The Misconceptions of Misandry

By Zachary

Feminism is incredible. I consider feminism to be one of the greatest and most wonderful movements of the twentieth and twenty first century. I believe strongly in the closure of the pay gap, in the right to have an abortion, and I believe that women should be entitled to the same opportunities as men, they shouldn’t be expected to fill a certain gender role, they shouldn’t be expected to have children, they should be expected to live their lives the way that they want to live them. I consider myself to be a feminist, I am a man, but I am also a feminist. But there’s a new word that has caught my attention lately, and that word is misandry. For those of you that don’t know, misandry is the strong dislike or hatred of men because of their sex, in essence, it’s the male version of misogyny. There is a sizeable group of Misandrists that call themselves feminists, however, I’m not going to give them the benefit of calling them that, because feminism is a movement about equality, something that misandrists are definitely not advocates for. Misogyny is an important global problem that must be dealt with, but what about misandrism? Is the hatred of men widespread enough to be taken as a serious issue? In my opinion, yes it is, because while misogyny is declining all around the world (this is not my opinion by the way, these are actual proven facts taken from extensive statistic research), misandry has an immense capacity to grow, and currently it’s often not spoken out against, and it’s even seen as a good thing! Before I begin my arguments for why misandry is a relevant problem on the same scale as misogyny, perhaps some historical background on the history of gender roles and patriarchy could be of use. Gender roles have been around since prehistory, and for most of the time humans have spent on the planet, it was useful, even necessary sometimes. Gender roles helped with the survival of our species, and later on it contributed to more stable social orders.

But modern society has outgrown its traditional gender roles, gender has become much more fluid, and enforcing ridged rules based on the organ between your legs is not only unnecessary, but it’s incredibly unjust. Patriarchy has a much more complex and ultimately more baffling history, historians don’t really know how it became prominent in nearly all social orders. Patriarchy definitely discriminates against women, but one of the often overlooked things about the patriarchy is that it oppresses men as well (this is the part where all of the misandrist women reading this begin to get angry). Men are expected to have no emotion, they’re expected to be all macho and strong and stuff like that, but that’s just not realistic. This patriarchal view of men causes them considerable challenges in western society, and this is where I’m going to ramp up the controversy about this article because I’m going to make my case for how society contributes to the oppression of men (yes, I’m going to argue that men have oppressive things in society, I’m not saying that women don’t suffer from oppression as well, equality has not been achieved in society, if you must squabble about who is most oppressed, please do so in comments, I’m not going to give you my opinion, I am not a woman and therefore I have not felt distinctly female prejudice but ladies, keep in mind that you have not experienced life as a man either). As a man I am “privileged” to know that if ever I’m sexually assaulted or raped, my court case will most likely be thrown out, and not taken seriously because sexual assault and domestic abuse is usually not taken seriously when the defendant is a man. If ever I get a divorce and lobby for the custody of my children, I will have the “privilege” of being at a disadvantage, as custody battles are won disproportionately by women. I could go on and on about these male problems in society, but I think that I’ll save my breath and say that lastly, I have the “privilege” of being demonized because of the organ between my legs, kind of like women are. Funny how that is huh?

The quality of discourse surrounding misandry is absolutely pitiful and disgusting. Articles from websites that are supposed to be professional journalism sites are full of reporters twisting data, demonizing men, and denying the existence of misandry, and the ones that are defending men and not denying the existence of misandry are all written by extreme misogynists who use misandry to preach about how feminism is evil, and it’s a “man hating cult” (I swear to god, that’s an actual quote from a men’s rights website, maybe men’s rights would be taken more seriously if it was more than just slander). The Guardian is my particular least favourite as its reporters seek to justify misandry, and claim that it doesn’t exist and is irrelevant and that all people who call misandrists out on being misandrists are stupid, insecure misogynists, and even Buzzfeed, a website that I usually find to be very good about rights issues has gotten in on the trend of pretending that misandry doesn’t exist, all of their content concerning misandry is nothing but passive aggressive sarcasm that has an underlying message of: no one cares that you find this offensive, you don’t matter because you’re a man. It’s amazing how double standards are so disgustingly prevalent.

