have been feeling like i have just been being a women's studies teaching feminist freak, but now i realize, no, i am totally totally right. stupid capitalist patriarchy.
This is also how I've been feeling recently. Some questions to flesh this out a bit:
- why must they always put the man's name first on every bill, from phone to city tax? even, I might add, in supposedly progressive southern California? (not that Virginia should get away with this treatment simply because they are supposedly "red state," mind you)
- why do I need to provide proof of my degree in order to get my title changed from "Miss" to "Dr" when my partner does not?
- why can't both names of partnered or married couples go onto a lease or mortgage? Why must it be the man's? Even when the woman has done all of the communicating to find said property, such that the estate agents don't even know the man's name and must ask for it???
- why do they ask me for the "groom's name" when I go in to ask for a copy of my marriage certificate?
the complexity stems from the systematic secondary status of women over time. so that women get paid less and are seen as secondary in the whole arrangement of who's bringing home the bacon, such that even though I was in fact getting paid substantially more than Sam for the year we were in Redlands, we had to fight to get my name first on the mortgage, sending the papers back for correction several times.
All of this is convincing me that while the tactics of the second wave don't continue to be helpful, and thus I find third wave feminism much more convincing, the questions and issues of second wave feminism are by no means resolved and in fact we have slid quite a bit backwards.
I suppose the bottom line is this: folks need to stop telling me these little things are no big deal. Certainly, if one assumes that one's relationship will last forever in MB (marital bliss—shout out to José) then it's no big deal that only one person technically leases your place or owns your home. And one assumes that in my friend's case and my case, that will be the case. But it doesn't make it right or okay that we live in this world that privileges a certain group of people because they can grow facial hair, fail (usually) to grow bumps on their chests, and have something between their legs. And it is a big deal.