October 6, 2015
I’m learning that internet trolls hate all things feminine or gay (shocker, I know). In the wake of recent blog posts on Donald Trump, fraternities, and last week’s Roseburg shooting, commenters have called me a “pussy” and a “fag” and have accused me of wearing panties and (my favorite new putdown) sitting down to pee.
This is nothing new. If you think about how boys bully other boys, it’s typically some attempt to feminize them. They’ll accuse them of being gay or, worse, being a female, or even worse, being a vagina! I know this first hand because when I was a teenager my name was transformed from “Blazak” to “Gayzak.” I remember one bully named Ted who stopped me on my way home and announced, “Gayzak, you’re a pussy.” Being a little too quick, I responded, “Well, I guess you are what you eat, dick.” Ted then punched me in the face, not for being homophobic but for meeting his feminization with a better one. (I’ve mentioned this story before in a blogpost about vaginas but I should point out that at our 20 year high school reunion, a few days after 9/11, a very emotional Ted apologized. It meant more than he knew.)
Now I regularly get called “Ballsack” by “clever” trolls who are stuck in the fourth grade and can’t mount an actual critique of my positions. But it all fits into the larger paradigm that’s behind the toxic masculinity that drives schoolyard bullies and school shooters and I would guess explains a lot of what drives America’s favorite bully, Donald Trump. It was clearly a factor in Roseburg. The shooter was mad at the world because he was a still a virgin. If you are a 26-year-old virgin, you probably shouldn’t be angry at anybody but yourself. This theme parallels last year’s mass shooting in Isla Vista, California (six killed, fourteen injured). Don’t die like a boy, go out “like a man.”
The root behind all of this is the devaluation of the feminine, the hallmark of all patriarchal societies. Females are less than fully human. While this predates the demotion of Eve from the Mother of Humanity to the Original Sinner (that BITCH!) by ancient Hebrew priests, it is not universal. Despite the mythology of the essential nature of male dominance, not all cultures are patriarchal and cultures get less patriarchal the farther you go back in time. Cavemen did not rule cavewomen. Hunting and gathering societies were mostly gathering and evidence relays that men and women shared in both tasks.
There is a lot to be said about patriarchy but here are two quick ways that men can keep power over the women who gave them life.
1. Create a god in your image. For most of our human history, men and women have bowed down to goddesses, the source of life. But early nomadic tribes and their warrior gods invaded goddess cultures, like Crete and Anatolia. Over thousands of years, goddesses were replaced with gods and then just one male God. And as Mary Daly said in 1973’s Beyond God the Father, “If God is man, then man is God.”
I’m going to write more about this important point later, just know if you worship a god who has a penis instead of a vagina, you are part of patriarchy. Also, is your god circumcised and if so, who did it and where is God’s foreskin now? (Sorry, I wonder about these things.)
2. Devalue all things associated with females, whether it’s ovaries or reproductive rights. Women are “girls” and men who you want to rank over are “ladies.” If a guy is being a pain, call him a little bitch (or the weirdly homoerotic “my bitch”) and accuse him of being on the rag. Call him anything to do with feminine anatomy; fallopian face, labial loser and the ever useful “pussy.” (The hatred of vaginas by these guys really makes you wonder.)
There is a right-winger who posts a lot of crap on my Facebook page. This is a guy who thinks Russian dictator Vladmir Putin is a bad ass and Syrian mass murderer Bashar Al-Assad is a hero. When I called him out on his sexist language he posted an image of a woman in t-shirt that said, “Obama is a pussy.” My response was, “You must really hate pussy.” He seemed confused.
This is the weird conflicted psyche of the misogynist. In devaluing the feminine you end up looking kinda, well, gay. You think women and “pussies” suck. So what DO you like? Men and cocks? (Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Holla!) I’m quite fond of the vagina and find it infinitely fascinating, so if you call me a pussy, I will take it as a great compliment. And when I think of the awesome gay people I know and what they have to go through because of asshole bigots, well, I couldn’t think of a better thing to be called. When I hear, “That’s so gay,” I translate into “Fabulous!!”
