Ethics Dunces : Michigan State University Student Feminists

MSU womens_study_lounge

Higher education progressives, students, professors and administrators alike, are seriously confused about ethics, and some basic principles like fairness, respect, equity, and competence, not to mention common sense. How did they come to such a state?

For various reasons, none of them reasonable, Michigan State University had maintained that gender segregation was appropriate in the student Union, and  a study lounge there was designated for women only. Perhaps we can forgive the school’s initial judgment in this case, since the Union’s Women’s Lounge, located on the main floor of the MSU Union, debuted in 1925, just five years after women gained the right to vote.Men vastly outnumbered women then, and were looked upon as oddities, or perhaps temptation.

It is 2016, however, and women are demanding equality where it may already exist, and declaring gender discrimination where it may not, so the continued existence of the male excluding lounge was more than a bit anachronistic. After all, Harvard College just declared war on any male student who dared to belong to off-campus all-male clubs, since even freedom of association away from school is deeply offensive to the progressive values of Ivy League educators.

Then a University of Michigan-Flint professor named Mark Perry, filed a complaint to the Michigan Department of Civil Rights towards MSU alleging that the lounge violated federal anti-discrimination law, which it obviously does.

Perry wrote:

“As a 20-year resident of Michigan, as a Michigan taxpayer and as a Michigan State employee (at UM-Flint), this issue is important to me because I believe that a women’s only study lounge on the campus of a taxpayer-supported university is possibly in violation of federal civil rights laws (including Title IX) and Michigan State civil rights laws (including Proposal 2 passed in 2006).”

After thinking about this for about ten minutes, and consulting with its lawyers, MSU “temporarily” made the study lounge “all-gender,” or what less addled schools call, “a student study lounge.”

Female MSU students, so poorly educated at the college that they cannot recognize discrimination and gender bias when they see it inflicted on others,  have started a petition on that playground of bad ideas and misplaced indignation, Change.org. It is titled “Allowing women on Michigan State’s campus to have a safe lounge to study in.” Catchy! More than 5,000 anti-male bigots ( and a few sadly brainwashed and intimidated male victims) had signed the thing as last week. There will also be a sit-in on August 31.  A pro-gender discrimination sit-in.

The rhetoric being used by the indignant “feminists” on campus—how can a women demanding gender apartheid call herself a feminist? Isn’t the correct term “a nun”?—is that they need a “safe place,” as in “safe from men.” No stereotyping and bias in that attitude, no ma’am!

“As a female student here on campus, this lounge was essential to my success my freshman year,” whined Alyssa Maturen, one of the student organizers of the protest. “It was the one place I felt I could go and truly relax, not to mention I was able to focus way better when among fellow women as I was not being approached by male students.”

Alyssa, I think what you are looking for is called an “all-women’s college.”

Writes Amy Alcorn:

“So, feminism isn’t about equal treatment for all, but special treatment for women, under the guise of wanting equal treatment. Got it. Does anyone think this constant demand for women to be treated as fragile flowers might make people think they should hire a man, rather than one of these wilting lilies who surely can’t manage to be around male co-workers without suffering a mental health crisis?”

Bingo.

122 thoughts on “Ethics Dunces : Michigan State University Student Feminists

  1. We’re going to have a nasty round of one upmanship, where the various biases will have to fight it out. Does a handicapped man rate higher than a elderly woman. What about competing demands from native americans and african americans? A single mother needing a private bathroom compared to a trans? They cannot all be the top cause and some are already bullying the others.

    • “We’re going to have a nasty round of one ‘upmanship’ ”

      It could get nastier; to stave that off, if it’s all the same to you, might we change that to “up-person-ship” or up-human-ship?”

      Wait a minute, those contain the evil, marginalizing patriarchal terms “son” & “man.”

      One-droid-ship?

    • “We’re going to have a nasty round of one upmanship”

      Been happening for years, I’ve heard it called “The Oppression Olympics” or “The Victim Hierarchy”, it’s just getting mainstream attention now. One of the more pleasant effects of new media and been the weakwning of traditional media’s ability to cover up and for the bad behaviour of these groups, which they’ve been doing for the better part of a decade. Now all you need it a camera and an internet connection to get this insanity front and centre for larger consumption, and it’s shamed them into better coverage.

    • Nothing threatens the patriarchy more than… sewing circles and quilting bees? Baby and bridal showers? I mean, I thought the patriarchy was pretty okay with that stuff.

      In my experience, nothing threatens the patriarchy more than women acting like normal human beings with minds that work similarly to men’s. The patriarchy seems fine as long as we stay mysterious and alien, whether “crazy” or up on pedestals. There’s a reason they started that study lounge back in the 1920s, and it wasn’t women’s rights. The patriarchy crumbles when it has to acknowledge we’re normal people.

      • Interestingly enough, the latter two are really about service to the current patriarchal culture, the former two historically have been done to provide for men and I think you’d hear loud objections if you tried to exclude males from any of those things if they decided they wanted to participate.

        Are you going to tell them no? Are they not free to pop in on those things whenever they’d like?

        • Well, yes, in the case of some bridal showers where the wedding dress might be out to show the other women they will tell the groom to stay away. I’ve never heard a guy complain about that, or being excluded from shopping for the dress.

          And of course that’s all in service of the patriarchy. That’s my point.

          The patriarchy has been built on the “othering” of women, and it will bend over backwards to do it. At various points over the past 500 years, women have been too good, too wicked, to wise, too stupid, too delicate, and too coarse to be treated equally.

          The patriarchy isn’t afraid of female-only spaces: it builds them. It builds ladies waiting rooms and segregates women during their periods. It says no “real man” would want to go to a baby shower or a ballet class. It makes “chick flicks” and romance novels. That’s the goal of the patriarchy, because that means we’re too too weird, to be allowed to be people.

          It’s afraid of women becoming too comfortable and confidant in common spaces. It’s afraid of us not being afraid or embarrassed. It’s afraid of having to admit we’re humans. If we insist we’re special, that men just don’t understand, we’re the ones propping it up.

    • [Yet if one considers ‘threats’ in a more general sense, one must at least mention that the idea of a war or conflict between a ‘matriarchy’ and a ‘patriarchy’, with attendent needs for secret councils and restricted space, represents a threat-in-action. It seems ultra-paranoid and establishes as normalcy that the two halves of a whole are in an historical, cultural battle.]

    • [The ideology of the idea of localizing a ‘patriarchy’ is pretty obviously directly linked to Marxian class-war predicates: Once you have located the enemy you only need to topple the enemy. What this has done in our societies, I’d humbly suggest, has been devastating. That is of course its purpose: to drive a wedge between partners. Second-wave feminism couched its arguments in social war terms and — to all appearances — these ideas still function. If a person’s understanding of the world and society is based in such predicates, it is not much of a surprise that there is breakdown in solidarity. Women then must align themselves with the various interests involved in processes of topping ‘patriarchy’. When one really begins to look at the influence of these doctrines, one begins to notice how deeply these motivations have penetrated our thinking. We think these thought reflexively, with little thought of their ramifications.]

    • That may or may not be a valid theory, but creating gender segregated environments on a two-sex campus and having it officially enforced isn’t called “getting together” but bias, discrimination and official segregation. Allowing it is the opposite of education: preparing women for life includes preparing them for life in business and social interaction with men. Exclusive men’s clubs have exactly the same justification as female lounges—the mental gymnastics required to distinguish the principles involves to encourage one while reviling the other are fun to watch, but unconvincing.

        • I tolerate sex-segregation. Half my arguments have been about not wanting to change or shower in front of intact males and not feeling I should give up my right to participate in society because of that.

          • Would you tolerate “male-only” spaces, clubs and organisations? Because if you did then at least you would be consistent… Even if you’re taking a hard to defend position. But I have the feeling that the same women who are bemoaning the loss of their female-only space are the same ones that would be front in line to protest a male-only space.

            And I think you know that… These weak bumper stickers that amount to “masculinity so fragile” are… just completely lacking a self awareness that leads to absurdities. If wanting to have equal inclusion in public spaces is an example of a threatened patriarchy, then what is the constant attack on male spaces but fragile feminism lashing out?

            I can hear the feathers ruffling through the internet, but you have to realise… Even by the standards of patriarchy theory, which is more dogma than measurement, the average man is not a patriarch. A middle class student doesn’t earn more at their minimum wage McDonald’s job based on their junk. Young men aren’t more likely to attend post secondary classes, they’re not more likely to get better marks and they aren’t more likely to graduate. By no measurement are these men privileged in any way that their female counterparts are not.

            And so I think it the most entitled of mindsets that allows someone to label someone pointing out real sexism as being indicative of a fragile patriarchy… Or even wrong. “Stop whining about your issues” is a refrain that in particular feminists should be exceptionally wary of using, especially considering the predication of the group to label everything, literally everything, as sexist.

            • If they want to set aside one lounge in the building for the menz, that’s cool, they can feel safe that no women will come in and interrupt their studies with sexual aggressiveness. But come on, you’re denying that there’s male privilege? Really?

              • Oh, I don’t deny that there are things that men will never have to deal with that women do, and if we want to call that privilege, then sure. But I think that men will also have to deal with things that women will not, and so by that standard, there is “female privilege.”

                At the end of the day, if we all took a step back and examined our respective privileges, the world would be a better place generally, but it’s too ephemeral and inconsistent an idea to make meaningful policy with, and too misunderstood to use as a club against anyone.

            • HT wrote: “If wanting to have equal inclusion in public spaces is an example of a threatened patriarchy, then what is the constant attack on male spaces but fragile feminism lashing out?”
              _____________

              The underlying logic of patriarchal theory is (as far as I have been able to tell) completely Marxist doctrine. The patriarchal structure is everything but the proletarian mass that is oppressed and enslaved. Thus the logic is that one must inculcate oneself to desire the destruction of the patriarchy, and the Olde Order.

              What has happened though is that the idea has unmoored itself from the strict doctrine of Marxism. Few think in these Marxian terms, yet what got the ball rolling is Marxian critical analysis.

