"Prejudice against women, however, has deep and far-reaching consequences that do a lot more than make them feel bad, for it supports an entire system that privileges men at women’s expense. Sexist prejudice doesn’t just target individual women, for it is fundamentally about women and strikes at femaleness itself in every instance. Each expression of antifemale prejudice always amounts to more than what is said, for it reaffirms a cultural legacy of patriarchal privilege and oppression. When a particular woman is treated as less intelligent, less serious, and less important than the men she works with, for example, this specific view of her is easily linked to the patriarchal idea that women in general are inferior to men. When men ignore her ideas and suggestions or pay more attention to her looks than to her work, they do so with a cultural authority that damages her far more than similar treatment directed at a man.
Since patriarchal culture values maleness, the weight behind antimale prejudice is limited primarily to the individual woman who expresses it and is therefore easier to discount (“She must not like men”). And however hurt men might feel, they can always turn to the compensations of male privilege and a mainstream culture that sends continuing messages of inherent male value. In this sense, the issue isn’t whether prejudice hurts-it hurts everyone it touches. But prejudice against women wounds in deeper and more complex ways than does prejudice against men because the hurt is magnified by a patriarchal system that spreads it by association to all women and that systematically links it to male privilege.
Because prejudice affects women and men so differently, calling antimale prejudice “sexism” distorts the reality of how systems of privilege work. Prejudice against women not only harms individual women, but perpetuates an oppressive system based on gender that harms women more deeply than any isolated instance of hurtful speech or discrimination. Antimale prejudice may hurt individual men, but it isn’t connected to a system that devalues maleness and oppresses men as a result. The difference between the two is so great that we need to distinguish the one from the other, and that’s what words like “sexism” and “racism” are for. Sexism distinguishes simple gender prejudice-which can affect men and women both-from the much deeper and broader consequence of expressing and perpetuating privilege and oppression. Without this distinction, we treat all harm as equivalent without taking into account important differences on both the personal and the social levels in what causes it and what it does to people."
Allan G. Johnson, The Gender Knot (via wretchedoftheearth)
Why Whites Hate Affirmative Action
Lack of knowledge on the actual policies. Very few people actually understand the original executive orders, subsequent judicial decisions and legislation beyond sound bites via “news” that is insistent upon painting this as “taking stuff” from Whites for Black people (as if it is “just” about Black people). Honesty, how many White people have reviewed the actual history of why this is needed? It’s almost as rare to find as anyone who calls themselves “patriotic” who has actually read the Constitution or a Christian who has read the Bible. Media soundbites shaped by bigotry (in a White supremacist capitalist patriarchal society) absorbed by many Whites whose life ideologies have been shaped by bigotry is not going to produce the nuance and thought necessary to understand affirmative action. (Even so, these two simple, non in-depth cartoons explain this almost as well as the complex legalese: 1 and 2.)
Anti-intellectualism. Piggybacking on the first point, the current culture of anti-intellectualism doesn’t encourage most White people (and Americans at large) to actually investigate things they are “for” or “against.” It’s much simpler to decide to be “for” anything shaped by a legacy of White supremacy and White privilege and against anything that appears to be contrary to the former. Whites are used to being a “baseline,” the “norm,” or not considered a group at all, but those whom other groups are compared to. Sociopolitically, many Whites are having a “day of reckoning” moment by even being classified as a “group,” or a “race” as Tom Scocca pointed out so well in a recent article about Romney’s overwhelming support from Whites. These factors contribute to the resistance to affirmative action.
Ahistorical views on race. If a White person takes the “why isn’t there a White history month” and “why isn’t there a White Entertainment Television station” stances on Whites and the media, it can be safely assumed that they are either uneducated or being willfully ignorant about the role of race in America and why certain spaces exist for Black people amidst the media, public discourse and culture itself. By pretending that the tide of history has no racial element, they can then infer that if everyone “is equal” (as if being equal means being treated equally) Black people are “unfairly” getting “goodies” through affirmative action. This also ignores the fact that even with said theoretical ”goodies,” unemployment, health care, finances, real estate, and more is markedly worse for Black people (and other people of colour) versus White. The latter is written off as Black “character failures” in the ever so common victim blaming ideologies such as American “exceptionalism” and even “patriotism” at times. This is where LIES about “poverty culture” come about as a way to praise greed, wealth and Whiteness and demonize suffering, poverty and Blackness.
