The Thinking 
Housewife
 

Idiocy and Hatred in the Men’s Rights Movement

July 29, 2010

 

JESSE POWELL writes:

Paul Elam, the editor-in-chief of Men’s News Daily, the largest news-oriented site of the men’s rights movement, has proclaimed, “Should I be called to sit on a jury for a rape trial, I vow publicly to vote not guilty, even in the face of overwhelming evidence that the charges are true.”

Interestingly, in the article he himself wrote on this subject he bolded the above part I am quoting from himself! He is intentionally being in-your-face provocative with this statement. 

False-rape accusations, which are supposedly rampant in our legal system, are one of the big complaints of MRAs (Men’s Rights Advocates). In the article by Elam on this subject he states, justifying his position:

“Since the judicial system is patently untrustworthy when it comes to the offense of rape, any guilty vote is simply an enabling capitulation to systemic legal corruption. In this, the age of misandry, not one aspect of a rape case can be trusted. The accuser cannot be trusted. The police that take statements, gather evidence and make arrests cannot be trusted. The prosecutor trying the case cannot be trusted. The judge cannot be trusted.” 

At the end of the article he proclaims,

“Better a rapist would walk the streets than a system that merely mocks justice enslave another innocent man. And better a system that cannot be trusted as it is, be corrected from within by a single honest citizen in the name of real justice.” 

Now you know that I am not a fan of the Men’s Rights Movement; I think their message and attitude only serves to undermine even more so the family and relationships between men and women. However, publicly advocating jury nullification in rape trials on general principle, regardless of the likely probability of guilt or amount of evidence against a defendant, raises the destructiveness and dangerousness of the Men’s Rights Movement to a new level.  

It is worth mentioning that there is a more moderate article written by Elam on his Men’s News Daily site on the same subject, but without the inflammatory call to acquit all rapists. 

The website A Voice for Men can be thought of as Elam’s personal website and Men’s News Daily is the well established men’s rights website where Elam is editor-in-chief. Men’s News Daily gets a lot more visitors and attention than A Voice for Men gets. Some opinion pieces, like the open letter to Sgt. Art Eld, are featured on Men’s News Daily and A Voice for Men, but the “Jury Duty at a Rape Trial? Acquit!” article was only featured on the relatively private A Voice for Men site. This means that Elam has indeed publicly issued his call to acquit rape defendants on principle, to protest against a supposedly unjust legal system where false rape accusations and the imprisonment of innocent men run rampant, but he has chosen to issue this call in the setting that is not so public and that will not perhaps endanger the public image of Men’s News Daily so much.

Laura writes:

Elam’s statement is repellent. He should retract it or step down as editor of Men’s News Daily at the insistence of its readers. It is even more repellent in light of the misogyny sometimes openly expressed at men’s rights sites, where commenters have been known to cheer on rape as a noble and principled act.

Here is the sort of absolutism, blistering idiocy, and moral retardation one sees in feminism at its worst. But I cannot think of any statement by a radical feminist that surpasses this. Not only does Elam condone violence against women, he feeds right into the hands of his enemy.

                                              — Comments —

Lisa writes:

“Idiocy and Hatred in the Men’s Rights Movement.” Do not forget “Provocatuers,” those among us who do not care that they lie or make no logical sense, as long as their agenda of disruption and destruction of the God-ordained entity of family is achieved, even under the banner of an injured party’s rights.

Youngfogey writes:

If the statement by Elam is correctly represented by your reader, then it is indeed ridiculous. I do not believe the Paul Elam identifies with the Christian tradition in any form. If he did perhaps he would see that what he proposes here is a form of lying in that if he were to follow through on his commitment he would be in a position of believing the defendant to be guilty but saying he believed him to be not guilty.

I have a feeling that any lawyer worth his salt would be eager to eliminate Paul Elam from a rape trial jury.

Laura writes:

I do not believe the Paul Elam identifies with the Christian tradition in any form.

He obviously doesn’t identify with any common code of ethics.

Lawyers will not so easily identify his supporters.

Karen I. writes:

Fortunately, Paul Elam’s views would come to light during the voir dire examination that prospective jurors are subjected to. If he answered the questions truthfully, he would be disqualified. If he lied and it were later discovered, he would face charges of perjury and give the defense cause to move for a new trial. As hateful as Elam’s writings are, he did society a favor by making his views known to the public in writing prior to ever getting a chance to sit on a jury. I doubt someone with such poor judgment would even be found fit to stand on a jury for even a petty crime, never mind a felony like rape. 

I wonder if Mr. Elam’s consideration of rapists would also be extended to child molesters. It seems likely. After all, if he would not convict a rapist even in light of overwhelming evidence because rape is sometimes falsely alleged, if only follows he would not convict a child molester on the same grounds.

Retired Escaped writes:

Your comment on Paul Elam’s opinion articles was rather interesting.

[Jesse writes,] I think their message and attitude only serves to undermine even more so the family and relationships between men and women.

This is in the category of “HOW DARE YOU?”

With a 40% divorce rate, and at least half of divorced fathers permanently, illegally, and immorally removed from their children’s lives, it takes chutzpah to worry about MRM comments undermining relationships between men and women.

Rip Van Winkle only slept 20 years. To be unaware that the feminist movement has not only undermined, but essentially destroyed relationships between men and women proves you have been asleep for at least 45 years.

Even [men] married a very long time are telling young men DON’T GET MARRIED.

Laura writes:

I’m going to refrain from being rude to you, but it will not be easy. First, I suggest you read some of the content of this website, perhaps a small fraction of the eight hundred or so entries, the majority of which criticize feminism and its deliberate trashing of traditional morality.

Second, I suggest you spend a few seconds engaged in rational thought instead of emotional, childish, knee-jerk, righteous approval of anything a spokesman for the “men’s rights movement” says. You might consider whether the abuses of one party justify foul play by another. Forget the law. Am I right in doing wrong because others commit terrible wrongs?

Third, I suggest you consider, unless you are a moral cretin incapable of imagination,  that rape is a serious act of violence and that there are actual rapists in this world. Elam has advocated that men join together to allow real rapists to escape punishment and return to the streets to commit further crimes. {NOTE: I intially wrote here that Elam seemed to be “one step away” from advocating deliberate harm to women. One reader said that this is too extreme. On looking the passage over, I agree.}

Vanessa writes:

“It is even more repellent in light of the misogyny sometimes openly expressed at men’s rights sites, where commenters have been known to cheer on rape as a noble and principled act.”

I have read articles at men’s rights sites and have never seen such a sentiment expressed by any of the regular commenters or authors. They have trolls, just as anyone else does. And their general “open comments” policy invites abuse, that they struggle to deal with. I think you are usually a very fair woman, which is why I read your blog and have actively promoted it, but I think you are doing these men a disservice to write such a thing. I have “gotten into it” with a number of them myself, but this comment goes too far.

Laura writes:

I do not think enough is done to keep out misogynist commenters at one of the most prominent sites. A reader wrote to me to say she commented frequently at this site and then left when a man who admitted to raping a woman was treated with approval. I am not saying this is typical. I have never read the forums at Men’s News Daily and have no reason to believe that rapists have been cheered on there or that misogynist statements are condoned there.

Reader N. writes:

In the discussion of Paul Elam’s bizarre position regarding what he would do as a juror in a rape case, you say this:

“Here is the sort of absolutism, blistering idiocy, and moral retardation one sees in feminism at its worst. But I cannot think of any statement by a radical feminist that surpasses this.”

Well, ok. Here are some statements that you may not know about:

Susan Brownmiller, in the 1975 tract “Men, Women and Rape” offers the thesis that all men use, and benefit from rape, as a means of keeping all women in a state of fear.  This book has been a commonly read book in women’s studies curricula for over a generation. You can read more about Brownmiller and some of her feminist sisters here.

Andrea Dworkin in her text “Intercourse” claimed that all penetrative heterosexual expression is an “occupation”. For some years after that, she denied that she had stated all heterosexual intercourse is rape, but frankly I find the argument unconvincing given her many years of misandry before and after the book was written. Dworkin was instrumental in passing some legislation, spoke to large audiences of young women in the 1980’s and 1990’s, and is still cited today.

Mary Daly was a radical feminist who taught at the Catholic Boston College for years until her misandry towards male students resulted in her dismissal from teaching. In an interview with a magazine called “What is Enlightenment”, Daly infamously called for a drastic reduction in the number of men “for the good of the planet”.

There are others I can cite, such as fiction writer Marilyn French’s infamous “All men are rapists, and that’s all they are” from a 1970’s work, but these came up fairly quickly in searches. It surprises me that you apparently have not heard of, or read, any of the above.

While in no way any of this justifies Paul Elam’s statement, can we not agree that labeling all men as rapists merely because they are men, claiming that normal sexual expression within marriage is rape, suggesting that the majority of men should perish, etc. is at least as offensive as his statement, and possibly a bit more? After all, it is very unlikely that Elam will ever be cited in any college classroom (unlike Brownmiller, Dworkin, Daly, etc.), or that he will ever testify before Congress (unlike Dworkin, who did), that he will every be a tenured professor at a Catholic university
(unlike Daly), so his influence is simply tiny compared to that of the feminists cited above, and many more I could cite.

Perhaps reading Elam’s argument for his position would be worth considering?

Laura writes:

I am very familiar with the work of Brownmiller, Dworkin, French and Daly, whom I have written about here before. I thought I had made my position on feminism – not just extreme feminism, but all feminism – clear. These statements are every bit as offensive as Elam’s. The feminists gained influence by first attracting small numbers of people to their views. The fact that Elam is not now widely approved does not mean his views never will be approved or that he should be ignored.  

I am aware of the argument behind Elam’s position. Men have been falsely accused and some women use rape charges as a form of interpersonal revenge. This is evil. The appropriate response is to fight against false accusations and the procedures and laws that lead to conviction of the innocent, not to advocate for the acquittal of anyone accused of rape.

MarkyMark writes:

All I’ll say is this: after being bashed, trashed, and criminalized for being a man, I can understand where Elam’s sentiment comes from. Oh, and what about Catherine Comins’ (dean @ Vassar) following quote about men who have been victimized by a false rape accusation: “They have a lot of pain, but it is not a pain that I would necessarily have spared them. I think it ideally initiates a process of self-exploration. ‘How do I see women?’ ‘If I didn’t violate her, could I have?’ ‘Do I have the potential to do to her what they say I did?’ Those are good questions.”  How DARE she say that! Oh, one can gain ‘lots’ of benefit from having his life destroyed and reputation ruined-sure!

There was Robin Morgan, editor of Ms. Magazine, saying that man hating was an honorable act. What about the feminist professor who said that 90% of the men should be killed? Or, what about Marilyn French saying that all men are rapists, and that’s all they are? Though you, as a housewife, have been on the front lines of the culture war, you cannot understand what it’s like to have THIS invective thrust at you day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year for your entire life! Oh, one could easily find a guy who’s either been falsely accused of something himself, or find a guy who knows of a guy who has been. Zenpriest said it best: you kick a loyal dog often enough, one day it’ll bite back. I believe that Paul Elam is merely voicing that sentiment, albeit in a provocative way.

II haven’t been called for jury duty in years. I can’t say that I wouldn’t be tempted to engage in jury nullification, because NO ONE in the system is doing their job. The Duke Three and Hofstra Five are still fresh on men’s minds; THAT is what we can look forward to if were unfortunate enough to get caught up in the clutches of the system. Was Crystal Gayle Mangum prosecuted for her lies? What about Danmell Ndonye? No, they both got away with destroying men’s lives! The same is true for the vast majority of false rape accusers. If the system won’t do its job, then we’ll have to do it for them. Only when false rape accusations start to hurt women will anything be done. Oh, and remember that women started The War of the Sexes, not men. Thank you.

Laura writes:

All of the feminists that MarkyMark and Reader N. cite would not have gotten anywhere without the widespread approval of men. They were published by men. They were hired by men. Their books were purchased by men as well as women. Men stood by while their sisters, daughters, wives and friends bought these books and most men did nothing to refute their claims or to publicly challenge their falsehoods.

Sorry, but this is not a war of the sexes. This is a war of ideas. And one side is fighting for civilization and the sacred concord between the sexes to defend it and raise the next generation. The other side is fighting for self, for envy, for materialism and glorification of the victim.

If you think you are ever going to get adequate revenge for all the evils that feminists have committed against both men and women then you are going to be consumed by bitterness to the end of your days. The best revenge against feminism is to reduce its false arguments to dust, to end all institutional support for it, and to restore male authority based in virtue and justice.

 MarkyMark says,

Only when false rape accusations start to hurt women will anything be done.

The cases you mention are terrible wrongs, but the acquittal of men guilty of rape does not right those wrongs or hurt only women. “No one in the system is doing their job?” That is far too extreme. 

Jesse Powell writes:

You might be interested to know that there is a major feud going on between The Spearhead manager Welmer as well as Paul Elam and the Manhood Academy. Paul Elam can be characterized as the leader of Men’s News Daily, the biggest news oriented men’s rights website; and Welmer appears to be the owner and is the overall manager of The Spearhead website and forum, the biggest forum in the men’s rights community. 

So both Paul Elam and Welmer have come out publicly against the Manhood Academy and in particular against their “Principles 101, Feminism, Manhood and You” booklet. If you will remember someone from the Manhood Academy once made a comment at your website and I sent you an email detailing some of the offensive things a leader of the Manhood Academy had to say about women. So, to recap, I liked Manhood Academy’s “Principles 101” booklet but I didn’t like many of the things said in regards to women in Manhood Academy’s forum. So, I do not support Manhood Academy overall but I do think their “Principles 101” booklet has a lot of good advice on how men can create a good relationship environment with women. 

I believe the reason why Paul Elam and Welmer have come out against the Manhood Academy and are explicitly seeking to drive them out of the men’s rights movement is because the Manhood Academy advocates traditional male authority, which many in the MRM associate with the “provide for and protect” chivalrous ethic. In the attacks against the Manhood Academy their “Principles 101” booklet is mentioned a lot but the offensive comments made on their forum are not mentioned at all. I think the attacks on Manhood Academy within the MRM are part of the long-running dispute between those who advocate for traditional gender roles and those who attack all notions that men owe responsibilities towards women.

 You can find articles and threads where Elam and Welmar attack the Manhood Academy here, here and here.

  Paul Elam responds to your post here. He writes:

Women like that are every bit as bad as feminists. The only difference is that feminists want all of men’s blood and sweat to be shared equally among women. The Thinking Housewife wants women to compete to own a man of their own. 

If it walks like a hoah…

Another commenter in the same thread writes:

But, rather that take a serious look at the core issue, Wood’s simply attacks your proposed response. Of course, from what I’ve seen, her standard approach is to acknowledge a male-oriented problem exists, then act as though she done men some great service by simply have made such acknowledgement – so now, men can shut up about it, and go back to their proper role of serving their wives and making them happy.

 What she seems to NOT understand is that it is such flippant dismissals of the issues critical to men that give rise to more radical ideas like yours in response. If these so-call Christian conservatives truly wished to protect men from the deleterious effects of radical gender-feminism (as they so often claim they wish to do), then they would rise in support of the issue that really concern men, and propose solutions that they deem reasonable. 

Their refusal to do so is effectively their way of saying to men: “If you aren’t with OUR program of being dutiful husbands to women, then we could careless about you”. And, they don’t “get it” why more men aren’t signing up.

Laura writes:

These comments are similar to other things that have been said about me at The Spearhead, that I am simply a feminist in disguise. Elam goes one step further and makes the classy statement that I am a whore. Well, you’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t. One of the first things I wrote at this site was a detailed argument for a return of customary economic discrimination in favor of men, but apparently what I am really doing by suggesting such a thing is calling for the empowerment of women. I would be much richer if I went out and personally took advantage of the feminist spoils, but in refusing these things I am just as bad as a feminist for devoting myself to my husband and children, and advocating obedience and submission to men in other women. I am guilty of false consciousness and really want to enslave men by arguing for male authority. This is where we see the men’s rights movement sliding into the same ideological rigidity and small-mindedness that reigns in women’s studies department.

Vanessa writes:

Laura writes, “A reader wrote to me to say she commented frequently at this site and then left when a man who admitted to raping a woman was treated with approval.”

If she has concrete proof of this, I would be interested to see it. As I’m sure the rest of your readers would be. If she cannot or will not provide evidence, then she should hold her tongue and refrain from malicious gossipping. But I am sure you told her the same, and demanded a link to the referenced statment. Would you please publish it now, so that we may judge them based upon the presented evidence, rather than upon mere hearsay?

Laura writes:

The comment from the reader is here. I did not publish the link. I will try to get it from her. I do not believe the major men’s rights sites are actively calling upon men to rape women. At least one of the major sites does allow misogynist comments. Here are some from The Spearhead which I posted before:

Paul: Women are utterly base and contemptible. Every time I think of them I am overwhelmed by the discussed [sic] they stimulate in me. I really do hate them.

Rebel: It’s OK to find women contemptible and to even hate them, but I would like to suggest a more constructive approach. Instead of wasting such good energy, why not take advantage of them. You can turn things around and make them work to your advantage. (refer to my previous post)Why not capitalize instead? Imagination is the magic ingredient: something women lack. So this is where we have the edge.They say there’s more than one way to skin a cat.

Firepower: The problem began when women were denied their basic profit urge and prohibited from opening brothels. They’re good at that business.

Toby: Somebody copyright and mass produce this slogan for the Spearhead: “Failure a Bitch.”

Vanessa continues:

Laura writes: “The appropriate response is to fight against false accusations and the procedures and laws that lead to conviction of the innocent, not to advocate for the acquittal of anyone accused of rape.”

Agreed. The idiocy of Paul’s article is that he is advocating false acquittal in order to fight false accusations. Both are a tragedy of justice, even if a false accusation is the worst of the two. It would be better reform the system that allows so many false accusations in the first place, and to severely punish the shameless liars who would bring such a false change.

But really, he is simply trying to stir up a controversy to bring attention to his cause. Considering the current state of the economy, politics, and the Gender War, he’s picked a good time to add fuel to the bonfire. Nerves are frayed, and people are in a lot of pain. Which is why it is irresponsible of him to write such a thing. If you carry a big stick, you are obliged to speak softly.

“Sorry, but this is not a war of the sexes. This is a war of ideas. And one side is fighting for civilization and the sacred concord between the sexes to defend it and raise the next generation. The other side is fighting for self, for envy, for materialism and glorification of the victim.”

Precisely. Many men and women have cheered this on because they only saw the “positive” side of such a movement. They were indifferent to, or ignorant of, the way that such a movement could poison interpersonal relations for generations. Many are still indifferent to it because they are enjoying the loose morals of our women. Many continue to be promiscuous while ranting about false rape accusations and slutty girls. That is hypocrisy, and counter-productive to their own stated goals. If we wish to improve things then we have to start with ourselves.

The Mother Church has been advocating against such policies from the beginning, and was demonized because of it. Where were these now-indignant men then? Did they stand up and defend chastity and life? No, they were too busy enjoying the easy sex and the ability to abort away their obligations.

What we see around us now is what happens when good men and good women find an inappropriate time to be silent.

Vanessa adds:

What Paul wrote about you was just plain juvenile. You are most certainly not a feminist, and anybody who has read your articles would know that to be true. What utter nonsense.

It is true that there is a patriarchy-libertine front in the MRM. The latest salvo was fired here (In Defense of Patriarchy). I wouldn’t lump Paul and Welmer into one ideological boat, though. Paul is clearly anti-patriarchy while Welmer is far more ambiguous. He waxes almost nostalgic in many of his pieces, and I think would welcome a return to the good-old patriarchy. He has also repeatedly “called out” men for being hypocrites or misogynists, and he is neither. He has finally had to give up and enforce a moderation policy, to keep his more rabid commenters in line.

I enjoy reading both Welmer’s articles and your own (which is apparently a widespread combination, based upon the links available at many conservative women’s blogs), and I hope you both will continue writing. You do important work, and I do not consider your respective missions to be fundamentally at odds with each other. It is clear to me that you are both advocating for a return to sanity and chastity, the right for children to grow up in stable nuclear families, and an end to our horrible “gender wars”. And those are all things that I can agree with.

Jesse Powell writes:

I am afraid I do not take such a charitable view of the men’s rights movement. The problem with Laura’s position, in the eyes of most men’s rights supporters, is that she believes and teaches that men should seek to be good husbands to their wives and fathers to their children; in other words, that men should seek to serve and be a benefit towards their loved ones, even if this entails sacrifice on the part of the man. As long as you hold to the view that men owe duties and obligations towards women and children you will always be an enemy in MRA eyes. 

Men who believe that men owe duties and responsibilities towards women and children, men who believe in the values and virtues of chivalry, are similarly attacked by MRAs as being manginas, traitors to their fellow men. 

True yes, Laura believes that women owe duties and obligations towards men and to their children, but that is irrelevant in men’s rights eyes. MRAs don’t care that Laura is fair and balanced in her idea of mutual responsibility and mutual support, they only care that she imposes duties upon men; that by itself is all that they care about, and that by itself is unforgivable in their eyes. 

Are men victimized in modern feminist culture? Yes. Is misandry real? Yes. However, MRAs peddle and pound the idea of male victimization endlessly and then claim because men are so oppressed and downtrodden that only the concerns of men should matter, that only men suffer, that only men count. It is a manipulative game. The end result is self-righteous self-centeredness; a very ugly male supremacy and male selfishness with no legitimate place in a cultural movement whose goal is the rebuilding and recreating of healthy family life.

Youngfogey writes:

I have been following your discussion on Paul Elam with some interest. I have only a passing acquaintance with the Men’s Rights movement, though, as you can probably tell from some of my previous comments, I do feel some sympathy with the movement’s general diagnosis of our current culture situation.

As I have read many of the comments made by MRA’s here and on Elam’s site, I was struck by the reality that the kind of unrestrained hatred we see expressed there is a result of two forces. First, it is the result of feminism and the horrible damage that movement has inflicted on men. While I don’t want to diminish the seriousness of comments that advocate violence against women etc. I so think it is important to consider the source of these. These comments are likely the unreflected yelps of men terribly victimized by the system.

I think Elam does present an interesting quandary when he asks what else is to be done when a system is so utterly corrupt that not one element of it can be trusted. I don’t think his answer is the correct one, but I certainly see the complexity behind the question.

The second force behind these kinds of comments is secularism. I think what we see in the hatefulness of the comments on Elam’s site is men eager to strike back at feminism but without the guiding framework of a religious worldview. So we have tremendous pain without a plan, a guide for transcending it.

Left adrift like this, some men resort to this kind of verbal ranting which, in most cases, doesn’t reflect a real intention to harm women. This, I think, is why some bloggers on men’s issues (Ferdinand Bardamu at In Mala Fide comes to mind) have been critical of MRA’s as whiners. It seems there is some truth to this charge. It would be better if these men spent their energies leading both women and other men into a more reasonable cultural arrangement, but without the map of reality that religion provides, I don’t see how they can.

I should also note that some of the small amount of Paul Elam’s material I am familiar with has been helpful to me.

Stephen writes:

[Note: Stephen is the author of the comment above posted at Elam’s site.]

Laura writes, “These comments are similar to other things that have been said about me at The Spearhead, that I am simply a feminist in disguise.”

 No, you’re not a feminist (as they identify themselves). Yet, in coming out against the very idea of men organizing so as to advocate for their rights, you are essentially taking the same position that self-identified feminist do. Feminist, especially the gender-feminists, proclaim that men have had (and continue to have) too may privileges, thus it is ideal that laws be crafted so as to disadvantage men (relative to women). The very idea of men organizing for self-protection is antithetical to their stated goals of socio-political/cultural “restructuring” in favor of women. 

Other than your “guessing” that a Men’s Rights Movement would be more-or-less a mirror image of feminism’s defacto “Women’s Rights Movement”, I fail to see any credible objection to men organizing so as to have the socio-political “muscle” to directly counter the “muscle” that feminists DO have, and have been using very effectively for many years to run rough-shod over the rights and interests of men (and, yes, traditionally minded women as well). If not an MRM, what do you suggest? That we men sit down and wait for you women-folk to save the day? 

Laura writes, “One of the first things I wrote at this site was a detailed argument for a return of customary economic discrimination in favor of men, but apparently what I am really doing by suggesting such a thing is calling for the empowerment of women.” 

You have written many things that I (and I believe most men) heartily agree with. And, at times, you’ve pulled no punches, and take women to task for their misbehaviors as well. Thus, it was particularly disheartening to see you denounce the very idea of an MRM. 

Yes, the MRM will have elements which are not in line with your ideological views. Yet, the legal issues facing men today are a significant part of the reasons why men are declining to marry, start families, and support women. Much of what the MRM seeks to do may not directly lead to a return to “traditional” social norms; yet, reversing the deleterious effect of deeply misandric laws and entrenched ways of carrying out the goals of feminism, would actually benefit your goals by restoring men’s confidence that they too will be protected under the institution of marriage.

 As it now stands, the institution, often correctly labeled Marriage 2.0, is a net losing proposition for men to enter into. They are saddled with responsibilities, but are not guaranteed any rights, and are legally prohibited from trying to demand them. The issue for men in marriage run the gamut from the ability of women to misuse divorce laws against their husbands, to paternity fraud (and the financial entanglements thereof), to the inequities for men in the Antifamily courts, to inequitable custody in the event of divorce (also running at about 50% in Christian marriages).

 So, where are you women-folk on addressing any of these issues? Sites like Concerned Women For America don’t seem the least bit concerned about these issues. In fact, when a bill calling for paternity testing at birth was being considered in Tennessee, not one group identified as conservative, Christian, nor traditional stepped up in support of a law designed to protect men. The same non-support is regularly seen when MRM groups like Fathers & Families try to seek more equitable custody rulings.

