What if she says “No”?


It used to be I’d get up in the morning and get battered with blog comments and email, and now I’ve added YouTube comments to my morning exercise. I think of it as part of my mental health regime.

I should probably stop, but I feel it’s necessary to clear out the worst slime from the comments there — and there’s a lot. Here’s one example of the kind of stuff that doesn’t get instantly trashed, but is indicative of the kind of mindset common there.

Why is the SSA suddenly the police regarding sexual rules between consenting adults? So now there are age restrictions against white men having sex; [Incorrect. There are rules about speakers of any age or color or gender hitting on student attendees] and if they’re too old, they don’t get to ask? Wow, actually the SSA seems way, way more gross and creepy and soul-dead and just plain inhuman than Carrier. I don’t get any of this so far. So “creepy” people no longer have the rights guaranteed to them in the Bill of Rights? [I think it’s more like that women have rights, too. I know, what a surprise!] I don’t get why you call yourself a progressive or a liberal. You sound like a Puritan, uptight square. Your into vlog sound just like a, “I’m normal and conformist,” video, so I don’t see anything deep or self-reflective other than that since our own people don’t really permit debate anymore, just a kind of weak self-preservationism in order to belong to the larger group by 100% conformity to the dogma of that group. (Note: I voted for Bernie Sanders in the primaries and Hillary in the general election; and I just got done voting for Feinstein in the midterms and virtually all Democratic candidates in our area [Would you like a cookie?] ; but I don’t get why being a liberal entails being a member of the #MeToo crowd.) I think you got by on your really calm, soothing voice style [Thanks, I think], that people mistook that for reasoning. I don’t see any reasoning here, just kind of stuff that my mean feminist friends say. (Because I’m progressive economically, I’ll continue to vote Democrat, but once we leave economic issues, most of the people around here in Northern California are just plain awful and cold and unfeeling; and I used to love them. Something really hideous is happening in our movement.)

There is a lot of this sort of thing, and there is so much to decode within it. I am trying to police men propositioning women! I don’t want people to have sex, because I’m a prude! I am the death of fun!

I do have a sledgehammer, though. It’s the word “No”.

You want to proposition women, OK. What do you do when they say “No”?

Sex is lovely. What if she says “No”?

What is your definition of a mean feminist? It seems to reduce to “A woman who says ‘No’.”

Can I hit you with this sledgehammer? No? Well, gosh, you’re no fun. Why are you trying to ruin this movement with your rules?

All right then, how about if I just run a calm, soothing hand across your thigh, sir? You can’t possibly complain about that. It would be something really hideous if you said “No.”


Although, to be honest, usually I just sigh and ignore these rants. It gets really tiring swinging a sledgehammer all morning. The women I know must have phenomenal upper body strength.

Comments

  1. Athywren - not the moon you're looking for says

    Oh no, daddio – he called you a square! :o
    Is there actually a mention in the bill of rights to being allowed to proposition attendees to your speaking events? I’m not American, and it’s not something I’ve actually read in its entirety. I have trouble believing it though.

    Anyway, I think he makes an important point about a failing of many people who would consider themselves to be skeptics: “I think you got by on your really calm, soothing voice style, that people mistook that for reasoning.” It’s something you see all over the place in YouTube video titles. “Ben Shapiro calmly proves there are only 2 genders.” “LogicHammer88 calmly destroys crazy feminist.” “Jordan Peterson calmly says something bizarre about lobsters – if you just watch another 1,000 hours of YouTube videos, you’ll see why it makes sense and isn’t utterly ridiculous.” Calmly, calmly, calmly. The actual reasoning is irrelevant, so long as it’s expressed in a way that appears calm – anyone showing emotions is rekt (or square in this case) and therefore irrational. Like if only we were calmer about things, we’d see how it’s cool, actually, to push ourselves on unreceptive people or people we have power over.

  2. Susan Montgomery says

    “You sound like a Puritan, uptight square. Your into vlog sound just like a, “I’m normal and conformist,””

    Well, he’s got you there. I’m serious. Most progressives, woke and bae and enlightened as they may be, have all the joie de vivre of an alcoholic Mall Santa.

  3. Chris J says

    I had to look up the policy this dude* was talking about. Here’s the relevant section regarding sexual relationships.

