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A Voice for Men: Christianity is all about hating on dudes

Tools of the matriarchal feminazarchy?

If you want even more proof that the denizens of A Voice for Men live in Imaginary Backwards Land, let me draw your attention to a recent posting from FeMRA TyphonBlue and JohnTheOther. The post’s bland title, Men, and patriarchy in the church, belies the loopiness of this particular bit of theological argument, the aim of which is to prove that Christianity is and always has been about hating dudes.

Oh, sure, TB and JTO note, it might look like Christianity in its various forms has been a tad dude-centric. I mean, it’s based on the teachings of a dude. And there’s that whole “God the Father” thing. Oh, and Christian religious institutions have been almost always headed up by dudes. There has yet to be a Popette.

But apparently to assume that the people running something actually run that something is to indulge in what MRAs like to call “the frontman fallacy,” by which they mean that even though it looks like men run most things in the world it’s really the sneaky ladies who call the shots, somehow. TB/JTO, citing the aforementioned faux “fallacy,” ask:

Because Christianity has a male priesthood, is headed by a man and uses masculine language to refer to the God and humanity’s savior, does it necessarily follow that Christianity is male favoring?

Bravely, the two decide not to go with the correct answer here, which is of course “yes.” Instead, they say no. And why is this? Because Jesus didn’t go around boning the ladies.

Seriously. That’s their main argument:

[Christ] had no sexual life. This absence leaves no spiritual connection between the masculine body and the divine.

The Christ is sexless; presumptively masculine, but never actually engaging in any activity unique to his masculine body. …

The implicit stricture of making the female body the vessel of Holy Spirit while offering no corresponding connection between the divine and the male body creates a spiritual caste system with women on top and men on the bottom.

Also: Joseph didn’t bone Mary, at least not before she gave birth to Jesus.

The birth of Christ is without sin because, quite simply, it did not involve a penis. The entire mythology around the birth of Christ implicitly indicts male sexuality as the vector of original sin from generation to generation.

Uh, I sort of thought that the notion of Original Sin had something or other to do with Eve and an apple in the Garden of Eden. But apparently not:

Forget Eve. Forget the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil and the Serpent. If all human women, tomorrow, conceived and gestated and gave birth without ever coming into contact with a penis, our race would be purged of original sin.

Pretty impressive theological revisionism from a couple of blabby video bloggers who apparently don’t know how to spell “canon.” (ProTip: “Cannon” refers to one of those tubey metal things you shoot “cannonballs” from.)

The two conclude:

Our culture’s war against masculine identity, male sexuality and fatherhood is an old one. That war arguably began as we adopted a faith which marginalizes the role of men in procreation, idolizing a story that removes them completely from the process. The exemplar of male virtue in this theology is a man who had no natural sexual expression, although his character is designated as male. And his primary purpose was to be flogged, literally tortured for the “crimes” of others, and then bound and nailed through his limbs, still alive to an erected cruciform scaffold, to die from shock and exposure on a hilltop. And we somehow manage to claim that this religion elevates men over women?

Well, yeah.

Rather than supremacy, Christianity provides to men the role of asexual stewards of women’s benefit, and sacrificial penitent, preaching the gospel of a female-deifying, male-demonizing faith. It is true that women have not historically been allowed to front this farce, but mostly because that would make the message too obvious.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What?

While some kinds of Christianity get rather worked up about the evils of premarital sex and/or birth control, I’m pretty sure married and/or procreative sex is a-ok with all Christians this side of the mother in the movie Carrie.  Even — well, especially — if it involves dudes. (I’m pretty sure the church fathers were never big proponents of lesbianism.)

And if women really run the show, despite men “fronting” the church, could you perhaps spell out just who these all-powerful women are? Like, some names perhaps? Who’s the lady puppeteer behind the pope?

They of course don’t offer any real-world evidence for this secret supposed matriarchy. Instead, they ramp up for a sarcastic ending:

But we continue to ignore all of this, and we entertain the farce that our religious institutions constitute a male-elevating, female oppressing patriarchy.

Yeah, tell us another one.

No point in telling you guys anything any more. Clearly you can twist any and all facts about the world to fit your increasingly weird and baroque fictions about men always being the most oppressed, past, present and future.

A Voice for Men is slowly but surely disappearing up its own ass.

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Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
8 years ago

Can we make libertarian-winger into an insult? Or at least Ron-Paul-winger?

It’s special snowflake syndrome, and a fallacy — Argument to moderation (false compromise, middle ground, fallacy of the mean) – assuming that the compromise between two positions is always correct

In tiny words, for Ruby — sometimes you are just plain wrong, this is one of those times.

We’re saying — you should never rape.
Ruby seems to think the bad position is — rape is always okay.
Thus the “clearly correct” middle ground is — rape is only sometimes okay.

But no, rape is never okay is not some extreme position that inherently proves the middle ground must be correct, that’s a fallacy, and more than a bit full of rape apologia.

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
8 years ago

“although most of the people here are pretty openly left-wing, so im not sure why that was supposed to be an insult. i mean, except in the mind of self-congratulatory ‘moderates’.”

Same fallacy, different terms. (That’s similar to same shit, different day) I would imagine it’s the same reason she called us extreme feminists.

Ithiliana
8 years ago

@Ruby: If we bore you, why do you keep coming back here?

I mean, I’m sure you never read the comments (which is one reason I like hanging out here), but why bother posting? You clearly think we are beneath contempt, so why grace us with your presence?

Because you SO don’t care?

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Ruby, why do you come here? You’re hardly a feminist, and you have less than nothing to say about the topics at hand.

If we’re nobodies, what does that make you?

ShadetheDruid
ShadetheDruid
8 years ago

Ruby is a libertarian? Well that would certainly explain a lot. :S

Sharculese
8 years ago

at this point is there really any other explanation for it besides that she loves the negative attention?

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

I don’t understand people who thrive on negative attention via the internet, of all places.

Ithiliana
8 years ago

@Hellkell: well, if people do thrive on negative attention (and I suppose one element could be the “oh, I’m so righteously right, proven by how they’re persecuting me, look, ma, they’re persecuting me), the internet is the place to go.

I just have no desire to give them those thrills, so if I become convinced that’s what’s happening (a certain college student), I quit responding to them.

I was ignoring Ruby for a while–and may just go back even if I have to grit my teeth when she comes out with the over the top shit she does.

Mandela Nelson
Mandela Nelson
8 years ago

I am not a Biblical scholar my any means, but I take religious studies so I happen to know that God is neither man nor woman as far as we can determine from wording in ancient texts. I am sure MRAs are gonna luv that fact! Oh noes! We have been worshiping a gender non-conformist!!!

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

Ruby: And yeah, I do care about women’s rights.

Maybe you do. But you have a lot of people whom you don’t care about at all. People who, in fact, you have a negative standard of care. You (like Meller, when facing women who have cancer) laugh when people suffer.

It “amuses” you to think of people being raped.

That’s not a strawman. It’s what you said.

That you do (or don’t) care about women is immaterial to that. Thinking someone deserves to be raped is evil. It’s immoral. It’s fucking wrong.

You have the right to come here, so long as Dave lets you. We have the right to tell you you’re a vile person, and full of shit.

You can, if you so choose, change your mind. At which point you may be treated as if you aren’t a vile person, who is full of shit.

But that’s their right too.

Uh, it’s people like Jerry Sandusky whom I don’t give a flying fuck get raped in prison. Oh, but you guys have sympathy for a child rapist? OK, whatever. If he spends the rest of his life in prison, and gets raped, it still doesn’t come close to the pain he caused others.

Got it. Being decent to people is dependent on them being wonderful.

Human beings are human beings. Good, bad, indifferent, they deserve to be treated the same.

But for Bernie Madoff, or Jerry Sandusky, or Sqeaky Fromme, you think that being raped is “just”. So you don’t care about them.

