Men Don't Protect You Anymore - But That's Okay

Today Donald Trump is being inaugurated into the White House. A misogynistic man, who denies climate change and treats life like a reality show, is now the most powerful man on Earth. Thinking about the saying “Men don’t protect you anymore” makes me feel a lot of gratitude for my father. Not your typical “man’s man”, my father showed and taught me everything to do with art, music, culture, building community, and environmental stewardship.

These days, since I live across the country, I regularly text him all my questions and thoughts concerning the ways of the world. He was never the type of dad to be “Mr. Fix It” or intimidate any of my boyfriends. He was never protective of me in that physical, overbearing sort of way. Even when travelling third world countries at a young age, I felt like he should have been more physically protective as men would leer at me and scare me with their advances.

Photo by Jasmine Wallis 

Photo by Jasmine Wallis 

However he has always been, and still is, a fierce protector of my spirit. I am now eternally grateful for the sense of strength and self-security that I carry within myself as a woman. I walk home late at night never thinking “if only I had a man with me I would feel safe”, instead I think, “OK this is what I would do if ____ happens”. If I choose to be with a man, no part of that is because I want the security.

My father raised me ensuring I knew that I was everything I needed. I thank him for forcing me out of my comfort zone time and time again, whether it’s chasing him by bike through a sea of taxis in Manhattan, eating sashimi for the first time in Japan, or singing “Somewhere over the Rainbow” in front of a crowd on his 40th birthday many moons ago.

Here’s to ladies saying, “I’m not interested” instead of “I have a boyfriend”. Here’s to men treating us, and fathers raising us, as truly equal. Here’s to taking your future into your own hands, and not Trump’s puny, orange ones.

Erika PreeceComment