If you are anti-IBTP-on-Facebook — and no spinster aunt can blame you for that — you have been spared the recent grim ennui of a painful exchange between a dude named Alexander who fancies himself feministically enlightened, and a blamer named Ana who does not entirely concur with Alexander’s self-assessment. It’s a classic Clueless-Dude Time-Drain. Hell, you already know what went down even if you didn’t read it. You’ve probably seen 2583 of these feminist vs. feminist-dude splitsplats.
This one was especially funny, though, because of the unintentionally ironic caption the dude Alexander gave his feministical little Jezebel link. “If you were wondering whether men hate you [...]” was how he put it. I’m not even kidding. He couldn’t seem to grasp why some blamers might have a problem with a man strolling in and telling a bunch of women that men hate them.
Look, just to be clear: when a man hangs around the feminists, it’s weird enough, but when he announces “men hate you,” it strikes rather a different — some might say “menacing” — note than when, say, an award-nominated spinster aunt says it it. You’re not one of the girls, dude.
But really, it’s comical, the predictability with which dudes who fancy themselves feministically enlightened just can’t seem to shut the fuck up when they are found to be duding the joint up a little too hardcore. They all appear to have been issued the same script. The script goes like this:
Blamer: Points out that the dude himself is at this moment exercising the very male privilege he has just derided in somebody else.
Dude: Gets defensive [he is feministically enlightened, and no woman is gonna tell him otherwise]. Implies, by dint of hilarious and supercilious walk-on-eggshells-cuz-this-chick-is-touchy language, that blamer is overreacting and misunderstands him.
Spinster Aunt: Steps in and tells the guy to go back to feminist school.
Dude: Counters with a display of vast feminist knowledge, perhaps stating [as dude Alexander did] that Jill’s ideas are not original; he happens to know that Andrea Dworkin thought this stuff up already.
Spinster Aunt: Mutters “Oy vey,” and repairs to the barn to shovel horseshit of a more pleasant kind.
Blamer: [now joined by more blamers] tells dude what time it is, i.e. that merely by persisting as a dude with a dudely perspective in a dude-free feminist forum he is, in fact, an exemplar of the abhorred oppressor.
Dude: Makes disingenuous apologies because of course he never meant to step on any toes or annoy anyone in any way, but doesn’t cop to exercising privilege except in an abstract, generalized, all-men-do-it sort of way.
Blamers: Get cheesed off because dude can’t take a hint.
Dude: Gets cheesed off because blamers won’t appreciate what a learned and magnanimous fellow he is.
[This will continue until I come in for lunch. There'll be 20 or 30 replies in the pile-on, and I'll be obliged to pull the plug. Then I'll do a blog post about it, and 75% of the time the dude will email me to outline all the ways in which I am wrong about him.] The end.
It has been said about 173,942 times — including on the aforementioned Facebook thread — that feminist ally dudes who genuinely want to advance the cause can best do so by minding their own fucking beeswax. Theirs, after all, is the beeswax that most thoroughly and systematically jams women up.
There’s quite a bit of dudely beeswax that needs minding, too. Dudes might quit using porn, for example. They could quit sticking their dicks in people with lower status than them (both literally and figuratively). They could get vasectomies, or clean their own toilets, or read a bunch of feminist theory, or explain to all their buds the ways in which their boo-yah mores are violent and oppressive. If they are sensitive artistes, they could even quit mooching off their girlfriends. They could combine all this useful, proactive, pro-feminist, anti-domination behavior with — to echo a cry that has risen in many a parched feminist throat — shutting the fuck up and getting the fuck out of our way.
Hahaha! Hoooo-boy! That’s a hot one. I have to say, the notion that more than a handful of men would ever do any of that stuff makes me throw back my head and laugh, as the poet said, a hollow, mirthless laugh.
But back to the point, which is this: I’ve pretty much had it with these supposedly well-meaning dudes who try to exercise their nascent feminist chops on my personal patriarchy-blaming blog. Patriarchy blamers in general, and I in particular, in no way require the “feminist” male perspective on anything, ever. See the FAQ for more information.
So I am revising, somewhat, the blogular comment policy. I end up doing this every year or so, when the dudeliness starts getting out of hand and wearying me, which it always does because I am never enough of a hardass.
The revision is this: This blog is goin’ dudeless. If you are commenting as a dude, don’t do it here. I don’t ever want to have to read fingernail/chalkboard crap like this again:
“So let me get this straight, you are blaming the porn industry and men in general for the poor decision made by this woman? It is pretty sexist for you to assume this woman was incapable of make [sic] her own decisions. I’m pretty sure that no one was holding a gun to her head telling her to get breast enlargement or die. I really don’t understand why any women get breast enhancement. They don’t look good, except sometimes while wearing a bra. They don’t feel good. And if the woman decides to have children, breast feeding is not an option. Of the maybe 20 guys I have talked to on the matter, none of them would marry a woman who had fake breasts.” — some random asshole with a Hotmail account.
As always, dudes are welcome to both spectate and contemplate the ideas discussed in this blog and in other feminist work. But from now on, I’m inviting them to do us the courtesy of shutting the fuck up. Of course, I’ll grandmother in those guys who’ve been around for years and have shown themselves capable of human decency.
New dudes can bypass the sex restriction by going incognito. I got no problem with that as long as they complete the prerequisites, never use the personal pronoun “I,” and knock it off already with the fucking tiresome-ass male viewpoint and supercilious tone. Good luck with that, though, because you know as well as I do that sooner or later they always start mansplaining or yakking about dudesex. If we can tell they’re dudes, they’re out.
As far as IBTP on Facebook goes, effective immediately dudes are invited to stop posting status updates on the wall (“Wall”. Really? Facebook is stupid). Blamers, even on Facebook, are not interested in dude-directed discourse. For now the Facebook comments will remain open to all comers, and we’ll see how it goes.
The purpose of all this is not to censor men or punish men or hate men or do anything to men at all (although if that’s what they want to think, it’s no skin off my nose). Rather, it’s to keep the blogular discourse as free as possible from the contamination of male privilege.