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Yes, Organs Matter. On Female “Hypervigilance,” And Being Born With A Babymaker, In A Rape Culture March 25, 2010

Posted by FCM in authors picks, feminisms, gender roles, health, international, PIV, pop culture, porn, race, radical concepts, rape, thats mean, trans.
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this will make sense in a minute, hopefully.  i am posting this video here, again, for those who havent yet seen it.  because i *still* have fucking transwomen and genderqueers commenting here, on various posts, shrieking about how “organs dont matter!!!11!!”  yeah, sure they dont.  so long as you werent born with a fucking babymaker, in a rape culture.  for the rest of us, our “mere organs” mean a lot.  let me illustrate.  and…i am going to take the long way around.

a few months ago, my mom was telling me how fucking lazy my step-dad is.  and he is so.  fucking.  lazy.  hes the kind of lazy that, if she didnt stage constant interventions, he would never even brush his fucking teeth.  (yeah, they are falling out).  he is the kind of clueless that if it werent for her, he would come home from work to a dark house on the same day every month, and wonder why the lights dont work. (the bills are due monthly, asswipe.  yeah you).  to top it off, my mom knows, absolutely knows for a fact because he told her so and has shown her so (once, as its all she would allow): he actually *likes* it when the lights get shut off.  everything is nice and quiet, and he likes candlelight better.  he says “its kind of an adventure.”  (do i have to also mention that hes an educated professional?  i dont know, but i just did).

ah life, what a fun adventure!  of course, if you were born female, its a different game entirely.  where every day you *dont* get raped or knocked up, you WIN!!!!11!!1  and the prize, if you can call it that, is this: you get to live another day where you do everything you can do, again, not to get raped and knocked up, that day, either. some stuff happens in the meantime.  that “stuff” is what other people (men) call “life.”  you know, work, play, sleep, etc.  some days, you dont even win.  seriously, this is how it works.  eventually you die, and hopefully rape and pregnancy have nothing to do with that.  many times, they have everything to do with it.  the younger, poorer and darker you are, the more likely this will be the case.

men can afford to let the lights be turned off, because nothing bad will happen to them, really, if they do.  if his car gets repossessed, its FUN!!!!11!!1  he will just walk everywhere (he could use the exercise, its true).  if he has bad breath or bad teeth, he wont get fired from his job.  and even if he did, he could find another job where all the men were as dirty and smelly as he was.  it would probably pay more, to boot.

but for women, if we dont keep every detail under tight control, we could end up homeless.  fucking shit, we might end up homeless anyway, and we know it.  and homelessness means rape, when you are a woman.  its an absolute 100% guarantee that you will be raped.  repeatedly.  or that you will have to have sex with men, for money, or for reasons having nothing whatsoever to do with “desire.”  (also rape, but thats a different post.)

if *we* let the lights get turned off, we wont be able to get ready for work.  no shower, no shaving.  no blowing our hair dry.  and not having a job means, eventually, RAPE.  if *we* let our car get repossessed, we will have to walk to the fucking store, in the dark (it gets dark at 4 in the winter.  do men even notice this?  i doubt it).  guess what that means!  not a fun adventure, not 30 minutes of cardio.  it means RAPE.  every little thing we do, you see, has a purpose.  its not “hypervigilance” really, if its exactly the right amount.  and if we stopped doing these things, it would create a downward spiral ending in…mm-hmm.

see…the difference between western, privileged women and the women in the NOVA video who are being injured and killed in childbirth is really only a matter of degree, and we fucking well know it.  its not a matter of kind.  we know that if we arent in control, to the extent we can be in control, that our lives will descend into chaos, where we are literally nothing more than fuckholes, for men.  (now, we are other things, too!!!11!!11!  like, you know, we have hobbies, and jobs and stuff, in addition to just being fuckholes, for men).  if we arent extremely careful, our wellbeing and our very lives will become dependant on men being charitable with us (newsflash: they arent).  when women are dependant on men to keep us safe…we end up raped, disfigured, and dead.  thats the simple, awful truth of it.

and every time a woman gets pissed off at her male partner for not picking up his socks, she is demonstrating that she knows her position in life, and how tenuous it is (or at the very least, the man is demonstrating how safe *he* feels, and indeed how safe, as a man, he really *is*).  when women are disproportionately presenting with anxiety and depression, they are telling it like it is, too.  so, what are they saying when they wear makeup, and dresses, and blahdy blahdy girly blah?  what are women demonstrating that they *know* to be the truth, having been born with a babymaker in a fucking rape culture?  (they are saying they dont want to get fucking RAPED, thats what.  they are trying to play by the rules, so that wont happen).

and what are transwomen demonstrating, when they do (and ENJOY doing) the same things?  this is not a rhetorical question.

look.  as born-women, our “organs” (well one of them in particular) are jam-packed with meaning.  and only a fucking transwoman, or a gender-obsessed western-privileged snot-nosed asshole fun-fem could possibly believe otherwise.  so stop posting this “organs dont matter” shit here.  i will not entertain your bullshit delusions for one.  more.  second.

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Comments

1. Undercover Punk - March 25, 2010

Babymaker in a Rape Culture! NICE!!!!

I enjoyed this post very much. Especially the anecdote about your step-father: very illustrative! And insightful. Thank you.

factcheckme - March 26, 2010

thanks for reading UP. as an FYI, the fucking transwomen and transactivists have already found this post, and are commenting. and i am going to keep my promise not to entertain their bullshit, for a single second.

factcheckme - March 26, 2010

omg. and this made me laugh and laugh: what fucking asshole man came up with this…

Hypervigilance is one of the hyperarousal symptoms of PTSD and refers to the experience of being constantly tense and “on guard.” A person experiencing this symptom of PTSD will be motivated to maintain an increased awareness of their surrounding environment, sometimes even frequently scanning the environment to identify potential sources of threat. Hypervigilance is also often accompanied by changes in behavior, (HAHA, no really?) such as always choosing to sit in a far corner of a room so as to have awareness of all exits. At extreme levels, hypervigilance may appear similar to paranoia.

http://ptsd.about.com/od/glossary/g/hypervigilance.htm

welcome to my world, asswipes.

2. thebewilderness - March 26, 2010

Criminy! If organs don’t matter then what the heck are transpersons making all the fuss about? Frocks?

factcheckme - March 26, 2010

well thats a good point, bewilderness. because what the transwomen clearly mean with this idiotic credo is “organs dont matter, unless you were born with a dick when you really wanted a cunt, like me!!!11!!1!!” boo-fucking hoo. nothing matters, unless *they* say it matters. nothing is important, unless and until and only to the degree that it affects them, and only to the extent that they *want* to address it. how very MALE of them, right? again, like the fucking MRAs who think rape doesnt matter…except when women rape men. NOT when men rape other men, nope, dont want to talk about that, at all. they think they get to frame the issues, define the parameters of the discussion, and hand-select the audience too. just like men always have.

also, i added “genderqueers” because they are saying the same shit. fuck gender, mm-kay? god i hate that this is where feminism has been taken. to discussions of gender, where being born with a babymaker in a rape culture has been completely eliminated not only from the discussion, but has been removed as a legitimate concern even. if i were more heavy handed as a mod, i would ban myself for being so transphobic as to address womens need to be hypervigilant, OUR WHOLE LIVES, and why. i should also note that this absolutely includes intersex, so long as they were assigned female from birth. because ALL women are presumed to be fertile, unless and until proven otherwise. then, if they “cant” get pregnant, they are derided as failed women. and of course, they are lifelong targets of male abuse too.

this does NOT include MAAB, clearly. aka men, MRAs and transwomen. anyone who still doesnt get that, doesnt want to get it. i am sure they have their reasons.

3. veganprimate - March 26, 2010

because what the transwomen clearly mean with this idiotic credo is “organs dont matter, unless you were born with a dick when you really wanted a cunt, like me!!!11!!1!!” boo-fucking hoo. nothing matters, unless *they* say it matters. nothing is important, unless and until and only to the degree that it affects them, and only to the extent that they *want* to address it. how very MALE of them, right?

Right on! I am so sick of men barging in and trying to define eveyrthing. Well, I got new for ‘em. I am NOT letting them define WOMAN. Fuck that.

I love how organs don’t matter. Then why did you get your dick cut off?

4. veganprimate - March 26, 2010

OH, and totally on a different subject, but I’m sohwing my age here. What’s the deal with this?–> !!11! I”ve also seen the word eleventy!…and I guess it has to come with an exclamation point. Methinks it’s some pop culture reference that has gone over my age-addled head.

5. dirt - March 26, 2010

Feminism hasnt been taken “there”, what these anti-women are preaching and practicing is NOT feminist in any way shape or form! What these “trans” “genderqueer” types are practicing and promoting is plain old patriarchy which hasnt changed a bit in over 5000 years.

dirt

factcheckme - March 26, 2010

@ veganprimate, its something i picked up along the way, and its something like “pwned” where its was originally just a typo but has taken on its own meaning. imagine some self-righteous asshat furiously typing away, using “!!!!!”s for emphasis, but his fingers slip off the caps button (possibly due to the trembling of his fury) and he just leaves it like that.

FUNNY, no? it always makes me laugh. thanks for asking.

factcheckme - March 26, 2010

oh, and in another context it can be used to indicate young, and overzealous. imagine a fun-fem zealously typing away about how FUN it is to hitchhike, and her finger slips off the caps button (possibly due to the trembling of her zeal) and she just leaves it like that. same thing.

and, its also entirely possible that i totally made all this up, or at the very least that i am the only person in the world that has ever noticed this, when it happens. if thats the case, then its an “inside joke” thats so inside, only *i* know about it. and now, so do you!

6. pmsrhino - March 26, 2010

Lol, nah, you’re totally right about the “!!!!11!!1!” stuff being a typo that is just used for laughs mostly now. Like when people say stuff like “TEH” or “PWN” or whatnot. All very geek culture driven that has leaked it’s way out into the mainstream internets, what with the social media and what not now a days. Now everyone can be L33T! :P (I love you description of the fun-fem and asshat typers, seriously made me lol)

And yeah, totally don’t get the “organs don’t matter” bit. I second veganprimate’s question of “then why did you cut your dick off?” If organs are sooo irrelevant, then why does gender reassignment surgery matter at all? With this logic you’re all woman with a dick between your legs so surgery isn’t necessary to be a woman, just a slight logic shift. How does this “logic” not make one’s head explode?

Women are beaten and killed because they ARE BORN WOMEN. They don’t even have to deviate from the feminine gender roles to be beaten and killed. Women who are tall, thin, white, covered in makeup, full of silicon, and wearing a dress and high heels are killed, raped, and beaten ALL THE TIME. And women who don’t meet all those norms PERFECTLY are at an even greater risk. Yeah, people who don’t conform to societal standards get beaten, murdered and raped too, but women are in danger no matter how “normal” they are, just. because. they are. women. The arguments trans people put forth about how “special” their issues are is ridiculous because IT’S THE SAME SHIT WOMEN DEAL WITH ALL THE TIME. This becomes even more ridiculous an argument when you have MtF who still have their dicks! I mean, come on! How dangerous is it really? At any point in time you just put on a suit and leave the makeup at home and bam, pretty much guaranteed to get through the day rape and death free. I have no such luxury. There is NOTHING I can do to guarantee that I will get through the day 100% rape and death free. Nothing. So how come the dude who thinks he’s a woman but still has a dick gets higher priority over the many many women who have no reprieve at all from the dangers of having a baby maker in a rape culture?

Oh, right, duh. I almost forgot we live in a fucking patriarchy. Why do I even bother entertaining the why questions sometimes? Answer’s always because of some dude’s swinging cock. -.-

factcheckme - March 26, 2010

you know, i have been thinking more and more about born-women who “don” femininity as a defense against rape. and i really think that this is the case. born-women are putting this shit on like a cloak, in order to maintain some (very pathetic) type of control over their lives, so that they dont end up HOMELESS. if that means being pleasing to men, (and it does) then so be it. whether its our male partners or our bosses or whatever. interestingly, in our extremely fucked up social conversation about rape, the issue is about female “consent” and not desire. so putting on a come-hither female sexuality also protects us against rape. the men dont go to jail, and we get to feel empowered! so long as we never question the way rape has always been defined, BY MEN. thats where frank discussions of PIV (and porn, and prostitution) become helpful.

so where women are donning femininity to AVOID RAPE, and i really think they are, transwomen are donning it to…WHAT. finish that sentence, anyone, and bear this in mind: being female is the number-one risk factor to becoming a rape victim. so. if transwomen wanted to AVOID rape, they would just STAY MALE.

oh yes i did.

factcheckme - March 26, 2010

I second veganprimate’s question of “then why did you cut your dick off?” If organs are sooo irrelevant, then why does gender reassignment surgery matter at all? With this logic you’re all woman with a dick between your legs so surgery isn’t necessary to be a woman, just a slight logic shift. How does this “logic” not make one’s head explode?

yes, absolutely. in fact, its so wonderfully concise, i think i will adpot it as the go-to response when a fucking transwoman tells me that radfems are biological essentialists, or that *i* am obsessed with vaginas. HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA yeah, right. organs dont matter…unless and until a MAAB says they do. roger, roger.

THEN WHY DID YOU CUT OFF YOUR DICK??

7. Big Fat Feminist - March 27, 2010

I have always had a problem with the idea of “consent.” It automatically takes power away from the one doing the “consenting.” Doesn’t it basically mean, “Yes, I agree you can do this thing to me.”

Consent v. desire, indeed. Very good way to frame it.

factcheckme - March 27, 2010

yes BFF the issue of consent is a major one. it highlights what teh menz see as the problem, really, with rape: men going to prison, for rape! its not what the men are doing to us. its not that they are putting us in harms way, constantly. they dont want to talk about PIV and how its problematic for us, and not for them. they dont want to talk about female desire, either. they want to keep doing what they are doing, and not have to go to jail for it. as long as we “consent” the problem (THEIR problem, the legal problem) is resolved. interestingly, it makes some things easier for us to swallow too. we dont have to question PIV either, or porn, or prostitution. when we start questioning these things, everything begins to look different. men begin to look different. to the extent we rely on men, we dont want them to start to look different. we want the status quo, and the rent paid, and the lights on. for obvious reasons.

speaking of, my partner and i just had a fight about the fact that he hadnt paid the cable bill. the shut off date was last week sometime. he just remembered today. and *that* reminded him that the cell phone bill is due too. whereas i pay all the bills that *i* am responsible for, online, early. some of them are on auto pay.

factcheckme - March 27, 2010

i kind of keep upsetting myself when i criticize fun-fems. but if they didnt keep coming on here with their genderqueer bullshit, maybe i wouldnt have to. i could just live in my radfem bubble and be pretty happy about it.

sam from genderberg commented here on another post that she thought it seemed “reactionary” to criticize third-wavers, when in reality radfems are responding to aggregate male behavior. in other words, its not womens fault that radfems are so angry or so rad, its mens. which is true. but its the fact that fun-feminism isnt RESPONSIVE to aggregate male behavior thats the whole problem with it. AND the fact that fun-feminism is mainstream now, and that its whats passing as the “feminist movement” obligates me, i think, to call it out. and to be specific in my criticisms, which i am doing. rather than “those dumb bitches dont get it.” really, they are making concessions to men, which we all do, to some extent. so its hard to “hate” them, and i dont hate them. but as dirt mentions, theres really nothing feminist about it.

8. Undercover Punk - March 27, 2010

fun-feminism isnt RESPONSIVE to aggregate male behavior thats the whole problem with it.

YES! Please make that a post. Even if it’s only one line! It’s beautiful. :)

And YES, you are being quite specific in your criticism. Thank you for advancing the conversation with genderqueers, etc.

PS. I don femininity cause I like bright colors and sparkly things. I’m like a crow. Seriously. But my brain still works! Mostly. And I stay the hell away from men! DUH.

PPS. I’m enjoying your moderation too. It makes the convos MUCH more interesting when feminists aren’t responding to stupid, derailing crap from people who only care about themselves (as opposed to caring about women as a class).

9. pmsrhino - March 27, 2010

“so its hard to “hate” them, and i dont hate them.”

Hate and criticism are two separate things. If all you did was hate them you wouldn’t write post after post critiquing and debating points and ideas, you’d just write one post that said “FUCK ALL YOUS GUYS YA’LL ARE DUMB KTHXBAI!!!” Which, honestly, would be easier than critiquing. Would definitely take less time and energy.

It is definitely not your fault that fun-fems and trans advocated seem to always see criticism and debate and questioning as attacks and hatred. That shit is all on them.

10. Big Fat Feminist - March 27, 2010

Consent. I have been thinking about this.

