No Cake For You

Matt Melson

Since the feminist movement of the late ’70s, men in this country have been in a difficult situation when it comes to interacting with women. This new age of sexism has allowed for women to have their cake and eat it too for quite some time.

During the second wave of feminism, women asked to be treated as equals within the world. They asked for respect, equal wages and a sense  of equality. But these requests contradict the way women interact with men now.

Women demand to be treated as true equals, but when a man wants to treat a fellow woman like a true equal, he is told that he is wrong for doing so.  Men are not allowed to treat women as equals in the world. If I was in the workplace and I wanted to have the same conversations with a woman as I have with a man, there would more than likely be a harassment complaint filed, or if I was on a date and tried to split the bill, you could almost guarantee there will not be a second date.

The other day I went to my sister’s apartment, and while I was going the  stairs, I saw two women who were struggling to carry a couch. I was taught by my grandmother to always be polite and a gentleman, so I offered my help to these two and, to my surprise, they snapped back at me, “Umm no we’re fine. We don’t need your help.”

I was speechless the entire way to my sister’s apartment. Keep in mind they were going to  the same level as my sister and I was behind them. It was an awkward five minutes.

This solidified my view on this issue. I was only offering to help two people struggling with a couch. The fact that they were women was irrelevant. Somehow my help was warped into a male dominance attack on a lesser kind. If I saw two men struggling with a couch, I would have done the same thing. It was almost like these two needed the satisfaction of not needing a “man’s” help,  but when I held the door for them they were more than happy to take it.

My point is that men are stuck when it comes to how we deal with women. It seems that it has become a lose-lose situation for us. No matter what we do, whether it is trying to be chivalrous or trying to treat women as real equals, we are wrong.

This whole having your cake and eating it too has to stop. You  cannot have it both ways. We can either be chivalrous to you or treat you as equals. Not the made-up sense of what “equal” is that has developed over the past 40 years, but a true equal. You choose.