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Is Antifeminism Useful For Men's Rights? Mostly Yes Sometimes No

Updated on September 12, 2016
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Is Antifeminism Useful For Men's Rights?

Karen Straughan On Feminism, Free Speech And Men's Rights Talk Starts At 32:55

Prof. Christina Hoff Sommers On The Crisis Facing Men And Boys

Prof. Christina Hoff Sommers On False Domestic Violence Myths

Prof. Christina Hoff Sommers Discusses The Feminist Fraud On Rape Statistics

Anti What Exactly?

It is a given that the men's human rights movement supports legitimate women's rights advocacy. The reality is modern mainstream gender feminism is an ideology and is not synonymous with women's rights. They are two different things. With that said, a rather fundamental question has frequently been discussed within the men's human rights movement. Is antifeminism useful for the men’s human rights movement?

When it comes to mainstream ideological or gender feminism, the answer is certainly yes. Patriarchy theory, the Duluth model and other feminist dogma, incites a hatred of men and completely ignores the reality that discrimination, oppression and violence affect men as well. Indeed even the mere discussion of men's rights sparks feminist censorship and even violent protest (as we saw at the University of Toronto). This was a topic that Karen Straughan (Girlwriteswhat) discussed in her talk at Ryerson University (see adjacent video above, particularly 1:20:25-1:26:35). A campus that had previously denied women (yes that's right, women) the right to speak about men's issues and form a men's issues group.

However despite all of the misandry in modern mainstream feminism, it is my personal opinion that there are feminists on the fringe of the feminist movement, that are authentic advocates of women’s rights. That is, they practice what they preach without bigotry or hypocrisy. These feminists do not cry NAFALT (not all feminists are like that) when other feminists promote bigotry. Instead they speak out against it along with men’s human rights advocates. Prof. Christina Hoff Sommers is one such individual. A person I have immense respect for. When I was still at high school and long before I had discovered the men’s human rights movement, I had heard of her campaign to raise public awareness of the boy crisis in education and her warnings about the radicalisation of the feminist movement. Sommers is still defending men and boys alongside Dr. Helen Smith, Erin Pizzey and Suzanne Venker at womenformen.org.

I wanted to write this article, because I wanted such feminists within feminism to know that there are people in the men’s human rights movement like myself, that are supportive of what you are doing. Sommers is trying to get the feminist movement to turn itself around and reform it. Now there are quite a few people in the men’s human rights movement, that think such a move is a lost cause. That the word feminism is simply too tainted now, to carry around anymore. They might be right, I don’t know. Personally I am very supportive of what these dissident feminists are trying to do and I want to see them succeed.

Christina Hoff Sommers is setting an example. It is an example that is really hard for other bigoted feminists to ignore, because it threatens to undermine their own legitimacy to power. Her conduct is that good it makes the rest of them look inept. As feminism becomes more and more detached from reality, feminists like Sommers are going to gain more and more influence within the feminist movement. A voice of sense and reason is very appealing to people when they are surrounded by the insane. If feminists ask me who they should rally behind, this is the person. Even if Sommers does fail to save feminism from itself, it is my belief that the path she has set, will lay a foundation for a new women’s rights movement to emerge from the ashes of modern feminism. One free of hateful dogma, ideological thinking and bigotry.

Ideally what I would like to see, is dissident feminists like Sommers banding together with men’s human rights activists. I want us to encircle the man hating bigots within mainstream feminism on all sides. Flush the bigots out from their positions of power and influence and then once the dust has settled, form a partnership between the two movements (they each keep their independence but form a cooperative partnership).

Prof. Christina Hoff Sommers Introducing Freedom Feminism

Option A, Option B And Then There Is Option X

Sommers is trying to promote a new brand of feminism at the moment called, “Freedom Feminism”. Or feminism reformed minus all of the man hating ideological dogma and an emphasis on facts rather than untestable hypotheses and myths. Frankly for what she done for men and boys and for speaking out against bigotry and hate within feminism, I think she deserves a chance. I am going to give her that chance. I have no doubt that a number of people within men’s rights will disagree with me. Maybe I am wrong about this, I don’t know. What I do know, is I trust Sommers and I know she is supportive of men’s rights. Her actions for men and boys should not be ignored. Neither should her criticism of modern feminism. I think she has earned the full support of the men’s rights community.