              What is hard to to discern the moment in our US history when this general movement began. I’d say it began in the first quarter of the 20th century. In my view, based on my limited understanding, it is intimately tied with the expansion of Bolshevic doctrines. Now, 100 years on, my impression is that few have a sense of the evolution of these ideas and their origin. Sadly, the idea of America as a nation of equality and equal opportunity for all, and opening the borders, and failure to discriminate on the basis of culture and race, is I think the root cause of the distortions we now notice in the present. And no one (or few) can ‘name the problem’ and so, it seems, there is endless quibbling over details.

              To begin to propose a *cure* is to begin to conceptualize radical alternatives, 2) define very strict and grounded philosophical and ethical positions which run counter-current to the present, and 3) to work in the direction of political realization of these more strict ideals.

              And this amounts to ‘unthinkable thought’ and so, obviously, it is not thought and considered. It is a lovely conceptual and historical trap. I wish to suggest that the dam will burst — eventually — but for the time being it is in an impass.

              The ‘overturning of the patriarchy’ has to be defined. What does this mean? It seems to mean a socialistic, militantly aggressive and governmentally-empowered social system that is policed by a powerful Federal authority. It will involve radical egalitarianism. It can only be achieved by radical indoctrination. This radical egalitarianism is not without a certain logic. In fact, most people share at least a certain percentage of its predicates.

              In order to contradict it, one has to turn against a whole order of conceptualization. One has to begin to establish definitions based in definitions of difference and possibly the first order of difference is race/culture. Other definitions follow from that. If you cannot make and defend distinctions, difference and hierarchy, you will be and you are a ‘victim of the present ideology’.

      • Yet some think it’s easier to pick up skills in an environment where there’s no men expecting deference or monopolizing the teacher’s attention. A fair justification for single sex colleges being available to those who wish them, it’s a fair argument for African-american colleges as well.

        I can’t say learning in an environment where you’re not marginalized has appeal.

        In those case though we’re talking about a much smaller a scale. A lounge where people can study without horny bros interrupting by hitting on them. I’d be cool with them setting aside two lounges, one for men and one for women. When I was in college peaceful places to study while my roommate was getting laid were few and far between during some parts of the year, at least till I found a couple corners in the library that no one ever visited.

            • What makes you think lesbians will have the same (lack of) behavioral standards as college-aged men? They’re not just men with tits you know, whatever trans advocates might want to you think.

              • No, they’re worse, Statistically. Gay men are least likely to be sexually aggressive, and lesbians are most likely to be sexually aggressive, with hetero people somewhere in the middle. This trend carries on to domestic violence numbers.

          • I never could have afforded it and it was too far a commute to save. I like college with guys, most of my friends then were guys as my hobbies were mostly the same.But my college only had some spaces that weren’t coed, and it wasn’t an absolute outside bathrooms. Like Valkygrrl, I’m fine with those, and I don’t think much of unisex bathrooms. Those places are for a necessary business, not more stress on safety.
            Single sex colleges do seem to hold the same grey place that single sex classes in high schools. Removing the hormones on display and immediate rivalries seems to increase the focus on the studies. With male students falling seriously behind in programs that cater for more feminine learning patterns, something needs to change. It’s mirror image of fifty years ago when competition was more prevalent and social learning less. The wheel turns and we need to either put more challenge and winning in education so students can learn from both approaches, or we MUST separate them so we stop leaving boys behind.

            Adult activities tend to be more self-selecting. The guy that does needlepoint should be as welcomed in a club as a woman who wants to kick box. (Though there should be some safeties or class/grades as needlepoint doesn’t usualy lead to consussions) I would have liked to go to one of the old gentlemen explorer’s clubs for the topics, but they also led to business and social links so I don’t think those should have banned genders anymore. If it’s an interest, there’s no reason some Irene Adler might not be a great member.

            Set up the rules for the study lounge (no talking, no looming over, whatever…) iron them out and let it go. I never really got to talk to blacks on my campus to learn and understand their stories as I couldn’t hang out with them in the black student union. The glares I got when I once tried to go in to meet anyone. I scurried away and ended up with only one black friend as there was was little interaction. That’s how the good intentions of those spaces in the 60s became its own apartheid in the 90s.

    • Nothing threatens the patriarchy more than the idea of women getting together without male supervision.

      Maybe the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.

      On a brighter note, one of Jack’s best toss offs: “that playground of bad ideas and misplaced indignation, Change.org.” Hah! Yeah, verily.

  2. I am bitter as I don’t understand the rules and the cultural shift. For me it is more pronounced and immediate. For over two decades I have been an active duty Marine, I have seen cultural shifts in the past there are some initial pains then we figure it out and carry on. The one constant, never fully adjusted cultural issue is women rights. Women demand equal advancement opportunity while simultaneously bitterly fighting equalizing physical standards and required attendance to leadership schools for promotion. Demanding female leadership positions in units that have been recently opened up to women without earning the right to be there. Demanding the military force males to go through endless sexual assault training and not allowing young women to be trained in how to avoid compromising situations as it would constitute victim blaming. Demanding to be provided with special (safe) women only billeting both on ship and shore while also demanding to be recognized as just as effective warriors as males. Demanding changes to be made in standards so that women can join a particular field with no concern over how those changes will weaken total combat effectiveness.

    It appears that this is just a game too many feminist to see what they can get society to swallow, it is about gaining advantage and not equal rights.

    • That’s exactly what’s going on. I saw a recent study that indicated that women resented the assumption that men expected to pay for a social dinner, but also enjoyed it when they actually did pay, and made minimal efforts to pick up the check themselves. This is called a “conflict of interest.”

    • “Demanding the military force males to go through endless sexual assault training and not allowing young women to be trained in how to avoid compromising situations as it would constitute victim blaming.”

      Yes, and I will be teaching my daughters how to avoid these situations too, because it is the smart and rational thing to do. But let’s not take our eye off the ball — the priority should be to teach men not to commit sexual crimes. If we did that, we wouldn’t have to waste valuable time teaching women how to avoid men programmed to assault women as long as the right opportunity presents itself.

      • The sexual assault training is worthless and treats all males as predators, even if you take it as a given that all males are predators these women are supposed to be warriors, not civilians, given feminist position that women are just effective as males than why withhold training that will make women immune to becoming victims? We aren’t talking about not taking every opportunity to make sure men don’t assault women but insuring these women warriors can take care of themselves. We are talking about people who are expected to go into combat and win, not to go into combat requiring extra support and special privileges so that they may feel special and gain unearned promotion.

        • Steve — that is dodging at its worst. Of course not all men are criminals — but until they identify some Gattica-like test so we only have to deprogram the bad seeds, then yes, everyone has to go through that. It was useless for you because you’re not a rapist. Discrimination training was worthless (and annoying) for me because I don’t discriminate against people. But my employer required it for everyone so I did it.

          In any event, I’m guessing that it might be difficult to train for combat while being harassed, assaulted, or raped at the same time.

          • “In any event, I’m guessing that it might be difficult to train for combat while being harassed, assaulted, or raped at the same time.”

            Talk about dodges, again treating the issue as if all men are predators and not acknowledging that these women are supposed to be warriors who should be able to handle themselves.

                  • It isn’t systematic. Despite what you hear from the media and activist military sexual assault incidents occure at a lesser rate than general society by a huge margin. I can promise you there is no period of instruction on how to sexually assault a new female member or any orders verbal or otherwise that makes sexual assault an approved or encouraged activity. The cases that get the media attention are horrible, deserve condemnation and action to insure it doesn’t happen in the future but there is no general or prevalent attitude of acceptance of this behavior.

          • “the priority should be to teach men not to commit sexual crimes.”

            “but until they identify some Gattica-like test so we only have to deprogram the bad seeds, then yes, everyone has to go through that.”

            With all due respect, bullshit.

            By this logic we should be teaching black youths not to shoot each other and women not to abandon their children in dumpsters. Find those examples offensive? Good. They are. And they should be just as offensive as the assumption that men would be rapists if only not for the sage education that they can be provided with.

            • What do you think is more common? Dumping babies in dumpsters OR sexual assault?

              Take your time…..

              In addition, everyone condemns dumping babies in dumpsters. EVERYONE. But bring up male aggression? It doesn’t matter that is widespread. It doesn’t matter that it ranges from honor killings in certain cultures to denials of opportunity in others. What will immediately happen is an entire (and predictable) conversation about: the numbers aren’t as bad as they seem; it wasn’t really assault; women need to learn to avoid these situations; what was she wearing; I wonder if she really WANTED to sleep with her boss, supervisor, commander, professor, etc. What I want to do is turn the conversation and start it at a very young age. Men need to be taught to value and respect women.

              And, for the record, there is a ton of education centered around teaching black youth — as well as other historically disadvantaged and poor youth groups — about the circle of violence, drugs, etc. and how it destroys entire communities.

              • Postpartum child abuse or sexual assault? Hard to say… Infants are even less likely to report than women. But to carry this forward, let’s even say you’re right.

                If the bar to be jumped is the prevalence of the crime, then there are a whole lot of other crimes we would be concerned with first. But no, let’s be honest: We pay attention to rape because of the obvious heinousness of the crime, and by that measure, leaving a child to die of exposure in a garbage receptacle HAS to be seen as on the same level.

                “In addition, everyone condemns dumping babies in dumpsters. EVERYONE. But bring up male aggression? It doesn’t matter that is widespread.”

                Shifting the goalposts. No one was talking about “aggression” we were talking about rape. Everyone condemns rape. EVERYONE. What makes rape worse than it already was is because the basic physical act (sex) is only deemed illegal based on the lack of consent, and so an act performed millions (billions?) of times daily is notoriously hard to prove.

                “What will immediately happen is an entire (and predictable) conversation about: the numbers aren’t as bad as they seem; it wasn’t really assault; women need to learn to avoid these situations; what was she wearing; I wonder if she really WANTED to sleep with her boss, supervisor, commander, professor, etc.”

                To be frank, women lie about rape. Not most women, but enough to be statistically significant. The rate of false rape allegations as measured by the FBI was approximately 4% (and those were only cases that were proven false or recanted), the next most commonly false reported crime was theft (think insurance fraud) at 2%. There’s a certain amount of scepticism for a woman reporting rape, but once it’s been proven, there is no sympathy for the rapist. None.

                “What I want to do is turn the conversation and start it at a very young age. Men need to be taught to value and respect women.”

                Should women be taught to respect men? I mean… As far back as I can remember, young boys are taught “you never hit a girl”, which invariably leads to this one harpyesque girl taking sadistic joy in running around punching the boys yelling “you can’t punch me back” until one of them invariably does, and take a wild guess who gets suspended? No, male.. female… young… old… white.. black… everyone can see the biases in the system and human nature leads them to take advantage of those biases. The point should be to remove gendered language and attempt at real equality under the law. These bullshit, poorly thought out platitudes do not help.

                • Actually, not everyone condemns rape. In fact, a lot people believe that the woman deserved it or asked for it — even in the US. In some cultures, a woman can even be honor killed for being raped.

                  • See, this is what I get for not clearly defining my terms. I deserve it.

                    When I have arguments like this, I take it for granted that we`re talking about the modern, Western nations that we live in. And at that point, I can still be derailed by the other person accurately pointing out that there are people who came from what I consider backwards cultures that practise some pretty chilling things that have brought elements of those cultures into America.

                    To have a conversation that at least pretends to be relevant or constructive, could we agree to limit ourselves to spheres in which our votes represent a base minimum of control that we are able to exert? I’m with you on Islam. It terrifies me that we’re importing so many people from places that have such a toxic culture towards basically everyone… But aside from pushing for reduced immigration, there is basically nothing I can do to affect those cultures.

                    If we’re able to agree to that much… Yeah.. There are still some horrible people out there. But I think you’ve taken an all-or-nothing approach to something very gradated… ‘Rape is Horrible’ and ‘She shouldn’t have worn that.’ are not mutually exclusive positions. There’s a very noticeable push to remove the shame and stigma from bad behaviours, but the removal of that stigma isn’t necessarily a good thing.

                    For instance, and to be hyperbolic… A woman drinks a gallon of tequila and decides to walk home naked through a dimly lit alley in the slums at 3 in the morning with a sign hanging around her neck that says ”I like to party”. Well… At the end of the day, she couldn’t consent… What happens to her is obviously rape (or murder.. or or or.). She SHOULD have been able to walk home safely. In fact, she should have been able to count on help if someone saw her.

                    We live in the real world. Alas. Although the rapist is still a rapist, and a bad person. The woman I’ve described is an idiot. She shouldn’t have drank so much. She shouldn’t have walked home. She shouldn’t have stripped naked, save for the sign. She shouldn’t have walked through alleys. Those are dumb decisions. It doesn’t make her responsible for her rape, but it does make her responsible for those dumb decisions, which we should encourage people not to make… And if that encouragement takes the form of cautionary tales…

                    I’m reminded of two scenarios…

                    One: A person who is hit crossing a street without looking both ways. Is it the victims fault that he was hit? Course not. Should he have looked both ways before crossing the road? Absolutely.

                    Two: (And as a real life example) That blessedly liberal woman who was going to prove that Muslims were not misogynist, violent people by hitchhiking across the middle east in a wedding dress. The one who was subsequently found beaten, raped, murdered and thrown in a ditch. Is it her fault? We’ve reached a point where I almost want to say yes… That this almost amounted to suicide by idiocy… But the answer is still no. Should she have done almost anything else with her summer? Hell yes.

                • Spartan wrote: “What will immediately happen is an entire (and predictable) conversation about: the numbers aren’t as bad as they seem; it wasn’t really assault; women need to learn to avoid these situations; what was she wearing; I wonder if she really WANTED to sleep with her boss, supervisor, commander, professor, etc. What I want to do is turn the conversation and start it at a very young age. Men need to be taught to value and respect women.”
                  _________________

                  A couple of thoughts. I spent some time and got acquanited with feminist literature. When one gets into ‘deep feminism’ I would say based on my own reading that the feminist question — the problem of woman — for numerous feminist philosophers is a very complex one. For example, Andrea Dworkin. Did you know that she identifies intercourse as, essentially, rape? And seen from a strictly ‘realist’ perspective she is correct. Or better put she is not incorrect.

                  To rephrase her perspective: It is male society that ropes and chains woman to a biological project. She is forced to fulill this role and coercion of all sorts is employed to get her to accept and even to love her slavery to male biological projects. Seen in this way, then, the act of intercourse, the demand for intercourse as it were, is in its essence a ‘violation’. And that the entire structure of ‘patriarchal’ culture is set up to enforce a role and to be sure that woman fulfills it.

                  What I came to conclude is not so much that she has an argument against men or male society, but that her essential problem is with Nature itself. The role of the female of any given species is to be ‘chained’ — biologically, hormonally, in instinctive behavior — to the role of generating the species. In nature there is no choice in the matter. Should it happen that a female of the species does not perform her role, she disappears from ‘natural consideration’ because she does not reproduce. To reproduce is then an imperative.

                  When I thought about it further I came to understand that her argument against Nature is essentially the Christian argument against Nature. The Christian notion of ‘God’ is of a being who is not organically connected to the planet’s processes. Instinct is ‘evil’. Desire is ‘evil’. Even gain and such are ‘evil’ and the object is to get out of the whole realm. Salvation and the salvific agent are given a unique and strange emphasis. It is the whole world that one argues with. It is everything about the world as it is that one resists and can’t bear. So, to achieve sanctification in Christian terms is to have resisted terrestrial power. It is to have achieved not to be human while at the same time exalting only the ‘good’ aspects of the human being.

                  I came to suppose that Dworkin is in numerous senses a sort of Christian idealist but she has turned patriarchal culture and man’s will and rule into Satan. Now, as it happens (I suggest) it is this and a whole range of feminist views of a similar order which have a good deal of power in our modern conceptions. This obviously leads to a tremendous and I’d suggest irreconcilable conflict in women themselves: On one hand they are naturally programmed — by Nature! — to function through reproduction, through child-rearing, and so many connected traits and virtues. But there is an opposing doctrine, or is it a will or an appetite?
                  to hate the role that has been ordained by Nature and to rebel against it. And in their rebellion they seek to locate the ‘patriarchal figure’, the demonic male, who lords it over them and who seeks to implant her with the terrestrial seed of her destiny and her unfreedom.

                  So, it is masculine culture — as against Nature in fact, and in opposition to Nature — which grants to woman the possibility of another role. It is male culture that has sympathized with woman and shared the trauma of her conditionment, and invented alternatives for her.

                  What is obviously super peculiar is how women want the best of both worlds. When they desire to be sexy and slinky and attracting all they need to do is … do nothing in particular: just be women. And the role of their inate and inalterable biological relationship occurs. It is a pattern that is part-and-parcel of their very selves at the most basic level. And we women know all about this.

                  But when we don’t want things to play that way, we demand that Nature all on an instant reinvent and repurpose herself. And we ask that men internalize and understand what is in essence our own phenomenological and existential dilemma. We want to dress for example in a slinky bathing suit but not have men look upon the goods.

                  The question of ‘valuing and respecting women’ is infinitely complex in fact. Since women have not decided exactly what they (most) desire to be and what to do, and what they value about themselves, we are not at all certain what *respect* is!

                  • Another part of that is that biology cannot be fully changed until we have the tech to flip that X and Y for the entire body. Surgery is a tweak not a full answer. Many women don’t know or don’t care to seriously think about the conflict of having it all and a family focus any more than celeb X tells them to.

      • “the priority should be to teach men not to commit sexual crimes. If we did that, we wouldn’t have to waste valuable time teaching women how to avoid men programmed to assault women as long as the right opportunity presents itself.”

        That is the most bigoted misandristic statement I have ever seen here. Sex crimes are not committed by most males. It is the equivalent of saying because most crimes are committed by persons of color that all persons of color need to be deprogrammed into not committing crimes.

          • Not true the way you think it is.

            There is one giant caveat in the statement, and that is whether you include prison populations or not.

            If you include prison populations, then absolutely, undeniably men are the gender more likely to commit sexual assault. But they are also the more likely gender to be raped. By miles.

            If you dis-include prison populations, which most studies tend to do, then sexual violence is a parity crime. The FBI crime statistics use a very strange definition for rape… It has to include the insertion of something into somewhere the owner of that somewhere did not want it to go. By this definition a woman holding a gun to a man’s head and forcing sex against his will is not rape, but a different crime class “Forced to Penetrate”, if you compare “rape” statistics to “FTP” statistics, you find that while rape is still more common, sexual assault is usually within 10 percentage points of parity.

            • It is interesting to observe you in ‘prevarication mode’, esteemed comrade HT. I wonder why you have difficulty in seeing that male sexual violence is a real thing and something largely exclusive to men? To my mind it is intuitively obvious and a common sense observation. The nature of Nature is to instill in the male (generally speaking) the will to intercourse. Against all opposition. There is not really, in Nature, a ‘saying no’. (Like in sales a ‘no’ is ‘a request for more information’ or an indication that another line of approach is needed. A shift in tactic is required, patience, but the focus must never be let up. This idea is quite disturbing to many women!).

              The male that succeeds in his sales pitch gets a genetic confirmation. His insistance is mirrored forward into the future. Not to insist is failure.

              This is from a Jungian study by Eugene Monick:

              “To write of archetypcal masculinity means to concentrate upon phallos, the erect penis, the emblem and standard of maleness. All images through which masculinity is defined have phallos as their point of reference. Sinew, determination, effectuality, penetration, straightforwardness, hardness, strength — all have phallos giving them effect. Phallos is the fundamental mark of maleness, its stamp, its impression. Erection points to a powerful inner reality at work in a man, not altogether in his control. This inner reality may be different from a man’s conscious desires at a given time. Phallos is subjective authority for a male, and objective for those who come into contact with him. This is what makes phallos archetypcal. No male has to learn phallos. It presents to him, as a god does. A male uses phallos; he is not aman if he cannot do so. Men need to know the source of their authority and to respect their sacred symbol. Phallos opens the door to masculine depth.”

