Yep, and that was the point.
Trudy W. Schuett

I had it once in hard copy, then lent it to a colleague at a men’s rights conference & never saw it again.

Indeed, I have had the experience of lending books and never seeing them again. One hopes they might do some kind of good for their new owners, to include maybe a touch of karmic humility when they remember each time they open them that they are in possession of stolen property….

It wasn’t the point you were making, this “men’s rights” thing, but you did bring it up, so I will comment on it.

I resolved a few years back now, that the answers to men’s loss of status and self-respect DO NOT lie down the road too-well-traveled, of creating yet another “movement.”

It didn’t take long, after my discovering several years ago that such a “movement” congratulated itself for existing allegedly in men’s behalf, to recognize the too-familiar indicators I have seen in every so-called “movement” I ever encountered: the snarky cliquishness, the rote recitation of talking points, the tendency to elevate questionable individuals into cults of personality and hang on their every word, the internecine squabbling and the resulting sub-division into further factions hammering away at one another over minute differences in schools of thought; and of course, meetings, meetings, meetings, events, events, events, conferences, conferences, conferences, where the talking points are recited, the personality cults further enhanced, the schools of thought re-enforced, and everybody walks away from them smugly congratulating themselves over much ado about nothing, having heard their sound-and-fury tales told by idiots which at the end of the day signify nothing.

This is what movement people, of any movement, are satisfied to call “action.”

I am, myself, a lot more interested in men’s lives, than in men’s “rights.” What will a men’s rights movement ever be able to accomplish in real-world terms?

To “raise awareness”? Good for them. So long as one disregards that those whose awareness is raised are only counted in clicks, in likes, shares and views which only add to a meaningless number of adherents to a meaningless atmosphere of snarky cliquishness driven by personality cults, I suppose the raising of awareness might be called something worth doing.

To “influence policy”? Right. The one glaring policy in dire need of influencing at least in the US, is this mafia operating under the Violence Against Women Act, which is essentially organized crime operating behind antique feminist rhetoric which serves well enough only to justify plain old graft and fraud. But again and again I have been told in no uncertain terms by these men’s rights people, that VAWA is just too big and too powerful a target to try and take down, so it gets ignored. It gets referred to, at best, as an excuse for further whining, a rationale for men not to take charge of our own lives and stand up for ourselves, as men and not as some movement. You made that point yourself just now, by suggesting that “laws and policies” are enough to deter men from taking charge, one man at a time, of our own lives and insisting they be lived on our own terms.

So it doesn’t surprise me in the least that your “colleague” stole your book about Lenin. He probably has cited and quoted it endlessly by now, on AVFM and Men’s Rights Subreddits, and no doubt has raised oh-so-much awareness with it, and offered that many more men that many more excuses not to address their own individual circumstances as men do, because after all, Comrade Lenin is really what we are struggling against, not the mundane details of our own lives and any need to be in charge of them, quite irrespective of what Comrades Elam or Farrell or Straughan or Bloomfield might have to say about it all at the next ICMI.

Movement behavior and posturing, is the institutionalization of a license to whine, of a ready excuse to act aggrieved, of an addictive and self-sustaining self-image as victims. And the men’s rights arena (or what I call it, which is “alter-feminism”) is acting just like every other movement in that way, obsessing over building a movement for the movement’s own sake. Its worst fear, every movement’s worst fear, is of real live results, because those would take away the reasons for having a movement.

Just like feminism.

And just like feminism, if this men’s rights circus ever by some accidental happenstance managed to create any actual results, it would make up new grievances to keep itself going. We’d see men holding rallies about “micro-misandry” on college campuses and demanding that “He Fears You” classes be given to freshman girls. We’d see petitions for “the government” (which every movement believes can solve everything if properly agitated into it) to pay for condoms and custody lawyers, and hear cries of “War on Men!” outside the Supreme Court.

Just like feminism.

Men aren’t going to solve their own down-on-the-ground circumstances by acting just like feminists. My point has been all along and will remain, that men will only do that, by re-learning what it is to BE a man.

One man at a time.

Comrade Elam isn’t going to get that done, not for any man.

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