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Men’s Rights Kontroversial Komik Kavalkade

Want to earn yourself some quick karma points on Reddit? It’s easy! Just post some terrible misogynistic comic and wait for the inevitable upvotes. Like this one, which combines some standard-issue victim-blaming rape apologism with a bit of racism and serves it all up in terribly drawn cartoon form, and collect dozens of upvotes!

XzyNpd4

Or this one, which also, er, touches on issues of race. Did I mention something about dozens of upvotes? This one got hundreds!

fTTXOEh

Yes, that’s right, a barely coherent cartoon protesting “race-mixing” did indeed get hundreds of upvotes on the Men’s Rights subreddit.

EDITED TO ADD: Ah; the reason it’s so incoherent is that it’s a racist remake of an anti-racist cartoon.

And this one got thousands of upvotes for its amazing insights into gender relations.

strong

Officially, according to the Men’s Rights subreddit sidebar, it’s against the rules there to post “rage comics, or other low-effort image posts. Mods may remove these at their discretion.” Apparently these all count as “high-effort.”

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Posted on September 15, 2013, in a woman is always to blame, antifeminism, are these guys 12 years old?, boner rage, gross incompetence, hundreds of upvotes, imaginary oppression, men who should not ever be with women ever, misogyny, MRA, MRA comics cavalcade, oppressed men, oppressed white men, playing the victim, racism, rape culture, reddit, straw feminists, victim blaming and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 196 Comments.

  1. Being pissed is the natural reaction, absolutely.

  2. grumpycatisagirl

    See, something like this is perfectly wonderful: http://thischarmingcharlie.tumblr.com/

  3. Every time I see this shit I just get incoherently ranty “But,,,but…most rapes don’t happen at 4 AM in dark alleys! That’s actually really rare! Women don’t actually walk around dark alleys in bikinis at night, the fuck?”

    Someone I had previously respected posted something like this, except comparing rape to shark attacks. Basically showing swimmers carrying bloody meat through shark-infested waters and then saying “sharks shouldn’t attack us!”

    So much rage! Rapists are not a force of nature like sharks or earthquakes! It’s not like the mere presence of a scantily-clad female walking alone at night *rolleyes* causes them to appear.

  4. Alice Sanguinaria

    twomoogles – I think that’s the part that really pisses me off the most, the fact that everyone sees rapists not as a person like you and me (except for the fact that they chose to rape), but as a sort of uncontrollable monster, a force to be reckoned with. And it’s annoying, because you’re being disingenuous when you compare rapists to monsters.

    It makes it harder for rape victims to get help/sympathy, because no one is inclined to believe that Bob, the nice guy next door, actually raped someone. To them, rapists are monsters, not people who live next door or who go to school with you.

    People choose to rape. Most (if not all) people do not wake up in the morning and thinks “I’m feel this sudden urge to rape someone today!”. They CHOOSE to rape.

    By comparing rapists to forces of nature, you deny rapists freedom of choice. And that’s the big flaw with that particular idea, because if rapists didn’t choose to rape, then what happened?

    And that’s why I think victim blaming exists — because a lot of people are in the mindset that rapists are forces of nature, not people with the freedom of choice.

  5. Welcome back, Athywren!

  6. Alice – not to mention that the whole “force of nature” thing gives aid and comfort to the rapists. It makes rape the victim’s fault. It exonerates the rapists (overwhelmingly men) and gives them societal support to continue raping.

  7. There’s something deeply ironic about men who compare themselves to sharks/earthquakes/other unpleasant things and then insist that it’s women who are somehow letting civilization down.

  8. Alice Sanguinaria

    kittehserf – Exactly! If rape is a force of nature, then if you rape someone, it’s never your fault. That’s the denial of choice, of agency.

    What I’ve noticed is that MRAs (and other assholes) like to deny agency to men with boners, to make consent much more complicated. But sex takes two (or more, depending of the number of partners you’re banging) partners, it’s not a one-person show.

  9. “Do you want to have sex with me right now? Y/N”

    It’s really not that hard, guys.

  10. @Alice in one of my other online communities, we called it the “disembodied penis” theory of rape. As a culture, we tend to talk about rape in the passive voice (“X was raped” as opposed to Y raped X”), or talk about what the victim did wrong, and we end up separating the act from the person who chose to commit it. It’s another way we’re failing to address the reality of rape.

    The Pervocracy has a great post on the slavering beast theory” of rape: the idea that rapists are not like normal people and spotting them should be easy.

  11. Alice – precisely! And you notice how their denial of male agency is always to the benefit of men who want to hurt/rape women. They deny women’s agency and humanity to put us down, and deny men’s agency to reinforce the power dynamic and absolve themselves of responsibility at the same time.

    (You can call me kittehs, btw.) :)

  12. Athywren: Yes! Exactly! And I don’t see how this is some difficult distinction here. Not being, personally, sexually attracted to a person: okay, whatever. Making broad, condemning statements about a whole group of people based on their skin color: racist.

    twomoogles: Getting incoherently ranty right along you!

  13. And about the whole “men with boners can’t control themselves/ are some sort of force of nature/ uncontrollable beasts” idea: Wouldn’t that be more of a justification for putting greater constraints on men’s behaviors and freedoms, since they obviously can’t control themselves around women, than telling women they need to act and dress a certain way?

  14. MRA: “I hate women! They’re always mooching off the hard work of MEN!”

    MRA: *steals artists’ hard work and uses it to make racist/sexist cartoons*

  15. Speaking of getting cars broken into. We had a 1989 volvo that was broken into. They stole the rearview mirror and nothing else. I’ve always been puzzled by that….

    And yea, denial of agency means a) you don’t have to think you’re doing it “I’m not like that monster!” b) you don’t have to think your friends do it “they’re nice guys, they’d never do that!” c) you don’t have to change anything about the current culture because you can’t stop something that’s inevitable “it happened as a natural consequence of [anything not explicitly THE RAPIST FUCKING RAPED SOMEONE]“.

  16. Sittiekitty: I can only assume that the thief also owned a 1989 volvo and the rearview mirror had recently broken.

  17. Ikr? It was just the weirdest thing to have stolen. And to this day I think I’ve only ever seen 2 cars that were the same as mine was. My other theory was that they were drunk and/or high and woke up the next morning like wtf, where did this come from?

  18. @Athywren

    Hi :D

    (also, wordpress ate my comment :( *mopes gratuitously of little things*)

    @sparky

    Wouldn’t that be more of a justification for putting greater constraints on men’s behaviors and freedoms, since they obviously can’t control themselves around women, than telling women they need to act and dress a certain way?

    IMO yeah. But they just want to punish women, not follow their fucked up logic to its conclusion.

  19. “If you are not able to stop yourself from assaulting people…”

    Satire, done right — http://www.rapecrisisscotland.org.uk/campaigns/10-top-tips-to-end-rape/

  20. Alice Sanguinaria

    I always loved that “Ten Ways to Stop Rape” poster. It puts the responsibility of rape on the rapists who choose to rape, and not the victim, where it belongs.

  21. Marie: Yeah, not even internally consistent to their own “logic.” It’s very sad.

    Argenti Aertheri: That’s wonderful, it made me smile. Thank you. Oh, and I read in the earlier comments, that you used to work at JoAnn Fabrics. I used to, too; this was back in the way back, though. Did they make you wear the stupid green apron, too?

    Alice Sanguinaria: Amen. A-freaking-men!

  22. I like Jonathan Grey and Cory Rydell’s comics, so I’m annoyed someone outright stole it and badly photoshopped it. I’m almost tempted to email them to bring it up – all considering.