So let’s talk about “she wanted it” and “she’s a tease” and all that – it means SHE WOULDN’T LET ME PUT MY COCK INTO HER AND PUMP AWAY UNTIL I CAME.

I was thinking: so PIV is usually “over” when a man comes, right? Let’s say it’s over when/if the woman comes. Is the man going to cheerfully withdraw his penis because the sex is “over”? Hell to the no.

If you’re a man and you reach orgasm during PIV, the sex is “over.” If you’re a woman and you reach orgasm, or you know you are NOT going to reach orgasm and so you’re done, it’s not that the sex is “over.” It’s that you are a fucking cock-teasing bitch who “changed her mind” “midway” during sex.

11. Sonia - March 28, 2010

yeah, that’s the most realistic depiction of a typical woman’s reasons for practicing femininity I’ve heard in a long time. I’ve never verbalized it that way but the safety factor is my biggest reason, fer sher. of course it doesn’t matter because in any given situation you could be even MORE blameable for your own rape because of femininity practices, but it keeps you from being a scapegoat in groups or safe social places. fuckin A. yes, there’s no way to win.

12. Sonia - March 28, 2010

p.s. also, calling out trans (men-to-women) people who demand inclusion in female/feminist space is not hatred. I’ve done it socially in a woman’s group and got a crapload of…crap…for it, but the reality is, organs DO matter and if you have an optional procedure to become a woman and then want to complain about the oppression, that’s not the same thing as fighting for your rights against a culture that hates you FOR YOUR ORGANS. It’s understandable why some people would internalize gender messages to the point where they can’t exist in this bizarrely stratified society without changing their outsides to match their inner feelings BUT…having those procedures does not make you a woman.

13. m Andrea - March 28, 2010

You are even angrier than me. lol I love you for it though!

I’m thinking there’s a trifecta going on: funfems, transfems, and queerfems. None of them are interested in women’s empowerment because they can’t recognize women’s lack of power. They are so confused they think it’s all the same thing. Rather than address radfem criticism, they’d rather deflect the criticism. Which is understandable when we consider what would happen if they did — they’d have to admit that the logic used for the criticisms is valid and then where would they be? The only reason for admitting a problem is for fixing a problem.

Ergo, they don’t want to fix anything. Life is comfy enough for them and change is scary. Things have to get worse before they would want to fix anything, but life has a tendancy to be like that boiling pot of frogs — the rate at which things get worse is so slow that they get used to it. Which is why the only people who make real progress happen nowadays are those who are deathly allergic sexism in any form. Btw, I’m thinking about throwing a barracuda in that pot of water… ;)

14. Me - March 28, 2010

There is so much wrong with this post, I don’t even know where to begin.

I guess I’ll just leave it at this: if you think the most important part of me and my identity as a woman is the presence of my vagina and uterus, and that the greatest accomplishment I can hope for is to ‘not get raped,’ if you think walking alone in the dark is going to get me raped and murdered, that having sex for money or selling pictures of my body is the same as rape… then… you might want to start reconsidering your victimblaming misogyny before you call yourself a feminist.

factcheckme - March 28, 2010

that’s the most realistic depiction of a typical woman’s reasons for practicing femininity I’ve heard in a long time. I’ve never verbalized it that way but the safety factor is my biggest reason, fer sher.

see, this is the part that i wanted to clarify. i am not just saying that its dangerous in most situations to dress like a big old bulldyke (although it is dangerous, and i am thinking about that very much these days, as butch lesbians response to this whole femininity/rape thing has been to reject the traditionally “feminine” trappings entirely…does this mean that they are extremely brave? i dont know what that means, still thinking on that). and i understand why it might seem counterintuitive: women dress like “sluts” so they *wont* get raped??!! (more on that later, maybe…but i had a fun-fem on here that told me i was a misogynist vicitm-blamer…i spammed her but i think i am going to post her reply in a minute).

my point was, really, that its HOMELESSNESS that we are trying very hard to avoid. that we have to please men, all the time, because THEY have the power to send us into the streets, whether its our male partners or bosses or landlords or whatever. because being in the streets, for women, means repeated rapes. or finding a “safe place” to sleep that night IN RETURN for letting a man fuck you, repeatedly. it means prostitution and porn too. we have to play by the rules, or THIS could happen to us. (it might happen anyway, but it might happen to MEN TOO. thats not the point. the point is FOR WOMEN that being homeless is the worst possible scenario, because we were born with babymakers in a fucking rape culture. its a source of great fear and anxiety, and major behavior modifications, for women but not for men.)

AND regarding dressing and acting like “sluts” (aka “attractively, and sexually, to men”) to AVOID RAPE, this might be the hardest part to grasp. but being straight women, we have to be pleasing to men so we dont end up homeless. BUT we also have to have “consensual” PIV with them, because that part of being “pleasing” to them. its absolutely part of the deal. and as long as we “consent” its not rape. so, inviting men to fuck us really is a defensive posture, in many ways. as long as i “consent” he wont go to jail, and i can feel empowered that i made a CHOICE!!!11!!!1 of course, its entirely possible that HE WOULD HAVE FUCKED YOU ANYWAY. but how nice it is, not to have to know for sure. (as i have said here several times, when i finally started having PIV with men, i felt really relieved, because i wasnt *as*afraid of being raped. because i was going to give it away “consensually” anyway. how empowerfulizing!!!1!!11 right? uh, wrong.)

and of course, sometimes we get raped anyway, repeatedly (i am thinking about jodie foster in “the accused.”) but thats because this is a goddamned dangerous game. and because we are playing around with words, and definitions, and making distinctions without differences, much of the time, in order to make it work. and because men dont get the context in which women are having to live, and the context in which we are “having sex.” in many ways, they are just hyperaroused morons and dupes, (because this game, what they see of it anyway, is all incrediby sexxxay) letting their hardons guide them through life. and some men are just straight-up rapists.

speaking of hyperaroused morons and dupes, do transwomen fucking GET any of this?? of course they dont. because they are men. they put on dresses and sparkles and want to be fucked (or want to continue fucking women), but their reasons have nothing to do with our reasons. and their behaviors and preferences and beliefs have nothing to do with being female, because they arent female. and they dont even know WHAT THAT MEANS.

factcheckme - March 28, 2010

There is so much wrong with this post, I don’t even know where to begin.

I guess I’ll just leave it at this: if you think the most important part of me and my identity as a woman is the presence of my vagina and uterus, and that the greatest accomplishment I can hope for is to ‘not get raped,’ if you think walking alone in the dark is going to get me raped and murdered, that having sex for money or selling pictures of my body is the same as rape… then… you might want to start reconsidering your victimblaming misogyny before you call yourself a feminist.

HAHA ok, this is the fun-fem post i initially spammed, but decided to post. because i wanted to use a real-life example of someone who DOESNT KNOW HOW TO FUCKING READ. see, this is literally what fun-fems SEE when they look at radfem work. and i dont know what can be done about that. for example, i never said anything about “selling pictures of female bodies.” she literally just pulled that out of thin air, and attributed it to me. same with “identities” and “accomplishments.” she fucking just made those up.

also, i see that my “why are transwomen donning femininity” question didnt go unnoticed. although i also see that she didnt answer (understand?) the question, or acknowledge (understand?) the context in which it was being asked. she just dismisses it as “victimblaming misogyny” EVEN THOUGH the entire post was very much about understanding womens behaviors and why we do what we do, and NOT blaming them for bending to the demands of the patriarchy, when the cost of not bending is so great. and feeling compassion for and wanting to understanding womens perspective, and the context in which we live is the *opposite* of misogynist. HELLO!! (and transwomen are MEN, duh. if anything its misandrist to question transwomens motivations, isnt it? some other transwomen seem to think so. search “misandry” or “julie bindel” in the sidebar for an article on that).

if i sound kind of baffled, its because i am. its as if these people dont understand the DEFINITION of WORDS. and they literally, LITERALLY see things that arent there. and what, if anything, are we supposed to do with that?

factcheckme - March 28, 2010
15. Undercover Punk - March 28, 2010

its as if these people dont understand the DEFINITION of WORDS. and they literally, LITERALLY see things that arent there. and what, if anything, are we supposed to do with that?

AMEN! May I just report that I had the EXACT SAME experience earlier this week regarding whether lesbians can be “he.” The other people to the conversation LITERALLY did not understand the DEFINITION of Lesbian (uh, Woman who have Sex with other Women–not males!). Ok, I’ll refrain from all gory details cause I’m not trying to derail with my own story, BUT the pomo-genderqueers:

1> did not understand the accepted definition of very basic term
2> erroneously reframed my argument as being in favor of femininity (rather than identifying *as* female)
3> alleged that they were personally offended by my use of CAPITAL LETTERS (hyper defensiveness) and that it reasonably impeded their comprehension of the underlying argument

So REALLY, what the fuck are we supposed to do when THEY LITERALLY CANNOT READ??

How much energy can we spend BREAKING. It. DOWN. Over. and. Over. and. Over. AGAIN?? I truly, truly want to make progress with these people– they’re fully representing Feminism in the mainstream and it’s damaging to all women, everywhere. In which case, it’s nearly IMPERATIVE that we DO make progress in terms of sharing our ideologies…but they are so incredibly STUPID! Even willfully misunderstanding us! And then WE are the rude ones??

Oh, the frustration!! I need to go blog about this. Thank you for the opportunity to share.

16. SheilaG - March 28, 2010

This is very enlightening. I never realized that women would have sex with men, because it freed them of the fear of getting raped.
Although, I always believed that the best way to not get raped, or reduce the risk, was to be in groups of women, and found and support women only venues and institutions. The less you are around men at all, the less chance of being raped. You won’t avoid rape entirely of course, you will simply reduce the risk.

Lesbian non-conformity to femininity is not really a reaction against it so much as it is simply not who many lesbians are. We are not interested in men sexually, and a lot of performed femininity is about a hetero construct, it is about women flirting with men, pleasing them, doing a dance for them. We gender non-conforming lesbians simply don’t know how to do this stuff, and when we watch the male pleasing tactics of straight women out in the world, it can strike us as odd or strange or just “oh my god how did they do that!” kind of reactions.

But like sterotypical depictions of blacks in 1930s movies, femininity can look like that to lesbians who simply find all of this a kind of insanity, an economically costly social conformity women are forced into.
To conform is a survival strategy I think. But I have always said, that the less you are with men, ultimately the more you’ll prosper. It will force you to take far more charge of your life, than you would under male control in a home. And all women who live with men are living in this state, whether they admit it or not.

To not go along with the male pleasing keeps men away. This is a delightful prospect to a lesbian, who has no sexual love for men, and many of us simply feel very little for those oppressors anyway. But what if you were actually sexually attracted to men? Then what? How would straight women take back the power, get out of the PIV trap, change sexuality into something completely delightful to straight women? What would that be like?

Butch lesbians are a special breed. We are also quite rare in many places, and I think our indifference to social conformity has less to do with courage, and less to do with our ancient Amazon ancestors, and more to do with our desire to be a fully ourselves possible.
Men leave us alone, walk away, mistake us as men… very useful to be seen as male in a dark parking lot at night. We are literally shape shifters, to use a native american example here.

My younger lesbian sisters find us older non-feminine lesbians kind of cute I think, or antiquated :-) But as you say FCM, it is far less humiliating for a straight woman to “give conscent” and overcome the fear of being raped. To convince oneself that this is conscent is very much a delusion that women must live in. It’s why so many women are afraid of the implications of radical feminism, because the pain of seeing our colonized status would be too much. And yet you do have to work through that pain of facing total social rejection.

Butch lesbians have faced unbelievable cruelty at the hands of straight feminine women. And straight feminists have also used lesbian energy in reproductive health issues etc., often at the expense of our own issues. This social cruelty has a new dimension because of this discussion. Straight women fear homelessness, rape, and more if they don’t “male please and sing and dance.” Lesbians who have never lived with men as adults and have had to be fully self-supporting without the benefit of male monetary subsidy see life from very different points of view. We did not have the luxury of this subsidy, and created ways to prosper outside a hetero-normative male pleasing construct. We simply were not interested in performing for men, we loved women. We were attracted to women as power, women as intellect, women as muse, women as sexual partner and companion. And we adore other lesbians because we deeply love women. We can fully love women, and lesbians have this powerful connection to each other. Whereas men think they can sexually dominate, or follow their basest instincts with women, because men essentially are animals, primatives, oppressors… socially worthless from a lesbian point of view. Straight women who come to radical feminism, very much of a challenge. I salute your struggle, but I certainly wouldn’t want to be you.

factcheckme - March 28, 2010

Although, I always believed that the best way to not get raped, or reduce the risk, was to be in groups of women, and found and support women only venues and institutions. The less you are around men at all, the less chance of being raped. You won’t avoid rape entirely of course, you will simply reduce the risk.

well, for a lesbian seperatist, it may be an option, as you say. but not really for the rest of us. and really, not even for *you* unless you are indepedently wealthy, OR able to find employment in a female-dominated (indeed, a non-patriarchal) field. of which there are none, that i know of. i certainly didnt find one. i have to please men daily, hourly. most women do. if you really dont, then thats extremely rare. and wonderful. assuming thats the case, i will move on to another of your points:

Straight women fear homelessness, rape, and more if they don’t “male please and sing and dance.” Lesbians who have never lived with men as adults and have had to be fully self-supporting without the benefit of male monetary subsidy see life from very different points of view. We did not have the luxury of this subsidy, and created ways to prosper outside a hetero-normative male pleasing construct.

its kind of a subsidy, but its one we pay for dearly (as all subsidies ultimately are, a deferrment and an obscuring of cost, not an abatement of cost). at any rate, lesbian seperatists have it right, i think. getting support and strength from other women is a must, and a survival strategy, if you are going to refuse to be pleasing to men. its very much a “communist” mentality, isnt it? as in, living communally, sharing resources and support, as well as a mutual ideology. whereas het women are very much tied to capitalism (literally, as in the opposite of living communally) in many ways.

17. Sonia - March 28, 2010

I agree with Sheila’s general point but I just wanted to also make the point that I deliberately cultivate male approval of me in places where I live and work on a superficial level to ensure support in the future if abuse goes down-stalker, rapist, etc. the reality for non-separatist women is that you have to do that-fake it 90% of the time for the 10% of the time when you’re in an unavoidable, trapped mess. it’s just realism. in most mixed gender contexts women don’t have enough power or initiative or cohesive ambition to protect you. I know it sounds a little backward, but it really does still hold true. men still have a lot of veto power even in heavily women-populated social situations and if they view you as a hostile bitch, when the shit hits the fan you won’t get the help you need.

factcheckme - March 28, 2010

also, what about fathers? lesbian seperatists seem to think that not only are they independent of patriarchal institutions, they were also immaculately conceived, themselves. my own father started calling me a “bitch” from the time i was 13, and didnt see things the way he believed them to be. my dad also supported me, and my mom, and my silbings, for many years. during that time, when he prospered, i prospered. (again, this is how white women benefit from racism: when white men do well, we do well, to whatever extent we rely on them for anything). but if my mom hadnt divorced him when she did, he would have cut me off 100% because he didnt like my ideology (aka. my “smart mouth.”) after that, the court told him what he did, and didnt have to do, in relation to me, and my “smart mouth.” and luckily for me, he could afford his child support payments, although he paid them late every fucking month to protest me, my smart mouth, and the fucking cunt who left him (my mom).

now tell me that lesbian seperatists dont have to be pleasing, to men. now tell me how much better, and different, you are, compared to straight women. because from where i am sitting, its the same thing as me calling fun-fems a bunch of ignorant sluts. WE ALL MAKE CONCESSIONS, TO MEN, sheila. hating (or hating on) other women for the concessions *they* make, when you are making concessions of your own, is kind of missing the point.

factcheckme - March 28, 2010

i forgot to mention that when i was having this conversation with my mom, about how fucking lazy her husband is, i told her that she better watch it, because if they had their car repossesed, she would be walking to the fucking store in the dark. she said “i would never walk to the store in the dark.” and i said “i know you wouldnt.” and we exchanged a knowing look. that, to me, tells me everything i need to know. we even continued talking about this, and i *never* one time used the word “rape” and i didnt have to. i told her that this kind of unforgivable, unapologetic laziness is what its like to move through the world as a man, as a person who never has to worry about certain things. and she got it. and my mom is no feminist, not by a long shot. she laughs at feminists, and shes derided me many times for being one, and for wasting my time with something so cerebral, and impractical. but this is about the shared experiences, of born-women. and we both get it. thats the whole point of this post, and of most of what i say, on this blog.

and once again, NOT A SINGLE FUCKING FUN-FEM OR TRANSWOMAN WHO HAS POSTED HERE HAS MENTIONED HYPERVIGILANCE, OR BEHAVIOR MODIFICATIONS, OR OBSTETRIC FISTULA, or indicated that she had watched the video, at all. they want to talk in the comments section, but they wont HEAR whats being said in the article. i am offering an opportunity, here (well NOVA is really, it was on PBS at least once) for people to learn something, and they are telling me that they arent interested. well, message received. but if they think i am going to allow them a forum here, when they wont even be bothered to click through to some very important information, some very FEMINIST information, they are fucking nuts. and they really, really arent reading, or listening, or paying attention AT ALL. i dont even know how they find the “send” button for their commments, seriously. they arent even seeing the words on the page.

factcheckme - March 28, 2010

and once again, NOT A SINGLE FUCKING FUN-FEM OR TRANSWOMAN WHO HAS POSTED HERE HAS MENTIONED HYPERVIGILANCE, OR BEHAVIOR MODIFICATIONS, OR OBSTETRIC FISTULA, or indicated that she had watched the video, at all.

HAHAHAHA this is the definition of “non-responsive.” duh. fun-feminism is completely non-responsive to aggregate male behavior. as they continue to demonstrate, again and again and again.

18. SheilaG - March 28, 2010

I don’t think transwomen and fun-feminists really are interested in any of this. I think actual science, and the horrors of forced child birth on women around the world doesn’t phase them at all. It’s kind of a dead end FCM. To see those films of the fistula hospital was as shocking on this video as they were when I saw the original series.
So that is something women in America need to see, need to realize the impact of this.

On another note–
But I believe straight women could have a lot to learn from lesbians and lesbian separatists, but maybe the world view of this tiny minority within a minority has value only to us, and our sisters worldwide.
There could be this psychological divide as wide as the grand canyon.
Who knows? All I know, is that I don’t male please, I don’t get income from men, they don’t have access to my life, my loves, my art and my passions. They exist out in the world. Like any human being, I will be civil. The older I get, the more indifferent I become to them. Maybe straight women hate men more because they really are stuck with them, stuck with the sexuality they were born into, stuck believing that heteronormative lives are as inevitable as PIV is for most women in the world.

But some of us said no, and our lesbian nation was important so that we could have more freedom, we could create our own lives. We wanted our lesbian spaces, where women felt safe, safe to dance with each other, safe to profess a profound and poetic love for each other.
We didn’t want to share this passion even with straight women at times. We were born for some other life, that we are always in search of.

Every lesbian I know feels a certain heartbreak to watch the lives of straight women they know. To see such beautiful, intelligent, passionate women marry monsters is too much for us. It is our pain to see this worldwide.

19. Sonia - March 28, 2010

I’m sorry, Sheila, but I have to say-without other women male-pleasing, you wouldn’t be able to do all the things you just listed. Until all women unite to end patriarchy SOME women do have to male-please. Within patriarchy, separatism exists as a possibility at the expense of some women interacting with men. to take a judgmental stance on those women is to ignore the fact that you yourself benefit from it.

even energetic resources of criticism should be directed at MEN, not other women.

20. Sonia - March 28, 2010

“even energetic resources of criticism should be directed at MEN, not other women.” ch-oops. badly phrased. meaning= even the energy of being pissed about this dynamic should not be aimed at women, not men-it’s counterproductive and just creates schisms.

21. SheilaG - March 28, 2010

I resepectfully disagree wtih you Sonia. I don’t believe women have to male please. We will just respectfully have to agree to disagree on this point.

22. Big Fat Feminist - March 29, 2010

What about the rare situations when a man is not abusive, not controlling, not domineering? When a man truly loves a woman? When a woman truly loves a man?

23. polly - March 29, 2010

Yes organs matter. Sonia, how do you think we’re going to end patriarchy exactly? You have no fucking choice AT ALL in some parts of the world, granted.

But Sonia. The males will always side with the males, realise that. It doesn’t matter how much ‘approval’ you have, that goes OUT THE WINDOW when a bro heaves into view. So women need to stop siding with men. Because when push comes to shove, the handmaidens of the patriarchy are the first overboard. You’d better believe it. I’m about to illustrate this to one said HOP, who is about to get hers for doing men’s dirty work for them. From the men, not me, because she will be the fall person for their wrongdoing.

Ha fucking ha. So still otherwise engaged fighting the pat in ‘real life’. But just dropping by to confirm my aliveness. And very wellness. I’m thriving thanks. More than a certain HOP is about to be.

24. polly - March 29, 2010

NB (for the comprehension challenged). The above refers to those who do have a choice (albeit limited) and choose to side with the dudes cos they think they’ll get on better that way – and quite often do until they’re deemed surplus to requirements. Remember:

Resist, do not comply.

factcheckme - March 29, 2010

@ BFF, i have written here before (and mentioned it in this post) that your chances of being abused increase the younger, poorer, and darker you are, which is true. meaning, they decrease as you age, and if you are older, financially stable, and white, you shouldnt act as if you are the same degree of victim as anyone else. also, the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior, and if you are with a man who is older and has no history of violence, he probably will only get more mellow with age, not more violent, or violent for the first time. this is the situation i am in, now.

BUT. he is completely clueless when it comes to certain things. like paying the fucking bills on time, and GETTING IT when i tell him that i cant walk anywhere, in the dark. we were looking at being without a car a few months ago, and this was the fight we were constantly having. he didnt fucking get it. it didnt fucking register with him that this was a very, very dire scenario (worse than just having to leave extra time in the morning, worse than having to carry all our groceries, worse than any of the consequences a man might think of in that situation, even though he wasnt looking forward to being without a car, either). something happened just last week in another context that showed me that he still didnt fucking get what rape culture was, and the things *i* have to consider, and he doesnt. he actually put me in harms way because of it. it fucking infuriates me. it wasnt intentional on his part, and he does love me and have my best interests at heart. but his ignorance sometimes places me in harms way, anyway. and this is really the BEST WE CAN HOPE FOR, as straight women. i am still relying on LUCK, to get me through. where men believe that hardwork and ambition are all it takes to survive, and thrive. HAHA. what a bunch of shit.

25. Undercover Punk - March 29, 2010

What an interesting and respectful discussion! How lovely. :)

BFF, I wrote a 4 or 5 part blog series entitled Male Exceptionalism. It’s about why valorizing exceptional males harms women by continuing to place feminist “successes” in the hands of men’s collective cooperation, enabling women’s continued loyalty to men, and encouraging misplaced gratitude. Etc. I also discuss my father’s exceptionalism in the comments of a more recent post entitled “Separatism 2.”

So, about Lesbian Separatism being at the expense of other women who male-please so that we don’t have to: I believe there is validity to this criticism. However, I also believe it lacks any practical resolution.

As an analogy, I try not to buy items made in sweatshops. They are manufactured and distributed by exploitation of cheap labor. But my act cannot and will not bring down the entire global economic system. Would it be better and more effective if I launched an international campaign against sweatshop labor, etc? Yes. But I don’t consider that a realistic expectation of myself (or anyone else). AND altruism executed by privileged white women in the West is similarly made possible by the very exploitation we protest! Eeek, the cycle continues!!

Likewise, my refusal to engage with men and to limit my male pleasing (I believe that ALL women do this, regardless of how minimal, unless you are literally off the grid and on Womyn’s Land) isn’t going to bring down patriarchy all by itself or change the circumstances of most women’s lives. But my act of LIVING Lesbian Separatism and TALKING about it with other women (as here) supports efforts to effectively minimize male intrusions through daily resistance and raises awareness about how to maximize female-centered behavior to the benefit of every woman in each of our circles of influence. Viewed this way, I believe Lesbian Separatism has both personal and community-building value. If there are any *True* Male Exceptions out there, I think they’d agree.

26. Level Best - March 29, 2010

So much in this post and comment thread! I am THRILLED that someone, namely you, FCM, is seeing things for what they are and communicating it so clearly, even if there’s much willful misunderstanding and reading comprehension failure on the part of some who would rather not believe things are as bad as they are for women. And I am so grateful you, unlike a lot of fun feminists, can see behind your nose to the horrors of women’s reality on a global basis, just not in the upper class of the “writing class,” say, in NYC, and other posh places some 3rd wavers blog. This radical feminism–getting to the root, seeing to the horizon and beyond, and hashing out the implications for all women. Thank you, and your wise commenters.

27. Sonia - March 29, 2010

it’s not that I don’t understand the separatist perspective. but for different reasons, not everyone is willing/able to separate to that point. all I’m proposing is that instead of looking at women who appease (or collaborate, tomato tomahto) as betrayers, keeping a unified view of women as a group. I don’t think further stratifying the world into righteous lesbians and collaborators is healthy for women. not that i don’t feel maximum frustration with women who compromise in ways that i don’t, but I do think at this point, patriarchy lives and breathes to the extent that it demands female sacrifice, in many forms. I don’t believe that separatism is an option right now for all women, though at some point it would be a blessed ideal.

yes, agree to disagree.

28. Sonia - March 29, 2010

I further think that we actually are saying the same thing from different positions within the patriarchy :) and I hear you both.

29. SheilaG - March 29, 2010

I deal with women every day who choose to side with the dudes, until something really bad happens. We have the delightful (thick with irony here) situation of straight women bringing their boyfriends and straight male friends to our gay clubs. This just freaks me out that they would willingly bring wolves into a den where lesbians are. Given a scarcity of clubs in town where lesbians even have safe venues, say dancing with each other without dealing with straight pornified men watching, this is just the very limit. It’s why lesbians create safe places where even straight women are not invited, although I’d love for all straight women to experience lesbian space, to see male free lives in action, not in theory. But…

And I do say, that while choice is limited worldwide, and there are a lot of what ifs for lesbian separatism or lesbian nation to thrive and be alive, I do say that many women CHOOSE to endanger other women with the men in their lives, and make a conscious choice to be financially dependent on men, even when they were perfectly capable of being free of this before. It blows my mind how women will willingly throw good careers out the window the minute Mr. Man comes in.

So yes Polly, HOPs indeed. Women really do need to stop siding with men, stop doing it. But I think this will be as likely as a man getting that walking at night is dangerous for women, and that not having a car could mean rape or battery or robbery to the woman. If it’s this hard to get man to understand the danger their own girlfriends face in the world at night, then what hope is there for the lesbian message that any dependence on men is a grave danger for women who do have CHOICES and options not to do this? Again, I am not speaking about poor women, or about women who are controlled by village traditions. I’m not talking about a girl under the Taliban. I’m not even talking about women who were abused by fathers or male relatives. I’m talking about ordinary well educated women, the kind you meet every day, giving up their lives and living on the male dollar without any thought to what risk this puts them in.
So until women who should know better really really get this, I think us recalcitrant stubborn lesbian feminists, who have always been lesbians and always been feminists are just going to shrug our shoulders in confusion. All women should know this by now. Jenny Sanford knew better, Elizabeth Edwards knew better. They had choices, they sided with these creeps, they suffer because of how men think nothing of their children and families, they think nothing of a wife who is dying of cancer…. and what is the pull of this willing compliance? Jenny Sanford was a bright rising star on Wall Street, she is far better educated and situated than I will ever be, so I don’t get it! just don’t get it and never will I guess, and that is why we won’t have a true feminist revloution any time soon.

If you have the choice, then choose freedom for goddess sake, chose it, embrace it, mean it. Live free or die, and damn it I want my freedom from those men. I want my freedom from their horrifing brutal selves, their ugly minds, their repulsive reptillian souls, and I want as many women as is humanly possible to have this freedom as well. I want it now!

30. Big Fat Feminist - March 29, 2010

I am sorry about your frustration, FCM. That sucks. Sigh.

31. Big Fat Feminist - March 29, 2010

Uh, that last comment sounded really condescending, and I really didn’t mean it to. I truly get what you are saying and I see so many other women who are in similar situations. And it does suck. And I don’t understand why men can’t just STEP UP and grow up and be responsible.

Wait … yeah, yeah, I do understand. I just hate it.

factcheckme - March 30, 2010

yay! pollys back!

factcheckme - March 30, 2010

thanks, level best. that means a lot, patricularly the “communicating clearly” part because i think this post is my most theoretically dense to date, and its taking more work in the comments and convo happening here to clarify and flesh out certain things. i am so glad the meaning is coming through. my new tagline: “seeing things as they are, since 2009.” HAHA as i have said, this is all relatively new to me. certain things have just become clear within the last few months. theres more to come i am sure. thanks for reading.

factcheckme - March 30, 2010

oh, and speaking of willful misunderstanding, i am getting some traffic from an MRA site that cited this article, and used it as an opportunity to whine about how men are homeless in greater numbers than women, and that mens “dirty smelly” jobs are dangerous. oh boo fucking hoo. poor teh menz. not once did they reference hypervigilance, obstetric fistula, or rape. just like the fucking fun-fems and transwomen, who have managed to miss the whole point of the post too…but still manage to have plenty to say, allegedly “in response” to it. clearly, they dont know how to be responsive, or understand the meaning of the word “response”. perhaps they should look it up.

32. Sonia - March 30, 2010

I think there’s a big difference between wearing makeup and backing your cheating worthless husband. FWIW.

33. ashley - March 30, 2010

but its the fact that fun-feminism isn’t RESPONSIVE to aggregate male behavior thats the whole problem with it. AND the fact that fun-feminism is mainstream now, and that its whets passing as the “feminist movement” obligates me, i think, to call it out. and to be specific in my criticisms, which i am doing. rather than “those dumb bitches dont get it.” really, they are making concessions to men, which we all do, to some extent. so its hard to “hate” them, and i dont hate them. but as dirt mentions, theres really nothing feminist about it.

Most wrong-headed ideologies start out with a grain of truth which makes it more palatable and hooks people in, but then they go twist it to hell to fit their agenda. Fun feminism, (sex-liberalism as I call it,) starts with the grain of truth — that right wing patriarchal anti-sex attitudes want to punish women for having and enjoying sex, which is true.
but then sex liberals, feminist and non-feminist, go on to advocate for women to be sort of like teenagers who rebel against their parents by doing the opposite of what the parents tell them, just because it is the opposite. the right wing religious patriarchal dogma is telling women not to have sex or like sex, so fun fems/sex liberals are rebelling against them by doing the opposite, by fucking everything in sight, or at least promoting the idea that women can fuck every man in sight and that will be empowerfullizing or “fun”, not harmful or abusive. Men are basically tricking women here.
Of course, sex-liberal dude nation men AND right wing men alike LOVE these women they can fuck to their dick’s content, and should they be made to feel in any way responsible for the sexual objectification, use and abuse of the women they are fucking, they can write it off as basically “libertarian” attitudes toward sex. I get mine and everyone else can go die. Because these are empowerfullized women who made choices and the men therefore owe them no responsibility or consideration. And they say so!
It is embarrassing to fun fems to admit that they expected or wished for anything from these men other than to be used or abused, so in order to keep their pride once tossed to the side, fun fems will rationalize that they don’t care that these men use and abuse them, to admit so would make them look foolish and gullible and so fun fems will continue to defend this phenomenon rather than be seen as “infantilized”.

34. ashley - March 30, 2010

the best part of the documentary is that wubete did not have to go back to her village just to get raped again. that is what i was thinking about for most of the documentary. that these operations are being done to correct the medical injury, but then the women and girls must then return to continue to be raped.

35. ashley - March 30, 2010

What about the rare situations when a man is not abusive, not controlling, not domineering? When a man truly loves a woman? When a woman truly loves a man?

BFF, maybe this isn’t what you meant, but, I’m jsut curious about this. how would a woman with a feminist conscious be able to even start a relationship with a man, even if she is heterosexual? Knowing what we know? I’m not saying I’ve even “advanced” feminist yet, but I’d say I’m past 101, and for many years what I have seen has made me completely lose all attraction to dudes, and my experience is that dudes mainly want to have hetero partners who worship their dicks, so it seems pretty easy to avoid as a woman who with even a modicum of feminist awareness. (I make the caveat that others have I’m talking about women who actually have a choice, and I realize many don’t in this world.) But it sounded like you were talking about lovey-dovey relationships between dudes and women, and that is what I don’t get how it could happen once one realizes the truth. And I’m not saying this as a superiority thing at all — I am literally saying how can women be attracted to dudes, and to be brutally honest about it, dudes are pretty much not attracted to feminists who don’t adhere to P2K beauty standards either. so I’m just not getting how women would come to willingly partner with dudes in these circumstances.

