Comments: Newsish

From the article you link to on AlterNet:

"The meterosexual is threatening to the Right precisely because his existence suggests that many men are embracing the breakdown of traditional gender roles, and the concomitant freedom to redefine masculinity. All of which can only mean more freedom and equality for women."

What's amazing to me is that we even need to have this conversation any more. I mean, what the hell? This is the same conversation we were having in the 1970s, and back then it seemed like the culture radicals had the momentum. Now their ideas are not even that radical anymore, yet the other side is still in the fight? How is that possible?

On another note, Phillip and I have finally posted some stuff to our new weblog, www.whatIsLiberalism.com. We are having a slow start, but from now on there should be at least 3 or 4 posts a week, and more as soon as our 3rd writer gets into it. I'd be grateful, of course, if you gave it a look.

Posted by Lawrence Krubner at July 17, 2005 09:20 PM

"Conservative:

1) resistant to change
2) opposed to liberal reforms"

From the perspective of the Radical Right, as long as they can remember a time when they (or their fathers) were able to judge a Real Man by the size of his car and the thickness of his pay envelope, any ideas to the contrary are new, unproven, and guaranteed to lead to the demise of this country.

In ritual, in tradition, there is comfort. Security. Change is scary and confusing. It could be an improvement but as long as the "old way" works (and from the perspective of these men, and a few women, it did work...for them), they don't see any reason to take a chance on change.

In a fashion, I do sympathize with them. Having grown up on the cusp of the Women's Liberation movement myself, I know there came a point in my childhood when I no longer understood what was "expected" of me. (There's something comforting, when you're immature, in being able to see the well-defined path in front of you.) That caused not a little confusion to my young brain as I danced between a husband, a kitchen floor to mop, and 2.5 children, or, you know, not.

I grew up and learned that part of being an adult is coping with change and challenge. The country still awaits the Radical Right's enlightenment on the subject of maturity.

More specifically, I think this conversation is coming back up now because this was significantly an intra-generational war. It's easy to look at the 60s and 70s and see a "generation" determined to liberalize society, but there were as many youngsters in those decades opposed to the changes as there were in support of them.

Right now the part of the generation that spawned the demands for change and the part that resisted are the ones in 'power' around the country. They're the CEOs, the politicians, the policy-makers, the ministers, the editors, and the decision-makers. And each side is reaching for the tools of power to institutionalize their position.

I think this is also why women's rights, a subject largely dormant in public debate for several years, is back on the public table, along with affirmative action and other symbols of minority rights. Of course, today's headline battle is the GLBT Rights movement, but since it was also founded in the 60s and 70s, I believe it's all intertwined.

That's what I think, anyhow.

Posted by Anne at July 18, 2005 08:19 AM

"In ritual, in tradition, there is comfort. Security. Change is scary and confusing. It could be an improvement but as long as the "old way" works (and from the perspective of these men, and a few women, it did work...for them), they don't see any reason to take a chance on change."

Well said. I linked to this post with praise for your comment.

Posted by Lawrence Krubner at July 18, 2005 12:16 PM

Thank you.

Posted by Anne at July 19, 2005 12:11 PM