By : Authors Note: This article started as a post in the comment section of an article named “Why I Changed My Mind on International Men’s Day” on a UK pro-feminist blog called “InsideMAN”. For those who would prefer the TL;DR version, the premise of the article was that, although the author used to oppose IMD (because, hey, every day is men’s day, right?), he now thinks it’s important for feminists to consider that it may have some limited value. How very kind of him. He describes this in typical gender studies word-salad style…“…critical studies of men and masculinities continually demands the acknowledgement of differing and nuanced masculine experiences, yet does not do a great job of acknowledging such difference and nuance among those groups—such as IMD—it identifies as regressive.”
Or, put into plain English, Not All MRAs Are Like That.
He went on to express the opinion that Feminists and MRAs should work together in a “Big Tent” approach rather than oppose each other. It was not the specifics of his article that got me thinking though. What struck me was that I realised that, over the past couple of months, this had to be at least the 7th or 8th time I had seen an article written by a Feminist that asked the question, “Can’t we all just get along?”. After some thought, I penned the following response and left it as a comment which, in true Feminist style, he deleted shortly before closing all comments. Coward.
You know what? I’ve noticed something…
For decades, between about 1970 and 2005, MRAs asked feminists politely and respectfully to help us address men’s issues and waited patiently for them to get around to it. Where did this get us? It got us 45 years of zero action on men’s problems while feminism dealt with the really big issues like microagressions and manspreading.
Then, around 2008, something happened. That something was Paul Elam and his web site, A Voice for Men. MRAs had gotten sick of waiting for action that would never come and started to fight for men’s issues on their own using an evidence-based approach outside of the narrow lens of ideological feminism and, just as importantly, completely regardless of the way that feminists felt about it. Of course feminists opposed that (because feminism is all about equality, right? Totally not a dogmatic cult) and what was their response? “There’s no need for the MRM because Feminism is taking care of it”.