A Dose of (Scapegoating) Stupid v25

It happens every day. In fact, it is pretty hard to avoid it. There are some things that can only be understood with a slap on the forehead. Things so mind-boggling that one wonders how humans managed to evolve thumbs while being this mentally inept. Case in point:

On August 4th, George Sodini killed three women and himself at a gym. The news has covered this fairly well and surprisingly balanced. Perhaps the reason for this is because Sodini appeared to be an average guy who should have been capable of attracting women. While he specifically targeted women and projected much on his anger onto them, it appears that Sodini desperately wanted a relationship with them. With the release of two videos he made on YouTube, it certainly appears that Sodini was more than conflicted in his thinking. Based on his writings, it also appears that he was far from being too out of control to stop himself. He managed not to on go with his plan before, and apparently left a message in the HTML on his site claiming that he might not have gone through with his plans for the right woman.

Sodini’s isolation and possibly conflicted family history probably played the major role in is his. Ultimately, however, the responsibility lies with him. No one else can be or should be blamed for the decision he made.

Given the situation, one would think people would refrain from scapegoating others. After all, wrongfully placing blame on others is part of what led Sodini to go into that gym with guns. One would think that, however… one would be wrong:

But… here’s a list of some of the worst quotes I’ve seen from (people I think are) MRAs and anti-feminists, commenting on George Sodini, the woman-hating racist who shot 12 women, 3 of whom died, in a health club earlier this week. There’s a bunch of quotes here, but I’m sure I could have found 2 or 3 times as many if I hadn’t gotten sick of reading.*

This is not the first time feminist blogger Ampersand has had a knee-jerk reaction to a specific situation. However, the above is one of the most intellectually dishonest statements he has made.

The comments on the blogs he mentioned are disgusting. If he wants to criticize them, he is more than entitled to do so. Yet, to unfairly, with no evidence, blame MRAs and nonfeminists for those comments is quite unjustified. Sure, from a feminist standpoint those two groups make easy targets. Feminists like Ampersand do not like MRAs or nonfeminists and consider their concerns — be it domestic violence against males, male rape or father’s rights issues — completely idiotic and inconsequential. These same feminist use the two terms as pejoratives , so one can see their temptation to apply them to the other comments, just for the extra kick to the groin to those groups.

Nevertheless, the post is a tactless, distasteful, absolutely exploitative display of projection that has nothing to do with the comments or Sodini. What Ampersand did on the thread would be akin to several women mocking and excusing female-on-male physical abuse or rape, and then some male victims’ advocate calling those women feminists (because that person thinks feminists are bad people and condone those acts), immediately adding a caveat claiming that he is not saying all feminists are like that.

Of course, such backtracking never lasts long:

Nonetheless, most of these views are, in a way, accepted within those communities. No one is shocked to see these views posted; no one is banned or modded for posting these views; and the disagreements are, in many cases, rare and mild, if they come at all. In other words, the most vilely misogynistic garbage, even to the point of sympathizing with murder, is part of the spectrum of ordinary opinion, within these movements. And that’s both a cause for concern, and illustrates what’s so fucked about about the “men’s rights” movement and community.

It would help if the person making that argument had not written dozens of posts dismissing, minimizing and sympathizing with the rape boys and men to such an extent as to consider male rape negligible, harmless and inconsequential (later including this on a checklist that is used in some Women Studies courses), along with characterizing adovacy for those victims as misogynistic and wholly unnecessary.  Such a person would be in no position to make any comments about a political movement, particularly not a person who is allied with a movement in which the most vile misandrous garbage is part of the spectrum of ordinary opinion, and especially not when that person’s blog provides and links to excellent examples of the latter.

Rather than look at what Sodini did and try to understand it so that it can be prevented, feminists are taking cheap shots at men, men’s groups and projecting their anger on those groups using various feminist conspiracy theories.

Real people were hurt. Real people died. Yet, instead of even trying to discuss that in a rational way, feminists resort to the typical “blame it on teh menz” nonsense. It is beyond disrespectful to the victims to do that, just as it is beyond conceited to view oneself in a “holier than thou art” grandiose manner. The victims deserve much better than to have their injuries and deaths reduced to an infantile attack on people who had nothing to do with Sodini’s actions.

