Downlo: desmadres replied to your post: desmadres replied to your link: Oh…
I’m actually a woman of color, so not sure if “do your own homework” was directed to me, or just in general, to white working class men.
I suppose we fundamentally disagree because I do care about white working class men. Some parts of our identities privilege others, and I acknowledge that one aspect about my identity privileges all white working class men even if I am a woman of color from a working class family, that, on top of that, does not identify as straight. By your own standards, I should be all of the way at the bottom of those privileged, except, I am getting an education from an elite institution, which gives me a privilege that they don’t have.
And, we also disagree because I don’t believe in a patriarchy (in the sense that it’s men oppressing women) in the U.S.
And this is why:
“Men do behave badly, do act in sexist ways, do beat and rape women in the home. Feminists interpret this as the enactment of male power. The Marxist reply is not to simply say these are the actions of men shaped by the society they grow up in. That is only one side to the argument. The other is to point out, as Marx did, that “men make their own history”. While humans are the products of society they are also conscious, thinking beings. […] Ideas (such as racism and sexism) propagated by the ruling class are not simply taken up by workers in a straightforward way. They are refracted through working class experience (such as differences in wages, domestic violence, etc) and interpreted in various ways. […]
The idea that men have power over women can do nothing but get in the way. It reinforces the division of sexism. Men are sexist today. But women’s oppression does not equal male power. If we see the fight against sexism as separate from the class struggle, we can easily fall into seeing working class men as an enemy. In reality, they are potential allies. In the seventies when building workers were confident of their union strength the Builders’ Labourers’ Federation (BLF) supported women’s right to work on building sites. Every defence of abortion rights against the Right to Life has received support from large numbers of men. In the mass abortion campaign against Queensland’s Bjelke-Petersen government in 1979-80, men were able to be won to support the struggle, including transport workers at Email, who stopped work to join a picket. In 1986, BLF support for the nurses’ strike in Victoria challenged their sexist ideas about the role of women.
Once we understand that working class men have nothing to gain from women’s oppression, we can see the possibility of breaking them from sexist ideas. Then we can be confident that workers, women and men fighting side by side in solidarity, can begin to change the “existing categories”. There is nothing automatic about changes in consciousness in struggle. But with an understanding of the roots of women’s oppression, socialists can intervene around these issues and relate them to the experience of workers’ struggles.
Women are better placed today to fight for liberation than in any time in history. They are no longer simply housewives. They are half the working class and able to exercise the power of that class alongside male workers. Ultimately, it is the struggle of the working class which can destroy the very social structures which gave rise to women’s oppression in the first place.”
So. I think misandry is bullshit and unproductive for the liberation of both women and men, whether they’re a person of color or white. Upper class women contribute to the oppression of working class women more than white working class men.
Because historically it has been white, affluent men in positions of power, that is still the case (that is, mostly rich white men run many if not most institutions in the U.S.), but even under capitalism, as more people of color get those positions of power, the same oppression will continue.
Racism and sexism exist because capitalism allows them to exist. The ruling class thrives on racism and sexism by dividing and conquering males, females, people of color, people with different abilities, people with different beliefs, the LGBTQ community, etc. And you, by insisting that “white male victimhood” is misplaced, are perpetuating this division among people. You are doing a favor to the ruling class. I would prefer to take these white males as allies to liberate us all from all of our oppressions that manifest themselves in different ways—whether it’s male disposability (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vp8tToFv-bA), attacks on the undocumented, women of color’s lower wages, etc.
It’s not just “their” homework. It’s all of our homework, just like the liberation of women is their homework, too.
A good article on the origins of family as we know it and the start of women’s oppression: http://www.isreview.org/issues/02/engles_family.shtml
I get you, downlo. I get frustrated, too, by people who forget intersectionality, but intersectionality includes class. I am aware that you know of classism, but let’s not discriminate against our white counter parts because they were born into a capitalist society that gives them certain privileges. Men are starting to be vocal about their own oppression because before (and even now), men showing and talking about their weaknesses was looked down upon. I am THRILLED that men are now talking about their own oppression. Yes, people have to continue checking their privileges (including white males), but let’s check our own, too, and let’s not make ourselves the only ‘victims’ because we aren’t. If you want to be truly intersectional, then address ALL forms of oppression, even if means of your own oppressor at times, because yes, they too, can still be oppressed.
Xicana BisExual MArxista
LMBO. I’m not even going to respond because so much of this is just obvious nonsense. But it was too cute not to share. I bolded the parts that I thought were the funniest.