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Fox News lends a hand to the White Men’s Rights Movement

Suzanne Venker: White Men's Rights Activist
Suzanne Venker: White Men’s Rights Activist

In a case of spectacularly bad timing, Fox News happened to choose the day before the Zimmerman verdict was handed down to publish an op-ed proclaiming “the White American Male” to be the most oppressed creature on Planet Earth. In a piece entitled “Men — The New Second Class Citizens,” professional antifeminist Suzanne Venker declared that

From boyhood through adulthood, the White American Male must fight his way through a litany of taunts, assumptions and grievances about his very existence. His oppression is unlike anything American women have faced.

What is revealing about this quote, besides its complete disconnection from reality, is that Venker makes no other references to race in the rest of her piece, which runs through a number of tiresome and oh-so-familiar MRA talking points about the alleged oppression of men.

Venker complains about schools being biased towards girls, from grade schools that force students to sit still to colleges with their infernal Title IX. She whines about “sit coms and commercials that portray dad as an idiot.”

Quoting antifeminist psychologist Helen Smith, a friend of and sometime contributor to A Voice for Men, she suggests that women can get their boyfriends or husbands locked up on a whim just by claiming abuse.

I’m surprised she didn’t talk about the evils of “friend zoning.”

But when Venker refers to “men” in all of these complaints, she is evidently thinking only of white men — why else would she switch so seamlessly from talking about the alleged oppression of “men” to proclaiming “the White American Male” the ultimate victim?

There’s really no other word for this than, well, racist.

The day after Fox published Venker’s nonsense, we were of course reminded (as if any of us really needed to be reminded) of the very real oppression faced by “the Black American Male.”

Trayvon Martin didn’t die because he happened to see a show featuring a bumbling sitcom dad. He died because George Zimmerman saw a young black man in a hoodie walking home from the store and assumed, apparently because Martin was young and black and wearing a hoodie, that he was up to something sinister.

Trayvon Martin didn’t die because he was male; he died because he was a black male. His killer walked free not because his victim was male, but because his victim was a black male.

Suzanne Venker did us all a favor by revealing the unconscious racism underlying so many Men’s Rights complaints. The Men’s Rights movement is not only a movement that is overwhelmingly made up of white men; it’s a movement that’s almost exclusively about white men, and their largely imaginary oppressions, as well. We might as well call it the White Men’s Rights Movement.

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CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

LIBRARIAN SMASH!

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

Bonus points for not only not understanding what intersectionality is but attempting to explain it to people who do.

cloudiah
7 years ago

Feminists: Wants to make sure there are no more Emmett Tills, Trayvon Martins, Amadou Diallos, or Oscar Grants.

MRAs: Rubs hands with glee and cackles at the thought of more dead black men who can be used as a club against feminism.

Ally S
7 years ago

Jason, I hate to break it to you, but talking about something you have almost no understanding of generally isn’t a good way to build your credibility around here. Just saying!

Hint: You might want to start at understanding what intersectionality is and how racism works in this society.

Owl Cake
Owl Cake
7 years ago

@Jason:

Racism is, by its very nature, misandry.

Do we need to buy you a dictionary? Or are you just being obtuse?

Speaking of obtuse – read the racism tag on this website, or maybe just start here: http://manboobz.com/2012/11/05/election-eve-the-spearhead-endorses-reactionary-misogyny-with-a-side-order-of-racism/ . . .

Then contrast with: http://manboobz.com/2013/07/13/open-thread-zimmerman-verdict/

Which side is more accurately described as ‘racist’ here? The feminists, or the MRAs?

cloudiah
7 years ago

NEWS FLASH: Black women were not taken from their homes, deprived of names, shipped across the sea in chains, worked to death, punished brutally if they disobeyed, forced to live under a system of apartheid for a century after being freed, and of course no longer face inequality in many aspects of life.

Thanks, Jason!

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@Sarah – that’s a very fair point. However, you’ll notice that the stereotypes of black women portray them as manly (overly sexual). Their womanly qualities are under-emphasized. Because we care inherently more for the pain of women than we do for the pain of men, racism tries to keep women out of the picture as much as possible – otherwise, we might start feeling sorry for the racial group in question, and seeing them as humans.

