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A Voice for Men: we’ll support women in combat only if the proper percentage of women get killed.

womannotincombat
Woman officially not in combat role.

As everyone reading this blog no doubt already knows, feminists have hailed the Pentagon’s decision to open combat jobs to women, which will allow women the same opportunities to serve as men. The decision is also a backhanded acknowledgement that, for all intents and purposes, women are serving in combat today already. (Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth lost both of her legs in combat in Iraq – but officially, what she was engaged in wasn’t combat.)

It seems inevitable that, as a result of this decision, young women will be required to sign up for selective service alongside men. While virtually all feminists I know oppose the draft, most agree that as long as registration is going to be required, it should be required for both men and women. Indeed, when selective service was reinstated in 1981, the National Organization for Women brought a lawsuit demanding this sort of equality.

Reaction amongst Men’s Rightsers to the Pentagon’s announcement has been mixed. Some have welcomed the change, as a “what’s good for the goose” acknowledgement of equal rights and responsibilities. Others, like most of the regulars on The Spearhead, predict catastrophe, as inherently unqualified women are sent to the front lines. Regular Spearhead commenter Uncle Elmer joked:

After this experiment runs its course, how many men will have died while bringing tampon supplies up to the front?

Can anyone tell me the additional garbage load from tampon-related issues on all-women submarines? Could a mission fail if some gal flushed her tampon down the toilet instead of following the proper mil-spec procedure?

But the most telling reaction has come from A Voice for Men, which in an editorial suggested that it would only support the move if women were required to die as often as men.

No, really. Here’s what the editorialist, presumably site founder Paul Elam, wrote:

AVFM supports the spirit of the new Pentagon Directive …  However, any blanket approval of the new measure thus far would be premature. …

[T]he only way this new policy will have any meaning will be if it is mandatory that women face combat on the front lines. With 20% of the military being comprised of women, that means roughly 20% of combat related fatalities should be female. 1 in 5 of body bags being filled overseas should contain the bodies of mothers, sisters, daughters, wives and girlfriends.

AVFM isn’t alone in hoping that one result of the Pentagon’s new policy will be increased injury and death for women. On his blog the self-designated “counter-feminist agent of change” Fidelbogen quoted – with a weird sort of semi-approval – one comment from an unknown person he says he found online:

I know this isn’t a laughing matter but this is pretty fucking sweet. Now those very same women who complain about how hard childbirth is get to experience real pain and misery by getting their arms blown off by enemy fire or their legs blown off by mines. Or getting infections when they have to stay at their post for days at a time without taking a bath. Those same women who say all men are rapists can now see what real rape is when they are taken as POW’s and gang-raped by foreign men at gun point and passed around like a piece of meat and then their heads blown off when they are done. This is real war ladies, are you ready for your cup of true equality?

In the comments on AVFM, meanwhile one Rick Westlake helped to make clearer the vindictive subtext of the AVFM’s editorial, suggesting that the Pentagon’s decision could be good for men if it served to

rub …  some high-ratcheted, ‘entitled/empowered’ noses in the misandric, disposable-male double standard of the Selective Service system.

Our current society, including our military, makes mock of ‘equality’ by divorcing ‘opportunity’ from ‘consequences,’ ‘choices’ from ‘costs,’ and ‘benefits’ from ‘responsibility.’ Princesses are awarded all of the opportunities, choices and benefits and are excused from all the responsibility, costs and consequences. ‘Draft-pigs,’ meaning men, are made to shoulder all those dirty, nasty, dangerous and demeaning responsibilities, consequences and costs on behalf of the Entitled Empowered Princesses.

Putting women on the combat line would be disastrous for the military … But the fact remains, enough Princesses have clamored for the ‘opportunities and benefits’ of serving in the front line, heedless of the consequences and the costs.

By requiring Princesses to register for Selective Service, before they can claim the benefits that ‘draft-pigs’ can only receive if they’ve registered – and by declaring them liable for the same fines and penalties as the draft-pigs, if they don’t – we at least remind them that freedom isn’t free, that choices have costs, and that true equality includes responsibility and consequences.

