The secret to playing the victim: Why #YesAllWomen is so important

Feminists have made quite the spectacle of Elliot Rodger’s murder spree. They have used it as a piece of propaganda, and done so in an atypically successful fashion. Yes, there has been much push-back, and the broader culture is not buying the feminist argument hook, line, and sinker. Yet feminists have managed to overtake the discussion in social media and on news networks like MSNBC.

This has prompted dozens of articles bashing men and the men’s rights movement, and plenty of self-congratulatory backslapping from feminists. Many of the articles are the same: men’s rights activists made Elliot Rodger hate and murder women (and some other people), men feel entitled to women’s body, society is oppressive against women, men prey on women constantly, only feminism is the answer, and so on. I normally would not comment on such nonsense, yet sense it has flooded the internet to such a degree I feel compelled to address at it. One article stood out.

Salon featured a piece by Rebecca Solnit. She wrote:

It was a key match in the World Cup of Ideas. The teams vied furiously for the ball. The all-star feminist team tried repeatedly to kick it through the goalposts marked Widespread Social Problems, while the opposing team, staffed by the mainstream media and mainstream dudes, was intent on getting it into the usual net called Isolated Event. To keep the ball out of his net, the mainstream’s goalie shouted “mental illness” again and again. That “ball,” of course, was the meaning of the massacre of students in Isla Vista, California, by one of their peers.

All weekend the struggle to define his acts raged. Voices in the mainstream insisted he was mentally ill, as though that settled it, as though the world were divided into two countries called Sane and Crazy that share neither border crossings nor a culture. Mental illness is, however, more often a matter of degree, not kind, and a great many people who suffer it are gentle and compassionate. And by many measures, including injustice, insatiable greed, and ecological destruction, madness, like meanness, is central to our society, not simply at its edges.

[…] The murderer at Isla Vista was also repeatedly called “aberrant,” as if to emphasize that he was nothing like the rest of us. But other versions of such violence are all around us, most notably in the pandemic of hate toward and violence against women.

In the end, this struggle over the meaning of one man’s killing spree may prove to be a watershed moment in the history of feminism, which always has been and still is in a struggle to name and define, to speak and be heard. “The battle of the story” the Center for Story-Based Strategy calls it, because you win or lose your struggle in large part through the language and narrative you use.

I agree with Solnit that “the meaning of one man’s killing spree may prove to be a watershed moment in the history of feminism.” It revealed feminists to be shallow opportunists willing hijack people’s deaths to bash half the human population. Six people died. Four of them were men. Three of them were viciously stabbed to death. The killer specifically stated in his manifesto that he intended to kill two of them — his roommates — because he did not like them.

Feminists glossed over those men’s deaths in favor of turning this into an example of violence against women. This is despite that the majority of people killed by the killer were male, despite that the majority of victims of random violence are male, and despite that violence in general but against women specifically has fallen every year in the United States for nearly two decades.

Feminists also revealed the pathological fear our society places on women. The vast majority of women are not victims of violence. However, our society teaches women to fear men, and feminists reinforce that idea by adding pathology to these phantom men. Now the men are not random devils to be avoided. No, now they are oppressors bent on keeping women down, and they are everywhere. Just like agents in the Matrix, any and every man and boy could be one of them.

This is ridiculous, paranoid misandry. What makes it worse is that lost in this feminist “discussion” are the victims. We are not talking about the six lives lost. We are not talking about how their murders could have been prevented. The person who killed them was mentally unstable. He had been for several years. There is no reason he should have been able to buy a gun, let alone seven. There is no reason why his instability should have been missed.

Those two factors — mental health issues and the ease of buying a gun — always crop up in these massacres. This is why they happen. Not because of men. Not because of “toxic masculinity.” These are all red herrings. These massacres happen (albeit rarely) because people who snap have easy access to dangerous weapons.

And to illustrate this point, keep in mind that Japan, India, and China have far more “misogynistic” cultures yet do not have anywhere near the level of general violence, let alone violence against women, the United States does. This is not about “misogyny.” It is about mental health.

It is unfortunate, however, that feminists are too blinded by playing the victim to see that.

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8 thoughts on “The secret to playing the victim: Why #YesAllWomen is so important

  1. Pingback: The secret to playing the victim: Why #YesAllWomen is so important | Manosphere.com

  2. Feminists glossed over those men’s deaths in favor of turning this into an example of violence against women. This is despite that the majority of people killed by the killer were male, despite that the majority of victims of random violence are male, and despite that violence in general but against women specifically has fallen every year in the United States for nearly two decades.
    I wouldn’t say they glossed over the deaths of those men but rather swallowed them up for the sake of “it was because of misogyny”. In their eyes Rodger killed those men because he hated women. Their deaths weren’t ignored, they were appropriated (or co-opted) for feminism.

  3. ” Feminists glossed over those men’s deaths in favor of turning this into an example of violence against women. This is despite that the majority of people killed by the killer were male, despite that the majority of victims of random violence are male, and despite that violence in general but against women specifically has fallen every year in the United States for nearly two decades.

    Feminists also revealed the pathological fear our society places on women. The vast majority of women are not victims of violence. However, our society teaches women to fear men, and feminists reinforce that idea by adding pathology to these phantom men. Now the men are not random devils to be avoided. No, now they are oppressors bent on keeping women down, and they are everywhere.”

    This was the exact same thing I attempted to say to a feminist commenter of mine when she wrote a post about this tragedy. To her and her commenters, it was all about patriarchy, misogyny, and hatred of women. I gently pointed out what you’ve written here…and was told once again that it was solely due to patriarchal oppression. I gave other examples, along with further information about Elliot’s battles with mental illness…this comment was not allowed through.

