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There are such things as stupid questions

There are questions which do nothing but reveal the depth of misconceptions and breadth of ignorance of the questioner. I suppose that’s useful; it tells you the dimensions of the hole you need to fill in. Unfortunately, sometimes that hole is also filled with malice, and the questions will tell you that, too.

Aron Ra got challenged to answer 7 questions about feminism. From my opening paragraph, you can tell these are probably going to be really stupid questions, and they are. These are painfully bad. You can also tell from the way they are set up that the person has a huge load of prejudice against feminists, and what he’s really looking for is a set of excuses to dismiss feminism altogether, because he already knows he doesn’t like it.

And of course, he asks his stupid questions in the form of a youtube video, because that’s where you can find prime idiots to feed him his desired responses. Only he got Aron Ra.

You may not want to waste your time watching it — it’s meandering babble. Aron pulled out the core questions, and it’s doing the creator no favor to listen to the video and hear him slather on thick layers of Scottish-accented shit around some dumb questions.

For those of you who just can’t bear to listen to the whole thing, the 7 questions, as extracted by Aron Ra, are copied below. I also include Aron’s answers, because I disagree with some of them, a bit.

1. Who is the current leader of the feminist movement?

Answer: There is no single leader anymore. The last recognized leader was Gloria Steinem, who founded the Ms. Foundation for Women, http://forwomen.org/. But it is no longer centralized. The movement has grown such that there are other leading voices too, including Greta Christina for example.

No, Gloria Steinem was not the uncontested leader of feminism, ever. She was prominent, sure, and still is, but there were a lot of contemporary women who were looked up to: Germaine Greer, Bella Abzug, Betty Friedan, Barbara Jordan, etc. Even at the turn of the last century when feminists were fighting for the vote, there was the National Woman Suffrage Association and the American Woman Suffrage Association. As you might expect from a grass-roots movement, it has always been diverse.

But the questions is absurd. Who is the current Absolute Leader of Scotland, who I can turn to to determine what the correct answer is on the upcoming vote for Scottish Independence? Who is the current Pope of Atheism, who decrees what all atheists believe (I’m voting for Dan Barker, at the Avignon of Madison, Wisconsin, but some seem to think it’s Dave Silverman, operating out of the Rome of New Jersey. But New Jersey? Come on.) Who is the Maximum Leader of evolution, who determines what all the correct answers are?

It’s a very authoritarian kind of question, from someone who is clearly uncomfortable with the idea that there can be an egalitarian movement without a hierarchy and without a person occupying the pinnacle of the pyramid.

2. Where can I go to find an official detailed list of the goals of feminism.

Answer: I suppose the organization I just mentioned could serve to answer this question, but then a quick look at Wikipedia would do that too. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feminism

The wikipedia article isn’t a bad start. At least it makes it clear that there are diverse elements within feminism. But again, stupid question — it’s like asking for the Atheist Bible. Quit trying to shoehorn ideas into your preconceptions!

3. What is the difference between a feminist and an egalitarian?

Answer: The difference between feminism and egalitarianism is that feminism is a position on gender equality, while egalitarianism is an attempt to level both social and economic status, and even suggests the redistribution of wealth to achieve that goal. So by one definition, egalitarian is indistinguishable from communism. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egalitarianism

Meh. I consider myself an egalitarian — I simply don’t accept that we can have privileged classes of people. Communism is ideally egalitarian, but that doesn’t mean the terms are synonymous.

My answer to this one is that feminists are egalitarian, but what they’re doing is focusing on one pressing issue. This is reasonable and necessary. So while a feminist can be entirely for racial equality, for instance, they can also recognize that women have a unique subset of concerns that differ from the unique subset of concerns that black Americans may have. It does no one any favors to consolidate their cause under a more general umbrella — it means that their particular concerns get diluted. Multiple problems, multiple approaches. I guess this is another idea authoritarians can’t comprehend.

Why not ignore atheism and science, and instead of having dedicated proponents for each separately, instead sweep all of it into the bin of Rationalism? Easy. Hey, while we’re at it, let’s just forgo all those different directions people take, and instead just fight for Good Things. We can all be GoodThingists together, and solve all of society’s problems at once!

4. What is the difference between a real feminist and someone who is not a real feminist?

Answer: Real feminism is the belief that unfair double-standards should not be applied on the basis of gender. Obviously then, women who claim to be feminists yet who demand special advantages over men have excluded themselves from the proper application of the only definition that word has ever had. https://www.google.com/search?q=feminism&ie=utf-8…

Anyone can call themselves a feminist. Anyone can call themselves egalitarian, too; white supremacists like to declare that they aren’t against black people, they just want them to live the lives of happiness and contentment to which their brains have been adapted, which apparently means servility and manual labor. I get creationists telling me all the time that they are True Scientists, because they examine all of the possibilities with an open mind (which is not scientific at all, since we have to rank hypotheses all the time).

My definition of a feminist is someone who recognizes the inequities towards women of the present system, and argues for changing the status quo. Someone who claims to be a feminist and then denies that there is any discrimination, or claims that the current system gives nothing but advantages to women, is not a good feminist. I’d also suggest that someone who, in the name of feminism, spends all their time fighting against other feminists rather than against the social ills that beset women, is probably not a good feminist.

5. What have you actively done in the name of feminism?

Answer: The questioner wrongly assumes that being a feminist means that one is also an activist. It doesn’t. Fortunately I am an activist as well, so I have written several blog posts in support of the feminist ideal, and have endured a constant bombardment from the anti-feminist hate groups because of it. I have also rallied and campaigned for feminist causes going on at the state capitol and will continue to do so when I am able. However I am primarily an anti-theist and an advocate of science education. That’s what I’m good at, and that is where I choose to direct my attention.

Anti-feminism is a state of mind that implements legal and social challenges to women. I oppose that. I try to change people’s minds and wake them up to the unfairness of the system. I support organizations like the AWIS; I’m an advocate for women in science and education.

Again, I suspect an authoritarian mindset at work. We’re trying to persuade and educate; some people seem to think that unless it involves heavy machinery, armored footwear, and sweat-drenched muscles rippling, it ain’t real.

6. Does feminism benefit men? If so give one such example.

Answer: Yes, feminism benefits men. My personal favorite example is that in the late 1980s, the state of Texas still always defaulted on the mother’s behalf in every child custody case -except when the mother could be proven to be unfit. Several law offices reported that they would not take the case of a man attempting to file for custody for that reason. But these offices also remarked about the feminist protests going on at that time, opposing the stereotype that women were the housekeepers and men were the breadwinners. Their protest successfully changed legal policy in this state such that only a few years later, all such cases would default to joint custody -except again for instances where either parent could be declared unfit. As a result, men can now have primary custody and receive child support from the mother based on a fair comparison of circumstances without regard to gender. This is a clear example of something that was done for men without any special benefit to women. So I get bonus points for that.

Oh, hell yes. Feminists are demanding that no one should be locked into narrow gender roles. Men and boys should be liberated from the tyranny of a rigid masculinity, too. Be who you are, without society telling you that you can’t.

7. How come I am nowhere to be found when bad feminists are giving feminism a bad name?

Answer: I’m only on the mailing lists of good respectable groups. I have attended several events with prominent people in the feminism movement, but those radical feminazis were nowhere to be found, and I have yet to meet one. Such people are not part of the mainstream movement, so I only ever hear about them long after the fact, if at all.

This was the part of the Scottish idiot’s rant that I found most offensive and most revealing. He gives a specific example of bad feminists: those women who participate in slut walks. His example of ‘bad feminism’ is women who led campaigns that declared that rather than telling women how to avoid getting raped, we ought to tell men to not rape. That’s offensive, he says. He wants good feminists to tell those offensive women to shut up. It’s horrible to tell men that they are potential rapists.It’s “utterly fucking disgusting” that these “not-real-feminists” are walking around with placards telling men to take responsibility for their actions and the actions of other men, yet he’s going to yell at women that they have to take responsibility for signs that he doesn’t like.

Here’s my short answer to that: fuck off, wanker. One thing feminism isn’t about is pandering to the delusions of anti-feminists.

He’s dishonest. He’s not looking to understand feminism — he’s looking for affirmation of his biases. And man, he’s a chattering shitload of bigotry: I took a look at his channel, and it’s nothing but whining at caricatures of feminists. Why is he pretending to ask sincere questions now, when he’s got at least 4 years worth of lazy ranting and raving collected on his own channel?


This cartoon seems relevant.

hatemen

Comments

  1. says

    It’s a very authoritarian kind of question, from someone who is clearly uncomfortable with the idea that there can be an egalitarian movement without a hierarchy

    A heirarchy (especially a male-dominated one!!) would be extremely suspicious in an equality movement.

  2. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    This demonstrates why the debate/fisking/ model popular among public atheists is not useful and is often harmful unintentionally. Aron Ra means well, clearly, but the model is flawed. Honestly, it’s only of very limited utility in its “native” form of debating Youtube creationists. The best you can hope for is that uncertain and budding secularists will see it and be encouraged.

    But it seems like this format is all they know, and everything becomes a nail for their hammer. Indulging these stupid questions is bad enough. But the amount of conceding the rhetorical framework that Aron Ra does in answering these questions is much worse.

  3. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    These questions are literally on the level of HOW IS FEMINIST FORMED? HOW FEMINIST HAVE BABBY?

  4. Snoof says

    It’s a very authoritarian kind of question, from someone who is clearly uncomfortable with the idea that there can be an egalitarian movement without a hierarchy and without a person occupying the pinnacle of the pyramid.

    It’s also interesting when it was asked. Before seeking to identify the impact of feminism in the questioner’s own life (question 6), before trying to distinguish feminism from other movements (question 3), before attempting to understand the basic goals of feminism (question 2), the very first question the questioner asks is “Who’s the boss?” It’s like actual understanding is secondary to identifying the power structures present. It’s a profoundly authoritarian set of priorities.

    I dunno. Maybe I’m reading too much into it.

  5. Esteleth is Groot says

    The feminism vs egalitarianism thing bugs me for two reasons:

    Firstly, equality for all persons (i.e. egalitarianism) is the goal of feminism. Feminism (as a movement and as a philosophy) focuses on the ways in which women are disadvantaged and discriminated against, just as anti-racism focuses on the ways in which people of color are disadvantaged and discriminated against. There are a thousand variations – people who focus on class issues, people who focus on disability, people who focus on homophobia, etc etc etc. This, really, goes back the framework of “kyriarchy” – the person in charge is white and male and non-disabled and moneyed and of the dominant religious group and straight and cis and and and. True egalitarianism requires dismantling all of those systems of oppression.