36. SheilaG - March 30, 2010

I think we are all in our small and large ways trying to get at solutions, trying different things. We all come from different places, but we all know first hand just how horrifying the world is for women.
MRAs just annoy me, and illustrate exactly how clueless and cruel men truly are. They are disordered beings on the Internet, creepy in person, inhumane is so many small ways, that even they don’t realize how this looks to women daily.

I agree with Sonia that separatism isn’t for all women, but I do know that I count myself very lucky to have met Separatists at an early age, and to be with that radical lesbian feminist community all those years.
Back in those days, heteronormativity just suffocated us. We had to break free of men, and we also had to break free of the male pleasing, which every woman engages in to one degree or another.
I make it a point to be far more aggressive and in men’s faces than most women are able I think, because I do have a different place to view the world.

I am under less illusions about men, since they were always a tangible enemy, a menacing presense. Lesbians and straight women are in radically different positions in the world, psychologically as well as socially. And, outside the Internet, I don’t feel much honest conversation goes on in daily life when I am in groups of straight women. I like who women are when men are not there at all. I love to see women together, and as I said before, straight women love women’s separatism too, they love the closeness that women have.

That said, it is hard to break free of the orbit of patriarchy, and to envision a world without it. Yet, I know Mary Daly broke free, I know Janice Raymond broke free, I know Susan B. Anthony broke free and Matilda Joclyn Gage. We have clear hertorical examples of women doing incredible things in their break from penile prisions.

On an interesting note… as I started this post, my dog came into the room and knocked over a cloth bag, it fell on the floor and out fell “Gynecology” by Mary Daly, which I had be re-reading since she died. Those moments in time I believe are our radical sisters in communion with us. I believe the women of the past reach out to us in the present.

I had no contact with fun feminism, the term would have seemed odd to the young me of 30 years ago. Lesbians do a lot of incredibly heavy social lifting for the feminist movement, and our work constantly gets denegraded. I think as a survival strategy, we hold on to our grandiosity, our belief in our own moral superiority. I’m not saying this is the best trait I possess, but nevertheless, when the world truly hates you, when whole countries propose laws to kill, imprison or torture and rape you just because you are a lesbian, you are very much alone in a world of this supreme indifference.

Our ideals of Separatism were essential for creating new space… rather like walking into a walled garden free of prying patriarchal eyes. When we had this passion, lesbians were strong, daring and powerful. We even had our priestesses of the goddess, our troubadors who sang love songs directly to us in the form of the whole women’s music movement. To finally be able to celebrate at Michigan and women’s land and in a deeply communal love worldwide is something that I treasure.

If you are heterosexual, this kind of thing would be too difficult, too out there. Like solitary confinement in prison, the few of us who survive this develop a kind of spectacular passion for one another.
Sadly, lesbian worlds have been highly corrupted by the sexual culture of gay men. The alliance with these poisoned sexually out of control urban sexists has derailed the course of lesbian feminism.
In that, lesbians male pleased.

To survive the solitary confinement of years of being closeted, years of being subjected to social cruelty that most straight women can hardly imagine exists… in the early stages, this produces a kind of explosive anger, a rage, a contempt. But as time goes by, this becomes a more mature separatism, that turns into the love letters between women. Undercover Punk celebrates this kind of separatism so well on her blog. Because her celebration is a gift to me of an older more hardened generation. To make a kind of wobbly comparison, it is like comparing young Chinese women today in their new found capitalist wealth to older women like me who were red guards— not exactly the same, but I’m more of the generation that is the red guard feminist style, the foot soldiers of Amazonness if you will.

I somehow knew, that if I lived long enough, I would see something lovely in the next generation, but it would be hard to take. It would cause a certain uneasiness… the foot soldiers out on patrol, eating rations in a guerrilla conflict for years, suddenly being served a 10 course French dinner. A shock to the system.

We are all in feminism together, we all want the torture and the demeaning of women to end. We all want justice for those women who walked miles to the fistula hospital. We all wave our fists in support of every group of women in the world that fights back, that marches in the streets, or who escapes an abusive husband with her life.

I want all women to be free, but I can’t take an association with men.
I can’t stand the sight of them, so I will have to stay away from straight women’s groups who welcome them in. I will have to keep a polite distance from husbands and boyfriends. I will have to distance myself, because it is not my place to be there. We can all be civil as human beings, and we all come to the present moment from differing herstorical pasts, different generations. To have survived the brutality of being lesbian as a youth, I created a warrior self, I connected to the women of herstory as my foremothers, because none existed in the present of my youth.

I would use my rage to literally beat up men who harassed women, and risked my life many times to beat the shit out of bad boyfriends, or clobber men who grabbed women’s breasts on trains and subways.
My rage fueled a strange physical strength, but I had to be cautious with my explosive hatred, my battling nature. Separatism to me was partially an oasis from 24-hour hatred of men. I had to be away from them, because I wanted to be free of hatred, I wanted to be fully in love with women.

In my time, we had so little of anything… so little money, so little resources. In my middle age, I think I relish what the new lesbians like Undercover are doing, because it’s a step to a new kind of light or freedom. With the insights of her lesbian loving, beauty loving blog, I take this inspiration out to the world. It helps me live by example, without words many times, but by a passionate example.

It’s a different life to be sure, far less gloomy and despairing, because I have survived this long with so little only to gain the world.
I can see that with Internet feminism we are once again in consciousness raising, once again hearing about how women are freeing themselves. We will be in different places on the liberation path, literally a product of our life and times, but we are still together with women. Either we love women in every way, a fall in love with lesbians everywhere, or we are in sisterhood and communion. Or both.

We have communication that is complex and is limited by the Internet.
It is not the same as real life. I am not as gloomy, and have a sunny nature because the love of women and my separatist self fuels a kind of poetic musical happiness. I try to write love letters to women always, to remember what love is in a hostile world. That has kept me going as a feminist decade after decade, year after year, it is that joyful love of women whose passion is directed as much as possible to other women. It is as much about chivalrus lesbian existence as it is about politics, if that makes any sense at all.

Thank you all for your words. I really like this discussion a lot. I think you are all very courageous in your truth.

37. polly - March 30, 2010

So, about Lesbian Separatism being at the expense of other women who male-please so that we don’t have to: I believe there is validity to this criticism.

I think only to the extent though, UP, that it’s only an option available to women of a certain level of affluence and in certain societies. But in the west, where social security benefits are available, that level of affluence doesn’t have to be very high, comparatively – there are, or were, a lot of lesbian separatists on benefits (I realise the USA is very different from the UK in this regard by the way, we have a national health service for one).

So you might be poorer if you’re a lesbian – you won’t have big cars, big houses, or flash holidays, but you can still live. Usually the more affluent women are the ones who have/have had relationships with men – eg the woman who ‘comes out’ in middle age after a long marriage.

You don’t get any pat points for being a lesbian separatist. And yes, males might be prepared to ‘tolerate’ lesbians up to a point if there are enough other fuckable women around.

But my personal experience (which is why I’m otherwise engaged BTW, tying up a few legal loose ends) teaches me that that level of tolerance is very low. It’s better than nothing maybe, but the straight males will still hate you by and large, and give the pat points to the heteronormative.

(NB even in western societies there are still of course women from certain groups/communities who are subject to extreme social pressures to not be lesbians – doesn’t mean they aren’t though, cos I’ve met a few muslim lesbians in my time)

38. Undercover Punk - March 30, 2010

Polly, agreed! The minimum level of privilege and affluence required to Separate is very much available to Western women.

Thank you, Sheila! I love the red guard analogy; I am definitely enjoying a ten course meal over here in Boston. And I thank you for being such a passionate participant in the struggle that paved the path to my comfort. LOVE! LOVE! LOVE!

Also, this is a totally AWESOME CONVO about Separatism. I have been missing this from blogging.

39. SheilaG - March 30, 2010

I don’t understand how lesbian separatism is at the expense of other women, since even most women out there hate and fear separatism.
Radical lesbian separatists are among the most demonized people in “social justice” movements. People are doing everything in their power to say we don’t exist, or that we aren’t a viable group or that our concerns aren’t real. All the time we have women railing at us for opting out of male worlds. There are reasons that women would have problems with us, we don’t want their boyfriends or husbands around, we don’t have men at our homes or apartments, we don’t want to deal with male issues. We aren’t very supportive of heterosexuality.

There are plenty of women out there who will have sex with men. I’m not holding my breath that this will change all that much in my lifetime.
Men don’t pay much attention to me, I am indifferent to them. I’d rather talk to and be with women. I’ve often wondered if men are simply more charming to women just to have sex with them, and since I’m not in that sexual world, men are free to act worse than they do in private with women they actually enslave (I mean live with).

Our level of affluence actually doesn’t have to be all that high. We’ve always shared freely, given stuff to each other, put each other up on couches, subsidized each other during periods of unemployment.
A group of us once supported several women who would have been out on the streets. Women know they can crash at my place and not do the things men do to women—like expect sex in return for a place to stay. Any woman who needs a ride home gets it, no questions asked. If I’ve got extra money, a woman who is struggling is going to get a dinner out, a tank filled with gas. People have done this for me, I do it for other women. I am indebted to the separatists who looked after me when I was very young. Not one of those woman ever took sexual advantage of me, but they kept me away from unsafe places. One woman owned a temp agency, so all the lesbians in town knew they could go to her and get a job, for example. We were very good at job sharing, subbing, temp work, whatever it took.

Persist in a career and have no children, save up money rather than spending it on high maintence “women’s clothing” and you’ll be better situated to deal with brutal economies etc. Two women who live together, have no children, and save and economize can have a wonderful life. We don’t need men or their money. The Internet makes even more income possible without having to interact with any human beings at all.

I still say that large groups of women everywhere should create male free worlds, so that all women have this option. Buying houses collectively, having extra rooms to share, pooling assets so that women can get higher education. We’ve sent a lot of women through college or special training programs through the years. We support lesbian businesses. A lot of us never got professional qualifications of any kind and were self taught— a lot cheaper than going to school, dealing with stupid boys in classes. Separatists aren’t as obsessed with how we look, dress, our weight. Fat women and skinny women,
even women with chicken pocks to quote the old TV ad.

I certainly had no time for advanced degrees, I had to get the basic education and get to work immediately. There were NO male safety nets. I have noticed that the wealthier women in our world were married to men for decades. Some of the most passionate lesbian separatists I’ve ever met were married to men for decades, hated the marriages, and once they were free they soared. They loved women the most passionately simply because they had suffered under PIV with creepy abusive men, for example.

To this day, one of the most powerfully romantic things I do is dance with women in their 70s…I adore them. I don’t think men ever look on elderly women with such love and passion as a lot of separatists I know. Women half our age love and adore us. Whoever has the freest mind often holds the most attraction. Perhaps it is this deeply erotic subtext that fuels our desire to do things for each other.
The diversity of our separatists is rather amazing. We often have intergeneration groupings — women who are 50 bond with women who are 25. Those with more resources share them, because we don’t want to deal with social service agencies in America. A lesbian doctor I know gives free medical care to women in need. We do this stuff as a matter of course, no fanfare, no awards ceremonies, we just do what it takes to protect and cherish our sisters.

I am convinced that women would flourish more with groupings of 15 or so, combined resources and assets and everything. We need to make a world where economic freedom from men is a perfectly viable and attractive alternative. This is a broad statement, but straight women are too socially isolated, too unable to create the collective the way separatists do. As long as straight women live in hetero units, they don’t have a wider social access. They remained trapped in a limited economy. If a straight woman married to a man loses a job, it can be a disaster. I don’t worry about the rent or mortgage all thta much, because sisters step up to the plate, as I do for them. I was motivated to make more money in the first place, so that the excess would go to women I knew who would need it. In this, I was doing planning for the needs of 15 women or more. The most disturbing trend was the creation of social service mentality in our community. We were doing much better I think when we were united in lesbian feminism. Now with younger women they suffer, so we have to teach them leadership skills, help them cope with the homophobia that can be so derailing to these younger women. Having to deal with brutal white supremacy AND patriarchy makes it all the harder.

Our older group is aware that we owe a debt to our older sisters even. We are thankful to live beyond age 50, we still cry over the loss of our lovers to drugs, suicide, alcohol. I struggle to support a few young lesbians struggling with depression and chronic employment at minimum wage jobs. I sometimes can’t sleep because of worry over the latest disaster or suffering. Separatists are willing to pay a price for our freedom, we know the costs, we know the benefits and yet we are still reviled for rejecting the horrors of males.

40. Big Fat Feminist - March 30, 2010

@ashley, thanks for your response. I am hesitant to say I’ve been with a man for 25 years who is not like any man ever described here. I’m hesitant because it sounds like “Not my Nigel!” and I HATE that. And yet … my Nigel does not care what I look like, does not care about what I do, does not divide our life into man-does-this and woman-does-that, can take or leave sex as I want it, and just generally is so different from most of the men I know. He “gets” patriarchy as much as a man can get it, he does not use porn, he does not just sit silently by when other men are being pigs. Nor does he expect a cookie for not doing these things. It’s why I chose him lo those many years ago. So – and I am NOT taking this personally; I am truly asking: would you recommend (If you were the Goddess of the world and could order everyone around) that I leave him and join a lesbian separatist community anyway? And leave my sons too?

I am nervous that this will sound like I’m picking a fight … I’m not; I really want to know what you (or anyone else here) thinks. I have been fortunate to be in woman-only spaces several times in recent years, and I drink in and fill up on that energy. So I am absolutely willing to turn the paradigm on its head and imagine things a different way.

factcheckme - March 31, 2010

welp. for my part, i have said here a few times that now that i am awake, as it were, the relationship i am in now will be the last one i ever have, with a man. theres just no way i would ever want to “date” again, now that i know what i know. and frankly, wanting a relationship and wanting children, so that you date multiple men to try them on for size, is probably the most dangerous and most risky thing that any woman could ever do. its so much more dangeorus than being in an unabusive relationship, and just staying there. and its much more dangerous than just giving up on men forever, and finding other things to do.

as sheila mentions, even hanging out with your nigel is a fucking disaster in the making, if you are giving up your career, and isolating yourself in the process. and almost all women are, even under the best circumstances. i just wasnt as rad as i am now, 8 years ago when i met my partner. we have been together for a long time, and have a relatively harmonious partnership that pleases me more than it pisses me off. and, i dont want to leave him, and i am not going to leave him. some of that is that i have made my bed, so to speak, and now have to lie in it. my mom and my sister and i decided some 20 years ago that family wasnt important, so we moved very far away from each other. now, the 3 of us only really have our men, and we dont have each other. not in any real or real supportive kind of way. we dont have our female relatives, and i cant even count how many wonderful female friends i have left behind over the years, when my education and then my career took me elsewhere. or theirs took them away, or both. the choices we make over decades make certain outcomes all but impossible, in the end. when i was 20, there was not an inkling in my mind that i would ever give up on men, or want to create a female community, or that i wanted to stay geographically close to my female relatives and friends. now…well its pretty clearly too late for much of that, and isnt just up to me anymore. my mom and sister and i would all have to move back to where we came from, and they arent going to move, and neither am i. and my partner and i have amassed a quarter million dollars in student loan and other debt, since we have been together. that needs to be addressed. those are just a couple of examples of the ways in which my own choices, from when i was a young sprout and didnt know fuckall about anything, have played out. and its hell and gone from a lesbian seperatist commune, let me tell you.

41. Big Fat Feminist - March 31, 2010

FCM, thanks for the response. I do have my own business, and thank you for talking about the “don’t give up your career” aspect of patriarchy that women don’t want to hear when we’re in luuuuuvvvv with a man. Even my own father used to say when I was 13, “Never depend on a man for your living.” Some 30 years later I asked him how he got so enlightened back in the early 70s, and he said it was from watching telephone operators (all women, of course) who had to work nights because their husbands had dumped them. He said their lives were always a horrific struggle. (For any of you young radfems here, people used to need real live human beings to make the connections for long distance calls, and even earlier than that, for ALL telephone calls.)

Funny, when I first met Nigel he was so different I was baffled. He did not respond to any of my patriarchy-approved games. I did not get it. He didn’t like porn! He thought fellatio was degrading! (Phew – I dodged a bullet with THAT one, LOL) He did not want to have sex ALL THE FUCKING TIME like every other boyfriend I’d had! He did not flirt! He would not be coy nor respond to my coyness. Once a woman we’d just met said snidely to him, “How come ‘she’s’ not talking? Does she not like us?” He retorted, “‘She’s sitting right here, and can hear you. Why don’t you ask her?” Of course I was upset that he didn’t DEFEND me. (For crying out loud) He did not compliment my looks, and believe me, I fished for compliments. None of the stuff I’d learned as a girl “worked” with him.

