What do MRAs want?

(722 Posts)

...aside from a blow job and, oh, a sandwich would be nice love.

grin

Right, seriously now. I try and be an open minded sort of a person, and I've been wondering about this. When I look at the world, my perception is that women are disadvantaged, belittled, by many things. We all know what those are.

When feminist women and non-feminist women have discussions about things like Page 3 for example, usually the feminists are trying to get the non-feminists to see the world in a different way: Page 3 not as a bit of harmless fun that the girls are happy (and get paid handsomely) to do, but as a "choice" pre-set by patriarchal values. That's just one example. So, I am open to the idea of people who hold different opinions trying to convince me to try and see the world through their eyes for a time.

Trying to see through an MRA's eyes, I think I'd see a world where women were protected by law and custom, vast majority got to lounge about at home pottering about with kids while the men had to work to provide, weren't expected to be violent and had lots of support when violence was committed against them. Had the deck stacked in their favour in family courts even though the father loves his kids just as much and has had to work so hard to provide for them. Was expected to just carry on when he had mental health problems, laughed at if he admitted depression or other problems. That sort of thing.

But where I get stuck is what MRAs want to be different. If they want the chance to shrug off the manly provider role, feminists are cool with that. If they want to campaign for more DV shelters, better mental health provision, prostate cancer research, that's OK with me. But they don't seem to want to do that. Rather, they just seem like an oppositional group that just wants to blame feminism for all their problems.

I'd be interested to hear the views of others on this... What DO they want?

Ugh, sorry, clumsily worded paragraph that is confusing. I will try again:

Trying to see through an MRA's eyes, I think I'd see a world where women were protected by law and custom, vast majority got to lounge about at home pottering about with kids while the men had to work to provide; where women weren't expected to be violent and had lots of support when violence was committed against them. Where women had the deck stacked in their favour in family courts even though the father loves his kids just as much and has had to work so hard to provide for them. Where the man was expected to just carry on when he had mental health problems, laughed at if he admitted depression or other problems. That sort of thing.

MooncupGoddess Mon 19-Aug-13 18:07:08

Honestly, they are like toddlers... they mostly want attention and the world to revolve around their wants.

Yes, that's how they appear to me as well. With a malevolent rape threat thrown in for good measure.

But, aren't we falling into the same thing we accuse others of? Of lumping them all in with the fringe crazies? I'd like to know what the moderate MRAs want.

FreyaSnow Mon 19-Aug-13 18:22:41

Different groups of them want different things. Some of them think women think in a very different way to men and so society needs to be organised in a way that acknowledges that. Some of them think that men and women are the same and so women need to lose their alleged advantages to make society 'fair.'

It's the latter ones that interest me actually, because it's those that I suspect may actually want pretty much the same outcomes (though for different reasons, of course) that feminists do.

FreyaSnow Mon 19-Aug-13 18:27:05

If they wanted the same outcomes as feminists wouldn't they just be feminists? I think a lot of the theory and research they refer to is the same used by feminists, but they then add irrational or unsupported ideas to them.

They seem to me to be inverse feminists. They see white where feminists see black so neither can agree, but if you sat them down in separate rooms and asked them to describe the society they wanted, the outcomes in practical terms would be surprisingly similar. Not so for the other kind, who are actually fighting for the status quo it seems.

I think they do feel that the world is genuinely unfair to men and that women want it to be. It's very hard for them to see round this.

I had a direct experience of this. I worked in a service where there were men and women (think support services for marginalized people). A woman there assaulted her partner in front of me and other staff and then he ran out. He came back later demanding to be let in. I said that was great and asked was he OK, did he need medical or other care. He ranted about how we were favouring women. I told him that she had already been asked to leave, I was happy to be a witness if he wanted to call the Police and that he was allowed back in and she wasn't. He just couldn't hear me. He believed that because we were a social service and were 90% staffed by women we would favour the woman. Even though we saw the assault first hand.

I think it may often be men like him who can't 'hear' that feminists frequently want good outcomes for men from fighting the system. Men who are marginalized, have few things going for them, have to ask for services, often from women. Men who are or perceive themselves to be on the bottom of the pile. They haven't benefited form the patriarchy, ironically, and have often been hurt by it. They actually have the most to benefit from a change.

BasilBabyEater Mon 19-Aug-13 20:05:13

I think they want to return to a golden age where women knew their place and there was full male employment.

A lot of the MRA activity is a response to a changing world where no-one has a safe job with a carriage clock and pension at the end of it. In uncertain times, people who used to be the beneficiaries of the old system, turn to simplistic certainties to try and re-capture what they thought they once had. (Even though lots of them never really had it in the first place IYSWIM). Usually, you need a scapegoat; immigrants, Jews, gypsies, feminists - take your pick.

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 20:21:55

I think they simply cannot countenance that women have a mind and a life of their own.

They think women's place is purely as a satellite to men's needs and wants

It makes them very angry to find that is really not the case

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 21:08:59

Some of them are out-and-out misogynists.

Others are angry because they're seeing parts of the same picture we see, and they think we're out to make things worse for them. So they see that (for example) most women get custody of the children, or that girls are pulling ahead in education, and they feel angry and resentful.

I don't think they are inverse feminists, because feminism (to me anyway) is about class analysis, and what they do is individualism.

CiscoKid Mon 19-Aug-13 22:19:37

I never even knew that the acronym existed before coming on here. I associate them now with Fathers 4 Justice, and Batman climbing up Big Ben.

When I do see someone writing on here who is one, or who is accused of being one, I perceive a lot of anger and hurt, and it almost always seems to be based on child custody and divorce. And if there is one thing that they seem to have in common with some feminists, it's that they are pretty badly scarred by previous events in their life. I think when you have that much anger inside, it's difficult to always present a coherent argument about something that is so dear and important to you.

What do they want? Dunno really, although a BJ and a sandwich is not a bad suggestion in any bloke's book. Do they have a collective movement, or are they like Al Quaeda - a loose collective with not much structure but roughly similar aims?

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 22:22:42

It's inspiring to see such a depth of warmth and sympathy for all the poor, angry, hurt, incoherent individuals you find around you, cisco. Do you often find people struggle to appreciate this generosity in your nature? sad

FreyaSnow Mon 19-Aug-13 22:26:02

They are a collection of different movements rather than a collective movement. Most MRAs online claim to be young and unmarried, in my experience.

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 22:33:15

I can find some sympathy with the MRA-types who are coming at it from the divorce/contact with children standpoint

those young/unmarried/childfree ones are simply bandwagon jumpers of the most base kind, the kind that wish to harm women

CiscoKid Mon 19-Aug-13 22:34:11

What do you mean, LRD?

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 22:36:10

Interesting you say that, AF.

I almost always find the divorce/custody ones more difficult to sympathize with, because there is something chilling about the way they seem to believe their children are pawns in some big game.

When it's young blokes I think it's easier to forgive because they're just stupid, and there's hope they might learn. But when it's someone who has got married to a woman or has a baby daughter, and still believes feminism is out to get men, then I find it really difficult.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 22:36:58

I was being slightly sarcastic, cisco, hinting that if you read your comment again it sounds a bit funny. I'm sure it was just unintentional.

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 22:41:32

You have a point, well made, LRD

I said some sympathy. In some cases I can understand some bitterness. In those cases the blokes don't tend to morph into dickheads who hate all women just because their relationship with one of the gender didn't work out, though smile

contortionist Mon 19-Aug-13 22:43:46

I'm a man, and while I'm generally sympathetic to feminist analysis and politics, I'm not comfortable identifying as feminist (and I'm not sure I'd be a very good one anyway). I would perhaps be involved in MRA organisations if they weren't generally so blinkered.

I would imagine your hypothetical reasonable MRA would largely agree with a feminist view of what an ideal world would look like, but disagree on what the most important immediate priorities for change are. For example he (and I) might prioritise awareness of and support for male victims of domestic violence ahead of female boardroom quotas.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 22:45:06

Yes, sure ... I don't think I'm really disagreeing, just musing about it.

I can understand the bitterness.

I also think, TBF, that there are plenty of men who're justifiably bitter, flirt with 'rah all women are shit' and then come to their senses, which is totally normal.

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 22:46:07

Yup. Usually because they are not dickheads in the first place smile

CiscoKid Mon 19-Aug-13 22:47:20

The bit about divorce and custody? Or about the feminists? I can think of a couple of blokes who have been on here and started threads about how they believe they have been treated shabbily by the courts, but my experience of any wider MRA issues is limited to what I read on here. Those are sad. It seems to have made them very bitter.

Likewise with some women on here who have come out of really shitty, abusive relationships - I am still with the first Mrs Cisco after 24 years, but I know I am lucky. I have close friends and relatives who have been in bad relationships, and it can cause the most mild-mannered people to have pretty extreme views, men and women alike.

That is all I meant.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 22:48:05

cont - see, I wonder about that.

To me, trying to visualize a hypothetical 'reasonable MRA' is like trying to say that you might find a hypothetical 'reasonable white supremacist', because it's not just people who happen to prioritize certain issues abover certain others (as you might if you prioritize DV over quotas, which I think plenty of feminists would), it's people who believe there's a misandric structure developing in society. Or if I understand rightly, that's what it is.

Panzee Mon 19-Aug-13 22:51:24

I had to google it as I can't see the full phrase mentioned in the thread, and the Mumsnet acronym guide didn't help.

The Urban Dictonary has some great definitions. grin

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 22:54:29

Ssssh! Don't mention the Illuminati.

I shall send you the special crucifix and the goat's blood in the post.

SigmundFraude Mon 19-Aug-13 23:00:16

You know, if you want to know what they want, why don't you just ask them?

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:01:50

We totes should, right?

CiscoKid Mon 19-Aug-13 23:05:35

Is the illuminati/goat comment aimed at me too? Have I missed something again?

FreyaSnow Mon 19-Aug-13 23:05:44

Well I know what they say they want, but as what they say they want is totally at odds with reality as it exists anywhere in the world, I have to speculate on what they really want by looking at the underlying psychology, which I don't feel equipped to do.

contortionist Mon 19-Aug-13 23:08:37

LRD - my hypothetical reasonable MRA doesn't believe society is structurally misandric, but rather that there are gender roles and assumptions which disadvantage both men and women, in different ways - and he's more exercised about the ways in which men are disadvantaged. Not necessarily because he thinks men have it worse than women, but because the issues affecting men are personally more relevant, and perhaps also because he has more idea of what might need to be done.
I don't think this is reprehensible - it's only human to be more concerned with what affects us personally (or people we identify with) than with more distant or abstract injustice.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:08:42

cisco - check out the references suggested. wink

And no, it wasn't aimed at you.

freya - it's interesting though, trying to work it out, because it does make me wonder more what the heck is going wrong.

SigmundFraude Mon 19-Aug-13 23:10:40

'We totes should, right?'

Yes. You totes should.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:10:43

Sorry, cont, cross posted.

I see where you're coming from. Yeah, ok. I've never come across a MRA who thought remotely like that, though - it's more what I'd associate with men who identify with other political ideologies including feminism. Do you mean you reckon this is what some MRAs might be like (and we should be fair and acknowledge they may be out there), or do you mean, going by the words alone, this is what a rational one would be?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 19-Aug-13 23:15:04

A few may remember the thread on the Politics board a while back - about a certain -ahem- MRA who started his own political party and who should remain nameless because few things bring the trolls, or even the man himself, over quicker than his name on a thread

A very angry young MRA came over and thought he was clever (he wasn't) fisking everyone's posts, and moaning about the poor men and that nasty women send them off to die in wars and constantly trick them into pregnancy etc.

But when asked what 3 laws he would bring in to address his perceived injustices - what did he want to change - he just could/would not answer. I think he just didn't know - but was suffering from a deep, deep fear and mistrust of women. He seemed to see them as a different species.

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 23:17:27

SF, why don't you tell us instead

g'wan, you know you want to

imagine how satisfying it could be, to actually contribute instead of uselessly sniping

FreyaSnow Mon 19-Aug-13 23:18:22

Contortionist, I think it is a sensible approach that people who are in a group determine particular issues for that group. With domestic violence for example, it is more sensible for male victims of domestic violence to be listened so that appropriate support can be created, rather than assuming they will want or need the type of support set up for female victims.

LRD, there are a lot of people who come on here who have a lot of knowledge in one area or another, and it is a shame there isn't anybody on here who knows a lot about psychology, because it applies to so many of the issues discussed on here.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:18:45

Is sig a MRA, AF?

I always assumed s/he just hated women and feminism.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 19-Aug-13 23:18:46

Love the Urban Dictionary definitions of MRA. grin

flowers for UD.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:19:43

freya - sorry, I didn't follow you, but yes, I agree.

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 23:21:29

I don't know, LRD. This could be an ideal time to lay the cards on the table. This thread isn't wholly hostile to the thought processes of MRA-types.

btw, SF, your well-used refrain of "I fear for my sons" is wearing thin. Lots of us have sons.

FreyaSnow Mon 19-Aug-13 23:25:35

LRD, I meant in terms of trying to work out what motivates MRAs, a psychologist might have a lot of insight. I've found out a lot of stuff on this board because so many people bring their knowledge of specific types of analysis, and I'd like the same to be true of a psychological approach.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:25:59

Fair point.

I think a lot do really believe in their cause, some are at the bottom of society's priorities and feel hard done by (as they should) and see the cause of the problem as such, but not the reasoning behind it. They see the patriarchy as such, but see the bits they think are bonuses for women and not men, instead of how it is bad for both men and women, and see women as to blame?

Bunnylion Mon 19-Aug-13 23:30:11

SF - still awaiting your definition of feminism that you said you'd think about and share earlier today.

AF, I've not got a son yet but I'm 9 months pregnant with my first - god help him, I'll have him dressed like a princess, baking cupcakes by Christmas.

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 23:30:31

Yes, it's a fundamental mistake that people who hate and distrust feminism make isn't it, RCP

that a male-centric society damages both men and women, particularly those at the bottom of the heap...if you look at it from a sociological POV

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 23:32:30

grin @ bunny, when my son was small he wore a pot towel on his head as "long hair" and insisted we call him "Aurora"

SigmundFraude Mon 19-Aug-13 23:32:38

As you and LRD have been so rude, I don't think I'll be discussing anything with you. Nice to see LRD reverting back to type anyhow.

If I said 'I fear for my daughters' would you be quite so scathing? I highly doubt it, I think the tone would be entirely different.

SigmundFraude Mon 19-Aug-13 23:33:37

* to AF

AnyFucker Mon 19-Aug-13 23:36:25

SF, I say "I fear my daughter" and "I fear for my son" constantly on MN

in context, that is

who, in this horrid world, doesn't fear for their children ?

but whenever you are challenged about your anti-feminist views you imply that you feel like that because you have sons, and that feminist views damage them

it's nonsensical

and I haven't been rude to you at all, I made a vow to be polite to you a while ago, as you know

contortionist Mon 19-Aug-13 23:37:01

LRD - I certainly know a few men who hold the sorts of views I've described and who wouldnt call themselves feminists (for various reasons), but I admit than I don't think any of them are members of F4J or are planning to scale any London landmarks in a Spider-Man costume.

BasilBabyEater Mon 19-Aug-13 23:40:43

I don't fear for my son just because he's male.

I do fear for my daughter just because she's female though.

SigmundFraude Mon 19-Aug-13 23:49:35

'but whenever you are challenged about your anti-feminist views you imply that you feel like that because you have sons, and that feminist views damage them'

What do you think my anti-feminist views are caused by? It's not only because of my sons, no. It really depends on the topic being discussed really. Demonising male sexuality, suicide rates, Female on male DV, family courts..those things make me worry about my boys. Lack of women in boards rooms etc, telling women how to live their lives etc...annoys me personally, obviously that doesn't impact on them directly.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Mon 19-Aug-13 23:50:51

cont - oh, yes, I know loads of men like that (who would hold those views, not call themselves feminists, and not be F4J etc.). I admit I'd never thought of them as MRAs, but because I do tend to think of it meaning the ones with well-publicized views.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 00:09:54

There's a few areas for genuine concern that the mens movement could point to where outcomes/attitudes could improve, as SF indicates, and there's more - victims of assault (albeit largely by each other), ridiculous role expectations, some sidelining of prostrate cancer research , declining educational outcomes, boardroom/political party shortlisting though I'm fairly hazy on that one meself, assumptions by both men and women that men are a bit caveman-like and need 'civilising' and evolving.

But largely the antidote to many of these ills is to take a bit of responsibility - men and women have the freedom to do that - and be better fathers, stop hitting each other, be better problem-solvers, seek help with problems of depression/anxiety/substance misuse etc. (though one of my most hated phrases is 'grow some' when it actually means 'develop some self-esteem and protect your boundaries').

As that thread in Politics earlier this year, a lot of mens rights advocates are keen on the responsibility bit, when it's much easier to blame others.