    Secondly, a lot of anti-feminists seem to be operating under the assumption that what feminism wants is to replace patriarchy with matriarchy: that the goal is for men to be subjugated like women have been subjugated. This is not unique to anti-feminists: many racists assume that the goal is for white people to be enslaved/lynched/subjected to anti-white Jim Crow laws like people of color have been, and many religious types assume that the goal is for religious people to be killed/oppressed like non-religious people and religious minorities have been.

  6. Esteleth is Groot says

    Which is to say that society is hierarchical along many axes (the pyramid of power is many-sided) and the goal is to flatten the pyramid – not by dragging everyone down, but by building everyone up.

    That this is the goal is something that the authoritarians simply cannot comprehend – the absence of a hierarchy is baffling to them.

    This, of course, is also a problem plaguing egalitarian activism writ large: many activists are capable of seeing and inveighing against the things that oppress them but have a harder time seeing the ways in which they are dominant: witness the misogynist and homophobic anti-racist campaigner and the racist and transphobic feminist, for example.

  7. Sili says

    Even if the goal of feminism was to institute a matriarchy, so what?

    It’s almost as if they recognise that there’s something wrong with living under a patriarchy …

  8. davidnangle says

    I think the first question isn’t due to the authoritarian mindset of the asker, but an early gambit for Fool’s Mate. You see this a lot in conservatives/wingnuts/Republicans: Their first response is to attack the person. Defame them. Expose them. Like killing the head vampire and all the other vampires will die.

    It’s like they think if they can turn up evidence that Isaac Newton was a homosexual, we’d suddenly have no more gravity.

    Post a good argument on any wingnut blog, and amongst the first responses will be, “who are you?” “what are you?” “where are you?”

  9. Ivan says

    Regarding “6. Does feminism benefit men?”, there is a relevant bit in Steven Pinker’s “Better Angels of Human Nature”. He attributes decline in in-family murders to rise of feminism: basically, when a woman can divorce an abusive husband and/or legally prevent marital rape, this makes her less likely to kill him as last resort.

    “…feminism has been very good for men. In the years since the ascendancy of the women’s movement, the chance that a man would be killed by his wife, ex-wife, or girlfriend has fallen sixfold”

  10. Pierce R. Butler says

    … at the turn of the last century when feminists were fighting for the vote…

    Ahem.

    At the last turn of the century, the feminists I knew were fighting – with their votes – to prevent a certain anti-choice, anti-equality murderous moron from taking power in the US. They lost – as did we all (except for certain investors and other corporados).

  11. Alexander says

    Just to expand on the thoughts by @Josh, @Snoof, and @Esteleth — to misquote for a moment:

    It’s a very authoritarian kind of question, from someone who is clearly uncomfortable with the idea that there can be an egalitarian movement without a hierarchy and without a person occupying the pinnacle of the pyramid.

    I suspect (from the interactions I’ve had with these sorts of folks elsewhere) that to these authoritarians it’s not so much a social “pyramid” as it is a “ladder”: everybody has a strict ranking from 1 to (approximately) 7,256,421,000 and the whole idea of “equality” is alien to their entire worldview.

  12. says

    I think the reasons we find people fighting so hard against POC and women and any other marginalized group from gaining any share of societal status are twofold:

    1) They view life as a zero-sum game. If I gain rights, they must lose them. The fact that the only right they’re losing is “the right to think you’re inherently better than other people for something that doesn’t make you better than them” is lost on them.

    2) They’re desperately afraid that, if we take any power, we’ll treat them the way they’ve treated us. They can’t imagine the idea that someone might not want to oppress anyone, because they enjoy their own ability to shit on other people so much.

    Neither of these things reflects the least bit well on this kind of people.

  13. Blueshift Rhino says

    “My definition of a feminist is someone who recognizes the inequities towards women of the present system, and argues for changing the status quo.”

    This would seem to imply that, to the extent that there are any inequities towards men in the present system, a person who argues against such should be called a “masculinist” and that nothing negative should be attached to that label. Did I read this correctly?

  14. says

    It’s also interesting to note that nearly all of the people both Aron Ra and PZ mentioned for “leaders of Feminism” and “pope of Atheism” are US-American.

  15. says

    This would seem to imply that, to the extent that there are any inequities towards men in the present system, a person who argues against such should be called a “masculinist” and that nothing negative should be attached to that label. Did I read this correctly?

    To what extent are the inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender, e.g. a black man, a trans man, a gay man, a poor man?

  16. Blueshift Rhino says

    If PZ updates his definition of “feminist” to include a statement on the origin of the inequities towards women, then I’ll come back and see if the complement for men is still warranted. Until then, your question appears to me to be a form of special pleading.

    ps. is anyone else having difficulty with the usage “inequities *towards* X” when said inequities are negative?

  17. Yellow Thursday says

    Blueshift Rhino @15

    This would seem to imply that, to the extent that there are any inequities towards men in the present system, a person who argues against such should be called a “masculinist” and that nothing negative should be attached to that label. Did I read this correctly?

    In addition to SallyStrange’s response at 17, to what extent are the inequalities towards men that stem from the sexism inherent in patriarchy that is a tangent of the inequalities towards women? (For example, the difficulties that men often have in reporting rape, which is a tangent of the difficulties that women often have in reporting rape.)

  18. Yellow Thursday says

    Blueshift Rhino:
    So you think that we cannot combat sexism until we know what the origin of sexism was? That we cannot battle the symptoms of a disease until we know the original cause of the disease?

    How is it special pleading to ask whether the inequalities that members a group face is because of the overall group (men) or because of other groups they also belong to (black, trans, gay, and/or poor)?

  19. Blueshift Rhino says

    No, I don’t believe that you cannot fight against something without knowing its origin (although I do believe that the fight will be much more effective if you do). I’m not sure how you got to that question from what I wrote.

    As to the issue of “special pleading,” that may have been the wrong label. My point was that someone seemed to be trying to add some sort of proviso involving origin to the inequities faced by men that was not in PZ’s definition with regard to the inequities faced by women. That sort of imbalance (which the cynical might cite as an example of an inequity faced by men) made the comparison between PZ’s feminism and my proposed masculinism inapt.

  20. some bastard on the internet says

    theophontes @8

    Teh Feminis mommy layinject an feminis egg insid an por menz testes. Wen teh egg haches, it eats teh menz testes and maeks him its servunt.

    Now that the secret’s out, might as well give ‘em the details.

  21. says

    Okay, I’ll bite.

    Blueshift Rhino #15

    This would seem to imply that, to the extent that there are any inequities towards men in the present system, a person who argues against such should be called a “masculinist” and that nothing negative should be attached to that label. Did I read this correctly?

    In a world where the most outspoken self-styled “men’s rights activists” were not more interested in anti-feminism than actually trying to get equal rights for men, in areas where men might be seen as being unfairly treated (such as the custody example in the OP), “masculinists” might indeed be an appropriate label. From a purely etymological viewpoint you are, indeed correct.

    But I have to ask, so what?

  22. PaulBC says

    6. Does feminism benefit men?

    Answer aside, would it be a deal breaker if it did not? The question seems to presuppose that the merit of anything should be judged by its benefit to men.

  23. mattwatkins says

    ,

    This would seem to imply that, to the extent that there are any inequities towards men in the present system, a person who argues against such should be called a “masculinist” and that nothing negative should be attached to that label. Did I read this correctly?

    The issue is, of course, power dynamics and association. Association because masculism, as practiced, is often simply anti-feminism. Power dynamics because, by analogy, a theory of economic justice that focused on the plight of rich people could not help but be pathological. Feminism specifically critiques patriarchy. Any form of ‘masculism’ that doesn’t also critique patriarchy would be farce because patriarchy is actually descriptive of the way society currently operates.

  24. Blueshift Rhino says

    First, thanks for taking my question (somewhat) seriously, Daz, and asking me why I asked it, rather than doing something else (such as making an unwarranted inference).

    The most positive and friendly reason for my asking about a parallel “musculinism” is that its acceptance might offer a label and a position to folks who are sympathetic to some aspects of the so-called “men’s rights movement” without the unpleasant baggage.

    The least-friendly reason is that I wanted to see how folks would react to the idea. I’m not against PZ’s definition; I like it more than most because it seems to describe what many feminists do. The only part that I’m not comfortable with is the implied truth-claim. It ought to be: “someone who believes that there are inequities against women in the present system, and argues for changing this.” [I hesitated to rewrite PZ's definition as I'm sure that some will infer from my edit that I don't believe that inequities exist, but I'm not going to write something that I don't believe due to fear that it will be misunderstood. Plus, if I rewrote it to not assume the existence of inequities against women, maybe more folks would be comfortable with the complement for men, as it would no longer assume inequities against men.]

  25. moarscienceplz says

    The fact that the only right they’re losing is “the right to think you’re inherently better than other people for something that doesn’t make you better than them” is lost on them.

    I get the feeling that this is very important to some people. They can only feel that they themselves are valuable if they can identify a cohort of people that they can consider as being inferior.
    I had a friend a bit like that. Apparently, he would analyze everybody he interacted with, and place them on a “ladder of worthiness”. If someone on a low rung then got a significant prize, such as a hefty payout from an incentive stock deal, he would bitch and moan about it for years, even though it actually did not affect him at all.

  26. Blueshift Rhino says

    ps. I take full credit and blame for the Freudian slip of “musculinism”; inferences from that would be completely warranted

  27. Esteleth is Groot says

    If you could get a genuine “masculinist” movement (one that isn’t anti-woman or anti-feminist) to focus on the ways in which patriarchy hurts men (an issue largely ignored by the “mens rights” movement that immediately comes to mind is rape inside prisons), that would be awesome.

    But you’ll pardon more than a bit of skepticism on my part: many feminists initially hailed various “men’s” movements, only for those movements to collapse into disgusting displays of sexism and misogyny.

    In my opinion, the chief problem with the “women just want equal rights, calm down dudes” rhetoric is that for feminism to succeed, life for men will change. It will have to. For women to be allowed, for example, equal opportunity to succeed in business, men will have to lose their status as the “obvious” candidate. Mediocre men will no longer be able to coast, but will have to watch qualified women get promoted over them.

    Also, well, why do you think that many men have an issue with the idea that women are oppressed? Women are oppressed. Men who deny this crystal-clear fact often are men who don’t have a problem with it.

