Can You Hear Me Now?

Filed in National by on June 6, 2014

Last week Cassandra put up a post entitled #YesAllWomen and things got interesting.  The entire thread (and its evolution or… reduction?) is worth your time to read, but, for this post, I’m going to deal with my interactions with individual commenters – which means I’ll be taking the comments out of order to highlight the individual conversations.

I’ve debated on how to do this and decided to post comments in their entirety – which means this post will be ridiculously long, but quotes will not be taken out of context.  (FYI: I’ve placed the comments in blockquotes, so they can be easily identified.  Anything in blockquotes is a direct comment from the #YesAllWomen thread.  Everyone with me?)  Hey, look at this as your weekend reading!

Basically, I’m going to dissect these conversations.  I am also writing this post from my point of view (and only my point of view) – how I interpreted these responses as a woman.

I was actually surprised by how frustrated I became writing this post, and I shudder when I think of the forthcoming comments.  Mainly because I’m not sure if we can have this discussion without getting defensive.  I’ll also point out that while I am calling out certain people’s comments I am doing so in a attempt to see if people can relate to my reactions to certain words, phrases, tone, etc.  Again, this post is about how I interpreted comments… and I didn’t always interpret them nicely, so feel free to call me out.  But once you do that… do you think you could comment on my point; do you think there’s a conversation to be had?  If you do, then after you call me out, could you address that?

As I was writing this I kept a sort of diary.  At the end of each day I wrote these comments in this post:

I’m beginning to question the wisdom of writing this (June 4th)

I’m not even sure if I’ll even publish this post! (on June 5th)

What am I thinking?  This is going to be a blood bath!  (My blood – LOL!)  I’m not sure this will be worth it.  (June 6th)

So… if you’re reading this it means I ignored that little voice inside my head – the voice of… sanity?

Here goes…  Everybody ready?

The Dissection of a Post:

We’ll start with Davy since he wrote the first comment on the thread.  Here’s his comment:

“Rodger is an outlier even if the experiences above are not outliers.

I would talk to my daughter about predators because it is easier to protect one known person than to stop an unknown perpetrator.

Alcohol neither excuses his actions nor condemns her actions. But drinking does make her an easier target.

“Rape is a serious allegation” because “rape is a serious crime.”

I wish that we lived in a world where everyone could do whatever he or she wanted. But we do not. Not everyone is noble, and we must worry about criminals. No amount of education or re-education will stop violence against women (just as no amount will stop violence, period).

You can live in utopia, but the rest of us live in the real world.”

Here’s my response:

“If you read his manifesto, rape figures prominently. And if he had been able to execute his plan then rape, torture and killing was his end game. His plan included turning his apartment into a torture chamber. This was his intent. He was thwarted by a locked sorority house door.

And actually, Davy, as a man you live in a very different world than women. That’s your privilege.”

My first paragraph is in response to Puck, who stated,  “Anyway, the Rogers case is about murder, not rape.”  The last line is directed at Davy’s comment, “You can live in utopia, but the rest of us live in the real world.

Davy answers:

“@pandora: “The way to stop discrimination on the basis of [gender] is to speak openly and candidly on the subject of [gender].” But you qualify to join the discussion if and only if you are a member of the class of victims. If not, the privilege of being a member of the class of alleged perpetrators is an effective substitute for participation.

Thank you for telling me that I am “privileged” and my views do not (or barely) matter.”

I did not tell him that his views didn’t matter.  I told him that, as a man, he lived in a different world from women and that was his privilege.  And… he did fire the first shot.  I pointed that out:

And thank you for your opening comment that says that we live in an utopia while you live in the real world. Why is your comment considered not dismissive, while my comment is cause for outrage. I simply responded in kind.

You do know that if you were to comment on your experience as a high school boy dealing with society’s ridiculous standards of masculinity I wouldn’t be questioning or dismissing your experiences. I would, you know, listen – mainly because I have no idea what it’s like to be a boy and would defer to you, and your experiences, for guidance.

And I don’t get why (mostly) white guys get so bent out of shape about their privilege. As a financially secure, white woman I know that I have privilege. I know, for instance, that my son would never be Trayvon Martin. I know, simply by my appearance, that I am given the benefit of the doubt and a lot of preferential treatment. I accept that my privilege exists which makes me aware when others aren’t afforded the same consideration.

So why do some men (not ALL men) take talk of gender or race issues so personally? Especially when it isn’t about them.. [emphasis mine]

My response to Davy lists several points:

  •  Asking why my comment on privilege is dismissive, while his utopia comment was not.  I did respond in kind – mainly because if he hadn’t written that sentence I wouldn’t have mentioned privilege.
  •  I specifically point out that if he were to write about his experiences as a boy/man that I would listen – that I wouldn’t question or dismiss his experiences – because I hadn’t lived those experiences.
  •  As a white woman I acknowledged my privilege and how my privilege made me aware of others who aren’t afforded those same privileges.
  •  And finally, I asked why some men take these topics so personally, especially when it isn’t about them.

Did Davy address any of my points when he answered?  You be the judge:

Davy:  “To quote myself: “Rodger is an outlier even if the experiences above are not outliers.”

Rodger was a misogynist. No doubt there. But do you think he killed people because he was a misogynist or because he was ill?

The answer is important because, presumably, it determines how we stop (or at least try to stop) the next Rodger. Do you think educating a Rodger clone about how to treat other people (which includes women) would help him?

The focus on misogyny with respect to Rodger is counterproductive. The focus on misogyny in general is deserved.”

So, did Davy respond to, or acknowledge, anything I said?  Did he hear me?  (and sure, blogging isn’t the best medium, but we deal with this phenomenon several times in this thread.)  Or did he switch the subject and give me more questions – homework! ;-) – while not responding to my points and questions?

Did he even realize what he did?  And that’s an important question, because I’m beginning to think that a lot of this is unconscious behavior.

But I did answer his new question (And perhaps I shouldn’t have.  Perhaps I should have refused to move on until he addressed my points.  But I didn’t, which may make me part of the problem.)  Here’s the exchange:

Pandora:“Rodger was a misogynist. No doubt there. But do you think he killed people because he was a misogynist or because he was ill?”
I don’t think this is an either/or question. I think he killed people because he was a misogynist and mentally ill – although, we have no proof (yet) he was diagnosed as mentally ill – just that he had problems and was in some sort of therapy – but we have a boatload of proof he was a misogynist. (And I wouldn’t be the least surprised if he had mental problems. Then again, I think anyone who is racist, sexist, homophobic, hates Jews/Muslims/Christians, etc. has mental problems.)

In some ways it reminds me of the gun debate. Don’t talk about gun control because guns don’t kill people, crazy people do. And this can be applied across the board. Was Timothy McVeigh anti-government or just crazy? And if he was just crazy, then why erect all those barriers outside of government buildings. Why have metal detectors? Why specifically address who he attacked if he was just crazy? Why do we react to the motives of terrorists, and not just say, “Well, some people be crazy” and move on, since there’s nothing to be done.

And the same can be said about homophobes, sexists, racists, anti-Semites, etc.. If crazy people (I refuse to use the word mentally ill, since the vast majority of mentally ill people aren’t violent and are more likely to victims of crime) are just crazy, and there’s no link to other issues, then that allows us to not deal with issues we may find uncomfortable – issues that may force us to reexamine ourselves and change our behavior.

If gun enthusiasts admit there’s a problem with guns, then they’ll have to change their behavior. If racists (especially those who pride themselves on not using the “N” word, but generally feel and act as if whites are superior – because, ya know, biology – and the biology “argument” is a favorite among misogynists/sexists, as well) acknowledge that racism is a problem, then that would make them question their own attitudes. Same damn thing with homophobes and misogynists – even those that are considered benign. You know the ones who carelessly toss around the words f*g (I despise that word), slut, whore, etc.. And I’m starting to feel that the push back on eliminating these words and attitudes, by the people who use them, is due to asking those people to give up something they like to do.” [emphasis mine]

Davy: “@pandora: So you are questioning whether Rodger was mentally ill? Rodger was in therapy before he entered puberty. In the Fall of 2013, he was prescribed an anti-psychotic, which he refused to take. His family was worried that he might hurt himself or others. Granted, I am no doctor, and no one with authority has said that he was mentally ill; however, based on known facts (including those from his manifesto), I am pretty sure he was ill.

Rodger does not reflect what is wrong with America with respect to sexual violence. Labeling Rodger’s crimes as acts of misogyny draws attention from real acts of misogyny, especially those that go unreported on college campuses throughout our country.

For Rodger, if not misogyny, then something else: http://time.com/114354/elliot-rodger-ucsb-misogyny/.”

Hmm… did I question whether Rodgers was mentally ill?  Nope.  Not one little bit.  (See the bolded part of my answer above)  So why would Davy ignore what I actually wrote and pretty much say EXACTLY the same thing I said.

And so I answered:

@Davy

You asked me this question: “But do you think he killed people because he was a misogynist or because he was ill?”

My answer: “I don’t think this is an either/or question. I think he killed people because he was a misogynist and mentally ill”

As far as questioning whether he was mentally ill, I said (see sentence directly above this one) I thought he was mentally ill. What I didn’t do, and was careful not to do, was guess at a diagnosis since it bothers me greatly when people throw out terms like Asperger’s or Autism in these sorts of situations.

And your “I’m no doctor, and no one with authority has said that he was mentally ill…” statement is pretty much what I was saying. So we’re agreeing, no? Both of us think he had mental problems, but neither one of us can say for sure what exactly they were.

And while I agree that deeply disturbed people will find a reason to kill, I wish we’d stop (as a society) giving them flippin’ directions. I completely understand why Jews, Sikhs, Muslims, Doctors who preform abortions, minorities, women, gays, etc. feel nervous and frightened for various reasons, mainly because there are a lot of people saying horrible things and mentally disturbed people are following their directions… orders?

So, I don’t understand why we need to remove the misogyny from this discussion (especially when we haven’t removed other “reasons” for other killers. I do remember bullying being discussed, at great length, after Columbine. Should bullying not have been part of the conversation?). Misogyny is the reason he targeted who he did; it is the group (PUAs/PUAHate) he found that spoke to his “needs” and the one he felt at home in.

