Toward Equality (For Everyone): A Response To ‘The End of Feminism (As I Knew It).’

Jasmine Peterson is a feminist who believes in men, and believes in equality for all. And she wants Valter Viglietti (and other men) to understand this.

This post is in response to The End of Feminism (as I Knew It)

I am a feminist. I love men. And as a feminist, I take deep offense to the insinuation that feminism is anti-male, or that its goal is only to advance the rights of women. That is not feminism as I understand or practice it, and as a member of a feminist organization, as a feminist who runs in feminist circles, and as a reader of feminist literature, this is not representative in any way of the feminists I know. Of course, that is not to say that there are not feminists who hate men, or who think women are superior beings. As with any heterogeneous group of people, beliefs will be held to varying degrees and may be expressed in a myriad of ways.

I agree with much of what Valter has said – men and women both have the capacity to be wonderful human beings, but we’re all fallible. As a feminist, I don’t think that women are superior in their morality, in their ability to nurture or to love, or in any other capacity. I don’t think men are superior in their ability to perform, to earn a living, or their ability to parent (I’m not trying to play into the gender binary with these capacities; just examples of how many people do femininity and masculinity, respectively).

Now, here is where our opinions seem to diverge. I want to understand men, and I want to support men. I want to help men to grow to their full capacities (outside of the ‘man box’), and to free men from oppression that they, too, face. And, as an activist, I engage in activities that are meant to address issues men face, in addition to women’s issues, so it really rather hurts me, and then kind of makes me angry, when I hear men suggesting that feminism is anti-male. Just like Valter really likes women, I really like and respect men (and women). In fact, I just have a huge respect for people, in general, which is why I work so hard in addressing inequalities wherever I see them.

♦◊♦

As a feminist I have been on the receiving end of a lot of anti-feminist backlash. A lot. My own partner, for a time, assumed the role of a masculinist in his opposition to my feminist ideology (we’ve since arrived at common ground, it seems, on the issue of feminism). The biggest concern seems to be that feminists assume that all men are guilty. Perhaps men have felt attacked by feminism. I get it. Acknowledging one’s own privilege (both male and female privilege) is a daunting task, because once acknowledged, if someone is concerned with equality, it means trying to let go of that privilege in creating a more equitable society. That can be pretty terrifying. And perhaps the discussions of privilege were initially quite heavily focused on male privilege, and this felt like a sentence of guilt. I get that, too. But in my experience, these discussions of privilege aren’t charging individual men, or women, as guilty parties; it’s merely about recognizing power structures in culture and how they contribute to inequalities so that we can find ways to empower marginalized groups. It’s not about blame. Similarly, talking about patriarchy, because of its perceived association to maleness, seems to make men cringe. Again, suggesting that patriarchy is a root cause of inequality is not an attack on men. Feminists, or all of the feminists I personally know, aren’t suggesting that the converse – matriarchy – is desirable. Patriarchy is as oppressive to men as it is to women. We’re not resisting men when we’re resisting patriarchy; we’re resisting inequality.

♦◊♦

What I’m curious to know is the type of feminists Valter has encountered, because they don’t seem to be anything like the numerous feminists I know. I’m not sure what kind of feminism it is that subscribes to the assumption that “To be a good man you need to always please (or never displease) women”. That doesn’t sound like any brand of feminism I’ve ever heard of, read about, or encountered. In fact, that’s decidedly not feminism. Feminists, in fact, want men to be free to be who they are, and to feel less encumbered by constructions of masculinity that might impose restrictions on how they express themselves. Feminists want men to feel free to express themselves in constructive ways. Feminists want men to be free to be their authentic selves. That doesn’t mean never displeasing women. People are certain to displease others, and no reasonable person would expect otherwise.

♦◊♦

I agree that not being able to own your thoughts is a terrible thing. I didn’t read the story to which Valter alludes, about the man who felt that his wife’s breasts were ‘ruined’, but I would assert that he should have the right to express his innermost thoughts and feelings without attack.

Women attacking this position isn’t akin to feminists inhibiting men’s authenticity. Firstly, Woman ≠ Feminist. And secondly, I think men and women should be able to freely express themselves. That doesn’t mean that upon doing so they’re not going to offend somebody, and won’t face reprisal. That’s part of authenticity – owning what you articulate. I have been subjected to tremendous amounts of reprisal simply for being feminist. That doesn’t mean I will stop being a feminist, or that I will dissociate myself from or call out an entire group who tend to engage in anti-feminist discourse. I have acknowledged that not everyone is feminist, that not everyone will agree with feminism, and that anti-feminist sentiment is deeply embedded within our culture. And it doesn’t mean that I think men should never displease women or should always make them happy. That’s not feminism.

Feminism is egalitarianism. Some people have even suggested that because of the many goals of feminism, it is time to change the name. I disagree (for a number of reasons that would make this more into a dissertation than a brief reply to Valter’s piece, so I won’t go into that here). Let me tell you, however, that feminism hasn’t changed from seeking equality to seeking ‘world domination’. In fact, feminism has grown into a movement that has accomplished great advancements in the status of women (although there is still work to be done), and has spread its reach to address inequalities of a number of marginalized and minority groups. Feminism is concerned with inequality, wherever it exists, and these goals are not in the slightest anti-male. Feminist researchers were the first to address masculinity as a health detriment in health research, out of concern for men’s health and greater morbidity. Feminists are concerned that young boys are subjected to gender policing more than young girls are, and the detriment this can have on their development. Feminists are concerned with men’s issues. That doesn’t sound anti-male to me. And let me just say, I absolutely love and appreciate every single male ally. Really.

Valter said: “In the end, I think this feminism’s “bias” might be its biggest failure. If you really believe in equality, then you care about everybody’s equality—not just for you or your kin.” The trouble is, this bias that you speak of doesn’t exist, except for perhaps among extremists, and it seems silly to generalize a prejudice against (or to dissociate yourself from) a whole group of people because of extremist factions.

photo by aklawstudio / flickr

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About Jasmine Peterson

Jasmine Peterson is a feminist and an activist. She is currently pursuing her Master's degree in Clinical Psychology. Her research has examined social constructionism, self-objectification, and, most recently, conceptions of health and their impact on males and females.

Comments

  1. Actually feminism has helped men immensely.
    The eight Presidential Councils For Women all got together and voted 4 councils to be given to men in the interest of equality,and for men to have their right to due process in the courts restored to them.

    No wait, that never happened.

    Just as likely, or more likely those eight Presidential Councils For Women conspired to fund more womens shelters to advocate more unjust laws and processes Against men.

  2. “To be a good man you need to always please (or never displease) women”.

    I know that kind of assumption by some men is taught to men by some dating/relationship books; one that comes to mind is “Straight Talk, No Chaser” by Steve Harvey. “The 10th commandment is Thou Shalt Always Take Her Side”, but you need to read the description (below) to decipher what it really means. Hint: It’s not to be interpreted in a selfish sense, but rather akin to “I rub your back, you rub my back”; it’s about supporting each other.

    10 commandments of pleasing a woman by Steve Harvey:

    1. Thou Shalt Give Her Free Time.
    Make the time for her to be able to take a class or pursue a hobby that she’s been putting off because she’s too busy with work and the kids to spend quality time doing something she loves.

    2. Thou Shalt Remember the Small Things.
    Rub her back and feet, run her bathwater and give her quality “alone time,” without obligation to give you some cookie for your troubles.

    3. Thous Shalt Consistently Find New Ways to Say I Love You.
    Love notes go a long way. Slip one in her wallet, briefcase, or lunch bag just because; she’ll appreciate that you were thinking about her and told her you love her without prompting.

    4. Thou Shalt Chip In.
    Wash the dishes, do a load of laundry, clean the bathroom, or do some other chore she usually handles. If you can’t or don’t want to handle it yourself, hire someone to do it for you. That’ll be one less thing she’ll have to do, and she’ll be grateful for the help.

    5. Thou Shalt Help with the Kids.
    Offer to put them to bed a couple nights a wee or run them to their extracurricular activities. She could probably use the help.

    6. Thou Shalt Embrace the Art of Foreplay.
    If candlelight and soft music used to get ehr in a romantic mood but you haven’t used either of them in years, get back to romancing her. She’ll appreciate the effort and respond in kind.

    7. Thou Shalt Respect Her Schedule.
    Sure, you should be able to get in a little overtime at work or go for a three-day golf weekend with the guys without being hassled about it, but it’s better for everyone involved if you coordinate your schedule with hers instead of assuming that she will just handle the house, the kids, and whatever else is coming the family’s way while you’re out having a good time.

    8. Thou Shalt Send Her Roses, Just Because
    Don’t wait for birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays to shower her with the things she loves. A simple bouquet of flowers or a pack of her favorite candy is a kind gesture that will show her you were thinking about her.

    9. Thous Shalt Remember the Golden Rule.
    You can be happy or you can be right.

    10. Thou Shalt Always Take Her Side.
    Of Course, your mother taught you that she’s always right. The woman you sleep with at night must feel like you’ve got her back, no matter who she’s going up against. She’ll give you that same support, too.

    • pillowinhell says:

      So where’s the Thou Shalts that men would enjoy. I mean hell, anyone of those things might make me happy as a woman, but how do I reciprocate? Secondly, isn’t this article sexist in that the underlying assumption that men are clueless, lazy or unwilling to help a partner out? I know plenty of men who take care of the house and kids without having a woman telling them to do so. As far as they are concerned, this is just something that goes with the territory of being an adult. Same goes with making sure a woman has time to pursue her own interests. Not many men I can think of (though a couple I’ve known spring to mind) who want a woman who’s glued to them as her sole provider of entertainment and socialization.

      Any thou shalts the men care to post?

    • Steve Harvey is a sexist idiot who mixes some common sense together with some really stupid sexist gender essentialist crap. One example in particular (aside from the fact that there are “rules”) is rule #9: Thou shalt remember the golden rule. You can be happy or you can be right.

      I am pretty sure that always having to cede to secure “the house peace” will make you unhappy. And wrong to boot.

  3. Look feminists definitely come in all shapes and sizes, and as you said, there are different ones. I can’t think of anyone who has a problem with a true equal feminist. What most egalitarians have a problem with are radical feminists, who believe that men inherently are problematic. See Amanda Marcotte’s writing for an example.

    • I am sure Amanda Marcotte loves men and believes in equal rights for any gender. But her passion and focus is first and foremost advancing justice for females…maybe this is where she sees the most need??? And where a decrease in gap between the genders will profoundly help eradicate social injustices and sexism?

      Anyway men dominate positions in government, law, policing, media, corporations, even fashion industries and so on — if men have this much power and resources at will, my theory is that: men can easily allocate resources, bring more awareness and advocacy to help abuse men and boys at the drop of a hat! Why haven’t they? Well I would suggest reanalyzing the Penn State case and look in the mirror. The answers are all there.

      Stop picking on feminists; they are doing a good job of advocacy and gaining the support they need. Good for them. I’m not here to pit one gender against another or feminists against MRAs, but I believe MRAs more or less are wrongfully attacking feminists because they are looking for blame and for a face that does not resemble theirs. Like I said, this world is dominated by men – if you want change, hell if anybody can do it, you guys can. Let’s put the onus where it belongs!

      • Zorro

        Mra’s attack feminism mainly of because of unfair legislation that has been put in place by feminism because of lies about gendered abuse that are told by feminism.

      • See, Jasmine…. Zorro provides the QED for my prior remark: Men expected to be women’s allies in the fight for women’s rights; while movement feminists and their institutions say to men at the same time: you’re on your own buddies!

        • Nobody is saying your own your own. But what is misinterpreted in my post above, is that: you’re more likely to move mountains if you stop attacking feminists, AND work on getting more support from men, especially those men in power positions to do something about it – you need their compassion and resources.


      • Zorro says:
        January 16, 2012 at 12:23 pm
        I am sure Amanda Marcotte loves men and believes in equal rights for any gender.

        I am not so sure, especially when reading her comments about innocent men related to a certain criminal case. I am still waiting to hear some comments from her about the ‘victim’, who is now in jail, facing murder charges in another not related crime.

        I think, Amanda Marcotte NEVER did anything for men – if you know about such a case please let me know. Thank you.

        • I’m sure Amanda Marcotte supports men in her personal life and circle and I believe that’s her business, this goes for any other feminist (male or female ally). Some of us have causes close to our hearts for whatever reason which drives us to speak out and to make a difference, usually to help others not go through the same horrible experience or to bring awareness to these plights.

          Did you know some men experience breast cancer as well? (I learnt about this just recently).

          - “Breast cancer is more than 100 times more common in women than breast cancer in men, although males tend to have poorer outcomes due to delays in diagnosis.”

          - “The National Cancer Institute estimates that in 2010, nearly 2,000 cases of male breast cancer were diagnosed in the U.S., and though that represents only a fraction of the 200,000 total new cases last year, male breast cancer resulted in nearly 400 deaths. It also left many patients and survivors feeling isolated and embarrassed.”

          Although the breast cancer movement is greatly associated as a female cause and generates a lot of attention and money towards its research, we can see from the stats above that men are affected by breast cancer as well…but clearly breast cancer is still a GENDERED disease/issue. I am usually in the know about most things, so I’m concern for men and questioning why the public, especially men, aren’t more educated that breast cancer also affects them? I may know why…I think I can draw parallels with men affected by breast cancer and men/boys who are abused at the hands of men/women. I think for one, there is some shame attached to both scenarios; two, breast cancer and abuse would cause affected men to feel less manly/macho, so they would less likely seek help; both of these points add to three: shame, embarrassment and feelings of emasculation keep men from speaking up and “advertising” themselves and their problems in the same manner as their female counterparts. Perhaps these issues showcase men having many SIMILARITIES to women (suffer some of the same problems) and that scares men? So instead of addressing the real issues at hand, this fear is projected onto women and they become the scapegoats, and so these men think they have the upper-hand on the situation – trying to control what these feminists say and do and make them take up their cause as well. Sometimes it looks to me, the MRAs are trying to ride on the hard-work and coat-tails of these feminists who have spent decades to get to where they are today.

          • I agree with you on the breast cancer thing (although I think its worth pointing out that somewhere in all that hard work and coat tails those feminists, folks who supposedly are “the ones” who are true champions of equality, would be able to at least mention that breast cancer isn’t gendered.

            I’m sure Amanda Marcotte supports men in her personal life and circle and I believe that’s her business, this goes for any other feminist (male or female ally).
            But wait a minute I thought that there was some thought that the personal was political and all that. And besides would we be so quick to say that “I’m sure (random MRA) supports women in his/her personal life and circle and I believe that’s his/her business, this goes for any other MRA (male or female ally)” in the face of said MRA having a history of expressing anti-woman sentiments?

          • “Sometimes it looks to me, the MRAs are trying to ride on the hard-work and coat-tails of these feminists who have spent decades to get to where they are today.”
            I’d say it’s more a case of hearing the equality line and seeing men were left out in the debate, so they feel betrayed. “We help you but you don’t help us whilst you say it’s for equality” would be 1 way to sum it up.

            It’s important to identify male breast cancer, men should be doing breast/pectoral/nipple exams because by the time men identify it…it’s often very late. It’s ok to have most of the focus on women as long as they give a lil bit of focus to men as it’s 1/100, but for rape and abuse it’s been shown it’s 1/2 up to 1:1 which warrants equal levels of awareness for both. I’ve seen for a while now men have wanted feminism to listen to their complaints, but not many listen. I’m not sure where I am spose to comment to get people to listen about the CDC stat bias, I believe Soraya had access and could talk to those in charge (I live in Australia so communication for me to them is very hard apart from email) .

            I am no expert in the field, I’d like to know if the experts spot bias because it seems from that report they didn’t and that worries me, I am completely at a loss to understand why a bias would still pass through and the top contender for an explanation is that the researchers themselves were biased from the start and expected more women to be harmed and that affected their reporting. The cliffnotes edition they showed the writers for newspapers should have mentioned the last 12 month stat, it’s impossible to read them and not be completely shocked at that level. It’s one of the biggest headline makers imaginable for rape reporting, it’d rake in so many reads simply because it shows a level that I don’t think has ever been shown.

            This is why MRA’s question those people who reported on it, because it does feel like it was buried and it really feels like there was an agenda behind it. It’s a bit worrying that the “conspiracy theory” starts to have weight and impact, I had thought the Mra’s were posting conspiracy theories before but I’m actually starting to wonder how much of what they say is right. I’ve torn my head out trying to get my head around the many reasons it could happen, but it’s starting to look like a duck….

            I don’t like when people blame ALL of feminism, but it does really look like there are a few feminists or organizations who have a fair bit of power and influence. I don’t think RAINN? even said anything about the last 12 month stats (correct me if I am wrong), what reason is there to ignore stats which shows high levels of rape and abuse by both genders against both genders? It clearly would mean it’s a bigger issue and needs far more focus than before since it appears to be getting worse. Start telling people about it and they actually might start worrying more about rape and abuse.

            And I agree that there are similarities and it conflicts with macho ideas, those ideas which silence men in the first place need to be challenged (along with anything that silences either side really). Fear seems to be the motivator in a lot of bad….I think it’s time we teach our kids how to handle fear in more productive ways.

            • I must admit I had expected more discourse around the 12 months figures in feminists circles. I have wondered if it some kind of confirmation bias at play which has the effect that things contradicting one’s belief system simply does not register or if it’s a conscious effort to overlook and disregard those findings. The reluctance to engage when those findings are pointed out in comments to articles and blog-posts sadly strengthen the latter option.

              Anyway, the cat is out of the bag and walking about. And I doubt that the CDC will be able to put it back into the bag by for instance excluding the “being made to penetrate someone else” category from future NISVS surveys. Hopefully other researchers will follow suit and include men and male victims when designing future studies on rape and DV. I predict that the amount of evidence for a much more parity between genders in both victims and perpetrators than currently believed will be too large to simply ignore. Then feminism and feminists will find themselves at a crossroad and willl have to decide whether some of the axioms of the movement must be discarded in order to be the egalitarion feminism Jasmine describes and defends in this article or if they should keep those axioms and, well, be the gynocentric feminism MRAs considers enemies.

      • Excellent points, Zorro. I think rather than denigrating feminism as anti-male and oppressive, it’s important to consider the fact that men are overrepresented in positions of power. So feminists have only got so much power to incur the change they want to see, and it takes time. Sometimes a lot of time. Rather than playing the blame game (Oh, you’re a feminist, so clearly you can’t be about equality for men, or Oh, you’re an MRA so clearly you hate women), we need to take responsibility and work engage in activism to make the changes we want to see happen.

        • You know what happens every time those men in power try and actually help other men (who aren’t in power)? Feminist organizations step in and start screaming sexism. I can think of two examples posted on thsi very thread that you have either ignored or completely dismissed as “well, I don’t agree with that.”

          N.O.W lobbied for relief funds to be diverted from failing (but male dominated) industries like construction to industries that were actually growing (but female dominated.)

          Affirmative Action for Men in college. Suddenly, when we need it, the idea of “affirmative action” is sexist and immoral.

          So you know what? You can say “well men are in power, why dont they try and help themselves?” all you want but you’re ignoring the fact that Feminist organizations like N.O.W have politicians ear, because they care about the female vote, and those organizations literally do not give a shit what happens to men.

        • DavidByron says:

          Well do you want to avoid blaming or do you want to take responsibility? Which? Because in a sense this entire conversation is about taking responsibility. It is about what responsibility you take, as a feminist, for the actions of the wider movement.

          You know that the MRAs have a very negative view of feminism. You agree with that view in some small part, disagree in other parts. But you recognise that they have that view. So far so good. But then you don’t really put two and two together. From their point of view anger and distrust is rational and reasonable. Isn’t it? Think about what this all looks like from their point of view.

          You complain about vitriol towards feminism and distrust about your own position. That only makes sense from your point of view. Why should their experiences have to make sense from YOUR point of view?

          I understand that you are frustrated. I understand that you are just trying to help and that you are one of the good guys. But the issue of distrust here is kind of your fault. You knew ahead of time that claiming to be a feminist was going to cause trouble, right? If you wanted to avoid all that distrust all you had to do was just call yourself something else. Egalitarian, humanist whatever. Now to you the label of “feminist” has some value that I confess I just don’t understand. Yet. But are you not responsible for the confusion and mistrust that you knew ahead of time would be created when you come here and decide to say, “I am a feminist”?

          I know you think it’s unfair. I know you think we just don’t get it. But there’s two sides to this story.

          Even if EVERYTHING you’ve said here is right and everything your critics said is wrong, you bare some responsibility for the mistrust. But stop and try and look at it from the other guys point of view. Ask how much responsibility you bare if everything THEY say is right. If you do that maybe you will understand the problem here.

      • Gee Zorro, you couldn’t have picked a worse candidate to highlight for that argument (not worse as a person, but for this argument her previous history goes against what you are trying to highlight). Amanda has so much hatred against her for a hypocritical stance on the Duke Lacrosse case, really really one of the worst choices you could make. I won’t fault you for it but try someone else, I’m sure there are plenty who simply focus on the women and aren’t questionable to men.

        It’s true men dominate positions of power and resources in government which makes it more of a slap in the face when laws are brought in that ignore or harm men, and it doesn’t help when they seem to be based on heavily biased stats. Many men were brought up not knowing of all this abuse, I only found out last year that abuse was so high against men…before that I thought it was like 90% women 10% men at best but we get biased reports, biased articles even written by feminists that don’t even report on huge groundbreaking increases of male sexual abuse.

        Are you really surprised there isn’t any trust when we have commentators on this site who are more unbiased, who factcheck and actually found that statistic showing heavy increases of abuse against men, especially by females, and not a single news article, feminist article that I saw even tried to mention it after it was pointed out. The same report showed a heavy increase of physical violence against men, did I hear feminists saying how bad it is women are treating men AND how bad men treat women in relationships? If you can find these articles, please do show me, but my faith in feminist reporting is diminished at the moment and it’s heavily 1 sided like many mra articles.

        “I believe MRAs more or less are wrongfully attacking feminists because they are looking for blame and for a face that does not resemble theirs. ”
        I think you need to read their words more carefully Zorro, it sticks out plain as day to me why the mra’s are mad and it has nothing to do with raising awareness for females….It’s raising awareness for females at the expense of males, the redirection of funds by the NOW organization is questionable, the lack of pointing out bias in reports is questionable, advocating for campaigns that only men can stop rape is downright insulting and evil in my book. I don’t think these mra’s are annoyed at all for pointing out how women suffer, but they’re annoyed that feminists use the privileges men get without balancing with the harms men face, as a way to compare to women.

        Pointing out where women get it bad = fine, pointing out where women get it bad without where they get it good = bad, n same goes for men.

        By the way, last I checked women have the majority of vote by 8million in America, so let’s start dropping down the level of how much influence men have in politics because women have a hell of a lot of power. It’s time to start telling women they have power, they have the majority vote, but please do be responsible with that vote. This men have most of the power routine is getting old and starting to drop fast, the average man has less voting power in numbers for America. Correct me if I am wrong but those in power also have a lot of money so there is a class issue, when you say men have power it ignores many men who have little say over politics apart from their vote which is less than that of a woman if the numbers are correct.

      • wavevector says:

        >if men have this much power and resources at will, my theory is that: men can easily allocate resources, bring more awareness and advocacy to help abuse men and boys at the drop of a hat!

        The goal of patriarchal culture has never been about advancing male interests over female interests, despite what feminist patriarchy theory claims. Patriarchal culture has always been about increasing the wealth, power, and influence of the society, nation, or organization, and exploiting all the human resources, both male and female, to the fullest extent in order to accomplish that. The minority of men who have that power and resources are doing what those type of men have always done, which is exploit the rest of us for power and wealth.

        MRAs are opposed to being exploited, both by traditional male gender roles which demand service and self-sacrifice, and by those non-egalitarian feminists who exploit those same gender roles (when they are favorable to women and unfavorable to men) to obtain special treatment, benefits, and privileges at men’s expense. A good example of this is feminists who oppose shared parenting laws painting women as perfect maternal angels in need of protection, and the men who contest custody as abusers seeking control of their prey.

  4. When reading this article I cannot help but to presume, that Ms. Jasmine Peterson is simply said a ‘happy person’ – she made obviously good experiences with all women around her and also with all men around her. Good for her! Enjoy your life!

    I think however she has NO IDEA AT ALL, how badly men are treated by some women but even entire governments in the name of feminism and equality.

    I ask myself where are my privileges? Which privileges? I was badly treated by women next to me when I was a child, I was badly treated by female class-mates when I was a student, I was badly treated by women when I was a young man…

    I moved away and I will never go back to my own native country – I will always fight against feminism as an MRA – but this does not mean I am hating women.

    Feminism did nothing for me, and openly said, why should it?

    Feminism is acting as an interest group fighting for advantages for certain women only and not even for all women. This means feminism will never consider anything regarding equality or men’s problems.

    Feminism proclaiming equality can be compared with an employer association, insisting it will take care of all needs of the workers and therefore employees do not need any labor union.

    • I have experienced some horrific things. Both at the hands of women and men. That doesn’t mean I will then generalize and hold an entire group of people culpable for the actions of a very few. That’s prejudiced, a nd frankly nonsensical, to me. Both men and women, and every gender in between, have the capacity to do good things and the capacity to do terrible things. While I lament that you’ve been treated poorly by women, I don’t own responsibility for that. I can work at advocating for men’s rights and speaking out against inequality when I see it, but I refuse to take on the guilt of what others have done just as I don’t expect men to take on the guilt of things other men have done.

      • @Jasmine

        You you proved that you can say nice sounding things.

        Where do you stand of feminism covering up abuse data and lying about abuse being mainly gendered?

        Where do you stand of feminist jurisprudence’ on going attack on fathers and civil rights via VAWA?

        • Here’s the thing – those are loaded questions. You are saying that feminists are covering up abuse data. I’ve seen some pretty appalling data produced by MRAs, as well. The thing here is thinking critically. When you see data, look at the source, look at how the data was collected, and how the data was analyzed. Any researcher with integrity will talk about the limitations of their data set, the interpretations, and will recognize and acknowledge potential biases. So I’m not going to engage in a question that is based on the presumption that ‘feminism’ is responsible for covering up abuse data. Who’s collecting such data? Is it feminists? Sometimes. But there are many sources for data on violence and abuse, and oftentimes this data comes from police reports. Are you going to suggest the police force, then (comprised mainly of males), is selectively reporting their data?

          The issue is more nuanced then ‘us’ against ‘them’ (with ‘us’ being men and ‘them’ being feminists, and vice versa). I’m sorry that so many men on this site seem to have had negative experiences with feminists, feminism, or even women, but you know, I’ve had negative experiences with some MRAs, and some men. But that doesn’t mean that I’m going to label all MRAs as using false data (although I’ve seen it), or that all men are clearly misogynist. These are fallacies. Just as it is a fallacy to assert that feminism, even the preponderance of feminism, is about male oppression. It just simply is not. Not to suggest that those experiences don’t occur, but that’s not representative of feminist ideology.

          What I’ve noticed is that these issues are extremely divisive. If I came here writing a piece about the ways I support males and females without identifying as a feminist, the tone would be very different. And that’s the sign of a prejudice.

          • @Jasmine – I’ve seen some pretty appalling data produced by MRAs, as wel

            Don’t tell lies Jasmine , the mens movement does not produce studies and data.

          • I understand how you feel it’s a prejudice, my experience is that it’s only with some feminists. What I fear though is those some feminists, actually are in positions of power and have a lot of weight which seems evident based on the various accusations others have said here on NOW and the stimulus money, anti-rape and anti-abuse campaigns where bias exists, reporting on stats with a biased view and supporting those biased stats which is what I dislike.

            “Are you going to suggest the police force, then (comprised mainly of males), is selectively reporting their data? ”
            Firstly, rape is worded in a way that excludes male victims especially of females in most cases (envelopment/forced to penetrate isn’t rape). Secondly, there are social barriers to men reporting on abuse by females and stereotypes where police can come into a home where a man is being abused and arrest him from thinking it’s always men doing the assaulting (fights can leave injuries on both victim and perpetrator as I’m sure you’re aware of). So you need to have these men report the crimes and the police to judge them appropriately free from prejudice themselves.

            Surveys can gather results that aren’t reported to the police, the recent CDC-The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) uncovers a heavy level of abuse that no one has known about male victims that I can think of, my jaw hit the floor when I read them ( ht tp://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/nisvs/index.html – Read under sexual violence, last 12 months, about page 17 onward in the full report) .

            Men can also oppress/treat other men like dirt or simply be selfish and want votes. If feminist organizations have power then thee men may pass laws that harm men simply for more power. They could also be under the impression abuse is heavily gendered against women, a stereotype that still persists today and this can mean they are trying to protect women (I guess that’s quite honorable) but doing so at the expense of male victims who they may think don’t actually exist in significant numbers (which isn’t honorable).

            Look up a law called Stop Online Piracy Act, anyone with a clue in IT knows its bad news and proves the people in power haven’t got much clue when it comes to Information Technology. If they can attempt to pass that pos act, does it surprise you they could pass a law on abuse against women without fully understanding how it could harm men?

            The road to hell is paved with good intentions, and unless you are an expert in those fields you probably won’t even find the bad in them. What politician wouldn’t want to stop abuse against women? Who wouldn’t want their wives, daughters, etc safer when they think women are far far more at risk of abuse than men. Hell they probably think men are tough n can handle themselves and women are weak so they need a law, many possible reasons why men can make silly laws that ignore men.

          • wavevector says:

            > Are you going to suggest the police force, then (comprised mainly of males), is selectively reporting their data?

            It is very naive of you to overlook the social conditioning that these male policemen have to see women as victims and males as perpetrators. And the feminist supporters of VAWA have done nothing but exploit and re-enforce those social biases. So yes, the police are selective in who they choose to arrest, the prosecutors are selective in who they bring to court, and judges and juries are selective in who they convict and sentence, and there are anti-male and pro-female biases at each of those steps.

          • thehermit says:

            You’re playing stupid, that’s not very nice from you.

            There are feminist organisations out there, what have enough power int their hands to push through laws. I can’t name any MRA organisation with such a power. Now, these organisations have a clearly anti male agenda. They call themselves feminist—> you indentify yourself a feminist—> you’re an ally of them, not mine. Plain and simple. Generalisation? Common sense.

            I hear you scream “But they don’t represent me!” Who they represent then, me? I closed my eyes and have seen thousands of moderate feminists marching on the streets with banners saying “not in my name!”–but then i realised it was just another slut walk, and suddenly woke up.
            Yes they speak and lobby in your name Jasmine, deal with it. The truth is, moderate feminists- as any other ones- don’t give a damn about mens’ wellbeing or civil rights. You’re not an exception (until you prove the opposite).

  5. Jasmine: I refuse to take on the guilt of what others have done just as I don’t expect men to take on the guilt of things other men have done.

    In this case you cannot consider yourself to be a feminist anymore.

    Leading feminists consider all men guilty and organize large campaigns to blame ALL men.
    This might be for ‘rape’ or otherwise violence, see slutwalk in USA, white ribbon actions in Australia up to even demanding a men’s tax (because men are more violent than women) in Sweden.

    Feminist literature was always directed against all men regardless their race, age, income… even against boys and old or sick men.

    I do not recall any case, where feminists were acting quickly, actively and protective on the side of a man, defending him against a woman even in case of serious wrongdoings by her side.

  6. I am a feminist. Make no mistake about that. Leading feminists do not blame ALL men. Slutwalk isn’t about blaming men in the slightest. It’s about stopping victim blaming. I have worked with victims of sexual assault, and I have seen victim blaming. It is harmful and hurtful, but addressing this issue is not at all the same as blaming men. Women blame victims just as much as men blame victims. Slutwalk is about addressing the culture that allows such victim blaming.

    Feminist literature is NOT directed at blaming, denigrating, demeaning, or otherwise disadvantaging men. Perhaps some of the feminist literature has, but it seems to me you’re reading a selective bit of literature. I’ve got an entire feminist bookshelf, and it does not house books that promote male-bashing or inequality for men. Not one of them. So I’m also reading a selective bit of feminist literature – that which promotes equality for everyone. And it does exist.

    Instead of blaming feminism, or women, it might be fruitful to listen to a woman who is a feminist saying that feminist can be and are allies of men and men’s rights, and take them to task, instead of spending so much time and energy trying to tell them they are somehow not at all doing just that. It would be more productive.

    • DavidByron says:

      You seem to be certain there’s no anti-male sentiment in the feminism you know. Do you think you are as good at spotting anti-male sentiment as a men’s rights advocate would be?

      If some minority group came to you and tried to explain that some of what you were doing was prejudicial against the disabled or whatever, would you react by angrily saying they were wrong? Would you insist that there was no such prejudice in anything you or your friends did?

  7. Isn’t it nice that at the same time Jasmine is saying that feminists do like men, do listen to men, and are concerned about the rights of men, she’s dismissing every point men make and ignoring the evidence we present to back up our claims as ‘anecdotes’?

    On one hand, I can understand her staunch, knee-jerk defensiveness. She’s seeing feminism attacked and feels attacked herself since she considers herself a feminist. It’s only natural to defend yourself when attacked. But in doing so, she’s doing exactly what she’s claiming feminists don’t do.

    • I am listening. And I’ve been very adamant about honouring the stories that have been brought forth. I have acknowledged repeatedly that I lament that anyone has been subjected to any such treatment by any human being, whether it be woman, feminist, men, or MRA. I’m not intending to be dismissive. I’m suggesting that rather than attacking feminism, listen to what the person is saying. I make assertions about my position on equality and all people seem to be hearing is “She’s a feminist. She’s a feminist”. Yes. I am. And that means I respect all human beings, and work toward equality for everyone.

      I’ve been very clear, I believe, that I don’t condone in any way the oppression of men. But at the same time, I will not be told that simply because I identify as feminist, I am an oppressor of males. I am talking about feminism as I know and practice it, to elucidate that the feminism that men have come for fear isn’t the only, or even the most pervasive, face of feminism.

      • “I’ve been very clear, I believe, that I don’t condone in any way the oppression of men. But at the same time, I will not be told that simply because I identify as feminist, I am an oppressor of males. I am talking about feminism as I know and practice it, to elucidate that the feminism that men have come for fear isn’t the only, or even the most pervasive, face of feminism.”

        And we have been very clear too…don’t just tell us…SHOW us.

        We aren’t simply telling you we think feminism is a bad thing, we’re SHOWING you WHY we think feminism is a bad thing. If you’d really like to bring your point home, SHOW US where feminists are doing something positive for men. SHOW US why you think feminism isn’t as bad as we’re saying.

        Are feminists working to make women-only colleges in America co-ed with the same fervor they did with men-only colleges? Are they working to disprove the notion that sexual assault or domestic violence is more than just male-perpetrator/female-victim? Where is the feminist boycott on The Talk where a great time was had joking about Catherine Becker drugging and mutilating her husband because he wanted a divorce? Where is the feminist denunciation of New York City banning men from playgrounds because of their perceived danger to children? Or British Air banning men from sitting next to children for the same reason? Show us where feminists in Germany are standing up against the ridiculous campaign to ban urinals because men standing to pee is “triumphing in his masculinity”, a “nasty macho gesture” and “degrading to women”. Show us a followup on the story I presented where feminists in Sweden are trying to get affirmative action reinstated because men being left behind in education is a bad thing.

        If you could do that, it would go a long way to prove your point.

        • LBC, it will be a cold day in hell when Jasmine responds to your points with specific examples and citations. She made it quite clear in an earlier post that she feels she has no responsibility to engage in evidence-based argumentation, merely assertion-based argumentation, leaving it to those of us who disagree with her to come up with the evidence to prove her point, or search in vain for a long, long time.

          Lisa, I hate to say it, but I think you’ve been the victim of a con.

      • wavevector says:

        > But at the same time, I will not be told that simply because I identify as feminist, I am an oppressor of males.

        I don’t think anyone is saying that *you* personally are an oppressor of males. It’s not personal! We think it’s nice that you are so egalitarian, but we don’t think that represents certain feminists that we oppose – the ones who are the anti-male, pro-female variety.

        What I and others would like from you is an acknowledgement that there is indeed this anti-male aspect of feminism, that it is often found in the politically powerful feminist organizations, and that it’s a problem. Because your denials make you appear either uninformed or an apologist for injustice. (That last bit is a personal criticism.) I am sure you don’t want to be an apologist for injustice, but that’s what you are as long as you deny or remain ignorant of the deficiencies of the feminist movement.

  8. Why not list some websites featuring self proclaimed feminists who share your brand of feminism? I think this would be much more helpful than constantly saying so many commenters here are wrong in what they’re telling you about feminism.

  9. Jasmine, to be fair, you seem like a good person and sound like you are coming from a good place.

    I just think you have bought into an image of feminism the same way many people in my neck of the woods were pushed into christianty from a young age.

    There is a certain level of denial that we all have to move past when we discover that something dear to us isn’t what we thought it was. Feminism isn’t the champion of justice and equality that we all believed it to be, but we can take those values of equality we believed in and use them just the same.

    Which is why I still don’t get why you want to be known as a feminist. You CAN support equal rights without being linked to misandry and hate, which lends much more credibility to your opinions as far as most people are concerned.

    • I’ve stated elsewhere why I identify, and will continue to identify, as a feminist, regardless of the vitriol levied at me for it. I have not bought into an image of feminism; I am immersed in the movement. I think that I could say the same to you – that you have bought into an image of feminism that is not voracious. Feminism is not synonymous with misandry. That would be like me asking why any man would want to identify as MRA, why they would want to be linked to misogyny and hate. (I don’t think this; I’m illustrating my point). And that’s where the danger in defining a group through generalizations becomes dangerous. You have a feminist before you extrapolating on my ideas of egalitarianism and equality, and people insist that I cannot exist. I tell you that I can, and I do, and I will not be defined by the actions of a few.

      Someone else asked me to direct them to feminist websites – I don’t spend my time on feminist websites, so I couldn’t direct you to one. My experience of feminism comes from interactions with real live human beings. Which is why I’ve made the comment elsewhere that I’m beginning to suspect that online feminism is where all of the anti-male feminists seem to be hiding out (given the perceptions of feminism that have stemmed from this, and other, posts).

      • *Veracious. Must remember to edit my comments BEFORE posting!

      • Mark Neil says:

        ” Feminism is not synonymous with misandry. ”

        Now I personally will agree with you on this one, contrary to many MRA’s and others. That said, feminism is not synonymous with equality ether, as you posit. The one consistent factor found throughout all types of feminism is the drive for female empowerment. This is not to say one can not also have a drive for male empowerment. Or that this drive for female empowerment is to be taken to any drastic or unreasonable level, though for some feminists it very well could. But it must be acknowledged that ensuring the male place in equality is in no way a part of feminism. Many have argued this point, so I shall simply leave you with a question: Solanas (of SCUM manifesto) is typically referred to as a radical feminist, but still a feminist none the less… How does she embody and promote the feminist ideal of equality for all, man and woman? Remember, if feminism is about equality, then it should be a consistent ideal throughout all who call themselves feminists. And if you don’t like Solanas, feel free to pick any number of other radical or dedicated gender feminists. Please explain how these feminists can not only not embody the very core of feminism as you define it, but actually run counter to it, and still remain feminists?

  10. If one doesn’t/can’t see the anti-male and misandristic attitudes, theories, and views that are common within feminism apparently is in agreement with them. There are thousands of examples of such right here in comments and articles, including, for example, the many claims that all men are somehow complicit in rape, and that virtually all married men are rapists of their own wives (Accidental Rapist).

  11. The male patriarchal society and porn culture has been responsible for the witch hunt against feminism. Now it is a dirty word, discarded, a joke, a caricature. Where did people first feel feminism is bad? Where did the idea form in the male mind? Can they even pinpoint a point? Many feminist haters haven’t read a feminist article in their entire life. Where oh where do these ideas come from? I can see why those who have to live with a false stigma would want to run instead of standing for truth and justice. If they’re that weak minded then let them go…

    • “The male patriarchal society and porn culture has been responsible for the witch hunt against feminism. Now it is a dirty word, discarded, a joke, a caricature. Where did people first feel feminism is bad? Where did the idea form in the male mind? Can they even pinpoint a point? Many feminist haters haven’t read a feminist article in their entire life. Where oh where do these ideas come from? I can see why those who have to live with a false stigma would want to run instead of standing for truth and justice. If they’re that weak minded then let them go…”
      I read one the other day that talked about male victims of sexual abuse by females whilst saying only men can stop rape. If you can work that logic out, let me know.

    • The male patriarchal society and porn culture has been responsible for the witch hunt against feminism. Now it is a dirty word, discarded, a joke, a caricature. <
      That’s not the entire case and only a person that thinks feminism is a perfect picnic of sunshine and rainbows would think that.

      Where did people first feel feminism is bad?
      Truthfully I used to buy into some of the media hype. Then I started interacting with actual feminists to give them a fair chance. That’s when I learned that media hype wasn’t wrong, it was just unfairly generalizing about the nastiness of some of the folks in that movement.

      Where did the idea form in the male mind?
      In my male mind it formed after coming across feminists that fit some of the stereotypes I had heard, and some were worse than that even. And how did I learn this? Same as above.

      Can they even pinpoint a point?
      Yes.

      Many feminist haters haven’t read a feminist article in their entire life.
      You got proof of that?

      Where oh where do these ideas come from?
      Like I said above. A mixture of myth and learning that the myth has basis in truth.

      In short there’s no need to act like feminism as a whole is entirely innocent in the bad image it currently has. Its certainly wrong to generalize all members that way but let’s not act like none of them act this way.

    • Feminism is responsible for its own reputation. After several decades, if feminism truly was about fairness and equality, there would be abundant evidence to prove it. There isn’t. I have asked repeatedly for evidence of feminism being an equality movement, and all I have ever been given are repeated unsubstantiated claims. By contrast, there is plenty of evidence of feminism being anti-male, including here.

      • Eric M. says:
        January 16, 2012 at 9:59 pm
        Feminism is responsible for its own reputation. After several decades, if feminism truly was about fairness and equality, there would be abundant evidence to prove it.

        In Europe for sure, feminism has nothing to do with ‘equality’. Feminism is used to create so-called ‘gender-neutral laws’ which benefit mostly women.