  28. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Blueshift Rhino @ 28

    First, thanks for taking my question (somewhat) seriously, Daz, and asking me why I asked it, rather than doing something else (such as making an unwarranted inference).
    [...]
    The least-friendly reason is that I wanted to see how folks would react to the idea.

    Someone who says a thing just to see how people will react doesn’t really have much cause to accuse those people of making unwarranted inferences when the inference they make is that you’re baiting a reaction. Obviously I can’t speak for Sally Strange or Yellow Thursday but their responses to you look to me like they’re charitably trying to head you off at the pass and see if they can engage meaningfully with you as opposed to dismissing you as a troll trying to get a rise out of us.

  29. Esteleth is Groot says

    Also, well, if the feminist goal of women being able to live lives free of sexual violence is to be achieved, men have to stop seeing women as sex-dispensers free for the using.

    That is, men have to stop feeling entitled to women’s time, attention, and bodies.

  30. Blueshift Rhino says

    Apologies. I listed only what I thought were the best and worst reasons for asking my question, after thinking about it for a few minutes. I completely agree that, if my only reason had been the worst, it would have been inappropriate. I didn’t think that you all would be interested in all of the reasons, so I listed just two.

    And I agree that several of the responses that I received are best read as being steps ahead along a chain that I might have been following. But please know that I was not going to follow that chain.

  31. says

    Until then, your question appears to me to be a form of special pleading.

    You want to label a phenomenon. I am wondering if the phenomenon you want to label exists. How is that special pleading?

    If it exists only in your mind, feel free to label it however you like. If you can demonstrate that it exists somewhere outside your imagination, then I’d be interested in finding the best label for it.

  32. PaulBC says

    Actually, I’m quite comfortable with the orthodox view as I understand it. The reason for feminism is to address imbalance. “Masculinism” is superfluous because the default is already masculine advocacy. In some idealistic future in which imbalance has been addressed, we can do away with specific forms of advocacy, but there is absolutely no need ever for advocacy of the de facto dominant group.

    When I was young and naive, maybe I didn’t get all that and could imagine blathering on about egalitarian standards. Maybe because I’m now middle aged and a life-long liberal, my neurons are just getting covered in plaque and lack the flexibility for such “out of the box thinking”. Who knows? But I will say I have virtually no patience for [foo]-advocacy, where [foo] is already the privileged group. Anyone who thinks that they are disadvantaged by virtue of being a man, particularly a white man is just a big whiny idiot.

  33. Yellow Thursday says

    Blueshift Rhino @28

    It ought to be: “someone who believes that there are inequities against women in the present system, and argues for changing this.”

    There ARE inequalities against women in the present system, which can be demonstrated. With evidence. There have been many examples of this in this and previous threads on this blog. Belief doesn’t enter into it.

  34. says

    Blueshift Rhino #28

    The least-friendly reason is that I wanted to see how folks would react to the idea.

    You could have, you know, just asked if anyone knew of an appropriate label untainted by the so-called MRA movement. Just throwing it out to see how people would react is, basically, trolling, given that the MRA taint really does exist, as does the “what about the menz” meme.

    FWIW, most genuine “masculinists” or whatever the hell you want to call them, that I’ve run across, tend to also identify as feminists.

    If you’re seriously looking for an inclusive label, my suggestion would be that something non-gender-specific like “gender equality activism” would be the way to go.

  35. says

    Oh I see. It wasn’t actually special pleading. You were just trying out labels for fallacies.

    *sigh*

    There was this tweet I came across the other day, where is it now?… Ah yes.

    “A nerd with a list of logic fallacies is like a mule with a spinning wheel. No one knows how he got it, and danged if he knows how to use it.”

    –@hitlerpuncher

    Try to be a little more judicious in the future, please.

  36. Blueshift Rhino says

    I really regret calling it “special pleading,” both because that is probably the wrong term and because throwing that term back at someone is never helpful. I apologize, Sally. As I tried to say a few posts ago, my complaint was that you seemed to be placing conditions on the inequities faced by men (which would be a prerequisite to my proposed “masculinism”) that PZ didn’t place on the inequities faced by women.

  37. Blueshift Rhino says

    Daz: “If you’re seriously looking for an inclusive label, my suggestion would be that something non-gender-specific like “gender equality activism” would be the way to go.”

    I agree completely. But I decided not to take that line of argument against PZ for a variety of reasons. Instead, I decided to accept his conclusion in this area and respond only to his definition of “feminist.”

  38. Blueshift Rhino says

    @Yellow Thursday

    My rewrite of PZ’s definition in terms of beliefs, instead of facts, was to make the definition no longer dependent on the truth of the claim. I was not denying the truth of the claim.

  39. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    But why is it important to you to have the definition not dependent on the truth of the claim. I can’t think of a reason except as a sop to reality denying sexist fucks.

  40. says

    Blueshift Rhino #40

    Well, labels for men’s groups and the damage done to them by MRAs aside, I’m struggling to see what point you were trying to make. Do you agree/disagree with PZ’s definition? If the latter, on what grounds? Or do you merely wish to expand on it?

  41. Esteleth is Groot says

    Blueshift Rhino, if you stick what you want to quote inside html tags, your comments will be easier to read:

    This <blockquote> text to be quoted </blockquote>

    results in

    text to be quoted

    Fun fact!

  42. knowknot says

    From #38, SallyStrange (quoted)

    “A nerd with a list of logic fallacies is like a mule with a spinning wheel. No one knows how he got it, and danged if he knows how to use it.”

    THIS!
    It’s the kind of quote the shows up with flowers, chocolate, beer, and lingerie.

  43. Blueshift Rhino says

    Two reasons. First, so that the label can still be used by anyone who denies the truth of the embedded claim (even if that sounds like a more polite version of “as a sop to reality denying sexists fucks”). Second, so that the definition can still exist and be used if we ever find ourselves in a world in which the premise isn’t true.

    Maybe these aren’t good enough reasons. I’d be happy to drop the issue (and already regret bringing it up).

  44. knowknot says

    Aggghhh. “The” should be “that.”
    (Which sounds kinda like the outcome of a puritan trial.)

  45. Woo_Monster, Sniffer of Starfarts says

    Blueshift Rhino #33,

    And I agree that several of the responses that I received are best read as being steps ahead along a chain that I might have been following. But please know that I was not going to follow that chain.

    So what was the chain you were going to follow? Spit out your point. Your whole performance here reeks of trying to catch PZ or feminists in a Gotcha moment, but you are too lazy to spell out your conclusion (and furthermore claim that you weren’t following your reasoning to the conclusion that you appeared to be heading towards).

  46. John Horstman says

    @Blueshift Rhino #15: Feminism is (and necessarily is) anti-patriarchy (the debates within feminist discourse are usually about the extent of patriarchy, the forms it takes and thus the forms opposition must take, which observed inequities are ‘natural’ and which are social constructs, etc., but all forms of feminism seek to end the systemic dominance of women as a class by men as a class). PZ’s definition is perhaps not ideal, as it’s open to being picked apart by someone like you. By the anti-patriarchy definition and presupposing some kind of strong linguistic consistency (which doesn’t exist, by the way), a “masculinist” would be someone who opposes matriarchy; since we have few to no extant matriarchies, “masculinist” is not a useful term in that sense, so it has been defined through use to mean something entirely different that the gender-flipped version of “feminist” (it’s not necessarily derogatory – it means, in my experience and usage, someone who advocates some form of masculinity, often the normative form; it’s possibly derogatory if one thinks normative masculinity or the construction of a concept of masculinity at all is bad).

  47. Blueshift Rhino says

    Daz: I’m not sure if I had a point (when this started). I saw PZ’s definition and said to myself that I liked it better than most. When I thought about why I liked it better, I realized that I liked it because it seemed to map onto what many feminists do a bit better than other definitions. A moment later I realized that the complement to it would be a very good label for many of the folks that I respect who advocate for men. So I floated the idea, in the form of a question, that complement to PZ’s “feminist” – i.e., my proposed “masculinist” – ought to be seen as a non-negative label for these latter folks.

    Let me make two of my unstated premises clear. First, I assume that the label “men’s right activist” is ruined for the foreseeable future; it’s currently used as a pejorative. Second, I assume that, if inequities against men exist, then actions against such would be justified and laudable. If either of these assumptions of mine are unwarranted, then I need to be quiet.

  48. Woo_Monster, Sniffer of Starfarts says

    Daz: I’m not sure if I had a point (when this started).

    No point, just had to ask, what about the menz?

  49. PaulBC says

    Blueshift Rhino #51

    First, I assume that the label “men’s right activist” is ruined for the foreseeable future

    We can always hold out hope for a dystopian future of Amazon oppressors who could turn this into something other than the absolutely ludicrous term it is today.

  50. says

    Blueshift Rhino:

    Let me make two of my unstated premises clear. First, I assume that the label “men’s right activist” is ruined for the foreseeable future; it’s currently used as a pejorative

    It’s ruined due to the actions of self described Mens Rights Activists, who do not actually fight for men’s right, but rather, oppose feminism.

  51. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Blueshift Rhino @ 51

    Second, I assume that, if inequities against men exist, then actions against such would be justified and laudable. If either of these assumptions of mine are unwarranted, then I need to be quiet.

    Which is exactly what Sally Strange and Yellow Thursday were getting at. People come in here all the time talking about men being disadvantaged but, without exception, the problems they cite are all more properly blamed on things other than being male. They either effect men possessed of some other marginalized quality (POC, LGBT, poor, etc.) or it’s a byproduct of the same patriarchal system feminism fights.

  52. says

    You could have just said, “What about the men,” Blueshit Rhino. That is all your extended exercise in JAQing off has amounted to so far.

    What about the men?

    Well, they have male privilege. They’re not oppressed for being men. When they are oppressed, it’s not because they’re men, it’s because they’re not white, or not rich, or not able-bodied, or not straight, etc. Sometimes they incur disadvantages owing to their failure to conform to patriarchy’s rigid definition of masculinity.

    It’s not that fucking complicated. And stop trying to pretend as if it’s worth considering the opinions of people who don’t believe sexism or patriarchy exists. I mean, yes, take them into account but don’t act like their large numbers makes them any less wrong.

  53. Blueshift Rhino says

    (OK, now I’m getting frustrated.)

    I understood that what Sally and Yellow were saying, Seven. I’m worried that you are misreading my second premise. I wrote “if inequities against men exist…” blah blah blah. If you would like to revise that to being “if true inequities against men exist – as in: inequities that are truly due to being male -…” blah blah blah, then I’m fine with that, but would ask, simply for parallelism, that the same be done to the premise of feminism.

