Thursday, February 5, 2015

Jumping on the Bandwagon

So I've been watching the continual, ongoing manufactured outrage over Women Against Feminism.  If you don't know what this group is, its just what it says:  a group of women (of all ages, walks of life, backgrounds, ethnicities, and so on) who have basically said "I've had enough of the Feminist Movement's bullshit" and are making public statements to that effect.


For those who are unfamiliar, these women regularly produce selfies where they are holding up signs that declare that they don't need Feminism, followed by a variable-length list of reasons why.  (One of the most popular reasons being "Because I think both genders are worthy of respect, not just the one that has all the uteruses".)


The signs have all been polite, and have stated these women's public disagreement with the accepted dogma of modern feminism (that is, the don't believe all men are rapists, they don't believe we live in a rape culture, and they don't believe that not getting your way all the time equates to being oppressed).


The reactions from feminists has really tweaked my appreciation for irony.


Seriously.


The fury displayed at the thought that there might be some woman, somewhere, who thinks Feminism might be a bad thing has been hilarious to watch.  These women have been called whores, traitors, and brain-washed self-hating misogynists.  They've been threatened with death, and even more amusingly, threatened with rape by feminists who otherwise are busily accusing every man who even looks at a woman funny as being a rapist.


What's truly remarkable, though, is that, amid the the cat-calls and insults and rape threats and the statements that these poor deluded women who are committing the crime of not marching in lockstep with the Feminism Sisterhood just do not understand what Feminism really means and thus need to educate themselves, there has been an upswelling of support from older, more established, professional women who apparently have been harboring bad-feelings about "the movement" and how its been actively and intentionally hurting men for years, but who have never had the courage to say anything in support of men's issues before now.


I find it very, very interesting that it took a bunch of women vocally rebelling against the usual Feminist ideology to get prominent (and not so prominent) Feminists all over the world to finally start paying attention -- if only for a moment -- to the very same issues that men in the Humanist community have been talking about for decades now.  Apparently when these issues were brought up by men, they weren't actually worthy of consideration.  Men who complained about the problems with modern Feminism and how it is hurting both men and women were brushed off and ignored, or worse yet slapped with the insidious "Misogynist" label simply because they were men.  Feminism was thus able to refuse to engage in any sort of meaningful debate with men about these problems.  But now that it is women making these comments, its a bit harder to dismiss men's issues as the product of misogyny.  No one is buying the idea that the women making the comments are all brainwashed.


Hypocrisy, thy name is Modern Feminism.


Not that the Feminists aren't trying.  The utter outright bloodthirsty rage displayed at these women who have broken with the official party line by Feminists is, in a word, disgusting.  These women, whose only crime is to hold a dissenting opinion, are treated as air-headed bimbos, know-nothing uneducated, stupid, brain-washed, sluts who are only disagreeing with Feminism because they desperately seek a man who will take control of their lives and return them to the status of chattel.  Of course, nothing could be further from the truth.  Most of the women involved in #WomenAgainstFeminism are highly-educated college graduates who've simply made decisions based on the evidence provided.


If I could be excused for a moment, I'd like to "mansplain" something to all those Feminists who go into a red-eyed rage over these women, because they are clearly missing the point.  Over and over and over in the Feminist-generated critiques of these young women, I kept reading accusation after accusation of how these women apparently did not understand what Feminism was "all about".  I saw dozens of complaints that these young women simply "did not get it."  Feminism wasn't about the things these women were complaining about, whatever that happened to be, it was about EQUALITY.  These feminist critics would quote the dictionary definition of the word "Feminism".  They'd quote great feminist minds of the past.  They'd cite actions done back in the 50s, 60s, and 70s that led women to the positions and rights they now enjoy.


Except not everybody is buying what the feminist critics are selling, and apparently that's not only angering feminists, its enraging them.


I'm not going to lie to you.  Among the small community of people who give a damn about men's issues, there's quite a bit of gloating and sarcastic laughter going on about how Feminism is now being devoured from within over this.  A lot of us predicted this sort of thing, and damned if we weren't proven right.  But we're not really gloating.  We're just basking in our collective vindication.


The reason why Women Against Feminism is truly getting under the skin of Feminists about all this is because while Feminism is a political ideology, in a lot of ways its become very similar to a religious cult.  Sure, the inner circle, the great minds, have been preaching equality and tolerance and balance and all that good stuff.  But in the mean time, the more aggressive, antagonistic, utterly misandrist wing of the Feminist movement has effectively become the public face of it.  The public image of Feminism has been tarnished by women whose agenda isn't "equality" but really, truly is "hurt the men because they're men."


