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Response to Mr. Anonymous by emma goldwoman

Response to Mr. Anonymous by emma goldwoman
(Response to: To Extremist Feminist Emma Goldwoman: 20 *Real* Interview Questions to Answer... and Emma Goldwoman's Femenazi Rants: Data Showing Her Unpopularity on Portland IMC. See also: Compost Bin 11/27.)

About censorship:

I do not agree with whoever made the decision to compost the original post. I am a free speech extremist. We must allow into public discourse precisely those opinions we personally find the most abhorrent, otherwise freedom of speech is meaningless. I do not think the original post constitutes spam. The person who posted it is, in my opinion, not trying to prevent the functioning of indymedia.

About the term 'feminazi':

The term 'feminazi' is first and foremost a word used to try and shut people up, specifically feminists and their supporters.

As anyone who takes the time to read my essays can discover, I consistently advocate a resolution of conflict through communication, which is precisely what the Nazis were most afraid of, because their power rested on terror, pure and simple.

The term 'feminazi' became current (as far as I know, perhaps someone can do some research on the word and help me out) in reaction to the women's movement of the late '60's and '70's. Rush Limbaugh is quite fond of this word.

Women can challenge this word directly, by refusing to be cowed by the people who throw it at them. We can calmly break the word down and expose the assumptions buried within it.

The word is made by combining 'feminist' with 'Nazi'.

Feminists, women who have organized and struggled to promote the rights of women, have never held political power. Far from it. They are considered dangerous, however, just as Palestinians are considered dangerous for Zionists, just as wage slaves are considered dangerous for owners, just as critics of American foreign policy are considered dangerous by the men (mostly) implementing that policy. Feminists are considered dangerous because they challenge the right of male violence (individual, legal, war) to rule the world.

The other word, 'Nazi', refers to an actual political movement which taught that some people are slaves, others are masters. The Nazis, naturally, considered themselves to be masters, and thus anything, ANYTHING, they did was justified, in their eyes, because THEY did it.

The people who use this word, 'feminazi', thus combine two words which, logically, cannot be combined. The word is meant to frighten, to condemn, and to intimidate. A man who uses this word is nothing but a coward, afraid of talking sensibly about human society. Women have to put up with this type of male intellect, this bullshit, day in or day out, this male intellect which assumes it is oh so logical, oh so intelligent, when in fact it has the mental age of an eight year old moaning that his pretty toy has been taken away. His pretty toy, in this case, is his own image of himself as the rightful ruler of our world.

The word 'feminazi' is interesting though, because the Nazis were an example of what I have been talking about in my essays.

We often hear that Hitler was a 'failed art student'. We rarely hear, though, that he was a 'successful soldier'. He was. He was a war hero, just like Timothy McVeigh. Just like Ariel Sharon. Just like ... ... . you fill in the blank.

The Nazi party was started by young men, soldiers, who had been through the sadist training school called war. The sensitivity necessary for healthy human life had been destroyed. They became killing machines, and after the war they remained killing machines, looking for a killing ideology and a killing leader to follow.

The Nazi party was the modern expression of undiluted male violence: efficient, cold, filled with the false coin of maudlin sentimentality and patriotism, racist, arrogant, self-satisfied, cruel, and completely unable to allow the sensitivity of direct emotion and relationship to affect their mentally constructed self-image.

The Nazi party is blustering George Bush calmly contemplating the violent deaths of thousands and thousands of innocent Iraqi people in order for the white boys from Texas to take control of the world's oil supplies. That oil belongs to Bush because he has the power to take it. Because he has the power, he is superior. That is the Nazi ideology, in a nutshell.

Ask yourself why the word 'masculinazi', or some such tortured coinage, doesn't exist. The reason is that 'Nazi' equals male violence. And any woman who challenges the right of male violence to order and rule the world must be condemned as the imagined shadow of male violence.

Men, you men who call feminists feminazis, take a deep breath, relax, and ADMIT THAT YOU HAVE THE MATURITY OF AN EIGHT YEAR OLD. (I do eight-year-olds an injustice by using them as my point of comparison) Women do not want to hurt you; you hurt yourself by holding on so tightly to your image of yourself. Women want peace. We want to walk the streets in peace. We want to live in peace. We are sick of men running the world like it is a video game, where you win if you kill enough people. I say it again: TEN THOUSAND YEARS IS ENOUGH!

Mr. Anonymous, here are my responses to your questions:

Mr. Anonymous: Your first posting was entitled "A Modest Proposal", was this in reference to Mr. Swift's "A Modest Proposal"? If so, why did you use a satirical title?

My first posting was intended to be serious, to point out what I saw as a problem on the left, but to do so in a humorous way. I meant the title literally. I borrowed the title from Swift, which caused some confusion. I hope everything is clear now.

That problem I saw on the left was the incredible male dominance of the left, where men will talk for hours about class relationships, and completely ignore the fact that ONLY MEN ARE ON THE STAGE TALKING. If men on the left were 1/100th as concerned about 'feminist issues' as they claim to be they would SHUT UP AND LET SOME WOMEN TALK.

Mr. Anonymous: One woman who commented on your article said, "I am doing a petition drive to get in the Green Party primary for Governor. Oh, well, it's a start!" Why do you feel it is neccessary [sic] for men to step down first in order for women to step up second? Can women like her step up first and succeed?

From my first essay my focus has been what is best for humanity, not what is best for women. The current male domination of our human institutions, including the groups who resist the status quo (the so-called 'left' we can say, for want of a better word) is, in my view, a major factor leading humanity to possible species extinction though destruction of the environment, and nuclear and biological warfare. Humanity must change its way of resolving conflict, otherwise we may all perish, or live in a vast police state. The way we currently resolve conflict is through the three forms of male violence (individual, legal, and war). The fastest way to change male domination is for a sizable percentage of men to realize it is a major problem, and for them to VOLUNTARILY allow women to step forward, to VOLUNTARILY support women who do step forward, and for men to VOLUNTARILY do their best to end male domination. The obvious place for this to start is with left organizations.

Certainly women can certainly 'step up' and succeed now, and find a place in the overwhelmingly male hierarchy. To do so they must support the traditional male way of resolving conflict through violence. My suggestion is that women refuse to join this hierarchy based on male violence, and instead should take the lead in creating new ways of resolving conflict, or utilizing old ways. Men who join the Movement for Male Restraint would VOLUNTARILY support the women who do this, and participate with them in creating these alternatives to male violence.

Mr. Anonymous: Though about equal in population, men have more power than women in the world. You propose the party with majority power give that power to the minority. On what logic do you choose gender as the qualifier? Why only gender? Why not other dimensions like age (old should give power to young) or race (whites should give power to minorities) or country (U.S. should give power to minority countries)?

This is a cocktail of questions, which makes it difficult to answer. First, the power you speak of is based upon the power of male violence. I'm not asking men to 'give' women that power. I'm asking men to allow women to create new ways to resolve conflict that is not based upon male violence (individual, legal, and war). I choose gender as the qualifier because I think it is easy to demonstrate, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that for the last ten thousand years men have dominated what we call 'civilization' (that is, humanity living in large groups instead of small bands of hunter-gatherers) through the use of physical violence (individual, legal, and war).

Mr. Anonymous: Would a proposal to have the United States (pop. 300 mil.) give its power (nuclear, military, financial, and otherwise) to the minority countries of Pakistan and Russia (combined pop.300 mil.) be any different than what you propose? Why?

Yes, obviously very different, because I am not proposing to give women the power of violence (nuclear, military, financial, and otherwise), but for men, through the Movement for Male Restraint, to allow women to create new ways of resolving conflict.

Mr. Anonymous: You can use the word patriarchy to describe a type of domination, but you cannot use the word domination to describe a type of patriarchy. Patriarchy is a property or quality of domination. Which do you see to be the real problem, the root domination problem or the patriarchy symptom? Or both? If both, which is more important and why?

Domination occurs through male violence. Male violence is what makes domination possible. All domination that is NOT based upon male violence, if challenged, can be ended relatively easily. Without violent coercion how can we dominate each other for any length of time? Psychological manipulation? Yes, it is very powerful. But without an enforcer (usually male) to back it up, how long can people be manipulated? Patriarchy, a way of organizing human society based on male violence, makes all the other forms of domination possible.

Mr. Anonymous: Do you feel your proposal is inclusionary [sic] or exclusionary and why? When you divide people into dual conceptual categories of any kind, white/not-white, attractive/not-attractive, USA/not-USA, male/not-male, how does the emphasis and reinforcing of that division promote an inclusionary [sic], peaceful relationship between the two? Is not the act of cutting or dividing a type of "conceptual violence", to separate that which is not ultimately separate?

Another cocktail, but nevertheless a good question. First, I think my proposal is inclusive, for this reason: I have proposed that men, through the Movement for Male Restraint, JOIN women in promoting a new way of resolving conflict which is not based upon male violence (individual, legal, and war). I'm proposing that the men in this movement VOLUNTARILY allow women to step forward and find this new way. I'm not dividing people based upon conceptual categories, but upon perceivable fact. Men and women are biologically different: that is a biological fact. Men control our society through male violence: that is an observable fact, and a historical fact. By pointing out these facts I hope to create a more peaceful relationship between all human beings. If men gave up male violence (individual, legal, and war) we would obviously have a much more peaceful world.

I'm not conceptually dividing anything. What if I said 'Human beings control each other through human violence'? That is simply untrue. Human beings control each other through male violence (individual, legal, and war). That is a statement which corresponds to reality, otherwise known as a FACT.

Mr. Anonymous: How do you respond to women who do not want any leaders, even female ones, even interim ones?

I responded to this in my previous interview: http://www.portland.indymedia.org/front.php3?article_id=35304&group=webcast

People may not want leaders, but leadership is inevitable for social animals. In any group of human beings, the first one to do anything, that others subsequently do, is a leader. The problem, as I have said before, is not leadership, but coercive leadership based upon male violence (individual, legal, and war).

Mr. Anonymous: In your first piece you wrote, "In one month, if men allow it to happen, the entire progressive movement can be led and dominated by women. If any organization refuses to do this, then clearly they will be resisting social change..." Converting people to Christianity is one example of a type of social change. Would you describe anyone who refuses to convert to Christianity as "resisting social change"? Isn't that facism [sic], albiet [sic] feminist facism [sic]?

In my third essay, THE MOVEMENT FOR MALE RESTRAINT, I stated:

"I was rightfully criticized for my use of the word 'domination' and I regret that my impassioned fingers hammered this word into my keyboard. I realized later, meditating on the responses to my article in a quieter moment, that 'domination' does not express the meaning I wish to convey. 'Domination' implies coercion through violence, which I DO NOT advocate."

Fascism, if the word has any meaning, means a political system based upon various forms of coercion, the basic one being male violence (individual, legal, and war). I HAVE REPEATEDLY SAID I DO NOT ADVOCATE COERCION.

Mr. Anonymous: Sociologists, including noted female researchers, have studied well-publicized reports showing how, historically, men's and women's roles had once been equal, but with the advent of farming technologies that child-rearing women were physically unable to participate in, the power shifted, not from greater or lesser, but from exterior to interior. While men had more power in the external world (war, work) women had more power in the internal world (family, home). This has very real consequences for men -- mortality by gunfire, alcoholism or homelessness, loss of parental rights in event of a divorce, a 15% shorter lifespan. The technological age we live in has eliminated the reason why this imbalance began, but it takes time for the balance to be restored. Do you feel your proposal is simple impatience on your part for the natural cycle to regain its equlibrium [sic]?

Natural cycle my ass. There is nothing natural about men oppressing women. Your 'natural' is only the status quo. The status quo is always defined as 'natural' or 'God's will'.

First, you are wrong: women have always participated in farming technologies. Show me one single case where they did not. Second: there is no such thing as an 'external world' or an 'internal world' in human society (a perfect example, by the way, of a false conceptual division). By controlling what you term the 'external world' men controlled what you call the 'internal world'. You've created a false picture of human society, where there are two equal spheres of 'female power' and 'male power'. But women do not prevent men from helping to raise the children. And women do not prevent men from washing the dishes, or cooking. Instead, men force women into this 'housewife' role using male violence (individual, legal, and war), and then have the nerve to call it women's choice. If there is so much power in being a domestic slave, then why do women refuse this role whenever they have an opportunity? Why have women fought and organized (and suffered) for hundreds of years if they derive so much power from cooking meals and changing diapers? This type of vapid argument has been used for years to justify male oppression.

Mr. Anonymous: You can describe a glass as being half-empty of water of being half-empty of air. Either way you get the same thing. Similarly, you can describe the world in terms of the problem of male domination or you can describe the world in terms of its opposite, female submission. Either way you get the same thing. Why do you choose to target male domination while largely ignoring the other side of the coin, female submission?

Was the submission of slaves the opposite of slaveholder domination? Hmm, I think not. Slavery was the RESULT of white domination through male violence. Female submission is not the opposite of male domination. Female submission is the RESULT of male domination. I am obviously not ignoring female submission, I'm trying to encourage men to VOLUNTARILY join the Movement for Male Restraint, and for women to VOLUNTARILY resist their oppression.

Mr. Anonymous: Dividing the problem into binary "male/not-male" thinking is one level of resolution. But you can go one resolution higher, i.e. "white males" are the problem. And even further dimensions, further detailed resolutions: rich white males, rich white Western males, rich white American males, old rich white American males, and so on and so forth, until you get a resolution with such breadth, with such detail that there is nothing that is not, to even the smallest extent, a part of the problem. The question is, why do you select the level of resolution that you do, that is simple "male/not-male"? Why not higher or lower resolutions?

I'm not sure what you mean by the word 'resolution'. It is a very unclear metaphor. What in the world does 'One resolution higher' mean? Are you saying that you can 'zoom in' and 'zoom out' on a map called humanity? I think you need to search your limited vocabulary for a more accurate word. However, guessing, I think you mean there is a hierarchy of dominators, if you will, and at the top of this hierarchy of dominators are 'old rich white American males'.

I've chosen to focus my analysis on male violence (individual, legal, and war) because, as I said in my previous interview, I think it is the Achilles heel of the network of coercion we live in. We have around half of the human population (most women) who do not participate in human violence (individual, legal, and war), and who are, generally, not conditioned to do so culturally. (This is changing. The James Bond sidekick wears a bikini AND shoots to kill.) We also have around half the human population, men, who are conditioned to participate in human violence, and to justify it. A sizeable percentage of these men actually are involved directly in this human violence, enough for me to define human violence as male violence. (My article A STATISTICAL ANALYSIS OF VIOLENT MALE DOMINATION provides the statistics for this.)

Mr. Anonymous: Concerning the above question, the larger the group you target ("male") the more resistence [sic] will be encountered. Thus, targeting smaller groups right on down to individual people (or even an individual person's single opinion, or single thought) is easier and easier. What importance do you place on individual personal change versus mass political change?

I'm not targeting a group. I'm pointing out the facts of violent male domination. I'm not out to get men. Far from it. If men join the Movement for Male Restraint and help women find new ways of resolving conflict the vast majority of men will have a better life. Your second question is a good question. Non-coercive mass political change must occur one person at a time, otherwise it is based upon forcing people to change. So, I place great importance on individual change. When I write my essays I am speaking to the individual.

Mr. Anonymous: Which is more important, to identify and analyze which spouse is beating which spouse, or to stop the beating altogeather [sic]?

This is a question with a false choice. In order to 'stop the beating altogether' you must first know who is being beaten, and start there. Women are usually the ones being beaten. Women have made domestic violence an issue, not men. And they made it an issue by hard work and activism. In fact, I think that the recognition that sometimes women physically abuse men in domestic settings is due to women's activism. You rarely heard about it before women made domestic violence an issue.

Mr. Anonymous: Of the 100 richest people on the planet, over one third (35) are women. The number of women in this top 100 list has been increasing, as are women in positions of all types of power. How is it that all these women were able to succeed without men giving up their power first, as your proposal requires? Or would you suppose that most of these women are on the list because men did give up their power first, and if so, doesn't that suggest that they were not strong enough on their own to achieve it, which paints a rather bleak picture of a woman's abilities and potentials in general?

Another cocktail question. It is obvious that you have either completely misunderstood my essays, or you have not read them very carefully. I'm not calling for women to join the male hierarchy. Far from it. The male hierarchy is based upon male violence (individual, legal, and war). In what way have these women 'succeeded'? Because they are rich? I don't call that success. I call that conformity and theft. Most of the women on that list inherited their wealth. None of them (and none of the men) created that wealth. They stole it, using the systems of male violence. None of the people were 'strong enough to achieve' that wealth on their own! What planet are you living on? Do you really think those rich folks have special abilities, and that is why they are rich?