Let them be raped. Let their rapists get away with it. Rape is only wrong when it happens to good people.

That’s what the misogynists say.

How do you feel about torturing suspected terrorists? What about beating confessions out of “child-rapists”.

What’s the difference?

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

Bee: Don’t feel like an awful person. I have some people who have wronged me. I don’t have wishes that they live lives of joy and riches.

I’m not going to do anything to make them have lives of misery and despair, which is the important thing.

Though I won’t feel any sorrow for them, I’m also not going to gloat if they do.

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

Seranvali: I sometimes wonder if Jesus was married. If he was it’s not mentioned but it would be highly unusual in that society for an adult, healthy man to have remained single.

Less unusual right then, than it was 100 years before, or 50 years after. There was a lot (a lot) of sectarianism, and millenialism, going on in Judaism of the time, and the evangelists did a lot of masking the truth of the times; their editors did more.

Take the Pharisees… We still have them. Modern Judaism is descended from Pharisaic Judaism of the time Jesus lived in. But the Pharisees were the people the Zealots and the Nazirites (not the Nazareans; and there is some serious dispute about the origin of the idea of Jesus being from Nazareth; with some suggestions that the town didn’t really become a place of note until some few years after Jesus died), who revolted against Rome, were extreme wings of the pharisaic parties.

So the entire arc of the story, with Jesus being hated by the Pharisees… either he was a lot more radical than the Gospels make him out to be (and the Gospels make him out to be pretty radical. That radicality was part of the problem Rome had with Christians), or the evangelists were trying to separate Jesus from the Pharisees.

There are some ambiguous aspects of the crucifixion too. Barabbas = “son of the father”, it’s an odd name. “Bandit/Robber” was probably better translated as “Rebel”. Pilate’s interrogation of Jesus (ignoring the timeline problems of making Pilate the governor ca 25-35 CE) has the following passage:

“Are you the King of the Jews?”

“You have said it.”

That can be a statement that Pilate said such a thing, or (because the Koine isn’t as clear, and the translators have an agenda), it could be, “It is true”.

Which would make Jesus, in addition to the religious radical we recal him as being, a political radical as well.

Which would have given Rome more than enough reason to kill him.

Josephus does mention him but I’d be far from confident that his text wasn’t doctored by the monks who did the copying at a later date

Actually, the way in which the throwaway happened, make me tend much more to it being a real piece of history. Josephus makes reference to James, “the brother of that Jesus who was killed”. It’s subtle enough to keep me from thinking it was an insertion. Such insertions tended to be a lot less deft.

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

Ruby:

OH NO, A BUNCH OF NOBODIES ON THE INTERNET THINK I’M A HORRIBLE PERSON. THERE GOES MY SELF ESTEEM!!! LOL!

Yawn. Your self righteous morality bores me. You remind me of Right-Wingers, and Left-Wingers.

You protest a lot. You protest that you won’t let us “drive you away”. So you plainly think that this is a place of merit.

Which implies you want to be well thought of. You keep insisting that you are a feminist. That you have science on your side.

You’ve spent hours, and pages, and thousands of words; even managing to find a couple of real studies, in your attempt to convince us of the rightness of your ways.

Which means we matter to you.

We don’t go to the Spearhead to convince them. We don’t spend time trying to get the folks at The Good Men Project how wrong they are.

You do come here, and you do try to persuade us.

So, accept it.

Dracula
Dracula
8 years ago

There’s something I don’t get. After all this, Ruby’s still going around making sycophantic, substance-free comments about how awesome David is. I know you’re not one to pay close attention Rubes, but I’m pretty sure our gracious host doesn’t think prison rape is justified or funny either.

One might suspect you of sucking up so you don’t get banned. Not really a mark of someone who doesn’t care.

