I would suggest that most, if not all, women would have been the subject of ridicule in some form or other simply because of their gender. Sometimes it is felt even without words – the scorn, belittling behaviour and condescension. Then of course we know of the way many men talk of their mothers, wives, sisters and women in general when with their friends; berating women as being silly, emotional, talkative (fill in the dots).
BUT….what about the way women berate men? Who hasn’t heard a woman talk as though all men are stupid, over-sexed oafs who can’t appreciate the finer things in life. Groups of women can get together for girls nights out and attend shows where they ogle at men’s bodies in the same way some men do with women.
Even among groups of Christians we hear derogatory comments about men, see raised eyebrows and talk of ‘domestic blindness’ when it comes to finding things in the house. From the pulpit we hear jokes about either gender in regard to so-called typical behaviour. Then of course the TV sitcoms perpetuate expectations of poor behaviour and attitudes towards both women and men.
Another small step along the way to true gender equality which is pleasing to God would be for us all to not succumb to the pressure to join in the laughter or complaints but contribute something positive such as saying…..’not all men are like that’ or ‘I know many women who are just the same.’ Usually when that is said, people pull back a bit and say that of course that is true. So….why is it so typical of conversations, even in Christian company? Habit, peer pressure, embarrassment, or……??