“OH MY GOD! GIRLS HAVE IT SOOO EASY! COACH GAVE THEM 15 POINTS!!!!”
-Twelve-Year-Old Me when a shutout kickball game became a tie.
In seventh grade kickball on Fridays, we’d play boys vs. girls. The boys always won in a slaughter but it was not a cakewalk. We’d have to kick with our left feet if we took an early lead. The gym teacher would give the girls more points if the gap got too big. One game we weren’t allowed to run. The concept of male privilege would have been as lost on Twelve-Year-Old Me.
It would be five years later that I’d faced with this idea of male privilege. My twelfth grade sociology teacher taught a class on the struggles of women through out time. I was slightly smarter at seventeen than five years prior so I took notes and paid attention in class. I was a good student. I had no trouble accepting that women hadn’t cruised through history. But then my teacher dropped this bomb at the end of her lesson.
“Even today men have it much better than women.”
My hand zipped into the air! I had to ask a question.
“You said men have it better. How can men have it better if you can be drafted to go die in a war just cause you were born a guy?”
My pencil was all ready to scribble down her answer. My brain prepped to soak in that sweet knowledge she was about to lay on me.
“I don’t think anyone should be able to be drafted.”
And then she gave us worksheets and that was it! I was left confused. I wanted to see her after class, but then decided to talk to my friends about video games in the hallway instead. So that question remains unanswered.
Do men have it better than women?
Virtually everyone would say it’s axiomatic that men have it better than women. I remain skeptical when it comes to the Western World.
I love reading crime statistics. That was a favorite hidden hobby of mine back when I was seventeen. I used to compare the trends of violence over the years to the portrayal in the media. It was like the more violence went down, the more violent stories were covered on television. Quite the dangerous inverse proportion.
One thing I’ve learned from all my fun time researching is that men are much likely to be the victim of a violent crime than women. They are far more likely to murdered, beaten, robbed, and a bunch of other nasty stuff. The only violent crime women outrank men is rape.
Men more successfully kill themselves more than women. Men die more on the job more than women. Men are more likely to end up in prison or become homeless. Can you say someone has it better if society is more likely to drive them to be a violent criminal? I’d have some trouble.
If you look at the tops of society, you will find men soaring. Men are more likely to be doctors, CEOs, and a bunch of other kickass stuff. But not many people look down and see the bodies of men laying on the ground. Men get to soar to the top, but they also sink.
I wouldn’t go as far to say women led easier lives. They have different equally as bad crap to deal with. I have trouble in general saying anyone has an easier life than another. It’s easy to observe someone else and pick out the good parts and not see what you might have over them. You might also miss what sucks about their life. Grass is always greener.
If you think I’m absolutely wrong and that men objectively have better lives than women, I’m open to hearing out your opinion. I’d love to have a discussion about it.