TUMBY BAY - Men are scared of women. Shit scared. They always have been and it lies at the root of how they treat women.
Violence against women is a direct consequence of male fear.
One of the things men particularly fear about women is their reproductive ability.
The ability to bear children gives women enormous power.
If you want to see how this works you can’t go past the reality television show The Bachelorette.
Ostensibly just another piece of puerile crap dished up by commercial television, it beautifully illustrates the primal forces underpinning the relationships between men and women.
Like a bitch in heat the bachelorette, Sophie Monk, has a slavering posse of men begging and fawning at her fingertips.
Who will be the successful alpha male who finally beds her is the foremost attraction of the show.
The show is biology at work in its purest and rawest form. It’s amazing they don’t screen the actual consummation at the end.
Why are men in even the most sophisticated societies so wedded to their biological imperatives? Why do they feel the need to dominate?
Because they have to prove that their genes are the ones women want when they reproduce. Because they need to prove they are worthy of even the most powerful woman.
Why is the drunk in the bar so afraid to go home? And, when he is fully loaded with liquid courage, why does he beat his wife?
Because he is afraid of her and has to hide his fear in violence.
Why do men in traditional societies refuse to eat from a plate of food that a woman has stepped over?
Why do men run a mile at the sight of menstrual blood? Why are they so afraid of contamination that they banish their women to little huts over a sea or in a forest?
Why won’t the Catholic Church condone the idea of female priests? Why does it insist on celibacy in its priests?
Why do apparently civilised men beat their wives when those wives succeed so admirably in their chosen careers?
Is it because if the woman is successful she might discard him and go looking for a new alpha male?
It is an ultimate irony that frightened men seek to induce fear in their women by threatening to beat them. Or in actually beating them.
They are saying, “I am the alpha male, you don’t need to go looking for someone better, if you do I’ll kill you.”
Expressed in these fundamentalist terms it is hard to see how this biological Catch 22 of fear creating fear can be resolved.
The answer, of course, is self-control. The control of primal drives is, after all, supposed to be the mark of a civilised society.
And who has to exercise this control over themselves?
Men, of course. And perhaps women too?
Weak men trying to prove they are strong and strong women trying to prove they are docile is not the way to go.
Just ask Sophie Monk.