The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by Enail on Wed Feb 11, 2015 1:08 pm

I realize it's a first draft, so I don't want to get nitpicky on that, but you left out almost everything I feel is important to the post, and added a number of your own beliefs about what women want and should be conveying to men, so I don't think it could in any way be said to be in the spirit of the original or an example of how feminist anti-harassment messages could be changed to respond to your concerns while still preserving the important message.

SomeSamSeaborn wrote:
Enail wrote:While I agree that it may be possible (and would be desirable) to craft messages against harassment and assault that continue to send clear, useful messages against both gendered and non-gendered harassment and assault, while doing less harm to those men who are currently reading harmful messages about male sexuality from them - I don't think that there is any common ground whatsoever between you and me about what that message would entail.

Maybe. But if you want to give it try, I'm up for it.

Heh, I think we've already given it several tries. I'm quite satisfied at this point that there is none, so I think I'll leave it, I just thought I should respond so you'd have some feedback.
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by kleenestar on Wed Feb 11, 2015 1:34 pm

Wow, that was ... revealing.

Sam, does your rewrite capture the way you believe all feminist discourse should be conducted?
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by Raindancing on Wed Feb 11, 2015 2:14 pm

Sam, do you see your essay as being informative to men? What is in there that you expect them to not already know?
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by Robjection on Wed Feb 11, 2015 2:33 pm

I'm addressing this bit because it's the bit I feel I am best able to address:

SomeSamSeaborn wrote:Maybe the two conflicting realities (*subjectively*) can be made clearer, as you seem to have read the "unfair" as a statement of fact rather than the approacher's subjective reality. I thought about including something like a "reasonable person" check, but the point was to accept her subjective reality as baseline even if it doesn't appear explicable in his subjective reality. Of course, her reaction will have subjectively be caused by his behavior, what else.

I might have bought that you were talking about the unfairness as if it were a subjective reality if you had said "And yes, it may feel like some women are just unfair in dealing with you."

The thing is, any statement that paints any group in any light (favourable or otherwise) has almost certainly at some point been stated as if it were some kind of absolute truth. If you wish to distance yourself from this idea, if you want to present a statement as a subjective reality, you need to include a phrase like "it sometimes seems like" or "it may feel like" or something like that. The fact that you talk about a subjective reality is not automatically implied.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by Hirundo Bos on Wed Feb 11, 2015 3:18 pm

Ok,

SomeSamSeaborn wrote:
Hirundo Bos wrote:The double bind, if I understand it correctly, is the feeling that the people in question are told that it's wrong to give someone unwanted sexual attention, but also wrong to give no one any sexual attention at all?

That's a double bind, too, but not the one I was referring to specifically. Or that one is a more specific version of the more general double bind I'm referring to. The problem in describing it, is, of course, terminology like "unwanted sexual attention", because who could argue for unwanted? And yet the behavior often described - certainly perceived as being described in those descriptions as unwanted - is not rarely part of the behavior that is considered attractive by the people - women as a collective assumed to be spoken for by feminism as well as, not rarely, feminists themselves - arguing against such behavor on the grounds described by you. My reply to Mel in the post above wrt to section V of Ozy's post seems also relevant in this specific context: overreacting vs. making points in a way that are distorted by taking them at face value.

I agree that it would be hard to argue for something unwanted, and at the same time, unwantedness is absolutely essential to the message such as I read it. (The reading that causes a rise in confidence and reduction of paralyzing fear.) When person A gets uncomfortable with, creeped out by, or straight out afraid of a certain kind of behavior, while person B gets turned on by the exact same behavior, the difference is that person A for whatever reason doesn't want that behavior to happen.

That's why there can't be a definite list of behaviors that are not harassment: The difference isn't in the behavior itself, but in the person that behavior is directed at. Whether they want the behavior to happen or not.

I'm still not sure if I understand your double bind, but does it have something to do with trying to please someone as if they were person A and person B at once? As they are defined here by wanting opposite things, that will indeed be very difficult to do.

I would also like to add that a surprising number of people do argue for unwanted. People who are eager to disregard a "no" from someone they are hitting on will in fact argue that what the other person want isn't all that important, or that they misrepresent what they want to maintain plausible deniability or play hard to get, or maybe they don't know what they want because we all know how irrational women can be... all these reasons are given to persist in unwanted behavior, raising the level of wrong from 1) to 3).

People that are prone to make and maybe even believe in such arguments are also among the audience for the feminist messages in question.

SomeSamSeaborn wrote: But again, this is probably again a matter of "how literal to take feminist arguments?"

You and Mel have already covered the question of literalness, but I wonder if there may be some less... uhm, literal meanings of the word literalness that might be relevant here... specifically, a kind of literalmindedness that I'm prone to myself is the tendency to see things as EITHER good OR bad, no different degrees of bad, no difference between 1) or 3). And add to that my jerkbrain, that takes almost every bad thing I hear of, and serves me pictures where I'm doing that exact thing. Or in other words, makes it All About Me.

One of the factors that has interacted with feminist messages to make me more confident and less paralyzed, is that I have been aware of both the either-or thinking, and the self-defeating jerkbrain thinking, I have been aware of it and able to correct for it. When I stopped being overwhelmed by the fear of being absolutely bad, I was able to take the information in the messages and use it to become better.


SomeSamSeaborn wrote:
Hirundo Bos wrote:I think it's a very interesting question (maybe or maybe not for this thread) how the same message can affect people in so different ways... what are the factors that have made them so helpful to me.

That is very true, and also something I would like to explore. My guess is that *this* has also to do with the personal intervening factors you mentioned above.

I agree, under the assumption that we both have intervening factors, that everyone who receives a generally broadcast message does it through a set of intervening factors... my main interest is to find out what my own factors might be, and then see if I can't spread some more of those around.
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by UristMcBunny on Wed Feb 11, 2015 5:18 pm

Now, see. If I was going to dissect a post about Schrodinger's Rapist to preserve the important meat of the post while altering the tone to be less harmful to guys with Sam's specific needs, I'd first want to sift through it for some bullet points I could use.

So, with this one for example:

http://kateharding.net/2009/10/08/guest-blogger-starling-schrodinger%E2%80%99s-rapist-or-a-guy%E2%80%99s-guide-to-approaching-strange-women-without-being-maced/

Some bullet points I might want to make sure I included in my rewrite would be...



The reader's intentions towards women are acknowledged to be good
For women, rape, assault and violence from men is a real and significant threat that they must account for
A list of statistics emphasising the seriousness of the risk to women, since many people do not actually know how bad it is
An example of how common potential rapists may be from made-up maths (I would replace with the known data from those two studies
Point out that predatory people are not immediately apparent or easy to spot in a crowd
Women set their own risk tolerance
Be aware of the signals you are sending - give examples of some potential danger signals
Be aware of your environment - give examples of some things to be mindful of
Emphasis on paying attention to verbal and non-verbal communication and signals, giving examples
Accept the "no" signals


So. In order for any re-write to still be effective at conveying the actual message of the original, it would need to include those things. Sure, it could be worded differently, but those points all feel like vital aspects of the original to me.

Now, what you did Sam, was remove pretty much every single relevant or crucial bit of specific information, call women "bitches" (yes I know you edited that out) and put in a bunch of supposition about what you believe women want. You took out basically everything that was useful or important or informative that might help someone actually take steps to improve.

And that's the issue.

At the end of the day, we've tried the nicely-nicely don't-cause-a-fuss method for a long fucking time. We need to be able to actually tell people what the deal is and what we need from them. The message needs to be actually useful.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by Caffeinated on Wed Feb 11, 2015 5:29 pm

Hirundo Bos wrote:
I agree that it would be hard to argue for something unwanted, and at the same time, unwantedness is absolutely essential to the message such as I read it. (The reading that causes a rise in confidence and reduction of paralyzing fear.) When person A gets uncomfortable with, creeped out by, or straight out afraid of a certain kind of behavior, while person B gets turned on by the exact same behavior, the difference is that person A for whatever reason doesn't want that behavior to happen.

That's why there can't be a definite list of behaviors that are not harassment: The difference isn't in the behavior itself, but in the person that behavior is directed at. Whether they want the behavior to happen or not.

I'm still not sure if I understand your double bind, but does it have something to do with trying to please someone as if they were person A and person B at once? As they are defined here by wanting opposite things, that will indeed be very difficult to do.