        Obligatory military service – for men only – comes to my mind. But also regulations about alimony which makes it possible for females to claim support even 40 years after divorce from the ex-husband, guidelines to sentence female criminals who are getting away with lenient sentences, different retirement age but receiving the same retirement allowance despite working at least 5 years less than men, quota regulations for female CEO despite missing qualification, prostitution laws, which allow to sell sex but make it a crime to buy sex, child-support for the mother even if she is in jail using the money for something else and the children are living with their father and so and so on….

    • David Byron says:

      I can see you will be very popular here Jody :)
      Welcome.

    • John Anderson says:

      Well Jodi, it could possibly be from these posts concerning male rape victims.

      http://subterfusex.wordpress.com/2010/11/22/hes-asking-for-it/

      http://www.feminisms.org/386/can-a-man-be-raped-by-a-woman/

      http://thecurvature.com/2010/10/29/justice-department-repot-on-sexual-assault-in-juvenile-detention-minimizes-violence/

      Unfortunately they took down the first example, but the post was about the “silver lining” surrounding the rape of men. It argued that as more men got raped, men would take rape more seriously. The second post the author minimizes male rape victims as suffering less. The third one was an excellent post, but the only comment was essentially rape apology. I didn’t see comment calling her out, even the author, nor did I see comments in support of the author’s suggestion to end cross gender supervision. It is unknown whether the author would have only suggested ending cross gender supervision of girls if the numbers were reversed. Does that mean that feminists care more for the employment rights of women than preventing the sexual abuse of boys? In the first post, the author retracts her post later, but she states that she tried to say what toysoldier said, but failed. MRAs know that she didn’t try to say what toysoldier said. That statement was untrue. If she said I was wrong and now agree with toysolder or something to that effect, the MRAs shouldn’t be that hard on her. In the second post, the author doesn’t completely retract her theory.

      Note: the first post was actually reviewed by feminist editors of the site and still got posted.

    • John Anderson says:

      Sorry Jody, I misspelled your name. They could have also got it from the change in the definition of rape pushed by feminists, which granted is an improvement over the old definition and I may be just a bit too cynical, but did anyone else notice that it specifically exempts the vast number of female perpetrators.

      Mew definition

      Penetration no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by the sex organ of another person without the consent of the victim.

      It seems that a woman who rapes a man with her vagina or forces him to perform oral sex on her or if she performs oral sex on him, is exempted because he has penetrated her and not the other way around.

      So how did the feminists react to this? Did they view this as a step to victory? Let’s look at the quotes.

      “Now that we have accurate data, we need resources appropriately allocated to fight this hideous crime”, said Carol Tracy Women’s Law Project Executive Director.

      http://www.womenslawproject.org/press/PR_FBI_Mueller_ChangesRapeDef.pdf

      Eleanor Smeal, the Foundation’s president, said: ‘It’s a great victory. This new definition will mean that, at long last, we will begin to see the full scope of this horrific violence, and that understanding will carry through to increased attention and resources for prevention and action.’

      http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2070956/Womens-rights-advocates-hail-FBIs-new-definition-rape.html

      In an article in The Hill on Monday, Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.) wrote: ‘In the coming months, we face a tough fight to preserve funding for critical programs that aid victims and help put their
      assailants behind bars.

      ‘The UCR data plays a key role in the allocation of vital resources for prevention, treatment and enforcement.

      ‘With so much hanging in the balance, it is imperative that the FBI move swiftly to adopt the proposed changes.

      ‘By taking this simple step and updating the Bureau’s definition to include all types of rape, we can make a real difference in the fight against this horrific crime.’

      http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2070956/Womens-rights-advocates-hail-FBIs-new-definition-rape.html

      Doesn’t look like accurate information, the full scope or all types of rapes to me. Jody, you think this could be another reason?

      • I wrote an article on the redefinition of rape and how it excludes men as victims of females; not all feminists overlooked the work that still needs to be done, and those victims excluded by this redefinition.

        And I am a feminist. Advocating for men’s rights and addressing issues that affect men are feminist issues.

    • “Where did people first feel feminism is bad? Where did the idea form in the male mind? Can they even pinpoint a point?”

      For me, it started when a now ex-friend of mine said she became a feminist and wanted to be referred to, in print, as a “womyn” since “woman” has “man” in it, which she found offensive.

      Now where, oh where is the “patriarchal society and porn culture” in that, hmm? Can you even pinpoint it?

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      So valerie solonas was patriarchal misdirection?

      I think it would be more honest for feminists to acknowledge their demons, even if only as a first step towards exorcising them. There are examples of men and women (porn obsessed or otherwise) unjustly dismissing feminist arguments in the name of religion, conservatism or whatever you may care to mention. But there’s also plenty of examples of people who call themselves feminists who claim that I am, by my very nature, a murderer and a rapist.

      Their arguments deserve dismissal, by feminists and non-feminists alike. The failure of the feminist movement to come out in strength against misandry (and in some instances mysogeny) within feminism implies support, and is a major reason for the blackening of feminism’s name.

      • Mark Neil says:

        I think it goes further than that. Christina Hoff Summers is a (self defined) feminist that does just what you are suggesting. She is critical of the negative elements within feminism, and calls for it’s “exorcism” (as you say), and for feminists to take up men’s issues as being as serious as women’s issues. For this, she is defined as anti-feminists by feminists themselves. She is openly ejected from the movement by other feminists, yet the radical supremacy type feminist only get dismissed as unimportant or “not-all-feminists-are-like-that”, but remain acknowledged as feminists. Radical feminists, but feminists none the less.

        So one must ask, why then are the equality driven feminists the ones being ejected (successfully or not, it is the attempt to do so I am addressing) and not the supremacists?

  12. Jody says:
    January 16, 2012 at 8:50 pm
    Where did people first feel feminism is bad?

    I think, it was in this moment where feminists started to demand special privileges and rights, because ‘women are different’. – It’s about men and women are equal, but we women are even a little bit more equal than you men…

  13. Jasmine says:
    January 16, 2012 at 1:46 pm
    ….. I’m not intending to be dismissive. I’m suggesting that rather than attacking feminism, listen to what the person is saying.

    It would be good for you to check out what moderators of feminist websites are usually doing when receiving any comment – even those perfectly polite and constructive written – from MRAs.

    Those comments will be immediately deleted and the user banned.

    Feminist websites are mostly attacked for their ignorance and arrogance against any comment from men, reasonable or not, because they do not want to acknowledge that men have problems too.

    I recommend you to try it out and tell your feminist sisters and brothers to listen what men are saying, even if the comment is MRA-related stuff. – I wonder what reply you will receive from them…

  14. David Byron says:

    Thanks to Jasmine for responding to all the comments and so on. I know how frustrating and difficult it can be to do that from my time on traditional feminist boards.

  15. Most feminists are good people. feminism is twisted and biased. Both of these can be true at the same time. I am not saying feminists are sexist i am saying that feminism itself is biased and relies on assumptions that aren’t true. Anyone who challenges those assumptions is silenced. I have seen this happen. Most feminists don’t understand that the assumptions they base their politics on is biased. This is why feminism is biased. Any challenge to the basic tenents of feminism is dismissed.

    Feminism posits the belief that men in power benefits men. It doesn’t both men and women regard men as disposable. Its why conscription of men is fine its why men dying doing dangerous work is regarded as of no consequence.
    In political terms there is no gender battle. Class is FAR MORE IMPORTANT. The only people who once given power benefit one gender over another is feminism. MRAs don’t have power.

    This is a fundamental aspect of feminism that isn’t true. Men in power doesn’t advantage men. Let me repeat that MEN IN POWER DOES NOT ADVANTAGE MEN. Rich people in power advantage rich people. That is true.

    • John Anderson says:

      The most dangerous aspect of feminism is its’ credibility. Feminism has done some much good in the past that it is deserving of its’ status as standard bearer in the gender equality movement. Consider the highly gendered FBI definition of rape pushed by many feminist organizations. It excludes nearly all female perpetrated instances of rape, even against females. I think feminist leaders did this for political purposes (and maybe some misandry. I’m not completely ruling out the possibility) and used this credibility and women’s justifiable fear of rape to convince over 100,000 people that this is what the definition of rape should be.

      In feminist speak in the arena of gender equality, feminists are privileged. Label yourself a feminist and many people will believe you favor gender equality. When feminists complain about MRAs attacking feminism, they don’t realize that MRAs are attempting to tear down the matriarchal structure that allows specific feminists to take anti-male positions and claim to do so in the name of gender equality. We need to get rid of the feminist equals good mentality and hold people and organizations accountable for what they do and organization in particular for what they don’t do.

      I’ve seen that in my master’s class. I’m sure most if the people at the start of the program would have identified as feminist. They were unaware of the gender gap in education and didn’t see it as a problem when initially informed, even with 70% of the class female. They wouldn’t acknowledge that men could face institutional bias in nursing school because all institutions were patriarchal. I spoke out under intense opposition. Many people are reluctant to give up their beliefs. I showed them proof and the attitudes started shifting.

      People started talking about discrimination against men in nursing. An instructor was shocked into silence when she asked the class if women were under represented in higher education and got a unanimous no. Two women even took on addressing the gender gap as a class project. Feminists are people and most people believe in fairness and justice. I believe that most feminists are decent people and that there is a lot of common ground between feminism and the men’s rights movement.

      • Peter Houlihan says:

        “I believe that most feminists are decent people and that there is a lot of common ground between feminism and the men’s rights movement.”

        This!

  16. Feminism is a man-hating movement – and if not, feminists have to hurry to distance themselves from people like late Valerie Solanas and her admirers, but as far as I can see this is not the case.

    I wonder how Jasmine justifies the feminist ideology of Valerie Solanas and the supportive statements of NOW and similar feminist organizations, which consider a convicted violent criminal as a ‘heroine of the feminist movement’

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valerie_Solanas

    After murder attempt
    According to Robert Marmorstein in 1968, “[s]he has dedicated the remainder of her life to the avowed purpose of eliminating every single male from the face of the earth.”[37] Feminist Robin Morgan (later editor of Ms. magazine) demonstrated for Solanas’s release from prison. Ti-Grace Atkinson, the New York chapter president of the National Organization for Women (NOW), described Solanas as “the first outstanding champion of women’s rights”[15][38] and as “a ‘heroine’ of the feminist movement”,[39][40] and “smuggled [her manifesto] … out of the mental hospital where Solanas was confined.”[39][40] Another NOW member, Florynce Kennedy, called her “one of the most important spokeswomen of the feminist movement.”[20][38] Norman Mailer called her the “Robespierre of feminism.”[15]

  17. Hey Jody, you know when i first realized “feminism” was a crock? It was my Eighth grade year when my classmate, we’ll call her “Katie,” Was given an A for her (completely unironic) report entitled “Why Girls are Smarter Than Boys.” I, of course, objected to this characterization of the male gender as sexist. You know what I got for my trouble? Detention.

    My teacher was a feminist. She talked all the time about “patriarchy” and “rape culture” and the rest of that crap. I knew something was wrong about what she was teaching us, but I didnt say anything because I figured… well, she’sa the teacher, after all. That and basically every teacher in our school was a woman. Except one, i think.

    She also had us read feminist articles. So yeah, i have actually read a feminist article in my lifetime.

    • Also, speaking of reading feminist articles… do you know how many so-called “feminists” I’ve encountered who don’t even know who Andrea Dworkin, Mary Daly, or bell hooks even *are*? They’re only peripherally aware of the likes of say Gloria Steinem either.

      I guess it’s sorta like the atheist who knows what the Bible actually *says* better than the Christian.

  18. Perhaps this answer might help:

    1) Nobody denies that anti-male feminists exist. Only their number is under debate.
    2) There are no anti-woman feminists as that would be a contradiction in terms. It’s a logical impossibility.
    3) There are feminists who are genuinely for equality. Here too their number is not agreed upon.
    4) Irrespective of the numbers, there must be a general anti-male tendency on average because there are no anti-female feminists to balance them out.

    Hence, feminism is anti-male. The only thing left to argue about is the extent to which it’s anti-male. The radicals are of course far more vocal and active so their number might seem a lot greater than it is. The only way to really get an idea would be to study it.

    Even more interesting would be to find out if the percentage of sexist man haters is greater or smaller among feminists than it is among non-feminists.

    Just because YOU genuinely want equality (I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt) and call yourself a feminist, does not make the feminist movement about equality. And you being offended doesn’t change anything either.

    Even the terms “male privilege” or “patriarchy” undermine men’s human rights at the core by justifying counteraction in advance. Feminists almost never mention female privilege and often men are denied a voice in the equality discussion because of their male privilege. It’s even added that they’re not aware of their own privilege. The fact that the concept of “unaware privilege” works just as well on women has never been brought up by a feminist to my knowledge.

    • Adi:
      1) Nobody denies that anti-male feminists exist. Only their number is under debate.
      2) There are no anti-woman feminists as that would be a contradiction in terms. It’s a logical impossibility.

      Hold on based on the claims of many feminists the movement is about equality for all people. If that’s the case then wouldn’t anti-male feminists also be a contradiction in terms, also a logical impossibility?

      Even more interesting would be to find out if the percentage of sexist man haters is greater or smaller among feminists than it is among non-feminists.
      I recall about 2 years ago there was this study done that actually compared the anti-male sentiment of feminists and non-feminists. People on both sides were asked a series of questions about men and then the results were measured. Turns out it the study showed non-feminists showed more anti-male sentiment that feminists did. Oh they propped this study up like it was the vindicating proof to shut up all the nay sayers once and for all…..

      Until you looked at the study and saw that the sample size was a total of (meaning both sides combined before being divided into feminist/non-feminist camps) a little over 400 people.

      • ” If that’s the case then wouldn’t anti-male feminists also be a contradiction in terms, also a logical impossibility?”

        No, because the claim that feminism is for equality is just that – a claim. And also the truth of that claim is what we’re disputing so a contradiction must be possible. Meanwhile, the term “feminism” by itself implies a pro-female stance which makes anyone who identifies as feminist, by definition, not anti-female. The existence of one single anti-male feminist already tips the balance of the whole movement against men (though very slightly).

        The only thing open for dispute then is the extent to which feminism is anti-male. Just counting how many anti-male feminists there are is not enough as it depends on how active they are relative to the rest. It also depends on how many political and societal changes implemented are anti-male to some extent.

        I put forward that the very fact that a publicly funded ideology that calls itself “feminism” exists while its counterpart “masculinism” does not receive public funding (provided it even exists), is evidence that the whole society (and not just feminists) is anti-male.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      I don’t mean this with any offense toward you, Adi, but your logic is off.

      If you don’t know the ratio between man-positive and man-negative feminists within the community, then you cannot come to any number in order to determine whether Feminism is “man positive” or “man negative”. If you could quantify it, perhaps you’d assign the man-negative members with a negative number and the man-positive with a positive, then at equal, you’d have a 0. I personally believe man-positive feminism is let’s say at 80%=8 of the population, and man-negative is at about 10%= -1 of the feminist population. That would land us at a 7.

      Thing is, you’re right, we can’t quantify it. And I’m going to regret this, but how the heck does “male privilege” undermine men’s human rights? By justifying counteraction? In what way? In what way am I trying to hurt you by pointing out privilege—especially if I speak of my privilege?

      And I know people have said this a BILLION times but I’m going to say it one time more:

      EVERYBODY had privilege. Every single person. Me, you, my kids, the gardener who mows my lawn, the waiter who made my coffee today. Privilege is ever-shifting, it is formless and borderless and changes based upon situations.

      If you deny you have any privilege, then you don’t understand the word.

      Here are my privileges:

      1. White
      2. Female
      3. Upper Middle Class
      4. Hetero
      5. Married
      6. Physically attractive (enough)
      7. Tall
      8. Blonde/Blue Eyed
      9. Thin
      10. College educated
      11. From a highly-educated family
      12. Have never been abused
      13. Employed
      14. A mother

      And that’s a short list. These things matter sometimes, other times they don’t. Sometimes these features actually make me have less privilege.

      Does having this many privileges make me a bad person? No. They are out of my control, for the most part.

      And I am a pro-man feminist. I wish to advance men’s causes (otherwise why would I be a contributing editor at GMP?) as well as women’s causes, but most I want to discuss gender and how it is at play in society.

      Feminism is neither pro-man or anti-man. It is merely pro-women. It is not a zero-sum game. When I advance in my job, I am not hurting you. I am not asking for you to give up anything. If you can come up with any way in which my job as a copywriter for a product development company harms men, go for it. But my grandmother would not have had this opportunity because this was a man’s job in her time.

      My grandmother was fired from her job as a teacher because she was a woman in the Great Depression. They had a policy that was totally legal wherein men were hired and women were fired, because they didn’t feel women needed the jobs.

      My grandmother, great aunts, mother and aunts were a part of the women’s movement because they wanted the future generations to not be fired based upon sex. That is what I believe too.

      Tell me how that hurts you? I’m not asking for men to be fired to make room for women. I’m asking for them to have an equal chance.

      • Schrodinger's Rapist says:

        “Tell me how that hurts you? I’m not asking for men to be fired to make room for women. I’m asking for them to have an equal chance.”

        Out of the 7 resume’s I have forwarded in the past 2 months to people in charge of hiring for my field (all men), 5 were returned with the recipient saying their company had an internal hiring quota and could only higher men once their female ratio was back up.

        I am routinely told that my accomplishments at work “would be so much more meaningful if only I were a woman” by my boss (who is male)

        I have missed a particular highly touted conference within my field 6 times because I have been unable to afford going. All 12 of my female co workers have been twice, each, due to contests and incentives that allow women in to attend for free.

        I have had a previous female co worker tell me in confidence that the sexual misconduct and subsequent dismissal case of another male college of mine “was funny to her, because she made the whole thing up and nobody checked her story”

        I have been told by a superior at a previous job that I should not feel bad for not getting assigned to a project I prepared for over a year because “there were only 3 slots and if we needed 3 women to balance things”. I was then told to train 2 of the 3 because of their lack of experience with the subject shortly after.

        I have had 2 speaking engagements canceled and my previously provided travel expenses retracted at the cost of self paid cancellation fees because a woman responded to a CFP after I did and they wanted to attract more woman speakers.

        … Many feminists say instances such as these are not the intent of feminism. They claim that feminism does not seek to cause these ugly indiscretions. But even though I believe that, to say that feminism is not used to hurt men is something I simply do not believe.

        • Wow, that is terrible. Quotas seem sketchy to me, especially in some industries where they cannot get women to goto. Do they at least wait say 1 month and then hire a man if there are no female applicants?

          I don’t agree at all that women should get their conferences paid for whilst men foot the bill if it’s required for work, why put a man out just to get women ahead? He’s paid his dues and worked hard too, send them both, especially if 1 gender has been twice and the other hasn’t been once.

          I found it interesting to here the quota system is starting to work for men and people were up in arms about it because universities became female majority and men could use the assistance to get in.

      • Hi Joanna,
        first of all, I would never be offended by you pointing out flaws in my reasoning. In fact I appreciate it.

        Now to your point:

        You bring up man-positive feminists vs man-negative feminists and make a convincing case that, so long as we don’t know the number, we cannot tell from that how anti-male (or not) feminism is. That is correct, only I didn’t attempt to make that judgement. You left out an important (probably much bigger) portion of feminists: namely the woman-positive and woman-negative feminists. Now lets look at the four types of feminists in those terms:

        1) man-positive
        2) man negative
        3) woman-positive
        4) woman negative

        Number four cannot be feminists because, like I said above, that would be a contradiction (though I used the wording “anti-female” – if you don’t approve of the change in terminology, then feel free to revert to my original terminology). All others can and do exist. Nobody disputes their existence and we can easily find examples of all three. So this leaves us with the following possible descriptions of a feminist

        1) man-positive
        2) man negative
        3) woman-positive

        As you can see, there is no woman-negative but there definitely is a man-negative. This, irrespective of how many there are of each, makes feminism man-negative. What we don’t know is how much.

        Now, it is of course more complicated. For example, groups 1 and 2 cannot intersect, while both can and do intersect with group 3. Also, you might argue that man-positive ‘neutralizes’ man-negative but this ignores the nature of activism and public attention (negative always gets more attention than positive). The very fact that man-negative is discussed as a possibility at all amongst feminist makes it man-negative (just as anti-racist activists discussing black-negative as a possibility) group on the whole.

        Probably the largest group of feminists are those who belong to group 3 but neither to group 1 or 2. They are simply not concerned with men at all. They neither want to help nor harm men. But this, one could say, by itself makes them man-negatve. Simplified, this is as if you only try to balance a scale by adding weight to one side. You’re inevitably heading for that side to become too heavy and since anyone older than three can see that result, the ultimate goal of that approach must also be man-negative – even if not directly stated.

        Now you could argue that it isn’t like a scale, and one side doing better doesn’t mean the other will do worse. True, but this very notion is precisely what feminism uses and has used repeatedly. Numbers are always pitted against each other – take the pay gap, the political representation, the victims of rape etc. It’s always men vs women at the heart of the matter. Never do you hear feminists adding that, men earning more might be beneficial to women – perhaps more beneficial than women averagely earning more.

        So gender not being zero-sum game doesn’t hold so long as feminists use zero-sum in their own activism.

        Now to your other questions:

        “how the heck does “male privilege” undermine men’s human rights? By justifying counteraction? In what way? In what way am I trying to hurt you by pointing out privilege—especially if I speak of my privilege?”

