I’m a guy, and I need feminism. Not “men’s rights.” Feminism. Here is why.
Everything that MRAs talk about that men can’t do or are socially punished for arise directly and immediately from misogyny. Not “misandry.” Misogyny.
Whether I am expressing my emotions, playing with children, baking, having sex wherein I am penetrated in any way, wearing the wrong color, talking the wrong way, moving the wrong way, being sexually harassed/assaulted, or paying too little attention to looking like I’m not paying attention to how I look, when society punishes me or derides me or marginalizes me for these things, it is happening because they are things women, not men, are expected to do, and our society at large fucking hates women.
Has that sunk in yet?
Men, can you even think of a single goddamn way you have ever been mocked that wasn’t related to something that a misogynist society sees as feminizing? Even when large men are mocked for their bodies, they are referred to as having “man-boobs,” for fucks sake.
How do you expect to improve those things with “men’s rights?” What right are you fighting for? I can tell you what I think you’re fighting for. I think you’re fighting for the right to contain and control misogyny, and direct it back at women, where you think it belongs. You want to maintain your privilege but erase its consequences, and that’s why your movement is farcical; it’s a big fucking feedback loop. How do you expect men to be free from the peripheral effects of misogyny when you refuse to even fucking believe it’s real?
This is another of several posts I plan on making responding to the most common beefs people have with my “misandry isn’t real” post. The question I’m hoping to answer here is along the lines of:
“If gender roles are constrictive for everyone, shouldn’t we just focus on egalitarianism and not feminism/womanism/etc.?”
Okay, it’s totally true that gender roles put everyone in boxes, but we are not talking about equally restrictive boxes. Some boxes have built-in swimming pools and eight-car garages, and some boxes are filled with hundreds of angry bees.
It’s shitty that as a person living as a guy, there are all kinds of things I can’t do without being attacked, sometimes brutally and physically, for my perceived femininity. I’ve been over that. But the privileges I get are gender roles, too. Even as a queer person, I am seen as having increased capacity for leadership, for strength, for authority, for intelligence, for all kinds of shit that gives me tangible benefits and privileges in the real world (like the job market, for example) whether or not I deserve them.
Meanwhile, even the positive traits women have pinned to them are spun in consistently negative and limiting ways. Women are called more “empathetic” but, in the same breath, less rational. They’re called more “nurturing” but are then saddled with the often exclusive responsibility for taking care of children. They’re thought of as less threatening, and as a result they themselves live under constant threat of violence. Trans* women, women of color, queer women, and others have to deal with being at the intersections of even more kinds of stupid hateful bullshit.
It does not make sense to approach gender role liberation from the perspective and for the benefit of people who are actually constantly benefiting from those roles instead of the people getting fucked over. THAT is why we need feminism, not the Trojan Horse egalitarianism of “mens’ rights.”