 What becomes clear is that only men are going to be concerned with such issues facing men, even though reforming the worst of the abuses might actually help the cause of those seeking to strengthen the institution of marriage.

 In essence, it seems that many of those who do not support the idea of an MRM have thrown the issues critical to men under-the-bus, and try instead to sell the notion that the only internal threats to our society and it’s institutions that are worth actually fighting against are abortion and gay marriage.

 Yes, you do correctly identify many of the other problems, yet, it seems that you do not hold them of great enough importance that they should be addressed; and you are opposed to men organizing to address them as well. 

No, you’re not a feminist – but you’re still very much gyno-centric. You’re heart may well be in the right place, but I hold your anti-MRM approach to be seriously in error. You are erroneously dismissing those who would be your natural allies, putting issues of form over the more important issues of  substance.

Laura writes:

First, let me say that it is simply not true that I have not taken the issue of female-initiated divorce seriously. It has been a regular theme at this site and, as I said in one post on the issue, it was a major motivating factor in my starting this website. While I have written briefly about the need for divorce reforms, mostly I have addressed the attitudes in women that lead to so many of these divorces. In my recent post on Father’s Day, I wrote:

The experiences of the men I have known who have been unwilling participants in divorce have changed my life. I cannot quite explain why this phenomenon has affected me more than it has others. These are terrible injustices, some of the greatest instances of injustice I have personally encountered, but I know many people who are entirely unmoved.

These men are not perfect people. But most of them are not more imperfect than, say, I am. Not a single one of them committed adultery; they were all tried and convicted on the grounds of insensitivity. “The punishment is incommensurate to the crime.” I have said that many times. I have said that to friends and family members. Whatever flaws they had as husbands, these men did not deserve the exile they received. (The same, of course, can be said of many women who have been left under no-fault divorce. I just don’t know many women who fall into this category.)

In another post, I wrote:

There are two kinds of women in this world: women who divorce and those who stand by and passively watch. The first kind of women wreck the lives of their children and husbands. The second kind say, ”We cannot judge.”

I am sorry to be grim. I have witnessed many divorces. Sometimes I feel as if my family lives amid the rubble of a ruined village. As I walk through this town, I see the place where the post office used to stand and the old bank and that church with the white steeple. All gone. They were decent structures. Each could have lasted for many years. With a few exceptions, they were destroyed by women, capricious women for whom divorce is the most romantic project of their lives.

It’s not true that men are the principal losers. So many women ruin their own happiness and the happiness of  invisible communities formed by couples.  I cannot help but come to this inescapable conclusion: Women cannot handle freedom.

The surge in female-intiated divorce is due largely to the glorification of women’s interests and this has been my focus, rather than the actual laws. I cannot do everything and I would like to urge women to reconsider their basic outlook on marriage. I might add that I probably believe in divorce less than you do. I do not believe the state has an interest in granting more than one marriage to any person. I believe divorce should be severely restricted and I have written about attempts to reform divorce laws in Missouri and other states.

I have also written about female adultery and stated that women today often blame their husbands for the breakdown of their marriages when really the women have romantic interests elsewhere. You can read my posts on the issue here and here.

Regarding the men’s movement, it is not true that I have said men should not organize. I have said that a full-fledged movement based on the idea of “men’s rights” can only have limited value. This is what I wrote:

It seems that a period of heightened male consciousness is necessary to enable more men to lose their inhibitions about openly criticizing feminism, to martial male drive and intelligence toward the cause of defeating feminism in its various manifestations and to articulate masculine interests, especially on behalf of developing boys. But I agree with Sage that this is not enough and is furthermore dangerous if carried into a full-fledged cultural movement. A men’s movement does not offer a holistic sense of purpose. At best, it can educate and refute, but not transform society. At its worst, it creates a male counterpart to feminism.

This is not a condemnation of websites or organizations exclusively for men. An entire cultural movement focusing on the victimization of men and their “rights” can, in my opinion, only divert men from their real roles leading both men and women. But I said a “a period of heightened male consciousness is necessary.” I think men’s sites have been important in helping men come to terms with feminism.

Thank you for your nasty contention that I am “gynocentric.” I will point out to you that I have spent many hours transcribing men’s comments into my platform and responding to them. I am the mother of sons and consider it a duty to see things from their view. At the same time, I respect and support traditional women in their efforts to fight the cultural forces that condemn them. I may not always succeed in either but it is simply not true that I do not make a genuine effort and have a sincere interest in the concerns of men. I am frequently the butt of contempt by other women for doing this. Do you believe you are more enlightened toward the opposite sex than I am? Show me. How many times have you personally written to a men’s site and said something positive about the many thousands of decent women in this country who struggle without pay or attention to raise their children and take care of their husbands? How much support do they get from men who call themselves conservatives? Show me where it is. Show me where the men are who stood up when Sarah Palin was nominated for vice president and said, “This woman should not speak for American women. She makes light of all that it means to be a mother and wife.”

Vanessa writes:

Jesse writes, “Men who believe that men owe duties and responsibilities towards women and children, men who believe in the values and virtues of chivalry, are similarly attacked by MRAs as being manginas, traitors to their fellow men.”

I think that MRA’s, like libertarians or any other large political movement, are very diverse. There are certain strands of the movement that are distinct from one another in their worldview, but they are trying to join forces on the things that they do agree upon. There is strength in numbers, and by shouting together their voice is considerably louder.

It is true that the libertines, the MGTOW, and the others harm the reputations of the conservatives they associate with. But the opposite is also true. Just as conservatives complain about the others, the others complain about the conservatives, the MGTOW types fight with the libertines, and so on. Coalitions always involve a lot of in-fighting, and Welmer is in the uncomfortable position of trying to juggle so many conflicting interests and opinions.

He has tried to pre-empt this conflict (or remove himself from it) by having an open-comments policy. Unfortunately, some commenters were taking it too far. I can understand some of their frustration and anger, though. The feeling of persecution and grinding injustice is a terrible weight to bear, and — as another commenter mentioned — even heavier if you do not hold strong religious beliefs and/or do not see a way out. I believe a return to patriarchy is a way out of our current situation, and that provides me with much comfort.

I get the sense that many of these men do not only know that they are suffering, but that their suffering is ignored, that the suffering is relentless, and that the suffering is pointless. That brings despair, one of the most horrible emotions any person can feel. And despairing men are a danger for everyone, including themselves.

