it must be nice to be able to think without writing. indeed it might be nice not to think at all, which is one of the wonders of meditation, including christian. however i find not thinking almost impossible especially when people make provocative statements and not writing painful when i think. so it is a good thing i have a left hand.
i have been thinking about patriarchy for many reasons, particularly because there still persist social contracts between men and women. the most obvious one that many of us women rely on every time we leave the house after dark is the understanding that men will not take advantage of the fact that we are smaller and weaker and attack us.
this used to be a contract between men and other men, of course, as men thought women derived our value from our relation to them. and indeed we can see today something of this attitude in men who feel it their responsibility to see certain women and not others home after dark.
i would say that is more meritorious for a man to see a stranger or chance acquaintance home, for she has no claim on his protective services whatsoever. a man more naturally wants to protect someone belonging to his family or group, whatever that group might be, from harm. and it must be a good feeling to know that your mere presence makes a woman happier and enforces your status in a group. as an occasional chaperone and sometimes rescuer of younger women i can guess.
i use the expression 'protective services' intentionally because i have recently read anarchist arguments against minarchist thoughts about the minimal state. the minimal state arises from from a perceived need from protection from violence, in which as a woman (a short one) who is forbidden by the state to carry a handgun, i am naturally interested. if there were no state i would certainly carry a handgun because, although statistics are on my side, any sexual attack--such as are not unknown in my neighbourhood--would be unthinkingly devastating to my psyche. it is for this reason that i never walk home through the woods after dark by myself but arrange to meet my husband at the bus stop.
from a patriarchal perspective i suppose i would ask how men should be rewarded for their protective services. i might answer back that, beyond the emotional satisfactions of doing a good deed, their reward could be sheer gratitude that they themselves are relatively--relatively--free from danger of attack in peace-time, particularly--outside prison--of sexual violation, at least now that they are adult males. i do not think they deserve a complex system in which they make all the decisions and get all the education and eat all the pies.
at any rate it seems to me that as long as women are in danger of sexual attack--and a breakdown of society--see Tahrir Square for a peacetime exanple--seems inevitably to lead to sexual attack--women will always need protective services and from those services will inevitable arise a state, even if that state is only patriarchy. the only way i can imagine a stateless society in which women flourish is one in which we are armed and prepared to kill an attacker. the problem then is if women can actually do this without great psychic damage.