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If you are a man, I do not want to know your opinions on feminism or women’s liberation or equality. I do not want you in feminist spaces. Feminism is not for you. Your presence within feminism is counter-productive. I don’t care what your views are - really, you could agree with me on all the major issues and i’d still feel the same way. Stop inserting yourself into feminist conversations. Stop inserting yourself into feminist controversies - yes, even (maybe especially) the issues that split feminism, and even the issues where you think some feminists are very wrong. Even if you think you’re standing up for certain groups of women, its not helpful - those women can almost certainly speak up for themselves and say what’s needed without you speaking over them. Your input does nothing but confuse and distort the issues and dis-empower women.
And no, there is no such thing as a male feminist, and you can’t bestow the title of ally on yourself - so stop calling yourself a feminist man or feminist ally. And you only count as pro-feminist if you are actively organising/working with other men and boys to stop male violence against women and girls. Unless you are not doing this, all of your words about supporting feminism are meaningless. And even if you are doing this active work, you still don’t have a place in feminism.
And don’t even get me started about the “nice guys”. Nice guys commit sexist and misogynistic acts every day. Nice guys uphold the patriarchy as much as the “macho” men they dislike. Nice guys rape and abuse and kill women as often as “macho” men do. When the news reports on a man committing for a horrific murder there is often a neighbour saying what a nice man he was and how you’d never suspect he was capable of the crime. So excuse me if i continue to be suspicious about your intentions. Unless you are actively working with men and boys to stop men’s violence against women you are not helping.
I will repeat - if you want to be pro-feminist, actively work with other men and boys to stop male violence, anything else is not pro-feminist. If your “pro-feminist” activity is writing blog posts that are not directly aimed at stopping men’s violence, or its going to a feminist reading group, or navel gazing about masculinity, or becoming an expert in feminist theory - you are probably doing more harm than good to the cause of women’s liberation. If your “pro-feminist” activity involves inserting yourself into feminist groups, or attempting to “take a lead” on feminist issues, or going into a sulk when you are asked to go to the back of a march against men’s violence against women, or getting over-emotional when women you know choose to organise in women-only spaces then you are almost certainly doing harm.
Women can liberate themselves, we don’t need you to do it for us. But men can stop men’s violence against women. So get on with it.
And no, you don’t get a cookie.