Does Feminism Scare Black Men?

by Zettler Clay

As a man, my relationship with feminism is an odd one. Surprise, surprise.

Let me unpack that for a second. Whenever I seek to understand why I adhere to a philosophy or why a belief holds sway over me, I try to control for race. In other words, can I vet myself as a human without attaching a color? I find that, fortunately or unfortunately, in this matrix, my base experiences are seen and felt through a certain prism.

That prism is the dichotomy of rich and poor, right and wrong, black or (whatever your race is), 0 and 1 (computer nerds unite) and so forth. To transcend that would be to embrace alienation and isolation; in other words, survival is predicated on learning how to live and thrive within a flawed system.

Our quest to just be with no apology is confronted daily by standards that say otherwise. So when I say “as a man,” I’m including all the factors therein. Most prominently, being an African-American man in a society that won’t let you forget that.

This brings me back to the subject of feminism, something I never, until recently, challenged or fought to understand because, frankly, it didn’t directly concern me. Intellectually I understood its purpose. Yes women are undervalued. Get paid less in corporate settings. Get stigmatized for acting on the same human urges men do. Fall victim to senseless double standards. I got all that. But that didn’t stop me from enjoying the perks of being the latter chromosome.

Being a writer and editor for Clutch, I’ve grown over the years in this regard. Talented minds and writers have graced this space with insight that stood up to reason, antiquated dogmas and flat-out rubbish that dominates the male-female relationship.

I’ve grown up with a lot of Black men who never really cared to synthesize how sexist thinking and actions perpetuated brokenness. Perhaps many Black men feel they (we) have more “pertinent” issues on board and sounding the alarm about gender-based oppression doesn’t register.

Or maybe Black men feel that patriarchy is the Big Joker in a weak hand. The one trump card that when all else fails, we’re good, because guess what? We’re men and genetically a cut above. Many of us hold this thought while failing to see we’re borrowing from the same ideological capital that was used to enslave us.

(My shield: Two grandmothers who demonstrated early that women, in many instances, are not only a man’s equal, but his superior.)

Last week, Jamilah Lemieux penned a piece about an encounter she had on the Twitternets with someone who took offense to this article. This someone ended up making an about-hour long video debasing her thoughts and the like. Cool, all in the game. But then he got personal. What had started under the guise of intelligent refutation, ended up being a study in therapy, only without the proper diagnosis and prescription.

Rhetorical dissent tends to come when a system’s inconsistencies is brought to the light. But in 2011, defending (or knocking down) a point with ad hominems is so fatigued as to be on a respirator. What ad hominems also do well is expose glaring insecurities.

Black men who show an aversion to feminism are generally a product of a thought process that goes something like this: For me to win, somebody has to lose. False dichotomies fuel our cognitive engines to the point where disagreements turn to glorious exercises in bitching and moaning.

James Baldwin once wrote, “I would like us to do something unprecedented: to create ourselves without finding it necessary to create an enemy.”

The black guy who hates feminists because “they just wanna run things and wanna blame men for every problem and not take personal responsibility” is as misinformed about the intentions of feminism as the woman who blames men for everything that is wrong with the world.

Of course, this is not limited to black men. Because the infighting is played out in media circles and enflamed by articles (seemingly every week) that puts a spotlight on black men and women, we have a unique relationship to this subject. We’re constantly conditioned to see the end game as the acquisition of power. Battling patriarchal slants is seen — consciously and unconsciously — to the exclusion of stacking ducats and attaining “elite” statuses built around male domination.

And if status can’t be had in the monetary and social sphere, we damn sure won’t give it up in the domestic sphere.

What a shame. A much richer experience awaits when each sex is recognized as what they are. Not queens. Not kings. Not bitches. Not epithets.

But humans. Being born with a shaft shouldn’t make me more able to enjoy and suffer through the human experience than anybody else. A certain rapper once flowed, “Being human’s hard, on the boulevard.” 
It seems that respecting humanity is even harder.

  • QueenofNewcastle

    This sounds like one long shaming tactic to me. A robust critique of feminism does not amount to fear. Not by a long shot. If you cant see some of the inherent hypocrisies and inconsistencies in modern feminism than you arent being fair.

    “I’ve grown up with a lot of Black men who never really cared to synthesize how sexist thinking and actions perpetuated brokenness.”

    How exactly were these men sexist? Are we to just take your word for it because they are men and the likelihood of them being “sexist” is pretty high?

    “Yes women are undervalued.”

    That isnt historically accurate. Women under many circumstances are more valued than men. Let us not forget that technically men dont really have a right to their lives and can be put in harms way by diktat.

    “Get paid less in corporate settings.”

    They happen to work less too.

    “Get stigmatized for acting on the same human urges men do.”

    So? Women should have a right to do as they please but they dont have a right to society’s acceptance or respect. That isnt a feminist issue.

    “Fall victim to senseless double standards.”

    Welcome to the club. Who doesnt fall victim to senseless double standards?

    Modern Feminism doesnt accept a man’s humanity. The feminism trotted out by some of the black females here certainly doesnt entertain the possibility that black men are even apart of the human species.

    As far as I am concerned these females are reaping what they have sown.

  • minna k.

    This is a great post. :) Well said.

  • LemonNLime

    Thanks! I thought this was a beautifully written article with great points

    I am always taken back and confused by the number of black males that take to Youtube yelling about how evil feminism is, how patriarchy is the best thing since sliced bread, how black feminist are traders, sellout, b$#&$es and everything else. In most cases, I just ignore these people because they are idiots but I have fundamental problem when one discriminated group feels that it is OK to disregard, attack, abuse, and supports discrimination of members of another discriminated group. How am I supposed to take someone seriously that says white society is doing this or that so WE (all black people) need to stop them, but in the next sentence tells US to sit down when it comes to issues black women deal with because I’m supposed to be submissive or quiet or that is just us having an attitude or my problems aren’t as important or black men have it harder?

    Black women are just that BLACK and WOMEN. The idea that our lives and experiences are shaped solely by the color of our skin (not our biology and other identifiers such as religion, sexuality etc.) and thus that should be our main focus (and anything else be damn) is one of lunacy.

  • JustSaying…

    Very good post…I agree.

  • SAA

    “How am I supposed to take someone seriously that says white society is doing this or that so WE (all black people) need to stop them, but in the next sentence tells US to sit down when it comes to issues black women deal with because I’m supposed to be submissive or quiet or that is just us having an attitude or my problems aren’t as important or black men have it harder”

    100% agree, couldn’t have said it better myself. I think its willful ignorance on their behalf. They spout these pre-conceived notions about something they don’t understand but could easily pick up a book and actually learn what feminism really is about and its history. However doing so would nullify what they think they know and somehow make them feel threatened for whatever reason….most likely because the victim card won’t work anymore. So instead they take to YouTube and find equally misinformed people like themselves. It’s really weird….

  • http://kmichelpress.blogspot.com/ K. Michel

    It’s a legitimate question. But if Black men don’t embrace feminism in all of it’s totality, then does it mean they are scared? Taking myself as an example, I understand the conditions from which feminism was fashioned and I love the concept of men and women (especially in the African-American community) being recognized as human beings. However, I don’t call myself a feminist because it isn’t a field I actively study.

  • JoeClyde

    No. I just hate people trying to scapegoat Black men for decisions they have 100% control over.

    Women don’t believe in true honest feminism anyway. Most don’t want equality. They want special rules for women. Basically, they want all the “perks” of being a man without any of the setbacks.

  • http://www.pyoowata.com/ Nne

    Where do I even begin with this article? All it gets is a thunderous applause from me. I personally grew up in a household where my dad declared himself a feminist even before my mom decided to join in. So yeah, much respect to the male feminists out there.

    Oh, and the Baldwin quote – classic.

    And must second this quote as well, especially the part about the so-called kings and queens meme: “A much richer experience awaits when each sex is recognized as what they are. Not queens. Not kings. Not bitches. Not epithets.”

    There are other parts of this article I love, but it would require writing the above article verbatim. Yep, saving this one.

  • LMO85

    You sound woefully UN-informed, please read a book and get a clue.

  • Gyslain

    i find it funny that women of colour would call theselves feminists when the feminist movement does not give a fuck about them .

  • Kay

    I feel as if you didn’t quite understand what was said here. Maybe you should re-read. Obviously he knows they men were sexist because guessing by this article he knows what the definition is and would not have included them otherwise. He also didn’t say all the men.

    Other than wartime practices when exactly are women more valued?

    Women get paid less in corporate settings for the same job a man does, even CEO, majority of the time.

    Getting stigmatized for the same human behaviors is a feminists issue directly.

    And MEN don’t fall victim to senseless double standards. Here is a definition for you:

    : a set of principles that applies differently and usually more rigorously to one group of people or circumstances than to another; especially : a code of morals that applies more severe standards of sexual behavior to women than to men.

    I’m not sure what you get out of reading this site except angry, because I can tell you obviously don’t understand the material.

  • DeePDX

    Dang! Why such the heavy indictment on feminism? I mean, I know from recent articles like this one, the article that sparked the discussion from Jemilah Lemieux, and the rebuttal from one VERY negative male blogger that Zettler is references, I don’t see how your post progresses this argument but lays blame to women solely for wanting to improve interpersonal relationships of the sexes.

