Please Be That Guy! 7 Men Who Are Transforming Masculinity

Lately I’ve been seeing a pattern.  More and more men are standing up to misogyny, to sexual violence, to street harassment, to victim blaming, to rape apologia, to sexism.

Despite the noise created by the idiocy in the Men’s Rights Movement, a tide is shifting.

On every college campus and in every high school where I work, I meet young men who are passionate about creating a different masculinity.

In short, there are men who are acting like this:

So I wanted to take just a minute here at Change From Within to highlight some of those amazing men who are leading this transformation of masculinity, men who I admire tremendously and who inspire me to be a better man on the daily.

Darnell Moore

Darnell MooreAs I sit here trying to write about Darnell, I find myself erasing and rewriting my introductory sentence over and over.  It’s impossible to describe this man.

I’ve long been a fan of his writing and speaking, and I had the opportunity to meet with him recently, and I cannot describe the humble power this man possesses in words.  His kindness and generosity are only surpassed by his brilliance.

As a public intellectual on issues of race, sexuality, and gender, Darnell is leading men to imagine their positionality in the world differently, moving toward an ethic of love and brotherhood rather than dominance and control, and his work with youth is truly groundbreaking.

Check out his recent Ted Talk:

Fivel Rothberg

Fivel RothbergFivel is a father, filmmaker, and activist who uses his own powerful stories to help men understand the work we must do to transform ourselves as part of transforming masculinity.

His film House Devil, Street Angel is an autobiographical documentary that tells Fivel’s story of his struggle to raise his son to know a different, nonviolent, positive masculinity.

On a personal level, Fivel is a caring soul, a man who is passionate about making this world a better place and who makes you feel like a family member in that work from the moment he meets you.

Fivel is currently working on a documentary about consent and positive, healthy sexuality, so keep an eye out for that.

In the mean time, check out the first of Fivel’s film that I ever saw:

Kai M. Green

Kai M GreenKai is a filmmaker, poet, and Ph.D. candidate who strives to build a more inclusive understanding of gender and masculinity through his art and scholarship.

Though I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting Kai in person, I am proud to boast that I get to write alongside Kai at Everyday Feminism where his writing inspires me to think differently about race, gender, and healing.

Check out the trailer for his documentary “It Gets Messy in Here” here, and watch his interview with Me and My Bois below.

Emiliano Diaz de Leon

I first met Emiliano when he delivered an amazing keynote on engaging bystander intervention in Spanish-speaking migrant communities at the Tennessee Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence’s annual prevention institute.  Simply put, he blew me away.

Ever since, I’ve been learning from him through his writing, activism, and work with the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault.

Most definitely read his writing at his blog, and follow him on Twitter to learn from this brilliant man working to build a more non-violent understanding of masculinity.

Check out Emiliano speaking at a SlutWalk rally in 2011:

Jackson Katz

Jackson KatzOne of the more formative male role models in my life has been Jackson Katz.  I first came across Jackson’s work when I was a first year in college, and it blew my mind.  I had never heard a man talking about masculinity the way that he does.

What’s most inspiring about Jackson’s work, though, is how accessible he makes the conversation for men from all sorts of backgrounds.

To understand how easy Jackson makes it for men to engage in the conversation of feminism and transformative masculinity, look no further than his viral Ted Talk:

Jeff Perera

Jeff PereraJeff Perera is an author, speaker, and activist who challenges men to leave behind outdated understandings of masculinity to build a more inclusive, loving, and non-violent gender identity.

Another man I have yet to meet face to face, I am regularly inspired by the work that I see Jeff doing.  Founder and Editor in Chief at Higher Unlearning, Jeff empowers men to be the ones to hold men accountable for their actions and words.

Check out Jeff’s recent Ted Talk:

Carlos Andrés Gómez

Carlos Andres Gomez

Carlos is a poet, actor, author, and speaker who calls on men to think more critically about what it means to “Man Up.”

I first came across Carlos when I saw him perform his inspiring poetry with Andrea Gibson in Denver a few years ago, and I’ve been learning from him ever since.

Most recently, I was inspired by this piece of his that was published in The Guardian (and actually prompted me to write this blog post).

Check out his Ted Talk on the concept of “Manning Up:”

———

Whether we’re talking about famous poets or intellectuals or our fathers or classmates, it’s time we start lifting up the brothers who are calling for a different masculinity, a more inclusive masculinity, a more non-violent masculinity.

Take this as a call to action.  Take some time to thank a man who you’ve seen do something, whether big or little, to build a better masculinity.

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64 thoughts on “Please Be That Guy! 7 Men Who Are Transforming Masculinity

  1. So honoured to be mentioned among these beautiful brothers! Thank you Jamie!!

  2. Jamie, so much gratitude for you and your thoughtfulness. I am so honored to be included on this list. Sending you so much love!

