True…at the end of the day, I don’t care that much, about the term feminism, what it does or doesn’t mean. I now understand that it’s become a really popular concept, (some say Beyoncé is to blame!) and that’s funny because from what I know of the academic feminists I am pretty sure Beyoncé is an anathema to many of them.
But I could be wrong. As you pointed out feminism has waves. To me people are making this just way too complicated. The whole thing is a Tower of Babel, and I think that’s the point. If we keep men and women at each other’s throats, well then people are largely powerless to work together to improve things. This one woman wrote a book at how there has been a huge shift in working class America, with women being more financially empowered than men (with the elimination of factory jobs). In the new economy, apparently might doesn’t make right, and the softer more nuanced skills of women are more highly valued. Still women earn less. This has wreaked havoc on the family unit. So men, not earning more than the woman, sometimes not earning at all, has been displaced from the family structure. So while feminism is bearing a lot of blame for this breakdown, I keep trying to tell people a lot of other factors are in play. Especially economic ones. There is just no getting around basic economic issues, and how technology is replacing a certain kind of male worker. One only has to look at Amazons business model to have a clue. But no one wants to talk about how Amazon buys these huge robots(replacing thousands of male workers) to do all it’s heavy lifting. Let’s just blame the breakdown of the family unit on the women! Because, as a friend once said to me, we are not allowed to talk about what is really going on. At first I thought she was joking, but it seems to be true. People run from the truth about the economic situation in the world (a few having all the money and manipulating and distracting entire populations away from this realization) as if it were the plague. Svetlana dismisses it as rubbish. (Another one of those very British words!) I wonder how she can, just completely disregard what is obviously and fundamentally true if you just examine the various states of the national economies worldwide. It’s nothing but rampant and blatant exploitation of the many by the few, in every single country on the planet! And yet, people just decline to have these conversations!
I mean I have admittedly a very basic, dictionary sort of definition of feminism that I ascribe to, it is not going to be enough for the hardcore feminists, nor enough for the anti feminists who want to argue about feminism relentlessly, which is why I largely ignored Svetlana Voreskova rant about it. She feels more strongly about it, than I ever will and there is no way I could ever match her passion and dogmatic tenacity around deconstructing a ideology that she feels is evil, or something.
So, because she feels so strongly she attacks what people have to say about their life experiences, which is patently unfair, and because you’re sort of shrinky, you get that. But most people who feel as though they must defend against an evil will not; and so, I finally get it that people who strongly identify as feminists or anti-feminists, can’t really be reasoned with. I haven’t attempted to reason with Svetlana or her band of followers also, because what fuels them, (and many others on any number of topics) is rage. People are ENRAGED. And there is just no reasoning around that. And people have a lot of buttons out there for the pushing! I know Caitlin Johnstone pushed mine and many others when she said Hillary Clinton was worse she than Trump. I feel strongly that Trump is the worst! But when I pulled back, and examined the issue reasonably, I have to admit the argument can be made. I will never agree with it, but it can be made. It’s not completely unreasonable.
But people just don’t want to be reasonable! Lines have been drawn in the sand and people are running defense and offense! What is the solution? Reasonable and intelligent discourse is nearly impossible! Most people will do better to pick a side and stick to it, because if you don’t you’ll just be attacked by both sides. Which happens to you. It also happens to me. ( I got kicked out of a radical feminist Facebook group because I refused to sign off on the idea that all men should die! I mean what an echo chamber! I was like seriously? This is the kind of stuff y’all talk about? It’s nuts! Rather than entertain my perfectly reasonable arguments that, no all men aren’t horrible rapists, and no they shouldn’t all die, they kicked me out of the group! And that was a really interesting group to be in because the women were from all over the world. People who have been through national instability, war, of course will arrive at some extreme views. But to just shut down any dissenting opinions? Especially when your main opinion is so extreme? It was the craziest social media experience I’ve ever had! So if Svetlana has encountered nut jobs like these, I can totally get why she is so dogmatic about her position.
I don’t know…I had the idea that I could be a reasonable feminist, but if everyone is going to be such an asshole about it, I’m just not going to engage anyone…or maybe I will. I can’t decide.
Is there any upside to being the voice of reason?