What a wonderfully clear way of stating this.
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by JP McBride on Wed Feb 11, 2015 6:31 pm

UristMcBunny wrote:So.  In order for any re-write to still be effective at conveying the actual message of the original, it would need to include those things.  Sure, it could be worded differently, but those points all feel like vital aspects of the original to me.

That's much better.

For me, the problem I have with the SR post is that one of the messages I get from it is that approaching women is an inherently threatening act.

EDIT: Dwarf Fortress reference?

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by InkAndComb on Wed Feb 11, 2015 6:45 pm


I feel like people are onto something with the idea of exagerration of certain aspects of feminist messages; the point in SR, to me, isn't to take away that you're bad, it's an empathy exercise. By not being able to cast yourself as the person in the place of the approached, and lingering on the frustration that results from being regarded in a suspicious manner, the opportunity to grow and be aware of more appropriate scenarios in which to initiate social contact is lost. I'd say another example that I often prefer is "Spot the Question". I think this is because you have an example of a well-meaning male included in the story, so a potential audience doesn't feel already condemned for something they may or may not have done, and I feel like the point is still received. I still like SR, but if people have a hard time not taking that as a personal attack/anxiety inducer, then Spot the Question seems to do the job.
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by eselle28 on Wed Feb 11, 2015 7:04 pm

InkAndComb wrote:
I feel like people are onto something with the idea of exagerration of certain aspects of feminist messages; the point in SR, to me, isn't to take away that you're bad, it's an empathy exercise.  By not being able to cast yourself as the person in the place of the approached, and lingering on the frustration that results from being regarded in a suspicious manner, the opportunity to grow and be aware of more appropriate scenarios in which to initiate social contact is lost.  I'd say another example that I often prefer is "Spot the Question".  I think this is because you have an example of a well-meaning male included in the story, so a potential audience doesn't feel already condemned for something they may or may not have done, and I feel like the point is still received.  I still like SR, but if people have a hard time not taking that as a personal attack/anxiety inducer, then Spot the Question seems to do the job.

I really like Spot the Question. Here's a link for the unfamiliar. I think it's also helpful that it doesn't specifically zone in on rape. There are lots of not-good things that can happen to women, and I feel it does a better job of suggesting the group of them rather than one specific thing.
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by UristMcBunny on Wed Feb 11, 2015 7:53 pm

Oh, Spot the Question is one of my favourites.  I've used that exact comment several times with people and it's an eye opened for them every single time.

*edit* and yes! Yes DF reference. As mentioned in the username inspiration thread!


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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by fakely mctest on Wed Feb 11, 2015 7:59 pm

UristMcBunny wrote:Oh, Spot the Question is one of my favourites.  I've used that exact comment several times with people and it's an eye opened for them every single time.

And the thing was, I haven't read that comment since I read it for the first time in that article and I STILL knew immediately what eselle was pointing to before I clicked on it. I was like, "Oh it's the super creepy story from the Captain Awkward comment section that still occasionally haunts my nightmares."

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by UristMcBunny on Wed Feb 11, 2015 8:03 pm

fakely mctest wrote:
UristMcBunny wrote:Oh, Spot the Question is one of my favourites.  I've used that exact comment several times with people and it's an eye opened for them every single time.

And the thing was, I haven't read that comment since I read it for the first time in that article and I STILL knew immediately what eselle was pointing to before I clicked on it.  I was like, "Oh it's the super creepy story from the Captain Awkward comment section that still occasionally haunts my nightmares."

Honestly that entire article haunts me still sometimes. I mean, it stands out as one of the BEST ONES EVER on CA for providing so much amazing commentary and links and things to reference, but the stories. Oh gods, the stories.

And not just the main ones in the article, either.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by username_6916 on Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:06 am

I'll note that for heterosexual people, this cuts both ways. If men aren't finding wives and girlfriends, then women aren't finding husbands and boyfriends. I think it says something that almost all of the complaints I've seen about the intersection between harassment and trouble finding dates are from men, while women seem more accepting of the trade off.

1) s/people/couples. Monogamy isn't entirely universal, and the gender balance of those who aren't monogamous isn't necessarily 50/50.

