Having for decades been exposed to the hostility of radical feminists, to the enormous harm they have done the schools and universities and the military, to relations between men and women, to their ashen tediousness and endless fury, their victimhood, I finally began to yell, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.” At least, not quietly. Some thoughts, expressed with the gentility characteristic of this worthy column:
To begin with, there is the problem of forged credentials. Radical feminists do not represent women. They represent radical feminists. Other women typically say that they are feminists, meaning in favor or equality of pay and opportunity, but explicitly reject the ideological baggage of the radicals.
Nor do feminists bear demographic resemblance to other women. For example, it is a good bet that no feminist voted for Trump, but CNN’s exit polls have 42% of women, and 53% of white women, voting for him. Further, few feminists seem to be married with children, and comparatively few are heterosexual. None of these conditions is morally wrong, but suggest not much commonality with most of humanity.
The ideological baggage is great. Radical feminism is not just about women, or perhaps even mostly about women, but rather a package of far-left causes, usually including open borders, Islamophilia, affirmative action, gun control, socialism, unisex bathrooms, environmentalism, compulsory diversity, opposition to abortion, opposition to free speech (“hate speech”), hostility for white men, support for bigger government, intense focus on nonstandard sexuality, and using the schools as indoctrination centers.
Some of these things may be reasonable or even desirable, but how such a porridge can be called feminism is hard to imagine. It certainly is not the feminism of the suffragettes, of people who campaigned for various forms of equality. It has given way to neurotic anger looking for targets. It combines the vitriol associated with antisemitism with the intolerance of Scientology.
Sometimes feminism borders on psychosis, though on which side of the border is not always clear. “Psychosis” means “detachment from reality.” For example, years ago one radical feminist told me, “three-quarters of men want to hurt women.” She meant it, cold sober and not in the heat of argument. Another told me, “Sixty percent of men are misogynists.” This is loopy, around the bend, Haldol time. Among themselves men say with wry resignation that women are mildly crazy and have PMS, and women complain about the position of the toilet seat and why don’t men ever pick up after themselves. All true, but doesn’t approach hatred.
Note that feminists tend strongly to be of the middle or upper middle class and well educated, much like members of the Red Army Faction and other virulently bored revolutionaries.
Invariably they describe as “women’s issues” things that are not. Abortion is a prime example. Check photos of any rally against abortion and you will see that a high proportion of the participants are women. An issue is not a women’s issue merely because some women favor it. Some women will favor socialism or compulsory military service, or longer hours for the library, but these are not women’s issues. They affect all.
Much of radical feminism evinces a profound dishonesty–though sometimes it may be simple confusion. Feminists paint opposition to abortion as hostility to women. Of course nobody opposes abortion for this reason. They oppose it because they think it morally wrong. Sane people may disagree on the notion, it isn’t misogyny.
The dishonesty appears again in their attitude toward rape. Rape is packaged as a women’s issue, the implication being that men are unconcerned about sexual attacks on their mothers, wives, daughters, friends, and for that matter women in general. Oh sure. The fact is that a man’s usual response to hearing of rapes involves either rude surgery or a rope–but what do radical feminists know about men?
“Lena Dunham Posts Video Celebrating the ‘Extinction of White Men’ on Twitter”
Ain’t no misandry here neither. Imagine the hooha if a man celebrated, or hoped for, the extinction of white women. (Let’s see, I have a wife, an ex, two daughters, a granddaughter, and a stepdaughter, all of whom I care greatly for, not to mention a conviction that without women, white or otherwise, the world would be unutterably boring. So I want extinguish women, right?)
When there is conflict between concern for women and allegiance to leftist causes, the causes win. Feminists disapprove of rape, real or imagined, only when committed by groups they don’t like, such as white men. It has been infinitely documented that black and Muslim men are far more given to rape than white men, but they are “people of color,” and part of the coalition against white men, so they get a pass.
If Donald Trump did this, he would get unfavorable press. Not Pakistani men, though. Have you seen radical feminists screaming to keep these animals out of the US, in which they would be utterly justified? Nope. Muslims are People of Color. Even when they are not.
It is telling that feminists do not criticize women who lie about being raped. Such prevarication puts innocent men in danger of having their lives ruined, being expelled from work or school, and jailed. Why no outrage from feminists? Would it not be moral to prosecute real rapists, and also prosecute the liars?
Apparently not. Why?
Well, Tawana was a black. The Duke-Lacrosse liar was black. Lena Dunham was a Democrat and feminist. All were women. Identity trumps gender. This behavior supports the view that radical feminism is just misandry wrapped in shiny cloth. I.e., a hate group like any other.
