Men Were Not Historically Disenfranchised

January 2, 2022

Imagine a time machine, and you can go back 150 years and live life as a woman, or as a man.

I understand many would instinctively reach for the ‘man’ button, but understand that is a life where you’ll be forced to work, forced to sacrifice, forced to put your body and your health on the line to support your family.

There is not autonomy here.

You won’t get the choice to stay at home, in the same way that women didn’t get the choice to go to work.

Your role is about being productive and ultimately, disposable. A tool to achieve a goal, a hammer to hit a nail, your life is to provide, that’s it.

And provide not just for your family, but for your country too.

If a war breaks out then you’ll be going – and dying – alongside hundreds of millions of other young men, in the worse way imaginable.

Yes, it’s true that once married, your wife will no longer be able to open a bank account, but guess what, you’ll be held responsible for all her debts – including pre marital ones – so you best get to work.

If jobs needs to be done, or resources need to be mined, it’ll be you going down the hole to get it. Whether you come back is of no real importance, there are plenty more men to take your place.

Boats, factories, farms, rigs, railways, sewers, building sites – that’s your place now, and no you have no vote, of course not, and you won’t until 1919.

Do you feel disenfranchised?

Is this the life of privilege you were promised?

And would you pick differently next time?

So, which button would you press?

Images by Caleb Fisher and the British Library.


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