    Did you read the original article Jemilah wrote just last week? She actually laid it out in front of black women readers of Clutch to seize the opportunity of the imbalance of our relationship with black men at THEIR feet, to not blame men. To take responsibility for not only negative views of men and not perpetuate the man-hating/women-hating attitudes that have come to representative character indictments on both sexes.

    “So? Women should have a right to do as they please but they dont have a right to society’s acceptance or respect. That isnt a feminist issue.” YES! It is a feminist issue!

    And by the way, you don’t have to be a woman to be a feminist. Desiring that women be treated just as the same as men is not something women own solely. The gentleman that wrote this article is proving this by making it known that it shouldn’t have to solely be a woman’s responsibility to make sure she is respected and of value. Yes, it is up to women to establish that foundation with her personal and professional relationships and aspirations by our actions and deeds of how we should be treated universally. However, together men and women CAN and SHOULD work together to make the disparities that keep us at odds,and forge a better relation between the two.

    Your response is very misguided and doesn’t help the cause, because let’s be clear, black women and black mens’ livelihoods at least in the United States that I can personally attest to, is an ongoing challenge and one that IS attainable to get past.

    Peace and Respect.

  • Rastaman

    The women in my family have always lived their lives quite progressively decades ahead of what represents much of today’s feminist movement. Being raised in that environment I am generally supportive of legal efforts to ensure that women have the same rights as men in the public sphere. That is not the experience of every man and so it is easy to see why some have such a reactionary response to women’s need for legal and societal equality. The privileged in any society do not cede their privilege easily; if that was true racism would have been stamped out in America eons ago.
    I no doubt benefit from male privilege but I also recognize that I benefit from youth privilege, tall privilege and probably don’t benefit from being black in America today. I wonder how many of my perceived privileges would I be willing to sacrifice to not be thought of as being less valuable by virtue of my race?
    I think unconsciously that is the dilemma of many women today as while they aspire to the tenets of modern feminism they also want the option of the privileges received by virtue of traditional womanhood. For the men for whom feminism represents an enemy they are more than happy to cease on the schism that at the heart of so many women and their relationship to feminism today. For the radicals at both ends of the argument many of these issues are easy calls, for a majority of people it more about living a life that works best for us. Some days we may be called on to exercise a progressive viewpoint another day we may be required to be more conservative or traditional. It is not ideology it is living.
    We could probably do without radicals if we lived in a fair world but history tells us that equality and justice requires continued agitation and not all of it will be acceptable to everyone.

  • DeePDX

    Dang! What a tangent to go on! I’m sorry, but no disrespect Queen but I think your vitriol is really misdirected here. Are you familiar with the articles that sparked this one? It’s been an ongoing “drama” since last week that I would suggest you read from the beginning because your indictment of this article is really off base.

    Funny that you place the blame on women when the original article that was written by Jemilah Lemieux (sorry if name is misspelled) actually was a call to women in the name of breaking down the outdated and damaging standards we live under to be the ones to take the responsibility of how women, specifically black women, representative ourselves. Instead of continuing the negative back and forth of men vs. women and bashing one another the author of the original article asked Clutch women readers to take look at themselves in assisting in the perpetuating this divide.

    “So? Women should have a right to do as they please but they dont have a right to society’s acceptance or respect. That isnt a feminist issue.” YES, it is a feminist issue! And by the way, you don’t have to be a woman to be a feminist. As the author of this article is proving, the responsibility isn’t solely upon women, but also men because they do benefit from battling these disparities that tear us apart and allowing the divide between us to grow.

    You post sounds really misdirected and I URGE you to not only read Ms. Lemeiux’ original article, but the also follow up with the very negative and woman hating rebuttal a black man blogger posted against her. It was both sad and VERY scary because he took it to a personal level. Well beyond a discussion on interpersonal discourse of black men and women. It was really deep, but also VERY troubling to know this is what black men think, say, and spread about black women. Educate yourself first, please.

    Peace and Respect.

  • http://twitter.com/rastaqueen92 Shug Avery

    For any Black Man or Woman who thinks Black Feminism is bogus I advise you to read Joan Morgan’s When Chickenheads Come Home To Roost. It always baffles me the assumptions one makes to movements they don’t even care to learn about. It drives me crazy how one group expects another group to suffer in silence for whatever reason.

  • mf

    That is EXACTLY what white people say and think about black people. that we don’t really want equality. that we want special rules and considerations just for us. that we just want ‘perks’ and to take no responsibility ourselves. lol.

  • http://twitter.com/#!/secretaddy secretaddy

    Ughhh some of these commenters are NOT reading the article, just the title !!!! *throws tantrum*

    THis is a beautiful article. I particularly love the point about the end game not being the acquisition of power.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dan-Tres-Omi/1033743926 Dan Tres Omi

    I thoroughly enjoyed this article. This is exactly what went thru my head when I finally started to open up on feminism. Yes I was deathly afraid of feminism since I used to think that politics is a zero sum game. It isn’t.

    I echo what the mighty Dr. Bell hooks once wrote: feminism is for everybody!

  • DeePDX

    “Most don’t want equality. They want special rules for women. Basically, they want all the “perks” of being a man without any of the setbacks.”

    WOW, what a generalization and honestly full rounded argument against feminism. It’s actually an attack and I would beg for you to think a bit deeper than make blanket statements like this.

    I don’t understand your assessment that women don’t want to be treated equally. Heck, who doesn’t want to be treated the way they are valued? I mean, yeah, there are examples of women AND men by their actions show what they think of themselves by how they treat others. But to say universally that women don’t want to be treated equally is devaluing those women and men that work to make disparities between people less and less.

    IMO, your statement smacks dead center in the argument that men and women can’t get along and by your admission shouldn’t even attempt to try to bridge the gap.

  • Are You Serious Bro

    Hopefully this time my comment will finally post :)

    I don’t think most sensible men are scared of feminism in theory, but rather weary of the way SOME WOMEN practice it. Equality politically, economically, socially, etc; for every one no matter race, color, gender or creed is something that I believe most sensible men(or people in general) are in favor for.

    The types of feminist that men have a problem with are the ones that go around screaming how they are a strong independent woman and don’t need a man to pay for anything, yet when they get on a date with a man, they still expect him to uphold past gender roles while not expecting to uphold their roles. How is that equality if I am inputting into the system more then you? If our time is of equal value, why should have to pay more for your time? If you answer that question with, “that is what a man is suppose to do” then you are supporting old fashioned gender roles for men but not for women.

    I agree with Jamilah, just because a women was born with a vagina, doesn’t mean she has to be submissive to a man. I also believe at the same time that just because a man was born with a penis, doesn’t mean he has to pay for a woman. True feminism at it roots should be about equality for both men and women. What some fail to see is there are more feminist like the ones I mentioned in my paragraph 2nd above then people realize.

  • Are You Serious Bro

    @Kay

    “Other than wartime practices when exactly are women more valued?”

    Women’s value in American society is at an all-time high. The growing economic and political voting power women as a group have in developed nations is surpassing that of men. If we are looking at the entire world, then I can understand your point, but women in developed nations like New Zealand, US, UK, etc stock is reaching new heights with each passing year. New Zealand in particular is one of the first countries to endorse feminism on a large scale.

    “Women get paid less in corporate settings for the same job a man does, even CEO, majority of the time.”

    The reason for that is, that women are more likely to take time off from work then men are. If you are not working the same amount of hours you are not going to get paid an equal amount. Contrary to popular belief there are some career fields that women get paid more then men.

    http://www.sixwise.com/newsletters/05/08/10/the-gender-income-gap-are-women-really-making-less-than-men-for-the-same-job.htm

    “Getting stigmatized for the same human behaviors is a feminists issue directly.

    And MEN don’t fall victim to senseless double standards. Here is a definition for you:

    : a set of principles that applies differently and usually more rigorously to one group of people or circumstances than to another; especially : a code of morals that applies more severe standards of sexual behavior to women than to men.”

    There are plenty of gay men who would disagree with you on that statement that “And MEN don’t fall victim to senseless double standard.” Homosexual men are stigmatize to a much larger degree then lesbian women are especially black homosexual men, who at times seem to have the ire of the entire black community at times. Both men and women fall victim to senseless double standards, it is not gender specific quality.

  • BOB

    Quite frankly feminism is Bull shit. Women will complain about only the things that put them at a disadvantage, but will not complain about having to sign up for selective services. They will not complain about ladies night at the club, where women get in free and guys have to pay. Feminism is not about equality women already have that. Right now feminist are striving to become completely superior to men. And now all these articles and media are being used to try to trick men into thinking that women have not gained equality in our society, that is bull shit. Women are paid less than men but, do indeed work less than men so, those statistics that say women are paid less then men need to show the reasons why.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Za-Conjurer-van-Poetrypotion/619026405 Za-Conjurer van Poetrypotion

    um – yes!

    ok let me read the article.

