Ever since I first became a heterosexual, I have always liked girls. I don't mean in the normal American way, where you pretty much hate them. How did "liking girls" turn into this pitched hostility toward them? If you don't "like girls" -- if you don't like them by virtue of your sexuality -- then you are free to actually like them. Which makes me gay, in a way, except for the sex part.
Somehow or another the sexual ideas I got about women led me to liking them comprehensively, not just in the restricted sense -- although when you are in different phases of your life this latter sense can take on a kind of primacy. Once your testosterone drops off a cliff, you can wisely observe that there is more to life than sex.
I'm very interested in parlaying the natural tendency of most boys to "like girls" into actually liking them. A lot of the reason I feel I can "get away" with being feminist comes down to the idea that, yes, I like girls. If you like girls, you care about them on some level. Well, that's true -- maybe it shouldn't be a big deal, but it's true. The "feminism" simply comes in as an acknowledgment of social injustice that women face.
There are many mornings I get up before dawn and hear radio broadcasts about missing women in Philadelphia and Camden, or unidentified bodies discovered in parks and parking lots which once belonged to women. I think it was only last summer or fall that there was somebody called the Kensington strangler; before that, of course, the Center City rapist. I know these were men who "liked girls" in the only sense that makes sense for most of us; now I hope we can agree on the inadequacy of its meaning.