We seem to get this with “pro-lifers.” We know the vast, vast majority of “pro-lifers” would never kill a doctor who performs abortions or bomb a clinic, but we do know why these pro-life groups post the name, phone number and home address of these doctors. They are giving directions, quite literally, in this case.

Davy didn’t respond.  And no, I’m not calling him out for that, because people do have a life.  But I sincerely hope he comments on this post.

Before I move onto the next exchange I’d like to point out something that frustrated me.  I wrote several times about the man who killed people at the Jewish Community Center, and no one (and I mean NO ONE) questioned if he was anti-Semitic.  That was a sincere point, and one that people arguing against misogyny never (and I mean NEVER) addressed.  Why is that?  Surely there were vast similarities, and yet that point was never addressed.  Why?

Now we’ll move onto Dave, who I know is furious/frustrated/annoyed (pick one) with me.  Fair enough.  I’m frustrated with him, too.  Before we address Dave’s first comment we need to address mine, because they are linked.  Here’s my first comment:

“Because every women I’ve ever known has a prepared explanation/excuse for when “no, thank you.” isn’t good enough for the man asking them to dance or for a date. And every one of them holds their breath waiting to be called a bitch (or worse) after they say “no.” Every. Single. One.

I’m not saying all men behave this way, but every woman has dealt with men that do… many times.”

Please notice my “Every. Single. One.” statement.  Okay? Here’s Dave’s comment, which I’d say was in direct response to my comment since he went out of his way to use my words.  And if you have any doubt that he was responding to me… well, he quotes me in his very first line.

Dave:  “I’m not saying all men behave this way, but every woman has dealt with men that do… many times.”

And probably everyone of those men have or had a mother. Every. single. one. Armed with that knowledge, I would think that the collective motherhood would have banded together to teach their sons respect for women. Yeah, I know that some children may end up the way they are through no fault of the parents, but some aspects of this culture can and should be influenced by parents.

How about MARC (Mothers Against Rape Culture) to support mothers in educating their children? If you looked at the high school survey, one has to ask “where did they get such ideas?” [emphasis mine]

Can we stop pretending that my “Every. Single. One.” phrasing didn’t hit a chord with Dave – even though my comment was a general statement not directed specifically at any particular man.  Hell, I even added a disclaimer at the end of my comment:  “I’m not saying all men behave this way, but every woman has dealt with men that do… many times.”

And I even gave him a chance to clarify.

Pandora:  Um, Dave… why is the father missing from your comment?

Dave responds to me (quoting me again):

Dave:  Um, Dave… why is the father missing from your comment?”

Good question Pandora. The omission was deliberate. The first female relationship every boy has is with his mother. Mother’s understand what it is to be a girl having had girl experiences. Fathers can educate respect for people in general, but I think that mothers are in a unique position to be able communicate with her son from a female perspective and mothers have more of a nurturing capacity than fathers. Plus, in the world we live in, every boy has a mother but many do not have fathers.

If I’m being honest… I actually snorted at that reply (Sorry!  But I’m being honest here.).  I don’t believe his reasoning that the “omission was deliberate.”  And I have trouble believing that he would have written a similar statement on black and brown people - And probably everyone of those black/brown people have or had a white friend. Every. single. one.  (Not saying he would write anything like this (he wouldn’t!), but maybe it’ll help explain why women read his comment the way they did.) I think, for whatever reason, my “Every, Single. One.” comment annoyed him and he shot back.  Truthfully, I’m okay with that.  Blogging is a great outlet for kicking the dog.  I responded:

“Sheesh, Dave, I’m not sure I can handle another female-only responsibility! ;-)

While I agree that mothers can have a strong impact, mainly by sharing their experiences with their sons and pointing out unacceptable behavior, I do think that fathers and men have just as much impact (maybe more) by leading by example. Defining, understanding, etc. your masculinity comes, in part, by watching, and emulating, behavior. Men have a huge role to play in this.

I would love terms like “man card” and “be a man” or “grow a pair” to be eradicated from our language, but these terms (and many more like them) exist and put pressure on boys to… well… man up. See how pervasive that crap is?

Several years ago, I banned all gender specific slurs/insults/idioms from my home. I told my kids to improve their vocabulary and we have had very interesting discussions on these words and how they’re used to hurt/devalue an individual man and woman. These were great discussions. My son said the male words/phrases were designed to make men do something they weren’t comfortable with – that they were goading words designed to lessen individual choice. My daughter said the female words/phrases were designed to either shut up a women or tell her to act more like a man (grow a pair, have some balls). Both ended up deciding the words were basically manipulative and now they have these discussions with their friends. That’s progress.

And I don’t believe mothers have more of a nurturing capacity than fathers. Maybe 30 years ago, but that is rapidly changing. Which is a good thing.”

Did you notice my emoticon?  I shouldn’t have had to add it, but I did… so shame on me?  Did you read the rest of what I wrote – things that included males and females?  I hope so, because no one else acknowledged them.  So when it comes to being concerned about serious issues that affect men, all points (so far) go to me!  Which makes me wonder… why do men who have trouble with labeling things misogynistic never really focus on men (and their issues) but rather on women – and how women affect men?

Dave then responds to Cassandra (he quotes her), but includes me with his social conditioning reply:

Dave:““There’s alot of the usual bullshit in your response, Dave. Because once again, it is the women in the equation who are supposed to be solely responsible for the behavior their men.”

Nope, there is no such thing as a sole responsibility, sole solution, or sole anything else. While much of the so-called female roles are a result of social conditioning, there are biological aspects that cannot be dismissed. That’s not to say that fathers cannot or do not nurture. Nothing is absolute but gender tendencies remain regardless even in the absence of social condition. We are after all mammals and most mammals do not deal with social conditioning issues that we deal with. It is simply that men do not walk in women’s shoes and cannot comprehend with the same empathy as woman could. People resort to that refrain for many aspects of life, including (and especially) race, gender, LBGT issues, ad nauseam. Even so, without repeating what I said, I did not exclude fathers, I was pointing out the uniqueness of a mother and son relationship that provides an opportunity for mothers (who were girls at one point) to act in a more collective and collaborative manner to effect a cultural change such as MAD has accomplished. I am sorry you read that as excluding fathers and anyone else I may have failed to include.

Honestly, sometimes I think folks read for omission rather than commission. It’s binary thinking that the mention of one group automatically excludes all other groups. I’m surprised that someone didn’t bring up families where there is no female role model (e.g. same sex male parents), after all I must have excluded them as well. But really, I didn’t exclude anyone. I merely pointed out what I considered to be a unique opportunity that is presented in a mother/son relationship.”

We’re going to have to break this down a little bit.

Dave says:  “Nope, there is no such thing as a sole responsibility, sole solution, or sole anything else.”

Really?  Let’s remind ourselves of Dave’s initial statement where he focused on “sole” responsibility:

Dave: “And probably everyone of those men have or had a mother. Every. single. one. Armed with that knowledge, I would think that the collective motherhood would have banded together to teach their sons respect for women. Yeah, I know that some children may end up the way they are through no fault of the parents, but some aspects of this culture can and should be influenced by parents.

How about MARC (Mothers Against Rape Culture) to support mothers in educating their children? If you looked at the high school survey, one has to ask “where did they get such ideas?”

Now see… I see that as a sole responsibility thing.  And his closing question, “where did they get such ideas?”, makes me wonder if the correct answer is… their mothers?  (And I have no time for the “biology” argument.  We’ve heard that before when it comes to sexism/misogyny, as well as race.  So over it.)  And it isn’t Dave’s point about mothers’ roles, it’s the way he worded it that ruffled feathers.  It’s his initial comment.  It’s the way he quoted me (Every. Single. One.).  In my opinion, everything he wrote after his first comment was an attempt to deflect from that comment.  Fine.  We’ve all done that, but that doesn’t erase the comment.

And, you know what?  I would have loved to discuss why my “Every. Single. One.” statement hit a chord with him.  Perhaps both of us could have dug deeper and learned something.  Then again, maybe not, but it would have been an interesting discussion.

Getting back on track, I answered Dave’s binary comment by saying:

“It’s really not binary, Dave, especially when you assign homework to women, and when #not all men has become such a meme – so much so that I used it in my first comment because if I hadn’t I would have been inundated with comments saying, “Not all Men!” (You do know that #yesallwomen was created to counter this “not all men” outrage? And it’s interesting how no one has ever claimed that all men behave badly, but I’m beginning to think that entering a discussion with “Not all men!” is merely a way to shut the conversation down. Not directed at you, btw.)

It bothers me because, while we lump groups together (too much/not right, but we do) we’re supposed to view white men as individuals – and most of them weren’t crying “not all women” or “not all blacks, hispanics, asians, gays, etc.” They only joined the discussion when their individuality was questioned. Then there was a problem. The VA tech shooter = discussion of Korean parenting. Fort Hood/Boston Marathon Bombers = Muslim religion discussion. Eric Harris, Dylan Klebold, Jared Loughner, Adam Lanza, James Holmes = lone wolf mentally ill person.

Even when Elliot Rodger writes a manifesto telling us exactly why he did what he did (he hated women and the men who they gave their bodies to, because he was entitled to those women.) we dismiss his own words, discount the misogyny, and pronounce him as mentally ill individual – even though society and the internet are full of men who think (and say things) EXACTLY like him. Elliot Rodger’s actions were extreme, his mindset was not.

And, your “ad nauseam” comment signals to me that you’re tired of discussing race, gender, LBGT issues. I’m not sure you meant to come across that way, but that’s the way it read to me.”

Dave’s answer:

““you’re tired of discussing race, gender, LBGT issues.”

No, I’m not tired because I rarely if ever discuss them because people have told me “that because I am a man, I cant speak on behalf of women.” and people “have said that because you are not Black or Jewish, you cannot speak on behalf of Blacks or Jews.” And so like Ben, I can’t explain the experience of women to them.

“I actually dont know if that is what dave was saying”

That’s exactly what I was saying.”

Really?  Not to mention, I did form my ad nauseum comment in a way for him to clarify.  I told him how I read it, and said I wasn’t sure if he meant it to come across that way. Sometimes I wonder if throwing your hands in the air and walking away is a way to avoid discussing things.  I wonder about this because I’ve done it as well, and this post has me examining my behavior and every snarky comment I’ve written.  Yes, some were justified and in fun, but others were not – others were deflection and said simply because I had a problem with the commenter.

