New policy for anti-feminist, men's rights, and right-wing posters

As part of my attempt to revamp the moderation policy, there are now new rules for anti-feminist, men’s rights activist, and right-wing posters. Please check ‘em out and let me know your thoughts.

This entry posted in Anti-feminists and their pals, Site and Admin Stuff. Bookmark the permalink. 

111 Responses to New policy for anti-feminist, men's rights, and right-wing posters

  1. 101
    Q Grrl says:

    As far as I know, I’m the only radical feminist that posts here — because of the political and theoretical basis of my critiques. But I do throw in a good bit of Marxist and anarcho-feminist theories too.

    Tom Nolan: I’m somewhat confused by your posts. You seem to be backhandedly attacking feminism with your references to “self-proclaimed” feminists and by putting the phrase, rape culture, in quotations. We don’t need to defend the tenants of feminism. Everyone here understands that they are valid, and varied. This thread was meant to lay a framework for those posters who are anti-feminist or anti-female to understand that we aren’t here to reinvent the wheel. If posters wish to argue and debate theorectical and practical nuances of feminism they should go for it; to purport that feminism is bunk, over and over again, is childish and historically, politically, and theoretically inaccurate.

  2. 102
    Dave says:

    I think the rules are very reasonable. It seems to me they’re only intended to prevent pointless arguing and getting off topic. Is the purpose really just to get people here to be courteous to one another? Because I always like that rule.

  3. 103
    Tom Nolan says:

    Q Girl

    I’m going to have to bow out of discussions for a while, but before I do I’d like to make my peace, so far as is compatible with honesty, with anyone irritated by my posts. The “self-proclaimed” feminists does *not* refer to those who would be universally accepted as being feminists on these threads (someone like yourself for example) but people like myself and Susan who might regard themselves as being feminists but would find that assumption challenged here. Just scroll up to the beginning of my correspondence with Lorenzo, and you’ll see that that’s all I meant by it. So it is not a back-handed swipe at you or feminists like you. The reason I put “rape culture” in quotes is that I’m never 100% sure what is meant when various posters here use it. Does it mean: a culture in which rape comes about, and in which it is not taken with sufficient seriousness by many people? Then obviously we do live in such a culture. Does it mean: a culture with a gender power imbalance, of which rape is the natural consequence? I think there may be something in that. Does it mean: a culture whose secret imperative it is that women be raped as a more-or-less conscious method of repression? About that I’m sceptical. I think the definition of “rape culture” varies a good deal from feminists to feminist and therefore felt the need to handle the words with asbestos gloves. It was certainly not a sign that I minimize the importance of rape ““ a horrible, insufficiently punished crime perpetrated almost exclusively by men, and of which women make the vast majority of victims.

    As for your being somewhat confused by my posts: that’s because I started debating a practical matter (who is to be regarded as feminist, who not?) with a view to defending as broad a categorization as possible for these threads, and ended up debating a more theoretical one with Lorenzo (should we define the politically aligned according to what they believe and how they behave, or should we define them according to their awareness and methodology). I was a bit concerned that by his “methodological” definition someone like Susan, who, armed only with a sense of natural justice and of her own potential has been doing a lot to fight sexism all her professional life, might not be accepted as being genuinely feminist, while someone like Robert who shares (according to his own post) much of the feminist critique of women’s and society’s problems but proposes non-feminist solutions to them, would be welcomed to the fold.

    With the rest of your post I have no quarrel.

    Best

  4. 104
    Susan says:

    “Feminist is as feminist does,” Tom? There might be something to that.

    At least as a woman competing in what was, when I entered it in the early 1970′s, very much a male profession, I appreciated actions which opened doors for us as women lawyers (or at least that didn’t affirmatively close them!) far more than I appreciated pious protestations and/or “correct” language and sentiment. In fact, sometimes I thought that the men in charge were busy purging the language of masculine pronouns and the like in order to look busy, and to avoid solving the real problem.

