Monday, December 10, 2012

What is a Man To Do?

I usually pooh pooh the complaints of men who are "oppressed" but I am wary of this whole "Mansplaining" thing.  Yes, men can be pompous and condescending, but we need to be clear that not all explanations are pompous and condescending just because they are uttered by a male.  And women can be pompous and condescending as well.

In the Spew household, we take turns--I am pompous about International Relations, Mrs. Spew tends to condescend about all things literary (jeez, I hope she does not read this post), and Teen Spew is pompous whenever her parents comment on pop culture aimed at those under 40 30 20. 

Seriously though, yes, unrequested explanations can be annoying, but as we converse with each other about whatever, must we always be as or more focused on the filter than on the conversation?  Of course, I have said stupid things or presumed about stuff.  But if mansplaining is a sin, I wonder who can cast the first stone?  Certainly not I, but also certainly not most of the women I know either.  I want my friends who are wise and knowledgeable to explain stuff.  I raise lots of questions (deliberately or otherwise) when I chat with folks, and I want them to point out stuff that they know better than I. 

Sure, it can be a bit much when one person dominates the conversation (unless that person is me), so as in everything else, moderate is the key.  Everyone will "mansplain"--they key is not to be rude.  But didn't we already know that?

And if you consider this post to be a heap of mansplaining, um, oops?


Mrs. Spew said...

Yes, oops. I will explain :) what mansplaining actually is to you later. It's not a term you actually get to own, man privilege. Next time, ask first, you man, you.

Anonymous said...

^ Big like.

Anonymous said...

I believe this is an appropriate reaction to Mrs. Spew's comment: