Normally, the origin of a term isn't too important to me, but Limbaugh is a public figure who has shaped, continued to shape, and charged the word with his continued use to conservative audiences.
Eh, Limbaugh isn't of particular interest to me. It might just be that I live in the south of England, but I only vaguely know who he is in the first place.
I prefer cisfemale supremacist or TERF for accuracy mostly, and because those terms are less likely to poison the well against average feminists who are just trying to have their voices heard. And plus those terms are less likely to be used as ad-hominem attacks.
Eh, I don't necessarily use Feminazi as a ad-hominem attack; saying "This is how I define Feminazi, and you fit the description" isn't the same as saying "You're a bad word so you're wrong." But that's just semantics, haha.
Personally, I see myself as a feminist, someone to whom women's issues and gender equality are important, not someone touting superiority of any one group.
Then I think I would agree with you on a large majority of things, I just don't personally identify as a feminist for a variety of reasons. But in the end, labels are only so important...what's more important is getting everybody who wants to have a discussion around a table to have that civil discussion...leave the militants and the radicals outside screaming at each other, and invite the moderate Feminists, the moderate MRA's and the moderate Egalitarians/Humanists together to start making a list of "shit that needs to change." I mean, all genders and sexes have issues, and it's only when we stop screaming about "MY ISSUES ARE WORSE!" and actually start going "ok, so, how do we fix these issues?" that we're actually going to start making any headway. And for fucks sake, can we as a species stop getting overly offended by bullshit that doesn't actually matter for just one week? Please? Kylie:
That may be so, but we don't all agree that the best way to deal with other factions is to trot out a term that's also been used quite brazenly and widely by anti-feminists against the moderates (among others). And I believe you did say you found the moderates to be the majority. It would be giving currency to a word that's most widely known for unsupported and rather unjustified attacks.
I agree completely, which is why I always make certain to qualify what I mean when I say it. There is use in that word, I just think we need to fight to get it
Of course, moderates might be the rule rather than the exception, but there is still a depressing level of idiotic ideas even within the moderate circle....or, at the very least, moderates tend to elect more radical individuals. The president of the feminist society at my old university, for example, once told me to my face that women couldn't be sexist against men, and men were physically incapable of being raped by a female. I was like.... "that's....so stupid I think you gave me cancer.
" So even though moderates are more common...there are still poisonous ideas floating around even in moderate circles that need to be stamped down on hard.
Perhaps there's some debate there about reclaiming versus discarding an ugly word, but I'm not sure it's really worth 'reclaiming' something that one never found much common ground with. It's one thing to reclaim 'bitch' or 'slut' if these are words tossed at all women as a group to some effect and they're pretty silly words by now for sheer daily frequency --- it's another thing to speak of 'repurposing' a word that has been primarily or mostly used in anger, and by a rather small but vocal faction of opposition in very many if not (or is it?!) most cases, and against moderates or even as a form of verbal intimidation against bystanders getting involved.
But the only difference with that is the age of the word; back when they were first coined against women, do you think they were compliments? Hell no. They were pretty much the equivalent of "Feminazi" back when they were coined, but every day use rendered them largely harmless in the grand scheme of things. Hell, I know people who are proud to be sluts...and to be fair, what is a slut or a manwhore but somebody who is just very popular with their preferred "type" of sexual partners?
I'd love to be popular enough to be a slut. It would mean I had a LOT more fun with my "equipment" than I'm currently having.
I dunno. Makes more sense to me to call piggish just that. You don't need to confuse things, and also risk appearing part of the very real throng of piggish naysayers also using that same word, by picking up the one that sounds more like "piggish because feminist" or "imperialist because American" or the like.
Well, again, I take pains to make certain people understand what I mean. I mean, if I set up my terms ahead of time, well...I can just point at it and say "you obviously didn't read all of what I said." And if people are gonna quotemine me to make me look bad, they were gonna do that anyway, and at least then they're going for the target that I can easily refute just by pointing at the previous paragraph rather than have to explain in depth what I actually meant. People are gonna quote mine regardless of what you actually say, so there's no point worrying about it.
Nobody? I wonder, if you look closely at some of the Republican speeches or certain politicians who have been gaining a touch of ground in Central Europe the last few years? It also depends if you mean argues explicitly, or for policies that if actually passable would amount to more or less effectively the same thing. But anyhow...
I said that nobody could do it and be taken seriously, and though I'm sure there are Republicans who try - remember, English Liberal here, so I don't really give enough of a shit to follow most Republicans
- they're only taken seriously by their specific demographic and will likely NEVER get elected into a position like president of the USA, and are largely seen as laughing stocks by the rest of the Western World. Nobody outside of the USA really takes Donald Trump seriously as a candidate for the US Presidency, for example.
Mainly because once you have admitted most feminists aren't deserving of the attack simply for being feminists (i.e. it is by and large a useful school of thought with much more to offer, even if a few jump off to some ridiculous corners with their applications and conclusions)... Then you're inviting a great deal of confusion, because so many times as the article relates, the term is used to attack people who don't deserve it. If you have to turn around to half the crowd who starts attacking you now on the assumption you're really piggish and explain you really mean to emphasize only something (and then perhaps, something not always so obvious for the situation from the word itself?) in the second half of the word but you didn't mean to claim that it was necessarily involved with the first half, well that's more than a bit messy.
Again, I just define my terms ahead of time and if this crowd behind me is too pigheaded to accept my explanation and definition, then they're not the kinds of people I want standing behind me anyway. *shrug*
Maybe we're just hanging out in different places, or listening for different things. I do think quite a few feminists in casual discussion have taken to using 'misogynist' too much by reflex when asssuming there 'must be something awful behind what's going on there,' rather than bothering to lay out the process they're vaguely imagining. And sure, there's a touch of attempted shame factor in there someplace... But if you don't like those cases, shouldn't you at least be more concerned about "feminazi" being overused for rather directly nasty purposes, as well?
