Yes Rachel, Feminism Really Is A Crock...
by Pete Jensen
I just ran across your letter while browsing my favorite website, and as usual I’m saddened to see yet another young mind infected with the lie that is feminism, horrified that someone might disagree with her “religion.”
Feminism is greatly beneficial to men as well as women.
We hear this often, Rachel, but it’s a platitude; when urged to enumerate these vast benefits the response is usually what Gonzo’s Lexicon describes as “The Fish-Face” – the speechless opening and shutting of the mouth by someone who has no ready response.
It is understandable, however, why you might be hurt by the success of women.
Very early comes the “Shaming Language.” This is a common tactic, Rachel, taken straight from a debater’s handbook – it’s a variation on the Strawman argument – you mischaracterize your opponent’s position, erecting a man made out of straw, and knock it down. In this case you characterize it as a fear, up with the usual litany of “Men fear strong women” and that ilk.
What is hurtful, Rachel, is not the success of women, it is the tendency of gender feminists to knock down men in order to raise up women. Quite a different thing.
Men respect and admire a woman of achievement; Maggie Thatcher is just one example. What we object to is when women insist on hitting from the red tees, or doing girl pushups, and then stamping their foot and insisting that they are “just as good.” And it’s become wearisome to be treated to the “Treat us like a lady when we want, and like an “equal” when we want, and read our mind to figure out when those instances would be.”
Both women AND men are subject to very very strict roles in our culture.
No, Rachel. Men have responsibilities. Women have choices. A woman working or staying home is unremarkable. A man staying home gets an article in the “Living” section on how “cute” these “Mr. Moms” are. And that is just the tip of the iceberg.
This not only makes it difficult for women to work to support the families that so often are fatherless (let's have your site work on this) while raising children as well.
Well, Rachel, whose fault is that? Despite the wishful thinking of feminists, the grossly inaccurate and mean-spirited stereotype of the absent dad who abandoned his family is very rare. If you have truly looked around this site, or any Men’s Activist sites, you will note that they are filled to the brim with enraged and powerless men who have been locked out of the family life by a biased family court system, and vengeful mothers, or mothers who see no need for a father, regarding their children as “their” property. By far and away, these kinds of “absent fathers” outnumber the abandoners. And it is precisely the point of sites like this is to put forth the idea that reproductive plumbing has nothing to do with worth as a parent – and the paternal instinct is as strong and valuable as the maternal instinct.
It also makes it so that men are trapped by the fear of being called homosexual, by the fear of not being man enough.
You might be surprised, Rachel, if you actually knew that many gay men are among the most rugged and manly men around. The flamboyant poofter, again, is obvious, but not the totality. Many men who like men like, are well, MEN. Not effeminate metrosexuals.
And many sissies are as straight as the day is long; whether gay or straight, this type of man is not manly. And most men don’t want to be this. Just like most women, even lesbians, don’t want to look and act like men.
I see how you can feel hurt by feminism.
I’ve already addressed the strawman argument you make. I’ll forbear repeating it.
First, it is not really socially acceptable because of our strict roles for you, as men, to feel little other than rage or drunkenness.
Oh yes, we men are just such callous brutes, aren’t we? Have mercy, we are sinners one and all. Rachel, this is offensive in its sheer shallowness. The amount of men heading up rescue and relief efforts, writing poetry, prose and music, engaging in all manner of pursuits besides “Drinkin’ beer an’ whuppin’ ass” are legion.
Second, you are hurt because you have a whole lot of power in this culture. You have for years and years, and now you feel threatened.
Oh where shall I start on my power? We have the power to be drafted, to be locked up without due process or evidence on spurious rape and abuse charges (Because, of course, the charge is so serious); the power to be systematically locked out of our children’s lives; to be assessed “imputed” income in a child support proceeding far in excess of our ability to make, or our history of making; the power to be eliminated from or denied jobs and education in the name of “Affirmative Action”; to be beat up, not fight back, walk out of a “Domestic Situation” with the blood running from our face and still be locked up as the “primary aggressor.”
