What do the shows Different Strokes, The Cosby Show, Family Ties, Full House, Step by Step and Family Matters have in common?
Categorized as America’s favorite TV shows at one point, one thing they share is that the fathers played in each show represented authority, respect, power, love and stability in their households. We fast forward to today and unfortunately the “feel-good,” family friendly shows are rarely shown on TV, which explains why I find myself watching old re-runs on Netflix.
It seems like the current sitcoms or the ones in the making want to parallel the views, values and behavior of our current society today. For the most part, men are confused on what to say, how to act, what to do in every day life because we as women have disempowered them and dismissed their function in society brought on by extreme feminist views.
Created in the late 18th century the feminist movement has brought positive as well as negative consequences that impacts us daily. The simplified version of the feminist movement can be described into 3 waves in American history. The first wave that dates back nearly 100 years ago, American women were responsible for the establishment of women’s suffrage, also known as the right to vote. The second wave that occurred between the 1960s and 1980s focused with gender equality in laws and culture.
The third wave surfaced in the early 1990s where women achieved success in corporate America. All of the waves stated above were great historical movements but what happens when the agenda keeps getting pushed to the extreme? For starters, as a woman and a minority let me make this clear that I am not “selling out” on my gender or race for what I’m about to say, I’m just pointing out the reality we’re living in and how we are waging war against men non-stop on every front.
As much as I support equality for all, I wholeheartedly believe there are exceptions to the statement. Based on limits and circumstances beyond our biological control, women need to learn and accept those differences and stop forcing it to change. As much as women are empowered and educated today, we must realize that women alone cannot do it all whether you’re lifting heavy objects, fixing a flat tire, shooting the enemy point-blank in the battlefield or raising your kids as a single-mom.
I applaud the efforts of those single moms who are committed to their children daily but admit the fact that it would be a lot nicer and easier to have the “man” around for emotional, psychological, physical and financial support. God made men and women to complement each other throughout life and in times of hardship the bond between both grows and strengthens.
There’s no question that our society has gone amok and I blame most of our social and economic woes on the American “broken” family. Over the last fifty years, we’ve successfully created, now accept and even promote this fatherless society without taking a minute to analyze the negative repercussions of this model existing in our communities.
A sense of respect, discipline, authority and structure have been severely undermined the minute we’ve declared the war against men. A study conducted by University of Maryland public policy professor Douglas J.Besharov reveals the following about single moms “More than half -- 51 percent -- of never-married single moms are officially at the poverty line, and an additional 26 percent are between 100 percent and 200 percent of the poverty level.”
According to fatherhood.org, a non-profit organization in Maryland states that children in fatherless homes are more susceptible to fall into poverty, drug-abuse, crime and dropping out of school. What can we do to reduce these statistics? Let’s reintroduce and welcome the man in our homes and allow them to fulfill their fatherhood duty and role with their children.
As women, we should take a few steps back and give the man the space he needs to develop and execute the responsibilities that are bestowed upon him as man, partner and father. No one likes to have the boundaries stepped on, so it’s time to take our heels off it.
So what is my message to those women who are not mothers and classify themselves as single? Well for starters if you want chivalry back and want a committed loving relationship, stop competing with men on salary, title and the number of people you bed with.
Sorry to disappoint you, but I don’t care if it’s 2012 or 2080, a woman who's had more partners in the bedroom than the average man speaks volumes of her insecurity, unhappiness and self-worth and thus will not earn the respect of any man now or in the future.
Time and time again, we see women who are constantly equating themselves with men in the dating scene and then they find themselves unhappy with their choices because the outcomes don’t serve their benefits. In other words, if a man opens the door for you, pulls out a chair, gives you compliments and wants to pay the tab on a date (assuming you’re not going on a date for the free meal only) then pay him with your lady-like generosity, manners and a sincere “thank you.”
By nature men like to take care of their special women in their lives, such as their mothers, sisters, daughters and significant others so it would behoove us all to give men the opportunity to fulfill their purpose so we can enjoy the added value they have to offer toward us and in our communities.
Carli Eli is a media and communications professional with extensive experience working on Latino social, educational and political issues. She's worked with ABC networks (radio and TV), MTV Networks, V-me Media and Telemundo in the areas of production, reporting, marketing, events and promotions, business development and community outreach. She lives in Washington, DC.