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  1. SubscriberSuzianne
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    25 Jan '17 02:39
    This article can be found online here: http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/1/24/1624448/-David-Brooks-mansplains-the-Women-s-March-and-of-course-gets-it-wrong

    Women are used to men weighing in on issues pertaining to us. Nothing seems to be off limits for discussion. Nothing—not our rights, our bodies, our choices of clothing, how we talk, or even our thoughts. This is not new. In fact, we’ve come to expect it. It often feels like we can never have a conversation about our lived experience without some guy, who thinks he knows better than we do or thinks that he somehow has some magical insight into what its like to be a woman, talking over us.

    And while experience shows that this is a tendency of men across racial and ethnic divides, it seems like a fair amount of white men have perfected talking over women as an art form.

    So in the latest instance of white mansplaining, David Brooks has decided to tell us why the Women’s March won’t bring about change.

    But first: this is an invitation to resist the urge to push back with “not all (white) men” defensiveness here. Clearly, not all men mansplain. Some men actually know how to listen to women. Some are deeply committed to women’s equality. But in a country and world steeped in patriarchy (case in point— the current POTUS or groper-in-chief was elected despite the fact that he has been routinely accused of sexual assault), it would be a miracle if you are a man and you did not receive some messages from society that told you that women aren’t equal to men. And the behavior of talking to women or over them to make your point in a condescending or patronizing way is an offshoot of these messages. So while not all men are mansplainers, it is true that all mansplaining does come from men. Therefore, if you are a man and you know you aren’t a mansplainer, now would be the time to have a serious chat with your brethren.

    Now back to David, because as is usually the case with most mansplainers, he doesn’t actually know what the hell he’s talking about.

    According to Brooks, while the marches were important for uplifting and empowering, they will do little for social change.

    "Sometimes social change happens through grass-roots movements — the civil rights movement. But most of the time change happens through political parties: The New Deal, the Great Society, the Reagan Revolution. Change happens when people run for office, amass coalitions of interest groups, engage in the messy practice of politics."

    Wait—what?

    Change happens mostly through political parties and not movements? If grassroots organizing doesn’t push political parties into action, what does? Marriage equality happened because grassroots activists refused to wait for political parties to catch up and forced their hand. Grassroots activists on the ground in 2014 were the reason that the Justice Department investigated the Ferguson police, only to discover that policing and court practices had a severely disproportionate impact on blacks. It was by confronting Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders that the grassroots Black Lives Matter movement forced them to finally talk about racial justice and allowed us to begin to have some substantive conversations about systemic racism in national politics.

    Frederick Douglass said that power concedes nothing without a demand. Political parties are unlikely to be compelled to work for change until groups of interested people coalesce and make them work for change by organizing, marching, getting signatures, registering voters, contacting local representatives. To refute Brooks’ point, the work being done at the grassroots level actually is the messy practice of politics. And it doesn’t exclude what people do at the voting booth or running for office or anything else.

    Additionally, Brooks says identity politics are too small for this moment and part of the problem.

    "But now progressives seem intent on doubling down on exactly what has doomed them so often. Lilla pointed out that identity politics isolates progressives from the wider country: “The fixation on diversity in our schools and in the press has produced a generation of liberals and progressives narcissistically unaware of conditions outside their self-defined groups, and indifferent to the task of reaching out to Americans in every walk of life."

    Funny how when women, people of color, immigrants, Muslims, and others who are not in the mainstream expand the conversation to include our issues, it gets labeled as “identity politics,” “divisive,” “indifferent to the issues of everyday Americans.” As if we are not everyday Americans and we don’t have the right to work for diversity in the hopes of creating a society that works for all of us. And as if rights are a zero-sum game where there are only enough for some and not everyone.

    Now there is plenty of debate to be had about the march and its effectiveness. A gathering that organizes people under the wide umbrella of “women’s rights” can and often does have the tendency to ignore that certain women, based on their social identities, are more vulnerable than others. Many women, rightfully so, felt this march didn’t represent them or their needs. Some chose not to participate. Some chose to participate while knowing that the march would not meet their needs, but thought it was a good opportunity to unify around larger issues. Either way, this is not about the one day of marches so much as what they represent: the ongoing struggle to bring issues like equal pay, access to health care, reproductive rights, racial justice, equality for the LGBTQIA community, and immigrant justice to the forefront of our national discourse. Which is gravely important, now more than ever.

    Lastly, Brooks offers this tone deaf food for thought.

    "The central challenge today is not how to celebrate difference. The central threat is not the patriarchy. The central challenge is to rebind a functioning polity and to modernize a binding American idea."