2) We can't assume an equal effort is put into the process either. It's entirely possible that men (in general) are putting far more effort just to get started in this area than women do (in general). It's entirely possible that the sort of changes suggested increase that workload disparity even further.

3) Making dating harder isn't the only downside that men experience from the attitudes I'm criticizing. Women don't have to worry about being seen as brutish or creepy in the way that men do. Giving cover to this sort of profiling hurts men in all sorts of other places far more than it hurts women.


But in terms of double standards, I would ask whether the men who are asking feminists to work to make dating easier for them have actually done anything to comply with those voices.
Of course they have. That's often why they are having such problems in the first place! What are we to expect from voices that say that your desires are inherently threatening and must be kept to yourself unless you are certain that they are shared or else you're a terrible creep?  

I'm not sure that we can draw a bright defining line between 'make dating easier' and 'stop hurting us by making dating harder', but certainly this attitude falls under the latter characterization?


Are they even working to further more standard feminist goals?
So, we can mention the things that they do that hurt us if we support this particular set of ideological goals?

But I find it rather difficult to accept the claim that women must do something to make dating easier for men merely because men have heard women complain about their difficulties dating and then dismissed those complaints as incompatible with their attractions or values.

The thing is men are already expected to do so much to make to make dating (and, I'd argue life in general) easier for women and I can't think of too many common examples where we collectively try to hurt women's chances at romance for the sake of our own comfort and status.




Um, who is "we" here? Because I have not been using this reasoning to justify harmful action against men. I've repeatedly said that I think men should point out actions they feel are harmful, and feminists should consider their concerns.

Ummm... Yes you do. Right here:

I agree that when feminists see guys freaking out about approach anxiety, they are not always as kind as the example I gave. But I think that is because they are often responding to guys freaking out about approach anxiety in the context of a discussion about street harassment or rape or whathaveyou, who are hearing about women's concerns for their safety and well-being and immediately jumping to "but that makes me feel bad" with very little if any indication of sympathy or concern for the women affected, while often exaggerating what was actually said ("saying catcalling is bad means you're telling me I should never talk to any woman!") and often derailing said conversation from trying to fix the initial problem. I think it is perfectly fair to be less than totally kind to people who are making someone else's problem all about themselves and don't understand that a conversation about women being assaulted is not the place to be looking for reassurance that you're not being told to never talk to women ever.

Right here you dismissing any response that says that some policy or set of values could harm men, so long as that policy was intended to protect women.



I am not so sympathetic to anyone who says, "It's not fair that my anxiety caused me to avoid women out of fear of hurting them, and then the guys who didn't avoid women had more success than I did."

You need to remember that this frustration is being addressed at those who have been saying "you must either avoid women or you're a bad person", and thus causing the anxiety.

I'm not sure what you mean by that last bit. And it frustrates me that you're blaming this problem on feminism. Guess what! People of both genders are trained to hate themselves and their sexuality. We live in a society that's generally sex negative. It was sex negative before feminism was even a thing. That's what we need to fix--we need more positive messages about sexuality in general from society in general.

This is one of the areas where today's traditionalism is yesterday's feminism. Much like the 'tender years doctrine', a lot of early feminist efforts in this area of making male sexuality shameful were so successful as to become part of 'patriarchy'. Wasn't it women who were the seductresses who needed to be controlled by men for their own protection before that?  

But, even without this odd historical role reversal, I think that it's only fair to criticize feminists who use same arguments as the traditionalists to similar ends as having a similar effect as the traditionalists.



I agree that it would be hard to argue for something unwanted, and at the same time, unwantedness is absolutely essential to the message such as I read it. (The reading that causes a rise in confidence and reduction of paralyzing fear.) When person A gets uncomfortable with, creeped out by, or straight out afraid of a certain kind of behavior, while person B gets turned on by the exact same behavior, the difference is that person A for whatever reason doesn't want that behavior to happen.

The problem with this is that the only to know is to ask. Which is also considered 'harassment'.


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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by reboot on Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:33 am

username_6916 wrote:
I'll note that for heterosexual people, this cuts both ways. If men aren't finding wives and girlfriends, then women aren't finding husbands and boyfriends. I think it says something that almost all of the complaints I've seen about the intersection between harassment and trouble finding dates are from men, while women seem more accepting of the trade off.

