When someone unexpectedly breaks/bends gender roles, can we call it being “gender rolled”?
When someone unexpectedly breaks/bends gender roles, can we call it being “gender rolled”?
First of all, we can respect women’s education, experience and career obligations, instead of expecting them to fill traditionally female roles. If the CEO of the local bank loves making cupcakes for the Women’s Banquet, fine, but it sure wouldn’t hurt to ask her to chair the finance board. And don’t grumble about the oncologist not taking her turn in the nursery rotation. Humility is great, and every church needs people to make the coffee, dust the pews and staff the nursery, but if you’re constantly tapping women for kitchen work while passing them over for roles that might be a better fit, don’t be surprised if they feel undervalued.
Second, male leaders can intentionally seek out female input. Women have an incredible wealth of wisdom, insight and parallel perspectives to offer the Church and the world—as men do. Imagine what the Church could look like if it paired the contributions of both together. And pastors, many of the women in your congregation are just waiting to be asked. Be intentional about including women among your advisors, and prodding for female attendees’ perspectives.
Last but not least, churches can hire women. About half of the students in seminary nowadays are women, which makes a powerful statement about women’s desire to bring their whole heart, mind and strength to Christ’s service in the Church. Even churches that are big on male leadership should be able to see the benefit of having called, gifted and theologically educated women on staff to minister to other women. There are some things women simply don’t want to talk about with a male pastor, and that a man will not be able to speak to like a woman can.
It is not good for man to be alone, and that holds just as true in the church board room as it does in the family. Let’s work on building a church that isn’t just hushing one side to hear the other, but where both men and women are encouraged to bring their whole selves to the table, using every gift God has given them for the sake of the Kingdom to the glory of God.
As generations have shifted, gender-based ministries have failed to keep pace with changing preferences and needs. By nature, traditional gender-based ministries hold narrow views of men’s and women’s lifestyles. In current culture, both men and women fill diverse roles and follow unique daily rhythms. We no longer hold as much in common within our sex as many churches would like to believe. Our lifestyles, preferences and attitudes contrast sharply. Not all women enjoy baking; not all men enjoy sports. We don’t all have children; we’re not all married, single, engaged or divorced. In fact, male and female professional accountants may have more in common than two 35-year-old women.
The latest attempt to persuade us to avoid pursuing guys in a relationship: “Prince Charming chased after Cinderella, not the other way around.”
Sorry, do I look like Cinderella to you? Secondly, I’m not trapped as a servant in an abusive household and in love with a royal - a case which would prevent me from initiating any contact with my “one true love” for multiple reasons, none of which are gender restrictions. Thirdly, - wait, let me just check: 21st century, living in Canada, short hair, higher education, imperfect body, no flowy dress, and people look at me strangely when I randomly burst into song - nope. My life is not, in fact, a Disney fairy tale. Whoops! It looks your restrictive gender role regarding relationships rule doesn’t apply to me.
It all just made sense in my mind.
I’ve been wondering for the longest time why Christians seem to have no problem with women who dress in more masculine clothing, but if a guy wears tighter jeans, let alone a skirt, he is ridiculed, or at least looked down upon by many.
BUT maybe feminine males and males who wear female clothing are often shown more disdain by society than masculine females and females who wear male clothing because masculinity is perceived as better, or stronger, or superior, so it’s natural that people would want to be more masculine. Femininity, while often emphasized as a requirement of women, is perceived as undesirable. By becoming less masculine, a man loses his privileged status as male and is seen as having become more inferior, and is thus treated with less respect.
If a young woman in middle school or high school hangs up a poster of Barack Obama in her room, this is seen as acceptable. It’s fine for women to admire men and want to be like them.
If a young man (the same age) hangs up a poster of Hillary Clinton in his room, this is seen as odd (maybe even troubling, is he gay? Oh no!).
Society tells us young men can’t think of women as role models, unless they’re a family member, whereas young women can admire and seek to emulate anyone, regardless of gender.
If you’re a young man, and if you have a poster on your wall with a woman, she had better be half-naked in a bikini, even if the Ronald Reagan or Gen. Patton poster next to it obviously features the man fully-clothed.
