Cracked.com on Misogyny

Ozy Frantz takes down a humor article that tries to be forward-thinking on gender issues and ends up the butt of its own joke.

This article originally appeared at No Seriously, What About Teh Menz?

Cracked has recently presented an article about the five ways modern men are trained to hate women, as part of its latest bid to be Feministe’s more ableist, more prone to dick jokes little brother. Seriously, what is it with Cracked and social justice these days? I can only figure that they’ve worked out that laughing at misogyny is funnier than “hey hey guys you know what’s funny? SOMETIMES PEOPLE ARE RAPED. Ohmigod I crack myself up.”

Unfortunately, unlike commendable articles such as 8 TV Ads That Hate Women and 7 Popular ‘Chick Flicks’ That Secretly Hate Women, this Cracked article tried for “feminist” and ended at “horribly misandric.” I really hate picking on David Wong; he is clearly trying, and criticizing people who are clearly trying kind of feels like kicking a three-legged puppy struggling to walk. But nevertheless he is spewing some really stupid shit! So here goes.

The first and most obvious problem with this article is that he keeps referring to “men” when he really means “straight sexist men,” which is a subset of men. While feeling entitled to a hot girl is very common sexist man behavior, it certainly doesn’t apply to (say) the shy guy who assumes that the girl who asks him out is joking, or the promiscuous dude who takes most rejections with a shrug and a “your loss.” People are different, and one’s anti-sexist language needs to be careful not to reinforce that sort of stereotypes.

The rest of the problems with the list I’ll go over point-by-point.

5. We Were Told That Society Owes Us A Hot Girl.

Here, I will admit that Wong has a point. A whole fuckload of media that star men and have nothing to do with romance end with the hero getting a hot girl at the end for being awesome. It’s simple Success Object: if you are successful enough at Thing X (whether X is earning money, playing in a rock band, or killing Nazi zombies), you should be able to earn a woman as a prize. You can even see the logic here kind of: I mean, everyone likes rich people and rock stars and dead Nazi zombies, right?

But, of course, dating does not work that way. There are lots of reasons that someone doesn’t get a partner that are no one’s fault and do not make one a bad person, ranging from shyness to not knowing many available people to a physical appearance disliked in one’s particular subculture to simple bad luck. And similarly there are many stupid assholes who still manage to get relationships (often with other stupid assholes). But the thing is, among certain sexist people, not getting the thing which you clearly deserve tends to lead you to hate the people who are so misappropriating the deserved things.

4. We’re Trained From Birth to See You As Decoration

This one is also not bad (except for an eyeroll statement about the difference between men and women is that women occasionally don’t think about sex). It’s also not particularly masculist, so I shall only discuss it briefly. Society tends to sexually objectify women; therefore, people of all genders tend to bring up women’s appearances even in situations in which it is not relevant, and to get positively angry when women aren’t sexy enough.

3. We Think You’re Conspiring With Our Boners To Ruin Us

Aaaaaand here’s where Picard starts facepalming.

Seriously? Way to erase low-libido or asexual men, dude. Just because you are constantly horny does not mean that men are constantly horny. And, yes, I think this section is a high-libido/low-libido issue, not a men/women issue. (Although what I have read about trans people on hormones suggests that it is possible that testosterone makes you hornier, the science is far from in, and at any rate lots of women are hornier than lots of men.)

I am fairly high-libido. I say I’m thinking with my clit! I get horny at inappropriate times! I really really want sex with partners I know are bad for me! I occasionally get horny when I don’t intellectually want an orgasm and have to put up with some annoyed masturbation in order to get work done! I was also born with a vagina.

(Also, dude, people with vaginas masturbate in public sometimes. If you’re clever you can rub your legs together in a way such that your jeans stimulate your clit and have a little orgasm and no one will even notice.)

2. We Feel Like Manhood Was Stolen From Us At Some Point

Darth Penis. Reaaaaaally.

Okay, look. Let me say this in the clearest way possible. Those urges to show your penis to people or hit something or light things on fire or jump off high objects or pee in public? Those aren’t necessarily evolutionary urges! It could be because our culture believes that men are supposed to be violent and reckless and risk-taking, and that proper masculinity (at least one form thereof) involves lots of explosions and lighting things on fire!

I actually don’t have that many objections to the “some forms of masculinity involve certain behaviors that are inimical to civilization, and therefore escapist media in which those forms of masculinity are possible is popular, and also some sexist men think that women stole getting to do awesome manly things from them” line of reasoning. I just don’t think those forms of behavior are evolutionarily hardwired in all men everywhere for all time.

…Man, everyone likes lighting things on fire, I don’t think that’s a dude thing, I think that’s a people thing.

1. We Feel Powerless

No. No. No no no no no no no no.

Queer men exist. Asexual men exist. Men who think sex is fun enough but all things considered would really rather play Magic exist. You CANNOT have a model of how men work that only applies to men who fit our culture’s idea of How Male Sexuality Works.

This is the Beast end of the Knight/Beast dichotomy. “All men indiscriminately want sex with everyone everywhere, all men continually exercise self-control to keep them from harassing and sexually assaulting and raping women, all men will fuck any warm hole that comes to hand, and if they try really hard they can pretend to be a Knight but there’s always the Beast lurking within.” No. That is not how male sexuality works. It isn’t necessarily predatory or violent or rapey or indiscriminate– any more than female sexuality is.

He then goes to a list of human achievements that exist because boobs. Apparently war is about raping women. Of course the myths of glory and dulce et decorum est have nothing to do with it– not to mention the horrific view “men are soldiers because free rape privileges!” gives us of men.

Seriously, this is SO misandric. Apparently men will not be motivated to do anything unless you bribe them with pussy for it like a five-year-old given a cookie to be quiet at the mall. The joy of creation, the rush of adventure, the endless hell of insecurity that nothing you achieve will ever prove wrong, even the desire for a fuckload of money in the bank– nope. Men know not these things! Men do great things because pussy. That’s it.

Simultaneously, he’s managed the dubious feat of making his feminist article incredibly misogynistic. DID YOU KNOW that women aren’t great architects? Or sports stars? Or musicians? Or actors? I mean, men only do it because they’re bribed with pussy to do so. But women can get cock whenever they like! So they really have no motivation to pursue art if they can already get laid. (Presumably queers don’t achieve great things either.)

Darth Penis. Christ.

 

 

Photo—Man do a facepalm from Shutterstock

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About ozyfrantz

Ozy Frantz is a student at a well-respected Hippie College in the United States. Zie bases most of zir life decisions on Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, and identifies more closely with Pinkie Pie than is probably necessary. Ozy can be contacted at [email protected] or on Twitter as @ozyfrantz. Writing is presently Ozy's primary means of support, so to tip the blogger, click here.

Comments

  1. It really sucks to see this from Wong. He wrote one of my favorite books, and he is capable of so much better than this. A real shot to the balls.

    The sad part is, I can kinda understand why he wrote it. Being fminist is “in” these days, like being liberal. He needs to channel his effort into something better.

  2. Gee, a “feminist” acting misandric, who’da thought it possible:P. Hugo had a knack for speaking on behalf of “men”, projecting his own failings as if it’s common or even representative of men whilst being misandric. If this is what is popular for these types of feminists then NOTHANKYOUDONOTWANT. If you wanna speak about a certain kind of man and what is good/bad about them then go ahead, but men vary wildly in what they like, how they act, etc.

    Wonder if a woman has written the female equivalent? Maybe some tropes about wanting a provider or someone rich, mix in a lil bit of seeing men as utility and disposable?

    • While I agree that no one can speak for ALL men and that it’s stupid to think you can, all I’ve seen from Hugo lately is that he is doing great work to help girls and women with damaging body image issues and to fight slut shaming. I always felt that his confessions were his own. Obviously not every man goes through 4 marriages, compulsive cheating, addiction, and attempted murder/suicide. He just seems to be attempting to turn his life around and do some good. His stories are personal and confessions, not an attempt to speak for all men, I think.

      • While what you say of his work is true of some of his work he still has some pretty problematic things to say.

        1. He has almost defended paternity fraud from the perspective of possibly being the biological dad that kept quiet of possible deception.

        2. He has said here on this site that by virtue of being attracted to younger women, older men deserve to be shamed.

        3. He comes close to denying creep shaming, writing it off as just something creepy men made up in an attempt to stop women from using the word altogether.

        …. all I’ve seen from Hugo lately is that he is doing great work to help girls and women with damaging body image issues and to fight slut shaming
        Sure that might be all that you have seen (and that’s good stuff to be sure) but that is nowhere near all that he has done.

        (Not sure how Hugo came up but anyway…)

      • Haven’t seen his new work, he disappeared. If he’s doing good then high 5 to him, his past articles left a lot to be desired. Hugo came up due to being similar in taking generalization and experiences as what “men” are, instead of some men.