1) s/people/couples. Monogamy isn't entirely universal, and the gender balance of those who aren't monogamous isn't necessarily 50/50.

2) We can't assume an equal effort is put into the process either. It's entirely possible that men (in general) are putting far more effort just to get started in this area than women do (in general). It's entirely possible that the sort of changes suggested increase that workload disparity even further.

3) Making dating harder isn't the only downside that men experience from the attitudes I'm criticizing. Women don't have to worry about being seen as brutish or creepy in the way that men do. Giving cover to this sort of profiling hurts men in all sorts of other places far more than it hurts women.

Polyamory is just as likely to be one woman with multiple male partners as vice versa, so an equal number of both sex should be multi coupled. Polygamy is very rare in your dating pool, since I doubt you are seeking women from those cultures or faiths.

As for equal effort, what exactly do you mean? Are you counting the effort women put in to be attractive and appealing? From where I stand, both genders work equally hard. They often work in different areas, especially if the are more into traditional gender roles, but the amount of effort is roughly equal for most.

Women do not risk being seen as brutish or creepy. They do have to worry about being seen as crazy, slutty, dirty, lacking self respect, "damaged goods" etc. if they express sexuality. And prudish, frigid, repressed, "dried out", etc if they repress them. So no gender gets away without damaging labels (including professionally and psychically damaging labels that haunt)

MOD

Username, I request that you go back and read the forum guidelines regarding feminism. You are damned close to stepping over the line. Dial it back or you will be banned.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by username_6916 on Thu Feb 12, 2015 3:07 am


Polyamory is just as likely to be one woman with multiple male partners as vice versa, so an equal number of both sex should be multi coupled. Polygamy is very rare in your dating pool, since I doubt you are seeking women from those cultures or faiths.

Are you sure about that? I really don't know, I suspect that there are more poly women than men, but that might just confirmation bias. Do you have anything more than a gut feeling about that?


As for equal effort, what exactly do you mean? Are you counting the effort women put in to be attractive and appealing? From where I stand, both genders work equally hard. They often work in different areas, especially if the are more into traditional gender roles, but the amount of effort is roughly equal for most.

Every escalation of the relationship, from first meeting to the marriage proposal almost has to come from the guy. This means that they assume nearly every risk associated with these escalations.

If beauty treatments count and 'being approachable' count, than so does does my day job. After all, I am still required to be a good potential provider on some level.

I will say that the workload is probably (and hopefully) a bit more evenly balanced once you're an established relationship. But that doesn't mean an equal amount of effort getting there.


Women do not risk being seen as brutish or creepy. They do have to worry about being seen as crazy, slutty, dirty, lacking self respect, "damaged goods" etc. if they express sexuality. And prudish, frigid, repressed, "dried out", etc if they repress them. So no gender gets away without damaging labels (including professionally and psychically damaging labels that haunt)

And, aren't you usually the one of the folks condemning this? Isn't that a relatively common belief amongst feminist communities?

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by eselle28 on Thu Feb 12, 2015 3:32 am

<mod>Username, did you not see the mod tags surrounding reboot's post? This is not a forum to argue about feminism as a general principle or whether men or women have it harder. It's also not a place where it's acceptable to argue with moderation.

Take a month off the site and look over the forum guidelines before returning.</mod>
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by azazel on Thu Feb 12, 2015 6:18 am

Mel wrote:We're talking about the sort of anxiety that makes it impossible for the person in question to approach women romantically/sexually. Given that the vast majority of men do still manage to enter relationships of some sort during their lives, I'm going to answer this question with, a lot more than are currently suffering from this anxiety.

Again a faulty argument. Majority of women have a job of some sort during their lives, therefore it can't be common to have (sometimes severe) women-specific problems finding one.

And strawman to boot. I've searched this thread but the only one using the word impossible - is you.

Mel wrote:I'm not sure what you mean by that last bit. And it frustrates me that you're blaming this problem on feminism. Guess what! People of both genders are trained to hate themselves and their sexuality. We live in a society that's generally sex negative. It was sex negative before feminism was even a thing. That's what we need to fix--we need more positive messages about sexuality in general from society in general.

