From Part II Chapter 8 The Fourth Wave
By T.L. Dayen
History and the sorry state of the established global status quo as well as basic common knowledge provides more than enough evidentiary support for the premise of The Female Imperative; and other than some alarming statistics and realities caused by disturbing trends in social, economic and environmental policy since the 1980’s, Stewart and I have intentionally refrained from citing specific ephemeral current events or politics in this work. As a student of political science and feminist theory in an increasingly bizarre world, this was particularly difficult for me. But the principles laid out in The Female Imperative are not based on evanescent or sensational headlines. They are based on the realities that have existed just beneath the surface of the animal mind images that fabricate the historical social construct of the dominant and destructive male ego power structures. But there is a “new trend” on the horizon of history that I fear is not fleeting even if it is bombastic. Apparently, there is a new movement for “male emancipation!” This is being called the ‘men’s rights movement’ or MRA (polar reverse of the equal rights movement ERA). They call themselves ‘meninists’ (polar reverse of feminists), and claim they are victims of ‘misandry’ (polar reverse of misogyny).
Did you just choke on that sip of wine; inhale your bubble bath in a gasp; blow out the candle in your book nook with an audibly shrill “WTF?” Well, I wouldn’t blame you if you did! But while their audacity may be even laughable, I would not underestimate the seriousness of the men (and women) in this “movement.” Just as I’ve implored you to crawl ‘outside’ the male ego image to see ‘reality,’ I’m now asking you to step back in for a spell while we examine the newest ‘weapon’ of the male ego being used against human mind reality to fortify its animal mind images. Personally, I wouldn’t normally “get in the weeds” with the male ego on its own distorted level, but one cannot truly claim that they see the light, if they do not truly know what it is to be blinded by darkness. And not many descriptions of the world of the MRA are more fitting then ‘dark.’
The first Annual “International Conference on Men’s Issues” (ICMI icmi16.wordpress.com) took place in 2014 in Michigan. This annual conference began and continues to be sponsored by one of the more prominent MRA groups emerging in the blogosphere known as “A Voice for Men” (VFM www.avoiceformen.com). Of course, there is absolutely nothing wrong with men coalescing to share interests, concerns and experiences unique to men. Lord knows that women appreciate when men make any genuine effort to open up and express themselves. This is a good thing! But the “tone” being expressed within these forums is nothing more than a rallying call to “rage” over perceived injustices against men through reverse “gender discrimination.” Paul Elam is the founder of the VFM and a regular speaker at the conference. The mission statement of VFM states “It is time for equity-minded men and women to engage in the final push for freedom for both sexes, and indeed for all human beings. It is time for the interests of humanity to take precedence over the interests of men and women as political factions and social adversaries.” This of course, is only a male ego image. The site posts articles that call feminism a “cancer” on western society; that blame feminism for “corrupting” education; that accuse women of ‘controlling’ everything including the court system, the television industry, politics and even the English language.
The truth is, Elam was added to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s hate group watch list in 2012 when he received national repudiation by proclaiming the month of October as “national bash a violent bitch month.” While one of the main focuses of VFM is to assist victims of and expose false rape accusations, he was quoted at the 2014 ICMI regarding rape, that women who drink, dance and “make out” at bars “are freaking begging for it.” None-the-less, Mr. Elam is apparently a well-respected member of MRA, and according to Dunn and Bradstreet in 2015, was receiving an estimated $120,000 in annual revenues from his supporters. Not all of his supporters or of the MRA in general are men however! Many women of animal mind have found a ‘home’ with this meninist movement. The late Phyllis Schlafly, who’s funeral was attended by President Trump, was a strong supporter of the anti-feminist efforts of the MRA. More recently, women like Erin Pizzey, a regular contributor to VFM and ICMI speaker, have taken the mantel in the anti-feminist movement. She calls feminism “the evil empire;” and to a group at the ICMI in 2014, “We need to go after them [feminists]. We cannot allow this to continue.”
