So I'm a bit late on this one, but hey, isn't society as a whole.
So misogyny has become a trending topic lately. Best way to put it, really. The Men's Rights Movement has gone from pathetic to pretty scary, and from what research I've done lately, rightfully so. The fact that I felt the need to do research says a lot, really. I'd openly dismissed them before as pathetic dinosaurs at best, youtube trolling comments come to life at worst. But now someone up and shot some people because he wasn't getting laid at the high frequency he felt he deserved. And that's horrifying.
Admittedly, it's horrifying in the same way as Columbine was horrifying in regards to Doom. Those two had designed Doom levels that mirrored their high school, and killing people over and over in there probably helped desensitize them, but Doom didn't cause the shooting any more than Men's Rights caused this one. What they did was give someone who was crazy, sociopathic, and/or easily influenced a way to act horribly and feel justified in it. So men's rights didn't CAUSE this shooting. But they sure as hell harbored it, and permitted it, and many voices in its ranks are reveling in it, forgiving it, even celebrating it. Several people dying pointlessly from a pathetic hate is a terrible thing. Voices crying out in triumph and encouragement is far, FAR worse.
I was fortunate enough in the memespread afterwards to be tagged on Facebook in a status celebrating men who fully believed in feminist rights, and acted in a way that showed it. I was flattered, and a little surprised, because while I've always believed in equal rights among the two genders (and all the spectrum between the two clear sides), I don't think I've really done anything special to stand out as such. I don't volunteer for organizations, I haven't spoken out in a big way to support some issue. I responded to the post that I believe in "human" rights, and all the feminist and GLBTQ and racial issues settle down into that bracket once you accept that everyone involved is a human. It's true enough, albeit a bit precious to say. Everyone's human; what do you believe humans deserve to have? Make that list, and then apply it to all. The details will vary a bit from person to person, and sometimes the variation might feel uncomfortable or gross, but "uncomfortable" and "gross" are terrible reasons to deny someone a basic human right. Just make it their business, ask 'em not to tell you, and never ask questions about it.
One thing that I believe everyone deserves to have is a chance to have sex. Sex is pretty great, and I'm not afraid to say it. But one thing I DON'T believe everyone deserves is to have sex. Big difference there, and it's what bothers me closest to the surface of the Men's Rights Movement. The belief expressed there is that they aren't having enough sex, with the women they want, and that they deserve it for whatever reason. Now, I've been a Nice Guy almost all of my life. It's gotten me laid sometimes (including this point of my life- high five!). But, I've also gotten Not Laid. I've gotten Not Laid a lot more often, really. I've Not Had Sex with WAY more women than I've Had Sex Yay High Five. (aside; since this is about misogyny, I'm simplifying it and leaving out all talk of my bisexuality and male experience/lack thereof). So, there have been plenty of times when I've fallen into the trap of Nice Guy, where I get frustrated that women aren't sexing me. Because I "deserved it", or I was "friendzoned", or "women only want *thing I'm not*". And it's only recently that I've realized how bullshit all those arguments are. And not just because I can count on less than one hand the number of times I was legitimately led on, as opposed to blindness and optimism and denial mixed in one.
No, it's because no one ever *deserves* sex, and no one ever *owes* someone sex. Even in the boundaries of a relationship, where one person might feel like it's been uneven and they want a bigger share than they're getting. You can demand, you can fight, you can break up over it, but *only* the other person can decide if you get sex. Anything else is vanity.
Okay, quick story. One time I almost committed date rape by accident.
Short version: she'd said she didn't want anything, I agreed not to try, we had a pseudo-date, stuff started happening, I was actively pursuing and she was going along without resisting. She didn't say 'no' in any way, but she didn't really say 'yes' either. I felt really weird about it, so I stopped and asked if she wanted to go on. She paused, thought, and said no. We stopped altogether.
I made a lot of bad choices that night, but pausing to ask was a good one. Maybe the best choice I ever made, because I knew on some level what her answer was and I asked anyway. And that night SUCKED after that. For various reasons, I was sleeping on her couch, so I couldn't just leave and get some distance. Things were very strained between us for a while, although I think we're back to fine now. Also: blue balls exist, and they hurt. So all of that sucked. But I didn't become a rapist. That's worth more.
I don't know how to wrap this up. So I'll just say that, really, I'm a very vain and selfish person, and that's prevented me from going down a darker path that I'm on. Because no matter how much I deluded myself; no matter how much I "deserved" sex because I was SO NICE, I didn't want to have sex unless the other person wanted to, with me. It's just... it's so much BETTER that way. That's my thesis, if I have one; to get laid in the right way, you have to work really hard, and get really lucky, and spend more than a few awful, AWFUL nights just totally failing to get laid. And it's so, so much better than getting laid in the wrong way. Or trying to, failing, and thinking that justifies shooting someone in the head.
( The List, Day 535 (6/20); 27/101 DoneCollapse )