Odd man out
- Apr 18, 2010
- MBTI Type
- Instinctual Variant
I agree. Equality of opportunity is at the root of my personal definition of feminism, which is giving to women the same opportunity, rights, and responsibilities given to men. This helps men, too, since, for example, it rules out an all-male draft, or the presumption in family court that child custody should go to the mother by default.If it's about equality of opportunity, then it's good feminism. If it's about equality of outcome, it's discriminatory and it could be called toxic. Also, often it's motivated by resentment and playing the victim card.
We cannot ignore outcomes altogether. While it is wrong to enforce equal outcomes, it is instructive to examine unequal outcomes to learn how they arise. This can reveal systemic hurdles disproportionately affecting one group vs. another, hurdles that can then be removed. The claim that disparities of outcome are the result of personal choices has never been and cannot yet be tested, because the truly level playing field that would require does not exist. The underrepresentation of women in STEM fields, for instance, has been attributed to a relative lack of interest in these fields on the part of women. Blacks, Latinos, and Native Americans are underrepresented as well, yet no one makes the same argument about them. It is not a stretch to imagine that some of the barriers limiting participation of these groups affect women as well.