The dramatic increase of misogyny and anti-feminism in the social media and blogosphere has gone hand-in-hand with the alarming rise in miss-informed fake news and conspiracy, white supremacy, anti-Semitism and nationalist rhetoric in the media and on the internet. In fact, during the 2016 ICMI held in London, VFM’s FB page was taken down as a result of its increasingly harmful imagery and content being expressed toward women. The page had over 34,000 ‘likes’ at the time. We believe these ‘trends’ are a dangerous illustration of the lengths to which the male ego will go, and the depths to which it will stoop to hold on to its position of authority and dominance in a world where women are increasingly feeling empowered to challenge the status quo.
We felt it was important to address the concerns raised by the MRA from the perspective of The Female Imperative. So, while TFI had made a clear distinction between men and the male ego, the arguments being made by MRA are being made by ‘men.’ Therefore, we need to address ‘men’ in our response. I will make note where I agree with the general basis of their concerns, but also expose how the approach MRA is taking is counter-productive to affecting any real changes, necessary as they may be. For the most part, I will not hold any punches here. Considering the source of the argument, I think the most direct response here is appropriate. Don’t you?
Woman Need to Get Over It or Deal with It
Men and women in MRA claim to be tired of hearing about female oppression and the “war on women:” spikes in college campus and military rape statistics as well as social media sexual objectification; the rolling back of reproductive freedoms; underrepresentation; pay inequity, etc. etc. etc. blah, blah, blah! The MRA claims our 21st century focus on these issues is an exaggerated, hyper-sensitive and narcissistic overreaction; that the only women having a problem are the ones who have a problem being a real woman.
If being a “real” woman means a life of domestic and sexual servitude to single minded knuckle draggers bloated with indignant self-righteousness then I’d say, “Absolutely!” There is only one sex that until just one hundred years ago, has without exception been ‘completely’ oppressed, repressed, subordinated, negated, marginalized and deemed necessary for only one thing: servitude to men domestically, sexually and reproductively. But even when you take into account the vast improvements in women’s equity during the 20th century, remember that men and women of human mind had to fight tooth and nail for every one of those advancements in civil liberty. And imagine if you will, what humanity could have accomplished over the past ten thousand years had over half its population only been afforded the same higher education and civic and scientific contribution to human advancement.
Black men in America were given the right to vote in the 1860’s, but they’d suffer 100 years of Jim Crow discrimination before the civil rights legislation of the 1960’s. Likewise, just because women were finally “given” the right to vote in 1920, did not mean that women were considered ‘equal’ in mind or body. As of 2014, only one gender (over half the planet) is still paid less, still has less upward mobility, still has less civic representation, is still expected to be seen and treated as a sex object, and is still fighting for reproductive independence. As of 2014 in many countries, only one gender is still a second-class citizen with no human rights or liberties other than what their husband (by arranged marriage) allows, if any; including her right to even live. If you think you are tired after just one hundred years of women trying to free themselves from subordination and oppression, then imagine how tired WE are after ten thousand years of being oppressed and subordinated!
There are only two reasons why any man or woman today cannot at least “empathize” with what over half the planet have, and will continue to, suffer and endure at the hands of their dominant male counterparts, worldwide, for no other reason than they are female. Either your scope and knowledge of history ceases to exist from the day before you were born, or you simply do not care! Either way, you have no credible voice at the table of human evolution!
Men on Men; Men on Women; Men on Terra
The MRA movement claims that by focusing on violence against “females,” we are somehow apathetic to violence against “males.” They seem confused as to why so much time and energy in our legislature as well as by human rights groups around the world are spent addressing violence against women, when more men die as a result of violence.
Let us clear up their confusion. It is MEN who commit the violence; against women, against each other, and against the planet. All life on Earth is victim to violent acts from the human male ego! Physical violence, sexual violence, domestic violence, gang violence, military violence, terrorist violence, racial violence, ethnic violence, homophobic violence, gun violence, serial and ritual killing, mass killing, animal sport killing and species extinction, and violent environmental and planetary destruction; is all committed by men under the parasitic control of the male ego! Relying on some infinitesimal percentage of “females” who commit these acts of violence in order to make a case for reverse gender discrimination is quite frankly, an ignorant attempt to deflect from the truth.
