Tag Archives: fathers

Hanna Rosin says we are witnessing the end of men! Oh yeah? How about we look at the facts?

7 Jan

hanna

Let’s get Hanna’s motivations clear right from the get-go, shall we? Hanna Rosin is not interested in equality. She is interested in dominance. Female dominance. Nothing more, and nothing less. From the author’s own website:

I come from a long line of matriarchs, women who either ruled over their husbands, or ran away from them. My mother is an intimidating figure. She has always served as the neighborhood watchdog, taking on bullies and running the co-op board with an iron fist. If you met her, it would be obvious why I was open to possibility of female dominance, because she embodied it long before it became the defining trend of our era.

Hanna acknowledges that female dominance is a central part of her understanding of how the world works, and that female dominance has become the defining trend of our era. Well, kudos to Hanna for at least being honest.

Hanna has been on a crusade to prove female dominance for some time now. In her original article, published at the Atlantic, she mused that “[f]or years, women’s progress has been cast as a struggle for equality. But what if equality isn’t the end point? What if modern, postindustrial society is simply better suited to women?”.

What if female dominance is inevitable?

Her recent article at Time Magazine lays out five reasons men are slated to be the oppressed sex – five ways in which men are complete and utter failures:

Men are failing in the workplace

The traditional household is vanishing

Men are increasingly subjected to violence from female partners

Working and middle-class fathers have become non-existent

Men have become feminized

Let’s take these one by one.

Men are failing in the workplace?

And what workplace would that be? The one that keeps our infrastructure up and running?

Statistically speaking, 100% of power plant operators, distributors and dispatchers are men.

91% of the nation’s electrical engineers are men.

97.6% of electrical power line installers and maintenance workers are men.

95.5% of water and liquid waste treatment plant and system operators are men.

95.9% of aircraft pilots and flight engineers are men.

98.4% of aircraft mechanics and service technicians are men.

91.9% of computer network architects, who design and implement all our computer based communications systems are men.

94.2% of radio and telecommunications equipment installers and repair technicians are men.

93.4% of garbage collectors are men.

78.2% of all workers in production, transportation and material moving occupations are men

82.4% of all industrial production managers are men

97.5% of all extraction workers, providing the raw materials to run our economy are men

Transportation, energy, communications, water treatment, resource extraction and waste management. Those are the things that provide us with a little something called civilization as we know it, and they are overwhelmingly provided by men.

While it is true that the manufacturing sector has taken a hit in recent years, the United States remains the world’s largest manufacturer, with a 2009 industrial output of $2.33 trillion. Its manufacturing output is greater than Germany, France, India and Brazil combined.

70% of that total workforce is male.

Primary metals manufacturing? 85.6% men.

Apparel manufacturing? 68.3% women.

So ladies in manufacturing are basically just sewing clothes?

How shocking! How surprising! How very housewifely!

What are the ladies doing in the workforce anyways? Most common job categories for women in 2010?

Secretaries (96.8% women)

Nurses (92% women)

Primary and elementary school teachers (81.9% women)

Cashiers (74.4% women)

Nursing aides (88.5% women)

Retail sales (51.9% women)

Retail sales managers (44.1% women)

Waitresses (71.6% women)

Maids (89.9% women)

Oh ladies. Thunderous applause. Doing all the same work in the paid market that you used to do at home. Progress!

Well, maybe the future will be different!

The top ten industries by annual average employment growth between 2Q09 and 2Q13:

Information Services

Support Activities for Mining

Educational Support Services

Technical and Trades Schools

Oil and Gas Extraction

Computer Systems Design

Management and Technical Consulting Services

Other Schools and Instruction

Ambulatory Healthcare Services

Employment Services

Educational support services? Maybe. Ambulatory healthcare and employment services? Okay. Sure. Women will dominate! But IT? Computer systems design? Mining support? Oil and gas extraction?

Ahahahahahahahahahaha!

Yeah. Right.

Hanna Rosin, you are full of shit. Women aren’t excelling in the workplace. They are doing all the same housewifely jobs they’ve always done.

The traditional household is failing?

Gee, I wonder why? Women are out in the workforce doing their housewife gig, neglecting their children and partners and are deeply, deeply unhappy as a result.

They file most divorce proceedings, have more mental health problems and express greater dissatisfaction with their lives.

But let’s blame men for that, shall we, Hanna? What women need is to be more dominant. To rule with an iron fist. Oh, except that women in traditional marriages are much happier.

Men are increasingly subject to violence from female partners?

It’s just sickening that Hanna sees this as a good thing. There is no question that it’s true, but how on earth can it ever be a net positive? Hanna links violence to women’s sexual confidence, which is deeply disturbing in and of itself.

Women are becoming more sexually confident, and something Camille Paglia has been waiting for, more aggressive and violent in both good ways and bad.

What Hanna is not taking into account is that women get away with hitting partners because the men are taking it. For now. How long does she expect that state of affairs to last?

Suzanne Venker puts it nicely:

It is a dangerous thing to create a society of angry men. Feminists have no idea what a can of worms they’ve created — and what it’s about to do to our nation.

Working and middle class fathers are becoming non-existent?

Again, it’s just sickening that Hanna thinks millions of children being raised without fathers is proof that women are dominant and men are obsolete. Children raised by single mothers do poorly on every imaginable scale. They have more emotional problems, experience more stress, are more likely to grow up poor, they have lower educational achievements and experience way more behavioral problems than children who grow up with married parents. Depression, suicide, drug abuse, jail and psychiatric medications are all more common in populations of children raised by single mothers.

The absence of fathers from the home is proof that women are stupid, heartless and profoundly unconcerned with their children’s well-being. If that’s dominance, I’ll pass, thanks.

Men are becoming feminized?

Which men?

64% of men do not wear any fragrance of any kind. Only 23% of men wear cologne daily. And cologne is hardly some arty-farty invention of middle class ladies.

80% of household spending is controlled by women. That 20% leftover is being used by men to “feminize” themselves? Bullshit.

Top Ten Things Women Enjoy Buying:

Handbags

Shoes

Summer dresses

Concert tickets

Jeans

Jewellery

Little black dress

Chocolates

Underwear

Beauty products

Top Ten Things Men Enjoy Buying:

Watches

Spirits

Apple Gadgets

Televisions and A/V equipment

Gifts

Dates and relationships

Life experiences

Sports

Gambling

Cars

It’s interesting that the lady list has only two things that could ostensibly be shared with a partner (concert tickets, chocolates), while the men’s list contains almost ALL shareable items. The preference for gambling, cars and sports doesn’t suggest the sissification of men to me.

Keep dreaming, Hanna. Men are becoming the gentle kittens you would like them to be? Don’t be fooled. Just because men can be and are very often gentle, kind and giving to women doesn’t mean they will always be that way.

Here’s an idea for you: let’s claim that men are obsolete and worthless, like a map of a flat earth or a woolly mammoth snare, completely ignore the fact that they run the entire economy and make possible every service industry by doing the hard, shitty work, slap the shit out of them at home, take their children from them and then call them sissies.

How long do you think it will take before you discover that men are not only far from obsolete, they are faster, bigger, smarter and stronger than you?

How long will it take before they decide they have had quite enough of your shit?

How long, Hanna, can you live without water, power, communications, transportation or sewage treatment?

Obsolete?

I don’t think so.

Obviously people want social calm, but if you do not let clever and ingenious people participate, there must be some dormant volcano that will erupt, sooner or later.

Lech Walesa

Hanna and her ilk think the revolution will be the triumph of feminism and the utter domination of women.

I wouldn’t count on it.

Not for one second.

Lots of love,

JB

First I feared him, then I loathed him, then I forgave him and now I take care of him: the story of my Father and me

16 Jun

germany

My father was born in 1938 during WWII in a small town outside a large city in Germany.  He was the only son in a family of ten children.  He was six years old when the war ended in 1944, and his earliest memories are of houses burning, being painfully hungry and soldiers marching.

Dad and his sisters suffered through extreme food deprivation, as did countless others.  Indeed, he experienced such severe malnutrition that his growth was permanently stunted and he reached an adult height of only 5’4, despite the fact that his father and grandfather and uncles were all well over 6’.  He has huge hands and incredible upper body strength, a testament to the physical man he might have been.

He witnessed horrors we can barely comprehend, including the deaths of four of his sisters.  They did not just die, they died in front of him.  Dad is not forthcoming with war stories, and I have never heard the exact circumstances under which he lost his sisters.  It is simply too painful, all these years later, to recount.  One story he will tell is watching a Russian tank burn, and seeing desperate soldiers escape through the hatch, only to be beaten to death at the roadside by old women with shovels and hammers.

tank

Those experiences made him a profoundly religious man, and sadly, his views of pain and suffering were always ones of comparison.  Dad was offered a place at the gymnasium in Stuggart (a university preparatory), but his father, a former SS officer, forbade it.  He would learn a useful skill, and he was sent to agricultural college.  His father didn’t see the Green Revolution coming, and by the time Dad graduated, industrial farming was well under way.