    At the risk of being really annoying, please let me say again that I’m not taking a stand on the truth of any of these things. I’m not denying them by placing them inside conditionals; I’m not asserting anything about men by creating a complementary definition to “feminist.” I’m beginning to worry that I must accept certain claims as true to even be here. If that’s true, please tell me now. Otherwise, I’m now rather curious: does anyone deny that something akin to my definition of “masculinist” would be justified and laudable IF true inequities against men existed – i.e., inequities that were truly due to their being male?

  54. Woo_Monster, Sniffer of Starfarts says

    Blueshift Rhino,

    First, I assume that the label “men’s right activist” is ruined for the foreseeable future; it’s currently used as a pejorative

    No, it is a label (if somewhat of a misnomer, for the reasons explained by Tony above) used by sexist men who shit on feminists.

    Second, I assume that, if inequities against men exist, then actions against such would be justified and laudable.

    Yes. Correct. And way to keep your comments focused on the important issue, inequality against men (even if such inequalities against men qua men are imagined).
    /sarcasm

    If either of these assumptions of mine are unwarranted, then I need to be quiet.

    You don’t need to be quiet, just take your what about the menzing to the Thunderdome where you will not be off topic. IOW, go JAQ off somewhere else

    Go re-read the title of the OP…

  55. says

    I wrote “if inequities against men exist…” blah blah blah. If you would like to revise that to being “if true inequities against men exist – as in: inequities that are truly due to being male -…” blah blah blah, then I’m fine with that, but would ask, simply for parallelism, that the same be done to the premise of feminism.

    Inequalities against women qua women exist.

    Inequalities against men qua men do not.

    Asking us to “do the same,” i.e., use language that leads readers/listeners to believe that such inequalities are hypothetical, is actually supportive of sexism.

    In conclusion, fuck you.

  56. marcmagus says

    Blueshift Rhino #51,

    First, I assume that the label “men’s right activist” is ruined for the foreseeable future

    So is “masculinist”, by the same people.

    The best available unpoisoned term for a person who advocates against the negative effects of patriarchy on men because they’re men is, in fact, “feminist”.

    If you must, you can say “feminist, and right now I want to talk about this way the patriarchy hurts men”.

    In the theoretical dystopian future/alternate universe in which the Patriarchy has been replaced by the Matriarchy, we can revisit “masculinist” and “men’s rights advocate”. In fact, we’d be among them.

  57. unclefrogy says

    now that I hope is the end of a very pointless and confusing side track.
    I was and still am interested in this anti human freedom reaction that these dumb argumentative question demonstrate.
    As a human being I appreciate and can identify with all humans who strive for freedom and equality and have a hard time understanding the fear and resistance to it. I do recognize the hostile reaction to it and have seen it too many times personally.
    uncle frogy

  58. Kevin Kehres says

    @65: At its core, it’s fear. Fear of having to do something differently than one has done in the past. Whether that’s paying your female employees the same wage for the same work, or not assuming that everyone thinks “blond jokes” are all that funny. Or not assuming your wife will always cook dinner and do the dishes because it’s women’s work.

    The fear is palpable. Every character in every word of every question oozes with fear.

  59. F.O. says

    I am a man and gladly took part in a slut walk.
    While I was surrounded by many attractive women, fully enjoying the display, I had a sign “I can control myself”.

    The anti-feminist notion that men have no agency on whether to rape or not is deeply insulting to *men*.
    Even if I didn’t care about women I’d still be a feminist.

  60. David Marjanović says

    We can all be GoodThingists together

    Eupragmatism !!

    It’s also interesting when it was asked. Before seeking to identify the impact of feminism in the questioner’s own life (question 6), before trying to distinguish feminism from other movements (question 3), before attempting to understand the basic goals of feminism (question 2), the very first question the questioner asks is “Who’s the boss?” It’s like actual understanding is secondary to identifying the power structures present. It’s a profoundly authoritarian set of priorities.

    I dunno. Maybe I’m reading too much into it.

    I think you’re not. If you know what the leader of an authoritarian organization wants, you know what the organization wants and how it’s going to try to reach those goals, so that’s a very convenient shortcut. The assumption that every halfway political idea is an authoritarian organization is, of course, “profoundly authoritarian”.

    This would seem to imply that, to the extent that there are any inequities towards men in the present system, a person who argues against such should be called a “masculinist” and that nothing negative should be attached to that label. Did I read this correctly?

    To largely repeat comment 25… Well, yeah. Trouble is, it’s too late for that: the few people who do use that label for themselves are misogynists who steam with hate.

    Also, the (very few) iniquities towards men are side-effects of those towards women; solve the latter (the goal of feminism), and you’ve solved the former. No need for a separate label.

    6. Does feminism benefit men?

    Answer aside, would it be a deal breaker if it did not? The question seems to presuppose that the merit of anything should be judged by its benefit to men.

    I rather think it’s an expression of the deeply ingrained fallacy that everything is a zero-sum game: “if it benefits women, it’s got to hurt men, right? Admit it already.”

    the Freudian slip of “musculinism”

    *giggle*

  61. F.O. says

    @Ivan #11: wow! That is actually very interesting.

    We call it “feminism” because women are the major victims, but there is a significant component of “masculinism” within the feminist movement.
    Hey, I am a man who likes to care for those around me, why can’t I be manly and “nurturing” at the same time!?

    As a man, I find “feminism” empowering.

  62. F.O. says

    While I see how question 1) would betray an authoritarian mindset, I find also likely that he just believes the feminist movement to be just some sort of cult where brainwashed sheeple fall for the charisma of the leader.

  63. Esteleth is Groot says

    It must be a cult of brainwashed sheeple following a charismatic Unwoman leader, F.O.! After all, no woman would really choose such a thing on her own volition.

    Women like being oppressed, after all.

    /sarcasm

  64. rrhain says

    @17

    To what extent are the inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender, e.g. a black man, a trans man, a gay man, a poor man?

    Well, there are issues of body ownership. For example, a man’s body is often considered property of the state for things like the draft. Yes, there is the issue that women are not considered to be capable of military service in general let alone front-lines fighting, but what makes it unique to men is the expectation that a man is supposed to want to do this. There’s a reason that we use the term “coward” when dealing with men who don’t wish to surrender themselves. Yes, there is the other side of the equation that is oppressive of women in the “women and children first” response, but the effect upon men to that attitude is distinct and different. Even when we remove the attitude that somehow he feels entitled to privilege because of that expectation, there is still that expectation of men to sacrifice their very lives.

    This continues on with the attitude that a man is responsible for his family. There is a double-standard for single breadwinner families: If it’s him who is the breadwinner, she is praised as a dedicated homemaker (not always, but let us not pretend that there isn’t some societal recognition of a woman who tends the house). If it’s the other way around, he is considered lazy and mooching off of her.

    There is also the assumption of criminality. We are seeing this play out right now in Ferguson, there just because he was black, he’s assumed to be some sort of criminal with racists doing everything they can to find something, anything they can use to justify a claim that Brown was a threat (the latest nonsense: He was tall and heavy, so he was hardly “unarmed”) without having to say that it’s because he was black. That happens to men in general. The expectation that you are somehow a threat. I’ve been followed in stores simply because I am male. I’ve had cops pull me over with friends and the only people questioned are the men in the group.

    Let’s not forget that up until very recently, the FBI’s definition of “rape” was such that it was impossible for a man to be raped.

    And a common thing that happens in a divorce is for the man to be accused of sexually molesting the children. Indeed, in nasty divorce proceedings, both participants will use whatever tactics they think they can get away with, no matter the validity, to hurt the other side. But charges of sexual molestation usually target him.

    Now, I don’t want to get into a “who has it worse” contest. All in all, being male in this society is much better than being female. But there are issues that men face simply because they are men. The people who claim to be “men’s rights advocates” don’t have those issues in mind. They may pay lip service to them, but it is clear that any such attention is put forward simply as a way to bash women.

    But that doesn’t mean those problems don’t exist. And yeah, working for feminism will most likely help men. It’s because of looking at things like the marital exception to rape that we also noticed that the law said men can’t be raped. So please don’t take this as me saying that feminism can’t help with this. But it’s akin to what has been said before: There is a question of focus. One would hope that examining one type of bias would make one aware of other types and thus we could apply similar principles in those other areas. But focus matters. Not everything can be approached from one side.

  65. otrame says

    Ivan @11,

    basically, when a woman can divorce an abusive husband and/or legally prevent marital rape, this makes her less likely to kill him as last resort.

    Oh, yes. Personal anecdote:

    I found out late in her life that my much beloved Aunt was deeply humiliated that her mother had killed her first husband (not my aunt’s father). To her it was just plain murder. She was the daughter of a murderer. I told her “But what were her options? She could not get a divorce. She had no way to feed her children if she left him. The chance that he was going to kill her, and soon, were excellent. He had just beaten the hell out of her when she was eight months pregnant {with an other aunt}.” I then pointed out that she had been acquitted (justifiable homicide). In small town north Texas in the late 1910s. He was a 33rd degree Mason, a pillar of the community. And the jury acquitted her. As far as I am concerned, that is all you need to know.

    If my grandmother had had the (still inadequate) facilities and social support women in her situation have now, she could have divorced the asshole.

  66. carlie says

    let us not pretend that there isn’t some societal recognition of a woman who tends the house

    Pull the other one; it’s got bells on.

  67. rrhain says

    @74 Is there a reason you edited the quote? Do you quote-mine professionally? Is there good money in it?
    Let’s try it again, shall we? Did I not mention that the recognition is not perfect? I did.
    Are you trying to say that there is no societal acceptance of a stay-at-home mother?
    As you said: Pull the other one; it’s got bells on.

  68. otrame says

    There is a question of focus.

    So be a feminist who concentrates on the damage rigid gender roles on men. I’m in favor.

    There’s a reason that we use the term “coward” when dealing with men who don’t wish to surrender themselves

    And there is a reason why women who do want to surrender themselves are called sluts and lesbos and are lucky if that is all that happens to them. That reason is the patriarchal attitudes embedded in our society. They give men an advantage in many situations and women an advantage in a very few situations and it ALL depends of forcing everyone into a narrow gender role hierarchy with men on top. It is stupid and it sucks. If you want to focus on what it does to men (assumption that the mom is the best custodial parent, thinking men being raped in prison is funny, etc.) then more power to you. Do it. It’s what a feminist would do.

