Is the empowerment of women ALWAYS....ok...almost always...:)  for the betterment of society?

....You can guess

My answer Is....YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What do you think?

Why?

For the purpose of this discussion: We must first define the empowerment of women. Please see this video. Women have only recently with the invention of modern medicine been able to control their reproductive health and choice. They have become much more equal in the workforce. They have been allowed to raise their children with infrastructure in place to aid them financially and emotionally. They have been given many rights that in previous generations were defaulted to the man, such as the right to vote, the right to join the armed forced and even the right to say no to sex and be heard. These rights have not come over night. But we now have them and many take them for granted. Myself included maybe. But the empowerment of women is more than just giving them rights. It's being able and willing as a society to recognize their humanity and honor it as just as important as a man's humanity. This means that special considerations must be made due to the nature of women as the child bearers and mothers. It doesn't mean special treatment or putting women above men, it means elevating them to a place where they can make the most of their lives and the lives of their children, and the society they live in. It means allowing them to use their unique skills and influence to counteract the sometimes male-dominated attitudes that prevail in public life, and it means that women MUST be respected for the natural born abilities they can bring to others, but even more so their ability to be authentically themselves without societal pressure to conform to old ways of thinking and living. It is the only way  our species will survive and has survived. Women have sought empowerment and have won in many ways, but in my opinion and the point of this discussion is to say that there is NEVER a circumstance where the empowerment of women would be detrimental to society, therefore it is ALWAYS for the betterment of society.

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Somos dos

Que lastima, para ti --

You (plural) got two of my houses, three of my cars, and my old coon dog, and you still want more power?!

And no - you're not getting THOSE! They're all I have left!

This is a double edged sword so to speak.  As a woman, I may have more rights than I would have had 100 years ago, but I with those rights, I also have more responsibilities. 

Women today are still responsible for the majority of childcare, the majority of housework, the majority of the shopping and running of the household--just as they were 100 years ago. This has not changed much at all.  However, today, most women are also responsible for "bringing home some, if not all of the bacon." 

Women, as child bearers, are different than men.  But other so-called abilities should not be considered innate, such as caring for children, passivity, emotion, etc.  Both women and men exhibit these behaviors, and the view that one or the other is primarily associated with one sex or another is primarily due to social conditioning. 

RE: "Women today are still responsible for the majority of childcare, the majority of housework, the majority of the shopping and running of the household--just as they were 100 years ago."

Division of labor has been a successful business model since the Industrial Age began, and as it's time-saving in an age when no one has a lot of free time, I see nothing wrong with it. But as for how the labor is divided, that should be up to the couple, based on their own preferences, rather than on "traditional roles."

I raised four children by myself for eight years, and have played all of the roles, including Chief Diaper-Changer. When I first started, my kiddos, playing anywhere in the neighborhood, knew when dinner was ready, they listened for the smoke alarm to go off. But I've since learned to cook and have become rather good at it, but if I'm going to cook, I want to buy the groceries for the meal, as I have certain preferences when it comes to the kind and quality of the fruits, vegetables and cuts of meat I use, but that's my preference. I would bet, though I'm a guy, that there are women who wouldn't want come guy without a clue picking up groceries for the meals they make either, so to me, shopping and cooking go hand in hand. To others, that may not be the case.

All I'm saying, is that it's got to be done, and dividing the labor is the most efficient way of doing it, but tradition should be thrown out the window when it comes to who does what. Sometimes shopping together can be fun and romantic, but not with a gaggle of children in tow. Cooking together might be fun for some, but when I'm cooking, get out of my kitchen - even if it's your house, it's my kitchen til the meal is ready - go grab a glass of vino, kick your shoes off, do anything but kibbutz while I'm cooking. "Don't you think that's a little too much salt?" "OUT!"

Not all labor can be divided, try as I may, I can't lactate.

"Women are works of art, men are monsters."
The world has always been dominated by men. That's one reason our species has survived and evolved. Human DNA designated the male of the species to be the biggest and strongest, not only so they could hunt Mammoth and protect the village, but also so they could physically overpower the females and...well, so the DNA strand would be sure to continue. That IS the genetic directive for the male, to spread the seed and perpetuate the species. The genetic directive for the female is to receive the males seed, be the 'vessel', and eventually the child-bearer of the species. That's the way our roles have been set up forever, so to speak.
However, as our DNA directed our bodies to adapt through evolution, it also directed our brains to evolve and adapt. Our DNA sensed (for the lack of a better word) that the better we were able to think, the more likely we were to survive. So our minds kept evolving, and over time it became a cycle; the more we thought, the better we thought, which meant we could think more, and so on and so on.

And now here we are in the 21st Century. Our minds have evolved to a level that we can leave the Earth in spaceships, build flat-screen TVs, squeeze cheese out of a can, and actually mess with our own DNA. Our mental abilities have far-outpaced our 'cave-man-like' genetic directives. That's why as intelligent as we've become, we're still just as violent as cavemen ever were.
Sure, we can put on a good show of being civilized and act peaceful, but when we're threatened physically or even emotionally, our first response is usually to get violent; 'fight or flight'. We think like modern men, but we still act like we live in caves.
The other thing that didn't evolve as fast as our minds and imaginations, was our libido. This IMO, is the major problem we've been dealing with for centuries, and we're still dealing with it today. Men are still unable to control themselves, just like their ancestors. Early man was not meant to control himself, he was meant to procreate. Men today, just as then, no matter what society on the planet they come from, can't keep from raping the women around them. It's not just a psychological problem, it's partly a genetic-drive problem. Of course our DNA doesn't see it as a problem at all. We only see it as a problem because we've evolved to be more intelligent and calm than our ancestors.

I'd personally love it if men would just give the reigns of this whole planet over to the women.
Yeah, I said it!
Please, it doesn't take a MIT grad to recognize that all the wars, all the starving, all the senseless deaths from preventable and treatable diseases that happen everyday, are all a result of male idiots being in charge. And I don't know for sure, but I'd venture to say that all the religions in the world were probably started by men too. That alone is reason enough for the guys to take a seat on the bench, and let the girls have a shot at it.
I am all for the empowerment of women, men have been in 'power' for far too long.

Early man was not meant to control himself, he was meant to procreate. Men today, just as then, no matter what society on the planet they come from, can't keep from raping the women around them. It's not just a psychological problem, it's partly a genetic-drive problem. Of course our DNA doesn't see it as a problem at all. We only see it as a problem because we've evolved to be more intelligent and calm than our ancestors.

@Rick Yost: I like what you said, but this phrase stuck out to me. Why do you think that men can't keep from raping the women around them? Is it pure libido? Is it just because we're beautiful? lol...Is it because they are just really horny all the time? I'm probably asking the question the wrong way but I'm curious why you say that. In today's society women are counseled that if they are raped that it's all about "power and control," dominance if you will...Do you believe this to be the case? Or is it really that they are just that fucking horny? (I say this in a somewhat joking voice but a serious question...) I want/need to understand this because it's something I'm currently dealing with in my own recovery. Getting a man's honest point of view would be helpful to me to understand. Maybe there are other women out there who are dealing with the same thing. I don't know. But I would appreciate your further perspective on this. Especially when considering that many/most rapes happen by people you know...it makes we wonder. It may allow me some insight to protect myself further in the future. Vulnerable question, but I can't wait for your answer. Thanks!

I'm not Rick, but until he responds, you'll have to settle for my cent and a half's worth --

While I'd be inclined to agree that perpetual hornyness and the urge to have sex with multiple females is normal and natural for many of us, and may be part of that natural instinct you mention, I don't believe rape falls into that category. With many men, sex isn't just about the orgasm, it's about the road to getting there. There's also an ego boost involved that a particular woman wishes to have sex with you.

In rape, however, there is none of that, except for the pure, raw orgasm - no fun in getting there, no ego boost, just the feeling that you are in complete control of the woman, and that's what I would assume that rape is all about - not fun, not the creative impulse, not even the orgasm, just the control of a woman who would likely otherwise have nothing to do with you.

I can't understand why a man would ever want to rape a woman, even if he knew for certain he could get away with it, but then I've never been much into controlling people.

Everything we humans do is either 'mechanical' or 'emotional'.
When we eat, sleep, read, get up to go to work, or make logical choices; that's 'mechanical'. When we cry or laugh, want intimacy, feel embarrassed or proud; that's 'emotional'.
Other's might think of different examples for both, or even disagree, but I think I've expressed the simple idea well enough.
You can have sex without being in love, and you can be in love without having sex.