              There is not really such a thing as ‘female aggressiveness’, there is only aggressive permissiveness which cannot ever be the same thing. Women put up a barrier and men are called to overcome that barrier.

              Now, I am not an advocate of rape or unwanted sexual aggression — and there is no woman who has not had to come to terms with this — yet I do wonder what it means to live in an age when women ask men not to be men. This is not an exaggerated comment. I have begun to conclude that it is our society and social structure that, no longer needing the aggressive, determined, overcoming, bold and virile man, asks its men to become women-like. I don’t think this is at all an exaggeration. I think it is a real social phenomenon.

              • I don’t really care how you define masculinity and femininity, but don’t conflate them with actual men and women. Just because you say there is no “female aggressiveness” doesn’t mean females can’t be aggressive. What you’re really saying is that aggression is mutually exclusive with what you have defined as the “essence” of a woman. You’ll have a hard time understanding people until you realize that people are more than, and not limited by, the “essence” of their gender.

                • Yes, I can imagine why you think that: You see your consciousness as separated from your body (to put it in raw terms). You have made what I think it the ‘ultimate hyper-liberal leap’: you have leapt out of the body!

                  It is not at all that I cannot understand this manoeuvre, nor that I cannot understand how it has come about and how it is ‘thinkable’ for you. It is that I go in a very different direction. Instead of even being attracted to the idea-possibilities of escape from my frame, and from terrestrial life, I understand that a radically different project is necessary: It is turning back to the body as the primary *thing*. And that is why of course that I place emphasis of race and culture, because what this means is:

                  “We now know that men are not, and never will be, equal. We know that environment and education can develop only what heredity brings. We know that the acquirements of individuals are either not inherited at all or are inherited in so slight a degree as to make no perceptible difference from generation to generation: we now know that heredity is paramount in human evolution, all other things being secondary factors”. (Lothrop Stoddard).

                  The hyper-liberal manoeuvre, which is one that captures the imagination of most, is a direct rebellion against the *actual facts* and, as I said somewhere else, is essentially an octave of the Christian manoeuvre. Really, I am not making this up. The primary influence begins in defintions of transcendence and salvific notions. I have inverted these definitions.

                  I prefer not to see us as opposed — that is a boring stance to take, I hope you feel the same — and I can see numerous ways that various bridges can be built.

                  The reason I say that is because I do believe — very strongly — in transformation, as well as in a form, qualified, of transcendence. I just do not believe in *abstracting* from one’s matrix or from oneself.

                  • “The hyper-liberal manoeuvre…is essentially an octave of the Christian manoeuvre.”

                    “Octave” meaning a different place on the same scale? That makes sense, considering the whole “soul/body dichotomy” dualistic idea.

                    I can understand the idea that a person is essentially an extension of the body and therefore would be abnormal to go against what the body is designed to do.

                    That said, why is abnormal a bad thing?

          • Perhaps we should encourage more males to report date rape when they change their minds the next day. Does no mean no if uttered by a male?

        • Sex crimes are not committed by most males.

          And yet as Spartan said, most sex crimes are committed by males.

          I blame patriarchy teaching that sexual aggression is acceptable and even expected. Despite some improvements, Roger Ailies aside, there’s been a marked drop in male bosses grabbing the asses and tits of female employees yet there’s still an insane amount of ‘then why was she dressed like that still going on’.

            • This is off the topic of restrictions to individuals or gourps. And while i might quibble that arrests does not equal crimes we already try to teach people not to commit violent crimes. The overall culture is only now improving on teaching about sexual harassment and sexual assault. Remember the example you posted from Animal House? Not very long ago. We’ve been much closer to consistent in showing that murder arson are not socially acceptable. Less so with battery, alas. Hitting people still has a degree of social acceptance.

                • Social training. Did you parents, teachers, other adult authority figures and the popular media not send you a message that murder and arson are not socially acceptable?

                  • Such a bad answer.

                    First off: When we’re talking about “Teach men not to rape” classes, we aren’t talking about social training. We’re talking about actually courses that we force men in college or in the workplace to attend.

                    Second: Are you really saying that parents and teachers or society send the message that rape is acceptable? What world do you live on? Can you think of a single source that gives that message? A single movie or commercial where the rapist is a good guy, or even a character the audience could have empathy with? Anything at all, where rape is normalised, even a little?

                    • Now you’re denying rape culture?

                      Shall we start with Zeus or Helen and Paris? Abraham and Hagar? But that’s just myths and legends. How about slavers and their human property? Lots of people think Tom Jefferson was a pretty cool dude despite fucking someone who had no right to refuse.

                      Still too far away? Let’s try the late 20’th century

                      How about Revenge of the Nerds? Our sympathetic heroes installed cameras and then sold photos of naked women because those women were mean and deserved it and it was oh so funny then one follows it up by deceiving a woman into thinking he’s her boyfriend in a mask, played for laughs, rapey rape. Pinto in Animal house ring any bells? Or do you remember Oz? Lots of cheering when someone got a ‘deserved’ rape Still too far in the past?

                      Khal Drogo. Or perhaps are you familiar with the phrase ‘oh John Ringo no!’, and the proclivities of the hero in Paladin of Shadows? The sympathetic rapists on Orange in the New Black? How many examples do you want?

                    • Now, now. You know that’s cheating. The Turner sentence caused an all-genders, cross country uproar. Defenders of it are extremely few, and fending off attacks themselves. If anything, the Turner case bolsters Michael’s argument.

                    • Now that I’ve got Spartan to agree to localise her outrage, can I get you to limit yourself to examples from after I was born (85)? Culture changes, which is something I don’t think feminism has ever come to terms with, choosing instead to bear the entirety of history on it’s back like a cross. Your recent examples though, sure, I’ll talk to those.

                      Khal Drogo, John Ringo (Ghost), Orange is The New Black (Coates).

                      I might be behind the eight ball here because I hadn’t heard of two of these characters before you brought them up. (Thank you Google). But I think that you confuse the portrayal of rape with positive ideas of rape. (“Any publicity is good publicity”?) And I also think that you overestimate media’s ability to influence behaviours. How does it feel to share headspace with Jack Thompson?

                      At the end of the day, a healthily skeptical person would see these things and ask: “Do I believe that seeing/reading about these characters actually makes someone more likely to hold a positive view of rape?” Coates… rapes an inmate, and then is demonised, drugged and sodomised with a broomstick. Gee, who wouldn’t want to do that? That’s one of your best examples for a positive portrayal of a rapist?

                      Excuse me, I have a new author to read.

                    • “Rape culture” is a spectrum. On one end, there is the strange man with a knife in dark alley. Everyone agrees that’s wrong. But after that, the examples get messier. Date rape — which is sometimes as clear cut as the rapist in the alley, but also can involve a situation where the man thought she was saying yes, and the woman thought she was saying no. Or a gang rape involving young men or boys who have never committed a crime before, but alcohol and/or peer pressure triggered something in them and they committed a heinous act. Then you have a long history of women being treated poorly in the work place — everything from outright harassment (9 to 5) or denials of opportunity because men, not women, are viewed as management material. At the lowest end of the spectrum is a plethora of literature, movies, plays, songs, magazines, etc. with a common theme — women are to been as objects of beauty while men are to be seen as objects of power. This affects everything in our lives (male and female) and programs us in way that we don’t always have control over or are even aware.

                      My young daughters asked me the other day why I wear make-up to work. I’ll admit that I stumbled for a minute before answering and then I dodged. Because the real reason why I wear make-up is that is expected that women should wear make-up in the office. If I didn’t, it seriously could affect my employment because I meet with clients every day — and women are supposed to look pretty in the work place, not just be competent. In any event, my lame answer was, “Some mommies like to wear make-up,” or some such nonsense. Because they are far too young to be given the real explanation.

                    • I think “Rape Culture” is feminism’s attempt to make casual sexism seem more serious by lumping it in the same category as rape. Unfortunately, what it’s done is decrease the seriousness of rape by associating it with such examples as a perceived expectation to wear makeup. I’ve debated feminists that have said that “using logic against women is rape” unironically. and so I have a hard time taking these theories seriously because they seem to be used as placeholders for intellectually lazy people standing on moral molehills.

                      Can you think of a single example of sexism that you would not also include in rape culture?

                    • Sexism is definitely part of rape culture, it’s just at the lowest end of the spectrum. Most experts would agree that rape is not a sexual act, it’s an act of power or domination. Sexism feeds into that mentality.

                      We are wired this way — straight men and straight women. The best that we can do is try to be aware of it and not let it dictate our social interactions. But this awareness needs to be taught to boys and girls at a very young age.

                      You must have heard of the stereotype that straight women love hanging out with gay men, correct? I certainly feed into that cliche and have four gay men among my closest of friends. No part of them sees me as a sexual object or as someone to be dominated. We can just be friends.

                    • “Sexism is definitely part of rape culture, it’s just at the lowest end of the spectrum. Most experts would agree that rape is not a sexual act, it’s an act of power or domination.”

                      I don’t think you can make a blanket assertion about what motivates a rapist (and I’d like to know who these experts are). Rape is an exertion of power and control, yes, but in some cases that may just be a means to an end. The motivation might be (in technical terms) hubris (desire for absolute control), wrath (desire to break limits of control), envy (desire for a specific experience), or lust (desire to break limits of experience). Just because someone feels dominated does not mean that domination is the main motivator behind the person making them feel that way. That applies to all acts of harassment ranging from heinous to tasteless.

                      Furthermore, where did you get the idea that the mentality of sexism differs only in scale from that of rape? Sexism can certainly allow people to rationalize rape, but on its own it isn’t necessarily violent or dominating. It seems like you’re ascribing the emotions and motivations you would expect to see, without actually delving into the minds of the people in question.

