Patriarchy Isn’t Real Because People React Negatively To Misogyny

This is the latest ‘argument‘ by Karen Straugn. She states that calling someone a misogynist is a



shaming tactic that works, especially if you call a man a misogynist. Her next claim is absolutely ridiculous. If society reacts negatively to the person being called a misogynist then magically, there’s no misogyny and no patriarchy. See feminists? It’s that simple.

‘The accusation could only have the power to shame and silence someone if society was not pervasively misogynistic. So in that sense, this standard feminist shaming tactic actually discredits feminist ideology.’

That’s the extent of her analysis.


13 thoughts on “Patriarchy Isn’t Real Because People React Negatively To Misogyny

  1. Wait, whut?

    The accusation could only have the power to shame and silence someone if society was not pervasively misogynistic.

    So, if someone makes a racial slur and we correctly call them out for it, it proves that society isn’t racist?

    How did the quoted sentence make it past the first pass of editing??

  2. Hello. I hope to engage in some constructive debate here, so I hope any and all disagreements can be aired in a spirit of mutual respect.

    In my view, Straughan is not saying that misogyny doesn’t exist. She is saying that if misogyny (i.e. hatred of women) were a normalized, accepted part of society, the accusation of misogyny would be ineffective as a shaming tactic. Imagine, for example, saying to someone in, say, London 150 years ago “You are a fornicator!” It would probably be effective as a shaming tactic if the person so accused believed others could be convinced of it, because the view of sex outside of marriage as immoral was the conventional societal view. If, on the other hand, you were to go to London today and say to a random person on the street “You are a fornicator!”, they would be much more likely to say “Yeah, I am. So what?” and look at you like you were crazy. That’s because “fornication” is is so normalized that the word itself is rarely used now except as a joke. I believe there’s even a rock band somewhere called The Fornicators (I guess all the good band names really are taken…)

    Part of the difficulty here is that definitions can be sufficiently expanded and made fuzzy enough so all one need to do as a shaming tactic is to use a label that is universally reviled and attach said label to the behavior or statement that someone (whom you want to disagree with) makes. To expand on the racism example above, Ralph Nader was accused of racism on the election of President Obama when he wondered allowed whether Obama would become the “Uncle Tom” for corporate interests that have a diprortionate share of political power in America. People who want a government-funded health insurance plan are called “Stalinists”. People who question any tenet of whichever one of the many splinters of feminism are called “misogynists”. For example, I refuse to subscribe to the view that mutually consensual coitus is by definition an act of violence against women (a position I am fully aware is far from universal within feminism). Any feminist who takes the coitus-as-violence-100%-of-the-time viewpoint would have to label me as a misogyinist because, since I am a heterosexual male who has engaged in coitus, in her view I have not only commtited an act of aggression (i.e. coitus) against women, but I refuse to acknowledge it as a form of violence. (Perhaps one could avoid such labeling if one disgreed yet self-identified as a feminist.)

    • It’s ineffective to misogynists like her and her pals even though they ARE misogynists. That’s the problem with patriarchy and privilege. You can call someone out on it but they refuse to see it.
      People who genuinely question tenets of feminism aren’t always misogynists. People who are anti-feminists ARE misogynists because the definition of feminism is quite clear. Equality of the sexes. Many feminists disagree with each other but we all know the common goal is equality. It’s the commonly accepted definition. Being anti-feminist IS sexist.

      Misogyny is normalized in our culture too. The forms of misogyny have changed. Men nowadays wouldn’t even question women having the right to vote (even though MRA’s do) but we still sexualize and objectify women. See women as less competent than men. Make women invisible after a certain age and so on. Still have to fight for reproductive rights state by state. Men still trying to control our bodies. Still have to fight for equal pay. Still have to fight to be accepted in the military without being raped by our fellow soldiers. Still have to fight against rape culture. Still have to fight to get jobs in the upper echelons and in politics. etc.

      The issue here is that a misogynist like Karen and her pals aren’t going to be affected by claims of misogyny. Others see them as misogynists but it still doesn’t mean there’s no misogyny in our culture.

      A Voice for Men is a hate site. It’s a misogynist web site.

