MRA Says, “Yep, We’re Domestic Abusers”

Before I interviewed Amanda Marcotte in July, we were discussing Men’s Rights activists. She made a statement to the effect that if you scratch an MRA, you find a guy upset that someone is keeping him from beating his wife and kids whenever he feels like it. Yesterday, via Ophelia, I came across a Man Boobz post that features an MRA making basically the same argument.

The MRA, Price, doesn’t say it directly, of course. He just says violence against women is all the fault of feminists.

Repeated provocations against men, systematic discrimination against men, and state-sanctioned debt slavery are starting to have the inevitable effect. In a triumph for the feminist movement, men are lashing out violently against women, fulfilling the feminist fantasy of a gender war.

I didn’t want to hurt you, honey, but you just wouldn’t stop. Everything would be fine if you’d just stop–in Price’s case, stop doing things like getting child support orders or demanding that equal civil rights trump the historical favoring of men in the workplace and civil and educational institutions.

You know I love you, but you make me crazy when you’re like that. I just can’t control myself.

Ironically, rates of violence against women, like rates of violent crime in general in the U.S., have been decreasing for the last couple of decades. There is no burgeoning gender war. There are just these few guys, pretending their entire gender is just like them as they fantasize about punishing that bitch who is walking away and anyone who dares to help her–those who stop at fantasizing.

So what “proof” does Price offer for his claim that men are “lashing out” at women because of feminism? He cites three news stories: one dealing with a woman-hating trucker who’s accused of killing several prostitutes; another involving a man who went on a shooting rampage at a church, killing his wife and wounding two others; and finally, the case of James Ray Palmer, the Arkansas man who shot up the offices of the judge who’d handled his divorce and custody case more than a decade earlier.

David Futurelle at Man Boobz is confused about how those crimes relate to feminism or a gender war, but it snaps into focus if you realize that this guy, like most MRAs, defines feminism as not being entirely under the control of the men around you. Feminism means not giving away sex for free just because some guy wants it. It means disappointing your husband so badly, somehow, even after you’ve withdrawn from your church with him, that he has to shoot you just like he did his first wife. It means telling a guy he has to keep paying for the upkeep of that kid whose visitation schedule is so inconvenient.

Feminism means, to this guy, deviating in the slightest from giving him what he thinks he should be due as a man. Those deviations have earned violence, just like noncompliant women in relationships have earned their beatings. And just as in domestic violence, Price warns us that the greatest price comes as we change the system, get out from under the control of men.

If we really leave, he’s telling us, we will die, and we will have made it happen. They can’t help it, you know. We’re so good at making them crazy.

Like any good abuser, however, Price will be generous and offer us a way out.

Women’s best bet for security is not in denouncing and fighting men, as feminists would have it, but in cooperating with them and taking on their proper role.

He can’t promise anything, mind you. It’s just our best bet. As though he knows from experience just how reliable those promises are.

Yeah, I’m with Amanda on this one.

Comments

  1. says

    The irony here is that if MRAs would fight for women’s equality instead of against it, almost everything they complain about would go away…except for the leaving part, that would probably still happen.

    But seriously, if you don’t want to be saddled with alimony and child support, maybe you should help make sure that women get paid the same as men for doing the same work.

  2. fastlane says

    I’m pretty sure I don’t want to know what ‘taking on their proper role’ means to douchenozzles like that.

    I’m supporting my wife through her PhD in the hopes that I can someday ‘take on my proper role’. =P

  3. Grace says

    After George Sodini shot those women in a fitness club, there were some men saying that this is the ‘tax’ women pay for big weddings and diamond rings and guys paying for dinner. Some guy told me that the women looked “smug” in their LA Fitness ID cards. I’m sure they were fully aware that if they didn’t look submissive and sweet when they had their photos taken for a gym ID card, they were being brazen feminazis who were flipping their finger at men, and the penalty for that is death. If you have the stomach for it, go to Sodoni’s video diary on youtube, he is getting a hell of a lot of support and sympathy. “The Feminazis are to blame for the deaths of those women. Fact.”

  4. Daniel Schealler says

    Proper place?

    *double facepalm*

    When I was a toddler, my mother taught me a very important lesson about ‘kisses and cuddles’.

    Her: Did know there are some boys that think that when they as a girl for kisses and cuddles and she says ‘no’ that she really means ‘yes’.
    Me: *furrows tiny brow*
    Me: … Does that mean they think that when a girl says ‘yes’ she means ‘no’?
    Her: No. They think yes means yes too.
    Me: But no means yes?
    Her: Yes.
    Me: Then… How are girls supposed to say ‘no’ if they don’t want kisses and cuddles?
    Her: They can’t.
    Me: *glares suspiciously*
    Me: Really?
    Her: Yes. Really.
    Me: But that’s silly. And not fair.

