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Subject: Feminism in Ottawa
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Author: merton fink.
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 2:55 am

Mal wrote:
the worst thing we can come up with? disadvantaging half of the world's population based on socially constructed norms?

that's not bad enough? what about the use of rape as a tool of war? how about female genital mutilation? or maybe, the global sex trade in trafficking womyn and young girls? how can you really put a quantifiable definition on the experiences womyn have to face and say.. is that the worst you can come up with? a system of oppression..yeah a system of oppression which justifies and explains away all of the aforementioned atrocities and then some because of socially constructed definitions based on one's sex and gender...

- here's a dictionary.com example
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/patriarchy

-here's wikipedia's definition
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patriarchy

- and here's another
http://m-w.com/dictionary/patriarchy

so what's your point?

I don't know why you're so set on proving your intelligence by arguing over definitions of feminism and/or patriarchy... as if you're merely looking for any flaw in the arguments being made just to prove that we're somehow wrong...because you could probably find ten different answers based on who you speak to, and what historical context you're referring to


1) My point is that when I hear you guys using words like "patriarchy" in one sentence and "female rape" "female genital mutilation" etc. in the next, as if they're one in the same thing, it gives me the distinct impression you dont know what patriarchy is all about

back in the the times of kings, society was basically structured like this: kings -> dukes & lords -> clans -> patriarchs -> wives & children. atleast thats the jist of it. Social order was maintained by having someone be responsible for someone else. So, the King wasn't really too concerned if your wife was off drinking mead and being promiscuous with the local blacksmith, that was the family patriarch's responsibility. As was making sure the kids werent off gallavanting with gypsies or other social undesirables. The family patriarch was responsible for keeping his women & children in line, otherwise he'd lose his honour and be seen as a weak patriarch who didnt know how to control his women/children. That is what patriarchy is all about.

No doubt rape, genital mutilation, closing of womens shelters, pay inequity, and whatever else are bad things. I'm not going to sit here and tell you they aren't or belittle them as problems, but there is absolutely no way you can construe any degree of connection between 'patriarchy' in the proper sense, and half of these forms of brutality/social problems. they are a totally different set of problems, and you're not going to get any closer to solving them by putting the onus of blame on the 'culture of patriarchy' every time a woman gets raped or a woman loses her job, as terrible as those things are. This isn't just brutality against women, this is brutality against a fellow human being. I mean, is there really something inherently different between a female being raped by a man and a male being raped by a man? A rape is a rape is a rape. Is there a difference between a woman and a man being murdered? a murder is a murder is a murder. Same with genital mutilation (jewish men have been brutalized by this practice for millenia!), or other forms of pay inequity (be that based on sex, race, class, language, or simply because someone doesnt like the look of your face) or lack of proper social services for people of either sex. Don't get me wrong, its not like I don't sympathize with these things, but how can you truly tell me that one set of victims are more legitimate than another set of victims?

these crimes should be viewed as crimes against humanity, and be villified for their utter disregard of all forms of human life, not simply certain forms of human life

Mal wrote:
but go ahead, claim we don't know what patriarchy is, and argue that our points are now null because you have found a flaw in what we're saying, it doesn't matter, that won't do any good in explaining why any of the aforementioned things still exist/are still happening predominantly to womyn


2) My original point back on page 2 was basically this:

i) all claims about the differences of gender (whether coming from a feminist or a patriarch) are totally baseless, you act "feminine" or "masculine" because you choose to mirror the identities of other females/males. Its all a social performance. This is ultimately a choice, not something youre born with or something you "can't change"

ii) the biological differences between men and women are mostly trivial, in the sense that there is nothing impeding one from doing something the other can't. the only glaring difference, obviously, is sexual reproduction. Otherwise, I think all claims to the contrary, trying to devise biological rationales for why and how men and women are physiologically different are grossly overstated and seem to ignore the way we are more similar than disimilar, same way social darwinists tried to demonstrate that there were more biological differences between blacks and europeans by focusing in on that 0.1% of biological difference, while skimming over that 99.9% of biological similarity. I've seen women on Sportsnet in those female bodybuilding competitions that could likely work on an oil rig or beat the shit out of 99.9% of the males on PunkOttawa, so I think theres no basis to claiming that women are inherently incapable of being on par with men as a result of biology. I'm also highly skeptical of any science that claims to have located a gene they "believe" "might" be linked to 'woman's intuition' or 'nurturing instincts'. All of these characteristics are present in men.

