Equality means equality for everyone.
I have been asked to contribute a regular segment to a new podcast “the pendulum effect”. I’ve linked to it on the left so please check it out. I think you’re going to like it. The latest episode has an interview with none other than Warren Farrell himself.
The pieces that I will be contributing to the podcast will be focused mainly on gender related news items. I will also be recoding these segments as videos and putting them onto YouTube. This particular video is featured in the show, but it is something I have always wanted to address and what a fortuitous situation to finally do so.
I would like describe what I understand the term “the pendulum effect” to mean. I myself have used this analogy in the past and it about time I expand on what I believe it to mean. I have broken down the pendulum effect into chronological stages and I have cited feminism as an illustration of the effect, even though it could be applied to other civil rights issues such as black rights and homosexual rights.
For complex historical reasons beyond the scope of this article, a civil rights need is identified on behalf of a group. The pendulum effect is viewed as bipolarity between two groups. With the group on the left deemed as being the oppressed group and the group in the right as being the oppressors. The relationship may be between women and men, blacks and whites or homosexuals and heterosexuals.
The oppressed group does indeed suffer from legitimate grievances. They become aware of the need to change their standing and push the pendulum of equal rights with their actions, to correct these grievances and to improve their image in the zeitgeist.
They face some resistance from either side, but they also face a lot of support from the oppressor side, who truly emphasises with their plight. This is the legitimate stage of the movement as the oppressed side gains the rights that they clearly should have. Luminaries of the men’s right movement such as Glenn Sacks and Warren Farrell freely admit that there are genuine gains that feminism has achieved, things such as legislation that codifies the right to equal pay such as the equal pay act of 1963 in the U.S. and 1970 in the U.K., the right to own property and to object to genuinely misogynistic attitudes as can be seen in the old style advertisements and public service announcements. I agree with this attitude personally. There is no such thing as a civil rights movement that has done no good. This is the legitimate and honourable stage of the movement. The pendulum is even.
The transition between this step and the last is hard to identify as the oppressed group transitions from generally doing good to doing bad. The oppressed group now has a respected and powerful lobby acting on its behalf that can affect the law, at this point no reasonable person could describe the group as being “oppressed” anymore, but the movement has turned into an industry of grievance mining, looking under every rock for signs of oppression and slights.
It is important to emphasise the members of the group are not lying to keep up the appearance if being oppressed, they truly believe it, but they are in too deep and lack the ability to holistically view the progress that their group has made, to take “yes” for an answer. The “oppressions” that their group supposedly suffers become more and more academic and created out of whole cloth. The goals of the group come more from the radical activist members, who mostly reside in academia. Issues that they choose to fight for include things such as redefining language, redefining history, redefining their definition of oppression and re-characterising the successes of the movement into further examples of oppression.
A prime example of manufacturing problems is to me, one of the most reprehensible aspects of modern feminism. This is where feminism has achieved a world where women have no less opportunity than men, can take any degree they want to and choose their own career. And then when women do not flock to careers that feminists want them to, they cites this as proof of work that still needs to be done for women’s rights. I think that women who feel empowered to enter the fields they want to enter means that the work of women’s rights is mostly done. To spin the liberation of women into an attempt to further victimise them is a disgusting act that is to spit in the eye of the good achievements that feminism has made.
The worst effect of this illegitimate phase of the movement is to brainwash the younger members of the group into hating men. The feminists have already refined history and distorted the facts to where, as a feminist said in an email to me, half of women are raped and the fraction of feminist haters dwindles in comparison to the number of men who hate women. Yeah, we sure are terrible.
None of this has any relation to the truth but what is to be the expected outcome if a young woman is told that men as such beasts? I’ll tell you the outcome because I saw it firsthand when I graduated in 2005. The young women I went to university with were angry, they were petulant and a hostile and felt the need to partake in constant belittling comments and man bashing. With an angry youth, the road is paved to the next step.
The discourse has become one sided. The feminists are seen as the authorities in the problem of equality as the status quo is viewed as being sexist and thus un-needing of representation. The feminists are now running a dictatorship of opinion and with a background noise of resentment and manufactured oppressions they start to act in a very hypocritical way. The true idea of equality has been lost, they have a new definition of the word. Equality of outcome. Sameness.
Departments of women’s health spring up, ministers for women are appointed and special programs for women are created. All of these are designed to help a beleaguered minority get the leg up they apparently need. With a population of hostile women some truly horrendous laws are passed, men’s achievements are deemed to be on the back of women. If girls are underachieving in school then they are being underserved whereas if the girls are overachieving then this is a sign of their natural superiority and empowerment. There exists no compassion for the suffering of males, many feminists will come straight out and tell you tough shit – they’ve been oppressing us for so long that it’s our turn now.
Witness the most obscene situation. The generation of women who have never had it so good being the most aggrieved and punishing the generation of men who have oppressed them the lease and want to commiserate the most. The pendulum is well and truly on the other side now.
The so called oppressors are now the oppressed and the cat’s out of the bag. Men are hit hard, their children are taken away whilst they are treated like criminals and are told when they can see them. They die younger, have to retire later, get shafted in divorce, suffer harsher sentences, are lagging in school, graduate less and are assaulted everyday by man bashing.
They can be sentenced to 18 years as a serf if a woman steals their sperm, they have no choice about being a parent, less is spend on their health concerns, they spend more on insurance, they can get passed over in lieu of a less qualified female at work and every morning on the tube ride to work they get tut-tutted at by adverts as being a bunch of boozing wife beating misogynistic rapists.
Then they have to listen to some snarky little co-worker tell them that.. “It’s a man’s world!”.
It’s enough to make a fellow turn to drink. More and more guys mutter heretical thoughts at the pub. When in the company of men I get favourable reactions to my material. Organised groups like fathers for justice start up and men start voicing their opinions on youtube and through podcasts like this one.
The reaction of the feminists? In one word, hysterical. They cannot react with ideas because their belief system has long been a barren intellectual wasteland populated with unproven hypotheses, conspiracy theories and falsehoods. So they react with shaming tactics, calling us “women haters” and claiming that we want to “turn back the clock” on women’s rights. Well, I don’t want to turn back the clock, but I certainly want to push back on that pendulum.
What remains beyond the backlash step remains to be seen, people who are fighting back against the ideas of feminism might instigate a whole new pendulum effect in the opposite direction. Perhaps we are doomed to endlessly push back and forth in perpetuity. I certainly hope not. Allow me to tell you what I hope the effect of the backlash against feminism will be.
We all know that a political system in which only one side is represented is not a good thing. If one side has complete control to implement their ideas then history tells us that we can end up in a horrific situation. There are two sexes and so far we’ve been letting feminism represent all issues pertaining to gender by itself. What I want to see in the future is a two party system where both sides are represented by movements that actually represent its members. I don’t pretend that I understand a woman’s point of view I am a man not a woman, let the feminists speak for themselves and men’s rights activists speak for ourselves. This two party system will also keep the other side honest, feminism has grown sloppy and overly academic in the face of no opposition so let us shine the light of scrutiny onto feminist ideas and let the ones that don’t stand to reason scuttle from sight.
On today’s show I begin a three part interview with Dr. Warren Farrell mens’ movement leader. Before that, our regular news commentator and pundit Mark defends Denis Prager’s take on the politics of sex in marriage.
My conversation with Dr. Warren Farrell ended up being so engrossing that in order to cover all the topics we wished to explore we decided to go long. The discussion will be released in three parts, on today’s episode 2, episode 3 on January 30 and as one of two interview segments on episode 4. I hope you enjoy them all.
Dr. Warren Farrell is roundly regarded as a leading figure in the men’s movement, or better, the gender transition movement. His unique background and expertise give him a perfect vantage point from which to address men’s issues. Dr. Farrell has taught gender issues and psychology at several institutes, including Brooklyn College, Georgetown University, American University and the School of Medicine at the University of California at San Diego.
As a young graduate, Dr. Farrell was a major player in the feminist movement, especially in creating men’s groups across the US, then becoming the only man to be elected three times to the Board of Director of the National Organization for Women in New York City. Farrell was featured in media including the New York Times, the Today Show and the Phil Donahue Show, leading to his authorship of the pro-feminist book The Liberated Man.