  • BOB

    and why should men have to pay for dates if you both are equals. Some women say because it makes me feel like a woman, so a man paying for your time is what makes you feel like a woman is defeating the so called purpose of Feminism. Women will refuse to admit the fallacies in the way they practice feminism, so as a man I feel it my responsibility to call them out of these fallacies and stomp them out, the fallacies not women lol. I think the earlier comments have gave so much examples of the lies and double standards women themselves participate in , its ok for a woman to cry, but if a man cries he is a weak man and disgust women. Double standards exist and everyone has to deal with them.

  • LemonNLime

    Feminist is a general term to describe a basic set of ideas – mainly equal political, economic, and social rights and equal opportunities for women. There are different terms one can use to identify ones self other than just feminist. Many people of color identity as womanists or thrid-wave feminist because many of the issues brought up by feminists in the 60/70′s were the concerns of middle/upper class white woman and did not take into consideration the experience of women of color. The same thing can be said of the civil rights movement where black men didn’t take into account the issues and concerns of black women. So in both the civil right and women’s movements black women were placed on the back burner.

    You too could learn more about this if you would OPEN a book and STOP making generalizations about a history you probably know very little about. Some of the very same feminist ignorant people like to complain about are out there fight for men who men are also harmed by sexism and gender roles.

  • Kay

    @ Areyouseriousbro

    Well are you? “All-time high” So obviously it was not always that way.

    “If we are looking at the entire world, then I can understand your point” Thank you.

    “The reason for that is, that women are more likely to take time off from work then men are.”
    Thank you for making another feminist point. This is what bosses think this is why they pay us less. Period.

    “There are plenty of gay men who would disagree with you on that statement that “And MEN don’t fall victim to senseless double standard.” For all purposes intended let’s just accept that the first double standard was between a woman and a man, a straight man. Thus it being in the definition in Miriam Webster Dictionary.

    Thank you for coming with rare, few and far between facts from outside the realm of the articles discussed above.

  • JaeBee

    Are you seriously trying to compare women’s civil rights with courtship rituals?

  • BOB

    dating is a part of society, and women want to be equals in all of society so why is dating suppose to be off limits because it benefits women. And feminist are not about equality, but are about only benefiting women any way possible forget equality for men.

  • JaeBee

    So, feminism (which is about civil rights for women) is hogwash because men have to pay for dates?! Just so you are aware, the matter of who pays for a date is NOT a civil right’s issue. There’s no way you can even begin to compare the two. You say you like to “stomp out fallacies”, how about stomping out the straw man you yourself have just constructed.

  • QueenofNewcastle

    @LemonNLime

    Well lucky you. Youre black when its convenient and a woman when its convenient. Good for you. Well if your womaness is paramount thank God for all those aging white women who did all the grunt work for everything that you have as a woman. Black women should be a lot more appreciative than they are. Still white women are the bane of your existence. But why? Because invoking your blackness in the face of white women has worked to guilt everyone into allowing you to be different when it comes to your actions and words. Stop playing both ends of the field.

  • Shemar

    I think the thing some men fail to see is how to treat a woman as an equal partner in life while still respecting her femininity. I think it is hard for some women to maintain their femininity while wearing their feminism on their sleeves.
    But I am a gentleman first so I pull out chairs, I open doors, I give my coat, etc. I pay for dates, I maintain financial stability because I want my partner to feel secure to choose whether she wants to continue her career, be a stay at home Mom, or depending on the circumstances I would be the stay at home Dad.
    That is my role in life whether my wife is a feminist or not. I aim to show my future wife that I am a strong capable partner and that is what I search for. One partner should never overshadow or control the other. I know that my wife will have a worthy opinion and equal choices in marriage whether or not she is bringing in a similar amount of bacon.
    That is what I feel a partnership is at the core, I wish more men and women understood this. Most importantly dating a feminists should not take away a Man’s masculinity.

  • JaeBee

    “Women will complain about only the things that put them at a disadvantage, but will not complain about having to sign up for selective services. They will not complain about ladies night at the club, where women get in free and guys have to pay. ”

    Bob, why must you keep constructing straw men in a [lame] attempt to deconstruct feminism? You know feminism has NOTHING to do with “ladies night” discounts at the club, and as for selective services, when was the last time you were drafted?

    “Women are paid less than men but, do indeed work less than men so, those statistics that say women are paid less then men need to show the reasons why.”

    Please give us some statistics which show that women “do indeed” work less than men.

  • http://sweetilocks.blogspot.com Sweetilocks

    Kudos to the man who composed this very dope piece. As a feminist, I truly appreciate the intelligence and the honesty. It’s a nice break from the usual defensive bile I have to hear like that of some people above who base their ignorant opinions on their own sad bitterness. Thanks for your contribution Mr. Clay.

  • Are You Serious Bro

    “Well are you?”

    Funny line, I seriously mean that :)

    “So obviously it was not always that way.”

    Correct but let’s not sit here and act like we are living in the middle of the stone age. Women in developed countries are reaching new and greater heights then ever before. Can we at least positively embrace that fact or are we going to continue to say “well so what, 100 years ago this happen.”

    “If we are looking at the entire world, then I can understand your point” Thank you.

    I think me and you would both agree that there are places in the world that is lagging behind as far as equal rights for women.

    “Thank you for making another feminist point. This is what bosses think this is why they pay us less. Period.”

    I think you missed the point. Women are not working the same amount of hours as their male equivalent in the first place, they are working less. For example if I work 80 hours in two weeks and you worked 68 hours in the same time period, why would you expect to make the same if you did not put in the same amount of hours. Unless you were on sick leave of some kind then you should expect to make less.

    Now if we put in the same amount of time and our performance is the same, then I will understand your gripe and I again agree with that point. This is not always the case. As I said women in general work less hours so of course they will make less when compared to someone who is doing the same work but working more hours.

    “Thank you for coming with rare, few and far between facts from outside the realm of the articles discussed above.”

    In my last statement I did not mentioned the article, I quoted what you were saying in your post. Part of my writing was focused on you and this quote:

    “MEN don’t fall victim to senseless double standards”

    I gave you one example of that not being true. I think you are failing to realize that they are double standards that negatively affect men just like they are negative double standards that affect women. Again double standards is not something that affects one gender but not the other.

    I think we want the same thing, just have different ways and beliefs of getting there. (^_^)

  • BOB

    @jaebee is feminism not about women attaining equality with men , so lets treat men and women the exact same way in society no double standards, no special privileges for either sex. I am all for equality, but true real equality where everything is indeed equal. If you do not support that you are not a true feminist, but a woman who wants women to run the world and have the advantage in society. Knock down that statement. equality that is what I support.

  • BOB

    Im all for equality women should have every right a man should. Women should be paid just as much money as a man, but they should also sign up for selective services. Women should not have to deal with any double standards set by society, neither should a man. Women and Men should pay 50/50 for dates. Do you women agree ?

  • Are You Serious Bro

    @JaeBoo

    “Are you seriously trying to compare women’s civil rights with courtship rituals?”

    Let’s look at the Merriam – Webster definition of Feminism:

    “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.”

    Courtship rituals fall under the social category, the same category as civil rights. Courting and dating are social behaviors that are learned and adopted, not biologically given. Just like civil laws are created by society, not biologically given to us. As I mention in another article on here, this is were feminism faces some troubles. It fits well in the concept of marriage and other areas of life as any partnership should be based on equality in all things and respect, but it does not mesh well with the way our society behaves in the current dating market. We have yet to find that delicate balance in dating in a feminist society. If you look at the current problems some women and men have in dating, you will see in part it reflects this. I expect most to believe that I am logically over thinking this, although I don’t think I am. I love critical thinking :)

    What I don’t understand is why when I mention feminism in dating the tune changes compared to when I mention feminism in marriage or feminism in the workplace? If equality is expected in the last two, why not the first one?

  • Are You Serious Bro

    @Bob

    “is feminism not about women attaining equality with men , so lets treat men and women the exact same way in society no double standards, no special privileges for either sex. I am all for equality, but true real equality where everything is indeed equal. If you do not support that you are not a true feminist, but a woman who wants women to run the world and have the advantage in society. Knock down that statement. equality that is what I support.”

    I don’t agree entirely with that statement. I do not think most people who share that view want to “run the world and have the advantage in society.” They simply want equal rights but also want to keep and embrace their feminine qualities and reap the benefits. The same thing could be applied to men. What some don’t see is how that could lead to a future inequality in an purely equal society. It is all about trying to find the right balance.

    I am starting to see that in order for feminism to be a true success we as a society has to reach a point where each gender is allowed to embrace the qualities that makes them unique while not creating an inequality while doing it. The thing is, can that realistically happen.

  • DeePDX

    @QueenofNewcastle

    I’ve seen your post on this thread and really I have to ask: What is it that you are trying to accomplish by posting negative, counter-productive, ill-advised, and just plain ignorant statements?

    Are you a man? Are you white? Are you bored? Because each response I’ve read of yours either in response to someone’s or your own has proven that 1) If you are a man, your attitude tells more about your level of understanding, compassion (which there is a lack of), and intelligence. 2) If you are white, then please move on tr0ll. 3) If you are bored, then there are far better places for your to exercise your freedom of speech and probably have a more enjoyable time than constantly battering the readers of this site with your hateful rhetoric and lazy attempts in continuing discussing things on this thread that obviously are not important to you and life.