Dad married in Germany, and had two sons.  Like many others, he turned his face towards the New World, seeking opportunity and greener pastures.  When his children were ten and eight, he set forth for North America, leaving his sons and his wife in the care of his mother and sisters, promising to return for them when he had secured a job and a home for them.

He never went back.  He abandoned them.

He met my mother when she was just nineteen years old and he was considerably older.  He never told her about his family back in Germany, and they married and had four children by the time my mother was 25 years old. My three brothers, and me.

And they were fucking horrible parents.  There is no nice way to spin it.  They embraced a religion that encouraged extreme violence against children.  Their philosophy was that a child’s will must be completely broken so that the child will then accept the will of God.  My mother was ecstatically violent, and my father less so, but they were both culpable. Their particular brand of religious violence continues in America to this day.

http://www.examiner.com/article/another-child-s-death-linked-to-pearls-and-to-train-up-a-child

To compound our suffering, my parents also believed that any demonstration of physical affection would “spoil” a child, and I have not one single memory of my mother or father kissing or hugging us, or showing any sign whatsoever that they loved us.

When my father came towards me, as a child, all I felt was … fear. I wondered what pain was in store.  And no matter what it was, I knew it would pale in comparison to the pain he had suffered.  I was supposed to feel grateful for that.

I didn’t.

farm

We lived on a farm, growing our own food, making our own bread, with chickens and cows and bees (for honey) and pigs and endless fields of potatoes. Whatever money my parents managed to earn, they turned over to the crazy church.  It was an interesting childhood, to say the least.

And then….my mother discovered feminism. She exchanged one violent, irrational, dehumanizing ideology for another, and she soon decided that she needed a man like a fish needed a bicycle. After countless physically violent arguments with my father, including one episode where she hit him in the head with a cast iron frying pan and left him for dead on the front porch, he turned his back and walked away from us, just like his first family.

One day we woke up and he was gone. My mother was quick to inform us that he simply walked away, and left us to starve in the streets, and that she alone would be the sole reason we survived and prospered. She never missed an opportunity to curse him.  She told us about his first family, and how she did not need to divorce him, because they were never married in the first place.  She hated him and hated all men and our daily lives were filled with her anger and vitriol and violence.  She never gave a moment’s thought to what her hatred of men and our father was doing to her sons. She gave us daily rations of rage and blame and every bad thing that happened was always his fault.

Being a child, I believed it.  So did my brothers.

And we loathed him for it.  How could he leave us with such an evil woman? My mother once held a knife to my throat and made me beg for my life.  When I was eleven. And I remember going to bed, thinking not how much I hated her, but how much I hated HIM for leaving us to her devices.

Needless to say, coming in to my own as a person was a difficult and very fraught process.  When I finally made it to university, I had literally no idea what a loving, affectionate, decent relationship looked like.  I was lucky enough to meet Pixie almost immediately, and although her material circumstances were much more comfortable than mine, she too had experienced a horrifically traumatic and abusive childhood.  I will leave it to Pixie to reveal any details. Suffice to say, at our posh university, we were definitely outsiders.

Interestingly enough, I was never attracted to men who behaved badly.  I never sought to enmesh myself in relationships that replicated the worst of my father.  Quite the opposite.  I didn’t seek out pain in an effort to work through what I had suffered.  I had a lovely boyfriend who was all kindness and sympathy.  He was the gentlest man I have ever known.  And I cannot adequately articulate how his gentleness and caring healed me.

He proposed marriage, but ultimately, he was far too compliant and mild, and I was disconcerted by his willingness to acquiesce to what I wanted, even though I never wanted anything bad.  I could trust him to treat me with the utmost kindness and care, but I could not lean on him.  That was impossible. I declined his proposal and moved on.

I eventually landed at graduate school, in an MBA program, where I met my husband. From the time my father left and all throughout my twenties, I never saw him.  I knew he was working overseas and only landed stateside a couple of times a year, but I never sought him out and he never looked for me.  I married and went overseas myself, and after a year in Australia and another year in China came back to North America with a young daughter and my son only months away from being born.

http://judgybitch.com/2012/11/03/i-went-to-mba-school-to-get-my-mrs-degree-and-it-worked/

And then I received a phone call.  It was my father, calling to tell me that my mother’s mother had passed away, and that I should let her know.  So much of the pain had seeped away that I felt confident confronting my father, and I asked him why he had done it.