Those 100 people are simply the beneficiaries of a society based upon male violence (individual, legal, and war); they are the World Mafia who take their wealth by pointing a gun at someone's head and saying 'your money (resources, labor power, land) or your life'. Where would Bill Gates be without the violent power of the U.S. legal system, which allowed him to force thousands of computer developers to transfer all their creativity and hard work into his pockets? He could not do this without legal violence. From what I know about it (not much), Bill Gates never wrote a line of code in his life. He bought DOS and kept the rights to it, and then it was just a matter of finding wage slaves. The key to Bill Gates is this: his father was/is a corporate lawyer, a specialist in the world of legal violence.

Mr. Anonymous: Organized or semi-organized warfare is a trait of primates (humans and chimpanzees) that crosses gender distinctions. A very brief rundown of just a few matriarchs who actively, and eagerly, participated in and initiated "mass murder called war": Queen Isabelle of England, Queen Isabella II of Castile, Princess Graine Ni Maille of Ireland, Catherine the Great of Russia, Queen Aahhotep I of Egypt, Queen Mavia of Syria, Queen Zenoba of Palmyria, Warrior Queen Zabibi of Arabia, Queen Tomyris of the Massagetai, Queen Cartimandua of the Brigantes, Queen Bouddicca of the Iceni, Queen Urraca of Aragon, Countess Isobel of Buchan, Queen Phillipa of Hainault... and more, as virtually all matriarchs throughout history have been just as bloodthirsty, power hungry and greedy as the patriarchs.

Scythian women were notorious warrioresses [sic], as were the Celtic women of ancient times, and Roman gladiators were of both genders. In addition, human sacrifice to "mother" earth was present in nearly all of all the pre-history matriarchs.

How do you explain these well documented, widespread accounts of violence perpetrated by women, from primates onward all throughout history?

I've never said women were not violent. Read my essays. I've said that the vast majority of human violence (individual, legal, and war), currently and historically, is/was directed and committed by men. All the Queens you mentioned were in power because of an ideology of inherited superiority through blood. They were the symbolic tiptop of a pyramid, and below them were men who directed male killers.

I've never heard of a single culture that sacrificed people to Mother Earth. But there have been many cultures, including our own, that have sacrificed people to Father War.

There has never been a culture based on matriarchy. You are confusing kinship determined according to the mother with a political system. There has never been a matriarchal culture in the way you mean it, with women holding political power through female violence. Never. Don't believe me, look it up.

Mr. Anonymous: Do you regret the decisions of inaction that women in the past made which have created the situtation [sic] of "gender oppression" you now live in today? If you do regret their inactions, how is that different from being ashamed of them, and is that not the opposite of female empowerment? Similarly, is looking only to a future female-run utopia a type of regret, a regret for the present, for what is here now currently? If you regret the present moment, and yet are tied inextricably to the present moment, is that not a type of deeply covered up self-shame?

Hey cowboy, you call that a question? That's a corral full of questions. I regret nothing about women in the past. I'm proud of women. Women have endured every imaginable form of oppression the male world has to offer, and yet they have never given birth to the kind of hatred that men spew out without a second thought. Women have never created hateful religions, hateful ideologies, hateful forms of killing. Read a history of the nuclear bomb, by a man named Rhodes, and count the number of women's names in the index. I'm not looking for a utopia, I'm trying to prevent the hell-on-earth that our male dominated political system is cooking up for us. Your lame attempt at psychoanalyzing my motivations is not worth a response. Yeah, I'm ashamed. I'm ashamed I'm taking the time to answer your flatulent questions. But now that I've started... ...

Mr. Anonymous: If a man breaks into your home, beats you and rapes you, is that an example of male domination? If a woman breaks into your home, beats you and rapes you, is that an example of female domination? Or are those examples simply examples of domination? Is the problem in both scenerios [sic] then not one of gender but of domination?

I wonder, how many women in the past one hundred years have broken into somebody's home in the United States and raped somebody? How many? One? Two? I refer you once again to my article A STATISTICAL ANALYSIS OF VIOLENT MALE DOMINATION Look at the statistics for rape. This is one of your more disgusting questions. The problem IS one of gender. Men rape women. Women do not rape men. Do a little research!

Mr. Anonymous: Racism, sexism, classism, and all the other dimensions and ways of dividing people into dual categories are problems which are interwoven; no one problem lives in a vacuum tube apart from the others. Why do you suggest taking a compartmental gender-only approach rather than a more holistic big-picture approach, which includes both genders not just as parts of the solution but as parts of the problem?

I open my eyes and I see. I report what I see. As I have said a million times, the incredible prevalence of male violence (individual, legal, and war) in comparison to female violence, is a fact, a contemporary fact and a historical fact. That's why I talk about it. Do some research dude, prove me wrong. Or, a better approach, take those rosy male-tinted sunglasses off and look at the world you are living in, and tell me honestly, who is doing the killing, who is directing the killing?

Mr. Anonymous: The 2000 FBI statistics you posted in "A Statistical Analysis of Violent Male Domination" showed that crime is mostly committed by men. This is true. However, it is only one angle. That exact same report which shows 90% of homicides committed by men also shows that 91% of homicides are by persons 18 or older, 70% by those 17-34, and 51% of homicides committed are by black people.

If it holds that the group committing the crimes is the group that needs to be targeted for reform, how is targeting males any wiser than targeting black people or young people? How is it any less a form of discrimination?

As I said in my essay, the least serious form of violence is individual violence. That is why I included the other forms of violence in my list of statistics. The most deadly form of violence is war, most of which is currently directed by a few white (mostly) guys (mostly) in Washington, DC. As I said before, I'm not targeting anybody. I'm stating the facts as I see them. I'm encouraging men to join the Movement for Male Restraint, and for women to step forward and resist male domination.

Mr. Anonymous: Have you ever been hurt by a man in the past?

Mr. Anonymous: Have you ever been truely [sic] loved by a man?