Ally S
7 years ago

NEWS FLASH: Black women were not taken from their homes, deprived of names, shipped across the sea in chains, worked to death, punished brutally if they disobeyed, forced to live under a system of apartheid for a century after being freed, faced widespread sexual assault and abuse, misogyny unique to black women, and of course no longer face inequality in many aspects of life.

Thanks, Jason!

Fixed that for you.

cloudiah
7 years ago

Also, you guys, remember when Rebecca Watson compared being asked out by a complete stranger while trapped in an elevator with him with no one around to slavery?

Oh wait, I don’t remember that either. Still, what a b*tch, amirite? How dare she have boundaries!

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@Cloudiah – I never said they weren’t. But that’s where “intersectionality” fails. Because you really can’t argue that it was significantly worse to be a black woman than a black man, or that a white woman didn’t have it infinitely better in just about every way than a black man did.

anadiomene122
anadiomene122
7 years ago

Shorter Suzanne Venker: White men are an endangered species. Evidence of this?

Too little recess and they can’t even play their favorite brand of sportsball anytime they want to.

MISANDRY!

cloudiah
7 years ago

Jason, can you explain why white men are able to kill black men with impunity? Is that also misandry?

(Citations available upon request.)

Ally S
7 years ago

However, you’ll notice that the stereotypes of black women portray them as manly (overly sexual).

Hey, how about you actually learn about how misogyny affects black women? Oh wait, you won’t because you’re an obtuse asshole.

The stereotype you’re referring to has been used to demonize women who are perceived as “overly sexual.” It relates to slut-shaming, not male-shaming.

How about you stop spewing your dumbass theories about racism and sexism and actually try to understand how they work?

sarahlizhousespouse
7 years ago

“that’s a very fair point. However, you’ll notice that the stereotypes of black women portray
them as manly (overly sexual). Their womanly qualities are under-emphasized. Because we care inherently more for the pain of women than we do for the pain of men, racism tries to keep women out of the picture as much as possible – otherwise, we might start feeling sorry for the racial group in question, and seeing them as humans.”

I’m sorry to disagree, but there are stereotypes about men with East Asian ancestry being feminine and sexless. This does not fit with the logic of the above statement that characterizing an “Other” group as masculine allows the “Main” group to feel no sympathy.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

Anyways, none of this is the point. You can nitpick little things I’ve said, try and make me racist or whatever, but you can’t disprove my original point – that Trayvon Martin was, in part, shot because he was male, and that racism is largely misandrous – and we need to address this issue, or else more incidents like this will happen.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

Jason has a rather familiar smell about him, doesn’t he?

cloudiah
7 years ago

Jason, see Aaliyah’s comment.

Might be too subtle for you.

Ally S
7 years ago

you can’t disprove my original point – that Trayvon Martin was, in part, shot because he was male, and that racism is largely misandrous –

Oh, yes we can. Given that it was a racially-motivated attack, Trayvon most likely wouldn’t have been shot if he were white.

All black people are viewed as dangerous in a white supremacist society. Including black women. And in many ways, sexism affects black women way more than black men. Just look at the rates of sexual assault for black women.

cloudiah
7 years ago

You can nitpick demolish little things everything I’ve said, try and make me racist or whatever, but you can’t disprove my original point – that Trayvon Martin was, in part pretty much entirely, shot because he was a black male.

FTFY.

Kim
Kim
7 years ago

@yoyo I still remember that happening in my english class when I was in yr 7. The teacher had no control over some of the boys and the class was a total waste of time.

The ringleader of that mayhem was at my school reunion just the other week. I commented to my friends about it when I saw him because I remember it so vividly. I didn’t speak to him then, but I would put money on him either not even remembering doing that, or remembering it as a bit of fun.