    7. Physical relationships: SSA staff and non-student conference leaders/speakers shall not enter into a sexual relationship with students at any time during the conference except in cases in which there is a prior intimate relationship. If you choose to form a physical relationship with a fellow attendee, please keep in mind that such relationships should always be safe, consensual, and legal. Obtaining affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement from all parties before engaging in sexual activity constitutes consent. Passive consent, silence, and intoxicated consent are NOT consent!

    The only real restriction is staff and non-student speakers not having sex with students. Student and student? Fine. Staff and staff? Go for it. Staff and student due to a previously existing relationship? All fine. Just as long as those relationships are truly consensual.

    It’s not even about age, it seems to be about a power dynamic with the leaders and organizers of the conference and the attendees. THAT is what is so unbearably square, puritanical, and soul-less to this dude.

    So god-damned telling that he interprets that power dynamic forbidding as targeting older white males and “creepy” people. Gee, I wonder what group he identifies with…

    Yeah, I’m assuming gender here. I think it’s a pretty safe bet.

  4. says

    I don’t get why being a liberal entails being a member of the #MeToo crowd.

    So, a long time ago there was this really, really fucked up “hypothetical” written by a libertarian college professor. He (claimed he) wanted to know if emotional or psychological impacts on bystanders can ever provide a legitimate rationale on which to found law or public policy that prohibits or punishes the behaviors that cause those impacts.

    As part of the hypothetical, he asked people to imagine him raped while drugged into unconsciousness, in a manner where no physical damage, injury, or disease (or pregnancy, one assumes) resulted. Then he asked would any “psychic harm” he feels upon being informed of the rape later constitute a public policy reason to punish the rape? Of course a brouhaha followed, because in his hypothetical, he is not the bystander. Some aspects of what he wrote indicated he wanted to investigate all “psychic harm” and where any of it could be used as a basis for government prohibitions or punishments. Other aspects of what he wrote indicated that he wanted to focus on the idea of “psychic harm” to bystanders. But the hypothetical certainly didn’t limit itself to bystanders, it was very explicitly about the emotional and psychological effects on the victim.

    The point of all this is that when challenged, he insisted that he “thought [he] was clear” that he was talking about bystanders only, and, further, that he thought he could safely ignore the harm to victims on the basis that there was universal agreement that the harm to victims – psychic or otherwise – should be taken seriously and could be a basis for government prohibitions or punishments.

    Except, of course, that he was talking about all this in the wake of Steubenville, when the town’s residents and the national media alike discussed the prosecution of several rapists as a horrible tragedy in ways that they decidedly did NOT talk about the rape itself. CNN in particular infamously talked about the guilty verdict “ruining” the lives of the very, very good boys who were convicted. Moreover, the assault itself was committed at a party in front of many witnesses, none of whom called the cops. There were endless ways in which the harm to the victim – who was drugged unconscious at the time of the assault, just as in the professor’s hypothetical – was not taken seriously.

    In other words, the professor claimed to be sparked to intelligent contemplation by Steubenville, but failed to learn even the single most salient fact from Steubenville.

    Why bring this up now? Because Fuckwad the Douchegabber from the OP says:

    I don’t get why being a liberal entails being a member of the #MeToo crowd.

    The whole point of #MeToo is that rape and sexual assault and workplace sexual harassment happen everywhere. If that’s true – and it sure as F is – than being a liberal sometimes coincides with being a rapist, a harasser, or someone who commits assault. Those people aren’t members of the #MeToo crowd. They’re the exact opposite of that thing.

    This douchegabber is claiming that protecting people from harassment is puritanical because, hey, no one in his crowd is a rapist, harasser, or person who commits assault. And he says this because he’s been hearing too much from the #MeToo crowd? That’s the kind of arrogant ignorance that blows doors down.

  5. whheydt says

    Okay… I’ve missed something somewhere…. Obviously, “SSA” is NOT the Social Security Administration.

  6. Akira MacKenzie says

    I don’t get why you call yourself a progressive or a liberal. You sound like a Puritan, uptight square.

    So unless you want to have sex with anyone and everyone who asks at any given moment, you’re some sort of Bluenosed prude?

    While I tend to hate compromise, I can’t help think there is some happy medium between “Puritan uptight square” and the author’s desired hyper-horny fuck machine.

  7. Akira MacKenzie says

    Susan Montgomery @3

    Well, he’s got you there. I’m serious. Most progressives, woke and bae and enlightened as they may be, have all the joie de vivre of an alcoholic Mall Santa.

    No Susan, we just don’t want to fuck a regressive, racism/sexism apologizing, libertarian shitstain like yourself.

