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Feminism: It’s like letting your kids stay up eating ice cream

funny-crazy-mad-kid-girl-ice-cream-youll-scream-pics

How would you define feminism in a sentence or two?

Wait, stop thinking, for Reddit’s ImissAOL  has already provided a wonderfully concise and accurate definition:

I see modern feminism as the equivalent to letting your kids stay up all night eating ice cream.

He adds, helpfully:

Just because they feel they are getting their way doesn’t mean it is actually benefiting them.

Gosh, that’s not patronizing at all!

Sometimes doing this blog makes me hungry.

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Some Gal Not Bored at All

Klan (I can’t even blame autocorrect for that as apparently, it suggests moan.)

Sid
Sid
7 years ago

Don’t believe I’ve ever posted here, but in case Nerds is still lurking, this is the reason I, personally, treat all MRAs as enemies.

1) BY DEFINITION, they do not call themselves feminists* or womanists or hell, even that “egalitarian” BS they throw at us every time we try to have a discussion. Feminism has been around for a long, long time. At this point, if there is a person who has, at any time in hir life, had access to the internet, and still believes feminism is about “female” superiority or treating men as second-class citizens, there is nothing that will convince them otherwise. So they know what feminism is about, in an abstract sort of way: social and legal equality, rejection of enforced social roles, rejection of kyriarchy in all its forms, etc. MRAs have taken a look at that and said, “nah, not really my thing”.

2) BY DEFINITION, they reject the idea of male or masculine privilege as a thing that exists. They see all the horrible shit non-men go through, and how much work it would take to even come close to breaking free of it, and rather than working with the only group that seems to give a damn and using their power to make the world slightly less terrible for people not like them to live in, they form their own movement to re-center the discussion on men. At best, they focus on the ways the patriarchy hurts men (because feminists merely discussing it isn’t enough, see) and minimize or outright deny the ways it hurts everyone else. At worst, they take individual situations and personal anecdotes and use them as “proof” that men are the REAL victims of society. Their very name is a privilege denial; what would you think if someone calling hirself a Hetero Rights Activist starting attending rallies against discrimination or persecution based on orientation, holding up a sign that said “THINGS SUCK FOR STRAIGHT PEOPLE, TOO”?

Now, I don’t assume they’re all rapists and abusers. But I can only judge people by what they do, and what they say, and everything they do and say works to both deny and further their own privilege, at the expense of everyone else. That is what it means to be an MRA. Because of that, talking with them, and befriending them, and including them in discussions is not worth my time or effort. It will never go anywhere, and there’s a very good chance that they won’t be one of the “nice” ones who pat me on the head for using critical thinking, but one of those who believe I am subhuman and that merely existing in a way that does not allow men to use me at their leisure makes me unworthy of life.

*It should be noted that I do know of a few men whose ideology would be considered feminist, and yet they do not call themselves such because they worry about unintentionally co-opting the movement, due to their privilege. I have all the respect in the world for such men and do not wish to undermine their choice of labels, but I think we can all agree this is not the mentality driving MRAs.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

::applause::

Welcome, Sid! 🙂

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

Okay, well I’ve done a fair bit of reading now. Let me see what I can answer and what I honestly can’t.

@pecunium:

I gave the source already, but here’s a direct link: http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20110218135832/http://rds.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/pdfs05/hors293.pdf

Officially, false allegations stood at 8% in that 2005 report. The report later mentions a false allegation estimation between 3% and 9%, but under the original rules, the sample was at 8% for false allegations – keep in mind that 8% doesn’t mean with admission.

[QUOTE] “Also, how in the name of fuck do you get off saying that rape isn’t a violent crime?” [/QUOTE]

I used the term generic violent crimeto separate between generic violence and sexual violence. After all if I use two sources of statistics, I need to separate generic violence from sexual violence to avoid accidental confusion.

[QUOTE]”Look at your, “sourcing”: you infer that the rest of the world must work like the UK. Guess what, in the US they aren’t required to give paid maternity leave to anyone.” [/QUOTE]

I gave examples of privilege based on concrete examples I already knew existed. Also, the US would be the exception there, not the rule. By the sounds of it, feminists have a lot of work to accomplish there, I’d consider paid parental leave a human right and the one time I can say “for the good of the children” without sounding ironic.

@heidihi: I give. I really can’t find a single prominent result for an MRA that hasn’t at one point or another said something which may be interpreted as hateful.

@titianblue: I was merely using those stats to explain that there are different issues affecting different sexes; not that risks of generic violence against men are greater than the risks of sexual violence against women.

@katz: The Good Men Project is added to the list of content to devour

@Shiraz: (Yes, I know you guys misinterpreted what someone else said and then misattributed it to me…but for the sake of clarity…) I don’t do false equivalence. For example, looking back at history, one can definitely say slaveowners views shouldn’t be considered equally alongside the views of the slaves (who were victims and deserved their freedom); but thanks for the example 🙂

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@Sid:

I pretty much understand everything you’re saying and appreciate the time you’ve taken to write this (I submitted my last comment then.. woah, epic post with a lot of answers I’ve been looking for has appeared!).

