Friday, August 21, 2015

Men's Rights Meme; Episode One: Talking About Feelings

I've decided to start a new series on this blog, entitled, of course, Men's Rights Meme. The premise of it is simple, but elegant. I hope so, anyway. Basically, I'm taking memes created by Men's Rights Activists on the internet and, well, beating the shit out of them. That's basically the whole thing. I'm challenging MRA rhetoric from a feminist perspective. That's so original, right?

 This first episode will, I think, be a short one. The meme I'm looking at today is a common one, which has been refuted countless times by better minds than mine. But I think it's a good introduction to the series, so I'm going to do it anyway. Let's get right to episode one: Talking About Feelings.

Here's the offending meme, which is a commentary on Emma Watson's He For She speech. It's a really poorly done commentary, and we'll get to why in a moment, but it's a commentary nonetheless.

Okay, wow. There are so many problems with this thing that it's hard to know where to begin. I would first like to point out that this thing finally shows the hand of the Men's Right's Movement. By that, I mean that the creator makes no effort to hide the blatant misogyny that plagues what can only generously be called a movement. This man seems to think that there's some shadowy conspiracy by a cabal of female leaders designed to suck away his money, for some reason. You'd think the illuminati would have a more reliable source of income. It's like he dated one crazy person in college and then just assumed that every woman is exactly like her, always.

But as much as I'd love to sling insults at those hateful fucks who pretend to care about real issues, we have something more important to discuss.

Namely, that Watson never actually said the words, "Men should talk about their feelings more." What she said was far more eloquent and nuanced than that. I suppose I can't fault the creator of the meme for straw-manning Emma here. Sexist assholes aren't usually known for their sliver tongues or discerning intellects. I'm sorry, I'm sorry. I couldn't resist taking one more cheap shot at this guy.

The entirety of Watson's speech can be found here, but the bit I want to focus on is this, as it's the one the meme is referring to. At least, I think that's the case. Quite frankly, this is so nonsensical that I can't tell what it's trying to say. Anyway, here is the full quote, placed back in the context this guy ripped it from.

We don’t often talk about men being imprisoned by gender stereotypes but I can see that they are and that when they are free, things will change for women as a natural consequence.
If men don’t have to be aggressive in order to be accepted women won’t feel compelled to be submissive. If men don’t have to control, women won’t have to be controlled.
Both men and women should feel free to be sensitive. Both men and women should feel free to be strong… It is time that we all perceive gender on a spectrum not as two opposing sets of ideals.
If we stop defining each other by what we are not and start defining ourselves by what we are—we can all be freer and this is what HeForShe is about. It’s about freedom. 

The part that really gets me is that the above ideas are exactly the kind of thing a real Men's Rights Movement would be promoting. But, like I said, these people don't actually care about the real issues facing men today. They just need an excuse to yell about how awful women are. It's a thinly-veiled way for them to express their deep-seated rage. Personally, I think it stems from the size of their dicks. That's just me, though.

Also, newsflash, guys. Anger is still a feeling. Maybe if you listened to her arguments instead of calling her a bitch on the internet, you would understand that.

You would also understand that men don't become homeless because of the aforementioned secret cabal of evil ladies. Roughly one-third of homeless people are in that situation because of mental illness, according to this. Many of these people would benefit from the opportunity to talk to a trained professional about their feelings directly. And they would have that chance, if the patriarchy didn't regard having emotions as a sign of weakness. Watson is one hundred percent correct here.

So much for this being a short one, huh?

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the first episode of Men's Rights Memes. Stayed tuned for the next one. I'm going to try and post these every Friday, and we'll see where it goes.

1 comment:

  1. Okay, I hope you don't mind my contrary perspective on this.

    I do not see how you think that the creator of this meme implied or believes themselves that there is a secret female cabal. The only way I can see you thinking this is the slightly collectivist manor it has been written in which can be easily and more logically explained by the fact it is a meme(and therefore the shortening of the sentences causes things like that). Also just love the laughing at a female cabal when that wasn't even alluded to but the Patriarchy is totally real and makes much more sense.

    As for your complaint that Emma Watson never said "Men should talk about their feelings more," of course the entire fucking speech wasn't quoted (because meme) and so obviously it would arguably been taken out of context.
    The "quote" used in the meme was of course designed to represent the general idea of what she said in that one particular speech but also one of the ideas of her campaign.

    The reason (I speak for myself and many MRAs here) we do not like HeForShe is because it still centres around helping women as it is He For She that is MEN (He) doing things FOR women (She). MRAs won't support more chivalry just because Emma Watson payed lip service to certain issues for men.

    Yes, we know that anger is a feeling, we've been saying that for a while now.

    Again no cabal was even alluded to but it can be said that homeless men don't get the same treatment homeless women get. Not to mention how an abused man if he wants to get out of the house has to file for homelessness but a women can just knock on the door of a shelter.

    Let me also address the writer of meme saying that "Men don't need or want to talk to you about their 'feelings'". When men in the MRM express their feelings of helplessness, being victims of injustice or even hatred they are shamed to the greatest degree by feminists like yourself and Emma Watson. You never bother to attempt to understand why some men might have a great distrust or hatred of women, because from some of the mail I've seen to female MRAs like Karen Straughan saying things along the lines of "You are the reason I don't hate women," and the large amount of men who have gained these attitudes due to feminism it's no wonder they don't want to open up to you.