  8. Susan Montgomery says

    Clearly you’ve been trained in the classics, Pancrazio Zebulon. I’ll try to match wits no more :)

  9. jefrir says

    Most progressives, woke and bae and enlightened as they may be

    “Bae” makes no sense here. Maybe don’t appropriate AAVE if you don’t know what it means?

  10. Susan Montgomery says

    @13 Well, I wouldn’t know. I pretty much gave up on slang after “gnarly” became a thing.

  11. jefrir says

    AAVE is not the same as slang, and if you don’t know it, don’t fucking use it. You can look less stupid and less racist, all in one!

  12. Ichthyic says

    Susan doesn’t care. Being stupid is all the rage these days, and you’re just trying to spoil her fun, you puritan using reason you.

    Hey, Susan?

    being slacktastic died out in the 90s.

  13. Susan Montgomery says

    So…if I don’t immediately subscribe to your point of view I’m stupid?

    What reason was I presented with? Is calling someone a stupid racist without anything else all the rage these days? One definition of slang is: “a type of language that consists of words and phrases that are regarded as very informal, are more common in speech than writing, and are typically restricted to a particular context or group of people.” I don’t think that’s too far off the mark to automatically deride me as a racist

    But continue to amuse yourself at my expense if you like. Given the frequency with which left-leaning sites ban dissenting viewpoints, I’m shocked to have lasted this long.

  14. John Morales says

    Susan Montgomery:

    But continue to amuse yourself at my expense if you like. Given the frequency with which left-leaning sites ban dissenting viewpoints, I’m shocked to have lasted this long.

    Um. I’d rather not, it’s cringe-worthy to see your antics, rather than amusing.

    You’re not dissenting, you just imagine PZ comes across as straight-laced to others because he does to you, and so you as much as called him joyless thereby.

    You got personal, so you got a personal dismissal.

    (No victim, you, nor persecuted — and it ain’t political)

  15. says

    Susan

    Is calling someone a stupid racist without anything else all the rage these days?

    Na, but like any other bigot, you don’t see your own bigotry.

    One definition of slang is: “a type of language that consists of words and phrases that are regarded as very informal, are more common in speech than writing, and are typically restricted to a particular context or group of people.” I don’t think that’s too far off the mark to automatically deride me as a racist

    No, you don’t, but we know you’re not good at thinking. Why do you people always have to be so stupid about linguistics?
    So, let’s unravel.
    First, you used phrases from AAVE, which, in itself isn’t a crime, for sure. Not even getting “bae” horribly wrong is. But you used it in a certain context, which was to dismiss your opponents and make them look “silly” by using their own language, so in short, you used black culture to indicate inferiority, which is what we commonly call racist.
    Then you got called out and dismissed criticism by calling AAVE “slang”, which does have thoroughly negative connotations, once again linking black culture with inferiority.
    And then you pulled a quote from the internet to demonstrate your white superiority in knowing everything better than the people whose culture you’re dismissing.
    Yes, cupcake, slang has words and phrases used by a group, yet you’re missing a few things, but you’d never know because you already think you know everything and therefore don’t need to learn.
    First of all, it’s usually a social group. Scientists have a slang.
    Secondly, just because it fulfils the criteria for slang doesn’t mean it does not have more features that make it something else, like its own grammatical rules, literature, etc, which makes it at least a dialect if not a variety.
    But you were trying to sound clever, so we can’t expect you to be actually knowledgable.

  16. KG says

    Fuck off, Susan. – PZM@11

    Does that mean we won’t be seeing any more of Susan’s smug stupidities? (He asked hopefully.)

  17. Susan Montgomery says

    @KG No such luck, I’m afraid.

    @19
    “like any other bigot, you don’t see your own bigotry.”

    Maybe you’re seeing bigotry where there is none. Did you consider that?

    RE: AAVE – I used those phrases to mock the hip, aloof and smug posture PZ often (but not always) takes when social justice issues come up. Nothing more.

    “Cupcake”? Should I be calling #metoo? Seriously, do you now claim the moral high ground and thus feel free to use a demeaning form of address? Are you feeling justified in using a term of inferiority freely because you feel I did?

  18. Rob Grigjanis says

    John @18: I find Akira MacKenzie’s “antics” far more cringe-worthy and offensive than Susan’s. Mileage varies, I guess.

