Growing up in a chauvinistic environment with teachings of men being superior to women in all aspects (except the kitchen obviously), it was inevitable really that I was to grow into a bigot of sorts. A woman’s place is in the kitchen, women are too emotional to have positions of power, women should stay home and raise the kids- these are but a few of the traditions imparted on and by extension instilled into me.
So coming to work in a feminist organization was a whole new and entirely different experience for me. I was dealing with a matriarchy here, a high mother giving orders, making decisions, with her fellow “subjects” who were all from the same species… I felt surrounded and scared, as if they’d rip me apart at any moment. I thus always felt the need to make my point, show them who’s the man here, but it was pointless. They were immune to my condescending attitude. Did I mention the discomfort I felt about their campaigns? Supporting lesbianism? I was like what the hell is this that I got myself into? These people here are supporting everything I regard taboo.
But eventually, like they had some sort of ninja fire jutsu, they managed to melt the ice from not only off these eyes, but most importantly, from off this once cold heart of mine. And slowly my views started changing, my outlook and perspective on life, on the way I perceived women, on the way I treated women- it all changed. I’ve learned not only about loving them, but respecting them, seeing them as I see me or any other man on a level plain field… but the most heartwarming part, seeing them as better than me. Working with them I have first handedly witnessed and observed how respect and love breaks the chains of traditions that says women are subordinates. It broke the ignorance in me that made me feel like I’m working with a high mother and her subjects and alternatively made me see them as family.
With this new and evolving mindset I now see the (what I once called), species of this organization as women, standing together fighting not for acceptance, but for respect. And their passion is so igniting that I too find myself fighting the urge to scream “Viva women empowerment” every time I see a woman who refuses to let a man dictate to her what to wear, or what to do. “Viva women”, every time a woman sends that lying cheating bastard to hell. I want to scream “women for president!”, “women for popess!” or whatever they call a female pope.
I’m getting carried away, the patriarch in me will never forgive me, but the ever suppressed loving, respecting, emotional man in me says what the hell, Go woman! And take a Sister Namibia issue with you.