Not all feminists are like that?  Conceded.  So the fuck what?  When the loudest and most politically active feminists are like that, I don't care what you say, they are the ones driving the bus.  Let me be blunt for a second:  what has happened to the Feminist movement is the same thing that has happened to the Republican party at the hands of the Tea Party.  In an effort to appease the loudest voices and to maintain the appearance of unity, the Feminist movement has allowed those loudest voices, the ones belonging to the real man-haters out there, to dictate the direction in which the entire movement would move forward.


Or at least that's how it looks like, and perception is everything.


There's a reason why less than half of all adult women in America now identify themselves as Feminists.  Its because Feminism has become so associated with man-hate that even those Feminists who want no part of that particular kind of poison end up painted with it.  And even worse, three decades of systematically demonizing men and masculinity has managed to drive nearly all men away from the banner of organized Feminism.  There was a time when I would have proudly declared myself as a Feminist, because I believed (and still believe) in equality for all.  But I believe in full equality, which means that you have to take the good with the bad:  if women want to enjoy all the benefits of society that men do, then they have to allow men to enjoy all the benefits of society that women do.  That means we have to end the practice of giving women lesser criminal sentences for the same crime; we have to give men an equal footing with women in family courts; we have to give equal respect to male victims of sexual violence; we have to spend just as much time and money researching men's health issues as women's health issues, and so on


You know... all those "imaginary" men's issues that most Feminists brush off with a casual dismissal, when they acknowledge they exist at all, because the Feminists don't see them as unimportant.


Yeah, well, they're important to me, and to a lot of other people.  Which is why we don't want anything to do with Feminism.


Since the 80s, individual Feminists and organized Feminist organizations have made it quite clear that they don't want men along for their ride.  After all, we were the problem, and as the problem we could not be part of the solution.  The more men tried to not be part of the problem, the more men were demonized for merely being men.  Whether they intended to do this or not, organized Feminism, as a movement, became associated with the callous disregard of all things masculine, and with a deep disrespect for men in general.


And let me tell you, it has grown so bad that men cannot get together in a public forum and discuss issues like the epidemic of male homelessness (over 80% of all homeless people are men), or male suicide (over 75% of all suicides are men), or work place deaths (over 90% of all victims of workplace deaths are men) without having Feminists organize protests, make death threats and bomb threats, and threaten boycotts against the venue that dared let these meeting happen within their halls.


I mean, think about it.  Apparently, the very idea of men getting having the temerity, the utter gall, to get together to discuss male health issues was seen by organized Feminists as some sort of attack on women, and thus organized Feminists decided right then and there that such a meeting had to be stopped by any means necessary.


And by "any means" I mean death threats against the organizers, bomb threats against the venue, false reports to the police regarding criminal activity, physically blocking the entrances of the conference (and physically attacking anyone, male or female, who tried to run this blockade), and other criminal and border-line criminal means to disrupt the conference.


All because someone decided that a discussion regarding men's health issues, and how they are basically ignored in the United States, was necessary.  Classy behavior on the part of Feminism, don't you think?


You know, once upon a time, men were a lot more supportive of Feminism than most of us are today; but what did that support buy us?  Accusations that we're oppressors.  Taunts based on our perceived status as "privileged" that utterly ignored the disadvantages we suffer.  We were made the butt of jokes and casually hateful attitudes so often and so pervasively that these days many of these jokes have become common wisdom.  No effort was spared to heap shame and guilt on our gender merely for existing.  We supported the quest for reproductive freedom and the right of women to own their own bodies, and in return we were painted as closet rapists that needed constant supervision lest we suddenly attack someone.   Feminists savage so-called "male feminists" with particular delight because despite being supportive, they still insist on being male.


And when we realized that there was absolutely nothing we could do, when there was absolutely nothing we could say, that would show Feminists that we weren't the monsters they were accusing us of being, when we realized that there was no use in trying to make Feminists happy with us, and threw the towel in and stopped trying to appease them, we were labeled "misogynist".  So we left the table in disgust.  We're no longer interested in jumping through Feminism's hoops, because there's always one more hoop to jump through with no reward for it at the end.


It is no longer in the best interests of men to support Feminism at all.


Congratulations, ladies.  You've turned a population of willing supporters into people who are indifferent, or even hostile, to your political ideology.  Not because they hate women, but because they are tired of being your punching bags.


Like with the Republicans and the Tea Party, you played to your base and alienated the mainstream.  You have treated men like shit for decades, and some of us take it personally.  A lot of us carry scars from our treatment at the hands of Feminists.


And we're tired of it. 

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