  5. D. C. Sessions says

    Thanks for reminding me, Stephanie.

    We’re cleaning out our closets again and it’s way past time some of the warm clothing went to local women’s shelters.

  6. Ace of Sevens says

    Is this guy really a representative MRA? I used to read MRA web sites all the time and they focused almost entirely on prison rape and bias in family court.

  7. Ace of Sevens says

    I suppose there was also a good deal of focus on the lack of support for male victims of domestic abuse and complaints about the Superbowl myth because it painted all men as one football game away from beating their wives.

  8. Stevarious says

    Aw, I made the mistake of following the links to the source of those comments. The site is just seething with repellent, repugnant, awful examples of humanity. I feel genuinely nauseous.

    Every post insisting that women learn their place, so that society can function. Every post insisting that the war against the feminazis is coming. Every post decrying men like me as ‘femalists’ and ‘white knights’ who will be directly responsible for the new dark age ushered in by our craven surrender to the Feminazis.

    Bluh. And I thought 4chan was bad.

  9. Grace says

    Prison rape is a serious issue that needs attention for sure, but I haven’t seen anything about it from the MRAs I’ve encountered.

    MRAs are like the White Aryan Resistance and the KKK. WAR and the KKK have revamped (sort of) and they claim reverse racism now, and paint themselves as victims of an anti-white bias instead of hating Blacks/Jews/Latinos (which you will discover they still do, you don’t even have to scratch the surface much).

    @Daniel Schealler
    Yeah, if you don’t hate and beat women, you are just being a stupid white knight. Jerk!

  10. anatman says

    when i first came across the initialism ‘mra’, i glossed it as ‘male rape apologist’. that gloss still seems to work pretty well.

  11. Tobias says

    Every time I read about people like this, I think:
    Oh this is a funny exaggeration of real problems, something this stupid can’t be real after all.

    Please don’t shatter my cozy bubble of illusion.

  12. Eric Riley says

    Ugh – I threw up in my mouth a little reading that… It’s such an alien thought pattern! Unfortunately, it used to be as pervasive as racism in this country (@Grace #10, that’s exactly what I was thinking too) – My wife and I watched ‘Corousel’ expecting a lovely Rogers and Hammerstein musical with a happy ending and got (spoilers) an abusive man and his wife who keeps apologizing for his abuse. “Oh, he only hits me because he can’t find a job.” as though that was *normal*. As though that was a perfectly acceptable reason for abuse (and that’s not the worst line in the show).

    It sounds like this guy is upset that isn’t the status quo anymore.

  13. mick says

    @Ben Zvan
    The reason for the paygap is that men work longer hours and take more risk as well as fewer days off. These are the MRA issues that would get women equal pay.

  14. Jack Wooster says

    Mick is correct about the pay gap, anything else certainly in the UK has been illegal since the nineteen seventies. It’s like the creationist moon dust argument completely debunked, totally outdated and still frequently asserted.

    An attack consisting of such a ludicrous strawman argument as this piece is merely an admission of failure.

    The Men’s rights movement is full of people of empathy and compassion, strongly opposed to violence of all kinds. See how the recent Men’s Health Boards scandal was dealt with.

  15. says

    The U.K. is not the only country in the world, you know. Even there, the process of pushing an equal pay case through is not trivial.

    “Full of” means there isn’t room for anything else. As you can see from the post, that is not the case. Nor is the guy quoted above anything like alone in his sentiments.

    And I have no idea what you’re talking about with the Men’s Health Boards. Link?

  16. Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle says

    An attack consisting of such an ludicrous strawman argument accurate description of the MRA movement, as this piece is, is merely an admission of failure extensive experience with the abusive bigots in the MRA movement.

    There, now it’s honest.

  17. Stacy says

    Re Jack Wooster @#22

    Scroll down that page. The (male) moderator says:

    …Neither berriewine or ponette have done anything wrong. berriewine asked for clarification and ponette was questioning the authenticity of some of the first time posters. The General Discussion board sees a lot of new members who join to post spam, troll, and flame. It’s not uncommon to see emotional first time messages appear only to be followed up by an accomplice or alias offering to help and promote their services. I’m not saying this is the case here but the General Discussion board has pretty much seen it all and long-time members are often skeptical from the start as a result.

    Another moderator points out that the post under discussion has an IP from Australia, and the IPs of several of the outraged people offering to help him were also from Australia. The first moderator then posts:

    I will not defend or support ponette’s post but rather state (again) that the majority of topics/subjects that appear in General Discussion are less than substantive or even relevant to “men’s health”. As a result this is where most of the forum garbage shows up with respect to spamming, trolling, flaming, scheming, and immature behavior. In the case of the OP, it was their first post and given the tone and nature of the content, many long-time members who live in General Discussion are automatically suspicious b/c it’s typically not a place where so many first-time posters come looking for or offering help of that nature without an alternative agenda.