  • QueenofNewcastle

    @JaeBee

    I think you need to scroll up when you just scoffed at the real civil rights issues that affect men only, i.e. selective services. Is that not a Civil Rights issues, not to be on the government role for potential wars? Should a man not be concerned about the fact that he could technically find himself unable to pursue higher education because he objects, conscientiously to being apart of the Selective Services? Thats a class issue too. Male students in financial need apply for government assistance. So its poorer male students who have to apply for Selective Services in order to receive loans he may have to pay back. Youre right, men havent been drafted in a few decades but when was the last time you were denied a job because you were a woman? Interesting how you can champion those issues that have NEVER happened to you but poorer mens concerns about Selective Service is completely irrelevant. Is that what you call equality?

  • QueenofNewcastle

    Modern feminism is nothing more than a paper chase.

  • BluTopaz

    @QOTNC
    “Still white women are the bane of your existence.”

    And Black women are the bane of yours–your point was?

  • ashley

    everything scares black men but going to prison.

  • LemonNLime

    @QueenofNewcastle – WOW someone is special. I’m gonna need some of y’all to open up some feminist theory books before you try and come on here and spout foolishness. I don’t know about you but, I am black and female 100% of the time and I live in world where I am constantly reminded of it. What kind of world do you live in where people are not multifaceted and don’t have multiple identities? As I stated somewhere else on in this conversation:

    “Many people of color identity as womanists or third-wave feminist because MANY of the issues brought up by feminists in the 60/70′s were the concerns of middle/upper class white woman and did not take into consideration the experience of women of color. The same thing can be said of the civil rights movement where black men didn’t take into account the issues and concerns of black women. So in both the civil right and women’s movements black women were placed on the back burner.”

    No where did I say that I didn’t benefit from their actions. And where does this idea that white women are the bane of my existence come from? That implies that what they do or believe has an affect on my life…and trust it doesn’t. You see white women aren’t on my radar like they seem to be on yours. I would expect comments like that from someone who seems to have an elementary way of looking at sex, race, identity, and history. Clearly we aren’t teaching critical thinking skills in school anymore. Sounds like someone has some personal issues that they should deal with and unfortunately I’m not a trained psychologist so take it some place else.

  • BOB

    @jaebee I think @QueenofNewcastle and @are you serious bro, already stomped out the fallacies of your argument and made them quite clear.

  • BOB

    @ are you serious bro , you hit the nail right on the head. I agree with what you said how can women keep their special privileges that benefit them in a society that the sexes are equal and not gain an advantage due to them. Then everything would be truly equal and nothing would be unfair. Somebody figure that out so we can put an end to trivial discussions on feminism. Because the way its looking right now all those special privileges can go to hell, if a woman is making just as much or more money than me I would be a fool to spend my hard earned money on her while she saves hers.

  • BOB

    @ashley and everything scares black women but dead beat dads and being a single parent.

  • QueenofNewcastle

    @DeePDX

    I would take what you were saying seriously if you would also take others to task who could be deemed as hateful and ill informed as you believe me to be. However you dont. You are there to protect, not the integrity of any of the debates here but the little wittle feelings of black females.

    Its time to grow up and realize that there is no safe place for you to discuss your issues where you can hand out lies, insults, and demonization and not be challenged. Have some integrity (unlikely) and call out similar comments or please get your own private heavily moderated blog where you will not be challenged or corrected.

    This is a blog focused on the issues concerning black women. I am a black woman. If you dont like dissent, you know where to go. Peace!

  • Shemar

    I just can’t believe some of these comments, disgruntled people, and made up facts. All of this because a woman expressed she was a feminist and wanted to tell women that hating men would not solve anything. Those that did not read the article, get a clue. Those that did not understand, get a tutor. Those that do not care for facts and want to discuss irrelevant topics that didn’t have much to do with the articles such as dating or making it seem as if women are actual valued equally in every aspect of this world already, get your own blog and make that the topic.

  • Courtney

    @ DeePDX – we’re not sure what Queen is other than a troll, but it’s definitely NOT a black female. It’s referred to black women (accidentally, I’m sure) as “they” on other comments on this site.

  • Courtney

    Why is it that the first thing men boo-hoo about is paying for dates? Like… really? That’s your biggest beef with the “equality argument?” Women are KILLED AND MUTILATED EVERY DAY for JUST BEING WOMEN… and you want to moan about having to pay for first dates to invalidate the utility and relevance of feminism? In the interest of full disclosure, I don’t let anyone pay for me – male or female. And I don’t expect a guy to pay for me on the first date for the same reason I don’t let anyone pay for me period – I feel like it makes me indebted to that person, and not without justification (please see all the men who DO feel entitled to some sort of conjugal action in return for buying a meal).

    Feminism is NOT about being better than. The ONLY men who see feminism as a threat are those men who inherently believe men are BETTER and should be ABOVE women, because it is truly about equality at a very basic level – the idea that women are human beings. It is that simple, really. There are a lot of paths and attitudes ingrained in our patriarchal world that feminism seeks to address, but at its core, it is about women being fully-fleshed out, intelligent human beings and not sex toys or childlike forms that need to “submit” or don’t have anything of value to contribute outside of the home. We are fully autonomous human beings and we deserve from men the same respect that they give each other. Don’t dismiss our ideas or opinions as somehow less informed than your own. Don’t assume that we all like a certain type of man – we have just as many varied opinions and preferences as men do, and coming from black men in particular it’s really dumb because white people assume that all black men are a certain way all the time.

    In short… treat us as individuals and treat us with the SAME (equal, not more for the men who constantly take this as a threat about “superior” treatment) respect that you give to each other. And this does include protecting us as well – which many people want to try to say is “favorable” treatment and not equal, and they’re completely wrong. Among black men, they CONSTANTLY protect each other – homies over hos, right? There’s numerous examples of them protecting each other on this very website, and the focus of the current so-called “civil rights” leaders PRIMARILY is focused on black men and their needs, to the point where several men use this as an excuse to subdue/silence black women who also want to bring misogyny as a topic of concern. So it would simply just be making us EQUAL if they started protecting us as well – like I mentioned in another comment, by refusing to sexually harass us or calling out people when they do, etc.

  • ashley

    lol

  • Courtney

    And a regrettably timely article to prove my point:

    http://news.yahoo.com/french-woman-malaysia-killed-refusing-sex-052058653.html

    Now, if anyone want to try to argue that this woman being killed for refusing to have sex had nothing to do with her gender and its resulting implications of inferiority (no autonomy = no legitimate ownership of her body, meaning the more superior male is entitled to it at any time for any reason), I’d have to ask them to find a case where a man was killed by a woman for refusing to have sex with her. No, really… google it. Cause I did (“woman kills man for refusing to have sex”) and found many, many results… all of various men killing women who refused sex. If you don’t understand feminism to be tantamount to the very survival of women and choose instead to pout about “ladies night,” “paying for the first date” etc. as reasons why men have it so badly and/or want to use the strawman that feminism is about SUPERIORITY, then we clearly can see what you’re really about.

  • BOB

    That was not even in America, if that does happen in America “man kills women because she refuses to have sex” That was a crazy man. I support Feminism that women are our equals, but I be damned if everything ain’t truly equal all those special social perks you get in America because you are a woman have got to go , if you want to be equal it’s only fair since women want to get rid of all the special perks men get in society for being men, to reach equality so it works both ways. Or we have to figure out a way to let women keep those social perks without giving them an advantage in society. No way getting around that bringing up an extreme that happens in Another country, we are not talking about that country we are talking about America. Women want men to give up all the special perks they get for being men , but want to keep all the special perks that they get for being women ????? how is this not messed up ?

  • QueenofNewcastle

    @Ashley

    What are black women afraid of? Natural hair, gym membership, white women? Now you see how insulting your original comment was when you have it turned around on yourself? Do unto others……

  • Sean

    @ Bob, There is plenty of rape in America, and you’re a f’n idiot for acting as if social mores are more important than common safety. So I guess it’s ok that men rape women because we got a free drink last night while you had to pay a cover to get in the club. It’s just the curse of being a woman right. Thanks Bob, thanks.

    Sexual Assault Statistics
    Nation wide 1 out of every 3 women will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime
    Every 2.5 minutes, somewhere in America, someone is sexually assaulted
    The United States has the world’s highest rape rates of all countries that publish such statistics. The U.S. rape rate is 4 times higher than Germany, 13 times higher than England and 20 times higher than Japan
    Rape is the most costly of all crimes to its victims. Total costs are estimated to be $127 billion a year in the U.S., excluding the costs of child sexual abuse
    4 out of 10 sexual assaults take place at the victim’s own home
    Approximately 73% of rape victims knew their assailant
    Overall, rape has the highest annual victim cost of ANY crime, yet laws and successful criminal prosecutions remain inconsistent and difficult
    More than 95% of all reported incidents of sexual assault and rape are committed by men
    1 out of ever 33 men has experienced an attempted or completed rape as a child and/or an adult
    The National Violence against Women Survey found that rape is a crime committed primarily against youth

  • http://www.pyoowata.com Nne

    Yeah, that was in Malaysia, and we may not have it as bad but there is still much use in advocating for women in the States. The number one killer of pregnant women in the US is intimate partner violence – not sure if it’s because these women aren’t having as much sex with their male partners or males are jealous of her now divided attention. Over 90% of the victims of domestic violence are women. You may argue that men may stay silent on the issue but feminism advocates for them too, in the spirit of gender equality. Want paternity leave? Feminists are on the forefront of that movement too. Feminist also fought for women to be in the army as well – again in the spirit of gender equality. Most single parents are women, in the spirit of simply being humane it would make sense to advocate on behalf of women who play the role of daddy and mommy. Oh yes, feminists show love to single fathers too.