        I’ll answer by giving an example which is representative as it is very typical:
        In my country, we have “equality representatives” on a political as well as institutional level. In all cases, men cannot vote such a representative – neither can they be elected to such an office. When I talked to one, pointing out the hypocrisy of such a law, she justified it with the existence of male privilege. In other words, denying men a voice in equality because of their genitalia was a counteraction of male privilege. There is no such counteraction of female privilege as this is publicly not recognized to exist – at least not by feminists ore equality representatives.

        That is one example of how the term “male privilege” hurts men.

        “And I know people have said this a BILLION times but I’m going to say it one time more:
        EVERYBODY had privilege. Every single person. Me, you, my kids, the gardener who mows my lawn, the waiter who made my coffee today. Privilege is ever-shifting, it is formless and borderless and changes based upon situations.”

        Exactly! And your list isn’t even the tip of the iceberg. Therefore, there is no particular reason to draw a line through the middle of the entire population, sort them out by their genitalia and declare one side universally privileged. That is exactly what the concept of male privilege, as it is used by feminists, does however.

        I’ll give you another example:
        Men might have an easier time becoming CEOs than women on average. But this is not true for men who get discriminated against themselves (transvestites, short men, bald men, black men etc) So trying to counter that overall gender balance with women’s quota, make it EVEN HARDER for those men who are already discriminated against. Such laws are almost universally supported by feminists though.

        “When I advance in my job, I am not hurting you. I am not asking for you to give up anything.”
        That depends on your job and how you got it. My friend was denied a position in a university because they specifically wanted a woman in that position. She advanced literally at his expense. They openly said they wanted a woman because they’d get more public funding.

      • Hey Joanna,
        I had read before that women were fired during the great depression, but I thought this was only in male-type jobs (like factory settings). I didn’t realize this even trickled down to female “safe” jobs like teacher.
        I’m not trying to nitpick, or deny that this was sexism or oppression, but in some ways this was somewhat defensible.

        You have to remember that during the great depression there was little social net, and homelessness was rampant. When women worked it was (somewhat correctly) seen as a superflous income for her. In a time where many families had no income and were homeless as a result of it, it was logical to say that a single woman was keeping another family from having any income at all. If she was married, then that family was stacking up two incomes and (for lack of a better term) reveling in excess, while another family starved.

        In the past (especially the first part of last century) both sexes were harshly oppressed with very restrictive gender roles. This is the view I adopt, compared to the patriarchy theory which says all women were horribly oppressed and men all had it peachy (or at least the majority of men had it better than the majority of women).

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          Yes, but even if that were justifiable for *some* women, as their incomes were superfluous, but the problem with these en masse firings of women is that you never knew what a woman’s income was for or her situation. There could be a man working whose family had tons of money, and there could be a widow working to feed her children, or a daughter whose father is out of work.

          Systematic oppression ignores individual stories, and therefore individual rights. Gender equality or nothing.

          • Peter Houlihan says:

            I’m sure there’s plenty of examples of individual suffering cause by such decisions. But they were desperate measures for desperate times. I’m sure if it had been possible to micro-manage such rules to ensure only the women who didn’t need jobs were fired they would have. I don’t think its any accident that the most “patriarchal” societies are usually the most threatened ones and I find it hard to conceive of gender roles as anything more than a survival tactic.

        • Patriarchy doesn’t suggest that all women are oppressed and men are not. It recognizes that power lies in the hands of few men, and that privilege of those over whom this power is held is transient. It varies on when and how we experience privilege and oppression. And it is certainly not theorized to be a phenomenon experienced only by women!

          • Just to amend that, it’s not to say that those who are oppressors are only men; there are some women in positions of power. As a social constructionist, discussions of power are really complicated, because I want to convey my thoughts in a manner accessible to all, but it’s a highly convoluted relationship. Power is transient, and it functions through complicity. Patriarchy isn’t about individuals (which means that no, we’re not blaming men or excluding men from discussions of oppression); it’s an institution.

          • Power does not only reside in the hands of “few men.” Hence, the feminist patriarchy theory is wrong. There are plenty of women with power, and many women have more power than men, increasingly so now. For example, in the United States, there are more women managers than men. Women have lower employment, are victims of crime and murder less often, and receive better and more education.

            Hence, the feminist term “patriarchy” and how it is applied is wrong and misplaced; hence, it is just an attack on maleness.

            • That statement belies a misunderstanding of what is meant by power. As I said, it’s a really complicated theory, and it’s hard to convey it so as to be accessible. I think you’re thinking of privilege, not power.

              I did mention that there are women who hold positions of power. However, I also mentioned that power inherently possesses a component of complicity. Patriarchy isn’t about accusing individual men of holding and wielding power; it is referencing an institution. Government is dominated by men; CEOs are predominantly men; those who hold a vast preponderance of a nation’s wealth are men. This isn’t to say that men are wielding power; power is institutional. Which is why I alluded to the transiency of privilege. It is not at all an attack on maleness. The term patriarchy has nothing to do with individual human beings, or individual men.

            • ”I think you’re thinking of privilege, not power.”

              I quoted you using “power”, not privilege, and thus responded to that. Managers have more power than subordinates. The employed have more power than the unemployed. The educated often have more power than the un- or less-educated. (you know, the “knowledge is power” thing). There are millions of women with more power than men in those areas.

              “Patriarchy isn’t about accusing individual men of holding and wielding power; it is referencing an institution.”

              Who is in charge of this institution? Why is it called patriarchy not matriarchy?

              “Government is dominated by men;”

              Not true. Women are the majority of voters. Hence, women, not men choose who is in government. Secondly, women are elected at the rate that they run for office. So, women dominate who is in government by a) running relatively seldom, and b) voting more often for men.

              “CEOs are predominantly men.”

              And, there are very few CEOs but there are hundreds of thousands of managers, where women not dominate. Also, anyone can be a CEO. I am a CEO because I started my own company. There is no sex/gender test.

              “Those who hold a vast preponderance of a nation’s wealth are men.”

              Again, not true. Women spend as much or more money than men, even if they don’t earn it all. Very few unmarried men have extraordinary wealth. One thing is that revealing about feminism is its blanket generalizations about males. For example, very few men are in government, very few men are CEOs, and very few single men are extraordinarily wealthy. Yet, they cite these things as relevant, as if they applied to all men.

              “It is not at all an attack on maleness. The term patriarchy has nothing to do with individual human beings, or individual men.”

              It is just another attack on maleness because it fails to acknowledge that those things are irrelevant in the lives of average men. If patriarchy did not have everything to do with criticizing males, feminists would have chosen a gender-neutral term.

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      Adi, sorry, but that doesn’t work. You’ve used your axiom of some elements of a group having one characteristic to prove that all of the group shares that characteristic.

      By your logic you and I, as MRAs, are misogynistic because some MRAs are.

  19. Mark Neil says:

    “I engage in activities that are meant to address issues men face, in addition to women’s issues,”

    Then it should be equal to provide examples? And I mean examples of addressing men’s issues, not just happening to improve things as a side effect of helping women. Furthermore, I ask if you believe your individual participation is sufficient to counteract opposition to men’s rights, such as from NOW’s President’s opposition to shared parenting http://www.nownys.org/fathers_resp.html (amongst other feminist organizations)
    Or explain Tory Shepard’s current attack on the men’s rights movement as extremists (http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/opinion/shepherd-mens-rights-extremists-go-online/story-fn34ojzj-1226240201714) while simultaneously (and hypocritically) promoting women and children first (http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/women-and-children-first-or-every-man-for-himself/), which clearly sends the message “men don’t matter” (men should be the ones to die in a shipwreck, but still aren’t allowed to complain about injustice while they live).

    Perhaps, too, you can explain why I have been called a misogynist every single time I have raised my concern over my Canadian government having a minister for the status of women and not one for men? A minister that has a mandate to be gender biased, and a budget to promote that mandate. A minister that has ministries, offices, councils and departments for women all throughout federal, provincial and municipal levels of government, never with an equivalent male counterpart. Why does my raising concern over this consistently raise feminist hackles and incur the inevitable accusations of woman-hater, lonely basement dweller, hurt angry man and threats I will never be loved by a woman with this attitude?

    “we’ve since arrived at common ground, it seems, on the issue of feminism”

    One might ask, is he still a masculinist, or was he required to give that up in conformity?

    “And perhaps the discussions of privilege were initially quite heavily focused on male privilege, and this felt like a sentence of guilt.”

    The issue has never been about examining male privilege, it is the utter failure to examine the responsibilities attached to those privileges, nor the privileges women experienced. It is the “only look at the good men get compared to the bad women get” that gets tiring. But worst still, is now people (MRA”s) are trying to point out these other factors, the responsibilities men endured and continue to endure without the corresponding privilege (eg: the legally enforced provider role without the corresponding paternal respect that came with it) and the privileges women have and continue to benefited from (the recent Costa Concordia has demonstrated the continued expectation that men should give up their lives for women they don’t even know, simply due to their gender), and the greatest opposition to these acknowledgements come from people (both men and women) who claim to be feminists (you can deny they are, but they or others can equally deny your idea of feminism. Given most feminist definitions specify it is for women only, true equality (which can’t be for women only) is not supported by those definitions).

    • Mark Neil says:

      “ Firstly, Woman ≠ Feminist”

      And yet, the number one accusation made against any man who speaks up for men’s rights outside of the feminist discourse, let alone is critical of feminism itself, is to call them a misogynist. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not justifying saying a woman should be assumed to be a feminist, or that any bad behavior or responses by/from women should be attributed to feminism. I don’t agree with this (Though, admittedly, my views of feminism are less critical then many other MRA’s, I’ll elaborate at the end**), but when a person (of ether gender) uses feminist rhetoric and/or theory to try and silence an MRA, I hold feminism accountable for this, ether by encouraging this behavior, or at the very least, failing to impress a more balanced, open-minded interpretation of those rhetoric/theories.

      “Some people have even suggested that because of the many goals of feminism, it is time to change the name. I disagree”

      I would be interested in reading an article that justifies naming an (allegedly) egalitarian movement for both sexes after the attributes of only one of them. Particularly when, even you have admitted, at least parts of that movement have been twisted into a supremacy movement.

      “feminism has grown into a movement that has accomplished great advancements in the status of women (although there is still work to be done), and has spread its reach to address inequalities of a number of marginalized and minority groups”
      I notice men aren’t amongst those listed who have benefited, despite your claims above.

      **my view of feminism is that feminism is a movement for the empowerment of women (and only women). To what degree (and this is where I deviate from many MRA’s) varies from feminist to feminist. Some are about only empowering women to the levels men have (but not disempowering them where they have advantage). A small subset of those actually agree with empowering men as well, but this is not a tenant of feminism, but rather, a side belief that happens to work in line for these individuals. Yet others believe in empowering women till they have everything they want and need. Others still want to go beyond that, empowering women into a totalitarian matriarchy. All of these different potentials have feminist activists that one can point to as examples, all of them fit under the definition I have interpreted the movement to be about. That is my biggest problem with your definition of “feminism is about egalitarianism”, not all (recognized) feminist fit that definition, yet they remain feminists, if your definition was correct, that couldn’t be.

  20. Jasmine, Joanna, Lori et all.

    I have a haven up specifically for you guys because I feel you’re doing your best to understand the other side.

    Please look up “Circle Of Fire” and go there. I’ll make sure a discussion between us is possible.

    Thank you.

  21. Gee whiz, I wish I could retract that last post as both the mens sites listed DO allow women to speak.

    I done stepped into it in my vigor for mansplaining.
    Apologies given

  22. empathologicalism says:

    The point where feminism went wrong was when they crossed over from attempting to rectify codified things, laws etc., and go forth with the mantra “though there is still mush to do” applying that to western society. Its crazy making, and no, there is nothing left to do except live a life of excellence, above reproach. I see feminism against things like attitudes and feelings, good luck, there will be bad actors with weird feelings, along with killers and theirs and rapists and hookers and you name it. You will not stamp out what you perceive as wrong thinking, just as racist thinking will never be stamped out and efforts to accomplish same foster same.

    What about women intentionally attracting attention saying “treat me right” is hard to understand as silly? In the micro, sure, be around folks that treat you right, in the macro, live a life of excellence above reproach, then see the benefits accrue. No one gets more liked by whining about intangible slights.

    Again, once the legal thresholds were breached and feminism entered the realm of policing peoples feelings and perceptions, it went wrong. Whats REALLY worse is that feminists would, if they could, attack intangibles like attitudes etc., though codified legal solutions, hence female superiority.

    This is gender science (cough) not rocket science

  23. Hello Jasmine,

    the way I see it, I would say there are three different kinds of feminists. We have the radicals, but there is no need to talk about them now (even though they kind of help to poison the well). We have the egalitarians and you seem to be a prime example of an egalitarian feminist with your stance on privilege and your view that there is a female privilege.

    Now, let me introduce you to gynocentric feminism -> http://finallyfeminism101.wordpress.com/
    —————————————————————————
    Feminism: The advocacy of women`s rights on the grounds of sexual equality (OED)

    Given the historical and continued imbalance of power, where men as a class are privileged over women as a class (see male privilege), an important, but often overlooked, part of the term is that sexism is prejudice plus power. Thus feminists reject the notion that women can be sexist towards men because women lack the institutional power that men have.

    Don’t women have “female privilege”? Short answer: No, what is commonly called “female privilege” is better described as benevolent sexism.

    As to why feminism requires a distinct agenda within the equalist movements? The special and distinct problem of misogyny both oppressing and directly harming women, pure and simple. Unless misogyny is directly addressed and acted against, general equalist activism will not be enough.

    No one is saying that discussions on men and masculinities shouldn’t go on. It is absolutely important to have dialogue on men’s issues, including discussions on violence done towards men. The thing is, a feminist space — unless the topic is specifically men’s issues — is not the place to have that discussion and neither are spaces (feminist or otherwise) in which the topic is specifically focused on women’s issues.
    —————————————————————————

    The very same discussion you and Valter are having has happened many many times. The problem is mostly a misunderstanding. The feminist critical view is actually a critical view of “gynocentric feminism”. So he isn’t even talking about your kind of feminism, the egalitarian one.

    What always irks me is that often egalitarian feminists, the ones that say that feminist = egalitarianism, pretend that gynocentric feminists do not exist at all. It is mind boggling. Every time you read an article of Hugo Schwyzer or Marcotte here, that is a gynocentric feminist point of view. Every time a feminist makes sure to tell us that there really is just a tiny tiny tiny minority of male DV / rape victims and we should care for the real victims, that is a gynocentric feminist point of view. And there are quite a few places on the net that I would consider gynocentric. Among them, feministing, feministe, NOW, the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Shakesville and quite a few more.

  24. Peter Houlihan says:

    Thank you for writing, and I’d like to see more egalitarian feminists on here.

    The trouble is that just as much as your feminist aims include men and campaigning for their rights there are many other feminists who don’t. Some of them think of gender as some kind of scales, and that if either side is privileged, they are privileged in every way and that the other side is oppressed in every way. Others think that men deliberately created this system in order to benefit them and oppress women. Others again think that men are the root of all evil and need to be wiped from the face of the planet.

    I might as well claim that no MRA hates women and we all work as hard for women’s rights as we do for men’s. Sounds good, but its just not true. There’s some real crazies out there calling themselves masculists just as there’s some absolute nutjob feminists. Acknowledging their existence is the first step towards dealing with them.

    • Peter, I don’t disagree with you. Where it becomes problematic is when we make sweeping generalizations – so if I were to say that men’s rights activists are misogynist and therefore should not be taken seriously, then I’m defining a group by those on the margins, and that’s not fair to the movement or to the people in it.

      And this is not directed toward you Peter, but I just received an email with a response from somebody, and I don’t have the time to sift through the comments to find it (my thesis draft is due Monday, and I really need to get it written). So somebody wanted to know about how feminism helps men. Here are a few examples:

      Feminist researchers were the first to draw attention to men’s health issues, and to the impact that some aspects of masculinity have on men’s health.
      Feminism has encouraged men’s role as father (this may be seen as a by-product of women entering the workforce and asking men to assume equal responsibility in the home, but I don’t see that as a negative thing)
      Feminist researchers are at the forefront of recognizing the constrictive nature of gender roles for males and females, and working toward eliminating these constraints, or finding ways to overcome these inhibiting gender roles
      Feminist researchers and psychologists are very concerned with differences in rates of mental disorders in men and women – some are higher in women, some higher in men – and in addressing the social issues that might be at issue in these discrepancies
      Feminists work alongside MRAs (those who are looking for equality) in their goals
      Many men feel that fathers who get divorced get the short end of the stick, but the reality is that most parents get the arrangements that they want (that doesn’t mean that there aren’t still some who are treated unfairly, but making sweeping generalizations is unhelpful and ignores data)

      Now, I’ve made this response, and I’m sure there are going to be a number of reasons why it’s all wrong, why I’m a terrible feminist who hates men, but I’m offering what you asked, and the reason I’ve not been responding isn’t because I don’t want to engage in these conversations, but because I’m a graduate student, and responding here was taking up too much of my time, to the detriment of my coursework. I’m not shirking the conversation or my role in it.

      I have suggested to others that if they have these questions they ought to seek out the information, and there is a very specific reason I say that. I say that because if you really want to find this information, it is out there, and it is accessible. Those who really, genuinely are curious to know would go look such things up (I did provide a few references, previously), because as people we have a tendency to seek out information that maintains our worldviews and biases, and discard that which contradicts them. So it was actually my knowledge of psychology that led to my providing a starting point, but not to giving you all of the information that was asked for.

      And now I shall be silent again – not because I don’t care about this conversation, or don’t want to engage, but because I have deadlines to meet (and my thesis is yet unwritten).

      • “Feminist researchers were the first to draw attention to men’s health issues, and to the impact that some aspects of masculinity have on men’s health.”

        I haven’t seen any concern about men’s health from feminism. Feel free to point to a feminist group or organization’s website that has made men’s health a key agenda issue. What I have seen and continue to see from feminism is blanket criticism of and negativity toward maleness/masculinity.

        “Feminism has encouraged men’s role as father (this may be seen as a by-product of women entering the workforce and asking men to assume equal responsibility in the home, but I don’t see that as a negative thing).”

        I can point you to major feminist organizations that are anti-father’s rights. They want men to have more than equal responsibility but less than equal parental rights.

        “Feminist researchers are at the forefront of recognizing the constrictive nature of gender roles for males and females, and working toward eliminating these constraints, or finding ways to overcome these inhibiting gender roles.”

        Those are feminist concerns, not most men’s.

        “Feminist researchers and psychologists are very concerned with differences in rates of mental disorders in men and women – some are higher in women, some higher in men – and in addressing the social issues that might be at issue in these discrepancies.”

        I have only seen evidence of feminists having concern over differences based on their concern for women, not men.

        • I’ve answered what you’ve asked. I’m not sure if you have access to academic journals, but if so, I can provide you with a wealth of citations with which to explore the ways in which feminists has addressed these issues.

          I am a feminist, and I do all of these things. So you HAVE ‘seen’ feminists concerned with such matter. This brings me back to the fact that we often seek information that maintains our worldviews and biases to the detriment of taking in any other information which might not be congruent with your own beliefs.

          In addition to academic journal articles of feminist research, I am a feminist, and my current research is focused on health, with the goal of informing a biomedical model that more efficiently addresses health of males and females, specifically attending to reducing the gap in health information, knowledge, and behaviours in males.

          • “I can provide you with a wealth of citations with which to explore the ways in which feminists has addressed these issues.”

            No doubt, in their own ways that come of as anti-male, in the views of most men and most women.

            “I am a feminist, and I do all of these things.”

            I have no idea what you mean by “all of those things.” We’ve discussed a number of things. Further, we see these issues very differently. For example, the feminist version of equality and concern for men is usually very different from what men are concerned about, and how most men and women see issues. The feminist “patriarchy” theory is a good example of that.

            All I have ever seen or read from feminists about masculinity/maleness is criticism of it, blaming “male behavior” on a wide swath of social issues negatively affecting women in one way or another.

            • Instead of: “No doubt, in their own ways that come of as anti-male, in the views of most men and most women.”

              No doubt. Feminism has addressed these issues in ways that come off as anti-male in the view of most men and women.

            • You don’t seem interested in shedding your misconception of feminism (“No doubt, in their own ways that come off as anti-male…”). I’ve provided you with exactly the information you asked for. And now back to working on my thesis I go.

            • “You don’t seem interested in shedding your misconception of feminism.”

              I was hoping that you would provide factual information to support your arguments. If I have any misconceptions, factual data could easily prove it. However, all you’ve shared is your opinion that men dominate everything, have all the money, male behavior causes problems, etc.

              By the way, my perception of feminism is shared by the vast majority of women (and men), which is why most women reject being with it.

            • I offered to provide you with scholarly articles; you dismissed this with your statement, which is why I didn’t bother.

              Feminism is largely misunderstood at the cultural level. I am aware that many women do eschew the term feminism. However, when you actually speak to these women and get down to their actual beliefs, it’s not feminism that they’re rejecting but the misapprehensions about feminism.

            • “I offered to provide you with scholarly articles; you dismissed this with your statement,”

              I did not dismiss the posting of any feminist scholarly articles that show true concern for males, for their sake, not based on how issues regarding them may affect females. Feel free to post any such links.