I can already hear the thin, reedy screeches from the Princesses. Fine. Let them learn what it is to hump 35-pound fifty-cal ammo cans to feed Ma Deuce in a firefight. Or let them scuttle back to the home and the hearth, and give thanks for (and to) the Brave Men who will defend them.

Elam himself echoed this vindictive “let them eat equality” stance in a sneering comment posted under his own name suggesting that in the wake of the Pentagon’s new policy plenty of women won’t find the “aroma” of equality to

be so sweet … This is what feminism was always about, and now, after three waves, the chickens are going to come home to roost. Because feminism never was about anything but creating tax paying, laboring, consuming, bleeding and dying servants to the masters of corporatocracy.

They lured women in with visions of corner offices and autonomy, and now that they have fully taken the bait, the doors are going to be slammed behind them and locked. They will be left to languish in their “freedom” as corporate wage slaves, and when needed they will be forced to contribute to the rivers of blood required to keep it going.

NOW and others will likely succeed in keeping the last part “optional” for while, but it won’t last.

The grand daughters of today’s college woman is as fucked as any man in history.

To which every feminist I know would say: bring it on. Feminists are well aware that equality, along with its many benefits, brings certain costs.  Putting more women into combat roles means, inevitably, that more women will be injured or killed. The feminists supporting the Pentagon’s decision are aware of this. Unlike many MRAs, though, they look at combat injuries and deaths as one of the sad but inevitable consequences of war — not as something to rub anyone’s face into.

Here’s a hint to any MRAs who think that either AVFM or the more blatantly sadistic commenter quoted by Fidelbogen has a point: Civil Rights activism is about uplifting everyone, not making others “pay.”

When the American civil rights movement took up the issue of voting rights, civil rights activists demanded that black people be allowed to vote without harassment or other obstacles like “literacy tests” standing in their way.

Civil rights activists didn’t demand that whites be kept from voting.

The Civil Rights movement called for historically all-white colleges to be opened up to blacks. It didn’t call for white people to be banned from these colleges too.

This is how you can tell that the Men’s Rights movement, as it stands today, is not a true civil rights movement. Because insofar as it is about anything other than complaining about (and sometimes harassing) feminists and women in general, it’s about tearing down rather than building up.

Instead of trying to build domestic violence shelters and other services for men, for example, the MRM is more interested in defunding shelters for women – even when their efforts in this area directly harm male victims.

It’s telling that when Father’s Rights activist Glenn Sacks had an issue with the advertisements being run by one DV shelter, he encouraged his followers to bombard the shelter’s donors with phone calls in order to cripple the shelter’s fundraising efforts – even though the shelter in question also provides services for men. It’s telling as well that MRAs rail endlessly against the Violence Against Women Act, and have celebrated Republican opposition to it – even though the act is officially gender neutral in everything but its name, and would provide funding for men’s shelters if MRAs got off their asses to build any.

Instead of fighting for the rights of male victims of rape, the Men’s Rights movement is more interested in downplaying the rape of women, wildly exaggerating the number of “false rape accusations,” and in endless discussions about whether or not having sex with women incapacitated with drinks or drugs is really rape. All of these things contribute to a “rape culture” that harms male victims of rape as well as female.

Not that most MRAs actually care about male victims of rape except as a debating point — perhaps because that would require acknowledging that the overwhelming majority of their rapists are other men.  (MRAs do get outraged in the rare cases in which women are the culprits.) The group that does more than any other to fight for male rape victims is the anti-prison rape group Just Detention. Try to find even a mention of this group on any of the leading Men’s Rights sites. (The only mention of the group on AVFM is a comment in a post attacking a feminist writer noting that it isn’t part of the Men’s Rights movement.)

There are endless other examples, because this is in essence the way that the so-called “Men’s Rights” movement does business.

When you take a certain pleasure in the notion of women being “made to pay” or otherwise harmed when they seek equality, you’re about as much of a civil rights movement as the Klan.

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Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

David seems to think it is when he says

“This is how you can tell that the Men’s Rights movement, as it stands today, is not a true civil rights movement. Because insofar as it is about anything other than complaining about (and sometimes harassing) feminists and women in general, it’s about tearing down rather than building up.”

