Men’s Rights

I am a Men’s Rights Activist.
Now, I know what you’re going to say:
Men
are their rights really in need of some activism?
Don’t men have all the rights already,
pretty much?

Well, actually,
I believe that we men could use a few activists.
Maybe we could use a whole bunch of them.
I believe there are a load of rights that we men are currently lacking.
I believe it’s time that this injustice be set right.

Now, I know what you’re going to say:
These so-called rights…
just what are these rights, exactly?

Please, from my own hard-won expertise as a man,
allow me to ‘splain.

I believe in the right of little boys who like dolls,
or daffodils,
princesses,
or the color pink
to be free of the shame we are fed every day.
To be free of the coercive insistence
that we separate ourselves from the trappings of girls.
Because we are “better” than girls.
Because girls are lesser.

I believe in the right of chubby teenage boys
to be free of the shame of mean locker-room taunts:
“Girl boobs girl boobs Croghan’s got girl boobs!”
I believe in our right to be free of hatred of our own bodies –
a hatred so deep and lasting
as to keep me from taking off my shirt in public
for the next thirty years.

I believe in the right of men who love charm bracelets,
or “chick flicks”,
“girly” cocktails,
or crop tops – even pink ones –
to be free of the shame shoveled on us by men – and women.
To be free of the coercive insistence
that we separate ourselves from the trappings of women,
because we are “better” than women.
Because women are lesser.

I believe in men’s right to love cooking,
and crochet,
and collecting candles. Scented candles.
I believe in men’s right to enjoy parenting,
and pole dancing,
and feeling pretty.
I believe in men’s right to wear lipstick. Fuchsia lipstick.
I believe in men’s right to weep at that moment in the movie
when the heroine finally inhabits her true self.
I believe in men’s right to hug and touch and hold hands with other men.

Even straight men. Even cisgender men.
And absolutely queer and trans men.

I believe in men’s right to be free
of these rusted chains of patriarchy,
which burden us, and bind us, and block us off from our true selves –
just like they do to everybody else.

Yes, I am a Men’s Rights Activist, and this M R A is here to say:
It is long past time for me to get active.

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