  3. About time we ripped the Mr. out of misogyny. If you are not a feminist you aren’t much of a man.

    • Those who make blanket statements aren’t much for freedom of thought. I don’t consider myself a feminist, but a person who is for equal rights

      • Who'safraidtosayfeminist

        Feminist = person who is for equal rights.

        That’s *all* a feminist is. You are a feminist.

      • Depending upon which dictionary you use, “feminism” may be defined inclusively (“belief in the social, political, and economic equality of the sexes”) or narrowly (“a doctrine or movement that advocates equal rights for women”). The latter definition, while there’s nothing wrong with it, could be seen as to imply that men’s rights are less important.

    • “Misogyny /mɪˈsɒdʒɪni/ is the hatred or dislike of women or girls” I don’t think I’ve come across anyone who hates or dislikes women or girls. I’ve come across plenty of ‘feminists’ who hate or dislike men though.

      • You’re living under a rock then.

      • Being transgendered have given me experience with both men and women who construct the other gender in order to polarize against members of their own sex. Misogyny, such as calling another man a “woman” in order to humiliate him is closely tied to male ideologies that promote the concept of “man” and “manliness” as in “do not be woman”. As Simone De Beauvoir pointed out, the “other sex” is constructed as a byproduct when constructing “man”. What I add though – is that woman-exclusive groups behave just the same and the ‘male-hate’ or ‘misandry’ is actually identical. The truth is that while misogyny is firsthand attacking men who do not behave like “men”, misandry is firsthand attack women who do not behave like ‘women’. Misandry is the practice to label things that are unwanted for women (to be avoided as woman) as “male” in a fashion that is actually anti-woman-rights. One striking example is when science or seats of power is called “male” in a fashion that mark science and seats of power as almost dirty or unwanted. Always keep this in mind when thinking about what the hate actually is, because the hate exist and it’s usually destructive of the same sex before it becomes destructive of the other.

        Also think about this… Would you like to join a white-supremacist group today who call everything they do not like as “black”? Would being a member in a such group support who you are, or work against who you are? That’s how misogyny/misandry works.

  4. […] To create the better world we are striving for, men need to stand up and help. This list highlights a diverse group of men who are working to redefine masculinity. […]

  5. Too much love. Thank you, Jamie!

  6. its pretty funny that the only people excluded from this project are males for whom feminism is already a given. this is a brah and reformed brah only zone, brah

  7. An attitude of new masculinity leaves much to be desired in a world already awash in needs. Can a man solve a world’s issues or must we now cower away from nature and become weaker then move forward. What is feminism? Besides behavior modifying a male, you will still have awkward feelings. I think masculinity is opinion, while equality is a pipe dream. Misogynist or not, truth is the only definition of a human.

  8. Not to forget all the men who refrain from being in the spotlight and stay at home to care for their loved ones!

    • Most definitely! And we need to lift those men up! I also think it’s important to have men who are visible in media or certain spotlights to light the way for men who don’t have those role models immediately around them.

  9. Thank you for introducing me to these inspiring men.

  10. You are wonderful and a huge part of this list as well! Thank you for your inspiring work. As bell hooks points out, we need to highlight and talk about the people who subvert dominant culture, to be able to believe in transformation. You’re work and the others here do that.

  11. Football

  12. Ah, don’t forget about the work of Zan Perrion and his Ars Amorata philosophy!

  13. Thank you! I know there are male allies – Thank You again for being LOUD.
    you are my peeps – I have your back, as you do mine :)
    bless you and yours

  14. “the idiocy of the Mens Rights Movement”? yes its virtuous when the feminists want to fight for what they want but when men want to strike back and maintain their rights and who they are they are monsters. This is very typical of the feminist movement to shame man and masculinity for what it is, because it does not fit into their perfect picture of what the world should be from a feminine perspective. Women have no right to be an authority on masculinity and tell us that we need to change our behaviour, since they have no idea what it means to be a man, we have no idea what means to be a woman. I would never have the balls the tell a woman to ‘woman up’ as silly as it sounds. If feminism is so concerned about the rights of everyone then why does it not just change its term to Humanism? then it would apply to everyone, it could not just be referring to women. I dont have to identify with feminism to be concerned wit the rights of people. Iam a philosopher, critical thinker, humanist, empiricist and free thinker, thats GOOD ENOUGH. This idea that if your not a feminist your a bigot really gets under my skin. As far as im concerned feminism ever since 1980, has ONLY been concerned with furthering the rights of women and ONLY WOMEN. And, in the 21st century their efforts are solely focused on white western American women, its about total female domination, you submit, or your a misogynistic bigot. Prove me wrong :/

    • Well, for a start this article was written by a man and includes men only. There’s not a single woman here telling you how to be a man; it’s men telling you to be decent to other people. This is the true men’s equality movement. The MRA movement is focused on how wrong feminism is, on how women are supremacist, on how women blame us fro everything. It is anti-women rather than pro-men.

