Take My Social Movement– Please!

The gender egalitarian masculist movement is tiny.

By “gender egalitarian,” I mean “believes men and women are more similar than they are different and fights against the sexist institutions and cultural narratives that try to make them more different than they are, while avoiding being racist, homophobic, transphobic, classist, ableist, etc. and not advocating violence, hate or stereotypes against a particular group.” And, unfortunately, there are not nearly enough of them fighting for men’s rights.

For instance, consider r/MensRights, the largest men’s rights group on Reddit. They have recently appointed AnnArchist as a new mod. He has a history of transphobia, advocating murder and violence, calling women “cum dumpsters” and “shrews” and bragging about “persuading” women into sex with him after they say no. In addition, he is a member of the r/beatingwomen subreddit. I feel it is not too much to ask that members of a gender egalitarian movement not find beating people of a particular gender hilarious. That is, like, the bare minimum requirement.

All too often, the mainstream men’s rights movement is not gender egalitarian at all. All too often, those of us who support equal rights for everyone– no matter what our differences in opinion– have found our voices drowned out by misogynistic, rape-apologist and frankly stupid asshats. That has to change.

One of NSWATM’s biggest problems is its lack of inclusiveness. It’d be less of an issue if we were just one of a thousand truly gender egalitarian masculist blogs. If we didn’t talk about the problem of male homelessness, then one of the other blogs would take of the slack. But NSWATM is one of a few voices in one very lonely wilderness. We have a responsibility to try to cover all the issues, as much as we can, and I worry about that. A lot.

But you know what? I’m upper-middle class, white and nineteen years old. There are things I cannot write about, because I don’t know my shit. I can’t talk about prison reform. I can’t talk about growing up male in a working-class neighborhood, or about the intersection of masculinity and race. I don’t know what it’s like to be a construction worker or a logger. I can’t talk about divorce or fatherhood. Sometimes I’m pretty sure the only things I’m qualified to talk about are suicidal depression and sex.

There has to be more than me.

So I’m asking you, everyone who’s reading this: if you can write, write. It doesn’t matter if you come from an MRA background or a feminist background or discovered NSWATM while searching for “i want to circumcised my uncircumcised anus without sergury.” (Yes, that is an actual search term.) All you have to do is not make jokes about beating people of a particular gender, and you will already be better than AnnArchist.

Radical feminists and MRAs, trans people and cis people, queers and straight people, white people and people of color, people of all social classes, people working on their PhDs in gender studies and people who’ve never read a bell hooks book, men and women and miscellaneous… it’s time to write about men.  

Critique our posts! Tell us where we’re wrong! Write about the things we’re not qualified to write about, or about the issues we’ve overlooked! Cover angles we haven’t thought of! Make us irrelevant! I’m begging you, come up with such brilliant theory that NSWATM seems as out-of-date, as full of mistakes, as completely missing the point as The Feminine Mystique.

Because only then– only when NSWATM is a half-forgotten trivia question– will we have a movement. A living movement. A movement that can change the world.

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65 Responses to Take My Social Movement– Please!

  1. Developers! Developers! Developers! says:

    You know, argueing is a whole lot more effective and interesting when you address your opponent’s strongest advocates, not their weakest. Not everyone who is opposed to your vision of gender equality is a “stupid asshat”, and not everyone who is opposed to your vision of gender equality calls their opposition “stupid asshats”.

  2. Kenshiroit says:

    could that be a idea to invite MRA’s in the blog? open a topik who is a general area of interest of MRA’s (like false rape, seen from the POV of MRA’s or marital alienation or what else) and send a invitation to the most reasonable people in that side of the fence, so we can have a open dialog with them? I find that much more constructive than calling them “stupid asshats” (i know its not your intentio to offend different opinions but a well defyned group of sexist people, men and women). That will raise the quality of the blog because you will be able to raise more inputs. More inputs = more info, and more info gives you (us) a much cleare picture of whats going on around the world.

    Just my two cents

    PS

    I use to navigate between the two world (mrm/feminism) and cant avoid notice that most of the time (misogynist/misandrist excluded) they say the same things, but use a different rethoric. Find the key to communicate with both..and then you have your movement. Communication is the root of most problems. If we can find a way to talk to both of them, we can only win.

  3. Glove says:

    You’re only 19?! I’m beyond impressed. Fantastic post, and for what it’s worth, NSWATM is the reason I now consider myself a gender egalitarian and can actually step back and examine how it can improve and inform my feminist work. I have my own tiny, humble blog, and I fully intend to add my small voice to the movement. Keep writing!

    P.S. Calling the more extreme and bigoted members of any movement ‘asshats’ is A-OK in my book. We can win them round, sure. But advocacy of violence and horrible sexist slurs? Yeah, you’re an asshat.

  4. superglucose says:

    You’re only 19? I can’t believe you’re younger than I am XD

    http://www.starcitygames.com/magic/misc/22786_To_My_Someday_Daughter.html

    I’ve been taking up as much as I can on my facebook notes (for those of you interested, my username at gmail.com is a great place to ask questions and I’ll gladly link you to my public notes). Some of the older stuff isn’t quite what it could be in terms of feminism, but for the most part it’s really apt and appropriate.

    Right now I’m actually doing an Open letter Response to the above article because Mr. Tait, in his well-meaning attempts to bring gender parity to the gaming community, commits many sins… he characterizes male masturbation as perverse, he talks down to polygamists, and he paints an entire group of people (gamers) as nothing more than a pack of cheaters who have no interest in remaining true to a committed relationship.

    I almost feel like every day I try to go write a note about something fun (Have you SEEN the art for Liliana of the Veil? My god I want hentai or a fic or SOMETHING of her doming Garruk. That would be the SEXIEST THING EVER) I get drawn away into the world of feminism and it’s driving me nuts.

  5. B-Lar says:

    Lets not beat around anyones bush. ANYONE WHO ADVOCATES THE BEATING OF A PARTICULAR GROUP IS A STUPID ASSHAT. They wear their ass as a hat. On their head.

    Trying to pander to these people by treating them with dignity is an affront to human decency. They are selfish bigots who believe that their life experiences mean they can deal out whatever they like and everyone else is wrong for not swallowing it. FUCK THEM.

    We can only help them when they want to be helped. When they come out of their razor tounged circlejerks then we can engage with them and show them the ways in which they were mistaken.

    Ozy, Give me a subject and tell me the tone you want it written in. I will research and write a piece. Just drop me an email.

  6. Kenshiroit says:

    B-Lar I think here you fail. First who do want to help? are you in position to help anybody? are you sure? or are getting carried by MRA/feminist hype?

    IMO there is no other way than communicate, having a open dialog. Pointing fingers and “im more holy than you” is a waste of time.

  7. All I can do is write how I feel about what I think affects me. And I’ve seen and experienced lower-middle class masculinity, and a great deal of working-class masculinity. I still occasionally work with at-risk vulnerable Teenagers. But I can only write what I see. And I wouldn’t know where to begin researching statistics (Google is my friend? or is there somewhere with peer-reviewed surveys?)

    Either way, I’d love to be able to provide.

  8. Great post, I’ll look forward to reading what comes of it.

  9. f. says:

    Ozy, you rock, first off. Some of us are here “lifting our teaspoons” as commenters (to shamelessly steal from feminizmz) because your work is so compelling. That you are only 19, is some mind-blowing shit.

    Second, the fact that a place like r/mensrights is run by an individual who thinks battering women is funny, should be a Red Alert for anyone who cares about men’s rights. It certainly is for me. Here is the story I’ve been attempting to tell and failing on the “creepiness” thread:

    One night I was walking home to my apartment at about 3 in the morning, and passed a small group of men – younger than me, probably just 18 or so – walking in the other direction. One of them called out to me, “Hey, what are you doing out all alone?” I replied that I was walking home. Another man told me I should come with them and I said that I was tired, then continued walking.

    One of the men, I don’t know which because I didn’t see a thing, turned around, caught up with me, and hit me over the head with a beer bottle from behind.

    I was lucky – that a taxi driver, my fucking guardian angel, witnessed the assault and hauled me to the hospital, that I was released from the hospital with a mild, harmless concussion, and that I have suffered few lasting psychological effects. I even consider myself lucky that the men weren’t caught, and that I was spared the experience of a trial, because I would have had no way of knowing which person was the perpetrator. But I can and will not tolerate being told that because men are hurting, that that situation was funny. That if women wouldn’t reject men so callously, that we wouldn’t get hurt by men. I realize that I am describing extremists here, but there are many of them, and I just can’t deal. There is NO EXCUSE for violence and hatred of the kind that puts people in the hospital. The apologists for violence, be they MRAs or feminists, get absolutely no tolerance or sympathy from me. There are places where my understanding does not and will not go.

    We can’t build a movement on, haha, people are getting hurt. I am so, so glad that there is one men’s rights blog out there that gets this, because it is the only place I can go.

  10. Feckless says:

    All too often, the mainstream men’s rights movement is not gender egalitarian at all.

    Same is true for the mainstream feminist movement. I am not trying to be “Moby Dicking” here, but it is a mess out there. An ideological minefield and I believe, talking about the whole MRA vs feminism canard, we have gone the full circle by now. There are the awful mainstream sites as well as horrible commenters as well as generalizing the other by pointing out the worst example possible, all by “both” sites. There is no good and bad anymore all made mistakes or stepped in an ideological mine at one time or another. I sure did (and flew out of the manboobz challenge for an old and awful post by me).

    What I am saying is the following. Monoliths, mainstream, the movement, we have to forget about it looking this way. It is simply not possible to generalize feminism or masculism with few words. Take the mentioned r/MR for example. Did the other mod (there was no “They” that declared AnnArchist mod) made a poor choice with that new mod. Yup. Can one argue based on that decision by a single mod that the whole 25+k readers of that subreddit are not egalitarian? Nope. As usual in a large board where everyone is fee to post what he/she desires you get everything. The good and the bad.

    And frankly, these days I am seeing more and more of the good stuff. When I started to be interested in, well what do you call that topic, equality movements 5 or 6 years ago, it seemed to me there wasn’t that much going on as it is now. The whole masculism point of view seems to be moving into the spotlight slowly, F&F are having more success, legislation in my country is changing (Germany: not being forced into the army anymore, slowly more rights for not married dads etc.), more sites, more discussions. I get the feeling something is going on. Looking at my google reader I follow around 20-30 blogs. It isn’t that NSWATM is the only blog looking at male problems, probably just the most feminist friendly one.

  11. Danny says:

    All too often, the mainstream men’s rights movement is not gender egalitarian at all. All too often, those of us who support equal rights for everyone– no matter what our differences in opinion– have found our voices drowned out by misogynistic, rape-apologist and frankly stupid asshats. That has to change.
    Then let us look in other places other than just saying there is venom in the mainstream and trying to declare the entire movement and all associated with it as bad.

    When it comes to men rights writing I often find myself looking at three places.

    Father & Families which I think most people know about. Futrelle can try to parse men from fathers all he wants but fact is most of the fathers out there are indeed men and alot of men out there are fathers.

    Mensactivism.org which is more of a place where there isn’t a lot of writing and theorizing however I do give them props because they have a tendency to bring up things that the mainstream media seems to actively refuse to mention.

    Pelle Billing who mainly runs a Swedish blog so his American blog doesn’t get much time put into it but still worth a read.

  12. B-Lar says:

    @ Kenshiroit – You are partially right. there is no BETTER way to communicate than having an open dialogue. The problem is that having an open dialogue requires both sides to have an open mind.

    IMO the guys who lash out at women because of some perceived injury against them are not investigating themselves and their own attitude, and taking the standpoint that they are unequivocably wrong (to advocate the beating of women, for example) is the first step to creating an arguement which can then lead to discussion.

    Who do I want to help? Anyone who is self deluded. Am I qualified to help? Not neccesarily, but I am open to discussion, and I take great efforts to work on my own perspective so maybe I can help others to do the same. I recognise my own self delusion and understand that honest conversation with others is the best way to eradicate it.

    I am not saying that I am “holier than thou”, (although i can understand how you might get that impression) but heres the crack; It is unnaceptable to solve problems through violence. It begets more violence. These guys sit around in a massive positive feedback circlejerk affirming their own delusion that the women in their lives deserve to be smacked around to show them their place. Unacceptable. Absolutely unacceptable. I cannot define what a rational human being is by my own standards, because that is a logically flawed position, but I can identify when someone is not rationally investigating themselves and by my own standards, I can utterly condemn that mentality as disharmnious and destructive.

    I challenge you: Can you start an open dialogue with someone who is not willing to have one? How would you point out that someone is not thinking clearly when they are not thinking clearly? When they are behaving logically given their own logical context?

    I bargain: I will agressively call these guys out as being entirely deluded, and when the seeds of doubt are sown, then I will pass them to you for more empathic reasoning.

  13. Kenshiroit says:

    B-Lar :”You are partially right. there is no BETTER way to communicate than having an open dialogue. The problem is that having an open dialogue requires both sides to have an open mind.”

    True and I agree, a healthy dialoque require aa willingness from both sides, otherwise it will just end like two parrots throwing random phrases at each others. Thats why I pointed out in first intervention here (misogynist/misandrists) aside, and dialoge only with the reasonable elements on the other side.

    As Danny also pointed out with some examples there are, no matter how hard to belive it is, non misandric/misogynist groups out there. Then there alsways some indivisuals who have a screwed POV. But they are not a rarety everywhere, neither in feminism/masculism, churches, libraries and pubblic toilets ect.

    B-Lar “but heres the crack; It is unnaceptable to solve problems through violence. It begets more violence.”

    true, violence is a never ending circle. And it will only result in more blood sacrifices for both sides.

    B-Lar ” These guys sit around in a massive positive feedback circlejerk affirming their own delusion that the women in their lives deserve to be smacked around to show them their place. Unacceptable. Absolutely unacceptable. I cannot define what a rational human being is by my own standards, because that is a logically flawed position, but I can identify when someone is not rationally investigating themselves and by my own standards, I can utterly condemn that mentality as disharmnious and destructive.”

    Thats the reason we should avoid this kind of MRA and focus on the open kind. Some people who experienced much abuse, left alone and abandoned by everybody, with no solution becomes extreme. Its not a excuse, but a explanation.

    B-Lar:I challenge you: “Can you start an open dialogue with someone who is not willing to have one? How would you point out that someone is not thinking clearly when they are not thinking clearly? When they are behaving logically given their own logical context? ”

    You cant talk to somebody who doesent want to speak. But as I pointed out, we should focus on the who wants to communicate, who is open, the good kind. Not the haters.

    B-Lar: “I bargain: I will agressively call these guys out as being entirely deluded, and when the seeds of doubt are sown, then I will pass them to you for more empathic reasoning.”

    ok agreed…lol 🙂

  14. Kenshiroit says:

    PS

    is there a guide on how to quote?

    thanks

  15. J says:

    Might I suggest we stop the arguing about who is right and spit ball some ideas so anyone thinking “Gosh I could right some of this stuff” has something to go on?

  16. Gaius says:

    @Ozy: “I’m upper-middle class, white and nineteen years old. There are things I cannot write about, because I don’t know my shit. I can’t talk about prison reform. I can’t talk about growing up male in a working-class neighborhood, or about the intersection of masculinity and race. I don’t know what it’s like to be a construction worker or a logger. I can’t talk about divorce or fatherhood. Sometimes I’m pretty sure the only things I’m qualified to talk about are suicidal depression and sex.”

    I find some degree of fault with this statement, but in only the best way.

    1). I don’t think ANYONE is entitled to speak for a group. Do I speak for all men? Do I speak for all gamers? Do you speak for all women?

    Of course not. Groups are not homogenous except at the roughest scale. I experience my gender differently than the next guy, so I can only speak for myself and my own experiences.

    But you can just as easily report on what YOU’VE seen, without invoking it as any sort of objective standard: “I’ve seen some sh*t that made me MAD, and though that is by no means a determinant, I’m going to speak out about it, just in case it’s important.”

    2). Certainly, there’s a chance, in reporting about other people’s issues, that you’ll make a mistake. Perhaps you’ll identify something that the majority don’t consider a problem, and is just YOUR pet peeve. Perhaps you’ll identify something that is rooted so deeply in institutions like capitalism that it ain’t going away any time soon. In either case, you take corrections, something you’ve demonstrated that you’re able to do (gah! That clause is awkward!).

    3). Some of these groups for which you might advocate egalitarianism might not be able to speak for themselves yet, for purely practical reasons: a lack of cohesiveness, a lack of representation, a lack of power.

    Sometimes, groups NEED advocates.

    Bottom line: you can try and speak for me any time. I’ll apply gentle correction if you get it Terribly Wrong. 😛 But I don’t anticipate that.

  17. ozymandias42 says:

    D3: If you disagree with me, and you are not an asshat, you are not the people I am talking about in this article. 🙂

    Kenshirot: I think that starting a dialogue between equality-minded MRAs and feminists is part of what r/masculism is trying to do. (I haven’t talked to Godless Altruist in months, so I wouldn’t know, but last time we chatted his general idea was “men’s rights, without the hatefulness that sometimes marks r/mr.”)

    Feckless: I agree, except that I don’t think mainstream feminism is the same. I’m not saying it’s perfect about men’s rights; I’m saying that to the best of my knowledge no moderator of a major feminist blog thinks that beating men is hilarious (although there was a Jezebel thread about the hilarity of abusing men– fuck Jezebel, seriously).

    Danny: Thanks for the links! I definitely wouldn’t say the entire men’s rights movement is bad– I mean, hell, I’m probably a part of it. 🙂 Just that large portions of it are bad and the portions of it that are good need to speak up louder and drown them out.

  18. Feckless says:

    Ozy, with all due respect there is a difference with a proffesionell blog and a public forum (which reddit is more or less). Besides that, does the offending poster believe that “r/beatingwomen and reddits response to that subreddit” is hilarious or does he believe beating women is hillarius?

    I don’t think that guy was a good choice at all but I get the feeling that he is more of a troll than a serious mysogynist.

    When asked why he deleted the offending posts:

    I didn’t feel they represent how I feel now. […] Well. . . sometimes I just post shit before I think.

    And

    I have 100k karma, theres going to be fucked up shit in there. Lots of it. They haven’t uncovered half of it.

    Source: http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRights/comments/kjohp/from_the_moderators_please_welcome_the_newest/

  19. Geo says:

    I appreciate your openness. I have found myself hurting as a man at various times in my life. Feminism has provided an opening for me, but I need to see where it as well as learning about Racism, Classism, Homophobia and other things impact upon my self-image as a man.

    Blaming others – whether Women or Men (or Feminism) isn’t helpful for me, though criticizing particular statements made can sometimes be helpful.

    I have found that seeking out like-minded men particularly with finding and most recently helping create a men’s support group has been most helpful to me. In 2010 – I began – A Men’s Project – http://www.AMensProject.com seeking resources to help men with men’s issues including violence (done by men and done against men), fathering, men’s health, racism, gender identity, etc.

    Yes – we men – oft times are hurting! For me – I need to learn how to better deal with my feelings. I need to learn how to better relate to others – both male and female. I need to continue to improve my relationships with my son and my step-sons.

    I need to be accountable to myself. I hope, in the coming months and years, to see more and more men taking responsibility for our selves and to working with other men to help each other. This includes those of us who have been abused as children and adults as well as those who are hurting from trauma and just “normal” pain.

    We aren’t competing with women for who is “hurting the most”. We are responsible for what we do and How we hurt others as well as ourselves. Feminism isn’t “all good” nor is it “all bad”. We each need to take inspiration (positively) from whatever helps us to grow. Thanks!

  20. ozymandias42 says:

    Feckless: He believes that r/beatingwomen and Reddit’s response is hilarious; I’m sorry, I should have stated that more clearly.

    Frankly, I am suspicious of anyone who only starts regretting the things they say once they’ve been called out on them. Whether he is a troll or a misogynist, he is not a gender egalitarian and really should not have been chosen as a moderator.

  21. GudEnuf says:

    I found this blog post offensive. As a man who wears an ass on head, I do not appreciate being compared the people at sites like The Spearhead and A Voice For Men.

  22. JM says:

    I’m afraid I cannot give an unqualified condemnation of violence.

    If you feel you are in a bad situation that will not improve without drastic action, that you are not heard and that you will never be heard, and that you are fundamentally an unsympathetic figure, does not violence start looking like the only remaining option? In his September 11th comment, Gaius mentioned “dialogue, the boycott, and even the fast”–but how is one who believes that they have no power, no voice, and no sympathy supposed to believe in these methods? I am not saying that particular people do or are justified in feeling this way, but there seems to be a case of cause and effect here.

    It seems to me that it is the weak, rather than the powerful, who use direct violence. Apart from moral concerns, using violence is risky. When you use violence, you risk retaliation from your target and your target’s friends, families, compatriots, and other allies, and that retaliation may be directed against you or your friends, families, compatriots, and other allies. Even if you succeed in your violence–whatever that means–those not directly involved in your particular incident may come to be less trusting of you. After all, you have shown yourself to be potentially dangerous. In time your community will suffer, for trust is vital to the flourishing of any community.

    The powerful? Don’t have to deal with that, at least not immediately. For power is not so much the ability to do violence, as the ability to compel others to do violence on your behalf. Why suffer all those risks of violence if you can get someone else to bear them? Better still, if you can compel violence through channels seen to have authority, for example, laws or the military, other people won’t see anything wrong with it. Most of the time, they won’t even think of it as “violence.” And then you can turn around and say you condemn violence (note: if it wasn’t clear I’m using “you” as a rhetorical “you”, not accusing any of you personally of anything). Your hands are clean, see? You would never do such violence as those thugs who got what was coming to them.

  23. Feckless says:

    @Ozy, we agree that he is a poor choice, heck if you follow the link to the reddit post you will find that most people complained about him as a mod.

    Talking about the mainstream feminist sites for a moment, I assume if one follows a mod there for a year you will find something controversial.

  24. SpudTater says:

    Well, so far this is the only men’s issues site that I have ever stuck around on, so you’re doing something right!

  25. typhonblue says:

    @ Ozy

    “I’m saying that to the best of my knowledge no moderator of a major feminist blog thinks that beating men is hilarious (although there was a Jezebel thread about the hilarity of abusing men– fuck Jezebel, seriously).”

    Er… you have your own counter-example there. That Jezebel thread was horrible.

    I think Ignatious chose him because Ignatious himself is more feminist-leaning. I don’t know if I agree that it was a good choice but it may be because Ignatious felt like he needed a more extreme counterbalance to himself.

  26. Adi says:

    Great post on a much needed discussion.
    I think there is something that we should keep in mind. Today’s MRA’s are at a point where feminists were in the 60s or even earlier. Just as the feminists did back then, the MRA’s today have little more than rage to fuel their movement. Because basically nobody cares….yet. And until society starts to care a tiny bit about men, you cannot expect them (those standing up for men’s rights) to be calm and politically correct. Rising up against oppression necessitates at least some adversity and hostility.

    Also, there is a massive power imbalance between feminism and MRA. Compared with feminism, MRA is a joke – pathetic to say the least. One look at public spending on women’s gender issues vs men’s gender issues or even just public awareness says everything. It’s easy to be the reasonable one when in a position of authority and influence. But when you’ve been hurt by a system and nobody gives a damn or worse, people think you deserved it and ridicule your suffering, then try being reasonable.

    Feminists of the old days made no secret of they’re having pinned the male gender onto their dart boards. And today, feminists have the luxury to be “open minded” and “egalitarian” but don’t kid yourself that this is a luxury that was brought to us by a lot of hostility and sexism propagated in the early days of feminism.

    I’m not excusing sexism or misogyny/misandry or anything like that. But I admit here that I do not call out MRA’s misogyny as much as I should but I have a good reason: The MRA’s are the one’s being bullied. They are the weak ones here, the minority. As such, as far as I’m concerned, they get a certain amount of leeway which I do not grant the stronger ones such as feminists.

    Another reason many MRA’s are misogynist is because for a long time, standing up for men’s rights was equated with misogyny. Even today, many feminist blogs or public institutions will dismiss men’s rights as anti-women. So if you’re going to be called a woman hater anyway, why bother with being reasonable? (Note that that is not my thought pattern but one that I can relate to).

  27. “They have recently appointed AnnArchist as a new mod” – It wasn’t they, it was 2 people. r/mensrights had no real say in the matter.

  28. Adi says:

    @ Feckless
    I don’t share your optimism about Germany (I’m there too). Conscription is a good example why not. When it was stopped earlier this year not a single soul mentioned gender equality as an argument. Everybody, from defense ministers to recruiters and economists, only referred to expenditures, quality of personnel selection and all kinds of other materialistic reasons for getting rid of forced military service for men. That’s a sad statement in itself.

    And as for the family minister’s ‘reluctance’ to impose female quota on corporations (which are by the way in full force in the public sector), that is only under the condition that the corporations do so on their own accord – which they’re doing right now because it sells to be “woman friendly” – even if it’s at the expense of men.

    You’re right about a few more voices speaking out for men’s rights these days but as far as actual change is concerned we’re still chasing the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

  29. Aerik says:

    Wanna know one reason NSWATM doesn’t have a big following? Look at your FAQ

    “Even Sarah Palin identifies as a feminist, despite her disagreement with reproductive rights and belief that rape survivors should pay for their own rape kits; it would be silly to believe that the contributors to this blog agree with her just because we share a label.”

    That’s not what it used to say. When the first blog started, I quoted the original text, which said that Sarah Palin _is_ a feminist.

    here is the link:

    And here is the exact text of how it used to be written:

    “Ann Althouse, Donna M. Hughes and Sarah Palin are feminists”

    So yes, in fact the contributors of this blog, who wrote the FAQ, did agree with her on her feminism status because she said she’s one. That you have to write that line into the FAQ is an admission that yes, you did in fact consider her a feminist.

    And now you’re lying about it.

  30. makomk says:

    Adi: the relative position of power of feminist groups also allows them to look more reasonable when they’re not. For example, a couple of years ago here in the UK, the Government passed a new Equalities Act that effectively blocked trans women from accessing rape counselling in the name of women’s rights. If you look at the parlimentary debates and the published justification for this part of law, it’s obvious that feminist groups lobbied the government for it, but there’s no public record of them doing so; whoever did it used their personal contacts within the government rather than the on-record public consultation process. (There’s not much chance our feminist community would hold them to account even if everyone did know who did it, mind.)

    Men’s rights groups don’t have enough power to obtain this kind of malevolent behind-the-scenes influence, they can only kick up a public fuss and hope. Which is interesting because according to traditional feminist theory it should be the other way around.

  31. Druk says:

    And now you’re lying about it.

    OR someone changed their minds/rethought their position/didn’t like the wording? It happens, especially to open-minded people.

  32. ozymandias42 says:

    Aerik: No, “lying about it” would be saying “we never said that!” What we’re saying is “we said that, people misunderstood what we meant, and so we clarified our position.” In addition, your position seems to be against the notion that anyone can ever change their minds about any issue ever which… is an unfortunate implication.

    Also, NSWATM has an excellent following.

  33. typhonblue says:

    @ Ozy

    BTW, is this a call to contribute?

    “In addition, your position seems to be against the notion that anyone can ever change their minds about any issue ever which… is an unfortunate implication.”

    People change their minds. The best thing about humanity is that it never sits still.

  34. Adi says:

    The absurdest part of it all is that feminism’s past and even current successes are not so much in spite of but BECAUSE of patriarchal structures. For male politicians or CEO’s it sells to ‘save’ women from whatever. They can shine as the heroes standing up for the damsels in distress. That’s what wins voters among both sexes.
    That’s how women’s issues were so quickly addressed and fixed.

    For men this is impossible because patriarchy puts men in mutual competition with one another. The winner takes all (literally) and the losers are damned. Only when in a team are patriarchal men really on the same side but that requires there to bee an opposing team. In other words, men’s rights will become popular only if there is an adversary for all men to fight against.

    This also explains MRA thought processes and why they obsessively cling to feminism as their enemy – they can’t work together and support each other without such a perceived enemy. Some just say “society” is their enemy or “the government” which also explains the right-wing tendency of MRA’s. And no, I didn’t forget women as a popular pinup adversary.

  35. Adi says:

    In fact, even I as an obsessive optimist, don’t see much hope for men’s rights in our lifetimes. Only with enormous and profound changes in humanity itself, and I mean changes that would dwarf the enlightenment, can we be ready for true egalitarianism.
    So I’m willing to settle for at least having society acknowledge that there are men’s rights issues. I accept that they won’t be fixed in my lifetime but it would be nice if they were at least not denied or ridiculed anymore.

  36. typhonblue says:

    @ Adi

    “That’s how women’s issues were so quickly addressed and fixed.”

    Thing is, Adi, in my opinion they aren’t being addressed. As long as feminism appeals to already existing structures to get things done, those structures are strengthened and the social oppression of women is never addressed. As long as the social oppression of women remains unaddressed, laws are simply so much window dressing.

  37. Danny says:

    A lot of yes to what Adi said at September 23, 2011 at 5:31 pm.

    Ozy:
    I’m saying that to the best of my knowledge no moderator of a major feminist blog thinks that beating men is hilarious (although there was a Jezebel thread about the hilarity of abusing men– fuck Jezebel, seriously).
    (Yeah I’m gonna have to get my Ahab on to say this but I think its worth it.) No it comes out in another way. It comes out in the form of absolute silence. Take the recent event of Katherine Becker who allegedly (although I’m not sure if you need “alleged” when she is on record as having said “he deserved it”). You would think that folks who brand themselves as the true harbingers of gender equality would say something about that. Or at least the commentary from that episode of The View a few days later.

    Geo:
    We aren’t competing with women for who is “hurting the most”. We are responsible for what we do and How we hurt others as well as ourselves. Feminism isn’t “all good” nor is it “all bad”. We each need to take inspiration (positively) from whatever helps us to grow. Thanks!
    I followed your link and went to the section about MRAs/FRAs. I’m not an MRA or FRA and even I think that page (http://amensproject.com/mensfathers-rights) is an unfair generalization of men.

    So apparently the MRA/FRA movements don’t deserve the same consideration that feminism gets about not being “all good” or “all bad”?

  38. ozymandias42 says:

    Typhon: No, this is a call to start your own damn blogs and email me about them so we can link to you. 😛 (The 80/20 Rule, of course, is still in effect.)

  39. Adi says:

    Well I’m in the process of building a larger website. The topic is not directly about gender issues but it’s still connected. When it’s up and running, I’ll be happy to email you.

  40. Feckless says:

    @Adi: Well you are correct, but I still see progress. Heck 5 years ago I couldn’t even imagine what they did to the army no matter how they worded it. Hurrah for Agens….booh for the Pirates….ah well

    We will see how it goes. Aren’t the EU courts of human rights doing some suing as well atm?

  41. Adi says:

    Wait a second, the Pirates are the only party that have set the goal of removing gender from being recorded in any public institutions including not having it listed in your passport. The idea is so obvious that you’ve gotta wonder why nobody else thought of it before.

    You’re right about the army – it is a victory, even if by accident rather than by activism. Still gotta appreciate it.

    The last I heard about the EU human rights commission was concerning the laws on custody that favored mothers over fathers. I don’t know what the end result was though but at least it got mentioned in the press. The one thing I do like about the German judicial system is that it’s relatively level headed and hysteria free. Even when it comes to things like rape, people tend to look at the facts before getting out their torches. Though I talked to a lawyer who said that false rape allegations are basically happening all the time and often not even for malicious reasons but for silly reasons like having an excuse for getting home late.
    Well there’s room for hope.

  42. typhonblue says:

    @ Ozy

    “80/20 Rule”

    Say what?

  43. ozymandias42 says:

    Typhon: It’s our guidelines for the blogroll: if we agree with 80% of what you say, then you’re on it. 🙂

  44. typhonblue says:

    @ Ozy

    I’m guessing that leaves out me and a good portion of the commentators then. 😛

  45. ladycat123 says:

    Ozy:

    I read this blog and lurk here often but I have been considering on writing something for this blog and cross posting it on my personal blog >.>

    Anywho: As I mentioned on manboobz, AnnArchist is also a cissexist.

  46. Hugh Ristik says:

    @Adi,

    Feminists of the old days made no secret of they’re having pinned the male gender onto their dart boards. And today, feminists have the luxury to be “open minded” and “egalitarian” but don’t kid yourself that this is a luxury that was brought to us by a lot of hostility and sexism propagated in the early days of feminism.

    That’s a good point. Present-day feminists have achieved some successes and mellowed out a bit. The correct comparison for MRAs is not present-day feminism, but the feminism of the 70s-90s.

    Ideologues everywhere are pretty similar. MRAs are only slightly more militant because they are a younger movement. Feminism today doesn’t need to be so militant because it’s enshrined in the government.

