Came across this video tonight:
[Which appears to have since been removed. Pity, that.]
That was the WoolyBumbleBee critiquing common MGTOW attitudes expressed on YT and on forums she’s affiliated with. Huh. Sounds like she and I reached pretty similar conclusions. Haven’t watched but just a few videos by her in past months and am not up on all the drama involving her and AVfM (now have listened to her and Paul Elam’s last phone conversation posted on dailymotion and that’s enough for me). Not too shocking that we made some similar points in places seeing as how it’s a glaringly noticeable problem within the whole men’s rights/MGTOW online environment.
Ya know, last year when I first stumbled across GirlWritesWhat’s channel and began watching her videos and became a bit riled up in reflecting back on how bewildering my own dealings with feminism turned out (as discussed elsewhere on this blog), I told myself I’d say what I had to say in a few videos maybe but wouldn’t get re-caught up in “gender war”-related bickering. But then I kept watching people’s videos and checked out the occasional forum. Then I started getting a bit irritated with super-biased “minions” in comment threads and their pseudoscience-peddling, woman-denouncing “leaders” preaching from their YT pulpits.
But I resisted diving too far into that bullshit. As soon as I stumbled across that load of characters last year they went to jumping to conclusions and insulting — right off the bat. What was my original crime? I created my “Why I’m No Longer a Feminist” video. So they got to grilling me and leaving comments saying things like I deserve to live out my life alone and shame on me for having ever been so naive (heaven forbid a college student might not know it all). Just stupid horse pucky. People say, “oh, don’t worry about people in comment sections,” but if they’re crawling all over every MGTOW or MRM-related video and site—plus my feminism-related video that didn’t mention anything related to the MRM even in the tags—how can onlookers ask questions and engage in worthwhile discussions? We really can’t. But we can show up to be harangued by people thinking they belong to some “in-group” and therefore are at liberty to stereotype and heckle anyone who comes across as even remotely critical of what they wish to believe.
That’s weird and it’s stupid. And the reason some keep telling these guys that they’re behaving like stereotypical feminists is because it’s true.
Let’s break MRAs down (and MGTOWs where applicable):
1.) Behaves as if the narrative he/she wishes to subscribe to is the only real truth and dissenters or critics are automatically the ones operating with flawed logic and irrationality.
2.) Argues from emotions that what he/she assumes trump all else, and is found too often to be largely uncritical of what it is they’re devoutly supporting.
3.) Firmly believe their narrative is supported by statistical data and scientific evidence, nevermind that statistics are commonly warped and misused, nevermind that the “science” involved is selectively cherry-picked and all other conflicting information is ignored.
4.) Coddles members of its own “in-group” while demonizing, wholesale blaming, trivializing and ridiculing, or ignoring those outside of it or who won’t toe whatever line is being drawn.
5.) Commonly speaks in “victim speak.” There’s a great deal of focus on oppression and institutionalized sexism, and terms like “abuse,” “rape,” “harassment,” “violence,” “coercion,” and “crime” are broadly applied when discussing interpersonal interaction between the sexes.
6.) Blame the other sex for having started this whole mess.
7.) Claim to be seeking “equality” under the law, and somehow seem to think the legal system is capable of ironing out all of our differences and disputes.
8.) Treat members of the opposite sex with undue hostility and condescension.
9.) Tell people not already affiliated with their “in-group” that they should read and listen more to the arguments being made by members of their community, especially before attempting to converse with them in “their” online spaces. If you open your mouth and state something many of them deem to be ignorant or wrong-minded, they parade you as an example of “the enemy” and again direct you back to reading and listening more to what they have to say. Because their concerns trump whatever you might have to say, automatically. And if your own experiential knowledge conflicts with the claims they’re making, you’re just not paying close enough attention to their “big picture.”
10.) Use examples of poorer persons facing harsh economic and/or social conditions here or abroad to bolster their own movement’s causes and arguments, even if their proposed “solutions” would in virtually no way actually impact those people’s lives for the better. And a good many belonging to the “disadvantaged” class in question aren’t actively involved in the “movement” online or offline and therefore aren’t having much of a say.
That’s what I’ve got right off the top of my head this evening. But tell me those examples don’t appear applicable to either gender-bent movement. And based on the nastiness I’ve witnessed in those calling themselves MRAs and/or MGTOWs and/or PUAs over the last year, I’d actually have to say my past run-ins with feminists online weren’t nearly as rude. They just tended to ignore me, which wasn’t much fun, but they weren’t calling me out as a “cow” or a “cunt” or a “fat bitch” or a “whore” or a “nobody” just because I expressed disagreement with them. That juvenile behavior is a major turn-off that ultimately is going to keep men’s rights-related issues and sites from being taken seriously.
For “leaders” or “big dogs” within these “movements” to defend these ways of being as just the result of “men in pain” who deserve the right to air their grievances is bullshit when they’re lashing out at strangers who haven’t done a thing to them. They’re projecting onto others what they wish to see, and if enough people behave this hostilely it will likely create a self-fulfilling prophecy. And that seems precisely what some are pushing for.
Ya know, when I started looking into all of this initially I did aim to reserve judgment and to not accept people dismissing the MRM as a cult, but now I’m just not sure what to think it is. My heart goes out to those who honestly are just trying to help men to receive equal consideration when it comes to custody of their children and fairer treatment by the courts, because the vocal hooligan fringe (or is it the core?) of their “movement” is serving as their loudest PR, and the impression given is pretty atrocious. And I wonder how might decent people within that sort of setup distance themselves from the clowns?
But it’s not just about “idiot minions” on comment threads; it’s about deluded “leaders” too. Look at this blog post, read the comments snipped and click on the links to verify the original publication and for context. Doesn’t matter who the source is that compiled those statements — it’s about the content. Now tell me, why should someone with a mind like that be leading anyone anywhere? This is a legitimate example of whom and what others partaking in that “movement” respect? I’m honestly asking and would appreciate feedback if anyone would care to wade in civilly.
There are limits. Nobody wishes to sign up for being given a hard time unnecessarily. Because men have been wronged by women, or women have been wronged by men, does not give us a free pass to treat perfect strangers like dirt. People are going to defend themselves, and why wouldn’t they? What kind of masochist would hang out on a “manosphere” or feminist or atheism+ forum (or wherever) where people are greeted by messages informing them essentially that ‘their kind’ won’t be tolerated to speak freely, even honest attempts in good faith being irrelevant since the whole place revolves around their own ideological narrative? Period.
How exclusive and unproductive. But whatever. People will do what they’re driven to do.
“Nothing is easier than self-deceit. For what each man wishes, that he also believes to be true.” — Demosthenes (350 B.C.E.)
“No man was ever so much deceived by another as by himself.” — Lord Greville
“Freedom is the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” — George Orwell
“He that is not aware of his ignorance will only be misled by his knowledge.” — Richard Whately
“Oh God, how did I get into this room with all these weird people?” — Stewart Brand