Back to Dave’s point about being told who/what he can speak about.  If you read any of my past posts, I’ve very clearly said that people need to LISTEN; that they shouldn’t charge right in and state their opinions, but rather, listen to other people’s experiences – people who have, you know, actually experienced these things.  Why is this request/demand so unreasonable?  Why is it considered over the top?  Why is listening equated with never being allowed to speak on a subject?

Yes, I did respond, by saying:

“You know… sometimes it isn’t all about you. Letting others tell you about their personal experiences and you asking questions and then contributing your thoughts is a discussion.

And it is interesting how posts (not only this one on this site) about women issues turn into threads about mens’ concerns.”

And here’s Dave’s final comment:

Geez! It was simply a comment that mothers (who are authority figures, role models, AND women) are uniquely positioned to provide some much need guidance to their sons in this particular area. As ben succinctly put it, they are “perhaps the BEST person” I did not, and neither did ben, suggest or imply that they were the only person or that they had the total responsibility. To infer a different meaning, intent, or implication in the comment is incorrect. If you don’t feel mothers are “perhaps the best” or “uniquely positioned” please feel free to disagree with that point. But don’t shift to an argument regarding what authority figure was omitted or because I failed to mention or discuss every authority figure.

I don’t think we were the ones shifting the argument.  Truly, I think Dave’s first comment was snarkily written – hey, it’s blogging.  I don’t think it was just simply a comment that we/I overreacted to.  And everyone has had an experience where their words were misunderstood.  Usually we handle this situation differently in the real world (yeah, blogging can suck!).  We tend to not accuse the person who heard us of being wrong.  We explain, and sometimes apologize for our poor wording.  Dave’s defensiveness over his initial comment was telling (Yep, there was a potential conversation there), and I wasn’t the one shifting (and expanding) the argument.

But this way of discussing women’s issues seems par for the course – Men, and their roles, are removed.  And that’s why Dave’s initial comment hit a nerve.  It always seems to be the woman’s job to civilize men – through what we wear, if we drink alcohol, if we “friend zone” men, where we walk at night or day, if we smile at a man (or if we don’t), if we are sexually active or “frigid” etc.

And with that Dave left the conversation… meanwhile, Ben entered.

“Wait a minute…. Pandora… you remind us (rightly) that the only proper authority on woman’s issues can be a woman. Why then, isnt the mother the best person to educate the son about how women ought/want to be treated? It isnt her responsibility alone… but based on what you’ve said here repeatedly, the father IS NOT the one who should be speaking on behalf of women. I think that is what dave was saying… i think

So that is to say….. Is the mother the BEST person… in a heteronormative 2 parent household…. to educate the son(s)… NOT the woman’s job…. or not to absolve fatherly responsibility…… but just the best one for that one specific job that conveys that specific set of education.
I actually dont know if that is what dave was saying… but now it is what I am asking. Im not tryin to GETCHA…. Im not trying to assign gender roles.”

Needless to say, Ben’s paraphrasing isn’t what I said – what I ever said.   I answer him:

Pandora:  I’ve said that a woman is the authority on her body, and only her body. I am not the authority of my daughter’s body. I believe in autonomy.

(And could you show me where I’ve said, “but based on what you’ve said here repeatedly, the father IS NOT the one who should be speaking on behalf of women.” I don’t believe I ever made such a claim.)

I’ve also asked that people listen to women’s experiences (which some days seems a bridge too far). It would be like you or me telling a black/hispanic person that their experiences with racism aren’t correct. We haven’t lived their experience, so our best bet is to be quiet and listen… not go off about biology or derail the conversation by making it about how “not all white people” are racist.

In the two person household you reference, both parents are in charge of raising children. There aren’t (or shouldn’t be) pink parenting jobs and blue parenting jobs.

Ben:  “Pandora… you have told ME… a few times… that because I am a man, I cant speak on behalf of women. you have said that because you are not Black or Jewish, you cannot speak on behalf of Blacks or Jews. It’s a fair principle that I hope you aren’t going to try to deny now.

I also dont recall me or dave saying anything was the mother’s sole responsibility. All I am saying is…. perhaps the BEST (not only…i am not saying only, please don’t respond to my comment as if i said only, it would be lame, incorrect, and counter productive) person to give insight to a young boy on how he should treat girls/women, is his mother. Sure, a father also should A) be the right kind of example (that is the most important part) and also give fatherly advice. that’s all im saying. [emphasis mine]

Really?  Did he read Dave’s first comment?  That was full of sole responsibility.  Dave says the omission was deliberate.  I have trouble believing that.  Could I be wrong?  Sure.  But that’s the way I, and other women on this thread, read his statement.  In all honestly, I have no idea why Ben joined the conversation the way he did.  What was his point?  Not kidding.  What was his point?

So I respond:

“And you can’t speak on those experiences, Ben (and neither can I). But I never claimed to speak on behalf of ALL women. But please provide a link to where I said what you claimed I said.

We’ve had many discussions where I have spoken for myself and have asked men to listen to women – I’ve even asked commenters to show the women in their lives some of my posts for feedback.

And you and Dave are placing the responsibility on the mother. You’re kinda going with the Sergeant Schultz defense ;-) while Dave mimics me with his “Every. Single. One.” has a mother and that these mothers need to band together and teach their sons to respect women. I asked him to clarify his statement because I sensed I hit a nerve with my first comment.”

Many men, not just Ben, seem to want to throw up their hands and say, “Who knows what women want.  I give up.”

And about that link to my comment…

of course i dont have a link to it, it’s somewhere back in the annals of DL. But it is true, and I hope someone would back me up here, because Pandora seems to have some selective amnesia…. that you have said people from a specific group have more of a “right” to speak on the issues facing that group, than someone from the outside.
Given that logic, a mother (woman) is more qualified than a father (man) to speak to a son (boy) on women’s issues, how women feel about certain things, etc.
You keep telling me what I’ve said, where one doesnt even have to search past threads to see it isnt what I’m saying. You have what you WANT me to be saying. you are arguing (kind of bullishly… as in a bully, not a male bovine) against the point you WANT me to be making. I’m sorry I’m being so uncooperative, but I dont think, nor have i ever said or implied…. (i actually think i disclaimed the point quite obviously)….. that only the mother should be anything, (other than the birther, of course) rather a BETTER resource on some topics.
Out of curiosity, what if the father is a misogynistic ass hole? Isnt it then the mother’s responsibility (to all the women her son will have contact with) to make sure he has a little influence as possible in how that boy grows up? It isnt FAIR…. but the alternative?” [emphasis mine]

“Of course” he “doesn’t have a link?  Someone back him up?  Google would be a good back up, no?  He’s claiming I said things, right?  But I thought I knew what he was referring to, and I said so:

“Sheesh, of course I have said that when a person from a specific group speaks about their life experiences (in being part of that group) that we need to shut up and listen to them. But that isn’t remotely what we’re talking about. We aren’t only talking about women when we discuss misogyny – we are talking about men and their behaviors (Not all men!). Removing them from the dialogue doesn’t make sense.”

Take a look at my last two sentences. “We aren’t only talking about women when we discuss misogyny – we are talking about men and their behaviors (Not all men!). Removing them from the dialogue doesn’t make sense.”  And that’s what’s missing from the misogyny conversation – the men.  And I don’t understand why?

FYI:  Misogyny isn’t a women’s issue.  It’s a men’s issue.  Please read that again.  Women are the objects of misogyny, men are the subjects.

Ben doesn’t respond to my comment, but later returns with this:

“I’d like to offer a new rule for all these lovely shades of bigotry. If many many people decide that “you” or “that person” is a bigot…. you’re (they’re) a bigot. Your free speech doesn’t protect you from being labeled horrible. Also, the motivations of a madman aren’t about “you”. If “you” feel personally attacked then “they” are called a misogynist, or a racist, or a homophone…. you should probably give some serious thoughts to your own views.

The problem here is, people are arguing against the points they WANT to be arguing against. No one is saying roger’s misogyny was the ONLY driver in this tragedy. Stop getting so defensive. It’s as if you (whoever is lighting their hair on fire over it) are sympathetic to his cause and perhaps feel guilty about your own sexism.
No one is saying misogyny wasnt an issue at all. No one is telling women to shut up. No one is putting all the responsibility on anyone. What people ARE doing is making this a Men VS Women argument which gets us. FUCKING NOWHERE.”

Far be it for me to point out that Ben’s “new rule” consists of ending the conversation, but, make no mistake, that is what it does.  In all honesty, I don’t think that was intention, but it is what he was doing.  And he’s wrong.  This isn’t a men vs women argument.  This is a discussion of misogyny – individual and systemic.  So yeah… #NotAllMen.

Here’s Ben’s last comment:

Yes cass. I try to derail the conversation… presumably by refusing to let other people tell me what I REALLY mean. what a jerk I am. you are such a hero for standing up to me.

What get’s to me the most, I guess I’ll address Pandora, is that I agree with 99% of what you say. The bit I disagree with is all around message delivery and how it comes across in this, very limited, medium. I pressed your earlier assertions about (I’m not quoting you, I’m just using air quotes) “who is more qualified to speak on issues relating to certain people” not to “show you” or “be the man”, but to make a point that, in the shared responsibility of raising children, a mom can… not should…. but can…. offer a unique perspective to her son, that the father can never give. Why the hell….. other than some people’s desire to only argue…is that a controversial/sexist statement? Do you think I’m trying to be misogynistic? Do you care?

Sigh.  And can I point out (yet again) that Ben calls out Cassandra, but not Geezer.  Why is that?  Seriously, guys, why is that?

And then he moves onto me (by name).  You know, I never said that a mom couldn’t add/offer a unique perspective, but somehow we’ve gotten here.  Yes, I’ve said that people in minority groups should be listened to when they speak of their experiences, but that wasn’t the discussion on this thread.

And, TO ME, the “mom” comment (which came complete with organizing a mom group) was used to place the responsibility on women.  Sorta like… if you want better men, women better start raising them.  That is what I kept hearing.  Perhaps it’s because I’ve been conditioned to hear it.  If you agree with my last sentence then I’d hope you’d examine your conditioning, as well.

His closing statement: “Do you think I’m trying to be misogynistic? Do you care?”

Oh, for crying out loud.  Did I call him, or say, or even imply, ANYWHERE, that he is a misogynist?  No.  And do I even care?  I’m tempted to say, “Not particularly” because that’s what that comment deserves, but it wouldn’t be true.  I do care.  I care about men and women – I do have a son and a daughter.  So I get it.  But this thread wasn’t about an individual man.  How many times do I have to say this?  How about I flip that statement and ask, “Do you care?”  I just can’t anymore.  So I’m going to move on.

Which brings us to Aint’s Taking it Any More (ATIAM).  He joined the discussion early, after MikeM2784 worried over what his young daughter would face as she grew up and I responded with my own teenage daughter’s experiences with misogyny/sexism.  Here’s ATIAM’s very first comment:

Pandora

Your writings suggest that you’ve morphed a legitimate problem into a lifestyle perspective. I read your rendition of your daughter’s pain and can’t help but feel that you’ve cultivated a victim.

Sex and age notwithstanding, there are shits in every corner of life that do inexcusably bad things for bad reason to others. Everyone has to deal with them. Giving those shits the power to make you feel hurt or bad, however, is the ultimate form of victim surrender. Take a page out of Maya Angelou’s life – learn to live life as it is not regret how it is.

Really?  Wow.  Now here’s a guy open for a discussion on misogyny!  Amirite? He’s not dismissive at all!  I’ve cultivated a victim? Everyone (everyone!) has to deal with sh*ts, so… suck it up?  Because I, not the boys/men behaving badly, am the one hurting my daughter?  Before I could respond, other commenters called him out and he responded again:

I have a 20 year old daughter. She went through all of the demeaning crap that young girls endure. She dealt with it relying on more courage that anyone could ever teach her. My scrawny son likewise endured the macho-abuse crap that boys have to deal with. None of it is good. None of it should be tolerated.

Like most parents my wife and I taught our kids the golden rule and, to the best of our ability, tried to live it every day. We also taught them to learn from everything in life – the good and especially the bad – in the hope that they would be better people for it.

I don’t know Padora’s daughter. I’ll gladly take your word for it. I did, however, read and re-read Pandora’s account of her teenage daughter’s troubles. My point was and is that we do nothing worthy as parents by allowing our children to see themselves as victims. I never ever said, though or meant that her complaints about abuse were petty or unrealistic. Nor did I say that parents shouldn’t teach and live respect. They should.

No disrespect intended. No malice intended.

That’s called back peddling while doubling down.  Not to mention he broke my cardinal rule:  Never make war on children.  (In fairness, he hasn’t been around long enough to know my cardinal rule, but now he does… so knock it off.)  And I would have been completely justified in calling out this bad behavior – in the harshest, nastiest way.  Did I do that?  Here’s my response:

“Your writings suggest that you’ve morphed a legitimate problem into a lifestyle perspective. I read your rendition of your daughter’s pain and can’t help but feel that you’ve cultivated a victim.”

Women would tell you that dealing with these problems aren’t a lifestyle perspective (what does that even mean?); that these problems are part of their daily life.

My daughter is 17, just finishing her junior year, and isn’t a victim. What she is is informed, mainly because we discussed all these situations over the years. She can spot red flags and is becoming extremely adept at avoiding toxic personal relationships. That’s a process, and one that begins with having open communication. If she’s not telling you what’s going on, or you’re dismissing/not understanding her uniquely female experiences then how is she supposed to recognize, handle or avoid a bad situation? How does actually addressing these specific situations create a victim? I would say it creates the opposite.

Everyone does understand that what my daughter encounters is what every woman encounters, in varying degrees, right? And yes, these situations are unique to women.

And talking to your children (I have a 20 year old son, as well) in the middle and high school years about this sort of behavior is crucial, mainly because it’s so blatant – most kids haven’t learned to hide their attitudes/behavior behind a phoney veneer. It’s textbook misogyny and quite easy to spot and address. And all of us should be calling it out.

Personally, I think I deserve a medal for my restrained response.  And how did he respond?

Legitimate Problem – abusive, unwanted advances made against women by men that are tolerated/excused by society

Lifestyle Perspective – anchoring your world view by pigeonholing everything in life through the lens of abusive, unwanted advances made against women by men that are tolerated/excused by society.

The world’s evils are not simply confined to misogyny. Every single day people confront other bad people who act on bad motives and who do bad things for bad reasons. Not excusing the bad people. That bad thing, that bad motive and that bad person neither define the world nor, hopefully, define their victim’s lifestyle or world perspective. To do otherwise is to acquiesce to victim status.

I do not dispute for a single moment the trouble your daughter, or my daughter, endured simply because they are women and simply because men cannot control themselves. Your point is acknowledged.

Point made: go back and read what you wrote. Every bit of it is saturated with the verbiage of a victim from the initial remarks, the responses and the descriptions. You called out one commentator for not including a reference to a father’s responsibility. You talked about battle phrases to be used in difficult situations and told us that every women has them at the ready. You pined on about your daughter’s struggles, her bravery climbing over the injustice, the tragedy she suffered. Reading it all lead me to conclude that the “writing” reflected a singular focus on misogynist behavior and, no less troubling, the emotional damage creating no more than a victim. The emphasis on victimization struck a chord and I felt compelled to comment.

Good day.

Let’s dissect this.  The perspective/legitimate misogyny definitions come across, to me, as an “it’s all in your head, non-reality based” comment.  It’s like saying, “Sure, there’s a problem, but your way of discussing/addressing it is delusional”

His next sentence is interesting too:

“The world’s evils are not simply confined to misogyny. Every single day people confront other bad people who act on bad motives and who do bad things for bad reasons.”

But… but… but… this was a post on misogyny.  That’s what we were flippin’ discussing.

And remember his closing statement from his previous comment?  “No disrespect intended. No malice intended.”  I should have called BS on this in my first reply to him. Disagree? Then take a look at his last paragraph in this comment… Wait!  Go take a look at all his other comments on DL.  His style is quite different.  It’s almost as if he has a different way of addressing women.  Okay, now we’ll look at his last paragraph:

Point made: go back and read what you wrote. Every bit of it is saturated with the verbiage of a victim from the initial remarks, the responses and the descriptions. You called out one commentator for not including a reference to a father’s responsibility. You talked about battle phrases to be used in difficult situations and told us that every women has them at the ready. You pined on about your daughter’s struggles, her bravery climbing over the injustice, the tragedy she suffered. Reading it all lead me to conclude that the “writing” reflected a singular focus on misogynist behavior and, no less troubling, the emotional damage creating no more than a victim. The emphasis on victimization struck a chord and I felt compelled to comment.

Good day.

Oh, I just bet it struck a chord.  Where we’ll disagree is which chord it struck.  I wrote about my daughter’s experiences.  I didn’t “pine” about her struggles.  I didn’t herald her “bravery” over “injustice”.  I didn’t cast her as a tragic heroine who has suffered.  I simply shared her extremely common experiences and how angry they made me. Obviously, that was a bridge too far.

And ATIAM’s conclusion about my “writing” (why was that word in quotes?) reflecting a singular focus on misogynistic behavior… Wait!  What?  This. Was. A. Post. On. Women’s. Issues.  Geez, if this had been a post on guns or homophobia would anyone say, “Why are you commenting specifically on guns/homophobia and not on how everyone has it bad?”  Of course not.  So why was discussing women’s issues on a thread about, you know, women’s issues wrong?

I’ll also point out that closing with the comment “Good day” came across, to me, as ending the discussion.  I found it dismissive.  But maybe that’s just me.  And it flippin’ could be me!  But we’ll never know unless there’s an honest discussion.

I responded again:

But this isn’t a thread on bad things happen to all people, is it? It’s a thread on #yesallwomen. If this was a post about how boys are bullied for not living up to society’s definition of masculinity then that’s what I would be discussing because… ya know… that would be the point.

And your projecting a victim-hood “lifestyle perspective” onto me and my daughter makes you part of the problem we are discussing.

Restrained response, no?  Rereading his comment I feel I would have been entitled to bring the hammer down – hard.  Does anyone disagree?  If you do, tell me why. Would I have been justified in calling out his parenting and his daughter?  That’s distasteful to me.

In fact, up until my head explodes (and I’ll address that later) all my responses were pretty restrained.  I made a lot of points – that were never acknowledged.  I asked questions that weren’t answered.  Instead, I spent a lot of time responding to male directed points and questions.  That was extremely frustrating.

ATIAM disappears for a while, but then jumps in with this comment in defense of Joanne Christian (who was indeed called out unfairly):

Joanne:

Don’t feel bad. It’s not you. Opposing points of view are bitch-slapped here.

First… bitch-slapped?  Really?  On a post dealing with misogyny he chooses that phrase?  Granted, those sorts of phrases are far too common in our culture, but given his previous comments I’d say his word choice was deliberate and quite victim-y.  Personally, his comment (TO ME!) had less to do with Joanne and more to do with him and how he felt he was treated.

Cassandra and I then write two comments about Joanne’s point on entitlement, where we agree with her but point out that misogyny is about entitlement.  Basically, we expand her point.

Here are our comments:

Pandora:  Entitlement was a key part, but entitlement is also a key part of misogyny. Misogynists feel entitled to women – to women’s time, conversation, bodies.

I’m actually curious, especially when Rodgers told us exactly what he was going to do and why he was going to do it, why people are discounting misogyny. Rodgers was quite clear in his hatred of women – said all women should be killed, with some kept in concentration camps for breeding purposes. He made it clear that he was going to a sorority house to kill women. He hated the men who were with women he felt entitled to, and hated the women for giving those men what he considered his due. All of this doesn’t lessen any of his other problems. But there was a specific reason he targeted the sorority house and not his old k-12 schools or a coffee house.

When that man shot up the Jewish Community Center no one said that anti-Semitism wasn’t the reason. No one said he wasn’t anti-Semitic because he killed Christians instead of his intended targets. So, I’m not getting the resistance to calling a guy who clearly stated his hatred of women a misogynist and lessening the role his misogyny played in the killings.

