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Mar 06 2014

Internet feminism hurt my feelings, but then I got up offa that thang

After a decade of web-based patriarchy blaming, if there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s this: it is pretty inadvisable to make arguments, oppressionally speaking, that do not take into account the viewpoints of every possible marginalized group, particularly those groups of which one is not personally a member and the specialized interests of which one therefore has no direct knowledge. Of.

Of course there’s no way around that, so welcome to the personal attacks, rushes to judgment, tone-policing, out-of-context misquotations, sanctimonious castigations, and full-on misconstrutions of Internet Feminism. They will give you fits.

The phenomenon to which I allude — lately all the white ladies are talking about it — is attributable not to the usual anti-feminist dudebros, but to the Mean Girls of Feminism Eating Their Own. This describes every internet feminist at one time or another. It’s been done to me and I’ve certainly done it myself. It’s kind of horrible, on accounta it’s painful, but then again, no pain no gain, right?

The lively, free, and sarcastic exchange of ideas is a beloved cornerstone of the internet. Opposing viewpoints exposing legitimate beefs within the cutthroat world of Internet Feminism should always be expressed colorfully, and with wisecracks. Still, it can be argued that one ought to distinguish between justifiable anger and knee-jerk abuse; cannibalism not a literary style. It should not be confused with argumentation.

But let’s back up.

It all starts with the hurt feelings. If you are, as I am, merely a human internet feminist, rather than an omniscient deity of infinite scope and virtue, chances are the nuances and niceties of the Wide, Wild World of Oppression occasionally escape you, and from time to time you unwittingly commit, out of either naiveté or sloppiness, a privilege-based stupidity foul. Hell, I’m probably doing it right now! As I mentioned, failure to grasp every possible sociological subtlety from the point of view of every imaginable oppressed party can — and will — result in dispiriting beatdowns. Your intent is irrelevant. Such is internet feminism culture in its current form.

And what a curious form it is. With its demands that members conform to strict regulations, subject themselves to incessant policing, and submit to discipline and humiliation, much of internet feminism culture looks a lot like — lard helpis — BDSM. This is disturbing but unsurprising. Given that no revolutionary political movement can exist outside of the very oppressive hegemony it seeks to destroy, a system of domination and submission precisely mirroring that of broader society necessarily obtains within internet feminism as well. Spawned by oppression culture, “feminist infighting” is, at its best, justifiable anger run slightly amok. At its worst it’s a sadistic mob indulging in an abuse fetish, slaking the bloodlust of the hive.

Many a spinster aunt finds that this hive stuff can paralyze the lobe, ravage the viscera, or chunk’er into a feminism-funk. For example, its prevalence is why — for the sake of my own delicate stomach lining — I keep disappearing on hiatus. It’s fairly depressing when your own tribe pillories you for unintended privilege infractions, or worse, when they inform you you’re not even in the tribe. In many respects it’s even worse than the “I hope you die in a rape fire” dude-threats. There’s a sense of betrayal and violation engendered by these smackdowns, and it takes a toll. You make some dumbass privilegey gaffe and suddenly you’re Public FemEnemy No. 1; women you had hoped were united with you against patriarchal tyranny turn out to have their own problems (indeed, you are one of those problems), and are now gnawing on your rotting carcass.

I know, right? White tears! But wait, before you kick me out of feminism again, I’m not suggesting that so-called “white feminists” — a designation that often appears as shorthand for “racist transphobic egomaniacal yuppie white bitches who think it’s all about them” — get a free pass. Au contraire; the whole point of all this Internetian discourse is to smash oppression culture, so it’s in everybody’s interest to use their hurt feelings as a privilege clue and quit being part of the problem. Writers of privilege who give a shit about enbiggening their worldview (those who don’t give a shit should not be considered feminists) have a responsibility to examine with an open mind criticism — even sarcastic criticism — dispensed by the differently-privileged. Yet even among those who assiduously self-monitor, obliviousness will occur, so a good old-fashioned privilege-check can definitely be all to the good. To wit (anecdote alert):

Recently I received an illuminating nudge that was strangely free of hostile scolding. A reader calmly pointed out that in a recent post — about ultra-privileged Jerry Seinfeld’s diversity tone-deafness — I had omitted to mention that, as a Jew, Seinfeld, though fabulously wealthy, is also a member of an oppressed minority. Such an intersectional detail should of course be pertinent when discussing privilege in the US. The reader described my omission as belonging to the “erasing Jewishness” genre, which turns out to be a Thing about the existence of which I had been previously oblivious.

Well, it was so weird not to be chastised, pilloried, and kicked out of feminism over this lack of insight, I practically plotzed (but stopped myself before committing a cultural appropriation). Weirdlier, even though the nudge had been civil, I was no less chagrined than if it had been hostile. This chagrin was my cue to implement my standing policy, which states: whenever a concerned reader says “watch out, you’re erasing someone’s Jewishness” I should ask myself, “hey, what is ‘erasing Jewishness’, and did I in fact do it?” Whereupon I stop, Google, and grok. Once I’ve acquired a grasp of the concept, and determine that the answer is “yes,” I cop to it. Jewishness acknowledged; worldview enbiggened; patriarchy blaming lumbers forth into its uncertain future.

Over the years, the spinster weltanschauung has been similarly enbiggened with regard to countless other issues large and small, including racism, trans politics, fat acceptance, disability, mental illness, vaginismus, blow jobs, motherhood, and discrimination against the ginger-haired. The thing is, the enbiggening took place regardless of the tone of the call-out. In the old days I would get pissy and make churlish retorts (the archive is full of’em), but it gradually dawned on me that ceding power to my bruised ego merely sealed my fate as an unenlightened chump. The key, I discovered much later, is not to get huffy and defensive, or to sit back and passively demand to be educated by the aggrieved party, but to get up offa that thang. Sure, when they tell you your head is up your ass you’re gonna sulk for a minute because you’re human, but then you’re gonna get up offa that thang, because you’re a feminist.

Remember, folks: your hurt feelings are the result of privilege. They’re giving you the opportunity to go out and entruthen yourself. Don’t waste it.

Thanks, Internet!

_______________________

One of my long-standing beefs is with dudes who love to lecture me that I will never win them over to the feminist cause as long as I keep copping a tude. My response is twofold. 1) fuck you dude, and 2) the moral indefensibility of sexism exists independently of my or anybody else’s demeanor; oppression isn’t any less wrong if the oppressed aren’t ass-kissers. And besides, winning dudes over has never been, to my mind, the objective of feminism. Appeasement will never liberate women from patriarchal oppression. What’s that old bumper sticker? “Well-behaved women seldom make history”?

Privilege-checking and a deep understanding of intersectionality are vital to modern feminism. In fact, they are prerequisites to the ever-elusive solidarity. I strenuously aver that no movement can evolve without a strong influx of ideology from vocal radicals. So maybe yelling “I hate you” at feminists from different backgrounds isn’t the most expedient of all possible solidaritous exercises, but until all the assorted privilege-weilding gets addressed, I don’t see how anyone can reasonably expect members of marginalized groups to “lighten up.” Is there a fine line between schooling and scorching? Sure, but I’ll say it again: either you’re against oppression or you’re not. A civil tone is more pleasant, but (excepting abuse for abuse’s sake; see “mob fetish,” above) not necessarily more effective.

_________________________

You know, not everyone who reads a feminist blog is interested in enbiggening her worldview. Apparently there exists a sizable cohort of consumers of Internet Feminism who are content to complain that disturbing shit like this

80's freak of nature Christie Brinkley displays her sexy pits on the cover of a magazine dedicated to patriarchal hegemony because she's way old but maintains fuckability.

80′s freak of nature Christie Brinkley displays her sexy pits on the cover of a magazine dedicated to patriarchal hegemony because she’s way old but maintains fuckability.

reinforces impossible femininity standards, and then call it a day.

Not to give the impression that casting a jaundiced eye upon damaging femininity propaganda is without value. I sure hope it isn’t, anyway, or I’ve wasted a shitload of time over the past 10 years. Jaundiced-eye-casting is the one of the spécialités de la maison here at Spinster HQ.

Fortunately, for them that wants it, feminism offers more than the opportunity to rip on Photoshopped pix of sexagenarian Christie Brinkley posing as a sexy tween, more than the “toxic Twitter wars.” Here’s hoping that sincere seekers of truth will choose to stay and fight on through the distracting twitterclysms of hate, and that cooler heads will continue to calmly nudge toward enlightenment those who thirst for knowledge, compassion, liberation, and a decent margarita.

Seriously, I’m thirsty. Where’s the bar?

____________________________

273 comments

  1. irieagogo

    Right on. You cannot know until you know. Then you work with the knowledge you have until it’s time to acquire some more. Keep blaming!

  2. Ellesar

    I don’t know if you deliberately avoided the term ‘political correctness’ – which is what you seem to be discussing in some detail – maybe you hate the term – idk. In the 80s I was a typical PC person, but on the internet even my pc credentials have been insufficient for some debates – resulting in eye rolling and leaving certain blogs behind.

    No one gets everything ‘right’. PC in the 80s made a lot of us feel guilty and inadequate, and there were a lot of jokes in the mainstream about ‘disabled black lesbians’ etc. This did not help constructive debate to flourish. In the modern context I can see the same thing happens online all the time – possibly even more of a minefield with the virulent anti feminist feeling so prevalent now.

    The best we can do is be honest, and try and act with respect. We may not get it back – but we can maintain our integrity can’t we?!

  3. Ashley

    I think this is the first post you’ve ever written that’s really just about your feelings. I really liked it.

    I feel the same way. I’ve lived many times in areas and once a whole country- where I was the only white person around.. and I can say that even though global racism as a force is mainly a white thing, because white people have most of the power- people of any color and gender are capable of hate that’s based just on someone being different. And yes, there is a lot of meanness directed at white women by women of other colors, probably out of a sense of inferiority that they get from being told by the world that white women are better, which isn’t true, but it just comes out as jealousy and rage at white women. IBTP.

    Within feminism, I get really bored of women of color (and no, I don’t give a shit what is going to be directed at me because of this statement, I have just as much self respect as you so don’t fuck with me) who spend their time just being mean to white women. It sucks and is lame. If you really have no other objective than to make well intentioned white women feel bad, you suck. Yeah, white women grow up with a lot of privilege and it makes it hard for them to see things, and many choose not to and are really really lame and also racist. HOWEVER. There are some white women, white feminists, who are nice people and care about others and don’t care what color you are, they want people to be free of oppression, whether it be racism or sexism. Twisty, I see you as one of these people.

    I don’t think that anyone should feel bad or feel guilt because of the privilege they grow up with. If you are using the privilege that you couldn’t help being born with to make a statement for the good of everyone, then you’re doing the best you can. That goes for men. If a guy is not actively participating in porn, or prostituting, or hitting women, or making sexist statements, is kind and doesn’t try to control women, and speaks out against injustice against them, I don’t have a problem with him. That’s the difference between hate, (or “reverse” racism) and a desire for freedom and equality. I’m not interested in making men feel bad, I don’t hate men. I want people to evolve out of dominance and cruelty-based social systems. And there is a marked difference between someone advocating for an end to racism, who is able to not hate white people, but hate racism and racist behavior, and people who just want to spread toxicity. This difference is something we are ALL capable of pulling off, and capable of failing at.

    I think you should keep saying what the fuck you want to, Twisty. If they don’t like it, fuck em. Whoever they are. Your heart is in the right place and you’re a loving person. Not even your highly advanced sarcasm can mask that.

    Hugs and love.

  4. Ashley

    And sorry, I don’t mean to come off all white power. I just mean, Latinas are amazing, black women are amazing, Asian women are awesome- and so are white women! We can’t get stuck in guilt for systems we didn’t create. We have to move towards using our social power to build understanding between women, not just keep on lashing out. So you forgot to explicitly state that Seinfeld is Jewish? and what the fuck exactly would that have done? made it ok that he’s behaving in a sexist manner?

    For the love of god. Seriously. Don’t we have better shit to do than nitpick crap like that?

  5. YM

    I appreciate your intent here, but the call-out culture is much more toxic than you make it seem. For example, feminists who are critical of the sex industry are routinely smeared and attacked by other feminists. Sex industry critical feminists are “called out” by other feminists for being the real oppressors of women (men are never mentioned). So should feminists who are critical of pornography and the sex trade just shut up after masses of feminists online criticize them? Underlying your argument is the assumption that those calling out and criticizing are well-intentioned and that they stand on a moral high ground. The situation is much more complex and toxic than that. For one thing, there is a concerted effort online to silence feminists with more radical views.

  6. ChariD

    If someone tells me that what I’ve said is [insert ism/ist here], and they come from an oppressed background on which this [ism/ist] is foisted on a daily basis, then I listen. I shut the fuck up, stop my hurt fee-fees, sit down and listen. They are the ones who determine what is [ism/ist] about what I said. They are the ones with the life experience to back it up. I say this as a CIS, lesbian white woman who has no doubt stuck her foot in her mouth numerous times. Anyone who has come forward to let me know something I said was jacked up, did so in a straight-forward, polite, but stern manner. I don’t blame them for getting upset — this shit has gone on for as long as humans have tottered on the Earth. Just because I didn’t *intend* to offend them isn’t enough; my intent isn’t magical.

    You get poked enough, you start to get pissed. White Internet feminists with huge platforms making blanket statements for all of feminism as if all of feminism is white, 30-something, straight and living in NYC is horseshit. It’s not nit-picking to ask that they shelve their privilege long enough to practice a bit of empathy and think before they say or write something. Seriously — as feminists, we expect the dudez to do it, and we school them on it. Dudez predictably act like petulant asswipe snots and act like we’re attacking them. See the similarity?

    As Flavia says, my feminism will be inter-sectional, or it will be bullshit.

  7. radjew

    Thanks Twisty. Commenting on your last post made me so nervous that I never went back to it because I was worried there would be posts like Ashley’s up above calling me a nitpicker. I’m glad my tone came through and you knew I wasn’t trying to scold you or be hostile. I really appreciate what you do and what you write, and I hope you know that in terms of feeling chagrined I’ve been challenged a lot by your posts and I think out of the two of us you’re winning. :)

  8. buttercup

    “use their hurt feelings as a privilege clue”

    One of the most profound statements that has ever been typed on Savage Death Island, and that’s really saying something.

    Ashley, I think you need to do some research into the concept of privilege.

  9. kauri

    Quite right Twisty.

    @Ashley, I (a white cis woman) have been working hard reading, following (on Twitter and blogs), and listening to WOC feminists for some time, and I have yet to experience WOC being “mean” to white women for no reason. They’ve certainly shown a lot of courage and persistence in calling white women on their privilege and racist bullshit. But the many I’ve met are good people and good friends. I suggest you read Twisty’s post again vis a vis “hurt feelings” and “white tears”.

    @YM, similarly, I have been educated extremely well by my interactions with, readings about, followings of, and connections with feminists who work in (or have previously worked in) the sex industry. What is being done to women (and men) in the sex industry is horrendous and there are many forces cranking it up to keep making things worse and worse for sex workers just to survive. If feminists are being called out by actual sex workers about their treatment of them and their ally-ship with the religious right and rightwing politicos, they should practice the basic values of feminism: listening to the voices of women and being led by those affected by that particular oppression.

    In short “nothing about us without us” includes WOC and women in the sex industry.

    In my own journey (similar to Twisty’s described here), as a 48-year-old lifelong feminist, I have never come closer to disavowing the label “feminist” than in the past two years of really engaging with and understanding the struggles of women and others with less privilege than mine. I am disgusted by white supremacism, particularly as it manifests within white feminism, and I am disgusted by the treatment of sex workers by vast swathes of feminism (not to mention the issue of trans women and feminism, something I’ve been aware of for longer). It is simply the ongoing fighters of intersectionality, and the new generation of feminists I am lucky to be acquainted with where I live, that keep me hanging in there: I want nothing more than to keep the name “feminism” for the good fight I can get behind.

  10. Nepenthe

    The aspect of “calling out”/the privilege wars/the rise of tumblr feminism that most irritates me is that it throws away all basis for evaluating claims of privilege or oppression. When someone whinges that they’re being kink-shamed or that their identity as a mythological creature isn’t being properly respected, they’re using the same tool as people decrying actual oppression of groups they’re actually members of: the sacrosanctity of “lived experience”*. I don’t think the implicit assumption that every call out is an opportunity for the callee to be enlightened is a valid one because I think there are groups that do not experience oppression as classes and I think that there are experience that one can have as a marginalized person that aren’t marginalization. Not every critique of pornstitution is “whore-phobic”.

    And then there’s the blessed ironies of members of marginalized classes being called out for being oppressive by members of the dominant class. I would really love to know what an able-bodied person can teach me about neurotypical privilege that I didn’t learn by being locked up with assault-happy psych wardens.

    *Presumably the phrase is always “lived experience” to distinguish it from imaginary experience, but I’ve never figured that one out.

  11. Pregnantpause

    This is a tough one but I like your approach. I think anything that can broaden our understanding and empathy for others will be a force for good in the world, which is pretty much all I’m interested in at this point. I’ve been a feminist for several decades, and I’ve seen trends and buzzwords come and go. The trend now seems to involve analyzing different aspects of feminism and intersectionality and while it seems to devolve sometimes to lobsters pulling each other back down into the pot, it’s totally necessary.

    One thing that I find personally is that I am so worried about doing it wrong that I don’t speak up as much as I should. It can be paralyzing to try to be perfect and I don’t have the academic background to know the right terminology. No one is obligated to play nice so the poor privileged people are comfortable, that’s not what I mean. But I do find myself second-third-fourth guessing myself until I decide it’s safer to keep quiet.

    For example I helped start/run a community program for girls, as a volunteer. It is popular but not diverse enough. We volunteers are attempting to improve this ASAP, but we don’t have the professional know how/aren’t sure of the right approach/are doing this for free in our spare time. I believe that building something and working at it to make it better as you go is far better than doing nothing because you’re afraid of missteps. I would hate to think that being afraid of being called out stops people from sticking their necks out, running for office etc.

    I think well-intentioned men likely do this with us too, because we tend to pile on them if they say something oblivious. (Note: I don’t often give a f**, I’m just saying.)

    Ultimately we all have to coexist and I think it’s best to try to understand each other. I feel I can relate to both oppressed and oppressor classes, and hopefully I can use that insight to actually enact positive social change however small.

  12. Morag

    Many “call-outs” to “check your privilege” are valuable. No doubt about that. And little by little, we become better, more sensitive people as we expand our knowledge about, and grow our empathy for, others who do not experience the world in the same way as we do, and when the same is done for us in return. It’s an ongoing, sometimes painful, back-and-forth exchange. But:

    ‘When someone whinges that they’re being kink-shamed or that their identity as a mythological creature isn’t being properly respected, they’re using the same tool as people decrying actual oppression of groups they’re actually members of: the sacrosanctity of “lived experience”’

    Yes. I agree with everything you said, Nepenthe. You, too, YM. If I’m called out for being privileged/oppressive, I’m going to carefully evaluate that judgement against me first, rather than immediately submit to it because someone has used the words “lived experience.” These are not magical words. The selfish, narcissistic, spoiled and privileged can use these words, too. And they do. As a way to shame and silence holders of valid, but unpopular, political positions (e.g., anti-porn, -prostitution, -BDSM).

    And, of course, it’s much easier to shame women into silence when we attempt to hold our ground, than it is to do the same to men. Men dismiss criticisms, dismiss the charge of being oppressive, with ridicule or they become belligerent with their real power; but for women, whose ability to be assertive is hampered by femininity mandates, the charge of oppression can unfairly mess with our hearts and minds.

    Because our sympathy for the other tends to get automatically switched on–even when it really shouldn’t. Or, if not our immediate sympathy, then our immediate feeling of vulnerability that we may be “just as bad” as our oppressors. Well, by all means, we should listen when someone tells us we’re getting it wrong, that we are hurting others with whatever privilege we happen to possess. But, we MUST have the ability, also, to say: “No. I’m not buying it. And this is why.” Else, we can get bogged down by bogus guilt and the shady tactics used against us, and thus become useless to ourselves and others.

    Also, I think, the very concept of oppression is in danger of becoming diluted to the point of meaninglessness (when, for instance, something like “kink-shaming” is taken seriously by feminists).