                      While I do give your experiences the benefit of the doubt (not because you’re a woman, but because you’re a person), I will not give you the benefit of the doubt in your interpretation of them (or your interpretation of statistics and news articles). People claiming to be oppressed say that other people have no authority to speak because they haven’t directly experienced something, but I say that they’re too often too close to the problem and have confirmation bias. We don’t rely on sick people to study their own disease; we have doctors for that. Simply because something happens to you doesn’t make you an expert on how it works, only how you feel about it. (It doesn’t disqualify you from becoming an expert in how it works, though.)

                      If we want to counteract sexism and the mistreatment of women, we need to understand the nuances of how and why it happens, respond appropriately to each type, and differentiate it from regular pettiness or sociopathy.

                    • A single movie or commercial where the rapist is a good guy, or even a character the audience could have empathy with? Anything at all, where rape is normalised, even a little?

                      Drogo is portrayed sympathetically at least on the TV show which is what most people know, he loves his Dany (once she’s knocked up) and she loves him, you’re expected to be sorry at his final fate and he is rather popular with the fandom. If all I wanted to show was that a song of ice and fire has rape I could just go through chapter by chapter, tyrion wants to rape his sister, Randal Tarly says he hopes Breinne will get herself raped so she learns her lesson and goes home, the bloody mummers try to rape her, Ser Gregor Clegaine aside form his famous rape and Murder of Elia Martell, pretty much rapes his way across the Seven Kingdoms and oh, every Dothraki warrior out there, not just drogo. The Wise masters, good masters, and greta masters all keep and sell bed slaves. Wolves,lions and broken men have been raping smallfolk in the riverlands, the Ironborn keep thralls…

                      Orange is the New Black, Coates is shown as not understanding that he even raped anyone, he’s shown forgiveness and he’s generally portrayed as a nice person. Bennett gets a lot of sympathetic treatment during his time on the show despite being a guard who impregnates an inmate, or you know, given the power dynamic involved, rape.

                      And you really should interact with some Ringo fans, they love that series and the character despite his horrifying proclivities.

                      Oh and the stuff that happened before you were born, it gets positive reactions still, quite a lot of it. Cultures do change, ours has improved, and yet there’s still a lot of denial and rationalizations about non-consensual sex acts and others who’s consent is at best dubious.

                    • Game of Thrones is a great example of violence against women, and using rape as the primary tool. The Sansa rape was especially horrible.
                      One quibble about Tyrion — I don’t think he wants to rape Cersei. But his comment is illustrative of the fact that it is acceptable to say such a thing. The Onion Knight doesn’t put up much of a fight either when offering a Cersei rape in exchange for a battle fleet.

                      Orange is the New Black is fascinating to me and demonstrates what I was talking about earlier about the rape culture spectrum. The rapists on the show have lots of layers, and the reason that you sympathize with more than one of them is that you wonder if they would not have become rapists if if they had received different parenting, different coaching, different educational opportunities, and — of course — different career opportunities. I think one of the themes of Orange is that well-meaning people can easily turn into monsters given the right circumstances.

                    • Spartan said: “women are supposed to look pretty in the work place, not just be competent. ”

                      Sounds like the implication being, that men are only expected to be competent, thereby placing an additional and unfair burden on women.

                      How is this not sexist? For starters, removing the decision making and agency from women; that makeup wearing is not really a choice as much it’s a necessity and a given, if success is to be attained. Not to put words in your mouth, but that line of thinking leads to, if given a choice, women would overwhelmingly choose not to look “pretty” in the workplace. No one believes this.

                      It also ignores why men: spend thousands of dollars on suits; own dozens of ties; get trendy haircuts; work out; have their shoes polished and buffed, or even own more than one pair of dress shoes at all; use scented body gel; use scented deodorant; neatly trim their facial hair; neatly trim their fingernails; etc. Either it’s because the unkempt man ALSO won’t climb the ladder at Business, Inc., or that people, men and women, want to look pleasing, attractive, and put together to others.

                    • Exactly. It’s all part of background mindset. Follow the rules and check all the boxes so that you seem pleasant to other people. Of course, there are ways to boost one’s ability to make a good impression on your own terms, if you’re willing to get creative and work a bit harder at it; semantics is just easy to standardize.

                    • EC writes: “Furthermore, where did you get the idea that the mentality of sexism differs only in scale from that of rape? Sexism can certainly allow people to rationalize rape, but on its own it isn’t necessarily violent or dominating. It seems like you’re ascribing the emotions and motivations you would expect to see, without actually delving into the minds of the people in question.”
                      ___________________

                      Where do they get the idea? They get the idea from an analysis of circumstances and from meditation on the basic, incontrovertable facts. I would suggest that it is rather simple, and rather obvious. In any case, feminist theory is not unsound theory, at least I do not see it as such. It is helpful to reduce it to the most basic elements and then to see if those elements hold up as propositions. In classic Second Wave feminism woman is understood to be a ‘field’. She is the cultivated biolgical field and, naturally, the better-prepared field will yield the best fruits. Woman is therefor, in the essential sense, the primary subject of the process of civilization. She is the garden as it were around which the structures of civilization are built up. She is in this sense the very center of civilization. Out of her come the generations.

                      This is so utterly simple, so very basic. ‘Sexism’ is a complex term. It does not mean exactly what it purports. Or, it can mean an array of different things. One can spin off into many modern definitions and twists on the basic sense, but in my view one must start at the very beginning. In Marxian analysis (which is not inaccurate or better put ‘refers to real things’) the primary ‘oppression’ is of woman. In the strict and obvious sense that she cannot deviate from serving the processes of generating life. Individually, yes, a woman can abdicate. But it is simply obvious that Woman cannot renege on her biologically bequeathed responsibility. I suggest that this is a primary truth. (And there are similar primary truths that pertain to man and his role).

                      Sexism means, basically, to insist on this version (if you will) of truth. It means that human authority will be applied to defeat time and time again any woman’s or Woman’s attempt to break out of the role given women by natural decree. I defy you or anyone to refute these basic facts. If all of womankind rebelled against that role, it would be necessary to reconquer her, and to put it in the most basic terms, reprogram her and recondition her to her ordained role. To understand *sexism* one must start from this basic platform.

                      If I am correct in my analysis, and if I refer to ‘real things’, then it follows that man conquers woman through an elaborate sexual *game* which is yet not a game at all. It is something far more elemental. This may be why, in Hindu symbolism (and other mythological symbolisms — indeed it is Universal) the sexual imagery is seen at a Cosmic scale. The Universe is involved in the sex act. Creation is generation. It seems quite likely that to grasp the inner mysteries of these facts is to have grasped a great deal. Yet the point is to speak to ‘sexism’.

                      In order to complete the analysis, one must speak to woman’s sentiments about her own condition. One must also speak to ‘rebellion’ and what it means when woman reneges on her responsibility. I suggest, because I think it true and I have devoted quite a bit of thought to it, is that the primary rebellion is the female rebellion. But this does not at all mean that woman is the responsible agent. Man betrays woman. This is more elemental than Cain killing Abel! One has to think deeply on why it is that woman’s condition becomes intolerable to her, and why it is that she plans escapes, mutinies, underminings, and other deviousness not the least of which is undermining the very platform of masculinity.

                      Now, you are obviously an outspace octopus and some of these terraqueous issues must be a bit hard to grasp, but bend your mind a bit and I think you may swim in imaginally in our waters: The primary seduction — if one really wants to muck things up, to undermine things — is the seduction of woman. This is a Vedic notion and it is, naturally, dripping with ‘sexism’. If you destroy a woman’s connection with the very matter of the universe; that is, woman is matter, as field, as soil, as substance, if you destroy that relationship and if you destroy her relationship to herself, many if not all other destructions follow suit. This can be described of course.

                      But I suggest it is important to see that the feminists get it right insofar as they *see* and describe things as they are. Think Simone de Beauvoir and the school of thought that originated with her.

                      The harder step, the stranger step, is for woman to be convinced to cease rebellion. She can’t do this alone though, don’t you see? Man’s mind is so distorted and he cannot see clearly. He does not know how to be a man. He doesn’t very well know what this means. He initiates corruption and then he must live the consequences of it. Man is in fact the subject of the particular *healings* we are alluding to here since it were his deviations that set so many disharmonies in motion.

                      Have I veered ever so slightly away from the topic at hand? 😉 It would appear so, but it is not so, not essentially.

                    • Jack, It isn’t just that things are depicted, it’s how they’re received. Game of Thrones is the most popular show there is right right now. While it may not take place in our culture, the story and how people react is a part. So if people smirk when The Mountain starts pulling off his armor so he can rape Septa Unella to death, that says something. When people like rapists so much as to cosplay as them, that says something.

                    • Of all the evidence that male humans shrug off the abuse of female humans, the fact that people admire fictional characters who abuse female humans is incredibly weak. I was just the other day having a conversation with someone about the phenomenon that fictional characters can be admired even after they do things that real people would never get away with.

                      By your logic, dressing as Emperor Palpatine is condoning the murder of thousands if not millions of people.

                      For that matter, what about all the other heinous acts fictional characters perform that real people smirk at? Or the less heinous but more realistic ones, which hit closer to home? Have you ever heard of the Addams Family?

                      Do some people genuinely admire evil characters for being evil, because they themselves are evil? Of course. But all the other people are innocent, and good luck sorting them out on that alone. Let’s move on to more substantial evidence of “rape culture.” I’d appreciate it if you defined it as specifically as possible, so I can know whether you’re prejudiced against men or not.

                    • “By your logic, dressing as Emperor Palpatine is condoning the murder of thousands if not millions of people.”

                      This is an example of why I have such a hard time with these discussions… The frame of reference is so alien. And the logic isn’t evenly applied. We have shows like Dexter, where a serial killer is DEFINITELY seen as sympathetic, even during the killings. Does this mean that we live in a murder culture, where people are actively or subliminally encouraged to kill the people they don’t like too much? No. And I realise that I’m shifting the goalposts, but that doesn’t make it less true.

                      When I asked for “A single movie or commercial where the rapist is a good guy, or even a character the audience could have empathy with? Anything at all, where rape is normalised, even a little?” I made a few of mistakes, and I’ll own them completely.

