In November of last year, I wrote an article for Fox News called The War on Men (which I subsequently expanded to an eBook). To keep it pithy, in the piece I focused on one effect of this war: the lack of marriageable men. But there’s so much more to it. The truth is, men have become second-class citizens.
The most obvious proof is male bashing in the media. It is rampant and irrefutable. From sit-coms and commercials that portray dad as an idiot to biased news reports about the state of American men, males are pounced on left and right. And that’s just the beginning.
The war on men actually begins in grade school, where boys are at a distinct disadvantage. Not only are curriculums centered on girls’, rather than boys,’ interests, the emphasis in these grades is on sitting still at a desk.
Plus, many schools have eliminated recess. Such an environment is unhealthy for boys, for they are active by nature and need to run around. And when they can’t sit still teachers and administrators often wrongly attribute their restlessness to ADD or ADHD. The message is clear: boys are just unruly girls.
Things are no better in college. There, young men face the perils of Title IX, the 1972 law designed to ban sex discrimination in all educational programs.
Under Title IX, the ratio of female athletes is supposed to match the ratio of female students. So if not enough women sign up for, say, wrestling and ice hockey, well then: no more wrestling and ice hockey.
What was once viewed equal opportunity for women has become something else altogether: a demand for equal outcomes. Those are not the same thing at all.
Title IX is also abused when it comes to sex. In 1977, a group of women at Yale used Title IX to claim sexual harassment and violence constitute discrimination against women.
Genuine harassment and violence should be punishable offenses, obviously. But the college campus is a breeding ground for sexual activity, which makes determining wrongdoing (and using Title IX to prove it) extremely difficult. Sexual misconduct does not necessarily constitute harassment—and women have as much of a role to play as men do.
Here again men are in an impossible situation, for there’s an unspoken commandment when it comes to sex in America: thou shalt never blame the woman. If you’re a man who’s sexually involved with a woman and something goes wrong, it’s your fault. Simple as that.
Judith E. Grossman shed light on this phenomenon in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed. A former feminist, Grossman concedes that in the past she would have expressed “unqualified support” for policies such as Title IX. But that was before her son was charged with “nonconsensual sex” by a former girlfriend.
“Title IX has obliterated the presumption of innocence that is so foundational to our traditions of justice. On today’s college campuses, neither “beyond a reasonable doubt,” nor even the lesser “by clear and convincing evidence” standard of proof, is required to establish guilt of sexual misconduct,” she writes.
When men become husbands and fathers, things get really bad. In family courts throughout America, men are routinely stripped of their rights and due process. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is easily used against them since its definition of violence is so broad that virtually any conflict between partners can be considered abuse.
“If a woman gets angry for any reason, she can simply accuse a man and men are just assumed guilty in our society,” notes Dr. Helen Smith, author of the new book, "Men on Strike." This is particularly heinous since, as Smith adds, violence in domestic relations “is almost 50% from men and 50% from women.”
Shocked? If so, that’s in part because the media don’t believe men can be victims of domestic violence—so they don’t report it. They would rather feed off stories that paint women as victims. And in so doing, they’ve convinced America there’s a war on women.
Yet it is males who suffer in our society. From boyhood through adulthood, the White American Male must fight his way through a litany of taunts, assumptions and grievances about his very existence. His oppression is unlike anything American women have faced. Unlike women, however, men don’t organize and form groups when they’ve been persecuted. They just bow out of the game.
America needs to wake up. We have swung the pendulum too far in the other direction—from a man’s world to a woman’s world.
That’s not equality. That’s revenge.
Suzanne Venker is the author of five books on marriage, feminism and gender politics. Her latest book is "The Alpha Female’s Guide to Men & Marriage: HOW LOVE WORKS." Find her on Twitter@SuzanneVenker.