Editorial Note: Tim Goldich has been a passionate advocate for the rights of men and boys for decades. He has asked us to publish this item to get feedback from the Men’s Rights Community. We present it here, unedited, to give feedback that Tim has asked for. –DE
It All Balances Out—just four words. Sounds simple, but it’s not. It is, I believe, a phrase that best describes gender reality throughout history and it’s a phrase that might cause the modern-day MRA to, shall we say, raise an eyebrow. I’m well aware that men suffer comparison with women in virtually every measure of well-being. But I respectfully request that my fellow MRAs hear me out on this. What you’re about to read demonstrates a strategy for getting our message across to the mainstream. In part, it’s crafted for “straights,” those who’ve not taken the “red pill.” How do we reach them? How do we send our message in a manner that is at least relatively palatable to mainstream sensibilities? How do we penetrate the “lace curtain” in a manner that’s healthy and constructive? How do we move gender politics into a new and more evolved phase?
I present to you now how I use the concept of It All Balances Out to further our cause.
It All Balances Out
The underlying principle that pervades and unifies every aspect of my book can be expressed in a single word: balance. In defiance, the book’s “radical” premise is simply this: In the benefits enjoyed and in the liabilities suffered, in the power and in the victimization, in the freedoms and the constraints, the good and the bad, It All Balances Out between Woman and Man—and it always has.
Historically, the gender system has certainly been less than perfect, inflicting injustices on both sexes alike. But these injustices have come out even. Ours has been an imperfect yet essentially balanced gender system, except for one thing—the highly imbalanced gender belief system. If I could, I would shift our entire gender belief system away from feminism’s MalePower/FemaleVictimization paradigm and toward a balanced gender paradigm.
As it stands, there’s an assumption of imbalance—an “imbalance” of power enjoyed by men and an “imbalance” of victimization suffered by women. That’s the story we make up, but that has never been more than half of the full story. The other half, the FemalePower/MaleVictimization half of the story, remains obscure because . . . neither sex wants to hear it. Nevertheless, for every female complaint, there is a mirror-opposite male complaint. For every one CEO, there’ve been many POWs. Hard/hazardous labor, battlefields, prisons, mines, the streets, the sewers—men have always occupied both extremes, the most and the least enviable positions on earth—the latter in far greater numbers than the former.
Imagine, if you will, a gigantic scale with love on one end of the balance beam and respect on the other:
This love/respect dynamic upon which gender balance pivots can be described in two brief statements:
Throughout history, both sexes have tended to respect men more than women.
Throughout history, both sexes have tended to love women more than men.
Feminism has effectively protested women’s lesser status in all things along the respect axis. Both sexes have listened and both sexes have done much to change the cultural environment in ways that promote respect for women. That men are less loved, however, may ring true from the outset yet be met with cynicism just the same. Both sexes receive the female side with empathy and the male side without empathy exactly because both sexes love women more and men less.
Hostility, when directed at women, is given a pejorative label—“misogyny.” We give it this very negative label because hostility toward women is forbidden. Arguably, our culture leans more toward misandry (hostility toward men). But few know this word misandry—a word that would condemn hostility toward men the same way the word misogyny condemns hostility toward women. Our lack of love toward men is so pervasive as to be invisible, and we concern ourselves with it so little that we don’t even have a word for it.
This balance I speak of is revealed in the following four key statements:
One: At birth, members of both sexes are assigned roles, socialization, and conditioning that facilitate and ensure a world in which men are more respected/less loved and women are more loved/less respected.
Two: Historically, men have been no more empowered to escape their biology, role, socialization, conditioning, and concurrent fate than women have.
Three: The two sexes, equally powerless and equally powerful, have plied an equal overall force of influence in the molding of our world and are thus equally responsible for outcomes.
Four: Throughout history, the enormous consequences and vast repercussions suffered by women for being less respected have been matched in full by the enormous consequences and vast repercussions suffered by men for being less loved.
These four statements are key because taken together they lead inexorably to the one key truth: It All Balances Out!
Last year, while at a Christmas Eve party, I was asked what my book on gender was about. “It All Balances Out between men and women,” I said.
“What balances out?”
“Everything,” I said. “The power, the victimization; the freedoms, the constraints; the joys, the sorrows; the good and the bad, the whole thing.”
So there I was, trapped in the kitchen with a half-dozen women all good-naturedly ready to pounce. “I’m . . . going to go over there,” I said, pointing toward the dining room—a tactical retreat that drew a laugh. But, not long after, the hostess approached me and with only a hint of reluctance admitted, “You’re probably right.” The truths of Balance stand in such direct contradiction to the official (feminist) gender belief system that they may be taken for an “outrage.” So it’s telling, I think, that unofficially these truths are so often met with a shrug. In my experience, prefacing a discussion on men’s issues with “It All Balances Out” is a good approach. It is an angle that is generally well received. And it gets my foot in the door in places that might otherwise slam the door on men’s issues. On a purely intuitive level, the truths of balance ring true.