                      First off, I got sucked into the idea that the question actually mattered. It really doesn’t. We don’t generally go around yelling “All Men Must Die” after watching an Episode of Game Of Thrones (unless you also happen to belong to SCUM). This wades into Jack Thompson territory, fiction has never been shown to effect long term behaviour. And I think if you want to say it does, you have a heavy burden of proof to show.

                      Second: I made the mistake of assuming that we all knew that people are multifaceted. That we knew that Drogo’s biography was more than: “Rapist. Bad Guy.” Context matters. I also made the assumption that knowing that, we could differentiate between different actions happening at different periods of time. Drogo wasn’t a sympathetic character as he was raping Dani, he evolved into a sympathetic character as the first season drew out.

      • Trump should change his immigration policy: We will allow Muslims to immigrate to the USA as long as they attend a “Don’t Be a Terrorist” class.

          • Let’s offer it to everyone, I always come back twitchy whenever I see Les Mis.

            *Whistles Do you hear the people sing?*

              • But but I don’t like westerns (unless they’re in space) and I do like epic musicals that aren’t Cats. Would you prefer I whistle La Vie Bohem? And yes I know RENT is based on La Bohem.

                • How about original musicals that aren’t faux operas loaded with bad translation doggerel, lifted music and endless posturing, and that don’t need 4000 words plot summaries in their programs to help the audience know what’s going on? How many people who say they love Les Miz can explain what those heroic students are shouting about? My informal research suggests almost none of them. Most people think the show takes place during the French Revolution. (Tell me you don’t. Please.)

                  A piece of over-hyped crap.

                  • No, the first chapter of the book is very clear that they’re well past the revolution. The bishop goes and meets with one of Robespierre’s old allies and feels revulsion for what that man did long ago.

                    Would this be a bad time to mention that Les Mis and RENT are my two favorite musicals? (Followed by Wicked and Phantom)

                    Miss Saigon, Avenue Q, Spring Awakening and Sweeny Todd ain’t bad either. I caught Best Little Whorehouse in Texas when Ann Margaret was doing the national tour, disappointing, I grew up on the movie and the stage show just didn’t have the same energy.

                • HA! Cowboys in space… Serenity, anyone? Space Cowboys? Cowboys and Aliens (okay, they tried to escape to space in the end) Love me a good cowboy movie!

          • And as long as we offer “Don’t rape” classes to both men and women, it’d be (slightly more) okay. But then, are the “Don’t rape” classes that Spartan and others suggest mandatory?

      • Spartan said, “If we did that, we wouldn’t have to waste valuable time teaching women how to avoid men programmed to assault women as long as the right opportunity presents itself.”

        Beth,
        You’re logic is based on an assumption that if you teach men not to commit sexual assault, then there will be no sexual assaults. Education “might” reduce the number of sexual assaults but I think you know that the assumption is likely false. It is an undeniable fact that there will always be a percentage of the population that will choose to engage in violent behaviors, that percentage may not change a lot over time, but as the population goes up the number that defines that percentage increases and thus the number of criminally violent people increases; therefore, we MUST train women of all ages how to be aware of possible compromising situations and give them as much reasonable instruction as possible of how to avoid those situations.

        Even though we would certainly like to eliminate all violent behaviors; we know that we cannot fully succeed, but that doesn’t mean we don’t educate both males and females as best as possible.

  3. You know that race-baiting tactic that became so prevalent after our first black man was elected as President; well, take that tactic and multiply it exponentially and you’ll be able to reasonably predict what’s going to happen after Hillary is elected. The political left will not let good baiting tactics go to waste when they can be used to “inspire” their opposition to capitulate; the tactic will be used to further divide the populace by expanding it far and wide.

    If you happen to be male, Caucasian, and a Conservative, watch out dudes, you are soon to be the bulls-eye of the political left. And woe-be-unto any of those on that list who just happen to also be Christians.

    You will be assimilated; resistance is futile.

    Splitting the populace into unique sub-groups to pit against each other has been a close personal friend, and a growing trend, of the political left for years; division is very high on their tactic list. I think the phrase is, divide and conquer; the left is so good at using this tactic that people like Trump have recognized it’s “value” and jumped all-in to the same unethical tactical quagmire.

    • “If you happen to be male, Caucasian, and a Conservative”

      Ruh roh, I hit the gosh darn trifecta, just like you.

      Mercifully, I have a “Get Out Of Jail Free” card; my “equity’ Feminist Sister who will vouch vociferously for my soi-disant gender-free equanimity.

      For a nice treatment of “equity-V-gender” Feminism, pick up a copy of “Who Stole Feminism” by the gender-Feminist Anti-Christ Christina Hoff-Sommers.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Who_Stole_Feminism%3F

      You’ll meet my Sister AND borrow my copy this Saturday.

      • Roots in similar ideologies. One of the few things Alizia has gotten consistently right is the identification of feminism as a Marxist movement. If you changed the words “bourgeoisie” and “proletariat” to “male” and “female” respectively, and then read some Marxist propaganda, feminism starts to make more sense.

        • You are too kind Brother Humble. But in fact I have gotten a great deal more *right* than you can recognize at this time.

          It is not only feminism that expresses the Marxian project but what I understand as a basic structure of view which has permeated our intellectual culture. When one begins to unravel that knotted ball of twine, it is tantamount to ‘taking the red pill’. One begins to see things in a different, and I think a more accurate, way.

          You might be able to recognize — because it is overt and obvious — that Second Wave feminism is tinged in Marxism. But can you also see that our racial and cultural definitions are also similarly tinged?

          Just as men and women are different, and are not equal and the same, so to are the different cultures and races of men. It is a simple, obvious, strict, scientific as well as intuitive fact, yet ideology keeps one from seeing it.

          The processes by which ‘difference and hierarchy’ have been undermined tie back to foundational definitions, and those foundational definitions are underpinned with Marxian definitions.

          How this all happened, over a 100+ year time-period, is fascinating. How it will be reversed is equally fascinating and very important.

  4. Huh. As a woman and a MSU grad, I have to say that I didn’t even know this study lounge existed — and I went to the Union a fair amount. I also managed to graduate with high honor. (I say that only in response to the one interviewee who said it was critical to her success.)

    But let’s not pretend that there isn’t natural sex segregation throughout college campuses — sports, dorms (does anyone object to those?), locker room, fraternities, sororities, certain programs. The list is pretty endless actually. This makes the lawsuit seem pretty frivolous — what is the difference between that and a women’s dorm that doesn’t permit men? (FYI — the sex segregated dorms also contain study lounges.)

    • So its discriminatory and bigoted not to allow biological males identifying as women into women’s rest rooms, but a women only study lounge is acceptable? You can’t get there from here.

      Would a men-only study lounge be permitted, or challenged as elite and discriminatory? If once gender became a legally protected class, such “reasonable” segregation was low hanging fruit to anyone who wanted to challenge it. What’s the matter with men’s clubs? Only that they allow old boy networks and exclusive habits to be entrenched. Women rejected a separate but equal approach for a forced gender neutrality strategy. Both had their problems, but there’s only one choice allowed.

      • There ARE numerous men-only study lounges on college campuses, they are located in men-only dorms. The problem here seems to be that the women-only room is allowed in an otherwise gender-neutral building. That’s why I think the lawsuit is more than a little stupid.

        I actually don’t understand your first point. The correct question should be whether a women’s only rest room is, in and of itself, discriminatory. Society has determined that the answer to that question is a vociferous “no.” Thus, only women are allowed in, including that tiny percentage of men identifying as women.

        • “There ARE numerous men-only study lounges on college campuses, they are located in men-only dorms.”

          Not relevant. The issue is restricting access to resources by gender in a facility open to all. Dorms can justify themselves on the basis of modesty and privacy. Not study lounges, unless this is a nude study lounge. I guess I should check…

          • BS. A person needs modesty and privacy inside a dressing room or bathroom stall — not walking through a lobby to a study hall. There is no difference between sex segregating an entire building vs. a single lounge. Either both are acceptable or they are both unacceptable. Personally, I don’t have much patience for rabid people on either end of that debate.

            • BSBS! It depends on the purpose of the building. Where someone showers, lives, poops, showers, dresses and sleeps is a privacy and legitimate comfort and safety matter, at least theoretically (I’m surprised any two-sex schools are using singles sex dorms any more—my college junked them in the 70’s). Segregated study lounges is separate but unequal stuff: It’s an insult… privileged, discrimination. “Why can’t I study in this nice room?” Because you’re a MAN!

              Yeah? Well so what, and screw that! It would be sit-in time for me.

              • I have never pooped in a study lounge. So, I still don’t understand the need for “comfort and safety.”

                Now, I might have had sex in a study lounge once, but that would have been with a man. (A lot of my twenties is a crazy hazy blur.) Thank goodness it wasn’t sex segregated — otherwise we would have had to find a dorm room or something.

                I wouldn’t sit-in pro or con on this issue. And I certainly wouldn’t care if there was an all male study lounge. I mean, my college had fraternities — but again, there is your building vs. room within a building distinction which I find pretty meaningless.

  5. A fascinating, knotty, and largely insolvable group of ethical problems. Even to identify and describe this knot requires the application of discerning ideology. On one hand the notion of gender equality. On another the notion of general equality within American culture. All of this connected to a certain understanding and interpretation of American doctrines about freedom & equality. And then the Federal application of these ideals. Then an entire post-war movement toward application of these ideals to society. Which does not seem to produce or bring forth the ‘equality’ as a social value that was desired and envisioned, but more or less the opposite: a nation divided against itself, consuming itself in unending struggles of one faction against another. And the more this is done, the more power is given over to the Federal authority which must mediate these questions.

    And this brings us squarely into our present. I notice that most everyone sees and identifies the present as *a problem* (problematical, crisis-ridden and uncertain) but no one in my view seems cabaple of actually defining the problem except through some mediated idealism.

    In order to define a ‘conservative’ position — and if this position is not really a mere costume of liberalism — requres a foundational conservative understanding. It must be philosophically capable of defining ‘difference’ ‘hierarchy’ ‘superior and inferior’ and the reasons why these exist. There is as far as I am aware no truly conservative voice or philosopher on this blog. If there were, there would be a discourse that enunciates in philosophical terms the difference between a man and a woman. This is phenomenological. Further, there would be enunciation of the other biological differences that exist within the human species which factor in to the diversity of gift and aptitude.

