I always thought there was one really clear cut sign that you are a feminist.
Do you think women are equal to men apart from minor biological differencees and that women should be treated the same as men?
If the answer is yes. You are a feminist. You may fall to your knees and scream “NOOOOOO” to the heavens.
But now there are 11 signs that you may be one. It may be parody, however judging from the way it’s being pushed it seems unlikely that the comment section (It’s MRA and anti-FTB-tastic. Because why help men when you can bash women?)
So let’s have some fun!
1. You think no woman should be called a slut, but you are all for and even participate in slutwalks
I was supposed to attend the Bangalore Slut Walk, it was cancelled when the right to assemble for women was revoked because of men. Men and conservatives who threatened women who were marching for the right to walk in India without harassment or risk and to not be shamed because of their clothes. It was cancelled roughly a year before Nirbhaya.
Now no one will stop them.
And that is why the SlutWalk exists. Because a lot of people’s defence against the rape of women is that they were dressed like sluts. They were asking for it. Well that argument was used by people in India who suggested the same thing for Nirbhaya.
For my readers who are American and anyone who is unaware, I am a British guy who works as an expat in India. Nirbhaya was the “name” given to the victim of the Delhi Rape in 2012. Nirbhaya was sodomised with an iron rod resulting in a ruptured colon leading to her death by peritonitis and septicaemia. She died slowly. And she was blamed for it. She was a slut, so she got raped.
So Indian women braved bullets, batons and beatings to fight for justice. People died, cops were beaten by mobs. Women were beaten and people even were shot. But change began. The dialogue changed from the old idiots (mainly men) who blamed her and started a new dialogue of changing culture.
The name picked in Canada. The advice given was “Avoid rape by not dressing sluttily”. Let me rephrase that in a way you would find repulsive. She wasn’t wearing a burka so she was raped. Slutty is relative after all. One culture’s slutty is another’s normal.
The ENTIRE point of a Slut Walk is to point out that not dressing in skimpy outfits would not stop rape and that there are many survivors of rape who walked wearing clothes similar to what they got raped in. And many women walked in outrageously skimpy outfits in order to point out that if you consider women to be sluts then chances are it never mattered what they wore in the first place.
How much leg must you be showing precisely before you are slutty? At what point is a rapist turned off by the amount of cloth in the way? Does the rapist say “A burka! My only weakness! Your shapeless form has turned rape into a case of deal or no deal and I would never live it down if I raped someone uncool!”. That really is what it boils down to. Bad fashion scares away rapists.
A rapist doesn’t really care what you wear. The entire point of a slut walk was to protest against people blaming women for being raped simply because they dressed in a way someone would consider provocative. To point out how moronic this argument and it’s echo chamber is?
Nirbhaya was wearing jeans. She was a slut because you could see the shape of her legs. What this point is complaining about is just a few steps away.
2. You want to ban pornography because it objectifies women but own a copy of 50 shades of grey
My claim to fame is I once had an article retweeted by Nina Hartley when I was working with sex workers.
Porn is changing a lot. Yes there are men who objectify women in porn but porn as a whole is one of the places where women earn more. And where changes are being made with regards to how women are being treated. In fact, from the sound of things… there is more progress within the porn industry with regards to women and their safety and acceptability than among say…
Skeptics and Atheists. We have seen more concerted backlashes against women in our community than within the porn community.
Feminism is not a monolith, there are sex positive feminists. I myself disagree with a “famous feminist” on sex positivity. I am staunchly in favour of protection and rights of sex workers. By contrast, Taslima Nasrin is an old school feminist who thinks that these women are always being abused and that all sex workers are forced into it.
By contrast there are women like Nina Hartley who were active in pornography and who push for women’s rights too. These are not mutually exclusive things.
And just because you own 50 Shades of Grey and enjoy a BDSM doesn’t mean you like being beaten up. So what you have here is two opposing views within feminism. I have no problem with 50 Shades of Grey, it’s a silly book. It is erotica, not a manual on BDSM. It’s porn and women like porn. There is a major market for it..
3. You demand men take ownership of their lives while simultaneously blaming all your problems on the Patriarchy
Except men are more in control of their lives than women are and the fact that the police can stand up and blame women for being raped in Canada. We are still discussing Birth Control access over decisions made by men. We are still discussing Abortion.
And feminists don’t just blame the patriarchy but also other things that cause harm. Many feminists mock “Fashion Magazines” which are primarily run by women. Many feminists fight for pro-Choice against Pro-Life who have a lot of women in the movement. Not everything women do is helpful for women.
4. You claim feminism cares about men’s problems too but false rape allegations are irrelevant because 1 in 4 women will be raped
This is a non-sequitur. Feminism does care about some men’s problems with regards to equality. False rape allegations are relatively rare. In the UK the Crown Prosecution Service between 2011 to 2012 prosecuted around 5400 rapes and 35 false accusations. Finland has the highest false rape report rate at 20% but the problem is Finland considers “intoxication” as evidence for “buyer’s remorse”. The fact remains that roughly 15 to 20% of women will be raped in their life time (a number that is falling thanks to changes) and of that around 30% will ever try to seek justice and within that 30% roughly 1 to 5% are false rape allegations.
Now the MRA demand that we make it harder to bring up rape despite the fact that even today just 30% of rape victims ever seek justice because the rest are simply told that they cannot form a case or are so ashamed that by the time they come forward no case can be made. It’s like suggesting we make it harder to form cases of murder because people fake their deaths.
None of these things are related. And you know what reduces false rape allegations? Real rapes getting prosecuted would drop the percentage of false rape accusations since people who are going to make false rape allegations are a fixed minority. If the report rate is 33% (for ease of calculations) and 35 rape cases are faked a year in all of the UK out of 5400 then the rate of false allegation is 0.65%. If we double the prosecution rate then the false allegation rate drops to 0.325%.
Making it more difficult to report rape is not going to help men and seriously? Let’s round up. If 99% (yes, I have tripled the rate of false allegations here) of rapes are real then surely we should try and make it easier for the 99% than for the sad 1% of victims?
Or perhaps, if we have a proper report system the number of false allegations will go down because rapes are now properly investigated and so false accusations are more likely to come into the light.
Or is the allegation that the majority of rape allegations are false and that rape is just a feminist con to put men into prisons. Cause with the MRA who bloody knows.
5. You shame men for shaming other men who don’t agree with MRA issues but any woman who does not agree with you is automatically a “gender traitor” and “rape apologist”.
The first and fourth point were “Rape Apologetics”. Just saying….
The MRA have real issues. It is just that they think the solution is to force women into unequality so that the unequality is justified.
And sure there are knee jerk responses but you know what? Taslima’s attitude to sex workers is harmful to them but that doesn’t mean Taslima is a gender traitor.
However me championing women’s rights makes me a beta male mangina.
6. You believe men only think men become feminists because they want to get laid, but also the only reason we tolerate female MRA is because we want to have sex with them.
No. Some MRA think that male feminists are in it for the sex. Again see my above “beta male mangina” link.
I have run into female MRA. There was Renee Hendricks who insisted that the MRA were not bad. That all changed after her site “A Voice for Men” ran articles arguing for men’s rights in India and blaming women for their rapes and hiding a culture of sexual harassment and rape. Then there was Karen from A Voice for Men claiming that women in Afghanistan don’t have it so bad and implied that the Taliban were some sort of Monkey’s Paw or malicious genie that granted Afghan women the wish that they could all stay home and have men do all the work outside. Then there was Judgy Bitch and her lovely slut shaming of a minor.
I don’t pretend to understand what’s going on in the minds of MRA who think this way irrespective of their gender. But considering Renee specifically supported a body that was willing to ignore the rapes in India to prop up their idiotic dialogue? Considering Karen’s written an article specifically designed to prop up the MRA viewpoint at the cost of women in Afghanistan (arguably the worst country on the planet to be a woman) and Judgy Bitch helped in the slut shaming and attacks on a young girl who had the audacity to NOT Want to date a Football Player and so who got raped for that and effectively ostracised in order to protect the sports career of the rapist.
And you want to hold up these women as ideals and paragons?
7. If your not a feminist your a bigot, but then you say that women have every right to hate men
Judging by the behaviour of MRA? I think women have every right to hate Men’s Rights Activists.
Also? Considering historical oppression and real life oppression, there is a lot of bias against women which explains the dislike and hate.
And want to know something? Most feminists are “straight” and “like” men. They think we are cute and sexy. They just wish we stopped harming them. That’s really all there is to it.
8. You constantly tell men to check their privilege but you refuse to acknowledge female privilege
Female privilege does exist but a lot of it has been broken down by feminists. In fact the lists of female privilege all seem to be made by men and all seem to be… stupid.
Literally the ones that are true are basically due to the perception of women’s incompetence. Women aren’t given high paid jobs because they are women and cannot handle it. Women aren’t expected to work because they are fragile little flowers whose tiny hands are incapable of work. Women shouldn’t do dangerous jobs.
In fact the major benefits to being a woman off the top of my head?
Women have a variety of outfits that they can wear while men have to stick to a handful of archetypes.
Women can express emotions without ridicule while boys don’t cry.
See let us take an easy bake oven. An easy bake oven emphasises the stereotype that women belong in the kitchen. It is harmful in it’s old state as a gender specific toy to girls. The newer models are uni-sex and sold and marketed to both genders. With the rise of the “metro” man and indeed the older “manly” foodie, baking and cooking are no longer female-centric.
The lists of female privilege is just laughable straw men. For god sake they still complain about the draft. This is a Vietnam War era argument and the MRA are still making it.
9. You find the idea of genital mutilation of a man being joked about on live television hysterically funny but claim misandry doesn’t exist.
A lot of feminists are anti-circumcision. Both Female and Male. Now Female genital mutilation is on many scales worse than the male equivalent, but we often see MRA derail conversations about FGM with conversations about men.
Humour punches up. Male circumcision and getting kicked in the crotch is funny for the same reason falling down the stairs is funny. It is because it is someone in power getting hurt by an attack on one of the things that gives him power. While hitting a woman is not funny since women are routinely hit by men and it’s a major problem.
Misandry exists among the more radical feminists but you know what? They are a minority, they are a vocal minority but they rarely are the ones speaking about things. However if we compare the net social effect of misandry versus misogyny then the voice of radfems is not a major voice while many MRA simply parrot things we take for granted.
10. You assert that women are strong, capable, never helpless or naive yet it’s society’s fault that women adhere to beauty standards and peer pressure. Implying that women are not smart enough to make healthy, intelligent decisions for themselves
No, no one says that. We say that women can be strong, capable and independent. However women don’t grow up in that environment and from a young age are told that they cannot do things.
We assert that men are physically strong, intelligent and capable of setting anything their minds to. Yet we cannot be nurses? What? Are we scared of blood? Bodily fluids? Sick people? Men can be doctors but not nurses? You know we don’t wear “hot nurse uniforms” anymore right? Are we not smart enough to make healthy, intelligent decisions bereft of the social and peer pressure of others?
Oh right, because social expectations and peer pressure define our actions as individuals. Women are bombarded with impossible bodies are told to meet certain standards to be accepted and have this behaviour as normalised.
There are people who interview women and rather than sticking to the topic, ask women about their fashion choices. Hell, let us look at the celebrities who strut down the red carpet at a gala event. Blokes? What movies they acted in, what their achievements are. Women? Dresses.
It can be called the weight of expectation, you aren’t just expected to be smart and strong and capable but also fashionable, attractive and cook well.
11. You claim that feminism accepts a woman’s choice to stay at home and be a housewife/mum and that feminism is a right to choose while calling women who reject feminism “baby makers” and “sex slaves”
Weird, I thought it was gender traitor and rape apologist. Women who stay at home aren’t rejecting feminism. However we do realise that women are expected to give up careers with greater frequency than men are. In addition due to the wage gap and difficulty of women to progress men are simply “better” off staying in a job. In addition men are derided for being “househusbands” making them less likely to be at home.
Now here is the thing, if the genders were balanced in how they were treated, there would be no issue with this. But as it stands, women staying at home is a thing mainly because women are expected to do so.
It’s just laughable, if the MRA really wanted to fight for men’s rights they would be pushing for the acceptance of house husbands rather than the denigration of feminists. And that’s basically the MRA in a nutshell.