Veronicas
Veronicas
7 years ago

Haha Fox news though. No normal person would watch it anyway

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@Sarah – well, there are probably millions of different stereotypes out there. Jews eat hummus, Brits are snobby, Asians are good at math, whatever. (I’d go on but it would just give you guys more fuel to call me a racist.) Anyways, there are lots of stereotypes, and of course most aren’t sexual. Not all are even bad (except inasmuch as judging a person by the group they belong to is inherently bad). But when you really want to demonize a group, you portray it as full of dangerous, sexual males. Back in the day, there were stereotypes about crooked Chinamen luring innocent white women into their opium dens. Fortunately, no one perpetuates that one anymore, because we’re far more accepting of Asian-Americans today than we were back when they were building the Transcontinental Railroad.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@Ally – Trayvon wouldn’t have been shot if he was white. I agree. But can you honestly argue that, if he were a black female, it would have gone down the way it did? No matter how racist Zimmerman might be, he wouldn’t have gotten out of the car to chase down a black woman because she might be a criminal.

anadiomene122
anadiomene122
7 years ago

Haha. Jews eat hummus? I think you’re doing stereotypes wrong, Jason.

I call Poe.

sarahlizhousespouse
7 years ago

“Anyways, none of this is the point. You can nitpick little things I’ve said, try and make me racist or whatever, but you can’t disprove my original point – that Trayvon Martin was, in part, shot because he was male, and that racism is largely misandrous – and we need to address this issue, or else more incidents like this will happen.”

I believe I just did. I am not sure if you are from the United States and familiar with our history, but we imprisoned a portion our citizens because they were of Japanese descent. That does not fit with your narrative, slick.

sarahlizhousespouse
7 years ago

@Jason
“But can you honestly argue that, if he were a black female, it would have gone down the way it did? ”

Unfalsifiable claim as well as a strawman.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@Ana – You’re right. Next time I want help stereotyping, I’ll ask a feminist for assistance.

Shiraz
Shiraz
7 years ago

“… that Trayvon Martin was, in part, shot because he was male,”

And he was shot by another male. What does that mean?

“… and that racism is largely misandrous – and we need to address this issue, or else more incidents like this will happen.”

But since he was shot by a man, you’re implying that men shooting other men is misandry.Okay, but explain what you mean.

cloudiah
7 years ago

But can you honestly argue that, if he were a black female, it would have gone down the way it did?

Right, that would be unthinkable.

Nope, unarmed black women never get shot by the cops.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@Sarah – Well, let’s put it this way: I don’t think we were afraid of Japanese women and children being spies for their country. And it’s a thought experiment. We don’t know for sure what Zimmerman would have done. But I think it quite likely that far more people would see a black man as a potential threat than a black woman, don’t you?

Jessay (@jessay)
7 years ago

Apparently young girls don’t have any energy, they just sit around and paint their nails all day. Young girls could not possibly also be struggling to sit through boring, repetitive lectures about things they don’t care about, frustrated that they’ll have to go home and sit around doing more of the same. No. This is a MALE problem, only young MALES have to fight back the urge to run around when they’re supposed to be sitting in class.

anadiomene122
anadiomene122
7 years ago

I’m just Jewish enough to be offended that you don’t think Jews are an international cabal of neurotic bankers who control the media and the world economy, Jason.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@Cloudiah – Cops will shoot at anything that moves and looks like it might have a gun. They’re operating on hair trigger. Zimmerman wasn’t, he made a conscious decision to go after an individual. And you can provide plenty of anecdotes, but there’s no denying that there’s a definite trend towards seeing black men as more dangerous than black women.

sarahlizhousespouse
7 years ago

@Jason
I can’t speak to how racists perceive black men vs black women, or as I like to call them men and women.

I also think that if the American Government did not perceive all citizens of Japanese ancestry to be a threat it makes little sense that all the aforementioned citizens, regardless of gender or age, were imprisoned.

anadiomene122
anadiomene122
7 years ago

I don’t think we were afraid of Japanese women and children being spies for their country.

This seems like an appropriate time to bring up McCarthyism and all of the women who were blacklisted on suspicion of being communists.

melody
melody
7 years ago

Jason doesn’t want to acknowledge race in this.
As others have observed he would not have shot a white man.
He did stalk and shoot a black man. The difference being race. People have covered this. In the past he made phone calls to the police about black men in the neighborhood.

I just can’t…..