      As for striking back and maintaining our rights. you rather betray yourself there. Who are you striking back against and what rights do you believe are under threat? It’s not a zero sum game. If ‘they’ get more rights it doesn’t mean ‘we’ lose any. There are areas that need to be dealt with like fathers’ rights, domestic abuse and violence against men, sexual assault and physical abuse by women on kids, men and other women but complaining about women and feminism won’t get us anywhere on those issues, only activism will. You could easily be part of that in your everyday life or you could focus on what you don’t like about feminism instead.

    • There is so much going on here, and so much of it is problematic, that it is hard to figure out where to begin.

      So I will start with a semantic point. First, you misquoted me. You claim I said “the idiocy of the MRM.” What I, in fact, said was “the idiocy IN the MRM.” That is quite an important distinction, as your misquote implies that everything and everyone in the MRM is idiotic, whereas I am referring to the noise created by the idiocy IN the MRM, of which there is a pretty astounding amount. So let’s be clear what we’re talking about.

      Second, I’m not at all sure how this post is shaming “men and masculinity for what it is” or somehow features women claiming to be “an authority on masculinity” or telling men “that we need to change our behavior.” This post highlights MEN and is written by a MAN. All of the featured men want to see a different kind of masculinity, one that is not characterized by the misogyny that far too often is inherent to the MRM. These men realize that feminism and feminist theory must involve men to create a world of true equity and inclusiveness.

      As to your point about humanism, humanism is great, and many feminists are also humanists. However, to leave aside feminism is to deny structures of power and oppression that exist. Feminism is important because it names patriarchal oppression as one of the roots of current systems of inequality, marginalization, and oppression. To simply call oneself humanist is to whitewash the problem, to pretend that, much like colorblindness in anti-racism, if we just don’t talk about the ACTUAL problem, it might go away.

      The silliness of the MRM responses to feminism, though, are perfectly displayed in your belief that feminism is somehow about “total female domination.” It’s absurd. Show me where in theory or practice any of the feminisms that are out there are, in fact, about any sort of domination rather than destruction of systems of domination and oppression.

      Finally, one thing you do point to where you are right and that is important to address is that feminism has focused too much on White, western women. This is a critique of mainstream feminism that has been made by countless women of Color and that helps explain the Womanist movement. The same point was brilliantly made by many women of Color this summer through the #SolidarityisforWhiteWomen HT.

      What that tells me, though, is that we need a better ethic of intersectional anti-oppression work that addresses racism and classism and heterosexism and ableism and other forms of oppression as part of the struggle against misogyny and patriarchy.

      I’m sorry, but your arguments are tired rhetoric.

    • Are you even aware of how the MRM presents itself? These aren’t men who want equal rights for men; they are men who are terrified of losing their privilege in the face of equality and are lashing out at women who dare to have a voice, autonomy, and individual agency. They have been historically violent, hateful, and vile.

      Feminism actually is defined by seeking gender equality. Yes, the focus is on women because guess what? women are the group historically and currently oppressed.

      “Prove me wrong”

      First rule of debating on the internet: the burden of proof rests on the person who makes the assertion. Accordingly, it is up to you to prove yourself right. :)

      • I would say, Raichu, that “MRM” like “Feminism” is no coherent organisation without a central philosophy or doctrine. My experience with both groups is that they come from many different backgrounds and cover many different perspectives even though both are reactionary to something. I study extremist groups, including gangs, organized crime, nationalism, sects and political groups and to me the bulk of the people who are attracted by the MRM message do not match the stereotype you present just like a “feminist” is not necessary about entitlement or hating men. Male studies is actually a recent focus that do not assume that the presence of men isn’t enough to call something “manly”, but that there are cultural ideologies that build up a “male gender” that is socially enforced and something separated from individual males. The problem with male gender is similar to female gender in that it denies those who do not fit the profile their right to be themselves and the false demand is actually corrosive and destructive. In fact, many feminists such as Talpade Chandra Mohanty have challenged the notion that it’s functional to say “women are oppressed” and note that many privileged women engage in and participate in the gendered structures. When you begin to acknowledge things like LGBT, skin-color, dysfunction and class, gender is added as a demand on top of an individual who struggle to fit in. The more problems you got, the less you will be able to conform. So to state things like “women are oppressed” or “men are privileged” is actually a reinforcement of gender and a denial of everyone who do not fit the profile. It tries to render them invisible who carry the most important clues that gendered systems are wrong. It’s not about men, or women, but about expectations and false cultural ideas based on sex.