    While scanning thru some of the comments, I read alot of complaints about the dating scene and who pays for dates. For an immediate solution, explain to your date that, we’re in a recession, and I think we should split the bill. If she bounces – well, on to the next one, she doesn’t meet your personally standards. I have yet to see an official feminist opinion on the subject of who pays on a date. However, if you wish to advocate, again in the interest of gender equality, that “times are hard, let’s agree to split the tab,” then, by all means, try working with feminists to change that. But forgive us in advance if we’re too busy working on safety nets for children of poor single parent families, intimate partner violence, and unequal pay to prioritize splitting the costs of your steak dinner last night.

  • Sheila

    @ Bob, you sound like a desperate man who can’t get a date with a good woman. You sound like when you do go on that date she realizes she does not like you and never calls you again. You may have paid for that date and now you are angry you got no play. Why don’t you call an older female mentor, a psychologist, and/or a stylist. Can’t get a date? Maybe they can help.
    And please get off this post, oh why can’t I get in the club for free, why can’t I get someone to pay for my dates? If you knew the owner, the doorman or your date actually wanted to pay for you because she didn’t feel as if she wasted a wear of her dress when she went out with you, she might pay for you too. Good luck because I can’t imagine your attitude affords you a woman with high self-esteem.

  • KingJason

    Feminism doesn’t ‘intimidate’ anyone and if you think it’s about anything other than gaining power and influence then you are naive at best. Is there a bigger simp than a Black male self-identified feminist? Dude they don’t even accept you.

  • Kay

    @ Are you Serious Bro

    Okay let me be clear obviously it is still not completely equal, at least not in America.

    In MOST places in the world women’s rights lag or are not even discussed.

    I think you missed the point actually because that’s exactly what I meant. Same job, put in the same time, same education etc. But because a boss sees the woman as a liability at times instead of an asset she is paid less.

    Also I love how you are acting as if the most prevalant double standard issue, are between two sexes.

    I can’t believe I have to discuss everything like I’m a lawyer and put everything in small print. All of these are still issues now, not 100 years ago.
    Talking to you about this is lot discussing with a white person how blacks are not yet equal in America. Frustrating and pointless because instead of looking at the some of statistics you seek out rare facts that prove your point. You aren’t a lawyer seeking precedence. Equal rights facts is the sum of all the numbers not just a few.
    We both know the sexes are not treated equal but thank you for this rousing discussion. Once America and the entire world is on the same page maybe you can get at me but yeah, that time is not now. I pray for the day I am considered equal as a man seeking job opportunities, negotiating salary, running for office, or hell walking down the street minding my own business. Today is not that day but thank goodness we have feminists who fight for the issues everyday. Somehow, someway I hope you can appreciate this. Hopefully the world will be a different place when our children are adults.

  • LMO85

    Wow. What a sad little pathetic peon you sound like in this comment. Shameful.

  • Tiffany W.

    QueenofNewcastle: “Well lucky you. Youre black when its convenient and a woman when its convenient. Good for you.”

    Congratulations. You just broke my brain.

  • Are You Serious Bro

    @ Courtney

    I don’t know if you were addressing me, Bob, or both of us, but here are a few quotes that I made in this comment section.

    “I think me and you would both agree that there are places in the world that is lagging behind as far as equal rights for women.”

    “I don’t agree entirely with that statement. I do not think most people who share that view want to “run the world and have the advantage in society.” They simply want equal rights but also want to keep and embrace their feminine qualities.”

    “True feminism at it roots should be about equality for both men and women.”

    “I don’t think most sensible men are scared of feminism in theory, but rather weary of the way SOME WOMEN practice it. Equality politically, economically, socially, etc; for every one no matter race, color, gender or creed is something that I believe most sensible men(or people in general) are in favor for.”

    As you can see I have no issue with feminism itself, but rather the way certain women, and from reading some of the comments men, practice it. Some, NOT ALL treat it like they are at a salad bar. They pick and choose the areas in which they want it, and leave behind the things they don’t want feminism near. This goes for both men and women. When they do that, it still creates a system of inequality that is being ignored.

    Even though equality and feminism is something we both believe in, I think we would be naive to believe that it wouldn’t have any negative outcomes once it is implemented. All social and civil programs/laws will have pros and cons, for and against it. From Affirmative Action to National Health Care, Feminism is not some magical exception to this rule. I mentioned only one, just one area(dating) where some have difficulty with incorporating feminism and as you see the claws came out. I could have mention child custody laws, divorce laws, the criminal and justice system, etc. There are still many areas where feminism has not sought balance and equality.

    Also I read the link, and whether the story to place in America or Malaysia, it is still sad that their are people in the world that behave like that.

  • ashley

    lmfao yes of course newcastle

  • joeclyde

    If women honestly believed in equality. They would ask men out. Pay for dates. Support men. Be on the front line in wars. etc.

    Women don’t believe in any of that. They will quickly pull out the female card, and say what a man is or isn’t to do. But when it comes to pay, housework, sleeping around, taking care of children. Then it all hell breaks loose, and we need equality.

    Women basically want rules that favor them doing. Anything and everything they want. With no consequence, or ridicule. While still expecting men to become pseudo-servants.

  • Are You Serious Bro

    @ Kay

    “Okay let me be clear obviously it is still not completely equal, at least not in America.

    In MOST places in the world women’s rights lag or are not even discussed.”

    Again I agree that yes we still have a long way to go for true equality for women, but I think we have different views on where we currently stand, and other small issues that in the grand scheme of things are not as huge or as different as it appears. Although I am pretty sure we could go back and forth all day, it wouldn’t solve anything and we would end up retreating farther and farther away from the things we do agree on.

    You see it as cup half empty and we need to pour some more to fill it up, and I see it as cup half full we need to pour some more to fill it up. Basically same damn thing.

    “Talking to you about this is lot discussing with a white person how blacks are not yet equal in America.”

    You made me spill my pepsi from laughter with that line. I am that bad to you. LOL

    “I pray for the day I am considered equal as a man seeking job opportunities, negotiating salary, running for office, or hell walking down the street minding my own business.”

    I hope that day come for all women too. Our society will be better for it.

    “Somehow, someway I hope you can appreciate this.”

    I can appreciate and respect your opinions. We might not agree on everything, but what two individuals do?

    “Hopefully the world will be a different place when our children are adults.”

    I will try to toast to that statement with what’s left of my Pepsi :)

  • DeePDX

    @JoeClyde

    I don’t know where you reside in this country or world, but the world has evolved and I am one of those women who have asked out a man, believe it or not. We exists, but the resounding argument of yours that UNIVERSALLY women EXPECT the “privilege” of being asked out or having things paid for them is OUTDATED. If your view of women is that short-sighted, then you need to ask yourself what type of woman are you associating with. I would expect you to have that belief if you are around women who are not only enabled and catered to regularly, but I’m here to tell you women like myself in this world have greater priorities to handle than if a man is going to pay a meal for me. And, the discussion of feminism is so much more deeper than that kind of topical discussion. Plainly.

    And as far as women believing in equality, regardless of your narrow-minded assumption about women is, you have only to pick from whatever field of industry to see women living their lives. We are so much more than you assume we are.

  • DeePDX

    @QueenofNewcastle

    No, I stick by my assessment that your arguments leave little room for any progress to be made regarding the conversation of women’s rights. As a black woman conscious of the dynamic of the relationships between the sexes, I would hope you could see that both Jamilah and Zettler are posing the arguments to the Clutch readers for us to look at ourselves and actions.

    Your words have been aimed at belittling the very important issue that honestly is at the heart of this forum, overall. Maybe I’m too sensitive. Maybe I care way too much about the plight that black women have struggle through, but you know, I’d rather care too much than to leave negative and potentially damaging public opinion of us undefended.

  • Courtney

    @ Bob. Please see the second sentence I wrote: “Women are KILLED AND MUTILATED EVERY DAY for JUST BEING WOMEN… and you want to moan about having to pay for first dates to invalidate the utility and relevance of feminism?” How, exactly, does the fact that my example took place in Malaysia bear any relevance to this point? My entire comment was to explain that feminism is not about superiority or “special perks” for being female, but seeing women as human beings. Not AMERICAN women. Feminism is not country-specific… but thanks for completely missing the forest for the trees.

    Additionally, feminism has NOTHING to do with bars having “ladies night,” okay? Like seriously… what the hell. Was that REALLY a topic of the movement in the 60s and 70s? Please give me a photo of a woman marching holding a sign to fight for this “perk.” Bars do that ON THEIR OWN ACCORD to MAKE MONEY. It has 0% relevance to the goals feminism, its origins nor its ideology, so can we please stop bringing up that strawman?

