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YPestis

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Since getting involved with Free Jinger, I have started learning about the more fringe aspect of the MRA movement. Some of the websites I've seen linked to are pretty appalling in their misogyny. I wonder who these men are who so openly disparage women? They refer to women as bitches and c**** and gleefully fantasize about when women will once again be controlled by men----as if that's something women should be grateful for?

 

What's intriguing is their argument. These men aren't like fundies who delude themselves into thinking that women were happier having babies and staying home. Fundies base their argument on the idea that society would be happier if women became submissive again. No, the fringe MRA people are fully cognizant that women like having money of their own and not getting hit, but they see women's new position as a threat because that means men don't get to control them anymore. They see legal backing against domestic abuse as a negative thing because it "removes" a tool that men have to keep women under control. Their argument isn't based on the idea that everyone will be happier if women are subjugated again. Instead, they seem to openly advocate that women should be forced into situations SOLELY to make men happy....and that women's happiness is not really relevant in their equation. It's like they deliberately want to make one group happy at the expense of another group, and make no apologies about it. Am I misreading that stance?

 

Even fundies don't place their argument that way. Instead, they believe everyone is a winner with their ideas.

 

I didn't think I'd see belief systems worse for women than those advocated by fundies. But fundies appear positively benign to what the fringe MRA people advocate. It's pretty outrageous that there are (seemingly) intelligent men who are cognizant of the advances women have made, and see it in a negative light only because it means another group's unearned privileges are usurped.

 

It's like the fringe MRA people see women as another species whose happiness is irrelevant. At least fundies are arguing from the stance that their idea will make women HAPPIER. MRA people seem to base their argument on the premise that women should be made unhappy so that men could be happy.

 

It just makes no sense to me. You can't base your reasoning on the premise that one group should obviously give up their rights so that another group can enjoy more privileges. Following that concept, my life would be easier if everything was free...and yet, no one thinks that's a convincing argument to make everything free for me. So why do MRA men feel that women SHOULD just give up their education and careers and be slaves to make loser men feel better about themselves?

 

My initial impression is that these fringe MRA people are either losers in real life and feel they must put the blame on someone...so why not women? They believe if all women were put at home, they'd be able to get that job, earn that money and get their own slave---I mean, wife. However, some of them have stated they have wives and daughters but off course, their wives know how to treat a man, and so everything is dandy for them. I fear for these females in their households because these men seem prone to abusive behavior. At the very least, they may pass on their poisonous beliefs onto their children. To me, that's just as damaging, if not worse, than the fundies who tell their daughters they should stay home. At least fundies teach their daughters that they are worthy and "equal" before God. These fringe MRA men seem to think all women are valueless and should be lucky to have a boot to lick on. I hate to think that's what they teach their daughters...the idea that they are not worthy of anything and that they deserve abuse from their husbands.

 

What do those with more knowledge of the MRA movement think? Am I just looking too closely at a very websites? Is this a a sub-culture of the MRA movement? Is this what most MRA people think?

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I am no more knowledgable about MRAs than you are Y. Pestis, but here are some of my impressions. Like you, I have lurked at a couple of their sites and find them to be absolutely appalling. Most of them are losers. I also believe a lot of them are playing an electronic version of "mine is bigger than yours" with their misogyny, misogyny they actually cannot express or get away with in real life. A lot of their rants to each other come off as kinky role playing to me. Bottom line is they are mad they no longer have automatic advantages in relationships based on their sex. In short, they are reactionaries. What you are looking at is not a subculture, but the actual totality of the MRM.

I'll give them some backhanded credit in that many say they will not get married, and that is another win for women everywhere.

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Ypestis. I had never heard of MRA's before I came to FJ. Would you like to share some of those websites with us so we can recoil in horror and inform ourselves? :)

From what it sounds like, the unapologetic striving for power and privilege makes these fringe MRA's more in line with pro-slavery, white power and other racist groups who believe in hierarchy and power differentials 'just because it suits them' with no coherent, ideology except their own self-interest. At least fundies pretend/claim to have the larger interest of womanhood in mind (and I do think some women with kind and loving husbands *are* happy in that lifestyle that they chose - the whole thing breaks down that they try and force it on the rest of us and keep women subjugated who aren't happy in that life style).

