Recently, I have been tossing around the distinction between equality and individuality between the genders. You know, that old chestnut. As the social landscape seems to be changing all around us (both perceived, and actual change) there seem to be so many ideas about what the new ‘correct’ is. I think sometimes equality and individuality are used interchangeably in the case of men and women when in reality for many, they are very different concepts.
A good friend of mine fights for the UFC. It delights me so much, not just because I know a famous, bad-ass individual who could destroy me 17 ways in mere seconds, (we also bond over our mutual love for cats) but because I get to watch her be part of an honest-to-goodness cultural evolution; women being accepted and fighting in the world of mixed martial arts. She even has the distinction of being the first woman to win a Ufc fight in Abu Dhabi. To me, that’s equality; women being given the same opportunity as men, and an arena (or octagon) to express said opportunity.
That being said, there are obvious individual distinctions that, to me, are gender specific, (despite agenda based groups declaring otherwise.) I am no biologist, but I have read and seen enough to be comfortable saying there are distinct genetic differences between the genders that make them one or the other. Are there variances? I am sure. I am talking vast majority here. At the end of the day, only one can be a biological mother, and one can be a biological father, for example. Should both be eligible for the same job or opportunities for the most part, sure, of course they should. But it doesn’t make the two groups the same. As Joe Rogan is fond of saying, “we live in strange times.” There are a lot of ideas being tossed around that challenge ‘truths’ we have been taught through the ages. Look hard enough and it’s pretty easy to find sub groups that believe all sorts of things, and aren’t afraid to try and convince you they are right; flat earthers, moon landing deniers, climate change pro/opponents, gender politics, just to name a few. It’s easy to get caught in the weeds. And when that happens, it’s really easy to divide, fortify and fight those that disagree.
When that happens, I find it valuable to hit the stop button on my brain (figuratively of course. Imagine if we had actual stop buttons? Perhaps one day if the techno-futurists have their way) and reset my thinking. I ponder the people in my life. I look at my wife. My family. My friends. My co workers. Both male and female. (Currently, that’s all I have, but am open to other types as well, though I barely even understand that statement) I am comforted, despite all the noise that’s out there, by the fact that we are all living the lives we see fit, in the roles we feel right in. Do I want us all to have the same choices, chances and even challenges? Of course. But I also celebrate the ones we must do on our own because of things out of our control, playing the hand that we are dealt. And in the game of life, no two hands are the same. I hope for a time of the playing field being so equal, that we can just be as individual as we want as we play the game together.