“All women are prisoners and hostages to men’s world. Men’s world is like a vast prison or concentration camp for women. This isn’t a metaphor, it’s reality. Each man is a threat. We can’t escape men. . . .
“[H]eterosexuality doesn’t exist and our ‘urges’ to bond with [men] emotionally or sexually aren’t natural drives but normal PTSD reactions to years of abuse and mind-programming.”
— Radical Wind, August 2013
When I think back on how this project began, I recall the woman whose screed against intercourse (“PIV is always rape, OK?”) led me deep into this swamp of radical feminism. It was, however, another rant by that same blogger which made me seriously explore the ideological psychosis of which her rant was a symptom.
That four-word sentence sent me off on an investigation of her sources, especially including Professor Dee Graham, whose 1994 book Loving to Survive theorized female heterosexuality as a response to male-inflicted “sexual terror,” akin to post-traumatic stress syndrome. Understanding this claim in turn required me to examine the sources cited in Graham’s bibliography, including lesbian feminists like Marilyn Frye, Adrienne Rich, Mary Daly, Audre Lorde and Charlotte Bunch. Graham even managed to work in a citation to “Starhawk” (neé Miriam Simos), the lesbian feminist who was the founding high priestess of a California-based pagan witchcraft cult known as Reclaiming. From such dubious sources Graham had propounded her theory of sexuality, based in a view of men as violent oppressors and women as victims suffering under tyrannical male supremacy. After several months of further research, I’ve begun to refer to this feminist worldview as Fear and Loathing of the Penis.
You see this in the counterfactual “rape epidemic” hysteria on college campuses, with activists at Columbia University trying to frighten prospective students — high school kids — with protests about “gender-based violence on campus.” Robert Tracinski at the Federalist examines the possibility that “rape culture” discourse represents “an attempt to create a scapegoat for the emotional dark side of promiscuity.”
It is evident that these women’s dread and contempt of masculinity arises from specific circumstances. Feminism does not cause women to hate and fear men; feminism is the political rationalization of these women’s anti-male feelings, permitting them to believe that their own unhappiness is not merely personal. It is the explanatory power of feminist theory that attracts women who do not wish to consider themselves responsible for their misfortunes, disappointments and failures, offering them a convenient scapegoat for their problems: Patriarchy.
To give you an idea of what I’m talking about, consider this recent post on Tumblr.com by an Australian woman named Kate:
I think that most of the times I feel afraid of the world, it is because there are men in it.
Men who want to hurt women; men who don’t want to hurt women but do not realise that they are doing so anyway; men who don’t want to hurt women, but do not care when they do, because whatever they want from the situation is intrinsically more important to them.
Men who you can tell are bad just by looking at them or listening to what they say; men who you instinctively feel could be bad, but you second-guess yourself because you want to believe and trust that they are good; men who you would never guess are bad in any way — whose badness doesn’t show for years, and when it does it is near-invisible to anybody else.
Men who make you feel threatened when they don’t get their own way; men who lash out and shift the focus when they don’t get their own way; men who spin every word when they don’t get their own way; men who act like children and make you their mother figure when they don’t get their own way; men who control you to get their own way, men who take what they want anyway when they don’t get their own way.
Men who do not listen to women’s words the same way they listen to other men’s; men who turn you invisible unless they want to f–k you; men who only want to be your friend because they want to f–k you; men who call you ‘intellectually dishonest’ for using emotion and context to argue a point; men who back you into corners physically, emotionally, verbally.
Men who call you ‘crazy’; ‘hormonal’; ‘irrational’; ‘emotional’, men who will not allow your anger to be recognised as a valid emotional response, or your sadness, your distrust.
Men who make you feel the most loved, safe, and cared for after they have abused you.
Men who make you question your reality by telling you with conviction that it is wrong.
Men who take away your sense of independence and self by controlling your every move, and by telling you a better way to do every little thing you’ve taught yourself.
Men who dissolve your self esteem by belittling and insulting you, and calling you names.
Men who tell you that your reasonable emotional reactions are abusive, and infringe on their rights to do whatever they want to do.
Men who do not stop whatever they are doing to you when you ask.
Men who look you in the eyes and lie to you every day to protect their double lives.
I am so tired of absorbing all of this.
Who are these men who do these things to Kate? We don’t know.
She doesn’t name them, but she is apparently surrounded by them, and we are thus unable to offer any advice or assistance to her. She is a helpless victim of men — men! men! men! — and it would seem she offers this catalog of masculine “badness” in the expectation that other women will recognize the pattern. Yet we might notice how Kate lists men’s reactions when they “don’t get their own way,” as if she can’t see that the entirety of her complaint involves her own dissatisfaction because she can’t get her own way with them. Men don’t behave the way Kate wants them to behave, men don’t say and do things the way Kate wants things to be said and done, and their failure to live up to her expectations — their unwillingness to comply with the imperious demands of Queen Kate — is proof that she is a victim of male oppression.
She is inviting us to a pity party where she is the guest of honor. If men reject that invitation, this just proves how bad men are, because they “will not allow your anger to be recognised as a valid emotional response, or your sadness, your distrust.”
Why wouldn’t male contempt for her be “a valid emotional response”? Men are the way we are in part because we must be that way in order to be recognized as men, as responsible adults. Nobody wants to hear a man complain about his problems. Women can be especially merciless in their contempt for any man who expresses a sense of emotional suffering, and many women are deliberately sadistic toward men. Some women enjoy nothing better than to insult a man and then mock him as a “whiner” if he takes notice of the insult. Women who take pride in their own cruelty toward men are invariably the same women who complain when men fail to treat them with solicitude and kindness. Such women are never able to admit that they are even partially responsible for their inability either to attract good men or to sustain relationships with the men they do attract.
Fear and Loathing of the Penis — a paranoid resentment of men, characterized by irrational suspicion — is the underlying mental condition that feminism turns into a political ideology. What disturbs me, after months of studying this phenomenon, is that this madness is both contagious and incurable. Feminism is a sort of cultural virus that, once it takes hold in a woman’s mind, makes it impossible for her to relate to men in a normal manner and, because misery loves company, she feels compelled to share her hateful anti-male attitudes with other women. If left untreated, the effects of this dangerous malady are well known.
“There are no Christian feminists, because feminism is a sort of narcissistic idolatry, wherein women deny God and instead worship themselves as their own divinity.”
— Robert Stacy McCain, Dec. 17
UPDATE: Welcome, Instapundit readers! As to envy, I have always thought Freudian psychology — “penis envy,” “Oedipus complex,” “castration anxiety,” etc. — to be a lot of mythical pseudo-scientific humbug. However, Freud did say this:
Women have but little sense of justice, and this is no doubt connected with the preponderance of envy in their mental life.
Like so much else Freud said about women, this seems insulting if read as a general statement applicable to all women. We should remember, however, that much of Freud’s practice involved treating neurotic women, the unhappy wives and daughters of the upper classes. As a description of a certain type of woman, his statement is certainly true. Envy is a poisonous emotion, and is antithetical to a sense of justice. The characteristic rage of feminists — their angry insistence that every advantage enjoyed by men is an unearned “privilege,” and that all women suffer oppression because of “male supremacy” — is entirely consistent with Freud’s observation of how “the preponderance of envy” manifests itself in the behavior of neurotic women.
UPDATE II: Linked by That Mr. G’s Blog, Brian Cragin and Doug at Daley Gator — thanks! — and our friend Doug apparently felt a need to pour salt in the wound. It should be sufficient to report facts and let people draw their own conclusions.
Of course, some conclusions are more obvious than others.
First published at TheOtherMcCain.com
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.