So what do mens rights advocates want? As tricky as knitting fog.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 00:13:21

aren't keen. that was an iphone mistake.hmm

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:15:28

I still don't understand why MRA's actually want though

if they see iniquities in eg, refuge provision for men who are victims of DV, do they want to see fewer for women ?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 00:18:18

They want the same provision. One or two safe houses for men is pretty pathetic by anyone's standards (hopefully).

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:18:31

*what

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:19:17

they want the same, like for like ?

so if there are 200 shelters for women, they want 200 too ?

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:20:29

I think there should be more provision for men too, btw

but not at the expense of women, because they don't have enough either

do you think women have too much ?

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 00:20:54

Probably a better provision AF, not necessarily at the female expense. The incidence of f on m DV is till shockingly under-exposed, though it's v difficult to compare the dynamics and costs.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:23:06

if there is a finite amount of money for DV provision (and we know it is woefully inadequate across the board), should it be shared equally between the sexes ?

feminism is about equality after all

or is it rather more nuanced than that...

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 00:23:11

Yes, better provision. Not like for like.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 00:26:45

'if there is a finite amount of money for DV provision (and we know it is woefully inadequate across the board), should it be shared equally between the sexes ?'

No, but provision for men falls woefully short of the need. It's difficult enough for men to actually admit to experiencing DV to anyone and be taken seriously, and if they do, there's nowhere for them to go anyway.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:27:36

Why don't MRA's suggest joining up and campaigning for more provision across the board then ?

I don't expect a definitive, btw, am just musing.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:27:59

definitive answer sorry, am doing 3 things at once here

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:30:10

SF, I see your "woefully short" and I give you "criminally lacking"

for everyone

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 00:32:04

and what I've heard first hand twice is 'if I leave I won't see my kids'. Really sad.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 00:32:40

I have to go to bed now.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 00:39:17

'Why don't MRA's suggest joining up and campaigning for more provision across the board then ?'

They do:

www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/04/29/earl-silverman-dead-suicide_n_3179850.html

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 00:44:27

Here is what I gleaned from that politics thread - in particular these are the some of the documented aims on the manifesto from that political party:

1. Compulsory paternity testing.

2. Men not financially responsible for their children unless they have signed a legal doc in the presence of a solicitor to say they accept responsibility for any children resulting from the relationship. ( shock yes really!)

3. A default to equal parenting - children spend alternate weeks with each parent and no CM payments made by either parent (regardless of earnings).

4. A date set, after which no state funding will be paid to any women having new babies.

5. New laws restricting access to abortion.

6. Anonymity for those accused of sexual assault.

Not an exhaustive list - just the most shock ones.

Scary.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 00:53:41

It's all a load of hot air anyway - they set up a petition over a month ago demanding an end to the state's 'assault on men and boys' (I would think he means this metaphorically) and he has.............37 signatures.

And they're not even all from the UK. The last 4 showing on the site are 1 Briton, an American, an Australian, and a Canadian.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 00:56:12

That thread came up on a google search. Happy days.hmm

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 20-Aug-13 01:07:09

If you want to have a closer look at the MRA movement, I highly recommend the blog Manboobz, which manages to be eye opening, horrifying and hilarious in equal measure:http://manboobz.com

WhentheRed Tue 20-Aug-13 03:19:54

A Voice for Men, which calls itself a Men's Human Rights organisation and which I think claims victory for getting RadFem kicked out of its centre this year sets out its mission and values on its website (Everything below is a direct quote. I can't be bothered to italicise.):

Mission Statement

It is the mission of A Voice for Men to:

Promote the dissemination of information that will expose misandry and gender-centrism on all levels in our culture;

Oppose any form of gender-centrism. We propose to foster the equal valuing of men and women socially, regardless of sexual orientation and identity, as well as their equal treatment under the law;

Recognize the institution of marriage and the family unit as the foundation of civilized society. However, we support the trend away from that institution until the current legal zeitgeist making it unsafe for men and children is corrected. We support an end to “no fault” divorce and support default shared custody in the event of divorce. We seek to promote awareness of information designed to protect men and fathers who are already married;

Promote a rejection of sex based chivalry in any form or fashion.

Promote the legal and nonviolent antagonism of all agents of misandry and gender-centrism, from members of academe, to holders of public office, to law enforcement and other state functionaries, to popular bloggers and to corporate agents who promote misandry and gender-centism for profit;

Support peaceful acts of civil disobedience when necessary;

Educate men, women, girls and boys about the threats they face in feminist governance and to promote an end to that governance;

Debunk sex based lies and distortions wherever they occur;

Offer a more reasoned, cogent and intellectually honest view of sexual politics;

Address the variety of problems faced by men and boys under feminist governance and attempt to ameliorate those problems;

Push for an end to rape hysteria, DV hysteria and false allegations;

Promote a culture that values equal treatment under the law for all human beings;

Facilitate a new social contract between men and women, leading to mutual respect, accountability and expectation.

AVFM’s sole ideology is compassion for men and boys that is equal to that of women and any other identified group.

♦♦♦

Our Values

AVfM regards gender ideologues and all other agents of misandry as a social malignancy. We do not consider them well intentioned or honest agents for their purported goals and extend to them no more courtesy or consideration than we would klansmen, skinheads, neo Nazi’s or other purveyors of hate. We will educate them where they are willing to learn, but hold them accountable for their ignorance as much as their actions;

We take no side at all in partisan political struggles and, after weighing the evidence at hand, generally view all organized mainstream political options as gynocentric;

We support and endorse only non-violent reactions to feminist governance and in fact are trying to prevent future acts of violence that feminist governance has already inspired;

We oppose all state authority over or interference in the private lives of consenting adults engaged in any form of interpersonal relationship;

We take no stand on religion or lack of religion. We neither endorse nor oppose religious principles.

Dervel Tue 20-Aug-13 04:06:12

Speaking as someone who looked into the f4j, and fnf crowd as a father(I hadn't even heard the term mra until I came here). I was almost instantly turned off by the rhetoric. Although doubtless there are many men led to these groups because they do love their children the bit I can't sign my name to is how it's all framed as a men vs women issue.

The law in principle as it stands I think has it 100% right, the core of any legal dispute involving a child be it over finances, residency or contact HAS to be about the needs of the child. End of. FWIW I do think there is a disconnect between what we as society subconsciously (and in some cases consciously) believe and that principle. We collectively seem to default to the notion that women make the better primary caregivers.

Wether that is actually true as a trend or not is in my opinion academic, as there are enough good fathers out there to warrant a shift in perception. In the exact same way as I would have said were I born a generation or two ago that there enough women with the intelligence, ambition and qualities to make it any traditionally male dominated career. Even now the glass ceiling is only just cracking and not trully gone. These two interests are actually in alignment, the more women who wish to focus on their career works for the men who want to primarily focus on raising children.

Where I think the MRA are going at it all wrong is they are seeking to cause a legal/political change where none is needed, when instead they should be seeking to alter society and its preconceptions. The thing is there are men out there doing precisely that. Statistics of stay at home fathers are increasing, as this becomes more and more commonplace society's bias will come into alignment with the law, and conflicts will come to resolution gender blind (as I believe the law attempts to already).

Unfortunately where does that leave us men at the moment? Changing society does take a long time, so maybe the answer lies in the symbol the f4j guys like to use: the superhero, maybe instead of dressing up like batman we need to start behaving like him. We may not be the fathers our children deserve (in that they get to wake up to us every morning of their childhoods, as much as we may want them to), but it is nevertheless possible to be the fathers that they need. We should protect our children from and teach them how to resolve conflict. In any conflict between a mother and a father, no matter who wins at the end of the day the child always loses. It is the conflict that mra promotes that means I personally am out.

My only hope for the mra is that wiser and cleverer heads than mine steer it towards that conclusion, and I do believe it useful for any group that feels marginalised to have a place to congregate. Taking feminism as an example I can't pretend to get or agree with every part of it, but it is vital imho for two reasons: 1 It provides a safe and supportive outlet for women who have had their lives compromised simply from being female, 2 Some spectacularly clever and wise women have come along and steered it in a positive direction. Maybe the same will be true for the mra someday, but hopefully in time we will have moved beyond the need for any group that needs to advance the rights of any demographic be it gender, race, sexuality or anything else a human being can be.

Greythorne Tue 20-Aug-13 04:39:52

I imagine MRAs see reproductive rights as very 'anti-men' in the sense that they would like to have no strings attached sex and if pregnancy results, no responsibilities. They would also , I imagine, like 'equal' rights to choose what happens if pregnancy does occur; so the right to insist on an abortion or the right to prevent an abortion.

The idea if a woman's right to choose is probably alien to then as they wish to promote a man's right to choose.

I think.

WhentheRed Tue 20-Aug-13 04:52:43

From what I gathered from the A Voice for Men's website is that the editor's position is that during the period of time during which a woman may decide to have an abortion, a man should have a legal right to disclaim responsibility for any child born from the pregnancy. In that way, the man does not interfere with the woman's right to choose but is not "burdened" with responsibility should the woman choose not to have an abortion.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 07:22:15

Greythorne, in the event of an unexpected/unwanted pregnancy, do you believe that a woman should be allowed to always pursue that father for financial support for the child, regardless of whether or not he wants that child?

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 07:41:42

"What do you think my anti-feminist views are caused by? It's not only because of my sons, no. It really depends on the topic being discussed really. Demonising male sexuality, suicide rates, Female on male DV, family courts..those things make me worry about my boys"

1. I don't know what's"demonising male sexuality" means.

2. Suicide rates are certainly something to be concerned about. But isn't this an area where challenging th patriarchy benefits both men and women? If men felt mor able to express their feelings and ask for help wouldn't that go a long way to reduce male suicide rates? And also it's important to remember that women actually make more suicide attempts than men do- sadly men are better at killing themselves efficiently than women are sad.

3. The figures of female on male domestic violence are problematic. But obviously all violence is serious and should be taken seriously. BUT. 2 women a week are killed by their partners, not the other way round. And, for information, most of the services and refuges set up for female victims of domestic violence were set up, at least initially, by volunteers and campaigners. They do get state funding, but still operate on a shoe string, and still depend on charitable donations. Are men campaigning and fundraising to set up safe houses for "battered husbands"? ( to use the terminology of the original refuges)

4. I have no personal experience of family courts-but of course both men and women should have to opportunity to parent-and financially support- their children. If this doesn't happen properly, then the system needs reviewing. Are feminists saying that the family courts work perfectly?

However,I honestly don't see what any of the above points have to do with feminism!

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 07:43:18

"in the event of an unexpected/unwanted pregnancy, do you believe that a woman should be allowed to always pursue that father for financial support for the child, regardless of whether or not he wants that child?"

Well, if he was there at the conception, under what circumstances "shouldn't" he support his child?

TheDoctrineOfJetlag Tue 20-Aug-13 07:59:12

Good post Dervel.

I run a feminist page elsewhere and we obviously attract a lot of trolls who say they're MRA. (Like any movement, there are plenty of misguided twats people who are attracted to it).

It's basically lots of people saying because they have it bad too feminism needs to stop, so we can all have it bad hmm (makes as little sense as it sounds). Then there's the standard rape threats to my inbox from said people, who deny it on the actual page. Laaaaavely grin

Agree with Curlew btw. Feminism might not often acknowledge those things but it doesn't undermine them. I certainly don't and only met the occasional nut job that does.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 08:39:05

in the event of an unexpected/unwanted pregnancy, do you believe that a woman should be allowed to always pursue that father for financial support for the child, regardless of whether or not he wants that child?

Yes! Emphatically yes.

IOnlyNameChangeInACrisis Tue 20-Aug-13 08:47:05

I am all for men standing up and demanding cultural change around expectations how men must think, feel, behave.

I am rather tired, though, of finding that there's a sizable cohert of men who don't actually want to stand up for themselves, but instead just want me to sit down. I see the difference in our mindsets as being something like this:

Feminists: Society is underpinned by patriarchal cultural assumptions that have become irrelevant due to technology and that are now actually socially and economically harmful. Women bear the brunt of this, but there are lots of drawbacks for men too. So feminists are against patriarchy.

MRAs: Society was just fine until technology and globalisation ate my job women started pushing back on being second class citizens. Now any problem men face is proof that women should never push back on any problems they face. So MRAs are against women.

BasilBabyEater Tue 20-Aug-13 08:47:19

How does feminism demonise male sexuality?

AFAIC, feminism demonises rape and sexual coercion, not male sexuality. If you claim that it demonises male sexuality, you're coming dangerously close to claiming that male sexuality = coercive rapiness.

And they claim feminists think all men are rapists. hmm

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 08:48:38

dervel - a lot of that makes good sense, I agree.

The points others make about reproductive rights strike a chord with me.

I have noticed, increasingly, that a lot of young men are simply very, very ignorant of the basic biological and medical processes of conception, pregnancy, abortion, childbirth and so on. I am not using 'ignorant' in a perjorative sense, because it would be remarkable if they were not: there is a lot of misinformation out there.

I've met young men who would certainly feel that, if a woman is pregnant, they themselves should only be responsible for the baby if they choose to be so, and they should have some say in whether or not the woman seeks abortion. That sounds like such a completely misogynistic statement when I write it out, that you wouldn't believe it could come from anything except deliberate misogyny. Yet I've heard these views from men who had heard me or my friends saying we were feminists and who thought they were engaging in a little light chit-chat about social mores. Really.

They honestly saw this as a 'fairer' situation than what exists now. I remember suggesting that maybe if a man didn't want children, he should consider contraception - and they were fine with that in theory - or a vasectomy. At this point there was outcry as I was informed that a vasectomy is an extremely serious operation, not to be taken lightly.

Of course, it is. But they really didn't see that abortion and childbirth might also be medically serious, even (dare we suggest), potentially more dangerous and invasive.

My impression was, FWIW, that they assumed all women wanted babies, so there was a fundamental imbalance, that all women would naturally be out to get pregnant at some stage in their lives, while only some men were naturally the paternal types.

I agree with dervel, I think one of the ways this has to change is with different social role models for men and women. Maybe if these men had been more exposed to real information about abortion/childbirth (and not that presented as right-wing propaganda), they'd have thought differently. Maybe if they'd been able to hear how many fathers do have strong paternal feelings and did very definitely want babies (and how many women don't want children), they would realize that it really can be a choice both parents make.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 08:49:49

Cross post cos I waffle on.

Yes, why do MRAs persist with the 'feminists think men are rapists'. Well, I know why MRAs do, but why is it such a popular myth?

FloraFox Tue 20-Aug-13 08:57:53

Sigmund if you are concerned about domestic violence against men, I can make a suggestion. Perhaps you could establish a shelter in your own home. You could move all your sons into one bedroom and perhaps ask an older one to stay with a relative for a few weeks. Then you could take in a battered man and his children who are complete strangers but are desperately trying to escape a dangerous and violent woman and have nowhere to go. Make sure the violent wife doesn't find out where they are as she might show up at your house and threaten violence against you and your family. It may take a long time for you to get any funding (hence, using your own home) and the man may not have any income as his wife may have been the sole breadwinner so you'll have to foot the bill for any additional costs, even if you are barely making ends meet yourself.

This is how my mother established a Women's Aid shelter and no doubt how many others were established across the country. Do let us know how you get on. Good luck!

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 09:01:40

If I reply to any of these 'why do MRA's....' questions, am I going to get labelled as one? I sit outside both feminist and MRA camps, so I have a slightly different viewpoint to a lot of posters. Not better, not superior, not cleverer, not wiser, not any other condescending adjective you care to name. Just different.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 09:05:11

I dunno, cisco. Probably depends on whether your answer is about, doesn't it?

I suspect pre-emptively labelling people condescending (in addition to hurt, angry, and so on) might not totally help your cause, but I am a weak and feeble woman and doubtless it's all my fault.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 09:09:47

I meant that I could be perceived as condescending, not you. I do like the way you like to assume that everything I say has to point to the worst possible scenario. But I guess that that is just your way, as per your sarcasm yesterday.

BasilBabyEater Tue 20-Aug-13 09:13:26

Ah how lucky we are that CiscoKid can offer his/ her services as the voice of reason. There's feminists on one side, MRA's on the other and Cisco, Reason, in the middle.

<Relaxes with coffee awaiting Cisco's Solomonic judgement>

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 09:15:47

See, that is why I asked first. As you were, with your totally unbiased analysis.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 09:18:05

I don't assume everything you say points to the worst possible scenario, in fact I'm being fairly restrained.

If you don't realize how you're coming across, I'd urge you to think about what basil says. That's how you're coming across. I expect it isn't deliberate, but it is rather like someone walking into a room full of people chatting and expecting his (or her) voice to be listened to immediately for its manifest wisdom.

If you have a point, rather than a snipe about poor little you getting seen as condescending/labelled an MRA, make it.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 09:26:20

The don't restrain yourself. Say what you mean. And don't use sarcasm, as you aren't very good at it.

