I got permission to quote a brilliantly shrewd Facebook comment on a long thread on Martin Wagner’s wall that was full of guys explaining at great length what’s wrong with feminism today. You already know what they said, because you’ve seen it many times before.
Here is that comment, by Justin Connelly:
1907: “Feminism? Bunch of men-hating women that don’t know their place. They don’t want equality, they want to be men”
1930s: “Feminism?! Pft. Ugly lesbians that just want to do men’s work if you ask me”
1960s: “Feminism? Bunch of ugly, man hating, bra burning hippies. Who needs it”
1990s: “Feminism? Radical man-hating liberal PC Police. Nothing more”
Today: “I just hate how feminism has been hijacked by radicals to be anti-man, rather than for equality the way it used to be. Feminists should abandon the label because it doesn’t mean equality anymore”
If you think your “observation” that the feminist movement is polluted by “man hating radicals” is some new, nuanced critique of a movement that has abandoned the cause of promoting social equality….you’d be wrong. You are, in fact, repeating the exact same tired slander and accusations that have been leveled at the movement since before women had the legal right to vote.
I find this nostalgic harkening back to the “good ol days” of feminism, before the radicals “ruined it” to be as disingenuous as it is historically ignorant. Feminism has ALWAYS been a movement aimed at addressing long-standing gender inequity, from the vantage point of the underprivileged class. And it has ALWAYS been marginalized or dismissed as the crazed ravings of radicals, lunatics, and misandrists. This. Isn’t. New…. You. Aren’t. Clever.