Cassandra:  I don’t get it, either. This guy had parents (who apparently tried to help him), multiple therapists and even multiple contacts with law enforcement. His entire “Manifesto” is fueled by his perceived rejection by women. His little brother was also a target for his killing spree. Pandora is right that the business of entitlement is a key part of misogyny. Joanne is right that some of this entitlement is cultural. All of which is an explanation and not an excuse. The culture changes when enough of us say that this is no longer acceptable.
The problem, though, is that those most attached to the misogynistic portions of our culture are the ones who are ground zero of the kind of dangers detailed above

ATIAM replies:

Well said.

Okay, that comment confused me.  Was he really agreeing with us?  You be the judge.  Here’s his next comment:

I speak jive.

If I understand Dave and Puck it is that the rabid over-emphasis on misogyny as the driver for Rodgers actions distorts the impact of everyday acts of misogynists. No one benefits from that discussion IF it is framed by the violent acts of an emotionally unstable person.

The point is that everyday acts/decisions, by otherwise well-meaning, rational people, operating within their own understanding of social norms can be lo less misogynistic and harmful to women and girls. Framing the issue with Rodgers as your poster boy, however, puts the whole discussion on a different footing. It is emotionally easy for the otherwise well-meaning, rational people, operating within their own understanding of social norms to intellectually distance themselves from Rodgers’ action and his attitude – i.e., that ain’t me and I would never do that, hence, no misogynist here.

Just translating here.

Rabid over-emphasis?  Talk about a dog whistle.  And I’d point out that Elliot Rodgers justified his over-the-top beliefs through every day misogyny.  He believed that women were inferior, that they were asking for it, that they dressed to provoke him, that they weren’t capable of making good relationship choices since they weren’t attracted to him – the ultimate “nice guy” and supreme gentlemen.  Like I said, Elliot Rodgers actions were extreme, his mindset was not.

I answered and asked for clarification (please notice how I’ve done this several times):

Now see… I’m having a problem (and perhaps it’s just me) with your words “rabid over-emphasis on misogyny” and “poster boy.”

And what behavior are you addressing when you say, “The point is that everyday acts/decisions, by otherwise well-meaning, rational people, operating within their own understanding of social norms can be lo less misogynistic and harmful to women and girls.” I’m not sure I understand the point of this sentence.

I can give you my personal experiences with (some) men who considered their actions well meaning and rational. If you’re interested…

Did I get an answer?  Nope.  Here’s what I got:

Pandora:

You are loco. Sharing your stories of opportunistic, offensive misogynist experiences would likely read like the chronology of my day. I know not how evil I am.

The reference to “rabid over-emphasis on misogyny” was a shot at those on this thread that can’t, and those reverently refuse, to see the forest for the leaves on the trees.

Let this thread die.

And with this comment (combined with his previous comments) my head starts to explode.  First, I’m loco.  Second, he’s not interested in my experiences.  Third, I reverently refuse to see the forest for the leaves because… I’m crazy?  This crazy/delusion/don’t live in the real world is a very prevalent theme, btw.  And he ends with “Let this thread die.”  Which pretty much means stop talking.

And I *sigh* responded:

Seriously, Aint’s Taking it Any More? I specifically, and with respect, asked you for clarification of your words. Your response is that I’m crazy? That sharing my “stories of opportunistic, offensive misogynist experiences would likely read like the chronology of my (your) day. I (you) know not how evil I am.”

I’m so biting my tongue to not respond in kind, because if I did I would be called out on my “tone”. What the hell have I written that would cause you take it personally and call me names?

And why are you only targeting what I say, and not Geezer and MikeM2784 and Steve Newton or John Young? Explain that. Go on. I’ll wait, because I’m sincerely interested.

Yep, that’s the steam starting to come out of my ears.  The men I listed in my last sentence were saying, far more directly, exactly what I was saying, and yet, their comments were ignored, or dare I say… deferred to?

And his wording about my experiences being “opportunistic, offensive” misogyny that would likely read like the chronology of his day is interesting, no?  Is he saying that I overreact to these experiences or that he’s a misogynist.  I’m gonna go with it being my overreacting, since that seems to be the “right” answer.  Anyone disagree?

So how does he respond?  Why, he was just being funny!

Pandora:

My dear – my humor was lost on you.

The thought of you sharing stories with me about misogynists had me laughing. I imagined my sweat filled brow, my trembling hands and beat red forehead glowing from my own guilt as you detailed those experiences.

Outside the humor, I wasn’t trying to pick on you. I took a shot at everyone. I did this because for the better part of a week this thread has kicked around small shit. The fact is that virtually everyone who commented agreed that misogyny is a problem, Rodgers’ writing was misogynistic, women are routinely subjected to unwarranted/unwanted and socially tolerated boorish behavior. Instead, the focus here has been on the periphery – the small shit: who could speak about it, a chicken/egg analysis of Rodgers’ conduct and upbringing, was it mom or dad’s job, who was better at it, my children this, your wrong, etc.

No offense intended.

So… it was my fault?  His “humor” was lost on me?  Go read his initial comments.  They’re hilarious, no?  And ATIAM’s claim that he took a shot at everyone?  I’m not buying that, but then again I remember the way he started out this thread.

And what is it with his closing tag lines?  No offense intended = Basically, Eff you if you can’t take a joke.  Let this thread die = it’s time to stop talking about this.  Just translating here = people who don’t agree (with Dave and Puck) don’t understand, so I’ll explain.  Good day = conversation over.   No disrespect intended.  No malice intended = blatantly untrue, but used to tell me I shouldn’t feel offended with what he wrote.  Even his first comment ends with: “Take a page out of Maya Angelou’s life – learn to live life as it is not regret how it is.”  Which says, to me, suck it up and live with it.

And the worst part?  I don’t even think he sees what he did.  And I’m sincerely hoping that what I’ve written allows him to see where I’m coming from.

And with that last comment my head has exploded:

Oh… so I didn’t get the joke? (And… “my dear?” Really?) You were just being funny when you called me loco? Sorry, I’m not buying that.

Anyone else wanna weigh in on Aint’s Taking it Any More’s reasoning? I would call it back peddling, since he avoided all of my questions. But maybe a guy could respond, since they haven’t been called crazy… or have been called out – at all. Not one little bit. Why is that?

Wanna know why I’m not buying “I’m just a funny guy” routine?  Could it be that I read his initial comments on this thread. Did he consider himself a jokester then?   Back peddling was an accurate term.  Basically, he was backed into a corner and now wants to pretend he was just kidding and that I didn’t get the joke.  Do you guys know how often women hear that excuse?  That’s a serious question, btw.

He responds, sticking to his humor defense:

You did miss the humor (my fault) . . . even after I confessed to it (your fault).

To answer your questions and – hopefully – end the discord:

1. You asked: I’m having a problem (and perhaps it’s just me) with your words “rabid over-emphasis on misogyny” and “poster boy.” My humorless answer: The discussion here, not on some other site, has hyper-focused on Rodgers’ misogynist writings. Rodgers was a mess on so many levels, and his spectacular downfall filled with so many value failures, that focusing solely on one aspect of his conduct is a mistake. He’s a lousy poster boy because his story is so lousy on so many levels.

2. You asked: And what behavior are you addressing when you say, “The point is that everyday acts/decisions, by otherwise well-meaning, rational people, operating within their own understanding of social norms can be lo less misogynistic and harmful to women and girls.” I’m not sure I understand the point of this sentence. My humorless answer: Misogyany is deeply ingrained. It takes many forms from the obvious brutality to wage disparity/product marketing/hand-shaking custom/etc. Ironically, your handle “Pandora” is very the Greek literary character from which most western misogyny flows.

3. You asked: And why are you only targeting what I say, and not Geezer and MikeM2784 and Steve Newton or John Young? Explain that. Go on. I’ll wait, because I’m sincerely interested. My humorless answer: See below.

Dave, Geezer, Steve, Mike, Puck, Davey, Ben, MikeM, Aint’s – you’re all loco. I think I got all of the guys. If they had offered to tell me stories, I might have more to say to them.

I’ll skip over the my fault/your fault (both sides do it) opening, since I’m still not buying the premise, and move onto (point #1) why, again, discussing Rodger’s misogynistic actions is “hyper” focused?  Why not just focused?  Rodgers was, after all, pretty damn clear in his motivations.  And I’d say that ATIAM’s use of adjectives (hello? rabid?) is what causes most people to question where he is coming from.

I have no idea what his point #2 is about, other than my handle is misogynistic so that makes me guilty of… misogyny?  There are a lot of nuances and details in Greek mythology, but 99.9% of people would associate Pandora with opening a box and not misogyny.  Why make that leap?  What was his point?

Point #3 is about… Sheesh, let me call other people out (for the first time) so she stops complaining (or perhaps… harping?) on this.  Okay, I called them out – and I even included myself so I must be serious (or rather… funny).  Conversation over.  

My head’s still exploding:

“Dave, Geezer, Steve, Mike, Puck, Davey, Ben, MikeM, Aint’s – you’re all loco. I think I got all of the guys. If they had offered to tell me stories, I might have more to say to them.”

Too little, too late. But you know that – and so does everyone else. And Steve DID offer you a story. And what did you have to say? Crickets. MikeM, worried (told a story) about his young daughter. What did you have to say? Crickets. Geezer called out misogyny several times and offered a story about his wife and daughter… more crickets.

Everyone sees what you’ve done here… even you. All the back peddling in the world won’t save you. For some reason you are invested in the way things are. Allow me to quote Steve Newton (who you ignored):

“The difference here, I think, is there will be millions and perhaps tens of millions of men who read Rodgers’ manifesto and fit into that second category: “You know, he was crazy, and I’d never do that, but man those women can do a number on a guy’s head, and I sorta know what he meant by all those stuck-up sorority bitches out there shaking it like it’s made out of gold or something.”

The number of men who jump up reflexively to distance themselves (sort of, and in the sense that the guilty flee when no one pursues) from Rodgers want to distinguish between what they consider to be inevitable or perhaps even acceptable levels of misogyny in our society and the misogyny that motivates a killer.

In the end, since they cannot distance themselves from misogyny, they need to distance Rodgers from it. He’s crazy, he’s not like us; it’s unfair to use him as an example

Perhaps you missed that comment – which, btw, was far more direct than anything I said.

