Gender Inequality: Violence

When I wished I was a misogynist sometime ago, Everchange understandably took me to task. For the record, I’m not a misogynist — in fact some of my beliefs could be perceived as feminist. I only believe in gender equality, something very difficult to find in today’s world. I’ve seen a friend of mine slapped by a girl over a ‘worthy’ issue that wouldn’t have been deemed worthy if he had slapped her for the same reason.

I like to call myself an equalist (whatever that means). Some of my opinions are offensive to either sex — sometimes both. I intended at first to write about gender inequality as a whole but when I started out, I discovered I had more to write than would fit below the boring/length threshold of a blog post so I chopped up my article and am focusing on violence instead here. This is a collection of bits and pieces so you’ll have to bear with me if it doesn’t appear well thought out. That said, let’s begin with:

A slap.

It’s quite simple — ‘touch’ someone’s cheek with a lot of force. Something as simple as being the recipient or giver of a slap can serve as a delineating factor between a man and a woman, a boy and a girl.

“A man should never hit a woman,’ someone once told me. I don’t disagree with this statement and a lot of people don’t either. When I asked her about women hitting men she told me there were lots of situations when women are allowed to do so.

“I’ll slap the hell out of his lying/cheating ass” is a statement I hear and see in one form or the other and everyone cheers her on.

Why is there an outcry whenever a man slaps a woman and yet the society actively encourages women slapping men? Why do a lot of movies feature men taking slaps coolly but in the rare cases where the woman gets slapped she’s usually the weak one getting hit by the villain? Why does the society only term it ‘abuse’ when the man is doing the slapping but thinks of any man who reports being slapped as wimpy? I could go on and on and on but I think we should leave slapping alone and focus on:

The beating.

In November I read an article on the BBC website (Survey finds male abuse approval) and I must admit I was quite shocked. In this so-called age of enlightenment, when a lot of women agree that pushing, slapping, punching and kicking men is acceptable, something is definitely wrong somewhere. What’s even more sobering is another article (Drop-in for male victims of abuse) that puts statistics at 1 in 6 men likely to experience domestic violence. What’s worse, it would be considered unmanly to report them.

The Wikipedia article on spousal abuse says the figures for violence among both sexes are almost even although the severity is usually higher in most but not all cases involving male perpetrators (you may take this with a pinch of salt like most Wikipedia articles although this one is well-quoted).

Who is to blame for this? The society? I think this is just a phase. We saw it in the past with women being actively discouraged from reporting abuse and rape. It’s going to be harder to convince men to speak up because as the dominant sex of the human species, the society has still not come to terms with the fact that men can be, and are abused but choose to remain silent for fear of ridicule.

Perhaps we should glorify men slapping ‘evil’ women in the media to the same extent as we do the reverse. Better still, both sexes need to be dealt with fairly and in the same way for committing criminal acts of violence.

Before I come off as misogynist, I’d like to say I don’t condone violence towards anyone regardless of sex. What bothers me is that a lot of women use their being ‘fragile’ as leverage to do what wouldn’t otherwise be condoned if the roles were reversed. I chose not to discuss violence directed towards women by men as this has already been examined everywhere ad nauseam.

I’ve told you what I think. You may now crucify shoot me.

Comments

  1. Vera Ezimora says:

    LOL

    Well, Azuka, I understand where you’re coming from sha, and yes, women do use their fragility as excuses.

    I think the reason 4 the double standard is that men are generally stronger than women, so if a woman were 2 hit a man, he could probably hold her down and control her. If a man were 2 hit a woman on the other hand, I don’t know if she will be able to hold him down without mace and a shot gun. Shey you get?

    Albeit, a lot of men deserve more than the slaps they get, but anyways, lemme not get in2 that, right?

  2. Jaycee says:

    Third…

    lol. Hmmm…I don’t think anyone shd be hitting anyone…male or female. But guess what? I know what the analogy is…common…men are generally considerable (not all the time) STRONGER than women. Unless they beat someone their own strength, it’s just not right.

    Veraaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…..number 1 blogger woman! Loll…

  3. mac says:

    “I know what the analogy is…common…men are generally considerable (not all the time) STRONGER than women. Unless they beat someone their own strength, it’s just not right.”

