Platonic friendship is totally possible

The Friend Zone
I was lying in bed reading my eink tablet while listening to a podcast. One of my saved blogs to read was from doctor nerdlove – Why men & women can never be just friends is bullshit.

I swear I was pretty pissed off (like Dr Nerdlove) reading about how the state of platonic friendship was a lie and how men will always want it to be more. Heck Hans Fiene who wrote the original piece Dr Nerdlove was reply to; goes on to justify everything as not only being biological but bad for society. Seriously WTF!

Let’s review the logic on display here. Male relationships are inherently transactional. Men barter time for friendship with other men. Men cannot be friends with women because they need to fuck her. Therefore, by not dating or fucking them, women are cheating men by not giving them the goods that men have been paying for. 

In Fiene’s world, a woman not putting out for her male friends is bad enough. But there’s a worse crime being committed: because he’s stuck in this quagmire, he’s not fucking other people. And to be sure: that’s not his fault. He’s just too stupid to overrule his boner.

No. For real. That’s Fiene’s argument.

Repeat the “We’re just friends” mantra a thousand times. It won’t rewire the circuits of the male mind. All it will accomplish is deluding you into thinking he’s content to stay in the Friend Zone quicksand and deluding him into thinking he can break out of it by sinking even deeper.

But let’s get back to the premise. Men are trapped in the Friend Zone because being told that they’re just friends isn’t enough to make them realize that she will never sleep with him. Being friends is the trap that women, bless their hearts, can’t help but ensnare men into because Lord love ’em those boners are just SO POWERFUL. It’s only because women don’t frame the rejection in just the right way  – as is incumbent on them – to free men from their snares.

Of course its not just Hans crazy ideological view, I see it everywhere. Even my friends talk about the friendzone like I’ve been put in it like a naughty child. Most of the time its for the best of both people and friends is not lower on some imaginationary ladder. Its also not to help me ascend the status hierarchy!

My biggest problem is people treat love as binary. You are either in love or not/you are in or out. If you have been paying attention you will know love is much richer than this, it also doesn’t count for evolution, society and cultural changes.

Ruth Libby quote from Hackers film 1995
God gave men brains larger than dogs so they wouldn’t hump women’s legs at cocktail parties – Ruth Libby ~ hackers 1995

As a male feminist who isn’t a slave to his dick and can engage his brain, I find the whole discussion hateful of women and wholly offensive to both sexes. Men and Women can be good friends full stop, if one chooses to take it one step further or backwards, thats just relationships (sometimes unequal).

Typifying people (male & female) is just bollox and it needs to end here!

Just checking its 2017, right?

Day 18/30: Shoes

This certainly fits under John Oliver’s “how is this still a thing?” On last week tonight

I can’t quite remember who first pointed me at the UK petition; but glad they did because I read the petition, was taken a back and signed it straight away.

Make it illegal for a company to require women to wear high heels at work

It’s still legal in the UK for a company to require female members of staff to wear high heels at work against their will. Dress code laws should be changed so that women have the option to wear flat formal shoes at work, if they wish. Current formal work dress codes are out-dated and sexist.

Yesterday I got a email telling me 152,420 people signed the petition, which is great as 100,000 was needed to get it debated.

Parliament is going to debate the petition you signed – “Make it illegal for a company to require women to wear high heels at work”.

The debate is scheduled for 6 March 2017.

Once the debate has happened, we’ll email you a video and transcript.

Look forward to hearing the outcome on this throw back to the past.

Women Are Sexual Predators too

The apparently benevolent hangover of sexist attitudes does women no favours. If women are to own their own sexuality, they must also own their potential to be sexual predators with all that this implies.

From the Festival of Dangerous Ideas: Alissa Nutting’s Women Are Sexual Predators. Its a great talk and Alissa really outlines the appalling double standards. Within the talk there are parts which further my thoughts about why I’m a feminist. Equality extends both ways.Its a complex equality…

Got to say the festival of dangerous ideas looks really good, will have to look out for it this year.

Why shes not a feminist

I have already posted about being a feminist and dating feminist. Interestingly Rosie posted how to find yourself a feminist partner which hopefully we will talk about on lovegrumps soon.

Recently I have butted head with different women over feminism. I don’t know what it is but so many women really hate the term and will never consider themselves feminist.

One such person is Girl Geek Upnorth, who wrote her feelings about why she doesn’t identify as a feminist. So I will reply…

  • I do not need to identify myself as a feminist to believe in equal rights and opportunities. I live in a world where I am free to make this choice, it is my right to do so, even if you don’t agree with it.

I agree, and I support her rights to make the choice not to identify as a feminist. Its ultimately up her, I just suggested she might want to consider it.

  • I do not believe that men and women are equal. I believe we should have equal rights and opportunities, but I celebrate our differences, and I can accept that these difference may lead to a divide in political, economical, cultural and social representations. This does not necessarily mean that equal rights and opportunities were not given.

Its all about equal rights and equal opportunities. Everybody is unique and different, I do celebrate this too. But they should have equal rights and opportunities.

So I think were saying the same thing pretty much, although she doesn’t use the label. However when it comes to the movement against and women against feminism, I’m less certain we agree.

It is my opinion, that in more recent times, feminism has been tainted. Something must be causing these women to feel like feminism is trying to make them feel like a victim, claim oppression, or be ashamed of wanting to be a stay at home mum instead of lawyer or doctor. These feelings don’t come from no where, and whether or not feminism represents these ideas or not, it does not make the opinions of these women any less valid. Maybe in their cases they don’t need feminism anymore because for them, the feminist movement has done its job, but I think it’s a damn shame that such an amazing movement has become so misunderstood and warped by today’s society.

I feel people are people and in groups, there will always be parasites. Or in this case people who claim to be feminist who don’t respect other peoples right to make decisions for themselves. For example when Jody wrote about her breast augmentation in the Guardian. The hateful comments from radical, self righteous, hypocritical, or even judgmental feminists was shocking.

I will admit I am finding more smart women who subscribe to the values of feminism but refuse to be called one. And its their right. I feel the word is in transition of being reclaimed, maybe in many years it won’t be a taboo to be called a feminist…. maybe?

Update… Andy Powell added his thoughts.

He asks the question about FEMINIST verses feminist. Or I you could say big F vs small f feminist. I did find the language politics highlighted by Tom Scott very interesting too. Although I can’t get behind Equalist.

…because of the attitudes of the FEMINISTS I find it difficult to claim I’m a feminist, so Im just going to go on record as saying I’m an Equalist.

Equalist for me is like when somebody says I’m  African American. I have been called it before while in America, to which I had to say I prefer Black thank you . I understand and respect why some people want to use that term but it feels like a half way house, and for what?

Feminist stirs the pot and conjures up thoughts in the people who hear it. Same as Black, same as Gay, same as Geek…

I guess at the end of the day as long as the values are equivalent it doesn’t matter what you use. Now thats something I can get respect.

BBC Merseyside Upfront feminism debate, to be continued…

Its 2014 and one of the fun things I’ve been doing in 2013 is joining Nguana’s radio show Upfront, on BBC Merseyside. Partner in crime Jody, keeps the whole thing turning into a Ian vs Nguana and friends verbal wipping. Trust me it would turn that way…

This time the debate was “has femisim gone crazy?” Not exactly what it was planned to be but go with it…

As I said in the post previously…

I have already declared myself a feminist in the blog post my crisis with masculinity and how feminism set me free. I originally was expecting lots more push back than I actually got but not being far from a good debate.

So it went really well, the debate was more about common decency to not just women but all humans. We did slowly get into more feminist topics but we ran out of time before we could get going. It was clear that a part 2 is needed. Hopefully some of the other guests will be on too, so they can add to the debate.

You can listen to the whole show for another 6 days on BBC iPlayer on Demand (about 90mins in for 25mins). Otherwise and for the international readers/listeners you can listen to a clipped version I created for archive purposes without the music.

Listen to the debate on Feminism and dating

I have already declared myself a feminist in the blog post my crisis with masculinity and how feminism set me free. I originally was expecting lots more push back than I actually got but not being far from a good debate I thought I’d let you all know that this Sunday on BBC Merseyside, I’ll be on talking about feminism in the context of online dating.

Of course it would be simply weird if it was just me and host Nguana debating. So we’ll be joined by my lovely partner in dating crime, Jody. Theres also other guests to going to join us, but expect fireworks and outrageous debate on a Sunday night.

You can tune in live by listening to the live stream from between 9pm and 10pm on Sunday. Not sure if Nguana is taking phone-ins but you can try calling in if we upset you in some way. Of course you can listen on-demand via BBC iPlayer later for up to 7 days. I’ll try and make a archive copy without the music again for those living out side the UK.

