One of the things that struck me, forcibly, at WonderCon was the fact that in competitions, women win. In fact, in just about anything, women win. This is doubly so for hot women. If you have a uterus and any kind of special power at all (including the average list of human traits and abilities - not just flying or moving things with your mind), in the face of most nerd boys, you win.
As someone who wants to be known for my own merits rather than the fact that my body is the shape of an hourglass, I find this a little disturbing (not to mention that something must be seriously wrong when a person worships any single person or group wholeheartedly). Still, I do want to be known for my merits. I don't want to be worshipped because of my reproductive organs, but then again, I also don't want to be stepped on or tortured for them either.
Recently we've been listening to the book, Don't Know Much About Mythology by Kenneth C. Davis as we drive back and forth between Buellton and Santa Barbara. The book has gone through any number of cultures and their myths, history, and the interplay between them. I found myself particularly interested in the change that occurred when cities began developing and specialization happened. It is a commonly held theory (which has significant evidence) that humans were matriarchal in our early history, and then became patriarchal. Based on my own experience and countless historical facts, legends, and stories, I would say the reason the change occurred was because men wanted to control women's ability to reproduce.
This has been a battle for as long as civilization (not humans but civilization) has been in existence. Along with the single organ in humans solely made for pleasure, women alone have the amazing ability to create life. It is one reason why so many women take fertility drugs, have acupuncture, and try all manner of things in an effort to be pregnant. Creating life is the thing that differentiates women from men. This is why our bodies are different, our chemistry is different, and our perspective on life is different. It's no wonder some women freak out when they are infertile, because what is a woman who is infertile? It questions the nature of her identity.
Men have to deal with this difference. Its true that some men come to terms with the fact that women and men are different, and are relatively easy on the other sex. The problem comes with culture and those men who aren't able to come to terms with the fact that women should have control over their own bodies.
Across the world, certain men (and those who support the status quo) as well as masochistic idiotic women are arguing against equality and women's ability to control their own bodies. This takes a number of forms. From lack of access to proper healthcare, and birth control, to lack of sufficient legislation and advocacy for those abused or assaulted - women are regularly fighting an uphill battle for equal levels of support with men. Yes, our bodies are different (and a bit more complicated!) and we've been second class citizens for a long time so I think we deserve a little extra help as far as basic protections are concerned.
Some people would say this is a feminist rant. I think that's disingenuous. Yes I am pro-women, but more than that, I'm pro-people. I don't hate men - in fact I like them, and most women would agree with me (just like most men like women). I did marry a guy.
The problem is that all people aren't getting what they need. Some of them have been singled-out. When you're in a system, sometimes it is hard to see that you are contributing to it - just like many American whites may not have realized they were actively supporting racisim in the 1950s, many men and women (unfortunately) don't realize they are supporting female subjugation. For this reason, I urge you to take a minute and think hard about how you think about women, men, and the laws that are being thrown around by state and federal legislatures. Women might win in comic conventions, but we're losing where it really matters.