Moreover, both women and men of human mind have been trying to stop all of this violence for centuries, only to get slapped down time and again by the male ego. Physical, sexual, domestic and gang violence is overwhelmingly rooted in poverty. Racial, ethnic and homophobic violence is overwhelmingly rooted in poor education. Serial, ritual and mass killing is overwhelmingly rooted in mental illness. Human mind recognizes that an investment is necessary to stave off poverty; necessary to improve public education; and necessary to treat mental illness. But investment will not be tolerated by the male ego. The government has no business using taxpayer dollars to interfere with social Darwinism; survival of the fittest – remember? Terrorist violence is rooted in religion, yet our own Congress is citing biblical scripture to justify cutting food stamps and school lunch programs for children. In fact, our taxpayer dollars are apparently only worthy for funding a military already larger than all militaries of the world – combined. And gun violence, sport killing, species extinction and environmental obliteration either fuels male ego thrills or bank accounts. Every regulation and legislation human mind has attempted to endorse or pass to address ALL violence on our planet has been ridiculed, fought and blocked by male ego afflicted men and their female minions.
Anyone truly concerned about “violence against men and boys,” supports investment in early education, lower tuition costs for higher education, family planning access and education, access to proper nutrition and ending the playground to prison pipeline. Not to mention corporate fascists who prop up corrupt governments that breed global civil unrest, crime and – violence! But if you are actually just concerned with grand distractions to maintain your oppressive control, then you have no credible voice at the table of human evolution!
Not “Me” Not “My” Problem
This is where the MRA concedes that “o.k.” men are more violent creatures, but “not all men” are violent, oppressive or even discriminating. Some are even downright wimpy. Why should the entire male population be made to suffer persecution and feel guilty for the horrific acts of some? It’s stereotypical gender discrimination, and it’s just not fair!
While ‘not all men’ are violent, oppressive or discriminating against women, it is ONLY men who are. To whom else do you suppose women should make their case to break the ten-thousand-year cycle of oppression and subordination – if not men? And even if you are not personally responsible for creating the images that built the social constructs that perpetuate that oppression, you are co-creating them in every moment of every day, if you are doing nothing to end it.
One hundred years after ‘American’ women “got the vote,” you don’t have to be the man in India lighting your wife on fire in your kitchen to collect another dowry. You don’t have to be the man in Iraq taking a door to door inventory of the virgins in your community for arranged child marriages. You don’t have to be the man in Pakistan shooting a 12-year-old girl in the face for wanting to go to school. You don’t have to be the man in South America sex trafficking 10-year-olds. You don’t have to be the man slapping his wife around because she was on the phone too long and his dinner is cold. You don’t have to be the man forcing a 14-year-old to create and give birth to her rapist Uncle’s child. You don’t have to be the man paying the men that work for you more than the women doing the same work. You don’t have to be the man stalking, abducting and torturing women and girls and randomly burying their remains. You don’t have to be the man date-raping the pretty coeds who have the nerve to come into your dorm room and then say “no.”
You don’t have to be THAT man, if you are only the man idly standing by and letting it all happen. You are not being persecuted! You are being petitioned! Any man or woman who is not taking a stand against female oppression, or even worse, is impeding women from taking their own stand; is simply a man or woman who’s taking the stand to permit and perpetuate it! And you have no credible voice at the table of human evolution!
Men Created the Laws Within Their Social Construct. Men Can Change Them.
The MRA movement has its roots in family court parental prejudice. They once made legitimate arguments regarding issues like paternity fraud, excessive child support burdens, unfair and biased parental custody awards, etc. But instead of coalescing to make needed changes in an archaic family court system to be more equitable toward deserving fathers, this movement has now become a forum for spewing on women for every conceived injustice perpetrated by a female against a male. Then they promote these “personal experiences” as evidence that in fact, men are oppressed by women!
