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Dear Mark Manson: Feminism Isn't Over

Yesterday I had the pleasure of reading “Why I’m Not a Feminist” by Mark Manson, a manly blogging dude over at a website called Post-Masculine. He spent some time researching feminism after reading all about how feminists are crazy on other MRA (men’s rights awareness) websites. In this article, he gives a concise history of feminism and a pretty good summary of its goals and achievements, to better educate his brethren.

Then he proceeds to explain his reservations with the modern feminist movement.

No problem, Mark. You make some good points. Let me make some to you.

Reason #1 That Mark Is Not a Feminist: Men and women are fundamentally different and therefore should not be expected to behave identically.

True, there are definitely biological differences. In fact, I pretty completely agree with your reasoning that behavior is a combination of biological impulse and cultural influence. This is why feminism has expanded to explore the problems with traditional masculinity, as you definitely pointed out in your summary of the modern feminist movement.

This is not a good reason to not be an, as you call it, equity feminist. This actually ties into Reason #2 That Mark Is Not a Feminist: If we’re going to talk gender, we should talk both genders at the same time. We NEED more men in the feminist movement, because until men get on board with breaking down damaging gender roles we’re only fighting half the battle.

If you’re frustrated with the uber-feminists, then you need to be more vocal about your moderate, equity feminist views. You know how we keep referring to the Tea Party as a radical fringe, and yet they’re all we hear about? It’s because of this silent majority bullshit, and it happens in every movement. People like you and me, who are about equality and confidence and opportunity for everyone, need to speak up more and say “You know what? I believe the genders are equal. That means I’m a feminist”–at least until we come up with another word for this new approach to all genders. Equist? Genderist? I don’t know. But right now, feminism is the word in gender equality.

Reason #3 That Mark Is Not a Feminist: The concept of rape culture is offensive.

This is the one that really made me mad. You make a good point: not all guys engage in the kind of behavior that perpetuates rape culture. (Just like not all feminists hate men or ignore biological differences or anything else–yeah, I thought we were supposed to be making generalizations, but I guess not.) I also appreciate your concession that “what [rape culture] describes is generally true.”

So your problem with “rape culture” seems to be mostly semantic. Your problem with it is that it’s “a divisive term, and implicates pretty much any and every man of being an accomplice to rape and sexism for no other reason than that he’s breathing and has a penis.” Honestly, I’m not sure where you’re getting that idea. The term isn’t “men raping women culture.” It’s rape culture, and rape can happen to anyone and be perpetrated by anyone. In fact, that’s one of the things the new feminism is raising awareness of: male rape and in-between-genders rape. Women can be rapists just like men can. It’s true that the majority of rape victims are still usually women and the majority of rapists are still usually men, and that’s why the conversation is usually gendered–but there’s nothing in the term rape culture that excludes other rape situations. So really the divisiveness and misandry you’re seeing in the term are coming from your own perceptions. It’s cool, it happens. Just recognize it.

And then there’s this:

The problem here is not a culture that promotes and glorifies rape (it doesn’t, rape is universally condemned, and rarely occurs). The problem is a culture that does NOT promote clear and open sexual communication between men and women.

You’re both right and wrong. Rape is NOT universally condemned, believe it or not (Daniel Tosh even thinks it’s funny) and it happens way more than it’s reported (because of the culture we have, which doesn’t like it when women refuse sex). But the fact that our culture is afraid to talk about sex is definitely a huge factor. Again, this is something modern feminists are trying to combat. I know you know this; you mentioned it in your brief history.

Sexism still exists, and sexism + aggression is what leads to rape. Rape is not aggressive sexuality, it’s sexualized aggression. As long as we as a society see women in terms of their sexuality and as long as society sees female sexuality as something that needs to be controlled, we will have a rape culture.

Reason #4 That Mark Is Not a Feminist: Feminism accomplished all of its political and academic goals, and I’m not convinced it has a necessary reason to still exist.

I’m granting you some leeway here because I know it’s hard to really understand different people’s experiences. I catch myself forgetting that a lot. I can know and empathize with someone different than me, but when it comes to actually feeling what they feel it gets way more difficult. Mark, you are not a woman, so I can understand why you might think that feminism doesn’t need to exist anymore.

You have probably never been leered at in the street.

You have probably never had your boyfriend coerce you into giving a blowjob.

You have probably never been told that you’re overreacting, or melodramatic.

You have probably never been afraid to be home alone.

You have probably never been groped by an unwelcome hand.

You have probably never been followed.