    Factually it seems, and because of the reigning liberal slant, there is no one who can speak in these terms, not only on these levels but on any level. Therefore and in fact I think that one could only conclude that this is not a conservative blog but one dedicated to liberal American idealism. True, it is easy to notice how the hyper-liberal left goes pretty insane with the same doctrines, but there is an essential and rationally describable link among the so-called conservatives who opine here. I say this in the most polite way possible. It is simply what I notice.

    • Aliza
      You said, . . .”but no one in my view seems cabaple of actually defining the problem except through some mediated idealism.”

      Problem defined: Fairness and equity are always defined by one’s personal self-interest. Mediated idealism suggests that there is some natural fairness to which the enlightened can show us the way. The question then becomes when we arrive will the enlightened relinquish power to decide what is right and just or will they work to keep their power and that which comes with it?

      What I consider fair and equitable may or may not be similar to your definition but I guarantee it will never be identical. Those differences are what lead us to be at odds with each other but they are also powerful motivating forces to improve one’s condition. Attempts to legislate fairness will always be unsuccessful and will invariably lead to conflict.

      Not until we recognize that many things in life are inherently unfair and such unfairness is not a function of some other human group’s attempt to subjugate them will we begin to function most efficiently.

      • I’ll go farther than that. Anyone who says that a situation in life is not fair is committing what Nasssim Nicholas Taleb called in his book The Black Swam the “ludic fallacy.” That is, treating real life as though it were a game, with a bounded range of outcomes. The way I’m using the term “ludic fallacy”, it also includes assuming that everyone agreed to rules coming in.

        Where do you start defining if a race is fair? Do you start with everyone following the rules? Do you start with everyone having the same amount of free time to practice? Do you start with everyone having the same environment to practice in? Being born with the same physiology? Having the same opportunity costs in their life? Having the same psychological predilection for diligence? Where do we stop?

        If you wanted to make things perfectly fair, you’d make everyone perfectly the same, or you would account for every difference and statistically measure their relative skills. But what are we measuring? Their bodies? Their brains? Their will? At some point it becomes a simple scientific fact who is more skilled and fit on average, which defeats the point of the game! The game is supposed to be the process by which we find out who would win, and the fun is in not being able to tell beforehand.

        No, we need to stop at the beginning of the game. Everyone agreed to the rules going in; they knew the possible outcomes, and they accepted them. If the rules are followed, then it’s “fair.”

        Life, however, is not fair. There are no limits to what can happen in life, there are no rules, and nobody agrees to the lack of terms going in. Stuff happens. It doesn’t really matter where we are relative to each other, but where we are relative to where we were. Unless we’re talking about establishing a set of rules for the benefit of society, we can’t say that a particular situation is “fair” because the term has no meaning as far as life is concerned.

        Likewise, if one says that a person “deserves” something, what they really mean is that society would be better off if there was a general principle where people with the same characteristic as that person get that thing as a consequence of their actions or character.

        That may be true, but when most people say that, they don’t take into account that to enforce that principle, other people have to put in their own effort. Yes, people deserve to have good things happen to them, but do they deserve to have other people make that happen? Possibly, but to what degree? We can’t make rules about many of these “deserving” characteristics, so we have to rely on empowering people to feel free to help each other spontaneously. That’s where I come in.

  6. If only they weren’t protesting the loss of their female-only accommodation and instead were protesting the lack of a male-only accommodation. Of course, at the end of the day, if they were successful in getting separate but equal accommodations – we’d still have the issue of which study lounge the Self-Identifiers could choose to use.

    • The problem with that is that male only accommodation has been on the decline for decades. If we immediately put a break on the closure of any sex-segregated space, you’d still find that women tend to have multiple times as many options as their male counterparts. For example: There are 39 female only colleges in America, there are five male only campuses. Feminists spent decades attacking these institutions as elitist and discriminatory, but turned a blind eye to their mirrors, and now that those mirrors are being attacked on similar ground they are fighting tooth and nail to preserve them. It’s indefensibly hypocritical.

  7. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly any conversation with a certain mindset of people eventually turns any conversation regarding feminism turns to the patriarchy and rape.

    Three hours after the post was made, the second comment implied this conversation to be an example of a ‘Frightened patriarchy.’ and seven hours after that, on the 12th comment, rape came up.

    It`s like the two buttons they have. ”Someone called something that benefits women ‘sexist’?’ PATRIARCHY! RAPE CULTURE!’

    I’d love to have a conversation with a feminist who didn’t bring those topics up. They’re so irrelevant to the vast majority of these conversations. Trust me ladies, letting men in the lounge won’t increase campus rape statistics. And nothing is actually described by saying ‘THE PATRIARCHY!’. ‘The Patriarchy’ is lazy pseudo-intellectual speak to describe phenomenons that are better described otherwise. It’s your boogyman, your devil. But as an atheist from the Church of Fenimism, your devil seems silly.

    • Per your earlier comment Humble, yes, let’s limit our comments to the Western Hemisphere. Animal House is a great example of a rape culture, so is Sixteen Candles. How about the song “Blurred Lines?” And then there is this lovely example of college men. http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/halifax-university-under-fire-for-frosh-week-chant-championing-non-consensual-sex-with-underage-girls

      FYI — I expect better from Canada. And from Fox News (I’m not speaking of the jerk Ailes, but the people who immediately came to his defense.) And I expected better from Bill Cosby while we’re on the subject. The man was a cultural and moral icon — he had an obligation not to ruin his legacy by becoming a drugging rapist who abused his position of power.

      This is why some women want women-only spaces, especially on college campuses. I never sought them out, but I don’t blame women who do. Remember that for many girls this is their first time away from home and parental supervision. Look, I am made of sturdier stuff and work predominately in a man’s world, but it does sometimes bug me that I need to wear a suit of armor.

  8. I think the mindset of background can help us understand what’s going on here. Background mindset is the use of semantics (rules) in the service of reading and creating impressions. I greatly resented the concepts of formal dress and etiquette until I realized that they were not merely arbitrary conventions, but applications of background mindset, at which point I found respect for them.

    Background has a “paper” theme. It is the canvas, the scenery, the makeup, the accent. It’s not the message, but the way it delivered. Background mindset is all of the conventions that give a distinct impression of what’s going on, but which you don’t usually notice unless something is wrong. By training this mindset, you can learn the rules of a cultural paradigm and calculate ways to bring other people into it.

    Most of the tensions between cultures, including those based on nationality, ethnicity, or gender, come from people being ignorant of background mindset, which is one of the aspects of communication, together with semantics/Light, empathy/Darkness, and background’s opposite number translation/Ink, which represents the message. If you want to systematically show a group of people proper respect, on their terms, then background mindset is what you need.

    What I’m getting at is that while I shake my head at hypocrisy just as much as everyone here does, this whole business is not about rules and equality like people think and argue: it’s not about pure semantics. It’s about background: rules in the service of impressions. As far as I can tell, the people advocating for rules to protect and elevate women don’t want equal standards so much as they want standards that make them feel normal among men.

    Based on my own obvservations, for a woman to feel normal among men is quite a feat in a world where background mindset has been used very deliberately by corporations to appeal to men’s sexual instincts (which are arguably already stronger than women’s) by invoking women as the paper on which their message is printed. Backup dancers in music videos and women displaying prizes on game shows are just a couple examples. The end effect is that tropes get stuck in the minds of men and women: Men Act, Women Are. Men Are Generic, Women Are Special. Maleness is default and proactive. This paradigm is what is institutionalized, not discrimination (although background mindset is responsible for much discrimination and prejudice as well). It’s much more subtle and subjective than discrimination. Nevertheless, it’s something many people, including myself, want to remove.

    However, we can’t make it into law, any more than we can make etiquette into law. It must be a cultural movement, spread by example. That takes nuance, patience, maturity, and background mindset. Not to mention all the other mindsets related to communication and presentation. Ultimately, though, these mindsets can not only remove the androcentric paradigm, but also command basic respect from people who would otherwise attempt to use a person’s gender as an excuse to exercise their own insecurities and selfishness.

    Self-declared feminists, based on your own experiences, how accurate would you say my perception is on this matter? Just in case you were considering it, please refrain from ascribing any limitations to my mental or emotional skills, especially limitations that extend into the future. It would be arrogant and would anger me. Although it may take a while, and I may not get it on the first try, I can eventually understand any situation I put my mind to, at least well enough to come up with a plan to help.

    • I am uncertain how to analyze and how to treat the content of this and all of your writing. I think your essential predicate is that you understand yourself as a viewer of this reality who has come from outside of the system. I realize that is a pretty obvious statement given the ‘outerspace octopus’ symbol but in order to understand what you are doing (and all presentation of orientation is a doing, right? a call to action of one sort or another?) one has to *locate* you.

      So, when you speak to ‘background mindset’ I take that to mean the entire pattern that makes a person a person, a human a human. I thought previously that you were mostly speaking of ‘software’ in the sense that you seem to see the structure of idea or conception as an arbitrary programming — and many in our present, and many philosophers and theorists seem to see things that way — but recently I have come to understand that you also apply this interpretation, this perception, to the *harder* structure of people: their genetic self.

      It follows from what I understand of your basic predicate that you see *the human stuff* and perhaps all the stuff of the world as malleable, shifting and mutable, but I think the most important aspect of your philosophy is that you see yourself as an agent of specific change, and in this sense you are — to use a neutral word in my lexicon that others might not understand neutrally — an evangelist of a certain way of being in this world. So, the *seer* also must become a *doer* and then the question is What specific doing?

      What the *end* of this applied vision is I am not certain. I do not think that you state it. I can only say that it seems quintessentially idealistic and fairly abstract. Because you have this perspective, and because you believe in it, you feel confident making sweeping statements on different topics.