He argues against his own position of extending the draft to apply to women as well when he states

“When the American civil rights movement took up the issue of voting rights, civil rights activists demanded that black people be allowed to vote without harassment or other obstacles like “literacy tests” standing in their way.

Civil rights activists didn’t demand that whites be kept from voting.

The Civil Rights movement called for historically all-white colleges to be opened up to blacks. It didn’t call for white people to be banned from these colleges too”

Progressives should nto be arguing that the draft should apply to women as well, leave that to the MRAs and other regressive types.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Could we please not dumb down this conversation? Everyone here is smart enough to understand the actual argument, which is that a. the draft is a bad thing and should not exist, but b. as long as it does it should apply to everyone regardless of sex.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

NB to lurkers, not all progressives are as dumb as Cassie.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Could we please not dumb down this conversation? Everyone here is smart enough to understand the actual argument, which is that a. the draft is a bad thing and should not exist, but b. as long as it does it should apply to everyone regardless of sex.”

Yes and I disagree with that, because of the reasons I gave above.

Including the ones David gave. At the point in history when men had the vote but women did not would you have said “men and women should have the vote but if they don’t then nobody should be allowed to vote”? If so why?

titianblue
titianblue
8 years ago

Cassie, you’re making the assumption that everyone agrees that the draft (or at lest registering for it) is unethical and/or a breach of human rights.

If someone sees registration for the draft as a not unreasonable condition of being a citizen of a country, like taxation for example, then that condition should be applied equally, regardless of gender.

Ironically, it is the MRAs who both argue that the draft is unethical and want it extended to women.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Wow, she’s even dumber than I initially assumed.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

Do you argue now that instead of increasing pay for women to achieve pay equity that we should decrease pay for men? It is the exact same argument and it is the argument a MRA would make.

kysokisaen
8 years ago

So basically if you had blood-focused BSDM sex on a hike you would trigger the Bear Apocalypse.

Bring food. Bears love food. And everyone could use a snack after a hike-orgy.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

But Cassie, is there even a draft in the US? I thought all the people serving now were volunteers. This law is about combat duty, not a hypothetical draft, isn’t it?

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Hint for the less dumb – the argument that is actually being made is more like “It’s unethical for the government to force people to give blood, but as long as that’s what’s happening, the requirement that citizens give blood should logically apply to everyone regardless of sex”.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Kitteh’s, there is no draft in the US right now, and not likely to be in this lifetime again. Men currently have to register for it though, but the military is volunteer.

Cassie, WTF are you huffing before you type?

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Cassie, you’re making the assumption that everyone agrees that the draft (or at lest registering for it) is unethical and/or a breach of human rights.”

No, I am not. Please provide reasoning for this assertion.

“If someone sees registration for the draft as a not unreasonable condition of being a citizen of a country, like taxation for example, then that condition should be applied equally, regardless of gender.”

Ah, but that is not the argument being put forward here, the argument being put forward is…

“Everyone here is smart enough to understand the actual argument, which is that a. the draft is a bad thing and should not exist, but b. as long as it does it should apply to everyone regardless of sex.”

“Ironically, it is the MRAs who both argue that the draft is unethical and want it extended to women.”

It seems to me David and others on this forum are putting forth the same argument, they state it should not exist (as it is unethical?) but if it does it should be spread to everyone.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

@ Kittehs

Technically there could be a draft, but it’s unlikely that there will be. I’d like to see registration done away with anyway for the reasons I listed above, but in terms of likelihood of anyone actually being drafted right now? Pretty low.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

Which means that Cassie is saying “The draft is bad, but while there is one, only men should be drafted.” Because that’s the result of her argument, surely?

In the meantime, I think the Pentagon is missing out on the ultimate war weapon. Parachute BDSM groups into the forests of enemy territory, let them have at it and the Bear Apocalypse will be triggered.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Also, Cassie, the MRM wouldn’t even make that pay argument except to say that women shouldn’t work at all.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

““It’s unethical for the government to force people to give blood, but as long as that’s what’s happening, the requirement that citizens give blood should logically apply to everyone regardless of sex”.