[QUOTE] “there’s a very good chance that they won’t be one of the “nice” ones who pat me on the head for using critical thinking, but one of those who believe I am subhuman and that merely existing in a way that does not allow men to use me at their leisure makes me unworthy of life.”[/QUOTE]

I’m kind of assuming you’re using the name Sid to avoid any “but you’re a woman” arguments, or am I misreading this part?

If you’ve read all the other comments, I’m pretty sure you’ve noticed the challenge others have informally issued to find examples of MRAs online that aren’t hateful or misogynistic.. well, I failed there. It doesn’t surprise me you find MRAs hostile given what you’d typically find on many MRA forums, so I guess I understand (or rather agree that your position there is natural and forms good common sense =]).

There are some parts I disagree with but these may be based on my own misunderstanding or misinterpretation of what’s written:

[QUOTE] “Their very name is a privilege denial” [/QUOTE]

Imagine if Feminism was referred to as Women’s Rights Activism and activists were called WRAs. The name in of itself wouldn’t be a denial of specific circumstances in which women have privileges, nor should it be. So I don’t see how Men’s Rights Activism would be any different in terms of name.

[QUOTE] what would you think if someone calling hirself a Hetero Rights Activist starting attending rallies against discrimination or persecution based on orientation, holding up a sign that said “THINGS SUCK FOR STRAIGHT PEOPLE, TOO”? [/QUOTE]

First, I’d like to say I understand the point you’re trying to make but consider this argument.

Lesbians until the early 00s had full rights to have sex at any age in the UK, there was no age of consent; therefore lesbians were technically granted more sexual rights by law than straight people. This means that although there existed straight privilege, there also existed privileges for lesbians that straight couples did not have. (A form of female privilege too, women being legally able to have sex at any age if it’s same sex.)

Would it be have been so unfair for a “Hetero Rights Activist” prior to the changes in law to campaign to get rid of the age of consent for straight people at a rally, since the government obviously saw sex at any age as okay for lesbians at that time? I would say it deserved attention just as much as reducing or even abolishing the age of consent for gay sex. Unfortunately, with the changes in law designed to benefit the gay community, lesbians lost freedoms they previously had and now can’t have sex involving penetration with any object until the age of 16.

P.S. I know my examples are all UK-based but our governments have historically been so stupid that it’s easiest to find imbalances in rights and inherent forms of privilege when stupid laws/statutes are approved frequently. I also happen to know the stupidity of my native country better than that of other countries >_>

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

Imagine if Feminism was referred to as Women’s Rights Activism and activists were called WRAs. The name in of itself wouldn’t be a denial of specific circumstances in which women have privileges, nor should it be. So I don’t see how Men’s Rights Activism would be any different in terms of name.

Except you’re still ignoring entrenched male privilege in patriarchies when you make that comparison.

Lesbians until the early 00s had full rights to have sex at any age in the UK, there was no age of consent; therefore lesbians were technically granted more sexual rights by law than straight people. This means that although there existed straight privilege, there also existed privileges for lesbians that straight couples did not have. (A form of female privilege too, women being legally able to have sex at any age if it’s same sex.)

Not necessarily. If you read Surpassing the Love of Men by Lillian Faderman you’ll see a case from c. 1800 where two women were put on trial for “tribadism”. They were the owners/teachers of a girls’ school and one of the students claimed to have heard them in bed together. They were acquitted, but lesbians weren’t as free and clear as that.

The fact also remains that when marriage was the only real career path for middle-class women, being lesbian was anything but a privilege unless you were in the fortunate minority who were indpendently wealthy. It’s not a privilege to have to marry someone you do not want to marry at all; even less so when you are not and cannot be sexually attracted to them.

You’re also overlooking that lesbianism wasn’t so much given blanket approval as simply overlooked, erased. The tale that Queen Victoria refused to outlaw it because women couldn’t do anything sexual together is apocryphal (I can’t imagine Victoria talking to her ministers about that sort of thing, let alone them raising the subject) but it illustrates prevailing attitudes and ignorance.

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@Sid: I should add that you and a lot of others here have given decent explanations answering the question on why MRM and Feminism can’t align yet.

For better or worse, manboobz is in my bookmarks list, since although a lot of the content is purely mocking misogyny, I’ve found the feedback here and some of the MRA articles very enlightening =]

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

Martyn (are you Word of the Nerds?) it isn’t “can’t align YET” – did you take in what Sid and everyone else said? The MRM is opposed to the very idea that women are human beings. They don’t just hate feminism; most of them hate women, full stop.

It’s exactly like asking PoC if they think they’ll eventually align with the KKK. (And, btw, the MRM is massively racist, as well: when you see a USian talking about “thugs” it’s a code word for coloured men.)

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@Kitteh: I was referring to 2000s when I said 00s. From the period of the 1970s through till 2000, lesbians definitely had an inherent benefit in the lack of age of consent, since women had financial independence and the availability of half-decent social housing.