Young men are not to taught to think of women as role models. They are taught to think of them as either family members or sexual objects. There is no other category presented.
As a society, we encourage girls and women to be emotionally accessible, and in touch with their feelings; we say that it’s an innately feminine trait. We say it, that is, until they have feelings that make us uncomfortable, at which point we recast them as melodramatic harpies, shrieking banshees, and basket cases.
The thing about chivalry is that I don’t want someone to be kind to me just because I’m female. Do it because that’s what you would do for anyone.
(Quite possibly the greatest thing you’ll read all day)
Calls for Men to Be Blindfolded in Public
In response to claims that men are unable to restrain themselves from committing rape if they see women in skimpy clothing, members of law enforcement agencies around the country have called for men to blindfold themselves when they are in places where they might encounter a female wearing a tank top or a short skirt.
“For years, we have been told that men don’t understand how to respond to the sight of a woman wearing, say, gym clothes – that as far as they are concerned, if they can see the outline of her body, then that’s an invitation to sex that they are simply unable to refuse,” said one police chief. “If that’s true, then we have no choice. We want women to be safe, and there is apparently no way for some men to reasonably restrain their own behavior once they catch a glimpse of cleavage, so all men will have to cover their eyes while working out, going to bars or clubs, or relaxing at the beach.”
Popular radio “shock jocks” Skeezer and the Gooch have gone even further, arguing that men should be blindfolded at all times while in public, on the grounds that “it’s not just skimpy outfits, some dudes get turned on by random stuff like women wearing athletic jerseys and sneakers,” making situation-specific blindfolding insufficient to preserve women’s safety.
Unwise to Allow Men to Go Out Alone at Night?
A local coalition of religious leaders, concerned about recent studies showing that an average of 6% of men will commit a sexual assault during their lifetime, and that nearly all sexual assaults are committed by men on their own or in groups, are urging parents not to let their sons go out at night unless they are accompanied by a mother, sister, or trusted female friend.
Mens’ groups have responded with concern, pointing out that this may leave some men unable to complete the tasks of daily life, such as going to school, working, or socializing.
In response, the religious leaders said that they “understand that this may be an inconvenience for some men,” but that “the minor difficulties this imposes on men are nothing when compared to the lifelong horror sexual assaults cause their victims.” “Really,” said the organization’s leader, “almost any limitation on men’s freedom is better than the risk that they might sexually assault someone. That’s just common sense.”
Time to Admit That Some Jobs May Just Be Too Dangerous for Men?
Recent allegations that Jimmy Savile raped numerous children while working as a television presenter for the BBC, have led to widespread calls for television stations to avoid allowing men to do similar jobs.
“We know that not all men are rapists, and that some men can probably be trusted to present tv shows safely,” said the director of Televisions Within Borders, a professional group that promotes the welfare of TV hosts and the people they cover. “However, now we know that some men can’t. And why take the risk? There are plenty of qualified women who can do this job instead.”
Voices from the blogosphere agree. “You wouldn’t send a cocaine addict to do a Good Morning America segment about a big pile of cocaine,” said a blogger who calls himself “UltimateMindz.” “Letting men be TV presenters is basically the same thing.” That post has since been shared more than 180 times on twitter, and has garnered nearly 2000 Facebook “likes.”
Supporters of this movement point to the fact that there has not been a single recorded case of a football coach raping a child since all college football coaching staff were replaced by women after last year’s Penn State abuse scandal.
Deans of 25 prominent journalism schools have taken a more moderate position, however, urging television programs to do more segments on bodybuilders and military contractors – subjects who are seen as safe for male presenters to interact with because their physical strength leaves them less vulnerable to assault. That way, the deans argue in a widely-circulated letter, male presenters may be able to remain in their jobs, albeit in a role with less visibility and almost no opportunity for advancement.
“Women are more likely to be attracted to personality and men are more likely to be attracted to physical appearance.”
Woah maybe that’s because we teach women to see men as people and we teach men to see women as objects.
Ding ding ding ding ding.