Thursday, March 14, 2013

"Don't Threaten Me For Saying This, But...."

Since I wrote this post on the way some men precede their conversations with feminists with a "joke" along the lines of, "Don't kill me for saying this, but...", I've seen men engage that "joke" about a handful of times on Internet.

When the problematic nature of that "joke" has been pointed out to them, they've either remained silent or insisted that they had only good intentions in saying it.  Which, while I think they may have thought they had good intentions in making the "joke," I question the accuracy of that description given that the very crux of the "joke" is to assume that the feminist woman one is speaking is on the verge of reacting violently to whatever it is the man is about to say.

Since some men are incapable of centering the perspective of other people when considering the problematic aspect of this joke, let me help illustrate it in a way that might hit home for them.

What if, from now on, when conversing with avowed anti-feminist and non-feminist men, I preceded all of my arguments with, "Don't threaten to rape me for saying this, but...."?

How might that play into pre-existing narratives about men?  Not so funny and harmless anymore is it?

And, actually, I reckon that in the real world, as opposed to the cartoon world in which all feminists are violent man-hating harpies, feminist women receive such threats far more often than non-feminist men are "killed" by feminists for saying non-feminist things.

No comments: