Woke Man is often a Leader of some kind, someone Well Respected for his Work in some sort of Important Progressive Cause. Woke Man may, understandably, think pretty Highly of himself. He’s got quite a Clever Sense of Humor, you see. He’s got Helpful Insights and Wise Advice. He is Compassionate and Committed to Justice. He’s forgiven for being a bit Smug, because he is Popular in Certain Circles, or Admired in the Movement. He is Smart and Well Read, and/or good at Expressing his Informed Opinions. Often Eloquent or Pithy, he enjoys a Good Debate and likes to Sneer at inferior chumps who are Ignorant and Conservative, especially those Troglodytes who thump their chests in a brainless display of Toxic Masculinity.
He has Lots of Women Friends. Many of them consider him an Ally because of his Outspoken Criticism of certain problems such as Rape and Intimate Partner Violence. He may even Support these women when they bring up subtler issues such as Language or Equal Rights. He Proudly votes for Women Politicians and even Condemns the media for its Sexist Bias.
It must be hard for him. I get that. Our culture roars continuously at him in a deafening media cacophony that females are inferior, males are superior, and any male who is not clearly dominant in “masculine” forms of social currency (physical strength, wealth, fame) must be failing at manhood. So men who are getting older, or who are frail, or a bit on the plump/skinny side, or short statured, or less than wealthy, or losing their hair, or small-jawed, or didn’t do very well in school, or haven’t climbed far up a career ladder, or are rather Unremarkable… our culture tells them that— well, perhaps they aren’t particularly Successful at being Men, but at least they are Male.
Continue reading “Woke Men, Stop Shitting On Women by Trelawney Grenfell-Muir”
Nearly a month ago, American voters showed up at the polls and delivered some big wins: the first openly transgender person was elected to a statehouse—Danica Roem in Virginia. Roem defeated an incumbent candidate who authored an anti-trans bathroom bill. Also in Virginia: the boyfriend of a reporter shot and killed on live TV, Chris Hurst, won a seat to the statehouse on a gun-control platform, defeating the three-term NRA-backed incumbent. And Hoboken, New Jersey, got its first Sikh mayor: Ravi Bhalla. These and others are encouraging signs that love and tolerance are gaining ground in the public sphere. But there’s still so much work to do. White Supremacists and Nazis still walk boldly in the streets, LGBTQIA teens still face bullying and higher rates of self-harm, women are still paid less for equal work and harassed in every arena, sea levels are rising at faster rates than we previously thought, people of color are still being killed by police, mass shootings are still a regular part of our news cycle, refugees are still waiting in camps around the world for a chance at a better, safer life.
Activists and advocates have been working for justice in these and other areas for decades. In the last year, spurred on by events like the Women’s March, a growing group of would-be activists has emerged. These allies are a welcome addition to the justice movement, but many worry they won’t do or say the right things, and want to have their perspectives deepened on important issues. They need guides and resources to give them the knowledge, tools, and confidence to make a real impact.
Continue reading “Faith in Action by Lisa Kloskin”
Being a man in feminism isn’t easy and that’s how it is supposed to be.
I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to be a male feminist lately. As the only man to be a permanent blogger on this very site until my colleague and friend Kile Jones came on board, I took my role, as a man in a traditional feminist (online) space very seriously. Although the ongoing struggle to be a male feminist is one continually wrought with dialogues about power and positionality (amongst a host of many other topics), I am often conflicted when I see male feminists take advantage and destroy the hard work that many, specifically on this site and beyond, worked hard to build and defend.
Not wanting to reopen old wounds or start new online battles, men have been involved in feminism for quite some time. From James Mott chairing the first women’s rights convention, to radical feminist Andrea Dworkin’s life partner John Stoltenberg, to Michael Kimmel and Michael Kaufman’s life long work to legitimize not only men in feminism but also what it means to be a man who works for gender equality, being a man in feminism isn’t easy and that’s how it is supposed to be. Continue reading “The Hot Seat by John Erickson”