It might be an odd comparison, but the MRA's sound very fascist to me. Just do as we do because we say so. It's the ultimate power trip.

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I've lurked at a few of those sites before. A lot of it comes off as "Waaaaaaah! My crush wouldn't go to the prom with me so all women are bitches/insert word here!"

The "A Voice for Men" site creeps me out especially with some of their articles. Trigger warning so I'm putting them behind spoilers tags.

A few of their articles claim that women actually enjoy rape and want to be raped by men.

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I agree. It sounds like nothing more than a power trip to me. Some people in this world want to subjugate another group simply to feel more important themselves.

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I have read some of those sites, like The Spearhead, and I find them absolutely horrifying. I have two young daughters, and it terrifies me that they will go out in a world where there are men who hate them so, just because of their sex.

There's a contradiction in the MRA that I've never seen addressed. They hate career women, of course, or any woman who makes a decent wage that lets her be independent. But they also hate paying alimony or child support so the ex can stay at home with the kids or work part-time. That ex should get off her butt and work! And the kids are never mentioned at all. They seem to believe the divorce system is designed entirely to take their money from them unjustly.

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MRA and other groups like them are simply pissed because being a white straight male doesn't automatically grant you a ticket to easy street anymore. Don't get me wrong, it is still way easier to be a straight white male in the US, but now they may have to put a little effort in to become successful - you know, with all those damn women and minorities around having the gall to be more educated than they are.

Basically, the white man is pissed. Poor things.

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there used to be a regular MRA protest on one of the bridges across the highway here. I stopped to chat a few times (I bike commute, so I was passing a few feet from where they were on the sidewalk) and they mostly seemed...sad. Middle aged sad sacks angry about their divorces. Not nearly as threatening as you'd think from their slogans.

I've also run into printed MRA literature a few times at highway truck stops (one a pamphlet against battered women's shelters - because they are discriminatory and ruin families by assuming all accused husbands are abusive, and one against family court and child support laws). Both times they had been printed by racist groups. One was the John Birch Society and one was something like the White Citizens Association of whatever county, which for all I know is just one dude in his basement. Both times I took the stack to the manager or shift leader at the truck stop and asked if they'd given permission for people to stock their stores with racist literature, and they said they'd remove it.

The online folks are scarier but I do assume they are hiding it in real life...but the constant belief that when they pay child support they are paying for access, like they can't even imagine a relationship with anyone that's not based on paying, is so fucked up I sort of think they must all have absolutely no real emotional attachment to anyone. I mean, if you view your own CHILDREN as pay to play you've got no real human feelings.

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Rosa, your anecdote seems to suggest (I know, *real* conjecture here on my part!) that there might be a connection between certain MRA's and certain racist groups?

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MRA and other groups like them are simply pissed because being a white straight male doesn't automatically grant you a ticket to easy street anymore. Don't get me wrong, it is still way easier to be a straight white male in the US, but now they may have to put a little effort in to become successful - you know, with all those damn women and minorities around having the gall to be more educated than they are.

Basically, the white man is pissed. Poor things.

:text-yeahthat: QFT

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I have read some of those sites, like The Spearhead, and I find them absolutely horrifying. I have two young daughters, and it terrifies me that they will go out in a world where there are men who hate them so, just because of their sex.

There's a contradiction in the MRA that I've never seen addressed. They hate career women, of course, or any woman who makes a decent wage that lets her be independent. But they also hate paying alimony or child support so the ex can stay at home with the kids or work part-time. That ex should get off her butt and work! And the kids are never mentioned at all. They seem to believe the divorce system is designed entirely to take their money from them unjustly.