I do not want to alienate her or dissident feminists like her. I want to support her and other dissident feminists. For those that disagree with me, I want you to ponder this-Imagine how much more quickly we could remove the barrier of mainstream feminism that is standing in the way of men’s rights, if we worked with dissident feminists to transform the feminist movement from within. I am not going to get caught up in ideological conflict when I see such an opportunity. The interests of men’s rights are far more important than clinging to some rigid position and failing to budge when things change.

With that said, I am not arrogant enough to believe I have all the answers. This is just my opinion on the matter. I believe that the men's human rights movement needs to be strategic and pick the occasional diamond in the rough. Lets not shut ourselves off from powerful allies and ignore the value in unconventional approaches to success.

If dissident feminists and men's human rights activists banded together, it would be a gender ideologues worst nightmare. Lets make that nightmare happen.

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  • MasculistFeminist profile image
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    Ryan 3 years ago from Australia

    To Rob-From my perspective as a man, Sommers successfully put the boy crisis in education in the public spotlight and has at least somewhat helped bring an awareness of the lies, ideological nonsense and misandry of mainstream feminism to the media (as has men's rights recently). Neither of these things have been easy, given the association of our media with feminism and the attitude of the movement to these issues. Nonetheless she has had success in getting a message out to the public and this has at least partly shifted media and political attention away from the narrative of mainstream "gender" feminism. Hence the outrage and condemnation by many feminists. You have to admire an individual that has the integrity to stand up against hundreds (if not thousands) of her own peers and question the core doctrine of her own movement, knowing full well she will ostracised for it. For that, Sommers has won my utmost respect.

    "I also see many ordinary women ignorantly just coasting along and reaping the benefits of feminist lies."

    I would agree with that statement. I would also add that I see many ordinary men ignorantly just coasting along until they get screwed over by our legal, education and government institutions or when they see the impact this gynocentric society and culture is having on their own son's. Then suddenly men's rights is relevant to them. Then there are the white knights that willingly go along and support the feminist ideology for personal or political gain, knowing full well the negative impact it is having on our society. Joe Biden and Barack Obama both come to mind.

    "So I wonder how useful this approach will be...."

    My opinion is that those involved in men's rights need to consider all the options on the table and this includes even those that are less conventional. I honestly don't know how useful it will be to attempt to reform feminism. All I know is that attacking hateful ideologies like feminism by eating away at it from within as well as from the outside, has it's merits. I am certainly not suggesting that men's rights becomes subsumed by some new reformed feminist movement. Men need their own independent voice.

    "What are your thoughts since you published this?"

    The general consensus I have received from people on Reddit and elsewhere since writing this article, is feminism has passed a point of no return. Reforming it now is too little too late.

    I would agree with that consensus. My gut feeling is that feminism has become associated with things far too hateful for it to have anything more to do with legitimate human right's advocacy. The further I probe into the underbelly of the feminist movement, the worse it seems to get. When a movement has had a long history of prominent leaders publicly advocating male genocide in academia (and elsewhere) and has done nothing about such bigotry except to support such individuals further, then it is time to move on and start something fresh. It is like trying to reform Nazism.

    Women's rights was around before feminism and it will be around after feminism has imploded. It is the brand name of feminism that is finished and not women's rights advocacy. Having said all of that, I am one person, with one opinion. I cannot say with certainty that it is impossible to reform feminism, it is just unlikely from my point of view.

    Will I support people like Sommers who have stood up for men and boys and whom face the seemingly insurmountable challenge to start a new reformed branch of feminism? Yes absolutely. Why? Because I feel such a change will accelerate the inevitable implosion of the feminist movement and leave a path for legitimate women's rights advocacy to surface from it's ashes. Sometimes the struggle is more important than success or failure. It can be symbolic and has historically brought about the collapse of ideologies and totalitarian power structures. So Sommers attempt is not in vain even if she fails (which she more than likely will). It will be the fallout from her life-long challenge that will do the terminal damage.

    So I am supportive of what she is trying to do, even though I don't think it will succeed.

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    Rob 3 years ago

    I understand where you're coming from with this, but I see such hostility from many feminists towards these women and I am not clear on what exactly they are achieving outside of the hype, which I will be looking into. I also see many ordinary women ignorantly just coasting along and reaping the benefits of feminist lies. So I wonder how useful ths approach will be. What are your thoughts since you published this?

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