Categories
announcements misogyny MRA

Program note: I will be on National Public Radio's All Things Considered today [UPDATE: Transcript up, audio soon]

Kids listening to the radio. Or perhaps an armoire.
Kids listening to the radio. Or perhaps an armoire.

So I was interviewed a while back by All Things Considered for a segment on men’s rights activism. The segment, part of their “Men in America” series, will be running today. All Things Considered starts at 4 PM — at least in my time zone (Central); you’ll have to do the time zone math to figure out when it starts for you.

You can listen online here. The segment will also be archived on the “Men in America” web page; it should go up sometime this evening.

Hopefully the segment will include some comments from me. But you never know. Should be interesting regardless.

EDIT: The transcript is up here; audio will be posted on the same page at 7 PM eastern. They included a couple of quotes from me.

I haven’t heard the segment yet, but reading the transcript i have to say the piece is pretty poor, giving MRAs in general and Warren Farrell in particular way too much credence. More on this later.

 

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

80 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
bekabot
6 years ago

“Somebody told me this thing led to Narnia, but all I got was the lousy Lindbergh baby”

opium4themasses
opium4themasses
6 years ago

I have only caught bits and pieces of the series and have largely been happy with it. Lots of people questioning traditional gender roles for men. The problem I have consistently found has been a tendency of the interview subjects to talk about “men” vs “boys”. Though this is largely a language problem. The people are generally talking about the difference between a person’s age and their maturity when this comes up. I just bristle because the same language is also used by people when they are gender policing.

opium4themasses
opium4themasses
6 years ago

Grr I ran off on a tangent with giving you a kudos. Congrats, David! I will listen when I have a chance.

Flying Mouse
Flying Mouse
6 years ago

Segment just started on east coast feed!

Flying Mouse
Flying Mouse
6 years ago

David made it on. 🙂

And it looks like they’ve already got the transcript up: http://www.npr.org/2014/09/02/343970601/men-s-rights-movement

I’m not even going to glace at the comments. It wasn’t an unqualified rave, so the angry will be thick on the ground.

Michael McG
Michael McG
6 years ago

How do defamation laws work with respect to calling a group a “hate group”?

I agree whole-heartedly that most of the MRM its a hate group, but I’m not sure that the hypothetical civil jury representative of the US population might be convinced enough to render damages.

kirbywarp
kirbywarp
6 years ago

Wow… You weren’t kidding when you said they were way too sympathetic. It described Warren Farrell as if he was the guy with good ideas in a movement that unfortunately had a few bad apples and has strayed from the path a little.

Yikes.

sparky
sparky
6 years ago

Eh, not impressed with NPR either. It was like thy were trying to go for that faux-neutral thing by presenting both sides as equally valid. At least they seemed to end on a critical note.

blahlistic (@blahlistic)

Underwhelmed, but glad you got on…they didn’t bring up Eliot Rodgers, when perhaps they might ought to have.

Aunt Edna
Aunt Edna
6 years ago

Indeed, way too sympathetic to the MRA loons. It almost makes Farrell and Elam sound reasonable. Too bad NPR did not do its own in-depth research to find out exactly who they are dealing with.

hellkell
hellkell
6 years ago

How do defamation laws work with respect to calling a group a “hate group”?

it’s pretty hard to sue for libel and win in the U.S.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
6 years ago

That photo at the top of the transcript. Look, the conference was full of people, and full of WOMEN because you can see one right there in the center of the frame!

Okay, NPR.

This story definitely went out of its way to seem evenhanded, without bothering to touch on the “but what are they doing about these things?” question beyond the quote from David.

Underwhelmed.

cloudiah
6 years ago

Ye gods, the comments:

As a white male, I can tell you it has been an uphill struggle all the way. Having to constantly prove your ability. Having to watch how you dress, how you speak, and who you associate with. Looking out at the world and seeing that the potential for financial and social advancement is limited. And don’t even start about political opportunity. It’s getting harder and harder for a male to get elected to office. And once he’s there, he has to watch every move he makes. Don’t drink. Don’t be too bossy. Don’t have extra marital affairs. Don’t get fat. And it’s not just in our secular society. Men have a hard time perusing their religious beliefs. The female centered religious establishments have made it difficult to practice our spiritual rights. When will the matriarchal “powers that be” recognize us as almost half of the human population?

He must be kidding, right? Right?

