I’m a born-and-raised New York native with an interest in sustaining happiness and collecting knowledge wherever I go. I grew up in the city for the first twelve years of my life before spending the next 10 years in a small town upstate where I attended high school and then community college. I now balance time between both locations and I’m currently enrolled in John Jay College of Criminal Justice. I’m just a man who enjoys his peace and the memories created with others. I believe that everyone has a duty in maintaining their wellness in order to improve their daily lives so that they may excel at whatever it is they want from life itself. And if you are around others who might need some help achieving that, it’s also important to care for those who may not be so good at maintaining their own wellness ..so lend a hand to them and watch them grow with you.
Male privilege. What is this concept? Believe it or not there are some (particularly men) who really will not know what this means. To keep it simple, it’s a term that practically refers to any rights or rankings given to us because of being men, but these same rights and rankings are typically denied to women.
Usually if someone is discussing a legal dispute surrounding male privilege, they’d use the word “sex” instead of “gender.” This isn’t entirely accurate in addressing discrimination issues because “sex” is used to determine the reproductive anatomy one has been born with as well as the "physical disadvantage" women may have in jobs that require more strength. “Gender” on the other hand, is more important in understanding male privilege because it is a social construction where men and women are taught to grow into and accept specific guidelines so that they can fit into society and not ask why these guidelines have been set in place for them. Because these guidelines are filled with obligations for both men and women, it’s obvious to see how the two can be unequal.
How do we identify male privilege in the United States? For a long time now, many women are not offered the same high status or position in careers that are usually given to men. In addition, women are never paid in an equal amount for equal work until legal changes start taking place.
An interesting idea to recognize is that many men are not consciously aware of their male privilege because we grow up thinking our opportunities are a normal and expected part of our lives.
Further information related to the idea of the obliviousness of men and their advantage in society is discussed in “White Privilege and Male Privilege: A Personal Account of Coming to See Correspondences Through Work in Women’s Studies” by Peggy McIntosh (1988). McIntosh (1988) states, “I have often noticed men’s unwillingness to grant that they are over privileged in the curriculum, even though they may grant that women are disadvantaged” (p. 83). The author makes a clear point by saying that there is an obvious sense of denial that many of us men have about our privilege because of the unfair advantages women may have in society. Some men will be completely unaware of the existence of this matter, while others will know of it, but treat it as the elephant in the room.
It's because of this denial that male privilege has become hidden and unacknowledged. In discussions, many of us (men) out there believe that we deserve to be the center of society because of the “important jobs” we’ve done for human civilization whether its ruling countries or building cities. However, you can’t put aside the fact that the men who chosen for these “important jobs” even when women had more impressive resumes.
Referring back to McIntosh (1988), men will refuse to admit that their privilege has opened many opportunities for them in society and the few who do admit their privilege would then say that it would be close to impossible to dismantle these advantages. The latter is simply a cop-out. McIntosh (1988) wants us to recognize the difference between “earned strength and unearned power…Power from unearned privilege can look like strength when it is in fact permission to escape or to dominate” (p.90). Men claim they support the idea of strengthening the status of women, but the idea to get them to lower their power would fall on deaf ears as we need it to feel exempt from any penalties. We essentially have nothing to lose regardless of the choices we make in life as we'll always have an easy road to travel that's been already paved for us.
McIntosh, Peggy (1988) White Privilege and Male Privilege: A Personal Account of Coming to See Correspondences Through Work in Women’s Studies Retrieved from https://www.csub.edu/~kcarpenter/Articles/White%20Privilege%20and%20Male%20Privilege.pdf