Suzanne Moore: Stupid Woman Columnist

Posted: November 10, 2011 in Feminism, misandry
Tags: , ,

Over at my Graunwatch blog I have written another response to these seemingly endless claims by feminists of endemic ‘misogyny’ online and ‘abuse’ by men of ‘female columnists and bloggers’. This has really incensed me, not least because I myself am a ‘female blogger’ and yet I am continually cast as  a ‘traitor’ to my sex, and very often called a ‘man’ (as an insult).

I am including here the section of my post about misandry and how it is denied as even existing by many feminists and their supporters:

There is another word beginning with ‘m’ forming on my lips as I type this: ‘misandry’.

But oh, if we so much as dare suggest that this line that men are nasty abusers of women constitutes ‘man -hating’ we are called … misogynists. As Dorian Lynskey tweeted to Suzanne Moore earlier today:

Someone who Graunwatch admires enormously, and who, apparently Suzanne Moore also admires, Mark Simpson, has had a few things to say about misandry.

Simpson, in an article reviewing a book on the subject, termed misandry ‘the acceptable prejudice’ because nobody bats an eyelid when it is employed. He wrote:

‘Quiet Riot Girl has kindly brought to my attention the vogue online for dismissing anyone who suggests that men might face sexism as well as women with the retort: ‘what about the menz?’And it isn’t just feminists using this school-ground approach.

It’s a rather telling phrase because it tries to project the childishness of the people deploying it against the ones they want to shut up. Ironically, it also seems to depend on the ‘patriarchal’ notion of shaming the whining boy who doesn’t just sup it up ‘like a man’.

Never one to miss an opportunity to whine – or annoy feminists – I thought I’d post this review I did a few years back of a book which argues that abuse and libel of men as a sex is not only acceptable but de rigeur.

Men, say the authors, have become society’s official scapegoats and held responsible for all wickedness, including that done by women they have deluded or intimidated. Women are society’s official victims and held responsible for all good, including that done by men they have influenced or converted’.

Maybe Mark Simpson is just a ‘self-pitying woman-hating cock’. But I don’t think so. And I don’t think Ms Moore has read his work carefully enough, or given it the respect it deserves, because Simpson’s thesis is a direct and strong challenge to Moore’s whiny, misandrist feminism…

My piece ends with this (included here to explain the title):

I called this piece ‘Suzanne Moore: Stupid Woman Columnist’ quoting one of the ‘thousands’ of hate letters she has received over the course of her career. I of course don’t really think she is stupid. On the contrary she is very intelligent and very clever at getting people to think she is the ‘sensible’ voice of feminism. But she does not fool me. She does not ‘silence’ me either and I will continue to challenge her misandrist, victim feminism wherever I see it. I hope you do too.

  1. Carecrow says:

    Lynskey’s twitter feed contains some very strong bigotry:

    “the word [misandry] is, with a few exceptions, favoured by bitter misogynists.”

    “no columnist would equate misandry and misogyny because there’s no equivalence. It’s absurd.”

    “In the dictionary entry for misandry it has a note at the end: “Only used by self-pitying woman-hating cocks.”

    The attempt to re-define ‘misandry’ to mean ‘misogyny’ isn’t that surprising (we have already seen this week the attempt to redefine ‘troll’ to mean ‘men’). What surprises me about Lynskey’s output is the brazen dismissal that misandry even exists. There isn’t even any evidence of the whimpering concession that a lot of people make when they accompany an accusation of derailment with ‘well, I never said men *don’t* face sexism I’m just not talking about that right now’.

    What I find so confusing is that he is totally oblivious to his own misogyny in his other comments:

    “the people abusing male writers online are usually men too. Probably the same men. It’s not women.”

    “I can’t take you seriously if you think women are just as abusive online as men.”

    A belief in equality comes with a belief that men and women are equally capable in every aspect of behaviour and character.

    I wonder if he read Caroline Farrow’s response ( to his own colleagues piece in the Guardian where she recalls:

    “Some of the nastiest, most insidious, most hurtful comments have been from women. The two people who have caused me the most online grief over the past year have been women. Their motivations are complex, but the stuff from the woman has been more threatening (the death at the hands of the rusty scissors comment was a woman) and more personal.” (I realise I posted this in another comment on this blog but I am not above repeating myself).

    Being stabbed in the vagina to death by a pair of rusty scissors as your unborn child is forcibly and brutally aborted? Yeah, Lynskey, that’s not as abusive as anything a man could say is it?

  2. clarence says:

    A “belief in equality” is not the same as a belief in sameness. And it does not have to include “equal culpability” in every aspect of behavior or character.