Or maybe it’s the host of all-male schools and establishments where no woman is allowed to tread, the exclusive Men’s Scholarships, agencies devoted to our every whim, and the “Violence Against Men Act.” When we get attacked by women, we are never made fun of on Jay Leno, nor when we are sexually harassed.
Yes, Rachel, by all means, let me revel in my power.
This is understandable, but I would say challenge yourself to step outside these boundaries that you've been forced into and you will see that there is a lot of room for you in feminism.
The boundaries I have been forced into, Rachel, are because of feminism. This is oddly like asking a leukemia victim to explore the opportunities cancer presents to him.
Feminism is an “ISM” Rachel – like racISM. It is a peculiar brand of sexism, the glorification of the feminine at the expense of the masculine. What you suggest is akin to asking Martin Luther King to join the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.
I can tell you I know scores of men who are feminists and they work every day to make sure that they as men are not contributing to women feeling unsafe or threatened by the power and privilege that you as men hold.
I thought it was us who were threatened, Rachel? Could you make up your mind here?
I had honestly started this intending to not get short with you, but I am losing patience. Exactly what threatens you and makes you feel unsafe? Disagreement?
Does the idea of a man getting due process of law instead of being presumed guilty based on your say-so make you feel unsafe, Rachel? Perhaps the notion that a man might be as good – or, dare I say, a better - parent than you threaten you? Does the thought that the best man for the job might indeed be a man bother you? Perhaps the suggestion that if you made a false allegation of rape, abuse, or paternity against a man; that you should be held accountable for it makes you quiver?
I don’t recall except on the scant fringe elements of Men’s Activism that anyone in the movement suggest that there should be an open season on the female of the species, Rachel. Damn me if searching through the archives here can’t reveal so much as one instance where it is suggested that rape should be declared a national sport, that “Whack-A-Wife” should be marketed as a new reality show, that women should be drummed out of the workforce, or not allowed out without a keeper.
But I will tell you what, Rachel: You sure-as-God-made-little-green-apples CAN find that all through feminist rhetoric directed towards males.
I think, Rachel, that you might be projecting that threat and insecurity. I’d suggest next semester drop that “Womyn’s Studies” class, and take a psychology class to learn what that means. In addition to discovering something new, it’ll have the advantage of not being a fluff class, useless for anything else but being a professional victim.
It is very difficult to call feminism "anti-father" because as a feminist, believe me- I want fathers to be present, I want fathers to be free to love who they want to regardless of gender, I want fathers to feel comfortable enough to raise children and support families in the same way women have for years.
I have heard this a thousand times from feminists, Rachel, and each and every time it has come with the unspoken qualification “…so long as they act like mothers, and do it in the women’s fashion, because it is a better way.” Your “In the same way women have for years” doesn’t lead me to think you are any different
It’s odd and produces in me cognitive dissonance when I hear a feminist say this and complain about the Men’s and Father’s Rights Movement, Because we want the exact same thing – except that we want to be Fathers in the manner of men, not mothers in the manner of women.
I suppose that really is the issue, isn’t it?
I am sorry I came upon your site because it makes me feel unsafe in spaces where men may be believing that young boys should not be taught that domestic violence is bad,
This angers me, Rachel. Because domestic violence is bad. And it’s bad when directed towards men as well. And what is just as bad is when there is a false accusation of it to gain advantage in a divorce or custody proceeding.
but I also hope that you will think about what your privilege as a man in this society really means for those who do not have it.
Again – what privilege would that be?
What would be the consequences you'd face if you called yourself a feminist?
Since feminism is based on the dislike of the male, I guess I would have to hate myself.
Tell me, though, Rachel – what would it cost you to become a “Men’s Rights Activist?” To fight for a real egalitarian treatment of men and women before the law, and in society?
I guess you would have to surrender that privilege and preference you have.
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Pete Jensen is a Computer Engineer and Curmudgeon who lives in the wilds of Southern Indiana. He enjoys satirizing political correctness, and mocking its advocates. If you’d care to write him and talk reasonably he welcomes it. If you’d care to write him and froth at the mouth ideologically, he welcomes that too. You’ll be grist for the mill, and know in advance he doesn’t regard any such diatribes as privileged communication. That’s right, you too can wind up lampooned by his searing wit and insightful barbs in front of millions on the internet.