Men Are Abused Too, So We Should Never Talk About the Abuse of Women

LogickedI hate to bring up Logicked, since I have very negative memories of dealing with him previously in the comments. But unfortunately, at his encouragement, I subscribed to his YouTube channel and have thus been made aware of his more recent videos. His style of arrogance is great so long as it comes with humor — the thing that originally attracted me to him. But of late, there is no humor — just his arrogant rants that show all the depth of thought that I’ve come to be very used to from the libertarian community.

His most recent video is “Response to Steve Shives on Bus Etiquette.” I’m not even linking to it nor am I going to embed it. I know that many readers around here already subscribe to him, so they have probably already seen it. It has to do with a sign on a train that tells people not to stare at or masturbate near women. I think most people will admit that such a sign is silly. Men who masturbate on public transit are generally insane. But reminding men that what they think of as harmless fun can be seen as threatening to women is probably a good thing — for women and men.

Logicked makes the argument that we shouldn’t single out male on female abuse because, hey, men get abused too. Well, yeah. They are. But is it really the same?

But Logicked takes the positions that women are not an oppressed minority because there aren’t laws against them. This is an argument that I’ve been hearing from libertarians for decades. Logicked may not consider himself a libertarian, but he fits the mold. What’s more, he strikes me as very much like people who call themselves “independents” but somehow always manage to vote Republican. If that’s your thing — pretending that you are such an individual that you can’t be labeled — so be it. But let’s consider this argument in a different context.

Avik Roy claimed that we have equality of opportunity in this country because there aren’t explicit laws against people having certain kinds of jobs. In other words, as long as we don’t have a caste system, we have equality of opportunity. One child grows up without proper nutrition and a substandard education and no social connections. Another child gets the best possible nutrition and medical care, the best schooling and access to the greatest achievements of humanity in the arts and sciences, and a huge inheritance and access to dozens of rich people who can provide jobs and venture capital. These two children have equality of opportunity because there is no law saying that the poor child can’t be CEO of HP.

Logicked makes the argument that we shouldn’t single out male on female abuse because, hey, men get abused too. They are equal before the law. Well, yeah. They are. But is it really the same? I use public transit a great deal. There are a lot of scary people on the bus and the train. But I’ve only ever seen men crowd women and come on to them in vulgar and implicitly violent ways. And I say this as a man who knows very well that women can abuse men.

Throughout the 20th century in the south, the lynching of black men was a major issue. From 1882 to 1968, 539 black men were lynched in Mississippi. Does it matter that during that time 42 white men were lynched? Would we look at a man in 1950 complaining about people making a big deal of the lynching of black men because white men were being lynched too? I don’t think so. I think people would see that man as the racist apologist that he clearly was.

So Logicked notes that men are abused on public transportation too. No one questions that. His argument is either self-evident and pointless, or it is an apologia for the whiny men’s rights activists. In either case, he is no longer worth following.

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Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

18 thoughts on “Men Are Abused Too, So We Should Never Talk About the Abuse of Women

  1. This is something that the MRA could actually take the initiative on. They could do what women did way back in the late seventies and early eighties. They could fight to get funding towards men’s shelters and studies on what causes women to abuse men in an attempt to figure out the signs to give people that information. Is it the same as men abusing women-where they tend to isolate the victim from family, friends? Does it involve using birth control and pregnancy as a weapon? Does it cause the male to have to be limited financially or does it involve forcing him to work to support a luxury lifestyle?

    But they don’t. Much more fun to beat up (verbally but sometimes…) on feminists trying to help women in abusive relationships out instead of men. They fight to get women’s shelters shut down since they claim it is discrimination against men to have them.

    Back when I was on Dave Futrelle’s blog regularly I actually asked one of the MRA trolls about that-why they didn’t do anything. His answer was essentially “if feminists claim to care about men, they should do it.” Basically it is about just hurting feminists or women for these guys. Not about helping their fellow man out when they need it.