Good job, David!

Harlan
Harlan
6 years ago

Listening now!

YoullNeverGuess
6 years ago

Congrats on getting more exposure, David! It is well deserved. You do a great job.

Save The Queen
Save The Queen
6 years ago

“As a white male, I can tell you it has been an uphill struggle all the way. Having to constantly prove your ability. Having to watch how you dress, how you speak, and who you associate with. Looking out at the world and seeing that the potential for financial and social advancement is limited.”

If him and other white guys actually feel this way, it makes me happy. It means that there’s been some chipping away at white, male privilege. Heaven forbid that mediocre white men don’t get financial and social opportunities handed to them simply based on the fact that they’re white and male. With all the far-right and libertarian claptrap I see oozing from MRM discourse, I thought they would be a-ok with meritocracy…you know, proving yourself.

“And don’t even start about political opportunity. It’s getting harder and harder for a male to get elected to office. And once he’s there, he has to watch every move he makes. Don’t drink. Don’t be too bossy. Don’t have extra marital affairs. Don’t get fat.”

Complete bullshit. I think he actually meant to say “women” here. If he actually meant men, then cool, people should be assessed on the same standards, especially when their innane (i.e. physical appearance). White dudes should be given the same scrutiny as women and PoC. However, I really don’t think this is the case.

“Men have a hard time perusing their religious beliefs. The female centered religious establishments have made it difficult to practice our spiritual rights.”

Did every world religion do a complete switchero while I was taking a nap and supplant male leadership with women?

“When will the matriarchal “powers that be” recognize us as almost half of the human population?”

Dude, I know you feel like that the entire world should revolve around white dudes but really, we don’t make up half of the world’s population.

Grilled Cheesus, the whiny entitlement of that whole comment.

Save The Queen
Save The Queen
6 years ago

Doh – “they’re” not “their” in my second paragraph.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
6 years ago

That comment has to be sarcasm/satire. It has to be. It has to be.

blahlistic (@blahlistic)

…I hope it’s satire, I was just about to remind y’all of Senator Vitter… Likes his call girls to make him wear diapers.

redpoppy
redpoppy
6 years ago

As a white male, I can tell you it has been an uphill struggle all the way.

Is it just me, or does it really sound like a baby crying in that whiny sentence?

opium4themasses
opium4themasses
6 years ago

@blahlistic And Anthony Wiener gets run out of office for some consensual digital cheating. To be fair, if he were a woman in the same situation, the conservative pundits would still be beating that drum.

Alais
6 years ago

“We need to know not only why are our sons committing suicide, but also why are our sons much more likely to be the ones to shoot up schools?” he says. “We’re all in jeopardy if we don’t pay attention to the cries of pain and isolation and alienation that are happening among our sons.”

Didn’t Dr. W.T.F. already answer this question, and wasn’t the answer already something like “date fraud”? I remember how he talked about young men joining the army after despairing due to repeated incidences of going on a date, paying for it, and then not getting sex.

Nova
Nova
6 years ago

I was heartily disappointed in the piece, honestly. While I can understand trying to be neutral, they ended up completely whitewashing a great deal of horrible things that Elam has said and done. It wasn’t until the comments that “Bash a B” month was mentioned and his refusal to convict any man of rape, even if he obviously did it are still not being discussed.

I did see a lot of handwringing and criticism of the “white upper and middle class women” that cling to feminism and never, ever give a single fuck about racial minorities or other marginalized people.

:::Facepalm:::

Alais
6 years ago

Also, aren’t feminists asking similar questions and then getting accused of misandry for pointing out that most school shooters are male? Aren’t feminists also getting accused of not caring when they express sympathy for a man who committed suicide?

(These are all rhetorical questions.)

Save The Queen
Save The Queen
6 years ago

There’s a couple of people insisting that the comment Cloudiah quoted is satire/sarcasm. I’m too lazy go through hundreds of comments to see if the OP came back to clarify his position. It’s a masterful attempt at trolling because it’s completely plausible it’s for real.

cloudiah
6 years ago

I too think/hope he’s kidding, but the fact that we can’t quite be sure is pretty telling.

Save The Queen
Save The Queen
6 years ago

Lol yup!

