I’m reading through a lot of the pieces that the Good Men Project is featuring in their MRA series. Two have caught my eye, Paul Elam’s and Pelle Billing’s. They are worth a read if only because they get down to the heart of what problems MRAs and rank-and-file men are actually dealing with – cutting through both the strawmen that feminists have created and the less diplomatic elements of male commenters around the Sphere.
In the comments section of Billing’s piece, Sallystrange wrote, about Billing’s assertion that modern husbands serve the role of protector for their wives:
Excuse me, what? Are you arming yourself and standing watch at night while wifey sleeps? Are you accompanying her at all times whenever she ventures out of the house, armed and alert and prepared for hand-to-hand combat with your mad karate skillz? Do you live in Somalia, where death by firearm or mortar is a real threat? If not, then I propose that the value of such protection is zero and you don’t get to negotiate some sort of compensation for labor you perform only in your imagination. This is the Western world after all; most of us are privileged enough that direct threats to our physical survival are vanishingly rare.
Britney Spears’ bodyguard rarely if ever has to spring into action to defend the pop starlet from violent attack. Spears is really paying mostly for the bodyguard’s mere presence which serves as a deterrent against attack or harassment. The bodyguard as deterrent is actually a more important role than bodyguard as Chuck Norris.
In this age where we mentally itemize and bill for every thing we do (“OK, we’re even on the dessert because you gave me a ride to work”), husbands and boyfriends deserve some sort of recognition for the role they play in protecting their women. This protection doesn’t have to be proven by defensive gun shots or fights in parking lots; the protection functions much like insurance. Not only is it there to protect you (financially) in case of an accident, it helps you proceed with confidence and peace of mind through a rough and tumble world.