I can honestly say that I do not have even a hint of misogyny within myself. That is, of course, a self-perception, and some women might disagree, but it is how I see myself. I honestly adore and admire women, and arguably have more female friends than I have male. Though I do have male friends whom I value greatly,
Despite my dodgy track-record as a husband, I bear neither of my former wives any malice. They are strong and brave women whom I still adore and always shall. To a large extent I was the domestic failure, not they.
And my feelings in that regard are odd if only in the sense I did not have a good relationship with my mother and am inclined to see her legacy (and I may be wrong about that) as the antithesis of what a strong woman should be. But, I guess the part of her legacy that is good is that I react to it, and consequently I am an unreserved admirer of strong and gutsy women.
I used to have a personal mythical female archetype female. She was a person who was worldly and traveled, appreciated good scotch, drove a sports-car, was well-read and cultured, could tell a ‘good’ off-colour joke, and had a completely honest sex drive.
Sort of a modern day Boudicca (Queen of the Iceni who vanquished the Roman Legions in days of yore). She is my heroine of history.
Well, we all have our fantasies, don’t we.
My blessing, despite the negative example of my mother – by the way, in so saying about her, I am not saying I didn’t love her, but am not saying I did, either – was having a number of strong and accomplished aunts, and a grandmother whom I kind of worshipped and who didn’t take ‘no shit from nobody’.
But, these thoughts stem from a quote by the Dalai Lama (everybody’s favorite Facebook mensch) said: “The world will be saved by the western woman.” Now, I don’t mean to quibble with His Exaltedness, if only to suggest that I think and truly believe it will be saved by women in general of all ethnicities. Indeed I don’t believe we have a hope in hell if we leave poltroons like the Cheneys, Rumsfelds, Bushes, or Hapers in charge of big decisions.
But women, God bless ’em. They have a different set of values – well, maybe not the late Margaret Thatcher, who seemed to have gotten an inordinate amount of testosterone in her mix – and they seem to be able to recognize a problem and take charge.
It has already been well documented that in aboriginal communities you will find powerful, bright and responsible women assuming roles of leadership and taking charge of problems the males of the communities have not addressed.
You see a similar situation in African-American communities, especially in the US. Brilliant comic Richard Pryor was prepared to say that his survival had depended on the support of his grandmother when he was young. She took charge and believed in him.