Marcus in a bra…
Today is International Women’s Day and I just want to publically acknowledge all the women who have touched my life and who make me a better person. Obviously, I start with my mother who not only raised me to be the man I am today, but who also dedicated her professional life to educating children. My wife, Marvelyne, who consistently shows me how to be a more compassionate and loving human being…and so, so many more!
Switching gears: In the past, I’ve done speaking engagements where a meeting planner will suggest having each audience member be blindfolded during my presentation. Ya know, so the audience will get a taste of what it’s like to be blind. If this is ever suggested (thankfully, “experiential learning” like this is no longer acceptable), I give it the big thumbs down.
When someone wears a blindfold, it no more gives them an idea of blindness than me wearing a bra gives me an idea what it’s like to be a woman. You can quote me on that.
When we try to walk a mile in another’s shoes, I think it’s a good thing. But, it must be done with the knowledge and admission that each human experience is different. We try to understand, we try to comprehend, but the truth is we just can’t get an accurate picture.
I empathize with how women have been treated as second-class citizens, yeesh, seemingly since the beginning of time. I understand the stats about women in the workplace and the glass ceiling. But, I can never know what it’s like to be a female. The best I can do is understand and admit that I am, and always will, come up short when it comes to knowing the experience of being a woman. Yet, I can acknowledge that shortcoming and still remain open and aware to my own ignorance. I can approach my relationships with females on their merit with the knowledge that we are different…and that that is okay. I can refuse to fall into the traps of old and the stigma, boundaries and ceilings that have been associated with women throughout time. That’s the best I can do…and to send love, hugs and support to all those who have been treated as “less than” by my fellow males. We’re getting better every day…I think, no matter what pitfalls our media shows. Let’s keep it up, men, and treat the other half of humanity with (gasp!) humanity.