To me, 'being in love' is emotional, it involves a huge combination of emotional things; a need for companionship and acceptance, a want for closeness, an appreciation for congruent personalities, a need to feel needed, a desire to feel worthy of the other's love; all sorts of mental things come into play, some quite sensible and natural, some more imaginary and constructed.
On the other hand, what I think of as mechanical, for the purpose of this discussion, is the ability of a man to become what we all commonly call 'horny'.
Women can be horny too, and that's just as mechanical, but I think it's for a different set of reasons, mostly pair-bonding or maternal in nature.
But let's get back to the guys.

Most of us have known a young man at some point who we've heard described as, "He'll have sex with any woman he sees!" No, it's not usually meant to be literal, but a distinctive behavioral pattern is obvious. I've known guys like that all my life; hell, I think I was one of those guys during my twenties. For years, every pretty woman I saw was immediately put into a sexual fantasy in my mind, until I saw the next one, and then the next.

Some guys instantly know there's a woman in their proximity. Once they see her, once they view her form, it becomes mechanical; their hearts start to race, their hormones start to sizzle, their testosterone increases, and they can even get an erection imagining having sex with them. Even if they're usually quite sensible and even shy, the mechanical trait has taken over, and they will sometimes say anything and do anything it takes to convince the woman to have sex with them.
I'm not saying they have no control, or in any way are they free from culpability or shouldn't be held accountable for their actions, I'm just telling you what I think is 'mechanically' going on inside them. The next-strongest instinct after 'survival', is the instinct to mate. As far as our own self-serving DNA is concerned, that's why we are alive.
Yes, I think every male human is born with this instinct. In some men the nature is less or more powerful than in others. Some men can control it better than others, some can mature past it rather quickly and easily without succumbing to it, some can't.

A guy can be working intensely on a fairly tedious project, concentrating on safely running a complicated machine, or engrossed in some mentally-taxing activity; but let a woman walk into view, and even if he's never seen or met her before, his mind can be instantly distracted; it can almost seize-up completely.
He can suddenly forget all about whatever had just been totally consuming his mind. The sight of her form, the sound of her voice, the fluidity of her movement, the scent of her pheromones can temporarily incapacitate him.
(sorry, I lost track of what I was saying there for a moment.)
Does this sound as if there is an emotion involved? Does he suddenly need to feel close to this woman he's never met before to express an emotional attachment. Does he instantly appreciate her love of classical music, how she looks when she's sleeping, or that cute little noise she makes when she sneezes? No.
The seizing of his mind at the sight of her body is purely instinctual, mechanical.

This is a DNA directive, a reptilian brain instinct that tells this young man's ordinarily sensible mind and body, that before the night is over, he needs to mate with her. Whatever the reason, his instincts tell him that he has a physical need to mate.
And of course men are notorious for feeling unusually upset, despondent, dejected if they can't fulfill their DNA directive and mate as soon as possible. Sorry, that's not love. They may fall in love later on, but at first, the emotional manifestation of love has nothing to do with it.
This directive is so strong and 'mechanical', that as a couple, you don't even need to have ever experienced sex before. You don't need to have ever heard about it before. If the instinct is strong enough, the act of sex will happen quite well all on it's own. All the working parts will come together nicely, almost effortlessly, because our DNA designed us that way.
I also think this instinct that is so strong in young men and women, lessens with age. It did in my case anyway.

Mix this constant instinctual male drive with a twisted set of values taught to them as a child, or an emotionally distorted need to feel powerful, or throw in some self-hatred thing that compels them to force themselves on women, and you'll have many different variants on the theme.

As much as we'd rather see ourselves as different and separate or 'above' the other mammals on the planet, we're merely the species that natural selection chose to stand at the top of the food chain. We may have developed complicated brain function through the natural course of our evolution and our DNA's need to survive, but we're still just animals.

I don't know if I came anywhere close to answering your question Belle, I hope so.

Yes you did Rick. You did. Thank you.

Thanks Arch. I should have thought that one through before I asked. Your (honest) answer strangely affected me pretty deeply. I'm not sure I was prepared for the answer or my own reaction to it.

RE: "I should have thought that one through before I asked." - you couldn't have, you asked for a male perspective, of which you are not one (unless you've got yet another alias in there somewhere --)

If I can put my opinion in a nutshell, rape is committed by a small ego in a big body.

But before I close, let me say I've been watching the evolution of your thought and reasoning processes, from when you first came here, til now, and there have been dramatic improvements - it's probably that we so often ask people to defend their positions, that you've learned to think more deeply and phrase the things you say more succinctly. Glad you decided to stay, whatever you're calling yourself this week.

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