              “Feminism is largely misunderstood at the cultural level.”

              Women reject what they see and hear from feminists themselves. I personally respect the intelligence of women, and therefore don’t for a second believe that after decades of feminism’s existence that they are too dense or ignorant to understand it.

            • I’ve not even remotely implied that women who reject feminism are ignorant. My experience has been that women often think they’re rejecting feminism, but when you sit down and converse about it, it’s actually the culturally held belief about what feminism is and how it functions that they’re balking at. Their ideas are congruent with feminist ideals of equality, and they’re often shocked to discover that feminism isn’t about burning bras or misandry.

              Also, I don’t have links. As I mentioned, these are articles in scholarly journals. I can provide you a list of references, if you so desire.

            • If they are not ignorant, why is there a need to “sit down and converse about it. . .?”

              If you are not claiming they are ignorant, why are they subject to (according to you) a wrong “culturally held belief about what feminism is and how it functions. . .” That, in fact, claims that all of us (non-feminists) are ignorant. We need feminists to sit us down and explain to us how things really are, because after decades of historic evidence, we still can’t figure it out on our own.

              Feminism is not new. It’s been around for decades. If feminism was about equality and absolutely rejected misandry, after all these decades, the evidence of that would be overwhelming and indisputable, clearly evident to women and men.

            • This 2012. If there is evidence to support your argument, at least something to point to would be available on the Internet. It wouldn’t all be locked up in text books.

  25. I don’t have the time to argue. Saying that many people hold beliefs that are promulgated at the cultural level and that are not necessarily accurate is not to say they are ignorant. I would suggest some Foucault for a deconstruction of what I’m getting at with that implication (discursive constructions of knowledge). I don’t sit down a woman who has negative views about feminism in some condescending manner, and it doesn’t necessitate a discussion. However, if feminism comes up, it’s already evidently a discussion, and often a conversation ensues in which I divulge the tenets of feminism to which I adhere, to which many feminists adhere, what it means to me, and the several myths about feminism. And what often comes from these conversations is that women (and men) say “Oh, well I believe in those things, too.”

    I don’t disagree that knowledge shouldn’t be so inaccessible to the average person. It is a huge contention of mine about the way in which knowledge production and dissemination works. However, given that I spend the majority of my time reading academic materials, I cannot point you to internet materials because I don’t know where they reside.

    • “Saying that many people hold beliefs that are promulgated at the cultural level and that are not necessarily accurate is not to say they are ignorant.”

      IF they (we) are not ignorant, why would we need to have feminists sit us down and explain anything?

      “And what often comes from these conversations is that women (and men) say “Oh, well I believe in those things, too.”

      Of course there are things that most women and men agree with feminists on. Similarly, there are things that far left wing democrats and far right wing republicans agree on. However, common ground issues are not the reasons that most women and men reject involvement in feminism. It’s feminism’s anti-male theories, such as “male privilege”, “patriarchy”, “rape culture”, critricism of masculinity/maleness, and a prevailing anti-male outlook on a variety of other issues that cause them to reject association.

      “I don’t disagree that knowledge shouldn’t be so inaccessible to the average person.”

      As I said, feminism has been around for decades, and what feminists have said/say, and have done/do are well documented. The issues they lobby about, their key agenda items, and their theories and arguments are in the public domain. Whatever information you are referring to must be something brand new if it can’t even be Googled.

  26. I read through most of the comments. The reactions to the word feminism is exactly as I suspected. We’re back in the 50s with women’s rights. It is the same reactions towards race in backwards time. Change feminism to racism and you will see the same reasoning. If you wanted equality for races, well you must hate white people or be a fanatic. What about those crazy civil rights people who cause trouble? Those goofy liberal teachers. What about the poor male white guy?

    Rape and domestic violence is overwelmingly forced upon women vs men. To say otherwise tries to distracts from the issue. It says some uncomfortable things about men and society that we often don’t want to look at. So what do we do? We blame the woman. She dressed wrong, she was talking back so got smacked, she must like to get beat up she’s staying with him. We don’t need to even ask why men are doing this, the responsibilty falls back to the women. This porn culture, this dehumanizing culture is so normal, is so accepted towards women most people are blind as a bat to it.

    We’re not on our hands and knees in the kitchen anymore, we’re on our hands and knees sexually, each image of a woman just as demeaning, just as objectifying.

    If you speak out. If you want real equality, rights, awareness, yes FEMINISM then you’re labeled a femnazi. Women shouldn’t have rights and shouldn’t even complain about it. In fact we’re already equal, just turn a blind eye to statistics, to the experience of almost every woman who has been objectified by most men she meets, by women who are pressured into sexual acts she doesn’t like by her boyfriend, husband, ect, who unconciously can’t see her body as her own right, because he learned about her sexuality from porn.How a girl has to be sexy more than smart or she is invisible. The human trafficing of girls, not to mention what goes on in all the world for so many many women. Poverty and abuse, honor killings. But these aren’t real problems right? How dare you speak up for their rights? Call yourself a feminist. You must be a man-hating lesbian. Some ugly girl who doesn’t want to sex it up for us red-blooded American men just having a little fun. Maybe you just need to get laid? Yeah. We know how you think about feminism and women’s rights. It will be a long journey and much soul-searching to see the truth your privilage blinds you from seeing, and to discover the how’s and why’s you feel so threatened you feel by real equality.

    • That’s truly how it is when viewed through a feminist gynocentric anti-male prism.

      • yup. She uses the standard shaming tactics of “if you are against feminism, you must not women to have rights” as if that’s the only possible reason to be against feminism, and it’s methods (such as the denial of male victimization she uses in this very post, or the constant use of just this kind of shaming attacks) and anti-male theories (like patriarchy theory or the very objectification theory she puts forth, again, in this post) play no part in opposition to, or dislike of, feminism.

        • Neither the theory of patriarchy nor objectification theory are anti-male (although there are many misconceptions about each theory that might lend to an anti-male interpretation). In fact, objectification theory also applies to the objectification of male bodies, an increasing phenomenon in our media and culture.

          • Perhaps at their core, most academic levels, they are presented in more gender neutral tones, but they are still presented in the context of a female victim centric ideology, which leads many, including a great deal of feminists, to accept them as male blaming, female victim theories, and very few, if any, feminists will ever correct another feminist (never in my experience) when it is used incorrectly, in this male blame (IE, anti-male) manner. As such, at least as far as I’m concern, academic patriarchy theory and objectification theory’s “may” be gender neutral, but in the way feminism so often champions, they have been redefined for feminism into anti-male theories. In other words, regardless of the academic definitions, feminist patriarchy and objectification theories ARE anti-male.

            The very fact you choose to challenge me, and fail to point out to Judy her flawed interpretations (as she uses both theories in anti-male ways within her post) only demonstrates my point.

            PS: If objectification theory was truly gender neural, it would also acknowledge the male financial/success objectification (which it may academically, but never in feminist discourse, except to occasionally claim it isn’t anti-male, and then gets firmly ignored). Same applies to patriarchy theory and the negatives men suffer and the advantages women benefit from that are far too often ignored, except for the occasional attempt to deny the anti-male perception.

            • Your perception of feminism doesn’t ring true for what I have experienced and the work that I do as a feminist. To suggest that feminism is anti-male is as generalizing and reductionist as it is to suggest that men’s rights activists are anti-female and anti-feminist.

            • I have to agree, why is it so rare, actually I can’t remember anyone calling out gynocentric feminists like Jody?

              “What about the poor male white guy?” How is this not shaming and insulting language? It infers that being male and white with problems mean’s the problems are trivial.

            • I mean, have to agree with Mark on

              “The very fact you choose to challenge me, and fail to point out to Judy her flawed interpretations (as she uses both theories in anti-male ways within her post) only demonstrates my point.”

            • I’d also say it’s only some parts of feminism, it appears to be 2 separate monoliths if anything. 1 gynocentric and the other is egalitarian based on what I’ve experienced.

            • I haven’t seen an egalitarian “part” of feminism where there is no subscription to many of the same classic feminist tenets.

            • Ironically, the truly egalitarian feminists are often ostracised and deemed anti-feminist by other feminists, such as with Christina Hoff Sommers (see wikipedia, where she identifies as a feminist on the page specifically on her, but is deemed anti-feminist on the feminism page). But they do exists, albeit rare.

            • Thanks for your comment/correction. Ms. Sommers does seem to be for equality. She rejects many of the unequal, anti-male theories and philosophies that many so-called egalitarian feminists embrace, support, and defend.

              I can see why feminists call her anti-feminist. She’s pro-equality.

            • What’s more, despite the fact many feminists openly reject her as a feminist, claiming her to be anti-feminist, they rarely do the same for radicals, whom they identify as fringe or a separate branch of feminism. IE, radicals, while not the same, are still feminists, but Ms Sommers, who is egalitarian, clearly is not. Says a great deal, that does.

            • Mark – very strong and valid point. I hadn’t thought of it that way. They, in essence, try to kick Ms. Sommers out of feminism thusly but refuse to do the same for even the most ardent man-haters.

              Says a great deal indeed.

            • It’d be good for every feminist to see that Eric and Mark. If Christina cops so much flack whereas radicals are ignored then there is a major problem. I see christians, muslims, etc call out the radicals and denounce their actions, it would be quite heartening to see some feminist leaders call out the radfemhub stuff and any other misandrous bullshit.

            • Yet, it rings true with what I have experienced, as well as with what many others here as well. Furthermore, it rings true with Judy (based on her comments), whom I was replying to, yet you don’t feel the need to correct her on what feminism is about, thereby accepting and validating it.

              Perhaps you should take a critical look at your own house, see if the ideals you claim to have are truly represented by the visible, vocal proportion of the feminist movement, and acknowledge the failings, and the perception/reputation that wing has garnered the movement and ether work to FIX it, or move on to a movement more appropriate to your ideals. I am tired of those like you, claiming feminism is not hateful, standing as shields to the truly bigoted.

          • Feminism has built its reputation of being anti-male over several decades. It’s well known. There’s been ample opportunity to prove what it’s about.

            If feminism was not anti-male and truly an equality movement it would be supported by more than a small minority of women and an even smaller minority of men.

            • Actually, that statement overlooks a lot of issues that complicates the position of feminism as an egalitarian movement. The reason it may not be widely supported at the cultural level has less to do with it being egalitarian or not and more to do with the fact that the anti-feminist backlash has painted feminism as some male-hating monolith that is out to destroy families so that women can take over the world. Anti-feminist rhetoric is everywhere, and there are a lot of myths of feminism that are promulgated. You ask people who don’t know much about feminism what it is and you hear the same things every time – bra burning, man-hating, child-hating, lesbians who want to take over the world. So there is this giant misconception that prevents people from identifying as feminist, even if they do espouse feminist ideology.

              I really appreciated a post that was put up a few days ago about setting aside the hate, and listening to one another. Sometimes we need to look past those knee-jerk reactions of distrust or anger and listen to what the other side is saying. The men’s rights movement needs female allies just as the feminist movement needs male allies. Because the goal of equality cannot be achieved with one gender pitted against the other, or without including all persons in pursuing equality. It means we have to listen to one another, really listen.

            • I think it’s time someone made a true egalitarian feminist website. Would be very helpful as a goto place to understand it all better, I’ve tried n tried to understand it but I keep coming across radicals and gynocentrics and it’s annoying as hell. I hope I just suck at finding stuff:P

            • I haven’t seen much of either type of website – egalitarian feminist or the radical/gynocentric version (but I don’t have a lot of time to peruse the world wide web, which might be why). If I had the time and the know-how I would create such an internet space. Perhaps in a few years when I’m done with graduate school I will undertake such a task. :)

            • It’s definitely needed as the online world is now many peoples first introduction to feminism, even just facebook groups and the commenting on them has quite a lot of activity. I don’t goto university myself, and I don’t think our Australian universities would have egalitarian gender studies (I may be wrong but it sounds like most are women’s studies) so I haven’t been exposed to the academic feminism you speak of, just internet blogs and articles and picking up bit by bit via them + comments.

              This is the only site I can think of where I can discuss both male and female issues in the comments and not get moderated out of existence, and seems to have all sorts of people commenting from all walks of life.

            • I get the sense that academic feminism differs slightly from other forms of feminism, probably in part due to its focus on theoretical paradigms. I am a social constructionist, so I tend to focus on power structures and social constructs that are oppressive to a myriad of groups. Perhaps it is because of my social constructionist lens that I tend toward an egalitarian feminism (every time I see this term, it just seems so redundant to me, as I view feminism as an egalitarian movement).

              However, I’m also beginning to wonder if the difference isn’t necessarily academic versus lay person types of feminism, but that there are cultural differences. I am Canadian, and the more I read comments here, the more I begin to think that perhaps my experiences differ so drastically from what I hear other people saying of feminism because of the cultural clime in Canada. I’m not sure.

            • Yeah cultural climate could affect it. It seems U.S.A has a lot of questionable laws, and Australia also raises my eyebrow with it’s highly gender focused DV campaigns (my jaw will drop if I see Australia have a campaign that mentions female abusers and get significant airtime/publicity).

              There seems to be a real sense of female victimhood in some feminists which talks about men in a much more powerful light, and women in a weaker and more vulnerable light. This is something that tends to really bug me as I see it a lot in anti-abuse campaigns and usually studies on women that get publicized have it. Such a major focus on how women suffer, and where men benefit/or aren’t suffering in that particular issue, seems to really ignore when men suffer in the same issue (DV for example), or other issues where women don’t suffer as much as the men do. That was confusing to say, so I’ll give an example.

              Anti-violence campaigns tend to get worded as a huge problem of violence against women, yet men dominate violence deaths 4-6x more than women (2004 World Health Organization statistics on causes of death, if you need a link just ask). From what I’ve seen of local Australian crime with violence if I remember correctly it was 400,000 reports by women to police, 800,000 reports by men (this stat will take me a while to find, it was on a government site I came across randomly:S).

              There are various studies showing domestic violence levels reaching parity between the genders, however injuries tend to be more so for women due to size and strength I’d guess. The psychological aggression and abuse though can easily be done by both genders and both can be injured greatly since physiological differences don’t create disparity.

              Add the CDC stats showing in the 1 year period the level of forced penetration or forcing someone to penetrate was pretty much equal numbers of victims between genders, 40% female and 60 male perpetrators. Now why say all of this? Because I do not recall any major campaign to address the violence men suffer, the closest would be an alcohol related one about fighting which played the typical male perpetrator role. I don’t recall seeing a single female perpetrator in any campaign against violence, yet we have statistics proving there is a significant amount of female perpetrators, and male victims.

              My biggest question to many feminists is why is there a major focus on female victims, male perpetrators, why is violence so often deplored when it’s against women yet damn near ignored against men when men are suffering the vast majority of violence it seems.

              I have no issue with people rallying against violence against women, because it’s horrible, what I do have an issue with though is society forgetting the men. What makes me question how many egalitarian feminists there are is that the campaigns barely mention male victims, and usually it’s male perpetrators against those male victims. If I was an anti-violence campaigner, my egalitarian mind would kick in when I saw 1 group’s rate of victimization rising dramatically and the other’s perpetration also rising dramatically.

              I am totally at a loss to see how the CDC stat in the 1 year period wasn’t broadcast and reported on, I didn’t see a single mention of that particular stat. I feel that is a huge news story regardless of which gender rose so dramatically, I expected a heap of feminists to be out there telling people of it to show rape needs more attention brought to it and to end it.

              I want to believe there are a lot of egalitarian feminists, I truly do. It’s just I am unsure of where they are, it all seems extremely female-focused and an attitude of fix women’s issues first, then we’ll get around to helping the men. I honestly hate the focus on who suffers more, if both sides have victims even if 1 side is 10%, acknowledge it. If both sides have perpetrators, even if 1 side is 10%, 5%, acknowledge it, show all of the combinations of perp and victim. To me that is the egalitarian way of handling the gender issues. I am sure there are many out there hoping egalitarians outnumber the gender-centric people but it’s quite hard to find them or indications of them being the majority.

            • I absolutely agree that any victim needs to be acknowledge, and I am equally uncomfortable with the positioning of females as victims and males as perpetrators. However, in my own work against domestic violence, I’ve seen the feminists I’ve worked with not only acknowledging that violence against women is an issue of power, but that this also impacts men because men are more likely to be victims of violence in general – especially at the hands of other men.

              I’ve done dating violence prevention workshops in high schools, and I try to maintain very gender neutral language so as to convey that any violence against any person is not acceptable, and to normalize the notion that females can be perpetrators of sexual assault as well. I hate that we live in a culture that often overlooks males as victims of sexual assault perpetrated by females.

              For me, feminism isn’t a gender war. It’s about really getting down to the root causes of serious social issues and attempting to eliminate oppression where it exists, and about acknowledging the lived experiences of people along the way.

            • Thanks for ensuring the gender neutral language, I feel that will really help especially with the highschools. The earlier on that people can learn anyone can be a victim, or a perp I think the more we will see support for everyone as it undoes the current biases in society. It’s very encouraging to know there are those who see all of the angles and not just the stereotypes!

            • “The reason it may not be widely supported at the cultural level has less to do with it being egalitarian or not and more to do with the fact that the anti-feminist backlash has painted feminism as some male-hating monolith that is out to destroy families so that women can take over the world.”

              If feminism were an egalitarian movement, after several decades of existence, there would be abundant clear, non-subjective, measurable, compelling, incontrovertible evidence to prove that it is egalitarian.

              No such evidence exists. If such evidence existed, it would make it impossible to “paint” feminism in any untrue way, as you claim it has been.

              “So there is this giant misconception that prevents people from identifying as feminist, even if they do espouse feminist ideology.”

              Sorry, I respect women far too much than to contend that the majority women’s rejection of feminism is due to their ignorance, that they are so clueless as to be easily duped by propaganda, such that only feminists are intelligent and aware enough to figure out the truth. That’s preposterous. Most women are intelligent and informed, and have made their decision based on what they have personally observed over the decades of feminism’s high profile existence.

              “Because the goal of equality cannot be achieved with one gender pitted against the other, or without including all persons in pursuing equality. It means we have to listen to one another, really listen.”

              Do you not understand that to the rest of us (including the majority of women who reject it) their theories (as presented) are, in fact, “one gender pitted against the other. . .”, not actual listening, just ranting and railing against men, boys and their oppression of women, patriarchy, rape, rape culture, objectification of women’s bodies, male privilege, on and on.

              People would respect feminism more if they admitted what feminism really is, a women’s advancement movement not an equality movement.

            • I’m not going to engage, Eric. I understand you’re coming from a place of mistrust of feminism. The things you’ve described feminism to be just aren’t feminism in my experience in feminist circles.

            • My comments are based on experience in discussion and reading feminist views, theories, arguments, and perspectives. It’s experience not mistrust.

              I don’t doubt that your experience is different. As I said above, those inside feminist circles see things very differently than men and women in general do.

            • And I am also speaking from experience, and your assertions don’t match my experience. I’m merely suggesting that you’re applying a very general and reductionist view of feminism to a movement that is not at all monolithic.

            • Of course they don’t. As you said, your experience is inside the feminist circle, where that the rest of us consider clearly unjustified anti-male views are considered benign or righteous indignation.

              Just as the Tea Party has some variety within its ranks, there are certain core principles they hold in common, lest they are all Tea Party members.

              Likewise, feminists must share certain core ideologies, otherwise they would refuse to call themselves feminists, as most women do. That they choose to ID with the movement is evidence of common views. Thus, it largely is not totally but certainly largely monolithic.

              For example, I haven’t found any feminists who reject feminist concepts such as male privilege and rape culture and who truly spend equal time in discussing and working to address issues that men want addressed (not to be confused with things feminists want changed about men) as female issues.

            • “I’m merely suggesting that you’re applying a very general and reductionist view of feminism to a movement that is not at all monolithic.”

              Aren’t you doing the same in your denial of his assertions and experiences?

            • Whether it’s a monlith or not doesn’t make much difference since even the most ardent man-haters are welcome in the movement.

            • So much for really “listening” to what others have to say. if what they say doesn’t fit your preconceptions, then dismiss it as uninformed, based off mistrust (never actually self criticising to determine if that mistrust is justified), etc.

              You yourself have admitted you don’t know a lot of feminist sites because you don’t spend much time on the internet (and you refuse to be self critical of feminism, despite many feminists and ex feminists jumping ship for precisely the reasons being described to you), yet you feel justified speaking on behalf of all of feminism, and claiming those of us who have had these experiences are wrong. And then you have the gale to tell us we need to listen better?

            • I’m not speaking for all of feminism. I’m speaking to my experiences of feminism and how it manifests itself in my life and my work. I do not refuse to be self-critical of feminism. I will assert AGAIN – feminism is not a monolith. There are inevitably going to be things that different feminists do not agree on. That is the nature of any group of people.

              I have not said that anyone who has had any experience is wrong. And yes, I do think you need to listen better (because if you really read what I was saying, none of the things you’ve just asserted are things I’ve said). But we all need to listen to one another, better. We can become clouded by defensiveness (myself included) and then are not effectively reflecting on what the other is saying.

              I’ve also not at all denied Eric, or any other commenter, his or her experiences. I’ve acknowledged them repeatedly.