As we discuss, in the late 80s, Farrell became increasingly convinced that feminism was rather one sided and that men’s issues were being neglected, leading to deep research on a variety of topics long taken for granted, and the publication of his landmark The Myth of Male Power, which touched on a diverse cross section of issues.
Farrell would go on to research each area in great depth, leading to the publication of 5 more books, including “Women Can’t Hear What Men Don’t Say”, a couples communication book to address the rise in divorces, “Father and Child Reunion”, to address the issue of fatherless homes and present the optimal shared parenting solution, “Why Men Earn More” to address the pay gap, and “Does Feminism Discriminate Against Men” which, among other things, called for men’s studies in academia.
However, I think at this early stage in the production of the Pendulum Effect, since many of our listeners, perhaps being in a similar position to Dr. Farrell prior to his conversion, shall we say, to a more balanced perspective on gender, might appreciate a sort of broad primer to get a feel for the nature of the issues. I’ve therefore asked Dr. Farrell on the show today to speak on his groundbreaking book The Myth of Male Power.
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Links of Interest
Exciting news! Our Pendulum Effect podcast is in the top 10 social science shows on itunes, and listed under “New and Notable.” I think that’s quite something considering we have all of 1 episode up thus far. If you haven’t yet, visit Pendulum Effect where you can listen to the pilot episode and/or subscribe to the show. You can also find us on itunes and leave a review (good or bad).
One reason to subscribe would be the exciting guests we’ve lined up, which we could use your help with if you have any questions you would like us to ask. These include:
In this book I try to correct the information and to give an accurate picture of “where the boys are.” A review of the facts shows boys, not girls, on the weaker side of an educational gender gap. Boys, on average, are a year and a half behind girls in reading and writing; they are less committed to school and less likely to go to college
A look at the sex breakdown of the CDC[Centers for Disease Control]’s suicide satistics reveals that for males aged ten to fourteen, the suicide rate increased 71 percent between 1979 and 1988. Girls attempt suicide more than boys, but it is boys who actually kill themselves more often. In a typical year (1997), there were 4,493 suicides of young people between the ages of five and twenty-four: 701 females, 3,792 males.
Unscientific studies and their effects
At the very time the AAUW [American Association of University Women] was advertising its discovery that girls were subordinates in the schools, the Department of Education published the results of a massive survey showing just the opposite…Girls read more books. They outperform males on tests of artistic and musical ability…Conversely, more boys than girls are suspended from school. More are held back and more drop out. Boys are three times as likely as girls to be enrolled in special education programs and four times as likely to be diagnosed with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder…
The historian Lynn Hunt, reviewing a history of women in western Europe, once remarked that “no one would write such a book about ‘the history of men'” – because “women” is the anomalous historical category and men as such don’t have to be explained. But neither masculinity nor feminity exists as a concept in itself. Each society has had its own specific definitions of manhood and what cultural values masculinity symbolizes. The fortitute to withstand pain, the ability to interpret a sacred text, the prowess with a special weapon, the willingness to seek revenge for a slight to family: each of these different local accents, often stressed in special rituals, constitues a particular culture’s style of masculinity. Social anthropologists try to define those styles and political activists often seek to change them. Defining masculinity itself, in other words, must interweave with defining masculinity in relation to a multitude of factors, including the context of war, which for so much of human history and in the vast majority of human cultures has been the prime place to fine oneself as a man
Ken Wiebe, fathers rights advocate with Fathers Canada: defending father’s rights, equal parenting and taking on a misandric family law system. When material from his website was used by the Status of Women’s Office as hate material, he initiated a suit against the government for defamation.
Dr. Charles Corry, President, Equal Justice Foundation, which deals with Families and Marriage, Domestic Violence against both men and women, the Courts & Civil Liberties, and Election issues.
If you have any questions you would like me to pose to these esteemed guests, send them to email@example.com. Also send ideas for topics or guests we might wish to contact.