Historically though, you’re right. It’s easy to forget just how dependent the system made women upon men and how at one time, rape “could not happen” in a marriage (and chivalry was an agreement by men for the benefit of men, too).

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

Yeah, I am WarOfTheNerd. Auto-fill keeps putting my real name in, plus I don’t mind people knowing it; so I might as well just use it.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

Easy to forget if you don’t know any history, perhaps, or aren’t in the group still feeling the repercussions.

Some Gal Not Bored at All

@Martyn

Lesbians until the early 00s had full rights to have sex at any age in the UK, there was no age of consent; therefore lesbians were technically granted more sexual rights by law than straight people

The right to abuse children? That isn’t giving them more rights so much as it is creating a loophole allowing child abuse. As The Kittehs’ said, it is erasing them, refusing to see them as existing, rather than granting them anything.

This isn’t a “right” any good person would want.

katz
7 years ago

Martyn, I’m glad you like to read so much, but reading a lot isn’t really a virtue if you also read indiscriminately and uncritically. You take all these MRM claims at face value when you really need to be able to analyze them. Not everyone who cries “I’m oppressed!” is really oppressed.

Sid
Sid
7 years ago

(I don’t really know how the coding works here, so I apologize if this looks like crap ;-; Also, thank you, Kitteh.)

[quote]I’m kind of assuming you’re using the name Sid to avoid any “but you’re a woman” arguments, or am I misreading this part?[/quote]
I use the name Sid because it is my name 😛 Or a shortened version of my name, to be exact. I don’t really care what internet people assume about my gender. I do identify as a woman though, for future reference.

[quote]If you’ve read all the other comments, I’m pretty sure you’ve noticed the challenge others have informally issued to find examples of MRAs online that aren’t hateful or misogynistic.. well, I failed there. It doesn’t surprise me you find MRAs hostile given what you’d typically find on many MRA forums, so I guess I understand (or rather agree that your position there is natural and forms good common sense =]).[/quote]
Oh, I don’t find them hostile, not as a rule anyway. Hostility doesn’t really mean much to me; I live in an area renowned for both its hospitality and friendliness, and its extreme bigotry.

Though, I feel I should mention that if I do assume MRAs to be hostile toward me, it may have something to do with the company they keep; my introduction to the “movement”, when I didn’t know what it was and assumed it was to feminism what Men’s Studies classes are to Women’s Studies, was a celebration of one woman’s brutal murder and another’s attempted assassination. And there were pretty much no voices of criticism.

[quote]Imagine if Feminism was referred to as Women’s Rights Activism and activists were called WRAs. The name in of itself wouldn’t be a denial of specific circumstances in which women have privileges, nor should it be. So I don’t see how Men’s Rights Activism would be any different in terms of name.[/quote]
Except that the two are not equivalent, because men have enormous privilege over women in our culture. Even those cases where men seem to get a raw deal are largely due to misogyny: women have some advantage in custody cases because we’re viewed as born “nurturers”, men hitting women is viewed as worse than men hitting men because women are assumed to be weak, rape laws/attitudes that protect women and not men are based on viewing women as property and sex as theft, and so on. My point is, the term “feminism” is inherently transgressive, because it centers a group that is usually Other’d, and brings said group’s issues and concerns to the forefront when they would otherwise be pushed to the side. Men’s Rights activism, or “masculinism” as I’ve seen it a few times, centers the group that is already seen as the default human, and frames men as an oppressed group, whose “rights” are in need of protecting. That’s what I meant by denying privilege.

[quote]Lesbians until the early 00s had full rights to have sex at any age in the UK, there was no age of consent; therefore lesbians were technically granted more sexual rights by law than straight people. This means that although there existed straight privilege, there also existed privileges for lesbians that straight couples did not have. (A form of female privilege too, women being legally able to have sex at any age if it’s same sex.)

Would it be have been so unfair for a “Hetero Rights Activist” prior to the changes in law to campaign to get rid of the age of consent for straight people at a rally, since the government obviously saw sex at any age as okay for lesbians at that time? I would say it deserved attention just as much as reducing or even abolishing the age of consent for gay sex. Unfortunately, with the changes in law designed to benefit the gay community, lesbians lost freedoms they previously had and now can’t have sex involving penetration with any object until the age of 16.[/quote]
Kitteh answered this far better than I could, so I’ll keep my reply short. I would never claim there aren’t some upsides to being marginalized. Much has been written about how useful it can be for people to forget you exist (I once read something rather interesting on romantic relationships between women throughout history, and how in many cases, the assumption that women weren’t sexual and certainly not with other women meant they had more freedom in their relationships than straight couples). That does not mean privilege is not a thing. My point was that, while those who hold privilege have legitimate complaints that are worthy of discussion, trying to recenter the discussion on yourself, especially when those complaints are so minor relative to the ones you’re silencing in order to do so, is sabotaging the efforts of marginalized groups and is itself an expression of enormous privilege. Speaking as someone who holds a great deal of privilege in a lot of ways, oftentimes the best thing an ally can do is sit down and shut up.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

::applause again::

Blockquotes here just use the angle brackets instead of the square ones.

