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I Can Open The Door For Myself
By: Ruth M. Beaver


Let me first state that I am by no means a Feminist. The women who go around and try to tell my sex that all men are vile creatures and will only serve to make our lives miserable are the kind of women who remind me of Tipper Gore and her censorship bullshit. They are just as closed-minded as those men who think that all women are below them and should spend their entire lives as housewives, cooking and cleaning and raising the kids. I am, however, very liberal. I believe that, as a female, if I am determined enough and am willing to put in an insane amount of work, I can do anything a male can.

As is human nature, we all grow up under stereotypes. Little boys are expected to play in the dirt with their Tonka Trucks and Matchbox Cars and G.I. Joes. Little girls are expected to play house with their Barbies and dress their dollies and change their diapers. If a little girl would rather play with Tonka Trucks or a little boy would rather play with Barbies, something is automatically assumed to be "not right" with him or her. The child is almost immediately assumed to have some sort of identity crisis and is unsure of his or her sexuality.

That, unfortunately, is the way society often works. And it goes both ways. Women who are assertive and are unwilling to put up with bullshit from others are usually seen as overly-aggressive, bitchy, or uptight. Some of us just know what we want, how to get it, and will not, for any reason, let some guy’s stupid pride stand in our ways. By the same token, it is sad that males who choose to engage in more female activities are considered gay or unsure of their masculinity. Take male flautists, for example. Some men make the best flute players in the world, but because the flute is often viewed as a “girlish” instrument, the most frequent assumption made about such men is, “He plays the flute? He must be gay!”

This brings me to the female “femi-nazi” stereotype that all guys are assholes. This assumption, while being quite the broad generalization and not taking into account that there are decent men out there, is not completely unfounded. Look at the Bureau of Justice statistics on rape for the last five years. Somewhere in the United States, a woman is raped every two minutes. Twenty-eight percent of those rapes are instigated by husbands or boyfriends. Another 35 percent are victims of friends and acquaintances, and yet another five percent were the acts of other family members. It is estimated that nearly 400,000 women are victims of rape or sexual assault every year. So if women, as a gender, seem hostile towards males, think about the reasons why we might feel that way.

Also look at how women have been treated through the ages. When the perfect hourglass look became popular, women were expected to starve themselves and squeeze into corsets that were pulled closed to horribly tight means. We have always been seen as the quiet and submissive gender, pandering to the desires of our strong and dominating husbands. In the 1940s, advertisements for household items, such as vacuum cleaners and irons, were geared to the common housewife. They made housework seem “fun” and appealing to keep women “in the homes, where they belong.” Today, women are expected to live their lives severely underweight to appeal to the media image painted of the “perfect woman.” Nearly 25 percent of all American females has or has had some form of anorexia or bulimia in their lives to appease a body image that has been put forth mostly by men.

Grand Admiral Thrawn, or the Private, depending on your current state of frustration instigated by the boy, forgets that he is not the typical standard of his gender. He is the consummate illustration that chivalry is not yet completely dead, but he often forgets that quite a number of his sexual category still view women as being the lesser of the sexes.

Women are not the lesser sex. We may not be the stronger sex, but, on average, the typical woman can stand 90 percent more pain than a man can. Your standard male can only withstand ten percent of the normal pain a woman sustains during labour. By definition, we are often more patient and can emotionally relate better. We have established our ability to think just as well as a male, analyze just as well, create just as well, and accomplish just as much.

And it's still very much a male-dominated society. As a female, we grow up being told that if we want to be "as good as" a guy, we have to be smarter and better and bitchier to not be lost in the crowd. We are not weak-minded. We are not over-emotional or “sensitive.” We are your equals. We are the ones who sit at the table during your board meetings with input that is just as intelligent and creative as yours. We have made medical discoveries and have put in long lab hours creating vaccines for diseases. We are the directors of NASA divisions and are stockbrokers on Wall Street.

And we can hold the goddamn door for ourselves.

Hold the door to be polite if anything. I am perfectly capable of holding a door myself and will get it myself if I arrive first. Those males who either expect you to wait patiently while they take their good damn time getting to the door to open it for you are the ones who bother me. Do not jump around us to open a door. Yes, we will regard you with hostility. And even if you do not rush to get the door and stand there and hold it open, we still might look upon you with a degree of disgust. Why? Because of the experience we have had with men. It starts with opening the door. Then he sits beside you at the bar. He talks to you. He hits on you. You try to leave; he makes it clear that you are not leaving without him. Yes, a rather extreme example, but not an uncommon one.

Some of us have come to expect that from the masculine sexual characteristics.

Some women have become accustomed to not trusting men. Sometimes, it is a very solidly logical decision. We have found many of you to be belittling to our sex. We have been oppressed by you, raped by you, abused by you, treated as property, and are still often considered being “not as good.” So yes, I may seem a little hostile and might insist that I can hold my own door. However, that is only because I know that I am my own person and don't need any special favours just because I have a vagina.

Do not try to impress us by being polite. If you are polite to us and not to the waiter, you are still an asshole. Manners are not a good way to “pick up chicks.” They are a good way to establish that maybe you are a guy worthy of more than two seconds of my precious time, but if you want to impress me, show me that you are capable of thinking about me outside of a sexual context and can respect me as your equal. We have worked too long and too hard to assert our independence and show others that we can do anything at which we set our minds to let some guy's chivalrous pride stand in the way of making something of ourselves.

Put a little more logic into your argument, Private Thrawn, and do not think for one minute that this gets you off the hook for last week.



Related Guest Rant

This Guest Rant was written in
response to Open The Fucking Door
by Grand Admiral Thrawn