I found myself some time ago under social circumstances in a group that included an angry radical feminist, which is to say a radical feminist. Out of nowhere that I remember, she announced, “Men are sexist pigs.” Such assertions are par for the species.
It was not easy to know how to respond. She was clearly attacking. You don’t insult a group some of whose members are present unless you mean to offend. While I may have doubts about, say, the legitimacy of psychotherapy, I do not say while dining with a practitioner, “Therapists are swinish frauds.” While “sexist” might be regarded with sufficient straining as a political category, “pig” is a schoolyard insult. The comment was simply ill-bred. So are feminists.
I could have responded, “Women are useless bitches.” The problem is that I don’t think that women are either useless or bitches. A few are, yes. A few men are sexist pigs, and I don’t like them either. True, I don’t care for some of the attitudes that seem to characterize a lot of American women. This is far thinking that women are pigs or bitches.
Why do feminists go out of their way to be disagreeable? Much of human behavior is templated. Certain kinds of personality do certain things. They can’t help it. Common templates are the True Believer, the Hater, and the Victim. The salient point is that the template comes first, the content second and sometimes almost as an afterthought. They are like empty forms waiting to be filled in.
The True Believer needs to believe in something truly and, really, doesn’t much care what: Christianity, evolution, Islam, Marxism or market forces. He needs the certitude. He doesn’t need to hate anyone, however. For example, evolutionists do not.
The Hater does need to hate something. Sometimes the choice is obvious, as when a black in the slums comes to hate Whitey. Sometimes the choice is less explicable, as when a man who has suffered no direct or clear damage at the hands of Jews becomes virulently anti-Semitic. A defining characteristic of the Hater is that maintaining the grounds of his (or, most assuredly, her) hatred is far more important than truth, reason, or kindness. The hatred is an end in itself, an identity, the core of his (or her) being. All thought and balance vanish in the insistence on painting the hated in as bad a light as possible.
The Victim believes that all of his miseries and failures are the fault of others. Victims are often Haters as well. Feminists combine the two.
The need to hate is different from the possession of an opinion. A reasonable person might believe, for example, that Jews exert too much influence over American foreign policy and various domestic policies, but also grant without demur that Jews had contributed much to the economy, the sciences, and the arts. The details could be debated, but the position is not that of a Hater. The Hater in anti-Semitic form cannot go for ten minutes in private conversation without adverting with hostility to various crimes and conspiracies which he attributes to Jews, and can never concede that Jews every, however inadvertently, have done anything good. He is obsessive about it.
So are feminists.
A feminist sees men exactly as anti-Semites see Jews. This is because she is an anti-Semite—the same template, the same bottle but with different wine. She has a more hair-trigger anger (“Men are sexist pigs”) because she can get away with it, a more bellicose incivility for the same reason, but the same (watch, and see whether I am right) lack of humor, obsessiveness, and the characteristic basing of her personality on the hatred.
Haters seldom know much about those they hate. It doesn’t matter to them, and just gets in the way. As anti-Semites are clueless about Jews, so feminists are clueless about men. Anti-Semites know that Jews rub their hands and say “heheheh” and want to destroy Western civilization. Feminists know that men don’t have feelings and want to oppress women, and hurt them, and degrade them. Yet they (both) think they know the hated enemy. They both pour forth half-truths, thudding clichés, carefully selected facts, and abject foolishness, and both are blankly unable to see the other side’s point of view or to concede it any virtue at all.
I have known only a few such feminists well, though I have read many. They have struck me, without exception that comes to mind, as fitting a peculiar mold: bright, very hostile and combative, but physically timid and pampered, hothouse flowers really, usually from fairly moneyed families and often Ivy or semi-Ivy schools. Often they have done little outside of feminism and would be helpless out of an urban setting. They have no idea how anything around them works—what a cam lobe is, how a refrigerator makes things cold, or how a file-allocation table might be arranged. Their degrees run to ideologizable pseudosubjects such as sociology, psychology, or Women’s Studies. They seem isolated from most of life.
None of this is characteristic of women in general. I used to belong to a group called Capitol Divers, of Washington, DC. About a third of the members I’ll guess were women. We dove the deep wrecks off North Carolina, chartered the Belize Aggressor for a week near Central America, and so on. It wasn’t lightweight diving. Sometimes we were in the open Atlantic in seas a lot higher than recommended, or ninety feet down at night on a wreck or, I remember, at 135 in the Blue Hole of Belize. (Cap Divers was a bit of a cowboy outfit.)
The women were fine divers, treated as equals by the men because they in fact were equals. Nobody thought about it. In a lot of aggregate time with them over the years, I never heard a single, “Men are sexist pigs.” The pattern is one that I’ve noticed anecdotally but widely. Women who are good at things that men respect are respected by men, and they tend to like men because they have things in common. They are not templated neurotics. Feminists are.
If you do not believe that haters are all the same people, wrestling with internal demons rather than trying to solve real problems, make a point of talking to them or, failing that, reading them. Remember though that a hater is not someone who recognizes an unpleasant truth about a particular group. A woman who says that men are much more given to violence is stating an obvious fact. So is a white who recognizes that low academic achievement among blacks is a problem. Neither is a hater.
No. You want the ones with the grinding all-encompassing hostility. “The kikes are destroying America.” “The niggers are destroying America.” “Men are sexist pigs.” These people are fascinating. Talk to them. Care is needed, particularly with feminists, to keep them from exploding before you can conduct an examination. But do it. Note that many are well educated. They can be polished. But the fundamental difference between a radical feminist and a Jew baiter is…is….
Wait. I’m thinking.