    I would have a lot more respect for feminists if they didn’t remind me so much of religious fundamentalists. It’s as though they have already made up their minds about X, and any different opinions about X means the speaker is either a misogynist or has internalized a self hatred of their own sex.

    Thanks for this post, Soldier. It’s much needed.

  4. I think this and the slanted reporting of Boko Haram may be a tipping point in the way the public views feminism. They are showing their true opportunist colors and their complete lack of compassion for male victims. Feminist knee-jerk reactions increasingly belie their obvious anti-male bigotry, and that’s becoming more obvious to everyone.

  5. First, something funny which has been successful in ‘subverting ‘ the YesAllWomen hashtag:

    https://twitter.com/hashtag/yesalldogs

    Plenty of funny posts on there about the “petriarchy” and how “Hello Kitty” is an unrealistic beauty standard, and how Tom is always demonized in Tom and Jerry because of RodentPriviledge. And some pushback, some from funny people pretending to be or defend DOGS from all the unfair pro-cat hate, and some from real feminists butt-hurt they are being mocked. My favorite response to this is when one of them complained a day or two ago and his own words were parroted back at him by an ostensible cat.

  6. Now as to my bone to pick with you: guns.
    Let’s ignore the fact that the majority of deaths and injuries in this tragedy were caused by a knife or knives and the car.
    Fair enough, in hindsight, he shouldn’t have gotten guns.
    But he got them legally after passing background checks.
    Remember Rodger had HELP – not just access to help – but was actively BEING helped when this rampage occurred. His parents had been trying to help him via assisted living and etc for years.

    Let me “pull a number out of my butt”. Lets say for the sake of argument that 1/1000 people who are currently legally prevented from getting guns due to mental illness might SNAP and commit some big act of violence. This seems to match the real world incidence of these rare occurrences and often we find they weren’t getting the mental health help they needed. Rodgers was getting such help. In spades. I’d say to “pull another number…” that 1 out of one million mentally ill people in Rodgers situation might do what he did. I think we can both agree that we aren’t talking about a ‘big problem’ here.

    I suppose you could change the law in California (already one of the toughest in the country) to say that anyone who has ever been proscribed an anti-psychotic for any reason (Rodgers was prescribed one and did not take it) can’t get a gun. Because Rodgers passed all the current background checks. It wasn’t that the gun dealer didn’t do his /her due diligence.

    But then I start to think about how much damage COULD be done in a car, and I start to wonder if we should let anyone who has ever been prescribed (once again to cover our political asses we’ll make it for ANY reason…no need for nuance when we defend the children!)an anti-psychotic drive.
    But then I get to thinking: why stop there? Sometimes depressed people kill not only themselves but take others with them. Maybe we should ban firearms/driving from anyone who has ever been proscribed an anti-depressant….

    Now, more to the point it’s not like ‘gun free’ zones are such places of security and warmth. I currently live in Baltimore city and loathe it because of the utter hypocrisy and stupidity in their policies. I can’t have taser, pepper spray, nor can I carry a handgun. Meanwhile this city (though it varies by neighborhood, sometimes tremendously I’ll just talk as a whole) is probably the most unsafe place in Maryland. Because of all the illegal guns and the illegal drugs.

    Meanwhile in Carrol and other rural counties of Maryland legal gun ownership is far more wide-spread yet murders per capita are much, much lower.

    I don’t think this has much to do with ‘easy access ‘ to guns. It seems to me this is mostly about mental health misdiagnosis, the difficulty of getting non-committed people to ‘take their meds’, and a rather stunning sense of entitlement.

    And meanwhile in Canada, land of the Gun Free, and home of the Brave and Non-violent:

    http://www.cnn.com/2014/06/05/world/canada-shooting/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

  7. Ahh, seems I got the #yesalldogs and #yesallcats tags mixed up. And yes, this whole thing is hilarious and a tremendous spoof on the #yesallwomen hashtag:
    The real Jon Brodkin ‏@jbrodkin May 31

    sad that #yesalldogs is trying to co-opt the #yesallcats movement, talk about entitlement
    Expand

    Shawn O’Malley ‏@shawnyboi321 May 30

    Because I am there for you rich & poor, sad & happy, sick & well. Because I will always lick u no matter what. #YesAllDogs #tailsofjoy

    Josh Filipowski ‏@funnyflips May 29

    Strangers just think they can pet me #YesAllDogs

    Legally Inebriated ‏@TheFrattitude May 29

    #YesAllDogs bc when people want to pet Daisy they ask me instead of her. pic.twitter.com/MNcmsEWbk4

    Real MBFL CultLeader ‏@RachelDaly12 May 26

    #YesAllDogs lol the ball is way to big for her mouth pic.twitter.com/xQ8Mf26HzV

    Real MBFL CultLeader ‏@RachelDaly12 May 26

    #YesAllMen #YesAllBlackPeople #YesAllAlbinos #YesAllDogs #YesAllSquirrels

    ★im zac efron lol★ ‏@itsjaredmv May 26

    #yesalldogs because I don’t need my oppressive owner to tell me what to do 🐶 pic.twitter.com/xkaiOh9xmd

    kelby doyle ‏@k3lbb May 26

    #YesAllDogs because my dog can’t be on beaches 365 days of the year look how sad she is pic.twitter.com/x0JPZ1Ed5o

    mnt kilimanjargeaux ‏@CrispyMarge May 25

    R.I.P to all the brave hotdogs that gave their lives this weekend to feed the american spirit. #yesalldogs

  8. Clarence, my issue is that someone in his position should not have had access to guns. If he were being treated and his therapists understood how unstable he was, which appears to be the case, why was Rodger not disallowed to purchase a gun? I do not think all mentally ill people should be barred from buying guns, yet it seems odd that someone with a history of mental illness could easily buy one.

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