Yes that is a good analogy. I disagree with your conclusion however, why would the best thing to be to violate the rights of more people? Isn’t it better to minimise human rights violations?

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Cassie’s argument is so circular, she’s about to disappear up her own ass. Any minute now.

titianblue
titianblue
8 years ago

Oooh, nooo, @Cassandra and I apparently argue against each other … OMG feminists disagreeing. Have I broken from the hivemind? Does this mean I have to self-distruct?

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

I don’t think Cassie has any idea what she’s saying at this point, actually. I’m getting a strong “I’m not quite sure what I’m outraged about but being outraged sure is fun!” vibe from this one.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Also, Cassie, the MRM wouldn’t even make that pay argument except to say that women shouldn’t work at all.”

Yes my statement there was unclear. I meant they would make that argument from their side of the fence. If they thought men got lower wages or whatever, they would demand women’s were lowered rather than men’s raised. Which is nonsense.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“OMG feminists disagreeing. Have I broken from the hivemind? Does this mean I have to self-distruct?”

I’m a socialist actually 🙂

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Cassie, how is registering for a draft a violation of human rights, and what MRA website did you crawl out of?

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

@ titianblue

OMG, one of us is now required to resign from feminism! Because of course just like AVFM we have a board of directors.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Again, for those lurking – if something is a violation of human rights, deciding that it’s just dandy for the rights of only one sex to be violated is what the less batshit among us refer to as “sexism”.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

Cassie, you’re still equating “minimising human rights violations” with “aiming those violations at a group based on gender” – men. How is this supposed to be a good thing? It’s stupid, targeting men for the draft on the assumption women can’t or won’t serve, if one has to have a draft, which the US at present effectively doesn’t. Same here, too: last time we had a draft was the Vietnam War.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

Ninja’d by Cassandra. 😛

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Cassie, how is registering for a draft a violation of human rights, and what MRA website did you crawl out of?”

Lol, I am far far far from being a MRA, just because I disagree with you doesn’t mean I agree with them, that is a false dichotomy.

As for why it is a violation of human rights, perhaps it isn’t, I didn’t say it was. If you could provide me with why you guys think it shouldn’t exist at all I could respond to that. Is it because you think it is unethical? Unnecessary? A violation of human rights? What is it?

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Sorry, Cassie, I’ve hit my quota of “trying to explain simple concepts to stupid people” for the day.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Cassie, we’re not here to educate your dumb ass. Google is your friend, use it.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Ninja’d by Cassandra.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Again, for those lurking – if something is a violation of human rights, deciding that it’s just dandy for the rights of only one sex to be violated is what the less batshit among us refer to as “sexism”.”

It would be yes, however that is not what I said at all. I said it is better to do as the civil rights movement did, as David brought up, push for greater rights, such as access to universities and voting. Not for less rights such as everyone being part of the draft.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Cassie, you’re still equating “minimising human rights violations” with “aiming those violations at a group based on gender””

Can you clarify this please. It seems to be contradictory. I think the less people who suffer human rights violations, or unethical laws, or whatever is you want to call this situation, the better! Extending it only hurts more people, one should campaign for it to be abolished if one disagrees with it, not extended.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Cassie, you know we can scroll up, right? You keep changing whatever inanities you’re arguing from post to post.

Go away, you are tedious and stupid.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Ignoring the stupid…I can kind of see the argument for a draft in certain specific cases, for example if a country is living under constant threat of imminent invasion. South Korea comes to mind – they have the most unstable, potentially dangerous country in the world sitting right on their doorstep, so they really do need some sort of military protection. OTOH, a lot of people there feel that part of the purpose of mandatory military service is to brainwash young men into acting the way the government wants them to, and that people come out fundamentally different to how they were when they went in.

