Traditional marriage may have formed the foundation of modern civilization, but it turned men into white knights. Many of us want something better. Is there a way we can work with the traditional women who have lately come out to oppose the feminist hate mongers without compromising the values of the Men’s Rights Movement?
Marriage is important
2012 Olympia, Wash. - Someday, I hope to get married. No, really. But the woman has to be special. First, she has to be intelligent. I find it hard enough to relate to most men. Sports, video games and other empty distractions bore me. It’s even more challenging, however, to relate to most women. Fashions, tattoos, talk shows grubbing around in the rubble of relationships, they’re worse than sports. At least football teams have pretty cheerleaders.
Second, I do not want a “wife.” When I get married–if I ever get married–I will borrow a phrase from one of my favorite authors, L.E. Modesitt, Jr. and refer to her as my “consort.” The term connotes the kind of relationship we will have: equal but complementary. Marriage, after all, should not be a competition, but a gift.
To me, the ideal mate is someone who you actually want to talk with. Every now and then my attitude about that has come out at inopportune times. Once years ago, a girlfriend and I were knocking boots. Physically I was into it, but contrary to the sexist stereotype men can and do multitask quite well, so I started to talk with her about…something.
She did not respond well.
Which leads to my next must-have: a great sense of humor. I have known many women who, by their actions say to men, “Women have a superior sense of humor, now try to amuse me while I cut you down for being inferior.” I have no time for them. My sense of humor ranges from the very goofy to the very dry, and I prefer the company women who can keep up. And if I have to work to keep up with her, all the better.
Fitness and vibrant good health are also important. But no gym rats. Fitness is like brushing your teeth. People who have sonic toothbrushes seem to spend hours brushing their teeth. That’s goofy. Done right, oral health shouldn’t take more than a few minutes a day. Same with exercise. Nutritional supplements, the Primal Diet and longevity medicine round it out. Life should be about more than sweating in a gym.
Complementary interests are also important. One of the women I’m in love with loves fish. Yes, she likes to-fish, but she’s obsessed with restoring fish habitat and healthy fish runs. I wouldn’t say that I love fish, but I admire her obsession. I want to restore human habitat and establish healthy human communities. She sees government programs as the means to accomplish her goals. Under current conditions, she’s right. But I see liberty and free enterprise as the means to accomplish my goals, and believe that eventually they will work to fulfill her goals, too. So our interests are complementary.
Another woman I’m in love with has an obsession to bring organic produce and wholesome meals to her community. That’s another fine obsession, in my opinion, and also complementary with my interests.
There are other women I’m in love with, and all of them have extraordinary interests. Is it possible to be in love with more than one person? Yes, of course. I’m not in a sexual relationship with any of them, and if that ever changes I will be committed to just the one woman because I believe in and support the institution of marriage as the bedrock of a healthy community.
I’ve written about that before and will again but no one, in my opinion, has written more eloquently on the importance of marriage than George Gilder in his book, Men and Marriage, and I recommend it without reservation.
Traditional Women’s Rights Activists
But now I want to address a recent article written by “Edita TWRA”. What does “TWRA” stand for? The first result in Google is “Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency,” but that didn’t seem to fit. Edita’s blog is Feminine Mystique: A Voice for Women ~ TWRA, and on her About page she explains:
I am a TWRA (Traditional Women’s Rights Activist). I am an ardent believer that feminism has hurt women and made it harder for women to reach happiness in our society. And I am here to expose feminism. – Feminine Mystique – About, Edita TWRA
Excellent! Men’s Rights Activists (MRA) have been waiting for conservatives to get with the program and join us in opposing the feminists. Unfortunately as with most conservatives, Edita is openly hostile to the Men’s Rights Movement (MRM):
We are not egalitarians, feminists, men’s rights activists (MRA) nor masculinists. This page is for anyone that believes women’s lib was the worst thing to ever happen to women. Somebody has to say what nobody else is willing to. – Feminine Mystique – About, Edita TWRA
Now, I am a gender egalitarian and an MRA. More specifically, I’m a classical liberal (i.e., libertarian conservative) who focuses on exposing and opposing the anti-male sexism of the progressive and otherwise socialist feminists. But should that mean that we cannot work with traditionalists? Experience suggests we cannot. For decades we assumed we should be able to work with conservatives, only to discover that conservative organizations were more inclined to side with the feminist bigots!
Why would they do that?
From Shahrazad to Conservatism to Feminism
Ironically, feminism is rooted in conservatism. Even more ironically, modern day feminism traces its roots to Islamic culture. In brief, here’s how: Minstrels accompanying the Christian Crusaders returned with Muslim stories, like The Arabian Nights. Remember Shahrazad? Christian culture at that time did not put women on a pedestal, but Islamic idealism did, in theory though not in practice.
Tales express values and these values gradually find their way into culture. It is often observed that “corrupt American values” infect the world through Hollywood. Well, not all American values are corrupt, but it’s true, nonetheless, that stories are a powerful medium for conveying cultural values. Thus it was that as Shahrazad became a part of the Christian culture, so the Islamic idealization of women became a part of western culture.
It took centuries, but this led western cultures to put women on a pedestal, too, and eventually to universal suffrage and feminism. Doubt it? Historian Reay Tannahil explains in her delightful book, Sex in History.
Women on a Pedestal
Objectively, there is no basis for putting women on a pedestal. We are all humans, all just people, and last time I checked women still grind food in their mouth and pass gas and more out the other end. Was the Apostle Paul thinking only of men when he wrote, in the Epistle to the Romans, that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God”? No, I’m pretty sure he meant women, too.
So women are neither better nor worse than men. We are all just people.
Culturally, however, the practice of putting women on a pedestal is very effective. Cultures compete. Sometimes, one culture gains advantage through an accident, such as when the European cultures invaded the Americas. But for infectious diseases, like Small Pox, modern America would have a very different complexion today, if it existed at all. Nevertheless, once it took root, American culture was able to compete with other cultures very effectively. And it began with putting women on a pedestal.
Culturally, England in particular gained a leg up on the rest of the world by putting women on a pedestal. The flip side to the “woman on a pedestal” myth was that a man was “the king of his castle.” So what we call conservative values today held that women were morally superior to men, but that men “ruled the roost.” It was contradictory and ignored certain fundamentals of human nature, but it worked.
This view spread to North America and Australia, whose cultural eminence today owes in large part to the social stability conferred by a middle class in which each man married one woman and toiled diligently to support her in “his” castle.
Do I think that’s ideal or the best way to go? No. In my religion, women and men are equal partners and we believe there is a way to live that is optimally healthy for the individual, the family, the community, the nation and the world that does not involve putting women on a pedestal or viewing every man as the king of his castle.
Should that mean that those of us who have a more libertarian view should not work with those who hold a more conservative view toward achieving mutually desired goals? No. Historically, however, the conservatives have often given support to feminists, though they almost never give support to the men’s and fathers’ rights movements. And when they do attack feminism, often as not they take the same opportunity to attack MRA’s:
Women have been the biggest dupes of feminism. They have been manipulated, exploited and used as pawns thanks to the feminist ideology, which is pervading our society today. Probably the biggest loss lies in the degradation of the female body and spirit. This phenomenon clearly exposes itself in the modern girl. The modern girl who is promiscuous, she is independent and she is career minded. She believes that she may use the man for sex. – The Degradation of the Virtuous Woman or why Men Embrace Sluts (but Never Commit to them), Edita TWRA, Feminine Mystique, A Voice for Women, December 24, 2012
A lot of women and men can agree with that. Western culture today has been so corrupted that it’s hard to find a relationship. And when we do, the risk runs high that it will end badly, both emotionally and socially for the woman, and legally as well for the man. So a lot of people who would prefer a committed relationship settle for hookups and one night stands, or no relationship at all.
No common ground?
Conservatives and traditionalists could find common ground with the MRM, but instead they attack, as Edita does in her article:
Paul Elam for example calls traditional women nothing but mere whores. As he espouses that women ought to be feminists who do not seek commitment from loyal men. Paul Elam wants men to be free from the duty of being the breadwinner and especially from the duty of being a father. Just like feminists Paul Elam and Co. have started a bizarre vilification fest against the traditional woman. This clearly marks the merging of the feminist and MRA movements that oppose the traditional men and women who seek to combat the venomous ideology of feminism. – The Degradation of the Virtuous Woman or why Men Embrace Sluts (but Never Commit to them), Edita TWRA, Feminine Mystique, A Voice for Women, December 24, 2012
To be fair, she’s reacting to something Paul wrote, which she quotes extensively from part of the following:
You see, as much as you might like to delude yourself into thinking otherwise, you are not a voice in defense of men and boys, you are simply another female elitist defending the traditional power to enslave men to your needs, desires and whims.No one is fooled by your fair weather defense of MRA’s. You are acting in your self-interest and your self-interest alone. I’d sooner break bread with a feminist than a traditionalist whore seeking to protect the free labor and protection that keeps her on her bon-bon fattened ass.
