“Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are incapable of forming such opinions.”
(Essay to Leo Baeck, 1953)”
― Albert Einstein
Everyone has opinions, those that don’t? Either don’t know the subject matter (as in, don’t even know it exists), or are lying and wish to protect their views. At least that has been my findings regarding opinions.
That said, I have opinions, strong ones, weak ones, changing ones. But I tend to keep them off-line, or debate them with those I know, even if they don’t share my views. Why? Many reasons, but not because I fear change*, but the biggest reason is because of my inability to articulate my thoughts and feelings. I try, my son is amazing at it (even if I disagree with his views at times), but I struggle just to keep my mind focused in every day situations, meaning debating and articulation of my views is next to impossible for me. I can think it clearly, but when I open my mouth to speak, the thoughts rush, jumble, and twist to make it out. It never is a straight line of thought.
That being said, I will try give a brief voice (well, my brief) to my views.
There is a lot, I mean a LOT of shit going down in this world right now, and frankly, with my health still nowhere near the 100% (or even 70%) mark, I try to keep informed, but without too much detail. That being said, In brief, Trump is bad, molestation, harassment, rape, etc is bad, many (maybe even most) men are bad. War, fear, anger, all bad (but some, inevitable – I get angry, even when I shouldn’t). MANY things are bad. Most of what is in the news is bad. I
can’t won’t post on all of it, so I will pick the top three: Trump, Guns, and sexual harassment/rape/etc. I will keep most super short.
Trump: Not much I can say. I can’t tell if he really is mentally unstable, or doing these things to distract from what he is doing. Probably a bit of both. Either way? Scary fucking dude who really should not be in power.
Guns: Don’t like them. Ideally, they would not exist. But, they do. I have fired them. I like to fire them. It’s fun to see who can hit the target the best etc. But That’s as far as it goes. I think even countries with strict laws could do better, but I have no clue how. I listen to my son on this. He is a gun enthusiast. As for the USA? I honestly don’t see a way out for them. At least, not cheaply or easily. But I feel that it will involve “dethroning” the NRA in some way. They need way less influence. I have no clue how.
The sexual stuff: I have NO CLUE where to start with this. I know MANY people who think that “ALL MEN MUST DIE”, I know some that think they should be around BUT, “ALL MEN ARE EVIL” hell, I have even know women that “stand by all the men, no matter what” (that last one makes me shake my head). I swing around many of the views, never quite landing on one as my “spot”. If forced to say a solid view, I guess I’d have to state that I don’t think it is all men, but the good ones are too few and far between, and rarely there when you need them. AND, if all you look for is the bad, you will NEVER, EVER see the good.
Hell, I married a good guy, I am trying to raise a good guy. NOW, if you are talking perfect? Has NEVER fucked up, Has NEVER made a mistake? Nope, they do not exist. BUT, if you mean a good guy that when he makes a mistake, or fucks up, once he realizes, apologizes, and stops doing that stupid thing, and has never raped? Then, yeah. They are out there.
As for speaking out? I find that one difficult. There are too many grey areas. I am a “Me Too” story, many of them. But I am also some one who, in younger, drunker years, have groped, and coerced men. Hell, I’d use what I had to get free drinks etc. Do I do that now? NO! I know better (plus I am married). Thing is? Maybe not all women, but oh so many I have known, or do know, have done shitty things like that when younger, drunk, and oh so stupid. BUT, once they were shown they were wrong they changed. (for me it was more of an “ah ha” moment – where I had something done to me, that I had JUST done to a guy …).
I have always been given the benefit of the doubt, or told “that was the past”, yet men who change, they are accused of not being able to change. Why? What makes me different?
Now, that does not mean I think men who are serial abusers/whatever should be forgiven, or not shamed. I am saying if it is something that happened when much younger/years ago (I don’t mean rape – rape is NEVER forgivable), or only a few times, and it is obvious they have changed, why should they not be given the same consideration I am given?
I don’t know. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe men are born evil, maybe they can’t change. Maybe it is built in to them and we should just lock them all up before they can do anything. (okay, a tad heavy-handed on that. But that is an ACTUAL conversation I over heard at work with some customers. shudder)
I have no answers, my mind is in constant flux on this one. I know that it has to change, I know women NEED to have the same (NOT more, but THE SAME) power/status/opportunities that men do. And YES men need to STOP thinking they are biologically incapable of not doing “the thing”.
I just have no answers on how we can get there. But, a good place to start? Men need to stop abusing/harassing/etc, and good men need to speak up and tell the bad ones to stop. THAT is a very good place to start.
*I do have fear of change. But not of opinion. Of surroundings, and placement changes yes. But not my mind. There I welcome change.