Since I started this blog I’ve been looking for a good way that MRAs could team up with Feminists to fight a common enemy. On almost every single issue Feminism has successfully framed the issue as “sexism against women” and “The Patriarchy”. These constructs create a dichotomy where men are the enemy and women are the victim. This prevents any sort of reasonable alliance from being formed. No agreement can be reached or common goal identified when the issue has a framing of men vs women.
Domestic Violence and rape have been framed as “violence against women” so even attempting to address these issues in a gender egalitarian fashion would require debunking decades of feminist “scholarship” on the issues. The dysfunction of educational systems has been framed as “sexism against women” and will take a great deal of changing feminism to address in a gender egalitarian fashion. On most of the big issues there is just far to large a void between Feminism Egalitarinism and Men’s Rights.
The gender wage gap was my first hope for identifying such an issue that is common to the MRM and Feminism. This can’t work. Both sides are entrenched in their positions of half truths. Women do make 77% of what men make, but this is not unequal pay for equal work. It is different pay for different work. Feminists by and large are unable to accept this well documented fact. There is a wage difference in the 3-7% range that is not clearly justified by differences in hours worked and types of work and other valid life choices that affect wages. This is a well documented fact that most MRAs refuse to admit. While desegregating the work force is something that both the MRM and Feminism would like to see happen, both sides are fortifying their half truths and not working for a common goal.
My hopes again rose when Francis Roy brought up Vassagel. The availability of contraception is an issue that feminists talk about and support regularly. The lack of reproductive rights is a top 5 issue for the MRM. Supporting the availability of contraception seemed like a natural fit for feminism and a contraceptive for men is something most MRAs want. There was a massive problem with this being a unifying goal for Feminists and MRAs. It’s not a women’s rights issue. It is a men’s rights issue. The availability of a male only contraception is not a right for women. It’s not that feminists or feminism opposes such a drug, its just not something that particularly interests them. Just like cancer feminist hold rallies and fund raisers for breast cancer because it affects women, but not for prostate cancer because it doesn’t affect women.
A new film is coming out, Divorce Corp. I think this may be the goose that lays the golden egg. Sexism within the family court system is something that both MRAs and Feminists have spoken out against. The assumption that women are good with children is a sexist stereotype that burdens women with the children in the overwhelming majority of cases. The assumption that men are bad with children is a sexist stereotype that excludes men from having full and fulfilling relationships with their children. The entire divorce process is mired with these sexist double standards that hurt both men and women.
I think reforming the divorce process and family courts is an issue that MRAs and Feminist can work together on. I am not aware of entrenched half truths on either side that will prevent collaboration. There are very real Women’s Rights Issues for Feminists to talk about and very real Men’s Rights Issues for MRAs to talk about. Because the problem isn’t MEN or WOMEN but a legal system stuck in the 1950’s there is a common enemy and a common goal. By working together MRAs and Feminists can make the system work much better for both men and women.
So, to any feminists that may read this. Here is my olive branch. I know that reforming the broken family law is a real issue for feminism. A great deal of women’s rights issues are tied up with marriage and divorce. If you work WITH MRAs and the MRM to address this issue making a true gender egalitarian movement we will be able to get much better results for both men and women.
I know that ALL feminist won’t accept this, neither will ALL MRAs. But if every one makes an effort, enough will. I’m not even asking that you make an effort counter to your current and previous efforts. The effort to reform Family law is something both MRAs and Feminists want to do. Doing so in a way that considers both the male and female perspectives isn’t counter to either Men’s Rights or Feminism.