Friday, December 31, 2010

I blew my cover...

So I've been very good at hiding my feminism. Folks tell me that I can't date black men and be a feminist and I believed them.But is the belief that black men are generally sexist  and completely wedded to  patriarchy true? Is it a similar generalization to the erroneous way black people were blamed for prop 9 being overturned - we were pigeon holed as generally homophobic. People say things like black people are more homophobic than everyone else. So black people are homophobic and black men are sexist.

Is it true?

I'm only bringing it up because I just let another one bite the dust and we both know it. We liked each other. Great conversations about politics and life and was inevitable though. I saw it coming. He'd say things like - a man being a man or men and women can not have relationships today because folks don't know their 'roles'.  I would do the hmm mmm and a 'is that so'.

Why bother you ask?

I dunno.

I simply got tired of ended it every time a guy said something sexist. It's impossible. I wanted to date.  Tonight though he irritated me by talking about my thighs - thighs he has never touched - and I didn't appreciate it. So when he made one of his statements - tonight was a doozie -- I called him on it.

It started like this. You know, he said, I love dating African and Haitian women. I don't date Jamaican women. I told my father before if I was married to my mother (He is Jamaican) I would have divorced her. She's got a mouth on her.

* this ass seriously saying this right now????

Oh really? What was it that you enjoyed about African and Haitian women (bookmarked the mom comment for later)(btw men with mom issues...scaaarrryyy)?

They aren't like Jamaican women. Jamaican women are always talking about paying for the pompom and manipulating you. When I'm out with African and Haitian women they have a respect built into their culture for men - so there is no issue there. (negative comment about southern women versus northern women deleted due to its inappropriate nature)

So what does that look like for you? Being respected as a man.

Well they you know uhm well know how to make a man feel good? You give him a task. Make him feel needed.

Uhm mmm and they give you this task over dinner?

Well you can see where this is going. He believes that women should take care of the home and men should be the provider and protector. I said okay provider but you know, we don't live in the wild wild west, what are you protecting from whom? He says protecting emotionally and such. Sigh. Anyway.

Let me say this. I can't say that I'm completely in disagreement with his argument. I do think that both partners have roles. Men should work. Women should work as well. We both contribute to the family in ways that we feel comfortable.

The rub is that I mostly embrace traditional roles. I love to cook, want to have children, but it's not my job to make sure the laundry is done, and the food prepared; can I do it on Wednesday through Saturday and you do the other days? Jeez. You have eyes and hands, wash the dishes and do the laundry when it needs to be done. I'm not making a sound argument but this argument about proper roles annoys me.

Here's the example that annoys me the most. I said to him, I have a girlfriend who hates domestic roles. She is great however at business, she can bring in that cash and wants to be the CEO of like a JP Morgan chase. What do you think about that? His tone: derisive. If she can do that and keep her family together then fine. I just need my wife at home with the children when they come because woman are natural----blah blah blah --
I know you know the scrip.


He follows with, I don't mean to diminished or pigeon hole anyone. I said, would you have said the same thing of a man who wanted to run JP Morgan chase. No answer.

So I didn't call him on this stuff because ultimately it has nothing to do with us. Neither of us is good in business and I don't mind doing laundry, but the rub for me is people who are not open minded about the world. I am a grown woman. I don't need a leader, I need a partner; and those things are not the same thing.

In the name of patriarchy rebuilding the community, these folks are running around saying that women and men can't stay in relationship because folks don't now their roles -- we know what that means.

I submit that we are having difficulty in relationships because men and the institution of marriage has yet to restructure itself embracing the freedom that women have acquired over the last 100 years. We have the right to vote, and the right to a divorce, and a right to be protected by the state from domestic violence, and the right to own land, and the right to open a bank account in our names, and a right to keep our money and our children should we leave our husbands.

Anyway, I've said all this before many many many times. (Did you see the nytimes article about the rising divorce rate in Iran? Those women were given the freedom to leave and they are jumping on that bandwagon) And the initial point to be explored is what are the implications of being a feminist in the Black American dating market? I'm not sure but at this point following that conversation it feels bleak.

Tomorrow when I am hopeful again I will remember that black people are not more homophobic than white people and black men are not all wedded sexism and patriarchy- there are some black people who hate gay people and some men(and women) who will forever be wedded to patriarchy - but there are others who are open minded about this topic - I will wait on them. And besides, I know plenty of men like that, I've dated them mind you! Stupid ass. Off with their heads!!  On to the next one!! * Stilettos clicking down the hall.

Oh wow. last post for 2010. hope ur NYE was wonderful!

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