  13. Bushfire

    Within feminism, I get really bored of women of color (and no, I don’t give a shit what is going to be directed at me because of this statement, I have just as much self respect as you so don’t fuck with me) who spend their time just being mean to white women.

    I highly doubt that any women of colour are just hanging out being mean to white women for no reason. I would bet the incidence of this occurring is right around zero. However, there are a lot of women of colour who are enraged at how white women erase racism. I hope you don’t have so much “self-respect” that you cannot listen to the reasons women of colour are angry.

    I appreciate your intent here, but the call-out culture is much more toxic than you make it seem. For example, feminists who are critical of the sex industry are routinely smeared and attacked by other feminists. Sex industry critical feminists are “called out” by other feminists for being the real oppressors of women (men are never mentioned)

    This situation has been bothering me for a long time. I’ve been kicked off an entire blog and I’ve had to leave a Facebook group because I dared to realize that prostitution isn’t a fun, liberating profession. I worry all the time that one of my real-life friends will one day turn out to be one of those sex-poz people who call me “whorephobic” just for stating facts. But there’s a difference between calling out someone’s real prejudices/ignorance and “calling out” someone for the crime of not believing a lie. It is an embiggening experience to realize how you have been erasing the lived experiences of people who face oppressions that you do not. However, when person A says that prostitution is violence against women and person B starts hashtagging “whorephobia” and other nonsense as a response, nothing is gained. Prostitution is violence against women; and comments that pretend otherwise should be regarded as they are: antifeminism. The sex-pozzies can try and argue all they want, but when it comes down to it, their argument amounts to “Women should have the choice to be degraded and abused and we should respect that choice.” That just doesn’t make any sense and it cannot be taken seriously. The people who hate women in prostitution are not radical feminists, they are punters and johns.

  14. Lidon

    “We can’t get stuck in guilt for systems we didn’t create.”

    Ashley, I agree. We can’t help what privilege we have; it’s a matter of what we DO with it. That’s what’s important and that’s why anyone with privilege should get over the defensiveness and move forward. And yes, women attacking each other is MUCH more common than women attacking men (whether it’s provoked or not). IBTP too!

  15. Lidon

    @ Bushfire: I’m not going to go into detail, but IRL I’ve had an experience or two where yes, I’ve had a person or two be nasty when it was totally unjustified. This has also happened to a friend who lived in a group home as a teenager and unfortunately made her more prejudiced as a result. If a person is angry, s/he doesn’t always react constructively, regardless of any privilege or marginalization.

    Of course the vast majority of the time, privileged folks don’t recognize their privilege and piss it all over everybody else. (And even if someone takes out his/her anger on someone who doesn’t ask for it, that topic is a derail anyway because the whole point of this discussion is to address how we need to stop erasing others’ experiences and statuses).

  16. Lidon

    “The sex-pozzies can try and argue all they want, but when it comes down to it, their argument amounts to “Women should have the choice to be degraded and abused and we should respect that choice.” That just doesn’t make any sense and it cannot be taken seriously. The people who hate women in prostitution are not radical feminists, they are punters and johns.”

    Agreed.

  17. pheenobarbidoll

    Wow. That was great right up until the white feminism comments on how woc are just jealous. Or mean.

  18. emilybites

    The concerns of the feminist movement these days seem to be 80% become more inclusive, 20% smash the patriarchy. Yes, my feminism will be intersectional or it will be bullshit, but some feminists seem to spend a lot of time castigating themselves and scolding each other for being insufficiently inclusive.

    While I am keen to make the world less racist, ableist, homophobic, transphobic and so on, combatting these isms isn’t the focus of feminism…is it? Feminists are trying to liberate women qua women, not take down…racism, for example. Where woc are oppressed, it’s their womanhood that makes me support them under the banner of feminism. I recognise that their oppression is different from white women’s, because they’re woc, and I have a lot of privilege, being fairly white. I also think that tackling racism in general is something you then do as an anti-assholism activist.

    I suppose I mean that feminism cannot be a panacea for all the isms. You can be an asshole and still be a feminist (am I doing it right, folks??).

    Does anybody ever feel like we do too much navel-gazing? I’m going to go and think about that.

  19. ivyleaves

    Too much navel-gazing? That seems to be the only way to “get it.” If you aren’t willing to look inward first, you can’t really do much truly useful outwardly. For me, avoiding a sort of “one size fits all” ideology where you find the “one true way” to view everything and then go out to force it onto everyone else is just patriarchy/religion. I have to take the view that whatever I think now could be wrong, and try not to be an overbearing asshole who stops thinking. Isn’t fighting patriarchy fighting assholism in all it’s forms?

  20. Rae

    “The concerns of the feminist movement these days seem to be 80% become more inclusive, 20% smash the patriarchy.”

    This, exactly. The (necessary, valuable) groups fighting racism, homophobia, ableism, classism, and the rest of the Kyriarchy are not flooding their every blog or meeting with “What About The Women?” comments/issues/nitpicking.

    We are expected to be the UNIVERSAL MOMMIES, soothing and caretaking and attending to everybody’s feelings and needs. Devoting the bulk of our effort to *class woman* makes us selfish mothers, don’tchaknow!

  21. Forp

    The problem I have with the idea that every time someone says “lived experience” everyone else has to cease critical thought or at least shut up about it is the abusive family dynamic, i.e. total denial of abuse so that people can keep living “nice” lives. Women, politically and academically savvy women even, may prefer total blackout-drunk style denial of horrible shit right in their laps to really dealing, and that’s fine, but I don’t have to FOLLOW THE FUCKING RULES OR GET THE FUCK OUT OF FUCKING FEMINISM because they don’t like the implications of some other feminist’s viewpoint in their own life.

  22. Cyberwulf

    Ashley and emilybites – this is not how we ally.

    There can be no smashing the patriarchy if we’re alienating a huge amount of women. That’s what you’re doing by describing marginalised women as nitpicking when they tell privileged women to check their privilege. “Stop letting the petty details of your oppression, which I conveniently don’t experience, get in the way of the Grand Plan.” You may recognise that statement as the cry of the Liberal Dude. We can and should do better.

  23. Mildred

    “use their hurt feelings as a privilege clue”

    Well this hit home.

    Has anyone else had this said against them by an angry dude “All you go on about is women and women’s issues, you never talk about racism or class-based oppression – you’re selfish and you only give a shit about what you were born into!”
    ?

  24. Owly

    I sometimes have a knee-jerk reaction to the word “privilege.” I feel like the word has been tossed around so much that it’s almost lost its meaning. I mean, I saw a “Vanilla Privilege” checklist online once (“vanilla,” of course, being opposed to “kinky”). It included things like “I have pornography that shows my sexual preferences readily available to me.” Really? REALLY? I cringe whenever someone tells someone else to “check their privilege” because it’s become such a buzz-phrase and it’s often followed by stupid shit.

    I’m not saying that if someone needs to have their ass handed to them because they’ve been offensive or obtuse that their ass shouldn’t be promptly handed to them (gently, if the mistake was an honest one). I just feel like the language of oppressed groups has been co opted by people who are not actually oppressed, and it’s a very clever tactic for shutting down people who you don’t agree with. Trot out the word “privilege” and who is going to question you?

  25. Twisty

    Owly said (and others hinted at): “I just feel like the language of oppressed groups has been co opted by people who are not actually oppressed”

    First, “vanilla privilege”? Wow. Is that like “kink-shaming,” another term I hadn’t heard before today? The mind reels.

    Critical thinking is critical. Just because the language has been co-opted by morons doesn’t mean the underlying principle-baby should be thrown out with the bath water. The language of feminism itself has been co-opted by the megatheocorporatocracy, retooled with the message “femininity is empowerfulizing,” and sold back to women as a lifestyle accessory, but we don’t abandon the fight just because assholes are monetizing our catchphrases.

    So my point is, you gotta consider the source. As I mentioned, whenever a reader tells me I’m being privilegey, I check into it. I do this because I’ve been wrong so many times before and lived to regret it. But jayzus, anyone who can’t tell the difference between actual oppression and being mocked for fetishizing corny-ass dungeon-sex, I don’t think you have to worry too much about going to hell over that one.

  26. Twisty

    Ashley, I gotta say, am pretty troubled by your comment; it suggests to me that you have misunderstood my post entirely and that you don’t have what I would call a solid grasp of the concept of privilege. I urge you read up on this. You might start by taking the statements you just made about jealousy and your self-respect and women of color just being mean for the hell of it, and imagine that a dude was saying that stuff about feminists. I think you’d agree, that is not a dude you would invite to the feminist cocktail party.

    Understanding privilege is absolutely essential to the success of feminism. That’s non-negotiable.

  27. Cyberwulf

    Rae – if you actually paid attention to any of the other progressive movements, you’d find that a big, BIG criticism of them is that the Liberal Dudes involved regularly indulge in and dismiss everything from casual sexism to heinous misogyny, including sexual assault. “Women’s issues” don’t affect them, therefore they get in the way of the Grand Plan. Sort of like what you’re saying when you bleat about how unfair it is that we have to be inclusive when no one else bothers. Nice infantilising of other women when you complain about having to be everyone’s mommy. I simply can’t imagine why those mean old black women won’t give us a break.

  28. Lidon

    I think any human rights movement *should* be including intersectionality, which often doesn’t seem to be the case.

  29. Banhorn

    @Rae – Great comment.

    I believe that the finger pointing obscures the issues entirely. It’s another diversion tactic IMO. I understand that inclusion is important, but constantly berating one another because we didn’t use appropriate language seems a little petty to me.

  30. Twisty

    It’s only petty if it doesn’t diminish or erase you personally. I promise you, language is everything, as any feminist who has been called an hysterical harpy can tell you.

  31. Twisty

    Listen everyone: inclusion is absolutely, non-negotiably a prerequisite for feminist solidarity. Feminist solidarity is absolutely, non-negotiably a prerequisite for liberation from patriarchal oppression. So I’m begging you. Stop trying to rationalize the unsupportable hypothesis that your honky/cis/American experience is the ONLY experience or that it’s somehow burdensome to include racism et al under the feminist umbrella. That kind of thinking will defeat us. If you need proof of that, just look around. Feminism’s dead in the water, ladies. And whose fault do you think that is?

    Any issue that affects any woman is a feminist issue! Come ON!

  32. pheenobarbidoll

    Look, when a jerkbag called me a squaw, even after it was explained to him that this was a horrible word, he didn’t separate his attack as an attack on my womanhood vs an attack on my race. It was an attack on both, intertwined in a way that makes it impossible to separate. The fact of the matter is that woc experience sexism joined with racism. Its a two for one package. So when you focus only on sexism, how we experience it is disappeared in a fundamental way. Real life doesn’t separate the two for us. Feminism needs to recognize this and stop behaving as if there is no color. As if it doesn’t matter. Right now, white feminism is trying its best to pretend its just color blind, when color blindness contributes to racism as well as sex/racism. How can I be included in feminism if feminism doesn’t include the whole of my womanhood? I’m not going to remain quietly on the reservation you’ve stuck me in, I’m going to complain. Loudly. Aggressively even, if needed. I refuse to remain half a woman because it might hurt some feelings.

  33. Veganrampage

    Wait a sec, Twisty is human? (Insert happy face emoticon.)
    “3. Blamers should make as many jokes as possible.”- see Guidelines.

  34. Twisty

    Yeah, so a ham sandwich walks into a bar, and the bartender says, sorry, we don’t serve food here.

  35. quixote

    Understanding privilege is absolutely essential to the success of feminism. That’s non-negotiable. No question. Rights are for everybody. Otherwise they’re not rights.

    And, of course, it’s much easier to shame women into silence when we attempt to hold our ground, than it is to do the same to men. Men dismiss criticisms, dismiss the charge of being oppressive, with ridicule or they become belligerent with their real power; but for women, whose ability to be assertive is hampered by femininity mandates, the charge of oppression can unfairly mess with our hearts and minds. Another yes. And a very important point, too.

    I sometimes have a knee-jerk reaction to the word “privilege.” I feel like the word has been tossed around so much that it’s almost lost its meaning. Yeah, me too! Sometimes it feels like it’s been tossed around so much that people should be checking their privilege to use it.

    And, yes, also this: “[Other groups] are not flooding their every blog or meeting with “What About The Women?” This. I don’t know what you do about it. Women as a group seem to have a clearer understanding of rights and to know everybody has to be included. So what’s up with us not being a priority for everybody else? Or, actually, anybody else? There’s a problem there. Especially since a big part of any group, except men, is women.

    Okay, this is turning into a book, but I’m still full of comments.

    Rights are going to conflict sometimes. In some cases, some rights may need attention more than others. Those situations have to be recognized, or else it becomes an exercise in telling one group to shut up.

    An couple of examples from this very blog. A while ago, Twisty posted a pretty funny gallows humor clip of a standup comedian talking about her fear of being raped by a black man who was using her fear of being racist to try to push her buttons. The discussion on this blog was mostly about how bad it was to insult him with stereotypes. Stereotypes and insults are bad. Absolutely. Objectively, fear of sexual torture, physical harm, and possibly death are worse. Pretend we’re not talking about a woman, if that helps. You’re a gay guy in a dive bar in Arkansas, and things are looking ugly, but you make a crude redneck joke. Sure, he could make some other joke, and it would probably be even funnier without taking the low easy road, but the insult is not the worst thing happening here. I think it’s important to value ourselves highly enough to see that. Feeling that you have the same right to live without fear as everybody else is not the same as being privileged.

    Or the recent discussion about Seinfeld. Nowhere, in not one single thing, does the fact that he’s Jewish have anything to do with the post. It’s about him saying he doesn’t care about all this gender, race, diversity stuff. To the extent that he felt antisemitism, he isn’t making it part of his point and he seems fairly determined not to learn anything from it. So antisemitism isn’t part of that discussion. (I’m not saying it’s never part of any discussion. I’m saying it’s off-topic for that one.) So why bring it up? That seems to do nothing but change the subject from the misogyny of the rich and powerful to antisemitism. Concentrating on feminism in a feminist blog, not to the exclusion of others’ rights but standing up for one’s own, is not antisemitic.

  36. quixote

    (Aack. I don’t know what I did, but I got plopped into moderation. I think I may have exceeded the gassing on quotient for an order of magnitude or two.)

  37. magriff

    What pheenobarbidol said. Also, it really is worth re-reading “Black Feminist Thought” if it’s been a few years.

  38. Twisty

    Hey Quixote, it’s not anti-Semitic not to mention that Seinfeld is a Jew; everybody knows he’s a Jew. But it’s wrong to pretend Jewishness doesn’t have a dog in the oppression fight. My post was about the oppression fight, so it was sloppy blaming not to include it in the analysis. Also, blamer comments on that post saying Jewishness is irrelevant because they’re all rich and white were pretty outrageous.

    Recall that shit tons of women are Jewish; therefore, feminism.

    An outraged response to a white lady’s rape need not infringe on a general policy that eschews racial epithets and racially charged parody.

    There’s room for all the outrages in feminism, that’s my motto!

  39. womansong

    That comedian wasn’t insulting the guy with stereotypes; she launched into a “black woman” shtick when describing what she could have said to him. “I could get raped on the brownline, okay, that’s where all the white people is, Stank-ass shit,” etc. “Twisty” posted the video under the heading “Women Aren’t Funny,” clearly implying that this woman WAS, but she backed away immediately once people started complaining about it.

  40. quixote

    “There’s room for all the outrages in feminism, that’s my motto!”

    True, very true. On good days, that’s clear to me, too. On the less good days, I’m angry that there’s not much reciprocity. I guess I just need to work on that.

  41. pheenobarbidoll

    That sounds an awful lot like why isn’t there a white history month. When woc discuss their experiences, they ARE reciprocating. Because our experiences as woc are feminist topics. Because we’re women. The reason, for what it’s worth, that the comedy clip was so offensive is because black men were/are actually killed over the stereotype of being white women’s rapists. They are wrongly accused, wrongfully imprisoned, and assaulted over it. So no, jokes about it aren’t funny. They perpetuate real harm, to real people. That harm includes torture in prison, sexual torture in prison and even possible death, and that can happen after being pulled over for ” matching the description”. Not quite just a bad thing, or just a stereotype when you consider real world consequences.

  42. Mildred

    I’ve searched my heart on what is my issue with ‘check your privilege’ and its this:
    it’s usually said in these bubble realities, like the twitter or tumblr feminist scene.
    When I think of the abortion clinics in Texas being shut down and some poor desperate woman can’t get a legal abortion, who the heck is she gonna cop a ‘check your privilege’ to? The people who wield the most privilege wouldn’t even loose a fart over anyone telling them they ought to question the hierarchies of dominance they are complicit in.
    I get that its important that we question these things, I absolutely do, but what is the end game here if ALL we do is navel gaze? The types of people who ought to check their privilege absolutely never will. I’m thinking the vast majority of people on the tumblr feminist scene don’t DO feminism offline – I’m just intuiting that, it’s just my perception.

  43. Twisty

    Womansong is correct. If memory serves, I had been impressed that a comedy bit about rape could be kind of cool, so I thought posting the video would be illuminating. At the time I must have figured that the rape message trumped the blackface routine and the blackdude rapist stereotype, but as is often the case when I get honky-centric, alert blamers clued me in and once illuminated, I did, in fact, backpedal. Although not, in retrospect, as strenuously as I should have. Not my finest hour. Watching that clip now, I can’t believe I didn’t see it the first time around. Which, as far as I’m concerned, backs up my thesis that the feminist privilege-checker cops are vital to the ongoing process of consciousness-raising.

  44. Twisty

    Mildred, I understand your frustration with privilege-check culture, I really do. But I stand by my assertion that it’s a vital element of consciousness-raising. Consciousness-raising, in turn, is what unifies the oppressed. Unless enough women get on board and get mobilized, shit like the Texas anti-abortion law is going to continue its choke-hold on the universe. And mobilization is not gonna happen if feminism continues to be hogged by white women who think WOC should just stop being so mean. So, yeah, privilege-checkism is a Thing on Twitter and whatnot, and like all Things on Twitter, there’s a lot of useless, un-enbiggening detritus mixed in, but like I keep saying, it’s incumbent on the privileged to stop shutting out the message just because it isn’t sugar-coated with appeasement and gentle reassurances.

    Demurring on this issue is tantamount to denying that racism exists.

  45. Redpeachmoo

    Wow. Great discussion. Thank you Twisty, and all you Blamers.
    Checking my priviledge,
    Now.

  46. mll_69

    The patriarchy oppresses all women, some more than others, but all of us women.
    Also, when feminists undermine each other, the patriarchy wins.

  47. thebewilderness

    Criminy! It’s been ten years. It has.
    The latest in the Tumblr world is the need to include incel men in feminism if one wanted to be truly intersectional feminists. Incel stands for involuntary celibate.

  48. WiltedLettuce

    @phenobarbidoll, thank you for spelling out so clearly how impossible it is for WOC to separate the sexism from the racism. That was embiggening to this honky-centric novice blamer.

    Thank you Twisty for not giving up and for framing the privilege checking as a necessary part of CR.

    This intersectionality stuff is challenging. I spent decades trying to get the best deal I could from the P by taking a male-dominated profession and generally trying to avoid fully identifying as a woman. On top of experiencing sex-based oppression, it was devastating to finally accept that I was in fact experiencing sex-based oppression (what? it’s not just me?) and will continue to experience it until the P is dismantled. I don’t like identifying with an oppressed class. I don’t like feeling the anger, the helplessness, the mind-fuck of internalized sexism, and the mental chaos of my denial mechanisms sputtering and failing.

    Then I try to catch up with internet feminism and find all this intersectionality business. What, now I have to look at and feel something difficult about my non-sex-based privileges? I want to hang onto those privileges as compensation for the one-downedness of the sex class membership. Which is pecking order maintaining patriarchy-based thinking right there, isn’t it?

  49. Mildred

    Hey Twisty! Thanks for replying.
    I totally get that consciousness raising is an essential element – but didn’t the radicals reach the point in the 80′s where they realized it had limited scope for social change?

    I suppose that is my frustration – the navel gazing. That and the fact that it causes liberals and radicals to constantly butt heads rather than unify on the issues where we have common ground. I do completely acknowledge however that if women make advances we HAVE to ensure that we do not pull the ladder up from beneath us and consciousness raising is a measure against that.

    TLDR: A little less conversation a little more action.