Once again, we have a grand distraction propagated by the animal mind of the male ego, desperate to maintain its epic campaign of control. For one thing, just because some men have suffered because their wife or partner has wronged them has nothing to do with the fact that “globally” women have, are, and will continue to suffer abuse, oppression and subordination by their dominant male counterparts. By the MRA premise, the fact that there are some very bad women in the world, either negates or justifies the oppression and subordination of ALL women in the world. Secondly, family and divorce court is just one segment of the human population. In other words, not all women even have children or are even married. Moreover, there are some parts of the world where “courts” are non-existent and divorce is not even a legal option for women; or where the cultural persecution of a woman who divorces her husband is worse than what she may suffer within her marriage. The fact that a man can even be wronged by a woman in court or out is a uniquely Western experience, because in most parts of the world, women have no personal liberty to even be “mean” to their men, let alone seek legal “freedom” from their bondage.
But perhaps the most obvious point that the MRA is conveniently overlooking here is that it is men, not women, who created the social construct that supports and favors women in issues of custody and property, and wrote the laws that enforce that social construct. How can any man blame a woman for using a system that was set up by men in the first place? The social construct of which I’m speaking 1) puts full and complete responsibility of reproduction and child rearing on the human female, from conception to legal adult, and 2) that strenuously encourages a woman to be a “housewife;” married and committed to her home and family; sacrificing her own personal and/or career ambitions for the sake of that home and family. Either way, when a “split” occurs between the male and female, the “court” recognizes the personal sacrifices made by the female in regards to the children, and therefore favors “her” in custody issues. It also recognizes the sacrifices made by the female in regards to personal ambitions that would allow her, her own personal material acquisitions and therefore favors “her” with “her share” of the material acquisitions acquired during the marriage.
This is all the result of a social construct created by the male ego, and the “law” simply recognizes that women are the ones who sacrifice their name, their body, their non-domestic goals, and therefore should be compensated for that sacrifice if that union is dissolved. It’s simple; if you are unhappy with the consequences of the male ego social construct, then change it!
- In the status quo, only women carry the full responsibility of conjoined sex and reproduction. The man has no responsibility whatsoever of whether or not his sex will lead to pregnancy. This has and continues to be a purely female consideration. Have you not ever wondered why modern medicine has made absolutely no investment in male birth control? Are you kidding? The male ego would never allow it! In fact, the only advancement made in male reproductive medicine is a pill to allow men to hold a longer erection.
- In the status quo, only women must sacrifice unpaid time off work to give birth; recover from birth; and see to her infant child’s needs in its first few weeks on Earth. Perhaps employers should be required to provide all women paid leave time for child birth – what a radical concept! And perhaps the man should be allowed paid leave time to assist his wife in seeing to his infant child’s needs in its first few weeks on Earth – another “radical” concept? This would not only be tremendously helpful for working and stay-at-home-moms, beneficial to both father and child, but would also finally demonstrate the recognition of parental equity to the family court system!
- In the status quo, only women are strongly encouraged and praised to be a “homemaker” if finances allow, and yet society does not credit her with the time she spends or the skills she masters as homemaker. If the social construct considered “homemaking” as a viable and credible skill set, perhaps palimony would not be necessary! And if men were NOT discouraged from staying home while the wife works, perhaps palimony suits would be awarded “equally.”
- In the status quo, only women can be considered a “trophy” as a spouse. The wealthy male, often older, marries (purchases) the young beautiful [trophy] wife. Her presence at his side is a status symbol for the successful male who otherwise has it all. She is a “prop” that makes a statement to other males (and women) about his virility and “purchase power.” He may even pretend to be in love, and pretend to believe that she loves him – all for the purpose of the appearance of a laudable character, and she must fulfil her role in this charade. Make no mistake; these men know these women will not stay with them forever. He is aware they will eventually divorce. He is aware she will be awarded a sizeable palimony to keep her in somewhat of an accustomed manner as the marriage afforded her; and make no mistake that this will allow him to continue to ‘claim” her as his trophy – not at his side, but as his ex-wife! Male ego female objectification is the root of this social construct. Rich “cougars” and their “boy toys” are vastly and historically, far less prevalent.