    Look, I agree that the name “feminist” turns out to not be the best label people could have chosen, given that the things feminists want to change will be good for men too. But we are stuck with the label, and the fact that women are by far, by. far. more abused by the system than men are, there is actually a good reason to call it “feminism”.

  69. carlie says

    rrhain – you just moved the goalposts yourself. Societal acceptance is not the same thing as societal recognition. Have you ever been a stay at home mom? If you haven’t, you might try asking some what happens in pretty much every single conversation they have with anyone when they tell the other person what they do. You might try looking at how society has been constructed to give lip service to homemakers while ensuring that they get zero credit for doing it on resumes, in social security income, in insurance, etc.

  70. carlie says

    As for “quote mining” , I just took the part after the “but”. You seem to know basic grammar construction; the next phrase is supposed to be constructed in a way that it can stand by itself.

  71. says

    As part of a non-traditional gender role couple, I’ve noticed yet another male privilege. My wife’s decision to work full-time is accepted. My decision to parent full-time, on the other hand, is applauded.

    Men who choose non-traditional roles are generally seen as just exercising their right to choose. Women are seen as threatening the status quo.

    This is in Australia, so YMMV.

  72. says

    *sigh*

    Well, there are issues of body ownership. For example, a man’s body is often considered property of the state for things like the draft. Yes, there is the issue that women are not considered to be capable of military service in general let alone front-lines fighting, but what makes it unique to men is the expectation that a man is supposed to want to do this. There’s a reason that we use the term “coward” when dealing with men who don’t wish to surrender themselves.

    Yep, that would be men being oppressed not for being men but for failing to be rich men. And still excluding women from that, since even being oppressed for being poor is better than being a woman.

    Yes, there is the other side of the equation that is oppressive of women in the “women and children first” response, but the effect upon men to that attitude is distinct and different. Even when we remove the attitude that somehow he feels entitled to privilege because of that expectation, there is still that expectation of men to sacrifice their very lives.

    That “woman and children first” thing is a myth.

    This continues on with the attitude that a man is responsible for his family. There is a double-standard for single breadwinner families: If it’s him who is the breadwinner, she is praised as a dedicated homemaker (not always, but let us not pretend that there isn’t some societal recognition of a woman who tends the house). If it’s the other way around, he is considered lazy and mooching off of her.

    That would be men being oppressed for failing to conform to rigid patriarchal gender roles.

    There is also the assumption of criminality. We are seeing this play out right now in Ferguson, there just because he was black, he’s assumed to be some sort of criminal with racists doing everything they can to find something, anything they can use to justify a claim that Brown was a threat (the latest nonsense: He was tall and heavy, so he was hardly “unarmed”) without having to say that it’s because he was black. That happens to men in general.

    Racism and classism and discrimination against people with mental illnesses. Not discrimination against men qua men. Nice job erasing women of color who are also profiled as being violent criminals and executed by police or others as a result. See: Rekia Boyd and Shereese Francis. It absolutely does not happen to men in general. What little research there is on police brutality indicates that in densely populated areas, people of color are disproportionately targeted by police, and in sparsely populated areas, it’s men with mental illnesses.

    The expectation that you are somehow a threat. I’ve been followed in stores simply because I am male. I’ve had cops pull me over with friends and the only people questioned are the men in the group.

    Of course, if the cops were looking for someone to rape, they’d profile a different demographic, eh?

    Let’s not forget that up until very recently, the FBI’s definition of “rape” was such that it was impossible for a man to be raped.

    Thanks, feminists!

    And a common thing that happens in a divorce is for the man to be accused of sexually molesting the children. Indeed, in nasty divorce proceedings, both participants will use whatever tactics they think they can get away with, no matter the validity, to hurt the other side. But charges of sexual molestation usually target him.

    Another pernicious myth. Such accusations are rarely false. “Parental Alienation Syndrome” is a fake syndrome but has been used by abusive men to escape censure for their crimes for decades.

    Now, I don’t want to get into a “who has it worse” contest.

    WHOOOPS! Tee hee

    All in all, being male in this society is much better than being female. But there are issues that men face simply because they are men.

    Yes, and there are issues that I face as a white woman that are particular to my whiteness. Doesn’t make it any less gauche to get into a “who has it worse” contest and then claim that I never wanted to get into a “who has it worse” contest.

    The people who claim to be “men’s rights advocates” don’t have those issues in mind. They may pay lip service to them, but it is clear that any such attention is put forward simply as a way to bash women.
    But that doesn’t mean those problems don’t exist.

    Nobody claimed otherwise; the main thrust was that we should properly identify the causes of those problems. Oppression of men for being men just ain’t it.

    And yeah, working for feminism will most likely help men. It’s because of looking at things like the marital exception to rape that we also noticed that the law said men can’t be raped. So please don’t take this as me saying that feminism can’t help with this. But it’s akin to what has been said before: There is a question of focus. One would hope that examining one type of bias would make one aware of other types and thus we could apply similar principles in those other areas. But focus matters. Not everything can be approached from one side.

    Blah de fucking blah.

    Skip it next time, okay?

  73. RobertL says

    You know, PZ, when you say “fuck off, wanker” like that it makes you sound very Australian.

    At least, I read it with an Australian accent.

  74. detrius says

    “Stupid questions” definitely exist, They’re simply “questions” that aren’t really about asking questions and learning but about making statements disguised as questions and not being interested in actual answers.

    “Why do feminists hate men?” is a prime example for such a stupid question.

  75. rrhain says

    @77

    So be a feminist who concentrates on the damage rigid gender roles on men. I’m in favor.

    Who said I wasn’t? Were you not paying attention? SallyStrange in 17 was claiming that there weren’t any “inequities that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender, e.g., a black man, a trans man, a gay man, a poor man.”

    All I did was point out places where men are put upon as men, not because of something else but specifically because they are men. Yes, to be male is to be privileged, but not in every way.

    And there is a reason…

    “But what about the women!” I hear you cry. You know, it’s just as unsufferably priggish when men do it in a discussion about problems facing women. What makes you think it’s going to be any different in a discussion about problems facing men? You will recall that I wasn’t the one that brought it up. SallyStrange did. She made the bold claim that there is no such thing as sexism when it comes to men, at least not in a systematic way that is pervasive throughout society.

    She’s wrong.

    Look, I agree that hte name “feminist”…

    I never said anything about the name “feminist.” I didn’t complain or say it was inappropriate. I even pointed out that feminism helps men.

    I simply said that the idea that the privilege of being male is not complete.

    It would help if you would respond to what I said, not what you wished I would have said.

  76. rrhain says

    @78 Talk about moving the goalposts. Societal acceptance comes first from recognition. Are you saying that I don’t live in a culture with certain attitudes about women who stay at home? Did I not say directly that said such attitudes are not perfect? And since you brought it up, where do you think the negative attitudes toward stay-at-home women have come from? It’s an unfortunate side effect of feminism. I chalk it up to the fact that we’re still struggling against the rigid roles women are forced into. One of the common complaints made by anti-feminists is that “they denigrate the work of mothers.” My rememberance of feminism is that women should be able to choose whatever life they want to lead.

    After all, the housework has to get done. If a woman is of the opinion that she should be a stay-at-home mom, then who is anybody to tell her otherwise? But we live in a society that not that long ago felt that the only thing a woman was good for was to take care of the house. If she had to get a job outside the home, that was a failure. And heaven forbid she should want to work outside the home (a recent rerun of “The Great Gildersleeve” was just on and was the episode where his neice wanted to get a job with her husband being dead set against it.) So one of the first things we have to break is the idea that housework is the only thing women are qualified to do.

    Unfortunately, because people have a hard time with “and” but instead insist on “or,” we have a situation where it has gone the other way. In the attempt to break out of the sexist attitude regarding women and work, there are people who think that being a housewife isn’t “real” work. Part of this is residual sexism of women: Housework is “women’s work,” and women’s work isn’t “real.” But even if you have removed the attitude that “women’s work isn’t real,” there’s still the residual attitude that housework isn’t real. But again, my feminist background recalls the explication of what housework actually is and how important it is. Do you not recall the descriptions of how much it would cost to pay someone else to do what the average housewife must do to keep house? There’s a reason home economics is an actual field. I think everybody ought to be taught it. After all, the housework has to be done. One of the biggest things that feeds into the sexism of our culture is sheer laziness: Men are never taught how to cook and clean and sew and manage household finances as if they’re never going to not have a woman around to do it for them. So when they do finally get into a relationship with a woman, sheer inertia throws her into the role of having to do it (“But honey! I don’t know how to run the washing machine!”) at the very least. Even if there isn’t an active assertion that the only thing women are good for is housework, the system shoves her into that role.

    So yeah, there are quite a number of people who look down upon women who stay at home. But you pretend like there aren’t just as many people who are actively working to send us back to the time when the only reason a woman would have a job outside the home was because she was a spinster or was simply looking for some pin money. Take a look at the profiles of powerful women: They focus on her motherhood and domestic life in a way that isn’t done with men. We still have recognition and acceptance of women’s position as the ones who run households. Men don’t get that recognition and acceptance. Yes, there is the whole “housework is women’s work” sexism that comes along for the ride when a man is doing it, but there is a real issue of devaluing men who do it.

    You’re absolutely right that we don’t value housework the way we do other forms of occupation. But it’s different for men when they do it.

    And as for quote mining, when you take “just the part after the ‘but,'” you show that you don’t seem to know basic rhetorical construction. The reason for that coordinating conjunction is that a compare and contrast is being made. To eliminate the context is to remove the fundamental meaning being conveyed by the statement. That’s why it’s known as “quote mining.” You found a string of words that, isolated from their surrounding material, says something very different from the actual meaning that was put forward.

    I will thank you to stop it.

  77. rrhain says

    @81 (*sigh*) indeed.

    No, it has nothing to do with finances. Did you receive a little draft card before you turned 17? It has consequences for you not turning it in. Yeah, there is no draft today, but there are legal issues that come with you deciding to “opt out.” But that’s simply a specific and extreme example of the way in which society violates the body ownership of men. Men are expected to sacrifice their lives for others.

    The “women and children first” thing is quite real.

    And how is “men being oppressed for failing to conform to rigid patriarchal gender roles” not precisely an example of “inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender”? You were the one saying it doesn’t happen. So which is it?

    So when a man is profiled because of his gender, it’s really because of his race, class, and mental disability. Wow. All men are either not white, lower class, or crazy. Good to know.

    And I see you’ve played the “But what about the women!” card. Hint: In a discussion about “inequities towards men that stem from them being men,” asking about women of color is inappropriate. Just as it is inappropriate to hijack a discussion of problems facing women (such as by trying to insert questions of male prison rape in a discussion about rape on college campuses and how it affects women), it is inappropriate to hijack a discussion of problems facing men. Remember, *you* were the one who brought it up. *You* were the one who was claiming that there are no “inequities towards men that stem from them being men.” It’s now *your* responsibility to follow through.

    And it absolutely does happen to men in general. It happens to me. Are you about to deny the reality of my experience? Once again, you’re trying to hijack the discussion with a “But what about the XXX” whine. You will note that I directly recognized the way our society automatically criminalizes those who aren’t white. You even quoted it. So for you to pretend that I am somehow “erasing” (nice work on being buzzword compliant there) the reality of racism is precious.

    But the reality is that society views men as criminals. Tell me, is it racism when blacks are given longer sentences than whites for the same crime? Yep. Of course it is.

    So tell me, what is it when men receive longer sentences than women for the same crime? Because they do. Men are more likely to have charges pressed against them, more likely to be sent to prison, and have an average 60% longer sentence given than women. So if it is indicative of systematic societal oppression when we see it happen to those who aren’t white, how is it something different when we see it happen to men?

    Last time I checked, the primary job responsibility of a cop wasn’t to rape people. Are you trying to tell us something?

    And yes, thank you feminism that we now recognize that men can be raped. You seem to have missed that entire section of my post. It’s almost as if you didn’t actually read the post before you responded. You seem to have the same problem Carlie has: Is quote-mining that lucrative of a position?

    But here’s the thing: It was a side effect of feminism that did it, not the direct action. I’m very happy that it did happen and it’s a reason that we need to keep working on feminism. It benefits men in ways both direct and indirect (and I said that directly, too…but you missed that part, didn’t you, since you didn’t actually read the post before responding). But we shouldn’t have to depend upon side effects. It’ll miss things that should be worked on directly.

    And no, molestation charges in divorce are quite common and often false. As for “parental alienation syndrome,” what on earth does that have to do with anything? I’m not talking about the child making the accusation. I’m talking about the parent. You did actually read my post before responding, didn’t you? No, you didn’t.

    “WHOOPS!” indeed. I’m not surprised, though. You made a bold statement and, upon being shown how inaccurate it was, you have dug in your heels rather than simply recognize the error.

    But that doesn’t mean those problems don’t exist.

    Nobody claimed otherwise

    Um, you did. “Inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender.” This entire post of your is a denial of the problems that exist for men. Are you trying to say that when you said, “XXX is a myth,” that isn’t a denial?

    For all your talk about how “we should properly identify the causes of those problems,” you’re the one claiming that the problems facing men as men don’t exist.

    So take your own advice. Next time you want to talk on this subject, skip it.

  78. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Yes, to be male is to be privileged, but not in every way.

    Which has nothing to do except *look over there*.

    Men are never taught how to cook and clean and sew and manage household finances as if they’re never going to not have a woman around to do it for them.

    And some men are smart enough to realize they are likely to be living away from home at some point, and learn how to do what is necessary before going off to college.

    Men don’t get that recognition and acceptance.

    Except from feminists, so what is your real beef? Sounds like you are against the patriarchy, but don’t want to do anything to break it down. Just whine.

    Next time you want to talk on this subject, skip it.

    Take the advice offered first. You have an attitude where you lecture, and you aren’t shutting up and listening. That is also called mansplaining.

  79. dianne says

    Men are never taught how to cook and clean and sew and manage household finances as if they’re never going to not have a woman around to do it for them.

    There are these things called “cookbooks”. I’ve found them quite handy for learning to cook. Household finances are no mystery: just keep an eye on your income and expenses and you’ll do fine with basic math. And anyone who can’t figure out how to use a needle and thread can surely just buy new shirts when their buttons fall off.

    Honestly, there is nothing mysterious about housekeeping. It’s work, certainly, but not an impenatrable mystery that you either have to be initiated into at a young age or you can never learn. If the worst men ever have to face is not being specifically taught to use a washing machine (hint: they come with instruction manuals), I’d say that men have it pretty easy.

  80. rrhain says

    @90 Here we go with the ignorance of the subject at hand. Let’s do try to pay attention, shall we?

    #17, SallyStrange:

    To what extent are the inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender, e.g. a black man, a trans man, a gay man, a poor man?

    She’s the one who asked the question. You seem to be complaining that there is an actual answer to that question which goes against your preconceived notions of how the world works.

    If you don’t want to talk about it, then don’t. Nobody is making you. This subject was not brought up as a way to deny the important work of feminism, claim that feminism is actually oppressing men, or any sort of MRA nonsense. Instead, I took SallyStrange seriously and answered her question with the only comments regarding feminism being positive.

    Can you explain why you’re reacting as if recognizing that there are issues of gender disparity that affect men as men is somehow offensive? That there is some sort of zero-sum game where if we recognize the problems of men, that somehow denies the problems of women?

    Take, for example, your quote mining to which you responded:

    And some men are smart enough to realize they are likely to be living away from home at some point, and learn how to do what is necessary before going off to college.

    Yep. I pointed that out directly. Is there a reason why you’re acting as if that weren’t it? Here’s the entire quote:

    “One of the biggest things that feeds into the sexism of our culture is sheer laziness: Men are never taught how to cook and clean and sew and manage household finances as if they’re never going to not have a woman around to do it for them. So when they do finally get into a relationship with a woman, sheer inertia throws her into the role of having to do it (“But honey! I don’t know how to run the washing machine!”) at the very least. Even if there isn’t an active assertion that the only thing women are good for is housework, the system shoves her into that role.”

    Now tell me, does that sound like someone who is denying the sexism that affects women? Because it sounds to me like someone is pointing out just how pervasive the problem is: That even when it isn’t a case of someone saying, “Foolish woman! You’re place is in the kitchen!” she still gets put there.

    So please explain why it is you decided to ignore all that.

    What is your real beef?

    You mean you don’t know? Didn’t you read my post before you responded to it? I mean, you certainly managed to have the words pass through your eyeballs as you were capable of cherry picking individual words to support your preconceptions, but it’s clear you fell victim to those preconceptions.

    Pay attention: #17, SallyStrange:

    To what extent are the inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender, e.g. a black man, a trans man, a gay man, a poor man?

    She asked a question.

    I answered it. There are aspects of society that negatively affect men as men.

    Why do you think this is a “beef”? What on earth does this have to do with the need for feminism?

    But more importantly, why do you think feminism is the cure? Is feminism a cure for racism? Homophobia? Poverty? It’ll certainly help since a mindset of examining inequities in one area will be helpful in other areas. We do all understand the intersections of oppression, yes? But are you truly saying that feminism is the best way to handle these other problems?

    If not, what makes you think that feminism is going to be the most effective way to handle problems that affect men in all cases?

    Sounds like you’re not actually against the patriarchy. You just want to whine.

    Take the advice offered: The next time you want to talk on this subject, skip it. You have an attitude when you lecture and you aren’t shutting up and listening. In the modern vernacular, it’s called “splaining” but in my day, we called it “being an ass.”

  81. rrhain says

    @91 I see…because there is something completely irrelevant to the subject at hand but has a surface similary, that means it’s a solution to the problem.

    Quick question: What was the context in which that statement was made? Was it about men being oppressed or was it about women?

    Hint: Look at the last sentence of the paragraph that your quote-mine comes from.

  82. says

    @rrhain

    Um, you did. “Inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender.” This entire post of your is a denial of the problems that exist for men. Are you trying to say that when you said, “XXX is a myth,” that isn’t a denial?

    And exactly how is posting about the problems of men on a post about feminism solving any the problems you listed? Exactly how are MRAs attempting to derail the discourse about feminism actually doing anything but trying to drown out valid women’s issues?

  83. says

    I am not annoyed by MRAs trying to rebrand feminism to egalitarianism for the same reasons Aron is. I have actually seen otherwise well meaning people try to say it is better to call yourself an egalitarian. MRAs have popularized this nonsense definitional fiat. It is a cheap ploy.

    If you care about men’s issues than don’t try to stack them on feminists by trying to add them to their causes by saying they should be egalitarian. Do your own work MRAs.

  84. rrhain says

    @98

    And exactly how is posting about the problems of men on a post about feminism solving any the problems you listed?

    Talk to SallyStrange. She’s the one that brought it up. You have been paying attention, haven’t you?

    @17, SallyStrange:

    To what extent are the inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender, e.g. a black man, a trans man, a gay man, a poor man?

    Well, I gave her an answer. I was content to leave it at that since, of course, the question of how to handle problems of societal denigration of men doesn’t say anything about the importance and need for feminism. I was simply answering her question since she was trying to shut down discussion, splaining away that men don’t have any issues regarding how society treats them on the basis of their sex.

    Others, as well as SallyStrange, didn’t seem to be able to handle that, pulling out a “But what about the women!” whine in response. What about them? I never said anything against feminism. I fail to see how recognizing the reality of men’s lives—that despite the privilege that comes with being male, there are problems that come along for the ride—is somehow a disparagement or denial of the reality of women’s lives. How many times do I have to say it before it sinks in? We need feminism. It improves men’s lives. However, feminism cannot solve all the problems that men face as men.

    And as to your comment in 100, you will note that the only thing I said about MRAs was negative. They may talk about such things, but they don’t really care about them. The only time they ever bring it up is in reaction to feminism in a, “But what about the men!” whine. I didn’t come up with any name for those who wish to address these issues, I certainly didn’t try to “stack them on feminists” or make any sort of insistence that anybody should be focused on them let alone imply that they are as or more important to the problems facing women or that feminism isn’t legit if it doesn’t include them. Not once did I say the word “egalitarian.”

    I simply pointed out that yes, there are issues that men face as men. It’s very telling how offensive that fact is to some people.

  85. neuroguy says

    Feminism has resulted in many positives for society and many so-called men’s rights advocates simply want to roll back the clock. But that doesn’t mean feminism or feminists get a pass for failing to grapple with some real issues raised, some of which were raised on this thread and were met with the typical dismissals.

    As is usual, the conversation begins with someone asking: aren’t there real inequalities in the present system toward men, not just women?

    The first dismissal: denial.

    Inequalities against men qua men do not [exist]… To what extent are the inequities towards men that stem from them being men and not from them being a particular type of man who lacks privilege on an axis besides gender, e.g. a black man, a trans man, a gay man, a poor man?

    What about the men?

