[Discussion] Men talking to men about Feminism

This thread is for people who believe that when it comes to feminism it's important for men to listen to women and to talk to men.

In this thread we assume Feminism is something you wholeheartedly support or want to support. Questions about the validity of Feminism are for somewhere else.

We used Valentine's Day as an excuse to eat out, then we got married on 9 February 2013, got a daughter on 10 February 2017 and my wife is godmother to a boy born on 9 February 2016. So we now celebrate a lot of things in February, but not Valentine's Day

I still would though if that made her happy.

I did all handicrafts this year. My daughter is pretty into it. Also, my wife appreciates it, especially when we're not using (wasting) a lot of money.

I went out by myself for pizza for lunch (with barely a crowd...only others there were a few construction guys on lunch break) and tonight have big plans to play more Sims 4 on XB1, and they've already had "Love Day" for their current year.

My most favorite memories of Valentine's Day was when my dad would bring home a box of Russel Stover (sp?) chocolates (with nuts...not the nasty creams) for me and my mom, and one year it had a stuffed dog on the heart shaped box, and that dog was named Valentine of course.

I'm sure I had a few Valentine's Day "dates" when I was in a relationship or when I was married, but they simply aren't memorable enough for me to remember.

Just do what's right for you and your family, and if your SO really wants to do something, then go along with it because that in itself is a gift.

I remember our primary school had us make and detail cards, as well as novelty items, for our parents. That was cool! Mum was chuffed. Good times.

Once we progressed up a few years the school decided we should instead create cards for our classmates. That was less cool! I recall not much caring. Love? Girls? Get away from me! I do remember one girl in our class asking if I'd make one out to her friend, who hadn't received any. I did. She was happy. Her friend was happy. I was befuddled. Thinking back now it was kind of uncool to create a situation where kids felt less worthy than others, per cards received. I was just thinking how long until home time and Super Mario Bros. 3!

RnRClown wrote:

I remember our primary school had us make and detail cards, as well as novelty items, for our parents. That was cool! Mum was chuffed. Good times.

Once we progressed up a few years the school decided we should instead create cards for our classmates. That was less cool! I recall not much caring. Love? Girls? Get away from me! I do remember one girl in our class asking if I'd make one out to her friend, who hadn't received any. I did. She was happy. Her friend was happy. I was befuddled. Thinking back now it was kind of uncool to create a situation where kids felt less worthy than others, per cards received. I was just thinking how long until home time and Super Mario Bros. 3!

Our school district dumped Valentine's parties and cards for Kindness Week. While the usual suspects griped like when the schools punted on Halloween in school, I am on board. Less garbage sent home, less cost to parents, more focus on being good to those around you.

Post Valentine's question:

If a woman is hitting you, and she has had no fighting experience or training, and is clearly not a threat to you, are you justified in hitting her back? I'm inclined to say no, but I'm chatting with a woman friend who is a feminist and she says yes.

LarryC wrote:

Post Valentine's question:

If a woman is hitting you, and she has had no fighting experience or training, and is clearly not a threat to you, are you justified in hitting her back? I'm inclined to say no, but I'm chatting with a woman friend who is a feminist and she says yes.

Short answer: Yes. Some one is using force against you. You should defend yourself. Gendered chivalry is toxic.
Long answer: This is one of those things that is so situational that it is difficult to really lay out what to down specifically.
Where are you? Could the "room" turn against you depending how you respond?
What is around you? Could the person grab something that could be used as a weapon?
Regardless of the person's training, the human body is paradoxically sturdy and fragile at the same time. So one (un)lucky hit could cause permanent damage either way.

You probably have the ethical* right to respond, but it may not be the best response.
* - There's probably a better term.

For my part, I don't act based on chivalry. For the longest time, I just never really felt threatened by a woman getting violent? I dunno. Never been hurt by a female punching me since before puberty. Maybe they've just been holding back? Kinda hard to hold back when you're semi-conscious, though. But males are scary sh*t. Even the small ones hit really, really hard. Not sure why.

I'd definitely feel threatened by a larger woman trying to hit me, though. I would definitely fight back in that case. I'd say the muscle advantage is counterbalanced by the weight category advantage she'd have.

Same rules apply as if a dude is hitting you, frankly. Respond with minimal force required to defuse the situation, and only start swinging when less violent options are exhausted.

And if you're 6'4" and they're 5'2", you're gonna be the one that looks like an asshole afterwards, regardless of who was the aggressor.