    Otherwise: there’s nothing really more pathetic than these kinda comics. The fact they’re considered “funny” just shows MRAs/PUAs have a terrible sense of humor. I’m sure they’d claim it’s “satire” – ’cause that’s the convenient excuse of the day. I see this kind of thing all the time at facebook when people share memes involving “friend-zoning” or “white knighting”. When I or someone else doesn’t find it funny, you’re accused of lacking a sense of humor.

    Of course – ’cause not finding everything “hilarious” is a personality flaw. Or, just maybe, they have a personality flaw and projecting it back onto you. Since, y’know, they can’t deal with constructive criticism and expect you to kiss their ass…

  23. “Did they make you wear the stupid green apron, too?”

    Yes! And customers never understood what “I’m on break” meant, they heard “fuck off” not “you’re cutting into my 15 min to grab food, go ask somebody else”.

    But hey, we had nuns. There were a couple nuns who came in regularly in the full nun garb and were just the nicest people to deal with (also a favorite — anyone who just needed to know where to find the thing they were sure they needed)

  24. My favorite were always customers who would come up to me and say, “You know what I’m looking for?” as an opener to asking where to find something. Because, I’m thinking, no I don’t know what you’re looking for, please tell me, I’m not psychic, but I am flattered that you think I am.

  25. And trying to refrain from actually saying “no I don’t”?

    My favorite idiots? Fabric returns, no receipt, no clue when they bought it, can’t find it in the store, why won’t we take it back?

    Because we haven’t a damned clue how much to give you, for fucking starters!

  26. sparky – when we get the customers like that it’s usually some twerp from a shipping agency on the phone who thinks I automatically know who they are because they’re so special and we don’t get any other shipping agencies ringing. One day some twit’s going to get what I say to my boss after these phone calls: why yes, I am psychic, but it’s a very narrow bandwidth and You. Are. Not. On. It.

  27. Argenti: I’ve occasionally heard of people tapping into open Wi-Fi networks and changing the name to something like, “Learntosetapassword”. This sort of thing amuses me. MRA-style victim-blaming? Not so much.

    Bruce Schneier (google him if you don’t know) doesn’t secure his wifi. He says he doesn’t care if someone surfs his bandwidth; and internet is important. He does secure his computers, printers, etc.

    Bruce is a mensch (as well as being so smart that I sometimes feel less than brilliant).

  28. Cassandra: Is that somehow made of malachite as in the stone,

    I don’t know the source for the ich-killer, but malachite is hella-toxic (it’s a copper rich stone, and the copper is poorly bound, so it leaches out. Something about the nature of it makes the copper more absorbtive than it would be otherwise. It’s not as bad as cinnabar, but I’d not want beads made from it).

  29. My favourite Idiot Customer story: working at the Museum of Victoria in its old building. Walk in the front door and there’s the information desk smack in front of you. Keep walking in a straight line and you get into the State Library. But if you turn right at the info desk you walk through a doorway into the Museum, you go a few yards and get to the ticket desk and first exhibit. No connection between the rooms, no way to get into the library from the museum and vice versa.

    You with me so far?

    So, one day I’m on the info desk and a bloke comes up, waving at the Library and complaining, “There’s only books in there! Nothing but books!”

    “That’s the State Library,” sez I. “The Museum’s through that door.” (pointing)

    Bloke says nothing but wanders off and is never seen again.

    Colleague who’s at the Museum ticket desk and has seen this then rings me up and says,

    “I sold that idiot a ticket an hour ago.”

    @_@

  30. This happens when people talk to me at work:

    “Do you know what I’m looking for?”

    “No, but you’ll tell me.”

    Re men and rape. My favorite Golda Meir story has to do with an outbreak of rapes in Jerusalem. Her cabinet wanted to make a curfew, on the women. She said, “If we are going to have a curfew, it will be for on men. They are the one’s committing the rapes.”.

  31. Kitteh — lol, clearly too smart for the library!

    Pecunium — you’ll see it before you see this, but the ich-killer isn’t the stone, but prolly more toxic to me cuz it’s liquid (or powder, but the liquid has always worked better for me [also, I definitely do not want to inhale that stuff!]). And yep to that approach to net security. My wireless printer and HD are secured (so much so that I keep forgetting to ask if you ever got access to the HD), my net when it was under my control? Open to anyone in range, enjoy.

