No Group is Perfect

As most of you know, Sunshine Mary, L. G. Robins and Lena S. had some kind of fight, Matt Forney got into it and proclaimed the death of the manosphere. But I don’t wish to talk about the specifics of that. Instead, I want to explain what I have noticed due to my experience of silently being a part of several movements and groups, and show that this is a feature, not death.

One time I used to agree with feminists, because I thought they were just about protecting women’s rights. And I still see many such feminists, but now I’m aware of the dark side of feminism and of its unsavory followers.

One time, I discovered the online atheists. They seemed to stand for rationality. But after a while I saw that even they have their own hang-ups. They don’t always look at the facts, many of them are brainwashed by modern feminism. They are not as skeptic as they think, and are in some ways very much the same as the people they criticize. Yes, people tend to believe in the religion their culture and parents subscribe to, but it’s the same with politics and certain moral values. I used to frequent the site Fundies say the Darndest Things, and had fun reading it. However, when reading my boyfriend’s post “Rape is Equality”, I gradually noticed they had no arguments. I also remember the time someone submitted a quote about a 12 year old transsexual, and they couldn’t decide in which direction their outrage was supposed to go. The only thing certain on this site, is that you are supposed to feel outrage and mock the quote, automatically. Some were outraged the kid used hormones too early. Others, not early enough. Despite presence of flaws in their community, I still like many online atheists and don’t discount the whole group.

Another flaw most of these groups seem to have is thinking they are better than other groups. Smarter, more logical or fair, happier or having better romantic relationships. Too bad pretty much any group can find some study somewhere, which agrees with them. (,_sex_lives ). Yet pretty much everywhere, I see these flaws:

  1. Assholes in the movement/group. Yeah, they will be unprincipled people in every group. People of weak character. And some will be principled, but vile, wishing death, restriction of speech, or pain on people with whom they disagree. Since a lot of these movements are about opposing something, they all hate something, and are therefore partially hate movements.
  2. Dumb people in the movement/group. And this is true whether they are in a majority group like feminists or a minority group like red pillers or atheists.
  3. Something wrong being accepted by the majority. Any movement is bound to make some mistakes, so it’s no surprise. It’s not necessarily negative that lots of wrong things are being said, as nothing new ever gets discovered if we don’t suggest ideas due to fear of being wrong. But it’s still good to be less wrong than everyone else.

So there is no need to be surprised that once in a while, some signs of these flaws appear in the manosphere as well. It’s also not necessary to despair over it. But perhaps we should adhere to a higher standard to minimize those problems. I personally try to follow this advice:

  1. Don’t openly wish pain on someone just because you think they are saying stupid stuff. No “I hope you get cancer because you’re against anti-smoking laws”. No “I hope your marriage fails because your relationship is unequal/equal”. If your hypothesis is correct, they will often be hoist by their own petard anyway, there is no need to “hope”.
  2. Try to limit your confirmation bias. If your theories are so correct, you will be comfortable trying to disprove them yourself, and they will stand. You’ll try to sink them, but they will float like a toy ball. You don’t need to cling to one study either.
  3. Think for yourself.
  4. Develop an inner system of principles that you don’t bend or break.

I guess being so objective might make you a good scientist, but it makes it hard to have strong opinions on anything but morals. But for me, it works.

This entry was posted in Feminism, MRA, Politics and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to No Group is Perfect

  1. darlingdoll says:

    Great post Emma. Anyone who thinks their group is perfect all of the time is kidding themselves. Discord becomes a part of any group striving to change cultural beliefs because everyone thinks they know the best way to make it happen. The fundamental flaw of humanity is that we tend to fail to see the flaws in ourselves.

  2. Clarence says:

    Groups are, by their very nature, rather dumb at times, simply because they consist of the amount of compromises required to retain members and/or accomplish a goal. Larger groups have to make more intellectual simplifications of course.

    Anyway, good post, and nuanced as is normal for you.
    Emma – the thinking person’s emo.

  3. Liz says:

    Great post, Emma. And timely.
    Think I have to unplug for a couple of weeks at least, and do some yoga. Serenity now! 🙂

  4. Liz says:

    Holy crap, Emma. I just read up on Matt Forney’s analysis of SSM. No wonder posters are skeptical of people.

    • emmatheemo says:

      Yes, things like that can eat away at social trust. But I just take everyone’s word for it on the internet. It doesn’t hurt me, because I’m not invested in any major (financial, emotional…) way. I’ve made true friends on the internet, but this is for select few, and they were vetted.

  5. theasdgamer says:

    Emma, I noticed that you think ethically, as opposed to morally, which is unusual for a woman. I associate ethical thinking with above-normal intelligence. Perhaps ethical thinking requires above-normal intelligence?

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