A great example of why men need a birth control pill. An article in yesterday’s Toronto Star,is, in the words of one online commentator, proof that the pendulum, a metaphor I enjoy using, “has swung so far one way.” The family courts are horribly biased against fathers. Fathers are second parents when it comes to choosing custody solutions, but equal parents for the sake of their wallets. If you think the courts rule in the best interests of the child, consider the following excerpts from the article:
But after Anciolina asked for an increase in payments and a reduction in the time he spent with the children, Pasqualino demanded a DNA test.
Indeed, we’ll see how the courts side by default with mothers who want to keep every part of the father except his wallet as far away as possible. Best interest of the child?
When the results showed Pasqualino was not the father, he asked to be excused from paying child support and demanded he be reimbursed for tens of thousands of dollars that he had paid in the past.
This was not only ruled against, but Pasqualino is being forced to continue paying child support. How ironic that fathers can not get out of paying child support when the child is not theirs, while mothers in many jurisdictions in North America can fail to inform the father that he is a father, wait 18 years, then sue him for back custody payments. Fathers have no legal right to be with their children when they desperately want to even when the child is theirs if the mother claims it isn’t, while they can be forced to pay for a child that has been proven to not be theirs. Best interest of the child?
But according to van Rensburg [the judge], it should not be a question of whether he is the biological parent, but rather whether he was considered a parent by definition.
That’s one flexible definition! A mother can give a child away for adoption without informing the father and if he wants to claim the child he must not only show it is his biologically but that he had made every attempt to provide a physical home for the child (you can see how poorer fathers are unwanted). When a mother wishes to keep a child away from his biological father the courts create a stringent definition of “parent” that asks him to do everything up to building a house, but when a non-biological father wishes to be relieved of duty suddenly the definition required to keep him paying support is rather loose, after all for 4 years leading to the dispute the father in this article wasn’t even a joint parent, never mind in the same house. Is making it harder for a committed father to be a father while making it harder for an uninterested father to leave in the best interes of the child?
Because Anciolina can’t remember the affair, she claims she has no idea who the twins’ father is.
Precisely why we should – along with the other barrage of tests – conducted on newborn babies, also have a mandatory paternity test. If done at the time of birth, there is increased chance of identifying the actual father, rather then having a child pinned on the richest man the mother happened to have slept with around the right time period. The paternity test could be subsidized by the government using the money currently spent on genitally mutilating (or, if you’d prefer a euphemism, circumcising) half our baby boys. Then mothers would be required to inform the biological father within a certain legal time period. Fascist? Not anymore then a court forcing a father to change jobs to one that is more stressful and hence conducive to illness so that he can pay child support, then throwing him in jail if he defaults. Is a stressed out and sick father in the best interests of the child?
The judge concluded that the children should not suffer because of the parents’ wrongdoings.
It always comes down to the old “best interests of the child” protocol. At this point though, I must ask, what has any of this got to do with the best interests of the child? Whose interests would the courts be looking into if a father had been fraudulently tricking a woman into paying for a child for 16 years, potentially forcing her to switch to a more grueling job in the process, needlessly increasing the stress on her body. But then I suppose “my body, my choice” doesn’t quite count when we’re talking about a male body.
The Pendulum Effect pilot episode is now available! We managed somehow to actually meet the New Year deadline we set for ourselves! Thank you to all those involved in this new project.
Katie Kish is a longtime campus activist for science and secularism and hosts Renegade Radio, a nationally syndicated program dedicated to exploring controversial issues in religion, culture and society from an atheist’s point of view. Katie is the assistant director and field organizer for the Centre for Inquiry Ontario. She is completing her studies at York University in Toronto in Environmental Studies and Music.
On the inaugural episode of The Pendulum Effect Katie shares her experiences transitioning from traditional feminism to a more balanced equalism. She explains how she went from being the Coordinator of the Women’s Collective at the University of Victoria Radio Station and a regular blogger on women’s rights to blogging on everything from religion and the environment to health and local politics, with an eye to providing a new point of view.
You can get the latest show by:
Download: mp3 file
If you like the show, please leave us a review on itunes.