I’ve had a front row seat on more than one occasion to the frustrating and, yes, painful result of inequity in the family and divorce court system. But the truth is, it simply reflects the inequity created by the social construct within which that system exists. Complaining that family and divorce courts are “stacked against” men, without acknowledging that the sacrifices and responsibilities of a family and marriage are “stacked on” women is disingenuous. Crying “foul” because the law impartially compensates for a social construct that supports traditional marriage and family unit that you yourself created and lobby to sustain is duplicitous. And you are a man or woman who has no credible voice at the table of human evolution!
Abuse of power vs. Abusive use of available power
Even if MRA could concede to the above, they will still declare with indignant righteousness that some women take malicious advantage of the system and use it to seek harmful revenge on their male counterparts. MRA claims that because women use and manipulate the systems within the social construct to their own means at the expense of men, the feminist movement and female oppression must be a farce; a grand illusion. Women are actually cunning and conniving creatures, and feminists are just looking for attention.
I sympathize with men who have been victim to “bad” women just as much as I sympathize with women who have been victim to “bad” men. But conclusions made about female oppression by comparing the two are flawed and erroneous. One has to be capable of looking at individual accounts of specific behavior, from the larger and historical perspective of universal circumstances and customary behavior. Two points must be made here:
- All women on planet Earth are oppressed or subordinated at different degrees by men, but women aren’t the only one’s oppressed or subordinated by men. In other words, female oppression is “universal” not regional. Other forms of oppression however, are determined by demographic and region. For instance, in America, Blacks still struggle against a racially biased social construct, but they don’t suffer this same discrimination in other parts of the world.
There are wicked, spiteful, cruel and malevolent women in the world, because “people” can be ruthless and “people” can be heartless! Humanity is made up of good and bad men and women of all colors, all races, and all religions. But only women, good or bad, no matter where they live, will wake up every day to a world in which they are held subordinate to the dominant male ego, from underrepresentation in government, business and finance to physical threats and actual acts of abuse and assault; culturally justified or otherwise. Female oppression is universal and is not limited by race, nationality, religion OR character!
- There is a difference between “abuse of power” and the “abusive use of available”
A woman who “takes her ex-husband to the cleaners” in court or “uses their children as a weapon” against him is criminal and even immoral – it is wrong! But capitalizing one’s only available resources to achieve unscrupulous aims of greed or revenge (abusive use of available power) cannot be falsely equated with exploiting one’s socially constructed ‘position of authority and command’, to inflict an array of physical or mental diatribes on those who find themselves within your institutionalized dominion (abuse of power).
In addressing these arguments made by the men and women of MRA, at times I felt a sense of ridiculousness for having to state the obvious. Some of the arguments made by the MRA are technically true. But as a means to discredit feminism, they are short sighted, intellectually limited, tactless and shallow flurry motions; shake with the left, then jab with the right; shake high, then uppercut from below. The MRA movement is a grand distraction meant to deflect global attention away from the very real issues of female oppression and caustic gender/role division, so the animal mind of the male ego can go about its business of global domination and destructive control. Because they hold the power, their abusive and oppressive behavior is an undeniable “abuse of power!” Are women who exploit the “loopholes” within the male dominated power structure justified to be counter abusive, manipulative and/or criminal? No. But like any other oppressed demographic in our history, eventually the pendulum must begin to swing in the other direction. It is not a justification, but it is an explanation.
The Female Imperative is a direct and present danger to the male ego. It will do everything in its power to shut us up and put us back where we belong; with the real women in a man’s castle serving up the sex, food and babies. Perusing the bizarre cyber world of the MRA, Stewart and I are only validated that the human male is infected by the parasitic male ego of animal mind. Human beings will continue to die and suffer at its hand, yet it will continue to tell us that it should be trusted as our “protector.” Human beings will continue to die and suffer from its policies and politics of greed, yet it will continue to tell us that it alone is “best” qualified in affairs of commerce and law. Human beings will continue to die and suffer from its war making, yet it will continue to tell us that it is the most capable of maintaining world “peace.” Well, male ego animal mind, we are onto you, and we’re not buying it anymore! To the men and women of MRA, we say that in the light of the truth, you have no credible voice at the table of human evolution!