  3. Peter Houlihan says:

    “Ozy Frantz is a student at a well-respected Hippie College in the United States”

    And is apparantly a brony :D

    Yeah, it’s not the only article like that up there. It isn’t so much a shot at men so much as at historical accuracy but I read a piece the other day which claimed that gender roles were invented by the industrial revolution. Apparently when we were all farmers housework was shared with absolute equality.

  4. Eric M. says:

    this “article tried for “feminist” and ended at “horribly misandric.”

    As if those two things have never been in the same place at the same time. . .

  5. Here is a response by another feminist saying that the article is actually misogynistic:

    http://pandagon.net/index.php/site/comments/misogyny-isnt-caused-by-male-horniness?fwcc=1&fwcl=1&fwl

    • “They say that “women” overlook the “nice” guys because they’re not as attractive or whatever, but if you scratch them, you’ll find that they exclude a huge percentage of women from the category “women” for not fitting their beauty standards. Thus, the whine only makes sense if you assume that men are entitled to beauty, but women should settle for “nice”, and give up on physical attraction.
      The rest of the piece is based on the iffy theory that only men really know what it’s like to feel horny. This is why liberal dudes were licking it up, since it was a purportedly anti-sexist piece, but it still had a soothing message that men still somehow are more than women, because they are more alive, you know. They have more desire. They really like sex, in a way that you women can never understand.
      Do you guys know how offensive this is? Imagine if you said that men naturally understood music better, or had a better ability to taste food, or just really enjoyed the sun on their skin more than women could ever understand. This article, while well-meaning, couldn’t get past the notion that women are dull, because we don’t have those all-important sex drives to create sharpness and ambition.”

      • Random_Stranger says:

        ahhh…but you confuse a desire for sex with a taste for fine art. Having a need to masturbate with greater frequency is akin to having a need to fart more often. Many of us would rather not have the burden. Its base and its crass, and it makes us less, not more human.

    • Amanda Marcotte? Forgive me if I fail to trust her words.

      “The piece starts off on a good foot, explaining that men are taught from the cradle that they’re entitled to women’s affection, and he even touches on how women who aren’t considered beautiful are often not considered at all. He’s 100% right on this. This is the underpinning of the Nice Guy® complaint.”
      Ummm not all men are taught this, why is it negative generalizations are ok against men but not against women? She’s talking with misandry at this point. Maybe I could write an article about women being taught from the grave that they are entitled to a man’s money and how men who aren’t “successful” or rich are often not considered at all. Would that be fair?

      • Random_Stranger says:

        omg, Amanda Marcotte? She sees the world through a very narrow lens. She is the worst kind of feminist.

        • Random_Stranger says:

          …pretty much for making comments like the following (cite above link)

          “I think men become misogynists not because their intense horniness short circuits their brain. It’s because they feel entitled to have women in a submissive position to them. They want to live in a world where women are considered automatically dumber, where women are expected to clean up after them, wipe their brows, and kiss their asses, all with a smile on our faces and without asking much more in return but an occasional bit of jewelry and a door-opening, which is just as much about the man feeling more powerful as it is about being nice to the woman”

          …so Marcotte is one of those feminists who see the gender binary as fundamentally adversarial between men and women, and the culture that upholds it as a patriarchy bent on oppressing women to privilege men absolutely and monotonically. She and many of her follower’s err in extrapolating on the hate and bigotry that African Americans and Jews, for example, have experience when base tribalism grips a culture. But gender is not like race. Rather than try to destroy a particular people, a culture needs both genders to thrive. And no culture on earth could thrive without exploiting all its people, men and women, to maximum potential. Marcotte and her allies would be well served to see the gender binary as a system of mutual exploitation, one where privileges and responsibilities, sticks and carrots, have been dolled out along gender lines to limit the choices, thoughts and behaviors of all individuals; a system men and women have been content to enforce on their fellow citizens even as they pine for their own personal liberation. She and her feminists friends may finally begin to see their own privileges and understand the hardships of men. Only then, we can all grow together. In the mean time, Marcotte will continue to spew her venom, spread misandry and keep men and boys down.

  6. “They say that “women” overlook the “nice” guys because they’re not as attractive or whatever, but if you scratch them, you’ll find that they exclude a huge percentage of women from the category “women” for not fitting their beauty standards. Thus, the whine only makes sense if you assume that men are entitled to beauty, but women should settle for “nice”, and give up on physical attraction.
    But what folks don’t like to talk about is that, to an extent, those Nice Guys are right about at least some of those women. Yes it would be nice if we could just say that no woman holds men to any hypocritical or unfair standards that they don’t hold themselves to, but that wouldn’t be true. Just the same there really are women out there that keep dating jerk after jerk while pining about wanting a nice guy. But for some reason its taboo to tell those women to think about the choices they make, no all of society needs to change to their whims.

    • How dare you mention female responsibility. :P
      I’ve seen the nice guys and nice girls want 1 thing but go for another, maybe nice just means something different to others? To me a nice woman is good but she still needs to be physically attractive to me, and I won’t feel shame for wanting that, I can’t date people I have no physical attraction to and I don’t expect anyone else to either.

    • Danny, now, if you’re telling me that I’m dating jerks is coming out of a place of concern and good advice, there is no problem with that. I’ve had it said to me and I appreciated the concern and certainly didn’t find it to be taboo. It’s when it comes from a place of bitterness, lack of knowledge about the situation, or attempted coercion that it becomes wrong.

      I say this every time the nice guy issue comes up. Not every guy is all ‘nice guy’ or all ‘jerk.’ And not every guy is one or the other in every situation or through the course of their lifetimes. There’s a whole spectrum, and people change with life events or depending on the circumstances. It would be nice if it were that simple, but that’s just not how men are, apart from a few extremes. The comment about society changing to whims came off as a little aggressive (and your comments are usually VERY fair, even handed, and enlightening). I’m not sure where you get that women want that–in some cases we just want to be understood, just like you guys do. The comment was about the fact that many ‘nice guys’ want the sexual attraction but somehow women should just settle for ‘nice’ and chose their partners based on that. It’s about the ‘invisible women.’ Women who don’t fit the standards of beauty, who are getting ignored and rejected by these ‘nice guys’ except to be pitied or ridiculed –while the ‘nice guys’ are complaining about getting ignored and rejected by a small sliver of women, except to be pitied or ridiculed.

      And also just like you guys, I also need for there to be a sexual attraction and connection. If I have sexual chemistry with my man, I sure as hell hope he’s going to be nice to me–it’s just that ‘nice’ isn’t enough, just as it isn’t enough for a women to be nice for a guy to want her, especially if you’re trying to sustain a long term relationship. Being attractive, it’s generally assumed that every guy I’m with is a jerk, especially if he isn’t conventionally handsome, rich, or charismatic (and often times, he’s not, because connection and chemistry are by far the most important thing to me). That HAS to be the only way he got into my pants, his magical jerky coercion. Some have treated me poorly (and I have treated some poorly myself), for sure, but oftentimes, the assumption is made long before any real knowledge into the situation.

      And as for hypocrisy. A lot of the guys who complain about not being ‘alphas’ and just ‘too nice’ to get a girl then go around scrutizing and insulting women, what they like, and their bodies. How is that nice? I’ve seen this in real life, online, and personally. The only guys who have made an effort to point out flaws or bring down my self-esteem have been guys who consider themselves ‘nice guys.’ It’s really off-putting.

      • Danny, now, if you’re telling me that I’m dating jerks is coming out of a place of concern and good advice, there is no problem with that. I’ve had it said to me and I appreciated the concern and certainly didn’t find it to be taboo. It’s when it comes from a place of bitterness, lack of knowledge about the situation, or attempted coercion that it becomes wrong.
        I can agree with that.

        I say this every time the nice guy issue comes up. Not every guy is all ‘nice guy’ or all ‘jerk.’ And not every guy is one or the other in every situation or through the course of their lifetimes. There’s a whole spectrum, and people change with life events or depending on the circumstances. It would be nice if it were that simple, but that’s just not how men are, apart from a few extremes. The comment about society changing to whims came off as a little aggressive (and your comments are usually VERY fair, even handed, and enlightening).
        I agree that there are all types out there.