The concept of what “greatness” is. The inherent racism involved in assuming that someone White is always “more” qualified, as if being White is a skill itself, is common in everything from college admissions to employment applications. The idea is that some “stupid” minority “stole” a slot from the perfect White knight on a horse who deserved things because he “worked” for them prevails. Further, the idea that perhaps a series of advantages afforded by White privilege is “hard work” would be even more humorous if it wasn’t despicable. Said privileges often place Whites ahead in spaces by sheer virtue of the luxury of Whiteness, not any actual work. The myth of meritocracy is a plague on the American psyche. (Christopher Hayes wrote about this oh too well in his book Twilight Of The Elites - America After Meritocracy. Also, I recently read a fascinating study about the REALITY of financial aid versus the myth that “stupid” minorities “take all of the college monies,” and other assorted lies.)
A zero/sum view of racism. Ultimately, many Whites feel that any joy, success or progress in Black life means misery, failure and regression in White life. Period. This tunnel vision view is rooted in racism and fear. Research has revealed that many cisgender heterosexual White men feel like the “real” victims in America. Even if they are victims, would that not be at the hands of men just like them, except of a higher social class? Not to them. Racist social narratives involve the worship of “job creators” (the same ones who fire these men) as heroes because after all, they share Whiteness even if they don’t share class, status or cash. Other research has revealed that while some Whites view past times (during and pre-Civil Rights era) as a time more racist against Blacks, they view today as “more racist” against Whites. Of course this is false and has more to do with the idea of some Black people not suffering and Barack Obama’s existence more than any in-depth study of how race is a primary factor to consider when examining socioeconomic status. The enlightened exceptionalism involved in some who even choose to praise Oprah or Beyonce or LeBron James is what allows them to pretend that life for the average and for most Black people has dramatically changed, when for many, it has not. Claims of “reverse racism,” which doesn’t exist, are more common now than ever.
People who benefit from affirmative action also want it destroyed. While more than anyone else, White women have benefited from affirmative action, many of them stand with White men against affirmative action while simultaneously benefiting from it. Most people now know the name Abigail Fisher and know it well. Further, many older Black people (primarily men from what I’ve seen) want it dismantled despite the fact they benefited from it in the past. They clearly knew that in their time especially, being qualified was not enough. Assumed inferiority blocked their way.
Men’s objectification of women is ALWAYS different than women’s objectification of men!
And here is why:
Almost all of the time, when a man objectifies a woman, he is physically able to force her to move from just being “admired” to actually having to be a sexual object for him. Simply put, he has the power to sexually assault her. So then, every “positive” comment, every cat call, every objectification, becomes a threat, because that man can decide to take it too far, and there is little the woman could do about it. That is why it is different. Objectification of anyone is wrong, particularly in a Christian context, but objectification of women by men is particularly problematic.
Perhaps if we didn’t live in a rape culture, it would be different. Unfortunately, that is not the case.
When I say I’m pro-life…
It doesn’t mean I’m religious.
Because I’m not.
It doesn’t mean I hate LGBT community.
Because I am a supporter.
It doesn’t mean I force women to give birth.
Because I never will.
Take what you want from my blog, but never assume I’m just your stereotypical pro-lifer. It is VERY possible to ask questions, state your opinions in a civil manner on this blog. I am respectful and I enjoy answering all questions received!
Thanks for following! :)
Let me tell you some things.
I used to investigate child abuse and neglect. I can tell you how to stop the vast majority of abortion in the world.
First, make knowledge and access to contraception widely available. Start teaching kids before they hit puberty. Teach them about domestic violence and coercion, and teach them not to coerce and rape. Create a strong, loving community where women and girls feel safe and supported in times of need. Because guess what? They aren’t. You know what happens to babies born under such circumstances? They get hurt, unnecessarily. They get sick, unnecessarily. They get removed from parents who love them but who are unprepared for the burden of a child. Resources? Honey, we try. There aren’t enough resources anywhere. There are waiting lists, and promises, and maybes. If the government itself can’t hook people up, what makes you think an impoverished single mom can handle it?