MRA's will use 'feminists think women are rapists' because it is a perceived weakness in feminist philosophy. If you Google it, you can find stuff like this on the first page;

thefemministfatale.wordpress.com/2012/12/04/all-men-are-rapists/

And so it's a good way to play down the feminist message, to point and say, 'Look, they are all harridan, man-hating nutters'. It is a minimal effort route to setting the public consciousness against their perceived enemy.

BasilBabyEater Tue 20-Aug-13 09:29:39

Oh so what, a few blog posts on the internet and it's an excuse to opt out of justice and women's human rights.

Cisco, you come across as believing that you have the right to arbitrate. That's not something I accept but it's something I recognise from many men who arrogate to themselves the right to pronounce on women's rights, hence the sarcasm.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 09:32:36

sad

The affirmation I was waiting for my whole life, and you withdraw it.

Maybe I have daddy issues?

We know the 'all men are rapists' thing is a 'perceived weakness', genius. That's what we're discussing. We're asking why people believe it.

I do find it interesting that some people assume sarcasm is primarily for them, not for me. confused

Is it not obvious it's a conversational styling I use because it makes me feel marginally less irritated, rather than something I slaved over in the hope of getting a pat on the head?

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 09:35:23

Anyone can pick out an arbitrary nutter or extreme viewpoint from any political movement, not just feminism.

The question wasn't should they do it. The question was why do they do it. And the reason they do it as far as I can see is to undermine feminism. I answered LRD's question from 08:49.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 09:38:48

Oh, I see, sorry, to be fair, I assumed you were stating the obvious rather than attempting an actual answer.

It is honestly a question I'd like to know the answer to (a real one, I mean).

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 09:42:24

3/10. But your comment about what people believe about your sarcasm - that tells me you have been picked up on it before. Perhaps people find constant sarcasm irritating, especially when they don't know you. But if it helps you, then so be it.

And they (people) believe it because it is possible with Google to find evidence that some feminists believe it in 0.000001 seconds. Einstein. So why wouldn't MRA's, who perceive feminism to be the cause of all their woes, go for the jugular? And why wouldn't the general public, who buy the Sun and the Daily Mail in their millions, believe it?

rosabud Tue 20-Aug-13 09:44:01

I don't think it matters what MRAs want as their arguments are so narrow, illogical and generally go round in circles that they are not taken seriously, at least in the UK, by the sections of society (government/media etc) that have power and influence. As SJM pointed out upthread, when they actually organise into political parties or pressure groups, their ideas and policies appear particularly ridiculous and garner little support. They do seem to want to sit on the internet all day and dress their anti-equality ideas up as reasonable, especially on feminist discussion boards, and generally try to reduce informed, interesting debate to irrelevant detail or semantics.

It's far more interesting to find out what ordinary men want, where they see the position of women in society going and what they think ther role in that is, which is why Dervil's post was far more interesting than any of Cisco's have been.

Morning grin

Theoretically I can sort of see the logic in wondering at what point "father's responsibilities / rights" (FR, for want of a better term) kicks in. And the contradictions inherent in such a discussion. For example, say FR begins at the point of conception, as suggested by the 'if you didn't want children, use contraception / have a vasectomy' argument.

That means that the woman has a greater window (up to when she can have an abortion) within which to make her choice about parenthood. In a simplistic analysis, I can sort of see why an MRA would cry unfair.

BUT of course giving FR beyond the point of the choice of whether or not to donate the sperm means giving him rights over the woman's body with potentially fatal consequences, as LRD points out.

It occurs to me that if our society wasn't actually patriarchal but instead women had the power, men might not have any rights over their children at all. Women wouldn't need them to contribute financially, because many more of them would be financially independent. It's ironic to note that my understanding of marriage as an institution was that it arose as a way of protecting male property rights, rather than to protect the wellbeing of dependents.

I'm rambling...

Cisco your passive aggression (when challenged on your superior, balanced, logical wisdom) is a great deal more aggravating than LRD's sarcasm wit.

Please consider how many of your contributions are perceived: as though you are superior to us little, emotional types with our lack of analytical ability. Really, you do come across this way, several of us have explained this now. If you have an opinion, please, just contribute it without all the wisdom on high / PA stuff. I am interested to hear it.

Otherwise, it's like a little thorn pricking us to respond in kind.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 09:52:31

'Is it not obvious it's a conversational styling I use because it makes me feel marginally less irritated'

No, it's not obvious at all.

Sigmund you've said you're an MRA...

What do you want?

Que'est ce que vous voulez?

Quid vis?

rosabud Tue 20-Aug-13 10:01:17

'Is it not obvious it's a conversational styling I use because it makes me feel marginally less irritated'

Yes it was obvious to me and, I should imagine, to most others who read it. However, some will genuinely not have found it obvious becuase they do not higher level reading skills required (although, of course, those people will also struggle to follow debate on in depth political theory so are unlikely to understand much of what you are saying anyway). Also, some will claim not to have found it obvious in order to further throw debate of course into irrelevant detail and semantics.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 10:01:32

This is a forum Buffy.

Yes, indeed it is. confused

A forum within which I started a thread wondering what MRAs want. You contributed an earlier post suggesting I ask one. I recall you saying that you are one. So, I asked you.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 10:03:51

Cisco - I appreciate I am referring back up the thread, but I'm intrigued by this:

"Greythorne, in the event of an unexpected/unwanted pregnancy, do you believe that a woman should be allowed to always pursue that father for financial support for the child, regardless of whether or not he wants that child?"

Is your answer 'no'? It's intriguing as that would be the view of many young men I have come across, where there is no responsibility accepted - which is more understandable in the young, but not in someone who has been married for 24 years and so is so much older. If your answer really is no, then I'd suggest you are further along on the MRA spectrum than you know or care to admit. Not goading, just a bit of clarity requested.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 10:06:09

Sorry Buffy, I misinterpreted you. I thought it was a hostile 'what do you want'.

IOnlyNameChangeInACrisis Tue 20-Aug-13 10:14:33

Why do MRAs believe that they can only have rights at the expense of women?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 10:14:46

Well I've been requested by AF not to express concern for my DS's. So I will say that I want (for men) better mental health care, more provision for victims of DV..the usual.

No, not hostile. Sorry if it came across that way. I meant how do you interpret the goals of the MRA movement? What practical changes do they campaign for?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 10:16:39

Sigmund do you really not see that one if the issues that most seems to concern you, dv against men, and the difficulties men experience in admitting they are victims and accessing help are the direct result if our patriarchal society? It's not feminism that makes it hard for a man to admit he is suffering DV. It's fucked up gender roles.

x post.

But that's where I become very confused because I don't see how women in general and feminists in particular are creating obstacles for those things. Personally, I think those aims are laudable. So, I become even more confused about why calls for better provision for men has to be prefaced by attacks on feminism in particular and women's rights in general...

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 10:17:30

I want those things for men too sigmund. Why do you think they are incompatible with feminism?

YoniBottsBumgina Tue 20-Aug-13 10:33:06

In my experience they just see it in a totally warped manner. Like they own a cake and they have generously given women about a quarter of the cake, and what more do they want?? They've got more than their share already.

Whereas women are saying Hey! This isn't fair! You have three times as much cake as we do. But the MRA doesn't see that the cake is to be shared, because they assume that women have a whole cake of their own that they're hiding somewhere.

Or something grin I really do think some MRAs seem to think women are a genuine subspecies who exist to serve men's needs and don't have needs of their own, sort of like pets. So they are angry at feminism because they believe women are trying to take over a man's world.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 10:34:41

I fear that you are right yoni.

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 10:38:10

"Well I've been requested by AF not to express concern for my DS's. So I will say that I want (for men) better mental health care, more provision for victims of DV..the usual."

OK. Maybe we're getting somewhere. I want those things too. Why do you think feminists are against them?

I wrote a long post early this morning, SF addessing your earlier points?Would it be really cheeky to ask you to read it and comment? It was at 7.41.

Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 10:46:55

I've asked SF a number of times to explain what her definition of feminism is.

Ive asked this because I think this is the route of the problem with MRA philosophy - a complete misunderstanding of feminism.

Chatting to a SAHM good friend the other day and in conversation she said "yeah, like those feminists who think we should all not have any children and work full time". She really believed that that was an aim of feminism! So I know that the message gets easily muddied, which can encourage anger and a perceived polarity of ideology from usually well meaning and intelligent people.

SF - what do you see as the primary aims of feminism?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 10:58:10

I think the main, overriding issue MRA's, and a lot of mothers of boys (I'm by no means the only MoB who feels this way) have with feminism is the woman=good/men=bad model. Also, for me, it is the 'women as victims/incapable of getting anywhere without a leg up' issue. I've talked at length about this before anyway.

Also, the agency debate.

Will answer you later curlew, if I get chance.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 10:58:12

Pan, in response to your question;

The answer is 'sometimes yes, sometimes no'. And that is because there are different scenarios.

Let's say a couple have a no strings fling, no plans for the future. Pregnancy occurs. There has to be a discussion. Do both want the child? Wonderful, both pay for the child's future. Man wants child, woman doesn't. Sad, but the woman carries the risk, so it's her decision, and he has to accept abortion. If she wants it, and he doesn't, right from the outset, and he makes it clear? Then he has a case for saying 'this is not what I want - we never planned for this'. Again, a shit scenario, but if people disagree, I'd want to know on what basis.

If a pregnancy occurs in an ongoing relationship, and a man changes his mind after previously agreeing to bring up the child, he should pay. The few men that I know in this situation have continued to pay because they wanted to.

If thinking that in some cases a man should have a say in paying for an unwanted pregnancy, then you have me. I am an MRA after all. It is not black and white.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 10:58:43

Ditto Bunnylion

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 11:04:31

You're right, rosa.

Sorry for the sarcasm, cisco and sig. I shall now restrict myself to lumberingly obvious observations couched in simple language.

I will be honest now and say I do think a major issue with this debate is to do with how we each expect to express ourselves and to be listened to. I think a huge part of the reason MRAs get a bad rap is because they pull stunts like F4J, and they write (not just on MN, I mean, but in general) in a very self-important 'ahh, little women, let us men explain ...'. fashion. Tim Lott, for example, does this. I expect he genuinely doesn't know how annoying it is. I would call it public school debating style, because it is the mode of expression (and the expectation of being listened to) that goes along with an ingrained belief that you really are worth more attention than most people when you open your mouth.

At its more dilute levels, you can see the same thing in perfectly ordinary men or boys in a classroom or a meeting room. We are conditioned as a society to expect men will talk for longer, will express themselves more aggressively (and often more sarcastically), and will be listened to.

Of course feminists also express themselves in multiple different ways, not all of them ideally suited to winning over unconvinced audiences. But we're less inclined to accept that as ok, because - as a society - we praise women when they speak up in order to flatter or smooth over tensions or whatever. And again, you can see this in classrooms or meeting rooms.

This is why simply asking MRAs 'so, what do you want' isn't really going to get us far, and why we need to think about the underlying stuff beneath what they say.

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 11:05:39

"I think the main, overriding issue MRA's, and a lot of mothers of boys (I'm by no means the only MoB who feels this way) have with feminism is the woman=good/men=bad model. Also, for me, it is the 'women as victims/incapable of getting anywhere without a leg up' issue. I've talked at length about this before anyway.

Also, the agency debate"

Now what I find difficult, as a feminist and as the mother of a boy, is that what you say here does not represent what I think, or what any feminist I know thinks.

So what seems to be happening is that we, as feminists, are being challenged on, and asked to defend, positions that we don't actually hold. I hesitate to introduce the straw man concept. But it's a straw man!

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 11:07:15

I disagree cusco on the basis that any adult having sex should know that even if contraception is used, it can result in pregnancy and they should expect to be legally responsible for any child born. If they aren't prepared to take that risk they shouldn't have sex.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 11:08:40

So sigmund you seem to accept that mras have misunderstood feminism? If you are saying "ditto" to bunny.

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 11:09:22

". If she wants it, and he doesn't, right from the outset, and he makes it clear? Then he has a case for saying 'this is not what I want - we never planned for this'. Again, a shit scenario, but if people disagree, I'd want to know on what basis."

If either person in a sexual relationship is categoric about not wanting to be a child, then they should take responsibility for ensuring that there isn't a child. If you are a man, this means either not having sex, having a vasectomy or using a condom very very carefully indeed.

Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 11:12:18

SF - feminism is not woman=good/men=bad

The patriarchal system (this doesn't mean our sons, brothers, husbands etc) is what is bad and is the cause of so much suffering to both men and women.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 11:16:50

'Now what I find difficult, as a feminist and as the mother of a boy, is that what you say here does not represent what I think, or what any feminist I know thinks.'

I know that. But it does represent other non-feminist mothers of boys that I have come across.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 11:18:07

Cisko - thanks for replying, though I didn't say you were an MRA, just a bit further along the path than you'd wish to believe.

The thing is though that saying I or 'we' never planned for this is a little weak, if you don't mind me saying - it's part of the responsibility and consequences scenario when exchanging secretions is it not? That's whats quite hard for the youngies to grasp at times, which you appear at least to be repeating. And life-changing experiences come to many people entirely unbidden and adjust to accept and deal with the consequences.

I'd also say it's more than 'paying for an unwanted pregnancy' - it's a child's and later adult's life and future happiness that is at stake, not 'just' a pregnancy.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 11:20:43

'Sorry for the sarcasm, cisco and sig. I shall now restrict myself to lumberingly obvious observations couched in simple language.'

Much better. As you have pointed out numerous times, you think I'm thick. I've got the message. You are the gift that just keeps on giving smile.

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 11:21:45

"
I know that. But it does represent other non-feminist mothers of boys that I have come across."

What's a non-feminist? And why am I being asked to defend the views held by them? <deeply puzzled>

SF- is it remotely possible that you are mistaken in your understanding of what a feminist is?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 11:24:10

So if you accept that women=good/men= bad is a misrepresentation of feminism I am at a loss to understand your POV sig.

Unless you really do think this is a mans world, women are and should be second class citizens and feminists should stop bleating and make their husbands dinner like they're meant to.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 11:29:30

But here is the thing. Contraception fails. Condoms rip or leak. Pills are not infallible. A vasectomy is serious in terms of reversibility. Should an 18 year old man have a vasectomy because he doesn't want kids for 10 years? It also is not infallible.

I totally respect a woman's right to choose birth vs abortion, because having a child is a massive responsibility. She also has health risks that a man does not. But to say that a man has no say, even if he has used a condom? I do not get that at all. If a man uses a condom, that tells his partner that he does not want her to conceive, doesn't it? He isn't being irresponsible, is he?

And Pan, I think you are right. Being an MRA must put you on a spectrum somewhere, just like being a feminist. You can believe that men have certain rights. Don't we all believe that, even if we disagree as to what those rights are exactly?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 11:32:48

Yes contraception fails. So could you explain why only a woman should be responsible for any child that results from such a failure?

Perhaps the hypothetical 18 year old should be more aware of their potential legal responsibilities rather than shrugging and thinking some woman has tricked him into fatherhood.

We are getting near the nub of the issue aren't we? Some men fear and resent women for their very biology.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 11:39:10

of course as Chub says some contraceptions fail and a pregnancy ensues. That doesn't take us anywhere though, does it? The consequence and responsibility is still shared.

Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 11:42:43

cisco But to say that a man has no say, even if he has used a condom? I do not get that at all

I'm trying to imagine how this could work. So a woman gets pregnant, a man insists in front of a court or a medical board that he used a condom, they believe him, a ruling is made that she must have an abortion.

Is this really a situation that you would be comfortable with?

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 11:45:04

cisco - so, by that logic, if I use the pill and it fails, should I be entitled to dump a screaming baby on my partner?

Your post is based on the premise (which I described upthread) that all women really want children. This isn't the case.

Two people make a baby. Both have to take responsibility at the point in that process where they can.

If someone is educated about the risk of a condom splitting and is willing to risk the very small chance of pregnancy (which TBH is a lot of people), then fine - if they absolutely can't, it's not fine. It's not on just to say 'well, I didn't want it, so it's your problem', is it?

DuelingFanjo Tue 20-Aug-13 11:46:08

There are lots of mothers of boys who don't feel like they have to focus on how hard done by men/boys are. As a mother of a boy I just want him to be able to respect the fact that people are people - that there should be no 'women are like this' and 'men are like that'. I want my son to grow up knowing that he can actually have the chance to be gentle and nurturing and have a voice and an opinion that doesn't need to be backed up with aggressive behaviour. I think all children should be able to grow up that way, where their voice and their opinion is listened to - boy or girl.

I have far more worries about how my son is bombarded with gender roles that are ridiculously stupid. Worries that he will grow up believeing that girls/women are victims or sluts. I want him to grow up being able to seek help if he needs it, because I think one reason men don't get the health and mental health help they need may be because they are conditioned to not ask for it.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 11:46:09

Well, doing 'all that you can' to avoid a pregnancy is a moot point, I think.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 11:46:09

If you're comfortable with that Cisco perhaps women should be able to force their partner to have a vasectomy, or a circumcision.

