Patriarchy? What’s That?

Patriarchy? Whats That?

Susana Miguel, Staff Writer

There are many moments in life where people are oppressed due to the characteristics of each person. These characteristics affect how bad people will judge us such as gender, sexual orientation, nationality, and appearance. Patriarchy is one of the most common forms of oppression. It is directly targeted at women making them feel that they are of the inferior gender. We are in a new era and patriarchy should be done by now.

One reason why patriarchy shouldn’t exist is because young people’s mindsets can be influenced by gender assumptions that are just wrong. According to an article, “Why Patriarchy Persists (and How We Can Change It),” patriarchy isn’t as noticeable because this type of oppression can come in many ways just as small as comments or clothes. Many parents say, “You can’t play with cars, you should play with dolls,” or “Act like a man, you aren’t supposed to cry.” This is a huge problem because this is where the mindset of a boy is influenced so easily. These comments cause them to think that they have to be in power all time, which isn’t true. These words also affect girls because they feel weaker and useless. Another article titled “How Patriarchy Negatively Impacts Men” shows how many men were influenced by their parents because their parents were influenced by the norms that their parents lived through. These norms become like traditions and they pass on those beliefs to future generations. Many might not think it’s okay but for them, it’s normal. It is absolutely disgusting that even when you are shopping, people might be assuming things about you. For example, when I was younger, my mother and I would go to McDonald’s for a happy meal. There would be toy options for boys and for girls but they never asked which one I wanted. They automatically gave me the “girl toy” even though many times, I wanted the boys one because their toy selection was better. It wasn’t until I was 10, they started to ask. This shifts someone’s mindset because it makes them think that they need to follow these norms, which is not true. 

Another reason why patriarchy should end is because it can affect the income of someone depending on their gender. There is nothing wrong with our gender, it’s just that we live in a judgmental society. Many women who work the same job and number of hours as a man still get a lower payment. Some years ago, the US women’s soccer team won the championship but still got paid less than the men’s soccer team, which did not win. The text, “Why Patriarchy Persists (and How We Can Change It)” demonstrates how women often get a lower salary, slower promotions, less recognition, lower-ranked appointments, and less retention rate. This demonstrates that opportunities that can increase their income are taken away from women because there are many norms and stereotypes that many follow. Many women have shared similar experiences and complain about having fewer good job opportunities in many places around the world. Many women struggle with money because of situations. For example, they are a single parent, their husband doesn’t give them anything, or work for themselves to have a good life. These problems affect how much money they have and without these opportunities, many struggle to have something.

Lastly, patriarchy takes away the rights of women, making them have to do something they don’t want to do. I have heard so many stories from around the world about women having to obey their husbands because of fear or because they are men. For instance, my maternal grandmother was born in another decade and was raised to be there and serve her husband. Even if she didn’t love her husband or wasn’t ready to get married, she had no option because it was arranged. At times, she didn’t want to have sexual relationships but because her husband was a man, she thought that she needed to give what men wanted. According to an article, “How Patriarchy Negatively Impacts Men,” many men are raised to take control over the house instead of letting a woman take over. Many women want to work so that they can have a bit of extra money but men don’t allow that because women are supposed to be housewives. Sometimes, women want to have a job in order to help the family with financial support. That is why many men start to be abusive towards their wives because they still want to be in control so that other people won’t scream insults at their faces. That is the reason why many women still stay at home. In the past, many females, around the world could not study even if they wanted to because they could not be in the same level of power as a male. The education of a female would be affected and wouldn’t know how to read or write because education was a privilege. That opportunity only belonged to men since they are so-called “smarter.” A woman’s role is to take care of the house, have children, cook, and practically be a toy for men. Females have lives too and it’s really sad that we still have to deal with these issues. Education is for all but some countries still have these opportunities taken away.

Finally, patriarchy should end because we are teaching young people the wrong thoughts, supporting the lower payment of people based on gender, and taking away someone’s human rights. Many people have different perspectives on this topic. It is okay to have different opinions but is it okay to make others follow them? If you really want to keep those thoughts, then don’t force people to follow them. Many were raised with that mindset of “a women’s responsibility is to serve their husband,” but do you really think it’s correct? I want you to think if patriarchy should still exist. I will leave this issue in your hands. Think if this is the correct way to live. Should we really live with these gender norms?