I don't answer personal questions. I enjoy, however, the way you so clearly reveal your basic assumptions. A lot of men, like yourself, think that feminists are feminists because of some deep dark motivation: they have been hurt by a man, or they haven't been loved (uh, 'scuse me, 'truly loved' ) by a man.

Believe it or not, feminists are feminists because they have the honesty and courage to look at the world and to tell the truth about what they see. That is all it takes. Talk to some feminists sometime Mr. Anonymous, and you will find every story in the book. There is no magic path to the recognition of reality.

On the other hand, as I said in the beginning about the Nazis, a lot of times the men who promote male domination and who are most threatened by disobedient women are men who have had their sensitivity, intellectual sensitivity , moral sensitivity, and emotional sensitivity, completely destroyed by the blunt instrument of male violence. I hope that is NOT the case with you. I hope, Mr. Anonymous, that you still retain enough sense to realize, at some point in the future, the utter ridiculousness of most of your above questions.

Humor-Challenged 30.Nov.2002 16:40

Commentator

> The term 'feminazi' is first and foremost a word used to
> try and shut people up, specifically feminists and their
> supporters.

Nice job of firing that rhetorical cannon at a gnat, but as is often the outcome in such cases, it didn't work.

The word "feminazi" is a sarcastic reference to the feminist tendency towards rigid hyper-obsessive moralizing about what ought to be the normal minutiae of life.

The term is similar to "soup nazi" from the Seinfeld TV show, "grammar nazi" (applied to those with rigid beliefs about how to say things), etc.

Resoinse from a man 30.Nov.2002 18:40

Dimitris therearguard@pdx.edu

Great response emma.

I love this woman... I am with you.

I agree that men (for the greater part) have been the most violent. I also have been feeling that we, men, need to step down from positions of power and allow women to deal with the mess we have made, all the while we RELEARN how to act civil again.

I admire women from the time I was a kid. I saw my grand mother growing up in a man's world and believe me she was a rebel, but she did it with so much love that the entire village called her the "lady of the village."
She was the only woman wearing pants, smoking non-filters and drinking ouzo and no man ever even thought of telling her other wise. She spent time with all the kids from the village and promoted love and peace in her own way. Everyone recognized that and that's why everyone respected her for it. She died more than 24 years ago and people still talk about her.

She dealt with so much crap from men, but she dealt with it and she did it with love. That is something most men lack in our society.

As far as Mr. Anonymous, he is really scary. He sure asks questions hopping to set emma up for something.

Anyway, I would like to join the movement emma. So maybe we can have a discussion on how men can do that. And maybe women can help us with getting reed of the violence the various institutions have ingrained in us. I surely don't feel a natural urge to kill anyone and any time I have ever gotten in a fight (last time was a very long time ago) I felt like shit spiritually and physically.

Men, we have a lot to relearn and a lot discover. I don't see any other way out of this mess the world is in other than to join women, because I truly believe their spirits have not been marred like ours. A generalization, but generally TRUE.

Thanks for all your work emma and the wonderful insight.

Great Replies Emma! 30.Nov.2002 20:49

Thanks

Great Replies Emma!

to Emma 30.Nov.2002 21:28

large extinct flightless bird

Emma, thanks for the posting (which was very thoughtful, and with which I mostly agree). You really should consider hitting the lecture circuit!!! I have first a comment and then a question.

You say that rape is almost exclusively committed by men. In the traditional, violent, physically overpowering sense this is absolutely true. But are you saying that when a person is coerced into sex ("I'm gonna' leave you if you don't give it up" is a very strong use of force) that it's not rape? If that's rape, and I think it is, then I can honestly say that a LOT of men have been raped. OK, that was part question as well...

Now the question--I would like to help foster equality, but I truly am stumped. So many of my friends, and so many indy readers look at their movement and say "why aren't there more minorities, why aren't there more women, what can we do to be more inclusive?" This doesn't sound to me like the problem in the activist microcosm is sexism or racism. Maybe it is, but I'm not aware of having witnessed it. Have you seen a lot of sexism in the Portland movement? If so then I know to look harder to recognize sexism, but if not, what can be done to make us more united?

to big damned bird that can't fly 30.Nov.2002 22:33

vance engel

i've had chics fuck me while i was passed out... had chics do the, "can i sleep in your bed instead of on the couch?" thing and i wake up to them on top of me after the ground rule for the night was "no touching by either party"... that's rape and it happens quite a bit.

that's just a side note...

what i wanted to say was that i had the *ahem* privilidge to sit in on a conference call for the march for social justice in Salem in Feb of this year. there was a PPRC representitive and a couple people from Eugene and some fuck from Salem... and they were trying to think of speakers... they listed about a dozen, and each one was met with, "yes, but he's male, don't we know any women or pepole of color?" for fifteen minutes it went on like this... finally, one woman was named, at least a 13th choice and they confessed she wasn't even a good speaker... but they were excited they had a woman... then they went looking for some minority speaker to speak and that was another 15 minutes that had to be postponed to e-mail discussion because, well, OR just doesn't have many minorities. it's even worse when people try to do that over here in eastern OR... it's a token thought that often comprimises the quality of the events.

and a question i wanted to ask was: woman who insults a goddess of mine with that name, are you on the editorial board or are you good friends with the editorial board? because your garbage litters it when the original questions and attempts at debunking your nonsense went unmentioned... just curious.

thanks for the questions, anonymous....

-me

More Questions for Emma Goldwoman 01.Dec.2002 01:36

a question

I don't have any sympathy for Mr. Anonymous and his perspective, but I have some questions for you.

How do you answer the critique made by many Feminists of color in the USA, and more importantly Third World Feminists, all of whom suggest that American feminism represents the interests and agenda primarily of White, middle class women. In particular, the dominant strain of American feminism is an Imperialist feminism--one which refuses to acknowledge the fact citizens (regardless of gender)in the United States and other First World nations to one degree or another benefit from a system based upon the capitalist exploitation of the Third World.

I am thinking particularly of feminists such as bell hooks, Chandra Mohanty, Gayatri Spivak, or Hazel Carby (author of the famous essay " "White Women Listen! Black Feminism and the Boundaries of Sisterhood,").

You have heard of these feminist writers, haven't you? If not, perhaps a google search would be in order.

Furthermore, how do justify the behavior of leading influential feminists such as Robin Morgan (author of the seminal 1970 anthology "Sisterhood is Powerful") or organizations such as National Organization of Women all of which *supported* the violent American attack on Afghanistan after 9-11?

How do you explain the fact that these feminists not only supported this attack--which murdered many Afghani women, by the way--but also promoted the propaganda that this attack was in part motivated by a noble, humanitarian desire to liberate Afghani women from the Taliban and their dreaded burkas? In other words, how could these feminists allow feminism to be hijacked and manipulated in order to support American Imperialist violence around the world.

How do explain the fact that, today, life in Afganistan under the American sponsored regime of Hamid Karzai involves the same kind of atrocities which occured under the Taliban, and that the burka is still a preferred clothing of choice? Has the National Organization of Women--or for that matter, Laura Bush or Mavis Leno--raised the same outcry or shed the same (crocodile) tears for these women now that an American client state has been forced on Afghanistan?

My problem with your analysis is that is an essentialist critique--meaning that it reduces questions of violence to an abstract biological essence. Violence is instrinsically (and by implication biologically) a Male phenomenon in your eyes. You offer a vague and generalized definition of violence itself, which you then ascribe to an equally abstract and vauge notion of Masculinity. What you fail to acknowledge are the widely different historical forms and institutions of violence and masculinity which you condemn.

Finally, your analysis neglects to address other forms of oppression such as White supremacy, homophobia, capitalist exploitation, and Western/First World Imperialism. Your agenda seems to be about promoting Male Violence as the one overarching issue or concern against which all other issues must be pushed aside or marginalized.

3rd try 01.Dec.2002 05:15

screwy software, yeah thats it

Anonymous' critique wasn't that good, but Emma, neither is your work. Mostly, though, it just pisses me off that you use Emma Goldman's name to do it.

Leadership and authority are the natural states of society indeed. Fey!

Pick a new moniker, please, so I can read your half-baked rants without getting angry at your disrespect of a personal hero of mine.

Explains why speakers suck at rallies 01.Dec.2002 09:24

Alexander

Well, at least one of these comments explains a bit why there are always too many speakers at rallies, and why most of them usually suck.

It planning a rally, there is usually way too much focus on who is entitled to speak. So you get a number of organizations involved in the rally who claim the right to have a speaker. Then you also get the "Well, we don't have enough women speakers", or "Well, we don't have a black speaker", so even more speakers are added to the rally speaking list.

The result is almost inevitably a long boring rally where even the most partisan supporters of the cause have long since tuned out the cease-less drone of the speakers, most of whom are saying things that have already been said.

I'd wish the organizers of rally would pick out the main points they want to make with the rally, then pick the speakers who can best make those points. And then try the hard task of actually staying focused on making those points.

I post this little thought, because it also reflects my views on roles of women and men in a movement. I personally refuse to think of people as "women" or "men". I much prefer to view them as individuals. As individuals, I deal with them on the basis of their character and "soul". When selecting people for leadership roles in a organization, I view them in terms of their energy, their imagination, and again their character, and then I'll vote for the most capable.

I personally think its horrible if someone judges me just on the basis that I'm a man. And I refuse to judge others just on the basis of whether they are a "man" or a "women". I think to do so is demeaning and stupid.

I've been fortunate to meet women of immense energy and ability, and I'll gladly support these women in any quest they have to be leaders of an organization when it is obvious they would do a good job of it. But I refuse to support any woman for a job solely on the basis of there not being enough women in charge and we need more women. I think having women in charge is a fine idea, and when a women is the best person for the job, I'll gladly support them.

I personally don't want to be viewed or characterized based on the external characteristics of my body. And I refuse to do the same to others. I like the tradition that's been established of having the organizations of this movement work in a truly democratic fashion. I like the way that all people are usually welcome to participate in a consensus decision making process. I do not think its wise to leave that process behind in order to obtain a goal like "having more women in power". I don't oppose having more women in power, but it should occur naturally from a free and democratic process.

I.e., if you don't have enough votes in a group to get yourself elected to a leadership post, then don't whine and complain and insist that you be appointed anyways because of your gender, skin color, hair color, ethnic group or sexual preference. If its that important to you, go out and organize a bunch of women to come to the meetings and participate then vote as a block to get you onto the leadership council. Then maybe someday we can grow up further and get beyond the women voting for only women, and the men voting for only men and have everyone vote for the best PERSON.

That was my point that I tried to start with. There are more important things than how many women and how many men speak at a rally. The aim of the rally is to try to present a viewpoint. Thus the rally should be organized so as to best present that viewpoint. So the speakers should be picked based on their ability to present the points that need to be presented at the rally.

When we get away from that, we get these long boring and basically ineffective rallies where speakers drone on and on and on and on and on and on .... After many rallies, we might be able to pat ourselves on the back for having every possible group speak from the stage, but if you look around, even the most die-hard activists have stopped listening and the rally has become very ineffective at what it was planned to accomplish.

