The Patriarchy Exposed (still a draft)
This is a short summary while I’m finishing the article:
I want to quickly explain the nature of the kill switch. Again details are in the rest of the article, but the bottom line is that the whole patriarchy construct is being held together and powered by a single component: and it is slut-shaming.
The patriarchy is practically built on it, which makes it a single point of failure.
So here is our kill switch: we stop telling women when, where and with whom she is allowed to get involved romantically. Her body, her choice. And she is perfectly capable of making it a responsible choice, thank you very much.
NOTE: This is not to suggest that anyone should change their own behavior. We do whatever we are comfortable with. That, of course, includes staying monogamous, still a perfectly valid choice. But it can not be justified as a moral choice anymore -- rather, it is a personal preference.
So that takes care of the patriarchy. And while it will take time to heal our hearts and our minds, things will only get better from then on. Let me give just one example why such optimism is justified. It is about choosing responsibly -- sounds complicated and risky, but what it really means is this:
Make it about your own fun. And your Karma will thank you later 😇 <not the cheap shot at miss K that I’d normally take… I hope she’ll take notice>
“And something I don’t take lightly is giving free sex to anyone” -- from conversation with “I’m a lady, not a slut” person at a dating site.
“The purpose of life is to be happy” --Dalai Lama
“Patriarchy has no gender” --bell hooks
Patriarchy is as a social system that elevates men above women in terms of power, right, social status, etc. That is the commonly accepted definition of what it is and what it does.
It is also very narrow and, ultimately, misleading. As
It is also misleading. It only describes the patriarchy's facade. And while gender inequality is very much real, its main purpose is to draw our attention from the patriarchy's hidden core -- a set of (sometimes unspoken) rules and restrictions, . That machinery is responsible for achieving the patriarchy's real purpose -- to rob ppl from happiness and love, as much as possible. And to spread misery and fear. As much as possible. Not just women -- everyone. It has no gender. It makes no winners.
And as if that wasn’t a pain enough, patriarchy has to hide its core in plain sight, so
I also find it very telling that while gender inequality, in general, is the official face of the patriarchy, there is one exception to that rule. It is about slut-shaming having no men’s equivalent. This is not an insignificant aspect of gender inequality. And yet rarely we hear about
Let's leave, for now, the obvious question -- who would design such a gift to humanity, and why -- and focus for now on its clever design, allowing it to inflict widespread damage while making it look like our own fault.
“Everything in the world is about sex except sex.
Sex is about power.” --Oscar Wilde
The patriarchy story is about a power. A power and freedom women had been enjoying literally since forever. Since anatomically modern humans first appeared 100,000 years ago. Until a relatively recent development, the advent of agriculture 8,000 years ago, disrupted the natural power balance.
That transition ended with a new and a rather dystopian society, shaped and governed by the patriarchy. The latter is the direct result of robbing women of that crucial power. And that also points to the way we kill the beast -- by restoring women’s original freedoms.
Feel like reaching for the blue pill yet? ;) If yes, that could be one of patriarchy’s defense mechanisms. It can only survive by deceiving us about its true purpose. And it makes us feel rather uneasy when we are getting too close to its secrets.
And as true evil, it is always posing as something good and beautiful, down to Disney teaching every little princess the “happily ever after” concept. Or if you want to empower women, it will gently steer you towards anarchy, public offices and, of course, men.. But it will NOT make you feel comfortable going that other way. You DON’T what to see what’s in there. You don’t want to learn that about yourself.
At the core of patriarchy since its inception had always been the concept of slut-shaming. I would go as far as to argue that the patriarchy IS what slut-shaming develops into once it takes hold in society. Between centuries and cultures and all the forms that patriarchy would assume, slut-shaming has always been its constant feature. Then came the modern times, the 20th century and the patriarchy conveniently received a major upgrade, which it badly needed to combat the effect of women’s emancipation.
And in the classic tradition of paving the road to hell with good intentions, the emancipation itself was re-purposed to do patriarchy’s bidding. Women are now encouraged to dress sexy and attractive. Not for men, of course, but for themselves.
But here is the trick -- the good ole slut-shaming was not going anywhere (why not, BTW). and it is the combination of the two that became a textbook example of the psychological double bind: a subject is given two contradicting requirements coming from an authority they cannot question.
As a result, many young women end up traumatized (C-PTSD?), and that leaves them vulnerable to guilt-tripping.
And the guys get the message -- guilt-tripping her will get you what you want. I can only guess how widespread is this pattern, but I could tell that some guys do it without even giving it a thought.¹
On the other hand, slut-shaming creates a trap for heroes/idiots neglecting mind games when hitting on a woman -- only to get shamed for “disrespecting” her. She is not evil, but with her friends watching her, she cannot afford to look unladylike. Or, sometimes, even passing at an opportunity for improving her reputation.. sorry nothing personal.
Now imagine people, both man and women trying to have healthy relationships after being conditioned like that…
¹ Incidentally, this also gives a woman a safe path to intimacy, if she can negotiate to fake guilt-tripping with a potential partner. Sometimes it can go all the way to a shotgun wedding and happily ever after. It also might serve as a test for emotional intelligence and non-verbal communication skills -- attractive qualities on their own. And using them to conspire against the evil in plain view is as hot and romantic as it gets.