I don't think that would be ok. Do you?

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 11:47:08

You can believe that men have certain rights. Don't we all believe that, even if we disagree as to what those rights are exactly?"

Of course men have rights. What I don't understand is what rights they want that they don't have now. And how feminists are denying them their rights.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 11:47:21

DJ your second paragraph sums up the damage the patriachy does to men. I share your fears.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 11:47:45

DF I mean

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 12:09:33

The sad thing is, we don't often need to believe that (white, Western, straight) men have rights - it's not an act of faith, it's enshrined in the law and in the way the law is carried out.

That doesn't make those rights less important, but there is a difference.

The fact I have to state 'I believe women should have equal rights to men' is the important point.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 12:17:30

This argument is so one-sided in the reasoning being applied that I am going to stop discussing the pregnancy issue. I think I am wasting all of our time, and getting away from other issues.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 12:19:40

'Two people make a baby. Both have to take responsibility at the point in that process where they can.'

If you think this is 'one-sided', I am a little confused at what you imagine a balanced argument would be!

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 12:26:38

The reasoning is fairly simple, Cisco. There is a shared responsibility in the procreation process, and all that comes from that. There's no 'sides' that that surely?
But okay, it probably is a bit of a waste of time.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 12:28:21

We are getting near the nub of the issue aren't we? Some men fear and resent women for their very biology.

This is my take on it too. It's as though they (the mra) resent women having the choice about something that is happening to their body purely due to biology. They feel 'cheated' out of a choice that is available to women further down the line from the actual act of sex - ie the choice to abort or to keep a baby.

Of course, what the mra fail to realise that in the event of an unplanned pregnancy, the woman doesn't actually have any real choice - she has to take one of 2 options - abort or have the baby. The option that she most wants is to be not pregnant. Most women do not take a decision to abort lightly, and either choice available to her will have a life-changing impact - physically, mentally, financially.

The bottom line though, is that a woman has the absolute right of autonomy over her own body in the event of a pregnancy.

cisco - I agree with pan that you might be nearer to mra end of the spectrum than you'll admit here.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 12:30:32

Let us say then that the couple is you and I, LRD. What if we both say, 'We don't want kids, let's just have fun.'

I get you pregnant. I say, 'Remember, we don't want kids!' You say, 'Actually, this changes everything. Maybe I do.' Because that is the scenario we are disagreeing over. We agree on everything else, I think.

Because otherwise both partners should just not have penetrative sex. Which, maybe on balance, is the correct solution. Either that, or some kind of pre-nup that expresses each partners desires, should it occur. So, have a quick puke and then come back to me.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 12:32:28

I was sick in my mouth a bit there, cisco. Did you really have to write that to LRD?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 12:32:47

Why would LRD have a quick puke? You're starting to lose me Cisco.

I am also struggling to see the one sidedness here

Isn't it the case that where men have had sperm frozen, even embryos IIRC, and then died unexpectedly, their partners have lost legal cases to continue to use them? That would suggest to me that the male's "consent" to the possibility of having a child happens at the point he allows his sperm to enter his partner.

One conclusion to this argument is no sex for anybody unless you're willing to take the chance that you might end up being financially, emotionally, physically responsible for a child. For 18 years.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 12:34:31

Is it possible to be a men's rights believer? Because I am not an activist. Maybe I am an MRB. I can accept that.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 12:37:12

Chub - see Sabrina's comment. She is vomiting at the thought of two adults being in a relationship, when she knows exactly what I was trying to convey - a real-life situation involving real people rather than theoretical situations.

Sabrina, please report my comment to MNHQ. I will abide by their decision.

Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 12:39:37

cisco please answer my earlier question - would you be comfortable with a situation (any situation) where a woman gets pregnant and the man who is the dad would have a say on whether or not she has an abortion?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 12:40:22

No, I think your "have a quick puke" comment had that effect on her. I am trying to understand why you said that.

So essentially, the problem is that women have an extra chance to make a choice about whether a child is born, i.e. she can decide to abort or not. Men say waaaaa, she's got an extra choice, that's one more than meeeeee, it's not faaaaaair!

The nub of the issue seems to me to be whether one thinks that having sex, however safe, means that one is accepting the small chance that an accidental child will occur for which both parties bear equal responsibility.

Or, whether the woman is to blame for the child's existence if she doesn't choose to abort and therefore the man should be able to amble off into the distance whistling.

But, if my reading of the MRA manifesto is right, then want to ban abortion? So what they will ultimately achieve is that no woman who isn't entirely independently well-off won't have sex with a man unless he's signed a legal document in the presence of a solicitor that says he agrees to take responsibility for any children. Consequently:

1) independent women using men as sex slaves / sperm donors then dumping them

2) women not having sex with them, ever

Is that what MRAs want??? grin

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 12:41:01

It's ok, I'll survive.

I think non-penetrative sex is fair enough too.

My issue, as I've already said, is that you (like a lot of MRAs, though this isn't me suggesting you are one, just saying, it's a common view) assume it would be the woman who thinks 'huh, actually, I really want kids'.

This is rooted in some of the gendered assumptions dervel talks about upthread. It's a problem.

However: in that situation, you're cutting to the end. If you really didn't want kids, you'd have had a vasectomy. If you'd had a vasectomy, and the woman you were sleeping with didn't want kids either, then felt differently once she was pregnant, I do think it still has to be her choice, but I also think morally it's extremely dubious.

I did get into this upthread a little: people seem to think it is totally out of line for anyone to expect a man to get a vasectomy, but logically, if you think the man has some say in the woman's decision once he's impregnated her, you are saying that it is ok for a man to expect a woman to go through one or other medical/surgical procedure (childbirth/abortion), but it's not ok for the woman to expect it of the man.

That doesn't really make sense to me, so I would say the difficult situations are more ones where sterilization fails, or where the two people can't agree on what to do if unforeseen complications arise (eg., being advised to abort for medical reasons).

I do think it is sensible to acknowledge that some situations are going to be heartbreaking almost whatever you do, and those would be. I don't want to be glib and pretend I've got any sort of good answer for what to do there, as I suspect one does't exist.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 12:41:29

(Oh, sorry, missed out all the puking etc.)

*they want to

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 12:43:07

Bunny - I said at 10:58, 'Man wants child, woman doesn't. Sad, but the woman carries the risk, so it's her decision, and he has to accept abortion.'

Is that not clear? The final decision always rests with the woman. Always rests with the woman. Always.

scallopsrgreat Tue 20-Aug-13 12:43:08

I think that the clue is in the sentence "'Actually, this changes everything." CiskoKid. Because it does change everything. Up to that point you can both have done all you could to avoid pregnancy (or not as the case may be) but after a woman is pregnant the goalposts have shifted, irreversibly. A huge shift like that must warrant a revisit to your previous intentions. But because it is her body she gets to say what she does with it.

That last point is the issue MRAs have the most problem with, because they are no longer in control of the woman.

And no, just because a woman has a baby and the man doesn't want it, does not absolve him of responsibility. Another sticking point with MRAs because they then have to actually face the responsibility of having sex, just like the woman is.

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 12:48:25

"Let us say then that the couple is you and I, LRD. What if we both say, 'We don't want kids, let's just have fun.'

But ther is the potential, however small,of pregnancy every time anyone has PIV sex. So you can't actually say "we don't want kids, let's just have fun" without being aware that a prgnancy might happen. So I suppose the only possible way that a man could make sure he was in no way responsible for any resultant baby is by both signing a legal document. By which time I suspect the moment would have passed anyway!

Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 12:51:53

It wasn't clear because soon after that you went on to say, I totally respect a woman's right to choose birth vs abortion, because having a child is a massive responsibility. She also has health risks that a man does not. But to say that a man has no say, even if he has used a condom? I do not get that at all

Which contradicts that statement and suggests a man should have a say on whether she has an abortion or not - but thanks for clarifying.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 12:54:55

Bunny, I see where the confusion arose. My incomplete explanation. I was referring to a man's say re financial commitment. My mistake.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 12:55:08

Well, the legal document thing is what some MRAs are suggesting, if I understand them right. Only the ones I know think you sign it during the pregnancy to say you think actually you'd rather not be involved after the birth. hmm

Thing is, right, I drive a car. I am aware that, by doing that, I'm moving around a huge weight of metal at high speeds, and it is perfectly possible that I might kill someone if I drive carelessly. So I don't. But I have to recognize that I could, even if I drove perfectly and defensively, still end up killing someone who jumped in front of my car or whose own car malfunctioned or whatever. And that's terrifying. But it's also something I knew when I got into that car.

Of course, if I kill someone through no fault of my own, people will understand. But I will still have to cope with what happened.

This seems to me the closest parallel to the situation if a man has a vasectomy that fails. He's doing his absolute best to 'drive defensively', and the only thing he could do to make the odds better is not to drive at all.

Yet, what's strikingly different in the two situations is that most of us, in the car-crash scenario, will understand that the driver will (as a human being) feel emotional about it all, and will feel horrible even if it wasn't his fault. Because we acknowledge that this is a function of human relationships.

It seems to me that in all MRA scenarios about pregnancy, there are men who're actively angry at the idea they might feel responsible, or humanely emotionally involved.

I actually think this is almost as important as what laws are passed - the fact that some men (and some women) are growing up to feel it is right and normal for men to do something like getting a woman pregnant, and not even to expect to feel emotionally involved.

I don't think it's normal or healthy.

scallopsrgreat Tue 20-Aug-13 12:57:24

"I actually think this is almost as important as what laws are passed - the fact that some men (and some women) are growing up to feel it is right and normal for men to do something like getting a woman pregnant, and not even to expect to feel emotionally involved.

I don't think it's normal or healthy."^

Yes I completely agree.

FreyaSnow Tue 20-Aug-13 13:02:37

There is not a way of making pregnancy fair. If a woman wants a baby, apart from in some exceptional circumstances, she is the one who will have to go through all the difficulties of pregnancy and childbirth. I can't decide to have a baby and get somebody else pregnant.

Men can't get pregnant. They don't have to go through that. They don't have the risks of pregnancy and so they don't have the choices about those risks. Giving them choices about a pregnancy they don't have to go through doesn't make the situation fair or equal.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 13:04:11

There's not a way of making pregnancy an identical experience for men and women.

I don't see that it's 'unfair' any more than I'd say it's 'unfair' that I wasn't born 6ft tall like DH.

FreyaSnow Tue 20-Aug-13 13:07:43

Men can't have the experience of being pregnant at all. It is not really the same as a difference in height.

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 13:07:54

Born 6ft tall. Cripes!

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 13:10:17

^ She is vomiting at the thought of two adults being in a relationship, when she knows exactly what I was trying to convey^

No, not exactly - as I am an adult currently in a sexual relationship.

I found you addressing your comment personally to LRD on this type of forum a bit creepy. I've had men irl say similar type of things to me when discussing similar topics, and I found that creepy too.

Anyway - carry on grin

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 13:10:38

grin

My poor MIL. Ouch.

Born to be 6ft.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 13:18:30

Anyone seen sigmund? I'm wondering if she could clarify what she thinks feminism actually is and why she is so opposed to it, now she appears to accept it is not predicated on woman good man bad.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 13:21:40

No, there is no such thing as sex 'purely for fun' - sure it should be fun, but men and women have to accept that there are emotional and physical risks attached to it - pregnancy probably being the most life changing.

The fact is that prior to contraception, women's rights and abortion legislation the unmarried pregnant woman was shamed by society. But now? Well, 1. attitudes towards unmarried mothers have changed and 2. because women have access to abortion.

I don't know how this relates to the increasing fury of the mra - but it does seem to. They seem to resent this liberation of women from being a total slave to their biology. I think it's incredibly misogynist, and an mra is never too far away from wanting to restrict women's access to abortion. It's happening in Texas now.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 13:27:43

So it seems some MRA men want women to be simultaneously solely financially and legally responsible for their children whilst restricting access to abortion. So what is supposed to become of a pregnant woman if the father of her child is able to legally disown them both and she can't get an abortion? Is she just supposed to go away and die and stop being such a nuisance?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 13:29:53

'now she appears to accept it is not predicated on woman good man bad.'

Where did I say that?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 13:32:46

Well at 10:58 you seemed to agree with bunny that this was a mistaken view of feminism some women have. Do you really think feminism is about women good men bad?

Really?

TheDoctrineOfJetlag Tue 20-Aug-13 13:36:13

Both men and women can make their best efforts to avoid conception ie use contraception.

Aborting, or not aborting, is not contraception. It is the termination, or not, of a pregnancy. That's why it's different.

There are threads on here at present where one woman is being asked by her manager if she's planning "an announcement" and another where a woman who is 20 weeks' pregnant is finding it hard to get a job.

Yep, biology makes things unequal.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 13:36:37

Oh I see. No, I meant:

'Will answer you later curlew, if I get chance.', then Bunnylion asked a question and I replied 'Ditto Bunnylion', as I I'll answer her later as well.

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 13:37:24

Could you just quickly define feminism before you dash off?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 13:37:50

Rightio. Will await with interest.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 13:40:45

'Do you really think feminism is about women good men bad?'

It certainly looks that way. This is not the only feminist forum on the net, you and others on here might state that you don't feel this is the case, but there are plenty of other feminist blogs that use this model.

I feel feminism is about control, essentially.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 13:42:57

Well it isn't. Not control of men, which is what you mean.

Do you really think it is feminism that makes it difficult for male victims of dv to seek and obtain help?

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 13:45:21

Just a quick definition. Shouldn't take you long

"A feminist is a person who....."

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 13:53:00

Is it really just other women, especially them nasty feminists that make it more difficult for a man to admit he has been the victim of DV ?

Really ?

Nothing to do with the male-centric and patriarchal society we have right now, that disadvantages women, children and men at some level, at all times ?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 13:58:28

I've read lots of online feminist blogs and things sigmund. They are unanimous in their opposition to the patriachy.

That's not the same thing as "woman good man bad". As has been pointed out to you numerous times in many many threads, the patriachy is bad for everyone.

curlew Tue 20-Aug-13 14:02:43

Sigmund, I hate to say this, but it does seem to me that whenever you are even slightly challenged on your beliefs, or asked for explanations, you suddenly become incredibly busy elsewhere. I wrote a long post directly addressing your points this morning- you ignored it. You have been asked lots of times how you define feminism- you dodge the question. It's hard to avoid thinking that you don't actually have a coherent, well thought out approach to this issue. If you do, could you set it out? It would contribute massively to the debate.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:03:37

I don't think you're an MRA sigmund. I think you're a libertarian. You'd probably find a lot to agree with the likes of Robert nozick about. When I was an 18 year old philosophy student I tended the same way. I thought there was no such thing as society and that people made their own luck. Which was nice if like me you were white, middle class and a student at a Russell group university and saw yourself as anyone's equal.

Then I got into the world a bit and realised that a lot of people really really didn't see me as their equal. It anything approaching it. It was a bit of a shock to find done people thought me less than them simply because I had a vagina, but nonetheless they did.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 14:08:45

I think SF's almost-but-not-quite ignored lament about how "men's sexuality is demonised" by feminism tells us quite a lot about where this poster is coming from.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:13:13

Well as (much as usual) she hasn't defined what she meant by men's sexuality, I'm trying not to speculate. But if its "want take have" (as i suspect) then I agree with you.

She'll probably explain that men are visual shortly...

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 14:23:29

'It was a bit of a shock to find done people thought me less than them simply because I had a vagina'

But that's just fucking it, this is the premise of feminism. There is no agency here, no responsibility, it's all 'woe is me', you place victimhood on a baby before she's even drawn her first breath. How do you know that this will be her reality? This is NOT my experience AT ALL, quite the opposite. That doesn't make me lucky, or unique. That makes me one a good number of people who say the same. Just because they don't pipe up on here doesn't mean they don't exist, you seem to forget this. Just because no one is here going 'Oh yes, Sig, this is my experience too', I'm the only one who feels this way.

This is my reality, and if it's not yours, then I'm sorry, but it's mine, and you try to diminish it constantly.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 14:26:51

SF, what is your reasoning behind the fact that you appear to be in a minority on Mumsnet ?

Do you think the many thousands of posts here over the years that point out sexism, that describe experiences where someone has been treated a certain way because she is a woman, is all arse-licking bandwagon jumping ?

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 14:29:19

You are very lucky to have never, ever experienced sexism.

You are decrying the majority's experience, IMO. Do you believe it doesn't exist because it hasn't happened to you ? I just don't understand why you think that's ok, and possibly never will.

I haven't ever experienced racism. I can see the damage it does though, ho yes.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:33:52

Blimey. That was quite a rant you had there. I accept it may be your experience, which is why I said you'd probably be a fan of nozick. But it's not my experience or that if the majority of women and I am very conscious that being white, educated at a world class university, professionally qualified and able bodied I am pretty near the top of the tree as far as being a woman goes. It's not "woe is me" it's the truth for me and many others.