And now, I will begin ripping even more into the misandrists who insist that misandry isn’t real (or if it is real, that it’s not oppressive and ultimately insignificant).

First of all, misandry IS REAL, anthropologists and many feminists will back me up on this, but I hear arguments all the time about how it isn’t. one of the arguments that I hear the most, is that misandry can’t be real, because it’s impossible for the minority to oppress the majority (first of all that is absolutely not true, there are literally thousands of examples in which they did JUST THAT, for evidence you could look to literally any empire ever in human history, majority rule only really took shape with the rise of democracy), but if you look at the numbers, you’ll find that the people in question are in fact not the minority. A nationwide study in the United States in 2014 showed that 23% of women and 16% of men identify themselves as feminists, but only 15% of the people polled identified themselves as anti-feminist, and the vast majority of people who identified as neither feminist nor anti-feminist stated that they believe in equal rights between the sexes. Some people don’t count 50% of those people as they are men, but to exclude over one third of your very advocates and identify them as outsiders just seems foolish. Misandry is giving feminism a bad name! Misandrists are literally alienating their own advocates! As well as people who may in time become advocates, misandry is making people hate feminists. This shows that misandry is not only a significant problem in society, but it’s a problem for the very movement it hopes to empower and promote!

Then there’s the argument that misandry is purely a joke designed to satirise misogyny, and that misandry is actually one men’s side and that it seeks to tear down the masculine archetype. That, ladies and gentleman, is possibly the most ridiculous thing that I have ever heard in my life. WHO ON EARTH THOUGHT THAT WAS A GOOD IDEA?! Saying that misandrous jokes make a positive impact on society, is like saying that racist jokes make people less racist (spoiler alert, they don’t). Let me give you an analogy for why using misandry as a way to combat misogyny is both ridiculous, and a terrible idea. Say you are a police officer, and you know that there is a murderer on a crowded street, you know that he’s there, but you don’t know who he is, or what he looks like. After analyzing the situation, you decide the best way to deal with the murderer, is to detonate a bomb in the middle of the street. Sure, you just killed dozens of innocent people, but at least you got the murderer! You see? It doesn’t make sense, the bomb is misandry, the murderer is misogynists, and the corpses of innocent people are all the men you alienate to weed out the one bad one, those men now feel terrible about themselves, and they probably don’t like you. And once word reaches the families of all the dead, you have hundreds more murderers than you did before, because they all now want your blood.

Men are just as sensitive as women, and misandry seeks to victimize them, and destroy their self-esteem, it causes men who have low self-esteem to feel terrible about themselves, and they have done nothing to women, they are not misogynists, and Misandrists are telling them that they deserve to feel terrible. Misandry can contribute to the male suicide rate being higher than it is (the suicide rate for men is significantly higher than for women by the way), it contributes to low self-esteem in men, and it’s just plain mean quite frankly. Some misandrists argue that to achieve equality for women, men must be subjugated, and demonized, but I refuse to believe this, because fighting fire with gasoline doesn’t work, hate just breeds more hate, and there’s nothing equal about that. Some misandrists also say that misandry is like sticking your tongue out at a school yard bully, but that is demonstrably false, if you’re a misandrist, even if you think it’s just a joke, you’re the bully, and you’re just flipping off your friends.

To finish this very passionate report, remember this: HATE BREEDS HATE. We as humans cannot foster equality through demeaning others. I am a feminist, and I am sick and tired of being demonized because I have “privileges”, both genders have advantages and disadvantages, we need feminists to tackle inequalities that face women today, but we also need to recognize misandry for what it is: hateful rhetoric that makes people feel terrible, and hate feminists.

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