But one thing most MRA’s do agree upon is that institutionalized chivalry (rather than the personal kind) is a bad idea. They are also wary of general calls to “protect women” or “defend women” indiscriminantly. I think that is a fair criticism. Institutionalized chivalry developed in a time when the majority of women were relatively well-behaved. In such a social climate, an average man working to help an average woman can be relatively assured that his efforts are not being wasted on someone ungrateful or grossly unvirtuous. And even some of the ones most vocal about “manginas” and “white knights” have been known to publicly defend a woman they personally believe to be virtuous or unfairly wronged. And their calls against chivalry do not apply to children, for sure. That is an unfair statement, and I hope that was not what he meant to imply.

Laura writes:

I assume the persecution and injustice Vanessa refers to is that of fathers who have been divorced, stripped of their incomes and denied the right to live with and raise their children.  As I said before, these are among the greatest injustices in our society. The situation is dire. But no suffering is pointless. If there is one small ray of hope until order is restored, it can be found in the children of these men. Most of them will see through what has been done to their fathers. I’m not saying that we should sit back and wait for their children to someday right things. But it is not true that no one shares in the outrage and sense of suffering of these men. Their children often do.

Stephen responds:

Gyno-centric simply means from a female perspective, and looking out for the interests of woman ahead of the interests of other groups. It wasn’t meant as an insult so much as to point out that, even in your concern for the interests of men, you frame it as how it will affect women (and their families). It’s not that you (or others) do it in every single case, but it does tend to be quite prevalent. Which is fine, BTW. As a woman, I really would expect you to preferentially take the position of putting men’s interests first in line.

 

Let me ask you this. Do you truly believe you are more enlightened toward the opposite sex than I am? Show me. What do I have to do to prove I am concerned about the welfare of men, having already devoted most of my adult life to taking care of the opposite sex? What does it take? A sex change operation? [Laura writes: These were words I wrote in a personal e-mail to Stephen.]

I just be happy if you’d allow for men to be free to organize as they see fit, and to address the issues that concern them. If your interests happen to coincide with those that men select, great. If not, please don’t tell men that they should not feel as they do, and instead direct their efforts as you’d see fit.

Frankly, it’s not just you, but most other social conservative (Christian) women who will give a nod to the issues important to men, and then ignore oppurtunities to actually call for meaningful changes (i.e. when legislation is proposed). Again, I don’t expect women to take up the causes important to men, but at least allow that we have every right to do so – without needing the approval of women.

I give you credit for writing about those issues, but, the reality remains that most women of your ilk are not going to become proactive in pushing for reforms that address only the concerns of men (paternity fraud reform, child-support and custody reform, strengthening of laws so as to actually be able to punish false accusers (sexual assault or DV claims). It’s understandable that women would not wish to benefit men where it might also “harm” women (by taking back power from them). So, what real choice do men have but to organize themselves and push for change?

Sure, it may mean that men also push for change that you disagree with. But, since you aren’t planning to join up, it’s not really your place to try to tell us what to do.

BTW, I’m married, have been so for 25 years, and I am happy in my own marriage. However, I fully recognize that marriage is a dying institution. Men have every reason to not want to wed with laws the way they stand. My oldest daughter is married. I hope the best for them. But, I know full well that she is highly advantaged over her husband if things don’t work out between them. That’s why I recommend that my son not marry.

I’m hardly alone in this line of thinking. Marriage rates continue to drop as men become increasingly aware of the pitfalls. But, all I ever hear for the majority of SoCon Christian woman is that the problems confronting marriage are gay marriage and abortion. And, that’s where they put their efforts. But, they ignore the real issue that keep men from wanting to marry, so things continue to spiral downhill.

In that only the MRM ever makes any positive efforts on the real issues destroying marriage, I’d have thought you’d at least not be so anti-MRM, and see it as an ally. Of course, I was wrong to have hoped for so much.

  Laura writes:

In what sense have I denied the right of men to organize? That is simply not true. 

The idea that because I am a woman I would not support the changes in divorce law you mention is based on sheer presumption on your part, the sort of contemptuous lumping together of those of one sex typical of feminism. 

You are accusing me of deliberately ignoring needed changes in divorce laws because I personally may want to use the liberal benefits of our current laws. That is an outrageous accusation and is not supported by the things I have written. Don’t you see how that is precisely the sort of attitude taken by feminists toward men? 

You write, “That’s why I recommend that my son not marry?” 

Ah, there it is. I see you have regard for your son but no regard for the sons he may father to a woman he has had sex with but not married. And you consider yourself someone interested in men’s rights? No, you’re not. You’re interested in your rights and in your son’s rights, but you’re not interested in the rights of all men, especially men of the future, who will need fathers in their homes and a healthy society based on marriage. 

I repeat, you do not care about the welfare of men.

Josh writes:

I think the dirty little secret with Elam, Welmer, Spearheard and so forth is both their erroneous focus on “feminism” — which in reality is devout dykism — and their hidden undercurrent of Eve hate, i.e., radical homosexualism. When one reads the Spearhead closely enough it becomes clear that these movements are pushing a de facto homo-ism for many immature and disgruntled young males.

Laura writes:

Well, I have never picked that up. But I think your criticism is indicative of why a men’s rights movement will face problems that a feminist movement does not. When women join together, they plead sisterhood. When men join together, unless they are focused on some objective beyond themselves, like hunting or politics, they face accusations from other men of homosexuality. I’m not saying this is right or good, it is just the nature of masculine competitiveness.

I had a long talk with my husband about men’s rights and asked him about his instinctive reaction to the idea, as he is not drawn to the movement. His gut reaction was this. “Men don’t do that. They don’t get together and talk about themselves.”

Stephen respons to Laura’s previous comments:

I didn’t ever say that you didn’t support legal changes. I specifically stated that social conservative women (meaning that group, collectively) is not in support of such changes. While it’s not possible to poll all such women, Concerned Women For America serves as a good representation of what issues ARE important to the group of women with whom you seem most aligned. But, you’re an intelligent ands articulate women, so I’m fairly certain that you knew full well I was not “pinning it” on you personally. 

And, by allow, I was not meaning that you needed to provide approval, but rather the form of that verb that means to “acknowledge”. (again, I’m sure you know that.) 

As to your sincere concern and support for men, I have no doubt. Yet, even if you stand on every street corner you cross, and loudly proclaim for all to hear your views, what protection is offered to those men in your life? Protections for your son’s and husband from false allegations of rape, of sexual harassment, gender discrimination will only be achieved via changes in the laws and rules. Protections for your sons against false DV accusations, parental alienation, paternity fraud, loss of parental rights, etc. are going to also require such real legal changes. 