Even Margaret thatcher admitted she had suffered from some good old fashioned sexism in her time.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:35:07

And please do explain how I could have taken responsibility for being treated in a mysoginistic way. I'd love to know.

StickEmUp Tue 20-Aug-13 14:35:19

you place victimhood on a baby before she's even drawn her first breath

Outside the UK, this is very true.

I've said this before, I find it so narrow minded to say 'I've never experianced sexism we all demonise men'

Just coz most of the UK is better place to live in as a women TO A DEGREE that others.

Go read about the congo. I've said it before, it's a horrible place of even the menz. SEE, look, I even said MENZ.

scallopsrgreat Tue 20-Aug-13 14:38:29

What about those girls in the gang rape trials SF, who were repeatedly not believed and even if they were believed nothing was done about it? Did they have agency? Did they have responsiblity? What was done to them was done because of their biology. Because they had a vagina.

It is you who is doing the diminishing, not us. We aren't denying your reality. You are denying theirs. We are trying to highlight theirs and stop it from continuing to happen.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:39:16

I also think this all angers you because you personalise the issues so much. When we say 1in 4 women will experience dv it isn't necessarily the case that if I get you and three friends in a room one of you definitely will. None of you or all of you may. Just as 1 in 3 gets cancer but I don't sit and look at me, my son and my daughter and think "which if us will it be?" It could be none or two or all.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 14:40:02

'You are very lucky to have never, ever experienced sexism.'

Why do women choose to define their outlook on life because of it. Which is exactly what feminists do. It stultifies women. Look at the donglegate BS. Why the fuck can't women say (like successful women before them), 'Fuck you, I'll prove you wrong', instead of 'We can't do anything until society changes for us'.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:42:31

Who says we can't do anything at all until society changes?

I must have imagined getting my degree and being admitted to the roll of solicitors then. Clearly I'm sitting here naked, not having agency, waiting for society to change.

I don't want to have to say 'Fuck you, I'll prove you wrong' or 'We can't do anything until society changes for us'.

I choose 'Fuck you (not you specifically Sig), I want to change society for the better'.

Why would you be naked though chub? Wouldn't your husband at least give you a modest clothes allowance?

FloraFox Tue 20-Aug-13 14:45:29

SF based on what you have posted here, you have made your own choices which happen to co-incide with the precise choices expected of you as a woman in a patriarchal society. You are happy with your lot in life. You may have analysed whether your choice resulted from a perfect exercise of agency or was it influenced by the expectations placed on you and/or opportunities open to you as a woman. You may have concluded that free from any imposed expectations and with a wide range of opportunities, you would make the exact same choice. If you did, I am not surprised that you don't see any evidence of sexism in society because you are not acting in any way which challenges the expectations of male dominated society and you are happy with that. I don't know whether your choice was truly an exercise in agency or was the acceptance and embrace of the role allotted to you by society. I do know that many women do not want to or cannot fit so neatly into their place but your beliefs and actions would force that upon them. Your concept of agency seems inconsistent with your apparent belief that men and women have different, sex-based roles or desires for their lives.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:46:04

Well he would I expect but I had to leave him because he hit me.

Clearly I should have had more agency in the first place and not let that happen. Tsk.

Well, I expect you nagged him or something. At least I hope you have curtains, otherwise some poor men passing your house might glimpse your naked body and be powerless to resist their urge to break in and slake their lust upon you. Well, what else can you expect, being all wantonly naked and all.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 14:49:07

Fortunately there are some very chaste blinds.

OK, phew, I'll stand down the femo-ninjas I'd scrambled to rescue you.

you aren't actually naked are you?

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 15:08:59

No fortunately not.

grin

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 15:17:40

I go and concentrate on my work for a mere 45 minutes and you're all getting wantonly naked. shock

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 15:18:44

I'm lacking agency LRD what can I say.

DuelingFanjo Tue 20-Aug-13 15:25:52

I choose to say 'fuck you' because I don't want my son thinking the kind of sexism I see all around me is acceptable and normal.

DuelingFanjo Tue 20-Aug-13 15:26:26

and I mean 'fuck you - I am going to do something to change this rather than stay quiet'

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 15:28:08

grin

grimbletart Tue 20-Aug-13 16:17:46

SF I am a feminist. I have been one since I was a small girl and this was 65 years ago and long pre-dated the late 60s/70s second wave feminism.

I also have loved being married to a man - the same one for nearly 50 years, so no man-hating there.

I like nothing better than having a beer and discussing sports with my blokey friends, which happens to suit me better than than the local sewing-circle, so no man-hating there.

I do not want men disadvantaged, treated unfairly or unjustly, so no man-hating there.

Any sexism I have experienced has been of the minor "you can't do that because you are a woman, shock horror" sort, to which I agree the appropriate response is fuck off to the far side of fuck and do one.

Nevertheless, just because I have only dealt with irritating minor misogyny in my life and have sailed on regardless with my take it or leave it attitude it does not mean that I cannot see that life has been very different for many other women in many other social situations whether due to their history, their culture, their temperament or sheer bad luck.

The plural of anecdote is not data (a cliche I know, but none the less true for all that). One's individual circumstances tell us little about the general picture i.e. because you move in certain circles and everyone is jolly happy with their lot does not mean there are a whole load of others out there whose experience is different - a) people tend to be drawn to those who they identify with and b) people don't always understand how mean is the play of chance i.e. as Chubfuddler said - just because one in three get cancer it doesn't mean that one of one's three children will. Your circle would have to be a heck of a lot wider than any individual's it probably is to drawn any statistically significant conclusion.

We don't seem to be getting from you on what is your definition of feminism.

As a starter why not look it up in the Oxford Dictionary and start with that one. You won't go far wrong. smile

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 16:27:49

I have decided that after this post I will be laying my Sigmund user name to rest, and keep my men's rights discussions for like minded forums, for the good of my health, and probably to give the mods a break from answering all the reports about me. I'll still be floating around with a different nn, probably talking about stuff like how many more stickers I need to get the set of Goodness Gang soft toys or something. I'd say it's been a blast, but.....you know.

LRD. Your frequent attacks on me have had their uses. You might spot your character on my blog, it would be difficult to miss wink

Laters x

I think it's a shame that you seem to see disagreement or agreement that your experiences are your experiences but might not be universal as direct attacks upon you, Sigmund.

You are of course entitled to your views but if you only ever talk with people who share them, then you risk creating a bubble for yourself that might make you quite intolerant of others who think differently. Maybe that's what you want... Well, I wish you the best smile

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 16:35:48

Oh, sig. Really?

Little ol' me, immortalized on your blog.

<weeps a tiny tear of joy>

Would you like to link to said blog, so we can bump the readership into double figures?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 16:36:51

Well, we do what we feel is right Buffy.

I wish you all the best too smile

grin @ LRD

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 16:40:06

I fully intend to LRD, I fully intend to, after I've included todays waspishness.

Thanks again.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 16:41:13

It's a proud day for me.

This, and getting my thesis in - they feel so similar, somehow ... the level of achievement, the recognition of my peers ...

Do tell me you will be giving me a winsome-yet-sensual nickname on there?

Thesis? In?!

Well DONE LRD!

wine cake wine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine cakewine

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 16:43:50

LRD, your posts have made smile today.

But do people really report sig? I've always felt she was part of the furniture around here. She's kind of like a literary foil ;)

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 16:44:40

wine Oh and congrats on the thesis LRD smile

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 16:45:42

Tell me again LRD, are you clever? Really? Really, really clever? Because you only mention it, oh I dunno, every time I 'talk' to you. So tell me, how clever ARE you? Super Dooper? Are you a professor yet, Oh Genius One?

grimbletart Tue 20-Aug-13 16:46:03

Oh dear, I post once in 230 posts and Sigmund decides to do a runner. blush.

I feel I have internet BO.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 16:46:44

Don't be bitter now, sig.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 16:48:26

Ha! Bitter. Christ on a bike.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 16:49:47

'But do people really report sig?'

Loads. Waaah, Sig has a different viewpoint to me. Don't you LRD.

DuelingFanjo Tue 20-Aug-13 16:49:48
Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 16:50:26

Grimble - excellently put.

SF - I've heard you mention your blog before. Could you link? Sorry you're going undercover, I for one have never reported you and find your views to add a flash of colour on an often dreary board.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 16:51:57

buffy - oh yes, a couple of weeks ago. I celebrated with the sacrifice of a boy child and a rousing rendition of 'Nana was a suffragete'. smile

IOnlyNameChangeInACrisis Tue 20-Aug-13 08:47:05

"I am all for men standing up and demanding cultural change around expectations how men must think, feel, behave.

I am rather tired, though, of finding that there's a sizable cohert of men who don't actually want to stand up for themselves, but instead just want me to sit down."

This is probably the most brilliant thing I have read in a long time and vocalises ideas I've been trying to put into words for a long time.

I think I love you!

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 16:54:11

Oh, and thanks sabrina.

sig - no, I'm really dim. My measured IQ from last time was 99.

I don't mention it every time I talk to you - it just feels that way. As to why that is, I could not possibly speculate. smile

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 16:55:45

I agree - that post is brilliant. And it does feel exactly like that.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 16:58:01

So the answer to the question "what do mras want?" Seems to be "to talk to other mras where the nasty feminists can't get at them".

Good good.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 16:58:24

Thankyou for not reporting me Bunny. I'm not going to link actually, that was a momentary lapse of judgement.

Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 17:00:19

Oh but you've teased us with it too many times.

Pleeeease.

Blistory Tue 20-Aug-13 17:01:42

I get you pregnant

Can I come back to this quote by Cisco because it's seriously been bothering me. I can't decide if it's arrogance or desperation that causes him to word his sentence that way.

So he acknowledges his role in as much as the man dictates whether or not a woman gets pregnant but then he wants men to be able to relinquish any responsibility as a father because the choice of whether to continue with a pregnancy is not up to him despite the fact that HE made HER pregnant. Is it really just about control ?

Or is it simply bluster - he needs to acknowledge his importance in reproduction because heaven forbid that it's the one area where men really have no input other than a bit of semen.

On the bigger issue at hand - can any MRA explain why their stance is so anti-feminism when feminism is not anti-men ?

<ignores Sigmund's tantrum>

Internet BO, arf! Nice one garlic.

is it your breath perhaps?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:12:14

'Oh but you've teased us with it too many times.'

You'll find it, it's already been linked to before.

Anyhoo, for reals now, Bye.

ThatsNontents Tue 20-Aug-13 17:17:42

What I don't understand is one of the biggest complaints on the feminism section is MRAs coming on it and MRA trolls ruining it.

So to start a thread about MRAs is a bit odd.

Where? Where? I want to seeeeeeee!

ThatsNontents I started the thread, because I wanted to discuss what MRAs want. Not in a "MRA troll appears and posts a few nasty / odd things and gets banned" way, but with a perky curiosity and desire to discuss the issue of, well, what MRAs want.

ThatsNontents Tue 20-Aug-13 17:22:24

Well why not post on an MRA forum?

Reddit for example, it just seems likely to attract unwanted attention.

Because I think that:

a) they won't want to engage in a discussion with me, and

b) they will be nasty to me and I can't be arsed with that.

Do you have an opinion, other than that I should shut up and / or go away?

Maybe I could go under cover...

<rubs crotch, sits with legs akimbo, folds arms over breasts unconvincingly>

So lads, what is it that we want to achieve exactly?

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 17:32:36

I have never reported you, SF

Actually, the penny droppeth. Have you ever mentioned my MN nickname on your blog ?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:36:19

No, never. It's completely fictional, no MN user names at all.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:38:41

It must just be LRD reporting me then.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 17:38:53

Ah, the abusive pm's I have got where I am informed there is a blog about me are nothing to do with you then, SF ? That's reassuring to know.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 17:40:18

But kinda not really, when you have to wonder what sort of mind thinks it's ok to send abusive messages to women who stand up and be counted.

Now, let me think about what kind of fucked-up attitude that mindset comes from...

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 17:40:32

To quote from Godfather III, 'Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in!'

Blistory quoted me at 17:01. I said 'I get you pregnant'. I wondered about this as I wrote it. I could have put 'we concieve', or 'we get pregnant', or 'the holy spirit enters you', or 'you fertile womb...blah blah', or something equally banal. And then I thought that any of those would lead people to say 'You are in denial. You provided the sperm. YOU got her pregnant! Accept your responsibility!'. So I left it as it was. Whatever I put could be dissected.

No arrogance, nor desperation. Just, I think, another stick to beat me with no matter what I say. Ah well. And that bit about the input merely being a bit of semen loses me. Is it important or isn't it?

There was someone who found me creepy for suggestion a hypothetical shag with someone else. And yet the last page is a shared joke about nakedness, rubbing crotches etc etc. I can see the joke mind. Don't you find this a bit hypocritical? Probably not.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 17:40:56

I doubt it, sig, I report you but then my reporting finger gets tired. Maybe if your rude posts were funnier? sad

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 17:41:58

SF, you have experienced fucked up attitudes towards women. Yes, you have. I have just told you about one, we are communicating here. I am sure you don't think me a liar or a fantasist.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:42:30

'Ah, the abusive pm's I have got where I am informed there is a blog about me are nothing to do with you then, SF ? That's reassuring to know.'

Er...NO. Why the fuck would I do that?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:44:22

'Maybe if your rude posts were funnier?'

Maybe if you fucked off to the far side of fuck. Really bored of you now. Tedious fucking nobody.

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 17:44:54

AF I do not know how you continue.

You're amazing.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:45:01

Go report that one.

shared joke about nakedness, rubbing crotches

OK, so those were both me blush but weren't connected. The nakedness and crotch rubbing were entirely separate jokes.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 17:46:00

I wasn't accusing you personally, SF. I was thinking that if you put names out there, and direct dickwads to MN, then it might explain some of the shit that has rained down on me and others too.

You don't see that ?

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:46:23

'I am sure you don't think me a liar or a fantasist.'

I'm not quite sure what to make of all this to be honest.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:47:09

AnyFucker, I have not, and would not, do that.

FloraFox Tue 20-Aug-13 17:50:07

FFS talk about the long goodbye

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 17:52:24

Buffy, your have a sewer for a mind grin

It's just a bit tedious when I get picked up for the kind of comment that I made, and your naughty merriment is perfectly acceptable. Double standards.

Blistory Tue 20-Aug-13 17:52:57

Sigmund, I feel for you, I really do as it can't be easy being the target but if you can't see that you invite it then perhaps it would be best to retreat.

You should open your eyes to the filth, abuse and stalking that some posters get and realise that there really is an agenda going on here.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 17:53:12

Yeah, cisco, weirdly neither of buffy's jokes creeped me out. I'll leave you to ponder on why.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:53:35

'You don't see that ?'

If some random has issues with feminists, there is nothing to stop them finding MN, it's not a secret forum.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 17:55:28

SF, you believe I have had abusive pm's that mention a blog that slags me off ?

You (rather misguidedly, and under fire) mention a blog of your own that uses material you pick up from MN

What's a girl to think ? I am not being oblique, or arsey. I think if you blog about MN in a negative way, there are certain types of folk that will pick up that baton and use it to beat people around the head (metaphorically). You actually sound rather naive about the intentions of some of these people.

perhaps you mean well with your "blog", but there are potential consequences and it isn't going to be you in the firing line (particularly as it is clear you are an inveterate Manpleaser)

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 17:55:47

'You should open your eyes to the filth, abuse and stalking that some posters get and realise that there really is an agenda going on here.'

Well as PM's are private, how am I supposed to know?

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 17:56:32

I've got to be fair, cisco's comment didn't creep me out.

The only thing I found odd was the suggestion I'd 'puke', because up until then I assume it was just intended as an exemple. I admit I did find the other comment a bit unpleasant, and I did recoil, but I must say without sarcasm that I think it was the kind of thing similar to when someone says something creepy but unintentional in real life. I didn't think it came across as deliberate.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 17:56:37

Because I am a man and cannot mention sex or conception in a discussion about sex and conception without being a filthy pervert, getting off on it as I slowly.....

Am I getting close? Did you report it? As I said, please do and allow MNHQ to administer their wrath.

Blistory Tue 20-Aug-13 17:59:14

Cisco

And yet you accept that you considered that comment yourself. So it's okay for you to question it but still post it and yet it's not okay for someone else to point out that it jarred ?

And as for the semen comment, yes it was flippant. If men weren't able to walk away, if men invested their time into their children, if men accepted that they were equally responsible, and stopped bleating on about their financial responsibilities, perhaps we would get somewhere.

Men need to accept that if they help create a child, they are responsible for that child. They need to show that they are involved in child care from birth to adulthood. They need to take parental leave, to accept the career sacrifice, to accept that the shitty nappies and sick days are their equal responsibility. Once they do that and stop seeing it as women's work will we have equality. And you know what ? Men get something out of it - they get equality, they get time with their children, they get to shape the future.

