Tuesday, February 10, 2015

The Freezing Man: Identifying My Dream Audience

Men often ask themselves, when they are distracted from their daily patriarchy by a chance encounter with feminism, feminists, or feminist thoughts (or more often the person reminding them that feminism is a thing), "But what about teh menz?"

It's even a meme.

But what about the men?

Are men worth saving? Or have they had a good run? Is now as good a time as any to finally give masculinity the boot?

Well... maybe some types of masculinity.

Even some of the bro-iest bros in bro town are willing to admit that men are a problem, otherwise, they wouldn't defend themselves by saying #notallmen.

To quote Samuel L. Jackson from 187, "Macho is bullshit."

And it's easy to villainize machismo, but it's only one of the broad spectrum of male behaviors and personality types that are destructive, harmful to women, and generally beneath the men who are actively engaged in their practice and proliferation.

So what is a boy to do?

Well, this post is part of a series for the Blogging 101 course offered for free by the excellent people at The Daily Post and the prompt for this post is to identify the readership you desire to attract by writing a post for the ideal reader.

And while I do a lot of thinking, and reading, about feminism, for whom could I write?

As someone who primarily identifies as masculine, writing about feminist issues for women feels patronizing. So when I think of the audience I would like to attract, ideally the topics I write about are addressed to men, but I think of the audience members as genderless, or genderqueer.

My perfect audience would read something I've written and say to themselves, "I really have to show this to X." Where X equals someone who is need of a feminist conciousness raising, but who is having trouble making that final step.

Because finding something is easy when you go looking for it, but if you don't know something is missing, how are you even supposed to start the search?

Macho men are easy to pick on because the macho ethos is predicated on the possession of, or willingness to use, force. However, raising someone's consciousness by force is worse than useless. Shine a light in someone's eyes and it prevents them from seeing anything else.

My ideal audience needs a light on their shoulder, so that they may look wherever they like, but wherever they look, there is no darkness.

For that person, I submit this short parable:
A man bought a house with ten rooms, but only used three. He slept in one, cooked in the other, and shit in the third. The thermostat was in the fourth room. For as long as the man lived there, he bitterly complained of the cold.
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