Why did you just turn your back and walk away?

And then the truth came to light.  He hadn’t walked away.  He certainly had not left us to starve.  My mother had filed for an annulment and requested a restraining order, which she was granted. When I finally saw my father again, he had two boxes with him.  One was filled with income tax returns showing that he had never missed a child support payment, and court orders preventing him from seeing us based on his violence towards my mother, along with supervised visitations that were all scheduled for when he was overseas, working to meet his child support payments.

mail

The other box contained cards and letters.  Birthday cards and so many letters.  All returned.  By my mother.  He never stopped sending them, hoping one of us would one day get the key and fetch the mail, but my mother was always adamant that the mail was her business.  It was one of those community mailboxes, where you had to go and fetch your mail, and since I never got any mail, it never occurred to me that there was anything untoward about my mother’s insistence that only she would have access to it.

mailboxes

As an adult, it makes so much sense.  How did we continue to live in our house?  How was my mother able to afford food and clothing and YMCA memberships for four children without my father’s support? Of course she had his support.  But she hid it from us, and poisoned our minds against our father.  It’s called parental alienation, and she is not the first, nor the last woman to destroy her children in this way.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parental_alienation

It’s a special kind of evil.

It has been many years since I have had any contact with my mother.  She hated Mr. JB with a passion, and saw that she could not control him.  She forbid me to marry him.  I told her to go fuck herself. With the birth of my own children, I have truly come to grasp the depths of her depravity.  It is unthinkable for me to hurt my children.  I would die before I ever whipped them unconscious with a wet leather belt.  I would kill anyone who tried to do such a thing.

It was not just my mother who was violent during my childhood, though, and a huge part of the reason I have a relationship with my father is owing to the heart-felt, tear-soaked apology he offered me.  My father does not cry.  It was an intensely emotional experience, to listen to him express his regrets for what he had done.

“If I could do my life again, I would have showered you with love, and never lifted a hand against you”.

He gave no excuses, no justifications, no defenses.  My father looked at me and apologized for being wrong.  So very wrong.

And I forgave him.  I cannot turn back the hands of time and restore his children to him, but I have three beautiful children of my own, and he is a wonderful grandfather to them.  He gives them all the love and attention he denied his own children.  And I understand profoundly how important that is.  In being the mother to my children that I wished I had, I have erased so much of the damage she inflicted.  In being a loving, perfect  grandfather, my father is able to forgive himself for being a terrible father.

grandfather

The most amazing relationship has blossomed between my Dad and my husband, too.  Mr. JB is the son my Dad wishes he had.  They go fishing and do home improvement projects together and sit in the sun and have cold beer and talk about football.  My Dad holds forth on his crackpot conspiracy theories and my husband laughs at him and tells Dad he’s nuts and they laugh and watch the kids race up and down the street.

adult

Today is Father’s Day.  Millions of fathers will wake up to pancakes and glitter covered construction paper cards and new socks and ties.  Millions more will wake up to a quiet house, their children only ghosts that haunt the corners of the room.  This post is for those fathers.  I am a living testament to the fact that children grow up, and they look back and see truth that they could not see when they were only children.  Estrangement from your children is the most unbearable pain, and to see your children twisted against you is pure agony.

But there is hope.  Children are not children forever.  The brutal reality is that the women who injure their children in this way will never face any punishment from the law.  Their own children may not be so forgiving.

My mother stole my father from me and blighted my childhood in so many ways. My revenge has been to refuse to allow her to influence my life, to refuse to carry out a cycle of abuse and to be a good mother to my own children.  My revenge has been to marry a good man, and be a good wife.  My revenge has been to find my father, forgive him, and be a good daughter.  I cannot give him back the days past, but I can give him this day, and all the days to come.

walk

Never lose hope.  The future could be so different.

Happy Father’s Day.

Lots of love,

JB

You don’t need to care about men to care about men’s rights. You just need to be fucking human!

8 Feb

 

 

Here’s an interesting study out of Baylor University In Texas.