    Taken as groups men and women display different strengths and weaknesses. Thus, to be an equalist I don’t have to believe that women are as likely to rape men as men are to rape women. All I have to do is want the women who do rape men to be held equally as culpable.

    On to the subject at hand, the reason that people such as Lynskey are wont to deny misandry is that by erasing the term they get to keep to their polar opposites theory of gender where all blame is placed on men. This is where he gets his influence and power from, there is no doubt he’s going to defend that. There might also be a bit of cowardice involved -notice how few male “feminists” dare to rock the boat. I always respect the few who do more when I see that happen.

  3. Jonathan says:

    Personally, I have a lot of sympathy for Suzanne Moore regarding the vitriol sent by certain men towards female bloggers. Yes, it often is very nasty.

    But as QRG points out, men hardly have a monopoly on this. For instance, the stuff that affects me personally comes mostly from a particular (albeit small) group of women – anti-trans feminists – and they can be very much as nasty.

  4. Henry says:

    I wonder if one of the reasons for the current kerfuffle about misogyny online is that – what with all these frustrating side issues like financial meltdown and economic catastrophe distracting us – the numbers of people paying attention to feminist blogs has been even smaller than usual (perhaps only the cranks are left!) The sisters got worried about this and cried “once more unto the breach”

    Or it could be vaguely related to what is going on with the Labour leadership in this country, I suppose. Shame to bring party politics into this but it’s quite interesting in this case

    • I don’t know if feminist blogs are losing readers/interest tbh Henry. But yes I think radfem ideas are influencing more mainstream feminism/politics.

      I saw a senior Labour MP offer support to the ‘female bloggers’ on twitter so she was taken in!

      • redpesto says:

        I don’t think it’s about ‘losing’ readers; it’s more a question thinking that – as in the Fawcett Society’s campaigning – gender issues (i.e. women) come first and the economy is just a subset of that, as if the ‘Occupy’ movement is (or ought to be) Greenham Common without the nukes. If women’s issues are instead a subset of the bigger economic crisis, having a ‘feminist’ position isn’t what’s driving the campaigning – think Naomi ‘No Logo’ Klein rather than Naomi ‘Beauty Myth’ Wolf.

        As for radical feminism influencing the mainstream, apart from the usual suspects trying to be ‘gatekeepers’ over at the Guardian, I suspect it’s more about a simplistic ‘vulgar feminist’ analysis that assumes being female somehow makes a woman a feminist and therefore automatically right in all things. It’s lazy ‘sugar n spice’/’battle of the sexes’ stuff where the women always end up as the good guys.

    • redpesto says:

      Henry – Charlotte Vere is a former Tory party candidate. WomenOn (‘… the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown’?) is her think tank project (i.e. anything Philip ‘Red Toryism’ Blond can do, I can do with women). Vere wants to the Tories to recognise that they have a ‘women problem’, but somehow thinks she can address that without any recourse to feminism in any form. So in this context accusing Harman of ‘radical feminism’ is just name-calling. There are plenty of problems with Harman’s take on feminism, but I don’t think Vere is the best person to articulate them.

  5. Ginkgo says:

    This notion that women are not as violent as men is a peculiarly Anglosphere trope. It seems especially Victorian and Romantic to me. If oyu tried to say something along those lines in chian oyu would just be met by blank incomprehension. The culture is full of women doing horrible things to other women and to men. Just standard data.

    Ci Xi, the Empress Dowager, had her daughter-in-law not just killed but thrown down a well to die. They show tourists the well on tours of the Forbidden City. That was only a hundred years ago. Back in Han times one consort, jeaous of her rival’s son, had the kid poisoned and had her rival’s arms and legs cut off before she was thrown into a latrine. This kind of thing is a standard plot device. There was that bit in Raise the Red Lantern where the Second Wife and the Third Wife Wife got pregnant at the same time, and the race was on to see who would pop first and have the senior son. Second poisoned Third to get her to abort, but failed. It was thrown in as character development, a completely plausible detail, not as some major hinge of the plot.

    • Hi is that Jim btw?

      I agree. The Victorian analogy is mentioned here:

      I find it frustrating how feminists like to assert their ‘strength’ and sometimes even their ‘crudeness’ but they still *always* play the innocent weak victim.

      • Ginkgo says:

        Yeah, it’s me.

        “I find it frustrating how feminists like to assert their ‘strength’ and sometimes even their ‘crudeness’ but they still *always* play the innocent weak victim.”

        It’s a figleaf of thier imagination. All kinds of people do it. Newly rich and successful people often make a point of talking as down market as they can, for a variety of reasons, but mainly to convince themselves they are still keepin’ it real or some such shit. For feminists it’s a way to act out their macho fantasies and still have the Damsel archetype to flee to at need.

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