Community Discussion: Blog by Shinta | Patriarchy: 4 out of 12 shooting victims died protecting their girlfriendsDestructoid
Patriarchy: 4 out of 12 shooting victims died protecting their girlfriends - Destructoid

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A week ago I had an interesting conversation about gender roles, and various gender theories in the comments of the God of War: Ascension article, with the creator talking about cutting back on violence against women in the game. I argued that this was another indicator that our society views males as the more disposable of the two genders, and that collectively we care much more about demonizing and preventing violence against women. (For more on male disposability see this video.)

I argued that these theories about male disposability highlight areas of our gender social constructions that feminism completely fails to address with the "patriarchy" model. I seem to find clear evidence of social pressure to put female life above male life in terms of value, and that this can't logically fit with a social construct that is supposedly focused purely on promoting male self-interest.

So today I was watching The Young Turks, a progressive, left wing online news show, and I was immediately struck by the headline of one of their recent videos: Boyfriends Take Bullets To Save Girlfriends From James Holmes In Colorado Shooting. 4 of the 12 victims in the recent movie theater shooting died while literally shielding their girlfriends from bullets. The girlfriends survived.

What really shocked me though was the commentary from the two hosts in the video.

Male Host: "You think you might do the right thing when the time comes, but you don't really know, right? [...] It was a moment of emergency, and they all not only did the right thing, the heroic thing, but it was also quick thinking."

Female Host: "I can't imagine the heartbreak, and the kind of confused mixed feelings that these girls must be dealing with. I'm sure that they're dealing with, obviously, disproportionate amounts of guilt - there's absolutely nothing to feel guilty about - I think that, just like you said, these were heroic actions that really proved how much they loved their significant others."

Male Host: "It's not just a matter of how much you love them either, it's just the decent thing to do."

I just had to point that out, because I couldn't believe how blatant it was. Don't misunderstand, I'm not saying they did the wrong thing in any way, or diminishing what they did. Personally, I would aspire to be strong enough to make that kind of courageous sacrifice when the time really came. (But keep in mind, that anyone claiming to genuinely promote true gender equality would have to find some of this deeply troubling)

What I am saying though, is that our whole society socializes males to accept that their life is worth less than a female's, and that this flies in the face of any attempt to try and paint modern western society as deeply patriarchal. Clearly this isn't gender equality either, because both of the hosts (both aggressively pro-feminist on past shows), went out of their way to reinforce gender stereotypes promoting male sacrifice. They glorified the event. They didn't even acknowledge the humanity of the male the entire time. They spent more time talking about how the girlfriends would have a hard time moving on because of the guilt - but made no mention of the man who lost his life and what he's lost out on, or his parents' hardship in losing a son. They didn't seem to mind that our gender roles in society directly influenced 33% of the fatalities in this one shooting. And while they did praise them several times for their heroism, they ended by just calling it "the decent thing to do." Die, it's just the decent thing to do. To not die would just be rude.

This is the kind of stuff I talk about when I say that feminism is flagrantly wrong. Not only have they exaggerated the modern influence of any remnants of a patriarchy, but there's plenty of evidence that suggests that in reality, our society elevates women and children above all else (the complete opposite of their theory). The right to live in an emergency. Modern day, 2012.

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