Violence Against Women is a Problem Men Have To Solve


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In a book that was first published in 1991 and should be required reading for every citizen of this country, Susan Faludi, writes:

Rosie Jimenez, a twenty-seven-year-old single mother on a college scholarship, had six months to go before completing her teaching credentials when she discovered she was pregnant. She had to cross the border into Mexico to ind abortion services she could afford. The cheap illegal operation killed her. When Spring Adams, a 13-year-old Idaho girl on welfare, was raped and impregnated by her father in 1989, her mother could find only one doctor in the entire state willing to perform the second-trimester abortion--and he refused to waive the cost. Unable to afford his fees (Idaho banned the use of Medicaid funds for all unless the mother's life was threatened), Spring's mother went on a desperate nationwide search. She finally found a a clinic in Portland, Oregon, that agreed to take on her daughter's case and waive all but $200. But two days before Spring was to board the Greyhound bus to Portland, her father--who opposed abortion [but evidently not rape, incest or mass murder]--shot her to death with an assault rifle.

From Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women (1991), 416-417.

We know this has been going on now for over two decades, the war on women was new when it began in the late 70s, by disgruntled men who saw their world slipping away and instead of pulling their ignorant heads out of their fat beer inflated assholes, they decided the reason they were getting fucked by capitalism was because women were getting all the shitty fucking jobs that paid just a little over half what the traditional men's jobs paid, and they put their ignorant collective imbecilic heads together and decided that the problem with capitalism, then as now--there were mass layoffs and 40 percent of the workers never got rehired, more importantly, of the 60 percent who found work they took steep cuts in pay 25-40 percent on average--was the women and minorities. And instead of blaming a system that was moving jobs offshore and consolidating them at home, these ignorant men whose self image and masculinity (read testosterone) was all tied up in their employment and their ability to provide for their families and other stupid shit, decided almost in mass like a school of fish, that it was the women and not the capitalists who were fucking them. Pretty fucking stupid. But there it is. So they started acting out and they still are because it is easier to hate and and abuse women than it is to deal with a system that is creating horrendous consequences for all but the very rich. And the rest are completely bamboozled by it all.

So what are they doing about it? Nearly all of them still seem to be striking out against women. We see that shit here everyday and all over the internet. I am leaving this thread open to all the fucking neanderthals here so they can show their real inner rapists. Let us all see just who these fucking depraved bastards are. Show off you ignorant fuckers. Let's see who you are and all the people who let you get away with your fucking rape fantasies.

This bit is for you from right now nearly 25 years later, and not surprisingly, nothing has changed for the better because too many men are still fucking animals, and other men are letting them get away with it by passively accepting the responses day after weary day.

Women and the Internet: Part One
Online and offline violence towards women

This is part one of a four part series.

Fixing this is going to require a lot of talking.

I try not to keep track of the threats. High profile women face hatred and threats online that can take your breath away. It has mine. I’ve been threatened with rape and being beaten to death and fucked to death with inanimate objects and more rape and put into slavery and more beating and then some more rape.

Sometimes the threats are sexual, sometimes just violent. I don’t know about all of them. I know Ryan Singel, my editor at Wired, often deleted them, along with comments about my looks, off the bottom of my articles before I could see them. I have a hard time remembering specific threats, because I have to block them out to function. Once, a man in Britain said he would send me a specific poisonous spider that would jump out of the box and kill me — points for creativity. A man in Australia told me that he fantasized about raping me then beating me to death. That stuck for the sheer vividness. Though when I think about his fantasy, it’s not really me he’s doing it to. It’s some kind of inanimate blow up doll of me.

I would fight, I think. I have a history of fighting back in real life. Sometimes it has worked, and sometimes it hasn’t.

For all the theories and fantasies about how we’d take down our attackers, it’s not so simple to decide if you should fight back. Some say you shouldn’t, because that’s how women get beaten badly or killed, and raped is better than dead, or eating through a tube for life. Or, if you win, you might go to jail for years. Raped is definitely better than going to jail for years, especially given the prevalence of rape in prison. There’s another benefit to not fighting back, which is this: if you know you can’t win, either because of physical or situational coercion, you can just leave your body. You just let it happen to the meat and send your mind somewhere a thousand miles away, where none of this is real. It works for rape, it works for beatings, it works whenever you are in terrible pain and no one is there to care for you. You make your body a stranger, you stop caring about it, sometimes you even hate it, and then it all happens to the stranger you care nothing for.

The problem is it can take years to come back to your body. It can be the hardest trip you will ever make. The stranger meat you’ve learned to hate takes all the abuse, and becoming one person again can be the task of a lifetime. Reuniting your mind and body is like trying to find your way in the dark, and every time someone says “Bitch you’d look better with my cock in your mouth,” you risk getting lost again.

Sometimes these days it just bounces off me, which reminds me that I’m made of walls.

The majority of online misogynists are all talk — they are looking to upset women, and through the force of their numbers and vitriol, crush women into silence. “It’s just talk,” I am told, “You need a a thick skin.” Inevitably this is said by people who clearly would not last a week in my threat-riddled public life. But not all of these men will settle for silencing women.

I have worried about some of my more persistent stalkers “going hot,” and I still do. I think all the talk ups the chance that someday one will take a shot at me, or finally try to do that thing they talk about with a crowbar.

A BBC appearance about women being abused on Twitter, for which I was screamed at and insulted on Twitter for several weeks.

Taking this speech off the internet doesn’t fix the fundamental disease. It sends violence against women back to being a silent problem that disproportionately hits disadvantaged women around the world. Women with no voice, women who are not in public, not famous, are out there suffering more than I do. But they are here with me too, when you look at me, the threats I get, and the stories I can tell about violence. You can see them, even if just a little bit. They are every so slightly more visible. Online violence reflects a very real world of the offline torture of women around the world.

In WHO’s report on intimate partner violence, between 10-69% of women reported being victims of violence. That means if you live in the best place on Earth for women, and you know more than ten, you know someone who’s dealt with domestic violence. But you probably don’t live in the best place on Earth for women, and you probably know many more than ten women. The actual, unreported numbers are also probably much higher. You know a lot of women that have dealt with brutal bullshit from their families and intimate partners.

Every day women die because they are murdered by their families and partners. On average, around three a day in America, two a day in the UK.


The internet can’t fix this. You can’t use technology to solve social problems. You just can’t. I don’t mean you shouldn’t, I mean it never, ever works. Technology can assist social reform, and it can amplify social problems, which it does with misogyny and social media. But it never creates or solves these problems. Trying to make technology do the job of people always ends in tears. The misogyny doesn’t come from the internet, it comes from contemporary culture. It won’t be fixed by the internet, and it won’t be fixed by women.

It has to be fixed by men.

Men construct manhood. They do it together. Women have an influence, but it is external and always contextualized by men, who are still constructing manhood together. I can’t fix men’s attitudes anymore than a man can tell me how to give birth. We, men and women, can point each other at resources, and posit theories, and support each other, but at the end of the day, I have to push and men have to talk. In all honesty, I’m not sure which is harder. Acknowledging that, I still can’t let men off the hook. Men have to open their mouths and talk about constructing an idea of manhood that makes sense in the 21st century. The whole world needs a manhood that doesn’t rely on attacking or demeaning women.
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