    • If you haven’t already, you should read my own personal story that I link to. It was a bizarre experience for me because even though I did not have any of the physical and economic constraints, I still hung around — long past the time I thought she was going to end up killing me. But it gave me a much better perspective on what it must be like to be in that situation without money or family. Basically, it would be slavery. But even with relative power, it has a horrible situation of being terrified but also self-loathing.

      • That is why I mentioned the need to study how to help those who are in that situation. Men have this weird thing I have noticed-if they are in a gawdawful relationship where there is no abuse but the two people just kind of hate each other, there is no love left, and no intimacy, the man is absolutely shocked when she files for divorce or moves out. I am like “yeah, because y’all were miserable, why would you stay there?” And I have yet to get an answer that makes sense to me. Then again, it took the last guy I was dating two months to figure out I broke up with him. So maybe it is me.

        Since we do know what the signs are for someone in an abusive relationship, those in the community have come up with ways for friends of the abused to help which does make it easier for the women to escape even with the twin burdens of the children he forced on her and lack of financial resources.

        • Solitary confinement is about the worst thing that prisons do to inmates. People will put up with a lot just to be with people. But I think things are getting better regarding spousal abuse. But I suppose I am just one of those irrational sexists who aren’t willing to pretend that life is exactly the same for men and women in our society. I am also, of course, an irrational racist who isn’t willing to pretend that the only kind of racism is the explicit kind. I don’t know how I live with myself.

          • By the sound of it, you live rather well with yourself. You sound like excellent company for someone like you to spend time with.

            Yes, things are getting better for people in abusive relationships. Victim blaming has gone down, there is more awareness of the signs of abuse and more resources. Still not great but better. And men are getting some recognition as victims and not in the “what about the menz?” Way.

    • Elizabeth — by their works shall ye know them, to quote some book. Most feminists are involved in things that actually affect women’s lives — domestic abuse, access to birth control, equal salaries and so on. There are lots of ways to improve the lives of men, particularly fighting for better wages and benefits. These types you describe whining about a loss of male status sound like pure fakers to me!

      Frank — do you really want to poke another fight with that guy? Although I unsubscribed from his YT channel, so I guess I can’t talk.

      • No, I don’t. I was just so offended by the video. And then I looked back on our comment exchanges and I realized something: he’s a troll. If he happens back by here (which I doubt), I won’t respond. Regardless, I already know what he would say: I trivialized his argument. I just don’t care. He represents everything that is wrong with the New Atheist movement. As you may be aware, one of the big problems with the atheist movement is that it is filled with misogynists. But if he does come back through, he will go line by line attacking each thing I said. That will be that much less time that he will have to spew his anti-woman and anti-Muslim views on YouTube. It’s funny that the New Atheists see themselves as the future, but they are very much the past. History will look down on them not just as regressive but particularly silly in thinking they had such a clear view of the world. Anyway, what’s next from this guy? A video attacking someone for criticizing The Bell Curve? It wouldn’t surprise me at all. This last video is so filled with blind privilege, nothing would surprise me. I originally noticed him because he was funny. Now he’s just an arrogant small minded libertarian. I’m sure he lost a lot of subscribers for that video. But I’m also sure that he gained a lot more from MRAs. There’s nothing the internet likes so much as a man who stands up for the powerful.

        • No, I did not know the movement was filled with misogynists. I’m not close to it in any way. Thank goodness, it seems!

          If I had to guess, I’d imagine quite a few militant atheists are resentful towards the patronizing tone of religious leaders/proselytizers. For some this may be the main source of their antagonism towards religion, far more so than the theology. And so it could possibly feel very gutsy and brave to “take a stand” against those who act as though their faith makes them morally superior.

          Are there liberals who act superior because of their political beliefs? Surely, as with every other belief system. There are hobbyists who act the same way. I run into snotty homebrewers and baseball stat geeks on a regular basis. But there’s no political points to be scored railing against snotty homebrewers, so we don’t have a prevailing caricature of homebrewers as petty snobs they way we do “liberal PC types.”

