A Voice For QRG At A Voice For Men

Posted: September 7, 2012 in Blogging, Feminism, Freedom of Speech, Masculinities, misandry, Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

The surest aid in combating the male’s disease of self-contempt is to be loved by a clever woman – Nietzsche

It is now well-documented that in my -frequent – arguments with feminism, my ‘sisters’ sometimes end up resorting to calling me a ‘man’ to dismiss and demonise my criticisms of their dogma. So, if the cap fits…

Recently I have made connections with some of the bloggers and activists who run A Voice For Men website. Loosely self-defined as ‘MRAs’ (men’s rights activists) these men – and a few women allies- provide a non-man-hating perspective in amongst the cacophony of misandry that is ‘mainstream’ feminist gender culture.

I like the subtitle to AVfM – ‘masculine counter-theory in the age of misandry’. It succinctly turns on its head the received wisdom that suggests it is misogyny and sexism against women that is the biggest gendered problem in society.

So I was delighted to be asked to contribute to the site. So far I have written two pieces. The first took quite a lot of soul-searching and emotional effort as it describes my break with feminism, that I grew up believing was the only logical, and moral lens through which to analyse gender. My essay is called:

Leaving The Sisterhood – A Recovering Feminist Speaks

The second is an edited post I initially put here at QRG HQ. (Thanks to  Laura Agustin for feedback which led to a few changes). It’s entitled:

Second Wave Feminism Is Dying (Slowly)

I only found the Nietzsche quote today, and I don’t know its context. But I like its suggestion that masculinity suffers from a pathological bad rep that needs to be transformed. And the suggestion that women must be involved in that shift. This is subtly but vitally different from the feminist concept that men themselves are ‘bad’ and need to change (with the help of enlightened feminist women). My view is that all that needs to be altered is how we LOOK at men and masculinity…

While I go back to my Nietzsche to see if I haven’t read too much into it, I hope you take a look at my posts at AvFM and the rest of the site.

The future is bright. The future is mixed-gendered!

_______________

Thanks again to @deanesmay for the encouragement to write for AvFM

Comments
  1. Dean Esmay says:

    You are utterly welcomed and loved there. The number of women is more than the few you might suspect. They are mothers, sisters, partners, wives, daughters, who have seen what this society can do to chew men up and spit them out in ways that go far beyond what most people notice (internalized misandry is rampant).

    They have a very large and growing audience and I know that you’re very welcome there. There’s the oddball here or there who’s got some anger issues with women but far, far fewer than almost anyone seems to think. (Everyone assumes it’s a rampant forum for misogyny–yeah right, because criticism feminism = misogyny? Whatever.)

    Are you still going to go to go to Glen Poole’s conference? I wish I was in the UK so I could attend!

    I love the Nietzche quote.

    • QRG says:

      hi Dean

      I am glad there are more women involved. I hope they speak up! It would give the feminists something to chew on to know there are more women who don’t subscribe automatically to their dogma

      I dont think I will go to the Men and Boys conference in November. It looks a bit too ‘service’ oriented to me. I prefer to have the argument first I think and to discuss gender issues rather than focus on ‘help’ etc. I know men and boys need services as much as women and girls do but I have many problems with some support services such as ‘rape’ and ‘domestic violence’ ones etc.

      XQRG

      • Dean Esmay says:

        I think I might also add that the name “A Voice For Men” should probably not be taken as “voice given only to men.” But rather, voice in the positive sense of being “for” something or someone. And against those who spread hatred of them.

        Of course some self-described feminists furiously and angrily deny hating men, with the classic “why, some of my best friends are men!” defense. But you know the truth: whether it’s old-school tradtionalists or new-school “feminism,” hatred of the male of the species is a binding, unstated underlying force that’s toxic.

  2. Paul Elam says:

    Hi,

    Your articles and your clear voice are a most welcome addition to AVfM. As Dean said, we do have occasional men that express anger toward women, generally speaking. But we also know that we have been able to help some of these men redirect those feelings and often reconsider them.

    The numbers of women contributing to the site are steadily increasing, bringing us a diverse but unified chorus for a more reasoned and balanced view of sexual politics.

    Again, thank you, QRG, and keep up the great work.