  47. Feckless says:

    @Adi: The Pirates looked promising with their AG Männer (Workgroup Men) where even German masculist Arne Hoffmann took part. That grouped bombed spectacularly though after one of their meetings with Manndat was attacked by feminist Pirates. Read it here (German language warning) – http://ef-magazin.de/2011/06/20/3045-piratenpartei-die-katze-ist-endlich-aus-dem-sackhttp://arnehoffmann.blogspot.com/2011/06/manndat-enttauscht-piratenpartei-alter.html

  48. Adi says:

    @ Feckless,
    I know about that incident and yes it was despicable. But you have to judge a party by it’s proclaimed goals and those make the Pirates the most gender egalitarian party around – by far. Isolated events like this are not representative of the party as a whole.
    Though we will have to watch them closely and as soon as they do something like quotas, I’m gone.

  49. Feckless says:

    @Adi: I agree and am not ashamed to admit that I voted for them the last time. Although right now it is a bit like a “Not gegen Elend” situation. But as you said compared to the other parties (especially the green party) the Pirates are the best we got.

  50. Xakudo says:

    @Ozy:

    It’s our guidelines for the blogroll: if we agree with 80% of what you say, then you’re on it.

    That is totally reasonable. I would not typically put people on my blogroll that I don’t at least often agree with.

    However, this 80/20 rule does make some of the items on your blogroll a little… disturbing to me, insofar as it indicates you agree with at least 80% of what they say. I had previously assumed some of those item were just up their for relevance. But I guess that’s just because I don’t agree with them, or often find them offensive. And that’s part of the discussion here, is hashing out these sorts of disagreements, hopefully to improve and sharpen all of our views.

  51. Feckless says:

    At least “Finally, A Feminism 101 Blog” isn’t up there anymore

  52. Adi says:

    Well I think the 80/20 rule is a little crude to say the least. Surely you’d want a qualifier as well as a quantifier – meaning it should matter what you dis-/agree upon and not just how much.

  53. kenshiroit says:

    Adi: I quote you on your analisis on the MRM vs feminism. Whery good indeed, remarkable analisis!

  54. Darque says:

    “At least “Finally, A Feminism 101 Blog” isn’t up there anymore”

    Here here!

  55. Pingback: Links: False rape accusations, misogynist Men’s Rightsers, and internet pervs « man boobz

  56. Men's Rights Activist Lieutenant says:

    How can you simultaneously agree with 80% of Toysoldier and Shakesville? Or even 50%?

  57. MizDarwin says:

    What’s wrong with “Finally, A Feminism 101 Blog”?

  58. ozymandias42 says:

    FF101’s definition of sexism is problematic primarily because it suggests that no sexism against men can exist. Some of the contributors to NSWATM also find it problematic that they view sexism that benefits women as “benevolent sexism,” but sexism that benefits men as “male privilege.”

  59. Feckless says:

    @Ozy: Also arguing that there is no female privilege, the being a feminist means believing women have it worse, that the female gaze does not exist or that there are such a low number of male DV victims that men don’t need DV shelters.

    Given the fact that Shakesville’s Mellisa McEwan is a main contributor of FF101 one really might ask questions about striking it from the link list….but I guess I am ahabing here. Kudos again for kicking of FF101 though!

  60. Danny says:

    I’ll have to admit that even at my own place I have it in a small list of Other Haunting Grounds (although I very rarely haunt the place). But frankly I kept it there in the belief that there HAD to be something of value there. But I didn’t know realize that McEwan was a big contributor there, makes sense though…

  61. Feckless says:

    Even though nobody is going to read that, AnnArchist started another post:

    “I have consulted with ignatiusloyola about the title. It was “Earning scorn from feminists since March 2008. . ”

    We have decided to change it to ‘Earning scorn from anti-equality activists since March 2008’ to be more inclusive. That way we don’t exclude potential feminist allies who might not have seen the subreddit before they even get into the door.

    It kind of reminded me of the women’s spaces that automatically discount the opinions of men merely because they are men / or expects them to take a backseat role because they have a penis. . .

    Anyway, this thread is for feedback (positive and negative) regarding the change.”

    -> http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRights/comments/ku92r/title_change_for_rmensrights/

  62. Hugh Ristik says:

    Props for removing FF101.

  63. ozymandias42 says:

    Feckless: Awesome! I’m glad. 🙂 The more people in the men’s rights movement recognize that feminists and masulists are not necessarily enemies, the better off we’ll all be.

  64. Feckless says:

    @Ozy: I agree even though my stance on feminism is quite critical. Anyhow, maybe the picture painted of r/mr was a tad too grim?

    It is funny someone is calling out AA for making that post and asking him to get removed *grabs popcorn* -> http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRights/comments/kuhra/nonconfidence_in_annarchist_vote_to_remove_as_mod/

    Aaaand gets downvoted.

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