You’ve seen the commercial. A cool masculine dude is taking a shower while his wife begins to tease him about the “soap” he’s lathering with. Turns out, it’s not really soap… It’s her feminine hygiene product.
The guy freaks out and begins a succession of “hyper-masculine” activities – working out, chopping wood, sawing lumber – seemingly desperate to remove the stench – or perhaps just the memory – of what he’s just experienced. At the end of the ad, he sits down on the sofa, still recovering. “That was close,” she says, snarkily.
It’s meant to be funny, of course. But it rubs many men the wrong way. The ad seems to suggest that men should do more than just accept women as our beautiful but distinct equals. We need to embrace a woman’s essence – and not fear the idea of a “woman” inside of us, too. You know, “get in touch with our feminine side.”
Men have heard this line for years – often questioning whether the women who say it – in their heart of hearts — really mean it. Women typically crave a man’s deep masculinity – his physical strength, his sexual stamina, and his ability to “tame” a woman’s neurotic excesses – and may even view his emotional “sensitivity” – unless it’s focused on her – as a sign of “weakness.”
Are men really such gyno-phobic brutes, as ads like these imply? Or are many “modern” women just hopelessly out of touch with what fires their passion for a man – and allows them to build real intimacy with him?
This is hyper-feminism at its worst – and it’s cropping up everywhere in American society. Women, it seems no longer want equality with men — they largely have that. Now it’s supremacy they’re after. Have you seen one of the latest Doritos commercials?
A mother returns home with the prized chips in the back of her SUV and invites her two children to get them. Initially, her son gets the jump on his little sister and grabs the package. But his sister hops on the family dog like a skilled horsewoman and lassos the Dorito package away from her brother.
But that’s not all. Moments later, she ends up using the same lasso to hog-tie her brother rodeo-style, lifting her arms triumphantly. Her mother cheers her on.
It’s a disturbing and demeaning image, suggesting just how much women genuinely want to stack the gender odds in their favor. And it’s starting earlier and earlier, with boys, not girls, facing a much bigger challenge with their grades in primary school, and women going to college in increasingly larger numbers.
Depictions of men in TV sitcoms are also tilting toward disguised misandry. In the hit series how Californication, David Duchovny was a philandering writer who bedded down a sixteen-year-old and regularly got into fistfights.
The father in the popular sitcom Malcolm in the Middle was clearly deranged; so was the meth-dealing high school teacher in Breaking Bad. In the Sopranos, he’s an angst-ridden psychopath. The star of Dexter was a serial killer. In other series, men are depicted as bumbling and ineffective and totally dependent on their wives.
Things were already bad before “Me-Too.” but they’re getting much worse. In politics, we are seeing an enormous shift toward demonizing all white men as would-be sexual predators. Women, by contrast, are held up as saints. Senator Kamala Harris, a lowly city prosecutor who slept her way to the top of the California Democratic Party, is touted as the “next Obama.” Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, who regularly taunts her staff and throws binders at them, is hailed as a working-class hero.
There’s a larger problem in American society that goes beyond hyper-feminization. In fact, gender differences themselves seem to be disappearing. It started with the rise of the gay movement but has reached new heights with the celebration of “transgendered” people.
Gay people constitute about 7% of the US population, transgendered less than 1%. However, somehow these are American society’s new icons and role models. Society used to be in denial about the abuse of women or the existence of sexual minorities. Now, every white male heterosexual seems to have a target on his back.
Forgive me for wanting to lather with soap in the shower. It doesn’t have to be Irish Spring. But I don’t have a vagina and I’m quite proud of my penis and what it can do. Last time I checked, so were you. Maybe you should act like it?