As part of a series I'm calling "I Watched It So You Don't Have To," I'm covering the always entertainingly-offensive Pat Robertson. His latest advice for a lady whose husband is a cheater leads me to believe that he may be worse at marriage counseling than he is at sounding sane. Robertson's advice for this poor woman sounds like it's straight out of the 1955 May Issue of Housekeeping Monthly. Here are the pleasant highlights from this supremely insulting segment, as well as a video below:
0:01: A woman's story is read out loud. In it, she explains that she can't get herself to trust her husband since he's cheated on her.
0:31: Pat Robertson cuts off his female co-host when she says that forgiveness can be difficult when it comes to your spouse cheating because it's the ultimate form of betrayal ... with the words "Here's the secret."
OUH I can't wait to hear his secret! Something tells me I'm going to wish he kept more secrets for himself.
0:35: "Stop talking about theeee cheating ... He cheated on you, yeah he's a man," Robertson says. I think he's confusing the word man with the world neanderthal.
0:49: He asks the woman to think about the reasons why she married her husband. He helpfully starts numbering them in order of importance:
1) "Does he provide you with a home to live in?"
2) "Does he provide you with food for you to eat?"
3) "Does he provide you with clothes for you to wear?"
I don't know about this lady's particular situation, but I'm pretty women now have credit cards to do that stuff. Maybe not all women, but Pat Robertson does know that women now have jobs now, right?
1:16: Robertson gets ... a little weird with himself, and advises the woman to "touch his face" while he strokes his own face gently. This is the part where you'll start feeling really uncomfortable.
1:14: He tells the woman to stop focusing on what makes her mad and instead focus on "the good stuff." Yes, because she's the one who needs to change her behavior to remedy this situation.
1:57: Robertson goes the extra sexist mile by telling the woman that she needs to "honor him" instead of worrying about the fact that he slept with another woman. Yeah. That's the best way of getting someone to respect you, honor them when they've treated horribly.
2:08: Then he puts the onus on her to "make the home so wonderful he won't wanna wander." Yes. Men only have penises, not brains, silly! They're like dogs. If you don't offer them a warm home with regular belly rubs and delicious food, they'll be tempted by the hot dog owner next door!
2:30: Then Pat Robertson makes the argument that her husband was captured by all the evil porn in the world and that she needs to "get him free" from it. Yes, because we all know women never watch porn and that they never cheat. Women need to stop complaining about unfaithful partners and help them win the fight against their hormones. It's not like women have any!
Some people will cheat and build a stronger marriage or relationship after the event occurred. It can be a sign that the marriage needs help and it can probe some healthy discussions between partners. The point is that everyone's situation is different. To tell a woman you don't know anything about that she should suck it up because her husband is wired to cheat is extremely harmful. It's offensive to women, but mostly, it's insulting to men. Media and marketing companies like to portray men as brainless hormone-driven pigs, instead of rational thoughtful full human beings.
Men are better than that. Of course it would be naive to assume that women and men aren't affected by their hormones, but it's ignorant to reduce humans to those very functions.
With his words, Pat Robertson hasn't only brought down women, he's dragged down men too. We're all better than that.
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