So cut to today, and I am so glad he’s who he is. What if I’d ended up with some more “typical” man? I don’t know if this was luck, or some dormant part of me recognizing that no, he’s not a friggin’ weirdo, he’s actually a great partner for a feminist.

AND, I also long for and crave the woman-only spaces I read about here. More and more I love and appreciate women. I feel like I have finally found a place here to celebrate women – not as “independent, sex-poz gals who get along with men! in a feminist way!” but as women who are fucking sick and tired of the P and rape culture and women being ignored and not appreciated for our real beauty, body and soul.

So thank you for this place. So much.

42. veganprimate - March 31, 2010

I just want to say…I love being a separatist! I had an eye appointment today, and I specifically asked to see a female doc. There is such a difference in the vibes when interacting with women. I freely choose to ask for women whenever I can, and I am not even embarrassed. When my primary care doc refers me to a specialist, I make sure to tell her, “Women docs, only!” I know it doesn’t change the world, but it makes me feel empowered (ugh! I hate that word!), and as long as I have a choice, I’m choosing women.

43. SheilaG - March 31, 2010

Just reading the above makes things more clear. It’s often been confusing to me about how women who were feminists became so isolated, since feminism to me has always been about women’s community as well as about issues.

As little baby lesbian feminists, we created large and small groups, and these groups grew nationally and internationally. It’s not unusual for someone to put out the word, and gather a group of women for a trip to Michigan, for example. We’ve had our own mini mortgage crises too, and made arrangments for women to move out of apartments, rent the rooms in the houses, so that the lesbian owners wouldn’t be in danger of losing a house. That was last year’s scary nightmare.

I am so sorry that life became such an economic struggle for you FCM.
I can’t fathom such a huge student loan, unless it was medical school at Harvard! I admire any woman who gets an advanced education.
I often thought that life would have been easier for me had I had a proper business degree, instead of learning everything by doing.

Since I never was interested in men and boys, and truth be told, never felt much of anything around them, it is very hard for me to understand what this would be. The connection I’ve had to lesbians worldwide has been my window to the world. It’s provided me with opportunity to live in different lands, to learn a new language, to feel a part of something larger than myself. I feel connected to all the generations out there, the young, the middle aged, the old.

I can feel very distant from hetero life, sad in a way as I watch women in shopping malls or beauty parlours, depressed when a straight woman friend gets a face lift, that sort of thing. But it was never just me and some man away from a community of women. I didn’t have the support of a biological family, just had to get life together on my own. Although you rather disparage your “fun feminist” years, perhaps you should treasure the idea that you did have so much fun when you were younger… I try to think that life had beauty to it, to see that to remember that. I try to think of my memory of an English literature class long ago, and a very young and innocent self read aloud Wordsworth and Byron as I gazed at the most beautiful girl in the class. I try not to think about what happened later.

If you have met a good partner, you have met one. There is no politics in love ultimately. I didn’t have a desire to have dozens of sexual adventures, I’m more of a romantic rather than a hook up, more of a dreamer… it amuses the young ones, but hey, they’ve never had Byron recited to them :-)

44. polly - March 31, 2010

I’ve often wondered if men are simply more charming to women just to have sex with them

stop wondering Sheila, IMNSHE, men only TALK to women any more than is absolutely necessary if they want to fuck them. Or they’re friends with someone they want to fuck… (as happened to me recently). Yes there ARE exceptions, but they just prove the rule.

45. FemmeForever - March 31, 2010

Sheila,

Your vision of the feminine community is beautiful and very similar to the community I wish for. Your way of being in the world and ideology is also similar to mine. My life is socially, financially (excepting workplace), sexually and emotionally independent of men, and has been for a long time. Anytime I have to deal with a professional or expert I will seek a woman so I don’t have to deal with the male-to-female language barrier. If I could find a female auto mechanic I would be lifetime customer. The main difference between us is that I am straight.

I envy you your feminine community. I have been trying to construct one for myself for years but it doesn’t work because women are never more important to het women than men are. Also I find that women who cohabit with men develop a harshness that makes them male-like which I know is a defense mechanism against the daily emotional abuse they suffer but knowing that doesn’t make experiencing it any more tolerable. And if they aren’t thinking and acting like men then they are fawning all over men and I can’t stand that either. So I find myself isolating from men AND women because women refuse to hold men accountable for who they are. They all want to complain about men but they want the status quo. I don’t hate them for this, on the contrary. I just can’t abide the recurring head-banging they do and I’m soooo sad they are willing to suffer. So I spend a lot of time in isolation wishing for the supportive feminine community that you obviously have. I have often wondered if lesbian culture would welcome het women of like feminist mind. I don’t know the answer but I know that it’s human nature to want to be with your own tribe.

Thank you for your comments they give me hope.

46. rainsinger - March 31, 2010

Hey Polly *hugs* *sloopch* I was getting worried about you!

Anyway, I’m just popping to say what a wonderful thread this has been to read! I have really enjoyed it.

As for lesbian separatism though – I see it as a ‘continuum’ when used used in the political sense, not the personal lifestyle sense. To me, political lesbian separatism is anywhere along the continuum to going to a women-only spaces a few times a year, to excluding all men from your *personal* life-space (as much as is possible, given whatever your personal circumstances are).

But sometimes, the *personal* just is NOT *political*. Sometimes it is just *personal* luck.

Finding men who aren’t exploitative etc, is like finding the needle-in-the-haystack. Of course they exist, but there sure aren’t enough of them to go around! Women who find it great – good luck to you. Because Luck is all it is. You found the rare individuals – well, bully for you (sarcasm intended) – please dont rub your sisters nose in it – its like crowing about winning the lottery to everyone – they wont like you for it. You found the ‘exceptional’ male, does that make you an ‘exceptional’ woman??

Lesbian separatists who *personally* can take that option, and find it wonderful – well, good luck to you too (also sarcasm intended) – because luck is all it is. Part of it is just age-group, baby-boomer generation women in the western world, who did get far more benefits in their youth, than young women today do. It was economic boom-boom party times, and the options and choices available, were far greater than they are today.

But, in the end – patriarchy is a *system* of male collectivity, that treats ALL females, collectively as commodities – if large numbers of women did choose childless lesbian separatism, and the numbers of women in “collective pool” of fuckable women reduced – I honestly believe that men-as-a-group would not tolerate it – another holocaust of the Burning Times would be upon us so fast, we wouldnt have time to blink.

Radical feminism, or lesbian separatism as a political movement – is not just a *personal* “lifestyle choice” – I find many of my closest les-sep friends the most annoying for this – they often do treat it as a “lifetsyle choice” – and I get tired of their frustration at heterosexual women. It seems often that in their separation from men, they have also separated from most other women!

To me, that is not radical feminism, just an adaptation of I-feminism – radical feminism is a POLITICAL ideology, not PERSONAL lifestyle ideology, which all other feminisms are – thats why it was originally “Women’s Liberation” – liberation = freedom, liberating from men – and tries to gain political solidarity across all women – even the ones who dont want to be liberated, even those who dont want freedom from men, even the HOPs and what Mary Daly called the ‘Token Torturers’.

For some women to ‘have the choice’, many, many, many others must either a) not have the choice at all – or (b) choose otherwise willingly –by any means necessary – thats how patriarchy works – they dont care too much if a small number of women go off and be independent – but they will care very much, if too many women do so. For every woman who chooses the childless les-sep path, there will always, always, always be hundreds more who cant or wont.

On the other hand, I can also sympathise greatly with why lesbian feminists have withdawn from working with het feminists. Bit of herstory – the second-waver les-fems did put an enormous amount of personal commitment of time and energy, into the struggles for abortion rights, reproductive control, divorce law changes, improved educational opportunities for girls, setting up, and womanning the workforce for rape crisis centres, women’s health centres, DV refuges and the list goes on.

They did this, not because it was a “lesbian” issue – but becaue they were “women’s issues” – and they believed in solidarity, and as circumstances allow – it was more likely to be lesbians who had time and energy to be involved.

When turn came about by the mid-80s or so, lesbians were almost forcibly excluded from ‘feminism’ – lesbians were told their issues of discrimination were not ‘women’s’ issues – but “gay” ones. Well, I can understand, why many lesbian feminists turned around and said well, fuck you too sister. Divide-and-Conquer is what patriarchy does best.

47. Big Fat Feminist - March 31, 2010

FCM, hugs if you want them.

I hope you are not beating yourself up over your choices, for what “choices,” exactly, are there in patriarchy? If you have a relationship that pleases you more than it pisses you off, then I’d say you’ve already done very well for yourself. And, no longer being the innocent young funfem onion that you were, at least you KNOW what things DO piss you off, and why.

None of us can smash patriarchy all on her own. You’re doing a great service by having a safe site, and by NOT SHUTTING up about feminism. That’s huge.

48. SheilaG - March 31, 2010

Veganprimate– it’s just as simple as that, always ask for women.
We are so lucky now, thanks to traditional boring old second wave feminists who broke barriers so that women are now half of medical school classes rather than .0001%

I had dinner recently with Dr. Susan Love, a giant in lesbian medical activism, and a woman who is determined to end breast cancer. Don’t know if she’s a separatist, but she is a powerful lesbian.

Big Fat Feminist, I must have missed your above comment… sorry about that. I want my world as free of men as is humanly possible, but I would never tell another woman to get rid of her parter (through divorce not murder :-) BTW.

There really are straight women in the world, and that’s fine, again, as long as they keep those men away from me. However, there are all those women “in-between” who because of economic necessity, or just plain fear of social rejection are lesbians who marry men. I meet them all over the place. To be indelicate, they are the ones most likely to hit on me at a club, and I now can energetically feel the difference. Hard to describe, but their energy is colonized in some way. I can’t put my finger on it. I was always conflicted about their presense in lesbian clubs, what they wanted. Hard line in the past, I would leave them alone. But, I must be softening in my old age, and will talk, dance, share a drink. They may someday have the courage to come out.

I can’t speak for all separatists here naturally, but the more we reveal and develop communities of resistance, the more we create all women’s space (like Michigan) like the music of Alex Dobkin and like Mary Daly, who expanded women’s intellectual territory about a billion light years, the freer all women are going to be.

Someone has to do this, and be this, so that this example exists in the world. We have to live it and be it. That is what the true philosophy of separatism is, and that’s why it is so reviled and attacked by MRA and even most moderate feminists.

And Polly, thanks for confirming why men talk to women. I’d long suspected this, but since I am a lesbian, I can’t see the male manipulation of women in high geer, because again, I’ve never dated, romantically kissed, married or slept with a man. I never dated boys in high school, shock imagine that in the early 70s! Despite a complete absense of any lesbian anything, other than my inner poetic self, and a world overrun with heteronormativity run amuck, I still had some inner compass that guided me. Like the clover who spoke to Mary Daly to announce it’s existence to her, I felt that spiritual or cosmic call of the wild.– Wild in the sense Mary Daly meant it, not some sex poz wildness, just for clarity here.

Imagine that, separatist commentary, and pretty damn respectful commentary on a hetero woman’s blog site. Now that’s progress. We never had conversations like this back in the day. It’s one of the best interactive conversations I’ve had recently on the topic.

49. SheilaG - March 31, 2010

Femme Forever–

I was deeply touched by what you wrote. I would always invite straight women into our world, but find they don’t want to hear about it or are afraid of what a lesbian separatist is. There are always my attempts to connect with straight women on a deeper level, and I feel deeply for sisterhood worldwide. An old fashioned word I know, but still it is what I’d dreamt of. Whether it was childhood, and my most postive women only space… Girl Scouts, and all the happy memories of camping, hiking, selling cookies door-to-door, and my revered Girl Scout troop leaders… That was a connection between straight girls and lesbian girls that was genuine. I felt looked after, cared for, indulged if you will, because even as a girl I was very very eccentric, nerdy to use a word not in use then, ill at ease with my peers.

As an adult, I was happy to have deep sisterhood with straight women from all over the place. Oddly enough, I found non-American women the most open emotionally. The woman from Ecuador who is VERY straight, is a hairdresser by trade, and yet, I feel always that she loves me. When she lost her little niece to cancer, I just hugged her as she was attempting to hold back tears. Everyone else (American men and women) just left the meeting, ignored what she had said. We spent sometime together, me just listening, holding back my own tears.

I don’t think I have ever had this idea that lesbian separatism excludes straight women. Maybe in a time when straight women were completely freaked out about lesbians and very cruel to us. If you are under constant closeted fear, or on the receiving end of rejection to the degree that we all were, well, this life experience shapes you. It’s why it is now comic for me to hear straight women say we were some privileged demographic.

Has any straight women’s group that you know of created an event to celebrate their lesbian sisters? Was a cake baked for us when Marriage was passed in MA? Or Iowa? Or Denmark?

The truth is, I am a feminist, I have worked for all women’s liberation.
I have done everything in my power to make life better for women. My issues aren’t exclusively lesbian and never have been. Work place justice, an end to sexual harassment, immigrants rights to name a few things… even to the point of coming to blows with men who are harassing straight too scared to fight back. I don’t have the luxury of not knowing how to fight, and had to a lot in my youth, because, being a really NOT gender conforming girl, boys would ATTACK!

What deeply hurt my feelings, is that lesbians did all this work on behalf of all women, but when we asked for A LOT of help on lesbian rights issues, we were met with either A-hostility B-the silent treatment, C- indifference. And this still happens. The silence after Prop 8 in CA was passed was deafening the day after the election. Not one straight woman came up to me, looked me in the eye, and said, “I am so sorry you lost this” not one. What am I to make of this?
Now I’m ambivialent about all this lesbian marriage stuff, just as I’m ambivalent about lesbians even having children… I have never even had a civil union ceremony, in fact, my relationship has no legal status at all.

I don’t mean this to go on for so long, but I feel we are in kind of a compassionate harmony on this thread. FemmeForever you said you envied me my community, and yet, I have never ceased inviting straight women to be a part of my world. Never ceased to cook for them, never ceased to invite them to lesbian ritual space as women.
I find that now, more straight liberal type women do welcome me.
I am a kind of token I think, but will overlook this because I generally want to say YES to women. The thing is, I don’t see straight women showing much interest in me as a human being.

I understand what you mean when you say women become like men, or become harsh because of the brutality of het marriage itself. I’m not in the PIV marriage, never had children, never had home/family juggling at the expense of my career or studies. I have the luxury of reading for hours at a time in a silent house. My straight neighbor across the street is overworked, stressed out with two young kids, and has an inattentive husband. Her husband longs for a dog, but she doesn’t want one…more work for her.

I don’t want to live in social isolation, and try again and again every day in every way, to welcome new women friends in my life, to be with my old friends, to constantly be open to the beauty of women’s friendship. I find that straight women are very difficult to know, and I have to spend a lot of energy cultivating them, inviting them, calling them… they aren’t very proactive in friendships a lot of the time, and maybe aren’t all that aggressive. Lesbians do everything, we carry our own loads, we ask the “girl” out on the date, we are passive as other women ask us to dance, and us older types have a shy demeanor in the midst of our more aggressive young lesbian sisters.

Our older group can have an almost Victorian shyness in the midst of a really wild large urban lesbian sexually aggressive culture, which is a lot of clubs out there. More later, just thanks for all of this. It has made my world better today!

factcheckme - April 1, 2010

just wanted to mention, i hope noone here feels sorry for me, because between the 2 of us, my partner and i have the earning potential of 10 western mortals now, and i am sure we will be fine (unless one of us dies, or gets sick). just right now, fresh out of school and into the worst economic disaster since the great depression, its been really hard, and we arent where we are supposed to be. not even close. so its easy for people in the baby boomer generation to judge people in my situation, but its hard for them to see “timing” for what it is: LUCK. and luck can be either good or bad. pure fucking luck, that had nothing whatsoever to do with you, or your hardwork, or ambition. it is what it is.

really, i only mention the “choices” i made here because its exactly as BFF says: choices made within a patriarchy, for women, arent really “choices” like other people believe them to be. (other people = teh menz). you know, free will, and all that. we do the best we can, to stay safe. and frankly, its why i kept going through school even though it was horribly painful and took so many years. i knew i was alone in the world, that i couldnt depend on men (or my fucked up family) for shit, but i thought that was my only option. it never occured to me: lesbian commune! yes, thats the ticket! and i didnt have it in me to work minimim wage jobs all my life, because it was too hard, and i was afraid i would end up in a bad situation and not have the energy to work 3 fucking full time jobs just to make ends meet. plus, i never liked peanut butter or ramen noodles.

basically, i knew from the time i was 12 that i wanted to do what i am doing now. i dont know how i knew that, but i did. and i worked extremely hard to acheive these goals. but thats the thing about having goals, and acheiving them: you make “choices” that make other outcomes impossible. i am not asking anyone to feel badly for me. thats just the way it works. but it does make me extremely angry, and frustrated when someone acts as if all this is a big mystery why straight women do what they do: why not just live communnally with other women, its so much smarter! because i wasnt a fucking lesbian, when i was 12. thats why. i think i have made this clear, and sheila has said as much, that she gets it, so i will leave it at that.

thanks everyone for a lovely convo. keep posting if you want, i will be back later to mod.

factcheckme - April 1, 2010

oh, and thanks to those who mentioned that they had watched the video. i know not everyone can take the time to watch it (really, its an hour long) but its not often that something comes along, and changes everything. and thats what this video was, for me. it perfectly illustrates (and indeed inspired the title and the mental image) what its like to be born with a babymaker, in a rape culture. and when i said it documents women being injured and killed in childbirth, i should have said “injured and killed expelling dead fetuses” because thats exactly what it is. only our western privilege protects us from this fate, to the extent we are protected. in fact, it highlights exactly what being born-female means, and the difference between female-sexed and female “gendered.” thats a source of major confusion for many people, who cant see beyond their own western privilege to the truth. i couldnt, before i saw this video. its absolutely required viewing, IMO. discussion welcome, as always.