You want to help men? Get the fuck up off your lazy ass and get a job. Even better, find one that is good paying and that exposes you to every danger and hardship traditional men have been shielding women from for all time.
You want to help men? Take on the responsibility of being one for five fucking minutes of your pampered, entitled life and see what it actually means to be one. There are women that do that, you know? Just not women like you.
I for one am sick and fucking tired of seeing leeches come in to this movement defending nothing more than their free ride on this planet at the expense of the brainwashed bastards whose blood and sweat keeps a pillow under their ass.
You want to help men? Then quit pretending like you know a thing about their lives and start actually learning that your traditional values are nothing more than a death trap for them so that you can take everything they earn and lavish yourself with trivial desires, before they die…and after. – A Letter to Traditional Women, Paul Elam, A Voice for Men, April 14, 2011
Boys Are Icky – You Go Grrl!
I support marriage and agree with Edita’s criticism of feminism and the consequences of the degradation of women…and men. But I also agree with Paul Elam. For decades, MRA’s like Paul and I have opposed the bigotry and hatred and cultural degradation of the feminists. And for decades we have endured their harsh reprisals.
In years past I endured public humiliation in the mainstream media, job loss, death threats and assaults, all due to the very public and noisy attacks of the “women are good victims and men are evil villains” second-wave feminists. And currently, “boys are icky – you go grrl!” third-wave feminists are trying to drive me out of my tribal community. All for taking a stand against the bigotry and sexism that praises women for every little thing they do, and scolds men to serve women.
Both then and now “traditional women” stood by and either gave their tacit consent to the feminist supremacists who put women on a pedestal, or when they have opposed feminism, it is with feeble complaints that women are losing their privileged place on the pedestal.
The thankless job Paul and other MRA’s have taken on is to expose and oppose the anti-male bigotry. It’s a Sisyphean task. They come at us from one source spouting lies. We respond to expose the lies. Before the dust has settled they come from an entirely new quarter spouting the same lies. It never ends, and trying to respond to them all is exhausting.
We have tried, but most MRA’s are regular Joes trying to make a living and have a life. Unfortunately, we are surrounded by women who have been raised in a culture that uncritically accepts the lies. They don’t know any better. So we get no support, no help, and rarely any sympathy. Especially from “traditional women,” who scold us for expending our efforts opposing the bigotry when they say we should be supporting them.
Lately, however, that has started to change. Some traditional women are not only taking on the feminists, but offering moral support to the MRM. Personally, I welcome that. But then I also took several years off from the MRM to serve in a very traditional (American Indian) community, while during that same time Paul and other MRA’s have toiled in the trenches to fight the bigotry that has, for so many years, enjoyed the tacit support of traditional women. So now we should accept “traditional women” who offer their support if only we will step back into the harness to support them?
Paul Elam responds:
I am pretty sure I read a comment from zed over at TS not too long ago that “Most MRA’s are one blowjob away from becoming a mangina.” …There is a pretty damned healthy debate right now in that thread about whether I should have spit in the face of what some MRA’s would consider a potential ally. But I have to say I think those MRA’s are missing the point.
Traditionalism is the driving force behind male slavery. It is the psychological machine that socializes men into becoming fodder and into becoming lapdogs disguised as guard dogs.
In my way of thinking, it never was a good deal. In the age of misandry and feminist governance, it is foolhardy to say the least. I would not do it; not for a million dollars, and certainly not for a blow job and plate of beans that I had to pay for. – A Letter to Traditional Women Revisited, Paul Elam, A Voice for Men, April 15, 2011
He’s exactly right, though I disagree with him that it was always a bad deal. Civilization has evolved thanks in large part to the myths that put women on a false pedestal and enslaved everyman as the king of his little castle. Most traditional women–at least in the English speaking nations–want to hang onto their position on the pedestal, but most went along with feminists in knocking men off their little thrones and unseating them as kings within the four walls of their tiny castles. Not all traditional women. I know Christian fundamentalists who still live like that.
