My final and ultimate position on “misandry”.
Here’s the thing; hatred and discrimination against men simply for being men is not something that exists in a powerful institutional form in the US, and I suspect the world as a whole, but being a US citizen, I can only speak to the US. This is evidenced by the wage gap (which really does exist), the disproportionate number of men in government power, the statistics of rape and DV that clearly show that the likelihood is far higher that it will be a man on woman crime rather than anything else, and the low prosecution rate for violent crimes like rape, and about a million other things.
Notice that what I have not said here is that patriarchy is good for men.
Patriarchy isn’t good for men. Sure, patriarchy is responsible for the fact that until recently, men dominated the workforce, run everything, and are seen as better leaders and workers despite the fact that that is probably not true. But patriarchy is also responsible for the ideas that men are stupid, obtuse, and unemotional. Patriarchy is responsible for the fact that men and boys are encouraged to suppress their feelings, miss out on certain activities that aren’t “manly” enough, and act in a very narrow way.
This misogyny that dictates strict gender roles are the same reason that men are seen as suspicious or shady if they go into elementary teaching or other child care professions; that is seen as “women’s work”, and men who want to go into those professions are seen as possibly having a perverse ulterior motive. (Something to keep in mind is that as wrong as that is, men in women dominated fields still make more than their women counterparts.)
This is the same thinking that leads judges to grant custody and alimony to women in the aspect of life MRAs complain about the most: divorce. Judges aren’t awarding children and money to women because women are superior caregivers. They’re doing that because centuries of patriarchy have conditioned us to believe that a woman’s place is in the home, raising children. That’s patriarchy, and it’s misogyny, and feminists reject those kinds of blanket generalizations and judgments. This is what I really don’t get about MRAs: we agree on this! We are on the same side, so why do you have to claim that rape culture, sexism, and the wage gap don’t exist to make that point?
There’s also one final crucial difference in the way I view sexism and the way MRAs view sexism, and I think that is in large part because I am a woman, and women are marginalized in our society (whether you want to admit it or not). Just like there are some men who hate women (or act in a discriminatory manner towards them), there are some women who hate or are suspicious of men. But when a woman says something like “Male bosses suck, they’re pervy and gross”, no one cares. There’s no discriminatory stereotype backing that up. When a man says, “Women bosses are so bitchy and emotional”, that carries a lot more weight and garners a lot more support, whether or not it’s true. Men don’t have anything to fear from the supposed “wrath of feminists”. Women can’t escape the fear and caution that must be exercised when living in a patriarchy defined by rape culture.
So those are my thoughts on MRAs and misandry. Let’s never make me talk about this again.
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