I love this video. It is a sweet demonstration of kindness, care and compassion. It also demonstrates a loving relationship between siblings.
What makes this video remarkable, in your mind? Is it seeing genuine human kindness and compassion? Or is that it’s from an older sibling towards a younger sibling? Is it because this act of kindness is made spontaneously, without prompting from a parent? Or is it because it is a male child rather than a female child who is taking on the caring role?
When I first watched this video, I felt this interaction illustrates something desirable about male-female relationships in general. Then more specifically, I thought of how it could be used to model something about feminism and the need for men to be active participants in empowering women to achieve their goals.
I have gotten into trouble before for being the wrong kind of feminist and so this thought was immediately dismissed as I could easily see the counter arguments. Yes, there are definitely elements of this interaction that could be seen to be perpetuating male domination and especially stereotypes around women being “emotional” or “weak” or “needing to be saved by a man”.
My argument is that just like affirmative action is necessary for black people, so is it necessary for men to give women “a leg up” to get them onto an even playing field and start to reap the benefits of equality.
It’s a complicated topic, one that is nuanced and difficult to illustrate. It is also okay for different people/different women/different kinds of feminists to have different opinions.
I’m just saying, if you are struck by feelings of frustration or helplessness because you are a woman or a man living in a world that is unequal and unfair, then offering kindness and help is a good place to start.
-more emotionally available and supportive men
-the chance to express our vulnerability safely
-those in position of power or dominance to use their “strength” to give those who are disadvantaged a boost so that they can also achieve their goals
-supportive brothers/partners/colleagues/bosses who will see our struggles and help us feel safe and cared for and believed in and who will assist us when needed
Or the beginning? Of a discussion… and go.