Men's Health Magazine Starts New Feminist Blog
What with all the bad news lately about legislation that hurts women, I was especially psyched to learn that Men's Health launched a new blog recently, The Men's Health Feminist. Finally, we have recognition from the mainstream media that feminism is good for men, too! Initial posts by reporter Kiera Aaron explore what it means to be a feminist, Kanye West, how popular athletes are given carte blanche to sexually assault women, and, near and dear to my furry little heart, the trend of "vatooing" (having your man's name temporarily inked into your shaved bare cooter* region).
I am not the only one excited by the new blog. Amanda Litman at Ms. Magazine's blog also believes this is a great development, especially, as she points out, while other feminist blogs shrink. (I was also a huge fan of Broadsheet, which folded back into Salon in mid-January.) Victoria at The Female Impersonator said that the Men's Health blog "made her day." Maureen Hehir at Sexy Feminist lauds it as a way to chip at stereotypes.
This brings me back to my original thought when I heard that a magazine for men was embracing feminism full force. First, it shouldn't be entirely surprising. I know many males who are feminists and proud of it. In fact, sometimes I think I know more men who are willing to call themselves feminists than women, partly, I suspect, because there is so much stigma attached to being a female feminist. If men are accused of not shaving their legs or only wanting to sleep with women, in many (if not most) cases, that's true. They have nothing to lose other than machismo, which is probably unappealing to them in the first place and why they identify as feminists.
Really smart men know that feminism tries to do as much for men as it does for women. The true goal (at least in my opinion) of feminism is that people should be free to pursue their interests as people, not people constrained by gender. Thanks to feminism, men now have more freedom to spend time with their kids, express their human emotions, and get mani-pedis (or something). If women and men are equal, men need not shoulder the entire burden of providing and women need not solely care for the home. Ideally, anyway. In reality we are crawling toward the shedding of gender roles as containers that restrict us.
Men's Health Feminist is a step in the right direction. I hope this is the first of many voices to emerge that help us explore who we are as individuals, people, and society, and why.
*OK, so cooter isn't a medical term. But I was horrified this past weekend when I read Cosmo (I think it was Cosmo) and they used the word "vadge" for vagina. Really? Is it now vadgina? I really, really hate this va-jay-jay/"vadge" trend. If you are not going to call it a labia, vulva, or vagina (depending on what anatomical part is being discussed), don't make silly names. Everyone knows it's a cooter, beaver, or snatch. Geez...