You have probably never panicked when you’re home alone in the shower and you hear the door open.

You have probably never thought “I should get a dog so that I won’t be taken by surprise when someone breaks in.”

You have probably never been told to change your clothes before you leave.

You have probably never been accosted by the bathroom in a bar.

You have probably never had to justify your concerns to the length I’ve sometimes been forced to.

You have probably never been told that you’re only sexually attractive to your boyfriend under very specific circumstances, which involve not your actual physical beauty but rather how you dressed and did your make-up that day.

You have probably never locked your bedroom door at night out of fear.

You’ve probably never been cut off by a man on your way out of a restaurant.

Those are only my personal experiences. They might not make a whole lot of sense to you and I’d be more than happy to elaborate on my feelings with each one. So much of the battle feminism still has to fight is internal, cerebral. I shouldn’t have to be afraid to live alone on the outskirts of a city, but when I’m home by myself, my heart jumps into my throat with every noise I hear. I have been shown, again and again, just how little recourse I would have if I were raped, and that scares me. When a man leans out his car window to shout obscene sexual advances at me, I don’t want to spend the rest of my evening and the following week on the lookout for his car. I don’t want him to think it’s okay to say those things to me.

You don’t seem to think that this is reason enough to continue pushing for gender equality. You say we should “call [you] when [we] have more serious problems.” I get that it’s easy for you to minimize. You don’t experience it, you don’t perpetrate it. That’s great. Thanks for being a stand-up guy. But you are an exception to a profoundly fucked-up rule. And honestly, you may not be as pro-lady as you think you are. My ex-boyfriend talked a big game about how he thought women were equal, but enlightened sexism was so internalized in him that he didn’t even notice the ways in which he was hurting me. When I told him that it was misogynist of him to expect me to out-of-the-blue move to Philly when he did (but not move in with him, just move to the city with money I didn’t have so that I could “be near him” until he was ready for us to live together), he was confused.

The problem, Mark, is that as you admit, you’re a man of action, not of ideology; but feminism has moved on to the ideological stage. We’ve got laws in place against sexism, discrimination, etc., it’s true (nevermind that many of those laws are under attack now). We’ve merely addressed the symptoms. We’ve yet to conquer the cancer.

That’s why feminism has expanded to all gender roles, because in our decades of trying to solve the problem we’ve realized that it isn’t just about women. Men need to have choices too.

Feminism still exists because it’s personal for us.

You say you’re not a feminist, but based on what you say you agree with, you totally are. You’re just afraid to use the name.

Here are some recommended readings for you: Who Needs Feminism?, The Rise of Enlightened Sexism, Rumors of Our Progress Have Been Greatly Exaggerated.

26 thoughts on “Dear Mark Manson: Feminism Isn't Over

  1. Hi Caitlin, I work for Postmasculine and saw your comment on Mark’s article. He’s not currently awake, so I thought I’d put my 2 cents in.

    First off, I thought you raised some excellent points. When I first read Mark’s article it really opened my eyes to feminist issues, but I knew that it was far from the (or his) definitive word on it. As another recent commentor on the article pointed out though, with a topic as massive as feminism, and a platform as limiting as a single blogpost, you’re inevitably going to have to limit your discussion to the point where it may be misinterpreted or offend someone, or else you risk not saying anything at all.

    Anyway, here’s my response.

    I agree that men need to enter the feminist discussion more. I’d like to do so myself. One of the issues that limits me from doing so, as you are no doubt aware of, is that unless you enter the debate with wildly pro-feminist views, as a man you’re going to get labeled a sexist. I’ve seen a number of reasonable male commentors on sites like Jezebel just get completely ripped out and it’s incredibly frustrating. It just feels like dangerous territory to even tread in.

    Also, add in the fact that I likely have some sexist beliefs I may or may not be aware of (let’s be honest, we all do, just like we all have some racist beliefs. It’s an inevitability), and yet if those become apparent in any way I’m immediately going to get insulted and abused, rather than anyone trying to help me understand that they are sexist, and how I can change them.

    I’m sure you’re aware of this already, so I guess I’m just saying please back us up when we try, and forgive us when we fail. We’re blunt and sometimes thoughtless, but that doesn’t mean we don’t care. You seem to be doing that with this post, so kudos.

    I agree that rape is not as universally condemned as it should be. I’ve heard way too many things in my time like ‘oh well she probably shouldn’t have been wearing that” or “she must have kind of wanted it”. Yuck. On the other hand, I really find the term ‘rape culture’ offensive. I get that it must be kind of terrifying to be a woman and have to wonder if your best friend or brother or teacher might one day try something. And I know that the statistics show that women are far more likely to be raped or sexually abused by someone they know. I know women who have been abused and I can’t even imagine how painful it would be to be their boyfriend, father or husband, let alone them. So I understand the fear.

    But on the other hand, like Mark I have never taken advantage of a woman, let alone forcibly tried to have sex with one. Generally I go out of my way to look after my female friends, and I’ve always tried to learn to be more respectful and understanding of them. So the term rape culture really offends me. I think it blindly demonizes men and creates paranoia instead of caution. It’s important we continue to acknowledge the potential for rape and the damage it causes, but I won’t do that alongside anyone who uses the term ‘rape culture’ and implies that I am a cause of it.

    I have mixed feelings about what you both said about whether feminism is still relevant. I think it pretty much has achieved all of its political goals (in the West at least). I’m sure there are areas that could still use reform, but I think achieving that would be a less valuable use of time and effort than other goals. I believe feminism continues to need to exist, but not in the form it currently does. I believe it needs to engage more with the male perspective, and start to see gender relations as mutually beneficial. I think there should be less feminist blogs dedicated solely to breaking down the portrayals of gender stereotypes in TV shows. I think it needs to recognize that a large proportion of women (including some of my most empowered female friends) no longer identify themselves with it, and ask itself why.

    You’ve acknowledged much of this in your post, particularly in regards to accepting men as part of the discussion, but what I hope this comment makes you realize is that there are other men out there who want to be involved, but have good reason for not doing so. Hopefully this

    1. The implication of rape culture is that rapists perpetuate it, not men. Reread the response and please, try to understand that rape culture centers around rape and that is a frighteningly real situation for most, if not all, women.

  2. So. Well, I agree. But it also makes me mad when women are like don’t call me a feminist. That seems counter productive. Also, I’m so glad I’m following you. 😀

    1. True story. There’s such a stigma against the word “feminist” that people are afraid to own it even when their views are textbook feminism. It reminds me of the Vagina Monologues segment where the woman reclaims the word “cunt.” It’s about time we remind people that being a feminist just means wanting equal rights for women, and that it’s totally okay to reclaim that title for yourself.

      Also thanks *blushblushblush*

  3. here! here! so glad you are writing, i had to share…

    1. Thank you so much! 😀

  4. What a great post. It is wonderful to read a clear and concise argument for feminism, and a rational response to someone’s irrational biases. I went on a date last week where the guy said he “was trying really hard to be a feminist”. I was like, it’s not that hard you just have to support the equal treatment of men and women in society and by the government. He seemed baffled.

    1. Thanks Alison!

      Yeah, feminism at its core is really simple, and pretty universal. I don’t really get the controversy.

  5. “That means I’m a feminist”–at least until we come up with another word for this new approach to all genders. Equist? Genderist? I don’t know. But right now, feminism is the word in gender equality.”

    Actually we call ourselves humanists generally. I think you make some good points but I think you also use a lot of personal stuff to argue your case. That’s partially fine but when you say things like

    “You will never know what it’s like to have your boyfriend coerce you to give you a blowjob”

    That’s just simply being insensitive to the fact women pressure men for sex all the time. It’s happened to me plenty. Sadly, most women that I’ve met don’t see why it’s wrong for them to keep pushing for sex if their partner isn’t interested. We are after all men and should always be down, right?

    “Thanks for being a stand-up guy. But you are an exception to a profoundly fucked-up rule. And honestly, you may not be as pro-lady as you think you are.”

    You can’t really say that and then say “my boyfriend blah blah blah”. I’m sorry your boyfriend was a jerk. Not all guys are like that. I would venture to guess most aren’t.

    “You have probably never been told that you’re overreacting, or melodramatic.”

    As a guy, false. I’ve seen it plenty.

    “You have probably never been afraid to be home alone.”

    As a guy, this is false. I’m sure this happens to everyone.You are kind of stereotyping women as weak here as well.

    “You have probably never panicked when you’re home alone in the shower and you hear the door open.

    You have probably never thought “I should get a dog so that I won’t be taken by surprise when someone breaks in.”

    “You have probably never locked your bedroom door at night out of fear”

    Seriously? You don’t think people of all genders would freak out if they thought someone was breaking into their house when they were in the shower or worry about protecting their home with dogs? Do men not get attacked in their homes ever? I don’t have statistics with me but I’m pretty sure I learned in my Crime Studies class that the majority of violent crime in the world actually happens man on man.

