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John The Other debates John The Other on MRA misogyny, loses

John Hembling: Open mouth, insert foot.

John Hembling: Open mouth, insert foot.

So the other day someone asked the Men’s Rights subreddit “Why do people think you guys hate women?”

There were a lot of ridiculous answers to that question, but one of the most ridiculous (and one of the most highly upvoted) responses came from our old friend John Hembling, the blabby Canadian videoblogger and A Voice for Men “Editor in Chief” also known for some dopey reason as John The Other. He explained:

johntheother [-37] 29 points 3 days ago (36|7)  They dont actually think we hate women. The accusation is a derailing tactic, designed to push the topic towards a defensive posture, and requiring proof from us (MRAs) that "hatred of women" is a false claim.  When used, it takes the discussion away from real issues such as suicide rates, homelessness, infant genital mutilation and so on.  It's very very effective, because it plays on the fact that almost all men, including MRAs are basically decent. And the social stigma of a public perception of hatred of women is painful. To overcome this tactic, it is necessary to discard a self image relying on consensus approval. Tough to do because we are social animals. But to disarm the attack of "you hate women" it's necessary to develop a strong self identity which takes no account of consensus conferral of approval. Be the "bad man", and let only your own internal compas of right and wrong guide you.

Really, John? Because I have something like 1200 posts on this blog here that would seem to suggest that, no, a lot of MRAs (and PUAs and MGOTWers) really, honestly, sincerely, and sometimes even proudly, hate women. (Ok, a certain percentage of my posts are actually about kitties, but still, I invite you to spend a month or so going through the archives, John; you may learn a thing or two.)

But, actually, there’s no need to take my word on the subject. Because if you really want to know why so many people think MRAs hate women, I invite you to take a look at and a listen to this video by a prominent MRA. Seems pretty obvious that this guy hates women, wouldn’t you agree?

Oh, by the way, this guy is you. [TRIGGER WARNING for people who are not John Hembling and who might be disturbed by a smirking asshole literally laughing about rape. Seriously. This is bad even by his standards.]

Oh, another by the way:  Hembling complained about feminists “doxing” him long after he made the video that was excerpted here in which he gave out his name. That’s right, he put his name out in his own video, then complained that feminists were violating his privacy and basically terrorizing him by ever mentioning his name. Until he started going by his real name again.

Before I go, here’s another particularly inane contribution to the Reddit discussion:

AloysiusC 6 points 3 days ago (9|3)  Many of the female feminists have deep inferiority issues about their gender and, instead of addressing those issues, they take the easy path by blaming the world which results in them seeing misogyny literally everywhere. Not just us, but all of society. Basically anything that isn't explicitly celebrating women triggers their misogyny alarm.  There's more to it.  Because they see it as a competition between the sexes (that's what an inferiority complex requires), they cannot handle anything positive being said about men. This too is, to them, misogyny.  Meanwhile many of the male feminists also deep down believe women are inferior but they're motivated by a sense of guilt - and they project their views onto other men. They simply can't imagine a man not seeing women as lesser creatures because that's how THEY feel deep down.  Because of these motivations, there will never be a way to be an MRA without getting misogyny accusations - no matter how much we walk on eggshells.

Huh. MRAs certainly have a most unusual way of “walking on eggshells.” Indeed, to this outside observer it looks a lot less like “walking on eggshells” and more like “angry toddler having an endless stompy tantrum.”

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Posted on June 25, 2013, in a voice for men, creepy, grandiosity, hate, irony alert, johntheother, lying liars, mansplaining, misogyny, MRA, rape, rape culture, straw feminists, taking pleasure in women's pain, the eternal solipsism of the MRA mind, the sound of his own voice and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 270 Comments.

  1. Well, I’m a scientist, so I know that you can’t go around only believing things that are provably true.

  2. What LBT said, Nepenthe.

    More importantly, you missed my point. I’m saying physical data and all the rest of the “scientifically measurable” stuff isn’t relevant. It’s not going to be able to measure this, it doesn’t touch it. Saying that makes something untrue is a pretty damn big jump unless you insist that what we know physically now is all there is to know, and that such measurements are the only things that matter.

    I believe what I experience is true. I have no way of presenting evidence that would satisfy someone for who this material world is all there is. That doesn’t mean I don’t care whether it’s true or not; I do, very much, because my life with Louis matters a fuckton more than most other things in my life. But I’m not about to decide “Oh well, it can’t be true” simply because it doesn’t chime in with the physical sciences, let alone basing its importance on those.

  3. How is it an impossible standard? It’s perfectly possible, given the existence of God-like being. Would you care to offer an explanation of why the Bible needs to be interpreted? Is it because God didn’t know what would happen if an ambiguous Bible was written? Is it because God can’t do anything about it? Or is it because God doesn’t care if we little ants slaughter each other by the millions over different interpretations of the Bible? Which of the Os do you want to drop?

    And the standard is not arbitrary. It directly follows from the ascribed attributes of God. Note that I did not say anything about non-triple-O deities. The fact that Greek myths, for example, are inconsistent says nothing about their truth value because no one claims that those deities are omniscient, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent.

    The standard is arbitrary because you fuckin’ made it up. There was no reason it was necessary on any level except as a stick for you to use to beat religious people with. And you’ve had to build an enormous stack of assumptions in order for this to make even the least bit of sense (such as that God pretty much sat down and wrote the Bible himself, and that violence wouldn’t happen if it weren’t religiously inspired, and for that matter that anyone here even believes in an omniscient/omnipotent/omnibenevolent deity).

    I can’t believe I have to say this, but the Bible is ambiguous because it is written with words. Made up by people. Who are not omniscient. To communicate with each other. As part of a language. Which is not completely free of ambiguity. Because it is spoken by people. People are not perfect at either sending or receiving communication. Therefore ambiguity will always exist.

    (And why on earth is this the route you’re going with the omniscient/omnipotent/omnibenevolent argument, anyway? There are so many better tacks.)

  4. RE: Kittehserf

    I’ve had to argue with singlets before who demand I prove my existence. Oddly, they never seem to like it much when I tell them THEY need to prove their existence to ME. Apparently since I’m the outlier, I’m the one obligated to answer a question they can’t.

  5. Apparently since I’m the outlier, I’m the one obligated to answer a question they can’t.

    Consciousness is one of those classic ineffable things. Like whether your senses are reliable; that’s another. But these things are meant to be contemplated on the couch with a joint in one hand and a bowl of chips in the other while going “Whoa, duuuuuude.” They are not meant for being aggressively assholish to people about; I’m sorry that people act that way to you :/

    And you have every right to throw the question right back at them!

  6. @katz

    Made up means arbitrary. Right. So all arguments ever made by humans are arbitrary because they were made up.

    Could you point out which part of my argument requires that God literally wrote the Bible? Could you point out the part that claims that violence wouldn’t happen if it weren’t religiously inspired? Do you not believe in a triple-o deity? (If you don’t why didn’t you come out with that, like, yesterday. Because then my argument is, admittedly, false.)

    As to your second paragraph, no shit sherlock. That’s obvious. That’s what you’d expect if there isn’t a god.

    I’m going this route because you wanted to talk about textual interpretation as it pertains to the Bible. Since I’m not trolling, I thought I’d post on that topic, rather than use better arguments.

    @LBT and kittehserf

    No way am I touching that.

  7. Oddly, they never seem to like it much when I tell them THEY need to prove their existence to ME.

    Oooh, I am liking this strategy.

    “You think I/we need to prove Louis’s existence to you? He’s been around a hell of a lot longer than you have; how about you proving yourself to him?”

  8. This is why I think this conversation (that’s been had many times before) is pointless. There’s no possibility of people coming to an agreement, because the underlying way of looking at certain things is too different, and I’m not sure why “OK, so we don’t agree, and your perspective seems as odd to me as mine does to you – pass the bong” isn’t an option.

    I can understand where the urge to suggest that if someone thought things through more they’d agree with you comes from, but I also think that it’s a good idea to be aware of how that can come across (and, again, how pointless trying to talk people out of their perspective ultimately is).

  9. RE: katz

    I think the next time someone tries to pull that on me, I’m going to do the same thing I did when orion asked what I was, and start claiming how I’m a reincarnation of the Golem of Prague, raised from my atticy grave to fight assholery in the world.

