Sunday 13 July 2014

"A man should never hit a woman" / Gender Inequality

One phrase that always gets on my nerves is that a man should never hit a woman; and no, a man shouldn't hit a woman, nor should they hit a man, nor should a woman hit a man or a woman hit another woman. Why is a man hitting a woman seen as SO MUCH WORSE than any other type of violence?

BBC3s recent drama, Murdered By My Boyfriend, has sparked another wave of people tweeting/writing/blogging about their horror at the violence some women suffer at the hands of some men - and while any case of domestic violence is truly horrible, I'm not denying that, it's not just women that suffer. Yet you never hear anyone say "a woman should never hit a man" - because stereotypes tell us that women are the weaker sex, and that women don't hit men anyway. But that simply isn't true, and I can't understand why it's so difficult for people to see.

In May of this year, UK charity ManKind released a video showing a public experiment they had carried out; the first half shows how members of the public react to a man shouting at/roughly grabbing a woman - and the second half of the video shows how the public reacted to a woman doing the same (and at some points, in my opinion, even worse things) to a man.

It baffles me so much that peoples' reactions are so wildly different - abuse is abuse, and if women want equality then why don't we treat men as our equals, rather than acting like we deserve more than they do? Just because men don't speak out as much as women do, that doesn't mean they aren't being abused. Just because men have always been seen as the stronger sex, that doesn't mean women aren't violent. And just because a man should never hit a woman, that doesn't mean it's okay for a woman to hit a man.

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