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

Oh, so it’s a fair assumption to make that Zimmerman wouldn’t have shot a white man, but when I make the equally fair assumption that he wouldn’t have shot a black woman, that’s an unfalsifiable straw man?

Shiraz
Shiraz
7 years ago

“But I think it quite likely that far more people would see a black man as a potential threat than a black woman, don’t you?”

No. You’re obviously, a racist and a sexist. Stop projecting yoor issues on to us.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

It’s not all or nothing, this sort of things happens to women too. But men are more likely to be seen as dangerous, or criminal, or guilty. There’s no denying that.

NightShadeQueen
NightShadeQueen
7 years ago

Jason:

Google scholar is your friend. Throwing out baseless accusations…well, isn’t.

melody
melody
7 years ago

I love how Jason is so fixated on how black men are seen as dangerous (more dangerous than black men) which is why MEN are being discriminated against and not race.

Both black women and black men have animalistic stereotypes. It is a common tactic to dehumanize people. Just because the stereotypes are different does not mean that gender is a bigger factor than race.

Oh, and earlier when you said angry black woman is a stereotype? ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? Google it you ignorant troll. It is a stereotype and just because you stick your fingers in your ears doesn’t change that it is a problem.

saintnick86
7 years ago

Thanks for the link, Sarah. I’ll take a look at it. I’m not familiar with maritime law in general or policies when it comes to sinking ships – but MRAs bringing up the Titanic as some example of misandry always bugged me (because it makes no sense).

And, Jason, the case with Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman largely has to do with race and the portrayal of those in the black community being “natural-born criminals.” I doubt all those portrayals in pop culture were because they were men and more because their skin-color differed from that of the majority – not to mention all the years of slavery, being secondary citizens, and pseudo-scientific theories like Phrenology. This happened to men and women. This is a fact and no amount of ahistorical analysis is going to change that.

The need to turn it into a case of “misandry” is exactly the problem I have with MRAs: every issue must focus on them, regardless of actual context. It’s self-victimization, which is odd because I see them accuse actual victims of such for no reason other than pure spite. Bring up the fact the prevalence of women who get raped is higher than that of men, and the response will be how it is “actually” just as bad if not worse…when it isn’t. At all. It comes off as as mass grouping of those with narcissistic personality disorder – it’s all about them and their pain and their feelings while dismissive of everyone else’s – and will continue to do so, as long as the group turns everything into an act of “misandry” and act oppressed when they obviously aren’t.

melody
melody
7 years ago

Edit: more dangerous than black women

I’m sure I made more errors, but I just can’t right now.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

@David – I’m not arguing that black men face more racism. Racism hurts both men and women equally, it isn’t some razor sharp device that gets only certain people and not others. But misandry is often at the heart of racist stereotypes, there’s no denying that.

cloudiah
7 years ago

The assumption that Zimmerman wouldn’t have shot a white man and gotten off scot free is supported by data.

Men are more likely to be murdered than women — by other men. Women are also more likely to be murdered by men. I fail to see how this is caused by feminism. NOTE: I do not think the cause of this fact is that men are worse than women. I think men and women are good/bad in roughly equal numbers.

NightShadeQueen
NightShadeQueen
7 years ago

….Here’s a contest for you, Jason.

The next time you feel like writing there’s no denying that, well, FIND SOME RESEARCH TO BACK YOU UP FIRST.

Jason
Jason
7 years ago

When people try to stereotype the women of a marginalized group, they usually try to make them as manly, and unfeminine as possible. That’s why black women are portrayed as sex-crazed, stocky, coarse, streetwise, etc… as manly as possible. There’s no stereotype of a fair black maiden. (Not until The Princess and the Frog, anyway, and that was deliberately meant to be antiracist.)

NightShadeQueen
NightShadeQueen
7 years ago

*cough* Asian females are stereotyped as being weak and submissive. *cough*`

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

When people try to stereotype the women of a marginalized group, they usually try to make them as manly, and unfeminine as possible.

Which is why when people want to stereotype Asian women they depict them as ultra-feminine, submissive, and as un-manly as possible.

Jason really isn’t very good at this whole arguing thing. I still think he’s a sock, FWIW.