  32. kittehs:

    why yes, I am psychic, but it’s a very narrow bandwidth and You. Are. Not. On. It.

    Now it’s your turn to owe someone for spitting out liquid on a computer!

    Information desks:

    My two favorite questions ever, both at libraries:

    1. “I need a list of all the books you don’t have.” (I believe that was the point at which I decided I was not cut out for public service. Although the dude asking for flea circus information, which I was able to provide, almost made up for it.)

    2. “I need a photograph of Cleopatra.” (This was to my sister, who after spending a significant amount of time explaining why that was impossible BECAUSE CAMERAS, eventually just gave her a photo of Elizabeth Taylor as Cleopatra that she got off of IMDB.

  33. I recall one of the more memorable stories from when my folks had a brick and mortar bookstore.

    Someone on the phone wanted a book; had nothing more than it was a romance, and possessed of a purple color. No author, no title, no year of release.

    I figured out what they wanted.

  34. @cloudiah

    “I need a list of all the books you don’t have.”

    *snortle* all of them?

  35. Did you use your superhero powers of digression? Because damn do you have skillz.

  36. Nah… I used my other superpowers, I asked questions, mined my wealth of trivial knowledge, and analyzsed present trends. I got that it was general romance, not series, that she’d had a friend tell her it was really good, and then thought about all the purple covered which had come out in the past three months.

    Then I worked which of those authors were more likely to get a word of mouth reference, and went to check that we had it; which gave me me the title, et voila, I work a miracle.

  37. Someone on the phone wanted a book; had nothing more than it was a romance, and possessed of a purple color. No author, no title, no year of release.

    That is surprisingly common as a reference question in public libraries too, less common in academic libraries though not unheard of. One of my other favorite questions was from a recent PhD graduate who came up to me in a huff because his dissertation wasn’t displaying in the catalog. It turned out that it was because he had misspelled his own name* on the title page and the cataloger had copied that spelling into the record. It wasn’t that tough a question; it was just amusing to watch an arrogant jerk deflate the moment he couldn’t blame someone else for the problem. (And yes, to any lurking MRAs, women PhD students can also be arrogant and obnoxious.)

    *Surprisingly common error in theses & dissertations!

  38. Ok Mr. Magic, I got one. Kid’s book, not a pop-up but like hungry hungry caterpillar with the cut throughs. Something about the kid in it going through like, under a tree? Hunting the moon I think?

    Yeah I’m digging 15+ years into my memory bank here, but it’d be awesome to find it again.

  39. As for the misspelled names, I did a review of an EA concert and the editor misspelled my name (FTR, I approve of the misspelling and said not to worry about the error)

  40. cloudiah:

    Now it’s your turn to owe someone for spitting out liquid on a computer!

    About time, too! :P

    Oh yeah, the “it had a blue cover” questions. Way common.

    I think I mentioned some twit came into the shop the other day and actually said “You’ve got a lot of books here!” It’s a good thing the boss and I work out the back, ‘cos he then said “Funny that, we’re a bookshop,” and we both DIED.

  41. @Argenti if Pecunium somehow doesn’t know the book you’re talking about (although it wouldn’t surprise me if he did), there’s a LiveJournal community called whatwasthatbook (a spinoff of whatwasthatone, which helped me finally place this sitcom I’d caught a glimpse of as a kid).

  42. Huh. I think my rapist was a monster, yet I also totally think it was his fault. And if “Bob the nice guy next door” rapes someone, I think Bob is a monster. I don’t like this new trend of telling people, which may include angry survivors, that they can’t view rapists as contemptuously as they feel they are. And there’s nothing disingenous about what I’m saying, I absolutely mean it.