Alais
6 years ago

To be fair, if I were going to write a comment impersonating one of them in order to demonstrate the ridiculousness of their position, that’s pretty much what I’d have written.

cloudiah
6 years ago

Yeah, Farrell’s prescription for dealing with the anguish of men is definitely that women should put out more, even when they don’t want to, and most especially if some dude has taken them out for a slice of pizza. Because we all know the best, most human rights-y way of solving one group’s anguish is to cause more anguish for another group. I learned that from Martin Luther King, Jr. in his “Send White Folks Some Bloody Feathers to Tell Them How Terrible They Are” speech.

deniseeliza
deniseeliza
6 years ago

There’s a couple of people insisting that the comment Cloudiah quoted is satire/sarcasm.

MRAs are so hard to satirize, because no matter what ridiculous thing you say, you can find a prominent MRA to agree with you.

I heard the segment on my way home. I agree that it gave MRAs too much credit. Sure, Warren Farrell and Paul Elam can talk all they want about how concerned they are about the suicide rates of men, or male victims of violence, or toxic masculinity, but what do they actually do about these things? Blame women. And that’s not activism. That’s why the movement isn’t catching on like feminism did. Because men can see with their own eyes that the women and feminists in their lives love them and care about them in their personal lives AND in their activism, which is in direct conflict with the idea that feminists are out to get them.

leocigale
leocigale
6 years ago

I really do loathe it when, in the name of neutrality or whatever, journalists/reporters will say “but they raise a few good points!” Sometimes the two sides of the argument aren’t equal in legitimacy. Like when accredited scientists will present facts, and then they bring in a credential-less cretin to “refute” the facts.

Ergh.

itsabeast
itsabeast
6 years ago

I’m only seeing a five-minute clip on the site.

Ken L.
6 years ago

@leocigale
But they do raise good points and that’s what make this really hard to get a handle on. Mixed in with all the bullshit,hate and stupidity MRM do raise real concerns. of course the do not do more then that.

enough with negative already, the report was about as good as it could be for the few minutes it aired. both sides got to speakers, David can off as a guy who knows what he is talking about. The way I look at is the more real media that looks at the MRM the better. Because this means it will be exposed for what it is or if their are any MRA who are really concerned with men issues and not just hate might get a platform, if the exist that is.

Ken L.
6 years ago

* sorry two speakers

Lauri J Owen (@laurijowen)

Since the GOP attacked them, NPR has progressed to leaning so far right I can hardly stand to listen to it. This story was no different. They gave more airtime to Elam, and spoke about his history and evolution. It sounded, to me, like they were subtly humanizing him, and promoting that POV as valid. I’m sorry, NPR, but when the goddamned SPLC starts paying attention, there’s an undeniable and serious problem.
I read you every post, David, and I listened to this, and you did great, but this story left me as disgusted with NPR as ever.

hippodameia8527
hippodameia8527
6 years ago

I expected better of NPR, though it sounds like I shouldn’t have.

Nitram
6 years ago

Crap! I missed this post! I’m an NPR junkie and would’ve lost my shit in excitement if I heard David futrelle on all things considered! Will listen to archives! Congrats David! I was just explaining to my mom why you changed manboobz to whtm. Being on NPR is a pretty good reason!

Nitram
6 years ago

Regarding all things considered giving MRM more credence than deserved, I think it may be where they just don’t know better. I gave the movement the benefit of the doubt at first before figuring out what they were really about. Kind of like the CAFE concert managing to fool a few bands to play before they realized what “equality” concert really was.

Then again, I’m not a journalist for NPR doing a report so that’s probably not a good excuse for them.

Deoridhe
6 years ago

….the one anti-woman thing they quoted was from a woman.

There’s something ugly in that.

Hyatt
Hyatt
6 years ago

As a white male, I can tell you it has been an uphill struggle all the way. Having to constantly prove your ability. Having to watch how you dress, how you speak, and who you associate with. Looking out at the world and seeing that the potential for financial and social advancement is limited. And don’t even start about political opportunity.