Balancing out the “official” gender belief system, that is my goal; that is what my book is all about. It’s about replacing “female-ism” with a new gender-neutral gender politics (what I’ll call “equalism”) that deals with the many and varied issues of women and men as mirror-opposites that balance each other. Only with this understanding can the gender politics of the future be built upon an even foundation.
It’s funny, but I’m often asked, if it all balances out, then what’s the problem? The assumption would seem to be that a balanced system is the same as a perfect system. But, as I see it, women suffer injustice along the respect axis, men suffer injustice along the love axis; these injustices may come out even (balanced), but they’re injustices all the same. So, a balanced system is not at all the same as a perfect system. There are many problems. But far and away the deepest problem lies in our failure to know and to acknowledge that It All Balances Out. This failure to perceive Balance results in the one overarching aspect of the gender system that is imbalanced: the gender belief system. Believing that Man has the power and Woman is the victim is one-sided, which is why it is false, which is why it’s poisonous. It is a gender belief system that maximizes victim, vindictiveness, and vengeance motives, which is why it’s a belief system that escalates the Battle of the Sexes.
The battle rages, inflicting damages on both sides. The damages may come out even, but they’re damages all the same. So, again, a balanced system—especially when it is not acknowledged to be a balanced system—isn’t the same as a perfect system, and it certainly hasn’t proven to be an entirely peaceful system. Understanding that It All Balances Out, there remains much to be passionate about regarding gender issues and gender politics.
And, crucially, it’s also true that the kind of immature emotional rage that both feminism and masculism can provoke finds no basis of support within an It All Balances Out belief system.
On what legitimate basis will we resent our opposite sex for the various powers, privileges, and exemptions it enjoys when we know our own sex enjoys powers, privileges, and exemptions in equal measure? When we come to the realization that the costs each sex pays for their respective privileges are costs that come out even, there remains no legitimate basis for inter-sex envy and bitterness.
But the only way to perceive this balance I speak of is to come to an understanding of the politicized perspectives of both sexes. With that understanding, balance is plain to see. At that point, a whole new gender-political space opens up, allowing for a whole new level of maturity, forgiveness, and fairness. When we proceed from the understanding that It All Balances Out on the global level, then when we focus in on any specific instance of gender conflict on the individual level, we do so without bias, open and available to whatever truths present themselves.
The Battle of the Sexes is like any other battle in as much as it is fueled by rage and righteousness. But while other battles may be settled when one side defeats the other, because the sexes are so deeply intertwined, when one sex “wins,” both sexes lose. For the Battle of the Sexes, the only win position is a draw. The battle will only de-escalate when the warring factions become willing to accept a balanced perspective. We give up rancor and resentment when we admit that what “they” did to “us” is balanced by what “we” did to “them.”
We acknowledge the wheel of complicity, whereby Man exerts a force of influence upon Woman and, in turn, Woman exerts an equal force of influence upon Man. But we give up foolish blaming and take on accountability when we agree that—as is true of each of us as individuals—Man and Woman are really each their own worst enemies primarily responsible for creating their own predicaments. The predicaments of Woman and Man are different but equivalent. The two ends of the balance beam need not be identical to weigh the same.
It All Balances Out is not an endpoint; it is a new and improved beginning. A balanced system becomes a far more workable system from which to proceed when it is acknowledged to be what it truly is—balanced! Believing that men have the power and women are the victims is the deep, underlying problem. Proceeding from the knowledge that It All Balances Out is the solution!
It is something that may be espoused even as a matter of principle. It’s healthy. It’s an “olive branch,” a peace offering. It is a decision. It is a leap of faith. For both women and men, it is a constructive and magnanimous position from which to start anew. It is the only mindset that leads to the full restoration and preservation of love and respect between the sexes because it is the only mindset that combines the perspectives of both sexes. It is, therefore, a gender-political structure offering real promise toward de-escalating the Battle of the Sexes.
The future “ceasefire” in the Battle of the Sexes in favor of a cooperative era of peace, love, and understanding between the sexes is the reward; and it is attainable, but not without extending ourselves. To reach a perception of balance, we must embrace the truths that are rejected, the truths that are missing, the truths of FemalePower and the truths of MaleVictimization, the truths that go on the other end of the balance beam.
As it stands now, within the “official” gender belief system, all perceptions of gender reality are filtered through feminism’s MalePower/FemaleVictimization (MP/FV) paradigm. “Knowing” that men have the power, what else will society do but take power away from men and give it to women? “Knowing” that women are the victims, what else will society do but extra protect and advantage women? Society, in accordance with its gender belief system, requires Man to pour from his cup half “full” into Woman’s cup half “empty.” Thus, society’s efforts to create balance end up creating imbalance.
