You may remember the embarrassing spectacle a couple of months back when Warren Farrell asked the readers of A Voice for Men to help him pick out a cover picture for a new ebook version of The Myth of Male Power, the 21-year-old crackpot bestseller that more or less provided the, er, intellectual foundation for today’s Men’s Rights movement.
It wasn’t just embarrassing because AVFM is a noxious hate site that regularly calls women c*nts and whores and helps to organize informal campaigns of harassment directed at individual women. It was also embarrassing because all three of the pictures were sexualized images focusing on specific female body parts. You can guess which three, and you’d be right: tits, ass, and vagina (the latter tastefully covered in a merkin made of moss).
Well, Farrell ended up rejecting all of these images in favor of … a different picture of a woman’s butt. Yep, the screenshot above features the actual cover of the recently released ebook version of The Myth of Male Power. (You can see it in its full sized-glory over on Amazon.)
The implicit message of the cover couldn’t be clearer: men may seem to run the world, but women can control and exploit them through the power of their sexuality. Male power is undercut by … butt power.
Am I reading too much into a cover image? Farrell doesn’t really believe this nonsense, does he?
Well, in the introduction to the ebook, Farrell writes:
In case you’re wondering, “genetic celebrity” is Farrell’s term of art for any attractive woman.
But golly, you say, the fact that a dude feels “powerless” because he can’t have sex with every woman with a nice butt that happens to wander across his field of vision doesn’t actually mean that men are powerless or that male power is a myth. Well, Farrell has an answer to this as well. And by “answer” I mean, well, whatever this is:
Got that? I’m not sure there’s anything there to get; it’s nothing more than hand-waving to distract attention from the nonsensical nature of his previous statements. In case any Men’s Rights activist ever brings Warren Farrell up as an example of a respectable, “academic” MRA, you may wish to point out that almost nothing Farrell writes ever actually makes any fucking sense.
In the book itself, Farrell repeatedly suggested that male power can be undone almost completely by the sexual power of women. In one oft-quoted passage, he wrote about the effect that a “secretary’s miniskirt power, cleavage power and flirtation power” allegedly has on their male bosses. (Myth of Male Power, p. 21)
While that statement has earned a certain notoriety for its sheer ridiculousness, Farrell went further elsewhere in the book, essentially arguing that men are as addicted to female “beauty” as drug addicts are to the drug of their choice — and as helpless.
“Sexually, of course, the sexes aren’t equal,” Farrell wrote. “[M]any men feel ‘under the influence the moment they see a beautiful woman.” (p. 320, emphasis in original.)
This sort of temporary “intoxication,” Farrell argued, leads men into shackling themselves to these temporarily sexy tyrants for the rest of their lives — thus agreeing to support them (he suggested implicitly) even after they get old and ugly. (p. 85.)
In Farrell’s original book, this “argument,” such as it is, was merely one of many that he thought undercut the alleged “myth of male power.” Now, with the butt on the cover, he’s put it front and center. Or, more precisely, rear and center.
Warren Farrell, you’re an ass, man.
Oh, awkward segue here, I just wanted to show off the cover to the new edition of my classic book, The Myth of Human Power.
It will soon be available for one million dollars in cash in unmarked bills, upon delivery of which I will sit down and write it for you. It will probably be pretty short and not very convincing.
Wearing a Skirt Has Consequences: A Men’s Rights Redditor defends a man’s sacred right to take upskirt photos
So we, as a society, have “peeping tom” laws to protect people who might unknowingly expose themselves to the creepy peepers of, well, creepy peepers who get their thrills from seeing and sometimes photographing strangers revealing more than they meant to.
It would seem reasonable enough to consider surreptitiously taken “upskirt” photographs as violations of peeping tom laws. But not in Massachusetts: On Wednesday, the Supreme Judicial Court in that state ruled that upskirt photographs are legally ok, as the laws there are written to apply only to protect victims who are “partially nude,” not those who are merely wearing short skirts.
In the wake of the ruling, legislators and women’s rights advocates are saying that the laws — written before cell phone camera were ubiquitous – need an update.
Naturally, this has some of the dedicated Human Rights activists in the Men’s Rights subreddit in an uproar. How dare anyone challenge their sacred right to take pictures of women’s panties on public transportation without their consent!
“Wearing a skirt has consequences!” What a perfect slogan for a “movement” that is about little more than tearing down half of humanity in the name of, what, a man’s right to be a peeping tom? Put it on a t-shirt, Demonspawn, and show the world the kind of creep you are.
NOTE: Thanks to Cloudiah for pointing me to this.
UPDATE: The Massachusetts State Legislature, moving surprisingly quickly, has passed a new law explicitly banning upskirt photos; it could be signed into law by tomorrow.
Put on your thinking caps today, because we are going to wade into the highly rarefied world of Red Pill Theory. Our Guest Lecturer today is a totally ALPHA DOG Red Pill Redditor by the name of GayLubeOil — don’t worry, fellas, he’s straight! — who has some important insights for us all on the nature of women.
Namely, that women are basically just overgrown children. Who give blow jobs.
Let’s let him explain, in a post that’s now Number One With A Sticky in the Red Pill Subreddit.
After reading all of that, you may have a few questions. Obviously, the most important question is: why Greek Yogurt? Well, in addition to being very popular with the ladies, it is apparently quite high in iron. Let’s let Professor LubeOil explain why that’s so crucial:
Well, with that critical issue taken care of in a totally not creepy or red-flaggy kind of way, let’s move on to some of the serious discussion Professsor LubeOil’s thesis inspired in the Red Pill Subreddit.
Ah, who am I kidding? They mainly just posted comments about how totally right he was and how women totally are a bunch of overgrown children. But saying women are children is totes not misogyny!
And, heck, even if a dude maybe is a teensy bit of a misogynist, what’s the big deal, so long as it convinces him to treat his women properly — that is, like you would treat special needs children.
Damn those feminazis and their “equality!” Why, it’s almost un-American!
British Men’s Rightser to feminists: I will fight you until my dying breath! And so will my totally real ex-model girlfriend.
Meet Sasha. Sasha is an angry young man living in England (allegedly), with a super-HAWT girlfriend (allegedly), and a lot of opinions about feminism (not-so-allegedly). The other day, he decided to share some of these opinions with the world. Or at least with any of those feminists who happened to be reading the Men’s Rights subreddit at the time.
In a topic devoted to a conference on “lad culture” in British universities, Sasha lashed out at feminists for what he sees as their hypocritical attack on boorish, sexist “lads.” Hypocritical, you see, because these very same women allegedly have sex with posh men all the bloody time:
Is there something about Men’s Rights Activists that renders them utterly incapable of designing posters that aren’t embarrassingly ugly and offputting?
Posters designed by MRAs are so routinely godawful it’s hard not to wonder if there is something inherent about them or their ideas that prevents them from seeing what a complete mess they’re making when they put together something like the poster above, which I recently found amongst a whole collection of similarly terrible posters at the website What Men Are Saying About Women.
In the case of Christian J, the WMASAW poster-designer, there is clearly something more than bad ideas at work here, but I do think the bad ideas of the Men’s Rights movement are a large part of the reason why MRAs can’t design posters to save their lives. Their posters are muddled messes because their ideology is a muddled mess.
5 Arguments Least Likely To Convince A Young Woman That A Voice for Men Isn’t a Misogynistic Hate Site
Not that long ago, an 18-year-old student named Carly, appalled by the rampant misogyny on display at A Voice for Men, sent a critical but thoughtful email to a number of the men associated with the site challenging them to rise above their hatred of women.
AVFM “Managing Editor” Dean Esmay decided to take her email as an opportunity to reach out to all the Carlys out there in the world in an attempt to win them over to AVFM’s peculiar brand of “human rights activism,” penning what he called an
open letter … not just to you, but to any young woman who has an open mind and is willing to be challenged on her prejudices.
Naturally, given that Men’s Rights Activists are some of the most verbose douchebags in history, it was long as hell — some 3000 words. But Esmay’s diplomatically worded attempt at outreach didn’t go quite as well as he might have hoped. Carly responded with a note saying that his open letter had merely
reinforced everything I believe. It seems we are at a stalemate, you will never agree with me, and I will never agree with you.
So where might poor Dean Esmay might have gone wrong in his attempt to win Carly’s heart and mind?
Let’s start here, with 5 Arguments Least Likely To Convince A Young Woman That A Voice for Men Isn’t a Woman-Hating Piece of Shit Hate Site, in the form of direct quotes from The Esmay himself. Since Esmay is so long-winded, I’ve highlighted some of my favorite bits in bold.
1)“[Y]ou’re 18, and so, not to put too fine a point on it, you are still a young skull full of mush.”
2) “[M]en have few to no voices speaking about issues that are specific to men, or defending men as a group, in this society. Until very recently in history men never have had such a voice. Because pretty much all civilizations for the last few thousand years have prioritized the needs and desires of women over those of men. For hundreds, even thousands, of years.
3)“If you believe men have silenced women for thousands of years … you believe something that just not true. … Furthermore, if you believe that, what you have to believe is that Asian men have been oppressing Asian women for thousands of years, black men have been oppressing black women for thousands of years, European men, Australasian men, and so on, have all been oppressing their women for thousands of years. And those weak women could do nothing about it. So what you believe here isn’t just wrong, it’s racist.”
4) “For most of history, being female was a privilege. It carried certain special rights that only applied to women, and special responsibilities that only applied to women, and through most of history, being male was a burden, a burden which carried certain rights that only applied to men, and those rights were there mostly so they could discharge their duties to women properly.”
5) “[Y]ou may occasionally see angry remarks or articles on this site. What I would hope you would do with that, when you do see it, is contemplate that there is a difference between righteous anger at real injustice, and what you seem to have misinterpreted as hate.”
The funniest thing about Esmay’s “open letter” is that this bizarre crackpottery, easily seen through by anyone with any knowledge of history or sociology or, hell, the real world, is his attempt to sound as reasonable as possible. He’s reined in the wild conspiratorial ranting he often indulges in when arguing with ideological foes; he’s avoided the misogynistic slurs (cunt, bitch, whore) favored by other AVFMers like Paul Elam and Diana Davison. And this is the best he can manage.
The Men’s “Human Rights” Movement isn’t ready for its close-up. And I suspect that it never will be.
EDITED TO ADD: A commenter has pointed out another quote I should have included as well. So here is BONUS EXTRA LEAST CONVINCING DEAN ESMAY ARGUMENT NUMBER SIX:
6) “The truth is, the most privileged class of people in the whole wide world are young women living in places like the US, UK, Canada, etc.–and if you want to be treated like an equal, you should not flinch or cry like a little girl if someone tells you that.“
How dare you accuse us of sexism, you spoiled little girl!