White cisgender straight Christian men sit at the top of society, and so, when some of them see oppressed groups gaining basic human rights, it upsets them. They feel victimized because, as society moves closer to equality, they will no longer sit on the top of the hierarchy, which is very threatening to someone who, for their whole lives, have been treated like they are superior.
In response to progressives pushing for equal rights, many white cisgender straight Christian men threaten that the “revenge of the cis” is coming, according to many social media trolls and Reddit users. In their minds, the equality that we are moving toward is oppression because, when someone who has been on the top for their whole lives gets knocked down to the level where everyone else is that feels like oppression.
The “revenge of the cis” isn’t necessary, equality is about the erasure of oppression not about switching what groups are oppressed.
Some of the men that are claiming the progressives “agenda” aim to oppress them believe that we have already reached equality, and therefore efforts to uplift minority groups are unnecessary, according to many Instagram posts trolling feminism.
However, this is simply not true.
First of all, the conversation we are having right now all over the world has to do with that, in the United States, Black American people are disproportionately targeted by the police and justice system. This isn’t some fabrication from the media made up in some attempt to “make it seem like Black Americans are oppressed” the statistics prove it.
According to a Harvard study, Black people are six times more likely to be killed by a police officer. If equality was something that existed almost nobody would be killed by a militarized police system because militarized police are rooted in oppression and wouldn’t exist in an equal society. But, because we are not yet equal, it can be said the police system targets BIPOC.
The GLAAD website has pages and pages of information on how the Trump administration continues to make efforts to roll back the rights of LGBTQ and transgender people. This means that right now, progressives are not only pushing for equality but are having to fight against those pushing for oppression.
Furthermore, people are trying to make it so women don’t even have full autonomy over their bodies. The basic human right of getting to control one’s actions could be taken away from women, and many male politicians are making stripping away women’s rights a top priority.
Another level of “evidence” people are using to back up the “revenge of the cis” are claims that heterophobia and misandry are real issues that we must tackle, according to people I have polled on social media. Most of the backup for claims that these are real issues come from jokes that have gained popularity amongst “Gen-Z-ers.”
These jokes fall along the lines of “I hate all men” and “I hate straight people.” What some are claiming is if men were changed to women and straight people were changed to gay the jokes would be terms for “canceling.”
Although the validity of these jokes is something that many have different opinions on (a poll I conducted showed a 50/50 split when I asked if the jokes are OK or offensive) the point is these jokes aren’t rooted in systemic oppression. Whether or not they are funny is up to the eye of the beholder, but the so-called “heterophobia and misandry” they prove, does not exist.
All of the above proves that not only are white cisgender straight Christian men still at the top of society, but they also aren’t coming down anytime soon. This is because progressives are not only fighting against the old systems of oppression but are forced to fight against new laws and ideals aiming to oppress those already being pushed to the bottom.
Much like “racial colorblindness,” the “revenge of the cis” ideal promotes the idea that we have already reached equality and ignores the fact that we still have so much work ahead.