50. polly - April 1, 2010

There’s a difference though FCM, between not separating (and harming yourself) and ACTIVELY harming other women for personal advantage. And that is what the handmaidens of the patriarchy do, lets face it. I don’t think ALL straight women do it, by any means, but a lot do.

51. Big Fat Feminist - April 1, 2010

I meant to mention, I did watch the video, and thank you for posting it. I felt such empathy for the women, and my heart was gladdened when I saw them all together in the hospital, able to be there for one another.

Of course, the only reason they are in the hospital in the first place is because of how discardable women are.

52. FemmeForever - April 1, 2010

Thank you so much for feeling me, Sheila. I means so much to heard.

53. polly - April 1, 2010

I also suggest people who think organs don’t matter have their liver or their kidneys removed and see how long they last.

54. SheilaG - April 1, 2010

I think we can all agree that it is truly awful when women harm other women for personal advantage. The trouble is, I don’t think majorities really know what they are doing in the world…

55. FemmeForever - April 2, 2010

Yikes. That should say “It means so much to be heard.”

56. FemmeForever - April 2, 2010

You know I was thinking about this term hypervigilance. Why is it hyper and not just vigilance? Men are lazy, irresponsible, slackers. Women are hard-working, responsible, and vigilant. Men always have to make a feminine trait negative. Vigilance is positive. If we didn’t have it nothing would ever get done in this world. Vigilance is the reason I would have an all female staff were I a business owner. And the reason I would hire all female workers even now if I had the choice. Women are conscientious. You can trust us not to fuck up. Not so with them. I am very proud of my vigilance and it’s a big reason, among others, that I always feel I can best a man at just about any task (assuming said task is not based on physical strength). Hypervigilance = Hypermisogyny

factcheckme - April 2, 2010

I also suggest people who think organs don’t matter have their liver or their kidneys removed and see how long they last

well thats just it polly. they dont think of vaginas as organs, at all. vaginas are just fuckholes, for men. and nothing matters unless and until THEY say it matters. of course, they are completely ignorant, and remain willfully ignorant to the extent that they havent watched the NOVA vid that i have posted here at least 4 times now, and to the extent that they ignore all other evidence that would refute their ridiculous claims, of the ways that their western privilege is shaping that opinion. not to the mention utter, utter erasure of women, as a sexual class, thats required for this fucked-up “gendered” world view.

because for almost all women, world-wide, their born-sex is their prison, and their own organs are literally their executioner. because they were born with babymakers in a rape culture, they have dead fetal parts running through them, several times a year. DEAD FETAL PARTS. this is damaging the women internally (and psychologically too), and killing them. they arent even giving birth to live babies, because many times the women are so malnourished that they are literally too small to *ever* give birth safely. and many of them are too young to boot. they are married off as child brides, and they do heavy manual labor (like all slaves do) and they arent fed properly (they literally eat the scraps that the fatassed male relatives dont want) so they never fully develop physically. and they are repeatedly raped and impregnated by their new “husbands.” when one “wife” dies this way, he just takes another. and another.

in many parts of the world, we have serial child rapists and serial murderers, passing as “husbands.” and fucking fun-fems are blogging about how fun it is to hitchhike, and teaming up with the fucking transwomen to tell radfems we are doing feminism wrong. FUCK THEM ALL.

factcheckme - April 2, 2010

You know I was thinking about this term hypervigilance. Why is it hyper and not just vigilance?

well thats a good point FF. because its not “too much” if its just the right amount. and most of us are as vigilant as we can possibly be, without going crazy (and many women push that limit, and many others break it). and its still not enough, many times. our behaviors are *always* gauged, in relation to men, and whats normal for men. sitting on their fat asses watching sports is about all they have to do, to stay safe. (ie. NOTHING, they are already safe. or bonding with their posse so they will have each others back, if its ever needed. you know, just in case). not that they ever have to think about it, which is kind of the whole point. *we* have to think about it, and think 5 moves ahead, all the time. its incredibly stressful.

of course, the term itself is a clinical term, and is used as part of a diagnosis of PTSD (i linked to a definition in the beginning of the comments section). in “extreme” presentations, it “resembles” paranoia. HAHAHAHHA and PTSD, for men, is something they acquire IN WAR. WAR. hello. that should fucking tell you something, right there. number one, that womens every day existance is absolutely brutal, whereas men only experience this extreme stress in extremely unusual situations. and two, that when they come home, the men’s horror is over, and their “hyperarousal” and “hypervigilance” is no longer necessary. so its inappropriate, and a disease state. but women never get a fucking break, and for us, its ALWAYS necessary.

ie. what would be a disease state, for men, is a defense mechanism, for women. because of rape. and men cant tell the fucking difference, because they dont care, and because everything is all about them, always.

factcheckme - April 2, 2010

But to clarify, you’re confusing gender and sex. Most people do, it’s not just you.

Sex is a physical reality. And when roughly one half of the human race has babies and the other half doesn’t, biology IS destiny actually. If you’re in the (very small) bit of the female population able to have control over your own reproductive capacities, bully for you, you’re privileged, to an extent. But being female matters very much if you don’t -and even if you do, a lot of popular contraceptives aren’t exactly a walk in the park. And even if you are in the affluent first world, you’re likely to find your financial prospects hugely affected if you have a baby. Particularly if you get sacked for being pregnant. Which is very common.

Now the magic bit is however, even if you NEVER get pregnant, you still get stuck in the ghetto reserved for the babymakers if you appear female on the outside. Which answers Nicky’s question about intersex, it’s how you’re categorised that’s the issue as well. So you’re in a clever double bind. Even if you don’t have a baby,even if you’re an infertile/post menopausal lesbian separatist, you don’t get to escape the lot of the female person, in fact you’ll be castigated for your lack of babymaking/dried up old hagness like as not. And your boss still won’t pay you as much.

And that, my friend, is gender.

thanks polly, for this excellent explanation of gender. its not so “fun” when one realizes what “gender” really is, and what its not. its NOT men putting on sparkly pink shirts, and giving the finger to the patriarchy (HAHAHA men flipping off the patriarchy, how unintentionally funny an image is that??) gender is what makes all female-assigned-at-birth human beings ghettoized sexual and domestic slaves to men, EVEN THE ONES THAT CANT REPRODUCE. how un-fun can you get. i mean really, its kinda a downer, WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT IT.

http://feminazi.wordpress.com/2010/02/16/transgenderism-active-framin/#comment-5225

57. polly - April 3, 2010

Gender is also this (really I despair). From a piece on a couple who had fertility treatment to sex select for twin girls:

When the twins were born, she called them Georgia and Danielle. They are, says Nicola, “completely different from the boys in every respect. The boys are rough and running around with guns. The girls are usually attached to my side, drawing, doing make-up, nail varnish, watching princess movies and just chatting constantly. Ah! I can hear Danielle.”

Out in the hallway are two pretty six-year-old girls in pink shifts. They take me to their bedroom, a bower of pinkness, with a pink plastic princess palace and two pink double buggies, for Georgia and Danielle’s twin girl baby dolls.

And dawg help those girls if they wish/dare to be anything OTHER than pink princesses eh?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2010/apr/03/sex-selection-babies

factcheckme - April 3, 2010

yes, how coincidental that this couple got the 2 pretty pink princesses that they paid so much money for, and went through so much agonizing physical and emotional pain to get. now what i would like to know is how all this pink shit materialized in the home for the girls to “choose.” by magic?

that the parents actually think this has anything to do with the girls, rather than having EVERYTHING to do with them, the parents, is really frightening. i mean really. frightening. talk about not seeing the words on the page.

factcheckme - April 3, 2010

you know, if people were honest with themselves about gender, more parents might find behavioral differences between their girl and boy children a fascinating study into their own unconcsious bias in thier rearing of those children, or their own selective seeing and hearing based on perceived sex difference that has nothing to do with how the children are behaving. instead of “proof” (its not) of biological sex difference. but i guess its asking too much that people really see things for what they are, or very likely are, rather than they way they want them, or the way they have always believed them to be. how disappointing.

factcheckme - April 3, 2010
58. SamC - April 3, 2010

This discussion has been really interesting to read through.

I watched the video, and haven’t commented so far because I really didn’t know what to say, in light of what I’d just watched in the video. It angers and infuriates me so much that fun-fems and trans women DARE come here, comment shit about organs not mattering and radfems “victim-blaming” without even having the courtesy to WATCH THE DAMN VIDEO. The minute anyone says “organs don’t matter” they erase the existence of those women (in the video thy couldn’t spare an hour of their lives to watch) completely – and discarding the lives of those women, dictated by the organs they were born with, as meaningless is unfathomably anti-feminist and offensive. Then they have the fucking cheek to talk about “cis-privilege” and the like… It’s like some sort of twisted joke, and it’s fucking infuriating.

Thanks for the great post.

factcheckme - April 3, 2010

thanks for watching sam. maybe its unfair of me to expect people to watch the vid, its long and i know women are busy and just want to pop into a few blogs and seed their minds with something interesting, (as opposed to the horribleness of what we are exposed to everywhere else) and leave. theres nothing wrong with that. and i also know that there are lurkers here who have watched the vid but havent said anything. and those who dont know what to say. i get it. but this vid should absolutely be required viewing, as i have said before. it changed everything for me, when i saw it on PBS. i was stunned. some things fell into place, that never made sense before. its VERY easy to be confused about the difference between sex and gender, and its because we western feminists have certain choices in life, and have access to birth control. but we are also quite blind when it comes to the ways that we are the same as all women, because we were all born with babymakers in a fucking rape culture (i will say that at least a hundred thousand more times in my lifetime, because its fucking true). that our “privileged” status is actually extremely tenuous, and many of us know it, on whatever level. some of us become aware of it on a conscious level. and when that happens, its fucking horrifying. but seeing things for what they really are, is always a good thing, IMO. its better than believing lies. its better to see the context in which we are making “choices” isnt it? i think so. i think thats the whole crock of beans, right there. context means everything. if we arent interested in that, we may as well go home. thanks for reading.

factcheckme - April 3, 2010

oh, and regarding context, so many people thought that “the matrix” was a really interesting movie…i dare say that probably *most* people who read and/or post on the feminist blogs have seen it. and it was an interesting movie, very much so. it was the first and only film i think i have ever seen that deals DIRECTLY with the issue of context. that theres a “big picture” out there that we dont see, and that various forces are trying very hard to keep us from seeing, because it benefits them to do so. if people can watch that film and get the basic premise, then i think they are smart enough to understand the concept of, and the importance of context. but to then refuse to apply it to themselves and to real life, even when there are people out there willing to spoon feed it to you (as i and my very patient commenters are doing, and like other radfems are doing) seems like willful ignorance, to me. i mean really. what was so interesting about “the matrix” anyway? was it that keanu reeves is such a great actor or a believable action hero? i doubt it, although it was the first film (i think) that utilized the wires and panoramic shots in the hand-to-hand combat scenes thats so popular now (crouching tiger, charlies angels etc). the premise of “the matrix” was absolutely fascinating. it really was. but “context” is not science fiction. context is real. its the backdrop against which we all live. it provides the “meaning” of and the reason for everything we do. change the context, and you change the meaning. or, when you become aware of the context in which youve been living this whole time, you see what things mean, for the first time. theres really no other way to gauge meaning. either you are awake, or you are asleep, to what things actually mean, in relation to the big picture. its really as simple as that.

59. SheilaG - April 3, 2010

FCM, I believe with men it is willful ignorance. They don’t want to change, don’t care, don’t want to know anything of the truth of women.
I really believe this.

As for context, the reason it is so important to move throughout the world is to change the context, because that is what will cause a person to wake up. If we don’t feel the change in context on a deeply emotional level, no real change is possible.

Had it not been for a change in context, I would not be the person I am today.

I tried to watch the Matrix, but it was just too speial effects and flashy for me. Couldn’t finish watching it. Have this problem with a lot of movies actually.

This idea of context is very difficult for patriarchally conditioned people to see and feel. It’s why transwomen don’t get biology or science or even how a female body naturally functions. It’s why men don’t really understand the bodies and physical nature of women to begin with, and I believe this is willful ignorance on the part of transwomen, because they have refused to transplant the one organ they can’t change, their own patriarchally conditioned brains. “What the anvil, what the chain, in what furnace is thy brain”

It’s why men demand PIV, not even caring about the risks to women.
But also gay men don’t care either, and still to this day, willfully make other men sick because of their misuse of the penis. They don’t like to admit this stuff is still going on, but believe me it is.

So men have no idea the danger to the world male sexual entitlement poses to the world, no idea, no clue, no compassion, no nothing. And I’ve never and I do mean NEVER met one man who will own up to this, admit it, or even try to find out why radical feminists talk about this stuff. Who is served by willful ignorance? Well, patriarchy and male supremacy is served, because it never wants women to wake up that’s for sure.

I don’t claim to be all knowing in the ways of feminism, but I do know my extensive lesbian feminist context, makes my view of hetero worlds very very different ALL THE TIME. It’s what gives a minority a view of oppression that is different.

My two pents :-)

factcheckme - April 3, 2010

i think its willful on the part of women too sheila. because its a very scary thing when things start to look different. when men start to look different. i spoke about that on the “more rad by the day” post. its sickening to me now to see men out in public, when i know, absolutely *know* that almost all of them are routinely abusing women and girls by demanding PIV. my bosses are all men. i have to tune some of it out.

and its a constant effort to maintain this denial. to the extent we rely on them for anything, we want men (as a group and individually) to look the same as they always did, when we initially agreed to be dependent on them, or when we became dependent on them for whatever reason. its so sickeningly terrible when they cheat, or become abusive, or say or do something out of character, because they look different after that too. you want more than anything for them to look the same as they always did. is that why women keep going back to abusive men even when they “clearly” shouldnt? i dont know. but it seems more a difference in degree, and not kind, to the absolutely willful denial that all women are maintaining, not to see men as a group, and mens aggregate behavior for what it is. rather than what we wish it were. we have to. some of us more, and less, than others.

60. rainsinger - April 3, 2010

..to the absolutely willful denial that all women are maintaining, not to see men as a group, and mens aggregate behavior for what it is.

I think its also a coping mechanism, a way of trying to be comfortable, happy and non-stressed for at least part of your life. A way of ‘making-the-best-of-it’. For to face male-aggregate behaviour, in the family, in the bed, in the workplace, and in mainstream politics around education, health care and other social or community generic services, not to mention human rights abuses falling far more heavily on females, than males – to see all *that* – also means coming face-to-face with women’s powerlessness to do much about it. Also, calls into question issues about ‘agency’ and ‘choice’. For who wants to believe they have no, or so little agency or choice?

factcheckme - April 3, 2010

i believe thats the case, rainsinger. absolutely. and i believe thats what fun-feminism is all about: making women feel better, by way of denying and ignoring the fact that we have so little agency, and the context in which we are exercising “choice.” because its all about how we feel, you know. because how women FEEL is the problem. yes, thats it. women are the problem. therefore, women can fix the problem. i feel so empowerfulized already.

factcheckme - April 4, 2010

oh, and thanks to samc for reminding me about fucking cis-privilege, the fun-fems and transwomens favorite distraction. how absurd is the very notion of cis- or cis-privilege, when one considers that the women in the video who are being serially raped and killed (its their own fucking organs that are killing them, for anyone who still hasnt watched the vid) are in class-cis, according to the utter logic-fail that is transactivism. and that these women are privileged, in relation to, say, a man in thier own community that “feels like” a woman…and regardless of whether that same man has serially raped and killed women in that community by way of his being male. or more to the point, because its western-privileged trans who are boo-hooing about cis-priv, these women are privileged in relation to western-privileged transwomen, because the women in the video are “immediately recognized as women” and western-privileged transwomen arent. of course, the women in the vid are recognizable as being women, for one thing, by the urine and excrement running down thier legs, caused by thier birthing injuries. and by the fact that they are living in shacks in their families backyards due to the stench of said urine and excrement. how…feminine, right? oh yes indeed, what a privilege.

factcheckme - April 4, 2010

and a cis-female in these communities would also allegedly be more privileged than another woman in the same community, if the other woman “felt like” a man…regardless of the fact that both women would be subjected to the same abuse at the hands of men, and both women would be at risk for serial rape and birthing injuries, having been born with identical “equipment.” and the cis-woman would be equally cis-privileged as her cis-male abusers, and the cis-woman would be equally oppressive to the non cis-woman as the cis-men were. you know, the cis-men who were abusing *both* women, without giving two shits how either woman felt about anything, or whether they “felt like” women or men, or neither. and not caring a whit whether the women were even straight, for that matter.

got that? good.