        Modern post-structural feminism such as post-colonial feminism or queer-feminism take for granted that ‘man’ is a social construct that come from the outside in the form of social pressure, not from within as some kind of natural force or will.

  15. […] An awesome post about some amazing men who are standing against misogyny and sexism. […]

  16. What’s with all the Ted talks? (Yuck.)

  17. Thank you for this site, and this headsup. It’s good to know that there are people like this out there, working hard, trying to change the world for the better.
    The only ones who can really change male attitudes toward women, are men. Because men listen to other men. All you guys who recognise your privilege, and still stand up and point out that sexism is wrong, that rape is wrong, that the definitions of rape are wrong – all of you who stand up, call people on their behaviour, make a stand, THANK YOU.
    I hesitated to comment, because I’m fairly sure I’ll get shot down by someone, but I don’t care. Just had to say thank you, for your words, your efforts, and your awareness.

  18. As a Swedish feminist, born “man” but who never identified as such, I am glad you tried, but I am sad to disagree with the overarching premise. The whole notion that there even is a “masculinity” needs to be tossed out the window.

    Think about it… What you say, in the end, is that there’s an abstract role, model, ideal, stereotype somewhere out there that boys and only boys should deny themselves to follow, and if they wish to not do so, they must transform the stereotype. Why not simply be yourself?

    Why not begin with the question who am I? What are my needs? My feelings? My interests? What makes me feel good? What’s my role in the world? These questions are denied when a person is preoccupied with adapting/transforming/working with a concept (“masculinity”) that doesn’t exist in the first place. We do not try to transform our hair color.

    This fictional creation denies personality and self exploration, shoehorn boys into locked paths instead of going ones own way, honing ones skills and talents, working with ones weaknesses. Even worse, it deny the possibility for a boy to have a female role model. A teacher. A musician. A scientist in geology. A photographer. There are so many skills and human qualities that are not tied to gender at all. It locks girls at the same time, for the same reason, by boosting the notion that we should keep ourselves boxed into gender, not take inspiration from and enjoy the entire spectrum of humanity.

    Masculinity is not something to be transformed. It’s something to be ignored.
    And that’s exactly what those who break the norm have done.

  19. I am naming and shaming Jamie Utt for interrupting my day. I have an urgent deadline which has now passed further into the distance and I need someone to blame. I have been reading and listening to a whole page that not only sanctions, but validates my feelings about ‘being that guy’. Thanks for the interruption. Your links have also meant now I will be searching for men like me in the UK that are more about equality and like me feel that we are doing ourselves an injustice by not ensuring that there is equality for all.
    I work with male perpetrators of domestic violence as well as young people affected by domestic violence and abuse. I will be sharing this info and doing all I can to ‘be that guy’

  20. David Lisak’s study found that approximately one man in 16 is a rapist.

    The men featured in this post are wonderful examples of who those other 15 men can be.

    While a feminist myself (yes, that’s not my real picture, it’s William Hartnell, the first Doctor Who), I am not the perfect exemplar of female strength. I am often frightened and intimidated by the hostility my opinions receive and the immediate threatening behaviour that follows them. When someone else stands with me, when I have an emotionally supportive hand to hold, I feel so much better. And when a man does so, I almost cry with relief, because it means they understand the real message, that it’s not all getting lost in the noise of knee-jerk self-defence and absolute terror of losing sex-on-demand.

    When men see that feminism is about partnership, about sharing the load and supporting each other against the things that break us – for example, a woman who can work and earn the same as a man is not a threat to men’s jobs, but a threat to the depression and crippling levels of responsibility placed on men’s shoulders as “the provider” – then maybe those who don’t will finally come to understand. It’s not a trick, it’s not a trap to pin them down as inferior slaves, it’s just… fair.

  21. This is some wonderful work these men are doing and they deserve support.
    Having said that, this also needs to be said: if you, the original author, think the Men’s Rights Movement is idiocy and noise, you are part of the past and part of the problem, the place in this world for your intolerance is shrinking and you have some growing up to do.

    The phenomenae of these men and their work, and many others like them, emerge not from feminism but in spite of it. The failure of feminist institutions of social engineering to bring about change toward equality has been well-documented, reported to governments and is the single greatest cause of funding cuts to many of their agendas. It is only because of a critical examination of their work that we have things like alimony formulas recalculated, 50% men inclusions in workforce quotas alongside the 50% women requirements, the documentation and prosecution of legitimate domestic abuse cases against women perpetrators, and so on, so we can put an end to other things like the marginalization and at times outright gender-hatred-based exclusion of boys hard-wiring in traditionally-viewed girls classes, the asymmetrical ratio of life-professions and death professions given to females versus males in the military and outside, the perpetuation of the myth of men’s moral inferiority, and the social problems that perpetuates, and so on.