    But then we all advocate equality? If a man can slap a woman and it is considered okay, then we’re back to the stone age: “MEN ARE SUPERIOR TO WOMEN”. If a woman can slap a man and the man is expected to suck it up, by the woman and the society, and act like he is superior, or more emotionally stable, or more controlled, then it’s a man’s world. It simply spells it out: “ALL THEY DO IS NAG, WHAT PLANET ARE YOU FROM, MAN?!”

    Whenever I hear girls/ladies/women talk about this equality thingy, it makes me wonder. If a woman expresses her frustrating emotions through physical violence, shouldn’t one think she has more problems than the man on the recieving end that just looks at her in disgust? When we talk about equality of sexes, do we actually refer to a “selected equality” or do we mean “role-play”?

    I think in these cases, ladies are the architects of their problems. If one expects to be– on certain days– treated as fragile and less superior, and on other occasions equal, the chances that they are treated as less-equal on all occasions increases.

  4. Azuka says:

    Vera
    Pray, under what conditions is it acceptable for a man to get even worse than a slap? Cheating? Lying? Women do those too and they cry blue murder when they are slapped. Violence should be discouraged in every form.

    Jaycee
    The woman slapping the man isn’t beating someone her own strength :-(.

    Mac
    At last, someone who understands where I’m coming from!

    A lot of women like to think women are the only emotional ones and can resort to violence any time they want. What they hardly stop to think about is that [in most cases] before a man hits a woman, he must have been hurt emotionally. We only get all the criticism because we do the most damage.

    I decided to split this post for just this reason: talking about sexuality and women assaulting men would have been akin to opening a can of worms. I’ll wait and see how this is received before venturing further.

  5. belle says:

    i think its unfortunate that abuse towards men is condoned. it is very unfair that the double standards exist.
    i remember my mom had a friend who used to get his arse whooped all the time by his wife, and then complain bitterly about it to my mom. i used to snicker back then… thinking he was such a wuss. however, i have since matured and I realize that abuse is wrong… if the man is such a dog, then leave!

    unfortunately we live in a world with double standards. there are many things men can get away with that women can’t— take philandering as an example. double standards SUCK!

  6. everchange says:

    I’m against physical violence period. And yes I also think it is wrong for a woman to slap a man. However, when fighting off an attacker, physical force is a way of defending yourself and your body. I think we can all agree that if someone grabs you in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable, regardless of your gender, you have every right to slap/hit them. Especially if you sense that a slap or punch would put a stop to whatever it is they are doing! I think women who hit their boyfriends or husbands (except in self-defense, or in protecting your bodily integrity) are also abusive, and should be dealt with in the same way we deal with abusive men. Being physically weaker is no excuse for beating somebody.

    Having said that, violence by women against men is not even close to the level of violence experienced by women in the hands of men. This is a FACT recognised by tbe United Nations, which is why the UN define gender-based violence as violence suffered by women. About gender equality- the most important point is not “who gets a free pass on physical violence.” It is that men and women are equal. And even speaking of domestic violence, you should be asking who put forth the idea that men must be strong and should never be dominated by women? You realise that the reason men don’t report husband-battering is because society would laugh at them for letting their wives “rule them.” Feminists did not create this dynamic. In fact, it is feminists and gender activists who are challenging dominant narratives of masculinity and manhood. So you should not be suprised that people committed to gender equality would agree with you that violence is wrong, regardless of who does it.

  7. temmy tayo says:

    Why on earth or what on earth wil make a REAL man hit a woman? It baffles me.

  8. Azuka says:

    Belle
    It’s all about double standards. I agree with you on the philandering bit.

    Everchange
    Good one. If you don’t mind me asking a question.

    I have seen cases where a woman is completely justified in retaliating — e.g., the usual touching and feeling some crude guys think they can get away with. What happens when the sexes are reversed? Men are supposed to take touching as compliments and I wouldn’t want to go into detail about a girl who touched me inappropriately and I stopped myself from hitting as I would probably have been lynched.

    Putting the blame on men for not speaking up is counterproductive and you may wonder why I would say so. Some years back, and even now, women who spoke up were ridiculed in about the same fashion as men would today if they did. It took a lot of education to get women to accept that they’re not the weaker sex and have equal rights. Men will need just such education as well.