You talk about feminism benefiting only women ? Well, if men would step up the benefits to them would be immense. Feminism gives, it doesn't take away.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 17:59:18

If it did creep you out I apologise, LRD. The puke reference was just pre-empting your anticipated reaction in your usual humorous manner. I am beginning to see though that is it difficult to get in on a shared joke, so I shall not do it again.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 18:01:09

Everyone who reads the news knows about the rape threats posted on Twitter towards a woman who simply proposed putting a woman's face on a banknote.

This is ok by everyone here ? Really ? SF ?

Personally, I have a strong aversion to sick, so I just skimmed over all the puke talk to get to the bunfights.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 18:02:42

Blistory, I wondered about whether it would give you something to shoot me down with.

You talk about feminism benefiting only women ? Where did I say that, ever, in this or any other thread? I think you are thinking of someone else. Happy to be corrected though.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 18:03:30

Cisco, no, I didn't report it, I don't report stuff like that.

Please don't tell me what I'm allowed to get offended about - I'm pleased that LRD didn't find it creepy, but I did.

It was the way the said to another woman on here "if it was you and me having sex" <fnar fnar> (or something to that effect- I'm not scrolling back to quote directly). It's suggestive in a way that buffy's jokes clearly weren't - she was just being a bit outlandish.

You obviously knew you sailing close to the wind, otherwise you wouldn't have made the "when you've finished puking' comment.

Anyway - great de-rail! Almost as good as sig's tantrum wink

Blistory Tue 20-Aug-13 18:03:45

Sigmund, I'm not talking about PMs - it's all over the FWR threads.

But you keep denying that there's a problem. These posters aren't making it up - there is a constant attempt to expose them, to ridicule them, to denigrate them.

And you walk bang into the middle with terminology and beliefs that echo the sick fucks intent on shutting down this part of MN and women in general.

Can't you see why it's assumed that you're on a wind up ?

LRDPomogiMnyeSRabotoi Tue 20-Aug-13 18:03:55

As I said, cisco, I took it as par for the course and unintentional. However, thank you for the apology.

I think the issue with jokes is, usually the mysterious shared factor is humour.

grimbletart Tue 20-Aug-13 18:06:48

Hi Buffy

*Internet BO, arf! Nice one garlic.

is it your breath perhaps?*

Ha ha - the only problem is I am not garlic, I am grimbletart. So maybe it's grimble breath. Nothing like a bit of grimble, especially topped with a slab of stilton, yay, grimble breath grin

Oh no grimble, I must apologise most humbly for the confusion. It's that pesky letter 'G' I suspect, that threw me onto the wrong, uh, scent.

I'm sure that grimble breath is positively delightful

blush

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 18:10:55
ThatsNontents Tue 20-Aug-13 18:11:53

If posters are getting threatening PMs why don't MNHQ forward them onto the police?

I'm sure their IP addresses must be on record, twitter trolls are being prosecuted.

Chubfuddler Tue 20-Aug-13 18:12:04

I'm amazed that a man thinks he cannot talk about sex and conception without it being assumed he's getting off on it. Context is all of course but in the context of a hypothetical sbortion I can't think of anything less sexually stimulating.

SigmundFraude Tue 20-Aug-13 18:14:15

'SF, you believe I have had abusive pm's that mention a blog that slags me off ?'

If you say you have, then I believe you.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 18:17:11

Pan I found that very calming brew

In fact, what actually annoys me about that sort of comment is the self-conscious apology / joke that follows. As if women / feminists are too sensitive to cope with a proper, full on joke or sexual reference.

Like older men that apologise for swearing because ladies are present. Far more offensive than the swearing (which I probably didn't care about), imo!

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 18:19:12

maybe they would now there are precedents, TN

Paninfinitum Tue 20-Aug-13 18:21:00

Good Sabrina. Come to think of it, that looks like a blue 'plant' on your tea cup. Cool.

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 18:22:15

Buffy, that is so true < senses a calming and lighthearted twist coming on >

many times, people who know me have kinda done a double take and a little jump out of their skin if they make a joke about sex

it's just silly really, and reinforces the daft idea that just because you are a feminist you don't a) have a sense of humour and b) like sex

either that or I am a very scary person < roaaar >

grimbletart Tue 20-Aug-13 18:24:02

No, don't apologise Buffy.

I really like the idea of grimble - I see it as a sort of Welsh Rarebit but stinkier. grin

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 18:24:40

Hang on - have I offended people or not? Should I have written it or not? Or should I write about it and not include a joke? Or was it in fact okay because the person I was discussing it with took it in the spirit intended? Or is there a list of acceptable jokes? Becuase, Chub, your comment should be aimed at Sabrina, not me. It was not a sexual discussion in any way, shape or form. It was a legal/moral issue about child support.

My advice would be: say what's on your mind in a straightforward way. If a witticism occurs to you that passes your internal quality control mechanism (my own standards are far from ISO9000, as you see) then include it. If people are offended, apologise with grace for the offence caused as it was probably unintended. Move on. Name change if required. Vow to learn and do better. Repeat.

Bunnylion Tue 20-Aug-13 18:30:10

I thought that the puking reference was an extension of the "so I got you pregnant" humour, as in morning sickness.

Never mind.

CiscoKid Tue 20-Aug-13 18:35:15

Right. Let us draw a line under my unintended offensive reference. I am sorry to those who thought it was offensive. All jokes go through Buffy's machine in future.

grin

I will allow that one to pass

AnyFucker Tue 20-Aug-13 18:38:09

Buffy is very reasonable after all smile

Blistory Tue 20-Aug-13 18:40:55

No, she's not - she's a vampire slayer. Hardly the behaviour of someone reasonable.

Oh yes, I earned that name grin

However I am flirting with the idea of outlandishness, as I think it's also apt. BuffytheOutlandishYetStillReasonableFeminist perhaps...

I seem unreasonable to vampires, demons and creatures of darkness, no doubt.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 18:50:20

And MRAs. Probably.

Yes, probably them also. I refrain from dusting them though, of course.

TheDoctrineOfJetlag Tue 20-Aug-13 18:59:05

More than 30 characters Buffy - it won't be allowed sad

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 20-Aug-13 19:10:09

BuffytheOutlandishFeminist does have a certain ring to it - but weren't the "reasonable" spurs hard-earned on a previous discussion? Pity to lose that just because of a bit of outlandish behaviour here grin

The 'outlandish' does give fair warning, like a fog horn or an orange flashing light... But the reasonable spurs have too much sentimental value I think. Damn those 30 characters.

Dervel Wed 21-Aug-13 02:55:52

Well I go away for a day and this thread gets huge! I'm interested in the stuff Cisco brought up re: unplanned pregnancies. I do see where you are coming from Cisco. It is never a nice feeling to be unable to choose something that is after all going to change your life beyond all recognition. However there are some things basic biology imposes on us, that MRA, Feminist or whatever we simply can't alter.

These impositions affect both genders both positively and negatively. Women have to assume the health risks inherent in childbearing, men don't. Men can take their sweet ass time deciding they are ready for parenthood, and defer the decision until much later in life where women cannot. These realities, and others like them are not imposed upon one sex by the other, they are simple biology. That said it is a perfectly human reaction to feel resentful about the thing we cannot control (and I suspect may be at the root of a lot of the crap each gender tends to fling at the other in their worst moments).

As far as abortion goes I'm afraid it's one of those things as a man you have to learn to realise you are never (and should never) have the casting vote on. By all means encourage men to pipe up and communicate their feelings one way or another on the matter, and for the record I find the idea of abortions personally abhorrent (not in a judgemental towards any woman who chooses one way, simply a profound sadness at the loss of a potential life). What I find much worse however would be the potential travesty that would occur if it was illegal: you'd still have the loss of life only you'd add the number of women who would die in botched illegal ones. Whatever greater fairness might be achieved in the MRAs eyes would be a net loss to humanity as a whole.

The MRA lot would just be better off starting an insurance company. You have to pass a lie detector test and interview to prove you genuinely do not want to have children, and will be fastidious in your use of condoms (much lower premiums if you decide to have the snip as well!). Then if the unplanned happens pass another lie detector test and interview to confirm every reasonable measure was taken and they pay out whatever your financial commitment would legally be based on your income (again higher premiums for higher earners, much as in the same way as higher premiums for faster cars). Might also alleviate some of the financial pressure on single mothers and the benefits system. Wether that would work or not fuck only knows (might make someone a lot of money), but my point here is I don't see the MRA chaps approaching this issue like I am and leaving women's rights well enough alone.

WhentheRed Wed 21-Aug-13 03:32:08

I don't agree that a man getting to disclaim responsibility for a baby after pregnancy occurs is the equivalent/complementary decision to a woman choosing whether to continue a pregnancy. Once a woman is pregnant, a baby will result unless the woman actively chooses to have an abortion. The woman does not actively "choose" to continue a pregnancy, she only chooses to end it. If she does nothing or decides too slowly, she will have a baby, regardless of her "choice". Having an abortion is a very serious decision. It is increasingly difficult to obtain and there is a great deal of moral condemnation of women who have abortions. There are far more babies born than abortions.

If a man wants not to have a child, his choice must be exercised at the pre-conception stage. No contraception is 100% effective. He must decide before having sex whether he is prepared to accept the risk of becoming a father and act accordingly. He cannot complain afterwards.

Sausageeggbacon Wed 21-Aug-13 07:27:32

Men's rights mission statement here

Make of it what you will

BasilBabyEater Wed 21-Aug-13 09:20:26

Dervel I think you've spotted a gap in the market.

Dragon's Den?

BasilBabyEater Wed 21-Aug-13 09:26:31

But of course, what MRA's would also want along with their insurance claim, is the right to exercise control of the mother of their biological child by having contact with the child as and when they want, on their terms, irrespective of how disruptive and emotionally abusive their erratic and unreliable contact may be to the child.

In other words, what they want is to have their cake and eat it - the right to withdraw their financial, moral and emotional support of their children if that child's mother isn't under their control if they want to, along with the right to have 50:50 care and control of the child if they don't live with the mother. (Very few of them want to do 50% of the parenting if they actually live with the mother and get on well with her. Indeed, often they are happy with her because she's doing all the domestic and childcare work.)

...but MRAs wouldn't want to pay the premiums, surely? Or, they'd expect a similar burden upon women.

It's not such a bad idea, actually. A bit like car insurance, but for sex. Imagine what the DM would say! Imagine the risk algorithms to set the premium! Imagine the Go Compare page! shock

Skimming the manifesto linked above (caveat: not reading in detail now as I don't have time) I find that with a few tweaks in wording - e.g. replacing the word 'man/men' with the word 'person/people' I can't see a massive problem with most of it. It looks like a Reasonable Feminist's ideas of what should be different, just from the opposite perspective of assuming men are disadvantaged currently. Please note I may have missed some stuff!

EXCEPT:

^ As a movement we believe no one should be forced into parenthood by the state or another individual, and that sexual intercourse is not a consent to parenthood. As such, mothers seeking arbitration from the courts in order to collect child support from a man she names the father should be required to submit a written instrument of consent signed by him, in which he explicitly accepts responsibility for, as well as defines his rights to, his child/ren. This will allow him to positively establish paternity through a DNA test before signing and allow both mother and father to define the rights and responsibilities of both parties rather than allowing the state to do so.^

Which reads to me as "we want sex. If an unwanted pregnancy occurs, whatever the reason, we don't want to have to deal with the consequences. But, we still want you to shag us anyway"

Basil once again, in theory 50:50 contact could and should be a positive thing for everyone. If, if IF the man is a good, involved, caring parent.

The problem, of course, comes when the man isn't, and this type of contact is bad for the children. Unfortnuately, I assume that most men in this situation don't see that so much contact with them isn't the best thing for their kids and instead convince themselves that their "rights" have been trampled all over.

*unfortunately

Dervel Wed 21-Aug-13 09:39:44

I agree with you 100% WhentheRed that men shouldn't get to disclaim responsibility. However, I am a little confused by the reasoning afterwards, a woman can get pregnant and "actively choose" that she wants to proceed, agreed she can fail to make any active choice but all of this is surely going to be down to the individual? Unless I am missing something. Sometimes a pregnancy comes about unplanned and all parties are over the moon about it. There are a great many ways these scenarios can pan out than just one.

I certainly wouldn't disagree that an unplanned pregnancy is not a weighty situation to be faced with for either gender, and concede the the ramifications for a woman include all the elements a man faces (with an exception that a man cannot choose an abortion, and by extension the right to continue the pregnancy if that is what he would want), with the additional health risks, social stigma (not that I agree with that, but as you rightly point out it exists), and the social presumption that the woman has to be responsible for the baby day to day once it arrives (although depending on the individual circumstances that can be a point of contention for either gender see below).

I also want to raise the point (although I myself in my post above continued in this vein). That this isn't just about feckless men wishing to absolve themselves of responsibility. Although we often frame discussions about this in this way thanks to social conditioning. In instances where unplanned pregnancy occurs where the man dearly wants to be a father, but a relationship with the mother is not viable. Say they are both happy for the child to be born, but what happens if the man would make a better primary caregiver than the mother?

Avoiding discussing extreme cases of maternal neglect where the answer is obvious. Can we examine potential scenarios where all other things being equal, both parents want the child, both parents are individually financially secure enough to meet the child's needs, but both want day to day care of the little one. Neither are bad parents, but in this instance the father's nature to nurture happens to be stronger than the mother. Maybe you believe this scenario is an impossibility, and I welcome hearing your views on the subject, but if like me you countenance the possibility I think men in such positions have every right to complain, or at the very least the right to feel marginalised.

As I said before I don't think the MRAs have their heads on straight, but then again I don't think feminism gets it 100% right all the time either, but FWIW I think feminism gets it a lot more right than the MRAs do. This whole discussion has started to solidify something in my thinking that has been bugging me for quite some time. In my research into feminism I have found the concept of patriarchy difficult to wrap my head around, and certainly I have benefitted from aspects of it, but it is becoming clearer to me that as a man to trully benefit from it I have to be the kind of man it deems acceptable, if I am not it will be swift to slap me down and put me in my place. The thing is, I have not been and never sought to be that kind of person, and think slowly but surely there are more and more men of that mindset standing up.

Dervel Wed 21-Aug-13 09:48:29

My sex insurance idea I was kind of being semi facetious, more to outline that there are ways MRAs can approach the situation of the perceived injustices without drawing the erroneous conclusion that we need to tear down women's rights to do it. You can approach problems from many directions after all, it's worrying that the first port of call for them is a mysoginistic one. I hope that for many it's simply down to the fact their minds have not been agile enough to approach it tangentially. Although it saddens me that the preservation of rights is the tangent and not the norm.

it's worrying that the first port of call for them is a mysoginistic one. I hope that for many it's simply down to the fact their minds have not been agile enough to approach it tangentially

It might be because dem's fik... Or it might be because we live in a culture that is misogynistic, and therefore solutions that seem "obvious" and "natural" tend to be so as well.

scallopsrgreat Wed 21-Aug-13 10:07:55

Actually there have been studies where 50:50 contact might actually be too disruptive for children and they thrive better in more consistent surroundings. 50:50 contact would have to depend on a multitude of things including practical reasons such as the location of the parents in relation to each other.

Yes, I imagine it would depend upon a number of factors: age, locations relative to school, relative size of houses... All sorts of things. None of which covered by the MRA manifesto, just a blanket statement that 50:50 is their right and better for the kids (without much detail as to why).

tptherapist Wed 21-Aug-13 10:49:56

Hello.

I have arrived to this board and thread because someone linked it at the MRA subreddit. I'm linking the FAQ because it answers many of the questions that you are asking.

While I don't label myself as a MRA due to ethical reasons (therapist in the progress), I'm aligned with it, so I am willing to answer any questions you may have, no matter what point of view. My own, my own from a therapist point of view, etc.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 14:46:02

I have a question

If MRA's just want a world free from gender discrimination, why don't they work with feminists to achieve this?

this is what feminists have been doing since the beginning of the movement, and have always acknowledged that patriarchy hurts men too, and that gender roles are too restrictive for both sexes.

I am going to assume that you do know what feminsim is actually about, and have some knowledge of feminist analyses on the topics you raise. No straw feminists please!

larrygrylls Wed 21-Aug-13 15:11:54

I am not an MRA per se and I think some of them are completely nuts. I can actually see areas of life where either women or men are favoured.

If you want a high powered career, better to be born a man.
If you want to be paid better for the same job, again statistically it is better to be a man.

If you want to be a SAHP, MUCH better to be born a woman as women (I will use "women" as shorthand for women in general in the UK, as I know there are some women who believe differently and very downtrodden women in other areas of the World, but it seems analogous to the way feminists use the term "men") believe they have a "right" to choose either path.

If you want to remain in the family home with the children post divorce, far better to be born a woman.

If you want to perform better at school, privilege belongs to the female of the species. Teaching and examining greatly favours females currently.