No, that ex should have stayed with them because they're SUCH NICE GUYS.

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I have read some of those sites, like The Spearhead, and I find them absolutely horrifying. I have two young daughters, and it terrifies me that they will go out in a world where there are men who hate them so, just because of their sex.

There's a contradiction in the MRA that I've never seen addressed. They hate career women, of course, or any woman who makes a decent wage that lets her be independent. But they also hate paying alimony or child support so the ex can stay at home with the kids or work part-time. That ex should get off her butt and work! And the kids are never mentioned at all. They seem to believe the divorce system is designed entirely to take their money from them unjustly.

Annother contradiction is that they believe that family courts that favor mothers are feminist/anti men. What they fail to realize is that actually those courts are buying into the patriarchy in thinking only a mother could be a good primary parent. The answer isn't to buy even more deeply into the patriarchy.

tthen you have guys like markymark who has never been in a relationship with a woman unless he paid for it and he seems to prefer rejecting women instead of being rejected by them. He will go on dates or talk to women and think what an ugly old cow she is and then get all high and mighty when she isn't interested in him.

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A lot of them seem to act as if there is 1 set of "rights" to go around, and if one group obtains them (women) then the other group loses them (men). I can't stomach the more extreme "women aren't even human" types without questioning why I even bother to live, but there are just as many (if not more) less extreme ones. There are plenty who aren't even aware of the MRA movement but espouse the same beliefs and would probably start to identify as such if someone told them about it. It's kind of like the sexist version of "persecuted" Christians, IMO.

They do occasionally make some good points about how men tend to get the "short stick" in some areas - divorce/custody arrangements, time off to care for children, not being believable victims of domestic violence or rape, etc. The problem is that 1) they refuse to acknowledge that these are things that feminists take issue with as well, 2) they refuse to acknowledge that most of them have origins in patriarchy and that getting rid of it will be helpful to men as well as women, and 3) their solutions tend to be of the "drag women down to the men's level" variety rather than "bring men up to the women's level". For example, they might complain about lack of paternity leave for men with newborn children. This is a valid complaint, but they focus on the end result (no paternity leave) rather than the cause (taking care of infants is considered "women's work"). And rather than advocating for employers to add paternity leave to make it more fair, they will advocate for employers to reduce maternity leave instead. This doesn't actually help anyone, it just makes them feel better that women aren't getting one over on them in some area.

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I have read some of those sites, like The Spearhead, and I find them absolutely horrifying. I have two young daughters, and it terrifies me that they will go out in a world where there are men who hate them so, just because of their sex.

There's a contradiction in the MRA that I've never seen addressed. They hate career women, of course, or any woman who makes a decent wage that lets her be independent. But they also hate paying alimony or child support so the ex can stay at home with the kids or work part-time. That ex should get off her butt and work! And the kids are never mentioned at all. They seem to believe the divorce system is designed entirely to take their money from them unjustly.

This dynamic is there in various types of abusive controlling relationships, not only the MRA people (but they're a prime example of it, because they are abusive and controlling).

It's the "I am going to put you in a position where you can't do X or have Y, and then I will belittle you for not doing X or having Y, at every turn."

Some fundies do this too, even when they're dressing it up with "I respect you like a queen" or "you're valuable, you just have a different ordained role" they are still preventing women from acquiring skills that will let them be independent. "Chivalrous old-fashioned" men (particularly young men making a conscious choice to embrace "chivalry") do it, "Nice guys" definitely do it... the putting women on some sort of pedestal saying they can't or shouldn't work, they shouldn't "need" to work, saying they shouldn't open doors or carrying anything, it's infantilizing. It keeps them weak, and puts them in social debt, which they quickly turn around and throw back with "but I do this and this and this for you, now you OWE me (whatever subservience)." "I was nice to you at lunch (unspoken: even though it's such a chore to talk to a woman, I did it!), you owe me sex."