      My impression of your orientation is that it is (I think it must be seen as such) an example of what I term ‘hyper-liberalism’. I place this in contradistinction to Conservatism or Tradiconalism of any sort. Hyper-liberalism is a complex of various perspectives, all of them ultramodernist, and I would also venture to say hyper-American. Hyper-liberalism and hyper-modernism are mediated by American culture and by ‘American theory’ if I may use that term.

      The discovery and the enunciation of the New World is on one hand a statement about breaking with the past (disjuncture, unmooring) as well as the description of a relationship to the Old World. An aspect of Americanism, in the sense of *The American Civil Religion* — a group of predicates and a platform of perception of Reality — has to do with the enunciation of a New Relationship. (This has essentially been understood as the literal establishment of a New Jerusalem and though it all sounds quaint now, I propose that these ideas function VERY STRONGLY in our American Present.)

      It appears to allow for a series of breaks and ruptures and reformulations and, as I see things, can be understood through the use of a symbol: The Burnt-Over District. It is Goggle-able and what it means, in essence, is the repetition of the evangelical effort in series of repetitions, in such a way that the former guiding structure (the religious narrative) fades away, and what remains is some non-defined but transformative pattern, intention or energy. So, there is a connection between the Christian evangelicism in the Burnt-Over District and, at the farther ends, seemingly unrelated religious activity in California spiritual reformulations in the second half of the 20th Century. This operates in Pentacostalism as well as Hare Krishnaism. It is intimately tied with Sixties patterns which had an unquestioned immense impact on *us*. (I say this even as a child of the 80s).

      One can place Aldous Huxley and the human potential movement and therepeutic movements like ‘Esalen’ and so many other quasi-religious movements which deal, in essence, in thought-reform: the modification of ‘programming’ in accord with new perceived needs and desires, in this category of extensions and reframings of earlier Evangelism.

      I do not point to any of this as if I am pointing to something negative — that is, I am not criticising — but I do so because I am fascinated with the location and the description of predicates and I see this as connecting to metaphysics: a metaphysics that we employ to make sense of our existence.

      You may remember the core Heideggerian question: What does it mean to Be? What is Being? When our questions get pushed to this point — inevitably — it always seems to reveal what a persoan understands IN ESSENCE about themselves, their world, and naturally this offers a view of a great deal that any particular individual is not commonly aware of.

      We are indeed driven and determined by Ideas. One prime question seems to have to do with: Is there an Anchor for ideation? (A metaphysical backdrop) or Am I called to invent as I proceed?

      I have little doubt that the essential questioning of the Role of Woman is quite intimately tied to metaphysics, though it has been hard to communicate this understanding to others who cannot, it would seem or do not wish to, stretch their understanding.

      The upshot is, in my own case, I am somewhat suspicious of your efforts in the same way I would be suspicious (to use your metaphor!) of an alien intelligence who is a Shape-Shifter and who seeks to *infiltrate* and *reprogram*. You surely must be aware that your metaphor can be pulled toward the two opposing poles, right? You can be ‘welcome change’ or ‘an acid that eats away at valuable structure’.

      • “I am uncertain how to analyze and how to treat the content of this and all of your writing.” I’m a perception user, like you. This is what we sound like. Now you’re seeing it from the other side.

        “…you also apply this interpretation, this perception, to the *harder* structure of people: their genetic self.” Yes, a person’s genetic structure is in many ways just as arbitrary as most social conventions. The DNA only has to construct and sustain a working brain, at which point the brain becomes the main determining agent of the person.

        “So, the *seer* also must become a *doer* and then the question is What specific doing?” Yes, indeed. My major character arc these days is the quest to develop action mindset, my limiting factor and the opposite of perception. My chosen purpose is to empower people by teaching them growth mentality and the basic mindsets, helping them overcome mental addictions, and helping them understand the nature of reality, without assumptions. In other words, nurture mindset. I also like to help them come up with paths forward: cunning mindset.

        You’re going to have to define terms like “liberal”, “conservative”, “traditional”, “modern”, and “American” before you start adding “hyper” to them. Same with “American Civil Religion”. I don’t have a functional statement about reality to attach the labels do. Also, I find the term “modern” silly because it just means “the present day as contrasted with the past”, which is constantly changing. Modern isn’t what it used to be. Except for “modern” art—they froze that one, and then came “post-modern”, which logically should mean “from the future”… but I digress. I try to perceive things accurately, and to perceive the way others experience things. I characterize people by their consciousness first, rather than by their nationality or gender. I try and help people survive freedom. I’m not sure if any labels other than my own fit me, for I am a powerfully odd shape.

        If you want to help people stretch their understanding regarding the “Role of Woman” then you need to start describing what you think that role is functionally rather than rattling off words with subjective meaning and no boundaries (What does “feminine” mean? Couldn’t anyone be “motherly”?)

        Finally, I’m well aware of the ominous and alienating nature of my alias. That’s why I chose it. It tells people up front not to expect me to be like them. That way nobody has to feel shocked when I think differently; I’m expected to think differently, because I’m not “human”. In order to understand how I think, you would need to have a more comprehensive understanding of the nature of reality and the implications it has for conscious beings, because most of who I am is based on and consistent with such an understanding, or at least something that looks like it.

        The alias also works decently well for exempting myself from the mediocre limitations people ascribe to humans (e.g. humans can’t understand each other’s motivations). The main point is to resist having factual labels applied to me to avoid the assumptions that people associate with the labels. Plus, although the alias came before the idea of perception as having an “evolution and adaptation” theme, they actually fit very well together.

        • EC wrote: “You’re going to have to define terms like “liberal”, “conservative”, “traditional”, “modern”, and “American” before you start adding “hyper” to them. Same with “American Civil Religion”. I don’t have a functional statement about reality to attach the labels do. Also, I find the term “modern” silly because it just means “the present day as contrasted with the past”, which is constantly changing. Modern isn’t what it used to be. Except for “modern” art—they froze that one, and then came “post-modern”, which logically should mean “from the future”… but I digress. I try to perceive things accurately, and to perceive the way others experience things. I characterize people by their consciousness first, rather than by their nationality or gender. I try and help people survive freedom. I’m not sure if any labels other than my own fit me, for I am a powerfully odd shape.

          “If you want to help people stretch their understanding regarding the “Role of Woman” then you need to start describing what you think that role is functionally rather than rattling off words with subjective meaning and no boundaries (What does “feminine” mean? Couldn’t anyone be “motherly”?)”
          _____________________________

          You could say you have a ‘hyper-odd shape’ and you would understand my use of that word as intensifier.

          Well of course my definitions are filled out in my writing. As are everyone else’s. I think I have a good grip on what both liberal and conservative mean; I mean in the real world. I would be happy to offer my definitions naturally but I am not sure I could right at this moment.

          ‘Modern’ I think refers to a moment in our history when history excelerated. That is, things had been moving along pretty regularly and also traditionally for a long long time and then, quite quickly, history excelerated. Four hundred years ago? Hard to place it exactly but around that time. But modernity, to me, is ‘unmooring’ from traditions, the traditions that have defined the human for a long long time. It is the opening into very different possibilities. Where modernity goes seems anyone’s guess. We are in increasing exceleration and I think it is also fair to say increasing unmooring. Not a criticism exactly.

          American Civil Religion (Robert Bellah) is google-able. It is a known thing, a described thing. In 5 minutes you’d get enough of a sense of it to understand why I refer to it. I think it is a super-interesting topic and highly relevant. Harold Bloom has also explored the topic and added to it.

          And ‘American’ should not need to be defined. I am not being pedantic. My ideas of America and Americanism have been influenced by Waldo Frank and ‘The Re-Discovery of America’. America really did and perhaps still does represent a new frontier. America is an extension of Europe or in a sense the spirit of Europe breathed into a new body. (The library I have access to is huge and the selction of books extraordinary. Many things that no one reads and few seem to know about. I also have access to bona-fide philosophers who give me lots of hints and reading tips, my BF being one of them. I mention these things only because the contrast between us should be apparent. You are very comfortable unmooring yourself; I am comfortable in re-mooring myself.)

          I understand what you mean about needing to make fuller statements about ‘the role of woman’ etc. The thing is that I do offer in my writing a rather consistant view of how I understand these things. Possibly to the point of appearing weird. But I cannot expect you to have read all I have written. Many people, according to what they say, skip over my posts. TLTR as is often the case! I certainly can’t blame them.

          If it happens that you pay attention more to what I write you will find many of my definitions encapsulated in it. But I think it is important to recognize that we are quite differently oriented. So, for me and in my lexicon, ‘feminine’ is not unbounded and subjective. Yet I notice that the term is for you, and I also feel I understand why it is so. Gertrude von le Fort speaks of woman ‘in her symbolic aspect’ (she is a Catholic philosopher of an age gone by and part of ideas gone by) and she influenced a good deal of my thinking about woman and her clash with the modern.

          To become ‘counter-currential’ to the present is a strange task, especially when the present is seen to be careening out of control and has lost it navigator. I desire to become part of a philosophical trend, European largely, that is reexploring old paths that have become overgrown and forgotten. And to pull them back into the present. The new right, or the alt-right, is said to be taking on the daring and the riskiness of what had been the role of the alternative left.

  9. 1. When I was in college (before it went coed), one section of the library was off-limits to women, because the men there were often sloppily dressed and sometimes asleep in the big leather chairs. The restriction was based on the desire not to be seen by women when you’re acting like a slob. So I favor the right to exclude the opposite gender when you’re sharing the guy/girl thing and acting the way your mother never wanted you to.
    2. The middies at Annapolis had a men-only meeting this spring to discuss date rape and the treatment of women. If you remember that these are men being trained to lead, you can see the significance of that gathering.

  10. This story has led to some interesting debate. As a former Michigan State student (between 1961 and 1971) I am very familiar with the student union. I am surprised the women’s only lounge has lasted this long. I think many readers here assumed this was a lounge which was part of a rest room. Unless there was a drastic change, the lounge is a room about half the size of the general lounge and the rest rooms attach to it through a door near the rear.
    It seems to me that the logical solution was to make that well appointed comfortable lounge a no-socializing quiet study area for all students.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.