If you want to hear the fun we have on air, listen to one of these other shows…

The twisted route down the rabbit hole

Blue pill or the red pill

Herb pointed me to a piece about Redditredpill.

The man who uses the Internet handle “Redditredpill” is having difficulty understanding women after going to a nightclub with some friends. As he tells it, “girls threw themselves at us for a sip of our vodka, to sit with us, to feel wanted.” These girls had “no intent on actually getting with [him]”:

Imagine the reverse. I tried it. A table of girls, I went over to the girls on other side of club, and said ‘Hi, can I get a sip of your champagne? Can I join you?’

What was the response? ‘F— off, go away, who are you, why should we let you sit with us?’

Said exactly the same to the [women] that came up to us […] So a group of single girls on a table allowed some [women] to sit with them, rather then an attractive male, who they didn’t know, [who] actually had a table himself […]

Point is, they tried […] and failed. And I tried to go to a group of girls and that failed too, as they thought they were superior.

This may sound like the instigatory words of someone looking for a fight, sarcasm gone too far at best. But Redditredpill shared his story in earnest with a very specific community that empathizes with his perspective.

It’s more than a perspective, in fact: It’s a philosophy.

The basis of this philosophy, which underpins almost all conversations in his community, is that females get away with things by virtue of being female.

And there is a community of men who really buy in to the ideaology, that men have had it harder that women.

Yes the same women who couldn’t vote in the last 50 years for example, yes those women.

The Red Pill is a collection of ideas encompassed by what its subscribers refer to as the “manosphere,” a number of loosely-associated blogs that focus on masculinity and personal philosophy for men. At the surface level there’s nothing terribly contentious about this, but if you click around one or two layers deeper, you’ll find plenty of examples why chatter from this gallery regularly turns heads. Like this:

“You are hating women because you have the wrong expectations for them. Don’t hate someone for something they CANNOT be. Women are, by nature, manipulative, attention-seeking, inconsistent, emotional, and hypergamous. Accept this truth. Once you do, you can game women for what they are … not what you want them to be.”

The community’s name is a tip of the hat to the truth-seeking attitude in The Matrix – Keanu Reeves pops a red pill to unplug his mind from a simulated world, freeing him to explore genuine reality.

For Red Pillers, genuine reality goes something like this: Female oppression is a myth and men are the ones holding the short end of the stick. That said, men and women are inherently different due to evolution, so each gender should carry out its designated role in society. For example, females should raise children at home and men should work and have sex with women.

Like all ideologies, there are those who stand on the sidelines and those who buy into it hook line sinker. As the blog post points out, most are just interested in getting one up on women in “the game” department.

This all really troubles me because what the red pill community have done is reduced the whole of female kind down to one stereotype. Maybe there mothers were not as kind and caring as my own but surely someone along there time on this earth was, and shock horror they were female! Its far too easy and convenient to just remember the bad experiences.

If you change women/female for black you get a different take on the whole debate.

You are hating blacks because you have the wrong expectations for them. Don’t hate someone for something they CANNOT be. Blacks are, by nature, manipulative, attention-seeking, inconsistent, emotional, and hypergamous. Accept this truth. Once you do, you can game blacks for what they are … not what you want them to be.

Ok it doesn’t quite work, but you can see it working with a few tweaks?

And I’m sure there are communities somewhere online who believe similar stuff about blacks and many other races (most noticeable are the holocaust deniers). Its far too easy to blog about how the whole community are wrong, misguided, dangerous, blah blah.

What I wonder is about the self-help nature of the community. Simon already mentioned years ago how the game is really self-help for men. Self help in the context of women?

I don’t see this as a problem, IF you don’t then turn against the thing your maybe working towards?

The problem is self confidence, fear of rejection and other deep rooted things. This raises the never-ending question of nature-versus-nurture, or genes versus environment I guess. But to be honest I wonder if most of this is a crisis of masculinity? Instead of embracing, they reject and hate because its easier to hate than embrace. Once the hate starts, everything re-enforces this (or at least it seems that way).

These guys shouldn’t be hated rather shown female kind is as wildly diverse as male kind or any ecosystem. There will be some bad eggs but you shouldn’t write off that kind…

We are all different and thats what makes us human. Embrace…