By Aaron Aroriza, Uganda:
“…You mean you don't know this?! Long ago women used to rule this land and its men. They were harsh and men began to resent their hard hand. So when all the women were pregnant, men came together and over threw them. Before this, women owned everything…”
This passage from Ngugi wa Thiong'o's 'The River Between' amuses me now just as much as it amused me the first time I ran across it many years ago. But it doesn't amuse me as much as the creation story in the bible. That God created Eve after realizing Adam was lonely and had no helper, is quite astonishing. What! She just came as an afterthought? Really? When all the other animals had been created with such helpers?
Perhaps someday, Christian women activists will push for a change in the creation story. And while at it, I hope they also demand for a non-gender based God. I will be behind them all the way. But I'm not exactly behind them on the marriage bill currently being discussed in our parliament.
You see, simply summarized, this bill is coaxing-nay-forcing men to either get into the marriage institution or to remain there. Now, if a girl lives with her boyfriend for six years, they'll be recognized as legally married. I don't have a problem with it save for the fact that it points out one of the many things that have gone wrong with this whole women emancipation drive. While busy with the noble fight for gender equality, women have forgotten how to naturally keep their men loyal and endeared to them. They have to turn to constitutions and laws to keep their men in bed with them. Woe unto the marriage institution!
But before I shed all the tears, let me suggest something that may tip this whole gender balance fight in favor of women. The men in 'The River Between' exploited women's pregnancies to strike. Modern women activists could borrow a leaf. They are the mothers who bring up these men-even the chauvinistic ones. They are the ones who would spend most time with the young boys at that crucial age when the brain is picking up all the societal biases, that’s if they didn't leave this noble motherly role to their house maids in favor of fighting with men for hopeless employment. As mothers, they would all connive to raise boys in a way that will turn them into very weak and useless future men. They would at the same time raise their girls to be tough, kick-ass bitches who would have these hapless silly men on their knees begging for mercy all the time. A generation later, men would be spending all their time wearing make-up and trying to look like pretty girls, throwing little gigs while they try to fit in those tight pants, piercing all their body parts and wearing all sorts of jewelry, regarding hair as their pride, take window shopping as a hobby, have closets full of shoes, and stay home waiting for the bread winning modern mother's daughter to bring the dough home and find modern mother's son all looking good and ready to go to bed.
But on second thought, it seems modern mother has already figured this whole thing out. Such men are already on the loose. It's just a matter of time before a mother tells her daughter a story as they wait on daddy in the car while he makes up in the bedroom, “…you mean you don't know! Many years ago, men used to rule this land and its women. Even God was a 'He'. They were harsh and women began to resent their hard hand. So when all men were busy in the bar drinking themselves silly and failing to save up time to bring up their sons, women came together and over threw them. Before this, men owned everything… And today, my dear daughter, is Men's day. It used to be women's day, you know. Go wish daddy a happy Men's day and tell him to hurry up. He already looks pretty in those ball bursting tight jeans that once belonged to us.”
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