    I am sorry to see you do not yet know this but the way toward a more compassionate society is that EVERYBODY’S stories get heard. That’s the only way out.

    You do not demonstrate that understanding in your own idiocy and noise. These men and what they are trying to do, were not helped today by your comment. But no matter. It has been that way for a long time. They and others like them are overcoming, because they employ a principle you did not demonstrate: upholding inclusion. This is why government policies and public attitudes are shifting.

    • It’s ironic that you would say to men that their brilliance and work is happening in spite of feminism while claiming to support them, in one breath denying their agency and their own perspective considering that, to my knowledge, all of these men align themselves with feminist theory and practice.

      Exactly what “feminist institutions of social engineering” exist? What seems to be missed by much of the MRM is an analysis of structures of power and oppression and of what role history (both long gone and recent) plays in our modern struggles.

      At its philosophical root, Mens Rights is the exact same thing as many of the White Rights movements: there is a fundamental denial of systems of oppression in order to continue to center those who have traditionally been in power and centered. White Rights claim that “civil rights” have gone too far and that White people are now those who are oppressed. White Rights claim that “diversity” and “inclusion” are words that simply are meant to deny White people their rightful place in society. And White Rights claim that there is actually some massive conspiracy to put White people under the boot of all other races. All of those arguments are precisely the same arguments made by Mens Rights, only about sex and gender.

      The point, though, is that both do the same thing: they deny structures that have existed for a long time and continue to exist to hurt MOST people (including many poor White people in the case of racism and men in the case of patriarchy) in order to serve the cause and needs of a privileged few.

      You speak of inclusion, but I have no desire to be inclusive of White Rights as a not-so-thinly-veiled form of White Supremacy, just as I have no desire to be inclusive of Mens Rights as a not-so-thinly-veiled form of Male Supremacy.

      Both movements are characterized by misguided anger and frustration.

      The feminist and womanist movements that I have been fortunate to learn from and grow in teach that it is WRONG that men should be caste into traditional roles of masculinity that force us to, in using your examples, serve only in the most dangerous of positions (such as being cannon fodder in war). Instead, feminism and womanism teaches that we need to undo the very systems of “power over” that restrict gender norms, working for a world that would allow men agency to be primary caregivers of children if they so wish, that would allow men and women agency in their employment and guarantee equal pay, that would allow AGENCY.

      For every one of the concerns that you posit above, there is an answer in intersectional feminism and/or womanism that leads us toward justice, not away from it, that subverts the current systems of inequality, and that allows people of all gender identities and expressions to fully realize their being. The feminism that I know encourages everyone’s stories to be heard, but it does hold people accountable to ensuring that those stories do not simply reinforce systems of domination and oppression at interpersonal levels.

      So yes, I call out the idiocy and noise in the Mens Rights Movement. I tried hard to give MRAs and MRM spaces a chance. I listened. But in the end, the extreme levels of outright misogyny in the movement ensure that it will be forever marginal, and those who are ACTUALLY concerned with creating equity and agency for people of all gender identities and expressions find their community elsewhere.