    We battered some of those doors down. Things aren’t perfect yet, but no young woman who enters the profession now will ever hear what I heard, will ever be treated as I and my colleagues were treated. We had to be better than the guys, and we were. Now the playing field is a lot more level. Not perfect. But better.

    The questions that interest me are not about theories. I’m far more interested in seeing this society actually move towards equal justice, and furthering that move, than I am in being considered a “radical feminist” or whatever by whoever. So, if I’m not “radical” enough for someone (or everyone) here, or if some don’t think I’m a “feminist” at all, that’s not going to keep me up at night.

  5. 105
    alsis39 says:

    alsis39 (comment #32), how seriously do you mean this analogy? Are you assuming that all white people are racist, all non-Jews are anti-semitic and all straight people are homophobic? Because it seems to me that the analogy here is women learning from men, not feminists learning from sexists.

    My core point still stands. Even a man with the best will toward women a) has male privilege and b) has drunk from a well poisoned by sexism. How can he help it ?

    The same would apply to me as a White woman if we are discussing racism. I don’t think of myself as a racist in the sense that I burn crosses, oppose affirmative action, would rather die than date a Black man,etc. But I enjoy White privilege, and I was born and reared in a racist society. This is something that would give me pause in any discussion in which I thought there was something I could teach a Black man or woman about racism. It doesn’t mean that racism itself is a taboo topic, only that it’s foolish for me to pretend that I come to the table with the same knowledge and perspective as a Black man or woman.

    Speaking for myself (if we’re playing the minority card I’m Jewish and bisexual), I really don’t think my ability to learn from others is limited by which groups they identify with. Certainly, I have learnt a great deal from non-Jews and from straight people, in all sorts of ways. I have even learnt about religion from non-Jews, and about sexuality from straight people. However, I don’t think I have much to learn from anti-semites and homophobes, or at least not on any issue where those hatreds are directly relevant. Maybe that’s what you meant by your comment about feminists learning from sexists?

    [shrug] Perhaps I was too muddle-headed in my original point. Sorry. :o

    I don’t think that it’s just a question of what you learned, but how you learned it, and the degree to which your happiness, your life, or something in between would be affected by your ability to learn it.

    I guess that I would ask myself what’s at stake for you, as a Jew or a woman in a same-sex relationship if you DON’T learn about how the majority thinks/lives. Or if you learned through osmosis how the majority thinks ? (And the reverse: Did they learn of your life and thoughts through osmosis, or by going out of there way to do so;By CHOICE ? What would have been at stake for them had they CHOSEN not to do so ? Anything important ?)

    A trivial example that happened about the same time that this thread reached a boiling point: I was on another board that prided itself on how un-P.C. it was. Jokes about sex, drugs, violence, etc. were all welcomed and a point of pride. There were literally dozens of Christmas threads there. I didn’t bother to post in them or talk much about Christmas. I’m Jewish and don’t celebrate Christmas and it wasn’t like warm fuzzy holiday feelings were the main reason that I was there in the first place.

    Then somebody started a poll asking whether people preferred “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” as a greeting. I came down in favor of the latter, and got pretty snappish with a couple of Gentile jerks who said some shit that made it clear they knew very little about life as a religious minority. Within a couple of hours, my post had been expunged by a mod. Not the ignorant comments made by the folks I responded to. Just mine. The mod’s explanation was unsatisfactory, and would have pissed me off no matter what s/he said, because I was given no option to change the way I voiced my opinion. Nor were the fuckwits who said the bigoted shit in the first place required to modify their tone. They were left undisturbed.

    Furthermore, I had posted in a thread in which someone HAD SPECIFICALLY INVITED comments that COULD include somebody less than thrilled at being told to have a “Merry Christmas.”

    A further point: I don’t think that all non-feminists are sexists. Some are, for sure. Again, are you actually holding this view of non-feminists, or am I misreading you?

