The thing that struck me most about the gathering was the palpable lack of gender tension. Men and women at this conference seemed to be on the same page, and the same team, in a way that seems almost surprising in these gender-divided times. Maybe that's because gender-talk, long a female domain, is also now about men. As another speaker at the conference, Warren Farrell, said, women can't hear what men don't say. So it's good that men are speaking up. As Farrell concluded in a Friday night dinner speech, the goal is "not a men's movement, not a women's movement, but a gender liberation movement."The problem is that the sort of men and women who have combined to construct the current anti-male legal regime are exactly the sort of men and women who were not at the conference. And it remains to be seen how many of the women who publicly portray themselves as pro-male are genuinely pro-male as opposed to attempting to coopt any pro-male movement into the service of the Female Imperative.
With men and women both talking and listening, it gave me some hope that perhaps we'll see something new, and better, in the politics of gender. Will this spirit be able to overcome the politicized divisiveness that marks today's gender discussion? If enough men and women of good will come together, it just might.
Monday, June 30, 2014
Ever the optimist
Glenn Reynolds attends the First International Conference on Men's Issues and comes away considerably more optimistic about the present state of intersexual relations than I am: