• Benkei
    735
    But then feminists say that a men's rights movement is not needed; men's rights activism is misogynistic; "There is no misandry"; etc.WISDOMfromPO-MO

    Barring anecdotal circumstances to the contrary, a social movement for men's rights would indeed be Bullshit considering the amount of benefits already bestowed on men, at least in typical Western societies. It seems to me you're confusing the existence of some misandrists with misandry being a social problem. It really isn't and to suggest otherwise as a man is weak (see what I did there).
  • WISDOMfromPO-MO
    512
    If this were the case, one would expect to find women dominating in matters pertaining to morality, in the judiciary and the priesthood, for examples. But they don't. Quite the reverse, because the dominant stereotype is the exact opposite - that women are morally weaker, and this is part of the justification for male dominance in every other sphere. If the dominant stereotype was that men are morally inferior, we would not put them in charge of everything.unenlightened

    A straw man.

    The message seems clear to me every day: men are horrible, rotten beings; men are a necessary evil at best; etc.
  • unenlightened
    1.6k
    Yeah, there are people like that. They don't run the country, though, they don't represent a consensus of feminism even, and they are therefore straw women. If you hang out with such people and hear that every day, you need to change your life some, maybe become a refugee.
  • WISDOMfromPO-MO
    512
    WISDOMfromPO-MO Yeah, there are people like that...unenlightened

    I did not say anything about "people".

    I talked about the message that boys and men get every day in the culture that I am a part of.

    They don't run the country, though, they don't represent a consensus of feminism even,...unenlightened

    "They" are irrelevant.

    And I did not say anything about feminism, so that is a red herring or some other fallacy.

    and they are therefore straw women...unenlightened

    What argument is being turned into a straw man?

    If you hang out with such people and hear that every day, you need to change your life some, maybe become a refugee.unenlightened

    One of the stupidest ad hominems I have ever seen.
  • WISDOMfromPO-MO
    512
    My father was taught to be 'manly' and that masculine attributes were physical in nature as well as being aggressive and showing dominance. He would boast about stories on how he made people disabled and would often beat my mother up - she was a tiny woman mind you - because in his pathetic culture violence against women had become normalised. He was a mindless follower of the constructions of masculinity and did the every bidding of his social environment that he cared for more than his own family and children, his false facade showcasing someone different to what we experienced when he came home.

    I care about the construction of masculinity because of the impact it has on me and my mother (who became lost because she could not escape) and siblings, all of whom bullied and harassed me as I was the youngest in the family to vent their frustrations. I have never had sex neither even kissed a man because I was for a very long time scared of men and of being hurt. While I am lucky that I was never raped or severely hurt in some physical way, psychological and in particular emotional trauma was significant because of the constant threat of violence and it took a lot to recover from the realisation that I was long hiding from the pain pretending I was protecting myself since I thought men were the enemy. I know now that by exposing my vulnerability and being myself, I am much stronger than my father.
    TimeLine

    I am sorry that you experienced all of that.

    I am glad that you have emerged from it as a stronger person.
  • WISDOMfromPO-MO
    512
    What you appear to be confused about is that you seem to be blaming feminism for this failure, but on the contrary, it is the construction of masculinity that has prevented the struggle of men to be voiced.

    If anything, you should perhaps be praising feminism for working hard to fight these social constructions and stereotypes for ultimately shedding light on the issues that men face.
    TimeLine

    I don't recall ever in my life blaming feminism for anything.

    Some people blame feminism for the failure of the family institution, the marriage institution, etc. in America. Some people blame feminism for the mistreatment of boys. And a lot of things around and in between. I even saw one writer blaming women's suffrage for the unsustainable expansion of government (women expect government assistance, or something like that). But I don't recall my own self ever blaming feminism for anything.

    What I have said here is that I believe that women's liberation has done nothing to address or correct how men suffer as men.

    Apparently feminism categorically denies that men suffer as men, I now must conclude (see the quote that inspired this thread).
  • Bitter Crank
    4.1k
    Of course, Men's Liberation isn't very concerned about women's suffering either.
  • TimeLine
    1.3k
    What I have said here is that I believe that women's liberation has done nothing to address or correct how men suffer as men.

    Apparently feminism categorically denies that men suffer as men, I now must conclude (see the quote that inspired this thread).
    WISDOMfromPO-MO

    Well, I disagree. Studies at tertiary institutions on men and masculinities is interdisciplinary in gender studies and sociology. The idea is that if the social construction of masculinity is causally to blame for the existence of misogyny, a focus on how masculinity effects men in turn transforms the very reality that feminists seeks to stop. It should not just be one voice trying to defend itself but men and women working together.

    https://cup.columbia.edu/book/masculinity-studies-and-feminist-theory/9780231122795
  • WISDOMfromPO-MO
    512
    Well, I disagree. Studies at tertiary institutions on men and masculinities is interdisciplinary in gender studies and sociology. The idea is that if the social construction of masculinity is causally to blame for the existence of misogyny, a focus on how masculinity effects men in turn transforms the very reality that feminists seeks to stop. It should not just be one voice trying to defend itself but men and women working together.

    https://cup.columbia.edu/book/masculinity-studies-and-feminist-theory/9780231122795
    TimeLine

    Men are not billiard balls in a physicist's experiment. Men are not mice in a psychologist's laboratory maze. Men are not Pavlovian dogs responding to stimuli.

    This whole "If we remove masculinity A from men's environment then men will no longer respond with misogyny M" business is dehumanizing. Much like the business of requiring men in college to attend training about sexual consent (and not requiring the same thing from women) is dehumanizing.

    I don't think that it is very complicated: treat women as humans with dignity and rights (historically, we have not), and treat men as humans with dignity and rights.

    That means treating men (and women) as people who are not perfect, make mistakes, are personally responsible for their personal choices, are capable of empathy, compassion, altruism, etc, suffer just like other humans (and, it is becoming increasingly clear, non-human life), etc.

    If I was leading a men's rights movement that would be my focus: we are humans who have dignity, and not respecting that is unacceptable. I would ask young men if acquiescing to "Every man is a potential rapist" ideology is worth attending college--if compromising their dignity for the opportunity to earn a degree is a rational trade.

    That barely scratches the surface of how men are treated as less than human and less than equal because of their sex.

    The only response feminism has is things like, "Well, if a man is raped nobody says that he asked for it with the way that he was dressed", it seems. That is not taking men's issues and problems seriously.

    A movement fighting for the dignity and rights of men that treats men as fully human and takes the problems/issues that men face seriously is needed. More "ism" is not needed, no matter if it is feminism, Protestant fundamentalism, or anything in between.

    Empathy and compassion for men as men does not seem to exist. Blaming that lack of empathy and compassion on patriarchy or misogyny does nothing​ to fill the void. Telling men that their suffering is their own fault is mean spirited.

    I don't have the resources to scrutinize every written or spoken word that categorically denies the existence of misandry. But I suspect that when somebody goes to that extreme in response to men's concerns, he/she is not listening and not empathizing.

    But now somebody will probably say, "That failure to listen and empathize is how people are socialized under male dominance to respond to men". Feminist reasoning looks more​ circular with each response feminists make.
  • TimeLine
    1.3k
    That barely scratches the surface of how men are treated as less than human and less than equal because of their sex.WISDOMfromPO-MO

    From experience, I have been treated as an object more by women then I have by men, but I have come to realise that those who have treated me that way - either men or women - are those with the least self-esteem and such people, in their vulnerability, can be rather monstrous. They follow others and even steal other people's personality; if A is attracted to B, then they are also attracted to B, because what they seek is the esteem given to them by others. I have encountered people who copy and then ridicule or ostracise the person that they are copying as though trying to separate themselves from the fact that they are slaves to this lack of self-esteem and they are so petrified of being independent and alone that overtime they lose their humanity.

    I have been treated that way by some women and men because my independence is clear and my kindness is genuine, and that can be threatening since their identity is formed under the assumption that obedience to societal expectations is absolute, that you cannot actually have real self-esteem but only if others give it to you. Society, being cunning, enables them to trick themselves into assuming that they are somehow 'individuals' when they clearly follow this desired image. Our attitude to ourselves is all a result of our social and environmental training. We "buy" and "sell" ourselves to others and social networking has become a perfect platform that enables and strengthens this lie.

    “What becomes of a man who acquires a beautiful woman, with her "beauty" his sole target? He sabotages himself. He has gained no friend, no ally, no mutual trust: She knows quite well why she has been chosen. He has succeeded in buying something: the esteem of other men who find such an acquisition impressive.” Naomi Wolf

    There are subtle albeit very effective behavioural demands and real power is strengthened when people believe that they are the one's making that decision. The man thinks he has made the choice of living with this beautiful woman because he wants her, and though he lives with anxiety or takes drugs or whatever that are clear indicators of his misery, he remains content living in that lie because he has acquired the esteem of others. It is like working in a dead end, horrible job year after year as long as you are getting paid. As said by Aldous Huxley:

    “One believes things because one has been conditioned to believe them.”

    This inequality does exist in men also, I will not deny that and will say that the problem is greater than sex. That is why I said that I am not a feminist because that merely scratches the surface. The problem is in humanity, it is social and environmental, cultural and religious. These conditions transcend sex. The fault, again I will reiterate, in your argument is that you are still thinking that somehow feminism is the issue.
  • BlueBanana
    367
    I talked about the message that boys and men get every day in the culture that I am a part of.WISDOMfromPO-MO

    Must be confirmation bias.
  • WISDOMfromPO-MO
    512
    From experience, I have been treated as an object more by women then I have by men, but I have come to realise that those who have treated me that way - either men or women - are those with the least self-esteem and such people, in their vulnerability, can be rather monstrous. They follow others and even steal other people's personality; if A is attracted to B, then they are also attracted to B, because what they seek is the esteem given to them by others. I have encountered people who copy and then ridicule or ostracise the person that they are copying as though trying to separate themselves from the fact that they are slaves to this lack of self-esteem and they are so petrified of being independent and alone that overtime they lose their humanity...TimeLine

    I have to catch myself every day and correct the thinking that men are horrible excuses for human beings.

    "Wow!", I will think. "That stranger--a male--was empathetic and compassionate towards me, and he didn't even know me".

    If I caught myself prejudging another person because he/she was female, African-American, homosexual, etc., I would feel ashamed. That's not the case with prejudices, stereotyping, bigotry, etc. with respect to men.

    And, as many of the responses in this thread show, it is futile trying to expose such anti-male attitudes--such double standard in attitudes towards prejudice and bigotry--and get people to take them seriously because you will be met with "Men have all the power", "The system funnels all benefits to men", etc., and people won't listen.

    With each new thing I hear in response to men's concerns it sounds more and more like I am dealing with an ideology that depends on vilifying men and viewing men as the enemy of all good in the world.

    I think that it is clear that there is misandry--I catch it in my own mind almost every day.

    "There is no misandry" itself sounds and feels like more of that misandry I struggle with every day, to be honest.

    The biggest struggle is with hating my own self for being male.

    I have been treated that way by some women and men because my independence is clear and my kindness is genuine, and that can be threatening since their identity is formed under the assumption that obedience to societal expectations is absolute, that you cannot actually have real self-esteem but only if others give it to you. Society, being cunning, enables them to trick themselves into assuming that they are somehow 'individuals' when they clearly follow this desired image. Our attitude to ourselves is all a result of our social and environmental training. We "buy" and "sell" ourselves to others and social networking has become a perfect platform that enables and strengthens this lie.

    “What becomes of a man who acquires a beautiful woman, with her "beauty" his sole target? He sabotages himself. He has gained no friend, no ally, no mutual trust: She knows quite well why she has been chosen. He has succeeded in buying something: the esteem of other men who find such an acquisition impressive.” Naomi Wolf

    There are subtle albeit very effective behavioural demands and real power is strengthened when people believe that they are the one's making that decision. The man thinks he has made the choice of living with this beautiful woman because he wants her, and though he lives with anxiety or takes drugs or whatever that are clear indicators of his misery, he remains content living in that lie because he has acquired the esteem of others. It is like working in a dead end, horrible job year after year as long as you are getting paid. As said by Aldous Huxley:

    “One believes things because one has been conditioned to believe them.”
    TimeLine

    In that respect it seems to me that women in the Post-Industrial West who think of themselves as liberated and independent are no different from privileged men. It may not be about the physical attractiveness of their partner, but their sense of self-worth hinges on external things. Education. Career. Home ownership. Conspicuous consumption of things like Hawaii vacations. Etc.

    It feels difficult trying to​ get to know such women below a superficial level, unfortunately.

    This inequality does exist in men also, I will not deny that and will say that the problem is greater than sex. That is why I said that I am not a feminist because that merely scratches the surface. The problem is in humanity, it is social and environmental, cultural and religious. These conditions transcend sex. The fault, again I will reiterate, in your argument is that you are still thinking that somehow feminism is the issue.TimeLine

    No, I have never said or thought that feminism is "the issue".

    Most feminists are simply behaving the way they have to behave to win at the political game.

    But that does not mean that their behavior is in their best interests.

    A man can be critical of feminism and have the best interests of women at heart, believe it or not.

    "You are either with us 100% or you are against women" does not do anybody any good.

    Calling anybody who does not go along with you in lock-step a "misogynist" is irrational and self-defeating. Having no empathy or compassion when men bring up their concerns about how they are treated for being men--not responding to such men as a human interacting with a fellow human--takes irrational and self-defeating to even lower depths.
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