    Honestly, your article is sexist against both men and women in a lot of ways. Seriously, I think you put women down a little with some of your “you have probably never” statements. Again, I’ll admit you make some good points but overall it’s got too much personal stuff in it imo.

    Again, I’m a humanist. I think Men’s rights guys and feminists are way too egotistical about how important their world views are. Both make some very valid points about their concerns for their gender. I’ll stick with the people who care 100% about human beings and don’t pick a side of the fence because then it leads to biased articles like this.

    I think in the article you listed the author actually says he doesn’t read much men’s rights stuff at all and he did a ton of research into feminism (far more than men’s rights) before having written it.

    Rape is actually a joke in society when it comes to both men and women. One could easily say that people joke much more about men getting raped in prison than women getting raped in a parking lot (both are equally disgusting imo). If you want to talk about no recourse for rape, men have it far worse than women getting justice (not to say women have it great). Now I’m sounding like I’m whining like an MRA guy but I’m just trying to point out some simple truths here.

    The first thing that needs to happen in my opinion is people need to stop clinging to ideologies that are too easily polluted by radical people and start to get on board with the humanist perspective of a better life for everyone and respect for all. Until then people will continue to fight over the petty differences.

    As soon as feminism becomes about “working through men’s issues as well” it becomes something completely different. Wanting to cling to the name of an ideology is holding it back. Plenty of guys don’t want anything to do with feminism because although a lot of it REALLY IS GREAT a lot of it REALLY IS CRAP when you look at the whole picture because a lot of it can’t even agree with itself. If you asked 100 “feminists” what they believed I’m almost positive you would get a ton of different ideas. Go ask humanists what they believe.

    1. Zac, thanks for your comment. It’s always great to get men in this conversation. Let me start by saying that it looks like we’ve had contradictory personal experiences, which is cool and TOTALLY POSSIBLE. I used a lot of personal evidence because it’s my argument that feminism is personal, hence why it still exists. Also, let’s remember when fighting anecdotes with anecdotes that YOUR personal experience doesn’t invalidate MINE. Your experience does not make mine “false” any more than mine makes yours “false.” We both still experienced whatever it was.

      HUMANISM: I’m aware of the humanist movement and I do consider myself a humanist. However, I categorize humanism and feminism differently because while humanism deals with human rights, feminism deals more specifically with gender rights. I think the two movements go hand in hand.

      COERCING MEN: Me saying that my boyfriend coerced me into giving him blowjobs is not insensitive to situations in which men are coerced. I’ve honestly never heard of any of the women I know coercing any of the men I know into sexual activity, which is not to say that it doesn’t happen. I believe it happens. My experience has simply been that it is LESS likely to happen.

      I would never coerce or guilt my partner into having sex of any kind with me. I’m sorry that it’s happened to you; it sucks, doesn’t it? So maybe instead of nitpicking which gender is coercing which gender, we should all just stop doing it!

      FALSE FALSE FALSE: I probably didn’t make it clear enough with my “These are all my personal experiences” line, but all of the “you’ve probably never” statements are NOT sexist generalizations. They are all things that have happened TO ME, some on numerous occasions. They’re not hypothetical. I’m not stereotyping women as weak by saying that I’ve sometimes been afraid to be home alone. I’m saying that I’VE SOMETIMES BEEN AFRAID TO BE HOME ALONE. That doesn’t make me weak, either. It means I have feelings.

      Like I said at the top of this comment, too, you can’t call my experiences false just because yours have been different. Again, I use personal evidence because feminism is personal as much as it is political or academic.

      It’s not that I think men never worry about getting their homes broken into. But their first thought when they’re in the shower and they hear a door is probably not, “Shit, someone’s breaking in AND I MIGHT GET RAPED.” The difference here is that women are taught from childhood to fear the prospect of rape much more than men are, unless the men in question had some very enlightened parents.

      Like I said in my post, which I’m not 100% sure you read very thoroughly, modern feminism looks at all gender issues, male, female, LGBTQ, all of that. As I distinguished earlier, modern feminism focuses on GENDER issues specifically, while humanism focuses on human rights in general. They work together; it’s not about picking sides of a fence.

      (I know Mark did a lot of research on feminism, and in the beginning of my post I commend him on giving a good and concise history of the movement.)

      Getting raped in prison is horrible and shouldn’t happen either. Not the point. Rape jokes aren’t funny, whether they’re about people in parking lots or people in jail. It’s just NOT FUNNY.