In Larry's hypothetical, the "clearly not a threat" to you is a very different situation from "I was afraid for my safety".

Jonman wrote:

Same rules apply as if a dude is hitting you, frankly. Respond with minimal force required to defuse the situation, and only start swinging when less violent options are exhausted.

And if you're 6'4" and they're 5'2", you're gonna be the one that looks like an asshole afterwards, regardless of who was the aggressor.

In Larry's hypothetical, the "clearly not a threat" to you is a very different situation from "I was afraid for my safety".

This totally!! Diffuse the situation or exit the situation as soon as possible. Get yourself out of harms way, even if that means exerting your physical prowess. Do what you can to de-escalate the situation, but not at the risk of your personal safety.

Many ways to deescalate without going hands on and even then there are several things on the spectrum before getting to striking someone.

I wasn’t implying to strike. I was thinking more along the lines of pushing past folks if that’s what it would take to get out of harms way. As a pacifist, I believe that throwing blows is an absolute last resort.

Could I have the principal of charity, please?

I'm unsure how I'd react. It is ingrained that if a man hits a woman it is he who is in the wrong, and he who will be judged, regardless of most context, in the eyes of the overwhelming majority. It may linger for a long time that he struck a woman. It's probably safer to just take the blows and hope you come out minus anything too severe. I'd rather deal with that than any contorted conjecture about having put my hands on a woman. I think.

There are now men coming forward to say how their female partners physically (emotionally and mentally) abused them. They simply took it. They didn't speak up. They didn't fight back. They took blows that drew blood, caused bruises, left scars. Ask them why and it's a mixture of embarrassment and a fear of being labelled as a woman beater. They're laughed at. They're dismissed as liars.

Let's not forget, though, that there are men who beat women without a second thought, and intimidate these women into never reporting it, as well as bully them to dismiss and lie about events if someone reports on their behalf. Then if it ever comes out they make up stories about it being self defence against the mentally unstable.

The gendered societal expectations and stereotypes in this regard are both fractured and seemingly easy to manipulate. So, the best course of action is somewhat difficult to accurately surmise. Different circles. Different people. Different circumstance. Different culture.

I'm thankful the women I've known, and continue to know, have been, and are, good people. Minus but a few. I'm also thankful that as a man I can lay hands on another man in self defence minus any nonsense. In the past anyway. I'm more of a pacifist now. Respect. Calm. De-escalate. With a pinch of common sense to avoid those looking for trouble, or engage politely yet as little as is required.

(I may have over-thought my answer. I'm in an over-thinking funk right now.)

Jonman wrote:

Same rules apply as if a dude is hitting you, frankly. Respond with minimal force required to defuse the situation, and only start swinging when less violent options are exhausted.

And if you're 6'4" and they're 5'2", you're gonna be the one that looks like an asshole afterwards, regardless of who was the aggressor.

In Larry's hypothetical, the "clearly not a threat" to you is a very different situation from "I was afraid for my safety".

I'm with this. If you can restrain the person or deflect a few blows, without escalating, that's best for everyone -- regardless of who the assailant is.

RawkGWJ wrote:

I wasn’t implying to strike. I was thinking more along the lines of pushing past folks if that’s what it would take to get out of harms way. As a pacifist, I believe that throwing blows is an absolute last resort.

Could I have the principal of charity, please?

Absolutely. Sorry that came across as snark. Could have said that better. My fault!

Pushing past, getting away is totally cool as it:
1) gets the recipient of violence out of harm's way
2) demonstrates their desire to disengage
3) protects others by deescalating

Side note: how are things getting to violence in the scenario? Often there's a ramp up period (at least in groups)? Drinking at a bar/home? Partner violence can be totally different and even more scary since it can come out of nowhere and in private (and with children/vulnerable adults close by).

So wanted to give a quick update on Valentines and comment on the self defense question.

I’ve moved to a new team where my boss is a woman. Not only did she give me comp time to go do some gift shopping but she urged me to do so given that I had been putting in a lot of long hours recently. She even gave me some great suggestions on where I could find a great local candy store with amazing chocolate. My last male boss was awesome but eating at your desk every day was the team norm and everyone worked as much overtime as possible. I would never have even thought of asking for comp time. So yeah for diversity!

Regarding Larry’s question - my recent run in with a psycho convinced me to get back into martial arts. I would highly recommend everyone at least take some self defense courses. You’ll learn ways to block and get away that won’t leave you open to being arrested.