That won’t save you from the Blockquote Monster though. 😉

Some Gal Not Bored at All

@Sid

Welcome and I want to apologize to you because, while you don’t need my help, I had meant to call Martyn on the assumption about your name and forgot to. I’m also sorry he was an asshole about that.

@Martyn

This was an asshole assumption to make.

I’m kind of assuming you’re using the name Sid to avoid any “but you’re a woman” arguments, or am I misreading this part?/

Why would you make any assumptions about someone’s name let alone that the purpose was, as you’ve phrased it, slightly dishonest. This comes off as accusing Sid of attempting to get out of tackling a legitimate point. (If it were illegitimate, why mention it at all?)

Other than sock-puppeting, I can’t think of a single reason to choose a name that is really relevant to the discussion we are having. If Sid chose the name to be gender neutral or assumed male, so what? The only time that we would relevant is in a discussion of how differently men/assumed men are treated online.

Don’t act like an asshole like this, please. You’ve mostly been pleasant (if wrong), but this was out of line.

Deoridhe
7 years ago

Re: Names and online gender identification, I chose Deoridhe for reasons far outside of gender (mostly having to do with heritage and religion) and the fact that I read as neuter turned out to just be lucky, as I got hit on much less often than people with more feminine names. I’ll never forget a night someone named Bigone contacted me privately (this was on a BBS, to age myself) and we have a lovely talk because I assumed his name was bygone and only picked up subsequently that it was big one without the space.

Really, though, women shouldn’t have to think about their gender when online. SusieSunshineSparkles is not asking for abuse, any more than people who aren’t so stereotypically feminine in our names should get praise for it.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

It’s essentially not our business to ask what someone’s gender is. Apart from anything else, it’s not just men and women; gender isn’t a binary. It’s up to people whether they want to mention it or not.

pecunium
7 years ago

I used the term generic violent crimeto separate between generic violence and sexual violence. After all if I use two sources of statistics, I need to separate generic violence from sexual violence to avoid accidental confusion.

You failed.

Did you factor the “generic violence” + rape? Doesn’t look it.

Officially, false allegations stood at 8% in that 2005 report.

Still doesn’t asnwer my question about what “false” means in this context.

I gave examples of privilege based on concrete examples I already knew existed. Also, the US would be the exception there, not the rule. By the sounds of it, feminists have a lot of work to accomplish there,

And yet you think the MRM needs an equal say.

Your bias, it’s showing.

@heidihi: I give. I really can’t find a single prominent result for an MRA that hasn’t at one point or another said something which may be interpreted as hateful.

That might tell a reasonable person something.

@Shiraz: (Yes, I know you guys misinterpreted what someone else said and then misattributed it to me…but for the sake of clarity…) I don’t do false equivalence.

Yes, yes you do. You do it when you try to say the MRM and feminism have parallel goals, and it’s unfair to treat the MRM as a hateful group.

If you’ve read all the other comments, I’m pretty sure you’ve noticed the challenge others have informally issued to find examples of MRAs online that aren’t hateful or misogynistic.. well, I failed there.

You more than failed. You started by saying you had one, though you get some props for admitting you can’t find any; though the lurkers in e-mail is still something you are holding pat on, and you still pretend the MRM, as a whole has a rational basis for it’s positions.

Shiraz
Shiraz
7 years ago

You don’t do false equivalency? What’s this?

“Imagine if Feminism was referred to as Women’s Rights Activism and activists were called WRAs. The name in of itself wouldn’t be a denial of specific circumstances in which women have privileges, nor should it be.”

Um, there’s an entire body of history that you seem to be overlooking — the part where women weren’t legally abled to be in charge of their own lives. That still goes on in varying degrees across the globe.

“So I don’t see how Men’s Rights Activism would be any different in terms of name.”

Errr, men have been in charge for a long, long time.

“[QUOTE] what would you think if someone calling hirself a Hetero Rights Activist starting attending rallies against discrimination or persecution based on orientation, holding up a sign that said “THINGS SUCK FOR STRAIGHT PEOPLE, TOO”? [/QUOTE]”

OK, a false equivalency arguement right there — extra points for invoking a scenario that’s never happened. Also, people don’t organize to limit the rights of straight people just because they’re straight.

Then you start to babble about lesbians and how cool it is that they can have sex with underage people…which is just frakking weird. Once again, you ignore history and try to characterize an entire demographic based on your strange assumptions.

“Lesbians until the early 00s had full rights to have sex at any age in the UK, there was no age of consent; therefore lesbians were technically granted more sexual rights by law than straight people. This means that although there existed straight privilege, there also existed privileges for lesbians that straight couples did not have. (A form of female privilege too, women being legally able to have sex at any age if it’s same sex.)”

What’s this, by the way?