From the Rolling Stone piece, written by Sabrina Rubin Erdely about an alleged rape of one Jackie Coakeley by fraternity members at the University of Virginia:
Seven men took turns raping her, while two more – her date, Drew, and another man – gave instruction and encouragement. She remembers how the spectators swigged beers, and how they called each other nicknames like Armpit and Blanket. She remembers the men’s heft and their sour reek of alcohol mixed with the pungency of marijuana. Most of all, Jackie remembers the pain and the pounding that went on and on.
Almost predictably, she turned out to be lying. A jury found the author and Rolling Stone guilty of defamation and awarded damages of $3 million. Why did this happen? Because of rape hysteria created entirely by feminists, a population accustomed to routine attacks on men, a female writer, a co-ed trained by the zeitgeist to think rape fantasies carried no consequences, and a lefty (usually good) magazine eager to make a splash.
When a black rapper called on other blacks to gang-rape Sarah Palin, feminists did not rise in rage that I saw. Why? Because they don’t like Palin, and because blacks are People of Color. This is racism. Bill Clinton, a serial forcible rapist, gets a pass, as does Bill Cosby, while Donald Trump, accused of groping, is a monster. Identity politics. Misandry. Sexism.
One sees the same thing in their criticism of “Islamophobia.” Islam probably the most misogynist philosophy on earth. Islamic societies genitally mutilate young girls, kill them if they are caught kissing a boyfriend, forbid them schooling, and have far and away the worst track record for sexual assault. Not a peep from feminists.
Identity, identity, identity.
For the record, female genital mutilation consists in a group of women holding a young girl down, forcibly spreading her legs, and cutting out her clitoris with a razor blade and no anesthetic. Speaking as a man, I believe that everyone involved in this, specifically including the father who allowed it, should be killed in some exceedingly unpleasant manner. Feminists are OK with it. Mustn’t criticize People of Color. If strong of stomach, click here.
Do you notice a correlation between genital sadism and Groups Whom We Must Not Criticize?
Invariably feminists portray themselves as victims, when the American variety are the most privileged of their sex in the world. This desperate victimhood is the bedrock of radical feminism, without which it would have nothing to complain of. When your sense of self depends on being oppressed, you cannot afford to run out of oppression. Yet for all their obsession with imaginary misogyny, they practice a robust misandry. (A cynic might ask, can anyone be more sexist than a feminist, or more racist than a black? But I am not a cynic.)
The enmity to men, sometimes disguised, never called sexism, sometimes open, runs through the culture today. This is hardly a secret. There is for example the endless portrayal on television of men as milquetoasts and buffoons in need of instruction by women, the now normal beating up by women of a hundred pounds of men of one-eighty. Misandry.
Men seldom challenge feminists on this free flowing snot and bile because normal men like normal women. Again, they are our wives, daughters, dentists, and neighbors. It is easy to hit back at the bad temper and ill breeding (“Name one thing, with a moving part, that was invented by a radical feminist.”) but hard to do so without offending normal women, whom we do not want to offend. Further, men have a sufficient track record of achievement in the arts and sciences as not to feel greatly threatened by the calling of names. So we roll our eyes and think, “Yeah, yeah, Rachel. Yeah, Yeah. Oh god, I need a drink.”
The above, currently lurching around the internet to much complacent clucking, encapsulates the curiously delusional thinking of the tribe. It is insulting to men, and intended to be. Misandry. Men are dangerously violent, killers even; you have to watch them every moment. Simultaneously men are strutting foolish little things, their delicate vanity always vulnerable to a witty sally from Sally. All of this is of course pure misandry–that is, sexism.
Are they wacky enough to believe this? If so, they are, again, psychotic. If not, dishonest. Normal women are not afraid of being killed by men. (“Ah, but Fred, you can see it in their eyes as they creep through the streets, staying behind cover, glancing furtively about, frightened, ever expecting the knife….”) If anybody is more blisterishly sensitive even to disagreement, much less to ridicule, than a radical feminist, I haven’t encountered him. Or her. Or it.
Yes, the cheerleader can devastate the class dweeb by saying that she wouldn’t date him on a bet, or the quarterback crush the not-so-pretty girl by saying that she looks like a box car with warts. But few normal people, either cheerleaders or quarterbacks, are so cruel. And men in general do not speak of women with the venom of feminists speaking of men. Most of us date women, even marry them, regard them as the most attractive part of the social landscape.
Though, of course, at any moment we may kill them.
Fred can be reached at email@example.com. Put “pdq” in the subject line, without the quotes, to avoid autodeletion.