Strong Women

After reading Susan B’s blog entry at http://www.xanga.com/home.aspx?user=sbalak from November 1, 2004 (I think it’s on the second or third page by now), where she says, “…I do not tuck my tail and run at the first mention of an opposing thought or idea. Which brings me to a whole other subject and I’ll elaborate in the next paragraph.
What is the deal with men who are intimidated by women capable of thinking for themselves? The fact that these women are capable does NOT mean that they are going to have an issue with submission. It does not mean that they are stubborn and pig-headed. It simply means that it will take a person whose ideas and critical thinking skills are a little ‘above average’ for the woman to WANT to follow him. I believe the innermost part of every woman has a yearning and desire to submit and to follow a male figure, but a woman MUST have confidence that the man they are following is bright enough to lead (and I am talking husbands here…not pastors, although that is something to think about also). No one, man or woman, wants to follow a leader who they feel are less equipped than they are to do the job.” (reprinted by permission of the author)
I was inspired to write the following.

Men sometimes do not really understand what a wonderful creature a woman that knows her own mind is. In this day and age when so many people appear to live by the old saw, “If it feels good, do it,” and have little or no conscience and what conscience they do have is skewed by Hollyweird and Mad avenue, you would think that a man would be happy to meet a woman who can think for herself. Once she has made up her mind, unlike the majority of T.V., movie, music industry and fashion idols that so many Americans follow, she can stick to it and follow her own path. While this can, in some instances and circumstances equate with stubbornness or bullheadedness, what it really means is that if this woman decides that she loves you, you do not have to worry that her mind will suddenly change with the latest opinion poll of her friends or for any other reason. You can put confidence in her.

Where would the country be, especially the West, if there were not women who could fight Indians alongside their husbands, work hard at the tasks best suited to them and leaving their husbands to do the work they had to do? Pioneer women were strong women with minds and opinions of their own who followed by choice their equally strong husbands into equal danger. When you have had a chance to meet some of these 100+ year old women and talk to them, you learn that life was a partnership and though vilified by some for “only” making babies and keeping house, they were, please excuse the ungallant expression I use to make a point, some tough old gals.

And where are the men that have enough manliness that they can lead such a woman? Where are the men full of strength that inspire confidence and security? Where are the mighty manly men who have convictions and beliefs that will not be shaken with every wind that blows and can articulately defend them to even the most crass and vulgar? The gentleman, who will open a door for a woman or suggest to his fellows that they relinquish the volleyball court in favor of the women, or offer his seat on the bus to a woman now seems passé.

I almost said lady there, but where are the ladies? Women, whose conversation nowadays, in public no less, could embarrass even the saltiest of sailors, are not exhibiting behavior that says they want to be respected and honored. The conversation and behavior of the opposite sex has gone from being respectable to something wholly other. They are “the Weaker Sex” no more. In some ways that is okay, but to me the term always meant that men should be protective and diligent and respectful in their behavior, not that they were literally physically weaker so much as they should be treated with the little every day niceties that used to be a trademark of American society.

This untoward behavior by some women does not mean that a man cannot be gentle and strong and behave thoughtfully, like a gentleman. Gentlemanliness is always fashionable and honorable. I realize it could be readily pointed out that when it comes to gentlemanly behavior I often fall dreadfully short, but I try. I often slip up but that does not mean my point is wrong.

Now, don’t misunderstand what I am saying. There is a time and a place for almost everything, and men, when they get together as a group, must be able in some way to contribute to such a gathering. Men in groups since the earliest days have always behaved in a predictable way. All men have something to add to, say, a campfire for example. Whether it be by the slaying of the vile Colorado Barking Tree Toad or killing a colony of Fire-Breathing Kentucky Barking Gorilla Ants, or by telling of or performing some manly exploit(s). Or older gents telling how much better and more superior the campfires were years ago or how much mightier the football players of old were. Remember the old saying men will be boys. This is natural and should not be a place where women would even want to think about going. Men resent the presence of women at such gatherings but must always take the most extreme caution to leave the caveman/hunter mentality in its rightful place.

When women are present, however, men must always try to be on their best behavior and not purposefully embarrass their wives or girlfriends and probably not their sisters either, depending on the situation. Mixed company is the time to dust off the manners and treat all of the women present like ladies. (Grammar Checker Note: Our society’s use of polite terms such as gentleman or lady is frowned upon by Grammar Checker which suggests woman or person instead of lady.)

Now, in mixed company, a man and woman ought to be able to carry on a conversation without any trifling vulgarities. If they talk enough they will at some point, disagree. This is where life becomes interesting. A strong woman with an intelligently articulated position can be interesting whereas anyone, woman or man, that argues just to hear themselves talk should be avoided. An intelligent argument can be, in some cases, more interesting than wrestling a six foot two Army Sergeant with stinky feet. A man should not fear an intelligent, articulate woman, but should try to show himself, if not able to be more articulate or intelligent, at least well-mannered and respectable.

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