That is, by far, the greatest irony of this. Sodini reached his final point by scapegoating and blaming an entire group of people for all his problems while demanding quite a lot from them. Yet some of his critics seem, rather stupidly, content to engage in the same ill-conceived logic.

* By no means do I suggest that the linked to post represents the most common, centrist views in the feminist community. In most of the forums where I read these posts, I did see occasional disagreements with the kind of thing I am linking — although all too often, not — and of course many condemned those feminists. And, obviously, I have cherry-picked the most offensive post, not the most typical post.

About these ads

23 thoughts on “A Dose of (Scapegoating) Stupid v25

  1. In my opinion the plate of blame can be passed from person to person, but no one ever gets full. Full responsibility for such an act can only be placed on the shooter, himself. In the blog you linked, there were many comments from men who held disturbing feelings toward women; whether they were anti-feminist or not, I can’t really tell. I suppose I’d have to know the full definition of an anti-feminist to get a better idea. Actually, I hate labels – no one can fall into one lable or another completely. Does anti-feminest mean that a man has resentment for women? – what exactly does it mean? I personally stay clear of men who display entitlement complexes and I would think that men would do the same with women who displayed such complexes as well. It’s a sad, unfortunate, story, no matter what side of the street you’re standing on–me I prefer to ride in the middle of the street on a bike feeling the wind through my hair! Peace, Light and Love to you and yours. . . CordieB.

  2. I am really not surprised that Amp would take this opportunity to attack MRAs. I noticed that all of his quotes come from about 5 MRA sites but he seems to have no problem passing those 5 sources off as representing the entire movement. Just another display of feminist hypocrisy.

  3. If i can bring quotes from people in mainstream media blaming the victim when 4 women kidnapped and glued a mans genitals does that mean society is biased against men?

    no

    But quoting 5 obscure mra sites really does prove how oppressed women are….

    Women killing male babies doesn’t prove society hates men. But 1 man killing 3 women proves society hates women.

  4. My Comment to AMP:

    Amp,
    Your first assumption is that NONE of the comments that you listed make ANY valid points. Even if that assumption were 100% true, you are only taking comments from a infinitesimal number of MRA blogs (as you yourself admitted). Fact is 99.9% of MRA blogs are NOT making the comments that you are attributing to ALL MRA blogs. Hence, you are mischaracterizing the entire MRA community based on .1% of MRA blogs.

    Conversely, I observed THOUSANDS of women commenting to news stories that Steve McNair “deserved to be murdered” and that Ben Roethlisberger “deserves a false rape accusation” against him. Therefore, statistically “main stream” women are showing with their comments that they are MUCH more accepting of violence and injustice against men than the most radical of MRAs are of accepting it against women.

    –FWO

  5. Ampersand apparently wrote…

    No one is shocked to see these views posted; no one is banned or modded for posting these views; and the disagreements are, in many cases, rare and mild, if they come at all. In other words, the most vilely misogynistic garbage, even to the point of sympathizing with murder, is part of the spectrum of ordinary opinion, within these movements.

    Bit rich coming from one who bans rape victims for daring to speak out.

    However the likes of Ampersand, the Feministing crew and other blogging feminists are increasingly appearing irrelevant to me. They are not the face of feminism. They do not define it. That dubious honour belongs to the likes of Oprah Winfrey. Even our political masters are becoming less relevant as they increasingly get suckered into the media maw.

    He, or she, who preaches to the largest congregations defines the religion.

    Personally I find some of their ritual celebrations a little more than distasteful.

  6. In the aftermath of the Virginia Tech shootings, people on college campuses nationwide– faculty and staff especially– were insisting that the shooters Korean-ness not be made an issue of.

    Making an issue of the sex of the VT shooter– and the sex of this shooter– is perfectly fair game, however.

    Not surprising, though.Ampersand saves-up the ol’ bleeding heart routine for female criminals.