  10. Made up means arbitrary. Right. So all arguments ever made by humans are arbitrary because they were made up.

    *facepalm* So much reading comprehension fail. Go back and look at that paragraph again.

    By the way, is Cassandra allowed back from her thread exile yet? Because I’m curious as to your justification for ordering her to leave a thread in which you were complaining about people silencing atheists.

  11. start claiming how I’m a reincarnation of the Golem of Prague,

    The Golem Possum of Prague. (Artwork! That needs artwork!)

  12. Golems live in attics? Aren’t they a bit heavy to be upstairs?

  13. Okay, WHAT is wordpress doing now? Stop eating my comments!

    I guess if a golem was possum sized it’d be okay.

    I found a pic that looks all too much like a possum golem, or perhaps a golem possum.

    Scary.

  14. PS – The above comment is not to be taken as an indication that I think golems are really real and there are many of them in Prague right now. Just so we don’t end up having to argue about that too.

  15. I’m not sure why “OK, so we don’t agree, and your perspective seems as odd to me as mine does to you – pass the bong” isn’t an option.

    That is my general modus operandi and the reason I pepper my speech with a lot of “IMO” and often reference my own biases. For reals, if I stray from this and start acting like “You MUST believe the thing I believe because it’s true otherwise I wouldn’t believe it!”, I hope people will tell me to knock it off.

    Once you’re in this mindset, you can actually have interesting conversations, because you can learn about other people’s beliefs and hear different ideas without the whole thing being polluted with a constant need to PROVE OTHER PEOPLE WRONG!

    I blame the lack of digital marijuana. Someone must develop HTTHCTP (hypertext THC transfer protocol).

  16. @katz

    Nice dodge of the meat of the post. Very impressive. The judges give it a 8/10 although you get marks off for addressing half of the substantive remarks instead of ignoring the first two paragraphs, which go together, entirely.

    I’d also like to know where I “ordered” Cassandra to leave the thread. I’ll have to provide that info to tech support when I explain that some weird browser glitch is hiding my comments from me.

  17. The above comment is not to be taken as an indication that I think golems are really real and there are many of them in Prague right now. Just so we don’t end up having to argue about that too.

    …I think we may have discovered the interpretation-free text.

  18. For crying out aloud, Nepenthe, you’re doing a great job of ignoring nuance and tone and all the rest of an online conversation here – your comments to Cassandra last night were very much “piss off if you don’t like it” and the fact that three people read ‘em that way says the “Oh, tell me where I said that?” line isn’t convincing. You’re seriously talking like a troll now, and addressing katz as if she is.

  19. I’m not so sure digital weed is a good idea. Do you know how hard that would make it to meet deadlines?

  20. The only reasons golems aren’t in Prague is ‘cos they all turned into ring-tailed possum golems and migrated here.

    Trufax!

  21. Totally OT but I’ve always wanted to go to Prague. It’s supposed to be a great bar city.

  22. And if we’re going with the “if I didn’t literally say those exact words, it didn’t happen” standard of evidence, such that “No one’s stopping you from leaving, you know” isn’t telling someone to leave, then you’re going to have to find a quote where someone literally said “atheists must be silent,” as you claimed about elebenty bajillion times yesterday.

    (Disclaimer: It was not literally elebenty bajillion times. I am using a device known as hyperbole.)

  23. When exactly did CassandraSays’ conversational preferences become so important here? If someone came in and whined on and on about how they hate when people post cat videos, would the person who suggested that there’s a wide world of non-cat video threads be yelled at for ordering them to go away?

  24. I’m not so sure digital weed is a good idea. Do you know how hard that would make it to meet deadlines?

    And then no one would ever remember to include their attachments!

  25. Yes. I told CassandraSays to leave. Because she wanted the conversation to be over. That’s hardly an order or an exile or whatever bullshit you’d like to pretend it is.

  26. Cassandra wasn’t whining. You really are getting objectionable about this, Nepenthe, and I’m not sure why. I seriously don’t see ATHEIST OPPRESSION OMG happening on this blog.

  27. Totally OT but I’ve always wanted to go to Prague. It’s supposed to be a great bar city.

    I went there when, ironically, I was a teenager. It seemed cool, but I’ve heard it’s an awesome place to hang out as a grown-up. Very young, very hip, very single.

  28. Also rather tall people, though, right? I’m worried it would be like when I went to Amsterdam and felt like I was in a chapter from Gulliver’s Travels.

  29. Looks like height is about an inch over US and AU; about 2 inches over UK and NZ. And…in the Netherlands, men are over 6 feet on average? Did not know that.

  30. Someone pass the digital bong. I’m still fighting with excel over headers because someone is apparently ALL THE POLITICAL VIEWS.

    Also, that possum thing is creepy.

  31. I may come to regret this, but you’ll all know in a couple of days anyways…half the blog checked non-religious beliefs. (Including the person who checked fifty-fucking-eight religions/beliefs)

  32. I guess I think of Czech people as tall because all the ones I know of are either models or hockey players. Still taller than me, though.

    Holland is the land of the giants. I wandered through the airport feeling like a kid who’d lost her mom at the mall at Christmas.

  33. I don’t have a digi-bong, so here is a song about weed instead.

  34. Geez, I am an atheist because I find no evidence of God or gods in my own life and experiences.
    I have no desire to argue anyone into agreeing with me who does not.

  35. KFOG in San Francisco has been playing this one at 4:20 on Fridays for as long as I can remember.

  36. Gotta have it’s own line!

    And thank you, I’m 2 min from having all the data in a useable spreadsheet that can be math’ed and shit.

    Well, 5 min because EXCEL KEEPS CRASHING!!

  37. Oh, is that what makes it not work?

  38. I’m pretty sure, yeah.

    I’m also completely beat. The data is all in one usable spreadsheet, will deal with it more once I sleeeeeeeep.

    G’night.

  39. WalkingStickBug

    @ Argenti Aertheri
    Oh man, your putting all of that in Excel? Yikes! Is that going to work correctly? I would think you would have to use a database for all of those questions that can have multiple answers since excel is just going to give you one cell per row and column for an answer. Unless all of the possible answers had its own column and everyone had a Y/N possibility for each individual filling out the survey. Holy Moly your giving me data nightmares.

  40. It exported with each answer as a column. In words, not Y/N — I’ve gotten the combinations for each answer worked out (lots of copy and pasting!) and gave it usable headers. And split it into sets of 500 answers since excel keeps spitting on it.

    Tomorrow first up will be making a spreadsheet (probably pages in a workbook) for each set of questions, then finding the outliers => trolls. Then maybe I can get to the fun stuff like charts!

  41. And now I really am going to bed, as my “tomorrow” starts in <3 hours (argh)

  42. @Argenti – yeah, the possum thing had me going WTF? when I saw it. Very golemish.

    I’d have expected more people on the blog to tick non-religious beliefs, actually. Right now I can’t recall if I did or not (it was that definition of religious that tripped me up). Also, secular humanist yes, when it comes to things like separation of church and state.

    In this country I could probably identify as non-religious because I don’t worship Australian Rules football.

  43. Argenti, thanks again for doing this, seriously.

    I’m not going to touch this whole religion thing. As I’ve probably said before, I’m an agnostic because I don’t believe in god but what the hell do I know?

  44. I may come to regret this, but you’ll all know in a couple of days anyways…half the blog checked non-religious beliefs. (Including the person who checked fifty-fucking-eight religions/beliefs)

    …that is one CONFUSED troll.

    It might be MRAL. And he thought it was ‘check one for the beliefs of each sock-puppet.’

  45. Oh, actually, maybe I want to touch the religion thing, but sort of differently. Who was it who was talking about being a unitarian universalist? I’ve looked at that b/c the whole “we welcome everyone, including atheists” bit sounds cool, but it just seems … really really Christian, in form and structure and culture if not necessarily belief. And sometimes belief: The UU church nearest me is actually a church that’s affiliated both with UU and with the united church of christ; it serves communion, etc.

    Just curious, really.

  46. I didn’t tick secular humanist because I thought it was a particular brand of atheism. If it just means supporting separation of church and state, I’m totally for it.