 

http://www.baylor.edu/mediacommunications/news.php?action=story&story=127023

 

Researchers set up two groups of people with some “resources”. Let’s imagine those resources are M&Ms. The first group got together and had to decide how much of their resources to donate to other people, and a few “planted” participants led the giving round: they gave around 65% of their M&Ms away. What did the other people in the group do? They followed suit, and also gave around 65% of their M&Ms away.

 

A second group did the same thing, except that the planted participants only gave 25% of their M&Ms away. What did the other participants do? Yep, they followed suit and gave 25% of their M&Ms away.

 

sharing

 

Now here is where the study gets interesting: all the participants were given M&Ms and asked to make an anonymous donation that no one else would be able to scrutinize or know about. The participants in the group who gave away 65% of their M&Ms continued to do so, even though their contributions were anonymous. Same for the participants who gave away 25%. Even with no one looking, they held onto the group norms and were cheap-ass M&M donators.

 

Why did they do this? The researchers at Baylor asked all the participants, after the experiment was over, to fill out surveys exploring their attachment to the group and how they felt about the other group members and themselves. And it turns out that adhering to group norms, no matter what that norm is, makes people feel happy and contented and accepted and powerfully attached to their own group.

 

group

 

Even if an individual participant felt that giving away 25% of your M&Ms was a pretty stingy thing to do, they went ahead and violated their own internal sense of right and wrong for the pleasure of feeling that they belonged to a group and adhered to the norms of that group.

 

What does this have to do with men’s rights? It’s a pretty strong indicator that what the movement needs right now is to get people to feel part of a group, even if the ideas the group promotes are unpopular, unpleasant or unfamiliar. Feminism benefits hugely from this tendency to go along with the group, even when the norms of the group are demonstrably, objectively destructive and deeply hypocritical.

 

hypocrisy

 

The feeling of “wanting to belong” is simply human, and humans will attach themselves to a group to achieve that, without considering the implications. It’s a rare man or woman who can stand up and challenge the herd.

 

be this guy

 

The past 20 years have seen the challengers take up the gauntlet and bring the issue of human rights for men into the mainstream conversation. It’s now time for the rest of us to start expanding the group and welcoming members who might not even understand the conversation, but who want to belong.

 

We can do that by articulating, very clearly, what some basic human rights for men should be:

 

The right to bodily integrity

 

baby

 

No person, male or female, should have a part of their body cut away without their full and informed consent. That’s an inalienable human right. No one’s imaginary friend gets any say in this. Mutilating infant genitals is part of the dark ages and we have no room in our society for that kind of medieval cruelty.

 

cruelty

 

The idea that is it a criminal act to cut a girl’s genitals, an act of despicable immorality, but acceptable to cut a boy’s genitals plays into an incredibly damaging stereotype: that males, from birth, can be subjected to pain and torture and they must accept this as part of their existence. Male feelings can be ignored, overridden, denied and eradicated. Little boys are disposable. They can be hurt with impunity and their only choice is to suck it up and accept their fate.

 

Wrong. Circumcision of infants – ALL INFANTS – must be abolished immediately. This is ground zero in the human rights movement for men, and even people who can’t accept any other precept of a human right’s movement for men can get behind that sentiment.

 

They will join the group and quite likely begin to understand and identify with the entire movement, lending support, just to belong.

 

It’s a start, and one that should be exploited fully.

 

Planned Parenthood

 

Men deserve the right to absolve themselves morally, ethically, legally and financially of all responsibility towards children they did not intend and do not want, just as women can. A woman can abort a child, surrender it to authorities under safe haven laws or place it for adoption, absolving herself of any further obligations. Men should have the same right.

 

safe haven

 

Assumed Custody

 

When a marriage or partnership breaks down, men should have the same rights as women to custody of the children. Automatic 50% and any other arrangement must be agreed to in advance or supported with evidence for why one or the other parent should not have 50% custody.

 

Children have a right to be cared for by BOTH their mothers and fathers.

 

family

 

There are many more basic rights (healthcare, social services, disproportionate sentencing in criminal courts) that are also on the table, for the very good reason that men are being punished or denied vital services BECAUSE they are men, and expected to just “man-up” and deal with their shit in a way that women aren’t.

 

But the first three items are pretty much no-brainers. They open a dialogue with people who might not otherwise identify, or who even actively resist the idea that men need some basic human rights protections.

 

http://jezebel.com/5967923/fuck-you-mras

 

Group affiliation is a powerful motivator. Time to hand out some M&Ms. Just a few at a time.

 

That’s all it takes.

 

Lots of love,

 

JB

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