And while I’ll admit to being angry and frustrated, and yes, emotional, I still had a valid point.  Can anyone tell me why guys defer to (or ignore) guys, but call women commenters out?  I can take a guess…

And, of course, he responds – just not to anything I said.  He’s sticking with his “I’m just a funny guy” excuse.  And please note, this is his last attempt to make good:

Last attempt to make good.

Pandora – you said: I can give you my personal experiences with (some) men who considered their actions well meaning and rational. If you’re interested…

You made an offer . . . . “if I was interested.” I found humor in the offer. Kind of like watching sinner in church. No one else has ever, in my entire life, offered to share tales of misogyny with me. The thing is that neither Steve, MikeM or Geezer or anyone else for that matter offered to tell me misogyny stories. You did. I responded.

Maybe I could share tales of misandry with you?

I did not respond to Steve. You are correct. Why you ask? Because I though our two pre-lost humor remarks said essentially the same thing: Rodgers can be a bad example.

Too little, too late – story of my life. No offense taken even if meant.

Finally, if back peddling is the worst thing I do today, then thank God cause this sinner is capable of so much more and enjoying it all the while.

BOOM!  Dare I use the word mansplaining?  Because from where I’m sitting it’s really prevalent on this entire thread.  And I’m with Steve Newton when he says that the guys on this thread reasoning is: “You know, he was crazy, and I’d never do that, but man those women can do a number on a guy’s head, and I sorta know what he meant by all those stuck-up sorority bitches out there shaking it like it’s made out of gold or something.”  I agree with this statement because, for some reason, you/some guys seem to have a vested interest in this killing not being linked to misogyny.  Why. Is. That?

So yeah, I exploded:

Still no response to Steve’s comment. Why is that? He’s called you out in no uncertain terms. Why not tell him that he’s raising a victim or that he has a “rabid” response? Go on… that was funny, wasn’t it? Geezer said he didn’t fully get his wife’s and daughter’s “stories” until #yesallwomen. MikeM worried about what his young daughter would deal with as she matured. Call their asses out. Call out their “stories” specifically. Go on. Call them out. It will be humorous, hilarious… no?

And the fact you think that your comments on this this thread were humorous… heaven help you. You ain’t funny or clever, or maybe you are in a “Make me a sandwich” sort of way – cause that was hilarious, amirite?

You are back peddling because you can’t defend your comments. Really, just own it. You targeted me, not the men who wrote the same damn things, and now you want to pretend I can’t take a joke, or understand your humor. Women can’t take a joke, amirite?

But even though I am furious I still have a point – a point that still hasn’t been addressed.  In fact, start counting up the points I’ve made that haven’t been addressed.

But then something interesting happens… wait a minute… what have we here? Dare I say, a victim?

Geezer says, in response to Ben’s “What people ARE doing is making this a Men VS Women argument which gets us. FUCKING NOWHERE.”

I disagree. It might not be getting us where YOU think we should be going, but I think this route is quite interesting.

ATIAM is no longer laughing.  He has a problem with that statement.  Somehow all this is no longer humorous, so he responds:

Geezer

How is it interesting? Do tell.

Is it interesting because too many commentators feign disgust and anger on nothing more than their own self-induced frothing?

Is it interesting because too many commentators are self-appointed, self-righteous, thin skinned know it alls that simply cannot tolerate other obviously uninformed points because they are different?

Or is it interesting because too many commentators have twisted words in ways that is nothing short of demon magic?

Is it interesting that instead of an intelligent discussion, too many commentators refuse read for comprehension preferring instead ignore the point made?

Is it interesting because too many commentators are happily hysterical at someone they don’t know, never met and have no ability, outside a few words on this site, to know their true intent or meaning?

Is it interesting because the game of gotcha practiced here by some commentators trumps spirited, genuine and otherwise worthwhile disagreement?

Is it interesting because the level of intolerance here is actually higher than Glenn Beck’s.

I thought this site was supposed to be interesting because, as adults, we get to express a viewpoint, kick it around with others with differing views AND God forbid broaden our intellectual horizon. Instead this discussion – and it really is only this one – is so mired in shit that it’s no better then an f’ing playground in the cattle yard.

Hey, I thought this was just funny.  I thought I needed to lighten up and take a joke.  None of this is serious enough to get upset over, right?  Cause… someone sounds upset and doesn’t seem to find this the least bit funny.  Why is that?  What changed?

I’ll finish with Puck.  (Disclaimer:  I know Puck in real life, and I’d be lying if I said I’m not having trouble understanding where he’s coming from.  I don’t get it.)  Here’s his first comment:

I don’t understand the consternation with the statement “rape is a serious allegation.”
Anyway, the Rogers case is about murder, not rape.

Rape is a serious allegation.  It’s also a serious crime.  But when society focuses on how boys lives will be ruined and buys into the meme that women lie about rape there’s a problem.  Both statements should be given equal weight, but they’re not.  And Rodger’s case was not only about murder.  It was about his plans for the women he didn’t kill.  He wanted to place the women he didn’t kill (based on their “hotness”) in concentration camps for breeding and torture purposes.  Should we really ignore that?

Here’s his next comment:

“I’m actually curious, especially when Rodgers told us exactly what he was going to do and why he was going to do it, why people are discounting misogyny.”

Rodgers is a garden-variety sociopath and it is offensive to link his sickness as part of a continuum with ordinary male/female relationships.

Does anyone actually think I linked Rodger’s actions to ordinary male/female relationships?  If you do, say so and explain.  Here’s the exchange (and yes, others were commenting):

Pandora:  This baffles me. No where is anyone calling out, or comparing him to, “ordinary” male/female relationships. I’m not the one making that leap.

Why is so important that this guy not be labeled a misogynist? That’s a serious question. Is it because people don’t believe misogyny is real?

Puck: ”I think he killed people because he was a misogynist and mentally ill”

If true, Rodgers’s brand of misogyny can’t be corrected by his father teaching him any better, or even by every boy’s father teaching them better. Because he is not part of a continuum with ordinary male-female relationships.

Pandora:  Why do you keep associating “this brand of misogyny” with “ordinary male-female” relationships?

Puck:  It is true that being a woman comes with certain potential vulnerabilities at the hands of men. But it also grants unimaginable power and control over men. The source of the vulnerability is the same thing that gives you the power; I don’t think you can have one without the other, and it is not possible to have neither. Vive la difference!

It is true that women generally have a greater risk of potential physical harm from violent men, and that sucks. But in terms of emotional harm, women give as good as they get, maybe better.

Oh… oh my.  I’m not even sure how to address that statement.  Anyone wanna weigh in?  He goes on, but I’m exhausted and my exhaustion isn’t directed at Puck.  This post is killing me.  So, I’ll just post his other comments and let others do the heavy lifting.

That is, of course, why the landscape of America is littered with shelters for (emotionally) battered men.

LOL… they’re called liquor stores…

Think of the iconic image of Humphrey Bogart at the bar with a bottle of gin (yes I know it’s fiction but it resonates).

He does have a point.  Men is crisis need to be heard and not dismissed as weak – you know, behaving like a women.

“Why is it so important to you that this not be labeled a misogynistic crime? ”

When that wacked-out druggie knifed Officer Sczerba because he thought he was a fanged monster attacking him, do we fret about public attitudes toward policemen? Or do we just shudder in horror and realize it was the drugs/mental illness at work and was not linked to any public culture or perception of police?

I did respond (as did others):

I’m really interested in the answer to this question, Geezer. I’d like Davy to answer, as well.

Also, if the guy who killed Officer Sczerba wrote a manifesto about killing police officers and was on “Cops deserve to die” websites, you know we’d be having that discussion.

And he ends with…

Given the nuances that we are trying (mostly unsuccessfully) to communicate here, how stupid is it to have this conversation on Twitter?

You know, when people were using Twitter to protest/overthrow governments I don’t remember it being dismissed as stupid.

Okay, I’m done and I’m sure people are pissed.  All I can say is that this is one of the most difficult things I’ve ever written.  Have at it.

In conclusion, I will say that the main point of my frustration was due to people derailing the narrative of the post – the way some men simply wouldn’t engage with anything I said, and instead, redirected me to their concerns.  The fact that I allowed them to redirect me and that I addressed their statements, answered their questions while they ignored mine makes me question myself.  I’ve a long way to go, baby.

 

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A stay-at-home mom with an obsession for National politics.

Comments (29)

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  1. Delaware Dem says:

    The fact that I allowed them to redirect me and that I addressed their statements, answered their questions while they ignored mine makes me question myself. I’ve a long way to go, baby.

    Pfft. Don’t question yourself. You were just being courteous, a good host, as you always are. But we all have a long way to go. The job is never finished, in terms of understanding each other.

    Great post, and I hope it was cathartic to get your responses on the record.

  2. pandora says:

    Well… it was really long. You know, I actually want to have this discussion. Drinks, DD?

  3. ben says:

    I was quite the little shit during this conversation. Pandora, I really respect the way you re-hashed this thread, in part because it seems to have taken quite a bit of time…. But it also provides some context as to what, exactly, the points of disagreement were.

    I think the way in which people read comments, with the lack of tone or facial expression, it can be difficult to understand actual meaning. especially when discussing a “hot topic”. That said, I would like to try and clear up ….

    “Back to Dave’s point about being told who/what he can speak about. If you read any of my past posts, I’ve very clearly said that people need to LISTEN; that they shouldn’t charge right in and state their opinions, but rather, listen to other people’s experiences – people who have, you know, actually experienced these things. Why is this request/demand so unreasonable? Why is it considered over the top? Why is listening equated with never being allowed to speak on a subject?”

    True…. you have never ever said “if you aren’t _______, you cant speak on the issue”. It has, at times, FELT like “you” are saying that…. when someone poses their own opinion (which none of us can really know their experience) and there is a disagreement, the “you aren’t _____ so you wouldn’t understand” is an all too familiar rebuttal. It is also (not so much by you) followed by some sort of a put-down, or swipe that really contributes nothing, and frankly doesnt give much incentive to WANT to listen, or to try to keep being open.
    I would charge that you don’t know who I, or Davy, or anyone else has been listening to. My thoughts and philosophies about gender and sex could be entirely informed by women who aren’t you, and I would still be keeping with your request to listen, even though you disagree with what I’m (or anyone else) is saying.
    You aren’t disallowing anyone to speak, but judging by reaction, people feel as if their opinion has been arbitrarily invalidated. You wouldn’t stand for that, and shouldn’t…. neither should anyone else. I stand by my statement that a mother is the most qualified person to educate a boy about understanding the opposite sex.
    Im really not trying to start a fight here. I’m wrong all the time and dont mind being told I’m wrong and corrected….. as long as my intellect, morals, or intentions arent brought into question as a part of the response. I try and argue in good faith, until i realize the person I’m talking to isnt interested in the same. I understand it’s the internet and all, but you arent required to treat people like garbage just because they cant see your face. We can be better than that.