“Would it be have been so unfair for a “Hetero Rights Activist” prior to the changes in law to campaign to get rid of the age of consent for straight people at a rally, since the government obviously saw sex at any age as okay for lesbians at that time?”

Not sure about your point of reference here, though maybe that’s because I’m U.S. Though you may be forgetting that lesbians weren’t mentioned in all the original laws because law makers basically assumed Lesbians didn’t exist in any way they had to legally recognize. Being invisible isn’t priviledge.

And this — what exactly are you implying?

“…with the changes in law designed to benefit the gay community, lesbians lost freedoms they previously had and now can’t have sex involving penetration with any object until the age of 16.”

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

I have to say, given the focus that many MRAs have on the idea that age of consent laws are misandry, I’m giving this whole derail about how there was a legal loophole in the UK where lesbians who abused kids weren’t covered, and the idea that this was a privilege, more than a little side-eye.

Shiraz
Shiraz
7 years ago

Yeah…a little side-eye. I’m giving it the hairy eyeball. Weird.

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Yeeeahh, I’m not cool with calling it a privilege to be able to have sex regardless of age difference. Not when that implies that statutory rape was legal and that was a privilege rather that a loophole that needed closing.

<blockquote>Also, you want these</blockquote>

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

It’s kind of telling, actually. The more moderate and attempting to be reasonable members of the MRM? Still pretty creepy.

Shiraz
Shiraz
7 years ago

It’s super duper creepy.

katz
7 years ago

Yes, creepy, but in fairness, I don’t think he’s advocating for pedophilia, particularly; I think he’s just grasping at straws in his attempt to find a case where an oppressed group was better off.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

I think so too. It’s the fact that he doesn’t even seem to be aware that having no legal protection from being molested as a child is not a privilege that raised my eyebrows. It takes a certain mindset to consider that a valid argument.

marinerachel
marinerachel
7 years ago

Still waiting on that free stuff, as per my vagina….

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

If that free stuff is being delivered by Startrack, we’ll never flamin’ well see it …

/crap courier rant

Sid
Sid
7 years ago

Ah, I see. Thank you kindly.

OK, a false equivalency arguement right there — extra points for invoking a scenario that’s never happened. Also, people don’t organize to limit the rights of straight people just because they’re straight.

I’m afraid that argument is one of mine, not his. It was not at all my intention to say that straight people are oppressed or anything, quite the opposite actually, but I apologize for being unclear.

Nobinayamu
Nobinayamu
7 years ago

*Sigh*
It used to be so much fun to kill time catching up on the threads. Now Arks is back, pithy and pointless as ever. B___n’s back, just as banal and twice as stupid. Still, I love the tangents that take over the discussions.

I mean, I’m sure it’s nice to have material comfort, emotional validation, and sexual satisfcation bestowed upon you for existing with a vagina, but it doesn’t build much character.

Arks? I’m going to give you some advice: stop hitting on straight men. Seriously.

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@katz && @CassandraSays:

I do not believe that age of consent is misandry in any way. The reason I mention this is because it used to be explained to children in sex-ed classes.

When I attended sex-ed as a kid, the fact that lesbians could have sex at any age was always explicitly mentioned, so people knew that straight people could have sex at 16, gay people 18 and lesbians at any age. Now, it’s mentioned as a historical fact in sex-ed classes alongside how unfair the age of consent was for gay men (it’s all equal now but it’s taught to explain how gay rights got big in the UK in the 90 and early 00s).

[QUOTE]”I think so too. It’s the fact that he doesn’t even seem to be aware that having no legal protection from being molested as a child is not a privilege that raised my eyebrows.”[/QUOTE]

Age of consent rules in the UK are based on conditions. If you’re a teacher, doctor, nurse or other working professional, you cannot have sex with anyone you work with until they are ‘over 18 years of age’, some institutions take this to mean 18-and-1-day, and others, like schools and colleges interpret this as 19 years and over. Parents can’t molest their children either, as very strict, draconian child protection rules exist. All a child has to do is mention things which may sound like abuse to a working professional (teacher, doctor, nurse, clergy… lawyer… you name it!) and information has to be passed on under child protection rules.

So, lesbian children/teenagers could have had consensual sex with each other without risks of child abuse. How’s that for cool? =]

Some Gal Not Bored at All

@Martyn

I think you missed the point.

joanimal
joanimal
7 years ago

@Martyn Hare (aka WarOfTheNerd)

I am going to assume you are a bright youngster, instead of a troll, and have insufficient life experiences to realize that an absence of something in your reading tells you nothing and cannot be used to infer something.

Several people have remarked on this so I will try to stick to bits about the law. My familiarity is from the US state of California’s Penal Code and I am not implyihg any literal application to English law.

The crime of rape is limited to penis in vagina assault. Other sexual assaults are covered by separate laws: penis in anus, penis in mouth, foreign objects in vagina, etc. The only gender specificity in the law of rape is the implied expectation of who has penises (peni?). The crimes of sexual violence that do not involve a penis have no gender specificity, implicitly or explicitly. I cannot help but doubt that the sexual assualt of minors by women was not covered by English Law.