  50. Cyberwulf

    @bewilderness – I certainly haven’t seen that on tumblr. I see a lot of people whining about “social justice warriors” being mean to them and alienating “allies”. Sort of like what’s going on here, what with all the disgusting characterisation of marginalised groups asking for some fucking consideration as navel-gazing and petty finger-pointing.

  51. iorarua

    To me, privilege check among feminists is fine, as long as it doesn’t take your off the ball – which is really about evening up the gross power imbalance across the genders.

    As a struggle for justice, feminism is unique, because of its universality. Women occupy 50% of all classes, races, religions, nationalities, majorities and minorities. And in all of those groupings women are, without exception, the ‘inferior’ or sub-gender that has to abide mainly by men’s rules.

    As a human being, I can and do empathize with other social justice struggles and oppressed groups. But as a feminist, I won’t pardon attitudes and behaviors from anyone, male or female, oppressed or privileged, that keep women entrenched as a sub-gender.

  52. Bushfire

    I’m surprised people take Twitter and Tumblr so seriously. Of course there’s going to be a lot of pointless and uninformed opinions on there. The whole point of Twitter is for people to quickly write out short, snappy bumper sticker slogans without thinking things through. That sort of “conversation” makes people less intelligent than they were when they started. We should be talking in MORE than 140 characters at a time. We should be taking the time to slowly digest new information and THINK before responding.

  53. pheenobarbidoll

    Some of you people need to read Ain’t I a Woman Too and apply that to your thoughts. Woc aren’t other oppressed groups. We’re women.

  54. Keri

    Well cheers to your Savage Death Island rallying cry that unites us all:

    “1) fuck you dude”

  55. AdmirerofEmily

    I second Pregnant Pause’s comments that “I am so worried about doing it wrong that I don’t speak up as much as I should. I….I don’t have the academic background [or work place] to know the right terminology. No one is obligated to play nice so the poor privileged people are comfortable, that’s not what I mean. … I decide it’s safer to keep quiet.”

    I’m here to learn. I’ve got tonnes of stuff going on in my life and can’t devote huge amounts of time to getting it all right at once. But I’m trying, and IBTP is the best place I’ve found for regular, quick updates before descending back into the maelstrom.

    A couple of times, both here and elsewhere, when I’ve raised something I’ve wanted to hear a radical viewpoint on, I’ve felt flogged, and humiliated – just like I was at home by my father. I understand that this is for advanced blamers, but I do think that sometimes the tone here, and other feminist spaces I’ve checked out, don’t create a safe space.

    Whilst “soothing and caretaking and attending to everybody’s feelings and needs” might not be appropriate at all times (for example where clear examples of thoughtless privilege are being wielded, or an oppressed person is totally exasperated from centuries of oppression) surely in some spaces those who are more across the issue could try to assume good faith and be temperate? Even encouraging?

  56. shopstewardess

    There are not enough good places on the internet which teach feminism. Most sites seem to be either “sex positive” fun feminism or mired in obscure academic language. IBTP is a breath of fresh air, which means that although it is for advanced blamers, Twisty’s use of language is so accessible, and her setting out of the ideas so clear, novice blamers will feel encouraged to join in the discussions.

    If Twisty has let a post through moderation, it will be because it adds value to the discussion and to the cause of blaming the patriarchy.

    I would hope that any pointing out of any errors blamers make (I’ve made a few myself) will not be done in a discouraging way, and that novice blamers will continue to feel that they can add to the discussion, even if that means adding new ways of thought to their feminism while doing so. New voices help keep conversation dynamic.

  57. KmtBERRY

    I have been a meat-space and Internet Feminist forever…since 1973, and the invention of the Internet by Al Gore, respectively!

    I have seen these internetian battles and studied them for years. Intersectionality is crucial and it is important to not be a dick to any other women.

    Here are a couple of things I have observed, however:

    1. Men, as a group, give barely a shit when called out on their dominance and love of oppression. For the most part not only do they not care, they love being dominant and think they should be MORE dominant because the P tells them they are losers if they aren’t. They objections of the oppressed really are falling on deaf ears with men, for the most part.

    2. This is very frustrating, and more frustrating as you go deeper into the oppression.

    3. This frustration has the effect, sometimes, of causing the oppressed to turn on one another.

    4. Big Win for the P !

    Naturally, this is an outcome we want to avoid; it is nothing but heartbreaking when Feminists rip each other to shreds. Which additionally gives the men the fun of the spectacle, AND proof that we are a bunch of cats, cat-fighting, and probably our brains really ARE the size of walnuts, and clearly a better use of our time would be making sandwiches for them.

    We should really try to NOT engage in divisive infighting, really if for no other reason than that they love it so much! Because BARF

    Yet, it is crucial to embiggen our collective outlook and raise our consciousnesses. It is important to listen to one another! But is it actually true that in order to include different perspectives, there must be “calling out” and hostility? Well, maybe it does need to be that way, sometimes. But perhaps women who are less privileged wouldn’t need to be hostile if the more privileged would listen in the first place.

    So, yeah, LISTEN.

    Secondly, I think there needs to be an acknowledged divide between writing or saying or DOING something bigoted toward a marginalized group, ACTIVELY, and the mere failing to mention them specifically in a statement. I cannot tell you the number of times exchanges happen like this:

    A: “It is up to us women to smash the Patriarchy!”
    B: “You did not specifically mention the sub-group of women to which I belong and therefore you, A, are a terrible person and not a real feminist and I feel othered and not included to the Patriarchy-smashing, so I’m not coming.”

    I have pretty much had it with the “I did not get specifically mentioned” thing. While it may not ALWAYS be an outlet for someone spoiling for a little infighting, I do think it is a sign that the writer has lost sight of the big picture.

  58. Forp

    THANK YOU KmtBERRY.

    I would like to add that when you are economically insecure, afraid for your safety, going through the horror of figuring out how much you are hated, or just generally in a bad place, it can be utterly exhausting, mentally and emotionally, to try to perfect your language and expression of thoughts (so you can, you know, participate in fighting your oppression instead of just giving in to helplessness and hopelessness?), KNOWING it going to be picked and nit-picked apart endlessly, and it has made me not participate in internet feminism anymore for the most part because it’s just too fucking hard. It doesn’t actually mean I’m a bigot because I don’t always say things in a way that perfect people approve of.

  59. Forp

    In other words: the rules might be good, but it also might be the they are just TOO MUCH and TOO HARD for most human women to follow.

  60. Owly

    I agree with Pregnantpause as well. This is one of the only online spaces where I feel safe to speak up. I just don’t have the energy, patience, or eloquence to carry out an online* argument. I’m not going to argue until I’m blue in the face with a “sex positive” feminist about porn, etc. because chances are I’m not going to change her mind and she’s sure as shit not going to change mine. But then again, how will anyone change their opinions at all unless through debate? So far, I’ve just left it up to more brilliant minds than mine.

    *Now, I did once drunkenly shout about women being the sex-class on the street on New Year’s Eve in Galway, Ireland. And we all know that drunk Americans making a scene abroad is everyone’s favorite thing. What can I say, the creature brings out the radical in me.

  61. Cyberwulf

    In other words: the rules might be good, but it also might be the they are just TOO MUCH and TOO HARD for most human women to follow.

    Actually, they’re really not, once you learn what they are.

    It’s more the response to being taught that’s the problem, and it’s disheartening that feminists don’t get this. Don’t we all know how fucking frustrating it is to see yet another clueless jackass engage in casual sexism, or overlook women? Haven’t we all had it up to here and been fresh out of nice words to call him on his bullshit? Don’t we all know how absolutely ragemaking it is for said clueless jackass to clutch his pearls and lecture us on our tone and how wounded his feelings are and good job we just lost ourselves an ally and how dare we, he’s a good man who’s never had a sexist thought, we’re just being petty and fingerpointing instead of being grateful for his help?

  62. Forp

    Cyberwulf, you’re condescending to me. It sucks. I can’t handle it anymore. If I bring up objectification and porn and all the ways it fucks up my life, economically and otherwise, I’m ridden out of “feminist” spaces for not being sufficiently “inclusive” of the women who benefit from it. THAT is what most of us in this thread are complaining about and you know it.

  63. Forp

    See? Right there? I committed and infraction by using “sucks” in the wrong way. I clearly hate women and gay men and sex and fun and sex workers (no such thing as a prostitute!) and popsicles and I probably love Rush Limbaugh, too!

  64. Cyberwulf

    No, Forp, “most of us” aren’t complaining about that. Maybe you should read the thread again.

  65. Cyberwulf

    I’m sorry that having to use the term “sex workers” is onerous for you. Have you tried asking sex workers what term they’d rather you use?

  66. Forp

    Yeah, i’ll go ask 13-year-olds if they’re sex-workers or if they’re prostituted in my spare time. Thanks for the education! I’m sure it made a big difference in the world today!

  67. Forp

    Look, I was scraping a peanut butter jar for something to eat today, OK? (I got some food, thanks for caring peeps) And I have a whole lot of other shit going on on top of it, like REAL shit, OK? I forgot to type prostitutED instead of prostitute, OK? But do you NOT get how this hall monitor shit gets out of control? You think a John who wants to beat little girls and women is going to change his mind if we say “sex worker” at all times? It’s not enough. It. Is. Not. Enough. We can all have perfect language, be perfectly inclusive, in EVERY single instance of every utterance, and STILL get raped and murdered and paid less, or starve to death because old women aren’t fuckable, etc. My big fucking concern in life is not whether every woman is always validated (in public of course!) for her so-called sexuality, and this is NOT ALLOWED in most feminist spaces and it is a big deal to my being able to just LIVE and I’m sick of not being able to say it in supposed feminist places and yes, I do see a lot of women saying something similar in regards to the ways that supposed “inclusivity” is used as a guise to chase out women who talk about this big taboo and divide in feminism today.

  68. gingerest

    “Remember, folks: your hurt feelings are the result of privilege. They’re giving you the opportunity to go out and entruthen yourself. Don’t waste it.”

    Just quoting for truth, because some people seem to have missed it.

    And restating an important point that’s been made here several times: the notion that we need to focus on feminism first, and not “other isms” is ridiculous, because freeing women means freeing women, ALL women, not just the highly-educated English-speaking cis currently-able-bodied white women who have the loudest voices in the movement. Escaping the patriarchy isn’t crushing it, and if you only help women who are just like you escape, you’re not actually achieving anything important. We can only call the patriarchy smashed if nobody’s subject to it anymore.

    To suggest that those women are the only women, as “other -isms” does, is erasing everyone else. It’s really easy to see that when you are among the people erased by the assumption, but even so. it can sometimes be hard to recognize the other people being erased when they don’t look exactly like you either. It’s not “infighting” when a woman gets fed up with being erased and yells, “Hey, shithead, what about me? I’m right fucking here. How many times do I have to say that before you notice?”

    And no WOC is talking “just to make well-intentioned white women feel bad”. Nobody has time for that.

  69. gingerest

    Then again, there is such a thing as pointing the policing in the wrong direction: http://banbossy.com/

  70. Twisty

    A propos of Twitter beatdowns, maybe this would be a good time to give the SCUM Manifesto a slight airing?

    All women have a fink streak in them, to a greater or lesser degree, but it stems from a lifetime of living among men. Eliminate men and women will shape up.

  71. Cyberwulf

    Forp, no one’s suggesting that using a synonym for prostitute – one that maybe carries less stigma – is going to make a difference to johns. But maybe it makes a difference to sex workers. It seems like you want to talk about sex workers, but not to them. That’s, you know, somewhere between erasure and talking over people.

  72. Mildred

    “Men, as a group, give barely a shit when called out on their dominance and love of oppression. For the most part not only do they not care, they love being dominant and think they should be MORE dominant because the P tells them they are losers if they aren’t. They objections of the oppressed really are falling on deaf ears with men, for the most part.”

    THIS, this, this, this so much! @KmtBERRY
    This is what I was trying to express – people who hold real dominance think dominance is great! To say they’re exerting privilege is like, awesome! And it ain’t an insult to them! Only people who are trying to be politically correct (and I don’t mean that in a pejorative way, I mean it in the way it was used in the 80′s) that are offended when they’re told to check their privilege.

    Gingerest – I see where you’re coming from – when I think of ‘check your privilege’ culture it’s a lot of white women & students on tumblr. I know what you mean about this ‘privilege’ talk especially between white sex pozzers & radicals, the language of the oppressed is often co-opted.

    There’s a difference between someone taking in good faith that you’re not aware that what you just said was kinda ignorant, and then pointing that out to the kind of internet fights where ‘check your privilege’ is a cutting comeback.

  73. Twisty

    Forp seems to be experiencing the cognitive-dissonance-based rage thing generated by the gap between academic theory and praxis in the trenches. I can sympathize. But check this out:

    As the always eloquent TwissB pointed out, there are but two avenues toward change open to women: consciousness-raising, and the vote (short of all-out feminist revolt, which as you know is the course I advocate). The latter won’t produce the desired result without the former. Consciousness-raising is the armature upon which all revolutions depend.

    The thing about consciousness-raising is, it’s a lotta talkin’, and often it doesn’t seem like it ever goes anywhere. Action, activism, that’s what women really need, right? But before they can activate, activists need platforms and mission statements and ideas to unite behind, and the only thing that generates these is discussion.

    So, since discussion consists largely of words, it turns out that words matter a lot. Words are the lifeblood of revolution. “Prostitute,” for example, is not a synonym for “prostituted woman,” which is not a synonym for “sex worker.” I can appreciate that you’re tired — who isn’t? — but particularly for those who are interested in the liberation of women from dudely oppression, these are not interchangeable concepts. You might just as easily protest that you’re too tired to distinguish between an elbow and a pitcher of margs. Understandable, yes, but perhaps not all that helpful to a thirsty person.

  74. iorarua

    @ginderest ‘the notion that we need to focus on feminism first, and not “other isms” is ridiculous’

    I don’t think it’s ridiculous at all. I’m more than happy to focus on feminism first and to put it before all other isms. That doesn’t mean I don’t care about all the other isms.

    I’ll go even further and say that feminism is the single definitive ism out of which all other isms flow.

  75. Forp

    This group of women gets to do the consciousness “raising” and this type of woman gets to have her knuckles rapped on with a ruler. I do not agree to the clean up of “sex work” because I don’t believe it is all the same. It’s a difference of opinion. The words do matter and it’s not all “sex work”. I’m not a bad, bad person because of this and it doesn’t mean I don’t listen to women working in the “sex” industry or that I’m not educated about women’s various types of experiences and the approaches to the problem (or non-problem depending on who you ask). It also doesn’t mean I can’t have an opinion of the actual lived effects in my own life of this great! porntastic! liberation! of women! because it goes against the grain when I say it sucks for me in my life in these ways. What it does mean is that instead of talking about my larger point, we’re talking about the mistaken usage of a word. On most feminist boards (or on Twitter) I could call Giselle Bundchen a c-word for her comments about other pregnant women being “trashcans” but I’m not allowed to just say her career has really not been all that helpful for me and other women, in my opinion, and she’s pretty well set up in the patriarchy if you ask me. NOT. ALLOWED. Because if I just “got it” correctly I wouldn’t say something like that, right? There can’t be substance to my argument or disagreement, because it doesn’t line up with the one way to think and talk about it.

    70-year-old Betty who’s barely making it on her Social Security can’t participate in this type of feminism. CAN’T. Because even though she supports those “gay kids” she doesn’t say cis enough or use trans in quite the right way every single time. And she’s too fucking exhausted to deal with it. Her voting record is just fine, but her problems don’t get aired out in quite the same way as those who have the time and energy to do the chasing out of the bad, bad women who won’t just read correctly and write correctly and word things the way others believe they have to to express themselves. It’s just fucking petty and the only people who have their consciousnesses raised are those willing to stick it out. And the thing is, I have stuck it out, but it is assumed that I have not because I don’t agree with some things I ought to. And I’m sitting here thinking it’s such waste of my time to even try to explain or express my perspective or opinion on this because I know exactly what’s going to happen and it won’t be the raising of my consciousness or support, but the erasure and ignoring of my viewpoint because it didn’t line up exactly with the correct! way to express it. Jill can get away with a criticism of Christie Brinkley, but I wouldn’t be able to. Because people feel like if they go after every internet comment they’ve accomplished something.

  76. Forp

    See, I did it again. I used sucks again. I’m just a hopeless misogynist. Or a human lady just trying to say, I wish I could figure out how to participate in feminism in a way that didn’t make me feel hopeless, attacked, upset, belittled and really tired at least half the time I attempt it, because I really need feminism to work.

    I apologize for thread-hogging, it wasn’t my intent at all.

  77. Kali

    Sometimes I feel like intersectionality has overtaken and run over feminism. And sometimes misogyny hides behind anti-racism, anti-classism etc. For example, when the media focuses, out of pure salacious and prurient interest, on white murdered and raped women and girls, there is a section of liberals (mostly men) who feel perfectly comfortable calling those white murdered and raped women and girls “blonde bimbos” while criticizing the media for not covering the murder/rape of people of color. The culture in which those men feel comfortable calling those murdered/raped women and girls “blonde bimbos” is the intersectionality culture, where a lot of anti-racist and anti-classist sentiment is directed not at white men, but at white women, usually in misogynistic ways. I have friends who are women of color who are very fond of using the b-word to describe white women, as in “racist b**ch” or “rich white b**ch”. The white woman could be any random woman on the street, minding her own business, a stranger.

  78. awhirlinlondon

    The big problem with the hurt fee-fees, I think, has to do with the fact that what one often feels – what I’ve felt, certainly – is not embarrassment, but shame, which is a fucking awful feeling. Takes longer to dust one’s self off enough to listen when one is in the throes.

  79. AdmirerofEmily

    I totally agree with Twisty that language and debate is critical to action. As psychologist Kurt Lewin said ‘There’s nothing as practical as a good theory” and backed it up with a model of change based on reflecting-planning-acting-observing-reflecting- etc. So reflection/debate is critical.

    That being said, is it really necessary to shame our allies? I’ve previously worked in a field where the principle of non-violence was central to the work. Though I was often shocked at what some people espousing this principle actually DID (which didn’t match what they SAID), on the whole I found that it was helpful in attracting people to participate. They felt safe.

    An Aboriginal colleague of mine introduced me to the idea of
    which is where “people in positions of powerlessness, covertly or overtly direct their dissatisfaction inward toward each other, toward themselves, and toward those less powerful than themselves”. To resolve it, Aboriginal man Richard J Franklin suggests “out it. Name it for what it is, a destroyer of Indigenous culture and life. Publicly admit it is happening and then take steps and measures to deal with it… Find ways to deal with it, end it, eradicate it from our lives and communities” (referenced on page linked to through ‘lateral violence link’).

    So I think it’s a good thing we are having this discussion. I don’t think it’s trivial – Twisty herself has said it’s the reason for her blogular sporadicism.

  80. AdmirerofEmily

    Sorry, mucked up the link.

    It should read ‘An Aboriginal colleague of mine introduced me to the idea of ‘lateral violence’.

    So everything in blue links to the website that discusses this.

  81. redyelloworanj

    Feminist in-fighting reminds me of the proverbial overworked and underappreciated father/mother coming home from work and screaming at the kids for minor rules infractions. Too much pent-up frustration coming out sideways, directed at “safe” targets. It’s one thing to call out a fellow feminist on unconscious displays of privilege, it’s another thing entirely to use the situation as an excuse to verbally abuse or dogpile on fellow feminists. I see the latter happen far too frequently and it not only creates unnecessary friction, it actively discourages women from getting involved in movement feminism. The world is harsh enough for female-identifying people, you know? We can afford to practice privilege policing in a kinder, gentler manner with each other. A women identifying as feminist comes to the table with a different level of empathy and willingness to learn than your typical liberal dude. Why treat them the same? Liberal Dude is likely to be all hopped up on privilege and eager to scapegoat someone for his troubles. The feminist is probably carrying around some degree of unexamined privilege that’s going to necessitate a little reeducation at some point. The difference being: dude doesn’t really care or want to care about your problems. Lay on the guilt with abandon! The feminist is going to fuck up out of ignorance and is amenable to change. Scolding/shaming her is only going to serve to increase the shit-ton of self-loathing she’s burdened with for merely existing in this world as a female person. More compassion, less castigation: that’s what feminism needs right now.

    And count me in as one of Those Feminists who is utterly exhausted by all this intersectionality stuff *because* the concept has been misappropriated and watered down. I can’t help thinking of one online feminist community in particular where intersectionality has been diluted to include “class status AND lifestyle choices”, resulting in zero tolerance for criticism of any choices a self-professed feminist might make. Don’t you dare say anything negative about high heels! Or beady ess em! (Torture fetishists were, so I’ve been told, just Born That Way. Uh huh.) Sex work is now above reproach. Of course sex *workers* need to become a protected class, but since when did the sex industry and the myriad ways it perpetuates and further entrenches sexism and misogyny become a verboten subject in feminist circles? It seems that over the last few years or so a handful of relatively privileged sex workers have managed to convince mainstream feminists, ever eager to prove their intersectionality cred, that criticism of the sex industry leads to negative perceptions of the sex industry, which, in turn, could theoretically discourage men from hiring escorts/going to strip/clubs/etc., and we must avoid this outcome at all costs because it would deprive sex workers of income. Revenue generation for a relatively privileged few now supersedes the welfare of women in general and all of society. This is the dark side of intersectionality, when special interest groups commandeer the discussion, demanding unconditional inclusion and unquestioning acceptance of their practices and beliefs. If you so much as flinch, someone is going to label you a nasty ass bigot. It’s manipulative, divisive, and effectively poisoning younger feminists against radical feminism.

  82. Cyberwulf

    A big complaint I see on tumblr over and over and over is privileged people getting all upset because somebody said “aaaargh fucking men” (/cishets/white people) etc. I reblog the complaints and patiently explain that people who say this don’t literally mean all men/cishets/white folks etc. That it’s anger directed at a system that privileges certain classes of people, and that the people saying “aaaargh fucking [privileged class]” know that not all members of that privileged class are like that.

    Well, reading this thread, I’ve come to the conclusion that enough of us fucking well are like that to justify every single angry word that comes out of every woman that has to deal with more than one form of oppression, while we sit back and “put feminism first” and criticise the hall monitors for petty fingerpointing and infighting. Enjoy the pity party Forp’s throwing herself upthread.

  83. Cyberwulf

    Also, this?

    The culture in which those men feel comfortable calling those murdered/raped women and girls “blonde bimbos” is the intersectionality culture,

    NO. It isn’t.

  84. pheenobarbidoll

    Yep. Some need to keep in mind that we are united, and we will move on with or with out you. If your hurt feelings or misplaced feelings of indignation keep you mired in privilege fail, then you can stay there. Woc are women too, so stop acting like the shit we deal with is some separate thing you can’t possibly be expected to remember. We’re not your mammies, shamans or personal Buddha and we are not The Help.

  85. AdmirerofEmily

    I totally get the shit WOC deal with – Aboriginal friends and Toni Morrison and Zora Neale Hurston helped there.

    As Twisty says ” I don’t see how anyone can reasonably expect members of marginalized groups to “lighten up”. Is there a fine line between schooling and scorching?”

    What I’m talking about is “Mean Girls of Feminism Eating Their Own”. Smackdowns and trivialisation when those smacked down say ‘hey, that hurt’. Why smack people of good faith who are here to learn? Why not treat them with compassion and welcome and willingness to discuss?

    I’ve been in a lot of discussions about this as my fear of anger is a major issue for me.

    Though I kinda like the saying ‘toughen up princess’, perhaps people who haven’t experienced anger turning into a ‘clip around the earhole’ maybe don’t quite understand the barriers you need to overcome to do this? It’s a continual process.

    I’m always very inspired by Nelson Mandela as he seemed to be able to rise above his anger and show a powerful way of asserting his rights. That also seemed to be very inspiring to many others.

    Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King were inspired by Mahatma Gandhi who practised Satyagraha which he described as “love-force or soul-force. In the application of satyagraha, I discovered in the earliest stages that pursuit of truth did not admit of violence being inflicted on one’s opponent but that he must be weaned from error by patience and compassion”.

    Twisty says “A civil tone is more pleasant, but … not necessarily more effective”. But perhaps Mandela, and the nonviolent sit-ins of the Civil Rights movement, shows that a civil tone actually is more effective as the tone doesn’t get in the way so they can’t so easily put up defensive walls and just call you irrational? It shows you are actually the strongest and most ‘moral’?

  86. gingerest

    The reason that focusing on feminism first, and not other “isms” is ridiculous is that a poor or Black woman isn’t a woman and a poor person or a Black person separately. Her experience of racism, colorism, or classism isn’t distinct from her oppression as a member of the sex class – it’s synergistic and unitary. White women don’t get to define sexism as meaning only the oppression appurtaining to them as members of the sex class – the daily expressions of oppression which a Black woman endures differ from those a white woman does, and a Black woman has as much right to define sexism by those expressions, and to define the battle against it (feminism) by her resistance to them as any other woman has to define and resist according to her experiences. I know a lot of Black women who won’t use the term “feminism” to describe their resistance to sexism, because it’s been so completely appropriated by white women.

    Also, Nelson Mandela was a phenomenal human being and leader, and it’s nicewashing to suggest he was a polite pacificist. The tone of the speech from the Rivonia Trial dock is utterly calm, but I certainly wouldn’t call it rising above his anger: ” I do not, however, deny that I planned sabotage. I did not plan it in a spirit of recklessness, nor because I have any love of violence. I planned it as a result of a calm and sober assessment of the political situation that had arisen after many years of tyranny, exploitation, and oppression of my people by the Whites.”

  87. pheenobarbidoll

    Feminists here seem to be appropriating the cry of the white d00d. ” If you feminists were just nicer about it, men would listen”. If women weren’t so angry…if people of color weren’t so angry. As if anger isn’t justified. As if we should be noble ( savages) for your comfort. Really? But pheeno, how will we ever learn? Crack open a fucking book. Utilize that nifty thing I call google. That’s how.

  88. redyelloworanj

    @pheenobarbidoll
    The cry of the white dude is more akin to “Stop making me feel bad about my unexamined privilege! I enjoy having it and don’t want to sacrifice it!” The cry of the white feminist is generally more along the lines of: “Ow! That really, really hurt! I care about you and want to make the world a better place for you, but I am a fallible human being who doesn’t have time to earn my PhD in race relations, ergo, I’m going to fuck up from time to time and I am genuinely sorry about that!”

    White d00ds are rebuked and hear: I want to inconvenience you with my pleas for equal treatment. White feminists are rebuked and hear: You are a horrible, stupid person who fails at social justice. Gawd, why do you even try?!?

    You don’t punish the well-intentioned for earnest mistakes. It’s the same reason you don’t swat a puppy with rolled up newspaper when they piddle on the carpet. The puppy is just responding to instinct and doesn’t know any better. The white feminist is responding to social conditioning and doesn’t know any better. I guess maybe if we were as cute as puppies it would be easier to be patient with us. *puppy dog eyes*

  89. pheenobarbidoll

    Its experienced as racism and race privilege regardless of intent. And given the attitudes towards the #solidarityisforwhitewomen, I have no doubt that white feminism is all about keeping that privilege, as much as any white d00d is. Your post still boils down to ” please explain how my oppression of you hurts in a nicer way, so I dont feel bad”. You feel bad when you find out you’ve said something shitty? Imagine how the victim of your carelessness felt getting kicked in the teeth in some place touted to be safe for women. (Just not women of color) Feminists DO know better. And their education is up to them if they do not. Again, we are not your mammies or shamans put on this earth to stop fighting our oppression to school you sweetly and feed you little bite sized pieces of thinkystuff. Do your own homework, and if you fuck up, own it instead of excusing it. And if someone isn’t nice enough about your boot on their neck, be more careful where you step.

  90. pheenobarbidoll

    And currently, there is no excuse to not know this. There are dozens and dozens of blogs on this very subject. There are dozens of How To Be A Good Ally blog posts, articles and even tweets on this.

  91. pheenobarbidoll

    And this has been around, and made the rounds since 2008. 6 damn years and yall are STILL saying the same damn thing. But cant manage to puzzle out why others are sick of it.
    http://kittikattie.livejournal.com/796501.html

  92. AdmirerofEmily

    @pheenobarbidoll – after I read my email, I realised that some of what I said was likely be interpreted as you are interpreting it. And the fact that I wasn’t really sure whether it would be or not was my responsibility and that I needed to educate myself on this – to get off my thang.

    I was interested to see if there was anything about this on Australian websites, as there’s not much *off* websites. So I firstly googled ‘ally Aboriginal “people of colour” site:au’. When I googled before lunch I got 78 results. When I googled again after lunch I got 92,000 results! Anyways, will read.

    I do understand that ‘if someone isn’t nice enough about your boot on their neck, be more careful where you step’. I also think that other violence is being wielded in the feminist community in an ‘I’m more radical than you – now piss off!’. Google “saying-ouch-to-shakesville”.

    I think we need to address all forms of violence within the feminist community.

  93. redyelloworanj

    Its experienced as racism and race privilege regardless of intent. And given the attitudes towards the #solidarityisforwhitewomen, I have no doubt that white feminism is all about keeping that privilege, as much as any white d00d is

    I don’t want to diminish the importance of what you’re saying, because I believe it’s true that there’s a segment of the white feminist population harboring a “justice for me, not for thee” attitude. From what I’ve seen, it’s a fairly small contingent that draws attention specifically because of their narcissism and seemingly congenital inability to withdraw their heads from their asses. I hope I’m right about that (that it’s a small group). They seem to also be the most wedded to patriarchy, obstinately refusing to examine their internalized misogyny. Just all around self-interested stinkers that want to take from the social justice movement what benefits them and to hell with everyone else.

    I’ll admit that it stings a bit to be lumped into this homogeneous “white feminists” group where the most obnoxious and narcissistic members are invoked as representatives of all white feminists everywhere. If you’d simply said “White people suck”, I would’ve understood immediately what you were referring to and I would’ve agreed with you. For some reason it feels personal when “white feminists” are targeted. Maybe it’s because, as I’d mentioned above, a woman interested in practicing feminism (as opposed to slapping the label on herself, vampirically extracting the benefits and calling it a day) comes to the table with a level of empathy and willingness to learn that most liberal dudes just don’t have. The slap-down isn’t necessary when there isn’t any resistance to overcoming privilege in the first place. Just an honest mistake here and there, free of ‘tude – like failing to consider the struggles of WOC in their assessment of a sexist situation; e.g., an oversight.

    Not sure what else to say. Speaking from the perspective of a disabled person, it riles me up when people say ableist shit and utterly fail to consider how different my daily life is from theirs. I get angry, sometimes I get ragey, and while that anger is undeniably justified, what I don’t do is fail to distinguish between the maliciously ableist and the clueless ones who simply don’t know any better but would absolutely do better if someone experienced in such issues enlightened them. I don’t chastise the clueless ones (a little sarcasm might creep in, depending on the circumstances) because what’s the point? Is it for them to walk away shaking their head, feeling unjustly attacked by a Hysterical Harpy (the thing we women magically morph into in the minds of our “victims”, of course). Where’s the opportunity for growth and connection when the marginalized alienate their best potential allies? Some people deserve an ass whooping, others deserve a little good faith. I guess I don’t see the point in creating more friction and divisiveness in the world when all that’s essential for some people to Get It is a gentle nudge in the right direction. No one ever said you should devote precious time and energy to reeducating the clueless. It would suffice to say, “I know you’re unaware that what you just said is racist. You should check out this website: [Racism 101 site].” I don’t know how many clueless-yet-well-intentioned dudes I’ve sent to the Feminism 101 site, but that’s my trusty fall-back for times when I don’t have the wherewithal to even begin to get into the basics. Or when I simply don’t feel like playing teacher. It sure beats a beat-down because everyone gets to walk away feeling like they’ve been heard.

  94. redyelloworanj

    I also think that other violence is being wielded in the feminist community in an ‘I’m more radical than you – now piss off!’. Google “saying-ouch-to-shakesville”.

    Prime example of how ridiculously vicious intersectional feminist communities can be. The mods are like sharks circling, waiting eagerly for the first drop of blood that will set off a feeding frenzy. Oh, and if you weren’t aware, the mods are constantly scanning the internet for members that have the audacity to “badmouth” them elsewhere. Badmouthers are banned for life. So be careful of what you say if you post there and use the same handle.

    Btw, I don’t know if they consider themselves rad fems, as they come across more like sex pozzies who have written The Book On Feminism and will brook no disagreement.

  95. pheenobarbidoll

    The number of white feminists who push back against any evidence they’re racist is not that small. And White Feminism as a whole is significant. Racism in particular has gotten the most visible push back. White privilege is as embedded as male privilege, it seems. Even when that douchebag Hugo S. Had his Twitter melt down and confessed to using white feminist racism against woc, those feminists refused to acknowledge or accept their active role. Those that did, did so with the non apology apology and excuse making. And still do to this day. Woc are treated like shit by white feminism and have been for too long. This is why you don’t see a willingness among woc to simply give benefit of the doubt. That’s a luxury we can no longer afford. White feminism and feminists have been shouting us down for decades. It’s too little too late. If you want to learn, you will. Regardless of the tone. If you don’t, we have no use for you and will leave you behind. It’s come to that, and its taken years. I think we’ve been exceedingly patient. Well, we’ve run out of patience and had white feminism bothered to listen over the past decade, those white feminists might not be so shocked by the anger. If you’re surprised, caught off guard or don’t understand it, you haven’t been paying attention. This is also not our doing. We tried nice. We tried hand holding. No one changed or learned.

  96. redyelloworanj

    The number of white feminists who push back against any evidence they’re racist is not that small. And White Feminism as a whole is significant. Racism in particular has gotten the most visible push back. White privilege is as embedded as male privilege, it seems. Even when that douchebag Hugo S. Had his Twitter melt down and confessed to using white feminist racism against woc, those feminists refused to acknowledge or accept their active role. Those that did, did so with the non apology apology and excuse making. And still do to this day.

    Oh yeah, I remember that. Those were all Jezzies, weren’t they? I don’t want to excuse bad behavior, because ultimately there was, and is, no justification for Jezebel’s appalling negligence (keeping Hugo Sexist on staff for so long), or for a significant portion of the Jez community to rise up in defense of that negligence, or in defense of Hugo. Something that makes me squirm, that I don’t feel entirely comfortable doing, is putting Jezebel in the “white feminist community” category. Frankly, it’s never billed itself as a feminist site and the community has always been a mixed bag. It *used* to attract a greater number of feminists, but there was a mass exodus when male writers (mostly misogynistic douchenozzles) were hired and more and more articles were designed to stir up controversy and garner page clicks, the editors complicit in fostering a noxious, woman-hating women’s site. (Now Playboy is a part of the same network Jezebel belongs to. Good gravy, talk about a conflict of interests!) Things have improved over there, and yet it’s still a place I only visit if I’m feeling particularly masochistic. If I want to lose faith in the younger generation faster than Hugo can harass a student, I read the comments sections at Jez. I think I may have even cried a time or two.

    I guess it would be futile to ask you to please consider the source of the pushback. I don’t blame you one bit for holding a grudge against that bunch. Hell, I’ll join in. That really was a terrible group of people, all of them entitled young asshats. With maybe a few older folks that really ought to know better thrown in. Some sites naturally attract vampire feminists and that is absolutely one of them.

    If you want to learn, you will.

    I try. I can’t follow *all* the black feminist blogs or twitter accounts, regardless of how much I’d like to. I simply haven’t got the time. I have no idea where to even access a racism primer with the fundamentals laid bare for the uninitiated. Does such a thing exist? I’d rather be referred to a site than randomly pick a google link. What if I want to read something authored by a respected leader in the community? That’s not the kind of thing you accidentally stumble onto.

    No one changed or learned.

    Then what’s the point of “intersectional feminism”? It didn’t grow out of a need for addressing the various forms of oppression women face? Seems to me that’s precisely what happened. And when I look around at intersectional communities, funny thing, they sure do have their fair share of white feminists.

  97. AdmirerofEmily

    Hi redyelloworanj. Googling solidarityisforwhitewomen might be a good place to start. When I googled ‘ally people of colour” this popped up. I reckon you’d be able to find something useful there. I’m about to embark on a reading binge when I’ve made dinner and finished my job applications.

  98. Mildred

    I read this upthread:
    “A women identifying as feminist comes to the table with a different level of empathy and willingness to learn than your typical liberal dude.”

    And I thought, yes
    But then my brain farted and suddenly I thought… But liberal dudes totally always require feminists to treat them with kid gloves like they truly are not your typical Nigel (even though they always are), and white feminists are asking the same of WOC. And then I read the last posts and imagined it was liberal dudes saying the things that some of us were saying (and I was saying) and I was like… shit.
    If it wouldn’t wash if a dude was saying it, it shouldn’t wash for us either.

  99. Kali

    It is not only white feminists who criticize intersectionality. I am not white, for example. The last time we had this discussion, there were a lot of women of color who were criticizing intersectionality.

  100. quixote

    Jezebel is a feminist site? Who knew? I scanned their headlines once and never went back. Reminded me too much of seeing Cosmopolitan in the supermarket checkout line.

  101. pheenobarbidoll

    It was not just jezzies. Look, you’ve got to stop trying to excuse this. It wasn’t just jezebel people and its not some insignificant outliers of feminism. I’ve explained this 7 ways from Sunday, fairly patiently and far less harshly ( isn’t that what some of you keep saying is how you learn?) But I’m getting pretty angry at the endless attempts to make it less than what I’m telling you. Or making it due to those “other” feminists. LISTEN TO WHAT I TOLD YOU AND STOP TRYING TO EXCUSE IT. I KNOW WHAT I’VE EXPERIENCED BETTER THAN YOU DO. This? This is part of the damn problem. You want to be told nicely about the issues. So I told you nicely. And your response was to deny, diminish and act as if I’m just not clued in enough to know what feminists are problematic. You, who claim to not know much about woc experiences with feminism, but now you know more about the problem than I do?

  102. pheenobarbidoll

    @Kali- yes, and the denial of intersectionality is a denial of my experiences as an NDN woman. I have a reasonable problem with that. It’s not ok just because it comes from other woc. I experience it, it’s not a figment of my imagination. Read my much earlier post about being called a squaw. I know what that is, I know how to define what I experience. Squaw basically means white man’s whore. Not just whore. Not just female. But specifically, a female NDN white man’s whore. It uses both my race and my sex. Not just either or.

  103. Kali

    gingerest: “the daily expressions of oppression which a Black woman endures differ from those a white woman does, and a Black woman has as much right to define sexism by those expressions, and to define the battle against it (feminism) by her resistance to them as any other woman has to define and resist according to her experiences.”

    pheenobarbidoll: “Read my much earlier post about being called a squaw. I know what that is, I know how to define what I experience. Squaw basically means white man’s whore. Not just whore. Not just female. But specifically, a female NDN white man’s whore. It uses both my race and my sex. Not just either or.”

    If that was what intersectionality was about, in practice, I would not have any problem with it. I would fully support it and be active in it. But, in practice, that is not how intersectionality communities operate, as far as I can see. When Twisty failed to note that Jerry Seinfeld was oppressed as a Jewish person, she was not being called out for failing to note how Jewish women experience sexism or religious persecution or some synergistic combination thereof. What I see in intersectionality communities and debates is a version of “what about the men” hiding behind a facade of “what about race”, “what about class”, etc.

  104. pheenobarbidoll

    But the complaint wasn’t about his maleness, it was about erasing the Jewish people as a whole. Women included. Thats where it got sticky.

  105. pheenobarbidoll

    Oh, and that’s not to say intersectionality is critisism proof. Its what is being critiqued and who is doing the critiquing that is the problem. Feminism isn’t perfect and is subject to critisism too. But when its done by white men who dictate that its just mean women who won’t patiently explain fuck ups, we can surely agree that this is not valid critisism by anyone in a position to criticize. When white feminists critisize intersectionality ( or flat out deny it exists) , because woc are just meanies who aren’t patiently explaining or are just making it up to protect men, you can see how its not valid and that they are in no position to critisize.

  106. quixote

    Rights are for all, otherwise they’re not rights. They’re privileges. If you want to call that intersectionality, it works for me. As Kali says, some of what gets labelled intersectionality doesn’t feel like that. What tweaks me isn’t so much a “what about the menz” vibe, although that surfaces too. It’s more a “my thing is bigger than your thing, so shut up.” If rights are for all, we shouldn’t be telling each other to shut up. Not white women to women of color, not woc to ww, not straight to all non-straight, nor vice versa, etc.

    Although, I have to admit, I feel an exception coming on for sex pozzies. Plain flat-out wrong without a clue what they’re experiencing under all the layers of the P. Tell them to shut up all you want. Please.

  107. quixote

    (eep. now what’d I do to get into moderation? I will go wash out my mouth with soap.)

  108. Kali

    “But the complaint wasn’t about his maleness, it was about erasing the Jewish people as a whole. Women included.”

    There is a difference between “Jewish people, women included” and “Jewish women experience sexism and other ‘isms that interact with sexism in ways that non-Jewish women don’t”. I don’t see a problem with treating the latter as an integral part of feminism, and I support that kind of analysis. I do see a problem with treating the former as an integral part of feminism, because it splits feminism into ladies auxiliaries of various social justice movements. Feminism in that case is no longer about sexism. It is about racism as experienced by women of color, classism as experienced by poor women, etc.

  109. pheenobarbidoll

    When you’re critisising a speaker for his or her privileges, you cant leave out things like race or ethnicity, because different power dynamics exist. Erasing his Jewishness erased that power dynamic and erased Jews as a whole. Do you honestly not see that? Asking that this stops isnt expecting feminists to stop being feminists or focusing on sexism. Its asking that they not erase identities and dynamics as they do.

  110. Lidon

    Privilege is blinding. Completely. Like Pheeno said, blogs people!!! I came across some really enlightening ones, usually as links from other blogs I like to read, and one day I thought, “Ohhh, THAT’S why these WOC are angry. They’ve been through a lot of shit!!!” It’s like the guy scratching his head, saying “I don’t get it,” wondering why women could possibly be angry.

  111. Forp

    What I am talking about has almost nothing to do with intersectionality, except that some people use that as an excuse to shame you into silence on certain issues. If women of color take over feminism completely, if all white women are quiet on the subject for 10 years, I will probably be better represented within feminism. I am all for it. I thought it was pretty clear some of us were talking about something else but I’ll try again.

    When the UK porn filter brouhaha happened, my thinking was that that’s what it looks like when there’s democratic debate concerning legislating the internet. Whether you agree with that policy or not, you may have thought something similar if you are at all concerned about the increasingly bubble-ized, click-baited, Google-controlled and corralled nature of internet activism, outrage, discourse, “democracy”, whatever. Well, I was accused of being pro-Syrian-baby-and-girls-and-women-rape-and-torture, aligning with the Christian Right, wanting to shut down all independent journalism, hating free speech, etc. for expressing less than perfect alignment on the porn-filter issue. Now, the most effective argument here to shut me down from speaking my interest about how the conversation in the UK actually is (whether the porn-filter is in fact the worst thing since Hitler) is that I am not being “intersectional” enough because I must not care about Syria if I can have a disagreement with all the very upstanding Liberaltarian Doods and Wellesley Girls about this particular thing. I wasn’t actually arguing with women of color about Syrian women’s voices on this issue or feminism or anything related.

    If enough of us have a similar experience, specifically around these sex-industry-adjacent issues, maybe it’s because some people with a lot of time on their hands and a lot of experience arguing these things have decided to make money from the sex industry by shutting out unsavory opinions using so-called intersectionality as a way to guilt and shame people into silence. And maybe not. And maybe what I’m saying is NOT perfectly inclusive of all women’s needs, and maybe us having a difference of opinion on that is just the way it is and it DOESN’T actually mean I want Syrian kids killed, yeah?

  112. shopstewardess

    When the Jerry Seinfeld thing kicked off here, I stayed silent. Apparently what Twisty said was a problem because “everyone knows Jerry Seinfeld is Jewish”. Well, pardon me for existing, but I didn’t. Apparently he is rich and famous in the USA because of a TV show. I’ve never watched the TV show and I don’t live in the USA. I suppose I could have tried to make an assumption based on his last name, but I try not to make assumptions of that sort.

    Another way of looking at this: way back in the early 80s, when I was but a very young tadpole travelling around the European continent on £100 for the month (perfectly adequate in those days, thank you), I met a privileged young white woman from South Africa. She had only been exposed to the South African white media. She hadn’t heard of Steve Biko. She might have vaguely heard of Nelson Mandela. She thought apartheid was “separate development” and for the benefit of non-whites. In other words, she was mired in her own small culture, hadn’t had the information she needed to see the other side, and had no reason to understand that she had white privilege, let alone examine the consequences of it. I understood then that not only was I fortunate to have grown up in a different culture, but that we are all more or less prisoners of our cultures, and that it is very difficult to see beyond those cultures, let alone fight against them.

    Everyone with a dog in this thread is a prisoner of their own culture fighting with someone who is a prisoner of theirs. I would like to think that it is having a more embiggening effect than I managed to have on my young South African acquaintance all those years ago. I failed to get her to internalise the horrors of apartheid. But I could still recognise, when I saw her on the receiving end of some nasty and unwanted sexual behaviour, that she was at that moment just another victim of the patriarchy.

  113. Lidon

    I took that whole Seinfeld thing (which had a lovely trollish comment or two that followed) to mean that the problem wasn’t that “everyone” should know that Seinfeld is Jewish, but if you’re going to criticize someone (especially on an online platform), you shouldn’t ignore that person’s marginalized status, provided there is one (which has been discussed several times now). I think that’s fair although I will admit, initially I was too busy thinking, “That asshole!”

  114. Kali

    “Now, the most effective argument here to shut me down from speaking my interest about how the conversation in the UK actually is (whether the porn-filter is in fact the worst thing since Hitler) is that I am not being “intersectional” enough because I must not care about Syria if I can have a disagreement with all the very upstanding Liberaltarian Doods and Wellesley Girls about this particular thing. I wasn’t actually arguing with women of color about Syrian women’s voices on this issue or feminism or anything related.”

    Liberal dudes love intersectionality for this very reason. It’s a great tool to split women up.

  115. Kali

    “When you’re critisising a speaker for his or her privileges, you cant leave out things like race or ethnicity, because different power dynamics exist.”

    Personally, I prefer to criticize people for their behavior rather than their privilege. Maybe that is the reason I have so much disagreement with the intersectional community, because their focus seems to be more on calling out privilege.

  116. Twisty

    But Kali, isn’t it the behavior what’s getting called out? Because it proceeds from privilege? If the call-outs are just spiteful hatey-ness that says “your even being alive pisses me off,” well then, they’re dumb and I can ignore’em. But it doesn’t kill me to to get over myself for a minute and actually consider that a caution from a reader that I am “erasing Jewishness” might actually have some merit.

    It turns out this WASP privilege thing is a lot more insidious than I used to think, and believe me, I didn’t just spontaneously sprout this insight because I’m awesome; it was, and continues to be, hammered into my honky consciousness by vocal and angry members of marginalized groups who weren’t seeing results from being supportive of the white girl’s take on feminism.

  117. pheenobarbidoll

    Kali- I should have said for exercising their privilege. Simply having privilege isn’t generally their fault. Re reading my words I see it makes it sound as if I’m critisising them over something they have little control over, as opposed to ignorance of privilege or behavior stemming from privilege.

  118. Val

    I think there are two separate issues here that really need to be clarified.
    One is about intersectionality and being called out, which as Twisty says is all good really although it can be hurtful, confusing etc.
    The other is about put downs and exclusion (what I call the ‘we don’t like her, do we?’ syndrome, from a remark I overheard a little girl making in a playground one day). This is about trying to create group exclusion of other feminists who disagree with you, and it really is a big problem for feminism.

    There was a prime example up thread where Forp and Cyberwulf were having a debate about intersectionality, which was interesting, both making some good points. And then Cyberwulf said “Enjoy the pity party Forp’s throwing herself up thread” – which is no longer a debate with Forp, but a ‘we don’t like her, do we?’ moment, an attempt to get other people to join Cyberwulf in excluding and denigrating Forp.

    Everyone who feels powerless can do this kind of thing, and of course women as an oppressed class may be at particular risk. But I really wish it would stop, it’s doing damage to feminism as well as individuals.

  119. Val

    Made an earlier comment that seems to have disappeared – maybe stuck in moderation, or maybe too harsh and judgemental? (Sorry if so)

    Just wanted to say I’m in favour of examining ourselves on intersectionality, but I really don’t like it when one feminist says about another “enjoy the pity party x is throwing for herself” (as happened earlier) and comments like that.

    Non feminists are always happy to treat feminists with contempt, but we don’t need to do it to each other.

  120. Bushfire

    Forp, it looks like you ran into a bunch of assholes who were calling you names to shut you up. This has nothing to do with intersectionality. If you read what pheenobarbidoll explains about intersectionality, you’ll notice it has nothing to do with bullying and shaming people, it has to do with recognizing the intersection of multiple oppressions.

  121. Forp

    Right, which is why the first thing I said was, “What I’m talking about has almost nothing to do with intersectionality…” in that paragraph.

    I really just wanted to agree with KmtBERRY about the infighting and add that it feels like it’s just too hard sometimes, especially if you can’t devote a ton of time to keeping up with it all or want to disagree without tenaciously arguing for a day or three. It was just a mistake to comment about it, I did not mean to take up so much space. Maybe someone else learned something or something.

  122. monika

    @ Forp and @ pheenobarbidoll,
    I wanted to say thank you for all of your comments since I can appreciate where both of you are coming from. I really appreciate the comments you wrote wrt to the JErry Seinfeld thread pheeno, and your comments about the dilution of feminism to buzzwords over the actual lives of women rang so true to me, Forp. On this very thread, prostituted women are called “sex workers” and women born women are called “cis”….

    On the topic of the #solidarityisforwhitewomen tag, I think it’s important to add the dynamic of liberal vs radical feminists. Most of the Hugo defenders were liberal feminists who run mainstream blogs. Many radical feminists bloggers, however, spoke out against Hugo but were dismissed as evil, TERFy, killers of sex workers: http://anntagonist.wordpress.com/2013/08/15/solidarity-is-for-no-woman/

    I’m not saying that radical feminists can’t be racist (or anti-semitic, as i know first hand). I know that to women who have been hurt by racism it really doesn’t matter where it comes from because it’s just another chip away at one’s soul. My point is that in the whole Hugo debacle, it wasn’t radical feminists who threw women under the bus. In the end it’s WOC radical feminists who are spit on the most-I mean, where was Mikki Kendall and Flavia Dzodan when the women at AROOO were threatened with rape and mutilation?

  123. Cyberwulf

    women born women are called “cis”….

    And?

    I took a look at your link. The person who wrote it is a TERF. And she’s throwing certain women under the bus. Good for you for supporting her. Very feminist.

  124. monika

    So a woman who prioritizes females is throwing men under the bus. Ooookay. Your failure to address anything else I wrote, and the knee jerk reaction to dismiss anything anntaganist wrote because she’s been smeared with the anti-feminist label TERF says a lot more about you than it does about me.

  125. Cyberwulf

    Oh, I didn’t dismiss her because she’s “been smeared” as a TERF. I read more than the article you linked, including her screeching about Fallon Fox. Who’s five foot seven and one hundred forty pounds. Three inches taller, fifteen pounds lighter, and with the same size biceps as this cis woman. Oh but clearly she’s spent years taking estrogen and had expensive painful surgery just so she can beat up women, because it’s so hard for cis men to assault women and get away with it. She’s a TERF. And if you describe trans women as men, you’re a TERF too. Enjoy.

  126. Morag

    If a feminist criticizing someone like Fallon Fox amounts to “screeching,” what does the insult “you’re a TERF!” amount to?

    In my opinion, this type of insult sounds like it’s coming from a petulant and stormy teen-ager, rather than a mature woman discussing feminist issues with other feminists.

  127. Cyberwulf

    The “criticism” was a picture of Fox with transphobic shit for a caption. But you’re right. I’d better watch my tone in future, lest I not be taken seriously and everything I say be dismissed out of hand. I could swear I’ve heard that before, somewhere.

  128. monika

    Once again, you haven’t addressed anything I wrote in my original comment, and the idea that you’re the one being tone policed in this thread is laughable. I used that article as a documented example of how radical feminists tried to stand in solidarity with liberal WOC feminists on twitter but were ignored because of separate disagreements on gender. I’m not going to engage in a derailment here about gender since this discussion was originally about intersectionality between white and WOC feminists.

  129. Morag

    If my comment above sounds like tone-policing to you, Cyberwulf, that can’t be helped. Because, to me, there’s no neutral way to call someone a “TERF”–the nasty tone is already built-in. I agree with monika that it’s an anti-feminist slur, so your sense that I’m not inclined to take you seriously–after you call another feminist a TERF–is accurate.

  130. Polychrome

    Twisty, I know you posted this a few weeks ago but I just saw it now. Wow. So perfectly expressed. Twisty / Jill / (and devoted readership): gettin up offa that thang since 2004.

  131. pheenobarbidoll

    A transphobic shit is still a transphobic shit. Prioritizing females? Fallon Fox is a fucking female. This need to dictate who is female and who isn’t is repugnant given that no too long ago woc weren’t considered women either. We were beasts to be used. So you’ll just have to excuse me if I side eye assholes who make themselves and their beliefs the arbiter of womanhood. They’ve yet to get it right on their own.

    And side rant with Fallon Fox. Its not brute strength that determines a fights outcome. Ive beaten the bloody snot out of girls back in hs who outweighed me, were taller by a foot and stronger. How? Because I had speed and skill. And I handed them their asses. Any other woman fighting fallon fox has the same chance to hand her her ass. Thats what they train to do.

  132. XY Feminist

    I hope I don’t step badly into the TERF discussion, and I have seen plenty of transphobia in various blogs out there, but what about the issue of residual male privilege after a person has transitioned?

    http://xyfeminist.wordpress.com/2013/01/16/mtf-and-residual-privilege/

    Perhaps there is a middle ground if we focus on male privilege rather than radfems?

  133. pheenobarbidoll

    Because that male privilege happens simultaneously with internalized sexism, fear and shame. Think that makes a wee bit of difference? I do. I present white. I am not white. And once, unbeknownst to me I dated a member of the local aryan brotherhood. He believed I was white and afforded me white privilege. When I learned what he was, I lived in utter terror of being found out. He was already abusive and I was without the tools to get away from him. Let me tell you, that terror overshadowed ANY privileged bestowed upon me. Live in fear for your life at being discovered you’re not the “rightful” recipient of that privilege and then we can chat about residual privilege. Be told who you identify as is shit, but you, why you’re great and those you identify with are worthless. Have that message hit you when you’re a child. Think that might screw with you any? I do.

  134. pheenobarbidoll

    Also what really irks me beyond the bigotry is that the loudest voices on the subject are women who expect that their opinion outweighs a trans persons lived experience. Which is like, the calling card of whiteness. Feminist or not.

  135. monika

    What the hell is happening here? I jut posted a link to a radical feminist who documented that it was radical feminists who supported the WOC who were threatened by Schwyzer. I’m a Jewish woman who is very visibly Jewish, and the irony of this thread isn’t lost on me-accusations that I must be white because I dared to link to the “wrong” feminist, and now straying so far off topic into “what about the transwomen?”

    Here’s how it is: I’m a woman who faces oppression from being Jewish and female. I wrote a comment showing support for other commenters who have to deal with intersectionality in feminism. Other commenters completely prove Forp’s point by dissolving into name calling a feminist who wrote things they don;t like which is a separate issue from what was originally being discussed.

    Can someone PLEASE respond to what I ACTUALLY been saying? (sending thanks over to Morag).

  136. pheenobarbidoll

    Not sure about the irony, but the point is certainly lost on you. I’m calling the vocal, prominent white feminists who blog their transphobia white. Radical feminist who are transphobic are not allies, as women of color can be and also are trans persons. So claiming certain radical feminists supported woc isn’t accurate when those radical feminists only stood up for women of color assigned female at birth. They’re deciding which woc are really women, and that’s not only transphobic, its racist and colonizing as hell. Which is something many woc took note of, hence their ignoring support that came from colonizing, racist transphobic asses.

  137. Cyberwulf

    Okay, monika, how about this. Say there was a feminist hashtag trending, about an issue that affected white, straight, cis women. And say some white dudes were aaaaaall on board with this, showing solidarity with us. But then we google a couple of their names and find stuff like “I’m not racist, but [screed about immigrants taking our jobs]“. Or an essay about how come lesbians in porn are super hot but in real life they’re ugly bulldykes who don’t want a man they can share. Would you be wringing your hands if those dudes were told “don’t bring the whiff of your bigotry around here, we don’t want your help”? After all, they’re being totally solid for white cishet women.

    @XYFeminist: on the topic of residual male privilege, this post popped up on my tumblr dashboard a few weeks ago: http://cyberwulf.tumblr.com/post/79099716162/kiriamaya-i-scare-cis-people

    For anyone who doesn’t want to click, it’s several trans women talking about the horrifying way in which men talk about women when they think they’re alone with other men. Relevant quote:

    “When we are closeted and parsed as other men, [cis men] are completely open about how fucking disgusting they are.

    Another reason why trans women being male-socialized is such bullshit. Being around men like this doesn’t force us to internalize positive messages about men, we internalize the negative we hear about women and we are scared.”

  138. monika

    Females are in the oppressor position wrt to men? A penis can be female? And this is why feminism is in the state it’s in-biology and history are erased in favor of social justice buzzwords. Women certainly have privileges over other women, but we can never be oppressors. I would really like an answer to my question before about why intersectional feminists like Mikki Kendall said shit when black radical feminists like Margaret Jamison and Kitty Glendower were threatened with rape.

  139. Bushfire

    TERF is not an anti-feminist insult, jeez. Excluding entire groups of women is what’s anti-feminist.

  140. monika

    I guess now we should call it Feminism: now with 100% more dick sucking. You’re just as male centered as liberal feminists. I will support any woman no matter what color she is, but to compare the tribulations of a man in a dress vs the historical oppression of WOC is not something I can get behind.

  141. Cyberwulf

    Hi monika, you’re a TERF. Kindly put yourself in a garbage can and hop out to the curb.

  142. Morag

    “I will support any woman no matter what color she is, but to compare the tribulations of a man in a dress vs the historical oppression of WOC is not something I can get behind.”

    Me neither, monika.

  143. pheenobarbidoll

    Typical colonizer bullshit. Just so you know, MY culture and other indigenous cultures on this planet do not believe the same shit you do. And you can shove that racist colonization bullshit right back up your ass. You are not an ally, you’re an enemy. Your crap bigotry isn’t our problem, colonizer. Go colonize someone else you racist piece of shit.

  144. pheenobarbidoll

    Oh and given that its MY experience that was being compared, not only can you two get behind it, you can kiss my NDN ass while you’re back there.

  145. monika

    Native American cultures that had strict gender roles for men and women had the concept of two spirit or transgendered people to explain why those people didn’t behave the “right” way. The cultures that didn’t enforce gender roles and didn’t have a fear of homosexuality did not. Sorry you can’t obfuscate my points with calling me a colonizer though, my people were too busy going through pogroms and eventually being sent to a concentration camp. If you bothered to read my original comments all the way through, I had been agreeing with you about intersectionality in feminism. But it’s much easier to jump down my throat and IBTP for that.

  146. Maria

    Pheenobarbidoll & cyberwulf -how many times do we have to see you two have a go at fellow commenters? I’m sick of it. You run the thread by running everyone else off it. This used to be a fun place to hear radical feminists speak but now it’s just like the rest of the blogosphere where women are policed and silenced and blamed. It’s hard not to notice the absence of former commenters or how tame the remaining commenters have become. It’s almost like they’re afraid, imagine that!

  147. Linda

    Pheeno loves to abuse other women online and to brag about her violence towards other woman online. Been watching it for years now and the pattern has not changed. IBTP

  148. Cyberwulf

    You know, describing trans women as “men in dresses” is an attitude that directly leads to the murder of trans women. But clearly me telling monika to take herself out with the rest of the garbage is the problem here.

  149. pheenobarbidoll

    Oh, please educate me on my own culture, wise colonizer. After all, we’re just dumb NDNS who need you to show us the way. And yes, you are a colonizer. Right now. Every non indigenous person on this continent is. Today. Modern times. You benefit from our ongoing genocide. Your house sits on stolen land. Your malls. Your places of work. Your schools. The food that fills your stores exist because my ancestors were murdered and my people displaced. Our water is poisoned so you have luxuries. So be very, very clear that I mean you, today in 2014. But I forgot, you already know all about the over 500 remaining tribes and their beliefs right? So you already know this.

