The more I thought about one of yesterday’s tidbits, the more I wanted to write my own response to it. Satoshi Kanazawa, who writes “The Scientific Fundamentalist” for PsychologyToday.com wrote a post titled, “Why Modern Feminism is Illogical, Unnecessary and Evil.” I’d like to address a few of his comments.
Kanazawa’s biggest beef appears to be that feminists believe that men and women are identical. No feminist I know today thinks this. What feminists say is that men and women should have identical opportunities. But Kanazawa writes that “men and women are inherently, fundamentally, and irreconcilably different,” and that because of that, we shouldn’t expect or encourage them to do the same things.
He uses the fact that women don’t make as much money as men as proof that women don’t care about making money as much as men do. Tell that to any single mother struggling to raise her family. Or to the woman who is doing the same job as a man but not getting paid as much. I suppose they both say, “It’s okay that I’m not making as much money as the men do; it’s the way I like it.”
I don’t know any sensible person who professes to know exactly how much of a person’s makeup is the result of nature and how much the result of nurture. For example, not all women are maternal. Perhaps if women weren’t the ones who end up holding the baby, so to speak, even less women would be maternal. Also, it can’t be a coincidence that since the feminist movement has pushed for men to be more involved in raising their children, we are seeing more men who are taking on child-raising responsibilities.
Kanazawa also uses the fact that men are more fragile physiologically as proof that women are actually at least on an even playing field with them, if not superior. Just because one sex is better at something doesn’t mean that it is superior in every way. Which is exactly what feminists have been saying for the past forty years. Being bigger and stronger doesn’t mean that men are better doctors, for instance.
One of Kanazawa’s most egregious statements is that “any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women.” Does this guy read over what he’s written??
In my opinion, Kanazawa’s use of the phrase “reasonably attractive young woman” shows that he thinks a woman’s power is based on her sexuality. While I do think that some women wield sexual power over men and use it to enslave them, they do it as a poor substitute for having the kind of power than men have. And besides, don’t even try to tell me that men don’t wield sexual power over women, often with disastrous consequences.
I have a theory about men who are as anti-feminist as this guy is. I think that he feels that a woman screwed him over in some way during his life and he’s bitter about the power that she has/had over him to make him miserable. Maybe she rejected him in love, or got a hefty divorce settlement from him or a promotion he thought should have been his. Maybe he had a horrible relationship with his mother. Whatever it was/is, he takes it out on feminists, as a way to vent his anger about women in general.
This is not so different from a white man resenting blacks because he perceives them as taking something from him: power, respect, a job, a woman. When a black enters the “white world,” he used to be considered “uppity.” Feminists are seen as “uppity” women because they don’t know their place.
I’m not saying that all men who have had run-ins with women are going to become women-haters or rabid anti-feminists. What I am saying is that I think this particular man has issues. If he’s not bitter, he’s afraid, or both. He’s afraid that feminists might actually be right: that men have misused their power. They use it to hold others down, so that they can feel better about themselves. He is afraid of losing his, so he lashes out with his “superior” intellect. But his arguments, like all anti-feminists, are weak. Just read his articles if you doubt that what I say is true.