Huh? Did we miss something here? This juxtaposition of genuine expressions of human love next to crass disrespect for human sexuality gives us pause.An so today, Valentine’s day, is the perfect day for us to begin to investigate the current state of male-female relations in our culture. We have begun to explore the meaning of friendship and love. Now that we have defined terms, let's get into the meat of the issue.
Why are we writing? Why have we found it necessary to address the issue of male-female relations? The answer is written in our experiences and observations. We have taken to our keyboards because our culture's push for androgyny has stripped men and women of their unique differences. This disrespect and lack of appreciation for the differences between men and women has significant implications for the relations between the sexes and has resulted in the deterioration of the male-female dynamic. But there is hope for an alternative.
Our culture has worked tirelessly to dismantle the unjust structures of gender inequality. Women have championed the cause of full integration and demonstrated their ability to participate fully in the world. Integration between the sexes has righted imbalances in the political and societal spheres. In a testament to woman’s determination, man’s adaptability, and our potential, we have sought to bring about a more just society.
While we praise the achievement of equality of the sexes, we understand equality to be distinct from the agenda of androgyny. Without a doubt, men and women have equal inherent value and ought to be afforded the same opportunities according to their abilities. But, unfortunately, the push for equality has been trumped by the promotion of sameness and androgyny—the belief that there are no significant differences between a man and a woman.
On campus, we are told to "celebrate diversity," yet are ridiculed when we celebrate the diversity between men and women. We are told that gender is a social construct that must be overcome. Rather than recognizing that men and women complement each other with differing strengths and weaknesses, our culture has sought to obliterate sex differences.
This widespread and utter failure to recognize the differences between men and women has led to confused relations between the sexes. Without societal guidelines, young men and women interact with one another with little or no understanding of their unique characteristics as members of opposite sexes. This has an incredible impact on all manners of relating, especially friendships and romantic relationships. What we face today is a crisis in male-female relations.
The simple fact we suggest is this: guys are not girls. Let that sink in. Girls are not guys. Radical idea, we know. The implication of this fact requires that relationships between the sexes must proceed with recognition, respect and celebration of differences. Unfortunately, without this respect for diversity, our culture has become the breeding ground for confusion. It has become the scene of harmful hook-ups and countless ambiguous male-female relationships, which may be regarded as potentially fruitful friendships between young men and women that disintegrate for want of clarity.
We hope the simple truth that “guys are not girls,” which we will begin to explore on this page, will help to mend the growing rent in the fabric of our society.