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
8 years ago

Random thought — if David’s on vacation and the mod-queue isn’t being attended to, does that mean an NWO free week? That’s a vacation for all of us! w00t

Sharculese
8 years ago

There’s something I don’t get. After all this, Ruby’s still going around making sycophantic, substance-free comments about how awesome David is. I know you’re not one to pay close attention Rubes, but I’m pretty sure our gracious host doesn’t think prison rape is justified or funny either.

i’m glad someone else noticed that. the teacher’s pet shit she’s pulling is super creepy.

Sharculese
8 years ago

i don’t think it’s about sucking up to avoid getting banned tho. i think the fact that she hasnt been banned yet makes her think david is genuinely on her side, and like all good conservatives she responds with a display of groveling obsequiousness to authority.

MorkaisChosen
MorkaisChosen
8 years ago

There was a lot (a lot) of sectarianism, and millenialism, going on in Judaism of the time

Unless I’m mistaken, millenialism is to do with thousand years and such. Did the Jewish calendar happen to line up right with that period?

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

MorkaisChosen: Unless I’m mistaken, millenialism is to do with thousand years and such. Did the Jewish calendar happen to line up right with that period?

You are both correct, and mistaken. 🙂

Millenialism is a wider term than just the Christian versions of it.

Encyclopedia Britannica on Non-Christian Millienialism

Basically it’s various end of the world/massive change narratives. The Book of Daniel is an example of it, and Daniel is a strong part of the shaping of the various writings of the New Testament.

MorkaisChosen
MorkaisChosen
8 years ago

Ooh, thanks. I was mostly working from etymology…

Reading that, I’m not quite sure whether ‘apocalyptic’ as a technical term means ‘based on a vision or revelation’ or ‘END OF THE WORLD! DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!’

lauralot89
8 years ago

Oh shit, we remind Ruby of Right-Wingers AND Left-Wingers? She’s been taking a page out of Brandon’s book.

The more I learn about Catholicism the more I realize that, despite disagreeing with a huge portion of the Church’s official stances and being so agnostic I’m starting to think I missed a “faith gene” somewhere in my DNA, there’s something about the Church that really appeals to me. Partly it’s aesthetic but I think it’s also partly the ritual aspects of the faith. Having AS and obsessive-compulsive tendencies, rituals are really comforting to me. I’ve prayed the Rosary before and while I didn’t connect on a religious level, I found the repetition and meditation comforting.

It’s a shame Agnostic-Catholics-Who-Don’t-Really-Agree-With-The-Church isn’t a denomination.

Cliff Pervocracy
8 years ago

It’s pretty fucked up for a libertarian to endorse cruel and unusual state-enabled punishment. I guess Ruby’s only in favor of small government for good people.

It weirds me out how she’s still dropping in threads to go “great post David, those MRAs sure do suck!” like nothing’s going on. I think she expects us to go “well, we may disagree about minor details like rape, but we’re on the same side here!”, and our failure to do so just shows what vindictive bullies we are.

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

lauralot: I’m sort of in that camp. I think “lapsed” is the technical term.

Cliff: I think you have part of it. Ruby wants to be seen as a feminist. More to the point she wants to be a good feminist. We keep telling her she’s not (because really, she isn’t). On top of that we are saying her morals aren’t much better than NWO, or Meller (because they aren’t).

Since she knows she’s a good person, it must be some failure in us.

I don’t think so, because her way of viewing people is one that makes their lives worse (and worth less). That’s not a good moral vision.

Which is on top of her poorly thought out feminism.

lauralot89
8 years ago

I wonder if anyone’s ever joined a church specifically to be a lapsed member?

Technically I’m a lapsed Lutheran, which is pretty damn close to Catholicism in my understanding, but our churches aren’t pretty and we aren’t encouraged to talk to Mary or the saints.

MorkaisChosen
MorkaisChosen
8 years ago

pecunium: ohai

Raised Catholic, still really like the singing, have converted to an extremely devout and highly specific form of agnosticism that goes “I cannot possibly know whether or not there is a God.” Fortunately for me and the way my personality works, this allows me to go “OK, whatever works for you!” to people’s religious beliefs.

katz
8 years ago

It’s a shame Agnostic-Catholics-Who-Don’t-Really-Agree-With-The-Church isn’t a denomination.