          I imagine if you already enjoy thinking of yourself as brave for “standing up” to religious snobs, it’s an easy leap to decide liberals deserve the same treatment. That is to say anyone who decries sexism, racism, religious intolerance. We’re a bunch of jerks who think we’re better than everybody, so boy do we need to have our egos deflated by the gutsy truth-tellers!

          What’s curious about this (if I’m describing it correctly; again, I don’t know any militant atheists, only a few libertarians) is how it is basically groupthink which considers itself very independent-minded. It’s just being a trend follower of a different trend.

          There’s nothing wrong in identifying with a community and sharing certain values, nothing at all! One test, for me, of whether a community is worth participating in is how groupthink-y they are. Can you agree to disagree on some major points and still respect each other for shared interests? Most liberals I know do this. Most “centrists” or libertarians I know don’t. (I know few people, so small sample size.)

          From what you’ve described, the militant atheists are a pretty closed-minded bunch. Which is sad. Salt Lake just elected a gay mayor. Salt Lake! If your movement has been passed in inclusiveness by Utah, you’ve got some serious catching-up to do.

          • It’s kind of like the Southpark guys who are norminally libertarians, but who largely come down on the liberal side of things. But it is almost always the liberals who they attack. It seems to be for cultural reasons. As though some bit of liberal PC nonsense is more important than starting wars. But I don’t want to paint the atheists too broadly. But there is no doubt that there is a huge appetite for this kind of conservative nonsense in the atheist community. Atheism and libertarianism lack the one thing that makes most movements reasonable: large numbers of women.

            • After what happened to the Skepchick: Rebecca Watson gently reminding men why you should not ask a strange woman in a strange city in an elevator at 4 AM to go back to your room for “coffee.” I am not surprised that there are few women in the movement. She simply said to not do something that anyone with sense would know and the movement exploded at her.

              There are a lot of reasons to not want to be around large groups of men who are angry about whatever and one of them is being female (or being female and marginally attractive.)

              • And it wasn’t even primarily what Watson was complaining about. The response to her was absolutely awful. The New Atheist community showed itself to be led by a bunch of privileged elites who could have been extras in Pleasantville.

                • The reality is that the New Atheist movement was largely supportive. The movement did not explode at her.

                  Now, for reasons not directly related to the ‘Elevator Guy’ who I’m not even sure really existed, I won’t read Watson, because she’s a privileged charlatan. Sorry, she’s the elite.

                  • Let me be clear, because I’m afraid I keep offending you. Roughly 70% of the atheist community is what I would call humanist. The remaining 30% are what I would call libertarian — although many not by name. This is based on polling data. I use New Atheism as a shorthand for “the movement that Sam built.” Of course, it isn’t that simple. I do not consider Dawkins a libertarian type, but I do consider him a jerk. In general, I have a major problem with the “Four Horsemen” and I think all atheists should as well.

                    It may seem like I’m always slamming atheists, but I also write some very nice things about them (us). It’s the same thing with the Democratic Party. It is the way of my people.

                    At this point, I like PZ Myers and I like Richard Carrier (although he’s been pretty boring recently). If Watson is elite, she is elite of that level — not even as well known as Myers.

                    • I once liked and respected PZ Myers, but not anymore. The same goes for the whole Atheism+ movement – even though on a general level it expresses my sympathies. I won’t read them or link to them. Left-wing Rush Limbaughs.

                      It saddens me too, because just about all of these people used to turn out really good stuff. Myer’s takedown of techno-libertarian remains a classic. But I’ll never click his blog again.

                      But the whole Internet SJW thing, there and elsewhere, is to leftism and feminism what astrology is to space science.

                    • I must admit to not following it. But I’m now going to look up the techno-libertarian article.

      • Yes they are fakers because they would be running away at the first sign of a fight. One of them once got very angry that anyone said anything negative about his attempts to get funding for a shelter and threw such a fit he took his ball and went home. Futrelle pointed out that this is what happens when you start a movement to fix something. People will fight you on it and they did it to the DV advocates but you keep pressing on. However the MRA sees that women are able to get funding these days without as much effort and think that it is so unfair since they did not see the long years of having to fight with everyone for every scrap.

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