    Regarding my assertion that this turned into a Men VS Women debate. Everyone was guilty of doing it. The conversation was devolving into a literal he said, she said, and it was all based around whether-or-not Roger’s misogyny was the biggest issue here. I think if he hadnt been a sexist, his violence would have manifest in another way. But it didnt. And this country’s rape culture is too easy of a hate-train to jump on. Beer commercials with scantly clad models didnt cause this. Revenge of the Nerds (a movie that gets more offensive every time i see it) didnt cause this. No more than Marilyn Manson caused Columbine.
    Last point. we all need to respect each other more. Race/gender/religion/politics are all just excuses to be dicks (someday, we’ll dive into the inherent sexism in that one) to each other. Perhaps we can learn from this and try for that goal.

    anyway, thanks again for the post-mortem… or would that be a post-post mortem…. maybe post mortem post?

  4. Dave says:

    “Can we stop pretending that my “Every. Single. One.” phrasing didn’t hit a chord with Dave ”

    No need to pretend. It was a direct enough statement that every single one of the men referred who asked “them to dance or for a date” have a mother. It was simply a nice segue into my thought that social conditioning (for good) can come from mothers. Did I intend to suggest it was a sole responsibility. Quite simply no.

    “Now see… I see that as a sole responsibility thing. ”

    Yes you did and asked me about it. I answered your question and attempted to clarify what I was saying. But then and now you said “I don’t believe his reasoning that the “omission was deliberate.””

    Almost always I write what I mean and try to form sentences with the intention of communicating my thoughts. Sometimes I am successful. Sometimes not. When asked a question regarding my comments, I offer clarification, again with the attempt to communicate. But when someone does not believe I mean what I said, including clarifications and proceeds to attribute my responses to “deflection” or “defensiveness” it kinda has moved beyond having a discussion about social conditioning, roles and responsibilities into an area of dialogue where the thrust is to assign negative meaning and intent to words in pursuit of I don’t what.

    For what it’s worth, I issued no challenge to the claim of misogyny. I pondered the post for a bit and then offered what I thought might be a way to ameliorate the problem. I’m sort of all about solutions, which I love to discuss. You claimed misogyny, I accepted your claim. I didn’t disbelieve it, challenge it or attempt to create a situation put you on the defensive. I simply accepted it and proceed to offer a way to improve things.

    To pull that thread one last time, wouldn’t you agree that misogyny exists because of men. I mean if there were no men there would be no misogyny right? Well, I thought that if men were the cause of misogyny perhaps women would be better suited to contribute to the elimination of misogyny. Fathers can and should have a role, but they are men and men are… So I kinda figured that maybe society could try something a little different because if you do what you’ve always done you’ll get what you’ve always got. That was my intent and point and I am truly sorry it was not believed.

  5. Unstable Isotope says:

    I was cringing as I read this because it is so reminiscent of conversations where men try to shut up women who are making them uncomfortable.
    Bad things happen to men too – check
    Not all men – check
    There are other more important things – check
    With a bonus it’s all the mothers’ fault

    We like in a very mysoginistic society. This society teaches us that women are responsible for men’s bad behavior because they just can’t help themselves (this insults men AND women). We are all raised in this society and yes women can participate in this bad behavior too. The point Pandora has tried to make is that we should listen and reflect on our own behavior. The first part of healing is diagnosing the problem. That’s one reason I think Twitter is a great thing. Yes, there’s craziness but everyday voices can get elevated. Five years ago would anyone be talking about misogyny? If you think I’m wrong think back to that man that shot women in a gym – he had a misogynist manifesto too.

  6. Unstable Isotope says:

    Ok I LOLed (sadly) at the assertion that a man being rejected by a woman is almost as bad as violence against women. Why do they never acknowledge that women get rejected sometimes too?

  7. Liberal Elite says:

    When I read the original thread, my thoughts were: clueless men, angry women. No need to post here. Run away…

    In this thread, Pandora swings her katana and emasculates them all.

    Good post… They deserved it. Maybe I’ll go watch Kill Bill.

  8. cassandra_m says:

    The fact that I allowed them to redirect me and that I addressed their statements, answered their questions while they ignored mine makes me question myself.

    In alot of ways, this is exactly the point. *You* are supposed to listen, acknowledge and address what they say, while *you* are never entitled to that in return. And it isn’t reasonable to expect any respect when the people who think that they are in a conversation with you have none for you. Certainly not enough respect to listen, acknowledge or address what you say — they want to rush right by and talk about whatever their POV is.

    On line conversation is tough, and too often folks think that just having a POV means that they’ve actually addressed something. But if you aren’t even trying to understand, you can’t expect to be understood.

    This was important blogging, P. Good job!

  9. pandora says:

    @Ben

    I’m going to break down your comment. Okay?

    I was quite the little shit during this conversation. Pandora, I really respect the way you re-hashed this thread, in part because it seems to have taken quite a bit of time…. But it also provides some context as to what, exactly, the points of disagreement were.

    LOL! Yes, you were a bit of a sh*t. I’m still not sure why you entered the conversation with, dare I say, guns blasting. I’d be very interested in your reasoning, because despite your “Im not tryin to GETCHA” comment, it did read like you were playing Gotcha!

    I think the way in which people read comments, with the lack of tone or facial expression, it can be difficult to understand actual meaning. especially when discussing a “hot topic”. That said, I would like to try and clear up ….

    Agree that conveying meaning and tone is difficult in blogging.

    “Back to Dave’s point about being told who/what he can speak about. If you read any of my past posts, I’ve very clearly said that people need to LISTEN; that they shouldn’t charge right in and state their opinions, but rather, listen to other people’s experiences – people who have, you know, actually experienced these things. Why is this request/demand so unreasonable? Why is it considered over the top? Why is listening equated with never being allowed to speak on a subject?”

    True…. you have never ever said “if you aren’t _______, you cant speak on the issue”. It has, at times, FELT like “you” are saying that…. when someone poses their own opinion (which none of us can really know their experience) and there is a disagreement, the “you aren’t _____ so you wouldn’t understand” is an all too familiar rebuttal.

    If it’s true that I have never said “if you aren’t _______, you cant speak on the issue” then what are you arguing? If I’ve never said it, then where are you getting this idea?

    It is also (not so much by you) followed by some sort of a put-down, or swipe that really contributes nothing, and frankly doesnt give much incentive to WANT to listen, or to try to keep being open.

    If it isn’t “so much by me” then can you explain why you called me out in your first comment on the #YesAllWomen thread? (And saying you have a problem with me – personally – is an acceptable answer, you’ll just need to explain why – using my exact words to make your case.)

    I would charge that you don’t know who I, or Davy, or anyone else has been listening to. My thoughts and philosophies about gender and sex could be entirely informed by women who aren’t you, and I would still be keeping with your request to listen, even though you disagree with what I’m (or anyone else) is saying.

    You’re correct, I have no idea who you have been listening to, but if I question if you have been actually listening (and given the way you jumped into this thread, I could be justified with that conclusion) and have, perhaps, been hearing what you want to hear – or interpreting what you’ve heard – would I be wrong? Perhaps. Here’s the thing, Ben. I do think you’re one of the good guys. I also think that even the good guys are subject to social conditioning that creates a blind spot. It’s the main reason I advise listening to people. When we listen to other people’s experiences we chip away at our (mine, too) blind spots.

    You aren’t disallowing anyone to speak, but judging by reaction, people feel as if their opinion has been arbitrarily invalidated.

    I’m not disallowing anyone to speak? Judging by their reaction? What reaction are you referring to? What did I say to incite their reaction? Again, I’m really interested in your answer. It seems that you’re saying, “Pandora, you’re not doing this, but you’re doing this.”

    You wouldn’t stand for that, and shouldn’t…. neither should anyone else.

    I wouldn’t stand for… what? What are you claiming I’ve done that people shouldn’t stand for? Flesh these claims out for me. To me you seem conflicted.

    I stand by my statement that a mother is the most qualified person to educate a boy about understanding the opposite sex.

    And why do you stand by this statement? Why is the mother the most qualified? Why isn’t the father? In fact, why isn’t it both parents job to teach their sons and daughters what a healthy, functioning relationship looks like? Seriously, why are you focused on the mother when misogyny is really a men’s issue – due to the fact it is about men’s behavior. Not women’s behavior – men’s. Again, I’m sincerely interested in your response.

    Im really not trying to start a fight here. I’m wrong all the time and dont mind being told I’m wrong and corrected….. as long as my intellect, morals, or intentions arent brought into question as a part of the response.

    And yet… you attributed to me things I never said because… well… I got nothing. Not trying to be snarky, but why should I take into consideration your “intellect, morals, or intentions” when you really didn’t offer me the same consideration? Why were you questioning my motives and intent (something you’ve retracted, btw) when that is unacceptable thing to do, in your mind? Again, sincere question.

    I try and argue in good faith, until i realize the person I’m talking to isnt interested in the same. I understand it’s the internet and all, but you arent required to treat people like garbage just because they cant see your face. We can be better than that.

    Did I treat you like garbage? Was I guilty of not arguing in good faith? Go reread your very first comment on the #YesAllWomen thread and get back to me.

    Regarding my assertion that this turned into a Men VS Women debate. Everyone was guilty of doing it.

    Could you show where I was doing that?

    The conversation was devolving into a literal he said, she said, and it was all based around whether-or-not Roger’s misogyny was the biggest issue here.

    Could you show where I said that Rodgers’ misogyny was the biggest (and only) issue here? I don’t recall ruling out mental illness.

    I think if he hadnt been a sexist, his violence would have manifest in another way. But it didnt.

    Did I say that he didn’t have mental issues? Did I say that his violence wouldn’t have manifested in another way? Or did I say he was mentally ill and, latched onto, and found a home in misogyny? Please show me where I disagreed with your claim.