Minus the “as a white male” part, words that could be spoken by basically anyone! So… this guy is lamenting how being a “white male” doesn’t elevate him above the rest anymore? That now he has to deal with all the issues that everyone else has always had to deal with?

redpoppy
redpoppy
6 years ago

I hope it’s a joke. Hearing it all the time as a serious statement is terrible enough. However, if I were to be PAID every time I heard it…well I’d be a very wealthy lady indeed.

littlefish
littlefish
6 years ago

For those of you that didn’t want to wade through comments, the guy that wrote the “white male troubles” comment (John Holenko) also wrote:
So you think that fathers at work are paying for their stay at home wives? What do you think is being paid for? How many children have you stayed at home to raise? You must be one of those who think money=value. Too bad. You should be made to stay home with a couple of children. For about 16 years

In response to (EqualityEd):

Your perspective is a bunch of tired cliches as if everyone didn’t have to watch how they dress, speak or perform their duties well to get ahead in life. Women aren’t limited in financial investment but they do make choices that leading to lower incomes that are usually subsidies by men’s greater financial contributions to the family. We have 30% stay at home mothers to 6% stay at home fathers. Who is paying for who?

It’s not cool to be indifferent to men’s issues but we can blame the bias against men in the media and our culture for leading you to think being conscious means ignoring male suffering.

Tigerbos
Tigerbos
6 years ago

Well most of what Elam and the others say are just flat out lies. Rarely do I hear anything positive from the MRM about women. Their number one thing seems to be to sit around and whine about terrible women are and seem ready to circle jerk around campfires about the evils of femininity.

Kootiepatra
Kootiepatra
6 years ago

@Save The Queen

Did every world religion do a complete switchero while I was taking a nap and supplant male leadership with women?

I’m clinging to hope that the comment you’re referring to could be satire — but sadly, I have heard this particular point about religion brought up more than once as if it were A Thing. If the comment is sincere, I would bet money it’s coming from a Christian (and I say this as a devoted Christian myself).

I’ve had more than one exceedingly frustrating conversation with guys who insist that the church has become “feminized”. There’s a particular author who has written several books and a whole website about the idea. And while he doesn’t stoop to the violent and obscene rhetoric that most MRA’s do, his ideas are roughly the same, and just as offensive.

Basically, the argument goes, more women than men show up to church on Sunday (it’s currently about a 60/40 split in the U.S.). Therefore, something must be driving men away from church. Obviously, this means that the church has been feminized.

When pressed on what “feminization” means, it’s usually said to manifest in: a) decor; b) singing — either singing too much, or the songs are too girly and not enough like a battle song / sports rally; c) the sermon is too long; or d) the sermon is about “girly” stuff, like love and compassion, and not about — I dunno, punching demons in the face. These dudes have very elaborate conspiracy theories about how modern pastors and worship song authors are catering only to women, on purpose, thus alienating men. (Note: I’ve personally known lots of pastors and worship song authors, even ones who were women, and never met one who did this. I’ve met a few who catered specifically to men, though…)

Nope, it doesn’t matter to these guys that men make up about 95% of pastors and a super high proportion of elder boards/denominational government. It doesn’t matter that, as a rule, the more patriarchal the overall culture is in a country, the *more* women outnumber men at church. It doesn’t matter that there are lots of congregations that literally don’t allow women to talk from the platform. It doesn’t matter that men have been making all the decisions, because they’re “clearly” under all kinds of pressure from their wives and mothers to do church women’s way. More women attend, ergo, they must be secretly running the show somehow.

It’s maddening stuff.

(And yes, #NotAllChristianMen, but still. Gah.)

Kootiepatra
Kootiepatra
6 years ago

Aaaaand the blockquote monster got me. The first sentence after addressing Save The Queen is their quote.

kittehserf - MOD
kittehserf - MOD
6 years ago

“Somebody told me this thing led to Narnia, but all I got was the lousy Lindbergh baby”

ROFL!

katz
6 years ago

I’ve had more than one exceedingly frustrating conversation with guys who insist that the church has become “feminized”. There’s a particular author who has written several books and a whole website about the idea. And while he doesn’t stoop to the violent and obscene rhetoric that most MRA’s do, his ideas are roughly the same, and just as offensive.

Ugh, the feminization of the church. I heard so much of that in neo-reformed circles. It suuuuuucks. “There are lots of women in the church, and obviously That’s Bad.”

I am about 120% sure that if the church were 60/40 male, they would be talking about how women should humble themselves to learn from men and accept the masculine nature of the church.

daintydougal
daintydougal
6 years ago

Wow, the comments are full of ‘financial abortion’ talk. Sorry; ‘shared parenting rights after conception’. Why is ‘people have rights over their own bodies’ such a difficult concept? Honestly? You can’t share a womb, that’s just science. Gah. My poor brain.