  150. pheenobarbidoll

    @Linda and Maria- I don’t give a pass to women who are racist. They don’t sugar coat their racism, I’m not going to sugar coat my response. I’m not their Tonto.

  151. Linda

    “You know, describing trans women as “men in dresses” is an attitude that directly leads to the murder of trans women”

    Fucking bullshit. It’s men and their culture of masculinity that leads to the murder of trans women. What is up with you implicating women in men’s violence? For fuckin’ shame.

  152. Bushfire

    Monika there is no “dick-sucking” here. If you read any part of this blog you’ll notice that it’s about blaming the patriarchy for women’s oppression. As for the paragraph you wrote explaining pheeno’s culture to her, I can’t believe this needs to be explained to you, but this is racist and it’s certainly NOT supportive of all women no matter their color, as you claim to do. Please get out of here and take your racism and transphobia with you.

  153. Cyberwulf

    “Fucking bullshit. It’s men and their culture of masculinity that leads to the murder of trans women. What is up with you implicating women in men’s violence? For fuckin’ shame.”

    HA. HA. HA. HA.

    Why the fuck do you think cis men murder trans women (leaving aside the fact that women are just as capable of murder)? Why don’t you google “trans panic defense” and see if there’s any similarity between that and monika’s disgusting, phobic description of trans women as “a man in a dress”? Not to mention upholding biology as the One True Indicator of Gender. You know, the very thing that patriarchal societies have always used and still use to justify the worst excesses of men and the characterisation of women as weak and helpless?

    Shame on YOU.

  154. Maria

    Pheenobarbidoll says ” Fallon Fox is a fucking female. ”

    You have zero credibility when you say crap like above. It’s positively Orwellian. Your FRAUD FEMINISM is all about finding women online to get angry with instead of fighting the patriarchy that is actively destroying women in the real world. You think anyone besides your mean girl buddies cyberwulf & bushfire give a crap who you think is racist when you blast off at the drop of a hat, and have zero tact & even less integrity? Please. Leave.

    And just to stop you before you start: I’m multi-racial. You are not the only WOC here so stop acting like you have some sort of authority. You don’t and I sincerely doubt you’re even a radfem so how about you go fight some “TERFS” on Jezebel and give everyone here a break for once.

  155. Yerfie

    Pheeno is an old habitue of the IBTP boards, back from earliest beginnings. She grew up white in a Native reservation setting in the US, and continues to claim white identity when it’s convenient. Here, though, she’s *the* WOC whose experience trumps all others’, and any discussion of race draws her in like a magnet, where she then proceeds to shit up the discussion. Nothing but a bully.

    It’s revealing to look at the evolution of her online presence at IBTP, from claiming a mostly white/poor identity to the current Native iteration. It’s bullshit. Woman, unquestionably. Poor, very likely. Disabled, possibly. NDN, absolutely only online.

  156. pheenobarbidoll

    Oh lord, here comes the ” I bet I do more than yoooouu!!” Idiocy, in no true scotsman tradition. You think I give a shit about racists and their fee fees? If they can’t handle being blasted for bigotry then they should try not being bigots. If tone is more important to others than flat out racism, I hope the door doesnt hit them on the ass on their way out. If you and others insist on erasing my cultures beliefs about the subject, feel free to follow them. Prior to patriarchy fueled colonization, the cultures here had zero issue with trans persons and homosexuality. And for people so against the p, you sure swallowed the p interpretation of our gender roles. The owner of the blog you’re on doesn’t even think the way you do, so maybe its not me who needs to leave. Your variations of ” youre too angry” are transparent as hell. And predictable. Its always the ones loudest about STANDING UP FOR WOMEN that turn. Always. So tack bigotry onto your feminism. Like I said above, you can wallow in it when we leave your ass in the dust. If you hadnt noticed, woc who arent bigots have no problem with forward momentum. Its your movement thats stalling. Have fun with that.

  157. pheenobarbidoll

    You also need to pay more attention. My responses up until I was called a dick sucker( and by extension my entire tribe), were not blasting anyone except those feminists who were linked to and referenced for supporting woc, but then ( rightfully) ignored. So I’ll wait while you address those who first started blasting.

  158. Bushfire

    Maria, Twisty herself has made it clear that this is not a transphobic blog and many regular commenters are grateful for that. I wish you would recognize that this is not the place for the “trans women are men” theory, seeing as how that’s against the wishes of the writer. It’s ironic that you’re making personal attacks against others on a thread that’s exactly about that sort of problem. Your comments about pheeno blasting off at the drop of a hat are incorrect; she’s reacting to the racism that other people have been dumping on her for years. Lots of people are against racism, not just cyberwolf and myself. “Mean girls,” really? Is calling people childish names really part of your Feminism?

  159. Morag

    monika came into this conversation in full agreement that understanding the intersection of sex and race is absolutely VITAL to feminism. She offered herself as an example of a woman who experiences anti-semitic misogyny, and she actively listened to and supported other women’s narratives about sex-based oppression compounded by, and inextricably woven into, racism. She also had questions about how well intersectionality works in practice, and provided a concrete example of its limited success in the Schwyzer scandal.

    Her sincere efforts at conversation went nowhere. Because of her critical view of genderists, she’s been demonized–unequivocally, but irrationally–as a de facto racist. So have I. And this charge of racism apparently comes from the fact that “women of color can be and also are trans persons.” Well, women of colour can be part of many different groups with an articulated cause, and not all of those groups will receive the support of all feminists just because women of colour are represented in them.

    pheenobarbidoll, you have thoroughly conflated anti-racism with pro-genderist politics. You turn two separate movements into a monolithic one, and then invoke the concept of intersectionality to consecrate this monolith as beyond doubt or question.

    This makes it possible for you to abusively dismiss even a committed anti-racist feminist AS a despicable racist, in order to discredit (in advance) her critical views on gender. I call this propaganda; it is coercion, manipulation and silencing through shaming. It’s an unjustifiable attack, not only on individual women, but on intellectual honesty itself.

  160. pheenobarbidoll

    Her attempt to inform me of my own culture is what makes her a racist. Her dismissal of cultural beliefs that have no issues with trans persons is what makes her a racist. And chock full of colonist privilege. How about you tell me the different cultures that make up your identity and I’ll proceed to educate you on what they really think, and if the beliefs differ from mine, I’ll call you and them dick suckers. Think that’d sit well with you? I doubt it. Up until monica posted prioritizing females, I’d been discussing anntaganist, her transphobia and explaining why woc distanced themselves from radical feminist support( because many woc cultures view transphobia as bizarre colonial crap and recognize trans women of color). Then monica decided I called her white ( incorrect. I said outspoken trans phobic feminists who dismiss lived experience of trans women were displaying whiteness). Then MONICA loftily informed me that she couldn’t get behind comparing ” men in dresses” to MY experience, equated MY experience with all of woc and proceeded then to inform me about my own god damn culture. What part of that is ME attacking HER? You’re full of shit. You’ve intentionally ignored the provoking shit she said and instead focused on my reaction to her bullshit.

  161. pheenobarbidoll

    Oh and since I’m such a mean girl, you also dismissed MY experience as a woc comparing identity situations with ” men in dresses”. Because god knows I need a non NDN to explain my own damn lived experience, im clearly too stupid, and require YOU telling ME those parallels are wrong.

  162. pheenobarbidoll

    Also- demonizing her as a racist? Yeah, being called a racist colonizer is so much worse that experiencing racism ( and yes, I sure as shit did experience that as racism) and colonization oppression( yes, that too). But no, lets ignore that a woc experienced racism and colonization and focus on what really matters. Someone was called the R word!!! The horror!

  163. pheenobarbidoll

    And the next time you want to accuse me of playing the race card, cut the word salad and just say it. What was that about intellectual honesty again?

  164. Maria

    Oh Pheenobarbidoll there you go again “Prior to patriarchy fueled colonization, the cultures here had zero issue with trans persons and homosexuality.”

    Your statements are false, as usual. Conflating two-spirit with trans is disingenuous and yet another reminder of your lack of credibility. A distinct third or mixed gender is not the same as trans today and mixing homosexuality with that as well? Yeah I’ll pass. I’m not here to discuss trans anyway, despite your best efforts to make that the topic.

    Bushfire, I’m sorry if the childish “mean girl” label hurt your feelings, I found it rather tame compared to “racist” and “bigot” that you and your buddies cyberwulf & pheenobarbidoll throw around. As for my comments about Pheenobarbidoll, they are 100% accurate.

    It felt good to participate in the call out culture you three are so fond of, but I’m done now. My radical feminism involves supporting women instead of policing them. Have a wonderful day!

  165. Cyberwulf

    Calling trans women “men in dresses” is bigoted, phobic, and not supportive of women. Sorry if that hurts your feelings.

  166. Maria

    Cyberwulf – no, it doesn’t hurt my feelings. Maybe you meant to direct your question to the person who said that? Saying a comment is “bigoted” is a vast improvement from calling commenters garbage, bigot, racist, etc. I really appreciate that slight change. Have a wonderful day!

  167. XY Feminist

    Talk about proving the point of Twitsty’s post! No one is checking their privilege here!

    “Man in a dress” is nasty and transphobic. There’s no way to use that term otherwise. Yes, there are cis-men who pose as women online to harass feminists on blogs [cite] but those dudebags aren’t who we are talking about here. And unless you want to end up shitting on everyone’s identity, you’re much better off critiquing people’s behavior rather than attacking the legitimacy their identities.

    Similarly, TERF is loaded and problematic as it singles out radical feminists as being somehow extra-transphobic than all other feminists (no one ever calls a transphobic fun feminist a TEFF). Of course there are some transphobic radfems in the world, but TERF is frequently used to silence any radfem who dares to question the very idea of gender and the problems of gender constructs. When people on this blog have told you that the term TERF is hurtful, why do you still use it? To quote Twisty, “Remember, folks: your hurt feelings are the result of privilege. They’re giving you the opportunity to go out and entruthen yourself. Don’t waste it.”

    And Pheeno, Cyberwulf. You are hijacking the conversation. From Twisty’s own commenting policy:

    If you find yourself commenting more than 2 or 3 times on a given post, please consider shutting the old piehole.

    Currently, the comment counts on this post alone are as follows:

    Pheeno: 29!!! (this may be a record)
    Cyberwulf: 16
    Bushfire: 6
    Kali: 6
    Quixote: 6
    Morag: 5

    (my apologies if I missed anyone)

    And Monicka’s original point still hasn’t been addressed. Probably because anyone who isn’t used to exercising their privilege of talking over others has been drowned out of the conversation.

    Please, everyone check your privilege and share the space.

    Going back to lurking now.

  168. Morag

    OK, I’ve made 5 comments, this makes 6–and that’s too many–but to answer commenters who have spoken directly to me, it may have to be 7 before I return to lurking.

    “Her attempt to inform me of my own culture is what makes her a racist.”

    Yes. But that part came later, pheenobarbidoll. Your first charge of racism came directly from discovering her/my sympathy with the radical feminists you call “TERFs,” and where you set up the untenable “TERF = racist” equation. That is what I’m criticizing. That’s what I’m calling intellectually dishonest.

  169. monika

    Thank you Morag and Maria for your supportive comments. I really appreciate that you recognized that I was acting in good faith-I’ve been reading radical feminist blogs for a while and only started to leave comments. A the risk of getting even more abuse, I’m going to step away here because this discussion feels triggering to me, as someone who’s been in an abusive family. And no this isn’t a “flounce,” I just feel that exhaustion that Forp wrote about before. Just a reminder, I’m not the one calling other women trash or pieces of shit. I don’t even live in America or Canada! I’ll say what I said before: radical feminists are not the enemy.

  170. monika

    Oh sorry one more thing, here’s a source for what I wrote about Native American cultures and transgenderism: http://culturallyboundgender.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/toward-an-end-to-appropriation-of-indigenous-two-spirit-people-in-trans-politics-the-relationship-between-third-gender-roles-and-patriarchy/

    I hope the author is the right kind of woman and feminist….

  171. pheenobarbidoll

    Im not conflated two spirit with trans, you twit. Which I’ve showcased pretty clearly by separately mentioning trans persons AND ( see that fucking word) homosexuality. Two spirit is not even MY GODDAMN TRIBES NAME FOR IT. Well LOOK AT THAT. Further, I explained that woc who are ignoring terfs are ignoring them because its racist bigotry and last I fucking checked, colonization. Another word you dont even know the definition of given your placing it in the past, not present. Have you figured out you need to shut the fuck up up yet?

  172. monika

    Just for the record, I have a comment in mod that links to a source of where I got the info for my comment about Native American cultures and gender.

  173. pheenobarbidoll

    Morag- oh I see. Racism is fine if it comes on the heels of having a belief accused of being racist. In order to defend oneself from being thought of as a racist, one should use racism as a response. Yeah. That makes sense. Her racism came AFTER. So its all good, right? Saying that I experience those beliefs as racism and colonization privilege, thats totally an attack. And should be countered with more fucking racism. However did I get the idea people were racist and stuffed with colonizer privilege? Its a mystery, to be sure.

  174. Morag

    “But no, lets ignore that a woc experienced racism and colonization and focus on what really matters. Someone was called the R word!!! The horror!”

    Of course it’s not worse to be called a racist than to directly experience racism and live with it. I do get that. But an accusation of racism on a dishonest premise tends to derail a conversation. Feminist polarization concerning trans women became the issue.

    Before that happened, I read every word you wrote about women of colour, racism and colonization, and integrated it into my understanding (so far) about the lasting, and continued effects of colonization on Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Particularly on Aboriginal girls and women. There’s an urgent feminist conversation about this that started a long time ago, that is still in progress, and that has to continue.

    From my point of view anyway, this important conversation has actually NOT been lost in the tumult of gender politics. It didn’t begin on this thread and it won’t end here, either. Bushfire reminded us that this is a private blog, not a public space, and that debate surrounding trans women is not welcome here. So, those of us who reject the word “TERF,” and who don’t agree that “TERF = racist,” can go elsewhere to learn how to be better allies to women of colour.

  175. pheenobarbidoll

    Thats lovely maria. Now let me google Jews and regurgitate everything I find to you, as the gospel truth. That should make it alright. And when I find something thats not accurate or stupidly simplifies something, I’ll ignore your direct words and just double down, insisting I know more about your beliefs than you do. Oh, and to prove it, I’ll be anti semetic while I do it. And YOUR reaction will be dismissed as mean.

  176. Linda

    I can recall when comments threads here were awesome spaces for blaming. Lately it seems they are spaces for pheeobarbiedoll to yell at other women, call them names, tell them to shut the fuck up and just generally act like she owns the fucking blog. I wish you all a nice weekend and will stick to just reading the posts from here on in.

  177. pheenobarbidoll

    I’ll be sure to let the woc I know to know you said it isn’t racism, so they understand you speak for us all and our experiences dont count. Because, dick sucking I guess. What you don’t seem to get is that its not a dishonest premise. If we disagree I suppose you can hand us links on the internet to explain our cultures to us. Guess that support and focus on women doesnt extend to the benefit of the doubt. Not when racism accusations can be dismissed as dishonest ( or playing the race card) or meanness.

  178. pheenobarbidoll

    I recall when this blog wasnt full of d00ds chastizing women on their comment count, or full of people who respond with racist comments as a defense.

  179. monika

    I apologize pheeno that my comments were examples of racism and colonialism. I’m not a native English speaker or from North America, but like I said in my earlier comments if you bothered to read them, I know racism doesn’t hurt any less even if it comes from someone well meaning. The only reason I spoke matter of factly about is that’s how I learned English, and also I hate when women speak unconfidently and make everything a question. Once again my intent was not to lecture you about your own culture, but rather dispute some of the claims you made about gender.

    I’m going to try not to comment anymore, but I think it would be great if you and Cyberwolf would apologize for not reading my comments fully or responding to my points, calling me names, lumping all the commenters who disagree with you together (you just wrote that comment about Jews to Maria, when i said I’m the one who is Jewish), and making assumptions about my background. I still agree with everything Maria and Morag wrote, but if it’s my responsibility to clear the air then I will.

  180. pheenobarbidoll

    Thank you monica. I apologize for mixing names, but I had 3 m names and I confused them. For the record, I did read your comments fully and agreed with you until that link was posted. You dont have to agree with the reasoning, but the reason many woc do not want support from feminists like anntaganist is because they experience her beliefs on trans persons as racism and colonizer privilege. Its not dishonesty as others claim, or a desire to just be mean. Its a visceral, gut reaction to something we have intimate experience with. When a trans woman can live on a reservation and be herself, safe, but cannot once she leaves the reservation, something is terribly terribly wrong. I cant apologize for disagreeing with you so fundamentally, nor can I change how I experience it. For me, its racism and colonization, 2 tools of the P I am very very intimate with. But I do apologize for contributions that triggered you. For that I am sorry.

  181. Cyberwulf

    Monika, you called trans women “men in dresses”. You belittled their lives and the danger they live in. That’s why I called you trash. I don’t feel obliged to be nice when someone comes out with bigoted stuff, no matter how anti-racist they are. But you’re right that I didn’t address your comment, so here I go.

    Imagine if there was a feminist cause out there and a bunch of white dudes were all for it, being real allies to the white women who were the most vocal advocates of the cause. But then we googled a few of their usernames and came across posts they’d written about how immigrants were taking all the jobs. Or that homosexuals shouldn’t be involved in youth organisations because it might hurt children somehow. Or how poor people were too lazy to get off welfare. Would you be wringing your hands if men like that, with those views, were told to get the fuck away from this feminist cause? That we really didn’t want the help or support of people who held racist, homophobic, or classist views?

  182. monika

    Cyberwulf, you need to get a hobby. I’m not interested in hypotheticals. The fact that you continue to dig into me proves that you’re not into feminism or social justice but want to bully an already marginalized woman. You smelled blood and took the opportunity to tear a woman down. You think I haven’t noticed how radical feminists are attacked driven offline for not accepting men who claim to be women?
    @pheeno Thank for the half apology, but I don’t consider being called a piece of trash a contribution. I feel so happy that transwomen are safe on reservations when women get killed in their homes. But the damage is done and now apparently I can’t even depend on fellow feminists not to treat me abusively. I have never seen men, even the likes of Hugo Schywzer, been called dehumanizing names (man in a dress isn’t an insult, just an observation). I promise not to comment here anymore since it’s obvious my views and experiences are not needed or wanted.

  183. pheenobarbidoll

    IM safer on the reservation too, until non NDNS get involved, so I guess its not us its your fucked up outside world thats the problem. Non NDNS rape NDN women, to the point our numbers are 5 times higher than the national average. We’re killed by non NDNS, raped by non NDNS, subjected to racism, colonization, and on some reservations the life expectancy is 47. Many reservations are tge equivalent of 3rd world countries, thanks to non NDNS. So thanks for making my case for me. Its yall who are fucked up. My people and our beliefs about people ( trans persons included) are clearly less P corrupted. But you go ahead and cling to your ways. They work so well.

  184. monika

    When I said women are killed in their homes, I was talking about all women including indigenous. I’m on your side in this.Why do you care about men who adopt womanhood more than actual women and by extension yourself? And did you miss the part where I said I’m not American or Canadian? Try naming the real oppressors.

  185. pheenobarbidoll

    Sounded like you were being sarcastic. And you dont have to be from this continent. http://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/russell-means-for-america-to-live-europe-must-die

  186. Cyberwulf

    “I’m not interested in hypotheticals.”

    I addressed your initial comment, monika. It’s the same thing. There was an issue that affected WOCs. They chose to decline the support of white women who said problematic stuff that wasn’t race-related but was trans-related. You believe that was wrong. I tried to get you to see it from their point of view using a hypothetical scenario involving white men with problematic views. So it seems to me like you only wanted to complain about how WOCs weren’t suitably grateful for help from trans-exclusionary feminists.

    “The fact that you continue to dig into me proves that you’re not into feminism or social justice but want to bully an already marginalized woman.”

    You described a trans woman as a man in a dress, and you’re calling me a bully?

    “You smelled blood and took the opportunity to tear a woman down.”

    I saw you being transphobic and I called you on it.

