“Woman is a violent and uncontrolled animal… If you allow them to achieve complete equality with men, do you think they will be easier to live with? Not at all. Once they have achieved equality, they will be your masters….. All mankind rules its women, and we rule all mankind, yet our women rule us.” – Cato The Elder (around 195BC ; Rome)
During the second Punic War in 215BC, Rome passed a law called ‘Lex Oppia.’ Cato argued that the law removed the shame of poverty because it made all women dress in an equal fashion. Cato insisted that if women could engage in a clothes-contest, they would either feel shame in the presence of other women, or on the contrary, they would delight in a rather base victory as a result of extending themselves beyond their means. He also declared that a woman’s desire to spend money was a disease that could not be cured, but only restrained; the removal of Lex Oppia, Cato said, would render society helpless in limiting the expenditures of women. Cato pronounced that Roman women already corrupted by luxury were like wild animals who have once tasted blood in the sense that they can no longer be trusted to restrain themselves from rushing into an orgy of extravagance. The law was repealed in 195BC, but this just goes to show that everything we’re dealing with right now is not something brand new. When society becomes more gentrified, women gain more power, gynocracy takes hold and then the nation either collapses from within (providing too many services for women and children, at the expense of the family unit and men), OR they are taken over by more patriarchal nations
Strabo (the Greek Historian, Geographer and Philosopher ; living from 64BC – 24AD) said this: “The multitude are restrained from vice by the punishments that the gods are said to inflict upon offenders, and by those terrors and threatenings which certain dreadful words and monstrous forms imprint upon their minds. For it is impossible to govern the crowd of women, and all the common rabble, by philosophical reasoning, and lead them to piety, holiness and virtue – but this must be done by superstition, or the fear of the gods, by means of fables and wonders; for the thunder, the aegis, the trident, the torches (of the Furies), the dragons, etc.. are all fables. These things the legislators used as scarecrows to terrify the childish multitude.” Essentially, they used religion as a way to terrify people (mainly women), so that society would be held in check. Just reading the history of the Roman Empire (Greco-Romans) brings such glaring similarities with our own civilization, it is as if human social dynamics are literally stuck in a cycle that repeats every couple thousand years (there were two matriarchal, extremely advanced civilizations: one at the end of the Roman empire, 2000 years ago, one possibly at the end of Babylon, 4000 years ago).
For those who enjoy history, here is a short recap of social changes in Rome, 2,000 years ago (most historians focus on military, economical and political facts, but I find the social aspects just as fascinating):
~5 century BC: Roman civilization is a a strong patriarchy, fathers are liable for the actions of their wife and children, and have absolute authority over the family (including the power of life and death)
~1 century BC: Roman civilization blossoms into the most powerful and advanced civilization in the world. Material wealth is astounding, citizens (i.e.: non slaves) do not need to work. They have running water, baths and import spices from thousands of miles away. The Romans enjoy the arts and philosophy; they know and appreciate democracy, commerce, science, human rights, animal rights, children rights and women become emancipated. No-fault divorce is enacted, and quickly becomes popular by the end of the century.
~1-2 century AD: The family unit is destroyed. Men refuse to marry and the government tries to revive marriage with a “bachelor tax”, to no avail. Children are growing up without fathers, Roman women show little interest in raising their own children and frequently use nannies. The wealth and power of women grows very fast, while men become increasingly demotivated and engage in prostitution and vice. Prostitution and homosexuality become widespread.
~3-4 century AD: A moral and demographic collapse takes place, Roman population declines due to below-replacement birth-rate. Vice and massive corruption are rampant, while the new-born Catholic Religion is gaining power (it becomes the religion of the Empire in 380 AD). There is extreme economic, political and military instability: there are 25 successive emperors in half a century (many end up assassinated), the Empire is ungovernable and on the brink of civil war.
~5 century AD: The Empire is ruled by an elite of military men that use the Emperor as a puppet; due to massive debts and financial problems, the Empire cannot afford to hire foreign mercenaries to defend itself (Roman citizens have long ago being replaced by mercenaries in the army), and starts “selling” parts of the Empire in exchange for protection. Eventually, the mercenaries figure out that the “Emperor has no clothes”, and overrun and pillage the Empire. Humanity falls back into the Bronze Age (think: eating squirrel meat and living in a cave), 12 centuries of religious zealotry (The Great Inquisition, Crusades) and intellectual darkness follow: science, commerce, philosophy, human rights become unknown concepts until they are rediscovered again during the Age of Enlightenment in 17th century AD.