  3. Matthew says:

    I think knowing many trans men and women illuminates these issues very clearly. We don’t know what gender it is now and forever in question. Long live the people’s movement!!!

  4. Congrats on getting your ideas out to a larger group of readers!

    I still have many ideological differences with many MRA’s so I personally don’t fit into that camp….

    Nietzsche is, um, interesting, but his morality seems to be “might makes right.” He’s huge in the manosphere….

    • Matthew says:

      Hi Stoner, much of Nietzche is interpreted that way but that is a very shallow reading. You can outline some of Nietzche ideas as the will to achieve, which is not dissimilar to Maslowian psychology. Or his Eternal return can be summed up as “Live your life as if you intended everything” thereby activating your will and “agency” in your own life.

      But what may be appropriate for QRG may be the three transformations of the spirit which culminates with the slaying of the dragon. On every scale of the dragon’s body is a “Thou Shalt Not”. What Nietzche is saying in this parable is we must transgress conventional morality and thinking to not only become a mature creative human being but to actually become a TRULY ethical human being. He calls this becoming a wheel propelled from its own center, becoming your own personal creator.

      • Hello Mathew,

        It’s been years since I read Beyond Good and Evil and The Antichrist.

        I’ll admit, I was totally lost with Thus Spoke Zarathustra-that’s one I gave up on….

        I don’t have much formal training with philosophy, so it very well may have been a superficial reading….

        However, I do recall that he seemed to prescribe a morality for the powerful to do what makes them more powerful….

        Seemed to me similar to telling a business man to do what makes them richer (regardless of the consequences to others.)

        • Matthew says:

          Yes you are correct BUT one of the most fruitful ways of understanding Nietzche is to know to some extent he is a reaction to Schopenhauer’s point of view. Schopenhauer believed one of the greatest realizations one can make is “I and the other are one” which is an advocacy for an innate human empathy and shared human suffering (in German Mitleid). While Nietzche saw this as yet another impediment to what will later be called in psychology “individuation” or will to power. Both ideas for me are somewhat incomplete. One fosters a sense of codependcy on the “herd mind” (Schopenhauer) while the other may individuate itself from collective thinking/feeling Yet it also never returns and speaks to collective humanity (like that of a Bodisatvah in Buddhism).

          In my opinion any artist or writer of real importance needs to go beyond collective thinking/feeling (such as the collective thinking in feminism). Feminism and Gayism are in some sense feel good theories. But also in my opinion individuated artist/writers need to “return” to being a human being and empathize with the greater collective and collective suffering.

          The polemical and binary writings of feminists and gay writers IMO creates a sort of tribal thinking of exclusion. Here feminism and gayism can not come to Schopenhauer’s realization because it actually excludes the other and does not empathize. And in a sense an individual who is a “recovering feminist” can not gain a broader perspective without overcoming the tribal myopic dogmas of feminism she must become an Übermensch.

        • Matthew says:

          In this sense IMO good postmodern theory needs to incorporate both primary identification and “Otherness” and make a move out of binary polemical thinking towards greater and greater inclusion. Feminism often operates out Of opposition. It poses as “postmodern” and yet its dynamics are akin to ancient Western tribalism. In this case “woman” becomes a tribe. It wishes to destroy the patriarchy by emulating hypocritically what it perceives as patriarchal. It is in its very name a polemicism. The move towards dialogical discourse is difficult but necessary. The problem is a critique of the hypocrisy of feminism will often be viewed as polemical.

  5. Jonathan says:

    did you notice Cath Elliott (W#16) wrote briefly about your first piece:

    http://toomuchtosayformyself.com/2012/08/14/joining-the-brotherhood/

    no comment

    • QRG says:

      yes I did! I’d say that piece was gay if I thought I’d get away with it.

    • Dean Esmay says:

      I was very amused by Cath Elliot’s piece. She searches through more than 100 comments to find one guy who was over the top, and conveniently failed to note how he was the only one to say anything like that, and how multiple commenters disagreed and told him he was crazy. That was quite dishonest of her.

      There is desperation in the Sisterhood. The more shrill they are, and the more deranged they are in the illogic of the attack, the more silly and hateful they look. Obfuscation appears to be their only remaining defense.

      A simple challenge: review the articles on A Voice For Men and, aside from frequent criticism of feminism, where is the rampant misogyny? Where? Can it be pointed to? But, no conflating of “women” and “feminism,” because that’s dishonest: feminism is an ideology and it does not represent all women. And as an ideology, if it’s to be taken seriously it should be open to criticism and it should have to defend itself intellectually.

      Furthermore, no cherry-picking through the comments to find the oddball commenter here and there who’s got some anger issues. Instead, show the world the woman-hating articles and what’s woman-hating about them. I assert that it can’t be done, because it’s not there.

      No one is obligated to self-identify as a men’s rights activist. The diversity of opinion among people (female and male alike) is great, and disagreement both frequent and welcome.

  6. Clarence says:

    Have you gotten your threats of rape or murder yet, that supposedly all MRA ladies get?
    Seriously, I think Silverside pulled that out of his/her/hir/whatthefuckeva ass.

    I know where the downright misogynistic MGOTW/MRA’s etc hang out, and AVFM is not such a place. And hell, even at THOSE places -places where they think women are stupid overgrown children who shouldn’t vote and can’t be trusted to keep their word about anything – even at THOSE places calls of actual violence against women are rare. Heck, fully half the crap one can find of that type is on various MRA subreddits and even then its usually calls for violence against a particular woman due to some alleged false rape/family court/custody issue. The very worst I’ve ever seen was one guy who got banned at several places for calling for an “affirmative action” rape regime.

    Meanwhile, rad fems call for extermination, and ordinary “gender fems” speak of men day to day in such language of dehumanization and blame that if more countries had hate speech laws and those laws were equally enforced quite a few of the more popular blog feminists would end up in prison.

    The one thing Paul Elam has ever said that I cannot agree with is that if he was on a jury and there was indisputable evidence of rape he’d vote to acquit. Which is why I hope he is never on such a jury. That’s unjust by any definition of the word, and even though the current justice system is a mess, taking out that injustice on a real crime victim is disgusting.

    • Dean Esmay says:

      FYI, that is not what Paul Elam said. Here is what he did say:

      http://www.avoiceformen.com/feminism/government-tyranny/on-jury-nullification-and-rape/

      Read it in full I suggest. His position is abundantly clear and not what he’s often accused of saying.

      • Clarence says:

        Sorry Dean, but simple googling provides a slightly earlier post:
        http://www.avoiceformen.com/mens-rights/false-rape-culture/jury-duty-at-a-rape-trial-acquit/

        And Paul’s own words:
        “With this important subject in mind, I make the following pledge as an activist, and as an American that believes fully in the rule of law. Should I be called to sit on a jury for a rape trial, I vow publicly to vote not guilty, even in the face of overwhelming evidence that the charges are true.”

        Sorry, I can’t support that. I can easily be the dissenting vote in a “He said, she said”, esp since I know that often the freaking law in SOME states doesn’t let prior accusations of rape (that were tossed out of court or admitted false or just acquited, whatever) in as evidence for the claim being false and that is totally unfair. But if I have good physical evidence and/or other witnesses, I’m not going to deny a rape victim justice.

        • yup, this (among a few other things) is why I won’t be an MRA….

          and Marcotte herself was quite reprehensible with the Duke trial, don’t these ideologues care about truth and justice?

        • Dean Esmay says:

          …and yet the post I linked gives you detailed explanation for why he takes the stance that he does. That’s why it’s a later post, added to fully clarify his position. Which you might want to take into consideration.

          Not everyone agrees with his stance, but let’s be clear: he believes the government cannot be counted on to give all the evidence, and has a documented history of hiding important evidence from jurors. Therefore, even if presented with overwhelming evidence, you cannot know if that evidence is real or if it is complete. Given the countless men the Innocence Project alone has sprung from jails in the United States, proving their innocence after they were convicted based on a “beyond any reasonable doubt” standard by jurors, but later proven innocent, the question would be: why would you believe the justice system in any of these cases?