Manipulative parents (fundie and not) do it, "spoiling" their kids and then taunting the kids for being spoiled, or just pointing out that the kids are kids and using that against them at every turn ("I pay the rent on your room!" as if it's some great favor rather than the natural order of things since 8 year olds can't work).

The online folks are scarier but I do assume they are hiding it in real life...but the constant belief that when they pay child support they are paying for access, like they can't even imagine a relationship with anyone that's not based on paying, is so fucked up I sort of think they must all have absolutely no real emotional attachment to anyone. I mean, if you view your own CHILDREN as pay to play you've got no real human feelings.

Yep.

No, that ex should have stayed with them because they're SUCH NICE GUYS.

EXACTLY spot on!!!

And of course the endless, endless whining about how women are just trying to "trick" them into having kids so they can steal his money and get a "sugar daddy" and the like. They have elaborate conspiracies about women somehow stealing their sperm, supposedly even getting it out of used condoms, because they are just looking to have a kid because it will tie the man down and give her a "free ride" for life (as if raising a kid, even with adequate income, is anything like a "free ride").

All I have to say to those assholes is, if they're serious that this is a risk for them, they should be more discriminating in their choice of girlfriends. And definitely wrap that rascal.

Meanwhile, if people want to read about some MRA action from a snark point of view, I can recommend some Man Boobz: http://manboobz.com/

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Annother contradiction is that they believe that family courts that favor mothers are feminist/anti men. What they fail to realize is that actually those courts are buying into the patriarchy in thinking only a mother could be a good primary parent. The answer isn't to buy even more deeply into the patriarchy.

tthen you have guys like markymark who has never been in a relationship with a woman unless he paid for it and he seems to prefer rejecting women instead of being rejected by them. He will go on dates or talk to women and think what an ugly old cow she is and then get all high and mighty when she isn't interested in him.

Actually, I think MarkyMark did have a relationship before, but she left him. Being dumped sucks, it really does, but how many of us turn and take it out on an entire gender or race because one person dumped us? That would be stupid. Yet, that's what any of these people do. It's actually rather sad. They become bullies and to have such anger and hatred it's pathetic. Must be a really horrible way to live. Yes, they bring it on themselves, but it's still horrible. No happiness or fun or love, just alone in their bitterness and spending their time ranting and raving on the internet about it, blaming everyone else instead of getting some help.

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Female MRAs are even more perplexing to me. FeMRA sites are really interesting (and disturbing) because the writers generalize all women as emotional and irrational, but at the same time they seem to believe that they, having taken the "red pill," are somehow the exception to the rule. A lot of these women post really cringe inducing accounts of their sex lives, which leads me to think that most of it is just kink.

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I don't mean to be a fraidy-cat, but I would really like not to be involved with those people....it'd be great if we thought ahead and didn't put any full terms in the posts and headers that would lead any of the nancy-pants over here.

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I used to look at some of those sites, partly because I've discovered I can learn things from understanding where someone with a different viewpoint is coming from, and partly because of the trainwreck factor. I think a lot of those people have legit grievances, but they don't handle it well and they refuse to consider that a. any of the men in their horrible stories of "bad women" may have contributed to the situation and b. that there are any feminists out there who are NOT cut out of the exact same cloth as the worst strawman they can conjure up. I really do feel bad for the ones who seem completely wrecked financially and emotionally, but I disagree with their proposed societal "cures."

And the oft-repeated canard about women being so "emotional" and thus needing guidance, well, I agree we often do make decisions based on our emotions. Guess what? So do men. The story of how women got the vote and how the liquor companies tried to prevent it using partying and free liquor to bribe the representatives and how that tactic almost worked is just one of many from history. Many of these guys could use a very thorough education in world history and what different kinds of societal organization schemes were like to live under - THEN maybe they could give constructive advice on how to make things better and more fair. Until then, they will simply continue proposing solutions that have already been tried and found to be awful; for men AS WELL AS women.