If you want to get into uni, far better to be born a woman, the ratio this year is 4/3 in favour of women.

Whether men out earn women later (and clearly that remains to be seen for the current academic cohort), it does not mean it is right or just to prejudice the education system against men. Feeling 2nd class for the first 21 years of your life clearly has an effect.

If you want to become wealthy by marriage, far better to be born a woman.

If you want to earn more in your 20s, better to be a woman. If you want to earn better in your 40s, better to be a man.

Clearly feminists will stack the above list the other way and a real MRA will only see where men are getting the worst deal.

To be honest, I suspect that moderate MRAs and moderate feminists probably want the same things, equal opportunities in all fields. Though, on an individual basis most men and women do not recognise where they are privileged but only where prejudice works against them. That is human nature.

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 15:17:10

tpthetherapist....

From that link:
False accusations - the traditional protection for people accused of crimes is shrinking for men in western societies, which means that men are becoming increasingly prone to the problem of false accusations

false rape accusations are rare and for Domestic Violence.

Surely there are many things in that 'manifesto' which are clearly untrue.

If you want to perform better at school, privilege belongs to the female of the species. Teaching and examining greatly favours females currently

When my mum was at school (1950s) there were different pass rates for the 11+ for boys and girls, the bar set higher for girls so that more boys than girls passed. I do not know what the criteria are for setting pass rates now, but I strongly suspect that they aren't different for boys and girls.

So obviously you don't mean 'stacked against' in that sense. Could you elaborate on your meaning?

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 15:27:48

^If you want a high powered career, better to be born a man.
If you want to be paid better for the same job, again statistically it is better to be a man.^ Yes

If you want to be a SAHP, MUCH better to be born a woman as women (I will use "women" as shorthand for women in general in the UK, as I know there are some women who believe differently and very downtrodden women in other areas of the World, but it seems analogous to the way feminists use the term "men") believe they have a "right" to choose either path. What exactly is stopping men becoming SAHP's? Is it related, in any way, to point above. Men are victims of their own success, it seems

If you want to remain in the family home with the children post divorce, far better to be born a woman. You mean, far better to be the primary carer. see points above.

If you want to perform better at school, privilege belongs to the female of the species. Teaching and examining greatly favours females currently.

If you want to get into uni, far better to be born a woman, the ratio this year is 4/3 in favour of women.^ So, what is your solution?

Whether men out earn women later (and clearly that remains to be seen for the current academic cohort), Hard to know, isn't it? Not like there is any precedent

it does not mean it is right or just to prejudice the education system against men. Feeling 2nd class for the first 21 years of your life clearly has an effect. Fuckin tell me about it Larry, or better still yell me about feeling second class for the whole 3 score years and ten. Still, men do better at work, as you acknowledge above.

If you want to become wealthy by marriage, far better to be born a woman. Because men have all the wealth? Would that be it, do you think?

If you want to earn more in your 20s, better to be a woman. If you want to earn better in your 40s, better to be a man. I would rather earn more in a senior job than earn more in a junior one. wouldn't you?

To be honest, I suspect that moderate MRAs and moderate feminists probably want the same things, equal opportunities in all fields. Though, on an individual basis most men and women do not recognise where they are privileged but only where prejudice works against them. That is human nature.
Most people who are used to class analysis are well able to recognise where they have privilege and where they don't. I have never heard a feminist claim she didn't benefit form white/straight/middleclass etc privilege if she did.

larrygrylls Wed 21-Aug-13 15:40:12

^If you want a high powered career, better to be born a man.
If you want to be paid better for the same job, again statistically it is better to be a man.^ Yes

If you want to be a SAHP, MUCH better to be born a woman as women (I will use "women" as shorthand for women in general in the UK, as I know there are some women who believe differently and very downtrodden women in other areas of the World, but it seems analogous to the way feminists use the term "men") believe they have a "right" to choose either path. What exactly is stopping men becoming SAHP's? Is it related, in any way, to point above. Men are victims of their own success, it seems.

It may be related to it but it is not only that. It is societal expectations in the same sense as a feminist will claim that societal expectations mean fewer women choose hard sciences. SAH fathers suffer from all sorts of prejudice. They are at best semi included in play dates/coffee meet ups etc, the staples of SAHPs.

If you want to remain in the family home with the children post divorce, far better to be born a woman. You mean, far better to be the primary carer. see points above.

If you want to perform better at school, privilege belongs to the female of the species. Teaching and examining greatly favours females currently.

If you want to get into uni, far better to be born a woman, the ratio this year is 4/3 in favour of women.^ So, what is your solution?

My solution is getting to a position in the education system where boys and girls perform equally, whether by modifying teaching or the exam structure.

Whether men out earn women later (and clearly that remains to be seen for the current academic cohort), Hard to know, isn't it? Not like there is any precedent

Well, we agree there!

it does not mean it is right or just to prejudice the education system against men. Feeling 2nd class for the first 21 years of your life clearly has an effect. Fuckin tell me about it Larry, or better still yell me about feeling second class for the whole 3 score years and ten. Still, men do better at work, as you acknowledge above.

Women no longer feel 2nd class for the whole three score years and ten. At least for the first 30 years, they outperform men.

If you want to become wealthy by marriage, far better to be born a woman. Because men have all the wealth? Would that be it, do you think?

If you want to earn more in your 20s, better to be a woman. If you want to earn better in your 40s, better to be a man. I would rather earn more in a senior job than earn more in a junior one. wouldn't you?

You are maximising money rather than utility. That is not necessarily the case. When people are in their 20s, most are single. By the time they have high powered careers, at least 50% are in some ways paid up and sharing incomes.

To be honest, I suspect that moderate MRAs and moderate feminists probably want the same things, equal opportunities in all fields. Though, on an individual basis most men and women do not recognise where they are privileged but only where prejudice works against them. That is human nature.
Most people who are used to class analysis are well able to recognise where they have privilege and where they don't. I have never heard a feminist claim she didn't benefit form white/straight/middleclass etc privilege if she did.

Hmm, yes. Interesting that you say "feminists" here, rather than women in general. They have a huge agenda against male privilege and their argument would look a little ridiculous if they denied all other forms of privilege. I think they frequently cannot recognise where society favours women, even when it is blindingly obvious to most (education, for instance).

grimbletart Wed 21-Aug-13 15:44:51

When my mum was at school (1950s) there were different pass rates for the 11+ for boys and girls, the bar set higher for girls so that more boys than girls passed. I do not know what the criteria are for setting pass rates now, but I strongly suspect that they aren't different for boys and girls.

I can confirm this as I took my 11+ in 1953. It was done because more girls than boys were passing and they wanted grammar school intake to be 50/50. We girls were told that (on average) we needed to score at least 10 per cent higher than the boys in our form to get a place.

It's worth remembering too that this was a 'sudden death exam', where these days we are always being told that girls do better in coursework loaded situations and boys do better in sudden death exams. Hmmmmm.

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 15:45:28

"If you want a high powered career, better to be born a man.
If you want to be paid better for the same job, again statistically it is better to be a man."

Anybody got any ideas why this is? it's obviously nothing to do with the patriarchy, because it doesn't exist, or privilege, ditto. And it's not because men are better educated, because schools prioritise girls over boys at every turn. So I wonder why it is?

larrygrylls Wed 21-Aug-13 15:47:34

Grimble,

"It's worth remembering too that this was a 'sudden death exam', where these days we are always being told that girls do better in coursework loaded situations and boys do better in sudden death exams. Hmmmmm."

So what are you saying? Do you actually believe girls are intrinsically brighter or more academic than boys?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 15:55:19

@SinisterSal

If feminism is working for an equal world, why are they not focusing in the issues that also affect men? Saying that "patriarchy hurts men too" but at same time doing nothing for men, like they have done since the beginning of the movement, is perplexing. How is it possible that grown up people from certain countries don't know that woman on man domestic violence is so common? That women can also rape, in two different ways, men? (Forced to penetrate or penetration via...use your imagination).

If one wants to work with feminism, one has to adhere to their dogma and this is something that MRA will just not do. Women have, through feminism, redefined themselves. It's time for men to do the same, but it's not going to be though feminism, but through its own movement. The man that feminism seems to want is a dysfunctional man. Otherwise, I don't understand the "men are useless" attitude, under which I grew up.

@DuelingFanjo

The amount of false rape accusation is tricky, as rape is a tricky crime itself. What MRA fights against is like comments of a certain Canadian woman of influence who said that false rape accusations "just don't happen". This is totally unacceptable. We also have more and more situations popping up where men were sent to jail and then, some time later, the woman retracts or new evidence appears that shows that the man is innocent. Real rapists shouldn't go free, innocent men shouldn't go to jail. However, little is being done to prevent the former except by accusing all men of being potential rapists, but too many men are going to jail without forensic evidence, just the word of the woman. Again, unacceptable.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 15:57:18

It may be related to it but it is not only that. It is societal expectations in the same sense as a feminist will claim that societal expectations mean fewer women choose hard sciences. SAH fathers suffer from all sorts of prejudice. They are at best semi included in play dates/coffee meet ups etc, the staples of SAHPs.

Societal expectations re science start in school (yes the very places that privilege girls) it's happening to children who are sponges soaking everything up indiscrimately. It's adult men who are choosing not to be SAHP's if that's what they want. Women 30 years ago took on the battle to work outside the home. It wasn't handed to them.
Mothers today have to make that decision also, and if you've spent any time on SAHM/WOHM threads you will realise there is no right answer for a mother. Societal expectations exist for women.
Have you ever been a SAHP? When I was a SAHM the playground was where we met. I only went on playdates and coffee mornings with my own parent friends.
I also know plenty of guys who were SAHD's. I'm in Ireland, when the construction crash came all of a sudden there were lots of ex-construction working men with generally teacher/nurse wives. So the dad stayed at home, no one said a word against it.

grimbletart Wed 21-Aug-13 15:57:39

I'm not "believing" anything, merely pointing out the fact and saying it seems strange that the prevailing wisdom (on which I have no views whatever having been out of the education system for decades) seems to state coursework favours girls and yet that was not the case in the 1950s. Thus my hmmmm - shorthand for 'that's odd'.

Have you an explanation? Because I haven't.

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 15:59:37

have you people with 'tp' in front of your names come from a particular place? has this already been mentioned or am I seeing something that isn't there?

tpnavod

I don't think men are useless. Some men probably are, but then most people are pretty useless at something. <eyes ironing pile> You might have to be a bit more specific on exactly what you mean by that so we can respond adequately.

I'm very happy indeed for men to redefine themselves. I'd only object if they did this in relation to a set role to which they expected women to confirm... confused

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 16:01:25

"What MRA fights against is like comments of a certain Canadian woman of influence who said that false rape accusations "just don't happen"." that's not the impression the linked to page gives, is it?

larrygrylls Wed 21-Aug-13 16:04:22

"Have you ever been a SAHP? When I was a SAHM the playground was where we met. I only went on playdates and coffee mornings with my own parent friends. "

We have both been at home since my two were born (now 4 and 2.5). We kind of share the childcare 70/30 in favour of my wife and everything else (including my investment business and cooking/shopping) 70/30 in favour of me, so it works out quite well. I am about to start a course leading to a second career. (Seeing as you don't believe me without personal details).

I frequently take and collect my oldest from pre school and it is amazing the way mothers then go on to coffees, walks etc and I don't get invited. I am not really that bothered as I quite enjoy spending time alone with my children but it is a fact. There is another full time SAHD in the same group and we have discussed this and it equally happens to him although he is a full time SAHP. No one "says " a word against it, SAHD are officially as welcome as SAHM, in the same way as girls are officially as welcome (if not more so) than boys to choose A level physics. It is hidden quiet prejudice in both cases, BOTH of which need addressing.

Regarding education, I can contribute merely an anecdote. At dd's infant school, they ask for dads and grandads to go in during Book Week so that the boys (who they are concerned will make less progress with reading because they have no male role model readers) can see that men can enjoy reading too.

Great!

Do they have female scientists in Science Week, so that girls can see that women can be successful in this area? Nope. Had it even occurred to them, despite lots of media coverage about the lack of girls and women in STEM? Nope.

As I said, just an anecdote.

There are several dads in the playground at school. I will chat to the ones I know but you're right, then don't seem to be members of any "mum cliques" (neither am I!). Some of them are fun to chat to, and when dc were younger and I worked very part-time I would have welcomed them as friends. What stopped me? Pretty much I was worried they might thing I was coming on to them, or that their partners might. Silly, huh. hmm

Argh, typo city blush

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 16:09:10

"That women can also rape, in two different ways, men? (Forced to penetrate or penetration via...use your imagination). "

And this happens frequently? As often as women are raped by men?

larrygrylls Wed 21-Aug-13 16:10:10

Buffy,

Since paedophobia reared its ugly head, there are very few male role models for boys in primary school at all. Almost none in pre school settings.

I agree with you re science later on, although I suspect it will take more than female scientists in Science Week to persuade girls to do hard science A levels.

But neither of the above paragraphs are good. Both should be addressed. In no sense does one problem negate the other.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:13:06

I would appreciate further clarification, as I think what you have written is a bit vague

If feminism is working for an equal world, why are they not focusing in the issues that also affect men? Saying that "patriarchy hurts men too" but at same time doing nothing for men, - such as ?

How is it possible that grown up people from certain countries don't know that woman on man domestic violence is so common?
some studies put it at 40% of victims are men, but those studies acknowlege that they are usually not always one off events, unlike the other way around which is usually not always an ongoing thing with many seperate incidents. Most studies out the figure at lower than 40%, and none show equal figures. t's all wrong of course. I think volunteers should set up shelters for men - it worked quite well for women's shelters. Of course, there's still so much more to do.

That women can also rape, in two different ways, men? (Forced to penetrate or penetration via...use your imagination).
But they very very rarely do. Not never I'm sure When men are victims of rape (1 in 7, I think? Compared to 1 in 4 women - all of it terrible) it's usually by men. If you are working to end sexual violence against men, why do you focus on the people who do the least harm? Wouldn't it produce better results for men if you focused on the people who do most harm? Or what is the priority here?

If one wants to work with feminism, one has to adhere to their dogma and this is something that MRA will just not do.
Explain the dogma and why is it so repellent to the MRA?

Women have, through feminism, redefined themselves. How?

It's time for men to do the same, as what?
^ The man that feminism seems to want is a dysfunctional man.^
Feminists think men are just great, other than the predatory ones. Is a non-predatory fair minded man a dysfunctional man?

Otherwise, I don't understand the "men are useless" attitude, under which I grew up. In what way, exactly?
I feel just the same about the 'women are useless' trope, for me a lot of that comes from sexual objectification in the media

No straw feminists please!

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:16:45

I haven't made any friends at the school gate either. The people I talk to were already my friends including a SAHD as it happens. I could conclude they just don't like me! not unheard of grin

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:17:52

@DuelingFanjo

I'm the same person. I was asked to change my username due to forum rules.

@BuffytheReasonableFeminist

It'd take a while to make a list, but you can find this in Anglo-saxon media with men portrayed as useless for everything that is related to parenting, housework, etc. Newspapers, TV shows, talk shows, etc. go this way.
I grew up in southern Europe with this mentality, which came from home, school, TV shows I watched, newspapers, etc.

@DuelingFanjo

The link talks about the subject of how things are being dealt when a man is accused of a sexual assault, including the "guilty until proven innocent" that it has become. By law, depending the area, names are not to be displayed until it is confirmed that the person accused is guilty, as otherwise the damage is immense and almost impossible to recover. The Danish movie "Jagten" (The Hunt) is used as an example for this.

It goes something like this : Woman accuses man of sexual assault -> He is arrested and the proper investigation will begin -> His name is leaked and "everybody" knows that he's been accused -> Some men lose their jobs already, even before the trial has started -> Big damage to the person, even if trial says "not guilty".
This is something that should be stopped, as being charged with a crime doesn't automatically make you guilty of it. When a man can be arrested on just the word of a woman...you can see where this is going.

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 16:19:35

"When a man can be arrested on just the word of a woman"

A person can be arrested just on the word of another person, that's how it works.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:20:38

@curlew

CDC released some numbers and woman on man rape is much higher than one could imagine. A big percentage of men will ignore the fact that they were raped, be scared to report, etc. Not so many men are going to go to the police and say "I was raped by a woman".

More info here

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:21:53

^It goes something like this : Woman accuses man of sexual assault -> He is arrested and the proper investigation will begin -> His name is leaked and "everybody" knows that he's been accused -> Some men lose their jobs already, even before the trial has started -> Big damage to the person, even if trial says "not guilty".
This is something that should be stopped, as being charged with a crime doesn't automatically make you guilty of it. When a man can be arrested on just the word of a woman...you can see where this is going.^

What we should do is change the justice system. At the moment 94% of rapes go unpunished. If we could devise a system that you could trust the justice system to punish the guilty, then no one need fear their name being blackened. An innocent man would be exonerated, and a guilty one punished, and all could have faith in the justice system workings.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:23:02

@DuelingFanjo

Did you have to ignore everything else? Anyways, this website can shed some more light.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:23:21

Not so many men are going to go to the police and say "I was raped by a woman".