They’re called Episcopalians 🙂

lauralot89
8 years ago

Oh, so that’s what Episcopalian means! 🙂

lauralot89
8 years ago

*googles Episcopalian/Anglican*

They seem more accepting of queer people and women in their official doctrines, which is awesome. Seems they object to the veneration of the saints, though, which makes me a little sad. I like the veneration of the saints. Not entirely sure why I care about it either way, considering I don’t have faith, but I guess that’s just human illogical-ness for you.

Polliwog
Polliwog
8 years ago

The more I learn about Catholicism the more I realize that, despite disagreeing with a huge portion of the Church’s official stances and being so agnostic I’m starting to think I missed a “faith gene” somewhere in my DNA, there’s something about the Church that really appeals to me. Partly it’s aesthetic but I think it’s also partly the ritual aspects of the faith. Having AS and obsessive-compulsive tendencies, rituals are really comforting to me. I’ve prayed the Rosary before and while I didn’t connect on a religious level, I found the repetition and meditation comforting.

It’s a shame Agnostic-Catholics-Who-Don’t-Really-Agree-With-The-Church isn’t a denomination.

Agreed! I don’t miss having to sit through mass multiple times a week (ah, the joys of Catholic school), but I do sometimes genuinely miss the aesthetic and ritual components. I still occasionally pray rosaries when I’m really stressed out, despite that being pretty darn weird for someone who lacks extremely critical elements of Catholic belief, just because they help my brain calm down.

My rather fun solution to craving the ritual and artsy elements of religion without all the, well, religion, is that I’m a choral singer, which is a career path that involves a lot of being invited to come to churches, temples, etc. and sing pretty religious songs. It is, sadly, not a career path that pays worth a darn, so I have to have a “day job,” too, but I really like that my work has sent me to almost every sort of house of worship in my area – and quite a few outside it – at some point or another, so I get to dip my toe into all sorts of religious traditions for a day or two at a time, without ever being expected to be part of the faiths in question. (And, honestly, with only one major exception I can think of, every congregation I’ve sung for has been super-nice and accepting of the fact that the singers probably don’t share their beliefs. Also, a lot of times some little old lady from the church/temple/etc. bakes us cookies. Apparently the Cookie Lady is a vital part of the church environment.)

Cliff Pervocracy
8 years ago

Wow, I feel almost exactly the opposite. I find the belief in a greater consciousness inspiring, the finicky details about “and this greater consciousness wants you to only eat certain kinds of food and pray at certain times using certain words” absolutely intolerable. Ritual bores and frustrates me and sends me into adult-annoying* questions of “is God really that flattered by people rote-reciting canned praise on a set schedule?”

Lately I’ve been calling myself a “pantheist.” I like to believe that there’s order and awareness in the universe. I don’t like to believe that order cares if I speak to it in Hebrew or English or never speak to it at all–prayer is something I ultimately do for myself–so I’d rather speak spontaneously and freeform.

(I’m not trying to argue anyone out of liking ritual, I completely understand that, only explaining why I feel differently.)

*jeez, “adult”? I’m 26. But something about this issue makes me feel like a kid again when I get grouchy about it.

VoIP
VoIP
8 years ago

The more I learn about Catholicism the more I realize that, despite disagreeing with a huge portion of the Church’s official stances and being so agnostic I’m starting to think I missed a “faith gene” somewhere in my DNA, there’s something about the Church that really appeals to me. Partly it’s aesthetic but I think it’s also partly the ritual aspects of the faith. Having AS and obsessive-compulsive tendencies, rituals are really comforting to me. I’ve prayed the Rosary before and while I didn’t connect on a religious level, I found the repetition and meditation comforting.

It’s a shame Agnostic-Catholics-Who-Don’t-Really-Agree-With-The-Church isn’t a denomination.