Now, again, CWFA and the majority of other socially conservative traditional women have near zero interest in seeing such changes come about – as evidenced by their continued lack of any effort. So, the only hope for such change is the various MRM groups that ARE actively working to implement change. 

Yet, your response to them? You openly disparage them as misguided efforts (without suggesting any alternative, BTW). You there by also send the message to your readers that they too should avoid or resist the efforts of those groups. Net result – you are effectively advocating against securing these right for men. 

Ah, there it is. I see you have regard for your son but no regard for the sons he may father to a woman he has had sex with but not married. And you consider yourself someone interested in men’s rights? No, you’re not. You’re interested in your rights and in your son’s rights, but you’re not interested in the rights of all men, especially men of the future, who will need fathers in their homes and a healthy society based on marriage.” 

I repeat, you do not care about the welfare of men. “ 

Right!

 I simply advise my son against the risk of entering into a contract with the state (Marriage 2.0), giving a woman the power of the state to secure his obligation to her should she ever tire of him, and you see me as being against the “welfare” of men? That doesn’t even make sense. I can neither force him too not marry, nor do I advise against so-called covenant marriages (provided courts end up upholding the European-styled private contracts). Frankly, advocating for the Marriage 2.0 strike by men is a way for men to collectively push for women (young woman who hope to marry) to join with them in demanding changes that will make marriage attractive for men again. 

But, sure, go ahead and try to portray me as being against men. It’s your blog, and you can do as you wish with it, posting whatever you wish.

Laura writes:

It is not true that I have only disparaged the men’s movement. I also favorably posted links to Spearhead. When I posted one reader’s general criticism of the men’s rights movement (Sage McLaughlin’s comments which are linked above) and responded that I thought that a men’s rights movement would not ultimately transform society, I was met with stinging accusations that I was against men organizing in any way. This is untrue and was not what I said. In any event, why didn’t those who thought this way write to me and tell me why I was wrong instead of posting nasty comments about me at other sites? I am open to criticism. I consider contrary views and post them. But this hostility to me after all I had said against feminism only made me more wary to post items from men’s sites.

Again, I do not believe changes in divorce laws are enough. These changes are critical and necessary, but my focus was on addressing the attitudes and sense of feminist righteousness that women often bring to marriage. I have read very little attacking women for intiating divorce and believe that many women deny their own motives.

I simply advise my son against the risk of entering into a contract with the state (Marriage 2.0), giving a woman the power of the state to secure his obligation to her should she ever tire of him, and you see me as being against the “welfare” of men? That doesn’t even make sense.

Yes, it does make sense, unless you are advocating that your son remain celibate. If not, the chances that he will have a child out of wedlock are very high and there is no question that this will be bad for any son he should father, or do you not consider a grandson to be male?  I would never tell my sons not to marry. I would rather them marry and be the victims of evil women than not fulfill their own obligations. That is the road to happiness and fulfillment for them, not to live in wary bitterness and suspicion towards women. I’m not advocating against men organizing to change laws, but I am saying that legal changes are not everything and that men must live as best they can in the meantime. Your son has a greater than 50 percent chance that he will not be at the receiving end of an involuntary divorce, and an even higher chance if he is college educated and if he is aware of some basics of female psychology and how to exert some control over his own marriage. Men have been victims of divorce, but there are some decent women left in this world. Why not instruct your son on how to find one? There are some women who believe they will rot in hell if they seek a divorce.

MarkMark writes:

All I can say is touché. You’re right about men enabling and encouraging feminism; without them, it never would have gotten off the ground. I stand corrected.

By the way, I don’t agree with what was said at The Spearhead about you. I know that you’re a friend to men. I started doing a post about you and other ladies who are non-feminists, and who don’t deserve the pot shots some of the guys make. I couldn’t articulate my points very effectively, so I never finished the post.

As for Men’s News Daily, I haven’t read there in a long, long time. When I did, Gonzo was the main man over there. I didn’t even know who Paul Elam was until earlier this year. It wasn’t the content that I disliked about MND; that was pretty good. It was the layout that needed work; it was bad! It was one of the least user friendly sites I’ve ever visited, so I simply stopped going there.

Reader N. writes:

Vanessa continues:

“The Mother Church has been advocating against such policies from the beginning, and was demonized because of it. Where were these now-indignant men then? Did they stand up and defend chastity and life? No, they were too busy enjoying the easy sex and the ability to abort away their obligations.”

“What we see around us now is what happens when good men and good women find an inappropriate time to be silent.”

In 1976 and 1977 I was a young man who stood up and disagreed in public with various aspects of feminism, including the toxic thesis of Brownmiller’s “Men, Women and Rape”. I soon found that I was alone, totally alone, in this effort. A tiny handful of feminists accused me of “chauvinism” as a result, that’s the thoughtcrime that preceded “sexism”.

Traditionalist women at that time said…nothing. Some of them shunned me, because of what the feminists said. Others just tittered and giggled and pointed, or rolled their eyes at the “crazy guy”. Here is what they did not do: stand up in public and disagree with the feminist trope that “all men are rapists”. Not one of them did that. Not one.

A few traditionalist men called me nuts for even bothering with the feminists, but none of them would stand up in public, either. Not one of them did that. It was a rather lonely time to be a critic of feminism, and I have never forgotten that when put to the test, plenty of traditionalist women will stand off to one side, or even with their feminist sisters, rather than stand up in public for what they claim to believe. I have also never forgotten that plenty of traditionalist men will, in their chivalric fashion, also stand off to one side or even join with the feminists against the “chauvinist” who is “picking on the girls” rather than stand up and in public for what they claim to believe.

Actions speak louder than words. Far too many times, I’ve seen the actions of traditionalist men and women diametrically opposed to their words. A bit of humility appears to me to be in order for all of us in this discussion.

Finally, I would like to know where Vanessa was in 1976, and what she was saying and doing about feminism, and divorce, and abortion at that time, if it isn’t too much trouble.

Jesse Powell writes:

I found an interesting comment posted under the “Jury Duty at a Rape Trial? Acquit!” thread at the A Voice for Men site. It seems reasonable to assume the author of the below comment is a supporter of “men’s rights”, mostly based on the context in which he made his statement. Nobody in the thread reacted to the below comment one way or another. 

The part of the below comment I want to object to the most I highlight in bold. What is objectionable about the part highlighted in bold is the denial that the sexual violation involved in rape is itself harmful and itself should be treated as a punishable crime. The harm of rape is not only the coercive or violent methods used to gain power over the victim, but is more importantly the sexual violation involved itself. To remove the crime of sexual violation from the concept of rape is to downplay the significance of rape radically and to impose much less severe punishments than are deserved considering the severity of the crime. I dispute the assertion that “a lack of consent is not in itself harmful” in regards to the choice of whether or not to be sexual with someone. 