        I’m not sure where you get that women want that–in some cases we just want to be understood, just like you guys do. The comment was about the fact that many ‘nice guys’ want the sexual attraction but somehow women should just settle for ‘nice’ and chose their partners based on that. It’s about the ‘invisible women.’ Women who don’t fit the standards of beauty, who are getting ignored and rejected by these ‘nice guys’ except to be pitied or ridiculed –while the ‘nice guys’ are complaining about getting ignored and rejected by a small sliver of women, except to be pitied or ridiculed.
        I got it from my own experiences and that comment reminded me of how when talking about being overlooked by women its quickly declared that I must be a Nice Guy that is overlooking all the women who are not conventionally attractive. The Nice Guy label is applied too quickly sometimes.
        And as for hypocrisy. A lot of the guys who complain about not being ‘alphas’ and just ‘too nice’ to get a girl then go around scrutizing and insulting women, what they like, and their bodies. How is that nice? I’ve seen this in real life, online, and personally. The only guys who have made an effort to point out flaws or bring down my self-esteem have been guys who consider themselves ‘nice guys.’ It’s really off-putting.
        The problem is even guys that don’t do this get lumped in with those Nice Guys. And why is that? I personally think that some folks don’t like the idea that a genuinely good guy hasn’t had much fortune when it comes to dating/relationships/sex. In fact:
        That HAS to be the only way he got into my pants, his magical jerky coercion.
        Now imagine being told that the ONLY reason you haven’t any partners was because something is wrong with you’re actually an asshole.
        Sorry about the aggression though. Understanding is the key, I’ll agree.

      • “The comment was about the fact that many ‘nice guys’ want the sexual attraction but somehow women should just settle for ‘nice’ and chose their partners based on that. ”
        I find the problem is some women say they want nice, and that is what they’re attracted to so people can assume women want nice guys and that they actually settle for jerks. So I’m not sure who says women should “settle” for nice especially since in the popular stereotype nice is what they want the most, hardling settling….

        Big problem with the nice guy arguments is that EVERY human is unique, likes whatever they like and we can’t just say all/most women like X, all/most men like Y. “Nice” is subjective too, what is nice to one can be clingy to another or even an asshole. Whilst I have little sympathy for people that go for bitchs/jerks knowing they are not nice, then crying they wanted nice, then repeating the mistake I do realize this isn’t the majority of cases. I think it’s probably more that the jerk acts nice to HER to land her, I also think these women probably mistake the jerks behaviour for confidence vs them usually being insecure in reality.

        Disclaimer: I can be an asshole, a jerk, a nice guy, I am a random mix and it depends on who I am with, only some people truly deserve my sweet side, others get the nice side until they show they don’t deserve it and fuckwits cop the jerk side.

  7. Random_Stranger says:

    You know, I’m going to express the minority opinion here and come out and say that Wong’s article actually resonates with me as a man. Is it pure hyperbole? Sure, but he only errs in magnitude and uniformity, he’s otherwise directionally correct.

    Try as we may, sex scandals are simply “of men”. From the embarrassing & risky, to the degrading & criminal, if it involves sex, you cannot deny that the fools and the predators are overwhelmingly male. And as men, like it or not, we have to own that. It is an inextricable extension of masculinity and not an equal opportunity aberration. Every man can recall a moment of shame and self-loathing when he lowered himself to sake his lust. We have to know that we share the same fundamental mechanics with the men in the news and that if not but for the grace of god, we too could go down that dark place.

    Wong also does makes a reasonably sound suggestion when he ties our lasciviousness to our perception of women and potential misogyny. Its not just our unrelenting sex drive that causes us such shame and recklessness, its the scarcity of desiring reciprocal partners that leaves us dogs. Can I be physically aroused against my will as Wong suggested? Sure, but my day to day is far more subtle. Everyday, I notice women; I glance involuntarily and my desire is to be noticed, to be wanted, in return. I want to feel as though I am an equal to this woman. But more often than not, our glances are ignored, we are rejected, we are reminded that we are less equal. We are left envious of her wealth of sexual choices, her lack of equivalent hunger and angry at our relative poverty and vulnerability. We desire not to feel that way, and some men have sought to protect themselves by removing temptation and limiting women, other men simply lash out.

    Of course, we accept that we cannot justifiably punish women for our preordained precariousness. But today, many men are left feeling incredulous with women’s sense of moral superiority at our sexual degradation. Its as though the wealthy are complaining of the offensive stench and unsightliness of the rampant homelessness in their midst.

  8. Feminism isn’t a monolith Ozy, there is feminism that calls for male holocaust and there is feminism that is far less misandric and everything in between.

    But there is no such thing as a feminism that doesn’t incorporate patriarchal dominance theory and ideology in some form or another, so I don’t believe that feminism and misandry can be separated. I think that’s wishful thinking on your part.

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