(The woman in your example? I would say is at least as likely to be thinking, "Oh no, did I give him the wrong idea, how can I let him know I'm not into naked activities right now without hurting his feelings?" as "what a freak!")

I agree, which is why it frustrates me how you can't see that the messages introduced via feminism can vastly be improved. But seeing as you have a son, I take comfort in the fact that you'll have a chance to see how the process works in person. Sometimes the only way to gain empathy is to see the situation play out close at home.

I also agree with the "Oh no, did I lead him on!" example, but would you say that only mentally ill/abnormally anxious women suffer from that thought since it's not rational?
If not, why is the male anxiety so abnormal?

Mel wrote:
azazel wrote:Your MGTOW example is a bad one, IMO, since being anti-feminist doesn't exclude being exposed to feminist messages on a young age.

I don't think that's what Sam has been talking about, but fine. So your position is that prior to the creation of the feminist movement, there were no guys who were anxious about women's reactions to them? No men being worried about harming women with their "urges" or whathaveyou? Have you read anything written prior to the 20th century?

My position is that your argument is faulty, no more no less. Are you familiar with the concept of a howler in mathematics? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathematical_fallacy#Howlers
Saying that feminism cannot damage men because MGTOW are damaged would be like saying that society can't be sex negative because feminists sometimes still struggle with feeling like sluts if they enjoy sex too much.

UristMcBunny wrote:Oh, Spot the Question is one of my favourites.  I've used that exact comment several times with people and it's an eye opened for them every single time.

*edit* and yes!  Yes DF reference.  As mentioned in the username inspiration thread!

I found Dr Glass unbelievably naïve. As soon as I'm used as a human shield for unwanted attention and the attention still doesn't stop, you would say I'd start to recognize there's a fucking problem?

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by fakely mctest on Thu Feb 12, 2015 9:29 am

azazel wrote:
UristMcBunny wrote:Oh, Spot the Question is one of my favourites.  I've used that exact comment several times with people and it's an eye opened for them every single time.

*edit* and yes!  Yes DF reference.  As mentioned in the username inspiration thread!

I found Dr Glass unbelievably naïve. As soon as I'm used as a human shield for unwanted attention and the attention still doesn't stop, you would say I'd start to recognize there's a fucking problem?

He did recognize that there was a problem. Spot the Question is about the degree of the problem as it's recognized by people in a way that shakes out roughly along gender lines.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by BasedBuzzed on Thu Feb 12, 2015 10:39 am

[quote="fakely mctest"]
azazel wrote:
UristMcBunny wrote:Oh, Spot the Question is one of my favourites.  I've used that exact comment several times with people and it's an eye opened for them every single time.

*edit* and yes!  Yes DF reference.  As mentioned in the username inspiration thread!

I found Dr Glass unbelievably naïve. As soon as I'm used as a human shield for unwanted attention and the attention still doesn't stop, you would say I'd start to recognize there's a fucking problem?

He isn't naïve, he's just too nice about it. There's an unfortunate irony in that the segment of people most sympathetic to marginalized viewpoints and the segment of people who fail to take decisive action because they consider all viewpoints overlap a tad.

In similar situations(unwanted boundary crossing cast as male hornlocking) I just take the other person up on the challenge to pester them off, knowing the script that protects his behaviour is also in place for me. Granted, single mid-twenties in student environment is not a great place for politeness anyway, but doing Brainy imitations or something is a thing even Dr Glass would be able to get away with, methinks.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by InkAndComb on Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:29 pm

Again a faulty argument. Majority of women have a job of some sort during their lives, therefore it can't be common to have (sometimes severe) women-specific problems finding one.

I don't mean to be rude, but can I ask you to expand on this? Because it sounds like an oversimplification of the experiences that go into obtaining a job, regardless of gender.  For example, I've worked in the same deli and grocery store for years; I've had male and female coworkers.  If you were to ask me if the problems they face are the same, I'd say no, and I would say there are significant issues that face the female employees that the males do not, and I could provide evidence for that.  Would that go against what you are suggesting, or am I taking something out of context?

My apologies, I just want to understand what you're saying a bit better with this.

Edit: Thanks for the quote help!


