Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Men's Rights For Beginners

Another little gem found over on Tumblr. One of my favourite commentators over there, One Man's View, was posed the question tell me more about MRA. i don’t know shit about it. And he responded:

Ok.  When I see these I can’t always tell if people are sincere, but after looking over your blog, you seem to be. So I’ll try to outline it it for you.

MRA is Men’s Rights Activist. Now as far as that is a thing, it’s typically a person who is part of the Men’s Rights Movement.  I’m going to assume your real interest is in the Men’s Rights Movement rather than MRAs themselves.

The MRM is a rights movement focused on areas where men are disadvantaged, attempting to even out things.  To briefly detail a few things the MRM advocates:
  1. Fair representation in family courts.  Courts in the US (I can’t speak for the UK and other countries) currently default to awarding primary custody of a child to the mother, the MRM would like that to be changed to shared custody by default.
  2. Reproductive Rights.  In first world nations men do not have Reproductive Rights.  There is a lot of misunderstanding of this point, as many assume(wrongly) this means the MRAs think men should have a say in abortion. to be clear, THEY DO NOT WANT A SAY IN ABORTION. Reproductive rights for men actually has three subcategories. The first being the right to know he has reproduced, protection from forced reproduction, and the right to legal paternal surrender. As it stands right now, no one in the course of a pregnancy or a child’s entire life, is anyone required to inform the father that he has a child.  Men can(and have been) forced to reproduce via rape, fraud, and trickery.  They were subsequently held responsible for the acts they were the victims of.  Legal paternal surrender is the right to choose not to be a parent or responsible for a child, and the surrender that burden to the state.  Women already have all of these protections.
  3. Intactivism- This is it’s own movement that falls under the purview of men’s rights. Basically the is the fight against he accepted practice of male genital mutilation, a.k.a. circumcision, and combating stereotypes associated with the practice. a brief google search can find more information on this if interested.
  4. Awareness campaigns of men’s health issues.  Things like prostate cancer, testicular cancer.  The fact that the same strains of HPV that have a high risk of causing cervical cancer, have an equally high risk of cause thyroid cancer, the HPV vaccine would protect men from this, but there is no campaign pushing men to be aware of these issues, or encouraging them to get vaccinated.
  5. Fighting Predominant Aggressor Laws: This is a set of laws that defaults the male in any case of intimate partner violence to be the aggressor. I have a write up on this already. Basically these laws dictate that no matter what has happened, a female is justified it attacking her partner preemptively in self defense, because he has the potential to harm, even if he never has.
  6. Opening shelters for battered men: this is a twofold issue, first is getting society understand that men being battered by their partners is a real issue, and then convincing them we need shelters for men as well.  You can find more statistics about IPV here. SAVE is a gender neutral resource for intimate partner violence.
Now for the sticky part:  MRAs fighting against Feminists. This happens, a lot.  They are fighting disinformation, male victim erasure, and blatant libel and slander.  They aren’t fighting to take away rights from women, they aren’t fighting to keep oppressive systems in place. Matter of fact, if feminism left MRAs alone, and ended a couple of damaging campaigns, MRAs wouldn’t even talk about feminism.

The campaigns being things like “Don’t be that guy”, “Men can stop rape”, and “Teach men not to rape”  All of these campaigns, which are feminist led and maintained, paint rape as something only men do, only happens to women, and that all men are rapists by default.  MRAs fight this, feminists perpetuate it.

Feminists also dismiss all of the above, as inconsequential, and irrelevant in light of problems women face, and that anyone fighting for these things is scum, less than human, worthy of scorn, and needs to die.

Oh, and just to counter a rampant claim… MRAs don’t blame feminism for all these issues. Just the ones (like number 5 above) that can be traced directly to feminism.

Feel free to ask me to elaborate on any of these things.

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