Abolish poverty. Do you have any idea how much childcare costs? Daycare can cost as much or more than monthly rent. They may be inadequately staffed. Getting a private nanny is a nice idea, but they don’t come cheap either. Relatives? Do they own a car? Does the bus run at the right times? Do they have jobs of their own they need to work just to keep the lights on? Are they going to stick around until you get off you convenience store shift at 4 AM? Do they have criminal histories that will make them unsuitable as caregivers when CPS pokes around? You gonna pay for that? Who’s going to pay for that?
End rape. I know your type errs on the side of blaming the woman, but I’ve seen little girls who’ve barely gotten their periods pregnant because somebody thought raping preteens was an awesome idea. You want to put a child through that? Or someone with a mental or physical inability for whom pregnancy would be frightening, painful or even life-threatening? I’ve seen nonverbal kids who had their feet sliced up by caregivers for no fucking reason at all, you think sexual abuse doesn’t happen either?
You say there’s lots of couples who want to adopt. Kiddo, what they want to adopt are healthy white babies, preferably untainted by the wombs and genetics of women with alcohol or drug dependencies. I’ve seen the kids they don’t want, who almost no one wants. You people focus only on the happy pink babies, the gigglers, the ones who grow and grow with no trouble. Those are not the kids who linger in foster care. Those are certainly not the older kids and teenagers who age out of foster care and then are thrown out in the streets, usually with an array of medical and mental health issues. Are they too old to count?
And yeah, I’ve seen the babies, little hand-sized things barely clinging to life. There’s no glory, no wonder there. There is no wonder in a pregnant woman with five dollars to her name, so deep in depression you wonder if she’ll be alive in a week. Therapy costs money. Medicine costs money. Food, clothes, electricity cost money. Government assistance is a pittance; poverty drives women and girls into situations where they are forced to rely on people who abuse them to survive. (I’ve been up in more hospitals than I can count.)
In each and every dark pit of desperation, I have never seen a pro-lifer. I ain’t never seen them babysitting, scrubbing floors, bringing over goods, handing mom $50 bucks a month or driving her to the pediatrician. I ain’t never seen them sitting up for hours with an autistic child who screams and rages so his mother can get some sleep while she rests up from working 14-hour days. I don’t see them fixing leaks in rundown houses or playing with a kid while the police prepare to interview her about her sexual abuse. They’re not paying for the funerals of babies and children who died after birth, when they truly do become independent organisms. And the crazy thing is they think they’ve already done their job, because the child was born!
Aphids give birth, girl. It’s no miracle. You want to speak for the weak? Get off your high horse and get your hands dirty helping the poor, the isolated, the ill and mentally ill women and mothers and their children who already breathe the dirty air. You are doing nothing, absolutely nothing, for children. You don’t have a flea’s comprehension of injustice. You are not doing shit for life until you get in there and fight that darkness. Until you understand that abortion is salvation in a world like ours. Does that sound too hard? Do you really think suffering post-birth is more permissible, less worthy of outrage?
“Pro-life” is simply a philosophy in which the only life worth saving is the one that can be saved by punishing a woman.
FLAWLESS COMMENTARY ABOVE. COMPLETELY AGREED. I’d love to see speakfortheweak reply to this, though we all know she won’t.
Can’t not reblog this. -Joe
"Patriarchy isn’t some vague intellectual conceit invented by radical feminists to pass the time in between trips to the Birkenstock store. It’s an actual humanitarian crisis, and it has actual consequences, even for you, even if you say it doesn’t."
Twisty Faster (via femalestruggle)
An Open Letter To Straight, White, Christian Men
Dear Straight, White, Christian Men,
It has recently come to my attention that some of you may seem to think that some portion of your identity is under attack, be it by the “lame stream media,” the liberals, the secularists, the gub’ment, or the ghost of Ted Kennedy.
I’m here to assure you that it is, in fact, not.