            • And yet you refuse to acknowledge the factions of feminism that create the very perception we are discussing. You have claimed that feminism is not male-hating, yet let Judy’s comment that “Rape and domestic violence is overwelmingly forced upon women vs men. To say otherwise tries to distracts from the issue” go unchallenged, despite you claims of acknowledging male victims in your own work. When she claims “If you speak out. If you want real equality, rights, awareness, yes FEMINISM then you’re labeled a femnazi.”, why do you not tell her that what is needed is for both genders to listen to each other, and stop blaiming the other as she did throughout her post. Why is it my comments that point out the anti-male attitudes found in her post that you felt the need to address, and not the anti-male commentary that prompted that response?

              This is what I mean by being self critical. If anti-male attitudes can be freely spoken without egalitarian feminists challenging them, why should anyone believe the alleged egalitarian feminists don’t just see those that are hateful as doing the dirty work.

              “I will assert AGAIN – feminism is not a monolith.”

              And yet, when it is pointed out to you that there are feminists that have earned the very perceptions that you rail against, you deny it and claim it is more likely false propaganda and myth’s that create those perceptions, and not feminists outside your influence. When prominante 70′s feminists spoke openly that traditional nuclear families must be destroyed before women can be “free”, does this promote an anti-family perception of feminism? Can it be said that acknowledging these types of comments, which I have never seen another feminist challenge (who didn’t then get ejected, as C H Sommers did), is promoting a false myth?

              “But we all need to listen to one another, better.”

              Then I sugest you start by listen to others when they say the reputations feminism has garnered, while perhaps not applicable to all, are not undeserved. And that, perhaps, it is best that you find out why those perceptions exist, and judge for yourself if the movement you believe you exist, is truly what is being represented by and large. And if it isn’t, what you wish to do about it. Burying your head in the sand, refusing to acknowledge the reputations aren’t just false propaganda and hatful, uninformed myths, and choosing not to engage with anyone who promotes those perceptions will not serve you well, and only goes against the very “we must all listen” assertion you are making, from up on high your pedistal.

              “I’ve also not at all denied Eric, or any other commenter, his or her experiences.”

              The bellow quote actually is a denial of other’s experiences, in your attempt to suggest that anti-feminism is not based on experience and evidence, but propagation, myths, misconceptions and lies.

              “The reason it may not be widely supported at the cultural level has less to do with it being egalitarian or not and more to do with the fact that the anti-feminist backlash has painted feminism as some male-hating monolith that is out to destroy families so that women can take over the world. Anti-feminist rhetoric is everywhere, and there are a lot of myths of feminism that are promulgated. You ask people who don’t know much about feminism what it is and you hear the same things every time – bra burning, man-hating, child-hating, lesbians who want to take over the world. So there is this giant misconception that prevents people from identifying as feminist, even if they do espouse feminist ideology.”

            • People tend to seek out information that is congruent with their worldview. It matters not what I say or how I say it. You will find a way to perceive it in a manner that is congruent with your view of feminism.

              What I said does not at all negate an acknowledgement of Eric’s experiences. I didn’t say that there are never legitimate concerns about feminism. To refuse to acknowledge that there has been an anti-feminist backlash that is not entirely based on a resistance to some ‘anti-male’ agenda would be as remiss as me saying that Eric’s concerns regarding feminism are invalid.

              However, this is becoming a divisive argument, and that is not my intention. I’m not going to go back and forth in an unproductive manner, because that’s not really accomplishing anything.

            • Doing the same thing seldom yields different results. As long as the anti-male agenda feminists are welcomed, supported, and defended, those who choose to identify with the movement are making a statement of support and agreement with their ideologies. Hence, their anti-male agenda will continue to define the movement.

    • @Jody
      RE: Domestic violence and rape. In the last year of the recent CDC report, male and female rape (forced to penetrate and being forcefully penetrated) had pretty much equal numbers of victims of male and female, with 40% female perpetrators and 60% male perpetrators. Many many many domestic violence studies show it to be a major problem for both genders, some saying equal levels, even the CDC report showed neck n neck for psychological aggression alone if I remember correctly.

      I do like how you said ignoring statistics because that is what quite a lot of people are doing, we have statistics showing female perpetrated violence against men is on the rise to the point it’s becoming equal in some cases.

      “We don’t need to even ask why men are doing this, the responsibilty falls back to the women. ”
      We need to ask why WOMEN and men are doing this, the responsibility falls back to both genders.

      Most of the anti-feminist talk I see on this website is anti-gynocentric feminism, see how you used snark and degrading talk about the “poor white male guy”? Well, even white men have rights issues and gendered issues to deal with, gender issues are NOT comparable to racial issues, they’re 2 very separate things. Many of the anti-feminists are PRO-egalitarian, and I see many of them desire to see more egalitarian feminists instead of the gynocentric feminists and radicals who LOVE to insult men, act as if men have no issues of importance and do the whole “butwomengetitworse”/oppression olympics routine. It’s tiring and it does so much harm to the name of feminism because it treats feminism as a sexist entity, makes men feel extremely unwelcome and pushes them out. Funnily you get others asking why aren’t there more men in feminism? If I wanted to see self-flagellation and talk of male sin I’d reach the bible.

      Feminism is 2 very clear and distinct entities to many people, 1 is gynocentric and through ignorance and promoting gendered laws seems to actually harm men, the other is egalitarian and simply wants everyone to be equal. I’ve rarely seen an anti-feminist that didn’t agree with and want more of the latter!

  27. My “poor white male” comment refers to anytime a woman speaks out about issues affecting women the rhetoric is oh some guys get beat/raped by women to. The point is to dimish the realities for women by these comments. No one should be raped or beaten and by all means start a mans group to spread awareness. If you did and females were commenting oh women get raped to. You can clearly see the purpose would be to undermine your cause.

    The facts are 1 in 6 women will be raped. Domestic violence is perpartated more towards women as well as kidnapping and forced prostitution. Female strip clubs outnumber male strip clubs 10 to 1. Pornography is only a woman doing whatever a man says with little concern for her pleasure and is filled with names like sl*t, b*tch, etc,

    There are many feminists fighting against rape, violence, and for women and childrens rights. Your media fantasy created by this patriarcial society is part of the problem. What about those handful of radicals eh? What about the thousands of feminists that do good work fighting for victims? Much of which is fueled by societal factors and the objectification of women. The attitudes and beliefs of society create these tendancies to objectify and abuse women.

    Your an abuser what do you think when you hear feminists are scum? A conversation quickly shut down with no thought as to any of the issues? It is so accepted to use and lie to women for sexual objects, many men believe the myth their genetics control them taking no responsibility. There are may dysfunctional beliefs against women that need to be heard and changed. We need to all be seen as the people we are.

    Regardless my opinion will fall on deaf ears.

    • “If you did and females were commenting oh women get raped to.”
      Quite a few comments like that happen here on the articles discussing male victimization, it’s quite weird to see but I’ve seen quite a bit of it over the various feminism/masculism sites with comment sections, even Hugo Schwyzer and a few other feminist authors would do it in their own article!

      “Your an abuser what do you think when you hear feminists are scum? ”
      Something others and I have tried to do is show people there seems to be 2 feminism mindsets, 1 is gynocentric and only focuses on female issues whilst the other is egalitarian and simply wants to help all of us in society.

      “The facts are 1 in 6 women will be raped. Domestic violence is perpartated more towards women as well as kidnapping and forced prostitution. ”
      ht tp://1in6.org/ – Seems 1 in 6 males are sexually abused in childhood, team that up with the CDC stats showing fairly equal rates of rape (if you include both forced penetrated and forced to penetrate) for a 1 year time period alone then I would suggest both genders probably are much much closer to parity in victimization than previously thought.

      A wide variety of studies even suggest domestic violence is fairly equal between the genders in the rate it happens, but do show females get injured more due to size differences. I believe a lot of damage is done psychologically so focusing on the physical damage isn’t a great idea, the most debilitating parts of the abuse and bullying I suffered weren’t the physical alterations but the psychological abuse. Words can REALLY tear someone apart and whilst physical abuse injuries will probably be higher for women due to the extra strength men have, neither gender seems to have an edge when it comes to psychological abuse so I view that as very serious.

      I’ve been reading up quite a bit on abuse, the various statistics, trying to figure out my own experiences but on that path. Based on what I’ve read, seen, talking to various people, reading lots of these comment areas, I believe the rate of victimization for domestic violence is closer to parity than most realize. I’m not sure if it’s simply reported more now or if something in society changed the balance, I also think it varies quite a bit on culture and area. I truly wouldn’t be surprised that some areas might have more male victims and more female perps, and others the reverse.

      Everything I thought I knew about abuse has been changed recently especially with new stats like the CDC report in interpersonal violence. But even so I actually dislike the whole oppression olympics that occurs when people discuss abuse, and I wrote this comment simply to point out that abuse against men, even by women seems to have increased to the point of parity in some cases. So when I hear people say DV, rape is mostly towards women I can’t help but wonder if that is really the case since there seems to be a lot of evidence now against it. I can see in the past that it was very much a gendered issue, but it really does look like it’s changed in U.S.A, Australia, the U.K.

      I truly believe we need to drop the gendered look at some of these issues, start advocating against it in all forms. That means to not show rape as JUST men raping women, but men > women, men > men, women > men, women > women, etc. The campaigns against domestic abuse, sexual abuse have really failed in showing all combinations and it’s left a hell of a lot of victims unhelped. In Australia we have violence against women, Australia says no campaigns yet nothing for females abusing males. What good does that do? Seeing abuse ONLY as a gendered issue just ignores those who don’t fit that stereotype.

      Tl:dr version, seeing abuse and violence as gendered is harmful especially as studies are showing it’s much closer to parity than many think.

      “Pornography is only a woman doing whatever a man says with little concern for her pleasure and is filled with names like sl*t, b*tch, etc,”
      Have you watched much pornography? Pretty much everything I watch doesn’t use those terms and both the male and female are extremely interested in each others pleasure, quite a lot of videos are focusing on the males only, AND the females only. Pornography varies WILDLY, there are so many genres, so much variety that it’s impossible to define pornography as “only a woman doing whatever a man says..”. Amateur porn also shows a lot of real couples both enjoying sex, both get pleasure and many don’t have any difference in pleasure, power, etc. I’ll admit there is quite a lot of bullshit in the pro-porn but even pro-porn varies quite a bit as I’ve seen quite a few videos without the negative language and all the combinations of who gets pleasure, who has control, including a 50:50 everyone gets their benefits (not sure what else to call it, they seem pretty equal at least).

      Haven’t seen many stats on trafficking for sex and kidnapping so I can’t really comment on that. I have read that human trafficking for labour was higher in number than sex trafficking and that it affected both men and women, do you know if that is true or not? I tried to find the stats for it but failed since most I could find would only talk about sex trafficking and focused heavily on females.

      Many are listening, many might have different opinions though. I try my best to listen to both sides of the gender debate, all I see is both have it bad in various areas and these days I can’t say for sure which is worse and quite frankly it might be impossible to say which is worse. All I know is a lot of humans are suffering and that bothers me, and I want everyone to be supported.

    • Mark Neil says:

      “My “poor white male” comment refers to anytime a woman speaks out about issues affecting women the rhetoric is oh some guys get beat/raped by women to.”

      The problem is that when people speak out against rape/domestic violence, it is framed in a gendered way that suggests only women suffer it. This is false and needs to be corrected. The fact that even our LAWS have gendered these problems shows what damage this causes. by law in the US, a man is not capable of being raped by a woman unless she uses a tool. Is this right? Is it wrong for me to note this is unfair? Is it wrong for me to point out that, when someone says women are raped more often than men, that the very definition of rape plays a significant part in making that true (after all, if a man being forced to have sex isn’t rape, how can we expect the numbers to be the same?)?

      The fact is, our laws an society already look to address these issues for women. But they still ignore the issues for men. Your “poor white male” comments are doing precisely what you claim others are doing. Pointing out that men are victims too does not reduce the severity of the issue unless you actually believe men are undeserving of support and assistance. Is that what you believe? If not, then explain to me how acknowledging men are victims too in any way distracts from the problem?

      “by all means start a mans group to spread awareness.”

      People have. These groups not only get people like you saying “what about the women”, but also get attacked as discriminatory against women, and are denied funding unless they help women too.

      “The facts are 1 in 6 women will be raped.”

      Raped or sexually assaulted? they are not the same thing, but are used interchangeably by dishonest feminist activists. And how many men raped or forced to penetrate? Can you even give a value, or do you believe that just looking at how bad it is for women somehow makes it a woman’s issue?

      “Domestic violence is perpartated more towards women”

      This is highly contested by many, MANY studies. The fact you aren’t even willing to acknowledge that some studies don’t support your view demonstrates who has the deaf ears.

      “as well as kidnapping and forced prostitution”

      This too is contested. Furthermore, forced labour is a far more common act than forced prostitution, and that is perpetrated against boys moreso than girls. By choosing only to concern yourself with prostitution, you are 1) making kidnapping and forced anything into a gendered issue 2) actually burying the instances of male suffering.

      Your views on female sexuality in strip clubs and porn show you for a hateful radical.

      “There are many feminists fighting against rape, violence,”

      No, they aren’t. they are fighting for more power for women. If they were fighting against domestic violence and rape, they wouldn’t be gendering it now that evidance shows it isn’t a gendered issue.

      “and for women and childrens rights”

      Are you aware that VAWA STOP funding guidelines in many states actually forbids the funding of programs and services that exclusively help children of domestic or sexual violence? Are you aware the united nation and many other constitutions actually say it is a childs right to know and have a significant relationship with both parents, but many feminist groups oppose given children any such rights to their fathers? So no, feminist groups aren’t working towards children’s rights, they are actually working against them. They only use the claim to helping children to garner support and empathy.

      Your last full paragraph (starting with “Your an abuser”) is very much the anti-male rhetoric this articles author claims feminism isn’t about, and ironically contradictory. You paint men as domineering sex fiends who see women as sexual objects, then claim we need to be seen as the people we are… do you feel only women are people?

    • Jody writes:
      “Female strip clubs outnumber male strip clubs 10 to 1. Pornography is only a woman doing whatever a man says with little concern for her pleasure”

      I thought feminism was about respecting women doing what they want with their body?
      what pure unmitigated drivel.

      Feminism is about the total infantalization of women. That is why feminism has to hold onto the victim label for women exclusively–feminists (like Jody) want equal rights for women, but not equal responsibility.

      When a women is to be held accountable for her actions, feminists want available a legal definition as victim (read: child) so that anything bad she does can be blamed on the nearest adjacent male (even when she is 35 and he is 13, as in boys who are statutorily raped having to pay their rapists child support).

      PLEASE grow up and realize women are not de factor victims due to their gender anymore (and probably less) than men are.

  28. I’m sure females do comment that women get raped to when there are male rape groups who speak out. Is this ok? I never said it was. Men do need to feel comfortable and supported to report such things.

    However to say men are raped in the world as much as women is simply false. Nor are they beaten as much. Go to Afghanistan, Africa, etc, this is a global problem. Women are sexually trafficked more, are child prostitutes, strippers, etc, far more than men. There are issues that affect women on a far greater scale and awareness needs to be spread. How this threatens or diminishes that is does happen to males as well is not the issue.

    As far as pornography. The violence is subtle and so accepted as to be invisible. The top 50 best selling porn videos were coded for violence against women, for how many times she was given oral, vs a man, To how often she was called names vs being called beautiful or pretty, etc, How often she was gagged and hit/slapped. You will be surprised how often this happens.

    This video is a bit boring with a long introduction but shows the study here. Which is very eye opening:

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4489853897776743667

    As far as what an abuser thinks I was slightly quoting Jim Lundy who is a male and has been a male abuse counselor for over 15 years. He asks when you make disparaging remarks towards women to ask yourself what an abuser thinks and how it validates his belief women are less than human and he is entitled to abuse them. He also points out how saying it happens as much to males is simply a tactic to divert the issue from the fact that overwhelmingly domestic violence is against women.

    His book is here:

    http://www.amazon.com/Why-Does-He-That-Controlling/dp/0425191656

    And finally Gail Dines which breaks down the history of porn culture and consumerism and why likely many of you think women issues are not a problem.

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=5003155114018800220

    Your comment oh raped or attempted rape. Again, diminish, diminish the issue. Anytime a woman speaks out and defends against rape or abuse there comes the comments to try and marginalize it. This is part of the problem of why it occurs in the world. This complete lack of awareness. Many men do fight for women’s rights but not enough. There is not enough done in the world and the porn media wants to silence us. We’re exaggerating, we’re trouble makers, cutting in on a man’s fun, femi-nazis. Yes who wants to be associated with such a group? I can see why the pressure to leave like the author of the original story is hard to deal with. Feminism is not a bunch of radicals. It is a self-imposed statement that I will fight for the rights of the abused, the downtrodden, the hurt, the women of this world who suffer. Many who still cannot own property or vote. The issues are real.

    I also do work with a holocaust survivor group and help those who are poor in impoverished countries. People have a lot of stupid ideas of why people are poor in third world countries and I explain the history, economy and facts and day to day life of those in these countries when I hear absurd comments. Maybe I am against rich people and hate them? This is as absurd as saying I am anti-male because I am a feminist. That fighting for women’s rights diminishes male rights. People have a lot of wrong ideas about feminism. Not wanting rape and abuse is hardly imposing on your rights as a male or trying to take over the world or lock you in a cage. But standing up for it is the rhetoric of why I do this, that I constantly must hear for spreading awareness of such issues. There are radicals in every group everywhere. That this is focused on to destroy women and men from speaking out on women’s issues is part of the multi-layered problem.

    Rape statistics are from RAINN.

    http://www.rainn.org/get-information/statistics/sexual-assault-victims

    • Factory says:

      What about da wimminz?

      • To the egalitarian feminists, read the above comment and reverse the genders and you’ll get an idea of when people say “whataboutthemenz” and the insulting nature of it.

        “Your comment oh raped or attempted rape. Again, diminish, diminish the issue. Anytime a woman speaks out and defends against rape or abuse there comes the comments to try and marginalize it. This is part of the problem of why it occurs in the world. This complete lack of awareness. Many men do fight for women’s rights but not enough”
        How is the issue diminished, it’s actually reinforced because it shows men TOO are raped so their is much more awareness needed. Why focus on one? I’ve seen this “diminish” tactic used way too much to dismiss the severity of male rape victimization in favour of female rape vicitimization (and actually on other issues too). It’s pretty much “butwomengetitworse”. The CDC stats show pretty close to equal levels of rape between the genders, yet you dismiss this by bringing in the “but women here get it worse” argument. Different area, different culture, very hard to compare! How about we focus on certain areas and tailor make solutions for them because what is needed here could be different somewhere else, BUT we should do it for all areas.

        “However to say men are raped in the world as much as women is simply false. Nor are they beaten as much. Go to Afghanistan, Africa, etc, this is a global problem. Women are sexually trafficked more, are child prostitutes, strippers, etc, far more than men. There are issues that affect women on a far greater scale and awareness needs to be spread. How this threatens or diminishes that is does happen to males as well is not the issue.”
        There are issues that affect men on a far greater scale. Violence as a whole has 4-6x more male deaths, it disproportionally is used against men. Rape, sexual abuse, physical abuse, psychological abuse happens at great levels against both genders worldwide, many issues affecting women actually affect men so advocating JUST for the women without advocating for the men as well is only half the effort. Quite frankly rape statistics seem to suffer quite a lot of bias, are the stats you are using including men being forced to penetrate?

        As for the porn issue, every man and woman I know who look at porn DO NOT pay for it. There may be quite a large market for it but there is also a huge amount of pirated material, and free material made. So to compare porn tastes we’d have to study a very large portion of people from those who buy it to those who don’t. You generalize about pornography and speak of it in a way that treats it as quite similar but the existence of some bad porn doesn’t mean ALL of it is bad. I totally agree and hate the bad stuff, which is why the good stuff needs to be spread so people can get off in a respectful manner. Slapping, gagging, namecalling, etc is such a huge turn-off, the pro industry has a lot to answer for and hopefully the amateurs will really push a more decent experience through without the problems as much as possible.

    • Jasmine says:

      I think any reasonable person, whether they identify as feminist, MRA, or anything else, would agree that sexual violence, mental, emotional, or physical abuse committed by any person against any person is not okay. For Jody, or anyone, to be particularly concerned with violence against women doesn’t mean she’s not sensitive to or concerned with violence against men. The wonderful thing about feminism is that it’s not merely about elevating the status of women to a state of equality, but about deconstructing cultural institutions that maintain inequality – of males and females, of racial minorities, of the gender nonconforming, of the poor and homeless, of the LGBTQ community. As a woman, I may sometimes have more insight into inequality women face, but it doesn’t mean I ignore or don’t appreciate the ways in which males are also subjected to systemic oppression.

      Mark – I don’t know why you are blaming feminists for not wanting fathers to be with their children? I’m a feminist and it certainly isn’t my position nor my experience that this is the case. I’m very immersed in academia, and I’ve not once encountered a feminist text that suggested fathers shouldn’t be permitted involvement with their children. Quite the contrary.