    I’m not defining equality based on violence. I only wanted to point out that advocating against male aggression when it can be found in however lesser amounts in the ranks of women isn’t exactly fair and I made the statement of promoting equality in violence in jest. Everyone, everywhere needs to be educated and sex shouldn’t be used as an excuse for violence.

    Once again, this isn’t everything I planned to write about. I just felt that especially on the issue of violence, only one side gets examined. I really appreciate your comments and I’ll let you know when I eventually get around to talking about relationships and sexual inequality. Cheers 😀

    Temmy Tayo
    I really don’t know. I’m waiting to hear what you think about women hitting men.

  9. c0dec says:

    yo. one i thing i know is that you shouldn’t argue with women. it’s so freaking pointless.

  10. Vera Ezimora says:

    I say, BEAT ALL MEN!

  11. nilla says:

    For some reason, i’m finding it hard gathering my thoughts together 🙁

    I think it’s because I’m for gender equality on some things (I deserve to be paid the same salary a guy would have gotten for my position (if i’m qualified for it), etc.);
    And I’m not for gender equality on some things(really, man and woman aren’t equal {and it’s not because one is superior or inferior to the other}).
    Maybe we should define what the whole “gender equality thing” is.

    Don’t even know if I just made sense now.

    I feel your post though!
    And I don’t support violence by any one of the two (male or female).

  12. Afropinay says:

    No comment..lol 😀

  13. Daddy's Girl says:

    Very interesting, Azuka. First of all, I think it’s wrong to use violence against any person when not in self-defence, regardless of gender.

    Second, this is not about this post – but generally speaking, I also think that equality is a tricky concept to apply to complex relationships and social structures. All the ethnic groups in Nigeria are equal, but certain groups, being regarded as educationally disadvantaged in the past, are actively encouraged to send children to school (sometimes by lowering cut-off marks etc), in order to help correct the imbalance. Does this make the disadvantaged group better than the others? Nope. It’s just that ‘equality’ cannot be applied blindly and without regard to the complexity of social relations and historical injustice. It can’t be exactly tit for tat, you have to go deeper… some times it’s more like french curves than a ruler.

    Your views are certainly interesting, I’ll give you that. Shows you’re an independent thinker, which is great. I wonder what you think about ‘gentlemanly behaviour’ (opening doors for ladies, offering them your seat on a crowded bus, carrying their heavy bags and all that stuff)?

  14. Azuka says:

    c0dec
    Lol.

    Vera
    Try it!

    Nilla
    I understand where you’re coming from. As a man, it would be very foolhardy of me to slap someone stronger than me simply because he lied. I’d definitely get a whopping I’m sure to remember all my life :-).

    On some things we can be equal, and on others well…

    Afropinay
    No comment? Na because of you I enable the rel=nofollow link in WordPress back. You dey take style get backlinks abi?

    Daddy’s Girl
    Thanks.

    Well, it depends on the situation. Most of what people would call gentlemanly behavior I’d consider just being considerate — opening doors, buying flowers, the works. I do them all the time for both guys and girls (except the flowers!) although a lot of guys wouldn’t like to be helped because it doesn’t contribute to their macho egos ;-).

    As for girls asking guys out I fully support it — for some reason I have this sadistic streak in me that enjoys seeing girls dejected when they have to handle the rejection men deal with every time they ask someone out, but that’s just me.

  15. Afropinay says:

    Azuka,
    If I catch u ehn? Na me send you? and actually its not even about that.. haba.. relax jo.. u this yeye monk oshi..
    But I think blogger even has no follow on their comment section..Men Ive been toying with linkbacks and no follow for some time.. yu know trial and error 😀

  16. Alain says:

    Nilla I like you comment. I feel exactly the same that why my motto is : ‘e-quality in differences’

    Azuka this is very brave of you to open this issue. I’ll keep an eye on you 🙂

  17. Boso says:

    A man who gets beaten is afraid of what people might think, that he’ll be labelled a weakling. So it’s tough for him as well.

    A man who beats a woman on the other hand, USUALLY has a physical advantage, and let’s be frank, it’s just unfair. Usually, there are deeprooted issues involved, like lack of self esteem, etc. I had an uncle who never worked a day in his life, while his wife was doing very, very well. He beat the hell out of her, accussed her of sleeping with her boss, put her in hospital a few too many times for 15 years, before she finally saw sense and kicked him out of HER HOUSE.