Last edited by InkAndComb on Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:42 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by caliseivy on Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:41 pm

Edit: Arghhh I am confused by the quoting system D: what did I delete incorrectly

The [quote] tags are backwards. [ quote ] for the beginning and [ /quote ] for the ending.
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by azazel on Fri Feb 13, 2015 4:19 am

InkAndComb wrote:
Again a faulty argument. Majority of women have a job of some sort during their lives, therefore it can't be common to have (sometimes severe) women-specific problems finding one.

I don't mean to be rude, but can I ask you to expand on this? Because it sounds like an oversimplification of the experiences that go into obtaining a job, regardless of gender.  For example, I've worked in the same deli and grocery store for years; I've had male and female coworkers.  If you were to ask me if the problems they face are the same, I'd say no, and I would say there are significant issues that face the female employees that the males do not, and I could provide evidence for that.  Would that go against what you are suggesting, or am I taking something out of context?

My apologies, I just want to understand what you're saying a bit better with this.

Edit: Thanks for the quote help!

You correctly identified why it was a shitty argument. It was made in response to the quote of Mel below, to illustrate why "vast majority of X obtain Y at some point in their lives therefore having (sometimes severe) X-specific problems with obtaining Y can't be common" is an oversimplification of the experiences that go into obtaining Y, regardless of X.

Mel wrote:We're talking about the sort of anxiety that makes it impossible for the person in question to approach women romantically/sexually. Given that the vast majority of men do still manage to enter relationships of some sort during their lives, I'm going to answer this question with, a lot more than are currently suffering from this anxiety.

fakely mctest wrote:
He did recognize that there was a problem.  Spot the Question is about the degree of the problem as it's recognized by people in a way that shakes out roughly along gender lines.

IMHO he recognized there was an issue, not a problem Razz

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by fakely mctest on Fri Feb 13, 2015 9:56 am

azazel wrote:
fakely mctest wrote:
He did recognize that there was a problem.  Spot the Question is about the degree of the problem as it's recognized by people in a way that shakes out roughly along gender lines.

IMHO he recognized there was an issue, not a problem Razz

That's a semantics argument. Obviously he knew there was enough of a problem to help his friend by running interference and, ultimately, by stepping in to shoot the guy down in a public way (even if, per Dr. Light's recounting he didn't meant for it to be so cutting). And, personally, I find that entirely appropriate. Having been in enough similar situations (thankfully none as consistently creepy as the one described) I know it can be hard for outsiders to know when to step in. Going in, guns blazing, to defend another person when things are at a certain level would be excessive and patronizing. Where the disconnect is in this story is first in a failure to consider the situation holistically -- until the hallway incident, each individual example of behavior was more or less at relatively low level; considered together they form a pattern of behavior that's tantamount to a missing stair problem -- and then, more critically, in a fundamental misunderstanding of the significance of the hallway incident.

Dr. Light did more for his friend (who he'd known for only the period of the course, ergo not a close friend) than many people would have done in his place because, as much as we like to think we're all anti-conformist iconoclasts when it comes to moral and behavioral standards, the vast majority of people are really conflict-averse. He also was still identifying more with this guy than his friend, worrying about the guy's embarrassment vs. how his friend's experience of the course was tainted.

My ideal-world version of this story involves a series of conversations between Dr. Light and his friend where he checks in to see what she wants to do about the situation and makes suggestions. It certainly involves a very serious conversation after the hallway incident with more forceful suggestions of reporting the guy to the course leaders.

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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

Post by Enail on Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:01 pm

To bring this back on topic, what do you think about the Spot the Question story versus Schrodinger's Rapist in terms of the things that people have been saying they find harmful to men's feelings about their sexuality?

I would say that since the Spot the Question story focuses more on understanding women's experiences around harassment and doesn't discuss how well-meaning men can avoid making women feel uncomfortable or unsafe when approaching them, it's not really an apples to apples comparison. It doesn't seem like the one could always be usefully swapped in for the other if it did have less chance of the problematic interpretations we've discussed in this thread. But perhaps looking at the differences between them, if there are differences in effect, could help us figure out if there are ways we could craft messages to do less harm to anxious men while still conveying needed messages.
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Re: The negative impact of feminist discourse on men's perceptions of masculinity and male sexuality.

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