  43. I don’t think that people shouldn’t view rapists contemptuously. I view them that way and I think they’re pieces of shit. However, I think equating them with mental disorders or similar things makes those rapists who are “the nice guy next door” invisible and less likely to get caught/more likely to be able to avoid consequences. Ie: “He couldn’t have possibly done that, he’s such a nice guy!”… I think people’s tendency to avoid saying that rapists could be anyone helps them to cognitively distance themselves from admitting them or their friends could be one and lets them (continue to) avoid getting active consent (because they know they’re all so nice doncha know! They could never do something so terrible.).

  44. SittieKitty, I wouldn’t presume that a rapist has a mental disorder. I have one and even participated in the “Faces of Mental Illness” protest campaign when that NBC newscaster referred to Ariel Castro as “the face of mental illness” (It was never publicly stated that he had a diagnosis.) I’ve just seen these dialogues lately telling everyone they all must feel and view rapists in very specific ways, on this thread “not a monster”. But what if a survivor feels such a person’s actions DOES make them monstrous? Why can’t a person be seen as “the guy from the neighborhood who seemed so nice”—I’ll say “seemed” because one who rapes just isn’t nice—-and also be seen as a monster walking among us?

  45. I don’t think it’s my right to tell any other survivors how to feel about the person or what happened. I have a hard time divorcing the idea that someone is a monster from the historical narrative of mental illness, so that’s why I hesitate to use the term. There’s a large cultural narrative of not being able to have both things at once, a nuance to seeing people as both “that guy who seemed nice” and “a monster”, and for people who haven’t dealt with it, it can be hard to understand how you’ve seen a side of someone they haven’t – especially since victim-blaming and rape culture are so very much alive that it’s practically a gut instinct for some people.

  46. Maybe it’s the term “monster” then, which is metaphoric in both cases. I don’t see mentally ill people as “monsters” I guess due to being one and spending lots of time in groups with other ones, though a mentally ill person can be a jerk or nice sometimes just like a neurotypical one can. I’ve read statistically people with mental health issues are more likely to be preyed upon by abusive personalities than they are to perpetrate, though when they do perpetrate violence, the media will always play up the mental health history, as with the recent gunman in DC, or simply speculate that one exists, like they did with Ariel Castro.
    A rapist or abuser may be more likely to target someone they know who is unstable (in the case of acquaintance rape) because any accusations can be played off as “they’re crazy, they’re delusional”

  47. I think that’s valid reasoning. I’m also neuroatypical so I don’t see mental illness as monstrous, but I do see society treat us as that, and the media is always quick to point out when someone has some mental disorder, or just to speculate. I think that’s where my issue with it comes in, because that speculation is a way for people to distance themselves from it, to dismiss victims and to avoid having to think too carefully about the people around them. It’s just the media and society trying to say: “They did a horrible thing, normal people don’t do horrible things, therefore there must be something wrong with them”. And because of that, it’s hard for me to accept that people are going to be able to see “normal” people as also being monsters. I’m pretty cynical on how much I think society at large is going to be able to deal with nuance.

  48. See, when I hear the ‘don’t call him a monster’ thing, usually about Hitler, the point they’re trying to make is that calling him a monster is saying ‘well, ordinary humans couldn’t have done this, so I couldn’t have done this, so my neighbors couldn’t have done it.’ Distancing ourselves from it and denying it could happen here and now.

    Don’t call him a monster, or inhuman, or anything Other–that’s how he was able to do what he did.

    Call him evil. Call him inhumane. But that’s the evilness that lives in all human hearts, the terrible truth; we’re all capable of doing immense things. Immensely good or immensely bad.

    Same with the rapists. That potential is in everybody. When the articles went around bemoaning how the Steubenville rapists’ lives were ruined, and how they were good boys with good grades and had promising bright futures, the point was that they didn’t fit the image of ‘monster’ that society said was the only real rapist.

    But that’s kind of long and rambling and I’m not sure if I’m explaining that clearly at all.

