Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Eighteen words. Two meanings.

So I was just roaming around on my Facebook feed and saw an interesting post by a Jasmin Newman (whom I've already contacted and got her permission to mention her here).

Here is the post she made:



If you are not able to read it is says the following:
"Nobody ever asks a man how they get things done. Nobody asks a man how he finds balance." Shonda Rhimes, Feminist screenwriter."
"Nobody ever asks a man how they get things done. Nobody asks a man how he finds balance." Jasmin Newman, Non feminist writer.
We are equal. The difference is empathy.
The exact same 18 words but meaning two different things from two different people.

Shonda Rhimes says those words with the context that while women are burdened with being questioned about how they find balance to get things done as if they can not pull those things off men are allowed a free pass and are not questioned. Its meant to say that men are in a privileged position of being able to just do what we do without people wondering how we can get things done and achieve balance.

Jasmin Newman says those words with a context of men are just demanded and expected to do what needs to be done with no care as to how we do them, what it may cost, and with little to no regard for our well being. Its meant to say that men aren't show the attention and care that we should be shown to see if we are balancing things out and making sure our well-being is taken care of.

In short Rhimes assumes that since we are men we MUST be in a better position than women on this issue. Newman points that as men our position isn't as great as people like Rhimes would have you believe.

Frankly I don't want women to be in a position where they are just expected and demanded to work themselves to death in silence with no one caring how they feel and how they are doing.

And that's the difference that is often ignored. While women are asked in a condescending manner "How do you, a woman, do such things?" there is no doubt that there is also a great degree of genuine care and concern for their well-being in such questions and let me tell you that is more than what men get.

Usually men aren't shown that level of care and concern until our productivity is so negatively affected someone takes notice and THEN they care how we are doing.

That is the supposed "privilege" Rhimes is talking about here. She is so focused on the fact that men aren't asked those questions that she either fails to see (or refuses to see) why men aren't asked those questions. It would be the same as saying, "Nobody questions why women cry." and then ignoring all the context of why its seen as okay for women to cry.

Now I know Rhimes aims to empower women and question the ways in which women are treated and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. However if she aims to go about it by falsely portraying the situation men are in then that is a problem and one that needs to be corrected.

And by the way, thanks for asking Jasmin.
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