          Anyway, I suggest actually reading his remarks here to understand his position. Then make your own decision.

          http://www.avoiceformen.com/feminism/government-tyranny/on-jury-nullification-and-rape/

          • Clarence says:

            Dean:
            I read both articles when they came out.
            I’ve also been following the Innocence project for about 8 years now, and Community of the Wrongly Accused (formerly False Rape Society) since that was founded.
            This is a tremendously complicated subject.
            Are all Prosecutors unjust in how they apply the laws of their states (and lets not get into the fact that there is a separate Federal system of prosecutors in the US)? I sincerely doubt that, and the Innocence project itself says that most of its exoneration’s were not necessarily of people falsely accused (for a rape that didn’t happen), but of people wrongly accused either because of poor police lineup procedures, lack of good forensics, etc.

            The fact is, given :
            A. How the definition of rape has been expanded to , in some cases, not withdrawing fast enough (check Washington State or my own state of MD), drunk (not passed out, just inebriated) sex, etc.
            B. How many rapes are of the “he-said, she-said” variety where we don’t know who is telling the truth, but that sex occurred is not the issue, consent is
            C. The backlog, not only of rape kits, but of DNA testing for old cases like the IP does
            D. The underfunding and often corrupt nature of police run forensics labs

            We don’t have any clue as to how many rapes occur, what the rate of false accusations is, or how many rapes are really unreported.

            I suspect the answers to those questions vary by state, just as much as incentives for Prosecutorial corruption do.

          • Dean Esmay says:

            Clarence: The only thing I ever ask of an intelligent individual is that they do their due diligence before drawing a conclusion. You have quite obviously done exactly that. I salute you, too few people do that on the internet! (Or anywhere else it seems!)

        • Dean Esmay says:

          Note that I do not demand that you agree with Elam. I merely encourage you to fully understand his position and why he takes it. If after reading all of this you still feel he is wrong, that of course is entirely your right.

  7. elissa says:

    The issue is that these modern day priests are a boring lot – unlike what Nietzsche had in mind when he wrote: (from his First essay):

    ‘For with the priests everything becomes more dangerous, not only cures and remedies, but also arrogance, revenge, acuteness, profligacy, love, lust to rule, virtue, disease – but it is only fair to add that it was on the soil of this essentially priestly form, the priestly form, that man first became an interesting animal, that only here did the human soul acquire depth and become evil –‘

    Moral entrepreneurs is the phrase I’ve heard that now comes to mind.

  8. elissa says:

    Opps – fixed Nietzsche quote

    ‘For with the priests everything becomes more dangerous, not only cures and remedies, but also arrogance, revenge, acuteness, profligacy, love, lust to rule, virtue, disease – but it is only fair to add that it was on the soil of this essentially dangerous form, the priestly form, that man first became an interesting animal, that only here did the human soul acquire depth and become evil –‘

  9. Matthew says:

    Being that I am on a role with my thinking, I may as well talk again about illuminations from my personal bisexual life and struggle. Part of the reason many Gay theorists have a need to violently erase bisexuality is to maintain a special form of otherness and Gay tribalism. By doing so “Gay” maintains tribal agency. Bisexuals must not exist in order to create an identity politics in contrast to “Straight”. But Heterosexism has been institutionalized by “Straight” 150 years ago. A similar binary is maintained by Feminism. “Woman” gains agency by identifying with gender. Biphobia and Transphobia is often born out of the fear of disrupting this binary tribalism. It places sexual orientation and gender into question, thereby disrupting agency and power. If you look at this seriously “Gay” all to often gains power by coluding with Heterosexism for it is Heterosexism which has created “Gay” as an other. While feminism often coludes with “patriarchy” by maintaining essentialized ideas of gender.

    • “While feminism often coludes with “patriarchy” by maintaining essentialized ideas of gender.”

      That’s precisely what “patriarchy” is: institutionalized essentialized gender. The continuing conceptualization of that as “patriarchy” promoted feminism’s stagnation.

      “Patriarchy” is a term of patriarchy.

  10. hey Elly… a treat having that vid pop up on my screen…. you know I’m a PJH fan…. but… was it hard choosing between that one, and 50 Foot Queenie?

    Good on you for finding a new outlet for your dissident scribblings.

  11. QRG,

    a little off topic, but more hateful comments from that “dahling” og the “progressive left, Amanda Marcotte….

    http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2012/09/19/is-it-rape-if-you-dont-mean-for-it-to-be-rape/#comment-526368

    Yeah, letting these people be the dominant voice on gender is like letting David Duke and the neo nazi’s be the dominant voice on discussions of race….

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