That's just like women - not many of us report rapes either sad I don't think it's easy for anyone

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:25:12

@SinisterSal

"At the moment 94% of rapes go unpunished."

That % and many other numbers have been debunked, including the "1 in 4". You can browse some links on MensRights subreddit (on the right sidebar) for articles showing how those numbers are either manipulations or poor research.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:25:50

Anglo saxon media?? confused

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:27:06

No they haven't been debunked.
Some internet people don't like them. Different thing.

What about the 1 in 7? It was one of your lot told me that. Has it been debunked too?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:27:07

@SinisterSal

It's not easy, but if a woman is raped and goes forward, she'll find sympathy by her pals and a large network of support. Men going forward are often mocked by their pals ("You're so lucky!") and have no network to get support from. Although this is changing and at least there are a few things there and there happening to help men in this situation.

I think we're really past the "You were looking for it" times. It's time to get a similar one for men, time to get past the "You're so lucky!".

larrygrylls Wed 21-Aug-13 16:27:59

Sinister,

That is very idealistic. It is all to do with standards of evidence in what will always be a very hard crime to convict as, on the whole, it is based on one person's word against another.

Bizarrely enough, I was actually on the jury at a rape trial earlier this year. It was a historical rape outstanding for in excess of 20 years. The only real evidence was circumstantial and the victim and defendant's oral testimony (and associated evidence as to times and places).

I clearly cannot say anything that is not a matter of public record, but we did convict. It is not like CSI, though, it really is just a matter of weighing one person's consistency and credibility against another's. It is no fun being a juror at all (and yes, I know it is even less fun being the victim).

scallopsrgreat Wed 21-Aug-13 16:28:19

Why should feminism do anything for men tpnavod? It is a political movement to liberate women from male oppression. If women were oppressing men then I could see your point. But they aren't. However, it does advantage men to keep women busy focusing on male issues, I'll grant you.

The amount of false rape accusations aren't 'tricky' and neither is rape. It is only 'tricky' if you want to obfuscate what rape is and defend rapists. Men lie about raping all the time. Why aren't you doing something about that? Men are far more likely to be raped, in fact more likely to be rapists than to be falsely 'accused'. What are you doing about that?

If women on male DV is so common, where are the frightened men trying to get into safe shelter? I am absolutely not denying there are some but women's shelters are overflowing and there are many many more of them. If female on male DV was such a widespread issue, surely there would be thousands and thousands of men crying out for shelters. And if in our incredibly male-centric media world we somehow or other hadn't come across this and in fact this is a major major issue, why are men not doing anything about it? Because that is what women did. They started setting up shelters for frightened and abused women to find a haven. Hadn't you better start doing something about that for men tpnavod?

"When a man can be arrested on just the word of a woman.." Very telling phraseology there.

It'd take a while to make a list, but you can find this in Anglo-saxon media with men portrayed as useless for everything that is related to parenting, housework, etc. Newspapers, TV shows, talk shows, etc. go this way

Aye, let's get rid of those, I totally agree. They mean that only women can do housework and parenting. I think men are equally capable and should do an equal share.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:30:49

@SabrinaMulhollandJjones

Isn't that how you talk about UK, USA and Australia? Many countries say it like that, but maybe it's wrong in English. If so, I apologize for the confusion.

@SinisterSal

Yes, they have. The 1 in 4 especially. I'm not aware of the 1 in 7 right now, I can't remember, so I can't help you with that.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:31:36

That is not true. the 'you were drunk, you kissed him, it's not real rape' is still really prevelent.

I don't know much about adult male victims, but for underage male victims the tone is much more respectful and considerate.

For example, you would never get a judge calling a thirteen year old male rape victim 'a sexual predator'

But I do think the You are so lucky thing is really crass and stupid - just goes to show how gender stereotyping is so damaging. Men are supposed to be always up for it and ready to go with anyone. One thing that really drew me to feminism was the way it really tries to break down stupid damaging stereotypes.

scallopsrgreat Wed 21-Aug-13 16:31:40

"It's not easy, but if a woman is raped and goes forward, she'll find sympathy by her pals and a large network of support. Men going forward are often mocked by their pals ("You're so lucky!") and have no network to get support from." Complete myths. Women do not find sympathy at all. They are blamed, not believed, ostracized and cut off from their existing support networks. There are reasons why only about 10% of rapes are ever reported and SinisterSal's figures of 94% of rapes going unconvicted is actually only 94% of reported rapes. So the figures for rapes that no-one is held responsible for is sooo much higher than that.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:34:02

'Yes, they have. The 1 in 4 especially'
Again. No they haven't. Not by anyone credible or respected anyway.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:34:15

Where are you from tpnavod? Anglo saxons are a little more, er historical.

The 6% and the 1 in 4 have been debunked have they? I must have missed that memo - the UK government also missed it. These are accepted figures by everyone except the mra.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:34:21

@SinisterSal

Drunken consent is a hot and controversial topic. If both are equally drunk, it's insane to assume that the man can consent, but the woman can't. They either both can or can't consent.

"For example, you would never get a judge calling a thirteen year old male rape victim 'a sexual predator'"

No, but you would get a boy teen victim of rape pay child support. Link

We can trade things like this all day long.

Isn't that why some are calling for the "consent" concept to be reviewed anyway? In favour of "enthusiastic participation" or something?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:36:32

@scallopsrgreat

"Complete myths. Women do not find sympathy at all. They are blamed, not believed, ostracized and cut off from their existing support networks."

Please, show me proof of this. The amount of women shelters and women support networks is very big and this is a damn good thing. That's a dream goal for men, to have a similar network.

@SabrinaMulhollandJjones

Example of what I meant used in English language.

@SinisterSal

And those numbers come from credible people? Do you know how you get the 1 in 4 rape statistic? Why asking loaded questions and then using a faulty interpretation of the answers.

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 16:37:53

"We can trade things like this all day long"

let's not.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:37:59

tpnavod - as you're clearly not from the UK, you may be interested to know that in the UK, rape is penetration with a penis. Therefore women cannot rape men under UK legislation.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:38:04

@BuffytheReasonableFeminist

If we have to write rules on how to "consent" for things, we're going backwards, not forward.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:38:41

@SabrinaMulhollandJjones

And that's an issue, don't you think? If women can rape, but not legally...well, it couldn't be clearer that MRA have a strong point here.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:38:46

I'm not clicking through, TP.
But i dunno...just thinking this one through...if a female rape victim becomes a parent, doesn't she have to take reponsibility for the child? And no, an abortion is not the easy way out, it's still a form of taking responsibility that the woman/girl has to undergo. Just musing here

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 16:40:54

"Please, show me proof of this. The amount of women shelters and women support networks is very big and this is a damn good thing. That's a dream goal for men, to have a similar network."

Women made the shelters and the support networks by hard work by volunteers. Women gave up rooms in their houses to provide shelters for "battered wives" Are men doing something similar? Or are they wanting women to do it for them?

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 16:41:41

"Drunken consent is a hot and controversial topic. If both are equally drunk, it's insane to assume that the man can consent, but the woman can't. They either both can or can't consent."

This is just such rubbish.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:41:47

@DuelingFanjo

It's disappointing that you'd constantly choose to ignore what could help you see things from a different point of view. I take it you have no interest in changing your mind.

@SinisterSal

We're not arguing man on woman rape and pregnancy, we're arguing woman on MINOR rape and pregnancy and the victim having to pay child support.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:42:10

Not really - a woman would be charged with sexual assault. It's pure semantics - rape is with a penis. A woman does not have a penis.

There is plenty of evidence in the UK, just recently, that female rape and assault victims are not taken seriously.

Perhaps you'd like to google Met Police Sapphire Unit or Jimmy Saville?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:42:16

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SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:44:27

Er - you came over here tpnavod...? (oh, and welcome btw)

Perhaps you'd like to have a look around the rest of the site? It's a great resource for parents.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:45:14

@curlew

Many of those women shelters are maintained with public money. I don't think anyone said that men want women to pay for th is. By the way, the first women shelter in UK was founded by a woman, Erin Pizzey, who had to escape to USA because of the threats received by feminists who didn't like she saying "But women are as violent as me!".

@SabrinaMulhollandJjones

So rape is all about penis? If an eunuch uses an object to violate a woman, would you be arguing semantics?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:46:21

@SabrinaMulhollandJjones

If you are saying why I wrote that to DuelingFanjo, it's because he has been saying baseless things, then ignoring everything I said in my answer except a line, then started from there and so on. Saying "rubbish" to my argument about both men and women being drunk is the last evidence to know that I'm dealing with a very closed-minded person.

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:46:48

'That's a dream goal for men, to have a similar network.'

well get off the internet and SET IT UP.
volunteer at helplines for male victims of sex crimes. Give them someone to talk to.
Show your mates that you can work your washing machine, and when you are making the household decision about which washing powder to get, boycott the ones with the sexist advertising
tell your boss you need more time at home with the children. You will have to take days off when the kids are sick, or leave early when childcare lets you down. Your boss won't like it, you won't get a promotion or a raise but you have to do what you have to do.

that is what women have done, do you think the gains we have made were was just handed to us? do you think it came at no cost to us?

If you actually cared about men's issues this is what ylo would be doing. If you just hated women and feminists you would be doing ill informed goady rants on the internet. It ain't fuckin rocket surgery is it!

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:48:16

I just thought you'd be interested in how the law works here tpn - I'd be awfully interested to know which country you are in?

UK law - rape is penetration with a penis. No amount of huffing from you is going to change that.

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 16:48:21

That doesn't address he point that men don't appear to be rushing to set up safe houses and rugs for male victims of domestic violence....

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 16:49:27

Oh, and could th peon with all th numbers tll me how many men are killed by their female partner in a week?

SinisterSal Wed 21-Aug-13 16:49:42

Of course not curlew.

He is not engaging with any of the points we have raised.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:50:55

If an eunuch uses an object to violate a woman, would you be arguing semantics?

Oh dear oh dear. Are we at that stage of the debate already? You've only been here for about 2 pages!

Erm - is it something I should worry about? Being penetrated by a Eunuch with an object? Likelihood of that happening to me would be, er, ??

To answer your question seriously - a eunuch would be charged with sexual assault.

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 16:51:14

"It's disappointing that you'd constantly choose to ignore what could help you see things from a different point of view. I take it you have no interest in changing your mind."

I do not agree with your point of view. You are assuming that I have not done any reading previous to this conversation or you are assuming that everything I have read is from one point of view only. I am not clicking your links because I am not going to engage with MRAs. I am responding to the things that you write, which is how this forum works. I will respond to whoever I like, thanks.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:52:57

@SinisterSal

How do you know I'm not doing anything like that? It's quite sexist that you'd assume that I can't use a washing machine or that I can't deal with any other situations.

"If you actually cared about men's issues this is what ylo would be doing."

This is nothing but a fallacious argument. You have been arguing with me for pages and, now, at the end, you had to use a shaming tactic. I can cook, clean, sew buttons, take care of pets, anything related to housework. I moved to a foreign country on my own and I'm designing a plan to set up maybe the first "Men Support Group" in this country. All while working full time as a team manager and studying to be a therapist.

Treen44444 Wed 21-Aug-13 16:53:51

Why is everyone trying to point score.

Missing the point or what!

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 16:55:36

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SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 16:58:13

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DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 16:59:01

"Drop the patronizing attitude." wow - pot... meet kettle.

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 16:59:41

"Drop the patronizing attitude. If you think that a man violating a woman is worse than a woman violating a man YOU are the sexist one."

I think they are both awful. But I think one happens every day and the other......doesn't.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 17:01:33

Tell me, tpnavod - are you accustomed to joining an established board and barking orders to people?

WhentheRed Wed 21-Aug-13 17:02:41

There is no magic to getting a DV shelter up and running. You start by gathering a group of volunteers, you devote tonnes of your own time and money, you use your own home, you set up fundraisers. Maybe after a few years you can apply for and obtain some government funds to pay for the rent on a standalone shelter and perhaps can employ one or two staff members. You will then spend tonnes more time recruiting a large array of volunteers to carry out the work and to continue to raise funds for operations.

Most of shelter groups of which I am aware only get a small portion of money from government. They operate through the dedication of their volunteers and sheer hard work.

There is nothing to stop men from doing that. If the dream for men to have a national DV network, then do it.

Treen44444 Wed 21-Aug-13 17:03:51

Do people just like an argument on here?
It's almost like people just want a chance to show off how much reading they've done.
Point scoring between each other is weird

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:04:04

@curlew

I showed a link earlier that shows that woman on man is a lot more common than one may think.

Maybe this will help you see things from a different point of view. It's a list of experiences, some of them are man on man rape, some others are woman on man. Those are real men confessing things that maybe they have never told anyone else.

Don't rape victims, man or woman, deserve sympathy and justice?

DuelingFanjo Wed 21-Aug-13 17:04:58

"Do people just like an argument on here?" Welcome to mumsnet the internet grin

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:06:11

@SabrinaMulhollandJjones

Barking? Am I a dog now? I came here to answer questions. What I have found is people :
-Arguing about totally different things that I said.
-Nitpicking a line, ignoring the rest of the content.
-Displaying their own sexism (which is amusing).

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:08:02

@WhentheRed

It will take time, especially for men, to start coming forward. To realize that saying "My wife is physically abusive" is not implying "I'm not man enough".

Treen44444 Wed 21-Aug-13 17:08:13

It's pathetic. It's not very helpful. I almost think that if there was agreement that the site would close.

Where is the value in saying 'it happens more to us than you', where's the bigger picture?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 21-Aug-13 17:08:49

Sorry - but did you, or did you not argue that accepted rape statistics have been "debunked" ? When they haven't been.

You claimed that - it's untrue. Women can get a little peeved by that sort of thing.

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 17:11:21

How many men are killed by women in domestic violence incidents every week?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:11:51

@SabrinaMulhollandJjones

Yeah, statistics like "1 in 4 women will be raped" have been debunked because it's just not true.

Treen44444 Wed 21-Aug-13 17:12:20

Curlew - why ask that question? How does it help?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:13:47

@curlew

Why are you asking me this when you can use google? But since you ask, I have some numbers here. It's one every week in a country like Spain, so it averages around 50 a year. In a country with 47 million people. The rate is quite low. Still, 50 a year is 50 too many.

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 17:14:05

Because you we saying that men suffer as much from domestic violence as women do. I presume that means as many men die as women do?

If we have to write rules on how to "consent" for things, we're going backwards, not forward

I'd say "nice soundbite, care to explain what you mean?" Rules get written and rewritten all the time, as attitudes change, new information comes to light. Why is that a bad thing?

But, it seems that MRAs and feminists really cannot relate or communicate. I'm really, really regret starting this discussion, let's just let it die shall we sad

curlew Wed 21-Aug-13 17:15:57

And how many women die per week in Spain? Or how may men in the UK? Just so we can compare like with like?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:16:20

@curlew

No, it doesn't mean that. Men are certainly potentially more damaging and more resistant. That doesn't mean that women can't beat up men at an equal ratio as the other way around.

FreyaSnow Wed 21-Aug-13 17:16:32

I think it is misleading to say that female victims of domestic violence are somehow getting funding for refuges while men are ignored. Male victims of domestic violence are usually not given the solution of an institutional setting because they are given floating support through housing schemes if they want such support. The benefits of this are that floating support is less intrusive, allows a faster return to independence, is less shaming as it is less visible and is carried out by people who are equipped in multi-causal factors in issues around housing needs.

I do not see that male victims are asking for such schemes to be replaced with single issue refuge based solutions. Are MRAs asking for that to happen, and if that is what MRAs want (the OP's question), what evidence are you basing the demand for that change to happen on?

As far as I'm aware, many people are now advocating for more women to be put into floating support rather than through the refuge and temporary housing system, so I can't see why men's groups are pushing in the opposite direction.

As for taking people into your own home, this is a long running government run scheme for young adults. Do lots of MRAs participate in this to make home situations available to young men who may benefit from a male role model housing him? Or is this kind of scheme not want MRAs want?

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:17:30

@curlew

The numbers I said are about women. What's the point of comparing two different countries though?

Treen44444 Wed 21-Aug-13 17:19:27

Curlew - I didn't ask that but how does it value the discussion? What do you want to achieve from asking it?

Why not look at why people are violent to partners as a whole? What needs to be improved? This will then highlight which sections of society are mainly affected. Action as a whole can then be taken.

tpnavod Wed 21-Aug-13 17:19:44

@FreyaSnow

The problem with many men in that situation is that they can't escape. I haven't heard of what you are talking about, so I will do my research on that. Thanks for the tip. Right now, many male victims of DV feel kinda trapped in many different ways, including psychological traps ("Not man enough").