Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Without Dependency, Anarchy Ensues

Okay, so I hate my fourth period class. It's Mystery, Myth, and Horror, and while I love the teacher and some of the curriculum is marginally interesting, I hate my classmates. My boyfriend is in there, an old friend of mine, and a friend of a friend who is actually a very nice guy is in that class. All the rest are basically asinine globs of teengoo. What does this have to do with dependency, you ask? Well, by itself, not much, however, it's merely an intro to another personal situation in which I tried to feminist.

All of the globs of teengoo hate the teacher of this class. I think she's the bee's knees, personally, but then again, I an carry on a conversation with an adult that doesn't involve "You don't understaaaaand meeee!!1", so perhaps I'm just not able to see things from their warped perspective. Anyway, we had a substitute today, so everyone was cheering and thanking God. I sighed and settled in for an hour and a half of stupid.

So anyway, the substitute was no push over. She was a pretty feisty old lady. I imagine that if I knew her outside of school, she'd be a pretty good poster child for "outrageous older woman". In any case, she was simply trying to do her job and everyone was giving her a hard time.

Anyway, I was trying to combat as much dumb as possible with wit and dissent, however, things still steadily went downhill.

First of all, there were two head dumbasses in the class. Dumbass 1 felt the need to sexually harass a female classmate as she walked into the class late. Dumbass 1 is really who we'll be dealing with most in this little story. Dumbass 2 just felt the need to scream obscenities across the room and announce genitalia at random intervals.

I told Dumbass 1 to please stop sexually harrassing the poor girl, as she seemed a little confused as to what was going on. I was not taken seriously and the lewd comments continued, of course.

Finally, toward the end of the class when I got my stuff done I was talking to the aforementioned nice guy and his friend who is also pretty okay. We were prettymuch minding our own business, actually discussing how patriarchy affects definitions of words and how such definitions can create oppression of both men AND women (we looked up "rape" and it singled out females as the only possible victims, it was an interesting discussion). Anyway, Dumbass 1 then felt the need to throw paper balls at us. I happened to feel a wad of paper hit me square in the ass and so I turned around got up, and walked toward Dumbass 1. He ran away yelling that I "looked like Satan" because I was obviously not happy that somehow a body part of mine became a target for him. I told him that if he did it again, there would be consequences. Lo and behold, a feel a paper ball hit my ass again. So anyway, I got up again, he once again screamed for help, and I walked up to the substitute and asked her to write him a referral to the office which she gladly did.

What does this story of asshattery and sexual harassment have to do with dependency?

It sparked a conversation between my boyfriend and I. As I mentioned before, he is in that class. He didn't say anything throughout the entire ordeal, so I asked him why he didn't later.

He said that he knew I didn't need it, that I could hold my own. He said that he didn't want to step on my argument and independence toes. I appreciate that, but that brings me to the crux of this post: Needing versus wanting.

It's a common anti-feminist tactic to draw on men's fears of not feeling "needed" and the awfulhorriblezomgness that those fears cause in men and boys. It seems as though to an anti-feminist, if a woman isn't in dire need of being rescued at all times, men and boys have massive mental breakdowns in record numbers. The sanity of male humans depends solely upon female humans being dependent upon them for, well, everything, it seems.

However, I think this is ridiculous. Not only does it create the idea that women's "power" lies in driving men insane simply for wanting to be treated like real people, and thus no women would really want to be treated like people while being moral in the process, it also creates the idea that being needed is somehow better than being wanted.

This is interesting, to me, because in Patriarchy land, women are not needed, simply wanted for the pleasures of the men that own them. Sure, they "need" them to be broodmares, however, that need is not as pressing as, say, the need to eat or be able to defend yourself against attacks, etc.

So to me, it seems like said anti-feminists are once again saying that sub-human "not being needed" status that drives men insane is okay for women. Women don't need to be needed, they can be "wanted" like all other second-rate things.

I just think that it's amazing how many layers of sexism anti-feminist arguments really do build up and love up on. It's disgusting.

Anyway, you wrap up, I promptly told my boyfriend that he was right. I didn't and don't need him to take over and handle situations like that for me. However, I would WANT him to stand up for me at least a little, like back-up. He had no problem with that. He likes being wanted rather than wishing I needed him. The awesomeness of that in a society that tells him he's less of a man if he's not NEEDED by a lesser woman is astounding.

2 comments:

Emily said...

Ha! The hit count is 4444. I think that's funny.

Anyway, your boyfriend should have wanted to speak up, being that it's never appropriate to just throw stuff at another person. He should have stood up for that other girl who got harrassed by Dumbass #1 too. It's his and everyone's social responsibility to speak out against sexism.

Megan said...

Oh, don't get me wrong, he told me he wanted to say something. He just didn't want to step on my toes.