61. SheilaG - April 4, 2010

I suppose a lot of women have to pretend that men as a group aren’t monsters. To know this, AND be sexually attracted to these men could really be mind altering. That’s what causes feminism to be so disturbing to most women out there. It’s why I rarely hear women use the word “feminism” unless I bring it up first. That’s just daily life out there, in the office, at the Starbucks, waiting in line at the movies, going to business meetings… even women in groups… the fear of even coming to consciousness about all of this.

So the lesbian experience of seeing these dreadful men with their paws all over women is horrifying to me. It’s painful to know my sisters have to live with these guys, have girls who get raped by these guys, walk in dark parking lots believing some man is going to protect them, from whom? Does the father protect that daughter he is raping?
Do the football captain protect the cheerleaders?

To watch public male behavior since childhood, and feel an aggressive desire to go to war against those animals… well, what can I say, that is the girl child’s cold realization that most hetero women are going to marry these pigs when they grow up, even when it is very obvious that as teenagers, boys are dreadful, and if they can’t see it then, when it is at its worst and in your face, when will they see it?
When it’s too late I imagine, and this has always baffled me completely, and I never quite get over the blindness, and it’s so painful for me to see this day in and day out.

It’s so painful for me to meet brilliant wonderful women, who say, despite everything to the contrary that they are “just housewives” that they know knowing about “their husband’s small business” even when they are they know it inside and out. And I find myself looking directly into these women’s eyes and saying, “No you are more than a role, your brilliance is self evident to me.”

Perhaps the true pain of lesbians is to watch women fall in love with these bastards (and I don’t use that term in print very often).

factcheckme - April 4, 2010

rape is still a property crime sheila. so men will protect women, and become outraged if another man rapes one of us, only to the extent that we are their property. mens property rights and their rights to unfettered access to womens bodies sometimes clash. the intersection is called “prosecutable rapes.” women who dont belong to anyone in particular (ie. prostitutes, loose women) and ones that dont look like they could belong to anyone in power (ie. black or brown women) do not normally fall into that intersection. men dont want to prosecute other men for rape, in general. because that would impact on all mens rights of unfettered access to womens bodies. if they didnt also need to protect their property, there would be no such thing as “rape.” it would just be another of the nameless horrors women experience daily, at the hands of men, that goes completely unrecognized as a violation at all.

and ZOMG, sheila said “bastard”!!!!11!!1!

62. sonia - April 4, 2010

” To know this, AND be sexually attracted to these men could really be mind altering”

it is the worst thing evs. especially when you have that to-your-bones awareness. and aren’t into women in that way at all. you just end up giving up your sexuality.

63. sonia - April 4, 2010

actually, I think that’s what fun-fems ARE. a lot of women realize the truth about men the way radfems do. they spend all their energy lying to themselves because they’d rather do that than be miserable. that’s why they’re so vicious towards feminists (speaking of the Matrix, “people will fight you for their slavery”). as a het girly girl radfem (hate me if you need to), I interact with both groups and that’s what I see. it’s not that femme straight women don’t KNOW, it’s just that they’re literally trying not to let themselves know what they know. IMHO all women know what time it is on some level.

factcheckme - April 4, 2010

they’re literally trying not to let themselves know what they know. IMHO all women know what time it is on some level.

yes. hence the hypervigilance, and “trying to play by the rules.” i dont really think its because we are innately neurotic, pretty-dress-wearing, man-pleasing rule-followers. we dont want to end up homeless, because we know what that means.

64. SheilaG - April 4, 2010

LOL on your ZOMG FCM.

65. SheilaG - April 4, 2010

Sonia, I would never hate a het girly girl radfem. I’m baffled by girly girl het women, but I don’t hate them. I get frustrated with the seeming mindlessness of straight women’s worlds, but it doesn’t bring out hatred, it brings out a kind of eternal frustration.

So it helps to hear (read actually) the points of view on straight women’s blogs, because otherwise, I think it would be impossible for me to understand just what is going on with straight women.

Truth be told, I don’t see much interaction between het girl girls and lesbians, and when there is, I’m the token who politely accomodates them. They don’t ask questions, maybe they are afraid of what I would say. But I do sense they want me with them, and I feel their support, it’s just that my world is kind of inaccessable and paradoxical. I’d say we were all in it together when we were young, and now that I’m over 50, I’m reconnecting with straight women again, because their kids are out of the house, they may be divorced or they are more open to difference now. Since the straight marriage system is in economic ruins, maybe now they see what I was talking about all along. And I do mean all along, for over 30 years now. If nothing else, I am persistent in my vision.

Knowing what I know, my best efforts are silent solidarity, economic knowledge, the ability to make things happen to protect women, to see ahead. I never gave this much thought, the “see ahead” part, but a few days ago, I went out to dinner with a straight woman, I know her lesbian daughter, and she’s asked me to talk to her daughter, who is really struggling. You know things have changed when straight mothers ask me to reach out to their daughters…

Anyway, it was an amazing conversation. We were talking about our college years, which I’ve always treasured and loved deeply. She was a self-described hippie, I was a lesbian feminist. She wanted to move off campus ASAP, and I loved living in the dorms, and having meals with all the other students. “I knew that I would be cooking for the rest of my life, so I loved the dorms because I could have the greatest conversations at meals with all these wonderful people, and not have to cook.” That was one reason I liked the dorms; I am very connected to people, and love having dozens around me. “How did you get so forward thinking” is what she asked me. And I had no answer for that.

Maybe it was hypervigilance, my worry about my future, my sense that I would have to work awfully hard or I would be doomed to poverty, to economic slavery, to being abused by men, to being trapped in a job that bored me to death… or it was the fear of being out of the closet, which I wasn’t in college. People knew I was a lesbian because I just can’t pass as straight to save my life. I don’t even have to try to be “transgressive” gender presentation wise, I just am a total sterotypical dyke, what can I say?

At any rate, if you are outside the heterosexual system, you see the lot of women all the more clearly. You see the college room mate who will be doomed, you see the horrifying men women date (not that lesbians don’t have bad relationships, we do), you see your college room mate change completely, drop out… decades later, she tells you about the date rape in college, the child given up for adoption.
She tells you it was those drinking parties at the frat house, that I would go on a tirade against. “You can’t be around men if they are drinking! Please don’t go to those parties!” Easy for nerdy lesbian me to say. It’s this stuff that haunts me even today, my powerless in the face of that powerful hetero world, that ideology of dating, that idea that it is okay for frat houses even to be allowed liquor in the first place openly. Maybe that was the sexual revolution funfem era, before that term was coined. Maybe it was the horror of that straight male sexual revolution that made me feel flabbergasted. It was my cold evaluation of men as reptillian out of control sex monsters, rapists, jackasses, pigs… that’s what I saw them as in high school and college. And I didn’t want to have anything to do with that world.

But straight het women did and do. That sexual machine is still going strong. Heaven help us as they are creating lesbian sexual mindless TV shows now, the beginnings of seeing lesbians as a market… We were immune in the past, no one knew us, cared about us, much less wanted to sell us anything. It was easy to not want any of that world, and later, I came to appreciate this advantage. But I didn’t know what it was when I was very young. All I knew is I hated those boys, they were my enemy.

66. polly - April 4, 2010

and a cis-female in these communities would also allegedly be more privileged than another woman in the same community, if the other woman “felt like” a man…regardless of the fact that both women would be subjected to the same abuse at the hands of men, and both women would be at risk for serial rape and birthing injuries, having been born with identical “equipment.”

Thanks for making this point FCM. The other day I came across this thread: (yes I really should know better by now).

http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2010/03/south_africa_th

In which a group of the clueless and the none-so blind-as-those-who-will-not-see, wonder hopelessly WHY lesbians are raped and killed in South Africa. Apparently it’s all down to heteronormativity and done to stop them being lesbians, (yeah it would make perfect sense to kill them straight afterwards then). Or because men need *educating* (gotta go to school, as Bachman Turner Overdrive would say). Or because of Christianity apparently.

Or maybe it’s because they’re female.

factcheckme - April 4, 2010

yeah polly, i think another cis-priv post is in the works. when taken out of the context of western privilege, its even more clear that cis- and cis-priv are complete and utter bullshit. and that transpolitikers are assholes, and can bite me.

67. SheilaG - April 4, 2010

Women get raped because they are women. Whether you are a lesbian or a straight women or a bi woman, men rape, because they believe they can do anything to women that they want to and get away with it. And guess what, most rapists get away with it over and over and over again. The prisons aren’t filled with rapists, but they easily could be, and still we wouldn’t have enough prison space to house those animals, pigs, monsters, and scum bags… and every other insult I can think of!

Men don’t see women as human beings at all. I don’t even think they are capable of this intellectually. They are rapists or would be rapists, porn viewers and would be porn viewers, but I don’t think they see women’s humanity or dignity or anything else beyond their own penile processions. A transwoman isn’t raped because she is trans, she is raped because she is thought to be a woman. That’s all it is ever about, and since transwomen weren’t born into women’s bodies and raised to deal with the male rapist world since day one, they have no way of knowing this. And they never will apparently to hear you and Polly report on these blogs, which I don’t even have the stomach to read these days. I’ve just had it with them.

factcheckme - April 5, 2010

i dont read the other blogs anymore either sheila. i sometimes will look around for a minute, to see what the peeps are talking about. HA. as if i didnt already know. i went over to the curvature today, and damned if every fucking article wasnt about trans issues, in one way or another. the curvature fucking sucks. same with feministe. same with kate harding. ugh. and the thing is, its all so boring. it really is. if its not rad, its fucking boring. its a fucking mansplanation, wrapped up in a pretty pink bow. thats all it is. this rad stuff is where my head is at, and i dont see that changing, any time soon. i dont think i am the only one, either. if i wanted to be bored to death with mansplanations, i would go back in time to my college years, and hit all the college bars. really, i dont know how i survived the first time. thank god for liquor i guess.

68. sonia - April 5, 2010

Sheila- :) I didn’t mean you, but I just feel insecure about “coming out” with that fact on radfem blogs sometimes. I def. hear what you’re saying, het life IS boring in a lot of ways.

69. sonia - April 5, 2010

‘if its not rad, its fucking boring. its a fucking mansplanation, wrapped up in a pretty pink bow. ”

you got the essence, girl.

70. SheilaG - April 5, 2010

Glad you report there is nothing to miss FCM. Must be the obsession always with the latest thing, rather than the basics of what feminism could be doing more of for women.

Never went to bars in college or in high school. And the frat house parties they always invited the girls to were just not going to cut it.
I was studious, closeted, in love with the woman of my life, political, musical, poetic.

Later in life, I was in heaven with lesbian revolution and our radical lesbian feminist world; loved every minute of it. Still am in heaven in a room full of women. Can’t stomach what men do in groups or even what they have to say, when there is too much I want to hear from women.

Mansplanation, boring, about sums up transpolitics rather well I’d say, would rather hear you report it than me read that nonsense. Guess they are there to drive lesbians and our spaces nuts with their maleness, just as Daly and Raymond warned. When are we ever going to learn?

71. sonia - April 5, 2010

sorry for my tangential triple commenting but FCM every time you mention getting homeless by not following femininity reqs I think, yeah-and I follow them partially to keep myself in line. I get too scrappy when I’m not feminine. I run my mouth of at dudes, too much, and if I don’t hot roller my hair it’s just a matter of time before i’m up in some douche bag’s face waving my finger and we’re toe to toe. it’s true. I don’t know why, but it’s this self preservation, probably what I mentioned before that you quoted. I just literally have to dumb myself down until the rest of the women in the world are ready to really stand up. ? When I’m femmed out i just swing my hair at em and they know what I mean=I’m too good for em, but I don’t have to bust a vein or make a scene to let them know. I know how it sounds, but it’s my reality.

72. polly - April 5, 2010

It pisses me off HUGELY to see someone who was born male (who incidentally supports the rights of rapists when they want to be in a woman’s prison with their penis intact) trying to ‘explain’ why lesbians get raped. Do you think we get a free pass or something? Yes of course rapists are going to ‘justify’ their actions in terms they think fit in with the prejudice of mainstream society and blame the victim. If it isn’t *curing* lesbians it’s ‘the slut was asking for it by wearing a short skirt’.

Only someone who was born male and hasn’t had a fear of men for as long as they can remember could actually swallow that crap though. That and their half assed straight/bi followers who will say anything (including treating lesbians like an alien species) to please the former penis owner

73. SamC - April 5, 2010

There are undoubtedly women who don’t have time to watch an hour long video in between working, looking after a family, etc, as many women are unlikely to have very little spare time. The trans-activists and fun-fems who have time to come and comment on a blog they have no real interest in/understanding of clearly have time on their hands simply by virtue of being here, and they don’t watch the video because they don’t care. Anything that doesn’t benefit their “feelings” isn’t worth their time.

The cis-privilege issue really gets to me… the sheer hypocrisy of western, privileged, raised as male individuals saying outright that women as a class have privilege over them is so illogical that it melts my brain. Even in my privileged existence, I in no way have any privilege over a trans-person. They think that because no-one is shouting “tranny” at me in the street, I’m privileged. Of course, when I’m sexually assaulted or expected to be a domestic servant, paid 40% less than men in the same job as me, overlooked for job roles and harassed in the street just because I’m female, that’s fine and dandy, ‘cause they’re all about upholding the ludicrous gender binary. When it happens to them, it’s transphobia, when it happens to me, which it does, that’s just life. Even the “homophobia” directed at me is just misogyny – no man gives a toss that I am interested in women, they simply consider me a failed woman because I’m not sexually available to them. Although I do, of course, get to wear “fierce” high heels, pretty makeup and dresses and flounce around waiting for men to buy me drinks (well, if I wanted to. Which I don’t), and I swear that the eroticisation of this “damsel in distress” image gets a lot of trans-women going, I really do. Because if being a woman in the West consisted less of dresses, high heels and hairstyles and more of being forced to marry, do the hardest work, be routinely raped, denied education and made to look after droves of children, I very much doubt any male-born person would be clamouring to be a “woman”.

On the subject of trans-women in women’s spaces/prisons, etc, I was talking to a female acquaintance who was interested in seeking legal advice (I work for a law firm) as her daughter had been raped as a child by a family friend. The police investigated but brought no charges. The man who raped her young daughter is now legally recognised as a woman, despite still being in possession of a functioning dick. Before the trans-activists’ heads explode, I don’t think all men/trans-women are child rapists (though they all have the potential), but I will say that my knowledge of ONE rapist trans-woman is more than enough for me to not want ANY in my space, since they have infinitely more chance of posing a physical risk to me than anyone born-female, especially when they’re still swinging a dick between their legs. Just sayin’.

74. SamC - April 5, 2010

Of course I meant “many women are *likely* to have very little spare time”, just to clarify!

factcheckme - April 6, 2010

The trans-activists and fun-fems who have time to come and comment on a blog they have no real interest in/understanding of clearly have time on their hands simply by virtue of being here, and they don’t watch the video because they don’t care.

yes. i am certain thats the case, after its all said and done. i have posted the vid here about 4 times now. whomever is interested can watch it, or will have watched it, by now. if they havent yet seen it, or if they never do, its because they dont care. simple as that.

as for transwomen raping women and children…YES. thats the risk that women take, when we allow them in our spaces. that the fucking funfems dont see this, or dont want to see it, is frankly absurd. and stunning, really. since they HAVE TO KNOW what men do, as a sexual group, that necessitates feminism, to begin with. and wearing suits ‘n ties to work AINT IT. i have an article up on that, called “rape culture simultaneously exists, and does not exist, say transactivists.” it was a ratings bonanza at the time, just like all my trans-critical posts. this one is doing pretty well too. i think anytime i refer to “fucking transwomen” someone tags it immediately. boo fucking hoo, transwomen. somewhere, an internet radfem isnt having it, while elsewhere, thousands of internet fun-fems suck your metaphorical (and actual) dicks. that they spend even one second here reading and responding to and tagging this material, that they so vehemently disagree with, is telling. i dont spend a single second of my life on the MRA blogs. thats telling too.