      Third time now: feminism is still the name of the gender rights movement because we haven’t come up with a better term yet. AGAIN, humanism and feminism are different things because humanism is general human rights and feminism is gender rights more specifically. Feminism is also still the name of the gender rights movement because outside the US, traditional woman-focused feminism is still needed in a lot of places. I’m down for re-naming the movement, but in my opinion “humanism” isn’t specific enough to the kinds of issues covered by feminism.

      Disagreements occur in every movement, but like I said IN MY POST I think this third wave of feminism would seem a lot more homogenous if equity feminists were more vocal. There are a lot of people here in the middle who cede the platform to radicals and that’s where we get ideas like “it can’t agree with itself!”

      I would even venture to say that because humanism is so general, it’s easier to be “in agreement,” whereas feminism’s specificity makes it a lot harder.

      1. Mark’s article and your response have reminded me that I haven’t been active in the feminist community (real life or blogosphere) in a long time, and need to get back. You rule, I want to be your friend, I am following your blog.

  6. “It’s true that the majority of rape victims are still usually women ”

    This is false, unless you have some statistics to back this up

    “When a man leans out his car window to shout obscene sexual advances at me, I don’t want to spend the rest of my evening and the following week on the lookout for his car. I don’t want him to think it’s okay to say those things to me.”

    People are mean and cruel sometimes. I don’t want to live in a world where groups of women publicly shame me sometimes for coming up and saying hi. I love women, I treat them respectfully, I’ve loved many and I think for the most part women love me. That being said, Women can be equally as cruel and mean in their own way to men. Please don’t come on and say they they deserve to be because men can be mean or creepy back because that’s pretty childish and will only perpetuate things to get worse. No one has an excuse to be mean or cruel. I sound whiny. It doesn’t really bother me when women treat me badly because they don’t know me. It does however bother me when women claim to have all the eggs in the “the other gender treats me bad” basket because it’s simply not true.

    I hope I’m not coming off as too big of a dick here, I simply had to put my opinion on some of the things you said out there.

    Mark Manson might not be completely right about everything he said but I don’t think you are either.

    1. That article’s statistics include prison rape, which is something that I wasn’t factoring in. While I think prison rape is terrible, I think the circumstances are different from street or date rape and therefore I consider it differently. Still terrible, but it relies on a different kind of situation.

      Sooo because people are mean and cruel we should just accept it? I thought the humanist movement was all about combating cruelty.

      Nowhere in my post did I claim that men are the only ones who treat people cruelly. I know it’s hard, but try not to make assumptions about things that aren’t explicitly stated. You’ll find that I’m about as moderate as you can get on a lot of things and I rarely discuss issues as binary. That’s why I used personal experience in this post, because my experiences are one of the only things I consider absolute.

      Like I said in my post, modern feminism–at least in my circles–is addressing the harmful facets and perceptions of traditional masculinity. The more we break down the stereotypes about men as well as women, the better we’ll all be able to treat each other. Again, I think that this kind of feminism goes hand in hand with humanism, it just focuses on gender because it’s such a core determinant in our society.

      You haven’t come off like a dick, which I appreciate.

      1. Honestly when you say things like

        “FALSE FALSE FALSE: I probably didn’t make it clear enough with my “These are all my personal experiences” line, but all of the “you’ve probably never” statements are NOT sexist generalizations.”

        You aren’t using personal experiences here, you are in fact generalizing. I’m sorry, I get a lot of what you are saying but most of your responses were “I’m right and you are wrong” and you were honestly wrong in a lot of what you had to say. I’m not going to argue with someone who discusses things like that. Cool blog though and I hope you have a nice day and consider that some of your points here weren’t completely well argued and if you want people to take you more seriously you should think about it.

        1. Um, personal experience is exactly what I’m using. All those “you’ve probably never” statements are in reference to things that have happened to me. Are you going to try and tell me that those things HAVEN’T happened to me?

          The only time I’ve used the words right and wrong was when I said in the original post, “You’re both right and wrong” in response to Manson’s assertion that the problem is not a culture that promotes rape, but a culture that doesn’t talk about sex. All the rest of my arguments, especially in my responses to you, were more elaboration of my viewpoint than anything else.

          You could argue that people use statements similar to my “you’ve probably never” lines to make sexist generalizations, but obviously that’s not how I’m using them, which I made clear by stating that they’re all my personal experiences. You’re being a little inconsistent here by claiming that I used too much personal evidence to argue my points and then telling me here that I’m not using personal experiences, I’m generalizing.

          Now go on, tell me again how my personal experiences are wrong.