      I think what happens in these conversations a great deal of the time is that people become mired down with their perceptions of feminism (much of which is fueled by an anti-feminist cultural discourse). I’ve seen it time and again that men (and women) become defensive and then miss some valid and reasonable points made by feminists because they’re so busy being defensive. The anti-feminist backlash has done its work well, creating division and mistrust. I admit that I also sometimes get my back up when talking to MRAs, and spend so much time focusing on elucidating the fallacies they’re espousing or the issues they’re overlooking that I miss opportunities to engage in a discussion about the things we do agree on and perhaps arrive at a consensus that every human being deserves dignity and respect, that any violence against any person is bad, and that in search of equality we all need to work together and listen – really listen – to what the other is saying, ratheyr than diminishing or one-upping their experiences.

      In terms of pornography, we live in a very pornified culture. It isn’t that objectification itself is inherently bad, but when images of women (and increasingly men) are presented in such a unidimensional manner, it becomes problematic. And in pornographic film specifically, I would suggest that a lot of the more mainstream porn is focused in a male point of view, and can be (but isn’t necessarily) very demeaning to women. Oftentimes women in porn look like they’re in pain, rather than enjoying the intimacy. At the same time, there is also sex positive porn, feminist or female-centered porn (although sometimes I wonder who has decided what constitutes “female-centered”, but that’s a lengthy discussion for another day) that presents alternative perspectives within pornography. I don’t think that porn or sex work (like prostitution) are inherently bad. But, we need to be cognizant of how portraying women consistently and pervasively as sex objects impacts not only women’s self-perceptions, but males perceptions of women, women’s desires, and how to relate.

      If you come forth to conversations about feminism with the notion that feminists hate men, never shave, are anti-children, lesbian, and intend only to elevate themselves to rule the world, then you’re going to miss out on important things that are being said and on the opportunity to calmly and rationally foster discussion from an alternative perspective because you’ll be so busy arguing instead of conversing.

      • Eric M. says:

        “I think any reasonable person, whether they identify as feminist, MRA, or anything else, would agree that sexual violence, mental, emotional, or physical abuse committed by any person against any person is not okay.”

        Except that feminists don’t take that position on a consistent basis. We can all cite hundreds of feminist sponsored websites that equate domestic violence with violence against women, which evidences a tolerance for violence against men. I haven’t found a single feminist sponsored website that denounces the fact that men are far more likely overall to be victims of violence in general or the fact that female on male violence is encouraged, defended as often deserved (based on something he said or did), excused (as if her reasons were justified), and considered comedy (tens or hundreds of thousands of examples of this on TV and in movies)

        All of this is clear evidence of feminist lack of concern about violence against men.
        I have heard feminists make such comments many times but have not once seen any evidence of what they’ve done that men were complaining about needing done (not to be confused with what they wanted to do to men)

        These are not inaccurate perceptions of feminism. These are easily seen and publicly documented facts.

        “The anti-feminist backlash has done its work well, creating division and mistrust.”
        Not even close to accurate. The majority of women see if very differently, which is why they reject being associated with feminism. I respect women as intelligent and able to make informed choices, not ignorant and helpless victims of propaganda.

        “If you come forth to conversations about feminism with the notion that feminists hate men, never shave, are anti-children, lesbian, and intend only to elevate themselves to rule the world, then you’re going to miss out on important things that are being said and on the opportunity to calmly and rationally foster discussion from an alternative perspective because you’ll be so busy arguing instead of conversing.”

        I have read dozens of male-bashing articles here and elsewhere and have seen their arguments supported, agreed with, and defended by feminists, rather than denounced and rejected, even by the so-called egalitarian feminists. I’m not sure how bashing someone can possibly be expected to create an environment conducive to productive discussion.

        • Jasmine says:

          This is not evidence of feminist’s lack of concern. This is simply evidence that the sites you’ve seen that proclaim to be feminist have contained information that you’ve interpreted thus. Stop generalizing. This would be like me saying that because I’ve seen a lot of vitriol on MRA websites, that any man or woman who proclaims to be an MRA is clearly hateful toward women, anti-feminist, a jerk, and doesn’t care about women’s rights. But I’m not going to say that because even if that may be true of some MRAs I’ve encountered, to generalize is not productive, does not lead to productive situations, and isn’t going to instigate the kinds of conversations that need to be had.

          You seem to have missed the part where I suggested that coming to these conversations with that anti-feminist lens that causes you to interpret everything a feminist says as somehow anti-male is not very conducive to the types of conversations and communication that needs to occur in order to move forward.

          • Eric M. says:

            This is simply evidence that the sites you’ve seen that proclaim to be feminist have contained information that you’ve interpreted thus.”

            Sorry. No interpretation involved. Noting a clear and long established pattern of behavior, with abundant evidence is not generalizing or interpreting. Supporting, expressing agreement with, and/or defending hateful views is evidence that the supporting and agreeing individual holds those views. I can point you to hundreds of examples right here. (I would be happy to provide examples)

            I came to the GMP with an open mind and have seen enormous evidence of feminism’s anti-male views, philosophies, accusations, arguments, and polices; some of them totally over the top in their overt misandry.

            “You seem to have missed the part where I suggested that coming to these conversations with that anti-feminist lens that causes you to interpret everything a feminist says as somehow anti-male is not very conducive to the types of conversations and communication that needs to occur in order to move forward.”

            Wrong again. If something it anti-male or anti-female, I will note it. If feminism would stop with its anti-male views, it could repair its reputation over time but it continues to reinforce it instead.

            • Jasmine says:

              You’ve clearly come to the conversation from a place of bias, and therefore the manner in which you interpret things IS coloured by the lenses you’re wearing. If it were veracious that you were not biased or anti-feminist, you wouldn’t have come to the conversation on the defensive. You are STILL generalizing, and you are still speaking in reductionist terms.

            • Not at all. As I said, I can provide many examples of feminist written articles of anti-male prejudice right here. That’s not bias. That’s the sad reality.

            • That actually is a type of bias. We tend to seek out information that is consistent with our worldviews. Bias isn’t inherently a bad thing. It only becomes potentially bad when we can’t/don’t/won’t recognize the biases we have.

              You keep saying you’re not biased, yet you continue to remain on the defensive. Nothing shall get accomplished from this conversation, because you’re arguing something that isn’t there. Can you provide me statistics on my feminism? On my daily interactions and the proportion of times I’ve helped males and females? If not, then it’s not really relevant to what I bring to the table. Statistics are all well and good, but one must critically consume them, and one must know when they’re not relevant.

            • Observing prejudice and discrimination and noting that it’s prejudice and discrimination is not bias; it’s noting a fact. There’s nothing defensive about noting facts. If anything the prejudice that has been documented is Offensive, not defensive.

            • Circular argument. Extricating myself to get something more productive done.

            • Please. Thank you. I’m disturbed by the support and defense of prejudice and discrimination.

            • The worst part is when someone is espousing prejudice but refuses to acknowledge it. It makes moving forward more than difficult.

            • True. Hence, the problem with feminism/ts

            • Of course. It must be the feminists. In your interactions with people, who’s the common denominator? Perhaps try being more receptive to others, and you might find that your preconceptions are quite inaccurate indeed.

            • Perhaps try listening and thinking about the facts. And looking in the mirror.

              I am far from alone. I am part of a very large majority who have observed feminism and it’s anti-male bias and prejudice.

              The writer of the article this was a response to walked away from the feminist movement. That had nothing to do with me.

              Most women refuse to even be associated with the feminist movement, let alone be involved at any level. That’s got nothing to do with me.

              Even fewer men want any association with feminism. Again, that’s got nothing to do with me.

              The problem is not with the vast majority of women and men who reject feminism. The problem is feminism itself.

            • I have and do listen. A lot. The author of this article (me) did not walk away from the feminist movement. I’m still feminist. As feminist as I was the day I wrote this article. :)

            • Ms. Jasmine, you wrote in response to a gentleman who dropped feminism for the same reasons I and most women and men never get involved in the first place.

            • I know which article you’re referring to. I was elucidating your prejudice. If you were not anti-feminist, as opposed to anti-prejudice, then you might have come to this post with a more receptive attitude. You cannot tell me that I do not work for equality, that I do not concern myself with the issues of people in general, or that I am some man-hating misandrist. We might have had a very productive conversation about the issues people face and what equality might look like, how we might work together to achieve that. Instead, you are stuck on the mantra ‘feminism is bad’. That’s not productive, and frankly it’s shortsighted.

              I have had some volatile interactions with MRAs who were hateful to feminists and women in general. That hasn’t turned me against MRAs because I know that these are all just people, that people differ, and that I cannot define everyone who self-identifies as MRA by the behaviour of others I’ve encountered.

            • “I was elucidating your prejudice. If you were not anti-feminist, as opposed to anti-prejudice, then you might have come to this post with a more receptive attitude.”

              Sorry, I cannot and will not be receptive toward bias and discrimination, even if it’s just lending tacit support to it by silent acceptance.

              “You cannot tell me that I do not work for equality, that I do not concern myself with the issues of people in general, or that I am some man-hating misandrist.”

              I never said anything about you personally. I spoke of the feminist movement and prejudice and discrimination that many feminists support. I will give an example below.

              I have heard many, many feminists claim to be for equality, but then go on to espouse the same prejudiced views and philosophies of the so-called extremists, possibly somewhat muted. I can give examples here.

              Very significantly, I have never, ever have I heard a professed “egalitarian feminist”, the ones who claim to love men, denounce a so-called extremist for their biased views, and publicly state that they aren’t feminists at all – that they don’t belong, that their hatred will not be tolerated. Their hate is met with silence,
              understanding, and/or defense and justification. If feminism were about equality, they wouldn’t be welcomed in the movement. But, they are.

            • I’m not asking you to be feminist, or to even stop being anti-feminist. I’m merely asserting that conversations are more productive when you set your biases aside (or at least recognize and mitigate them) so as to have productive conversations.

            • I have watched this and many exchanges similar on GMP (and other blogs with other people) and I always wonder how the conversation would go in person. Would there be more good humor? Would there be more of an ability to back up, translate, come to understanding. I love dialogue, but don’t understand how some of the conversation can just be repeats of “new information” “no”
              “questions and clarification” “No” so forth and so on. No common ground is sought, not just with “feminists” cause I’ve seen conversations like this in other spheres, but other groups. It’s so strange to me.
              I’ve been willing in many places in my life to examine my own confirmation bias, clarify my own thoughts, realign beliefs when new information comes in….I don’t relate.

            • Eric M. says:

              Jasmine, I’m not asking you to stop being feminist, just recognize the current and historic bias and misandry in within the feminist movement, stop pretending it doesn’t exist, and denounce it. The rest of the world sees it. Denying it is reminiscent of the emperor in Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Emperor’s New Clothes.”

            • Jasmine says:

              I didn’t think nor state that you’ve asked me to stop being feminist. What I am suggesting, and have been suggesting, is that rather than argue about what you think feminism means or what I believe it means, focus on productive conversation. My experience of feminism has been anything but what you proclaim it to be, and when I do see such things I do and will speak out against them. As I’ve suggested before, perhaps the milieu is different here in Canada. However, when others point out to me ways in which they feel that feminism is misandrist, I acknowledge and work with that. But this isn’t a one-sided effort. We live in a culture full of misogyny. I’m also going to recognize that and point it out. The misconception that feminism is about women in its third wave is particularly frustrating sometimes. Feminism concerns itself with equality of human beings. It’s not about gaining freedom for women at the expense of men. Some of the commenters here at GMP have opened my eyes to the different ways in which feminism is perceived, and some issues I’d not considered before, because I don’t allow my biases to inhibit the intake of new information or my communication with those with whom I might not agree. Rigid adherence to one’s position without consideration of another’s viewpoint is not going to lead to any growth or change.

              My point was, this whole discussion that ensued between the two of us was not at all productive. Spending all of that time and effort on telling me how awful or wrong feminism is could have been much better spent on action-oriented discussion. I’m merely pointing out how our biases (and I’m not suggesting I don’t have my own, because we all have biases) can sometimes cloud our perceptions and inhibit discussion conducive to change.

            • Mark Neil says:

              Pot, meet kettle.

          • Eric M. says:

            You’er missing the point. The argument was that it’s not true that men, as a rule, are “dropping out of fatherhood”.
            Do you not realize that creating a strawman is actually lying about someone? You continue to claim I said something I did not and then argue against what is, in fact, a lie.

            YOU used the term “dropping out of fatherhood”, NOT me. Children of single parent households are at a disadvantage in building a strong relationship with both parents, especially the non-custodial parent, which is most often the father. Hence, the changes your advocate, whatever advantaged they may have, have also created a situation where fewer children than ever have regular contact with their fathers. Congratulations.

            • Jasmine says:

              Your argument lacks cogency, and I’m not following where you’re getting these bold assertions from. When and where did I say anything about men dropping out of fatherhood?

              And still you’re missing the point (but illustrating my argument well). When you come to these discussions without a critical lens but rather with an anti-feminist lens, you’re likely to spend your time arguing, being defensive, and missing the entire point of the conversation. This is counterproductive.

            • I accidentally posted this here.

              I’m not anti-feminist, I’m anti-discrimination and prejudice. That is my issue with the feminist movement. I can provide examples here.

            • Jasmine says:

              Ah, I see. I couldn’t figure out where the fatherhood argument was coming from. :)

              If it were true that you’re not anti-feminist, you wouldn’t expend so much energy on your anti-feminist sentiment. I am being candid – when I hear MRA, I do have a lens through which I then begin to interpret everything that person says to me. I acknowledge this, and attempt to mitigate its effect as much as possible so that I can listen to the person, rather than getting caught up in vehement debate about MRA as a whole. You are relying on generalizations and your argument is reductionist. I am a feminist. I don’t identify with any of the things you’ve accused feminism of representing as yet. You are definitely coming off as anti-feminist, not anti-discrimination (an ironic statement you’ve made, given that you are discriminating against an entire group of people in your sweeping generalizations about feminists).

            • I am not against any group unless they/it adopts discriminatory and prejudiced views, which feminism has a history of.

              If feminism denounces its anti-male views and philosophies and truly embraces equality, it would have my support.

            • Is it ok to make positive generalizations? I’ve seen many made for feminism and have wondered if it’s any more or less helpful than negative generalizations.

              What I see isn’t so much as anti-feminism, but anti-gynocentricfeminism the most, there truly does look to be 2 major mindsets in feminism and one of them causes major distrust (being female focused only) as the other is basically another word for egalitarianism.

              These 2 clashing views seem to cause the world of confusion, it’s sad but I truly now do believe egalitarian feminists need to separate themselves by a label in order to be listened to as egalitarian. Feminism has become a trigger word to quite a few, and also a very confusing word. I’m not sure anti-feminists are truly to blame mostly for the backlash, quite frankly I think backlash is caused from a few radicals with loud voices mixed in with a gynocentric view of equality to the point of ignoring male issues. That seems to be the most common thing I see, men feeling ignored by many “feminists” and even copping scorn for mentioning male issues.

              I see 2 clearly different feminist mindsets to the point it’s a split group. There are just way too many comments online, offline, by people who question the egalitarian aspect due to seeing too much of the gynocentric aspect. I will admit that when I hear feminism, I wonder which version that person is because I find only one really listens and is helpful whilst the other too often will do the womengetitworse speech and dismiss male issues. I do not trust gynocentric feminism to handle male issues in the least because it really looks like any scrap of attention to male issues is just the after-thought of female issues. How could any male feel welcome there? It doesn’t feel very balanced and I can’t see how heavy focus on one gender will really do much for the world when focusing on both together I feel could REALLY do major difference.

              I see another facebook post on white ribbon campaign, and yet I ask myself where is the attention to the male victims? Why do we so often only look at half of the issue? I just had a conversation with someone tonight of the ways a young woman was emotionally and physically abusive to her partner, yet the consensus seemed to be that the guys are led to believe they actually need to ACCEPT that abuse as part of a relationship, accept being hit, and like it’s no big deal. I see females hitting n slapping their partners around others quite openly, joking about it, yet a guy initiating would cop an earful and possibly a fist or 3.

              All that after quite a few very public campaigns of violence against women, Australia says no/white ribbon campaign/etc. Violence against men, Australia doesn’t give a fuck seems to be the appropriate title. And what appears to be small and insignificant hitting, slapping, and the emotional manipulation it actually amounts to quite a bit of control. “Pussy whipped” might be a sexist term against women but instead of automatically seeing the harms it has in women, how about we also look at the harm the men suffer? It’s pretty much psychological abuse, it’s controlling behaviour, and I’ve seen how that can tear a man down.

              I don’t mind when people talk about issues women face, what I do mind is the absolutely deafening silence of men’s issues, ESPECIALLY by some who call themselves feminists and throw in the equality line. How about some balance because how are we going to end abuse if up to half of it goes unnoticed, unspoken about, unreported, treated as an anomaly and thus insignificant? When’s the last time you saw an ad on TV where it told women to stop raping men, stop hitting and abusing men? I cannot remember 1 single god damn tv or newspaper ad, and only know of 1 website (oneinthree.com.au) that actually talks about it which took a lot of digging around to find!

              I love the fact you know of egalitarian feminists Jasmine, I’d high 5 each one. Thing is, they are not visible enough, the gynocentrics have a heavy presence and the one-sidedness, dismissal of male issues is creating a lot of anti-feminism because feminism = gynocentric in many eyes it seems. I may be totally wrong but I am fearful I am right, publicity and public image are extremely important! The MRA’s have quite a negative public image because of the few misogynists, but feminism has that same negative public image because too many people run into the ones that harm the egalitarian image. A very basic comparison could be islam after 9/11, people that didn’t have much of a clue probably were informed by sensationalists, terrorism became extremely well known and I noticed quite a lot of anti-islam sentiment was born. There are most likely A LOT of great muslims who are awesome, but there publicity was overpowered by negative publicity.

              The most common anti-feminist comment I see on this site is basically this – Male (and sometimes female) goes to feminist area, brings up a male issue which ends up copping flack from gynocentrics and belittled, the egalitarian view they might have had of feminism cops a negative hit. It can sometimes take 1 incident like this, or quite a few and it’s enough to piss all over the good name of feminism. I believe feminists also see this in some of the mra areas, so when both go and find their like-minded fellows the generalizations and scorn can really build up! I’ve had this experience and it really pissed me off bigtime, the place I went talked about egalitarianism and that feminism was egalitarian and we didn’t have to rename the movement to include men. Sadly the kind of feminist I found there were mostly gynocentrics, 1 egalitarian would speak up but get drowned out by “this is a female space, men have the entire world” + “womengetitworse” mentality. I felt about as welcome as a the devil in a church.

              Thankfully I saw quite a few egalitarian feminists speak out here on the GMP which showed me these 2 versions of feminism, I really hope more people can meet the egalitarians because I 100% believe they are the ones along with egalitarians, and egalitarian mra’s, and whatever label that means the same damn thing pretty much will be the ones who totally combine forces, go voltron and bring in major change. Simply addressing male victims of violence AND the female victims I 10000% believe will do a massive amount to lowering the cycles of violence between generations, lower crime and mental illness and creating a safer society.

              That’s my dream, everyone getting along and working together because we have fusion power generation to discover and perfect, we have to make extremely cheap energy, extremely cheap safe drinking water, raise the living standards around the world and especially the education levels because we have to stick together as a species to survive decently in the future. How much energy, resources, time is wasted on the issues we have at the moment? What good does all this damn fighting, suffering do anyone?

            • Jasmine says:

              A resounding yes to your very last paragraph!! I don’t care if people disagree with me, or even if they have reasons to mistrust feminism. My only desire is that when talking with individuals of any orientation, we attempt to set our preconceived notions about what terms like ‘feminism’ mean aside and attend to the person and what the person is saying. I know I have a bias against MRAs and tend to become slightly defensive, so when talking to MRAs, I try to be cognizant of that and step back so that the conversation can be a productive one. Because in the end, nothing gets accomplished when we’re spending time hung up on arguing.

              And I know I’ve said this before, but I’ll just briefly iterate it, I’d never seen before this two sides to feminism that you speak of. All of the feminists I know, have worked with, and the feminist texts I’ve read have all been about equality (for every human being), concerned with all marginalized groups and all forms of inequality. However, through discourse on GMP, I have come to understand that some people’s experiences with feminism and feminists is different. I’ve yet to meet one of these ‘radical’ feminists, but I do concede that others’ experiences with feminism may have been drastically different from mine. Which is why I can understand coming to the table with biases. What I don’t understand is when an individual allows those biases to supercede productive conversation.

              So thank you, Archy, for participating in productive conversation. I think that we’ve both benefited from being able to listen to the other. :)

            • Thank-you, hopefully your feminism wins out vs the gynocentrics. The thing I see the most is many voices desperate to be heard but unsure of where to go to speak. I truly hope they find their space, and hope I find that egalitarian feminist website one day:P

            • Archy, there’s no use pal. She doesn’t even admit the existence of fgynocentrist feminists.

              According to her estimation, all of feminism is “wonderful.” Her word.

            • Are there manboobz style blogs for calling out the radfems?
              Google for the “Agent orange files” Jasmine if you want to see a taste of some of the radfems.

            • Mark Neil says:

              Not that I’m aware. As anti-feminist as many MRA’s may be, I don’t think we are so much so as to dedicate our livelihoods to exposing what is so easily found. Plus, it really is a sad thing, to dedicate yourself to one big ongoing ad hominem attack upon a movement.