    “man in a dress isn’t an insult”

    Yes it is an insult. It’s saying that trans women aren’t really women, and is the foundation of all the narratives of deceptive trans folk fooling straight men into having gay sex (therefore they sort of deserve it when they’re brutally murdered), forcing gay men and gay women into touching the “wrong” genitalia, and fooling women so they can invade their spaces and rape them (so let’s turn them away from shelters and name and shame trans teenagers who just want to use the fucking restroom like human beings).

    If you were triggered by my telling you to put yourself out with the trash, maybe you shouldn’t dish out insults and accuse everyone who doesn’t agree with your transphobia of dick-sucking for the patriarchy.

  187. LegalBeagle

    Long time lurker here…
    Insults (from justified anger) flying, Monika as has been said, Twisty has specified this is a non-transphobic blog, “man in a dress” is a sadly common dismissal of trans women’s participation in feminism. WOMEN’S rights are HUMAN rights. If you can’t accept that this is not acceptable or fail to see that calling a trans woman a man in a dress is utterly wrong, GTFO. You are no it being forced to agree, but called out on how offensive those statements are and informed that they are not welcome here.

    No matter how well informed you are about the culture of another, if you explain their own culture to them, you will be seen as a condesceding, racist asshole. Man explaining feminism while ignoring woman’s comments = sexist. Person not of specifc culture explaining specific culture while ignoring comments of person from specific culture = racist.

    How about reading the original post? Twistys point seems to be that if you are called up on something, don’t get defensive – use the hurt feelings a signal to check the privilege you might be wielding. Take a step back – why did pheenobarbiedoll call you racist? Is it because she’s a big meany or did she experience your comment as racist? That seems to be the question that people fail to ask themselves before jumping to defend their own hurt feelings.

  188. Maria

    Pheenobarbidoll – you said “Prior to patriarchy fueled colonization, the cultures here had zero issue with trans persons and homosexuality.”

    That’s not specific to your tribe, which I would not presume to speak on. You gave an insultingly vague grouping of all tribes so I used the most common “two-spirit” in my response. Most tribes are pretty similar in regards to a third gender, which as I stated, is NOT the same as trans today or homosexuality for that matter. If you want to address your tribe, have at it, but at this point I don’t really trust what you say. As for myself: I have Pima & Lakota heritage and have spent many summers on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Like I said, I’m a WOC and I don’t appreciate you acting like you are our spokesperson.
    Also, “d00ds” didn’t ask you to mind the flooding of comments, women who share this space did and deferred to the blog host’s guidelines. Nobody has time for this, but I felt the need to respond because you falsely stated I don’t understand colonization which is laughable.

  189. pheenobarbidoll

    Feminism didnt include woc when it was first concieved of either, but evolution occurs. As it should. And as far as two spirits, last I checked since youre bringing it up, it includes 4th gender and also includes things like lifestyle, clothing choices ( man in a dress sound familiar?)social roles to the point that insisting it didnt cover trans gender is shaky ground at best. At worst its using indigenous beliefs as a tool of oppression. I generalize when I have no desire to tutor someone in indigenous issues. If that motivates you to zero in on a 3rd grade level understanding of two spirits as if it means anything, thats your problem.

    Secondly, xy feminist is a d00d, according to his blog profile.

    And since you enjoy specifics, it would be pretty fucking hard for indigenous beliefs fom 500 years ago to accurately cover TODAYS trans gender, since people couldn’t surgically transition back then. If one were to adapt the 2 spirit concept, then yeah it sure would. Im sure to the disappointment of bigots everywhere.

    Personally, I’ve had my fill of assholes using asshole beliefs to dictate the identity of other people. Blood quantum has a nasty fucking side affect I dont care for ( reference cherokee freedmen as my example), and this man in a dress business is as close to a blood quantum as it can get. And if those are your beliefs then not only do I not speak for you, it turns my stomach to even speak TO you.

  190. 2291

    Two-Spirit as a term and identifier is a new age-ism. Two-Spirit in native culture is not the norm, and not in a majority of native cultures but in those who have a very sexist and misogynistic culture, like the Lakota (the op?) and the Dene (me).

    Two-Spirt people did not think, nor were they told, that they were the opposite sex.

    MtTs think they are women.

    P.s. You’re the token ndn here pheno. Feel good?

    I’m First Nations. I call your bullshit.

  191. Polychrome

    It’s interesting how “indigenous issues” and “tribal identity” take on whatever properties it is you need them to (including a sudden and very convenient “generality”) in order for you to triumph in debates on the internet. This invoking of non-Western identity as nothing in itself, just a convenient foil trotted out as a vehicle for critique, has a really long history. It’s a colonial one. This thread and your arguments in it have become parodic: you are doing *exactly* what you level as critique, pheenobarbidoll.

  192. Maria

    I have a solution for you, Pheenobarbidoll. If it turns your stomach to even speak to women who don’t hold the same beliefs as you, then simply DON’T SPEAK TO THEM. Don’t yell at them. Don’t call them racist or garbage. Don’t even call them bigots. Just leave them alone. This blog does not need a thought police officer on patrol. I’m confident that everyone here is just doing their best and I speak for every commenter that you’ve run out of here when I say: please stop.

  193. pheenobarbidoll

    Looking the other way when bigotry is involved is your feminism, not mine. Its also why your feminism is stalled out dead in the water and why no one is going to offer you a hand. Your pool of allies is shrinking, and now youre just a pathetic sect of feminists no one listens to. I’ll care about poor bigot commenters when you care about the women you’ve shit on because their blood quantum isn’t enough for you. If you or they dont like it, well too bad for you. I’ll pencil in crying a river.

  194. Linda

    What is really sick-making to me is that men beat, torture, rape, murder and exploit us (including trans women) and our kids, frequently and with impunity. Many commenters here identify and collude with males offline and freely reference this in their comments, and this is somehow not problematic. Yet let one woman go off script regarding trans politics and a shitstorm of abuse is rained down on her. To me, this is fucked up.

  195. Cyberwulf

    It’s not “going off-script”, it’s bigotry.

  196. huffysnappy

    Maria: March 24, 2014 at 1:21 pm (UTC -6) :

    Seconded. To the power of infinity. Especially: “I’m confident that everyone here is just doing their best and I speak for every commenter that you’ve run out of here when I say: please stop.”

  197. shopstewardess

    The Patriarchy makes it impossible for any woman to live a perfect feminist life, or a perfect intersectional feminist life, or even a perfect intersectional feminist internet life.

    The insidiousness of the Patriarchy makes it difficult for women, all of whom are trapped by the Patriarchy to a greater or lesser extent, not to turn on each other.

    The Patriarchy is helping itself to a long and prosperous future each time we fight each other.

    We fight the Patriarchy every time we recognise these truths and apply them to trying to make our lives, and those of other women, better.

  198. 2219

    Some posters here exhibit all the characteristics of abuse, according to a noted worker on battered and abused women:

    *Believes she is the victim -Because she believes she has the right to have absolute control over his interlocutors, she sees every attempt others make to resist as infringement on HER rights–so, comes to view herself as the victim. Her self defense becomes abuse.

    *Manipulative, with a good public image

    *Skillfully dishonest

    *Disrespectful, superior, depersonalizing.

    If the mocassin fits….

  199. Cyberwulf

    There’s being gentle with people who are trying. Then there’s spackling over an ugly mess of bigotry for the appearance of unity. I won’t do it.

  200. christina

    @Cyberwulf
    That’s a bullshit reversal and you know it. If you really care about the well being of transwomen, than you must certainly realize that it’s men who commit violence, not radical feminists? Are you doing anything to protect transwomen from violence in real life, or just thought policing uppity women online? I and a lot of other women see right through your perfect social justice warrior shtick for what it is-an excuse to attack women you irrationally hate for daring not to roll out the red carpet for men who present as women. Admit it, you hate women, don’t you? For fuck’s sake, calling a transwomen a biological male is not bigotry or violence or an excuse for histrionics.

    At the risk of being called a piece of trash, since apparently that’s feminist now (and then victim blaming a woman who’s suffered abuse), I posit that intersectionality does not mean “agreeing unequivocally with everything a WOC or otherwise marginalized woman says just because they’re a WOC and you want to score good ally points.”

  201. Redpeachmoon

    This discussion has gotten ugly. And it does intimidate a blamer to speak up.
    Linda, I hear you! Maria, you too.
    Not seeing things exactly like (anyone) does NOT a vitriolic transphobic bigot, or a racist colonizer make.
    Quit the name calling, please.

  202. Cyberwulf

    Describing trans women as “men in dresses” and “men who claim to be women” is transphobic and bigoted. Attempts to make it into some minor difference of opinion are part of the problem.

  203. gyp$y

    Pheenobarbidoll, cyberwulf et al: you’re being really cringey and super embarrassing, and I say this as someone who’s an immigrant and not white. These things should be discussed in a civil, intelligent manner, but all you’ve provided are misogynist, hysterical, baseless, wildly hyperbolic polemics. Disagreeing with elements of trans dogma and enforced orthodoxy does not make someone a TERF–it makes them someone capable of critical and independent thought. Similarly to other people here, I’m a non-white person who’s critical of what passes for ‘intersectionality’ because I think radical feminism as a theory already has analysis of class, race, caste etc inextricably built within it. You have no right to tell women to shut up, insult them, call them ‘twits’ or ‘bigots’; we should all be grateful to Twisty for her excellent essays and the space she provides here and instead you’re monopolizing and weaponizing her personal blog as a platform for your own vitriol and misdirected hate.

  204. Linda

    Redpeachmoon thank you!

    If we were able to take all the viciousness that we aim at each other and redirect it to men that would be awesome. It’s men who need to shut the fuck up and get their fucking bigotry under control.

  205. Cyberwulf

    Interesting that this conversation only “got ugly” when a WOC started speaking up and another blamer was called on her transphobia. Apparently there’s nothing ugly about a bunch of white women solemnly agreeing that they shouldn’t be called on their bigotry, which they aren’t even capable of because they’re helpless victims of the patriarchy, whining about having to mommy mean black women who aren’t even grateful for their support, and telling women who aren’t exactly like them to just shut the fuck up already, all this petty fingerpointing is getting in the way of the Grand Plan and dicksucking for the patriarchy. Also, women who don’t literally hate and fear all men everywhere are traitors.

  206. A higher funtioning autistic writes;

    Another interpretation of events is;

    Someone “forgot” the conversation is global now.
    And that there are people, white people still , but “the wrong kinds of white people”, living in Europe with quite a good idea of what it’s like suffer at the hands of a cheerfully murderous land owning and inheriting elite. People who are just as unimpressed with the setup that enables that kind of shit, people who don’t often get to talk about it mainstream.

    But someone “forgot” that and basically declared “y’all look alike to me”.

    An American student of colonialism went and stuck their own particular cultural nuances all over some European’s own contexts and apparently has no idea why those people are pissed off with that. Haha. It’s one of the raw mechanics of what makes colonialism go bad, and they went and did it anyway, either as clueless hypocrisy or something more “blood for blood”.

    In which case; cease.
    It’s the petty infighting that let’s them just roll on in right over us, like example after example.

    Including the one where Patriarchy will not secede authority to women but is only to happy to give women have the power to police their own for falling outside of a compliantly nurturing gender role ideal.

    Which is part of my problem in this. They’re quite hung up on getting us to check our privilege based on looks, not our behavior and like how many times in our lives as women have our looks come before our actions? And what actions does the patriarchy find acceptable for women again?

    And the assumption that having a problem here is entirely down interrupted privilege is a dangerous assumption to have. You know, like most of them. Could go full bloody Aspergers on this but I’ll reel it in because there’s other stuff to do, people to disappoint.

    Am sick of this fucking Ant-Mill. Women permitted to stridently yell at each other to be less strident, letting “boys be boys” again is how this whole fucking setup “works”.

  207. pheenobarbidoll

    I guess racism isn’t vicious. Or colonization ( which contributes to the ongoing genocide of NDNS). Nope. Not vicious. Woc reacting to it is vicious and racist white women should get a pass, because women. The woc who won’t post here because of racism don’t count, the only women who count are white women afraid to be called on their privilege. The fact that a majority of woc want nothing to do with these feminists is blamed on woc, or the p but never these feminists own words. White women must be coddled, we must shuck and jive for them, we must be the help and tell them they are smart, they are important or else they won’t help us. This is the message here.

  208. christina

    Um not all Jewish women are white, so perhaps you should get over yourself. This whole thing about transphobia is a reversal and you know.

  209. buttercup

    The level of disrespect is mindboggling, not just to women are experiencing a level of intersectional oppression most of us could barely comprehend, (WOC and trans women) but to the blog owner herself, who has repeatedly asserted that as far as she’s concerned, trans women are women.

    Not just the blatant disrespect and attempts to shout over Pheeno and accuse her of running people off the blog with her oh so horrible tone. How very dare she. Not just the baldfaced “you’re oppressing me by not letting me oppress others” shit which is a near perfect copy of the persecuted majority shit thrown at us by the godbags and the poor white men. But the blatant disrespect to Twisty.

  210. lisa

    The reversals on this thread are unbelievable. Of course it’s easy to frame this as an attack on WOC by white women, but anyone really reading this thread with the slightest critical thinking will see that’s not the case. Some of the people disagreeing with pheeno and Cyberwulf (who I’m pretty sure isn’t a woman) are WOC also. I’m a WOC as well, and I don’t appreciate comementers who’ve proven they don’t give a shit bout other women speaking for me. As far as I can see, monika’s original comment didn’t even address transwomen, it was Cyberwulf dissolving into hysterics because she linked to a woman who in her other articles condemned gender. Whether you like it or not, the thread has dissolved into a pity party for men and unfounded accusations of bigotry. Btw pheeno and Cyberwulf, people are disagreeing with you because you’re intentionally misconstruing people’s words and are trying to frame your hatred of women as a case of the poor WOC fighting against oppression. It sure as hell ain’t working on me.

  211. LegalBeagle

    Ack, seem to be stuck in mod. Long time lurker echoing the sentiments of buttercup. Not only is being transphobic blatantly ignoring Twistys rules for this blog, but this comment thread seems to have completely missed the point of the article. If you are called out on something, use your hurt feelings as a clue to privilege wielding. The arguments that Pheenobarabiedoll and Cynewulf weren’t being nice enough when they called you seems very similar to the godbags insistence on their freedom of speech at the expense of others, or the cry feminists here from “allies” – you’re just not explaining it well enough/nicely enough no wonder men are sexist blah blah as nauseum. Basically its not their responsibility to educate you by being nice and patient when you are being offensive. If you are called on being offensive, as Twisty said in the article, it is YOUR responsibility to educate yourself and learn from your mistakes, or decide to affirm your conduct, whatever you chose.

  212. Linda

    Speaking of Twisty, where is our gracious host? I hope all is well.

  213. tatiana

    I just want to express support for monika, Morag, Maria, and anyone else I may have forgotten!

    To pheenobarbidoll, Cyberwulf and buttercup:
    From where I sit, YOU are the privileged ones. Let me explain. I’m from and live in an Eastern European country, and English isn’t my first language. Sometimes we don;t have access to reliable electricity, and so for me to get to a computer is lucky. I come from a country where if the police want to, they can break into your house and arrest whoever they want without any legal papers. I’m also Jewish, and pogroms here aren’t a thing of the past. My mother survived a concentration camp. Not my great grandmother, not a distant cousin….MY MOTHER. It’s not uncommon for one to know at least one woman who has been, or has been threatened with, human trafficking. And forget about gay marriage, if you’re even visibly lesbian here that’s enough to be beaten nearly to death.

    So for you to dominate the discussion here with a lot of comments, to call a woman who has repeatedly said she doesn’t have the same background as you, and to call other women oppressors because they don’t agree with you…..that to me is a PRIVILEGE. I’m so glad you have time to talk about various isms and call out the assumed privileges of commenters you don’t like, but for me and a lot of other women, that doesn’t come close to our lived reality by a long shot.

  214. quixote

    Linda, she also posts about her problems in rural living at Dreadful Acres. Every once in a while there’s also a breathtaking unproblematic wild turkey.

  215. TatianaofMinsk

    Just thought I’d leave this here, since the topic of whiteness was brought up: http://hungrylemongrab.tumblr.com/post/70422079541/whiteness-in-europe-tumblrs-us-centric-sj

  216. yulia

    The US centrism on this thread is appalling. “Whiteness” is not defined the same in Europe (it sounds like monika is from Eastern Europe?) so the idea that a nonAmerican Jewish woman is oppressing you with her comments (“white colonizer!!!”) is laughable. Why is the idea of taking someone’s experiences seriously only reserved for American Woc? Instead of welcoming all perspectives, you chased off an already vulnerable woman without even acknowledging that her point of reference is different from yours.

  217. pheenobarbidoll

    Whiteness isn’t a race or skin color. Its a system, like the P. Colonization doesn’t stop at borders either, unless you live in a country that never imports anything ( the us stealing indigenous resources to export to the world benefits everyone but the indigenous stolen from.) The US takes advantage of oppression in other countries this same way. I find it interesting that most everyone can recognize the contribution of us oppression when, for example, sweat shops are involved. But indigenous americans bring up the same type of global oppression and exploitation and we’re called US centric as a way of absolving residents of other countries. Residing in another spot on the globe doesn’t give you permission to define someone elses culture for them, or use it as a tool of oppression. That? Thats a colonizing mentality right there. I know nothing of your culture, but here let me teach you about it anyway. And when the indigenous of the country are still in the midst of ongoing genocide, that colonization mentality causes real harm. Instead of seeking to understand, you defend and justify it, without even knowing what you’re defending. I dont know if I can stop my eyes from rolling at the idea that European oppression of Native Americans stopped in 1776.

  218. pheenobarbidoll

    Oh and I will AGAIN point out that my side of the conversation was calm and nice up until the point my cultures beliefs were explained to me by someone not of my culture and not accurate of our beliefs on top of it all. Which, again, is never ok, no matter where you are. Her point of reference is not an excuse to use my cultures beliefs to support hers.

  219. yulia

    Jewish women aren’t oppressing you. She apologised. Get over it.

  220. yulia

    And she was showing a correlation between different tribes and their belief on gender not explaining your culture to you. Her original comment was AGREEING with you for fuck’s sake, but you’re more interested in bullying a different woman off this thread under the guise of combating racism. Everyone can see who you really are, so maybe it’s time to find a hobby instead of leaving 100 inflammatory comments on radical feminist blogs.

  221. pheenobarbidoll

    She doesnt know enough on the over 500 recognized tribes and differing beliefs to comment at all to begin with. Until people get that you cannot interpret indigenous gender roles through non indigenous eyes and expect anything remotely accurate, they need to stfu about it. The very act of defining indigenous gender roles via non indigenous lens is colonizing. Its been happening for over 500 years, for fucks sake. Think thats enough? I do. And until her comment about me calling her white, I wasnt addressing her individually to begin with, I was talking about the outspoken, more well known white radical feminists that she and others had linked to and were mentioning. Ive made that clear 3 fucking times now. So who’s the fucking bully. Or are you expecting me to give you the benefit of the doubt that you just accidentally didn’t fucking notice in your hurry to explain to me thats her bullshit perspective on indigenous cultures here is ok, because Europe.

  222. pheenobarbidoll

    And also- your bullshit playing the race card tactic is noted. Thats what “under the guise of combating racism” means. She’s a grown ass woman, she can educate herself thoroughly before opening her mouth on cultures she knows fuck all about or she can be called out on it. This isn’t a feminist 101 blog , nor an introduction. She can go cut her teeth somewhere other than here. Unfortunately for you, I plan to stay. Too bad.

  223. Cyberwulf

    @christina: Are *you* doing anything in real life to help women, or are you just arguing on someone’s blog?

    @lisa: Cyberwulf (who I’m pretty sure isn’t a woman)

    Not blindly agreeing with everything another woman says means I’m a man.

    As far as I can see, monika’s original comment didn’t even address transwomen

    I didn’t start on monika personally until she used “man in a dress” as a synonym for trans woman.

    the thread has dissolved into a pity party for men

    How has it turned into a pity party for men?

    and unfounded accusations of bigotry.

    Using “man in a dress” as a synonym for trans woman is bigotry.

    @tatiana: to call other women oppressors because they don’t agree with you

    Bigotry is bigotry. Transphobia is transphobia. Don’t like it? Too bad for you, because I won’t ever not call it out. By the way, I live in a country where it’s illegal for women to have an abortion, and which has a conviction rate for rape of 5%. You know, if we’re playing that game.

