I like hipster guys.I do. I like their thickly framed glasses, and unnecessary need to squeeze into their little brother's Ryan Adams T-shirt.I like their chain-smoking habits, their Beatnik reading material, their oh-so-tortured artistic souls,their vegan moral codes, and their inexplicable desire to be ironic or "authentic". These are precisely the kind of guys i am friends with, the kind of guys i respect and admire and come to appreciate.
But more often than not i am mentally pelted with two critical questions: 1.)How does any oxygen get to his junk while squeezed into skinny jeans 5 sizes too small? and 2.) Why does the hipster guy pride himself on participating in EVERY socio-political cause known to (wo)man EXCEPT feminism?
Honestly, they will squeeze into "I heart PETA" T-shirts and rip the rabbit fur coats off of runway models during fashion week, or dive in front of moving vechicles as a bizarre anti-war protest gimmick. They will peel through clothing at "vintage stores" and the Salvation Army so as not to contribute to the child-labor sweatshops in Tahitti. They read the Cornel West Reader and the Autobiography of Malcolm X and claim that it made them aware of their privledged socio-economic status as a corn-fed suburban white boy. They will wave the rainbow flags with the fags. They will live green. They will create T-shirt slogans like "The only Bush i trust is my own" and spend their spring breaks on voter registration commitees and raising money for some international AIDS fund while their peers are kegging-it-up for Girls Gone Wild videos. But when it comes to women's issues, they suddenly morph into Bush 2 .
But this isn't a complete conundrum, because, you see, i've deciphered the code behind their women-related apathies, and it is this: They simply feel left out.
It seems that feminism is one of the only politcal posses to keep the edge exclusivity still visible; to basically say, "step back, Jack Keuroac, we got this." It never discouraged the support of free-thinking men, but it did not actively depend on it. The great thing about feminism is that it is a movement that must start and end with women. It is one that decided to manifest itself straight from the core; with girlfriends and mothers and sisters and daughters, and to make point of our concerns first. Men looked up and saw a bunch of women tinkering around with picket signs and talking this nonsense about equality without ever really asking them to be apart of it. They felt obsolete and unimportant, and decided to oppose feminism, to hate it, destroy it, and reclaim their power! This is one of man's most primal instincts: reject what has rejected them.
And even the others, the hipster guys who believe they should be exempt from feminism's wrath because they dont, say, beat up on their wives. But even these men, while certainly better than those who are blatant mysogynists, are still not blameless because they don't do anything. They bite their tongues when screaming would be the more appropriate response to a culture that is raping, killing, and mutilating their sisters and daughters and mothers as a passtime. They sit down, they are passive and apathetic when they need to be angry as fuck that there are people who are groped, hit, mocked, laughed at, restrained, belittled, and denigrated on a daily basis. They believe they are informed and compassionate because they plant neighborhood trees or visit nursing homes, but never realize that you cant call yourself a humanist until you call yourself a feminist.
And no, it isn't just the fault of men. I really believe that eventually women will wake up, shake themselves out of their masochistic mindsets, and they will have to do that on their own. But in the meantime, it would nice to have a little help.