Men to Feds: Are We in this Together, or Not?

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About Greg Peterson

Greg Peterson is a married, middle-aged transactional lawyer. His greatest accomplishments are having taught one daughter to Eskimo-roll a kayak and another daughter to bake.

Comments

  1. Eric M. says:

    “Are we in this together, or aren’t we?”

    The answer is obvious. If you are female, yes, they are right there in the trenches with you, fighting for you, ensuring that even though your services cost more, you won’t pay more. Why? Because you count. You health and life matter.

    But, if you’re male, good luck, pal. You’re gonna need it. You’re on your own. You life and health have little value. And, if you’re a minority male, yours has almost no value, with rare exceptions.

    This ACA situation is symptomatic of the discrimination against males and the indifference toward problems experienced by boys and men that is baked into the consciousness of our society. This is one of many examples where this is in evidence.

  2. Hmmm, yes well naturally if they are going to cover the cost of birth control etc then they should cover vasectomies, etc. That doesn’t make sense to me at all. I may be a woman and this is great for me, but well there should be that availability to men. Did they forget the other side of the equation? It always seems like some forgets that it takes a man and a woman to make a baby.

  3. “Erin Gloria Ryan put it well in her recent Jezebel post: “When a woman consents to sex, she is not also consenting to pregnancy.” A woman in the U.S. has a constitutional right to terminate hosting a fetus and unilaterally end any obligation to support and raise a child. A precisely opposite legal regime applies to men. When a man has heterosexual sex he is presumed to have consented to paternity and a couple of decades of child support. To control their own fertility, straight men, unlike women, are entirely dependent on complete abstinence or the highly competent use of very limited and often ineffective birth control methods.”

    This double standard is pathetic, and the justification I always hear to differentiate it is only about body autonomy…You can’t use a woman’s body against her will, but in saying that it also gives the privilege of opting out of motherhood should she choose to do so yet men are given the “keep it in your pants” line, we expect men to be more responsible under the current law.

  4. (R)Evoluzione says:

    Obamacare is a sad, farcical, massively overpriced violation of the Hippocratic Oath. Let’s hope SCOTUS does its job and strikes it down.

    • Anthony Zarat says:

      If the SCOTUS strikes down this horror, it will be the 3rd happiest day of my life.

      Fortunetly, the betting odds at intrade predict a strike-down with 62.4% certainty. I hope and pray, with every fiber of body and every drop of blood and every whisp of soul that I have, that this foul law goes down. If Obamacare stands, there will be no dawn for men and boys.

      • poester99 says:

        I believe that NO amendments of any kind were accepted from the GOP and thus none of then voted for it. So how is it that the GOP is always held responsible for failing to compromise? This big, expensive and very important bill was 100% compromise and diplomacy free, and they pushed it through without any wide consensus like other big historical game changers.

  5. “War Against Women”…my ass. Whether its healthcare or education, liberals have been waging a war against males for years.

    • Anthony Zarat says:

      So true :)

      Before Obamacare, discrimination against boys in K-12 was my #1 issue. Education is very important, but staying alive is even more important. Obamacare, the most cruel act of government discrimination since Jim Crow, MUST end.

      • Peter Houlihan says:

        I’ve mentioned it before, I really think the Jim Crow comparisons are out of line:

        Look at it from a black person’s point of view: You’re effectively saying to them that white men are now going through what they and their ancestors had to.

        Don’t get me wrong: the sexism inherent in Obamacare is bad, but it’s not slavery or lynchmobbing.

        • To play devil’s advocate, I would say that there doesn’t need to be a lynch-mobing.
          All that needs to happen is for violence against men (especially by women) to not get justice, which largely seems to be the case.

          Mary Winkler.

          • Anthony Zarat says:

            There seems to be some confusion.

            Jim Crow laws were not “mob justice”. Although some were genuine black letter laws, many established institutional jurisdiction over everyday aspects of life. The institutions did the “dirty work”. There was no need for lawmakers to associate their names with terrible injustice. Instead, this was left to beaurocrats.

            This is exactly, EXACTLY, how Obamacare works:

            1) All Americans are required to purchase “qualified” health care.
            2) A few dozen institutions (beaurocracies) are established to define “qualified”.
            3) All of these institutions are placed under the supervision of “women’s health” offices, staffed by “women’s experts.”

            The result is predictable and tragic. Every year, men and boys will lose more and more heatlh care benefits. This will free up more and more money to extend luxuries, privileges, and pampering for women. Expect critical lifesaving treatment for men and boys to have unaffordably high co-payments. Men will stay away from treatment, become sick, and die. Liberals will blame big bad companies and greed.

        • It wasn’t stated that Obamacare’s anti-male laws are LIKE Jim Crow laws, just the most egregious discrimination SINCE the Jim Crow laws. Unless you can think of a government policy that was created since then that is as blatantly discriminatory against a demographic as large as the male population, then the statement is accurate. .

      • Chicago-JSO says:

        @Anthony Zarat I’m not agreeing or disagreeing with you, I genuinely don’t know nearly as much as I should about obama care, but you said the following ” Obamacare, the most cruel act of government discrimination since Jim Crow, MUST end.” How is it the most cruel act since jim crow laws? As I said I’m neither agreeing or disagreeing just curious!

    • So have conservatives Luckey.
      Conservatives want individual men supporting women. Liberals want society (which is hugely more supported by men since they pay more in taxes) doing it.

      We’re caught between a rock and a hard place. The MRM is a movement w/out a political base. Unfortunately, men are on their own (when it comes to bureaucrats and politicians).

      • Anthony Zarat says:

        “… The MRM is a movement w/out a political base …”

        When the slaves rebel, nobody is happy. This only makes our work even more necessary. If we do not succeed, there will be no tomorrow for our sons.

        • solution, don’t have sons

          • Anthony Zarat says:

            I already have two sons. Moving to South America is a potential solution. I have also looked into Singapore and China.

            • I have read that this is actually becoming a serious option for those with the means to do so (jumping ship).
              And not just for the war on men this country seems fixed on continuing (and winning lol). There is also the fact that every man, woman and child now owes the federal reserve $43,000.

              This lavish spending of the public coffers to buy votes can’t be maintained. Not to mention the Nafta super-highway and the dept of justice bringing anti-trust lawsuits to companies that staff too high a % of their employees with Americans.

              The corruption and squeezing of the common man and woman between the rich and the layabouts is going to bring this country down the sh*thole. And it’s going to happen soon.

              Unfortunately, I am not one with the means to jump ship.

        • Okay look…using hyperbolic rhetoric like equating men with slaves and the ACA with Jim Crow laws doesn’t actually get anyone anywhere. Really, it just makes people ignore what you’re saying. For crying out loud, men are not slaves, and the struggle for gender equality is not the same as the struggle for racial equality.

          • Peter Houlihan says:

            Hear hear.

          • Anthony Zarat says:

            (men = slaves) is hyperbolic.
            (ACA = Jim Crow) is not. It is accurate and informative.

            Let me elaborate. The only existing Obamacare narrative talks around services:

            The dominant narrative is “Obamacare should provide more services to women”.
            The emergent narrative is “Obamacare should provide equal services to men”.

            The neglected narrative is “Obamacare has nothing to do with health or services, it is about POWER.”

            Obamacare has the same relationship to government services as the Jim Crow laws did. Obamacare establishes the structural framework for deciding which medical services people will have access to, and how much these services will cost. It then places this structural decision making mechanism under the control of “women’s experts”.

            This is exactly how most Jim Crow laws worked. Beaurocracies were established to partition government services among all citizens in a “fair” way. These beaurocracies were under the control by extremist ideologues, ensuring that the division of resources and protection was increasingly “unfair”.

            • Mate, that’s how pretty much everything in our government works. The legislation lays the basic framework, and a bureaucracy is put in charge of the nuts and bolts.

              It’s not some conspiracy to make men less than equal; it’s a big oversight that needs to be fixed.

              Also, calling it Obamacare is a bit of a misnomer, really. What ended up getting passed wasn’t what Obama had pushed for originally. And if you’re going to get angry at the Democrats for writing this, you should also get angry at the Republicans for totally screwing up the national debate around this piece of legislation. Remember that when the ACA was being debated, the Republicans didn’t provide coherent and rational dialogue about what was wrong with the bill. Instead we had people shouting about “death panels,” and “omg we’ll have to pay for abortions,” and so on. Personally, I think it’s the burden of the opposition to provide constructive and factual criticism of any bill that is introduced, but especially something this big and important.

            • Anthony Zarat says:

              Two years ago I was furious with Republicans because they scuttled the “public option”. That would have been an OPTION! If the beaurocrats made it a terrible option, nobody would take it. It is self-limiting and self-correcting. It would have cost some money, but it could never result in denial of services and rationing of health care.

              That was then, this is now.

              Beaurocracies allways implement laws. However, giving a beaurocracy a legal mandate to discriminate is profoundly wrong (even though beaurocracies can discriminate no matter what). What sets Obamacare, and Jim Crow apart from other laws is the MANDATE to discriminate (built into the law).

            • “It’s not some conspiracy to make men less than equal;”

              Not, it’s a conspiracy to make women superior in health care coverage quality and services, and cost burden. Which ends up being the same thing, doesn’t it?

              It’s a conspiracy to ensure that, if anyone is on the short end, it’s definitely men, not women. If women were the ones on the short end, it would be classed as sexist discrimination by every news outlet and every feminist organization in the country would be referring to it as a “war on women.” Immediate and decisive change would have been demanded months ago.

              But, since men are on the short end, it’s ignored and/or defended. Thanks for being the only feminist (that I know of) that even acknowledged it as needing to be fixed.

            • Anthony Zarat says:

              “Thanks for being the only feminist (that I know of) that even acknowledged it as needing to be fixed …”

              There are others. I sometimes feel as angry and hopeless as you appear to feel today. Maybe we should both have a beer and remember that, even if we fail, tomorrow is another day. Our sons will grow strong and brave and fight their own battles.

              Back when our adversaries were fighting for dignity (for women, it was equal opportunity), the early days were dark and hopeless. Now, it is our turn to fight for dignity (for men, it is equal protection), and our days seem equally dark and hopless. And thus the wheel turns.

            • That’s why I said, “that I know of.”

              Who are the others that have acknowleged this as discrimination and called for it to be addressed?

              Regarding males, especially minorities, I have little optimism without a major intervention, which appears as likely as snow at the equator.

              Given the current facts and trends, this situation will simply not improve without a major acknowledgement of what created it, and dedicatoin to address it.

              As always, some will do well. My kids will, and yours will too. They have us. But, many don’t have the requisite family and societal support; hence, they don’t have the educational opportunities, cultural exposure, funding, training, socialization and other support needed to break the cycle.

              As a result, they get caught in a cycle of anger, hopelessness, and despair, which often leads to rebellious and self-destructive behavior, making it easy for people to point right back at them as being the problem, and making it convenient to ignord what created the problems in the first place.

            • John Anderson says:

              @ Eric M

              “Thanks for being the only feminist (that I know of) that even acknowledged it as needing to be fixed.”

              I noticed the silence also. Feminists usually respond to criticism of their movement with, if only men would speak out about injustices, they would find many allies in the feminist community.

            • John Anderson says:

              @ HeatherN

              “It’s not some conspiracy to make men less than equal; it’s a big oversight that needs to be fixed.”

              If the articles (parts 1 and 2) are factually correct and I’m assuming that they are. I don’t know how you can assert that an act that specifically exempts men based on the safe harbor statement that specifically excludes that portion from protections afforded in the rest of the legislation.

              An omission can be considered an oversight, but deliberate action tends to lead to support the theory that there is an active war in men.

            • “Personally, I think it’s the burden of the opposition to provide constructive and factual criticism of any bill that is introduced, but especially something this big and important.”

              …Does that include the dems framing a bill that would make birth control coverage optional for employers as A WAR ON WOMEN THAT WANTS TO MAKE BIRTH CONTROL ILLEGAL AND TURN WOMEN INTO ROUND THE CLOCK BABY FACTORIES OMG!!!!!1!!

            • ohmygoodness caps. Anyway, yes, that goes to everyone about everything. Mind, this is an article about ACA and not an article about birth control.

            • Heather writes:
              “And if you’re going to get angry at the Democrats for writing this, you should also get angry at the Republicans for totally screwing up the national debate around this piece of legislation. Remember that when the ACA was being debated, the Republicans didn’t provide coherent and rational dialogue about what was wrong with the bill.”

              If I remember correctly all the committees that were in charge of writing this bill were Dem only. Also, the Dems were *at least* as irresponsible takeing ridiculous positions. The amount of exemptions and give-aways to the last holdouts so the bill would have the veto-proof 60 votes necessary were just insane.

              Then you had Nancy Pelosi making the ridiculous statement “You’ll have to pass it to see what’s in the bill”. The Dems are just as much (or more) of a circus show as the GOP. Don’t extrapolate that I am for the GOP with this statement.

              Quite frankly I think both parties are a miasma of toadies and boot-lickers. They are selling away our sovereignty and livelihoods right before our eyes to buy votes.

            • My point is that you can’t just say – oh the Democrats wrote it so they’re the ones to blame. And you can’t just say – oh the Republicans failed to provide constructive criticism, so they’re the ones to blame. Everyone worked together to create the problems in the ACA.

              So instead of worrying about who is to blame, how about we work on actually fixing the problems.

            • Men don’t have the institutional, social or political power to change this, only women do. It’s women and their union who saw to it that the bill was structured this way.

            • MRA’s are an advocacy group without a political base or sponsors.

              The vast majority of politician’s (on both sides of the aisle) want men exactly where they are: financing the ever-growing welfare state on one side with taxes, and being foolish enough to accept the social role of father in the face of a huge wave of commitment allergic women who are only too willing to call it quits, knowing that the fathers obligations go on for 18-21 years, but her obligations are terminated at the divorce.

              There have been many books and articles trying to shame men (who by and large in the lower age brackets are no longer working over-time, ladder-climbing, marrying or fathering children in the rigged game).

              Both McLame and Palin have had there hand in the feminist cookie jar as much as any dem with their speeches regarding the wage gap myth and other feminist talking points.

              Things are slowly starting to change. F&F is making huge inroads into political advocacy. Their board has met with a lot of politicians including Newt and others on both sides of the aisles.

              Things will change, but it is going to come very slowly.
              It will change the more good women who are truly worried about the men in their lives start coming forward and championing men’s issues.

            • Additionally,
              Keep in mind that VAWA was reauthorized in 2000 when we had a GOP pres, senate & house.

  6. Great article.Well done gmp.

    *Julie and Joanna, this is why I was so dismissive on the “war on women” type threads.

  7. Heather, it doesn’t matter what or even how it is said. It’s not as if they are suddenly going to stop wanting to discriminate against males.

    This issue has been and continues to be ignored because male discrimination such as this has been and continues to be fought for, supported, and defended by many of those that claim to be for gender equality. They feel how they feel and want what they want. It’s not as if they’re going to be easily convinced to actually want equality. They don’t.

    • Anthony Zarat says:

      You put your finger on it. No matter how lop sided the health expenditure equation becomes, the feminists will never be satisfied. When 90% of health expenditures are on women, that will still not be enough. The only thing that might interfere in this relentless dehumanization and discrimination is if enough men die before the end of their productive earning years that it starts to hurt the bottom line.

      Men matter in the same way as any other beast of burden matters: utility.

  8. “Dr. LoSasso noted to GMP that young men have been the least likely to carry health insurance, instead gambling on their invincibility.”

    This is not necessarily the case. Young men make on average 8% less than young women and furthermore more young men may be working under the roof of temp and contract companies many of which simply do not offer healthcare. However, being how expensive healthcare is along with the lower average wages of men I wouldn’t be surprised if men forgo healthcare expense when it is offered them….to make ends meet.

    • You also have to think about divorced men who have independent women and women’s children to support. These isolated resource producing males that have been removed from the family under Marriage 2.0 laws may have a difficult time paying for health care coverage of their own.

  9. “Erin Gloria Ryan put it well in her recent Jezebel post: “When a woman consents to sex, she is not also consenting to pregnancy.” A woman in the U.S. has a constitutional right to terminate hosting a fetus and unilaterally end any obligation to support and raise a child. A precisely opposite legal regime applies to men.”

    Which is why I believe in the male right to abortion. I promote young men to practice this right in their own lives whether women and their government concede to give men equal rights or not. The lack of male Liberty and equal protection under law should not be sacrificed on the alter of “women’s rights”.

  10. Moderator’s Note-attacks on the site or it’s moderators will not be allowed.

    • Actually they are still sitting in moderation. I guess I’ll check back again.

    • GMP Moderator says:

      GMP does not have a full time moderator, so sometimes comments will end up in moderation for awhile. Also, GMP uses a program that puts potentially problematic comments into moderation. On occasion, it will put a comment in moderation that is not actually in violation of the commenting policy. Speaking of the commenting policy, you can find it here: http://goodmenproject.com/commenting-policy/

      I am looking through the comments that were put into moderation, and it appears that mostly it was due to the use of generalizations. We ask that if a commenter is going to make generalizations they provide data to back up their claims.

      Finally, if you have a comment in moderation we ask that you do not post it a second time, as that only makes it more difficult to sort out for the moderators. Thank you.

  11. “Men are carefully trained from infancy not to show pain, not to complain about hard knocks and not to seek help.”

    Men are first and foremost use and utility objects. Without male use and utility men are not granted the title of man. Men are not inherently valued as women nor inherently valuable. A man is not something one is, a man must “be” a man. This subjugation and status of men transcends to male worthiness and the desire to remain worthy in relation to bodily health.

    • Without being useful or presenting one’s self to be used by women and society, whether it be as cannon fodder in war or simply to secure the choices and needs of women (as in the case of Feminist Marriage 2.0 laws, reproductive rights etc.) men have absolutely no value. Men are the worthless beasts of burden. This may be why 85% of the street homeless are men. This is where men end up if we are not able to be used by women or society.

    • In other words, men don’t face possible health issues by seeing a doctor because they know their value depends on their use and exploitation to women, the feminist family and society. Facing the possibility of being an unhealthy male, no matter how slight the condition essentially nullifies a man’s right to even exist.

  12. “This double standard is pathetic, and the justification I always hear to differentiate it is only about body autonomy…You can’t use a woman’s body against her will, but in saying that it also gives the privilege of opting out of motherhood should she choose to do so yet men are given the “keep it in your pants” line, we expect men to be more responsible under the current law.”

    I’m leery of men even being allowed to speak here but I will again venture to comment anyway. Here is my take on it. However provocative it might be this is how I see it.

    I’ll tell you a secret women don’t want you to know…..it’s not about their body….its about the body of a child, the ramifications that child will have upon women’s lives and the ability to absolve themselves of said ramifications. Men….men on the other hand, we are the only gender responsible for conception. So….. depending on what life choice women decide for us we are stuck with it. Their choices, our responsibility. This way women’s choices aren’t hindered in anyway by a man’s choice in the matter. You do what you’re told. You are a sperm donor and a wallet.

    You see, if it were ever found out that the debate really isn’t over women’s bodies then the concept of a mutual act leading to mutual responsibility will present itself and thus the product of said mutual act being mutual property of the life created. Under constitutional theory property ownership does not exist without rights over said property in which case the truth would be revealed that men have no property rights…only women.

    Therefore the last thing women want men to have is property rights. If men were able to abort and women were to then decide to abort or not abort we would have whats called equal protection under law. We can’t have that now can we. Which leads us to the abduction of male individual Liberty in the name of supporting women’s.

  13. “Aren’t those cost barriers more likely to depress demand, making it less likely products will be brought to market?”

    Yes, correct. With government subsidized female focused healthcare the non-free market incentive is created so that a male birth control pill will never see the light of day. This while at the same time creating incentive for big pharma to focus even more on women.

  14. In other words, men don’t face possible health issues by seeing a doctor because they know their value depends on their use and exploitation to women, the feminist family and society. Facing the possibility of being an unhealthy male, no matter how slight the condition essentially nullifies a man’s right to even exist.

  15. Ryan I was struck by a couple of the comments you made:

    “Men don’t have the institutional, social or political power to change this, only women do. It’s women and their union who saw to it that the bill was structured this way.” and

    “With government subsidized female focused healthcare the non-free market incentive is created so that a male birth control pill will never see the light of day. This while at the same time creating incentive for big pharma to focus even more on women.”

    Maybe, maybe not.

    We live in an age of highly disruptive technological innovation. Innovation has repeatedly outpaced legal and political systems. The fact that it was Wired magazine which ran the in-depth article on RISUG, and that http://www.newmalecontraception.org is focused on providing prompt information about research results on a considerable variety of technological approaches to male contraception (e.g. ultrasound) and is operating as a conduit for angel financing speaks volumes to me.

    For sure there are FDA hurdles. But we also live in a time when the most rapid economic growth and population growth on the planet is taking place in non-western nations. India and Indonesia are not going to wait for approval from NOW before acting.

    And while there wasn’t room to put it in the article, the Gates Foundation is sufficiently interested in the subject to have sponsored an initiative (Future of Contraception Initiative) on innovations in family planning, held at UW (U Dub to some of us:)) just last October. You can see the conference agenda, and papers here:

    http://depts.washington.edu/uwconf/foci/agenda.php

    I agree with you that certain women’s rights groups do seem to act on occasion as though they would be threatened by a world in which conception of offspring would be subject to a dual trigger (male technological control as well as female technological control over fertility). My guess is that effective, reversible male contraception would fly off the shelves faster than ED pharmaceuticals. There is money, lots of money, to be made serving the largely underserved global market for male contraception, and probably a Nobel Prize for Medicine down the line as well.

    Bottom line for me is that investing in research and clinical trials for male contraceptive approaches, in the US or in emerging economies, is far more likely to pay off for men interested in self-determination for themselves and other men, as well as economically, than contributing to political campaigns in the U.S.

    Thanks for reading and being engaged on the subject. It matters.

  16. Bottom line … when this string started is that men are screwed with this healthcare bill.

  17. freebird says:

    “Facing the possibility of being an unhealthy male, no matter how slight the condition essentially nullifies a man’s right to even exist.”

    As a disabled man I can verify what you said %100.

    Men are not inherently of value as are women, they are What They Do.

    ” Hi-I’m Julie,what do you do? A lawyer? Oh my that IS interesting!

    Jim Crow is alive and well.
    I’ve been quite amused that Heather is so upset someone would make the obvious comparison,why?
    Because the whole african-american-feminist alliance counts on itself Never Being Questioned.

    Sad day for “intellectuals” when the truth must needs be suppressed in the interest of fem-dogma.
    Just goes to show how disingenuous these super educated women are.
    At least an ignorant 3rd world grunt would admit the obvious truth,rather than using deception as a battering ram to silence those discriminated against.

    “Never Question The Narrative”
    Someday that dam is going to break-and it’s going to be spectacular.

  18. Wilhelmina de Jong says:

    “Men don’t have the institutional, social or political power to change this, only women do. It’s women and their union who saw to it that the bill was structured this way.”
    This is simply conspiracy-theory-thinking. Women are far less powerful than you think they are and the majority of lawmakers, lobbyists, congressmen, senators, legislators ARE MEN.

    While the article has one excellent point, namely that men should also have access to contraception and – even more important – have access to education about family planning (as well as the other health service that were mentioned) it’s language makes it sound as if men are some kind of endangered, discriminated species. It must be hard for some men, coming to realize that they are not advantaged by nature and that they now must compete with women and are not naturally superior anymore.
    To blame ‘feminists’ is queer, cause from the comments one gets the idea that ‘feminists’ is some kind of evil force that is out there on a mission to destroy men. Funny enough, in the feminist movement I’ve never met such women. All the feminists I know, including myself, do advocate equity – not a ‘us good/they evil’.

    ACA is of course grossly unequal and men and women should have equal access to equal health care. But did someone ever think that this is also the result of our society’s belief that women are weak and must be cared for, hence they need more care. Versus men, who are strong and can look after themselves and consequently need less care?
    It’s all easy to blame it on feminism, but men also have to start to make changes within their own gender group. This means standing up and being strong enough to admit to your peers that men also do need care.
    (And before the misogynists start spewing, there are similar issues where women also have to make changes within their own gender instead of blaming men. I’m fully aware of that.)

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      “This is simply conspiracy-theory-thinking. Women are far less powerful than you think they are and the majority of lawmakers, lobbyists, congressmen, senators, legislators ARE MEN. ”

      If that’s true then why does aca have thousands of provisions for women’s health but none for men? Why are laws passed which ride roughshod over men’s ability to defend themselves in court and create presumptions of guily? Clearly the fact that more legislators are men doesn’t make a difference. Society has always put women’s welfare first and always will until feminism, as a body, wakes up and decides to get real about female privilege.

      “To blame ‘feminists’ is queer, cause from the comments one gets the idea that ‘feminists’ is some kind of evil force that is out there on a mission to destroy men. Funny enough, in the feminist movement I’ve never met such women. All the feminists I know, including myself, do advocate equity – not a ‘us good/they evil’.”

      You musn’t have met any of the feminists who lobbied for these bills then. *Maybe* mainstream feminism is genuinely dedicated to gender equality (and I regard that as an outside chance) but the fact is that the vast majority of feminists I’ve seen so far (yourself included) aren’t willing to own up to their own privilege and seem to think that because there’s more male politicians that sexism doesn’t happen to men. Even when a bill get’s passed that gives women access to thousands of medical treatments that are denied to men and the national conversation is about one thing which a tiny portion of women *might* have to pay for.

      If the feminist lobby were willing to call out this sexism then your assertion that they’re not part of the problem might hold water.

      • Wilhelmina de Jong says:

        So have you met feminists who lobbied for these bills then?
        But seriously, of course I don’t think that it’s a good thing that men are so excluded on these crucial issues in ACA. I’ve been flabbergasted more than once at how little American men (and some women, too!) know about contraception and reproduction and the only way to provide for better sex education is to make it accesible for everyone and to make it accessible free of charge.
        I just oppose to solely blaming some feminists for this and also don’t believe it’s solely their job to ensure gender equity. Not in a country where it seems a sport amongst law makers to infringe on basic women’s rights.
        I also don’t believe in “female advantage” cause so far I have neither noticed nor benefited from any kind of advantage.
        Society expects men to be strong and that this also has huge disadvantages is something I acknowledge. However when it comes to my situation as a woman, I’d feel really privileged if I could walk over campus in the dark of the night without the male protector on my side. And to go with your flow, a nice little side effect would also be that the male would not required anymore to sacrifice himself for my safety. These kind of privileges I can really do without.

        I’m not saying that women are not part of the problem. But we are not the sole problem and women alone do not cause these problems. Imho, we are in this together and instead of fingerpointing at who is more evil – feminism or patriarchy – men and women should work together.

        • Peter Houlihan says:

          I don’t solely blame feminists. These policies were greenlighted by regular politicians too, but they don’t profess to oppose gender roles. Feminist groups on the other hand claim to be the enemy of sexism, yet here they had a direct role in constructing it.

          “I also don’t believe in “female advantage” cause so far I have neither noticed nor benefited from any kind of advantage.”
          It’s a function of privilege that the recipient is usually blind to it until it’s pointed out, but it does exist. Society treats you preferentially to men in many ways.

          “Society expects men to be strong and that this also has huge disadvantages is something I acknowledge. However when it comes to my situation as a woman, I’d feel really privileged if I could walk over campus in the dark of the night without the male protector on my side. And to go with your flow, a nice little side effect would also be that the male would not required anymore to sacrifice himself for my safety. These kind of privileges I can really do without.”
          Here’s the thing, men walk across campuses in the dark all the time, even though they have a significantly better chance of being assaulted (if not sexually assaulted). If you want to do without female privilege take a self defence course and do the walk yourself.

          “I’m not saying that women are not part of the problem. But we are not the sole problem and women alone do not cause these problems. Imho, we are in this together and instead of fingerpointing at who is more evil – feminism or patriarchy – men and women should work together.”
          I agree, both men and women are responsible for perpetuating gender roles. I don’t agree “patriarchy” is the word for this given that women are equally invested (patriomatriarchy?), but at least we agree gender roles are something we’d be better off without. The trouble is that while male privilege and female oppression are more than challenged precious little is being done about female privilege and male oppression. Hence the need to call it out, especially when it’s being deepened by groups which claim to oppose sexism.

          • So I’m just commenting on the use of the term patriarchy here. A patriarchy is a society in which men are the main movers and shakers. Or rather, where men are political and family leaders, and where they guide moral and cultural trends. Also, if the culture has any sort of private property, men are the ones who own it. A matriarchy is the same, only in reverse. A more gender egalitarian society, is one in which power and property is not more in control of one gender or another.

            Now, to be clear, a patriarchy doesn’t mean all the men are rich and powerful and all the women aren’t. It means that in any given situation, men have more power…whether that’s within a very poor home, or whether that’s the leader(s) of the society. Again, same with a matriarchy. It’s also important to remember that while these are somewhat useful descriptive terms, all patriarchies and all matriarchies don’t actually function in exactly the same way. You could have a patriarchy that’s a democracy, or a monarchy, or whatever. Men in control doesn’t inherently mean men are oppressors, though it can. And women in control doesn’t inherently mean women are oppressors, though it can too.

