Self empowerment is the greatest feeling one can experience. As a child, when I saw my uncle admiring his field of golden wheat swaying in the sun before bringing in the crop, I saw a fulfilled man. In winter, when, in the warm presence of his expanding family, he sat around the dinner table where the products of his farm were being served, he was a happy man. Those feelings have nothing to do with societal empowerment. Societal empowerment has turned out to be very detrimental to human development in that it supplanted self empowerment. The conundrum is that while societal empowerment should enhance self empowerment, it does just the opposite.
When the world of credit got rolling in early 20th century, women were the first victims of societal empowerment. Because they had always been subjected to male domination, they were understandably overwhelmed by the world of credit and the power it offered them. Unfortunately, not knowing what to do, they decided to get emancipated through the man. In order to get social status, it was deemed preferable to seduce a pseudo alpha male rather than look for a genuine life partner with whom to build and share a family life. Thus, the badge of femininity became the symbol of the sexual revolution that we’re still experiencing today, and it does not favor parity. What follows is an attempt at explaining the mess brought on by societal empowerment.
In early 20th century, people moved to the cities in tandem with the arrival of electricity, tap water, toilets and jobs. It was the beginning of tangible societal empowerment. In 1913, the bankers in the City created the US Federal Reserve Board, which made the dollar an international currency, and America, the biggest economy on earth. With this great market economy firmly in hand, the City could now proceed with its globalization agenda. It was time to bulldoze the Ancien Regime countries of the world, including those of the Holy Roman Empire in Europe, Tsarist Russia, the Ottoman Empire, Japan and China. Although the two World Wars that followed created havoc in the existing market economies, the result was mostly positive for the women in that they finally got good paying jobs. After WWII, because America was now considered the Eldorado of the world, everybody wanted to go there in order to create wealth, and a lot was created in a very short period of time.
People experienced greater comforts and long-term prospects looked good. However, as societal empowerment took root, it was the males who got the diplomas, the managerial responsibilities, and the investing and inventing opportunities. Males were cast in the ‘father knows best’ role, and that didn’t augur well for the females. Although some women got good paying jobs, most were of the office secretarial staff and factory production line variety. The parents wanted their sons to have a good education, get a good job, make good money, and marry a good woman, while for the daughters, it sufficed to get a good man, a ‘somebody’. The world continued to be very macho because women geared their ambitions to that of their men.
However, in 1920, after the passing of the 19th amendment, women got the right to vote, own property, and manage their bank account without their husband’s permission. After WWII, there was a move to the suburbs and the good life, and that’s when the real trouble started. It was the beginning of a world of comfort, leisure and plenty, a world for which our specie is absolutely not genetically programmed. The desperate housewife was being born.
However, women had to wait for the 1960’s and the advent of the pill in order to be emancipated, at least sexually. That’s when they were freed to some extent from male sexual domination and abuse. For the first time in 3 million years they could claim that they were in charge of their own body, and free to decide whether to have children or not. But though the females did gain some sexual freedom, social parity remained very much out of reach.
Genetically, women are programmed to get the best male with the best genes, as dictated by natural selection. But when we became intelligent and left the world of natural selection some three million years ago, though our genetic make-up remained unchanged, the relationship between males and females took an abrupt turn for the worse. Women lost their privileged status in that they stopped getting the services of the best genitor available, the alpha male. Not only did more lower ranking males get at the females, but they became selective as well. When the pill came along, women unwittingly attempted to go back to the good old natural selection days where they were the ones who more or less chose and got the best genitor. But unfortunately, in trying to reclaim their social role of old, they decided to do so by being seductive. They didn’t know at the time that fighting for emancipation by attracting pseudo alpha males with their badge of femininity would not only be a missed opportunity, but a disastrous social experiment. They didn’t know that the altruistic alpha male of pre-sapiens times no longer existed.
The male entrepreneurs were quick to exploit that sexual aberration by taking charge of the fashion world. The badge of femininity, as a symbol of independence and success, was adopted with a vengeance when technicolor first hit the big screen in 1936 and especially the small screen in 1966. In the process, women naturally morphed into Barbies, and it made many heterosexual and homosexual males of the fashion and cosmetic world very rich. By wearing her mask, the female couldn’t hope to find a partner who was her equal and a job worthy of her potential, and she was an easy prey for any pseudo alpha male who came along. Establishing a meaningful equal relationship became almost an impossibility. The female certainly wasn’t aware that wearing the badge in order to get a man was not only ugly and vulgar, but counterproductive as well. To be fair, the pill had hit the market like a tsunami, and overwhelmed, women had responded instinctively by looking for an alpha male like they had always had in the world of natural selection millions of years before. Unfortunately, they weren’t aware that the alpha male of old had volatized along with the world of natural selection and had been replaced by self-interested and self-centered imitations.
It now seems obvious that if women are to achieve social equality and parity, they must discard the badge of femininity as an absolute prerequisite. They not only have to fight tooth and nail for equal education and equal jobs for equal pay, but they have to focus on getting free universal child care, parental leave, and having access to pro-choice clinics. Women would be well advised to stop making their quest for alpha males a top priority, for altruistic alpha males are long gone. The alpha male of old was objective in his role, and was concerned with the welfare of the group, whereas today, the perceived alpha male is mainly self-interested. The female should look for an ordinary loving man like her in order to share the joys of family life on an equal footing instead of looking for a pseudo-alpha dominating male, be he an Adonis.
But in our world of leisure, it’s hard to find a partner with whom we can establish a lifelong relationship based on trust, honesty, and respect. And if equality and parity are to be achieved, women have to stop using sexuality as a tool, and throw their badge of femininity in the trash can. If one feels the need to prove that he or she is a man or a woman, something has to be terribly flawed in that person. Marlboro Man, the macho man par excellence, was dethroned years back, surely Barbie, the bimbo, can be as well.