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Another contradiction is that they believe that family courts that favor mothers are feminist/anti men. What they fail to realize is that actually those courts are buying into the patriarchy in thinking only a mother could be a good primary parent. The answer isn't to buy even more deeply into the patriarchy.

This. I hear this argument a lot, because there are a lot of family courts around this country that don't seem to like military fathers.

A lot of them seem to act as if there is 1 set of "rights" to go around, and if one group obtains them (women) then the other group loses them (men).

QFT

They do occasionally make some good points about how men tend to get the "short stick" in some areas - divorce/custody arrangements, time off to care for children, not being believable victims of domestic violence or rape, etc. The problem is that 1) they refuse to acknowledge that these are things that feminists take issue with as well, 2) they refuse to acknowledge that most of them have origins in patriarchy and that getting rid of it will be helpful to men as well as women, and 3) their solutions tend to be of the "drag women down to the men's level" variety rather than "bring men up to the women's level". For example, they might complain about lack of paternity leave for men with newborn children. This is a valid complaint, but they focus on the end result (no paternity leave) rather than the cause (taking care of infants is considered "women's work"). And rather than advocating for employers to add paternity leave to make it more fair, they will advocate for employers to reduce maternity leave instead. This doesn't actually help anyone, it just makes them feel better that women aren't getting one over on them in some area.

Yes, then it becomes a "women's issue" and we all know how seriously that one gets taken. It always seems to be women's fault, not, oh I don't know, the fault of the men who run the company? The fault of the men who have developed a corporate culture that assumes all households have a (likely female) adlut who takes care of everything related to it?

We had a guy who wrote to the Army Times and talked about how he just KNEW women were getting pregnant so they could get all the benefits, like extra uniforms (which we have to give back) and being able to wear tennis shoes (I would personally have to be unable to lace up my boots before I would do that) all the time. And, oh yeah, to get out of deployments. His suggestion was that we separate all women who are getting pregnant. That way he wouldn't have to deal with all the issues, and did he mention that as a single father, the Army screwed him over?

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To be quite honest, I don't understand why we need MRA movements. Isn't feminism about tearing down world-wide patriarchy to make the world have equal opportunites for all genders/sexes and minorities available, not just 1 minority majority, or am I missing something?

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We had a guy who wrote to the Army Times and talked about how he just KNEW women were getting pregnant so they could get all the benefits, like extra uniforms (which we have to give back) and being able to wear tennis shoes (I would personally have to be unable to lace up my boots before I would do that) all the time. And, oh yeah, to get out of deployments. His suggestion was that we separate all women who are getting pregnant. That way he wouldn't have to deal with all the issues, and did he mention that as a single father, the Army screwed him over?

Man. My experience is with Navy people and certain odious relatives (by marriage!) and their friends who can be pretty damn misogynist, they are always going on and on about slutty irresponsible women sailors who supposedly just "get knocked up" conveniently to avoid going out on patrol. Because again, having a kid is just such a walk in the park, amirite?

Now, I'm not going to claim that somehow NO one ever does this, but come on, there are men who get various conditions in order to "slack" and be medically denied too, but somehow that's different.

To be quite honest, I don't understand why we need MRA movements. Isn't feminism about tearing down world-wide patriarchy to make the world have equal opportunites for all genders/sexes and minorities available, not just 1 minority majority, or am I missing something?

It should be, yes. As others have said here and on other threads, much of the legitimate restrictions on men are put there BY OTHER MEN as part of the oppression of women. The assumption that women are better nurturers and should always take care of the kids, the assumption that women's careers are sacrificable, the endless fences and policing behavior put on men as part of homophobia (you don't want to be "a pussy", y'know?), all that stuff.

But among the MRAs it's all twisted around, to position women as somehow being MORE privileged than men, because they're put up on the pedestals of chivalry - except that the women are not asking for that, they are not causing that, and of course the dark side of chivalry is that there is always a debt incurred by the woman. So there's this idea that women are more privileged because "all they have to do is get married" (completely ignoring the risks involved in the giving up of financial independence with the "traditional" marriage compact if the woman ends up with a deadbeat or abusive man), or they can just offer up sex to get anything they want. In that view, women control the world by withholding sex (and so as a further corollary sometimes men just have to take it by force and that's justified - hello rape culture).