    @ Are you serious… I understand your point. Really, I do. Can you in turn understand my point that everything that you have an “issue” with in regards to feminism isn’t remotely on the same scale of importance as the issues feminism actually seeks to address? Do you similarly think that the “perks” blacks have from affirmative action negates in any significant way the detrimental effects that racism has had and continues to have? You’re taking the same position as whites who feel like they now have an “unfair” disadvantage, despite centuries of white privilege that continues to help them today. Should we now focus our time and attention on getting whites to be able to say “nigga” without social repercussions in the interest of “equality” when the very serious, very real issues the legacy of racism continues to have on blacks’ wealth and mortality haven’t been resolved to any significant degree?

    I’ll start giving serious time and energy to a minority of self-proclaimed feminists being hypocrites when women stop being killed, abused, harassed, raped, and mutilated for just being women.

  • LemonNLime

    Some of this issues you bring up come down to personal choice, community, and public policy.

    I identify as a womanist and I ALWAYS offer to either pay for my meal, split the check, or take turns paying when I go out with a guy. In college most of the guys where fine with that because everone is broke in college. Once I graduated and started dating professional men most would not let me pay for the first couple of dates even when i offered. I don’t know if it was how they were brought up or if they felt like it would be emasculating if they didn’t pay. I these cases, I offered and they made the decision… not feminism.

    Regarding selective service, it is the men at the head of the military who keep women from being forced to sign up for selective service …not feminism.

    Regarding men and their ability to cry, I personally don’t want a man that can’t express his emotions in a healthy manner and crying is healthy. Why are you as a male being around women or men that make you feel less than because you are human and cry? In that case it’s you choosing to be around those elements or you being raised in elements that taught you these notions…not feminism.

    So please explain to me how feminism is even close to being responsibly for some of the issues you site. I think you are also forgetting a big point. Not ALL women identify as feminists . So this:

    “and why should men have to pay for dates if you both are equals. Some women say because it makes me feel like a woman, so a man paying for your time is what makes you feel like a woman is defeating the so called purpose of Feminism.”

    Doesn’t apply to all women. If you are a women and you don’t care about feminist theory or thought you probably would not expect or believe that you should have to pay for your dates or any other number of double standards that could apply.

  • BOB

    I want to make paternity testing mandatory. Lets make that happen , women that are evil can not trick somebody into taking care of a baby that is not theirs. And Lets make everything truly equal.

  • BOB

    @kingjason you understand whats going on Amen, women you will have to make everything truly equal and yes getting social equality is important to me as much as safety but rape and all that sexual violence is at an all time low. Lets make paternity testing mandatory

  • Kay

    @ Bob, maybe you didn’t see this person’s statistics

    Maybe this is low, well thank goodness for this.

    Nation wide 1 out of every 3 women will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime
    Every 2.5 minutes, somewhere in America, someone is sexually assaulted
    The United States has the world’s highest rape rates of all countries that publish such statistics. The U.S. rape rate is 4 times higher than Germany, 13 times higher than England and 20 times higher than Japan
    Rape is the most costly of all crimes to its victims. Total costs are estimated to be $127 billion a year in the U.S., excluding the costs of child sexual abuse
    4 out of 10 sexual assaults take place at the victim’s own home
    Approximately 73% of rape victims knew their assailant
    Overall, rape has the highest annual victim cost of ANY crime, yet laws and successful criminal prosecutions remain inconsistent and difficult
    More than 95% of all reported incidents of sexual assault and rape are committed by men
    1 out of ever 33 men has experienced an attempted or completed rape as a child and/or an adult

    Maybe you should advocate that men push their own birth control pill, wear condoms religiously, maybe even get snipped. How about you advocate men only have sex in committed relationships as women are encouraged to do.

  • Wello

    LMAO @ ladies night being on par with the rape of women and other issues that destroy many women’s lives.
    just when i thought people can’t get any more stupid, they do
    men that make comment like this are generally misinformed and have NO interest in equality or fair treatment. they’re trying to keep the status quo by bringing up border issues where feminism can be uses in a way to help men, like getting rid of ladies nights

    pathetic, pathetic, pathetic.
    when women are being beating to death and raped in drones, you as a human being feel the need to fight against something that wants to end this? OMG YES!! women getting into clubs for free is completely as important of the rape of little girls
    and i bet they think they’re brilliant and brought up a prolific point to “enlighten” women about the evils of feminism *yawn*

    all the “perks” women get are generally back handed and can be uses in other ways to marginalise women or infer inferiority about being a woman and they don’t compare to what patriarchy does for men. these “perks” aren’t on the same level. free entry into clubs and getting higher wages, not being alot more likely to be raped and beaten to death… you see how stupid it sounds to try and compare these?

    some of you are disgusting obtuse excuses for humans beings.

  • Wello

    black women are women so why wouldn’t we be interested in tackling issues that affect women?

    the black movement was pretty anti woman and gay so why should black women and gay black people have anything to do with a movement that doesn’t give a f*ck about them?
    the black movement is centre around black heterosexual men and largely when issues about black people is brought up its about black heterosexual men

  • Wello

    lol @ ladies nights being on par with the mass rape of women, young and old alike.
    those who bring up trivial stuff like this don’t care about equality; they want to “enlighten” women about the ills of feminism because rape is a fair trade off about free club entry *vomits*

    PATHETIC, PATHETIC, PATHETIC
    the “perks” women get always have a negative side that can be used to maginalise and and infers inferiority
    if you think that the lower wages, dead broke and beaten bodies of women is on the same level to be compared to free entry into clubs, it say alot about your character and intelligence. the few positive scraps patriarchy offers for women can’t be compared to what men get from it.
    you want to fight about the women that “trick” men but you’re silent about the men that beat women to death, rape little girls and the men that are MIA from the lives of the child that they help created, it say alot

    many of you are obtuse pathetic excuses for human beings only interested in your selves and not in any form of equality, empowerment or interest in helping to make an environment that helps create happy well rounded humans. you aren’t interested in equality so please drop the sh*t about “what about the women that…” you are transparent; your arguments weak and abundantly flawed but you probably think your key strokes were prolific but its the same ole crap by another misinformed bitter man (self hating woman) that feels the need to spew venom on the few spaces made for black women because they feel entitled to everything and that includes women *YAWN*

    i refuse to go back and forth with such hatred and stupidity.

  • Are You Serious Bro

    @ Courtney

    “Can you in turn understand my point that everything that you have an “issue” with in regards to feminism isn’t remotely on the same scale of importance as the issues feminism actually seeks to address?”

    In some others like dating yes, I can understand and respect your point. In others issues regarding the criminal and justice system and child custody laws, no I believe the last two are of great importance and should be address.

    “Do you similarly think that the “perks” blacks have from affirmative action negates in any significant way the detrimental effects that racism has had and continues to have?”

    My personal feelings on the matter is this: Creating an inequality on top of a inequality will breed only more inequality in the future. The problem some have with affirmative action is not the fact that it gave minorities “perks,” the problem lies in the fact that in the long run it would have created an even greater divide among races and gender because it was centered around quotas, bench marks, and bending the rules for one but not the other( See University of California v. Bakke Supreme Court Case in 1978)

    When you have an “us vs them” mantra that only leads to more trouble. Any time you have a system like that, it will only help continue the trend of racism. To answer your question no I don’t think AA negates the effects of past racism, but if it was allowed to continue at a massive scale it would have help fueled future racism.

    “You’re taking the same position as whites who feel like they now have an “unfair” disadvantage, despite centuries of white privilege that continues to help them today. Should we now focus our time and attention on getting whites to be able to say “nigga” without social repercussions in the interest of “equality” when the very serious, very real issues the legacy of racism continues to have on blacks’ wealth and mortality haven’t been resolved to any significant degree?”

    This should be the example given when you hear the term “straw man argument.” I laughed and spilled my Pepsi when Kay said the first line jokingly at the top of the comments page. You using this as an actual debate tool and pushing the envelope further into a land of pure desperation and idiotic comparison, leaves me wanting to post a facepalm gif on your behalf.

    Let me get this right you are actually equating me wanting fairness and equality in dating, marriage, child custody laws, the criminal justice system, along with the other areas feminist here wants to address with a white person wanting to use the n-word and nothing else. I have to ask the question “Are You Serious Bro/Brosket?” I hope for your sake that was hyperbole and not meant to be taken seriously lol.

    “I’ll start giving serious time and energy to a minority of self-proclaimed feminists being hypocrites when women stop being killed, abused, harassed, raped, and mutilated for just being women.”

    I again will post what I said in my first comment on this page:

    “I don’t think most sensible men are scared of feminism in theory, but rather weary of the way SOME WOMEN practice it. Equality politically, economically, socially, etc; for every one no matter race, color, gender or creed is something that I believe most sensible men(or people in general) are in favor for.”

    If you are not the type of feminist I have issues with, why the outrage when we agree on everything in regards of equality.

  • vee

    @Shemar

    Exactly.

    We’re equal but it doesn’t mean we’re not different.The thought that just because a woman is a feminist who wants equality, she should have to do things that are inherently “masculine” makes no sense. Its also proof that whoever thinks like that believes that elevating ones status in society must mean increasing masculinity…its still the same old sexist mind set. When it comes to courtship men can do certain things for women and women can do other things for men. Feminism and chivalry are not mutually exclusive. You can fully respect everything about a woman, see her as your equal and still pull out her chair.