  3. Yet if misogyny is hatred of women, with the accompanying conviction that women are inferior, and if Straughan and at least some MRAs honestly believe that feminism really isn’t about the equality of the sexes, then could one postulate that they might be considered grossly mistaken, but not haters of women? Is it possible to be all for the social and political equality of opportunity of the sexes, yet sincerely believe feminism doesn’t truly serve such an end? My perception is that this is so far outside the paradigm of feminism that anyone who professes such a view this is labeled a misogynist almost by default.
    As for MRAs wanting to deny women the right to vote, I’ve never heard of that. Is that part of the official platform of A Voice for Men, for example?
    You’ve listed a number of of things, but let me ask you about the upper echelons of politics you have mentioned. Criticisms of feminism include a concept known as the Apex Fallacy, which is (at least in this instance) defined as the tendency to look at the men in the upper echelons of the public and private sector and extrapolate it to all men in all sectors of society. This is seen as having two major flaws: one is that while most of the most powerful people are men, not all men are neccessarily powerful; on the level of individual family relationships, for example, there are situations where women actually exercise more power than men. (In the blog Xyfeminist, “Male Privilege # 19” is asserted as “the primacy of men’s comfort” in making family living arrangements and even with regard to measures taken for women’s safety. I can tell you that in my experience that has never been true.) The other is that if you look at all strata of society, not just the apex, and look not only at the top, but also at the bottom, in occupations that have the highest rates of injury and death, are physically arduous, and have little job security , these occupations are overwhelmimgly occupied by men. So quality of life isn’t just a function of bean-counting the number of female vs. male CEOs and lawmakers. I guess my main question here is that, if a man is all for having equal opportunity for political and social advancement, has absolutely no problem with working for female bosses and managers, doesn’t automatically view women as incompetent, yet for the reasons described above simply cannot perceive himself as privileged for the reasons described above and feels that feminism doesn’t acknowledge the existence of the issues he faces and so does not himeslf identify as a feminist,does that mean he must be a misogynist? “You are either with us or against us” sort of thing?

    • That’s not the definition of misogyny, completely. Look it up in the dictionary and come back to me with the complete definition.

      They are misogynists because of what they write. I think I’ve done a very good job of outlining this so far on my blog.

      The people in command are men.

      Privilege is real even though SOME men are poor.

      You have any qualms with the list I gave you. It wasn’t exhaustive but tell me how my list of injustice towards women is similar to the so called ‘injustices’ that MRA’s say men face?

      They’re not even close. Men dying on the job isn’t a function of some man-hatred. Men being poor isn’t the result of man-hatred.

      You can deny male privilege all you want but it’s there even if you don’t think you’re experiencing it. You will AUTOMATICALLY be seen as more competent. You will never have to deal with the glass ceiling, lack of reproductive rights, being seen as a cunt and a bitch in politics and all the other things listed. Fear of rape when walking at night.

      No matter what strata of society a man comes from he is still privileged in ways that women are not.

      Oh and feminists also recognize class analysis and it’s still the case that women are the majority of the world’s poor.

      This is changing though. Not because of MRA’s but because of feminism.

  4. What would make anyone think that calling a misogynist a misogynist is a “shaming tactic?”

    As I’ve said the MRAs are close relatives to other conspiracy theorists and they are all so politically-minded that it doesn’t occur to them that other people are not.

    Male oppression of women in the form of violence, online harassment, hate-mongering, etc – all the stuff the MRAs do and advocate, for example – is the definition of misogyny. I don’t think anyone is “shamed” by that word and I can’t imagine why anyone would think they would be. To me, the MRAs are just saying publicly what most men who hate women have the discretion to keep to themselves. None of them are going to be “shamed” by being called “misogynist” anymore than they are shamed when they get away with raped, domestic abuse, harassment, etc. The majority of people seem to think that’s the woman’s fault – she’s the one who is “shamed” by misogynists, not the other way around.

  5. Can you give me a specific example of a self-decribed MRA group that advocates rape, and quote them?

    The MRAs may argue that once upon a time the misogyny label worked to shut them up, but no longer, just as some women say that “slut-shaming” no longer affects them. If the lack of effectiveness of “You’re a slut!” doesn’t work to shame a woman into not asserting ownership of her own sexuality, is it not valid to assert that the same principle might apply to Karen Straughan et al in terms of accusations of misogyny?