Sadly, I’ve been in a horrible relationship where my ex came at me with a large blade. I escaped and called the cops who told me I had done the right thing. If I had tackled her I would have gone to jail for domestic violence. Juries and judges would have not looked favorably on me being 6’ 2 “and an Army vet and her being a 5’ 5” Japanese college student.

I don’t know if it’s fair to say a man is always punished for striking back because a lot of abusers get away with just probation. However, frequent flyer donkey clowns know how to work the system and would probably get a lower sentence than an honest guy trying to defend himself. At the very least, you’re likely looking at a weekend in jail even if you’re acquitted.

The only caveat is if you can’t get away and she’s going to hurt you. Then the maxim “better to be judged by 12 then carried by 6” applies.

The incident that prompted the question was a woman physically attacking a man in a bus. For context, alighting the bus at that point could mean a 2 hour walk home. The provoking incident was that he was allegedly staring at her.

Outside of corner cases like that, I'm convinced the best general self-defense training is track and field and the best general self-defense tool is a bicycle.

LarryC wrote:

The incident that prompted the question was a woman physically attacking a man in a bus. For context, alighting the bus at that point could mean a 2 hour walk home. The provoking incident was that he was allegedly staring at her.

Outside of corner cases like that, I'm convinced the best general self-defense training is track and field and the best general self-defense tool is a bicycle.

Wait there weren’t other buses coming soon? No taxis or Ubers? (Sorry if Uber hasn’t hit the Philippines yet but it seems to have expanded to most major international cities.

I wish I had better answers. The attacked man probably has a good legal alibi in that she was a random aggressor. The problem is that the surrounding passengers will likely assume the guy did something wrong.

I also don’t know if there are specific dangers with Filipino cops. Like is there any chance you could get summarily executed if she swears up and down that you’re a drug dealer?

LarryC wrote:

The provoking incident was that he was allegedly staring at her.

Why do I read "allegedly staring at her" as "blatantly eye f*cking her"?

OG_slinger wrote:
LarryC wrote:

The provoking incident was that he was allegedly staring at her.

Why do I read "allegedly staring at her" as "blatantly eye f*cking her"?

This is why there really aren't good solid answers for a scenario since you have to make so many assumptions.
Who is the bad actor in the scenario? Is the attacker reacting to a threat, real or perceived?
What cultural norms are in play? I kind of mentioned this in my original answer with how will the room respond.
What are the escape options?

lunchbox12682 wrote:
OG_slinger wrote:
LarryC wrote:

The provoking incident was that he was allegedly staring at her.

Why do I read "allegedly staring at her" as "blatantly eye f*cking her"?

This is why there really aren't good solid answers for a scenario since you have to make so many assumptions.
Who is the bad actor in the scenario? Is the attacker reacting to a threat, real or perceived?
What cultural norms are in play? I kind of mentioned this in my original answer with how will the room respond.
What are the escape options?

I got the feeling that this is a personal anecdote, in which case I can't imagine Larry purposely being an eye rapist. Of course, it could have been construed as oggling but throwing a punch because someone's a weirdo without at least giving them a verbal warning is still unacceptable.

jdzappa wrote:
lunchbox12682 wrote:
OG_slinger wrote:
LarryC wrote:

The provoking incident was that he was allegedly staring at her.

Why do I read "allegedly staring at her" as "blatantly eye f*cking her"?

This is why there really aren't good solid answers for a scenario since you have to make so many assumptions.
Who is the bad actor in the scenario? Is the attacker reacting to a threat, real or perceived?
What cultural norms are in play? I kind of mentioned this in my original answer with how will the room respond.
What are the escape options?

I got the feeling that this is a personal anecdote, in which case I can't imagine Larry purposely being an eye rapist. Of course, it could have been construed as oggling but throwing a punch because someone's a weirdo without at least giving them a verbal warning is still unacceptable.

Sorry, it sounded like him watching this occur.

Guys, you're crowding the other feminism thread again. Quit it.

garion333 wrote:

Guys, you're crowding the other feminism thread again. Quit it.

Men are crowding the men talking to men thread? (Assuming this is the other thread.)

Or, the Feminism & Social Justice thread is being crowded? (Assuming that is the other thread.)

Honest question.

Definitely the second one.

Third party. I can't say whether he was ogling her or anything. But again, I'm rather large for the locals so the woman wouldn't have been able to hurt me in a bus anyway, if that ever happened.