Northeastern professor asks, ‘Is it really so illogical to hate men?’
A sociology professor at Northeastern University is raising eyebrows with her new op-ed arguing that it’s logical for feminist women to hate men.
Suzanna Walters, director of Northeastern’s Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program and the editor of the gender studies journal Signs, wrote in her op-ed for The Washington Post last week that in order for men to atone for “all the millennia of woe” they have inflicted upon women, they must stop running for office and resign from power.
“Lean out so we can actually just stand up without being beaten down,” she wrote. “Pledge to vote for feminist women only. Don’t run for office. Don’t be in charge of anything. Step away from the power. We got this. And please know that your crocodile tears won’t be wiped away by us anymore. We have every right to hate you. You have done us wrong. #BecausePatriarchy. It is long past time to play hard for Team Feminism. And win.”
Ms. Walters admitted that while the blanket condemnation of all men could pose some ethical problems, there are several “universal facts” about the sexes that cannot be ignored.
“Pretty much everywhere in the world, this is true: Women experience sexual violence, and the threat of that violence permeates our choices big and small,” she said. “In addition, male violence is not restricted to intimate-partner attacks or sexual assault but plagues us in the form of terrorism and mass gun violence. Women are underrepresented in higher-wage jobs, local and federal government, business, educational leadership, etc.; wage inequality continues to permeate every economy and almost every industry; women continue to provide far higher rates of unpaid labor in the home (e.g., child care, elder care, care for disabled individuals, housework and food provision); women have less access to education, particularly at the higher levels; women have lower rates of property ownership.”
Ms. Walters said that even in the era of #MeToo and #TimesUp, there hasn’t been “a mass wave of prosecutions or even serious recognition of wrongdoing” that she feels would be necessary to make things right.
“On the contrary, cries of ‘witch hunt’ and the plotted resurrection of celebrity offenders came quick on the heels of the outcry over endemic sexual harassment and violence,” she wrote. “But we’re not supposed to hate them because . . . #NotAllMen. I love Michelle Obama as much as the next woman, but when they have gone low for all of human history, maybe it’s time for us to go all Thelma and Louise and Foxy Brown on their collective butts.”
Ms. Walters‘ op-ed has been met with backlash on social media, with some going so far as to characterize it as hate speech.
Surprise, surprise. A Gender Studies director thinks we should be able to hate men (in the broad sense). Male students at Northeastern should be nervous. https://t.co/kFRuU5smzD pic.twitter.com/MsDeY0Iw0L
— Ashe Schow (@AsheSchow) June 9, 2018
— Mark Meckler (@MarkMeckler) June 11, 2018
Conor Friedersdorf, a staff writer at The Atlantic who also characterized Ms. Walters‘ op-ed as hate speech, wrote an article rejecting her argument as a tenet of modern feminism.
“It is always illogical to hate an entire group of people for behavior perpetrated by a subset of its members and actively opposed or renounced by literally millions of them,” he wrote. “It is every bit as easy, and more just, to assign collective rhetorical blame to groups that deserve it, like ‘murderers’ or ‘rapists’ or ‘domestic abusers’ or ‘sexists.’”
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