  49. Pedantic and pre-coffee, so I might be totally wrong, but would “rapist don’t LOOK LIKE monsters” solve this?

    Thanks emilygoddess!

  50. See, here’s how it goes:

    If the rapist fits the image of a “monster”–unpleasant looking, unhygienic, badly dressed, mentally ill, unsuccessful in life, from the “wrong” sort of background–everyone will say to the victim, “Well, what did you expect, hanging out with someone like him?”

    If he doesn’t fit that image–if he’s attractive, well-liked, from a well-off family, etc.–everyone will say “But he has such a bright future! You wouldn’t want to ruin his life over one mistake, would you?”

    As usual, women can’t win.

  51. That’s pretty much what I was trying to say Howard B.

  52. extraterrestrial biological entity princess

    Just want to raise a few points (have not read all comments on this thread, sorry if i missed something).
    The cartoon at the top – as I see it, if someone is vulnerable, even if they made themselves vulnerable, that is never, ever any possible justification for harming them. If one person leaves something valuable in an unlocked car, the person who steals still had to make the desision to open the car door and steal. If someone is walking down a dark street in a dangerous area at 2 am (where i live, this is doing something everyone is allowed to do, in a place everyone is allowed to be), the rapist or mugger still must make the choice to commit the rape or mugging, rather than leave the other person alone, ask if they need help and give help if they do, et c. One person’s vulnerablity never makes another person’s choice
    to do harm or break the law right.
    Monsters. I learned the hard way that there are lots of monsters who do terrible, evil things. Most of them look and act exactly like anyone else. Your respectable, nice neighbor could very well be a monster who abuses children, commits domestic violence, or rapes. I really think people in general need to realize this. Anyone, even the last person you would suspect, can be a monster. The monsters among us must be treated as such, even the ones who have bright futures, even the “nice” ones. Being mentally ill or not neurotypical has nothing to do with being a monster, and i am bloody sick and tired and angry about how the lie that it does is repeated over and over to demonize innocent (and vulnerable) and protect and excuse the real monsters.
    Rant over. Love the Scottish rape prevention poster advising folks who can’t control their urges to only go out with a buddy who can stop them before they rape. Brilllliannnntt, Holmes.

  53. I’m going to leave the flat in my underwear later at 4am, you know, like you do if you are a woman.

  54. This comic is pure bullshit. There’s so much wrong with it. First it’s interesting that a color has to be specified… I mean why a “black guy” rapist with a knife? This is a conscious choice–the “artist” could have said anything. It would never occur to me if I were making such a comic to specify that. It says more about the cartoon author than any “point” he’s trying to make.

    Second –even if it made sense that there was something she could wear, some time of night she could walk when she should have to be afraid of being raped because of it– her “concerned friend” chooses THAT time to be a judgmental asshat with her right after what would probably be the most traumatic experience of her life. What kind of absolute fucking asshole does that?

    What if she got in a car accident and lost her legs, would he visit her at the hospital the next day and say “I gotta ask, why were you driving 10 miles an hour over the speed limit?”

    Maybe it was hot out. Maybe she had to get to somewhere at 4AM. If there was a rapist around and she was wearing jeans and a sweater, or a fucking Bukhara –There’s a pretty good he would have still raped her. I don’t think those odds would have gone down much. Women wearing Burkinas get raped all the time.

    Worst of all it implies that she did something wrong. She did NOTHING wrong. She should be able to walk anywhere she wants any time she wants wearing anything she wants with ZERO fear and ZERO chance some asshole is going to rape her. Anything above zero, any implication that any part of that is her fault –and the fact that so many people think it’s “logical” that it should be –that she should have to meet her rapist somewhere half-way in terms of responsibility for the rapists crime– is exactly why we need feminism.

    I was on the fence and as a man I don’t like being marginalized or see my gender unfairly represented, but crap like this shoves me over that edge.

    The idea that rape isn’t partly the victim’s fault in some way -even a tiny bit makes no sense at all. It’s not “logical” in any way shape or form.

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