  • BOB

    I’m talking about in America , we need mandatory paternity testing. And we need to treat people regardless of their sex exactly the same male domenance in America has not benefited me much if any at all, explain how men in America have an advantage over women ? I want to learn

  • Kay

    @ Bob

    Wello may not respond, if you couldn’t tell from the tone of his message, but I will. If you don’t understand the dynamic of sexism and male dominance in society as a whole including America then you need have a whole different problem.
    I would suggest asking some women you know how they feel about things, read a book. Hell read this site. Then maybe you can come back with realistic debate on this subject.

  • LemonNLime

    That is already possible. If someone tries to get you to pay child support, you can get a motion from the court for paternity testing. If you don’t want to pay child support you can wave your paternal rights in some states and jurisdictions. Better yet stop having unprotected sex or sleeping with everything that has a vagina and you wouldn’t have this problem to begin with.

    You have an extremely elementary idea of the dynamics of sexism and I would truly recommend that you do some research. The fact that you site men paying for dates (something decided by the people on the date), paternity testings (something you can buy at Walgreens), and men not being able to cry (something taught to them by their family and peers not just women and something that can be unlearned) as issues is comical and they are not issues on the same level as say FGM, rape as a tool or fear, war, or just the act in general, sexualizing young girls, reproductive rights, sexual assault, disparity in income, etc. issues women often do not have control over.

  • Courtney

    @ Are you serious Bro.

    So… let me get this straight. Instead of supporting the very real life-and-death issues that the feminist ideals seek to correct, you want feminists to spend more time concerning the issues of men when the goals of feminism are no where NEAR being completed. And on top of that, you have the nerve to condescend to me about my “white privilege” analogy being a strawman? Alrighty sir. I’ll put it into simple terms for you so please, try to keep up:

    When many white people discuss civil rights and the current issues that black people are concerned about and still struggle to fight against or solve, they frequently divert the debate to re-center on THEIR perspective and how the issue affects THEM. Quite frequently, their issues are of ludicrously low importance and effect in society, especially compared to the issues that blacks (and other minorities) faced and continue to fight in regards to racism. Compared to unarmed blacks (men, women, and children) continuously being killed by the police, they want to whine about how they can’t say “nigga” without social ramifications. Compared to the beneficial legacy that hundreds of years of free labor endowed them with and the subsequent decades of oppressive Jim Crow measures, they continue to think of their isolated anecdotes about how someone called them a “honky” compare to the racism that minorities experience daily and refuse to acknowledge the different ways racism has created the current situation and continues to perpetrate it. If blacks and whites were in a race and whites were given a 30 second head start, their complaints about civil rights or affirmative action being “favorable” treatment is akin to us being able to start the race a couple meters ahead of the official start line… when they got a thirty second head start. They are not concerned with joining us in the very real fight against the continued systematic oppression of minorities and instead seem to believe that now that that’s all irrelevant and/or solved and we are finally equal in every way, that we need to start addressing the “racial double standards.”

    Likewise, men discussing feminism in the context of hypocritical feminists or male-focused issues are both 1) dismissive of the much more severe, much more institutionalized, and much more WIDESPREAD ways that patriarchy continues to affect the health, lives, and safety of women and 2) just like white people and “nigga,” continue to try to re-direct the conversation in regards to feminism on less severely impacting MALE-centered issues. Do you want to join the fight against domestic violence, AYSB? Do you want to start coaching your fellow men about respecting us as fully-fledged, autonomous human beings? As a 25-year-old black female, the NUMBER ONE CAUSE of my mortality statistically speaking is domestic violence.

    Or…

    Do you want us to instead drop all of that and focus more on how “unfair” the court system is when it comes to custody rights? Because while I’m not saying it’s not an issue that needs to be addressed, I really take offense to this notion that we, as feminists, need to start directing more of our time, energy, money, and resources to address this when we are still being killed for just being born women and this still continues to a very severe degree – not just in third world countries, but here in America. If you agree that 40 years of officially legal equal status hasn’t solved/compensated for centuries of racism, then I’m sure you can also agree that 40 years of officially legal equal status hasn’t adequately solved/compensated for centuries of patriarchy. Your personal opinion about affirmative action is irrelevant to the point of the analogy. And regarding this statement:

    “Creating an inequality on top of a inequality will breed only more inequality in the future.”

    In theory, I agree with this. In reality, your sentiment is akin to someone putting a cup of dirt onto a mudslide and then expecting me to care more about that cup of dirt than the landslide.

    And you continue to use the exception to disprove the rule. By and large, feminists are NOT concerned with Ladies Night. Nor are we really that concerned with the unfairness of custody – 1) because that’s primarily a MALE issue and ANY interest group concerns itself with the issues concerning THAT GROUP OF PEOPLE. Do you similarly expect the AARP to advocate for people not old enough for social security? If it’s unfair, then start a group and advocate for it. I’m pretty sure this has already been done, however. And it still is not directly related to the goals of feminism. 2) Again, we’re primarily focused on issues of much greater and more relevant importance to women. I understand that, as a man, the issue of custody is very serious to you and I’m not going to negate that. But that is NOT a feminist issue, and I hope that you can appreciate why it’s a little offensive to want to divert feminist time/energy/resources to addressing that when we actually still have yet to accomplish our goals and women’s LIVES are still at stake.

    And you know what? If the way custody cases are handled in the courts are unjustifiably skewed to favor women? THAT IS A RESULT OF PATRIARCHY. Women are considered the “nurturers” and so perhaps it would be considered a socially more harmful decision to place them with the “providers” – who aren’t supposed to raise, just rule. However, as we probably both agree, being a female doesn’t make someone the better/more fit parent, and vice-versa. You can still blame people who subscribe to “traditional gender roles” for this attitude, though.

  • joeclyde

    @DeePDX

    I’m glad you don’t subscribe to that belief. But if you read the articles just on Clutch. On what they expect from a “real” man. Then these same women complain about equality. It doesn’t add up.

    I believe men get hung up on the equality word. Because what most women aren’t asking for true equality at all. They love all gender roles with favor women.

    Feminism isn’t about true equality or getting ride of gender roles. If that was the case. Most men wouldn’t have an issue with that. But when you sit back and watch. You see how men basically are getting the short end of the deal.

  • KingJason

    I don’t trust the word “feminist” anymore than I do “christian”. I have to see what you do and what you stand for.

  • Kay

    @Courtney *digital high five* I know the road has been arduous and I commend your efforts and agree with your arguments.

    @ AYSB I believe that was a knockout, a clear countdown and knockout. But you’ll probably come back from the dead again. I agree with you but, but.

  • DeePDX

    @ joeclyde

    I’ve been reading Clutch for over a year and I can HONESTLY say that stories I have read regarding dating and relationships from the black woman’s perceptive has usually been in the tone of how to love ourselves in order to love any man that we spend time with. How to treat ourselves with love and appreciation so that we attract the same thing of man who has that himself. The articles I’ve read have always challenged the perceived views of black women as we continue to struggle not only against the white majority but in many cases our own people and history. I am so HAPPY that Clutch is here for me and you to have this type of dialogue whereas not even on BET or in VIBE can we see a comprehensive story regarding the dynamic of relationships between black men and black women.

    “On what they expect from a “real” man. Then these same women complain about equality. It doesn’t add up.”

    I don’t think it’s unfair for women to ask of men to be their best selves. Whatever your definition of “real” is, I can tell you that black women who want black men in their lives as more than a date, or a meal ticket, or some way to attain some type of status, WILL and ARE able to communicate what that means without offending men interested in hearing us out. It’s not an “us vs. them” as some men on this thread of accused the fight for equality that women have been waging. “Feminism” was a vehicle of creating a place for women in a male dominated society and this, like the Civil Rights Movement, didn’t just start in the 1960′s.

    “Feminism isn’t about true equality or getting ride of gender roles. If that was the case. Most men wouldn’t have an issue with that. But when you sit back and watch. You see how men basically are getting the short end of the deal.”

    Yes, Feminism is about getting rid of gender roles, actually. However the prevailing attitudes of a male dominated society does not want that. WHY? Because that means someone (men) feel like that they will be the ones who will be dominated as women have been since, oh, the beginning of time. Power shifts and power games are up for the taking and no one wants to be on the end of that stick, correct? Yet, women in the larger scheme always have been until the tides (both big and small) of change finally came in. This doesn’t have to create a bigger gap between the sexes is what I’m saying. This is where progress can be made, but it takes both sides to see the grace in that. To see the benefit of breaking down those barriers that keeps us apart. As a matter of fact, dissolving what we think of as what men and women are SUPPOSED to be instead of treating them both as sentient beings is what Feminism at its core is about.

  • DeePDX

    @Courtney

    All that you just wrote was all TRUTH. 100% agree.

  • Are You Serious Bro

    @Courtney and @Kay

    I might as well address both of you now.

    A knockout? Hardly. Both of you missing one sound point that I have been saying over and over and over since I(Are You Serious Bro) started posting in this comment section and that is that I agree with feminism on the whole.