However, lets assume you are correct and English law did not protect minors of sexual assualt by women. That doesn’t imply a societial acceptance of the behavior. Whether or not the behavior is a societial norm can be proven, but not from the law. For example, the absence of laws against wife beating in the past does not prove that it was a societial norm, but the historical accounts of its occurrence do,

Another example is car joyriding (TWOC in England.) The definition of theft is the taking of property with the intent of permanently depriving the owner of that property. Decades after the car was invented, it was realized that joyriding, the taking of a car without the intent of permanently depriving the owner of that car (but officer, I just borrowed the car) was not actually against the law. Again, the absence of a law does not imply a societial acceptance. Nobody has thought of it before that.

joanimal
joanimal
7 years ago

So, lesbian children/teenagers could have had consensual sex with each other without risks of child abuse. How’s that for cool? =]

I call shenanigans.

NOW I think you are a lying troll. Not because I have proof, but because what you say sounds preposterous.

I am open to be proven wrong, but first you need to show me the relevant sections in English law.

Some Gal Not Bored at All

@joanimal

I’m not sure that Martyn is lying, possibly just misinformed.

When I attended sex-ed as a kid, the fact that lesbians could have sex at any age was always explicitly mentioned, so people knew that straight people could have sex at 16, gay people 18 and lesbians at any age.

Maybe it is basically an urban legend?

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@joanimal:

I’m not trolling. With the greatest of respect, I think you’re misinterpreting what I’ve said, I’ll try to clarify.

Two minors who are consensually having sex is not the same as an adult abusing a child. I’ve not said anywhere about adult women abusing children or even abusing other women being possible under UK law, in fact I’ve said the opposite. I’m saying the law allowing two lesbian children/teenagers to have fun together consensually was a freedom afforded to lesbians that was not afforded to straight and gay people at the time.

This was educated to children and teenagers by teachers in sex-ed classes; it was not a theoretical loophole or anything culturally abnormal. It was actually encouraged in the ’90s. It was taught so that lesbians were aware they could do things if they wanted to without legal repercussions. That was a *good* thing because people who wanted to have sex early who happened to be lesbian could do so knowing they didn’t have to lie to the school nurse and could even get full sexual health advice talking about their own real-world scenarios, not “theoretical” ones like gay people had to at the time.

@Some Gal Not Bored at All && @Sid && @Kitteh:

Sorry. My intention was not to be an asshole, but instead to try and say “you don’t have to hide your gender, I’m not going to disregard your arguments just because you’re a woman”. I really only mentioned it because I wanted to know the reference point of what was written; some parts what Sid wrote read differently depending on whether the writer is straight, a gay man or a woman (an assumption of the latter two logically deduced from the writing style).

Or a shortened version of my name, to be exact. I don’t really care what internet people assume about my gender. I do identify as a woman though, for future reference.

That helps me better understand what Sid wrote 🙂

@pecunium:

Factoring in (generic violence + rape) would be unfair regardless of situation. It’s very easy to add together (generic violence + rape) and come out with an answer that is extremely biased in favour of MRM-arguments – hence why I did not do it. It’s been done over and over again and I know why it shouldn’t be done. Without factoring in London gang violence, it’s hard to balance things fairly.

and you still pretend the MRM, as a whole has a rational basis for it’s positions.

The problem I have with looking at both Feminism and MRM as a whole is that both can’t be looked at as a whole.

To better explain, I personally think sex-positive Feminism is common sense everyone should have, while I’ve seen conservatives claiming to be Feminist say and write things that sound oppressive toward women, let alone men. I have the same problem with the MRM, I see people who say stupid, ridiculous things (before anyone says anything.. I know that’s the point of manboobz…) like “women shouldn’t get paid maternity pay, it’s free moneyzzz, they can have a baby and get paid for nothing!!1111!!one”.

So I’m not pretending anything, I believe the concept of activism to resolve problems with laws and the system which affect men (which is what the MRM is meant to be about) is sound. It just needs the vocal, bigoted minority to step down and the reasonable men who say nothing and get on with things thinking “that’s the way life is” to step up and say something.

Yes, yes you do. You do it when you try to say the MRM and feminism have parallel goals, and it’s unfair to treat the MRM as a hateful group.

Well the MRM is primarily about men’s rights and feminism is primarily about women’s rights. The fact that the MRM has been co-opted by hateful bigots is a problem that needs resolving.

though the lurkers in e-mail is still something you are holding pat on

You mean people I know IRL who identify as MRM but don’t maintain any presence online? Face to face, I can talk all day about problems with the institution of marriage, how the lack of a men’s rights officer position in the student union at uni makes for a total lack of representation for men etc. But other than raising the complaint at the source of the specific instance of a problem, we don’t do anything. I know it’s our job to fight our own battles but look at the result? Stonewalling because the term MRA is still associated in most people’s minds with bigotry when really, it isn’t, the MRM just has some vocal bigots.