To paraphrase Jon Stewart, you seem to be confusing “war” with “not getting everything you want all the time.” Because, you see, even though you are represented incredibly disproportionately in positions of power, thereare other people in this world who are different than you. And sometimes, those people deserve to have some attention paid to their wants, needs, and even rights. I know, I know, that’s scary. But don’t worry! You still hold the lions share of the power, and that’ll be the case for some time.
And Christians, don’t worry. Your religion is safe. I mean sure, some people think that its not okay for you to tell others what to do based on your religious views, but you’re still well over-represented in Congress, and there have been a record number of laws proposed and passed that implant your religious beliefs firmly in the uterus of every American woman. As an atheist that is about to be living in a state that says I can’t hold public office because of my religious beliefs, I have a hard time taking someone in the religious majority seriously who complains about religious persecution. That’s not religious persecution. I pinky promise.
"What is really being sold in a pornographic film? It’s a conception of sexuality that Dworkin identified— it is not just sex on film. It is sex presented in the context of domination and subordination. Pornography does not just eroticize or sexualize male domination over women. It eroticizes racism. It eroticizes every power dynamic that you can imagine. Think of any power dynamic that you know where there is a hierarchy. I can guarantee you that there is a pornographic film that eroticizes that dynamic."
male/female, white/poc, employer/employee, parent/child, etc…it is a sick sick industry.
i haven’t seen any sex-positive feminists defending racism as a valid “kink” yet (funny), but there’s still time.
edit: i HAVE NOW. nazi kink, for real.
and i read a good argument for the concept of “full-time” “slavery/ownership” in BDSM being inherently racist.(via discosherpa)
If you’ve gained weight, it just means there’s more of you to smash the patriarchy with.
"I felt that I was deeply masochistic, but that my masochism was not personal - each woman I knew lived out deep masochism. I wanted to find out why…From that beginning I looked at other pornography, fairy tales, one thousand years of Chinese footbinding, and the slaughter of nine million witches. I learned something about the nature of the world which had been hidden from me before - I saw a systematic despisal of women that permeated every institution of society, every cultural organ, every expression of human being. And I saw that I was a woman, a person who met that systemic despisal on every street corner, in every living room, in every human interchange."
Andrea Dworkin, Our Blood (via indigenousfeminist)
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.
phoetiquette asked: Hey. So this really is genuine curiosity, not a troll or a challenge, but can you elaborate on why/how misogyny in ‘black’ music is a product of racism?
You see, white d00dz set up this thing called the patriarchy a long time ago. We all live under it. We actively try to tear it down, but that hasn’t happened yet. In the patriarchy, masculinity is seen as ideal. At the same time, we live in a racist society (also set up by white d00dz, btw). In this racist society, white is seen as the ideal. Now think about black males growing up. We’re simultaneously told that masculinity is the most important thing a person can have, but we’re also told we can never be quite as good as a white man. After all, many of us don’t even have fathers at home, and if we do, we mostly see them working menial jobs that come with little to no respect, almost none of that awesome masculinity the patriarchy is constantly telling them they need.
So, we develop this overly masculine culture to compensate for it. We can never compare to white men in the masculinity factor (which, again, the patriarchy is telling us is the most important thing ever) because we’re black (and, again, the racist society is telling us that white > black), so this overly masculine culture attacks anything the patriarchy tells us is less masculine than us: women, gays, trans* folks, non-athletic people, etc.
And then we make music. We make music about our culture, our culture which we want so badly to believe is our own, but has been shaped so much by the patriarchy and by racism. That music then reflects the negative things that have been ingrained in us by the systems white people set up, so imagine how I feel when white people act like misogyny in hip-hop is the cause of misogyny? No no no, white people, don’t blame black men for the misogyny that your men have been ingraining in us since the day we were born. Deal with your shit and we’ll deal with ours, but this shit started with you, not us. Many, many African cultures were matriarchies.
"The first act of violence that patriarchy demands of males is not violence toward women. Instead patriarchy demands of all males that they engage in acts of psychic self-mutilation, that they kill off the emotional parts of themselves. If an individual is not successful in emotionally crippling himself, he can count on patriarchal men to enact rituals of power that will assault his self-esteem."
bell hooks (via cultureofresistance)