  22. No, it only seems ironic if you are brainwashed to believe feminism is the vehicle toward greater MUTUAL empowerment, which in your case is a malformation that apparently occured without proper exposure to the dating history of feminism by the west. You need to look at feminism’s legal record with liberal modernized governments and why there has been an institutionalized backlash. I used to think like you until after developments in Canada following the Montreal Massacre and the sustained campaign against men as a class of society by feminist lobbying groups and organizations (the “institutions” that seem such a mystery to you). Since the concerted efforts of feminists in Canada has been documented and dissected extensively in a critical mass of academic literature, however, the efficacy of that vehicle toward that goal is now long outed as a myth.
    I am liberated from the oppressive burden of rationalizing that feminists want to make a place for me as a male included alongside females because of works like Legalizing Misandry and Spreading Misandry – two Canadian Crown Commissions into social attitudes following the Montreal Massacre. This is not wingnut propaganda. What these 2000 pages of sociological study revealed about a highly liberal society (even from American liberal standards) has changed the way family law is practiced in Canada, son. It led to the nearly totally dismantling, for example, of the National Coalition for the Status of Women offices, which were reduced from 16 offices nationwide, to a mere 4 when the conservatives rode to power, citing failure of the former’s ability “to create a more just and equal society.” Brother it doesn’t get much more naked than that. We no longer need to turn to theories, conjectures, and extrapolations. We may view the damning EVIDENCE that history provides now. The guesswork is over. You should stop believing it, too. Hence the irony is gone because your foundation (feminism provides equality) is baseless, at least it’s been since 1989.
    THAT MEANS FEMINISM FAILED. It rallied egalitarians but only to replace one tyranny with another. And why do we know this? Because of the collective demonization and economic warfare against men that has been documented since the 1990s. We have never really healed as a country since then. But corrective steps have been taken to redress the sustained campaign of misandry that followed the 90’s. This is because of the work of the Men’s Rights Movement! When organizations like Fathers For a Fair Divorce got their mandates passed and the alimony formulas recalculated, there were no feminist supporters helping them one inch of the way. So much for champions of social justice! Would you like the power base of the far right to go away? Then acknowledge the case of your brothers in the MRM. All you’re doing here is marginalizing society. As liberals we like to pretend that the complaints of the MRM are all about patriarchs pissed nobody’s making sammiches for them anymore and how they wish for things to go back to an imagined golden past. This is a stupid liberal’s wet dream. The reality is quite different. The reality is that we spent millions of dollars re-educating men on their attitudes to women after the Montreal Massacre, while around roughly the same time in a culturally similar place (albeit the US, i.e. Chicago) Laurie Dann, an infamous gender-based serial killer had 1. burned down a young men’s Jewish association 2. poisoned the food at another boys school cafeteria 3. shot her own son 4. killed several other boys and men, including 5. an 8-year old boy she claimed was going to become a rapist anyway, and 6. openly confessed she did these things because they were males, but nobody spent millions of dollars re-educating women’s attitudes toward men. In fact, the gender of all of her victims was obscured when the press leaked the story in the common media. The US’ Laurie Dann beat Canadian Marc Lepine (the Montreal Massacre murderer) in the New World pissing contest of gender based violence but it was swept under the rug because of prevailing attitudes of misandry – the same attitudes that made endless jokes about mutilating WayneBobitt. Go out and try to make a joke about forced female circumcision and see how long you last. The very least you must admit is that we could not count on feminists for anything but keeping social attitudes toward a moral asymmetry of the sexes. And that’s exactly the attitude that will make equality take LONGER. It took men fighting for men’s rights to even make this tacitly accepted social asymmetry known. So no, there is no irony. Your illusion of feminism as the default vehicle to total empowerment is a stupid myth.
    The other leg of your argument, denial of historic systems of oppression as a premise for dismissal, secures your position as morally repugnant and erodes your credibility. This irrelevant strawman, like all effective lies, surely has some basis in truth and mandates a certain need for correction; but you appear to intentionally ignore the fact that said correction does not come at the expense of what has been achieved for some. The point is to make it available to everybody. Anything else is merely a recipe for changing the tyrant, and a revolution, not building a society of equals in their diversity which, *nota bene* is supposed to be the point of giving feminist institutions public money. Your apparent confession that whites having rights is inherently wrong destroys what dignity and moral authority you claim to have remaining. Whites exist, like it or not, and they certainly do deserve rights: they deserve the same rights as everyone else. Whether they are being denied or not is someone else’s argument. The idea that they don’t deserve them which you basically argued the case for is inherently ridiculous. Thus you are unqualified to judge the position of the Men’s Rights Movement since you are incapable of envisioning rights for other large groups of citizens in a just and equal society.
    Let me make it easy for you. Helping your sister up does not require that you fall down. Therefore if your method of correction is flawed you have to fix the flaws (*THIS* IS the position of the Men’s Rights Movement) or admit you don’t really give a damn about mutual empowerment, you’re just a different flavor of tyrant. Strange destination for a non-believer in rights being a zero-sum game.
    Feminism and womanist teachings teach that it is wrong to cast men into traditional roles of masculinity not because they found such results in their own work but because men interested in men’s rights called them out and made such complaints as part of an extremely important dialogue between the two camps. Feminists never gave a rat’s ass about Vietnam War Vets, and not a single one lifted a finger to modernize the alimony divorce formulas. The education you claim to have received at the altar of feminism was actually supplied by Mens Rights advocates like Warren Farrell, (the only man to serve on the advisory council of N.O.W. three times – also happens to be the author of the critically acclaimed “The Myth of Male Power”) and what he says in concert with important social policy makers is that the stories of men do not have to be silenced in order for the stories of women to be heard and vice-versa. The absence of this truth is what is morally repugnant about your position.
    At its philosophical root, Men’s Rights seeks inclusion of men’s interests in social engineering agendas, because feminists (the champions in which we invested public funds to facilitate equality and mutual economic empowerment) has proven themselves utterly indifferent to broader economic empowerment, and in some cases, misappropriated public funds for campaigns of public demonization of men as a class and their economic exclusion from traditionally female-dominated industries. This means that the corrective aims of the Men’s Rights Movement are noble; at least I should say, they are nobler than your aims in this argument. If you’re ever going to reach reasonable men in the MRM, stop disqualifying them from having a legitimate point. You are becoming the man that calls men pu55ies for calling the police on violent wives instead of sucking it up or “handling” it somehow (like what? Murder suicides? How’s that working out?) Denying the legitimate points of the MRM is to say that every utterance of every feminist capable of shaping public policy has only been of merit and has brought no damage to men as a class. That is just unforgivably stupid and needs to be called out. That is the ideological space you occupy with your derision, and it is criminal.
    I will say this in your defense, though: there is a once-necessary form of arrogance embedded in the teaching of women’s studies at certain institutions and you will not get a passing grade if you do not embody that arrogance in your papers and student responses to the curriculum. Perhaps you experienced this or subsumed it into your thinking. However, we have evolved and moved on. Since you are presumably not a student (assuming you even had ever been one) it is time to drop the assumption of feminism as a synonym for moral authority and see it as entire governments are now seeing it: an old institution quietly backpedalling as fast as it can, in order not to lose even more access to public funds. And if you are the least bit curious, you should be asking yourself how it got to that state. I have given you two books worth looking at, but also consider The Myth of Male Power by Warren Farrell as an important US counterpart to the two Canadian books I mentioned above, which are published by McGill University Press and University of British Columbia University Press. No academic slouches. Go ahead, I dare you to investigate their contents.