I try to do something by trying to put out there the idea that there should be an open discussion on what affects both sexes, even if I do come across as biased (partly because I know more about what affects me personally, than what affects others).

@Argenti Aertheri: Thanks for the tip on quoting. I’ll try to remember to use that in future 🙂

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@Some Gal Not Bored at All:

This is the first result from google, not an authoritative source but: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1045383.stm

It wasn’t an urban legend when I was in school. It’s also no lie.

katz
7 years ago

Martyn:

First, good job on the blockquotes.

I want to discuss you in general and why you’re getting such a bad reception here, because I’m guessing you find it puzzling, but foremost I just have to say: Please, please, please drop the “lesbians have more freedoms because they can molest children” line. It makes you sound pig-ignorant, bigoted, and LIKE A PEDOPHILE.

Some Gal Not Bored at All

@Martyn

That doesn’t say it was legal, just that it was not specified in the age of consent. That is, overlooked. There are numerous other charges that could be brought against someone of any age engaging in lesbian (or otherwise) sexual activity. I know a little bit about the age of consent laws in England and, historically, they were fucked up for a number of reasons (many of them pertaining to class and prostitution issues). That they failed to address lesbian activity does not mean that lesbian activity was condoned by all law.

I don’t know about your schooling in particular, but much of what I was taught in school was only partially correct. You may want to look at your own education as a bit less authoritative. It seems like, in this instance, you were taught something that was true, but taught that the implications of that truth were other than what they are.

Leaving all that aside, it is not a privilege that lesbians enjoyed. Heterosexuality was (and continues to be) privileged. That the erasure of lesbianism left the age of consent for lesbian sexual activity unaddressed does not mean that it was better to be a lesbian or that such activity was seen as better. It wasn’t seen at all! It was ignored! That is not a privilege.

Well the MRM is primarily about men’s right

No. The MRM is primarily about hating women or anti-women’s rights. That you may think it should be different or wish it to be is beside the point. Additionally, centering those who are already centered by society is always, in some way, going to promote the oppression of those on the margins. That is why feminism focuses on women’s rights, for example, to correct the historical and contemporary imbalance. Most of the issues that do affect men are those that will be corrected by feminism. Setting up a movement thar seeks to accomplish the same goals, but cares more about men or primarily about men may correct those specific issues, but will (I believe) do so at the expense of women because, at its fire, it recreates the inequality present in almost every facet of society. It is misogynistic in its premise because it takes secondary oppression as primary, thereby erasing the primarily oppressed.

While it is far from perfect, I do not feel the same way about the Father’s Rights movement(s) because while much about our cultural conceptions of mothers oppress women, mothers (as a theorectical category apart from women) are not necessarily oppressed as such. Thus, Father’s Rights do not center a group that is already considered by society to be consistently central.

Father’s Rights are, however, still addressed by feminism.

Some Gal Not Bored at All

Shit.

Setting up a movement thar seeks to accomplish the same goals, but cares more about men or primarily about men may correct those specific issues, but will (I believe) do so at the expense of women because, at its fire, it recreates the inequality present in almost every facet of society.

This should be:

Setting up a movement that seeks to accomplish the same goals, but cares more about men or primarily about men may correct those specific issues, but will (I believe) do so at the expense of women because, at its core, it recreates the inequality present in almost every facet of society.

katz
7 years ago

While it is far from perfect, I do not feel the same way about the Father’s Rights movement(s) because while much about our cultural conceptions of mothers oppress women, mothers (as a theorectical category apart from women) are not necessarily oppressed as such. Thus, Father’s Rights do not center a group that is already considered by society to be consistently central.

Gotta disagree with this; while there are some side effects that end up harming fathers, society as a whole hugely favors fathers. Fathers get to “have their cake and eat it too” by having both a family and a career, while mothers are expected to make sacrifices; fathers are treated as the head of the household, while mothers (and wives) are expected to obey them (especially in Christian circles); fathers get kudos for doing chores or spending time with the children, while mothers are negligent if they ever don’t.

Some Gal Not Bored at All

@katz

I knew someone would. I was giving the idea of it the benefit of the doubt. It isn’t really possible to separate fathers from men and mothers from women. I see all the father’s stuff you identify as more men’s stuff. Husbands, fathers, male partners, etc. all get to “have their cake and eat it to,” be treated deferentially, etc. Men aren’t expected to be nurturing at all and it is treated as a pleasant surprise if they do any of it.

Theoretically, though, if father were separate from man and mother are separate from woman, Father’s Rights could be a thing. If they stuck just to expecting men to actually act like nurturing parents and supporting men in custody issues, then maybe…

It seems to me to be less oppressive than men’s rights, but perhaps that is just because I’m not a mother? Maybe I should rethink this.

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@katz:

What I’m puzzled about is why people see my explanation of the law to mean “lesbians can molest children” when I’m on about lesbian teenagers (and potentially kids) having fun with each other consensually *and* when I already explicitly stated how adults can’t have sex with minors even with no age of consent under UK law. That’s neither in favour of paedophilia or in favour of child abuse.