    The question posted in this article by the author was “Does Feminism scare black men?”

    I responded by saying no I support feminism and am in favor of equality, BUT(yes Kay BUT BUT BUT :) am weary of a certain type of feminist. I don’t agree with feminist that want to uphold gender roles for one gender but not the other, or approach things with hypocrisy, and make those things their primary focus. I can tell you that as a college age man, a lot feminist I have came into contact with between the age of 18-24, fall into this category not the next one I am about to mention.

    Now if you are the type of feminist that is out there advocating on improving the quality of life for women around the world, then you have my full and utmost respect and backing. If you are the type that is involved in after school programs like girl scouts, team sports, or anything that is helping young girls or women in a positive manner, you have my utmost respect. This was never and never will be the issue or gripe I have. Women should have the chance to be given the same rights and opportunity as men in our world have. You will never hear me say otherwise like other commentators have touched on.

    “Do you want to join the fight against domestic violence, AYSB? Do you want to start coaching your fellow men about respecting us as fully-fledged, autonomous human beings? As a 25-year-old black female, the NUMBER ONE CAUSE of my mortality statistically speaking is domestic violence.”

    A recent poverty simulation that I took part in had a section specifically addressing domestic violence against women and the part men play in the matter. There was an honest and open discussion from both men and women regarding gender in American society and the world in general. I can say without a doubt that I am glad that I attended and participated in it. I gained a lot of insight and knowledge that I did not know beforehand. I have done and will continue to help do just that on my campus and in my life in general; whether it is through poverty simulations, charity events, outreach programs, community service, or service learning. I am also against domestic violence of any kind and a big believer of simply walking away from a potential violent situation rather then escalating things and resulting to violence.

    As far as the things I mentioned in the comments, child custody laws, criminal and justice system, etc; I am already involved in groups in my town that are looking to address this issue. We have already had successful contacts with our local representatives. What I would tell any one looking to join a men’s advocate group is to LEAVE THE HATE AT THE DOOR. It is about trying to create equality in our justice system, not about having an axe to grind.

    Again I was not diverting attention, or knocking feminism. I simply stated that there is a certain type a feminist I have a problem with. You all chose to keep ignoring the parts that we agree on which is the majority of things, and focus the small parts we disagree on even when I made it clear that I agreed with the two of you in the first place.

    The questions remains,

    If you are not the type of feminist I have issues with, why the outrage when we agree on everything in regards of equality for women?

  • Kay

    @ AYSB

    I believe Courtney said. “Likewise, men discussing feminism in the context of hypocritical feminists or male-focused issues are both 1) dismissive of the much more severe, much more institutionalized, and much more WIDESPREAD ways that patriarchy…” You know the rest.

    It’s insulting that you continue to push the issue of discussing this “type” of feminist you are weary of… an exception to the rule, if you will. You discuss it as if it is on the same level of importance of actual feminist issues. IT IS NOT

    As far as I’m concerned Courtney explained everything thoroughly if you are still saying “but oh what about the hypocrites?” If you don’t enjoy being chivalrous, just don’t do it.

    Chivalry as far as dating is concerned is not something most women agree on, let a alone feminists. Heck it’s not something all men can agree on. It is more personal preference. So it has no place here.

  • http://windmillperception.wordpress.com Trudy

    “And if status can’t be had in the monetary and social sphere, we damn sure won’t give it up in the domestic sphere.”

    That’s the core problem, especially amidst minority men and women (not even just Black, but other minorities). Because minority men still have privilege based on being male, but not as much as a White man has for being White and male, they seek to replace this power at home. That coupled with socioeconomic factors, general stress, and the consistent battle of seeking equality with White men then becomes higher alcoholism rates, infidelity (to prove sexual prowess, another form of perceived power) domestic violence at home and even murder.

    Until the quest is to fight for equal rights, but not seek to be “in control” of other beings in order to assert this theoretical equality with White men, many men of colour, especially Black ones will view feminism as an enemy or deterrent to them assuming power. And, in a patriarchal society that often teaches men that they are nothing unless they have money and power (and power achieved through money, status and controlling women), Black men have a hard time rejecting that and instead carving out a space and life where equality and respect for women, especially the ones they are involved with is something they can value. Research confrims that healthy relationships actually improve men’s health, well-being and general satisfaction with life. However, some will reject all of the above for a semblance of power, begging for “submission” from women in relationships as some sort of perceived equality with White men.

    Jamilah wrote it best in the article you reference, “By definition (feminism), it challenges a system that provides men with certain inherent benefits; even men like this one, who feel that their race denies them those advantages, want to maintain the system in hopes that one day they might be as powerful as whatever forces kept them from experiencing what they feel entitled to.” The endless quest for power and control instead of self-assurance and well-being is unfortunate.

  • joeclyde

    @dee

    “To see the benefit of breaking down those barriers that keeps us apart. As a matter of fact, dissolving what we think of as what men and women are SUPPOSED to be instead of treating them both as sentient beings is what Feminism at its core is about.”

    But that is the thing. If women believed in breaking down the gender roles, etc. Then how do you on the other hand complain about supporting a guy? That leads me to believe that they love the Gender Roles that favor women.

    Look at the comments on the Chivalry Topic.
    http://clutchmagonline.com/2011/07/on-chivalry/

    Women feel more like a woman. When a man is performing under gender roles. Most die hard feminist IMO seem unhappy. Some things are social, and others are just part of nature.

    I believe this Feminism needs to be called out for the self serving ideology it really is. It is not about equality at all. You cannot have Chivalry and claim to want true equality. Which feminism calls for.

    I believe women should be treated fairly. Period.

  • PascaleDE

    “Black men who show an aversion to feminism are generally a product of a thought process that goes something like this: For me to win, somebody has to lose. False dichotomies fuel our cognitive engines to the point where disagreements turn to glorious exercises in bitching and moaning.”

    Mr.Clay I love you & your rhetoric, I could not have said this any better!!! Your whole article is on point!!!

  • yehbuddy!

    I’m a Black woman and I HATE modern feminism.
    that is all…

  • yehbuddy!

    AGREED!

  • Socially maladjusted

    Nice piece, and for me your strongest point was this bit

    “And if status can’t be had in the monetary and social sphere, we damn sure won’t give it up in the domestic sphere.”

    Absolutely nailed it with this point. They won’t challenge the capitalist power hierarchy that subordinates all but a tiny elite class of men, so they settle for trying to make women subordinate to them.

    They want to lead women, rather than reform society to bring about equality between men and between men and women.

    With that said I’m a very a vocal critic of feminism in it’s current form. It is now a female supremacist movement that no longer challenges this patriarchal capitalist order but merely seeks to deploy the power of the system to keep the mass of the male population under control and protect the culture of social and legal priviledge it grants to women.

    An increasing number of men are coming to similar conclusions and I think it’s a mistake to lump them in the same category as the “traditionals” who merely want to roll back the rights women legitamely gained.

  • Courtney

    THIS. +1

  • Courtney

    @ AYSB

    … pretty much exactly what Kay said. I really can’t go any further with this debate.

  • DeePDX

    @Joe

    I’m going to post this one last bit and say peace because we are arguing the same thing. On another thread two women and one man are arguing exactly what you are talking about: the hypocrisy of some feminist when it comes to our societal roles vs. personal preferences in treating the opposite sex. I see the correlation of your argument to their response to the man and can only post this because it is stating exactly my sentiment.

    I believe Courtney said. “Likewise, men discussing feminism in the context of hypocritical feminists or male-focused issues are both 1) dismissive of the much more severe, much more institutionalized, and much more WIDESPREAD ways that patriarchy…” You know the rest.

    It’s insulting that you continue to push the issue of discussing this “type” of feminist you are weary of [Joe, in this case you bring up the kind of woman that DEMANDS a man's respect, rather than intrinsically honoring him as human first]… an exception to the rule, if you will. You discuss it as if it is on the same level of importance of actual feminist issues. IT IS NOT

    As far as I’m concerned Courtney explained everything thoroughly if you are still saying “but oh what about the hypocrites?” If you don’t enjoy being chivalrous, just don’t do it.

    Chivalry as far as dating is concerned is not something most women agree on, let a alone feminists. Heck it’s not something all men can agree on. It is more personal preference. So it has no place here.

  • http://startswithakesh.com/ Keshia

    For black men I think it would be better for them to understand beyond general feminism to the intersection of racism and sexism that is inflicted on black women. I think that would be more beneficial.

  • FinegIRL

    they didnt post my comment :)

  • Pingback: Monday Morning Links « Rotten Little Girls

  • Michelle

    Referring to women as ‘females’? Yeah, that’s really progressive.

  • Pingback: You Are Not Alone: Black Male Feminists In Action | Clutch Magazine

Latest Stories

Struggling To Tell Black People Apart? Watch David Alan Grier Hilariously Break It Down

by

Carol’s Daughter Files For Bankruptcy

by

Should Schools Enforce a Dress Code For Parents?

by

Looks We Love: Porsha Williams’ Best Hair and Beauty Moments

by
Read previous post:
10 Black Women Making Moves In Film
Mr. Nice Guy (or How I Learned that Being One is Stupid)
Close