To me, in organizing a rally, making that rally be effective at saying what it is trying to say is far more important that counting the number of speakers on the stage and making sure that every group is represented. And that serves as a good example for the larger idea. I believe we all have larger goals in mind when we join a movement or organization. We want peace. We want Justice. We want a clean and healthy place to live. If a women is the best person to be leader or spokesperson of a group that is trying to achieve these goals, then I'll gladly support her. But I refuse to sacrifice the best hope for progress toward these goals just to meet a secondary goal of having "more women in power."

Portland IMC Is Unbelievably Biased 01.Dec.2002 13:01

Anonymous

There is no such thing as an independant, unbiased media. I first realized that today when I looked at the Portland Indymedia front page.

When TWO articles are posted in defense of men with a firestorm of comments, the first is deleted and the second ignored.

But when Emma "responds" it's suddenly a feature -- but the topic of DEFENDING MEN is twisted to read "FIGHTING AGAINST MALE VIOLENCE" as the front features page topic. Excuse me, Portland Indymedia Editors, but how are articles in defense of masculinity "fighting against male violence"?

THE FEATURE WOULD BE CALLED "FIGHTING AGAINST FEMALE VIOLENCE" IF PORTLAND INDYMEDIA WASN'T SO BIASED!

Because that was the point of the two articles posted -- that Emma Goldwoman's work ranting against males was a form of written violence.

The title of the feature is also manicured towards Emma Goldwoman, featuring her (not her critics) in the active voice -- it reads "Writer emma goldwoman responds to critics" instead of something like "Critics Question Feminist Essay Series".

Further, ONLY EMMA'S QUOTES appear on the front page with no dissenting quotes offered, and the entire second half of the "feature" is just one big dogma advertisement with links to old Emma articles (and no links to dissenting articles -- and not becasue they're not there).

So the feature is all pro-Emma pro-Emma pro-Emma! It's as though Portland IMC is being used as a personal vehicle for this person. I wouldn't be surprised if "Emma" was close to people in the editorial board or on it herself.

Wake up, Portland IMC readers, and smell the censorship and biasness of so-called "independant" media... it's better than corporate media, but don't kid yourselves -- not by a hell of a lot.


Yeah, I noticed that. 01.Dec.2002 18:41

Relatively Exact

It's rather ironic, isn't it? Emma Goldwoman makes a very good statement (bravo, Emma!) in favor of freedom of speech and against censorship on this site, and yet freedom of speech is curtailed and censorship promoted for her sake.

Oh, brother.

BTW: I still can't help but notice that there seems to be a certain selectiveness concerning these "database errors". And why is it that suddenly informing the editor about them has become "members only"?

Come on, you guys, don't fall into the same trap as the corporate media!!!

This discussion is improving 01.Dec.2002 20:01

ranger

The comments on this thread are a little more thoughtful than the previous thread. Some valid points are being made by both "camps". I respect your aspirations Emma, but I don't buy your thesis that men are implicitely violent. Have you looked at all cultures? I don't question that men have a violent history. What has been the process of male violence over the past 10,000 years? Did it evolve or do you actually believe it is part of the nature of man? As I have mentioned in a response to another post of yours, there are plenty of examples out there to dispute this claim. (some examples given in a response above) I do believe that young boys are aculturated into male dominant roles as the society dictates, but it not necessarily natural to them. On the other hand, there are some women who have no qualms in supporting violence. Many women support the death penalty, many women have supported the bombing of numerous countries even if the victims happen to be women and children. Okay, so this is not the same as supporting violence by being in a position of power, but it is tacit approval of male directed violence. So where do you draw the line? I'm all for a non violent world - screw nuclear weapons. There is a level of domination with which many agree is considered acceptable if mutually agreed upon. I'm referring to the act of sex, or the fact that some people tend to be better leaders. Unfortunately, this gets fouled up when the dominant person, or the leader loses sight of the other(s) needs and becomes negatively dominant. So how do we attain balance Emma?

answer for 'a question' 01.Dec.2002 20:52

Bill

bell hooks saying it doesn't make it so. And it is "many" not "all" Feminists of color in the USA and Third World Feminists who say that "the dominant strain of American feminism" is "Imperialist".

Regardless of the merits, it is not up to Goldwoman to answer. She does not assert, in these essays, the dominant or even a popular minor strain of American feminism. It is quite impertinent of you to demand she answer for others possibly imagined sins.

How did you manage to associate with imperialism someone who so clearly and frequently rejects domination and violence?

help 02.Dec.2002 00:35

me understand

obviously not all men believe in or espouse male violence, domination etc... but by constant reference to male this and patriarchal that all men are targeted, this has a tendency to put all men on the defensive. is it okay to term women who have embraced "patriarchal" culture brainwashed or unenlightened/unaware victims and men who have done the same perpetrators. being white and male makes me feel like i have two strikes against me, like i am being judged and held accountable for the sins of my ancestors, for the color of my skin, for the content of my genes. if these violent and aggressive behaviours are inherent in men then why aren't i that way and if they're aren't inherent then why are they termed male? certain types of destructive drug use are more prevalent in certain ethnic groups and certain status groups- are you willing to say this is a trait that is genetic or class determined or could it perhaps be environmental. Listening to Emma's analogy of what if only Martians were controlling the government-

what if they were all Martians? Wouldn't we say "Hey, there's something weird here, only Martians are making the decisions that could lead the destruction of our species." Why isn't this obvious fact something to talk about? Why isn't it something to try and understand?

my first instinct is to agree with her. but then what if i were a Martian? what are the numbers i start to think. out of how many people on the planet what is the number of men making these decisions. i have no idea but i bet it is something like 0.000001%. seems like judging all muslims by the actions of the terrorists on those planes. female serial killers are practically non-existent, since the mass majority of serial killers are male does this make the mass majority of males serial killers?