iii) the word "woman" or "female" is defined by its opposition to "male" or "man". "woman" basically means "not a man". Actually, in Old English, the word for woman was "wyfman", with "man" being a gender neutral term for humans; and "wyf" meaning, "wife". From that perspective, woman means "human wife". So, traditionally "woman" was defined by their role in relation to the man they were fucking and not any identity/biological characteristics. Which, to me would say you're better served dropping the "wo" from "woman" instead of changing the "a" to "y" in "myn"

In any case, my point here is that the distinction between man and woman is totally arbitrary and meaningless

Many men, probably alot on this board, find that they don't identify with "traditional" or "popular" concepts of "being a man". Nor do many women. So what do these arbitrary terms "man" and "woman" even refer to? Do they mean anything? Clearly if all it means is the difference between a penis and a vagina, then doesnt that seem kinda trivial? How can anyone say having a flap of skin or a hole in their pelvis (and all the reproductive instincts that are "supposed" to come with them) makes any difference at all when 2 people with penises or 2 people with vaginas are pairing up and fornicating? or people are saying they "naturally" identify with roles traditionally of the opposite sex? or people are dressing up in drag or getting sex changes?

iv) feminism is the politics of division and continues to draw distinctions/differences between men and women, which only serves to perpetuate inequality for women. People involved in feminism should be working towards an entirely different goal: uniting the sexes, not arguing "I'm different but should be treated as an equal".. As long as theres that perception of 'difference', theres always going to be inequality and those things are going to continue to happen.
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Author: duderocker
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 8:03 am

chicks are rad!!!!!!!!

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Author: smago10
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 8:43 am

duderocker wrote:
chicks are rad!!!!!!!!

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Author: the frog queen
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 9:43 am

I'm coming into this a little late again but here goes.


so_lonely wrote:
Some of the issues you guys have mentioned seem like good causes. But a lot of causes seem like they're either misguided, or fall under categories broader than feminism.


So that means that feminist should not fight for those causes? and I don't know how you see being against violence misguided ... or equality in general.


so_lonely wrote:

Okay, womyn's shelters may be underfunded and that's causing problems. But there's also a dearth of homeless shelters, and the homeless population contains about twice as many myn as womyn. So how does lack of funding for shelters prove the existence of patriarchy?


okay first off, I just wrote an article about this retarded thing I like to call the " I'm more oppressed than you" complaint. You here this is all the time from "Men's Rights Groups" who like to argue that men have it so much worse than women. okay, I don't actually believe that but lets say for a second, they actually did, does that mean that women shouldn't fight for the rights,safety,equality of other women just because there are men out there that have it bad?! Further to that, feminists do fight for mens issues. the problem is people don't get that. Feminists believe in something called "equality" and however much of a pipe-dream some people may think it is, we're not gonna back down.
so_lonely wrote:
Also, I have a problem with the people citing the fact that women make 77cents for every man's dollar like it's automatically unjust. Fact is, womyn work shorter hours than myn, are more likely to work part time, and are more likely to take long periods off work for kids.
Yes, and why do you think women have to take off time at work to look after kids? BECAUSE WE LIVE IN A PATRIARCHAL SOCIETY THAT BELIEVE AND ENFORECES SOCIAL NORMS THAT SAY "WOMEN TAKE CARE OF KIDS, NOT MEN".

so_lonely wrote:
Furthermore, I think it's pretty conclusively proven that myn generally have brains more proficient in systematising, while womyn have brains more apt at empathising. And, unjustly, systematising professions tend to contribute more value to the economy, and thus get paid more.


This is just fucking garbage. Certain people have this belief that women are too delicate to make it in the rough and tough professional world. Well if that were true, I wouldn't be where I am today, in the corporate world thats "oh so rough and tough". It's just bullshit that people try to use to justify the fact that there are more men making big bucks than women.
so_lonely wrote:

There is some discrimination going on too, I'm sure, but is far less responsible for pay gaps than these other factors.
Womyn's groups decrying unequal pay rates seems to me about the same as if myn's groups were to decry unequal incarceration rates. But myn are more apt to commit crimes, so unequal incarceration rates is an accepted fact.


apples and oranges...
so_lonely wrote:
Some of these crimes are rapes, which, hardly condoned by the state, are punished severely.