Free to Choose
But Paul is absolutely right that in today’s world it’s an invitation to disaster. I also agree that it’s a matter of personal choice:
The bottom line here is simple. I don’t support any movement to abolish personal freedom. That means that anyone should be free to pursue any type of relationship they want. It is even written into the mission and values here that AVfM opposes any interference in the relationships or the commercialization of sex between consenting adults.But where it concerns activism, men’s best interest and the voice that emanates from this forum, it is my not so humble opinion that any woman who likes “real” men who spend their days carrying a load she doesn’t feel obligated to share is no friend to the men and boys in this culture who now find themselves in such desperate trouble.
This kind of woman is not only an opportunist in an age where such opportunism is outmoded, she will also train any children she has to have the same entitlements, or burdens, depending on whether they are female or male.
Her sons will live on their knees, and her daughters will pay for that privilege – on theirs. – A Letter to Traditional Women Revisited, Paul Elam, A Voice for Men, April 15, 2011
Hard Words for Hard Truth
Looking back at 40 years of MRA’s opposition to feminist bigotry and getting nowhere, I have come to the conclusion that the only way we can effectively counter the hate-male campaign is for a bunch of us to get rich, if not wealthy, so we can establish a cadre of professionals who work full time to fight this war. And it is a war, a war in which our opponents have the resources of political and academic institutions to draw on, while we have only the pennies in our pockets.
During that time MRA’s have endured public humiliation, heart ache, job loss, hate mail, death threats, loss of children to family courts that favor mothers over fathers, and being publically excoriated for rejecting the stereotypes that men are the ones most likely to commit acts of domestic violence when the preponderance of evidence shows that women are at least equally violent, especially where elder and child abuse are concerned.
How is the war going for the MRM? Are we any farther along than we were 10 or 20 years ago?
Well, support is growing. People are getting wise. The children of feminists are especially inclined to join us, having experienced the hypocrisy and hatred up close and personal. But will it be enough? I’m not so sure.
More Than Grass Roots
The Daily Bell is in the avant-garde of what they call the “Internet Reformation.” Among other things, they document and analyze the efforts of the Anglo-American Axis (“Anglosphere” for short) to subvert the middle classes and dominate the globe. The feminist movement is a part of that effort. In this, they are very effective, destroying families, keeping men in bondage through the family court system and by stereotyping men as monsters and women as their victims.
It will take more than a grassroots effort to counter that. We will need deep pockets and a full time army of professionals to research, document and counter the lies, and we need spokesmen who are articulate and attractive to become the public faces. Warren Farrell and Christina Hoff Sommers are great, but we need an army.
So I intend to get wealthy beyond my wildest dreams of avarice and then spend my ill-gotten gains on cultural carpet bomb runs to destroy the hate-male programs, directing an empire from a palatial estate nestled in the foothills of Mount St. Helens. (Unlike Dr. Evil, my volcano isn’t extinct.) That’s me, and I’m still working to amass a fortune. Meanwhile, most of the MRA’s are running on fumes, emotionally, financially, politically, socially, and in every way. So I am not inclined to condemn those who are less than charitable. Particularly not someone like Paul Elam, who, in my opinion, has created the foremost website of the MRM.
A Powerful Alliance
Nevertheless, traditional women and MRA’s could be a thousand times more effective if we worked together. During the past 40 years, however, traditional women by the millions have rejected the men of the MRM and have sometimes even sided with feminists. So who needs to make the first move, and what should that first move be?
Feminist and leftist organizations have repeatedly lied about Paul Elam’s website, A Voice for Men, describing it as a hate site. His site is often angry, but anger is not hate. Maybe it’s past time for traditional women to get off the sidelines and directly attack the progressives for lying about Paul and the rest of us.
Don’t tell us. Tell the mainstream media. Write letters to the editor of your local newspapers in support of the MRM and our efforts. Join Women Against VAWA Excess in their opposition to the unbelievably sexist Violence Against Women Act. Stop hiding behind fake names, get out in public, put your personal reputations on the line and get active.
Anything less is just so much hot air.