    • What gets me is that at the end of this comment, Eminsk mentions Warren Farrell, as if Jamie isn’t already aware of him. I mean, anyone who’s heard of the MRM has heard of Warren Farrell.

      But also, that the very end is a dare. “I dare you to investigate their contents.” It’s such a blatant challenge to Jamie’s masculinity…to “prove” he’s man enough to go read a book written by Farrell. And that appeal to Jamie to prove himself is precisely the sort of masculinity Jamie and the men mentioned in this post are trying to move away from.

      • At least you read to the end, (s)he lost me in the first paragraph by insinuating that feminism is one coherent body when “feminism” captures a plethora of ideas, movements, individuals and organizations spanning 100+ years. When someone begin a long argument with a such premise it informs me on the outset that this is someone who might be excellent as speaker and excellent at producing consistent logic, but lack the habit of informing themselves about the premises before thinking. So it’s very ironic that (s)he speaks about “investigating” when ten minutes on feminism and feminist history collapse the whole post and the entire foundation of the reason behind it.

        Say what you like about Warren Farrell, but he do know the diversity in feminism.

    • First, what they ^^^^ said.

      It’s hard to know where to begin, and I do not have the time it would take to go through your entire rambling post and refute its inaccuracies and absurdities one by one, but I will address a few.

      I will start with your statement about White Rights, as it makes it nearly impossible to take ANYTHING else you say seriously after reading your defense of the White Rights Movement. You seem to believe that I argued White people should not have rights (which is the exact claim being made by White Supremacists in the WRM), but that’s not what I said. Instead, I made the point that White people are not being denied a single right as a class of people, something that cannot be boasted for people of all races, which makes the WRM absolutely asinine. To claim that there is a need for a WRM (just like the MRM) is to deny the structures of power that exist, something that you brush off as a straw man despite a tremendous canon of research to prove the point (see ALL of Critical Race Theory and Intersectional Feminist and Womanist Theories). In essence, to defend the WRM to make your point about MRM simply proves that the emperor has no clothes: this is a thinly-veiled movement for male supremacy just like WRM is a thinly-veiled movement for White supremacy.

      Next, you, again, seem to be parroting the misguided rage of the MRM. First, you highlight the case of serial murderer Dann, a woman who killed a number of boys and men (and also attempted to murder at least two girls). And this is a terrible thing, one which I would challenge you to find a feminist who would not condemn. However, it is not evidence of sDo women kill men? Yes. But the numbers simply do not compare to the rates at which men kill men and men kill women (particularly men killing their intimate partners): http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1635092 As I said above, it is a travesty that men are more likely to be victims of violence than women, but that comes at the hands of other men, and many feminist practitioners and theorists address this issue (including Jackson Katz – one of my favorites) who bring to light the destructive nature of traditional masculinity that must be changed in order to address this problem. Yet the MRM somehow seems to think that this is a problem of misandry. Why? Because violence against women gets attention thanks to the tireless efforts of women who have fought against it. You claim that feminism has failed because it has not yet addressed every single concern under the sun? Fantastic critique, my friend.

      Just one quick note about one of the champion causes of the MRM that you bring up: Yes, men are disadvantaged in custody cases. Does there need to be some more balance brought to this issue? Sure. But in the words of the fabulous Jamie Kilstein (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-l7q71AimrA), “if I pushed a tiny human out of my vagina, I might want home court advantage!” Unless the mother is being abusive, they DESERVE home court advantage in custody battles.