  224. pheenobarbidoll

    Oh, what a fun game! My turn! My aunt was sent home with tylenol for her cancer. My uncle was murdered at an Indian residential school when he was 7. Not my great uncle, not my great great uncle, my uncle. My aunt ( the one dead from untreated cancer) ran away from said school after being sexually abused and physically attacked on a daily basis. 3 of her children were removed by cps and never heard from again. The government steals our children, dismisses our murders as suicides, wont even investigate rape, poisons our water, mines our land and makes sure we die in the process, eradicates our food sources, dictates what religious practices we can engage in, and is hellbent on finishing the genocide they started. We are living under an invading, occupying government. Committing an ongoing genocide.

  225. tatiana

    Oh I’m sorry I thought there were feminists here, and that my people’s continued suffering would be given the same amount of weight as yours, but nah it’s just a “fun game.” When did anyone here said your people weren’t suffering? I spoke about my life- which is a fucking painful thing to do b/c I’m a woman too-to prove that the suffering of Jews is still going on in Europe and we would fucking kill to be thought of as white. The women in Europe are not responsible for your suffering, in fact we’re suffering just like you.

    Big thanks to A Higher Functioning autistic for getting it.

  226. Twisty

    Oh my gosh, I turn my back for 4 lousy weeks and I come back to a commentarian splosion! I can’t even begin to plow through all these blames. I assume, since the 100-comment mark has been exceeded by 125%, that Nazis have already been invoked and the Mean Girls of Feminism have noshed on the rotting corpses of the oppressed.

    Good old internet!

  227. pheenobarbidoll

    Again, whiteness is not race or skin color. Aside from that, if you’re not the well known outspoken white radical feminists I was TALKING ABOUT BEFORE PEOPLE INCORRECTLY ASSUMED I MEANT THEM, THEN ITS NOT YOU I CONSIDER WHITE. Is that fucking clear enough? You dont have to be white to perpetuate colonization mentality. And since you give fuck all about my culture and their ongoing genocide, you’ll get fuck all back from me over yours. The fun game comment is called sarcasm. Look it the fuck up because im done drawing you a picture of why whats been said is in fucking fact offensive for anyone to say to the indigenous, no matter your goddamn geographical location. Stop justifying their words, because they are unjustifiable.

  228. Twisty

    Well, I managed to read a few more comments, and, as I suspected I would, I sort of regret it. “Man in a dress”? Really?

    Le, as the internet says, sigh.

  229. Linda

    Yeah Le Sigh is pretty much my response to trans women’s threats of violence against us.

    I guess it’s like the same yeah? Saying “man in a dress” / death threats= same. All good.

  230. Cyberwulf

    Linda, take your TERF pity party somewhere else. “Man in a dress” is the same mindset that leads to the murder of real trans women. Your whining victim complex is making this cis woman want to slap you.

  231. Morag

    ‘“Man in a dress” is the same mindset that leads to the murder of real trans women. Your whining victim complex is making this cis woman want to slap you.’

    Feminist women are not the murderers of trans people. But men ARE the murderers of women, remember? Go slap the men, Cyberwulf. Oh, right!: women are safer and easier targets.

  232. Cyberwulf

    Oh yeah, I keep forgetting that having a vagina makes a person incapable of bigotry, wielding privilege, or perpetuating the kyriarchy.

    Any cis person who thinks trans folk are out to murder us all deserves a slap and should get over themselves. The evil trans menace does not exist.

  233. Morag

    I see. You blame the kyriarchy. Just like Natalie Reed does.

    Reed, the violent asshole who organized a protest against a day of remembrance for the L’Ecole Polytechnique massacre, because Reed did not like one of the feminists invited to speak at this memorial event. Curiously, when one blames the kyriarchy, trans-activism trumps the memory of fourteen women who were slaughtered by a woman-hater.

    Have fun slapping “cis” women and “TERFs,” Cyberwulf. We can be sure that men will enjoy watching.

  234. pheenobarbidoll

    You’re on the wrong blog. You’ll notice that the owner does not agree. And seems to not appreciate the term man in a dress. Funny you’ve not tried to chastise twisty. Or respect her.

  235. yulia

    So the term “man in a dress” that was lobbied at a hypothetical transwoman in this discussion is worse than calling a living woman participating in this discussion a piece of trash.

    I have to take issue with a comment above about how this isn’t a 101 space and us stoopid European women need to educate ourselves. Guess what, American women don’t hold the copyright on feminism. We have our own feminists writers and blogs in our own languages, and we’re so sorry that our feminism doesn’t engage in intellectual gymnastics about how men can magically become women because they say so. We have bigger issues to worry about, like how in my neighborhood gangs actively seek elementary school girls to sell. So sorry once again for trying to engage with American feminists, who love to call us bigots when that isn’t even close to our reality. We’ll just stay in our circle of feminists, since American feminists have proven that they love using foreign women as props-and I’m not talking just about this discussion. Everyone have a good day!

  236. Cyberwulf

    Hi, yulia, I’m not American. Thanks for playing.

    Now put yourself in a trashcan and hop out to the curb, TERF.

  237. Maria

    Twisty enables Pheenobarbidoll, Cyberwulf, & Bushfire in their attacks against the women who dare to comment here. It’s not the first time I’ve lost respect for Twisty, but it is the last time I expect her to do the right thing. They don’t even consider themselves radical feminists, yet here they are, seemingly welcomed by our host, making it a toxic environment for those who do. This has nothing to do with Trans and everything to do with the hatred & contempt shown to women who speak their own truths.

    I love seeing the vast majority of commenters on this thread do what they know is right and stand up for the women being attacked by these impostors. Radfems support women & they don’t feel the need to police women with whom they disagree.

    “Courage is a habit. A virtue. You get it by courageous acts. It’s like you learn to swim by swimming, you learn courage by couraging.” -Mary Daly

    Keep it up sisters! Your strength gives strength to others!

  238. Cyberwulf

    So Maria, it might interest you to know that I googled “Natalie Reed protest” and it turns out that Morag’s characterisation of it is totally bogus. But hey, I guess blatant lies are just her truth so I should respect it. I’ll remember that next time some dude spouts a bunch of misogyny. Who am I to question his truth?

  239. Morag

    pheenobarbidoll: chastisement is Cyberwulf’s speciality. She knows, apparently, which feminists are human trash, and which ones deserve to be slapped. She gives these women short-hand, reductive names, so that others will immediately know which women are human trash and deserve to be slapped.

    This thread is a wonderful example of intersectionality and identity politics in action and taken to its logical ends. It begins with articulating differences (plotting each individual woman on a complex matrix of power and oppression where she, more often than not, is declared an overlord in need of correction). And it ends there, too.

  240. Morag

    The happy ending for the Montreal Massacre Day of Remembrance is that Natalie Reed failed. The protest came off as a whimper instead of a bang.

    But Reed’s calls for action, attempts to drum up trans-activist support and organize the demonstration, are a matter of record. You can read the screen captures from that time, but a lot of this work/reporting was done by women you call human trash who deserved to be slapped, so you might be inclined to ignore the evidence.

    My point was, you and Natalie Reed have things in common. Trying to replace the word “patriarchy” with “kyriarchy” for one. Woman-hating, for another.

  241. pheenobarbidoll

    Thats a nice tapdance around the fact the owner of this blog has already said trans women are women, and showed how very tiresome she finds the man in a dress slur, right here not 4 days ago. If you don’t like that or it causes you to lose respect for her, don’t let the door hit you on the ass on your way out. This is her house, not yours. She pays the bills here, not you. And, on the right hand side in the description, it clearly states this is an advanced blaming site. If you don’t agree with any of this, you are free to go cry into your e-pillow elsewhere. Otherwise, put your money where your mouth is and attempt to respect her space as a woman instead of stomping in and demanding she change to accommodate YOU.

  242. Maria

    Edit to previous comment: it’s not the first time I’ve lost *some* respect for Twisty. Obviously, we all have a great deal of respect & gratitude for this space and our host. I did not want to give an impression of “all or nothing”.

    Cyberwulf: you’ve shown more of yourself and character than perhaps you’re aware of. We can all google, thanks.

    Every commenter who stood up against the attacks was attacked. You can’t hide behind trans as an excuse to treat women this way.

  243. Morag

    pheenobarbidoll, who are you addressing in your last comment?

  244. Maria

    Hey Officer Pheenobarbidoll -respect the blog owner’s rule on the number of comments before lecturing me. Look back at my comments, I said nothing against the rules & repeatedly asked you to stop trying to discuss trans with me. You attack women and over comment, and it’s frustrating that Twisty ignores it.

  245. pheenobarbidoll

    Morag-You, yulia and Maria.

    And Maria, I sure dont see you worrying about your post count or the fact your words are in direct opposition to the blog owners viewpoint. One tends to rack up a post count when having to address 3-5 commenters. You and your bigoted buddies like to pile on, but it must be frustrating to pile on a strong woman who doesn’t give a shit and isnt intimidated. You’re on a trans friendly blog. Get the fuck over it. No one forced you to come here.

  246. Cyberwulf

    Morag – oh, I looked. I’ve got a comment in moderation with links.

    women you call human trash who deserved to be slapped

    You say that like I should be ashamed of myself. *I’m not.*

    you’ve shown more of yourself and character than perhaps you’re aware of.

    As have you, Maria. I especially like the rules-lawyering.

  247. Morag

    Oh goody! Links exonerating Natalie Die-Cis-Scum Reed of planning to protest a memorial event for the female victims of murderous hate crime because gender-critical feminists were there speaking about male violence. It was Reed’s ardent hope, expressed in a letter posted to Facebook, that the whole event would be shut down:

    ‘Many folks are trying to prevent VPL from hosting the event, especially given that VPL’s own policies insist upon events being inclusive and respectful towards marginalized groups and identities (and IIRC, gender identity is specifically mentioned). *Hopefully* the talk being prevented from taking place at VPL is what will happen, or at least VPL inviting members of the trans community to respond / debate. BUT IF THE VRR / JANICE RAYMOND TALK PROCEEDS AS PLANNED… I would very much like if we could organize a counter-event to take place at VPL the same day (with or without explicit approval from VPL… library square’s status as public space should permit us to gather there regardless of prior approval- at least long enough to stage the response event- as long as we aren’t being destructive or harassing anyone or anything).’

    The entire letter, written by this shameless, egoistic pig, is posted on the “Women Born Transsexual” blog.

  248. gingerest

    They don’t even consider themselves radical feminists, yet here they are, seemingly welcomed by our host, making it a toxic environment for those who do. This has nothing to do with Trans and everything to do with the hatred & contempt shown to women who speak their own truths.

    I love seeing the vast majority of commenters on this thread do what they know is right and stand up for the women being attacked by these impostors. Radfems support women & they don’t feel the need to police women with whom they disagree

    I’m a radical feminist, and your “truths” are straight-up bigotry. It’s not “hatred” to call bigotry what it is, and your ugly humanity-denying perspective certainly merits contempt. Trans women are women, not “impostors.” They have access to masculine privilege, but the fact they can’t live with their erroneously attributed gender puts masculine privilege well beyond their reach. They live in an even more cramped social space than cis women do. Where’s your compassion and empathy? I thought you gender essentialists were all about how nurturing cis women are?

  249. Morag

    gingerest, people who believe that gender is innate (and thus, something that can be “misaligned” with a sexed body or “erroneously attributed”) are the gender essentialists. Included amongst the gender essentialists are transgenderists.

  250. Bushfire

    I have a comment in moderation, how frustrating! Morag, this latest rant of yours is absolutely disgusting. Please, I beg you, stop!

  251. Morag

    Bushfire, are referring to my reply to gingerest? My calm reply to her makes perfect sense and is not a rant. How is that disgusting?

  252. Lidon

    “They have access to masculine privilege, but the fact they can’t live with their erroneously attributed gender puts masculine privilege well beyond their reach.”

    gingerest, are you denying that male privilege has affected them? I’m not being antagonistic, I really want to understand what you’re saying. I’m asking this because I’ve had transwomen acquaintances and friends straight up overlook feminist issues completely, and/or have been porn obsessed, and have literally said, “Women have it SO easy.” That’s not male privilege talking? OBVIOUSLY I’m aware this isn’t everybody but I’ve seen it with my own eyes.

  253. pheenobarbidoll

    I know cis women who disdain anything feminist, think all feminists are humorless, ugly women, think porn is fine and feminists just hate sex. They also think women ( themselves included) have it easy because we can manipulate men to do stuff for us and buy us expensive things. There are plenty of women who also think getting married and having babies are what women are for and working outside the home is selfish and wrong. They’re fine with their husbands making their decisions and believe this is the way it should be. How are these women different from the trans women you mention? Honestly. How are they different, because I’ve sadly heard the same things coming from the mouths of cis women too. When a women tries to exert male privilege ( or what men deem as their privilege and only theirs) punishment follows swiftly, as we all know. Trans women experience that punishment too. So speaking for myself only, I dont think thats just male privilege speaking, as it comes from the mouths of cis women as well. Its P brain washing, and every single human on the planet that lives in the P is born submerged in it. It takes hard work to over come a lifetime of brain washing and unfortunately not many people are willing to make that effort.

  254. Linda

    I am a butch dyke and I am utterly offended by the term “cis”. I did not choose this label for myself and I reject it wholeheartedly and unreservedly. Do not call me this without my permission.

  255. Lidon

    pheenobarbidoll you’re absolutely right (hence feminism being the minority as usual). But I just think that when women act that way, it’s internalized sexism like you’ve mentioned, not male privilege (because they’re still treated as women growing up). Regardless, I do think as humans, and as women, it’s important that we ARE inclusive otherwise we’ll just be shooting ourselves in the foot.

  256. Cyberwulf

    Linda I better not see you calling straight women straight without their permission.

  257. pheenobarbidoll

    Linda, all cis means is that you were correctly identified as female at birth. Explain how accurately determining your sex is offensive.

  258. pheenobarbidoll

    Lidon- but given that trans women know they are women from the time they are little, don’t you think they also internalize that sexism? I realize it’s just anecdotal, but all the feminist trans women I know are aware of this and do discuss and analyze it. Which is what tends to make us all feminists.

  259. Lidon

    @ pheenobarbidoll: I see what you’re saying. Good point. I’ve had a friend for years who grew up as a gay man before transitioning and truthfully, I don’t know if she felt that she was a woman ever since she was a child (but I do know transitioning was something she had been thinking about for some time) and internalizing that sexism would make sense.

  260. Bushfire

    @morag Not your reply to gingerest, the rant you wrote about a specific woman where you put nasty words in her mouth that she didn’t say and called her a pig for organizing a demonstration that she herself wanted to be non-harassing. Your blind hatred of trans women is disgusting and is not welcome here as per Twisty’s comment guidelines.
    Linda, cis just means “not trans” which is not an offensive thing to say to someone.

  261. Morag

    I did not put any words in Reed’s mouth. I quoted directly–using quotation marks and citing the source–and Reed’s words speak for themselves.

    People can read, Bushfire, and they can make judgements about what they read. I’ve made mine.

    Reed had hoped–it’s right there, in black and white–that a solemn event to remember and honour murdered women would be cancelled. If that failed, Reed planned to demonstrate against feminists slated to speak on male violence against women, simply because trans-activists don’t like these feminists’ critical views on gender. That’s shameless.

    Reed wanted to co-op a day of remembrance, a day of women coming together to discuss violence against women, in order to air trans people’s grievances publicly. That’s profoundly insensitive and narcissistic. And, not a single word for the fourteen women who are dead because a misogynist hunted them down and shot them. Shot them while they pleaded that they were not the feminists he hated so much, hoping he would spare them their lives.

    You’re free to call me disgusting for having zero respect for Natalie Reed. I’m also free to call your defense of this person disgusting. But, I get it now: women can “call out” other women as trash until the cows come home, but transgender people are a special, sacrosanct group beyond reproach. To notice their fucked-up politics and moral failings is unenlightened, bigoted, racist, hateful. Hell, from what I’m hearing, to just NOTICE reality of biological sex is considered violent. Violence ostensibly on par with Marc Lépine’s violence.

  262. Bushfire

    I don’t have the energy to take this apart and point out all the things you’re deliberately twisting, misunderstanding, and mischaracterizing. You obviously don’t want to learn and grow here, and you obviously don’t want to respect Twisty’s wish for no transphobia. Good day.

  263. Morag

    Reasoned criticism of a trans person or people is not transphobia.

    Perhaps you don’t have the energy to take apart my reply because you’d have to make it up, Bushfire. Since I haven’t twisted, misunderstood or mischaracterized anything.

    And, on the contrary, I’ve learned a lot from this and other radical feminist blogs. Including how to recognize shaming and silencing tactics.

  264. Cyberwulf

    I’m guessing the reason my comments are in moderation is because I did some digging on Janice Raymond, and paraphrased her belief that “transsexuals” are phonies who ar ay pee ee the female form. But that couldn’t possibly be the reason anyone wanted to protest Raymond speaking at this event. After all, it’s not dehumanising or downright hateful. And even if it was, genteel “women born women” would NEVER react with furious anger if a notorious misogynist was invited to speak at a memorial. They’d live and let live, because being “feminism critical” is just male truth and to be respected.

    Morag, go put yourself in the trashcan, hop out to the curb, and take yourself off to the dump. Quit exploiting a tragedy to push your hateful bigotry. You aren’t “critical” of anything, you just hate trans folk. Have some gumption and admit it.

  265. Morag

    The trash can is full. Of your empty rhetoric, neologisms, acronyms, slogans, platitudes, and gratuitous insults.

  266. Polychrome

    Slapping women? Putting them in the trash? Hitting them on the ass (with a door, but still…)? All in the name of what, exactly, Twisty? This has nothing to do with being a trans-allied space. Sure, it’s your blog but

    http://dashes.com/anil/2011/07/if-your-websites-full-of-assholes-its-your-fault.html

  267. Cyberwulf

    No response to the actual facts, I see. But then facts are so subjective.

  268. Morag

    You “facts” are in the garbage dump–the same place where you think women, with whom you disagree, should be disposed. What an unfortunate metaphor you’ve chosen, Cyberwulf.

  269. Cyberwulf

    TERFs belong in the dump with the trash. Off you go, TERF.

  270. sarahonthemountain

    Wow, what a wonderful, pro-woman person you seem to be…..calling other women trash is the best thing to enter feminism since Slutwalk and the porn is empowering brigade. And please don’t give me that valiant protector of poor transwomen from the evil radfems shtick. I don’t think you’re trash though, maybe more like a pretzel since you like to twist things around so much they become unrecognizable. Also pheenobarbidoll, if you have to announce to a group of commenters that you’re not going anywhere after viciously attacking a woman who, let’s admit it, you really don’t believe is some kind of racist overlord, then maybe you’re not as popular as you think you are.

    And I have to respond to a comment written above about all those mean people on Tumblr making fun of social justice warriors: sjws are batshit insane sycophants who believe that buzzwords are worth more than people. They’re so divorced from reality that they believe they’re perception of the world is the only one, so by their logic women are not only sexist, but even more sexist than men. Something women should remember is no matter how many times you say the word cis, or how often you throw other biological women under the bus, or even if you win the most progressive person award, the men you ally with will never see you as fully human.

  271. Cyberwulf

    Well sarahonthemountain, I’d engage with you, but since you think I’m only using the term “cis” to suck up to men, that sjws are insane, and I’m throwing biological women under the bus by not agreeing with every bigot who was born with a vulva, it’s obvious what you are. So put yourself in the garbage can and hop out to the curb, TERF.

  272. Morag

    “Something women should remember is no matter how many times you say the word cis, or how often you throw other biological women under the bus, or even if you win the most progressive person award, the men you ally with will never see you as fully human.”

    This is true. And it’s only a matter of time until their latent hatred for their allies becomes explicit.

    Great comment, sarahonthemountain.

  273. sarahonthemountain

    Seriously, is “throw yourself in the trashcan TERF” the best you got? You can’t even address any points at all and instead resort to namecalling? If you think you’re being cute or clever, you’re wrong. YOU are the one who belongs in the trash traitor. Do you get some perverse pleasure out of expressing the most vitriol hatred to women online? So how about you throw yourself in the trash and hope out to the curb, you misogynist scumbag traitor. Oh and sorry about your penis, or the fact you hate your own vulva…whichever fits.

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