    Again, you can debate until the cows come home as to how often partaking in the goods of a sexist society leads to out-and-out sexism. I don’t think it’s debatable that the very act of exercizing privilege is sexist. Again, to draw a parallel, I doubt that any of the people in the painful little interlude I had on this other board are truly anti-Semitic, but they did behave like ignorant fucks and when I pointed it out, I was the one censored. I am grateful that nobody threw a cinder block through my window at my Menorah last night, but it doesn’t follow that even nice people who are part of the the dominant religion in American culture don’t say ignorant, hurtful things to those who are not.

  6. 106
    alsis39 says:

    Arrgh. I’m an idiot. Amp, if you’re reading this, I was responding to Individ in #64, and I meant to snip my first paragraph (“If you like…”) in the previous post, as it simply makes everything even more muddled. Dispose of it, if you don’t mind. :o Sorry.

    [No problem - paragraph deleted. --Amp.]

  7. 107
    Aaron says:

    You know… I’ve read through 110 comments… interesting comments. Some long, some short. Some objective, some really nasty. If this space was a microcosm of the world we’d all be doomed. Mainly because there are apparently only two kinds of people in the world — feminists and anti-feminists; WRA or MRA.

    What about the rest of us that aren’t either? It seems that the “intellectual debate” that so many people want to (and some don’t want to) have can only be truly isolated to feminists or MRAs?

    I don’t have any clue about any cases about rape because feminism issues are not on the top of my PubSub subscription lists or RSS aggregator. I can’t tell you any “four rule” shit because I never heard of them until reading this blog.

    I really appreciate Amps stance on respect and openness because I take mostly the same approach on my own blog. I keep up with this blog because it’s in my feedreader. But I dare not engage any one of you in debate of any sort because if it’s determined that I’m not inline with the “feminist” view then I must be a Men’s Rights Advocate…. huh? I’d like to see that leap in logic spelled out but okay… Then, based on what I’ve seen here, if I’m seen as an MRA (because I’m not a feminist) then I have no place in intelligent discourse.

    Yep, there’s a reason I don’t comment often but I couldn’t resist tonight.

    I think I’ve figured out a scientific law. I can’t prove it but it came from some comments made at one point by Stowe Boyd. If a person reads twice as much as they normally do and writes half as much as they usually do, he (or she) would become a more well-rounded and balanced individual.

    1:45 AM. Bedtime. Until I comment again in 3 months… Peace.

  8. 108
    alsis39 says:

    Aaron wrote:

    Mainly because there are apparently only two kinds of people in the world … feminists and anti-feminists; WRA or MRA.

    Add your strawman to that tally, and we actually have three kinds. >:

  9. 109
    Q Grrl says:

    uh, aaron: why is feminist in quotes and Men’s Rights Activist not? And the only reason you don’t know about rape is becuase you don’t subscribe to feminist issues? Lame buddy, really lame. I think it’s fairly safe to say that you fall into the anti-feminist camp. I mean, do you really want us to lower the bar further? How low exactly? Low enough so that guys like you can feel free to backhand feminists and still feel like you’re one of the neutral good guys? Might work in the locker room…

  10. 110
    Aaron says:

    I think it’s fairly safe to say that you fall into the anti-feminist camp. I mean, do you really want us to lower the bar further? How low exactly? Low enough so that guys like you can feel free to backhand feminists and still feel like you’re one of the neutral good guys? Might work in the locker room…

    Deduced because of quotation marks? Nice logical trail there…

    /shakes head

  11. 111
    Johann says:

    Whatever you think about Ampersand, beyond doubt, he is very very active and he has truly the capability to present pro-feminist issues interesting for everybody, and not only for the feminists themselves.

    I rarely have seen a busy administrator like him producing such a lot of quality topics for discussion; this site contains a lot of serious work and knowledge.

    About his moderation policies, I think he did the right step to ban some certain posters. Same opinion or not, pro-feminist or contra-feminist or whoever, some level of politeness is required and is improving the quality and credibility of this site.

    Ampersand staunchly defends pro-feminist issues as a man. Why he is doing that? I have no idea. Really remarkable. Feminists, whatever their position might be, can be happy to have him on their side.

    I am MRA, of course, I often do not agree to his pro-feminist comments, but this is another matter.