1. Male privilege is being comfortable with walking down the street at night without fear of sexual assault (Saunders, you realize that your first point of men not being able to walk down the street without being feared as an assaulter is something to blame men for, not women, right?).
2. Male privilege is being able to ask out girls because it’s the norm; when a girl asks a guy out, she is interpreted to be too ballsy or aggressive and depriving the guy of the role. Male privilege is also not having to deal with overeager, oversexed, unsolicited “creepiness.”
3. Male privilege is being able to get drunk and have sex with a girl and then getting away with it on the grounds that it was a “grey area” and that “these things regularly happen anyway.”
4. It is male privilege to turn on the TV and see yourself represented in a positive way and be encouraged. Male characters, no matter how unappealing or unambitious or otherwise unattractive (ugly and lazy, in Saunders’ words) they are, can still score quality women. Male privilege is not having to deal with the intense body image pressure and “thinspo” bullshit as unrelentingly as females do. Male privilege is being a bodybuilder and getting praise; females become bodybuilders and they are met with misogynistic “that’s disgusting, that’s not how a girl should look” comments. Male privilege is being able to work out without a shirt on at a gym and not being kicked out, whereas if a woman were to work out with a sports bra and yoga pants, she gets kicked out.
5. Male privilege is being recognized for heroic actions, whereas female heroines are rarely heard of in media and history.
6. Male privilege is being able to decide whether or not you want to be a father, whereas for a mother, it is apparently not supposed to be a choice (if the law prevents a woman from being able to choose to be a mother or not, then the law should also prevent men from being able to abandon fatherhood. It took two to make the baby).
7. Male privilege is being able to get away with writing a check every month for child support while the mother actually raises and supports the child. You want to talk about responsibility for supporting a child “you didn’t want to have in the first place”? It’s not just about money.
8. Male privilege is not having your gender used against you and everybody else; it is not having your gender associated with inferiority and weakness. It’s never being told that the way you are born is, by default, wrong: “You throw like a girl,” “Stop being such a girl,” “You run like a girl.” I fight like a girl, and you can test me on this.
9. Male privilege is being able to joke about rape.
10. Male privilege is being able to leave your wife and not have anything to do with her or the kids anymore because you found a younger booty to chase.
11. Male privilege is being able to frighten your spouse into not calling the police and simultaneously cultivating her Stockholm Syndrome.
12. Male privilege is being commended for being empathetic and sympathetic; dare females be as cold and indifferent (read: calculating and objective) as men tend to be, we are admonished for not being sensitive enough.
13. Male privilege is being taken seriously at your job and not having to deal with sexual harassment–which, even when reported, may not actually be taken seriously as an issue. Male privilege is not having a glass ceiling. Male privilege is being able to make your way to the top without anyone assuming you fucked your way up there. Male privilege is being able to be a stay-at-home dad and get reactions of commendation, not people sneering at you for being “unproductive.”
14. Male privilege is being found guilty of crimes and still serving less harsh sentences than women.
15. Male privilege is not being discriminated against in qualifying tests and winning the majority of athletic scholarships.
16. Male privilege is being able to have an opinion without being told you are a picky or high-maintenance or self-righteous bitch.
17. Male privilege is being able to discuss sexism without being written off as “just another crazy feminist.”
18. Male privilege is arrogantly believing that sexism is no longer an issue.
Those match Saunders’ 18 items. But continuing on:
19. Male privilege is not having to deal with the backwards-ass patriarchy that still pervades in today’s societies (first world societies aren’t the only societies to exist, you know) such as reading articles like the one Saunders published on Thought Catalog.
20. Male privilege is being able to sleep with numerous partners and be revered, whereas females are called whores, sluts, tramps, and the like for doing the same thing. Even if men are called “manwhores,” notice that the root word is “whore”–which roots in being female.
21. Male privilege is not having to put on cosmetics and make-up and shave your body hair to appear more presentable and pleasing to the eye. Male privilege is not being told the natural functions of your body that come with your gender (and being a human in general) are inappropriate or disgusting, such as menstruation, menopause, body hair, facial hair, hot flashes, and cramps.
22. Male privilege is being able to walk on the streets without being honked at, whistled at, or having lewd comments shouted at you. (see this article on objectification)
23. Male privilege is having so many superheroes and protagonists to relate to, where as females, for the most part, are just eye candy (see Laura Mulvey’s Male Gaze theory).
24. Male privilege is not having your worth automatically discounted upon reaching the age of 30 (I love the show, but in HIMYM, Barney often discredits women over the age of 30 and deems them unworthy, or “expired”).
25. Male privilege is not automatically being deemed a bad driver and suffering higher insurance premiums.
26. Male privilege is not being deemed loose/brazen for partying and drinking.
27. Male privilege is not being expected to pay for birth control pills, plan B, or other medical contraceptives.
28. Male privilege is not having your innards bleed out of you once a month as mother nature’s way of morbidly congratulating you on not being pregnant.
29. Male privilege is not having to check out in a lane with a female cashier for some purchases.
30. Male privilege is not having to go through the judgment of buying a pregnancy test or the morning-after pill.
31. Male privilege is being able to keep your last name and not depleting your parents of funds for the wedding.
32. Male privilege is being able to cry about something and being told that “it takes a real man to cry,” whereas when a female cries, she’s just being a drama queen.
33. Male privilege is having your emotions and thoughts validated as being genuinely from the autonomic self, whereas female emotions are just hormones.
This list is clearly biased against males by using falsely universal statements–just like Saunders’ list was clearly biased against females by grouping them all together. Also note that many of his grievances actually can be traced back to men fucking up and ruining the livelihood of women to the point where we have HAD to create these “privileges” for ourselves.
Obviously, none of the points on my list are universal or descriptive of every male ever. They are generalizations that can easily be challenged. There are exceptions to every rule, and you know what? Everybody has their own opportunities and privileges, and likewise, they all have their own crosses to bear. We need to quit bitching about how unfairly we are treated by others and look to how we treat each other, and then collectively learn to treat each other with empathy and respect.