    Guess I should have googled a bit before not ticking certain boxes… too late now. :-)

  47. I got to ‘politics,’ and I was like, democratic socialist or socialist democrat? Fuck it, they’re both better than what we’ve got, I’ll take ‘em. And I checked them both.

  48. I wonder if there will ever be an argument that doesn’t descend into something like this:

    Person A and Person B are having a conversation about population X, one is pro, one is against:

    Person A: I like population X because.

    Person B: Well, I have a criticism about population X. It is *specific criticism about some problematic aspect*.

    Person C: Ooooh, so that means *broad generalization and blatant strawman about population X*.

    Everyone else: Wtf? How did you get from Person B to Person C?? That’s not at all what was said??

  49. The fact that Greek myths, for example, are inconsistent says nothing about their truth value because no one claims that those deities are omniscient, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent.

    Which certainly made them more believable to me, back when I was worshipping them. The fact that they might not answer your prayers, or even notice you at all, was well documented.

    I’m still not convinced that theist privilege is a thing, because “theist” is such a broad category and extremely heterogeneous. Christian privilege is certainly a thing, and I think everyone else benefits or suffers by how far their views are from the Christian mainstream.

  50. SittieKitty — probably not.

    Re: half checked non-religious — I should’ve clarified, that’s half the responses to the question (which was check any), not half of us. So once I account for multiple replies it might be higher. I totally blew getting up early >.<

    David — you see my email? Opinion?

  51. One thought on the theist priviledge thing, that I’m going to try not Godwin’ing on — Jewish priviledge isn’t really a thing, and the farther you get into things like keeping kosher, the harder it gets to do things like eating in restaurants, at parties, etc.

  52. Argenti, just sent you an email, sorry about the delay, sounds fine.

  53. @Howard

    …that is one CONFUSED troll.

    Or a really adamant “all gods are real” polytheist.

    @David

    Who was it who was talking about being a unitarian universalist?

    *waves*

    I’ve looked at that b/c the whole “we welcome everyone, including atheists” bit sounds cool, but it just seems … really really Christian, in form and structure and culture if not necessarily belief.

    Our roots are Christian, and we definitely structure our worship in a particularly New England Protestant way, but it really depends on which church you go to (each congregation is self-determining). At my church, we only talk about Jesus on Easter and Christmas, and even then he’s treated like a wise prophet. Believe me, if it felt Christian to me, I wouldn’t go at all. Another congregation I’ve attended has a really Pagan bent, while the congregation in my new neighborhood is pretty heavily Christian. It’s all down to the culture of the congregation. That said, UU is still pretty religious in the sense of having a formal structure and a set of principles and “sources of wisdom”, but the spiritual stuff is left up to the individual.

    The UU church nearest me is actually a church that’s affiliated both with UU and with the united church of christ; it serves communion, etc.

    The UUA and UCC recently formed a sort of partnership over their shared liberalness, and there are some joint congregations, but it’s not like we’ve adopted their theology across the board or declared ourselves Christian or anything.

  54. and even then he’s treated like a wise prophet

    I should add that UUs tend to use “prophet” to mean “someone who had something important and world-changing to say”. This includes Jesus and Muhammad and Moses, but also MLK Jr and Rachel Carson. I add this just for clarity.

  55. @Howard

    …that is one CONFUSED troll.

    Or a really adamant “all gods are real” polytheist.

    B-but, he checked the “no gods” box too!

    This is just like that novel I wrote that one time.

    Damn, I gotta polish that up and shop it around.

  56. Sorry, last point on me and UU: the religious elements are pretty much last on the lost of why I go to my church – the fact that they share my politics is top, and the community is second (this is why I don’t really think of myself as a UU – I’m just someone who attends First Parish in Brookline)

  57. Howard is correct. Xenu is also involved.

  58. RE: CassandraSays

    Golems live in attics? Aren’t they a bit heavy to be upstairs?

    The Golem of Prague is supposed to be buried in an attic, where he was put down after doing his job too well.

    RE: Kittehserf

    Well, THAT certainly belongs on wtftaxidermy, for sure. Creepy!

    RE: emilygoddess

    My husband’s Southern Baptist, but the last church he got on well with was a UCC church. They were quite nice people! On the whole very old.

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