          1. “you’ve probably never” makes an assumption about someone else. I’m not telling you your personal experiences are wrong. I’m telling you the way you are going about making your points don’t really hold much weight. By implying that someone else hasn’t experienced those things because they are a man, you are in fact being slightly sexist and making a generalized guess.

            For someone who says they enjoy distention, you have a hard time admitting that anything you said could be off base. lol.

          2. Fair enough; I didn’t think that you were referring to the “you’ve probably never” part. I do assume that a lot of those things have never happened to Mark because he’s a man, and I’m sorry if I’m mistaken; of course, Mark is really the only one who can tell me if I am. I know that the things I mentioned have not happened to any of the men I know, at least not that they’ve told me.

            Still, I like to think of it as more of an educated guess than a generalized one. That’s not me whining and saying “But I’m still right!” I just really doubt that someone who had ever been made to feel vulnerable because of their gender could question the validity of a modern feminist movement.

          3. Again, I think “I just really doubt that someone who had ever been made to feel vulnerable because of their gender could question the validity of a modern feminist movement.”

            is a sexist comment.

            “Still, I like to think of it as more of an educated guess than a generalized one. That’s not me whining and saying “But I’m still right!”

            Not saying you are whining, but at pretty much every single point I made you responded with “I’m still right”

          4. Well, it’s not technically sexist because I levee that accusation at anyone regardless of their gender. It’s definitely combative, but I stand by it.

            That’s because, with the exception of pointing out the sexism of “you’ve probably never,” you’ve yet to change my mind about anything I’ve said. I’m frankly not even sure what you disagree with. My original main points were: 1. feminism has expanded to all gender rights, 2. rape culture is a real thing and applies to all situations of rape, and 3. feminism still exists because there are still societal changes that need to be made, and people are still talking about feminism because for a lot of us it’s a personal battle.

            Anything there you take issue with? You justifiably said that my phrasing was sexist at some points, but other than that you’ve spent a lot of time telling me my personal experiences were false, and since your original comment you’ve continued to tell me I’m wrong without really indicating which of my main points you were talking about. What, other than my educated assumption that men probably don’t have the same experiences as women, am I wrong about?

          5. Also, if this is going to continue, maybe we should start a new comment thread so that it’s easier to read haha

          6. There is a setting in WordPress that allows you to make it so that comments stop getting skinnier after a certain number (I usually do 3). When I figure it out I’ll post it here.

          7. Oh, that would be totally helpful. Thanks!

  7. In vague response to criticisms in these comments:

    There’s a consistent pattern in feminism-related discussions in which a writer will say, “I’ve identified problem X that women unfairly experience and that society should conquer,” and a male respondent will say, “I don’t personally perpetuate that! Stop attacking me! Your criticism of society is irrelevant unless you also discuss how things sometimes suck for men, too.”

    Zac and Tim, neither of you have been so blatantly unfair, but many of your criticisms involve that type of thinking. I cannot conceive of a way that feminist activism directly hurts men; the only anguish it can cause men is that as it succeeds, it gradually (and in a broad sense) equalizes genders, and thus removes male privilege bit by bit. Unless you actually think that men deserve to control the dominant plane of an unbalanced scale, you have nothing to fear in feminism nor identification as a feminist.

    In terms of this article, men will not suffer if more men consider themselves feminists and participate in the conversation. Men will not suffer if rape culture is addressed and conquered. Men will not suffer if women cease to have relatively heightened fears of sexually-focused harassment and assault. Ultimately, these things benefit everyone (except misogynists).

    Finally, a more specific point regarding rape culture: We live in a culture that enables rapists, and that’s bad. Not only are most rapists men, but because of the generally-more-dominant nature of the male gender, men can do a lot to heal rape culture by being aware of privilege, being attentive to women’s concerns, and discouraging rape jokes and the like. If you do these things, you are promoting the cause of feminism and should have no reason to fear the term.

  8. I always find it disconcerting when people argue against your thoughts with comment after comment about semantics and how you said it, but not the actual content of your article. I think this is because you are a lady, and they don’t want you to talk. I’m glad you’re writing.

  9. False rape accusations are about 45% monthly for the city of Denver alone so I doubt false accusations aren’t an issue. Secondly when women rape men they get child support, or more often face book fan clubs, and insane ammounts of praising comments.

  10. […] up about their experiences. I want to help people who aren’t affected by this, the ones who (as I characterized Mark Manson over two years ago) don’t experience it and don’t perpetrate it, see what it does to […]

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