What? did you just say that rape is punished severely?? did I get that right? um, do you consider shattering a person sexuality, emotional stability, and inflicting constant fear on someone a harsh crime? Along with all that, the crippling effects of rape that can end up in disease, permentant physical scars and injuries and in some cases steralization, to be a heinus crime?? If someone did that to you, would you be happy if they got convicted and put away for 2 to 5 years with a chance of parole in 3 years for good behaviour!?!?! if you think that is severe then there is something wrong with you. And don't even get me started on the near impossible feat of actually getting a rape conviction.

so_lonely wrote:


And then I feel like a lot of issues that fall under feminism are just HR or sociological issues, apportioned into subdivisions of the discipline. Global sex trade, yes myn are most of the demand, but both myn and womyn profit off it. And it is illegal, at least in Western countries. I watched some CBC documentary a while back, and the main person they focused on in the business was a woman. Also, it is typical for the head honchos in Asian gogo bars to be womyn.
Female genital mutilation is horrific, I agree. But so is gay boys getting hanged, or torture in prisons. So why segregate the HR crusade?


Since female genital mutilation doesn't really happen here, can we at least agree that while there is significant work to be done in the world to make womyn's situations better,

Canada, at least is officially patriarchy free?


I'm pretty mad after reading all that, but honestly, do you really think that just because some men suffer from the same social injustices that feminists are going to disapear and stop fighting for equality!?!? because thats what your saying...
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Author: korngrrl666
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 10:40 am

Frog Queen, you just OWNED that fucking argument. Good post. So Lonely, you make me want to puke on my asshole!

I wouldn't talk to you if my life depended on it you stupid idiot.
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Author: Mal
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 10:56 am

korngrrl666 wrote:
Frog Queen, you just OWNED that fucking argument. Good post. So Lonely, you make me want to puke on my asshole!

I wouldn't talk to you if my life depended on it you stupid idiot.


exactly what I was going to say

just because men are oppressed too doesn't negate that all the instances I mentioned are DISPROPORTIONATELY AFFECTING WOMYN - therefore, explaining the need for feminism

feminism also doesn't negate other injustices - again as the frog queen said - EQUALITY is what feminism is all about, yes it's focused on womyn, and it will continue to focus on womyn until we aren't DISPROPORTIONATELY affected by these things

oh yeah and don't even start on "harsh sentences for rape" - 90% of women who have been raped don't even report the crime because of the ordeal they have to go through by giving their story to the police (being twice victimized, lack of belief on behalf of police, grueling questioning which often feels like cross-examination, and not to mention the very small chance of even getting a guilty verdict)

and merton - I get what you're saying about the history of patriarchy, I'm not arguing it's historical context, I'm saying (and probably what a lot, if not most, feminists would agree on) is that the system of patriarchy has translated into privilege and valuing of some and the oppression and subordination of others..

I'm not saying they're the same thing, I'm saying the disproportionate oppression of womyn is a result of a system (patriarchy) which puts inherent value on men over womyn... which then translates into the current acts of sexism (re: my examples) that we all know about to some degree

and if you still disagree, then I guess we can just agree to disagree on it... because I think we've gotten each other's points clearly enough now

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Author: the frog queen
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 11:28 am

thank korngrrl and mal. I apologize for the multitude of grammarical and spell errors. Being dyslexic sucks ass.
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Author: Dani B.
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 11:44 am

so_lonely wrote:
Furthermore, I think it's pretty conclusively proven that myn generally have brains more proficient in systematising, while womyn have brains more apt at empathising.


http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/print/CTVNews/20061019/math_women_061019/20061019/?hub=SciTech&subhub=PrintStory

there has been solid proof of stereotype threat for over a decade.

it has been shown to apply with traditionally held sexist ideas and racist ideas in society.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stereotype_threat

the messages that women and girls are "naturally" less talented in math and science are everywhere. with the reality of stereotype threat, it obviously has to have an effect on the averages we end up seeing and believing.


Last edited by Dani B. on 11/30/07 12:08 pm; edited 1 time in total.

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Author: Computer_Boy
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 12:05 pm

hey aryeh, is this feminism?

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Author: merton fink.
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 1:56 pm

the frog queen wrote:
so_lonely wrote:

Okay, womyn's shelters may be underfunded and that's causing problems. But there's also a dearth of homeless shelters, and the homeless population contains about twice as many myn as womyn. So how does lack of funding for shelters prove the existence of patriarchy?


okay first off, I just wrote an article about this retarded thing I like to call the " I'm more oppressed than you" complaint. You here this is all the time from "Men's Rights Groups" who like to argue that men have it so much worse than women. okay, I don't actually believe that but lets say for a second, they actually did, does that mean that women shouldn't fight for the rights,safety,equality of other women just because there are men out there that have it bad?! Further to that, feminists do fight for mens issues. the problem is people don't get that. Feminists believe in something called "equality" and however much of a pipe-dream some people may think it is, we're not gonna back down.