        • Look at the jezebel article in which the team of contributors at jezebel laugh about beating their boyfriends.

          It’s pretty clear what is going on. Feminism teaches men can’t be victims because it applies class-warfare labels to the genders: oppressor and victim. Therefore because men’s pain isn’t “systematic” it doesn’t matter.

          Even when it can be shown by factual evidence that in fact 50% of DV is female inflicted and men are 4 times more prone to stranger violence even when you include rape.

      • Mark Neil says:

        ” For Jody, or anyone, to be particularly concerned with violence against women doesn’t mean she’s not sensitive to or concerned with violence against men.”

        Are you prepared to argue that claiming women have it worst and that means it’s ok to completely ignore male victims, and should anyone even mention male victimization within the conversation, it should be deemed an attack against women… are you prepared to argue that this isn’t being insensitive or lacking concern for male victims? Are you seriously going to defend the idea that not letting men speak without interpretting it as an attack is somehow demonstrating a concern for male victims?

        “The wonderful thing about feminism is that it’s not merely about elevating the status of women to a state of equality, but about deconstructing cultural institutions that maintain inequality ”

        Such as VAWA? Or the ministry for the Status of Women Canada? Or the woman only health councils throughout most western nations, that lack a male equivilent? Or affirmative action? Or the feminist march that just ran through Toronto demanding that women (and only women) should be granted special protections against losing their jobs in the current economy? Your assertion of what’s so wonderful about feminism doesn’t stand up to the reality we live in.

        “but it doesn’t mean I ignore or don’t appreciate the ways in which males are also subjected to systemic oppression.”

        And yet you stand up and defend someone who claims that, pointing out talking only about women when discussing a non-gendered issue results in, and perpetuates systemic discrimination against men, is some kind of attack against women. Do you not see how your actions can make your words seem nothing more than lip service?

        “I don’t know why you are blaming feminists for not wanting fathers to be with their children? ”

        But that isn’t what I said, is it…

        “Are you aware the united nation and many other constitutions actually say it is a childs right to know and have a significant relationship with both parents, but many feminist groups oppose given children any such rights to their fathers?”

        Feminists aren’t opposed to fathers being with their children, they are opposed to fathers and children having a legally binding right, that suppercedes the mothers wishes. Feminist actions promote the idea that a father is perfectly entitled to a relationship with his child (and vice versa) up to and not further than what the mother is willing to allow. Feminists support a mothers unilateral control over to what degree that relationship is allowed to develope.

        Opposition to a rebuttable presumption of shared parenting, promotion of ever looser domestic violence laws, opposition to consequences for intentional and malicious misuse of those laws, opposition to the concept of parental alienation, calling fathers rights groups abusers lobbiests and men who want more power to abuse their ex’s, opposition to visitation enforcement laws. These all promote granting a mother the power to deny a father/child relationship if she so wish’s. It isn’t that feminists are opposed to father child relationships, it is they are opposed to denying mothers the ability to control and gatekeep that relationship.

        As to the remainder of your post, it is nothing more then trying to make feminism itself into a victim, to garner some sympathy as wrongly accused and targeted with slander. Feminists (those in power anyways) have earned the reputation feminism has. That reputation is based on, and supported by, the actions of prominant feminist organizations, including NOW and the women’s bar assocciation. If you think the reputation is unfair, perhaps you should stop defending those like judy, who perpetuate anti-male rhetoric, and instead start acting like the egalitarian you claim to be.

        “If you come forth to conversations about feminism with the notion that feminists …”

        I’d say the same applies to those like yourself who think feminism can do no wrong, except one is based on truth’s and actions, while the other on rose coloured glasses.

        • Jasmine says:

          I’m not going to do any more of the back and forth. I’ve heard your points (repeatedly) and am not interested in arguing about whose conception of feminism is right and whose is wrong. I’d love to have a productive action-oriented conversation, but otherwise this is counterproductive and I am not interested in doing any more of the back and forth. Every point I address you will have a rebuttal. That’s not a productive mode of communication.

          • “not interested in arguing about whose conception of feminism is right and whose is wrong.”

            Really? Why did you write a article defending feminism? Sorry, but the rest of the world’s perception of feminism is based on the history of the movement and the views and actions of feminists themselves.

            What is not productive is refusing to see what most people see and not even being willing to open mindedly analyze why feminism has a solid reputation for being anti-male, among women and men.

          • Mark Neil says:

            ” I’ve heard your points (repeatedly) and am not interested in arguing about whose conception of feminism is right and whose is wrong.”

            Then don’t come wincing and complaining when people trash feminism for what they see it to be. If you wish to make the choice to ignore peoples reasons for disliking feminism and seeing it as a largely hateful movement, to deem such a conversation as non-productive, then you have relinquished any right to claim others are wrong (without being a hypocrite, after all, for you to claim others are wrong is to deem that point important enough to discuss).

            “Every point I address you will have a rebuttal. That’s not a productive mode of communication.”

            I’m not following you? are you suggesting that because I can defend my position (with a rebuttal to each point you seek to address) better than you can, that it is not a productive conversation? Are you suggesting that in order to have a productive conversation (with you), I must ignore reality and submit to your views for no other reason than to let you feel important or correct? Personally, I’d suggest saying ” I am not interested in doing any more of the back and forth” is far more damaging to productive conversation than providing rebuttals to your points. Is this an example of feminist debate?

            • Jasmine says:

              The conversation has been not at all productive, and so I extricated myself from it. I am not ‘wincing and complaining’ about people trashing feminism. What I am doing is elucidating that there are many misconceptions that have lent to the anti-feminist sentiment espoused by many. Those who see feminism as a hateful movement aren’t seeing feminism for what it is. They’re seeing a conception of feminism that isn’t accurate. I’ve looked into some of the assertions made by commenters about how feminists have limited men’s rights, and what I found was that it was a simplistic and reductionist assertion that overlooked a number of other important factors that contributed to the issue.

              I am not suggesting that there should not be discussion, but when the discussion turns into a persistent argument without any attempt at listening or understanding the other side, it becomes counterproductive. And that is the key – the lack of listening. It’s not even the rebutting that would in itself impede this conversation, but the fact that the rebuttals would have been at the expense of any real attempt to understand or to listen. And, knowing exactly how this conversation would go, I decided not to engage. I don’t the time, energy, or desire to do so. If there was desire for productive communication, I’d be far more likely to set aside time to engage.

            • Mark Neil says:

              “What I am doing is elucidating that there are many misconceptions that have lent to the anti-feminist sentiment espoused by many.”

              No, what you are doing is telling people the anti-feminist sentiment people feel, the view of feminism as hateful, is based on misconceptions and not lived or witnessed experience. And you are failing to provide any evidence to support this claim, nor are you acknowledging any evidence to support their claims are valid (instead claiming to not want to go back and forth, but coming back anyways to once again state your opinions as truth (elucidating ?) and once again ignoring others opinions as “misconceptions”).

              “They’re seeing a conception of feminism that isn’t accurate.”

              According to you, with no evidence or reason to accept your view as truth, except your insistance that you are correct and your refusal to see others arguments, full stop.

              “I am not suggesting that there should not be discussion, but when the discussion turns into a persistent argument without any attempt at listening or understanding the other side, it becomes counterproductive.”

              And you don’t see how this is precisely what you have done, by refusing to even acknowledge the reasons people see feminism as hateful? You insist everyone elses opinions is based on misconceptions, and when anyone points to a supply of actual events, policies, councils, actions, oppositions, etc etc etc that demonstrate where their views are coming from, you ignore those points, claim they are being counter-productive, and claim your going to stop talking. Pot, meet kettle.

              ” And, knowing exactly how this conversation would go, I decided not to engage.”

              Then don’t engage, but that goes for the future as well, which is what I meant when I said don’t come wincing and complaining. Otherwise, all you’re doing is opening yourself up to ignoring another group of peoples assertions on why they feel the way they do, so you can ignore them and claim you know better based on nothing more than your faith.

              ” If there was desire for productive communication, ”

              Define productive communication as you see it, because from your last few posts, it seems to me you define a productive conversation as one that conforms to your beliefs, and does not challenge those beliefs.

            • Jasmine says:

              You’ve just illustrated my point nicely. You’ve taken pieces of what I’ve said and used them to evidence something that is not there. For me to talk about misconceptions of feminism is not at all to deny that some people have had negative experiences with feminists. In fact, I have repeatedly acknowledged those experiences when they have been mentioned by commenters here. I would anticipate the same amount of decency from others, to acknowledge that my experiences differ from that.

              A productive conversation is not defined by agreeance. I’ve never suggested that (of course, you have taken my words to mean that, which was why I had no intention of engaging with you). A productive conversation, as I’ve highlighted several times already, is one where both sides listen. I’ve listened, and acknowledged, that there are people who have had experiences with feminism that inform their negative views of it. I have felt heard by Archy, who was able to acknowledge and listen to my own perspective and my experiences of feminism. Archy and I don’t agree on everything (which illustrates that it is not agreement that makes a productive conversation), but we have been able to listen to what the other says, in spite of our own biases. Listening and being able to traverse to a place of common ground is productive. This strain of conversation is not.

            • Mark Neil says:

              “For me to talk about misconceptions of feminism is not at all to deny that some people have had negative experiences with feminists. ”

              But for you to claim that anti-feminism (as a whole) is based on misconceptions (rather than the lived experiences of a large number of individuals) IS to deny that those experiences are noteworthy. Sure you can acknowledge that some people have had negative encounters with feminism (in fact, a great many people, given the general hostility gaining ground in the general population), but by claiming that anti-feminism is based on misconceptions, you ardently refuse to acknowledge those experiences are (or even can be) the norm, instead presenting your own experiences as superceding all others. That isn’t listening.

              Furthermore, you have defended Judy’s position, injecting your own optomistic view of feminism onto rather hateful rhetoric (rhetoric another egal feminist on this site was capable of seeing and admonishing**), meaning you aren’t listening to her ether. This then calls into question your own experiences… after all, if you can’t see hateful rhetoric right in front of you, here, when we’re pointing it out, why should we believe you’re cappable of seeing it elsewhere? And if you are blind to the hateful rhetoric of the feminist movement, then of course your experiences are going to be all rainbows and blue skies.

              **http://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/why-i-believe-men-belong-in-the-feminist-movement/comment-page-2/#comment-117066

              Finally, you’re repeated avoidance when specific examples of large scale, political activism that demonstrates where negative views of feminism begin, is again making the choice to not listen. The destructive actions of feminists against fathers rights are an experience you too can witness, if you so choose. As is the greater feminist response to male domestic violence victims (such as demanding mankind innitiative in the UK, a privately funded men’s shelter (because they can’t get government funding) adhere to screening criteria no feminist lead, government funded women’s shelter has ever needed to even come close to adhering too, or the continued insistance that men are a marginal proportion of victims, based on feminist studies that as often as not don’t even examine male victimization, like a current study granted $5 million in Canada by status of women Canada). These are things that “SHOULD” exist within your experiences as well, because they’re virtually global in scope (perhaps not the specific examples, but the general gist of it all). But somehow, they don’t seem to be, you seem as cappable of ignoring it in general as you were with Judy, again, even when we point you to it. So, I need to ask, are you really listen (and I don’t just mean listening to me), or have you closed yourself off from hearing the hate within your own movement?

            • Jasmine says:

              You are entirely ignoring what I am saying and what I have said, selectively taking pieces that you wish to hear, and then interpreting them in ways that fit your vision of what I am saying and what feminism means. When I’m not being heard, I don’t care to continue a conversation.

            • Mark Neil says:

              You’re claiming I’m not listening doesn’t change anything. You still refuse to hear and see the hateful rhetoric within your own movement, even when it is pointed out to you, instead defending it as a misconception, as benign or ignoring it altogether, as if we never mentioned it. You still refuse to accept that, by claiming anti-feminism is based upon misconception, you are claiming your own experiences outweigh all others, and that this is a denial of all others who’s experiences conflict with yours, and who’s experiences are NOT misconceptions. And you still choose to run and deflect with accusations of not listening and ignoring what you’re saying, trying to take the moral high ground, when the truth is far more likely that I hear you all too clear, and you don’t like being so exposed.

              Therefore, if you don’t want to engage, then don’t. But don’t pretend it is because I won’t listen. Know that it is because you can’t stand to hear what we have to say.

            • Jasmine says:

              I am not pretending anything. I have disengaged precisely because you’re not interested in hearing anything outside of your already formed notions of feminism. And I’m not interested in having a circular and unproductive conversation.

              I assert that anti-feminism is based on misconceptions, even if it stems from experiences. Not because those experiences are not legitimate, but because those experiences inform a limited view of feminism. I have had some negative experiences with MRAs, but I’m not so reductionist or limited in scope to then assert that the MRA movement is in its entirety harmful to women and complete and utter crap. That’s the difference.

            • Mark Neil says:

              I should also point out that you have been attempting to dismiss me as “not a productive mode of communication” right from my very first comment to you. You have yet to even acknowledge, let alone address a single point I have made, instead trying to pretend you are above me. Hows that for not listening.

            • Jasmine says:

              My intent is not to be dismissive (although I do see how it comes off thus). However, the conversation is not productive. It is accusatory, circular, reductive, and unilateral. I’m not here to defend all of feminism. I cannot speak for self-identified feminists who behave in an oppressive manner. I cannot speak for the experiences of anyone else. I can, however, speak to my own experiences with feminism, working with a feminist organization, and my own goals as a feminist. I have dismissed this conversation because it was evident to me that your intent was not to empathize or come to common ground, but to assert that feminism is awful, bad, and anti-male. Anything I had said to address your points would have received a rebuttal. And my point here is that that is not constructive. That is not listening. Your rebuttals would then elicit rebuttals from me, and would result in neither side feeling heard, both sides on the defensive, and nothing is accomplished from such conversation. So, I do apologize that you have felt dismissed, but there is a legitimate reason I have chosen not to engage in such a conversation.

            • Mark Neil says:

              ” Not because those experiences are not legitimate, but because those experiences inform a limited view of feminism.”

              Are you aware this is the first time you have actually acknowledged a point I have addressed to you, at least in this thread begun by Judy?

              But I need to ask, where do you get off claiming it is everyone else whose experience informs a limited view of feminism? Is it not possible it is in fact you who has a limited view of feminism? Was it not you who said your experience with feminists outside your local group and GMP was fairly limited (honest question, I could be mistaking you for someone else on this)?

              This is my point. You are juxtaposing your experiences with those of everyone else and dismissing everyone else’s as limited or incomplete. That’s not listening, that’s telling us how it is.

              ” I have had some negative experiences with MRAs, but I’m not so reductionist or limited in scope to then assert that the MRA movement is in its entirety harmful to women and complete and utter crap.”

              “In it’s entirety”… This would suggest that you do feel it is in some ways harmful to women and/or complete and utter crap. Would it not then be offensive and/or dismissive of me to tell you your experiences with the MRA are limited and your view is based off misconceptions promoted by anti-MRA elements? Would this not be especially be offensive/dismissive if you could then point to example after example of large scale MRA activity (not just the rantings a few hostile individuals) that was harmful to women, and I proceded to try and take a moral highground and dismiss/end the conversation? because this is precisely what you have been doing.

              But the fact is, I suspect you would be hard pressed to show any large scale political activism/policies that were harmful to women, instigated by the MRM, let alone in the same numbers we are able to produce for feminist activim. So you are comparing apples and oranges. This also ignores the utter smear campaign many feminists perform on the MRM (I can point to several examples on this very site if you so wish), so while you personally may or may not be doing so, your feminist movement most certainly is.

              Next post:
              “I’m not here to defend all of feminism. ”

              But that is precisely what you are doing by claiming it is based on misconceptions. It is not a misconception if it is true and applicable, even if it may not be applicable to all.

              ” I have dismissed this conversation because it was evident to me that your intent was not to empathize or come to common ground,”

              Based on what? My first post was largely questions, and were virtually all based on your reaction to judy, your claims to feminism as a whole, and factors that flew counter to those claims.

              “but to assert that feminism is awful, bad, and anti-male.”

              I actually don’t believe that though. I have stated repeatedly within GMP that I believe feminism is about female empowerment, nothing more, nothing less. It is not about equality, but does not preclude one from being about equality. But I do believe the bulk of feminists, particularly the large scale feminist organizations (NOW, Women’s Bar, etc) focuses around a Dworkin/MacKinnon brand of feminism. I believe due to this bulk, that the negative reputation of feminism is well deserved, and not based on misconceptions, but on facts prevelent to the larger portion of the feminist movement.

              “Anything I had said to address your points would have received a rebuttal. And my point here is that that is not constructive. ”

              If my providing a rebuttal is not constructive, that takes a position that determining who’s position is correct/accurate/more likely/etc is not constructive. And by saying that it is ME providing the rebuttal (and you’re just saying things to address my points), and that it is MY rebuttal that makes it non-constructive, you are placing your position as superior to mine, or mine as insignificant overall. THAT is not listening.

              Furthermore, these are all presumptions of how the conversation would have gone, presumptions based on nothing more than a single post initiating a conversation, and your own biases.

              “but there is a legitimate reason I have chosen not to engage in such a conversation.”

              Perhaps legitimate to you, but it is nothing more than a dismissal and trying to claim the moral high ground to me. The fact you keep coming back, despite you insistence you do not wish to engage, just so you can attempt to maintain that moral high ground, further reinforces my opinion.

            • Jasmine says:

              I wonder how this conversation might play out in person. As it stands, I find you to be reinforcing all of my assertions about its nonproductivity.

            • Mark Neil says:

              Likewise, you reinforce my assertion that feminism is largely an exercise in psychological projection.

              And the fact you have repeatedly stated you do not wish to engage, yet here you are, needing to get the last word in, time and again. This (plus your repeated attempts to claim moral high ground) suggests the conversation in person would likely look like you talking over me so that I wouldn’t get my say, and if I asserted myself to get a chance to speak, I would be accused of being abusive or “mansplaining” (perhaps even using my large size to promote a bully perception of me), and you would once again claim the moral high ground (yes, I’ve had these discussions in person with feminists too, not just on forums). But this is all just speculation based on what I’ve witnessed here.

            • I’ve been watching this go on and while I’m sure there are things in both your arguments I could agree with, if we were in person, I’d stage some kind of humorous intervention like a shot drinking contest or a knitting circle.

              You both seem to be talking past each other (in my opinion) and I bet that if the convo was a personal/in person one it wouldn’t have gone this long this far.

              The internet has it’s limits, I always say (even though Lisa disagrees with me ;)

              I’ll do a shot now if you will! I’ve got me some bourbon!

            • Jasmine says:

              This is part of the reason I refused to engage in a discussion of the issues with you – you are equating your perception of one person with the entire movement, reinforcing my opinion that you take a reductionist position. Anything I would have said would have been positioned within that frame. If you had come to the conversation from a place of genuinely wanting to hear in addition to wanting to be heard, I would have felt far more compelled to engage in the discussion. Instead, you’ve employed thinly veiled insults, generalizations, and circular arguments.

              You clearly have a disdain for feminism, and it appears that you are unable to separate my feminist identity from my personhood. I am more than willing to have conversations with people who really want to hear and learn from my experiences, as well as share theirs from which I can learn. My initial assertion (based on a presumption given your previous commenting style) has been affirmed throughout this conversation that ensued. Had I responded to each of your points, you’d simply have gone through, quoted me out of context, and asserted why I was ‘wrong’. I want to converse about the issues, but I want to do so in a productive manner. I have set boundaries for myself in which I don’t put myself in situations where I know I will not be heard or acknowledged. If you wanted to approach this conversation differently, from a mutual desire to understand one another and discuss issues without making sweeping generalizations about a group of people, from a place of desire to understand, I’d be more than happy to do so. I just don’t have the energy to put forth in a conversation that isn’t leading to some greater understanding.

            • Jasmine says:

              In fact, I invite and welcome just such a conversation – one where both participants genuinely wanted to listen and learn from the others’ viewpoint. There was a time when I would have fully participated in a conversation revolving around circular arguments. However, I’ve learned that it is entirely unproductive, and nobody walks away from such conversations feeling as though they’ve accomplished anything.

            • I responded to Mark below, but my shot offer still stands.

            • Jasmine says:

              I concur, Julie, that the internet has its limits. :) And I also concur that there has been some talking past each other. It’s difficult when two people are staunchly rooted in a position to always be sensitive to the other.

              If I weren’t in the process of attempting to finish up my 3-hour lecture to be given tomorrow, I’d certainly take you up on the shot offer. :) If I finish it any time this evening, there will be a glass of vodka in my future. Cheers!

            • What Mark said.

  29. thehermit says:

    “I have and do listen. A lot.”
    You don’t, only act like that. That’s not the same.

  30. not buying it says:

    The statement ” feminism is the radical notion that women are people”
    had lost all it’s value & legitimacy in western countries for the most part due to realities of women & the power that they hold in these countries, not the rest of the world before any body jump into conclusions, and since feminism has been losing some grounds when it comes to pushing it’s gynocentric agenda, it has been camouflage it’s goals as humanist movement which is far from the truth,the movements actions & words speak louder then it’s claims,
    the real statement is ” feminism is the radical notion that women are for ever victims”
    to feminism the only real solution is gynocracy full stop.

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