            So then we’ve got the current western system…where we used to be more patriarchal, and now we’re not. We’re in a bit of a between space. Men’ve got advantages in some areas and women’ve got advantages in others. Now whether we could still, technically, be called a patriarchy is debatable, but at this point it sort of doesn’t matter. The word is charged enough that just using it descriptively can cause all sorts of problems.

            Also, I’m loathe to use the word oppression (with regards to men or women) for the inequalities currently in the west. I much prefer the term inequality…mostly because the term oppression implies some sort of intent, as if there is some great conspiracy to keep women (or men) under the thumb of society.

            • “It means that in any given situation, men have more power…whether that’s within a very poor home, or whether that’s the leader(s) of the society.”
              Yeah I feel this is most definitely changing, mummabear had quite a lot of power in our household and probably more than pappabear. I see some patriarchs in my extended family but I also see matriarchs, it seems the generation of my parents were the change-overs (born in 1945-1950) and the main patriarchs of the family were born in the 30-early 40′s.

              Nowadays I see plenty of women with power in relationships of my friends, family, n others around here. Hell quite a few of the men are “under the thumb” to the point that their opinion holds very little weight.

          • Wilhelmina de Jong says:

            “Feminist groups on the other hand claim to be the enemy of sexism, yet here they had a direct role in constructing it.”
            Which feminist groups? Which ones exactly?

            • Each and every one that got involved in / spoke out on the Catholic Church / Sandra Fluke birth control debate. The only change to ACA they considered sexist and therefore demanded change to was forcing the CC to pay for BC pills, being 100% satisfied with boys and men being discriminated against.

        • It’s actually females that are at the advantage in regards to violence from strangers as a whole from what I gather from stats, male – male violence is the most prevalent form. Women are more likely to be harmed by people known to them. I realize there is the size difference between men and women which causes more anxiety but keep in mind men being the most at risk of physical violence, excluding sexual however recent stats may raise the risk men face damn close to the risk females face on that particular form of violence.

          Thing is there is a hell of a lot more focus on violence against women where I live (Australia), if it’s similar there then that can help cause a general ignorance to the risks men have since the narrative is mostly about female risk. So men can walk around without KNOWING they’re at such a heavy risk, and they’re also taught to realize it’s a part of life more I think.

          But quite frankly both genders are at risk and it’s sad that we have those who wish others harm in the world, so are either really at an advantage?

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      “But did someone ever think that this is also the result of our society’s belief that women are weak and must be cared for, hence they need more care. Versus men, who are strong and can look after themselves and consequently need less care?”

      Yes, exactly, in other words female privilege.

      • Chicago-JSO says:

        “But did someone ever think that this is also the result of our society’s belief that women are weak and must be cared for, hence they need more care. Versus men, who are strong and can look after themselves and consequently need less care?”

        Absolutely, this point is the crux of the matter. Feminists falsely assume that because society sees women as weak women are hence discriminated against, belittled, etc… That is as I see it one of the core assumptions behind the feminist movement. The problem is this, if we are to assume women are seen as weak, then someone must be strong, furthermore it becomes, in western morals (eg: any fairy tale we tell our children, which is in part the basis of adult morals, and other parables from the bible and any similar source), the job of the strong to protect the weak. But being “protector” is a lower position, think about it, guards protect the president, whose more important, the guard or the president? The answer is that the guards are less important and even expected to sacrifice their lives if needs be to save the president whom they are guarding. It is female privilege to be seen as weak, because it means that any man is of lower value, essentially all women are seen like the president and all men are seen like the guards at any moment any man is morally and in many cases legally obligated to sacrifice himself for the good of any woman around him.

        Secondly the person seen as being stronger is routinely given less because the assumption is that they can provide for themselves. The problem is that men are not stronger, perhaps physically yes, but societally as a whole men and women are equally capable, however, since the false belief that women are weaker exists, men are consistently disenfranchised of support that they need.

        So you see, that very feminist gripe that the world sees women as being weak and child like actually gives women a tremendous amount of privilege, and simultaneously damages men’s rights and equality.

      • Wilhelmina de Jong says:

        And being seen as weak is really not a privilege.

  19. Anthony Zarat says:

    Sounds about right, Ryan.

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