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Men, if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem.

(337 Posts)
curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 16:24:19

Fantastic article by Laurie Penny

ApocalypseThen Fri 16-Aug-13 16:35:57

It certainly has made a lot if men very angry. Not at the social structures, of course, dear me, no. About the idea that they might consider doing something slightly different to make the world safer and better for women.

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 16:36:09

Isn't the title a bit of a George Bush-ism? 'If you aren't with us, you are against us'. I wouldn't choose George as a shining light of political philosophy.

ApocalypseThen Fri 16-Aug-13 16:39:37

In this case, it's true. You think women are people and should be able to live like it, or you don't.

curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 16:43:29

Sorry, I thought that was a well known expression, CiscoKid- it must be my age! It means that there are no neutrals. If you are not actively part of the solution, you are actively past of the problem.

CaptChaos Fri 16-Aug-13 16:45:26

Reference the title, I think it's mentioned in the Bible and, despite what GW believes, he aint Jesus

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 16:56:42

There are neutrals though, at least in the political context. I can want women and men to be equal without wanting to be a feminist.

curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 17:01:04

Have you read the article?

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 17:04:56

Yes. I got as far as paragraph 4, second sentence: 'But culture hates women....', and found myself shaking my head. I read the rest, but that really set the tone for me.

SinisterSal Fri 16-Aug-13 17:11:16

If you don't believe the culture is misogynistic, what in the world would bring you to the feminist topic?

curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 17:17:29

Say more, CiscoKid- whatndonyou mean, "set the tone"?

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 17:21:57

Well, there we have it. Are you saying that this is not a good place to discuss aspects of feminist belief, to challenge some of its tenets, to exchange views? After all, this is a place to discuss feminism and women's rights, is it not?

If, by culture, the author means our (Western) system of beliefs, customs and manners, then I disagree with her. There is no hate.

SinisterSal Fri 16-Aug-13 17:23:38

Well, there we have it indeed.

Boosterseat Fri 16-Aug-13 17:23:51

Great article, worth recommending to the "lip service" feminist men i come across.

I know a few men who agree with the principle on Feminism but would not actively call out instances they see in RL for fear of sneering from other men, which is exactly the problem Penny is speaking about.

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 17:26:40

Curlew, I mean that it conforms to the the stereotypes and tropes of most of the feminist articles that I read. Saying that, it doesn't mean that I throw a hissy fit and stop reading. Just because I don't agree with all she writes, it doesn't make it a bad article. It throws up some interesting points for discussion. I assume that is why the OP posted it here - for discussion?

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 17:29:38

You took the time to respond, and yet you didn't answer the questions, Sal. Is this a place for open, polite discussion of feminist topics or not? I am interested to know what you think. Of course, you don't have to answer.

curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 17:30:47

Cisco- I still don't really understand what you're disagreeing with in the article- could you be specific?

SinisterSal Fri 16-Aug-13 17:33:14

Don't be disingenous Ciskokid. Just means it takes a long time to get somewhere not very interesting.

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 17:37:01

Sorry Curlew, I thought I was. In paragraph 4, second sentence, the author states that 'culture hates women'. I disagree with that, and I think that that particular viewpoint is fundamental to the article.

NicholasTeakozy Fri 16-Aug-13 17:47:13

I think she has a point. When we don't call men for sexist behaviour we are complicit in that.

YoniMatopoeia Fri 16-Aug-13 17:54:39

great article

curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 18:01:41

OK. Change "hates women" (maybe you do have to be a woman to see that) to discriminates against" and let's work from there. I'd hate you to dismiss the whole article for the sake of a word.

curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 18:11:57

And before anyone comments, I am conscious of the irony of my last post in the context of paras 2 and 3 of the article. it does rather neatly make the point, doesn't it!

CiscoKid Fri 16-Aug-13 18:24:05

Why change the word though? She says hate, she means hate. As a journalist, I accept her ability to write what she means, to understand what she is writing. After all, it's a powerful word.

In paragraph 7, she uses it again - 'men as a group certainly do (hate women)'. There is no confusion as to what she is trying to convey. This belief is fundamental to her article. I disagree with her.

On the point of calling out sexist language or behaviour - I could not agree more. Her reasoning about why it happens though - that is where I think she is wrong.

Lastly, your point about paras 2 and 3 - I am not asking anyone to modify their language, to pander to my feelings or to spare my injured male ego. I get why feminists pursue this line, but it doesn't anger me. If anything it makes me feel a bit sad.

curlew Fri 16-Aug-13 18:28:49

I offered to change it because it is obviously a block to you discussing the main point of the article, which is that all men benefit from a sexist society, and men need to be part of the change. And I don't want this thread to descend into a discussion of semantics. As so many discussions between men and women on such topics do,

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