75. SamC - April 6, 2010

It is telling that out of the many mainstream feminist blogs, all of which are more than happy to stroke the egos of trans-women, invite them to guest-blog on topics that have little bearing on feminism and generally accommodate their every whim and demand (especially when it comes to blacklisting commenters for imagined transphobia, simply for asking how the trans issues effect female at birth women/feminists), yet they have to come and cry and stamp their feet and threaten and insult on blogs such as this one because their feelings aren’t being catered to. In other words, behaving exactly like any other man when he doesn’t get his own way and when his needs don’t come first. As you say, I spend exactly zero minutes of my life on the blogs and websites of trans-women and MRAs demanding that they accept what I say – because on what universe have men ever given a fuck about women at the expense of their own privilege? It is telling that trans-women choose their battles with internet feminists, rather than those who are actually the source of oppression – men.

And it still riles me that they didn’t have the decency to watch the fucking video, since they so obviously have the time to spare. As if I needed any more evidence that they couldn’t give a fuck about women or feminism.

76. SheilaG - April 6, 2010

Since when have men ever watched videos about serious international women’s issues, and been able to comment thoughtfully and intelligently… that’s how you know MTFs really are men. It’s their complete lack of feminist consciousness, an utter disregard for who women really are… I don’t see much difference between them and all the men out there now.

And I don’t get why feminist sites are catering to these idiots and I don’t know why they don’t attack their real oppressors which are … bio-men. Do battle with them, and they’ll kill you. Do battle with feminists, and you risk nothing. Cowards.

factcheckme - April 6, 2010

seriously. transwomen guest blogging on feminist blogs makes about as much sense as MRAs blogging about DV, womens health, or child support (which they ALWAYS DO!) and should be taken just as seriously. in point of fact, any reasonably non-misogynist human should treat the advice and perspective of transwomen and MRAs exactly the same: whatever these asshats believe, think or do, you should believe, think and do THE EXACT OPPOSITE.

follow this one rule, and you will fall on the non-misogynist side 99% of the time. for most people, thats a vast improvement over what they would otherwise acheive on their own. and so-called “feminist men” who followed it would find their feminist cred vastly improved.

77. SheilaG - April 6, 2010

Men? feminist cred?…. oy

factcheckme - April 6, 2010

i hear you sheila. but just going on probability alone, if any man did the opposite of what the MRAs are doing, they would be doing the right thing almost all the time. even you have to admit that it would be a vast improvement over what they are doing now. as for the feminist men, having them be non-misogynist would be a great start, and more than we are getting from them now. which is pretty much nothing. you wouldnt really be conceding anything, to concede that point.

78. SheilaG - April 7, 2010

No, I’m not disputing your idea of doing the opposite of MRAs and being dead on feminist 99% of the time. I just have yet to meet any man ever who has done this. I really don’t think they exist, and so I believe that our greatest struggle is simply to get women to wake up, and women to take massive action over time. I have written off men entirely, but I believe women can have a unique revolution, that we have the numbers and that we have the media. We can see male supremacy die, it’s just a question of women getting it. That’s what my frustration is. Men, I see them as base animals, incapable of enlightened thought, living addicted to sex, addicted to power, basically worthless, if not an evolutionary mistake. That’s how I see them.

factcheckme - April 7, 2010

sheila, i didnt say it would be “feminist.” i said it would be non-misogynist. which is the best than any man can hope for i think. its still hell and gone from “feminist.” but i would settle for it, in a second, compared to what they are doing now.

79. SheilaG - April 7, 2010

That’s a good basic standard of conduct for men FCM… non-misogynist, a kind of first do no harm standard that could be basic.
Again, I never meet men who are like this, so good luck.

factcheckme - April 8, 2010

just as an FYI, the stats for the “fun-feminism is hazardous” post have exploded in the last few days. its been linked at several sites and its getting mad traffic. if theres anything you want to say to the lib fems, porn-actors and progressives, nows your chance because they are reading.

80. Undercover Punk - April 8, 2010

FCM, you know the pomos don’t READ!

I could leave a really simple, straightforward comment and they’d STILL miss the point.

81. SheilaG - April 8, 2010

Well, all I’ve got to say it, fun fems who support porn, take a look at who’s running this global industry, what it does to women, how it feeds into prostitution, trafficking, and providing rape manuals to male soldiers worldwide. I expect men to fail in every way to understand the seriousness of this issue, but liberal feminists who go along with this are either blind, or completely lacking in understanding of what this kind of stuff does to women, day in and day out.

You’d think by now that women would really get the implications of subjecting themselves to blatant sexual exploitation by men. The fact that rape even occurs on college campuses is indicative of the work feminism still has to do.

I don’t know what we as radical feminists have to say to our sisters to get women to wake up to these realities. After 30 years of activism, I still despair that you’ll ever wake up. There is just too much complacency among western women on how porn on a global level demeans and takes away the humanity of women everywhere, and to support this I think ranks right up there with buying heroine from drug lords and fueling that “fun” industry as well. That’s what I’ve got to say about “fun” feminism. There is no fun in feminism, it is about the depth of human rights for women all over the world.

factcheckme - April 8, 2010

yeah, they really *dont know how to read, do they? at least, they dont know how to LISTEN. all they ever want to do is talk. heres a perfect example. miss andrea left a pretty stunningly logical and unemotional response that laid it out all perfectly, when she said this:

Eh, fun feminism isn’t just limited to the BarbieBimbo clothes, at least to me. It’s the idea that stripping and prostitution, and BDSM, etc etc etc, are empowering.

Btw, there’s nothing “wrong” with wanting to be attractive, attract one’s preferred sex partner, or just have fun expressing oneself in a creative way. The bit which seems “wrong” to me is the idea that there is any authentic power which accrues to those who engage in stripping, BDSM, etc.

Authentic or “real” power requires the presence of a specific quality. If that quality is not present, then authentic power cannot exist. What is this mysterious quality?

It requires that the Empowered Person is free from coercive brainwashing. When someone is brainwashed from birth to believe that activity X is the most fun thing ever, it’s not surprising when an individual derives more pleasure from activity X then what actually exists. Without a coercive environment, the individual may take some pleasure in activity X, but not as much.

Authentic power is when you are pleasantly occupied doing whatever the hell you want without any brainwashing coercion being present, and when you tell someone to jump, they ask “how high?” Faux power is when you have to meet or exceed THEIR requirements BEFORE they would ever consider responding with “how high would you like me to jump?” Barbie has to meet somebody else’s stringent requirements before she can order that other person around.

I’m genuinely asking, what part of that didn’t make any sense, or what part is objectionable?

then this:

To clarify, it seems that “funfeminists” (and gee I’d like to find a less insulting term) clearly recognize the part where Barbie “gets” someone else to do something for her, but funfeminists ignore the part where Barbie had to do something for the other person first. I wondering how the funfeminists can assume, first of all, that Barbie is “empowered” by a reciprocal exchange. Why would “empowerment” mean “equal”? Power actually means that someone has power over another, it doesn’t mean equal.

The other thing I’m wondering about, is how funfeminists can assume that the end result is more beneficial to Barbie than the guy. Personally, I find focusing attention on my sexuality only reduces me to a collection of mastatorbory aids — my humanity is ignored. The guy gets a simpering fool, and what exactly did he give up in order to get this?

It’s the answer to that last question which makes me think that he has all, or most, of the power. Which means Barbie has little or no power, which means she isn’t empowered at all. I’m sincerely trying to understand the perspective of the funfeminists (yes I want a less insulting term) and understand how they are reasoning through this dynamic.

here was the immediate response:

Hm funny, all the people damning “Fun feminism” seem to hate transgendered people too,

Andrea: I have to say that you’re the one being rather demeaning to those who may actually be involved with sex work or BDSM. No, really:I’m not joking.

and another:

m Andrea mentions BDSM in the first sentence in her first comment. And I suspect Jenny was referring to Factcheckme and m Andrea, both of whom have posted some pretty hateful, transphobic, and misogynist things about trans women, and constantly impose their own fictional narratives about trans people over trans people’s real lived experiences for pure rhetorical convenience.

what. the. fuck. they didnt even read what m andrea said, at all. and it was one of the most clearly-phrased questions i have ever seen, from a radfem directed at a funfem, or a funfem sympathizer. its not going to get any better than that. and they still cant answer it, and they still think “TRANSPHOBIC!” is an appropriate response.

http://punkassblog.com/2010/04/01/fun-feminism-part-one/comment-page-1/#comment-573238

82. thebewilderness - April 9, 2010

FCM,
There is a long history of patriarchy compliant faux feminists not only not reading and responding to anything m andrea says but also trying to prevent anyone else from reading and responding to her as well.
They seem to think that name calling and vacuous dismissal is a valid counter argument to analysis.
It has been going on for years. Srsly. They do not appear to even grasp the significance of her name, fer cryin’ out loud.

They hold certain truths to be self evident. One of those unquestionable truths is that a man is anything he says he is and a woman is anything a man says she is.
M Andrea questions. Oh yes, she does!

I would be curious to hear an analysis of how exactly a woman says misogynistic things about men, as some whozit in the above quoted remarks claims.
What would those words be, I wonder?

factcheckme - April 9, 2010

yes bewilderness, i was called a “misogynist victimblamer” on the babymaker thread, for describing why born-women practice femininity; then asking why transwomen do it, when their reasons have nothing to do with our reasons. the whole article was about compassion for women, and understanding the context in which we live. and one trans-critical point at the very end was enough to have the entire post and all the comments dismissed as “misogynist”. its such a fucking fail, in every respect. they dont even know what “misogynist” means. again, i think this is the legacy of allowing born-men into the movement, whether its transwomen or third-wave “feminist” men. heres how they make sense of this whole misogyny thing:

the feminists get mad when someone says something misogynist, therefore when someone says something that makes *me* mad, that person has said something misogynist!

this is the same dynamic in which successful women succeed because of misandry. where women who get stuck with the kids in the divorce because the father doesnt fucking want them, *WIN* CUSTODY, UNFAIRLY. what a bunch of shit. these men can go fuck themselves. and the fucking transwomen out themselves as men, every time they open their fucking mouths to speak.

83. Polly - April 9, 2010

Well it’s so much easier to criticise what somebody didn’t say than what they did isn’t it? Requires no thought. Or even reading.

Whereas actually formulating an ‘argument': Oh noes, that needs brain cells….

84. SheilaG - April 10, 2010

I don’t think you can expect a lot of these people to really get feminist logic, or to understand M Andrea, who sticks to very basic logic.
They can’t follow the arguments and simply are too lazy to do the analytical work.

I got sick to death of blog attacking Mary Daly after she died, and they’d almost all say something to the effect that, “I never read her work, but she was transphobic and racist blah blah blah…” They just were not going to read through an intellectual feminist and respond to the actual ideas.

You’ve got a lot of fun feminists out there or porn supporters, that just don’t know what feminism is, can’t bear to admit that it isn’t “fun” that’s making women say this stuff, it’s a kind of desparation not to be held accountable in any way.

Radical feminism tries to come up with practical solutions. It’s why we say men are rapists, and we don’t want to be around them. We can’t risk being in vulnerable situations with men around, much less drunken straight men. A fun feminist would just party on and say I was being male hating for wanting to protect myself against rape. Amazing, how women will advocate very risky behavior to other women who are under no illusion about men. Hey, they’d be MORE not less likely to rape a lesbian.

It’s the same frustration that FCM has pointed out again and again about how men (MTFs) don’t know biologically how a born woman’s body actually operates. They know nothing about the physical characteristics of women, no knowledge of biological science, no interest in learning either.

Fun feminists are simply mindless. I never liked the party women in college, and I most certainly didn’t like it when straight women would want to bring men into our lives. It was hopeless trying to communicate with women who stubbornly clung to the illusion that men had their own best interests at heart, that sisterhood wasn’t as important as having sex with men… you know the drill.

So I give up with the fun fems and the trans apologists, and the Nigel defenders etc etc etc. If we want real change in the world, then obviously women have to radically wake up, and I really don’t see any of that happening very soon in the US. I rather suspect that the most advanced radical feminism is being practiced underground in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan and other middle eastern countries.
The lesbians in those worlds definitely have subversive tactics, and they are wise enough to never let all women come in; it’s not safe, and they want to protect lesbian spaces. The penalty for goofing up or being a fun feminist there is death by stoning, beheading, jail, rape in jail… but no fun feminists in America are not interested in logic, in serious discussion, they just want to call names, not read Mary Daly and then call her names after she is dead, and that’s what passes for discourse on those sites. I’ve really had it with them.

85. factcheckme - April 12, 2010

i also wanted to add that i think this is the reason that men dont go to doctors, and seem to have no regard for their health beyond working out. healthy diets, regular checkups etc seem to be completely unnecessary for many if not most men. and i read somewhere (i think it was a comedian who said it) that married men live longer because their wives nag them to go to the doctor. i think thats probably the case.

for example, last week i had crippling neck pain and muscle spasms to the point that i was actually afraid that i might not be able to get myself home. i thought i literally might be stranded somewhere, dependent on strangers to help me. and whenever i get sick, i realize that i am in an extremely tenuous situation, in that i depend on myself 100% to run my own errands and to be able to get up every day and go to work, and that i will have to get up every day and go to work for probably 30 more years. that i am alone in the world with noone to help me, but me. and if i dont, i could end up homeless. and that i rely on my health to do that, 100%. and i know that someday, its going to fail.

again, i dont think men ever think this way, and they surely arent scared shitless of depending on strangers to help them home. so whats a cup of mayo on that bacon double cheeseburger to them, right? not a big deal. sure its not. FOR THEM.

86. polly - May 9, 2010

Hilariously, FCM, I just saw a transactivist claiming that ‘cis feminists’ analysis of gender was restricted to white western women! No, sweetie that would be YOUR analysis that assumes we are all affluent westerners.

factcheckme - May 9, 2010

that is ironic, considering that the only people who have access to the medical services needed to transition, and are therefore able to tie themselves to the medical establishment for life, by choice, are largely relatively affluent westerners, themselves. of course, they also want to count the progressive states of (fill in the blank) where gays and lesbians are forced to transition or face execution…fine. also relatively affluent, by definition. this shit dont happen everywhere, nor has it happened ANYWHERE until relatively recently. yet they all seem to believe that the transsexual experience is universal. its not.

of course, MEN have been screwing around with “gender” and transgenderism for a long, long time. women havent had that luxury, being married off and impregnated early in life being the primary marker of the female “gender” i mean SEX in most places, throughout history. it does make me laugh that they are attempting an analysis, and cant even get their facts straight. thats kind of the most important part. at least, its the BEGINNING part. and of course, they are completely unable to reason, as well. pfft.

factcheckme - May 9, 2010

transwomens whole schtick is irony though, isnt it? which pisses me off no end. real women have better things to concern themselves with than “irony” and our lives are a sick joke, written by someone else. theirs, they write themselves. and they want a pat on the back for being so IRONIC. fuck irony, i say. and fuck them.

87. polly - May 9, 2010

Oh yes – you can have males who are hijras, but dawg forbid those women who actually manage to get born at all in South Asia step outside their ‘gender’ role.

88. polly - May 9, 2010

This is interesting as well:

http://rictornorton.co.uk/molly.htm

males have always been able to get away with ‘gender bending’.

89. Eve's Daughter - May 28, 2010

No, see, all one needs to do to be female is have a “female brain”. I know it’s true because Vexing said so: (http://community.feministing.com/2010/05/transgender-is-an-adjective-no.html#comment-343820)

Warning: most of the people on that thread demonstrate an inability to read. How much more clear can they be about wanting to erase female existence and experiences?

factcheckme - May 28, 2010

I love how they are all fucking experts on the human brain. It’s true because I say its true, is what carries the day with transwomen and their fun fem pets.

90. polly - May 29, 2010

Oh not the bloody female brain again. Well if you all you need to do to be female is have a female brain:

WHY BOTHER WITH HORMONES AND SURGERY?

Seriously folks, you make no sense whatsoever.

factcheckme - May 29, 2010

exactly polly. or female clothing for that matter.


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