To follow-up on this comment I posted because I feel inclined (not directed at Lany or anyone else specifically, not even the AVfM folks, just blogging)…
Yeah, I was being a bit hyperbolic in that last response. Not trying to disrespectfully play down what all men can go through. Just that I keep hearing complaints pertaining to babies’ mamas and past girlfriends. Much less often I read or listen to someone speaking about trauma suffered at the hands of his own mother or grandmother. Have heard quite a few complain about bully sisters though. But much of the talk relates back to a relationship that fell apart or never took off.
Of course there are the political/legal disparities, though there again so much of the talk revolves around divorce and custody issues. I don’t have kids and never will, so I really can’t say a whole lot on that topic specifically, which I stated in at least one video after repeating it again and again in responses on people’s comment threads. The way I look at it is we each bring to any table what we’re able, and my own personal focus is pretty far in outfield so far as gender-bent movements are concerned. But I have familiarity with criminal justice concerns impacting men disproportionately and unfairly, and I’m personally very worried about the role of the U.S. military in mistreating and then disposing of men (and women) after calling them to action under false pretenses (as has probably always been the case with wars and militaries). Plus, I’ve never understood why circumcisions remain the custom (though I have a theory on that for another time). In my view, there’s a tray of enchiladas I’m up for dissecting and discussing and seeking ways to more effectively confront. That’s what I may prove useful for.
**Though, it’s always important to note that I’m not a political activist. Don’t claim to be one and have no interest in aligning with any movement(s) going forward. See no reason to do so. But I can agree on certain matters and offer my active support where it strikes me as warranted and just. The legal and political tit-for-tat game does nothing for me anymore and appears to be little more than another set of distractions to keep us divided and warring while we all continue to lose ground. But still occasionally I bug my Congresspeople and show up for local protests (albeit far less often since stepping away from social justice activism a couple years ago), and I’m willing to come out in the future for good causes, if only to help others to see that support exists out here.**
YET, nearly every direction I’ve turned in trying to communicate with MGTOWs and MRAs they want to press custody and divorce issues in my face and demand I make some sort of response to this and that law or case or statistic. Hell, I don’t know. Not a mom, no longer a wife (that marriage lasted a mere 4 years), and I keep telling them that. They kept barking at me for belonging to a demographic that they’re terrified is extorting them. Well, the only advice I can really offer is to take major precautions to not have unwanted children and to choose not to marry. No reason to enter into the State’s legally-binding contract to confirm our love for one another. People can still have healthy relationships without a marriage certificate, and I don’t personally comprehend this great push to produce so many kids when so many are out here needing help already. They then pipe up about birth control options residing mostly with women, and that’s true, but there’s nothing I can do to speed up the release of Vasalgel in the North American market. *shrugs* Sorry, but that’s a fact.
(Though a while back I did fill out the survey/petition for Vasalgel on this site. People can also sign up for updates from Parsemus Foundation, the developers of Vasalgel, and help support their efforts through donating and getting the word out. That looks like an amazing technology for men that may offer long-term, impermanent protection in a non-hormonal method.)
And, as always, somewhere in there I come across to them as if I don’t give a damn at all about men’s problems in a nutshell. Because you’re either “for us or against us” — can’t be zoning in on particular areas of concern without wading through the divorce/custody hoopla and sitting through being grilled over and over again. It’s pretty irritating really.
They focus on marriage and children because that’s either what’s impacting those individuals personally or it’s what they worry about dealing with in the future. Understandable. But I’m coming from the position of a child-free, divorced individual who might never remarry, not some sheisty beastie angling to take financial advantage of anybody in that way. I don’t want to produce kids and will not do so, and I’m sorry that it makes some jealous that I as a female have the power to make that decision. They can too: it’s called a vasectomy, and I’d have one in a heartbeat if I were a man. Because that’s how strongly I feel about not wishing to produce kids of my own. But when I say that, some react as if I’ve jammed a stake through their hearts. Cold-hearted me. Totally insensitive I apparently am. Okay. Yeah, on that subject I suppose I am after years of working in the opposite direction entirely and wishing a number of others would follow suit since plenty of folks out in society act as if they don’t have their hearts and minds in the right place for parenting. Plus, we’re overpopulated enough without producing more kids conceived during drunken booty calls between adults who don’t truly respect or appreciate one another. That’s my take on that, unpopular as it must be.
Undoubtedly there are countless people out here worried about custody and divorce situations to where I don’t understand why each and every person must engage from that starting place. And this is where the notion of ideology became apparent to me.
First sentence on wikipedia: “An ideology is a set of conscious and unconscious ideas that constitute one’s goals, expectations, and actions.”
Whether everyone within these men’s “movements” agree or disagree on how to take on systemic problems that they/we all confront, they do come across as being nearly in lockstep when it comes to how the issues are framed, where the blame tends to be cast (on women and our hypergamous natures and neotenous appeal that, one way or another, led to everything else like a snowball rolling down a mountain), where non-members’ attention is directed so as to get us “educated,” and also in how their narrative is marketed as being The Truth (“red pill vs. blue pill” Matrix analogies abound).
That wikipedia page actually is pretty enlightening as to how much controversy surrounds the term “ideology” and the various ways it’s been used and defined. It’s become a buzzword these days to describe any belief system or movement, though perhaps rightly so since an ideology provides the framework for such systems of thought to spring up and out from. But, naturally, there’s no clear consensus on the matter among academics and authors spanning back to the late 18th century.
Perhaps people are most turned off by the term “ideology” because it connotes something similar to religions. Yes, and that’s because there indeed are similarities and overlaps between religions and political movements. These are not mutually exclusive, not even when the movements in question happen to be populated by secularists and/or atheists. Makes no real difference. The demonization of religions seems to have blinded people from understanding that ideologies are, at bottom, about how we organize ideas and information into worldviews that we can then act through. In other words, ideologies are rooted in religions as well. No human or group is immune to this, and it tends to be a bit easier for thoughtful, skeptical outsiders of any given movement to scrutinize the ideology being employed that the members themselves commonly take for granted as plainly evident and True even when confronted with contradictory information. Though our own personal biases tend to get in the way of our assessment of what we ourselves would like to believe in.
Anyway, I tuckered myself out on that topic for the evening.