    As ROOKIE mentioned, the IP of the OP is Australia. Personally I don’t understand why the OP would choose to register and post this type of message in a general conversation board without any previous history here. If they’re serious, a quick google on the topic will generate several websites, resources and discussion forums that are readily available. Also, as ROOKIE pointed out, many of the IPs/replies from first-time members in this thread are also from Australia. I don’t recall seeing this many Aussies in one thread within the MH forums but as long as everyone understands and plays by the rules then the door’s open

    So, yeah. Paul Elam was one of those outraged–outraged I say!–that the forum members were being so “misogynistic” (read: skeptical) toward I-tried’s story.

  18. Jack Wooster says

    Yep. I would hold up Paul Elam, Dr. Tara and Typhon Blue at Voice For Men, as people of empathy and compassion. This is on the evidence of hearing how they reach out to help people in trouble.

  19. dogeared, spotted and foxed says

    Really, Jack? What if it was a woman who wanted to call the cops because her ex-husband slapped her? Since Elam et al wouldn’t consider her a “person” I doubt there would be much reaching out.

  20. Stacy says

    This is on the evidence of hearing how they reach out to help people in trouble

    Or make up stories about people in trouble and then “reach out” in order to promote their cause, as the evidence suggests may have happened in the example you provided. Whatever; the ends justify the means, right?

  21. Jack Wooster says

    Dogeared – “Elam et al wouldn’t consider her a “person” any evidence for this assertion? It sound as silly as the strawman attack in the article.

    We all know what happens if a woman calls the cops if her ex-husband slaps her, an immediate response, support and court services waiting for her. If a male victim of domestic violence calls the police it is an entirely different story. A complete lack of interest, no help offered. Only MRA’s campaign for the forgotten victims of domestic violence and it seems only MRA’s want an OBE for Erin Prizey. It takes empathy to sympathise with all victims of violence not view every incident in terms of gender. No-one has done more for female victims of domestic violence than Erin and she is denied recognition because she also has empathy for male victims.

  22. Jack Wooster says

    Stacy – Are you saying Dr. T has made up all her patients? Must be hard for her to earn a living then.

    Imagine a world where 90% of the homeless were women, where 80% of suicides were women, where men lived longer than women. How much traction would these issues get in the main-steam media? How much do they get now without the gender reversal?

    These people and their sufferings are real not make up stories.

    Then the next question is why do people feel the need to make stawman attacks on those who are campaigning to bring attention to these issues?

  23. Stacy says

    Are you saying Dr. T has made up all her patients?

    No. I don’t know shit about “Dr. T.” I am saying that the evidence for “misogyny” you adduced is suspect.

    Imagine a world where 90% of the homeless were women, where 80% of suicides were women, where men lived longer than womenz

    In the United States, according to the National Coalition for the Homeless, 67.5% of the homeless population is male–in the United States. In other countries, the stats are different. In some countries there are more female than male homeless.

    The gender disparity between successful suicides (as opposed to attempts) between males and females is real.

    Women live longer than men (where there is low maternal mortality) for biological reasons. Between hormonal differences, the problems inherent in the Y chromosome (and males having only one X), and other factors, you’ll find the same sort of discrepency in other mammals (again–after controlling for maternal mortality.) Not a systematic problem.

    why do people feel the need to make stawman attacks on those who are campaigning to bring attention to these issues

    These are not “strawman attacks.” The examples of MRA idiocy are quite real.

  24. Jack Wooster says

    The example of a strawman attack is the very article above these comments- “MRA admits we are domestics abusers”. That is a strawman attack. MRA’s are against all domestic violence, we see male victims as being no less important than female victims. This goes for all victims of violence, a male victim of any violence is no less deserving of help and compassion than a female victim. Due to the life circumstances that bring people to activism there are many victims of domestic violence in the MRA community. Men are more likely to be victims of violence than women in all parts of the world, but all deserve compassion regardless of their gender.

    Of course there are examples of idiocy in the MRA community which online community does have such? Most people who call them selves feminists would surely shudder at the views of Radfem Hub and the SCUM manifesto and would be scandalised if they were tarred with the same brush, quite rightly. It would be a strawman attack.

    To seek to paint the whole MRA community as worse than any extreme element that actually exists in it is of course an unjust slur.

    Stephanie says I should not hold up A Voice for Men “as your examples of “people of empathy and compassion”” Maybe she does not know shit about Dr T either?

    To dismiss misandry is to condone sexism and this helps neither men nor women.

  25. says

    Jack, I’ve been on vacation for the weekend, which has given you plenty of opportunity to deal with the statements criticized in the post in an honest way. You haven’t managed it once. That you now declare, as a response to threats of violence, that MRAs are against violence is to reach a level of stupid dishonesty I don’t want tainting my blog. You’re done.

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