Sunday, May 29, 2011

Bowling therapy.

You know what I really want to do with "Men's Rights activists," "pick-up artists," anti-feminists, "men are from Mars women are from Venus" theorists, straight-up misogynists, and other varieties of people who hate or just fundamentally misunderstand women?

I want to take them bowling.

I suck at bowling, but that's not the point; the point is to drink terrible beer and shoot the shit, cheer each other on strikes and take the piss out of each other on gutterballs, and just generally do something that's fun and sociable and low-pressure. Bowling's just a way to give the evening some structure. We could play pool or go fishing or whatever. Some recreational activity that keeps you mildly busy but gives you plenty of time to talk.

I'd invite some female friends, too, but not to launch a feminist assault on these guys. (And certainly not to date them; not only do I respect my friends more than that, I don't want this to be reduced to a pickup opportunity.) Just to talk about our lives, to joke around, and to interact with each other and the guys the way people interact on a casual night out.



Why? I'm going to answer with a confession I hope doesn't cause strife in my relationships: sometimes I get jealous of Sprite when she's not around. Not like "SHE MUST DIE" jealous, but "I worry she resents me or something" jealous. And then I spend time with her in person, and it absolutely melts away when I realize what a warm and kind person she is when she's actually there. It's only the theoretical Sprite I'm jealous of, the Sprite that I construct in my head from circumstantial evidence; the actual present Sprite is awesome.

I think women-hating types have this same problem with women--the imaginary woman in their head is strange and cruel, and they don't have enough real women to compare her to. (Some of them are burned-out divorcees, but many more seem to have never had a significant relationship with a woman.) I'm convinced a lot of these guys have no female friends and not that many male friends, so their view of humanity is largely interpretations based on media characters, glancing observations of strangers, and the limited interactions of work or school. They've developed this giant hate-on for the theoretical woman and all the evil she theoretically would do. And then they get together and tell each other about their theoretical women, and the meta-theoretical woman, a truly fearsome critter, is born.

And the only antidote for all this is real women. Not real women as dates--in some ways that just cements the concept of "woman" as a Martian with a pussy attached--but just as people. I want these guys to go bowling with women and hear about our preferences in cheap pitcher beers, our minor annoyances, our quirky interests. I want them to tell us their daily problems and funny stories and watch as we react in a sympathetic and entirely human way. I want them to get to know women who are doctors and women who work at Starbucks, women who are self-identified sluts and women who are celibate, women who are kinda annoying and women who are completely adorable.

I want them to learn that spending time with a woman isn't a laborious prerequisite to fucking her, but a pleasant thing in itself, a way to feel more alive and connected to the world.

Funny thing is, not only would this shake some of the asshole out of those guys, it'd probably get them laid. I believe that you can't really have a girlfriend until you know how to be friends with a woman, and learning how to hang out and just chill with women is excellent practice for all the hanging out/chilling that a relationship entails. Getting these dudes laid would definitely be a side effect and not a goal--I hold the radical feminist opinion that you should treat women like people even if this doesn't get you laid--but if they learn that treating women like humans leads to happy penis feelings, so much the better.



In the end, it's not argument that wins people over to your side. It's showing them the essential humanity and ordinariness of the people they were trying to hate. I have no way to make the Woman-Haters-And-Women Bowling League really happen, but it's a beautiful dream for me.

127 comments:

  1. You are so right. "It is the unknown we fear." People fear what they don't know or don't experience. People who have close friendships with people who are different develop understanding, and lose their fear. Great post!

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  2. So, when do we get to elect you president of something?

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  3. Holly, I think I love you. This post is amazing.

    Also, I totally volunteer to be president of the Los Angeles chapter of the Women Haters and Women Bowling League!

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  4. I generally find when you do this sort of thing (no matter how well intentioned) you will end up with unrequited love from someone who, when rejected, will then see your rejection as a reason to justify there prejudice.
    You become the "One decent guy/girl" in this person’s life because you're showing them that there can be exceptions to their sweeping generalisations and they become desperate not to lose you. As rather then accepting that they might be wrong about how they view your gender they instead decide to put you on a pedestal to avoid cognitive dissonance. If it were easy to adjust a lifetime of prejudice from one example then I’m sure that such views wouldn’t be as widespread as they are.
    While I agree that Gender Activists would benefit a lot from perhaps viewing the opposite gender as a person and not a set of genitals attached to an alien, taking that responsibility onto yourself can be quite dangerous, for their mental heath as well as your own.
    Though I still wholeheartedly agree with the spirit of your post.

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  5. That's a good point. I was more thinking that you'd lose them at the "I don't want this to be reduced to a pickup opportunity" point in the proposal. If there's not going to be a chance to pick up the women there, why be there? That's what betas do!

    Also, to Holly, I feel bound to point out that you are incorrect in your characterization of women as Martians with adjunct pussies. None of the people you're describing in this post believe such a preposterous thing, and it amounts to a strawman on your part.
    (The women are Venusians.)

    I'm supposed to be reading Mars and Venus On a Date because I argued with a believer who swears it will open my eyes to the solution to some problem I was talking about with my wife. I promised her I'd read the thing because she really is trying to help, and she got me to promise because she knows I think it's mostly bollocks. It's an interesting relationship I have with that forum; we all bump along and get along somehow, even though they know I just can't buy into all the Martian vs. Venusian, Enneagram ("But of COURSE you don't believe in Enneagrams! You're a Type 7 speaking in your feminine!") stuff. It's kind of like an online version of your bowling night.

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  6. I second what the other Anonymous up there says. You'd more than likely end up in the "I've got nothing against women; in fact, I have a very good friend who's a woman." situation.
    People with prejudice will see the world through that lense. They'll see the bits that confirm what they already think, and will ignore the bits that contradict their point of view. Otherwise, it would already have worked!

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  7. I would agree with this from experience.
    In 9th grade, I decided to try to "Understand Girls", with the unstated assumption that they were significantly different than boys. Being a geek, I decided that I needed to first gain a theoretical understanding. To the Library! (Kapwing!). Since my parents at the time were reading Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, I read through that. I also encountered on the internet, such gems as The Ladder Theory, and this guy http://maddox.xmission.com/ I may have also unwittingly stumbled upon some PUA stuff.

    Luckily I decided to change tactics to "lets try to befriend a lot of girls, as that seems more likely to lead to a healthy relationship and also has the failure mode of having friends. Being a geek, this was kinda difficult to implement until I left High School and started attending a small technical school in Our Fair City, wherein I had a number of very enlightening mixed gender conversations about how relationships and social interaction actually work.

    If I'd had these conversations in 9th grade, I would have been a much happier high schooler. I'm pretty sure I would have jumped at the change to as well... Or at least if you replace bowling with Dungeons and Dragons.

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  8. Anons - Sadly, you have a point. I don't know how to avoid "well, you don't understand how those other women are, you're one of the good ones" syndrome. I'd try to include a large and diverse population of women in the Bowling League (which would be difficult as hell, because seriously, I wouldn't blame women for not wanting to be Gender Ambassadors to some assholes), and I'd try to make it a stepping stone to a real social circle, but still. Sometimes this shit is pretty ingrained.



    Don - I assume you know what I think of the Mars/Venus books?

    (Of course! Exactly the same thing every other woman would think, but exactly the opposite of what a man would think! Because that's how it works, right?)

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  9. Hm. On second thought, I'm going to go off armorsmith42's experience and tell the anons that it matters what age you catch these guys at. Although they sound like bitter middle-aged men, a lot of these dudes are actually in college or even high school. (An age when almost everybody has trouble with dating and sex, but it's easy to feel like things will never get better.) I think if you can get them into normal human interaction while they're still developing emotionally, your odds of bringing them all the way around are a lot higher.

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  10. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWKRwCzwMNA

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  11. I think this could work. The issue here is treating people like people. These woman haters don't know how to treat people like people because they've never been treated like people. If your look or your hobbies are any different from the mainstream people are going to make fun of you. They call you a loser or creep or whatever else and treat you less than a person. I think these woman haters really hate everyone but they aren't attracted to men so they don't have to worry about them. Really it comes down to wanting to have a relationship with a girl and not being able to get one. I think to say everyone in college is having trouble dating or having sex is a bit of a stretch. If your a guy and you graduate without having sex the first question people are going to ask is what's wrong with you.

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  12. Anon - These woman haters don't know how to treat people like people because they've never been treated like people.
    This rapidly becomes a vicious cycle. The problem is that if you treat other people just wonderfully, it may still take you some time and some nasty rejections to get a good circle of friends. If you get discouraged early, you can develop a shell of bitterness that drives people away and makes it nigh-impossible for you to bond with other people--even perfectly nice ones who otherwise would.

    If your look or your hobbies are any different from the mainstream people are going to make fun of you. They call you a loser or creep or whatever else and treat you less than a person.
    SOME people. But "people" are not a monolith standing against you. Some people have weird looks and hobbies of their own!

    If your a guy and you graduate without having sex the first question people are going to ask is what's wrong with you.
    Not really. And a lot of the ones who do will be doing it to cover the fact that they didn't get laid either (or got laid like twice and it was all awkward, but they've built it up to sound like it was a valiant conquest) and they also don't realize how normal that is. There's no better way to distract people from your loneliness than to point at someone else and go "Haw haw, look how lonely this loser is!"

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  13. Oh, wow, I didn't realize that Holly here was the same Holly as over at Manboobz! I found both your blogs roughly at the same time (I picked up on yours from a link to your post on Billion Wicked Thoughts).

    The internet, a strange and wonderous network.

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  14. ithiliana - Yep, I'm Holly all over the place.

    And this post is inspired by a conversation on Manboobz, too.

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  15. I am gay. If all it took was for bigots to get to know the people they hate as individuals then my parents never would have campaigned to strip away my right to marry.

    I am transgender. If all it took were for bigots to get to know us as people then I should never have to hear my parents talk about how wrong it is that children are told it is alright to be like me.

    I am Autistic. If all it took were for bigots to get to know us as people then I would never again have to fear being pittied or being told that my kind has no rigth to be born from people I had thought were friends. My mother would not have a book on her dresser describing my kind as soulless changelings. I would never have to fear coming out.

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  16. Anon - Unfortunately, you're right; that's not all it takes. (Although in my experience, parents often do not know their kids as people; they know them as former babies who got out of their control at some point, and don't truly know them as adults.) But I hope that it helps, at least in some cases.

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  17. I agree with the spirit of this post.

    Oh, and hi there, found you on Manboobz. I think this is a great companion blog, not just for posts like this, but also for other things.

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  18. "Companion" blog... why I... you little whippersnapper.

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  19. "'Companion' blog... why I... you little whippersnapper."

    Bahaha. Red_locker, to translate: Holly's been talking human rights and sharing the details of her perversities since before Manboobz was but a pair of boyish breast buds.

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  20. Whoops, forgot the original reason I came to the comments section.

    Holly, just wanted to say that your tolerating the dude who inspired this post long enough to get to a point where you're nudging him towards rehabilitation is near-saintly.

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  21. It's to the point where I almost want to take him under my wing. It's too bad about the violence comments, then. Otherwise I'd seriously consider making him my little rehab project.

    (Not MRA-to-feminist rehab project. Just "miserable bitter loner" to "guy who understands that socializing is hard but humans are worthwhile" rehab. Although I suspect that would coincidentally wring the MRA right out of him...)

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  22. Holly - "It may still take you some time and some nasty rejections to get a good circle of friends. If you get discouraged early, you can develop a shell of bitterness that drives people away and makes it nigh-impossible for you to bond with other people--even perfectly nice ones who otherwise would."

    But after a lot of time and a lot of nasty rejections you might still have no circle of friends. So even if you don't get discouraged and bitter your sitting there with no friends. I choose not to be bitter about it but I can see why some people might turn into that type of person.

    "Some people have weird looks and hobbies of their own!"

    Then those people are normally going to section themselves off and hangout with each other. People that live a certain lifestyle are going to hang out with other people of that same lifestyle. There are some people that don't fit in any particular circle and they get left out.

    If your a virgin after college graduation and they don't ask whats wrong you that's definitely what they are thinking. You even it said "Being "incel" is the fate of the picky, shy, or socially inept". Implying that there is something wrong with them and fixing the problem is as simple as fixing one of those issues.

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  23. If you think that there's nothing to change about yourself and the only problem is with other people, then you can expect your current life situation to continue indefinitely.

    Obviously it's possible--in the statistical sense--to be an interesting person who goes out all the time and is nice to people and never makes any friends, but it's super unlikely. Not even worth worrying about unlikely.

    It does take time though. The first time you put your neck on the line and really put yourself out there, you may feel like you got nothing... and the second time, too. I was in my current social circle for a couple months before I got really close to anyone as a friend, and about six months before I met my boyfriend. If I'd thought of it as "six solid months of rejection," I'd have gotten bitter as hell. But it wasn't. It was just the six months before I met someone completely awesome.

    I think it's also important to chalk up "mere" friendliness as a win; if you go out and have some laughs and meet some people, that's a good night. Focusing too hard on getting laid as a goal not only gets you frustrated, it actually makes it way harder for you to get laid.

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  24. "If you think that there's nothing to change about yourself and the only problem is with other people, then you can expect your current life situation to continue indefinitely."

    When did I say I think this? I'm constantly trying to make changes about myself not that it has any effect.

    "Not even worth worrying about unlikely."

    If it's currently happening to you then it's definitely worth worrying about.

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  25. It does depend who you are and where you live, but I really believe that if you're a super friendly person--not friendly as a means to an end--straight up "I like people!" friendly--you will make friends.

    Try different groups of people. If you have the time/access, try joining some special interest groups--a gamer club, a crafting circle, something like that, whatever you're into. "People" in general are hard to get to know--people who are into D&D, or people who build model trainsets, or whatever, are much more approachable.

    That's why my idealistic little scenario has bowling, instead of just inviting MRAs and women into a room to talk. Having an activity, whether it's your favorite or not, can smooth over social awkwardnesses.

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  26. I concur wholeheartedly on the bowling theory. I have observed that people have a hard time overcoming the a lack of exposure to healthy relationships, but it is possible for them to grow and ease into a healthier relationship with others as well as with themselves.

    This post made me smile because it reminded me of Camper van Beethoven's Take The Skinheads Bowling. Thanks for the grins.

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  27. Anon - Sometimes I think the most important thing is just to get out--out with people, by any means necessary. Find out social events happening in your area and get out to them. Some will be hopelessly awkward and you'll just stand around. Some will turn out awesome.

    Also, the simplest trick I learned and it's helped me meet a million people--just walk up to someone (maybe not on the street, but at any social event or club meeting), smile like ya mean it, stick out your hand, and say "Hi, my name's Anon. How're you doing? What brought you out here?" Again I cannot promise 100% effectiveness, but it will start conversations and some of those will become friendships.

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  28. Ok, I graduated college without getting laid, it wasn't that bad really. Between luck and my awkwardness approaching women romantically, it never happened. I did other things, made lots of friends (both men and women), and had a fulfilling life.

    @Holly - another tip: if you're not well received in a particular social group after a few outings, try another group. There's tons out there, so any one group is far from your 'only chance', and as you try out different groups and interact with different people, you'll be learning skills and hopefully having a good time until you find a social circle that clicks.

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  29. So, possible courses of action:
    0) Actually hold events like this, as Holly mentioned:
    I am not sure how I would do this, since most of the people I know tend to be silently feminist anyway.

    1) Avoid gender-segregating activities for kids:
    I'm kinda confused as to why adults sometimes gender-segregate kids when they are before the age of puberty, but it seems more difficult to make the assumption that males and females are different if you've been interacting with girls since you were for the past 10 years.

    This probably will also have the nice side effect of avoiding making genderqueer/trans/agender kids feel awkward.

    2) The first several hits on google for "understanding women" range from bitter and sexist to psuedoscientific and sexist. perhaps it would be helpful to write up a sane, reasonable page on how to interact with women^Wpeople, some of whom may have breasts.

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  30. Armorsmith42 - 0) Sadly, getting MRA dudes to come out to events like this would be super difficult--especially getting them to come out and take it in good faith. I have no idea how to invite them without saying either:
    -"We have women for you to hit on!"
    or
    -"We're going to indoctrinate you with Feminist Dogma!"

    1) An excellent idea, but not one I have any influence over.

    2) An excellent idea and one I will try to make into a post.

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  31. Fishing? For realz? Do you have any idea how miserably boring motherfucken fishing is?????

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  32. @Comrade PhysioProf: I know! But you could call it "Fishing With Sharks!"

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  33. @armorsmith42

    1) Perhaps I was just not aware of it, but I do not remember adults really going out of their way to gender-segregate children when I was young: the children seemed to do it fine all by themselves.

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  34. Daniel - The kids don't get the idea out of nowhere--adults teach them all about boy games and girl games, boy toys and girl toys, boy sports and girl sports.

    T4T - Anytime.

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  35. Holly - "If you think that there's nothing to change about yourself and the only problem is with other people, then you can expect your current life situation to continue indefinitely."

    I'm doomed....

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  36. It occurs to me for a lot of burnt out divorcees, their wives might be their only point of reference for what a women is. Society doesn't really encourage meaningful, platonic opposite gender relationships. Taking into account that there also seems to be a persistent idea that the most meaningful relationship is one that includes sex (and therefore ~twu luv~), I don't think it's a large leap to say that if they were married young enough, a wife may be one of the only significantly emotional bonds a man might have to another woman (excluding family). Vice versa as well.

    And, well, for an embittered divorcee that might create a skewed view of women. If your experience of women has soley been Mother, People in my Class, People my Friends Have Dated, Friend of a Friend, Co-worker and Wife...

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  37. If your a guy and you graduate without having sex the first question people are going to ask is what's wrong with you.

    For what it's worth, I graduated from college without having sex and nobody ever, once, asked me that.

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  38. ok, I don't know if my last attempt got thrown out as moderation or just got lost for a technological problem; but I wanted to ask Holly to stop dismissing other people's suffering just because she once maybe felt kinda lonely, so she knows what it's all about, and the solution is just to Smile! And be friendly to people!

    I know your intentions are nice, but this condescending tone riuns it all.

    I'm a 25 year old woman, and a virgin, if we define real sex as something the participants feel safe while doing (using the traditional definiton might result in, like, 5 occasions or still a virgin, if you only count PIV). I don't really have friends.

    I can't just go to events and be nice to everybody, because being nice and initiating has the implied statement "I believe there is a chance you might like me, so what I'm doing could be considered nice by you and not just bothering - and even if you don't find me personally attracting, you can IMAGINE people who would like me, and won't consider me an egoistic, deluded freak just for supposing they might exist", which for some of us sounds like science fiction - so the only polite behavior is not bothering all those nice people who wouldn't want us anyway.

    And because living like this is painful, there are often self-defense mechanisms to convince ourselves that those people weren't that cool anyway, which eases the rejection, but makes harder to be just well-meaning and curious and accepting - because the more I accept random people, the worse their rejection will feel, and it's close to impossible that they could give anything else than rejection.

    My strategy is paying a psychologist and not just declaring that All Boys Are Stupid, and I don't support the MRA-s answer; I just want you to try to imagine that there are people who have been abused, or just come from all kinds of shitty places in life, and giving obvious pieces of cliche advice that only works with people who are already kind of allright is... insulting.

    I don't want you to give me advice, just to tone down your know-it-all style a bit.

    It's like telling a transwoman that "c'me on baby, some days I feel that maybe my XX-chromosomed body is not girly enough neither, but then I usually just ask my boyfriends and the large amounts of friends I have for reassurance, and call my mother so she can tell me I'm pretty, and the sad goes away! So if I can cope without hormones etc, you should be able too, and if you can't, it only proves you're too stupid to use the exact same methods that worked so well for me".

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  39. Anon - I'm sorry that my tone came off condescending. But I do get frustrated by the bitter tone of people who try to tell me that making friends is totally impossible and could never ever work for them. I believe that's true of far fewer people than believe it about themselves.

    Some people need help to change their lives; others really are capable of doing it themselves.

    Please don't assume that my life has been sunshine and roses and parties in my honor, by the way. Really hasn't. I'm not saying my situation was ever the same as yours, but it's a little condescending on your part to tell me that my methods only worked because life was handed to me on a silver platter and I've always been popular and comfortable with people. You have no idea how far that is from the truth.

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  40. Don - I assume you know what I think of the Mars/Venus books?

    Yup. You've made that clear, and I feel the same way more or less. I think there's probably some useful advice in there, but for the most part it's people selling simple solutions.
    On the other hand, I'll read anything once and I've never actually read any of the Mars/Venus series . . . and she promises I will be amazed, so we'll see. I've had kind of a hard time really getting started so far. I admit I'm going in with my biases intact.

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  41. If you two don't stop condescending to each other right now, I'm going to condescend to both of you. Don't think I won't. I have a Y Chromosome from Mars and I'm not afraid to use it.

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  42. Oh Don, aincha cute, thinking you can condescend with the big kids.

    *pat pat*

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  43. But ugh. It's hard to find a balance between buying into people's cognitive distortions--validating the idea that they are uniquely unlovable or that meeting people really is super impossible--and sounding condescending. I don't mean to be all "your problems can be solved with a smile and a handshake!"... but I also don't mean to be all "your problems are unsolvable and you're right to despair of ever being a normal person," because 99% of the time that's really not true.

    I'm not really sure where the respectful middle ground is between those. As someone with a long and very real history of social awkwardness that I've only really gotten over in the last year, I try to share things that worked for me.

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  44. ok, I'm the anon who's in the mutual condescending party with Holly (maybe it's a threesome with Don?), and I too want to stop it. Holly, I remember reading your old post about awkwardness, so I know you really mean it. What made me flip was the "I really believe that if you're a super friendly person--not friendly as a means to an end--straight up "I like people!" friendly--you will make friends" quote, because it seemed like advanced material, so I have tried to explain why it wasn't helpful for beginners - if you're already a "super friendly person", you're on the finishing line already! But I did get a bit too agressive in my comment; sorry.

    but then, again: I remember a post of you which I bet is more than a year old, from your old city, which described an evening with your non-kinky boyfriend/friend-with-benefits-with-emotional-connection who didn't want to declare himself your boyfriend, his name was maybe Aron?, and I was drooling over it - not because of the sex part, but for the comfort and warmth and shameless sillyness of it all. So even if you declare that period one of social awkwardness, for me it still was a fantasy.

    I'd like to recommand you here http://www.viruscomix.com/page528.html the sixth comic - with the sad realization that I might well live somebody else's dream life (actually, I think I do live the dream of a former self of mine, from various points of view).

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  45. and the rest of the comic for all the sad MRAs around here, actually.

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  46. This is so right-on, and well-written. It's completely rational, fair, objective,insightful, and a good idea. Thanks for posting this. :)

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  47. It's a great plan for convincing MRAs to calm down a bit, but it seems like a hard sell for the women.

    "Bowling with people who hate you for no reason!"

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  48. "Take the Skinheads Bowling" is exactly what came to mind at first.

    I saw the other thread, and you are way nicer than I, Holly. I know you didn't do that for validation from a random stranger on the 'net, but I was very impressed. Then he had to go get violent, which is a shame in so many ways.

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  49. As I have been, for most of my life, painfully shy, my strategy was not so much "be super friendly" (which was impossibly difficult for me), but "hang out with people and not say much". Which actually worked surprisingly well. Many people like to talk and will be glad to find someone willing to listen attentively. And it gave me a chance to observe other people interacting socially and kinda figure out how it works. Eventually, someone would start a conversation I was very interested in (interested enough to risk speaking up) and next thing I knew I was "being friendly" despite myself. And it does help that, as I get older, "people my age" in general have tended to get less judgmental about social awkwardness.

    --Rosie

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  50. I was homophobic before I actually met some and hung around them. The light slowly turned on - there is no significant difference.

    So, chalk this up as a piece of anecdotal evidence for the bowling theory.

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  51. Yeah, you have more patience than me. I do 101, and I don't mind talking to folks who're neutral towards the various labels on me, but your bowling league sounds like the equivalent of me going to play with the False Memory Foundation.

    NO THANK YOU. I don't have the stamina.

    --Rogan

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  52. Holly, your post is based on a flawed premise and thus doesn't make any sense.

    You assert that MRAs and people who identify with men's rights do not understand women and/or have no interaction with women. That is false.

    Many MRAs are married or in long-term relationships. Many are divorced. Some are gay. Many are women themselves.

    The real reason people are MRAs is not because of individual women, it is because of the system.

    People aren't MRAs because of despicable, evil, bad women. They are MRAs because these women get rewarded and supported by the system.

    People aren't MRAs because women abuse, hit, and injure men. They are MRAs because these women are not punished by the system.

    People aren't MRAs because women make false accusations of domestic violence. They are MRAs because these false accusations are treated like gospel by the system.

    People aren't MRAs because women try to take kids away from their fathers. They are MRAs because the system helps them to do so.

    Although your supporters are fawning over this post, it is meaningless.

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  53. RE: Cel

    Could you please offer links offering evidence for your claims?

    --Rogan

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  54. This is just an attempt to put a pleasant face on the typical "MRAs are losers who can't get laid" shaming language. Which, when you get down to it, is just a simple-minded ad-hominem attack.

    Cel has it right. MRAs are opposed to a system which grants men few reproductive or parenting rights, provides them no protection against domestic violence, and treats them as disposables, with relatively little concern for their health and safety.

    MRAs are anti-feminist because we see feminists as supporting this system which tramples our rights. The day when feminists really start supporting equal rights, including those for men, is the day the MRM will become obsolete.

    I've got another motivation for MRAs for you to think about - many of us are fathers to sons. We've seen how other men have been used and abused, and we don't want that to happen to our boys.

    I myself am in a very loving, amorous, and sexual relationship of 20 years with a wonderful woman. I wouldn't learn much by bowling with you.

    ReplyDelete
  55. Cel is right. This strategy cannot work, because it's based on a false premise.

    It's just like a man inn the 1950s proposing to "cure" feminists by finding a nice boy for them to marry.

    ReplyDelete
  56. LBT, I'd be happy to provide some. Thanks for not dismissing them out of hand due to pre-conceived (false) beliefs.

    In regards to bad, despicable women being supported and rewarded by the system:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/8544783/Woman-had-two-children-after-secretly-taking-ex-husbands-frozen-sperm.html?sms_ss=reddit&at_xt=4de5569589ca84e0%2C0

    Summary: Woman fraudulently takes her ex-husband's frozen sperm to impregnate herself. Sues for child support, gets 100 thousand pounds.

    Violent women not being punished:

    http://www.law.fsu.edu/journals/lawreview/downloads/304/kelly.pdf

    "Limiting this examination to the criminal justice system, Part IV considers how the feminist definition of domestic violence has skewed arrest and prosecution philosophies, resulting primarily in having only male batterers criminally pursued."

    Accusations being treated as gospel:

    http://www.northfieldnews.com/content/prison-holm-turned-god-family-and-pursuit-dreams-survive

    http://www.freejordan.org/?page_id=27

    Summary: 22 year old got jailed for years after being accused of non-consensually performing oral sex on a woman. The only evidence was her word.

    -DNA evidence showed nothing happened.
    -The woman's own boyfriend, who was in bed next to her at the time of the alleged assault, testified in court saying she was a liar.

    Among other problems. Yet, still convicted.

    There are many other similar examples of false claims being automatically believed.

    As for custody, I'm sure you're well aware that men are screwed over when it comes for custody. What specific citation would you like?

    ReplyDelete
  57. what a beta faggot

    OH MY PWECIOUS SPWITE I WUV HER SO VEWY VEWY MUCH

    GOTTA PWOTECT HER FWOM DA EVIL "PICK UP ARTISTS" AND OTHER ASSORTED WOMEN HATING MISOGYNISTS WHO HATE WOMEN

    OH PWECIOUS WOMEN OUR MOST VAWUABLE WESOURCE

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You realize this is a woman writing about Sprite (another woman) don't you?
      Or are even women part of the (unreal) alpha-beta tier system now?
      Trolls: check yourselves before you wreck yourselves (at least look up basic info like this)

      Delete
  58. I want them to learn that spending time with a woman isn't a laborious prerequisite to fucking her, but a pleasant thing in itself, a way to feel more alive and connected to the world.

    are you trying to convince me, or yourself?


    Funny thing is, not only would this shake some of the asshole out of those guys, it'd probably get them laid.


    wow typical shaming language. LOL MRAs and PUAs and misogynists are a bunch of losers that don't get laid, unlike me, a smug cunt. wow, we're all really jealous of the fact you get to lick a fat dyke's smelly vagina.

    ReplyDelete
  59. Double trollbow, oh my god. It’s a double trollbow, all the way. Whoa that’s so intense. Whoa man! Wow! Whoa! Whoa! Whoa ho ho oh my god! Oh my god! Oh my god! Woo! Oh wow! Woo! Yeah! Oh ho ho! Oh my god! Oh my god look at that! It’s starting even to look like a triple trollbow! Oh my god it’s full on! Double trollbow all the way across the sky! Oh my god. Oh my god. Oh god. What does this mean? Oh. Oh my god. Oh. Oh. God. It’s so bright, oh my god it’s so bright and vivid! Oh. Ah! Ah! It’s so beautiful! Oh my god. Oh my god. Oh my god! Oh my god, it’s a double complete trollbow! Oh right in my front yard. Oh my god. Oh my god, what does it mean? Tell me. Too much. I don’t know what it means. Oh my god it’s so intense. Oh. Oh. Oh my god.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Man, what Holly said on Twitter was right on. "I don't hate women except they're HORRIBLE and also MRAS/PUAS never ever complain about bitches who won't have sex with them. Ever."

    Guys, women are human beings. I'm really sorry about the crazy nasty ones, but there are crazy nasty men, too. We're all people.

    Maybe if I shout into the abyss long enough, an echo of reason will come back...sigh.

    ReplyDelete
  61. jack

    I guess you complete the trifecta.

    ReplyDelete
  62. Good grief. I feel two minutes dumber for reading your post.

    Let's make this really, really simple: I'm in my early 30's. I have dated about 15 women in my adult life. Five were long-term relationships. Two involved substantial cohabitation. One almost resulted in marriage. I have had tons of female co-workers, some being very close collaborators. At this time I have several female friends, though not nearly as many as I used to.

    I understand women very, very well. I like some of them. I am neutral towards most. A select few are on my sh*t list, but it is for a good reason.

    I still have real grievances with the way men are treated in our society, the privilege that women receive, and the facts to back it all up. That is why I'm against feminism, and in favor of men's rights.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Guys, women are human beings. I'm really sorry about the crazy nasty ones, but there are crazy nasty men, too. We're all people.

    _____________________________________________

    Yes, there are bad men and what do men do about it? We put our lives on the line to protect women from these men. What is strange is how so many women go through their bad boy phase and seek out abusive and bad men. Many women never get out of this phase.

    So, what are you women doing about the bad women?

    I get called a misogynist for thinking that women are humans and expecting them to act humane instead of the way most act.

    ReplyDelete
  64. Guys, women are human beings. I'm really sorry about the crazy nasty ones, but there are crazy nasty men, too. We're all people.

    ____________________________________

    Even more, who creates these evil nasty men? There aren't many men raising children today and the majority of child abuse, both physical and sexual, is perpetrated by women. The little bit that is perpetrated by men is usually done by moms boyfriend and usually with moms knowledge.

    The majority of abuse of boys in juvenile facilities and prisons is perpetrated by female guards and social workers. The majority of teacher on child abuse is done by women to boys.

    There are now more single mother families than intact families and the safest place for a child is in it's biodads care.

    If you look at the areas where there is high rates of "bad men" behaving badly then you will see that most are matriarchal ghettos. There is a reason that "hyper and toxic masculine ideals and misogyny" exist in environments that are female dominated. I always laugh when feminists talk about black men and misogyny in hip hop and so on. They are complaining about a situation that they helped create because feminism hijacked the civil rights movement and that is why the black community is like the canary in the coal mine when measuring misandry.

    ReplyDelete
  65. This post is the most obnoxious and arrogant thing I've seen all week. Is it a deliberate attempt at trolling?

    The entire idea is predicated on the assumption that the concerns and complaints expressed by MRA's are entire frivolous and superficial, and if they just had a few beers with some women, they'd get over it.

    So tell me, for the guy who hasn't been allowed to see his kids for six months.. how many beers should he drink to forget them?
    For the guy facing a false rape accusation, how many frames does he need to play to make the police go away?

    I think its YOU that has an imaginary MRA in your head, a fictional angry bitter man who hates everything. It's much easier for you to believe this, because it means you can dismiss their concerns, and ignore everything they say.

    ReplyDelete
  66. This whole blog post is just an insult to men.

    ReplyDelete
  67. Thank you guys for coming over here anonymously to explain to us how actually everything ever is womens' fault! Especially criminal men. That's definitely their momma's fault. It's always momma's fault, whatever decision a man makes.

    A real man knows who's responsible for his actions, and it sure ain't him. It's his momma. Or his wife. Or his ex-wife. But never him! He's helpless as a babe against the machinations of women!

    And that's why most of the positions of power in the world are held by men. Because of the machinations of women, who are spending so much time manipulating those hapless men around them, all they have time for is cleaning the house and raising the kids. Not that that's hard or anything, they're just too lazy and unambitious to work for real money. It definitely makes more sense to manipulate all the men around her to go to work and make the money. Much more secure. And if she wanted to work and make the money, well, the only reason she can't make as much is because she had the gall to go have kids so she could manipulate her husband. She doesn't deserve to get paid as much as a good hard-working man! Who only does what he does because of what his momma or wife says anyway. That's the real power, not how much you make! That and tits.

    And every woman who divorces a man, well, she ends up in a much better financial place. She sucks him dry and then sits in his house eating bonbons that he pays for! Especially when she gets the kids, we know how much they contribute to the bottom line. Luxury!

    Just look around! It's obvious if you look around! And if you can't see it, it's just because the women have manipulated you into not seeing the TRUTH. Those bitches.

    ReplyDelete
  68. "So, what are you women doing about the bad women?"

    Taking them BOWLING of course!!!

    Bowling. The perfect solution for throwing a rug over the elephant in the room and forgetting all about it.

    ReplyDelete
  69. Oh dearie me. I think you guys kinda speak for yourselves. Just a couple things I want to say:

    A) Although I may disagree with them, I have no desire to "cure" people who are concerned about men's custody rights, college attendance, rate of incarceration, etc. I was thinking more of the people who came on here and started calling me a stupid cunt, and in particular the ones saying "I wouldn't hate women... if you weren't all so horrible!"

    The concept of a men's rights movement is not misogynistic, but the current incarnation of it is riddled with misogyny. I look at the men's rights reddit, and y'all can't get through two sentences of equality without someone yelling "personally I think we should just smack the bitch." Those are the guys I'd like to take bowling.

    B) This wasn't about whether you get laid. This was about whether you're friends with women and understand them on a human level. It's quite possible to get laid, even get laid a lot, and still not have that.

    C) I think men's rights dudes target feminism to create the impression that we're opposite and equal, that MRA is just like feminism for men. Or even that feminism is just as bad as MRA, which kinda speaks for itself but I hear it a lot--"we only call you cunts because you hate and oppress men!"--even if that were true it still wouldn't make you look too awesome. Feminism is way bigger, older, more welcoming of all genders, less full of anger and violence, more productive in the real world, and contains more goddamn grown-ups than any MRA movement I've ever seen.

    ReplyDelete
  70. Hershele OstropolerJune 2, 2011 at 9:57 AM

    I think it's also important to chalk up "mere" friendliness as a win; if you go out and have some laughs and meet some people, that's a good night. Focusing too hard on getting laid as a goal not only gets you frustrated, it actually makes it way harder for you to get laid

    How then with those of us who are quite successful at getting laid despite a seeming inability to make friends?

    I just want you to try to imagine that there are people who have been abused, or just come from all kinds of shitty places in life, and giving obvious pieces of cliche advice that only works with people who are already kind of allright is... insulting.

    That's a circular argument with a dash of Calvinism, though; you seem to be defining "kind of alright" as "being the sort of person for whom the advice works" and saying nothing an individual does can put them in that category.

    As someone with a long and very real history of social awkwardness that I've only really gotten over in the last year

    The person who was writing this blog in 2008 -- at least technically you -- had had sex with more people than I've had non-small-talk social conversations with. And I'm older. And I don't wholly subscribe to the MRA theory that this is because women qua women have an easier time getting laid than men qua men.

    But I don't want to make the same mistake as the 4:45 Anon and conclude that this must be because you're really social. So it may be that you've discovered/developed some technique I haven't or I've passed on or that doesn't or wouldn't work for me. Or it may be that combined with you not being as socially awkward as you think you are -- by definition, you wouldn't encounter the people at the very bottom of that scale.

    ReplyDelete
  71. Hershele OstropolerJune 2, 2011 at 10:03 AM

    Also: I notice only one of Cel's links refers to a societal tendency that's provably not a one-off incident -- the rest are gross miscarriages of justice, to be sure (except for the rapist who was sent to prison on "nothing more than" his victim's word) but only demonstrably so for the people involved.

    ReplyDelete
  72. Feminism is way bigger, older, more welcoming of all genders, less full of anger and violence, more productive in the real world, and contains more goddamn grown-ups than any MRA movement I've ever seen(Holly)

    You are probably right on most of what you say. The thing is though if you listen closely to anon and some others like him(not all), you can hear the little boy saying, "Help me, Im a victim too".
    Unfortunately many havnt grown past their hurt(victim) stage and they dont have the skills to properly communicate their message.

    ReplyDelete
  73. Holly- If feminism is about "rights for all" please articulate specific examples of how feminism addresses these grievances. (Besides bowling outings.) This list was submitted by a woman, by the way.

    Source - http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRights/comments/hpb7z/men_have_no_right_to_be_angry/

    1) Women can rape them (men) with impunity and its their fault. Not their fault because they wore the wrong thing, said the wrong thing or did the wrong thing, but because they have the wrong genitalia. They are disproportionately the victims of false-accusations and are afforded little empathy: 'where's smoke, there's fire', 'he probably did it and just got away with it', etc.

    2) They have few protections against domestic violence inflicted on them by women and, in fact, run a risk of being arrested if they do report domestic violence against them.

    3) Are sexually available to all women everywhere in public places and are called whiners if they complain about being groped or harassed. And if they fight back physically they risk an assault charge.

    4) Have no reproductive rights. If a woman chooses to continue a pregnancy they have no choice but to become a father (or to lose a child in the opposite scenario.) If a woman obtains their sperm through rape, fraud or theft they are still strictly liable for child support if she gets pregnant. Mothers have complete control over whether or not a child will have a relationship with his or her father and aren't condemned for creating father-deficient children; but because kids need their fathers so much(only if mom doesn't mind) men are complete monsters for abandoning them.

    5) Divorce does not exist for men. It only really exists for women. Why? Because a woman's responsibilities in marriage can be ended, a man's cannot.

    6) They are expected to pay for the privilege of the company of the opposite sex because their sexuality is inferior to women's.

    7) They are treated as if their emotions are either irrelevant or absent. Notice the stream of unremarked upon male death in every. single. media.

    8) Masculinity is seen as inferior to femininity and a dangerous, toxic thing. Masculinity, in fact, has no positive characteristics except where it treats itself as expendable in service of femininity (The Christian admonishment for men to 'sacrifice for their wives as Christ sacrificed for the church.')

    9) Their bodily integrity is not respected. Thus they have no right to protection from circumcision or conscription.

    10) All of these issues are swept under the rug because most of the positions of power in society are held by men. Men who got into those positions of power by stepping on, ass-raping and eviscerating as many other men as they could and likely actively hate other men with a passion so can't be said to really identify as men--it'd be more accurate to say that male politicians are MtF transexuals but without the guts to go under the knife--but, you know, patriarchy.

    ReplyDelete
  74. 1) Women raping men is in fact illegal. However, you're right that the enforcement sucks, and this is something I'm concerned about: http://pervocracy.blogspot.com/2011/05/male-victims.html

    2) Ditto.

    3) Ditto, with a proviso that this happens way less often to men than women.

    4) Men can get 100% equal reproductive rights when men have 100% equal reproductive anatomy.

    5) Guh? I think what you're saying here is that if you make more money than your partner, you will (sometimes) lose more money than they do in a divorce. This is very different from divorce "not existing."

    6) Not if you ever spend any time with women who are not prostitutes.

    7) Wait, what? Also, to the extent this is true, it's got a lot more to do with machismo than feminism.

    8) Again, that's machismo, not feminism.

    9) I totally agree about circumcision. As for conscription, we're not currently doing that in the US, and I suspect--and frankly, hope--that if we ever have a draft again we will include women. We (as in, oh my gosh, feminists) are making a lot of progress in getting women front-line roles in the military.

    10) MtF people are women, not wussy men. They are not your rhetorical device.

    But if most of the power is held by men, then go after these men! Stop hating on women (or being SUPER tolerant of people in your movement who do and never criticizing them for it) and go after the damn system already. Instead of attacking feminism.

    Oh, and the fact that women participate in sexism doesn't exactly blow my mind or make it extra valid to me. I believe that women are people, and some people are jerks, so, you know.

    ReplyDelete
  75. I should point out (again), that the message of this post is not "MRAS DROOL FEMINISM RULES YOU DON'T GET LAID BWA HA."

    The message is "people who don't like or understand women--which includes a lot of MRAs (but not all of them and not only them)--ought to spend some pleasant time in a nonsexual social context with a diverse group of women."

    ReplyDelete
  76. 4) Men can get 100% equal reproductive rights when men have 100% equal reproductive anatomy.(Holly)


    Isnt that sexism, Inequality based on gender? Even though the child/fetus is only possible with the BOTH genders involved?

    ReplyDelete
  77. tit, I think that holly is talking about the fact that if a woman wants to keep a baby against her partner's will, her partner has the grave biological obligation to ... do whatever the hell he pleases, because he is just not needed at all biologically after the point of fertilization.

    meanwhile

    if a man wants to keep a fetus a woman doesn't want to, his part of the work, pain and risk is 0, while the women would be forced to tolerate an alien in her body for 9 months against her will, resist the side effects, take the risks, give birth (it's called LABOUR for a reason), and experience all her hormones going crazy...

    there are some things you just can't deconstruct THAT easily.

    even leaving aside all the moral problems of partenthood, you just can't use women as incubators of your children against their will. If they don't want to keep it, it must go, because forcing women to keep unwanted objects in their genitals is quite rape-y.

    ps: of course using men's sperm without their consent is a crime, too.

    ReplyDelete
  78. even leaving aside all the moral problems of partenthood, you just can't use women as incubators of your children against their will.(anon)

    Interestingly enough, you can force the father after the fact(against their will) to be a provider. Slippery slope when it comes to equality.

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  79. The biggest flaw I have as an MRA ( I prefer to wear my boxers not burn them ) is the belief that our views are based around theoretical women, in that statement unintentionally perhaps you have dismissed the idea that men do have genuine issues with things that are happening in there lives and in the world. There are issues in divorce, in domestic violence in sexual assault and in other areas that in our rush to push towards equality we have overshot , and we are imbalanced in a lot of ways, some in favour of men and some in favour of women and men sit there and are berated about how good we have it as men when half the time we are screaming about the things that we see as wrongs done to us , until its accepted that we are right to want to discuss this and until we actually find women wanting to listen it will fester. While the majority of both genders are good people ( my best man was actually my best woman at my wedding ) there are still people who have issues , major issues and that has to be acknowledged by women as it has by men, the best way to sum it up ( and im not comparing like for like on this just the actions are a good thing ) im a Scot and was at glasgow airport when the terrorist attack happened , after that the local muslim groups had a march showing that the idiots were not bombing in their name , now as i said im not calling radical feminists terrorists , but it would be nice if more mothers or wives when hearing from radical feminists spoke up and said " thats wrong " , if there was evidence that women would side with men when wrongdoings were happening in the same way chivalry dictates men should then a lot of the resentment would be gone.

    ReplyDelete
  80. Tit for Tat: This may not be what you're talking about, but so far, when I've encountered MRA topics on the subject of child support, the men involved only became unwilling participants in the process at the time of divorce. If you decide to create a person with someone else, you're bloody well responsible for that person you've created until they can more or less take care of themselves, regardless of whether or not that ceases to be fun. Additionally, in regard to fathers being forced to provide, let me ask, when does that cease to be necessary? The answer - When mothers can provide for themselves. When will mothers truly be able to provide for themselves? When women are paid as much as men for equal labor and not shunted out of their career paths if they have kids. And let me finally ask you who's been working on that for ages? I think we both known the answer to that one...

    Scott: Gotta ask, why do you assume that only mothers and wives could recognize wrongdoing to men and say something? Also, I don't think there's any way you're going to pull off a terrorism metaphor without wandering into the territory of "wildly offensive." I'm pretty sure that feminism is paying attention to issues where men are getting hosed. Yes, there we have our obnoxious feminists who think that all men are evil, but all I need to do is look up this thread to see that your movement has an at least proportional number of trolls, so let's leave that part be. The feminist movement as a whole, however, is paying disproportionate attention to issues where the imbalance is against women, because the system on the whole is still stunningly balanced against women.

    ReplyDelete
  81. Roseblack: MRAs think that men should not be forced into parental obligations against their will, just like women should not be. This agreement must take place before birth, possibly even before conception. No one argues that child support should not be paid in a marriage or where both parties wanted a child.

    Now, MRAs do agree that fathers should get equal parental rights and custody as women, but that's another topic.

    As for women being paid as much as men, they are. In some cases, they are paid more. Here's a collection of links to prove it:
    http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRights/comments/hpb7z/men_have_no_right_to_be_angry/c1xdmog

    Also, given that most women want and choose to stop working in order to raise kids, feminism has never, and will never, be successful in stopping that.

    ReplyDelete
  82. Alright, lots of misinformation being thrown about which I will address.

    1. "But men are in power!"

    No, that is false. Men are not in power. Most of the powerful are men. That is irrelevant.

    Suppose 1% of the population are powerful, and half the population are men. Of the powerful, 80% are men, 20% are women. That means 49.2% of men are non-powerful, and 49.8% of women are non-powerful.

    Does it help the other 49.2% of non-powerful to know that the majority of the powerful share their gender? No, it does not.

    Holly: Yes, there are some posts that talk about violence. These are either trolls that are voted down, or made in the context of women doing very bad things, things that deserve violence or far worse. As for your claims about feminism, bigger and older is true, but says nothing about the morality or validity of feminism.

    More welcoming of other genders, is frankly laughable. Some feminists deny that men can even be feminists (only allies). Less full of anger? There are countless feminist blogs full of anger. It's in real life too. Domestic violence shelters and feminist organizations are well-known to be full of man-haters. Here's a Swedish documentary about that:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5_oHJxkbto

    Sorry, you are only seeing what you want to see in regards to feminism.

    The fact of the matter is, feminism is NOT working to help men. There are countless examples, here's just one that comes to mind:

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/016/659dkrod.asp

    Feminist groups lobbied against the government creating construction jobs for men, even though most of the jobs lost in recession were said construction jobs.

    Hershele: In regards to only one of my links being non-anecdotal, you are incorrect.

    For instance, the child support link is about how the system allows and encourages women to harm men through children.

    For instance, boys who are the victims of statutory rape must pay child support.

    Women can name any man they please as the father in some states, and if he does not contest it within 30 days, he must now pay child support. Suppose the letter gets lost in the mail, or sent to the wrong house? The law does not care.

    Suppose an unmarried couple has a baby, the man has no parental rights unless he has signed up for a registry, a registry that is unpublicized and over 90% of men do not know about.

    The list goes on in the ways that the system, NOT INDIVIDUAL WOMEN, but THE SYSTEM, harms men.

    Last thing: Holly, you claimed the partner who earns more must pay the other. That is false, women who earn more do not pay alimony. Why? Because the system helps women and harms men, once again.

    http://articles.cnn.com/2008-05-22/living/lw.manimony_1_alimony-marriage-divorce-case?_s=PM:LIVING

    ""Thirty-three percent of higher-earning spouses are women, but fewer than four percent of alimony payers are women,"

    As I've said over and over, the reason why MRAs exist is because the system harms men and helps women. And make no mistake, feminism does nothing about it and in many cases actively supports the harming of men.

    ReplyDelete
  83. I made a long comment addressing much of the claims here, but it seems to be getting auto-deleted? Perhaps by the spam filter. It has only 3 links, is that the cause?

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  84. @Cel:

    Men do have the right to avoid being forced into parental obligations. You can use condoms when you have sex, you can pull out on top of that if you're worried about breakage. You can also try a vasectomy, celibacy, and not having sex with women who you don't know well enough to know for sure they'll have an abortion if they get knocked up. Male birth control has been in the works for years, and when that finally comes out you'll have even more control over your reproduction.

    Yes, there's an odd case like the one you linked to where some crazy lady steals sperm, but those happen so rarely that they tend to make the news when they do. It's much less newsworthy when a rapist forcibly impregnates a woman who can't get an abortion because it's illegal/expensive/she can't get parental consent and is stuck with nine months of pregnancy, labour, any resulting health problems, and usually ends up raising the damn baby on top of that. (Also, probably without child support.)

    Women get forced into parental obligations as well, much more frequntly than men, and the experience is usually considerably more traumatic than writing a check.

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  85. Maya: The injustice of men being forced into parental obligations has been well-debated, so I won't go into it here. You are a true believer that will never be convinced no matter what. I will point out that all your arguments are identical to the pro-life arguments against abortion.

    As for stealing sperm being rare, that is correct. However, the fact that it is rare is irrelevant. We are discussing the system's discrimination against men and for women, which is why MRAs exist.

    As for women unwillingly raising a child after being raped, that is quite rare as well. Rape itself is not very common, much less impregnation, much less being unable to abort (hint: it's not illegal in North America), much less choosing to raise the baby (see, women have a choice, they can abort, adopt, or legally abandon a baby, while a man has no choice).

    For you to claim that women get forced into parental obligations more frequently than men is simply false.

    Further, "writing a cheque" as you claim can actually ruin people's lives. You know, by taking away their money and thus their autonomy. Funny how, when feminists discuss money for women, it takes away their autonomy and is controlling (Domestic violence includes a man not giving money to his wife!), but for men it's simply "writing a cheque."

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  86. If you decide to create a person with someone else, you're bloody well responsible for that person you've created until they can more or less take care of themselves, regardless of whether or not that ceases to be fun.(Roseblack)

    I wrote a post about this a while back hoping it would stimulate some good discussion too. Check it out.

    http://titfortat6.blogspot.com/2011/02/can-equality-and-pro-choiceas-used.html

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  87. This is a great post, in theory. However the average feminist is too fat to lift a bowling ball, and will need to verbally request the supposed male bowling companions to overlook her mustache and consider her a real woman.

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  88. What if a woman is fat with a mustache? You may not want to fuck her, but she's still a person with a whole life and everything.

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  89. Cel - Those posts about violence were directed at me. Because I suggested taking people bowling.

    It's very rare that someone suggests violence against men on my blog (or 99% of other feminist spaces), and when they do, unless it's in the context of those specific men having committed actual violence, they get shut down like fast.

    On "male abortion" - I'm fine with a man terminating his parental responsibilities, so long as he does it in the first trimester of pregnancy, and also consents to having the fetus removed from his uterus.

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  90. "Cel - Those posts about violence were directed at me."

    What posts are you talking about? You mean this?

    "Well that's just annoying, makes me want to smack her around (I'm a girl so it's ok)."

    And its response:

    "Actually its ok for guys too! :P"

    These are your examples of posts about violence? By the way, they were not because you "suggested taking people bowling," as you claim. They were because you suggested the reason MRAs exist is because they do not understand or interact with women. That is analogous to saying women are only feminists because they are ugly and get no male attention.

    As for examples about violence against men, I'd be happy to link you to some radfem blogs that advocate just that. I'm sure you know about them though.

    Regarding male abortion: What's your opinion on a publicly accessible "non-parent registry" where any man on it is ineligible for parental rights and responsibilities?

    Elaborated on here:

    http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRights/comments/hq7zl/nonparent_registry_a_fair_and_beneficial_solution/

    Lastly, do you acknowledge that your original post was flawed, and that the reason MRAs exist is because of injustice within the system?

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  91. I used to run a whole series on here denouncing radical feminism, but stopped it because people were using my examples of excessively radical feminism to denounce all feminism.

    The radical feminists, however, very rarely talked about violence, and they're a tiny minority in the feminist mainstream. Whereas I have trouble finding even one non-radical MRA site.

    Even if I insulted or condescended to the MRAs, I certainly never mentioned violence. Joking (God I hope it's joking) about hitting me isn't just disproportionate, it's really fucking creepy.

    I think you go on a de facto parent "registry" when you have an offspring who exists and thus has needs and incurs expenses. If you want to commit to that never happening, get a vasectomy.

    Cel - No. I acknowledge that my original post was flawed because it wouldn't be physically safe, much less productive, for me to spend any time with some of the people on your side. (The ones you barely bother to make excuses for, much less oppose.)

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  92. Holly, have you ever seen one MRA site where they seriously discussed and supported violence against women? I haven't. Perhaps you could show me some.

    Even browsing through sites where the commenters are generally misogynist, such as The Spearhead, I do not find comments endorsing violence. I simply see comments stating that women are lying gold diggers who are unfit to be in positions of power, etc.

    Meanwhile, here is a radfem blog that explicitly endorses violence against men, with support in the comments.

    http://evebitfirst.wordpress.com/2010/10/07/a-rant/

    Regarding a parent registry, did you misunderstand what I said, or did you understand but simply disagree?

    You are incorrect in suggesting that joking about violence or mentioning it means the speaker is a violent person.

    Lastly, I see that you did not address my two main points:

    1. MRAs exist because of serious and valid grievances against the system (not women).

    2. Feminism does nothing to address these grievances and in some cases actually contribute to them.

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  93. Hershele OstropolerJune 3, 2011 at 12:04 AM

    I don't see the injustices MRA's claim are all around me.

    I don't see a lot of injustices feminists note either, at least not until they're pointed out, but that's to be expected -- they're not happening to me.

    Any oppression you don't know about unless you go to the right Web sites isn't really oppression.

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  94. @ Feyline and Holly

    Oh, hahaha, cool.

    Gah, took me so long to respond back.

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  95. "Men can get 100% equal reproductive rights when men have 100% equal reproductive anatomy."

    But feminists love using the laws to force "equal" outcomes despite unequal anatomy.
    (e.g. reduced physical fitness requirements for women in the police and military, equal pay laws, domestic violence laws, child support, alimony.)

    Why make an exception for reproductive rights?

    Oh, its because its men that want equality this time isn't it?

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  96. Anonymous,

    Why make an exception for reproductive rights?

    Because when women do 10 less pull-ups than men in Police Academy (or whatever), nobody's bodily autonomy is violated - how about that?

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  97. If I force a man to give me money thats called robbery, If I force him to work on threat of imprisonment and rape, that's called slavery.
    (And slavery is a violation of bodily autonomy.)

    But if a woman does it to a man, thats called child support.

    So Gali, a womans bodily autonomy is sacrosanct, but a mans is worthless?

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  98. Holly, thanks for leaving your post open, and for not deleting this stuff.

    It is good to remember that these people exist, when I don't meet them or deal with them ever.

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  99. It is good to remember that these people exist, when I don't meet them or deal with them ever.(miette)


    You may not be around the violent, misogynist types but you may be surprised how many men in your life deal with some of the sexist bias that is presented here. One of the reasons both sides seem to shout over each other is because neither of us can imagine what its like to "Walk in another person's shoes"

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  100. Oh, for fuck's sake -- paying child support is not akin to slavery, nor is it a crime committed by women against men. It's SUPPORT for a CHILD. Who exists, and needs to be clothed and fed and educated and stuff.

    I suppose it's vaguely -- very vaguely -- unfair that most men give up control over what happens to their gametes once they've done the deed, but you have to realize that the alternative is a) forcing people to have abortions, whether they want them or not, or b) forcing people to have babies, whether they want them or not, which are both untenable. Having a baby is a Big Thing, biologically, with long-term consequences: it's the uterus owner who gets to make that decision, whether they're a man or a woman. That's just how it has to be.

    If this awareness fills straight cis men with creeping raw horror, vasectomies exist. So, in fact, do plenty of women who are physically non-reproductive because of surgery, accident, or transition -- if you're really hung up on "oh shit what if she gets pregnant", take care to only sleep with those, and it's a non-issue.

    I realize this won't stem the tide of BAAAAAW WHY SHOULD I HAVE TO THINK ABOUT MY REPRODUCTIVE CHOICES EVEN FOR A SECOND, but still. Perspective, get you some.

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  101. Anon - Actually, it's the child who's "forcing" you to work. When you walk away, the kid doesn't just disappear, and they don't stop needing food and clothing and medical care (to say nothing of diapering and bathing and playing with and cleaning up after). Relinquishing your parental status wouldn't make the child magically disappear, it would just put the entire burden on the mother--who, if she tries to walk away, would be charged with child abandonment.

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  102. Let me use a very rough metaphor. You slip on some ice, fall down your front stairs, and break your leg. You call an ambulance and they take you to the hospital where they give you pain medication and take X-rays and put you in a cast.

    Then the hospital sends you a gigantic bill, as hospitals do.

    You say to them "no, I shouldn't have to pay this, because I didn't want to break my leg! It wasn't my decision!" (Or even, as it seems in a lot of these cases, "well, yes, I wanted to break my leg at the time, but now I changed my mind.") Perhaps you show proof that you were on a "non-patient registry," and the mere fact that you were, physically, a patient in their hospital shouldn't change that. And if you're particularly given to drama, you declare that paying the hospital for taking care of something you didn't want to happen is slavery.

    None of this changes the fact that not only is the hospital still legally entitled to get paid, it should be. The bed you took up and the supplies and staff time you used cost them money. Walking (er, limping) away from that wouldn't make these costs go away, it would stick the hospital with them.

    ...does this even sort of make sense?



    How many of you would find it just fine and dandy if your babymama dropped the kids off with you and disappeared forever--not asking for visitation, but not sending a penny or lifting a finger? You'd be just fine with that?

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  103. Cel - Holly, have you ever seen one MRA site where they seriously discussed and supported violence against women? I haven't. Perhaps you could show me some.
    How about the page on which you linked to my post? Seriously now.

    Even browsing through sites where the commenters are generally misogynist, such as The Spearhead, I do not find comments endorsing violence. I simply see comments stating that women are lying gold diggers who are unfit to be in positions of power, etc.
    Ah. Well, that's fucking dandy then.

    Do you realize we (feminists) really aren't reverse MRAs? We don't hate men! Seriously, I think that most men are entirely honest and quite fit to be in positions of power--alongside women. I think the system we have right now gives unfair advantages to men (some of them repercussions of previous discrimination, some ongoing), but I don't want men to lose any rights, only for women to gain status. I also don't hold any particular stereotypes of men in general; as this very post shows, y'all come in all types.

    Meanwhile, here is a radfem blog that explicitly endorses violence against men, with support in the comments.
    http://evebitfirst.wordpress.com/2010/10/07/a-rant/

    Whoop de fuck, you found a crazy person who calls herself a feminist. The difference is that she's not a goddamn majority.

    You are incorrect in suggesting that joking about violence or mentioning it means the speaker is a violent person.
    Oh, so why do you have a problem with the lady above, then? Maybe she's just not a violent person.

    Lastly, I see that you did not address my two main points:
    1. MRAs exist because of serious and valid grievances against the system (not women).
    2. Feminism does nothing to address these grievances and in some cases actually contribute to them.

    I actually agree with you about some of the systematic injustices against men, but I think they can be better addressed in a framework of moderate feminism rather than alongside a bunch of guys who're frothing at the mouth about women's failure to raise their children alone for free, or rape being a prosecutable crime, or women going around being all WOMANY, or other such dubious causes.

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  104. How many of you would find it just fine and dandy if your babymama dropped the kids off with you and disappeared forever--not asking for visitation, but not sending a penny or lifting a finger? You'd be just fine with that?(Holly)

    In my case(and my daughters) this scenario(dream) would have had many benefits that would outweigh the loss of one parent. Alas, it didnt work out that way, now we deal with the aftermath.

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  105. Holly, you lie.
    When a woman gives up her parental rights and responsibilites, its called not called abandonment, its called adoption.
    Why don't men have the same right?

    As for your broken leg analogy, its missing one component. There are two parties involved in a pregnancy. To stick with your analogy, I was at the top of the stairs at the request of a woman (consensual sex), a position she knows to be dangerous for me. When I fell, she had not one, but 4 different opportunities to catch me, but she wilfully chose not to. At the very least she was wilfully negligent, and I should sue for all damages and expenses.

    (The four options being morning after pill, abortion, adoption, and not putting me on the birth certificate.)


    Anon,
    "I suppose it's vaguely -- very vaguely -- unfair that most men give up control over what happens to their gametes once they've done the deed, but you have to realize that the alternative is "...
    C - Women taking sole responsibly for the actions. (Since they have sole rights.)

    I have to say though, I'm actually shocked that any women here would display compassion for men... It's appreciated.

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  106. Hershele OstropolerJune 3, 2011 at 9:49 AM

    Is it common -- and that's "common," so one news story about it happening once proves nothing, and an MRA whining about it happening to him proves even less -- for women to deceitfully get pregnant in order to get a man's money? Because if it does happen a lot, that is indeed a political issue. But again, I haven't noticed this, it doesn't really factor into my lifestyle or my decisions.

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  107. Anon - To really twist the metaphor, you also had a ton of opportunities to catch yourself (condoms, vasectomy, celibacy) and didn't use those, making you 50% liable.

    And I just have to say: DOES ANYBODY HERE ACTUALLY LIKE THEIR KIDS? Tit for Tat is like the only guy here who's expressed anything like a desire to actually be part of his kids' lives for the sake of, y'know, being a parent and all.

    I know this doesn't cover every situation, blah blah, but I was under the impression that most people would actually want to share the responsibilities and thereby the rights to their child.

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  108. Tit for Tat is like the only guy here who's expressed anything like a desire to actually be part of his kids' lives for the sake of, y'know, being a parent and all.(Holly)

    Thanks for noticing. My daughter reads some of your stuff(limited of course);)
    We get to debate the pros and cons of the ideas. She is going to be a great feminist, oops, I mean humanist. :)

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  109. If I force a man to give me money thats called robbery, If I force him to work on threat of imprisonment and rape, that's called slavery.
    (And slavery is a violation of bodily autonomy.)


    Anon - that's not what we were discussing, actually. You tried to compare different physical standards for men and women, and the different options men and women face when a pregnancy occurs. I explained why they are not alike (bodily autonomy).

    As for the issue you raised here - child support - well, I am also a slave: I am forced to pay my landlord rent, even though I really would rather live here for free. I also have to pay at the grocery store, when I would rather just take the food I want and walk away. Not to mention those slave-drivers at city hall, who take my hard-earned money and carelessly waste it on roads, health, education, and other frivolous concerns.

    So yeah, if we take your point seriously, we're all slaves. What do you want to do about it? go Communist? starve? other

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  110. And I just have to say: DOES ANYBODY HERE ACTUALLY LIKE THEIR KIDS? Tit for Tat is like the only guy here who's expressed anything like a desire to actually be part of his kids' lives for the sake of, y'know, being a parent and all.

    I actually like my kid. I mean, yeah, I yell at her -- sometimes loudly and quite vigorously -- and ground her or punish her in other ways when she doesn't behave well, and she drives me fucking nuts a chunk of the time (and she has, through the various stages of her life; right now she's a 14-year-old know-it-all, which is just a DELIGHTFUL stage). But I like her. Quite a bit.

    And in some senses, she's not even MY kid... I wasn't involved in her life until she was approaching two years old, she's from a previous relationship my wife had, and the biological father is a goddamned disaster (and fortunately minimally involved)... but in the most important sense, she's mine, as I'm hers).

    It's the same thing, to a less-advanced (chronologically -- only about four years of contact to date) degree, with my girlfriend's eight-year-old. I like her too.

    But some of the posters here... Jesus, it sounds like some of these guys would be first in line at the annual Burlap-Sack-And-Rocks Sale if they could get away with it...

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  111. I'm a feminist who does think it would be equitable to give men the chance to opt out of fatherhood, in the first trimester -- giving the woman the option of aborting or taking on the full parental burden. But our society is so anti-abortion, I don't see that ever becoming a workable system.

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  112. There are so many logical fallacies here.

    Take the hospital analogy. If you call the hospital and ask them to send an ambulance, you are asking for their services and therefore must pay the bill.

    Likewise, if you agree that you want kids, you must help to raise or support the child.

    For your analogy to work, you would have to tell the hospital you did not want treatment, that you could set the bone yourself, and they forcibly abducted you and then later gave you a bill.

    That is what the current child support system is like.

    Why are many of you feminists throwing around the strawman fallacies of "not wanting your kids" etc.? No one is arguing that child support is wrong in the case of two people who agreed to have kids.

    Rather, the argument is that no one should be forced into parental obligations against their will.

    If a woman wishes to birth a child knowing that the father did not want and never wanted a child, she should be responsible for raising it. She has all the rights, all the power/choice, thus she should have all the responsibilities.

    It is immoral for a woman to birth a child that she cannot support herself knowing all along that the man never wanted a kid.

    It's as simple as this:

    Women have all the power, they have all the responsibility.

    Men have NO power, they have NO responsibility.

    Further, all the arguments that you are making are identical to pro-life arguments.

    Hershele, it is relatively uncommon for a woman to get pregnant in order to get money. However, it is extremely common for a woman to get pregnant and demand child support from a man who never wanted kids - that is wrong.

    And wow, the strawman of being "enslaved" to your landlord who you pay rent for is ridiculous. Do I even need to explain why it is a fallacy?

    Imagine this hypothetical scenario:

    A young couple agree they do not want kids. She gets pregnant and wants to abort it. Unfortunately, the man has the magical ability to teleport the fetus out of her uterus, and birth it using advanced technology. The child is born and DNA tests prove it is hers.

    He is from a rich family and has no problem with money. She is poor and must drop out of school to earn money for child support. She must pay for the next 18 years.

    Would you agree this is fair?

    Lastly, I see that your belief that feminism is the solution to men's issues will never be changed. I am very sad to see that, as although you may genuinely believe it, supporting that belief is directly harmful to men, since it is completely false.

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  113. I didn't read through the 100+ comments so someone probably said this already. But: As a woman who has spent way too much of her life surrounded by men who hated women... This doesn't work. The only thing that happens is that you end up with a low sense of self-worth and internalized misogyny, and any time I do anything irritating it becomes another reason for them to hate ALL women. These guys don't deserve female friends, that's why they don't have any. They objectify and ridicule and disrespect us and we can't do anything about it. No way are they getting attention from me, unless it's to tell them off. Waste of time. Same thing goes for racists (I am a woman of color) and other bigots. I'm sure there's the rare bigot out there who is just ignorant to the fact that good people exist that are black/gay/trans/female/etc. Most of them encounter us daily and hate us because of what we are. It doesn't matter that we're awesome people. They don't see it.

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  114. Dear Cel,
    You said
    "1. MRAs exist because of serious and valid grievances against the system (not women)."
    Yay! Feminists are trying to make the system fairer too! Why don't we all get together and make it fairer for everyone? Many people seem to be picturing this as a 'tug of war' when by definition, if the system is fair is HAS to be fair for everyone.
    People keep on mentioning feminists like they are 'things' not people - people with male family or friends who may be going through divorces or otherwise being treated unfairly by the system too. It's in the feminists best interests too that *everyone* be treated fairly, not just women, they are just focussing on the womanly part of it for now (just as MRA's should be focussing on the manly bit, but not in direct opposition to the womanly bit)

    "2. Feminism does nothing to address these grievances and in some cases actually contribute to them."
    well, it would be odd if feminism addressed all the men's grievances - we'd have to give it another name if it did (although men should be interested in feminism for similar reasons to the one above, they're people who know women and should be interested in everyone being treated fairly). And you say feminism makes only a partial contribution to some grievances in some particular cases? So, it's not so bad then, but you know for SURE somehow it never does any good? Hmmm....

    BTW, seeing you posted a link that attracted some very abusive posts on this blog, I think you should at least acknowledge those posters, let us know whether you agree with that behaviour, and if not, then actively discourage it. It's kinda like bringing someone to a friend's party, then ignoring them when they abuse the host and throw up on the floor aka a bit rude. I know they aren't your complete responsibility, but you could at least stop pretending they don't exist.

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  115. HEY COUSIN! Let's go bowling.

    Let's see how successful you are at getting women to meet any losers or creeps. You could get MEN to show up for bowling with women claiming to to be incel. There are no incel women. Even the woman trying to become the fattest woman in the world is in a relationship. Quit acting like things are on a even playing field.

    I know it's sacrilege to your gender's never ending victimhood but women have it easier when it comes to relationships. The supply and demand is totally in your favour.

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  116. Lol Anonymous. Although I find it incredibly sad that someone would 'try' to be the world's fattest women, if you've ever seen the lady involved, you'll see she's quite confident and friendly - that's probably why she's in a relationship. And the world's fattest person (a man) was *married* for crying out loud. That has nothing to do with anything we're talking about here.
    There is no 'supply and demand' issue here - heck, where I come from there's a statistical shortage of men my age to the order of about 5000 or so. And for every women who supposedly finds it easy to get into a relationship - there has to be a guy! (assuming she's heterosexual). So there's your demand for guys. Maybe *you* should stop playing the victim and, y'know, go out and do some bowling.
    (btw I don't know what your definition of 'losers and creeps' is, but it doesn't sound like someone being confident and friendly, and respecting the women their talking too - maybe if they worked on that, they would have more luck!)

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  117. @Trowzers:

    "Yay! Feminists are trying to make the system fairer too! Why don't we all get together and make it fairer for everyone? "

    You misunderstand me. Feminism does not contribute to solving discrimination against men. It contributes to causing and perpetuating discrimination against men.

    That is a fact.

    Here's one example, of feminists directly harming men by falsely claiming that domestic violence is primarily suffered by women, which led to policies of always arresting men (even though women are equally likely to be perpetrators of domestic violence).

    http://i.imgur.com/aob5k.jpg

    There are many other similar examples of feminists directly causing harm to men by supporting injustice within the system.

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  118. Holly, I notice in your hospital analogy you conveniently change the situation to make a flawed argument.
    "condoms, vasectomy, celibacy" aren't going to help anyone after a woman becomes pregnant.
    And demanding a man to have irreversible surgery as a method of birth control is a violation of his bodily autonomy. It merely demonstrates that you believe men to be lesser beings, who's bodies can be cut up and brutalised at your pleasure. You're starting to sound like a rapist.

    As for the rent analogy, that's just idiotic. You can change landlord if the rent gets too high, you can even buy your own house, or move to Alaska and live in a tent.
    The analogy only works if "the landlord" is the federal prison service, and the tenants aren't allowed to leave.

    Its telling that none of you can form a solid argument why men should not be allowed to opt out on fatherhood. And only a minority are willing to even consider it.
    This is to be expected, privileged groups are always reluctant to admit they are privileged, and even more reluctant to give up their privileges.
    Equality is coming whether you want it or not.

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  119. One thing I'm noticing here is a lot of people thinking this is about sex--that I'm saying MRAs don't get laid, or that getting laid will fix them.

    I'm talking about being friends--casual, nonsexual friends. I'm talking about talking with and hanging out with women. Immediately jumping to thinking that this is all about sex suggests... well, suggests some of that "Martians with a pussy attached" attitude.



    And the male abortion thing, sheeesh. Given that a lot of single mothers don't make a ton of cash on their own--kind of hard when you're either paying for childcare or constantly watching the kid--you're either putting a ton of people on welfare or you're just starving them to death. (Getting an already-born child, especially one that has any problems, adopted is not a simple matter.) I'm not thinking of the rights of the woman but those of the child, who the woman often can't just step up and provide sole care for.

    This isn't even a feminist thing, really. This is just a reasonable thing--you don't get to simply opt out of being a parent to a child who exists and needs to eat. The kid can't opt out of eating.

    And demanding a man to have irreversible surgery as a method of birth control is a violation of his bodily autonomy. It merely demonstrates that you believe men to be lesser beings, who's bodies can be cut up and brutalised at your pleasure. You're starting to sound like a rapist.
    You're starting to sound like someone who's never considered what actual rape--which one so rarely gets to make an appointment for and do under anesthesia and do by choice because you could also use condoms sheesh--is like.

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  120. May I interrupt the argument to say that I kind of love you right now? The "bowling therapy" idea is just the most beautiful thing ever. I'm working my way backward through this blog, and you just won me over completely right here.

    On the Men's Rights thing... I'm sensing a vibe. I'm gonna use a race metaphor here whilst I try to explain this vibe.

    It goes like this. I'm white. I can trace my family back to Wales. I love my culture and my heritage. I love old European folklore and songs and legends and traditions. I know old ballads and I can illuminate manuscripts. I go to Ren Faires and the Highland Games, and occasionally even Oktoberfest (when I'm feeling my German side more.)

    For this precise reason, it drives me up the goddamn wall when I hear people whining about "white pride" and "why are whites the only group that can't be proud of their heritage?" Because inevitably, the people making this argument are racists. "Celebrating" their heritage, to them, means putting down other people's heritage, and that makes those of us who are legitimately celebrating our heritage without hate look suspect, too. Whenever I hear someone ask that question, I have a strong urge to scream at them, "It's because of you! It's because racist assholes like you ruin it for the rest of us! YOU ARE THE REASON WE CAN'T HAVE NICE THINGS!!!" (Which is obviously facetious, but you get to flail your arms in a most satisfying manner while you say it, and that's fun.)

    Similarly, I will certainly agree that in some areas, some men tend to get the shaft. And that's not fair. Sexism is bad, regardless of which gender gets the short end of the stick. It sucks, hard, that men who've been raped get even less respect than women. (And given how nasty society is to women who get raped, that's saying a lot.) It sucks that courts are more willing to give custody of children to the mother, even if the father is a demonstrably better parent. It sucks that a woman who hits a man is often seen as "feisty" rather than abusive, and that there is a social stigma against a man reporting domestic abuse at the hands of a woman. All of these are shitty things.

    However, a lot of the men who advocate for Men's Rights seem less interested in actually working to correct these issues than in demonizing and blaming women. I'm not saying all are; I'm not even saying most are. But in the same way that a few white supremacists can make "European heritage" a dirty term, a few misogynists can make the whole movement seem a little suspicious.

    In theory, feminists and men's rights activists should be allies. After all, we're working for the same thing, right? A world where all people are treated as individuals, instead of being judged on their gender? Instead, a lot of men's rights folk seem to see themselves as a backlash against feminism, rather than as cooperative comrades-in-arms. I don't know where the "blame" for this ultimately lies, and I don't really care, but I am interested in what can be done (on either side) to correct this.

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  121. Wow that theoretical sprite sounds like a total ass-hole. ;b

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  122. Vasectomies and abortions are pretty comparable.

    If it's inside your body, you get to decide what to do with it.

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  123. I have a similar experience. I am only jealous of my sweetie's theoretical other partners. When we first started opening up our relationship I had a fabulous evening with him and his date, who I'd been so jealous of for weeks. As soon as she and I met we started seeing each other as friends, the jealousy went away! Now its been a couple of years that we've had a poly/open/whatever relationship, and I still see that effect in both of us.

    I just found your blog, I'm enjoying it! Thanks.
    Emily

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  124. Having read your post over a year late, a couple comments.

    From the cynical side of my brain:

    1 Are you proposing to treat these guys like human beings because, as human beings that's what they deserve, or is it because you hope to win them over, somehow? That is, you propose being friendly so as to manipulate them. I find myself thinking that what you propose is just a more idealistic version of some girls I knew when I was in college who could be very friendly when they needed a ride somewhere, or needed someone to buy booze for them while they were underage,etc., but weren't too interested in me otherwise. I think your hypothetical misogynists would, in fact, suspect that you were trying to manipulate them. How would you and your uptown feminist friends react if, out of the blue, you received an invitation from some 'Men's Group' to a cook out and pick-up baseball game at the West Succotash Sportsmans' Club, "just as an opportunity to be friendly"?

    2(And this is the most deeply cynical part of me talking)You posted a piece about your 'beautiful, unrealizable dream' not because you had any intention of working toward it as a real world goal,or had any interest in actually making friends with those hypothetical misogynists, but because you wanted Brownie points for being open minded and empathetic. If you've actually done anything toward organising such a bowling league in the last year, well, I happily retract the foregoing.

    Having said that, I think it's a great idea. My guess is that a lot of misogynistic guys out there got that way because they had few real world opportunities to regularly interact with women on a friendly basis. In a lot of communities, including several I've lived in, there really aren't too many such occasions. Once upon a time, I'm told, there were dances, socials, picnics, etc., where people, men and women, old and young, married and single, regardless of creed or opinion, got together to socialize. I think nowadays much of people's social lives are boxed into special interest 'communities' where they are only exposed to others like themselves.

    I think your idea would be a great project to actually work toward. But I do have to agree with one of the posters above, I think more men than women would show up.

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