    I don’t think violence by anyone is appropriate, man or woman. Domestic violence is used by one party to exert authority over the other, and it’s not necessary.

  18. Gridl0ck says:

    It is true that women try to use the society’s perception of their being the weaker sex to their advantage. And it goes well beyond slaps too.

    The day a woman slaps me (and she is not my mother), I will lose a lot of respect for her, because I expect her to reason her emotions in words and not twith her hands.

    On the other hand, the only condition in which I could slap a woman is when she’s getting hysterical – the shock should bring her back to her senses.

  19. mari says:

    lol No comment as well. Just making my presence known. Have a lovely weekend.

  20. I’m against physical violence period. I’ve seen too much of it and lived too much of it

  21. temmy tayo says:

    women hitting men?

    That one pass me o.

  22. Its true – Ive seen cases where the women beat the living daylights out of the men – and they have no choice but to take it. In that case – the women tend to have more financial control or is an alcoholic who needs help. Either way – no one should be laying their hands on their fellow human being.

  23. Azuka says:

    Afropinay
    Have you heard? It is a sin to insult a monk!

    Alain
    Thanks for dropping by. Great site you’ve got there…

    Boso
    What a creep that man was! I agree with you on your points.

    Gridl0ck
    Fro someone like me, if I’m in a relationship and someone slaps me, it’s breakup time. No pleading, no excuses — after all, I would advice any woman who gets beaten to do the same.

    Mari
    The presence is appreciated. Have a good one too!

    Overwhelmed
    I understand… Thanks.

    Temmy Tayo
    You sure say e pass you?

    LOASCM
    It’s all about power control. Just as in the cases where men beat women, when a man is slapped once, it becomes routine.

    Thanks for dropping by.

  24. amen my friend….. i’m tired of all this feminist bullshit myself…… if you want equality, have equality, but don’t tip the scales the other way…..

  25. chainreader says:

    i think a slap is a slap, no matter who it comes from. I’ve never been one to condone violence, i just don’t see the use. But i think the reason people only equate domestic violence with a man hitting a lady is cos men are usually the stronger ones, and their beatings are usually more convincing!

    That being said, i would never raise my hand against a man. One, because i abhore violence. Two, and even more importantly, because i dey fear una!

  26. Vickii says:

    Hmmm, this is a very interesting, albeit controversial topic. Okay, first of all the average man is stronger than the average woman so while the average man will actually hurts her if he lets his anger manifest itself physically, the average woman will do little more than annoy, scratch a guy. That being said, violence in relationships at all is wrong, I don’t care who is doing the hitting.

  27. Azuka says:

    Nikita
    My sentiments exactly.

    Chainreader
    Lol. Why’re you scared of us? Some guys [like me!] are all milk, honey and roses…

    Vickii
    And the annoying and scratching could prompt a very intolerant man to give her a beating! A man usually won’t cry if he gets slapped but slaps do hurt.

    Good point on your last statement.

  28. andrei says:

    Actually, the significance of a woman slapping a man is a cry for respect, a man slapping a woman is show of male power being dominant over the woman. Its just culture.

  29. Azuka says:

    Andrei
    I think [I may be wrong] that you’re slightly off the mark.

    When you cheat, a girl believes she has all the right in the world to slap you but when she does and you do, it’s abuse.

    When you say something rude to a lady it’s acceptable to be slapped but when one says something of the same magnitude to you, it would be more ‘gentlemanly’ to ‘take it like a man.’

    Double standards, I daresay.

  30. idemili says:

    I don’t think anyone should be slapping anyone else. You treat people the way you want to be treated.
    Women justify physically hurting men/destroying their material possessions when they cheat,which I comprehend to an extent. I know that what some women physically do it men, is the equivalent of what some men do to women emotionally, due to the fact that it is considered taboo to smack them.
    However, if you were to put a female friend in the place of the your man you would see it is a bit too much really. You wouldn’t punch, kick or scratch a female friend who wrongs you. You wouldn’t burn her clothes or smash her stuff, it is just terribly disrespectful. The friendship would suffer and/or cease to exist.
    Why then would you hit your man? There is no justification for it.

  31. idemili says:

    OMG, I do go on.

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