http://morialekafa.blogspot.com ...May he blog on forever:
Still waiting for something, anything, to happen. In the meanwhile let us consider the question of bathrooms.
I do not wish to be indelicate; however, there is a serious problem with American bathrooms. No, I do not mean the absence of bidets. It's the absence of urinals that I find distressing. Why is it that in the vast majority of public bathrooms men are provided not only with standard toilets but also with urinals, whereas in their homes they are not? I have never seen a bathroom in an ordinary American home with a urinal. Never. And I'll bet you haven't either.
Not only is this a blatant example of sexism it is also awkward, unhygienic, inefficient, and undesireable.The sorry details of this problem must be known by every wife and cleaning lady in the country. Think of it: if a man raises the toilet seat and stands to do his duty it splashes around and eventually has to be cleaned up by someone (I'll wager most men don't do the cleaning). If, on the other hand, he puts the seat down he then has to take down his trousers and underwear. Most men I am sure do not do this unless they have the more serious business in mind.
I realize that most wives, and even people in general, do not want one of those full-length old-fashioned standing urinals which can easily become messy and smelly and in general undesireable. But what about the newer models that are small, well-designed, and just hang there on the wall, certainly requiring no more care than an ordinary toilet? Some may argue that such a device is too unsightly for a home bathroom. But what is sightly about a toilet? Others may argue that home bathrooms are too small to accomodate both a toilet and a urinal. Build them bigger I'd say (actually many bathrooms are plenty big enough to begin with).
A few people have argued for years for the use of bidets in America, a movement that has gone nowhere, due no doubt in large measure to their questionable association with prostitution, an idea brought back by our fighting men from the two World Wars. Also because many Americans have no idea what a bidet is. I submit that a bidet is far less necessary than a good urinal in the typical American bathroom. And who would argue that a bidet is more aesthically appealing than a modest wall-mounted urinal? Besides, everyone knows what a urinal is, and that it is usually separated from sinks and toilets by a discreet screen of some kind. It doesn't just sit there on the floor in all its porcelain majesty like a bidet.
How might one explain this curious cultural tradition and historical oversight? I conclude that it is women, bless them, who perpetuate this strange custom. As they don't use urinals, and as they are the primary architects and buyers of bathrooms, they apparently see no need for such a male convenience. I resist the temptation to dwell on the concept of "penis envy" although I have no doubt it plays some role in this shameful situation. Just because women have to adjust their attire to perform their bodily functions is no reason men should be penalized and discriminated against.
Indeed, I would argue that it would be in a woman's best interest to provide her mate with an attractive well-kept urinal. What better way to keep floors and toilet seats clean and free of germs? Besides, it would give husbands more time to babysit and do the dishes. Come to think of it, why don't we have separate facilities for men and women in our homes, bathrooms designed specifically for men and women, just as we do in train depots, airports, offices, and most everywhere else? You notice you rarely if ever see matching toilets in a bathroom, we just don't have two-holers anymore like we used to.
Something needs to be done about this.
posted by morialekafa at 7:50 PM