i don't know, i think the purpose of these dualistic theories is guilt avoidance and self responsibility avoidance. anybody who is ashamed of who they are or what they do can look to past injustices perpetrated on them or their perceived group and employ a little justification. any american indians who are selling off the resources of their lands or running greed/gambling outfits can point to their systematic domination and eradication by european whites. african americans can point to their systematic enslavement and dehumanization by american whites. do these things make them innocents? a look at the american indians history shows when whites first showed up on the scene some american indians were routinely warring amongst themselves and when they were offered trade goods to participate in the wholesale "harvesting" of animal pelts (beaver etc) large numbers enthusiastically participated. In the book "Sources of the River" by jack nisbet which reconstructs the life of trapper(from his own daily journals) david thompson as he pioneered trade in beaver pelt literally across the continent, not one reference to a tribe or individual that refused to participate in or objected to the practice or its effects. Certain African american tribes in africa were routinely warring with, enslaving fellow african americans. Including supplying the slaves to the white slave traders waiting with ships at the coast. Romantic idealogies of some american indians reverence for the land or the wholesale innocence of the african american tribesman are rudely turned over by anyone who actually wants to try to verify them. Yes some american indians lived in balance with the land, apparently not strictly out of their belief in the rightness of it, but because no offered them the right price. Their are no innocent peoples or groups or genders or nations. There are innocent individuals. Thats it. Any finger pointing is simplistc us vs them idealogy. the same idealogy that is at the root of virtually all evils, all injustice in the world today. and if you distill it down still further you are left with hate. Hateful individuals are in control and hate is the link that needs to be broken.

on lame affirmative action 02.Dec.2002 00:37

large extinct flightless bird

To add to the fray--well, yeah, a person should be judged by who they are not what they look like. Sincerely, too bad if a better speaker has been snubbed just for being a guy. But affirmative action is really just something that springs up as a result of another problem--namely that women are not participating as abundantly as men are in this scene in the first place. You get to 50% women (as it should be) participating in the scene and you'll be flooded with good speaking choices on both sides of the gender fence. The worries of crap speakers being selected by well-intentioned leaders will vanish of its own accord.

reality check 02.Dec.2002 02:02

let's work together

ok, emma, the male dominated government is characterized by violence, greed, and domination of the other. agreed. you propose a female government, so you are asserting that the problems in the current male government must not be present to any large degree in the female population, otherwise why would you recommend replacement of male with female. therefore, in general, women we would assume are characterized by the opposite of the male properties - women are characterized by pacifism, charity, and equality. if such is true, and considering us census projections for 2000 women outnumber men 106,865,000 to 98,947,00. with such a large voting block of people with these characteristics facing a incumbent government such as is and in addition, taking into account a higher percentage of women vote than men, what the hell is going on? seems to me women are providing the majority of support and perpetuating the status quo. unless of course male violence(individual, legal, and war) extends into the privacy of the voting booth at local, state, and national levels.

according to a gallup poll in september of 2002 58 percent of women support sending ground troops to iraq vs 56 percent of men. that's strange. this pacifistic, charitable, equality minded group (who, by the way, won't be the ones dying) are outnumbering the bloodthirsty male gender in support of war.

and lastly, the same labeling/stereotyping system you sweepingly apply to those of the male gender can easily be applied to the American female if you change the argument to Americans and our enslavement/domination of third world nations . assuming you are American, pay taxes, drive a vehicle or ride in any petroleum driven conveyance, consume anything beyond food grown in your backyard, don't make your own clothing, etc etc...

by the way, resolution is defined in merriam webster's collegiate dictionary tenth edition, definition h - the process or capability of making distinguishable the individual parts of an object... so perhaps the term was relevant.

i wasn't all that impressed with anonymous' questions but your victim doctrine, while in part true, is divisive and non-productive. oh yeah, i can use spell check too.

Good discussion 02.Dec.2002 15:46

New gender options now!

So I just want to reiterate that rape is not a 100% male perpetrated phenomenon. My guy friend passed out at a party, then this girl tickled his cock until it was erect and then he woke up inside her. He brought this up at the Against Patriarchy conference in Eugene a few years back and had to leave the room in tears because a bunch of women told him that "women can't rape".
Having said that I think it's also important to be very clear about the fact that most rapes are done by men and rape structurally upholds male supremacy.

Seems like this whole discussion is focused around the binary gender system. This completely ignores transgender people and the activism they have done for years to achieve recognition and equality. Trannies, of course, really get the shit end of the patriarchy stick, feminists don't even acknowledge them a lot of the time. How does a hermaphradite fit into The Movement For Male Restraint?

Emma, what of *a question*'s questions? 02.Dec.2002 21:10

GRINGO STARS gringo_stars@attbi.com

The 6th comment on this post is excellent. I would love to see Emma's response to the comment entitled "More Questions for Emma Goldwoman" posted by someone called "a question." These are vital issues of feminism that my partner and I regularly discuss. I would be interested in what Emma thinks about how capitalism, racism, and imperialism fit into her views on gender. All of these things are definitely related.

women do rape 02.Dec.2002 21:44

anonymous

I'm offended by your sterotypical denial of male rape victims. I have met many men who were raped by women. None of these men reported it because they believed that no one would believe them. One example is,there was a woman in the town I grew up in who raped at least 4 of my friends. She would get them drunk to the point of passing out. Then she would rape them. If they came to and resisted she would respond with violence. She was a serial rapist. Because no one talked about it she was never caught and this happened to many other unsuspecting men. She didn't stop at adults either it turns out. I believe the reason statistics don't show men being raped is because men are taught that men can't be raped by women. So they are shamed into silence. I'm not trying to disproove your theory. I just hope that in the future you will not further traumatize male victims of rape by confirming their fears about speaking out against their aggressors. You'll only alienate these men which helps no one's cause.