What men's rights groups?!

You realize "NO MAAM" was a fictional organization and the irony was that Al Bundy and Jefferson Darcy always caved into their wives at the end of every episode?

also, just curious, what "mens issues" do feminists fight for?
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Author: the frog queen
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 2:29 pm

merton fink. wrote:
the frog queen wrote:
so_lonely wrote:

Okay, womyn's shelters may be underfunded and that's causing problems. But there's also a dearth of homeless shelters, and the homeless population contains about twice as many myn as womyn. So how does lack of funding for shelters prove the existence of patriarchy?


okay first off, I just wrote an article about this retarded thing I like to call the " I'm more oppressed than you" complaint. You here this is all the time from "Men's Rights Groups" who like to argue that men have it so much worse than women. okay, I don't actually believe that but lets say for a second, they actually did, does that mean that women shouldn't fight for the rights,safety,equality of other women just because there are men out there that have it bad?! Further to that, feminists do fight for mens issues. the problem is people don't get that. Feminists believe in something called "equality" and however much of a pipe-dream some people may think it is, we're not gonna back down.


What men's rights groups?!

You realize "NO MAAM" was a fictional organization and the irony was that Al Bundy and Jefferson Darcy always caved into their wives at the end of every episode?

also, just curious, what "mens issues" do feminists fight for?


Have you heard of the MRA? Men's Rights Association?

To answer your other question I will first stipulate that feminists want equality. We're not looking for superiority. Breaking through unconciously accepted social norms from things like "boy gets tonka truck" & "girl gets baby doll" to things like "man wears had hat, man does not stay home and take care of children". Also the preasures on a man to be uber masculine/macho/insensitive and unemotional.

In my own opinion, I think traditional gender roles affect men & women in pretty negative ways and is part of what has been holding back further equality in the last 20 years. Even tho great progress was made, I always think these sort of unconcious accepted roles hurt us all the most in the long run. Little boys get power tools to play with and little girls get kitchen sets... you these gender roles being enforced in our kids in commercials.

Also as I mentioned much earlier in the blog and as did Mal, patriarchy doesn't jsut affect women in a bad way, it also hurts men. I still gotta read that book it's sapose to be great.
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Author: lekate
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 2:33 pm

wouldn't the gender roles we force upon children affect little boys more than little girls? just because it was socially acceptable for me as a child to follow the boys in the neighbourhood and get all muddy, but I'm sure as hell people would've looked at my brother funny if he got into my dolls and "girly toys"...

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Author: the frog queen
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 2:50 pm

lekate wrote:
wouldn't the gender roles we force upon children affect little boys more than little girls? just because it was socially acceptable for me as a child to follow the boys in the neighbourhood and get all muddy, but I'm sure as hell people would've looked at my brother funny if he got into my dolls and "girly toys"...


did you not read any of my posts? I'm not even gonna bother answering your question until you've read everything.
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Author: the frog queen
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 2:58 pm

http://painfulreminder.blogspot.com/2007/11/sexist-pencil-sharpener-and-bad.html

above is the blog I wrote the other day that half addresses the whole "but I'm more opressed/descriminated against/ victimized than you" thing. that really has been pissing me off lately. Such arguements minimalize the real problem turn it into a pissing match.. lame.

*please keep in mind, I'm not a writer and have a lot of trouble articulating myself due to lack of formal education.
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Author: merton fink.
Subject:
Date: 11/30/07 3:47 pm

the frog queen wrote:

Have you heard of the MRA? Men's Rights Association?


http://www.mensra.com/

hmm interesting, i'd never heard of this before..

in any case, you can rest assured this group is likely pretty marginal

the frog queen wrote:
To answer your other question I will first stipulate that feminists want equality. We're not looking for superiority. Breaking through unconciously accepted social norms from things like "boy gets tonka truck" & "girl gets baby doll" to things like "man wears had hat, man does not stay home and take care of children". Also the preasures on a man to be uber masculine/macho/insensitive and unemotional.

In my own opinion, I think traditional gender roles affect men & women in pretty negative ways and is part of what has been holding back further equality in the last 20 years. Even tho great progress was made, I always think these sort of unconcious accepted roles hurt us all the most in the long run. Little boys get power tools to play with and little girls get kitchen sets... you these gender roles being enforced in our kids in commercials.


i am in agreement with you about gender roles, tho i'm curious, if you were to ever bear children (whether through submitting to that infernal anachronistic patriarchal institution of marriage or through artificial insemination) and you had a boy and a girl, what kinds of toys would you let each of them play with?
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