    There goes the mansplaining once again, telling women that patriarchy is not the problem. In case it isn’t crystal clear, patriarchy is a huge problem. Patriarchy is the reason that there is a wage gap. Patriarchy is the reason this country has an unacknowledged problem with rape culture. Patriarchy and racism intersect. Patriarchy and acceptance of comments like this:

    "In an interview with New York Magazine ('who keeps letting this guy speak to the press?' asked precisely no one), Trump uttered this charming phrase about women: 'You have to treat 'em like s----'."

    and this:

    "You know who's one of the great beauties of the world, according to everybody? And I helped create her. Ivanka. My daughter, Ivanka. She's 6 feet tall, she's got the best body. She made a lot money as a model—a tremendous amount."

    and of course this little gem right here:

    "I'm automatically attracted to beautiful [women]—I just start kissing them. It's like a magnet. Just kiss. I don't even wait. And when you're a star they let you do it. You can do anything ... Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything."

    are why Donald Trump was elected.

    So if we are going to rebind a functioning polity and modernize a binding American idea (and its worth asking just whose idea gets considered anyway), we have to learn to multitask because we can’t do that without acknowledging patriarchy, diversity, and difference.

    And we won’t be able to do it if men like Brooks don’t bother listening to women—and stop mansplaining.

    -- Kelly Macias, writing for DailyKos.com


    David Brooks' original article can be found online here: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/24/opinion/after-the-womens-march.html?ribbon-ad-idx=4&rref=opinion&module=Ribbon&version=context&region=Header&action=click&contentCollection=Opinion&pgtype=article
  2. Zugzwang
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    25 Jan '17 03:1010 edits
    Some white Americans here have been acting as though 'white feminism' were a label
    that I fabricated rather than an established term describing a reality of American feminism.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_feminism

    I know you like to dilute the feminist message with racial issues."
    --Suzianne (23 January 2017, to Duchess64)

    An African American woman disagrees here with Suzianne about the Women's March.
    Will Suzianne also attack Vanessa Willoughby for 'diluting the feminist message with racial issues'?

    http://www.teenvogue.com/story/signs-at-the-womens-march-on-washington-called-out-white-feminism

    "Signs at the Women's March on Washington Called Out White Feminism:
    White women elected Donald Trump."
    --Vanessa Willoughby (an African American woman)

    "It's not difficult to understand why some marginalized women — specifically black
    women — would feel that the Women's March was exclusive, rather than inclusive.
    Some of the same white women who were so adamantly dedicated to the Women’s
    March were nowhere to be found when it came to the Black Lives Matter movement.

    According to Vox, 53% of white women voted for Donald Trump. Despite allegations of
    sexual assault, documented misogyny, and sexism, over half of white women voters in
    America cast their vote for the President-elect. On the contrary, only 7% of black women
    voted for him, according to CNN's exit poll. CNN also reported that 25% of Latino women
    voted for Trump.

    Prior to the leaking of the Access Hollywood tapes featuring Billy Bush, Trump made
    numerous, racist comments about about immigrants, black people, Mexicans, and
    Muslims. Yet it wasn’t these examples of bigotry that incited a massive display of public
    protest.

    Some of the signs at the Women's March served as a reminder to white women of how racism influenced the election.
    [photo of a sign with 'White Women Elected Trump']
    Some of the protestors that chose to confront white feminism were not met with gratitude."

    "White supremacy and white feminism are linked in the sense that both need the institution of whiteness to survive.
    For the white patriarchy, it’s easier to consider that (white) women’s rights are human rights
    than believe that black people’s rights are human rights."
    --Vanessa Willoughby

    I wish that Vanessa Willoughby would refer more inclusively to 'non-white' than only to 'black'.

    "For some black and brown women, the feminist movement is void of representation.
    As a black woman, I do not support any kind of feminism that feeds on selective
    suffering, feminism that functions on sanctioned prejudice to ensure the dominance of
    the status quo. The Women's March certainly calls attention to our culture of sexism and
    misogyny, but for black and brown women, we have already been painfully aware of this
    truth. Liberation for black and brown women is too often regarded as an afterthought, if
    thought of at all."
    --Vanessa Willoughby

    Sadly, Vanessa Willoughby overlooks the reality that not only 'black and brown women'
    are afflicted by racism and have reasons to distrust 'white feminism'. But Asian women
    rarely are considered important enough to be worthy of attention (other than as narrow
    stereotypes designed to appeal to and be used by white men) in the mainstream US media.
    Asian-Americans typically face marginalization at best in American civil rights organizations.

    It's been said that the best way, if not the only way, for an Asian woman to fight racism,
    is to marry a powerful white man to protect her. Elaine Chao (the daughter of a wealthy
    Chinese family) is a capable woman, but she never would have been nominated for the
    US Cabinet if she were not--more importantly, the wife of powerful Senator Mitch McConnell.

    Suzianne, Phranny, and the other white Americans here seem willfully blind to the racism in American feminism.
    But many diverse people (even including some white Americans) know that the racism
    in American 'white feminism' may deter non-white women from lending their support.
    I could cite many critiques from diverse women of American 'white feminism'.