But of course, that’s not what the He-Man Woman Haters mean. If you Google “Obama is a pussy,” you also find plenty of images of Obama as a female. That’s the put-down. Female, like your mother/wife/daughter, is the worst thing you can be. Patriarchy makes these boys and men so sexually confused, no wonder so many of them are deathly afraid of cunnilingus. According to the male God bibles, that’s nothing but a dirty devil hole. “She was bleeding from her whatever!”
One more story. Before my neighborhood got the shit gentrified out of it, there was a brothel on my block. A pimp named Freddie hung out there and the license plate on his Caddy just read “TNB.” One day I asked, “Hey Freddie, what does TNB stand for.” He answered, “That’s my street name, Trust No Bitch.” Without thinking of the time Ted punched me in the face, I replied, “Oh, does that include your mother?” That was the day I learned you don’t talk feminism with a pimp.
How anyone with a daughter can hate the feminine so much is beyond me. You have to feel sorry for any woman who is married to a guy who hates pussy and tells other men they are going to be his bitch. Don’t these men know they came into the world through a vagina? (Shout out to my C-Section peeps!) What happened to them that they loathe females so much? Oh, that’s right, they grew up in a patriarchal culture. Eve, that nasty-ass skank biotch.
I have a baby daughter. Besides the fact that keeping her vagina healthy is an important agenda item, I’ve also learned to not wake her when she is blissfully sleeping. Since the bathroom is next to the nursery, one way to achieve this is to pee sitting down. (Trust me on this one.) When you pee sitting down, you can check your email or read a few paragraphs in the latest issue of Men’s Health. It’s kind of a cool thing. (Sitting down is also handy if you are drunk, hungover, really tired, or drunk.) But I also eat quiche, watch Ellen Degeneres, sometimes I wear pink and always call myself a feminist. When I was a boy, I might have been afraid of some of that. (I think a lot of “disco sucks” crap I was into as a teenager was driven by fear of the feminine.) Fortunately, I grew up.
The point of all this is that if boys and men started listening to women instead of hating them or only viewing them as sexual objects to be cum upon, they might learn some important lessons about how to live. All week I’ve been asking people to ask why boys and men go on these shooting sprees. Perhaps the better question would be to ask why girls and women don’t go on shooting sprees. Stop calling people pussies and start really hearing what people with pussies have to offer.
I don’t have all the answers, just this thought. Maybe men should just sit down and shut up and have a nice pee.
Note: Plenty of liberal guys engage in “bro talk.” You don’t have to be a right-winger to fear the power of pussy.
The following book was mentioned in this post and is available at Powell’s Books by clicking on the cover below.
7 thoughts on “Maybe you should sit down to pee.”
Thank you for naming this problem what it is: bullying.
Women are bullied by men and other women. Men are bullied by women and other men. To an extent, we are all bullied by the pervasive social mores that (for better or worse) define our culture: men must be “strong,” “stoic,” “tough.” Women must be “beautiful” and (at least perceived to be) “sexually available.” We are all held in this dichotomy of unreasonable double standards for behavior, appearance, and our treatment of ourselves and others.
I think the next step in the conversation is, “How do we respond to bullying?”
More importantly, “How can we model zero tolerance for bullying?”
Also (because I am a mother of three young boys), “How do we redefine masculinity and the formation of masculine identity, without reference to or dependence upon the use of violence;misogyny; or traditionally patriarchal social norms?”
Something to think about.
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Girls bullied me heavily growing up. Sorry, but I simply can’t sympathize to hear them complain about getting bullied by guys.
It’s HOW the bullying happens.
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This is my fav post of yours to date.
I don’t like the term “douche bag” because it’s also a slam against
things feminine. Why not call a jerk guy a jerk? Or maybe a dick? Seems pretty simple to me.
Thanks for your thoughtfulness towards us gals.
I appreciate this. I’ve wrestled with this term. It “sounds” so much better than the more gender-neutral (but more apt), “colostomy bag.” But sounding good is no excuse. Jerk doesn’t really have the same literary flair. From now on, I’ll use “dickwad.”
LOL, sitting down on the toilet is an insult? That would seriously not offend Muslim men! Sitting/ squatting down is seen as more hygienic in Islam. But whatever.