Anathema
8 years ago

Given that the USA doesn’t actually have a draft right now, I don’t think that you have to worry about feminists pushing for women to be drafted. There’s a difference between saying that IF there was a draft then it is unfair to discriminate amongst potential draftees based on gender and actually pushing for women to be drafted.

anathema2
anathema2
8 years ago

@ Cassie:

In some hypothetical world where the draft still existed in the United States, allowing women to be drafted would not mean that the overall number of people drafted would increase. The same number of people would still end up being drafted, it’s just that that same number would include both men and women.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Also, I don’t think our friend Cassie understands political strategy at all. What do you think would happen if NOW issued a declaration saying that they were opposed to women specifically being drafted? How do you think that would impact, say, campaigns to open positions that have traditionally been closed to women in the military?

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Given that the USA doesn’t actually have a draft right now, I don’t think that you have to worry about feminists pushing for women to be drafted. There’s a difference between saying that IF there was a draft then it is unfair to discriminate amongst potential draftees based on gender and actually pushing for women to be drafted.”

My understanding of USA laws was that when men enrol to vote they also have to put their name on a draft register in the case that the draft is put into effect and that women aren’t required to do this. Is that an incorrect understanding?

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Or, to put it another way – the recent decision to open combat positions to women? That probably wouldn’t have happened if feminists hadn’t put forward the argument that as long as there’s registration it should apply to women too.

(I hate trying to teach realpolitik to people with no real-world experience, it’s always an exercise in frustration.)

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Also, I don’t think our friend Cassie understands political strategy at all. What do you think would happen if NOW issued a declaration saying that they were opposed to women specifically being drafted? How do you think that would impact, say, campaigns to open positions that have traditionally been closed to women in the military?”

Ah yes, political strategy. That is an interesting topic. I’m not sure what would happen if NOW said that, then the issue becomes how much are you willing to compromise your political position to cater to the masses?

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“In some hypothetical world where the draft still existed in the United States, allowing women to be drafted would not mean that the overall number of people drafted would increase. The same number of people would still end up being drafted, it’s just that that same number would include both men and women.”

Interesting point, I don’t necessarily accept the bounds of this scenario though. Why is it necessarily that the same amount of people will be sent to fight and die? If women could have been drafted during Vietnam do you not think it is possible if not likely there would have been more people over there?

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

To tie this in to the other thread, this is part of the reason why I love SBS so much – they’re a perfect example of how do to political work that’s based on practical ideas rather than rhetoric, and they’ve never had any patience with dumb kids who refuse to deal with reality.

Cassie
Cassie
8 years ago

“Or, to put it another way – the recent decision to open combat positions to women? That probably wouldn’t have happened if feminists hadn’t put forward the argument that as long as there’s registration it should apply to women too.”

This is really a different argument altogether. I have not argued against asserting this as a position for political reasons, only argued with the position itself.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

(Not to suggest that all young people are as dumb as Cassie – we have several young activists here who understand how to do politics.)

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

Cassie, you’re saying that only men should be drafted when there is a draft. That’s what you call minimising human rights violations. It’s what the rest of us call sexism.

It isn’t that fucking difficult to understand.

And given that this ENTIRE ARTICLE is about opening combat positions to women, wtf are you blathering about a nonexistent draft anyway?

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Cassie, why are you here? If it’s just to JAQ off and devil’s advocate, kindly fuck off.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

And given that this ENTIRE ARTICLE is about opening combat positions to women, wtf are you blathering about a nonexistent draft anyway?

Because outraged trolling is fun!

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Even more fun when you don’t know a thing about what you’re outraged about!

God, I wonder what she actually knows about socialism.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

The flailing is starting to remind me of the bit with the fish in this video.

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
8 years ago

Lol, I am far far far from being a MRA, just because I disagree with you doesn’t mean I agree with them, that is a false dichotomy.

*ahem*

This is MRA logic101

Progressives should nto be arguing that the draft should apply to women as well, leave that to the MRAs and other regressive types.

It is the exact same argument and it is the argument a MRA would make.

It’s almost like you’re a giant hypocrite or something!

And then there’s this:

“OMG feminists disagreeing. Have I broken from the hivemind? Does this mean I have to self-distruct?”

I’m a socialist actually

And? They’re not mutually exclusive. Or is this going to turn into some “class is the only oppression that matters” bullshit?