American culture sends a clear message of equality to women: You can be just like men as long as you lose weight, apply makeup, and wear heels. That’s the constant refrain. Could there ever be an attitude more sexist than the notion that women must be like men to be happy? The ladies of the USA can now enjoy the hard earned freedom to work 50 hours a week like men do; to wear a football jersey and enjoy sports like guys do; to engage in casual hookups with strangers like some womanizers do. But was that really what this was all about: women wanted to be more like men?
Granted, we guys take our share of abuse. There are a few voices in the culture who encourage men to discover their feminine side. Popular TV shows generally present male characters as goofy bozos who rely on natural charm to conceal their inability to think very deeply or very long. Yet most of us have no problem standing against the tide- largely because the tide is pretty small, and most women still like males who are men.
It’s different for the fairer sex. American women are constantly pummeled into conformity. Their magazines and TV talk shows all reflect one standard: the skinny, glamorous, sexual one. Scientists and health authorities warn them about the perils of moderate obesity. (Men suffer from obesity too, but 20 extra pounds won’t change the way people treat us.) Even in politics, women are often mentioned just as often for how they look or what they wear as what they believe.
American society is no longer about true equality for women- and it hasn’t been for quite a while. The hook up culture and the abandonment of marriage are assets for lustful young men who want sex without consequences; not for women who yearn for stability, marriage and children while their biological clocks are ticking. The spread of sex-selection abortion is more commonly used to eliminate little girls than little boys. To paraphrase George Orwell, all Americans are created equal but some are more equal than others.
It’s curious that many American women so willing to submit to such double standards and hypocrisy in the public realm are strangely outraged and offended by the biblical precept that a wife should submit to her husband. The same New Testament teaches that younger people submit to older people; citizens submit to governmental leaders; Christians should submit to each other; etc. In a society where anything goes in relationships, is this the only taboo- offering a little womanly respect to a singular man who adores you? Do we really accept the current ideal that it would be progressive for an ambitious young woman to sleep with her boss, but unthinkable for her to submit to her husband?
The Word of God never commands women to submit to men. Rather, scripture directs that a wife should submit to only one man- the man she fell in love with and married. This is the guy she chose for life. She makes him a focal point of her world, just as she becomes his. In a different age, this was known as intimacy. Today it’s supposed to be demeaning.
Lift up the cross!