FAR better would be for the men to say hey, yeah, maybe I want serious paternity leave, because in my family I take care of the kid more and there's nothing at all odd about it! Plenty of healthier men do argue this way, and are happy to be considered allies of feminism.

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A lot of them seem to act as if there is 1 set of "rights" to go around, and if one group obtains them (women) then the other group loses them (men).

This pretty much sums up their entire mindset. I'm pretty sure that true equality and access to life's rich pageant is not a zero-sum game, but maybe that's a wee bit too sophisticated for most of these ass-hats to comprehend.

I picture most MRA bloggers as a contemporary version of Ignatius Riley, scrawling out their anti-modernity screeds on their aging laptops instead of a Big Chief tablet, screaming at their mothers for more soda and snack cakes.

What these insufferable douchebags don't understand is that if they were born into a true meritocracy, (which is the scenario they presumably believe would allow them to achieve their full potential without the interference of uppity women) they would be miserable, toothless dirt farmers, and not titans of high capitalism or whatever masturbatory fantasy they have about a world without feminism.

Suck it, MRAs.

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Man. My experience is with Navy people and certain odious relatives (by marriage!) and their friends who can be pretty damn misogynist, they are always going on and on about slutty irresponsible women sailors who supposedly just "get knocked up" conveniently to avoid going out on patrol. Because again, having a kid is just such a walk in the park, amirite?

Now, I'm not going to claim that somehow NO one ever does this, but come on, there are men who get various conditions in order to "slack" and be medically denied too, but somehow that's different.

Are there women who do it? Yes. Should their bad actions be held against the rest of us? No. Are they? You bet your sweet ass they are.

Obviously, sometimes you have an oops. I will confess to worrying about it more, as we are gearing up to go visit a land of patriarchy gone wild for 12 months, and the last thing I want is to NOT go because I got knocked up.

Also, somehow the man is never to blame. Grrr.

As others have said here and on other threads, much of the legitimate restrictions on men are put there BY OTHER MEN as part of the oppression of women. The assumption that women are better nurturers and should always take care of the kids, the assumption that women's careers are sacrificable, the endless fences and policing behavior put on men as part of homophobia (you don't want to be "a pussy", y'know?), all that stuff.

But, that would mean it's a MAN's fault. That isn't allowed!

Also, I think a lot of the MRA comes from white men who are not at the higher class levels, and they like blaming someone else more than they like admitting that patriarchy and elitism isn't good for any of us, really.

But among the MRAs it's all twisted around, to position women as somehow being MORE privileged than men, because they're put up on the pedestals of chivalry - except that the women are not asking for that, they are not causing that, and of course the dark side of chivalry is that there is always a debt incurred by the woman.

Plus, chivalry is a contract, and if women don't hold up their end, there's hell to pay. Yes, they have been making that same bullshit argument for over 100 years.

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And the oft-repeated canard about women being so "emotional" and thus needing guidance, well, I agree we often do make decisions based on our emotions. Guess what? So do men.

What I've seen so far in my (admittedly) minor excursions into these sites (basically on two occasions--both prompted by recent threads here), is that much of their anger/ideology comes totally from emotional realms. Isn't most of it whinging because they aren't alphas, and alphas are hogging up all the most desirable women, so these betas are now butthurt that they're missing out and so hate all those damned whores? If that's not emotional-based thinking, I don't know what is.

BTW: What's this red pill blue pill thing that I keep seeing referenced on some of these sites?

And...I just can't even with some of what is being said. Really? Divide the country into "zones": some for fat women, some for sluts (but it seems like in their minds that's a redundant term, since all women are sluts), some for athletic women, and some for women who sign on to having their lives dictated by these slimeball menz? WTF?!?

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