      As far as Warren Farrell goes, I love your assumption that I am not familiar with him and his work. I will get to a brief look at his claims in just a moment, but first let’s address this statement: “The education you claim to have received at the altar of feminism was actually supplied by Mens Rights advocates like Warren Farrell.” The sheer sexism of this point is astounding. What it says is that the powerful women I have learned from couldn’t possibly have made the important critiques about, say, gender roles and masculinity. It must have been a MAN, thereby denying the accomplishments of the countless powerful women who have informed and advanced the women’s movements.

      Beyond the blatant sexism of your statement, the irony is that Farrell borrows many of the critiques from the feminist movement that he now turns his back on, arguing that gender roles need to be more fluid (a critique that started in the women’s movements), arguing that we need to help men realize livelihoods that do not caste them into dangerous, physical labor (again, a critique made in the women’s movements and labor movements long before Farrell was even alive), and on and on. The only difference, though, is that Farrell chooses to deny the structural examples of male systemic power that make it difficult to change these things and instead blames the feminist movements for not adequately addressing his concerns. It simply comes off as another “But What About the MENZ!?” critique of feminism, and it’s tired. It’s been long addressed by other theorists and activists. His work and the work of the other two Canadian publications you mention have plenty of legitimate critiques of the current systems of gender construction, but again, their anger is misplaced, and their critiques of the women’s movements have long been debunked.

      Finally, you claim that I am doing things like “becoming the man that calls men pu55ies for calling the police on violent wives instead of sucking it up or ‘handling’ it somehow.” First, you continue to make the sort of blanket statements that you criticize me for making in the first place. All that tells me is that we’re both assholes who can’t stand the other side. Second, it’s ironic that you would say that to a man who served as a sexual assault and intimate partner violence survivor’s advocate in a program that was based in feminist theory and tremendously inclusive of survivors of all genders. In my time, I served male survivors, helping them sort through their trauma to find their own agency in the situation. And I did all of this because of feminism.

      You say, “Helping your sister up does not require that you fall down,” yet that’s the whole point of this blog post – NONE of these feminist or pro-feminist men are falling down. We are rising to a new masculinity that leaves behind the misogyny that characterizes FAR too much of the MRM.

    • Oh, and if you’re wondering why you can no longer comment, I simply don’t have the time to reply to any more of your rambling posts defending the MRM. I reserve the right to control the discussion in my space, and I don’t want a situation where your absurdity can go unchallenged since I don’t have the time to respond, so you will not be commenting further. I have taken far longer responding to your feeble critiques of my post (which actually ignore the whole of the post and focus on ONE sentence) than it took to assemble this list of amazing men, so that’s about all I have the desire to dedicate to you and your comments.

      Have a nice day!

      • Jamie, thanks so much for this post and for your interesting and well-written replies to others. I’m really grateful for the time you have spent doing this (I know how wearisome it is to keep replying to the same cliches about what feminists want – often I just give up) and I have learnt a lot from it – there’s some great people out there, thank you for all the amazing work you are all doing! Best wishes from the UK

      • Thanks for the comment, Clare. It is always helpful to know that others are reading along and benefitting from my responses to problematic comments, particularly since I’m far more likely to see a comment from someone who disagrees than from someone who agrees.

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  24. […] we can change masculinity, even expand it.  We need not teach boys to see emotions and emotional connections as […]

  25. […] Check out this list of awesome male allies doing work to confront men’s violence against women and to end gendered violence!!!  Please Be That Guy […]

  26. […] recently wrote a piece on my personal blog that highlighted seven men who are transforming masculinity, and I was blown away by how well it […]

  27. “Oh, and if you’re wondering why you can no longer comment, I simply don’t have the time to reply to any more of your rambling posts defending the MRM. I reserve the right to control the discussion in my space, and I don’t want a situation where your absurdity can go unchallenged since I don’t have the time to respond, so you will not be commenting further. I have taken far longer responding to your feeble critiques of my post (which actually ignore the whole of the post and focus on ONE sentence) than it took to assemble this list of amazing men, so that’s about all I have the desire to dedicate to you and your comments.”

    Have a nice day!”

    That’s right jamie…

    If you can’t get someone to “agree” with your ideology, then block them….

    Great control tactic…

    PS: Put me on that “block” list too…

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  35. […] to realize justice (as has been called for by fantastic men like Jackson Katz, Tony Porter, and many others), if our praxis rests solely in the other, in those other people impacted by patriarchal […]

  36. […] when I was in New York City last fall, the incredible Fivel Rothberg (who I profiled in my 7 Men Who are Transforming Masculinity piece) and Martyna Starosta had the idea to film a short piece about the 7 A’s of Hooking Up, […]

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