*googles Episcopalian/Anglican*

They seem more accepting of queer people and women in their official doctrines, which is awesome. Seems they object to the veneration of the saints, though, which makes me a little sad. I like the veneration of the saints.

Lauralot, if you like you could check out people who call themselves “High-Church Anglican” or “Anglo-Catholic.” Those are Anglicans who act more like Catholics in their worship.

lauralot89
8 years ago

Thanks, VoIP! There don’t appear to be any such congregations around me, but it’s still good to know.

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

I’m in the middle. I have a moderately theistic streak, which needs no church to enjoy. I find ritual to be refreshing (I went to a pair of jewish weddings in the past week), but I’m not all that concerned with the ritual’s structure (merely that it be coherent, and inclusive).

I get a personal satisfaction from the mass (though when I want ritual I tend to go to Episcopal services, because the form of the mass has changed, and I’m a fuddy-duddy; as well as being lapsed. The form matters to me, because I am not doing it as an obligation, but as a participatory meditation. I insert the parts of the mass the Anglicans leave out).

I find the communal attempt to access the sense of the Divine to be greater than the act of “prayer” would be. Which is why I attend Quaker Meetings, as well as the odd Catholic (as a family of religions, so that includes Orthodox (Greek, Russian, Armenian, etc.) service.

I do Passover with friends (and now I am doing the other Holidays, because my partner is a moderately observant Conservative Jew). I do them because I find them connective to other people.

Lauralot: Re “Anglo-Catholic”. I reccomend looking at them with care;If all you want is ritutal, they are great but a lot of them tend to be more Roman than the Romans, esp. on issues of women/homosexuals. It can make participating in the community a little more difficult.

lauralot89
8 years ago

Thanks for the heads-up, Pecunium. I think I’m going to go start my own denomination. I shall call it “People who Aren’t Really Into This Whole Religion Thing But Like Pretty Churches and Ceremonies.”

howardbann1ster
howardbann1ster
8 years ago

Thanks for the heads-up, Pecunium. I think I’m going to go start my own denomination. I shall call it “People who Aren’t Really Into This Whole Religion Thing But Like Pretty Churches and Ceremonies.”

See also: the Unitarian church.

lauralot89
8 years ago

Wow, there really is a denomination for everything.

howardbann1ster
howardbann1ster
8 years ago

This is an appropriate place for a Monty Python quote about Splitters.

But that might seem really inappropriate and mean if you weren’t familiar with Monty Python.

So I’ll just conclude with this nugget from the church of my youth: “No, this is the denomination where you can use an organ in church but you don’t, women are supposed to wear coverings on their head during prayer, and no dancing; if you want the church where you can’t use an organ in church, women are supposed to wear coverings during prayer but don’t, and no dancing, that’s down the street and to the left.”

VoIP
VoIP
8 years ago

So I’ll just conclude with this nugget from the church of my youth: “No, this is the denomination where you can use an organ in church but you don’t, women are supposed to wear coverings on their head during prayer, and no dancing; if you want the church where you can’t use an organ in church, women are supposed to wear coverings during prayer but don’t, and no dancing, that’s down the street and to the left.”

Orthodox? We dance, though.

katz
8 years ago

Pecunium, I know a couple of Orthodox guys who would be pissed that you lumped them in with Catholics.

pecunium
pecunium
8 years ago

I know some too, and they are wrong. 🙂

ozymandias42
8 years ago

I find religious ritual very comforting, especially when I’m anxious/depressed, but as a fairly hardcore atheist feel somewhat weird about going to church. I really want to go to church though. 😛 (The Unitarians around here like meditation, which makes me fall asleep, so that’s out.)

katz
8 years ago

ozy, you need a concent.

MorkaisChosen
MorkaisChosen
8 years ago

One thing I still do, despite being devoutly agnostic: in moments of serious stress my internal (and occasionally external) monologue is essentially praying. (“Oh god help me” and variations on the aforesaid theme.)

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