I do think it would be unfair to only mention the part of the author’s comment I put in bold, a full context of what he said should be given, but I do believe the below comment is relevant to the issue of MRAs downplaying rape and promoting dangerous ideas in regards to rape that are threatening to the social fabric and the important principle that women need to be protected from men’s predatory behaviors. 

 Unassumption

July 28th, 2010 – 09:31 

I would vote Not guilty for the same reason people acquitted obvious murderers before the death penalty was thankfully repealed – the punishment is too harsh. Rapists are treated like the scum of the prison, when they are often troubled or poor men who need help, and are usually repeatedly raped in the prison. The ever-expanding definition of rape (applying fraud laws to rape in some states so if you lie to get her in bed you get a rape conviction, having sex with someone of 16 when your [sic] 18 in America, co-ercing her emotionally, etc, that would never fly with men) does what feminists have accused porn of for decades, demeans rape.

 I don’t want to provide something to quotemine  [sic] here but I have to say it. Since a lack of consent is not in itself harmful, and is almost impossible to prove to a reasonable standard of evidence, “rape” should be struck from the law books, since everything surrounding a rape (threats, force, violence in the act itself, diseases transmitted, restraint) are legitimate provable crimes. Rape can be a horrific crime, but the definition has expanded to include so many tangential topics it falls under its own weight. Maybe just wipe the slate clean and get a new more objectively testable rape law?

Laura writes:

This comment suggests that we have gone from the feminist assertion that all men are rapists to the men’s rights claim that all rapists are victims.

Vanessa writes:

That rape comment doesn’t even make any sense. It is the sex without consent that is the crime, not the violence associated with it. Even if the woman is completely unaware of having sex, or is not phyically harmed in any way, she can still be raped. Rape is sex without consent by very definition, which is why there used to be a marital exception (because the wife is assumed to consent).

Vanessa continues:

Reader N. writes,  “Finally, I would like to know where Vanessa was in 1976, and what she was saying and doing about feminism, and divorce, and abortion at that time, if it isn’t too much trouble.”

I was born in 1980. I have been an ardent opponent of feminism and socialism for about 10 years now, despite having been raised by feminist socialists and brought up in a very liberal wing of the Catholic Church.

N. adds, “I have also never forgotten that plenty of traditionalist men will, in their chivalric fashion, also stand off to one side or even join with the feminists against the “chauvinist” who is “picking on the girls” rather than stand up and in public for what they claim to believe.”

But that is precisely the point Laura was making! Both the masculinists and the feminists are inclined to make this into a rehash of the Gendar Wars. Boys against girls. But just because they say that is what it is, does not mean that is what it is. Jesus told us all what it is. It is Satan amongst us, stirring up trouble, sowing discord, and trying to distract us from what we know to be right.

God made men and women for each other. He formed us to fit together like puzzle pieces, both physically and psychologically, because He wanted us together, not at odds with each other. He put us in male-female pairs (through marriage) and then he formed us into a Church (through His Son’s death and resurrection). We are a team, whether we like it or not, because He made it so. The enemies are not each other, the enemies are those would would wish to split us up and turn us against each other.

Not only is that unnatural, it is evil, because it goes against His Design. Satan would like nothing more than for us to be busy tearing and screaming at each other, while Creation falls to pieces around us. I know you see that, I see that, Laura sees that, and many of the good men in the MRA also see that. I know that they see that because they have told me that themselves.

Stephen said, “It wasn’t meant as an insult so much as to point out that, even in your concern for the interests of men, you frame it as how it will affect women (and their families).”

And that, precisely, is the core of the dispute. I have repeatedly received the same accusation. Namely, that I am unconcerned with injustice against men in it’s own right, but only when it has some sort of negative impact upon women or children. That I see men in a purely utilitarian light, rather than as human beings of equal worth.

I think that the criticism is undeserved in both our cases. It is true that many women have a point of view that is skewed inward (and Laura has taken them for task for that very thing, on numerous occasions), but I think that a woman of good upbringing and strong faith can be trained to take a more altruistic interest in the plight of others. That she will call out injustice when she sees it, even if it brings her no personal benefit or advantage.

Laura says, “Again, I do not believe changes in divorce laws are enough. These changes are critical and necessary, but my focus was on addressing the attitudes and sense of feminist righteousness that women often bring to marriage.”

I think that this is a very important point. All of the legal changes in the world will not turn women into moral actors. The only thing that will do that is being called out by other women, and forced to face the ugly realities of our own behavior. And men should do the same for men (as they already generally do).

Laura writes, “Yes, it does make sense, unless you are advocating that your son remain celibate.”

Not necessarily. As Catholics we know that marriage is a natural institution, and that it’s establishment is completely outside of the bounds of civil law because it is ruled by Natural Law. It is absolutely possible for a man to marry without applying for a civil marriage license, and Church law deems all of his children as legitimate, even if civil law does not. For Catholic men it is a bit trickier, as their marriage only takes on a sacramental nature if conducted by a priest. [Laura writes: This is an interesting suggestion I had not considered.]

The Church’s recognition of a marriage is not limited by the vagaries of civil laws, but is eternal and absolute. And I think we can all agree that the mockery that Western governments have consistently made of the sacred institution of marriage is one of the main reasons that the legitimacy of such governments is being increasingly called into question.

God will not be mocked, and God will not allow a civilization to toss marriage aside as if they could defy Natural Law. No respect for marriage, no civilization. We turn the state of marriage around, or things will get ugly.

N. writes:

Laura wrires: “I thought I had made my position on feminism – not just extreme feminism, but all feminism – clear. These statements are every bit as offensive as Elam’s.”

You appear to be sending the message that calling for one or more rapists to be set free is exactly as offensive as calling for billions of men and boys to be murdered, solely because they carry the Y chromosome…no more, and no less.

Is that the message you meant to send?

Laura writes:

Who called for billions of men to be murdered? Was that Daly? If she said such a thing then yes, that is a statement worse than Elam’s. That doesn’t change the substance of my complaint against his argument. That doesn’t make your insinuation that I am unfamiliar with feminist scholarship and am oblivious to its full scale evil correct. I am not trying to prove in this post that the men’s rights movement is just as bad as feminism though I have certainly said that in some instances it is. I am trying to prove that what Elam said was vile and wrong. 

By the way, he was not simply advocating that one or two rapists be set free. He argued that the judicial system is so corrupt that any rape conviction is wrong.

 

 

 

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