  19. consciousness razor says

    I don’t know what alcoholic Mall Santas did to deserve such a compliment, but I’m sure they at least appreciate your idiotic bluster, even if nobody else does. Perhaps you’ll find that somewhat consoling. Sorry this comes a bit late … the panegyrics are apparently over for now, and I don’t mean to interrupt all of the very important things you must tell the internet.

  20. Azkyroth, B*Cos[F(u)]==Y says

    No Susan, we just don’t want to fuck a regressive, racism/sexism apologizing, libertarian shitstain like yourself.

    I think it’s presumptuous to attribute to Susan investment in any cause other than petulance for its own sake.

  21. secondtofirstworld says

    I’ll enter a case into “evidence” from a factual world that already works as Susan seems to like it. It happened not so long ago, that a 32-year old teacher tried to abduct an 11-year old boy under a false identity, but they were caught at the airport and he was arrested. He got a year and 8 months and was released on a suspended sentence (you see, homeless people need to be immediately jailed). He was convicted of human trafficking and violating the family status.

    There was a secondary investigation brought on by recovered texts between the teacher and the minor, explicitly sexual in nature. The charge was illicit sexual relations with a minor and harassment. The prosecution concluded dropping the charges, because the minor, according to them, acted on his own accord when responding and besides it was after school so it’s not like the teacher had rights of control. Again, the dude was arrested trying to abduct a kid with false papers.

    So, Miss or Mrs. Montgomery. It must be entertaining to play the game where you aim to win by riling other people in the hopes of them admitting they care more about self-image than others, your contrarian nature fails on declaring what it stands for, not just against. Those who actually learned philosophy know the arguments aren’t won by assuming the other side is a weak orator/interlocutor, but by having arguments that can be substantiated.

    The crowds decrying not being able to sleep with minors overlook that in 22 American states you can still knock up a 12-year old and get away with it by marrying them. Even worse, attempts to delegalize such laws are constantly blocked by a religious group who’s being backed by libertarians and Republicans. As long as your representatives support such vile behavior, you don’t really much have a right to talk about joie de vivre.

  22. says

    Susan

    RE: AAVE – I used those phrases to mock the hip, aloof and smug posture PZ often (but not always) takes when social justice issues come up. Nothing more.

    Yep, as I said, you used black culture to mock people.

    “Cupcake”? Should I be calling #metoo? Seriously, do you now claim the moral high ground and thus feel free to use a demeaning form of address? Are you feeling justified in using a term of inferiority freely because you feel I did?

    1) Wait, so it was OK when you did, but when I do so it’s suddenly bad?
    2) #metoo, another thing you don’t understand. One woman insulting another woman (and I freely admit to doing so) isn’t sexual harassment and violence, but thanks for showing that you have so much respect for the victims of sexual violence that you think me calling you some mild names is somewhere even in that area.
    3) Learn the difference between simply being rude and a bigot. But since you have no working definition of “bigot”, that#s probably beyond you.

  23. Susan Montgomery says

    @Azkyroth I am someone who would very much like to see progressives stop pissing around with appropriation and microaggressions and focus on actual issues like police abuse, income inequality, structural unemployment and the like. I’m sure someone who hasn’t worked for two years isn’t too worried about a show-biz exec playing grab-ass or some random internet commentator using “woke” incorrectly.

  24. secondtofirstworld says

    @Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk- #28:

    Before corrections would be made, I’ll “mansplain”: certainly context and content is king, but the act of one woman insulting another woman can be sexual harassment. It could be for example a case where a young lesbian or bisexual woman slanders an older rival for the affection of a third person by way of using terms in a derogatory fashion (slut-shaming, fat shaming, ageism).

    Again, I know this wasn’t your intent here, but I did oppose the general claim it couldn’t happen, it would be heteronormative.

  25. Rowan vet-tech says

    Apparently in Susan’s world, you can’t be concerned and working to correct more than one thing at a time. How fascinating.

    Susan, here in the real world, I can be extremely concerned about poverty AND microaggressions AND even more things! And the point with some director or exec playing ‘grab-ass’ with women and men who have status, wealth, and social power is to show that not even that status, wealth, and social power can protect them. And if THEY can experience these things, imagine what happens to those without the status, wealth, and social power. I do care about what happens to other people, even though with my career the odds of me ever being able to retire are pretty much nil and my career is so physically demanding that I’m destroying my joints in the process. My future looks like shit. And I worry about the microaggressions my black coworker faces.

    So fuck off you compassionless ass.

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