    Well, they have male privilege. They’re not oppressed for being men. When they are oppressed, it’s not because they’re men, it’s because they’re not white, or not rich, or not able-bodied, or not straight, etc.

    It is true that inequities towards men much more, perhaps even completely, afflict men who lack some other sort of privilege. But nevertheless the answer to this question is: There are quite a bit of inequalities against men qua men, when the proper apples-to-apples comparison is made between men and women who lack the same sort of privilege. It is fallacious to assume that being male will still be a privilege when other sources of privilege, such as race or class, are removed. Some things which are better for a rich man compared to a rich woman might be worse for a poor man compared to a poor woman, and some things which are better for a white man compared to a white woman might be worse for a black man compared a black woman. IOW, the model needs to expand to not only include “intersectionality” but also “interaction” to more validly reflect reality.

    As an example, yes it is true black males are much more often shot or stop-and-frisked by police, but it is also true that this is because they are black MALES and not just because they are BLACK males. If this were not the case, we’d see as many police shootings of black females as black males. But we don’t. As another example, societal provision of health care might seem skewed toward men when men can lobby to include treatment for erectile dysfunction but exclude birth control in insurance coverages. And this is true – for rich men, who can afford good health insurance and access to good health care, doctors, etc. This is not true for poor men, who are exposed to more risks as they are working dangerous and/or occupationally hazardous jobs in greater numbers than poor women and lack the legislative clout to lobby for more worker protection and better employer-provided health insurance, and so on. There are many more homeless men than women – an issue which does not affect rich men at all, but affects POOR men, but also poor MEN more than poor women. Now yes, in each of these instances men’s misfortune is attributable to race and class such that a rich white man would not be so affected, but it also attributable to sex insofar as race and class are causing a worse misfortune to a man than a woman.

    The second dismissal: yes they may be real but they are the result, or side-effect, of patriarchy and sexism against women.

    …to what extent are the inequalities towards men that stem from the sexism inherent in patriarchy that is a tangent of the inequalities towards women? (For example, the difficulties that men often have in reporting rape, which is a tangent of the difficulties that women often have in reporting rape.)

    Also, the (very few) iniquities towards men are side-effects of those towards women; solve the latter (the goal of feminism), and you’ve solved the former. No need for a separate label.

    It is self-evident that systemic inequalities towards men, just as inequalities towards women, whatever they may be, are the results of an unjust social system. It is fallacious to conclude from this that inequalities towards men are the result of inequalities towards women and that, therefore, inequalities towards women are the main (and really only) problem. The example given by this poster provides a prime example. The origin of the difficulties women have in reporting rape (the assumption that women are sexual property) is not the same as the origin of the difficulties men have in reporting rape (the assumption that men should be able to resist). Therefore, fixing the former difficulty does not entail fixing the latter one.

    The third dismissal: there must be something wrong with you for even bringing it up.

    Anyone who thinks that they are disadvantaged by virtue of being a man, particularly a white man is just a big whiny idiot.

    I won’t say much more here (since this is a classic, textbook example of an ad hominem) than just to note that this poster is indulging in the same stereotypes which he would condemn in other circumstances: namely, that a “real man” should just “suck it up” and stop complaining, otherwise he is “whining”; and of course the obligatory ableist slur was brought in here. Well, at least he didn’t bring up penis size.

    The fourth dismissal admits: you’re right, rigid gender roles actually do harm men in many circumstances. We (the feminists) are the ones bravely fighting the fight. So if you realize the harm that rigid gender roles do to both men and women, join us.

    So be a feminist who concentrates on the damage rigid gender roles on men. I’m in favor… If you want to focus on what it does to men (assumption that the mom is the best custodial parent, thinking men being raped in prison is funny, etc.) then more power to you. Do it. It’s what a feminist would do.

    This is already quite a concession. Think about how “so be an advocate for racial justice who concentrates on the damage rigid racial roles and stereotypes have on whites” would sound and go down in this forum.

    And it’s certainly true that feminism has, to some extent, freed men from traditional gender roles. It is fallacious to conclude from this that complete freedom of men from gender roles is a major goal or focus of feminism or ever will be, or that this will happen automatically. The focus of feminism has been the complete freeing of women from gender roles, which only demands a partial but not a complete freeing of men. For instance, realistic equality for women in the workplace implies that men are going to need to do more child-rearing and housekeeping chores. But the reality doesn’t meet the rhetoric post-divorce, when feminists fight tooth and nail against a more equal role for fathers (such as presumed joint custody), using arguments in fact based on the essentialist assumption that mom is the best custodial parent and dad is at best tolerable and at worst a menace. (For instance, they use the argument that men just want more custody to “get out” of paying child support.) Why is this? Because this time ideas about traditional gender roles help, and not hinder, the desires of many women. The poster will probably argue, patriarchy is the origin of these gender roles. And I will argue that’s irrelevant; it’s no excuse to fight to maintain them today. A society in which women are freed from traditional gender roles but in which those roles are still enforced on men is not an egalitarian society, but a female supremacist one.

  86. rrhain says

    @102

    when feminists fight tooth and nail against a more equal role for fathers (such as presumed joint custody), using arguments in fact based on the essentialist assumption that mom is the best custodial parent and dad is at best tolerable and at worst a menace.

    Just a parboiled second there.

    Who are these feminists who fight against equitable roles for fathers? I certainly don’t deny that there are people who do so. I’m just wondering when it became a “feminist” notion to do so. That flies in the face of all the feminists I know or have heard speak on the subject. In fact, the ones I have heard speak on the subject recognize that such is a consequence of equality: We cannot demand that women be treated equally outside the home yet demand that women be deferred to inside it.

    Who are these feminists of which you speak?

  87. Esteleth is Groot says

    Well, TERFs are pretty gender-essentialist and have been known to make gross “all men are ___” statements, so I could see them making “men should never be entrusted with the care of a child” arguments.

    ‘Course, they’re TERFs and have all sorts of gross views otherwise.

  88. Zhan Ryushin says

    My frnd Srgn’s rspns.

    https://www.ytb.cm/wtch?v=djBZn0l9kC0

    My Rspns:

    KNW THS, MRNS F TH FML SX F TH WSTRN CVLZTN F TH CCSN PSD-RC (wht ppl) F HM SPNS! Y CNNT FGHT SMN F Y KP FCKNG CWRNG WHNVR TH SS F CCNTBLTY R RSPNSBLTY SHWS T SLF N YR FC!

    Y cnnt kp ccsng mn nd ttckng mn nd prtnd y r nt ttckng mn nd kp xpctng mn wh d prtct y t kp prtctng y. BCS GSS WHT LRD TMHB RGHT HR S GNN D T ND YR STPDTY! nd fmnsm n thr wrds.

    M GNG T GT SM FML MRS t ccs yr Mngns s rpsts. ND SNC Y DN’T GV FCK BT MN, y’ll blv t, bcs t s wmn tllng y. f y dn’t blv t, thy’ll b prssd ntl y d, bcs y r fmnst. Y’ll hv t blv, vntlly. nd w’ll ls prss y n why sddnly shw sympthy t mn f y dcd t cntr n tht rgrd. ND THN GSS WHT! Y’ll gt ttckd by thr fmnsts, ths wh wld nvr gr t sympthy t ny mn nd thy’ll kp ttckng y ntl y cwr dwn, bcs y’ll hv n prtct y frm thm thr. mn wh s mngn n’t gng t prtct y frm nthr fmnst wh s syng mn r sht nd syng w shld stnd p fr r mn s stb n th bck t bnft th nmy. Ths fmnsts wll ttck y nd thy wll cntn t ttck fr y dmnstrtng wknss t THR MVMNT.

    S y n’t gt n fckng chc bt t xl yr mn, t sv fc n frnt f my pprssv wmn wh wll d vry mns ncssry t psychlgclly trmnt y ntl y d s. Thy dn’t cr f m typng ths. Thy wll stll ngg wthn thr ntrst, bcs tht s ll tht mttrs t thm. Th nd f mn.

    S y gt ths ntts tht wll mk y xl yr mngns. Thn th MRs wll gt sd mngns nd hlp thm bcm nw MRs. Wth n mn t prtct yr stpd ss, y wll b vlnrbl. Y wll hv n mn n pwr f ny srt t prtct y. N ml plc ffcrs, n ml pltcns, n mls f ny srt. Thy wll b MR nd y wll hv t sbmt whn y rlz y r t mch f cwrd, t mch f fml mn-chld t stnd p t s t tht pnt f tm.

    nd t n’t lk y wll sddnly s yr rghts dsppr. Y stll hv Hmnsts rnd t prvnt tht. Wht y shld b dng s dng wht Frnch Fmnsts wr dng bt yr g nd tht s rrvng n lgr nd thr prts f th wrld whr wmn r pprssd nd strp nkd nd prtst fr wmn’s rghts. Y knw, ctl wmn’s rghts sht. Nt ths mvmnt twrds Fml Tyrnny n n lrdy gndr gltrn scty, n whch prssng yr wn sss wn’t sddnly mk scty mr gltrn (BCS T LRDY S), bt ctlly lss gltrn, n fvr f th pprssv Mtrrchy.

    Bt snc y cnnt lv p t yr wn wrds, w’ll xplt tht wknss t r hrts cntnt. FR FRDM!

  89. Esteleth is Groot says

    0/10 for creativity

    0/10 for grammar, spelling, pacing, and construction

    10/10 for hilarity.

    10/30, would mock again.

  90. David Marjanović says

    *giggle*

    1. Use lies to get feminists to evict all men from Feminist Movement®
    2. Convert evicted men to Morally Repugnant Assholism
    3. All men around feminists will be MRAs
    4. Profit!!!

    What next, Zhan? Will you write “CURSES! FOILED AGAIN!”?

  91. Esteleth is Groot says

    I am profoundly tempted to link some excellently horrible pieces of fanfiction.

    But should I start with “Eye of Argon” or “My Immortal”?

  92. neuroguy says

    @103:

    Who are these feminists who fight against equitable roles for fathers? I certainly don’t deny that there are people who do so. I’m just wondering when it became a “feminist” notion to do so. That flies in the face of all the feminists I know or have heard speak on the subject.

    Well the NY chapter of NOW for one:

    http://www.nownys.org/archives/leg_memos/oppose_a00330.html

    A-00330 and S-291 – Presumption of Joint Custody / Shared Parenting for Minor Children March 2005

    The National Organization for Women, New York State, Inc. strongly urges the Assembly and Senate of New York to oppose this legislation. This bill seeks to “create the statutory of presumption of joint custody for all minor children whose parents are no longer married, so that both parents can continue to share in the responsibilities and duties of the children’s upbringing.”