Moreover, if women are the victim, what else can women be the victims of but men, the ones with the power. So, now we’re left with a story of Bad over-empowered men oppressing Good innocent-victim women: thus the MP/FV paradigm leads inexorably to the ManBad/WomanGood paradigm.
What if the MalePower/FemaleVictimization paradigm is the source of all our gender political woes? What if the repercussions of the MP/FV paradigm constitute the sole cause of women on the rise and men in decline? I believe that the MP/FV paradigm is the deep, underlying problem and It All Balances Out is the solution!
Let us admit that no human mind can hold the entire female experience on one side of the brain, the entire male experience on the other, and claim to know, with certainty, which side is lighter/which side is heavier; which is happier/which is sadder; more fulfilled/less fulfilled; freer/more constrained; which is “better”/which is “worse.” The reality of the Big Picture is a reality that simply will not support any such certainty. In its place, what you end up with is mere opinion.
Pull the camera back far enough, take in gender reality all over the earth, all through history, and I believe that It All Balances Out is the one gender truth highest in both quantity and quality of truth. Nevertheless, the main objection to It All Balances Out is that it is not “true.” In the opinion of feminists, it isn’t “true” because men have the power and women are the victims. In the opinion of masculists, it isn’t “true” because women have the power and men are the victims.
Currently, masculists have the better claim. I totally get it that masculists have cause to balk at the concept of balance. But what if the dreadful man-stats and misandry all result from actions and attitudes society adopts in response to feminism’s MP/FV belief system? If so, then a culture-wide understanding and perception of this balance I speak of may be all that’s necessary in order to bring about balance because, in balancing the gender belief system, we balance out the one overarching imbalance from which other imbalances derive.
If social workers, teachers, police officers, judges, legislators, and politicians operated within a balanced gender belief system, it seems reasonable to suppose that these professionals would do their jobs in a balanced way. It seems to me that, to a large extent, a culture-wide perception of the true balance in gender power and victimization will, all by itself, take us a long way down the path toward creating gender balance!
With little support and/or funding, we few masculists have done a heroic job of raising awareness. Our facts and truths are finally penetrating the “lace curtain”! But I think that, strategically, we could be more effective.
When we present the facts and truths of FemalePower and MaleVictimization as an end in themselves, we turn a lot of people off. We seem to only be adding men to the list of victims and escalating the Battle of the Sexes. But, if we present our truths as a means to end—that end being an understanding that It All Balances Out—we present the facts and truths of FemalePower and MaleVictimization as that which goes on the other end of the balance beam. And, in so doing, we present not only our perspectives but also our vision of a new era of gender fairness, negotiation, and mutual understanding.
We MRAs have cause to be angry and embittered, but we don’t really want to oust Woman from victimhood’s center seat just so Man can sit there instead, do we? And yet it often seems as if we seek to drag the profoundly entrenched MP/FV belief system all the way to the far other end of the ideological spectrum when the more doable task of dragging gender beliefs into the middle serves our purposes just as well. Out there among the “straights,” outside the grip of gender ideology, It All Balances Out rings true. But more than that, it rings healthy and hopeful. It’s an olive branch, a peace offering.
When asked, “How does it all balance out?” we’re invited to speak our truths just as we always have. But, because we opened with It All Balances Out, we cannot be dismissed as “victim-mongers.” We present our truths within a framework that validates both sides and promises to bypass war and head instead down a path toward a brighter future. In so doing, we invite a more positive response.
So, what will humanity do?—wait for the “right” time?—wait till all agree? Being a matter of opinion, the battle of MalePower/FemaleVictimization vs. FemalePower/MaleVictimization, feminism vs. masculism can rage back and forth ad nauseam. But at what cost?
And while the contest for the coveted title of most powerless victim can rage back and forth for a long time, it cannot go on forever, can it? A thousand years from now, will we still be debating whether it is Woman or Man who wins the title? What must we endure and for how long before we set victim and vengeance aside and finally, inevitably, call it a draw? It is exactly because there can be no agreement and no certainty in these matters that we might as well be magnanimous about it. And we men might as well be the magnanimous ones because, while a perception of balance can only fatally undermine feminism, we men have nothing to lose and everything to gain by it! So, I urge everyone, why not take a leap of faith, demonstrate a little gender generosity, and simply call it even?
The contest for most powerless victim is destructive, intractable, and can have no positive outcome. A pox on it! Let’s put that behind us and take the first crucial step toward a more evolved phase of gender politics and gender relations. Let’s de-escalate a costly war neither sex can “win.”
If the MHRM truly wishes to affect constructive change and peaceful resolutions, I believe it would be wise to stand behind It All Balances Out as its first principle. To Men’s Issues Activists everywhere I say, let It All Balances Out be the banner that unifies us and keeps us on a healthy and beneficial path. Whether present or distant, it is the inevitable future. What are we waiting for? There’ll never be a “better” time to declare balance. The right time is now!
It All Balances Out!