    I would rather march alongside Vanessa Willoughby than alongside Suzianne.
    We may be moving in a similar general direction, but we shall be carrying different signs.
  3. Joined
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    25 Jan '17 03:212 edits
    What sexism on display

    Women's March....

    Mansplaining

    Sexist, sexist sexist

    Throw in D's crap and you get...

    Racism, racism racism
  4. Behind the scenes
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    25 Jan '17 03:44
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    This article can be found online here: http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/1/24/1624448/-David-Brooks-mansplains-the-Women-s-March-and-of-course-gets-it-wrong

    Women are used to men weighing in on issues pertaining to us. Nothing seems to be off limits for discussion. Nothing—not our rights, our bodies, our choices of clothing, how we talk, or even our t ...[text shortened]... odule=Ribbon&version=context&region=Header&action=click&contentCollection=Opinion&pgtype=article
    Women are used to men weighing in on issues pertaining to us. Nothing seems to be off limits for discussion. Nothing—not our rights, our bodies, our choices of clothing, how we talk, or even our thoughts.



    This is true, but I'm sure it has not escaped your attention that many women prefer it this way.
  5. Zugzwang
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    25 Jan '17 03:45
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    This article can be found online here: http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/1/24/1624448/-David-Brooks-mansplains-the-Women-s-March-and-of-course-gets-it-wrong

    Women are used to men weighing in on issues pertaining to us. Nothing seems to be off limits for discussion. Nothing—not our rights, our bodies, our choices of clothing, how we talk, or even our t ...[text shortened]... odule=Ribbon&version=context&region=Header&action=click&contentCollection=Opinion&pgtype=article
    In an earlier post. Suzianne wrote that she believed that 'gender trumps race'.

    Sexism is a problem for all women. Racism, whether that comes from the patriarchy
    or from 'white feminism', is also a problem for non-white women. White women have
    no right to decide which problem is more important for non-white women.
  6. Standard memberchaney3
    Bring it on.......
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    25 Jan '17 03:53
    Women are never short of words or opinions on what they think about men, also known as 'womensplaining'.

    It goes both ways.
  7. SubscriberSuzianne
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    25 Jan '17 04:40
    Originally posted by Eladar
    What sexism on display

    Women's March....

    Mansplaining

    Sexist, sexist sexist

    Throw in D's crap and you get...

    Racism, racism racism
    People are right, you ARE a moron.
  8. SubscriberSuzianne
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    25 Jan '17 04:41
    Originally posted by mchill
    Women are used to men weighing in on issues pertaining to us. Nothing seems to be off limits for discussion. Nothing—not our rights, our bodies, our choices of clothing, how we talk, or even our thoughts.



    This is true, but I'm sure it has not escaped your attention that many women prefer it this way.
    Most do not.
  9. SubscriberSuzianne
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    25 Jan '17 04:421 edit
    Originally posted by chaney3
    Women are never short of words or opinions on what they think about men, also known as 'womensplaining'.

    It goes both ways.
    No it doesn't.

    Zero equivalence.
  10. Joined
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    25 Jan '17 10:21
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    This article can be found online here: http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/1/24/1624448/-David-Brooks-mansplains-the-Women-s-March-and-of-course-gets-it-wrong

    Women are used to men weighing in on issues pertaining to us. Nothing seems to be off limits for discussion. Nothing—not our rights, our bodies, our choices of clothing, how we talk, or even our t ...[text shortened]... odule=Ribbon&version=context&region=Header&action=click&contentCollection=Opinion&pgtype=article
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=8M7KGe2UnmE

    I invite you to watch this video.

    I don't regard this as some kind of credo, but I think it covers many issues reasonably accurately.
  11. Cape Town
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    25 Jan '17 10:46
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    No it doesn't.

    Zero equivalence.
    Not equivalence maybe, but it is a fact that women misread men just as much as men misread women. I actually think women typically believe themselves to be better at understanding men, when they are not.
  12. SubscriberSuzianne
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    25 Jan '17 23:59
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Not equivalence maybe, but it is a fact that women misread men just as much as men misread women. I actually think women typically believe themselves to be better at understanding men, when they are not.
    The difference lies in the fact that women generally don't assume they are qualified to tell men what to think about men's issues.
  13. Account suspended
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    26 Jan '17 00:30
    You need to get better icons. Madonna?? Lady Gaga?? Miley Cyrus,?? really? I mean really?

    Take a look at Eleanor Roosevelt, here she is below, intelligent, articulate, respectful and utterly adorable and contrast that with the motley crew above.

    YouTube
  14. Unknown Territories
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    26 Jan '17 01:00
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    People are right, you ARE a moron.
    Psst, sweetie?
    Those voices in your head?
    They're not actually people.
  15. Unknown Territories
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    26 Jan '17 01:01
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    The difference lies in the fact that women generally don't assume they are qualified to tell men what to think about men's issues.
    And yet you do.
    On the freaking daily.
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