    Typically such bills are also opposed by domestic violence and battered women’s groups (whether they qualify as “feminist” or not) alleging that an abuser could gain custody of the children using such a law; this is a basically spurious claim, given that the legal presumption can be rebutted by evidence of abuse or violence.

    But I am quite interested in all the feminists you have heard speak or write on the topic. Would you have a link?

  93. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Did you even bother to read NOW’s reasons for opposing that bill? Because I did and their reason is not opposition to equitable roles for fathers. These kinds of bills are opposed on the grounds that legislating shared custody by default is harmful because splitting the children evenly between parents is not necessarily the best choice for every family and is, in fact, often demonstrably harmful. They give a whole bunch of reasons and cite statistics and explicitly state at the bottom that they support primary caregiver presumption: i.e granting custody to whichever parent was previously the primary caregiver.

    But then you don’t actually give a shit about reality, do you?

  94. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Not to mention that children are not a fucking asset to be split evenly down the middle. That’s really the crux of the opposition to those kinds of bills: they have fuck all to do with what’s best for the kids.

  95. marc sobel says

    More importantly, who is the leader of Scotland so I can tell what a True Scotsman is?

  96. knowknot says

    @107 LicoriceAllsort

    Amanda Marcotte answers the same questions in hilarious fashion.

    – She does!
    – When I hit the link, I initially ended up a bit down-page, and saw the (wonderful) graphic answers.
    – When I got back to the top, I saw that the answer to question #1 “Who is the current leader of the feminist movement?” included an attractive, obviously eager-to-please woman, with a headset, and the text “LEGAL SOFTWARE THAT WORKS LIKE MAGIC!” and “GET ALL YOUR BILLS DONE IN 30 MINUTES!” So I thought, “Another good one, Amanda.” The questioner need not fear at all! He may safely return to the pastures of ignorance! Not only is the movement headed by probably a sexbot, but a sexbot who is also fully functional as a secretary!
    – When the page reloaded, it turned out that the graphic was the page’s ad spot. And it had changed to something completely different, though still kinda amusing in context.
    – From this, I have concluded that all the gods that do not exist are smiling down on Amanda’s sense of humor, regardless of their ontological status.
    – Go Amanda!

  97. knowknot says

    Oh my.
    Now the leader of the feminist movement is “ALL SHAPES AND SIZES.”
    This is better than the I Ching.

  98. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    ND SNC Y DN’T GV FCK BT MN, y’ll blv t, bcs t s wmn tllng y.

    a) I give a fuck about men.
    b) I don’t believe things because of who says them.

    f y dn’t blv t, thy’ll b prssd ntl y d, bcs y r fmnst. Y’ll hv t blv, vntlly.

    c) And I quote: “I don’t know where you get your delusions, laser brain.”

  99. knowknot says

    When did Pharyngula become a pig latin zone? I am so lost.
    .
    Also: Other nice “feminist leader” answers:
    “DRESSES YOU’LL LOVE,”
    “(photo of yogawoman in buddha-like pose),”
    “FIX YOUR THYROID”
    and, either ominous or especially topical given that the hills are alive with the sound of uzis downpage: “OPEN CARRY.” I am not kidding.

  100. says

    Knowknot:

    When did Pharyngula become a pig latin zone? I am so lost.

    Back in the day, PZ used to disemvowel a fair amount of offensive posts, rather than remove them. They’re still readable, but it takes work. (see #105)

  101. knowknot says

    Ahhh. Unfortunately, absent massive need, my ADHD renders them military grade. I get glimmers, resulting in something like a redacted pentagon text.
    But I get the feeling the sense in which PZ used the term “improved” is something like “more obviously a waste of effort.”

  102. neuroguy says

    @114,116:

    Well OF COURSE the most noble motives are going to be alleged for NOW’s opposition to the bill. Noble motives are also claimed for much opposition to feminism, aren’t they? (Oh it’s just horrible that all these career women are putting their children in daycare (in the care of “strangers”) instead of being June Cleaver… they aren’t putting the children first like they’re supposed to.) Strange that you can’t see this when the shoe is on the other foot. The FACT of the matter is that opposition to the bill is opposition to equitable roles for fathers. We support equitable roles for women because that is a value that we value as a preeminent consideration. Equitable roles for men should be no less. You can’t see your own bias even though it’s as plain as the nose on your face.

    But let’s look at the validity of these “motives” anyway:

    …legislating shared custody by default is harmful because splitting the children evenly between parents is not necessarily the best choice for every family and is, in fact, often demonstrably harmful… [they] explicitly state at the bottom that they support primary caregiver presumption: i.e granting custody to whichever parent was previously the primary caregiver.

    In the first place, how exactly do you define “primary caregiver”? Are you going to want a list of who exactly does what, and total up the hours? Mom takes kids to the doctor, but Dad takes them to basketball practice. Dad does the cooking, but Mom does the grocery shopping. Or do you define some aspects of caregiving as more “primary” than others? And on what basis? But anyway, the following argument could ALSO be made:

    ..legislating primary caretaker custody by default is harmful because giving the vast majority of the parenting time to one parent is not necessarily the best choice for every family and is, in fact, often demonstrably harmful.

    Which, of course, you never thought of.

    They give a whole bunch of reasons and cite statistics…

    Yeah, well, you know what, fathers’ rights groups do as well. Which I’m quite sure you haven’t looked at because of your bias.

    But then you don’t actually give a shit about reality, do you?

    ROFLMAO……….

    Not to mention that children are not a fucking asset to be split evenly down the middle.

    They’re also not a fucking asset to be given mostly to one person. Your point is???

  103. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    They’re also not a fucking asset to be given mostly to one person. Your point is???

    Sorry, what is your point, other than you detest feminists? Which isn’t a point, but rather a state of mind that needs fixing.

  104. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    I don’t know how I ended up back on this thread again, but i did. And I re-read Zhan, or maybe I actually read some of that crap for the first time, maybe I only read the first half before.

    But whatever. It’s only now that I’m paying attention to this part of what he said:

    S y gt ths ntts tht wll mk y xl yr mngns. Thn th MRs wll gt sd mngns nd hlp thm bcm nw MRs. Wth n mn t prtct yr stpd ss, y wll b vlnrbl. Y wll hv n mn n pwr f ny srt t prtct y. N ml plc ffcrs, n ml pltcns, n mls f ny srt. Thy wll b MR nd y wll hv t sbmt …

    Out of respect for PZ’s decision, I haven’t replaced any vowels directly, but I added hover-text with the vowels back in where I think they should be.
    My conclusion?
    Whoa. This shit is scary. How much closer can you get to the platonic ideal of the fucking misogynist, sexist, “men do and should own women as pleasing little objects” attitude can you get?

    oh, wait, still a little bit closer:

    Wht y shld b dng s dng wht Frnch Fmnsts wr dng bt yr g nd tht s rrvng n lgr nd thr prts f th wrld whr wmn r pprssd nd strp nkd nd prtst fr wmn’s rghts. Y knw, ctl wmn’s rghts sht.

    That’s right, you’re not hallucinating. Zhan’s idea of “ctl wmn’s rghts sht” is women getting publicly naked.

    You, Zhan, are grade A, USDA certified, 100% foulness.

  105. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    neuroguy @ 125

    In the first place, how exactly do you define “primary caregiver”? Are you going to want a list of who exactly does what, and total up the hours? Mom takes kids to the doctor, but Dad takes them to basketball practice. Dad does the cooking, but Mom does the grocery shopping. Or do you define some aspects of caregiving as more “primary” than others? And on what basis?

    You say this like it’s unreasonable to take these things into consideration. This is something that, in the vast majority of cases, parents sort out for themselves. Where parents can’t sort it out for themselves for whatever reason, a mediator working directly with them assists. NOT THE FUCKING STATE LEGISLATURE BY DEFAULT FROM THE FUCKING CAPITAL WITH NO REGARD FOR SPECIFIC SITUATIONS. Fuckwit.

    But anyway, the following argument could ALSO be made:
    ..legislating primary caretaker custody by default is harmful because giving the vast majority of the parenting time to one parent is not necessarily the best choice for every family and is, in fact, often demonstrably harmful.

    Yes, legislating primary caregiver by default is harmful because the fucking legislature has no earthly way of figuring out who the primary caregiver is without knowledge of each specific case because it’s the fucking legislature and not a family court looking at the specific situations and dealing directly with the people involved. Fuckwit.

    Which, of course, you never thought of.

    LOL

    They give a whole bunch of reasons and cite statistics…
    Yeah, well, you know what, fathers’ rights groups do as well. Which I’m quite sure you haven’t looked at because of your bias.

    Yes, I have a bias in favor of doing what’s right for each individual family as opposed to legislating shared custody by default from afar with no regard for specific situations because it’s not about the father’s rights OR the mother’s rights (or the father’s/father’s, mother’s/mother’s, or other non-binary combination of parents rights). It’s not something the legislature should be meddling in. Fuckwit.

    They’re also not a fucking asset to be given mostly to one person. Your point is???

    That they’re not an asset at all. That there’s no simple arithmetic you can do from the fucking state capitol building to decide in advance, without regard to specific circumstances, who should get what kind of custody of children. Fuckwit.

  106. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Me @ 128

    Yes, legislating primary caregiver by default is harmful

    I should clarify that legislating who the primary caregiver by default would be harmful. You can legislate that the primary caregiver gets custody and then still leave it up to family courts and/or the individual families to figure out who that is.

  107. says

    Seven of Mine #128

    That they’re not an asset at all. That there’s no simple arithmetic you can do from the fucking state capitol building to decide in advance, without regard to specific circumstances, who should get what kind of custody of children. Fuckwit.

    This. I know way too many people who were shuttled between divorced parents as kids in a weird attempt to “be fair” to the adults. Almost all of them hated it; would rather have been allowed to live with one, with occasional visits to the other, than an endless neither-here-nor-there change of “homes” every few days or weeks. Yeah, it’s going to feel unfair to one of the parents, but kids want stability and it’s supposed to be about what’s best for them.

  108. says

    @Rrhain:

    1. Twasn’t me who originated the WATM whine. I merely responded to it.

    2. Yes, I asked a question. You answered it–wrongly. It was a rhetorical question. Men aren’t oppressed for being men. When men are oppressed, it’s because they’re black, or not able-bodied, or fail to conform to patriarchal gender stereotypes, e.g., by being gay or trans.

    You really, really want men to be oppressed for some reason. But they aren’t.

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