    To me, the issue over the use of the misogyny label is the perception that anyone who really does not hate or oppress women while at the same time questions the tactics or tenets of feminism (e.g. trying to shut down public discussions/ speecehs on certain issues is labeled a misogynist) is labeled a misogynist, because the two are considered mutually exclusive. In one video of a speaking engagement at a university I saw a woman screaming at a young man “You rape-apologist scumbag! You came to listen to this misogynist, therefore you must be a rape-apoligist yourself!” etc. etc. To me, this is a shaming tactic and only shuts down constructive debate. Saying that ipso facto, you are a misogynist because you disagree with some of the central theories of feminism, or even because you came to listen to a speaker feminists disagree with, is to me akin to saying that if you’re an American who disagrees with US miltary policies you’re anti-American. “Don’t tell me you disagree with the war yet you love your country” is analogous to “Don’t tell me you question Patriarchy Theory yet are not a misogynist.” In both cases, the speakers presume to own the discourse.

    Whether the issue is feminism, the environment, election reform, or anything you’d care to mention, any group that tries to literally, physically prevent people from face-to-face discussion on an issue (such as in the video I mentioned above) will have a very hard time convincing me of the sincerity of their intentions. And I refuse to buy the argument that letting MRAs speak on a campus about men’s suicide rates is somehow the equivalent of letting Naxiz or klansmen speak. I hear a lot of talk about MRA rape apologetics, for example, but I haven’t actually seen it . Perhaps (as I mentioned at the beginning of this post), you could point me to a specific example?

    • First question re: rape
      Paul Elam says women are begging to be raped. Misogyny.
      MRA’s campaign against rape awareness posters. Misogyny
      Their writings saying rape culture doesn’t exist. Misogyny

      All their ideas about women are misogynist. The paranoia about apex fallacy, hypergamy (women are all gold digging whores) etc. This is MISOGYNY.

      Misogyny label doesn’t shut them up because they don’t care that they are misogynists. It’s as simple as that. No need to bring in the label slut, which is more misogyny.

      In order to question feminism they have to know what it is in the first place, and they don’t So yeah, moot point.

      Counter protest is free speech. I find it hilarious when men whine about this. It’s the same old privileged mindset that women are supposed to shut up while they speak. I also find it hilarious because they have no experience protesting for anything and don’t realize that is exactly how protesting works. Welcome to protesting 101.

      Now you’re saying calling someone a rape apologist misogynist IS a shaming tactic? huh?

      ‘Whether the issue is feminism, the environment, election reform, or anything you’d care to mention, any group that tries to literally, physically prevent people from face-to-face discussion on an issue’

      Fine. You don’t have to like it. Doesn’t mean you get to make up what you think feminism is rather than what it actually is.

      My blog is full of examples of rape apology. If you don’t see it now, you probably will never see it. You won’t understand it because you don’t WANT to understand it.

      This is why MRA’s don’t care if they’re called misogynists. They ARE misogynists but don’t care. They are rape apologists and don’t care.

      If you can’t find examples of these things on your own or in my blog then NOTHING I’m going to say is ever going to convince you. You’re like them in a way. You refuse to understand truly what feminism is. You make up your own definitions just like they do. You don’t understand protesting. You don’t understand counterprotesting. You don’t understand that whether or not people want to discuss something with you doesn’t have a thing to do with feminism but yet you put that in there so you can have something to fall back on so you can say ‘I don’t like feminism’.

      I’ll tell you here and now. If you don’t like feminism, under it’s definition which has remained the same for decades: ‘Equality of the sexes’ then you are a sexist. It’s that simple.

      Now don’t waste my time any more unless you’re willing to actually accept the timeless definition of feminism or willing to argue against a point of feminism that actually exists and not one you make up.

      • I’m Enjoying my life of victimhood. really just sad. poooooorrrr widddlee boy. A woman came to me with pure logic and after quickly growing tired of having to attempt to validate my delusions, leave comments like this to shut-down the debate in an illogical, childish manner. typical whinyman response. Men’s rights is STUPID. In a time where we have Egalitarians, Humanists, etc. we all just look like little brats who watched wayyyy too many disney movies growing up. EVERYONE sees this. My cause is a joke now and a disgrace to the people who do suffer horrible oppression throughout the world. And even the lawyers, academics, people whose livelihoods depend on the existence of whiny males are scrambling to try and keep it together with more blithering nonsense. Men’s WIGHTS is a joke, it has failed, and it is doomed to die. This is this too oppressive for me! You are oppressing ME! WHAAAAAA! I’ll Go make a sammich.

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