  7. However the likes of Ampersand, the Feministing crew and other blogging feminists are increasingly appearing irrelevant to me. They are not the face of feminism. They do not define it.

    I doubt that these people are anomalies in the feminist movement. They may not be the people in the front of the movement, but they probably are the majority of the masses behind those people. It is simply that the internet gives them a certain amount of anonymity, allowing them to speak their minds in echo chamber where they will very rarely be challenged. I am sure someone would argue the same about MRA sites, but those places do not have nearly the same traffic as feminist blogs. One could reasonably argue that those MRAs are the fringe element. It is much harder to argue that those like Ampersand are fringe feminists, particularly when his checklist excusing grossly minimizing male rape is now part of several feminist college course.

  8. You know I went back to read some more of that thread at Amp’s thinking that it might be worth it….then I read this.

    Except they do. And they hate it, because for the MRAs, feminism is a bad thing.

    MRAs don’t want equality. They want inequality, in men’s favor. They want the world that existed in the 1890s, when women were handed from father to husband, never free to be themselves. They want a world where women are beholden to their spouses, where divorce is unthinkable because it means penury, where children are a man’s property and a woman’s responsibility. They want a world where marital rape is not a crime, and where acquiescing to sex any time her husband wants it is considered part of a wife’s duties. They want a world where they call the tune, and women dance.

    What MRAs object to, in the end, is that women can leave them. That women can reject them. That women can live lives apart from them. It’s too bad, because there are parts of society that would be improved by a true men’s movement, one that focuses on the idea that masculinity is not a single thing, that men have emotions that aren’t rage or lust, that men are capable of changing a diaper, or mopping the floor, or cooking dinner. But that’s not what the MRAs are about — not at all.

    Now I know that Jeff Fecke is a anti-MRA type that will attack them without justification but I think this is pretty telling of Amp and the community as well considering that no one challenges the gross generalizations he makes here.

    That thread is just Amp putting MRAs in a barrel and inviting folks over for some shooting practice. At least some of the other offensive comments are asking questions about what MRAs are doing whereas this comment is nothing but a childish rant. Hell the readership of Glenn Sack’s place alone proves nearly all of this rubbish wrong on its own.

    Its funny when feminists get smug and recommend people find out what feminism is all about but then can’t even practice what they preach when dealing with other groups.

  9. Its funny when feminists get smug and recommend people find out what feminism is all about but then can’t even practice what they preach when dealing with other groups.

    Ironically, if people did go to that site to learn what feminism is about, what they would find would not be all that pleasant. That thread makes feminism and feminists look as hateful, bigoted and woefully uninformed as Sean Hannity’s show.

  10. Guess what?… Good ‘ol’ AMP censored my comment, completely deleted it… Hahahaha… Typical Female Supremacist tactic, censor any dissenting opinion that is based in facts and logic.

    –FWO

  11. From the look of it, Ampersand has allowed some comments to remain, although not without the typical mockery and chastisement that follows. What was in the post that he removed?

  12. TS said…

    It is much harder to argue that those like Ampersand are fringe feminists, particularly when his checklist excusing grossly minimizing male rape is now part of several feminist college course.

    I’m quite disturbed at this. Can you provide me with the detail. I’ve a mind to see if Mike Lew might have a look over it. If it’s being taught as you suggest it is very prejudicing.

    A current similar situation in my state involves the possibility that at least one of our tertiary welfare studies programs is teaching that male victims and their advocates shouldn’t be believed. The instigating agents would be Michael Fl**d and Stephen Fisher.

    These are clear and provable examples of feminists deliberately and overtly acting against the interests of male victims. Something they claim to never do.

    Note also that it’s male feminists!

  13. You can see some of the college course and multicultural material here. Since the list was first written, I have read several different people say that they planned on using it in their class. Whether they did or not, I cannot say. However, it is part of some material being taught in some schools.

  14. I feel great empathy for Sodini.

    I have always lived on the fringe of society. I completely agree with Sodini’s sentiment of alienation.

    I seem to have adapted more successfully than Sodini.

    But with just a little bit of bad luck, with just a little bit more stress, with a little bit more provocation, I could have snapped like Sodini did.

    I don’t see myself as morally better than Sodini. Perhaps I have been luckier.

  15. I do not think that Sodini snapped. He admitted in his writings that he thought as he did for quite some time. He made a conscious decision to withdraw from people, specifically from women who, under his own admission, showed interest in him. He apparently had plenty of opportunities to passed them up. Granted, perhaps he did that because of the isolation he felt. Perhaps he did it because he thought no one woman would really like him. He did seem to frame the women who did take interest in him as giving him lip-service. However, even if that were the case, the women he attacked had nothing to do with that. Usually people like Sodini hold misanthropic views. His were specifically misogynistic. Hating people who you generally isolate yourself from comes only from one’s own twisted logic.

    So to the extent that he felt isolate, he would have had my sympathy. That sympathy vanishes though because he blamed that isolation on people he never even associated with and projected his anger on the women at that gym by shooting them. I do not sympathize with people who hurt others just because they are hurt.

  16. Interesting–

    When it comes to Valerie Solanas, who self-identified as a feminist, we are told that it does not tar feminism as a whole, every movement has a lunatic fringe, it means little, etc etc.

    As for this nutcase in Pittsburgh, Amp has no problem whatsoever linking him to MRAs via apparent similarities in rhetoric even though the nutcase has never self-identified as an MRA. And lo and behold, MRAs bear full responsibility for this atrocity.

  17. Ha, Ampersand as usual. Sometimes I wonder how regularly he reads antimisandry (I am an admin over there).

    Interestingly the comments he cherry-picked from AM were
    – one that complained about the way the story is covered
    – one that feared the impact this will have on the gun laws
    – and finally 2 that can be considered more legit to critizize, but those also display frustration said individuals seem to have about women (also featuring the one idiot always saying women should not vote)

    That this doesn´t even represent 1 percent of the memberbase on AM, is another proof on the stupidity to generalize via cherry picked postings. But as I said Ampersand as usual.

    Ps.: Sometimes I wonder if the nick Ampersand is taken from “Y: The last man on earth”. Ampersand was the (male) pet monkey of the last remaining man on earth. Really curious…As much as I personally distrust the man and would never allow him to be anywhere near my cousins, brothers, foster siblings or godson, and as much as I have wondered the same thing about his choice in nickname, technically your comment could be read as an ad hominem and that is not allowed here. Please keep it civil — TS

  18. I seriously doubt he reads antimisandry at all. My guess would be that he either read the posts about MRAs on other feminist blogs and/or simply typed “George Sodini MRA” into a search engine* to see what came up and proceeded to hunt for (what he considered) the most egregious statements made on MRA sites. What is woefully ironic is that he admits that he cherry-picked comments, yet still attempts to lay the blame for Sodini’s actions and thoughts on all MRAs, antifeminists and nonfeminists. Anyone who objectively reads what he wrote would come to only one conclusion: he specifically hates nonfeminists and likes to scapegoat them even when he admits that what he is doing is grossly inaccurate. It is a terribly dishonest thing to do, however, politics have never been honest, so it is not to be unexpected.

    * Coincidentally, if one typed that phrase into a search engine, mostly feminist sites pop up, the majority of which link back to Ampersand’s post, which itself links to other feminist posts, all of which cite the same handful of unrepresentative comments. So it would appear that feminists themselves created this “problem” and they are the ones propagating the myth of huge MRA support for Sodini. This is not unlike Fox News creating talking points about Obama’s citizenship and his healthcare plan that birthers and other right-leaning people pick up and repeat, therein creating en masse the strawman they plan to attack.

  19. You might be correct….he has a user on AM though.

    (BTW, it wasn´t even meant as a personal attack, it wouldn´t surprise me that Mr Deutsch is an avid comic fan. If Ampersand ever reads this, sorry, this wasn´t meant to be offensice)

  20. Danny,

    That excerpt from one of Amp’s knowledge on the subject of feminism sounds like the garbage I had to endure in public school history class. The stuff that gave me emotional damage.

  21. Pingback: Gems of Wisdom from philatles | Single Ladies

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s