It's about the same, for me. People who seriously use Feminazi to put down all Feminists, regardless of their moderate status or not, are rarely worth listening to anyway, in much the same way that feminists who try to shame people using "Misogynist!" are not worth listening to. There's definitely a risk of "Feminazi" being overused and whatnot, but if I define what I mean ahead of time...well, it's a short, sharp, punchy label that has a certain type of useful negative connotations. I'll rarely use it myself, but I don't think the word should be discarded...just better utilised against people who actually deserve the label.
There are also quite a few cases where things like 'feminazi' are followed by rape and death threats and so on -- I'm doubtful whether there's really an equal level of explicit and individually targeted threat generally chasing after the 'misogyny' talk. There is probably some degree of runaway institutionalization, where things like jobs get investigated or sometimes abruptly bumped off, but that's at least (formally speaking) initially premised on some honestly assumed pursuit of equality.
Ok, let's nip this in the bud.
We ALL should hopefully know by now that something like 95% of death and rape threats are utter bullshit. I can't find the statistics now, but I recall an FBI assessment that only a vast minority of such threats were actually deemed credible. Barack Obama has something like 30 death threats a DAY, and how many people have tried to assassinate him (that we know of)? None. Let's be honest, here; most of it is people sending empty intimidation attempts, overreacting to a piece of news, venting their anger or just trolling. If you want to kill somebody, DON'T WARN THEM. How many murderers actually warn their victim ahead of time? Not many, I'd wager.
Here's the thing; SO MANY online personalities of all stripes use death threats to wave in front of the media for headlines and clicks, but only a tiny fraction of them are actually genuine threats. How many people who have been threatened with death have actually been attacked by the person who sent that threat? yeah, that's what I thought.
You can say all you want about threats, but accusations of misogyny and sexism - regardless of whether it's there or not - actually do more often than not lead to at least the persons job and social life being put at risk, if not outright ruined. For me, actually ruining somebodies work or home life is far worse than an anonymous person on the internet tweeting "go die" at you. And let's be brutally honest; most online threats stop there.
Well, I've spent a lot of my life in academics so what can I say. You could better explore that with someone who's done closer to half their years in each? I've rarely if ever heard feminazi used seriously in academia, though who knows by now. Whereas misogyny is taken rather more seriously and is in a lot of writing, both solid and otherwise. Personally, most of the times I've heard feminazi have been more recently, and pretty often by people who I thought were trying to brush away rather substantial concerns with little good support of their own.
So have I. I'm just saying that comparing a word that is commonly only used in casual conversation to a words usage in academia is....well, it's a bad comparison, simply because one is meant to be used in academia and is also used in casual conversation, and the other is ONLY meant to be used in specific "casual" circumstances.
And the common understanding among many feminists if not indeed most, is 'feminazi' marks a distaste for feminism more generally and a desire to attack their school rather than the substance of what they said. If you haven't actually noticed so many cases of it yourself, you could take the examples in the article for starters.
Which is why I only ever really use it to insult a particular type of Feminist who I know is unlikely to ever really listen to what I'm saying. It's a way to, as you say, say "Fuck this, I give up, have fun being a fruitcake."
Sounds kind of (?) like you're at least agreeing that 'feminazi' is at least rather pointless in a reasoned debate situation (at least, until you want to say 'forget all that' quite vehemently).
Most of the time, though it depends on the context, company and nature of the debate; if you define it before you start, "Feminazi" can be used in the debate dialogue, though probably only as a descriptor rather than an attack. Say, for example, you define Feminazi as "An individual who holds militantly radical female supremacist ideals at the express expense of males." Then you could use it in that debate as a descriptor since you've pre-defined it. But most of the time, if you're just using it as an "attack," then it has about as much place in a debate as a screaming infant.
I'm not trying to make "rules" for individual words. I'm saying I think this is a good case for questioning, even ridiculing, how people have often been using this particular word in debate -- here, now, lately. Whether tossing it around "just casually" left and right while that is so often happening in an environment where some parties are working very hard to deny women equal rights is going to help change the word in some really "useful way".... Umm, I'm pretty skeptical. But I am foremost talking about these forums and how I sense it being used a lot when I've noticed it more. I could just be hypersensitive to those usages, and if so fine. Against those usages.
Eh, I tend to try and ignore words that I dislike and focus on the heart of what they're saying. If they say something stupid, I'll call them out on it, and I'll TRY to avoid attacking them...but as I said, I will use Feminazi if I think it's an accurate descriptor, and make certain to specify what I mean by the term somewhere in my footnotes.
But now that you've raised the question this way, there really is quite some danger of puffing up the word so much by frequent "casual" use that the nasty uses become a more common shared belief about how the world works. That is the sort of thing that the Republican candidates appear to be aiming for when they talk about women "enjoying" rape or being "able to control" who they are pregnant with and the like, and then insist it was all some sort of informal joke and "regret that their intentions were misinterpreted" after the fact. Now sure 'feminazi' isn't quite that necessarily nasty and people may somewhat more often misinterpret how it's intended, but it's starting to get up there on my ladder of shared and overlapping likely interpretations. At least, the way I understand the society to be pushing the word around today. Your corner might be giving you different information.
There's a cure for that; specify what you mean as much as possible, if you're worried about being misconstrued, and if they misunderstand you, just specify what you meant. If they don't "let" you, they aren't worth talking to anyway.