In British culture, it’s considered fine for people to have sex before the age of 16 provided they’re of the same age, despite the fact its prohibited by law. In fact, the laws have been amended so that health professionals under patient-doctor confidentiality can provide contraception to under-16s without informing parents and without passing on any information in the name of child protection if it’s believed that underage sex is occurring with informed consent. Kids do have sex before the expected legal age, it’s normal, not paedophilic and given our culture, it was something lesbians could do without legal issues due to no age of consent. Why does everyone assume abuse/paedophilia when underage sex is mentioned? The vast majority of it is between people of the same age!

Gotta disagree with this; while there are some side effects that end up harming fathers, society as a whole hugely favors fathers. Fathers get to “have their cake and eat it too” by having both a family and a career, while mothers are expected to make sacrifices; fathers are treated as the head of the household, while mothers (and wives) are expected to obey them (especially in Christian circles); fathers get kudos for doing chores or spending time with the children, while mothers are negligent if they ever don’t.

In terms of societal “norms” yes (and I hope that gets fixed) but in terms of law, no. I get that societal norms mean men are less inclined to want to take the role of “house husband” through social stigma of being “the housewife”, resulting in career-driven women being less able to persue good money even when the man of the house is earning far less. But the law is messed up, at least where I live.

Although potential mothers sometimes suffer from a massive wage gap due to the stupid assumption that having a child means lost money for the employer, mothers get far more legal protections to allow them to have a career and family than fathers do, in fact the system seems to punish fathers who want to be decent fathers by preventing them from taking paid leave until the mother has finished her ordinary statutory paid leave. (I know, I know not all countries have statutory maternity pay, but those countries suck and are the exception, not the rule – at least in Europe).

Fathers rights groups may aid the feminist agenda by helping to fix the problems with the maternity/paternity pay rules, allowing fathers and mothers to stop working when the child has arrived for a period, which would allow couples to better organise how to balance career and family – potentially resulting in a big net win for the career-orientated woman.

Of course, nothing seems to solve the dreaded problem of arseholes who make a woman pregnant claiming to love them, find out their lady is pregnant and then bugger off without supporting the child they helped bring into the world. I don’t know how anyone will ever solve that one. It’s a problem that fathers rights groups need to address big time.

Some Gal Not Bored at All

@Martyn

Perhaps you ought to address my points before you start an new argument with katz. Especially since, as katz and my back-and-forth establish, you cannot in fact separate fathers as a group from men as a group, which is what you are doing when you try and treat fathers as a category not already privileged above women.

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@Some Gal Not Bored at All

If they stuck just to expecting men to actually act like nurturing parents and supporting men in custody issues, then maybe…

It centers around problems with fathers being paternity testing by mothers who are suspected of lying about paternity within marriage (in the UK if you’re married, paternity is assumed unless challenged in court), getting child support payments from mothers if the father is the custodian or if in joint custody the father looks after the child for longer (fathers often have to pay even if they look after the child more than the mother….) and campaigning for fairness with rights over custody.

Fathers 4 Justice for example protest the idea that mothers should get any child support payments from fathers if joint custody is an equal 50:50 split of time, they also protest court bias when fathers have custody but mothers aren’t asked to pay. They’re controversial at times and can be intimidating, if you ask different people you get varying views on them, from praise all the way to “they’re batshit insane”.

katz
7 years ago

Martyn, you don’t understand why this makes you sound like a terrible, terrible person, but it does. If you don’t want to sound like a terrible person, stop talking about it.

Your primary problem here is that you don’t listen. I told you that you should stop talking about the lesbian age of consent thing, and your response was…to keep talking about it. I don’t want to argue about it and I’m not going to. Trying to pull me into an argument about that point is only making you look pushy.

Martyn Hare
7 years ago

@Some Gal Not Bored at All

Fathers can be separated from men technically, but fathers rights do not campaign for the rights of female fathers unfortunately.

But it’s time for another lesbian example for those who are puzzled by the above line! If a lesbian couple wants a child, then the mother is the person who has the baby, making the other half of the relationship the “father”. I don’t know how this works for gay couples, unfortunately. If anyone from the LGBT community could enlighten, I’m intrigued!

Unfortunately, this doesn’t really separate the men from the situation, because there are no prominent campaigns centered around lesbian fathers issues within the fathers rights movement.

So I don’t think I can address your argument. I don’t want to try and dodge it, I just don’t have all the information to address it.

howardbann1ster
7 years ago

Gah!!! I just… this is mansplaining on a whole new level for me. And I remember Owly!

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Going back a couple of comments because I was off seeing the batshit insanity doctor.

“…whether the writer is straight, a gay man or a woman…” — um, there are other options, *waves* hi, I’m another option!

Glad you sorted out quoting though.

But um, guys? Does anyone else smell socks? Maybe it’s just standard fare goalpost shifting…