I worked with a guitarist from Argentina who was very "macho". He would say things like "Women are very intelligent but they're not men". As if being a man was simply a fact of superiority on its own, beyond any characteristics. To me he would say in Spanish "Tu, tu tiene cajones pero tu no es feminista" (" You've got balls but you're no feminist").
On the other side, many 'feminists' I know have a perpetual anger towards men that somehow seeks revenge for past crimes, that is unforgiving and unrelenting. I feel sorry for men when confronted with this because there's really not much to say -- men seem to be beyond redemption here.
When I was young I was very attracted to men but awkward and insecure in how I dealt with them. I was so sexual but had trouble finding men who enjoyed that sexuality and yet did not regard me as a 'slut', who could find dignity and respect in mutual pleasure. And then, I would confuse brutality with masculinity, losing interest in men who were reasonable and moderate.
So where do we go from here? What can we do? What is the cure?
I believe that there is a real possiblity that men and women can regard each other as people and function as equals while retaining the characteristics of feminine and masculine. A women's feminity and sexuality is based on generosity and kindness, a willingness to nourish and receive. A man's strength and purposefulness are based on a call to action, a willingness to give by supporting in every way. I believe that men and women can become that 'sacred marriage', a balance of yin and yang, so to speak. It takes mothers educating their sons. It takes fathers treating their daughters with respect and trust. It takes men and women learning to talk to each other openly from a very early age. It takes society to truly equalize education, employment and legislation. And it takes the media to stop presenting cliches and start presenting an evolved type of relationship, not just the usual cliches.
Indeed, I do believe that two people can demonstrate qualities of masculine and feminine (and perhaps not always respective of their birth gender) in a balanced and real manner, acknowledging that both are beautiful and valid and a wonderful playfulness. After all, our bodies are just the vessel that contains our spirit. Our relationships are between spirit, not just body. From there a new generation could come that might actually understand this and create a peaceful world.