    And this country’s rape culture is too easy of a hate-train to jump on.

    I’m not understanding this statement. Could you expand?

    Beer commercials with scantly clad models didnt cause this. Revenge of the Nerds (a movie that gets more offensive every time i see it) didnt cause this. No more than Marilyn Manson caused Columbine.

    Did I say they did? I thought I was saying that misogyny played into who he targeted.

    Last point. we all need to respect each other more. Race/gender/religion/politics are all just excuses to be dicks (someday, we’ll dive into the inherent sexism in that one) to each other. Perhaps we can learn from this and try for that goal.

    How did I not respect you? If I did this, and you can point out where I did, then I’ll apologize. Can you show me where?

    And when you say “someday, we’ll dive into the inherent sexism in that one” in reference to “dicks” well… didn’t I already call that behavior out?

    anyway, thanks again for the post-mortem… or would that be a post-post mortem…. maybe post mortem post?

    You’re welcome. Can’t wait for your response!

  10. pandora says:

    @Dave:

    “Can we stop pretending that my “Every. Single. One.” phrasing didn’t hit a chord with Dave ”

    No need to pretend. It was a direct enough statement that every single one of the men referred who asked “them to dance or for a date” have a mother.

    Wait… what? Asked them to dance or for a date? What does this mean? These seem like pretty ordinary life experiences to me, but how do these experiences relate to your not pretending (your word). I’m going to hold firm on this, Dave. Why quote me (2x) if you were simply offering a stand alone point about mothers?

    It was simply a nice segue into my thought that social conditioning (for good) can come from mothers. Did I intend to suggest it was a sole responsibility. Quite simply no.

    “Now see… I see that as a sole responsibility thing. ”

    Yes you did and asked me about it. I answered your question and attempted to clarify what I was saying. But then and now you said “I don’t believe his reasoning that the “omission was deliberate.””

    Do you really believe it was simply a nice segue? Why quote me and use my words? There was a reason for that, no?

    Almost always I write what I mean and try to form sentences with the intention of communicating my thoughts. Sometimes I am successful. Sometimes not. When asked a question regarding my comments, I offer clarification, again with the attempt to communicate. But when someone does not believe I mean what I said, including clarifications and proceeds to attribute my responses to “deflection” or “defensiveness” it kinda has moved beyond having a discussion about social conditioning, roles and responsibilities into an area of dialogue where the thrust is to assign negative meaning and intent to words in pursuit of I don’t what.

    Unlike other people who don’t write what they mean and try to form sentences with the intention of communicating their thoughts. Did you ask yourself why people had a problem (and the exact same reaction I had) to what you wrote? Or did you, well, dismiss them as not writing what they meant?

    For what it’s worth, I issued no challenge to the claim of misogyny. I pondered the post for a bit and then offered what I thought might be a way to ameliorate the problem. I’m sort of all about solutions, which I love to discuss. You claimed misogyny, I accepted your claim. I didn’t disbelieve it, challenge it or attempt to create a situation put you on the defensive. I simply accepted it and proceed to offer a way to improve things.

    Hmmm… did I say you questioned misogyny? No. That wasn’t my point. And other people are about solutions, too. Myself included. But, Like UI says, we can’t offer solutions without a diagnosis.

    To pull that thread one last time, wouldn’t you agree that misogyny exists because of men. I mean if there were no men there would be no misogyny right? Well, I thought that if men were the cause of misogyny perhaps women would be better suited to contribute to the elimination of misogyny. Fathers can and should have a role, but they are men and men are… So I kinda figured that maybe society could try something a little different because if you do what you’ve always done you’ll get what you’ve always got. That was my intent and point and I am truly sorry it was not believed.

    So your solution , as a solution driven guy, is to remove all the men? Um… okay. But if we don’t do that (remove the men), is their another alternative? And I keep coming back to your unfinished sentence, “Fathers can and should have a role, but they are men and men are… ” Men are WHAT? Please complete this sentence (because it sounds like “men will be men/boys will be boys” nonsense). Please complete this sentence.

  11. pandora says:

    And since I’m on a roll…

    Thank you, UI, for pointing out the real issues about discussing this topic. It would seem that you read Dave’s mother comment the same way I (and others) did. I’d love to hear your reasoning.

    Liberal Elite… Mr. Pandora applauded your comment (he does love me!) and asked if we could get together with you for a drink. He watches Kill Bill whenever it’s on! Email me (pandora@delawareliberal.net) if you’re interested!

    Cassandra hits it out the park. Love you!

  12. Steve Newton says:

    @cassandra

    The only improvement I could offer to your take is this: the norm for this level of conversation is that men get to react to what they think they heard (without checking for confirmation), while women are held to the standard that they must accurately understand every nuance and always give the man the benefit of the doubt merely for deigning to enter the conversation.

    This is one of the areas where traditionally only one side of the conversation appears to have an obligation to prove they understood what the other side said before firing back.

  13. pandora says:

    Yep, Steve. Exactly.

    Do you think they even realize what they’re doing?

  14. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Steve:

    In the context of this entire discussion that is the stupidest god damn thing you could have said. It presumes stupid, it reflects stupid. Unbelievable. Give your paycheck back to whoever pays you

  15. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Cassandra

    You said: But if you aren’t even trying to understand, you can’t expect to be understood.

    Remarkable that you offer this. You smacked down virtually everyone that had the audacity to disagree with you.

    Before you stumble backwards on to the high road, your bitter ass should look into the mirror. You’re the unmistakable dolt that was satisfied doling out trite smack downs. It wasn’t that others didn’t try to understand. Rather you steadfastly refused to do the same.

    Pandora: I said too much. I should have realized you were beyond reasonable. When words are all that we trade here, why is it that you cannot accept someone’s words as they are written. You dug deeper to find a meaning that was never stated, intended and flatly denied. Sometimes the only way to make a point is to not engage in the discussion. My bad. I should have kept to myself cause nothing was ever going to make you stop and think. Your mind was set.

    You clearly spent time on this re-hash. You wasted that time because, at best, you re-barfed trying to validate your own intellectually vacant virtue.

    Steve: You might be a bright guy. But you said some of the downright dumbest shit I’ve heard from an adult in years. Your remarks were constantly inane. Suggestion: instead of scratching your ass for an intelligent answer, try picking your brain unless, of course, the two are right next to each other.

    Good day.

  16. Steve Newton says:

    shorter ATINM: Steve, I didn’t understand what you said, and that makes you stupid.

  17. cassandra_m says:

    You smacked down virtually everyone that had the audacity to disagree with you.

    It wasn’t that they disagreed with me, it was that they weren’t even in the conversation. Hence the equation of engagement and respect. My rule is that if you aren’t listening, I engage you on exactly your terms. Exactly.

    Your miserable ass is definitely on the list. If you want to presume to tell people what to pay attention to, then you get to know that is unacceptable behavior. Clearly there are people in your life whose job it is to kiss your ass. Until you start passing out checks, no one here will be kissing your ass.

  18. Dave says:

    “So your solution , as a solution driven guy, is to remove all the men?”

    Tongue in cheek or is that what you believe I was saying?

    “Please complete this sentence” “Fathers can and should have a role, but they are men and men are… ” MISOGYNISTIC. Please tell me you are joking and really did know that was the word that completed the sentence!

    I think that completes this thread for me. I’ll try to write with more clarity next time.

  19. pandora says:

    @Dave

    Hmm… this is interesting. I wouldn’t have completed the sentence that way. I was expecting you to say unaware, clueless – something along those lines.

  20. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Cassandra
    No one kisses my ass, thank God. Another imagined sack of shit that you impose because you haven’t got anything better to say.

    Your trademark here is to chuck shit at any one.

    It’s either intellectual weakness o one very, very bitter person that does it so easily. Which one are you?

  21. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Steve

    Difficult to understand you – ever. Your retorts are bent, twisted with a big “ah ha” at the end. Kind of like Bagdad Bob as the bombs fell around him.

  22. pandora says:

    Obviously, we can’t have this conversation.

  23. cassandra_m says:

    Obviously. Because ATIAM is clearly exercised that he isn’t controlling the content of the conversation here.

    If you aren’t interested in what happens here, you don’t need to type delawareliberal.net in your browser. There are plenty of places where the resentful male class can hang out and get their resentment on. Good luck in your adventures in resentments.

  24. Liberal Elite says:

    @P “Obviously, we can’t have this conversation.”

    What surprises me is that you thought you could.
    That could be one of the tenets behind #YesAllWomen?

  25. Aint's Taking it Any More says:

    Pat yourselves on the back. You’ve risen above the fray.

  26. pandora says:

    Far be it for me to point out that ATIAM hasn’t addressed one point I made. Not one of his comments contained any substance. (I’ll prepare myself for the “You wouldn’t understand substance! (insert name calling)” deflection.)

    What he has done is display, quite spectacularly, why this conversation won’t happen (he’s too invested to let a back and forth discussion occur) and, in the end, he actually makes my point through his vitriolic comments. He might as well as typed “Shut up! You’re stupid!” 100x.

    Spamming this thread is just another way to shut the conversation down – it also makes the thread all about him.

  27. Liberal Elite says:

    @ATiAM “Pat yourselves on the back. You’ve risen above the fray.”

    Not completely. I took the time to laugh at people like you.

  28. ben says:

    Pandora,
    A lot of the places in my comment that you responded to as if it were directed a you, were comments on the thread in general. It could have been directed at anything I read that I didn’t write. I jumped into the conversation, because it looked interesting, I had something say, and as usual, it spiraled from there.

    Other than that, I’m going to back off this entire conversation and perhaps pick it up if we ever run into each other at a Drinking Liberally, or something.
    Hardly any of what I was trying to say seems to have been effectively communicated…. It’s actually quite frustrating, because I really AM trying to have a deep conversation, but as we agree, the internet isnt quite the right venue for when tone and stuff matters. (for example, I KNOW we’ve talked about anatomy terms being used as slurs….. that bit was all hyperbole and meant to be a joke… it failed) SO….. think I’m putting down the “keyboard shovel” in favor of a “verbal rope ladder”.
    CHEERS!

  29. fightingbluehen says:

    This post + Bill Clinton x his enabler = paradox.
    Your politics ≥ your principles.

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