Society

The Jenkins Report’s Man-Hating Wokeness

Do ideologues use the name of feminism to further an agenda that does not have popular support? By ‘feminist’ I mean those who accept equality of opportunity and equality before the law, but who do not believe that women, except in particular circumstances, should have more rights than men. The greatest triumph of feminism has been to persuade everyone that feminism is about nothing more or less than the pursuit of equality between the sexes.

Whenever I’ve offered the slightest objection to feminist dogma, the response has always been the same. I’m asked, ‘Do you not believe in women’s rights?’, so I ask what ‘feminism’ means. The answer is always that feminism equals equality. When I ask, ‘Do you believe the feminist claim that ‘everything is socially constructed?’, including science, reason, logic, and, most notably in recent years, biology, a look of bafflement will usually cross my feminist interlocutor’s face. When I further ask, ‘Do you believe that, since the beginning of time, across all historical periods, among countless multifarious cultures in different geographic and climatic regions, there has existed a patriarchal system designed by men for the sole purpose of keeping women subservient?’ the same look of incredulity will flit across my friend’s face. When I point out that these notions are the foundation of nearly all modern feminism’s philosophy and that, to some extent, all feminists believe in a form of this anti-intellectual nonsense, my feminist friend will simply deny that feminists make these claims. The script and the reaction never vary.

Hardcore feminists don’t believe in equality between the sexes. This is proven by what extreme feminists do rather than by what they say, although the slogan ‘Kill All Men’ may have somewhat given the game away. So, I ask again, how many actual feminists exist who reject extreme feminist theory and who believe in simple equality? This distinction is vitally important.

To put this even more clearly, are there two mutually conflicting strands of feminism? One, the vanilla version known to the public, and the other a dogmatic, ideologically driven feminism which, if its policies were implemented, would have grave consequences for freedom of speech, freedom of conscience and liberal democracy. Have feminists, in other words, used a strategy of linguistic equivocation, saying one thing and meaning another, in a constant game to fool people into thinking that feminism is only about equal rights for women?

The pattern of feminist activism, to be clear, has always pointed in the same direction — that of female chauvinism — and is based on a simple and disingenuous calculation: always increase women’s rights and decrease women’s responsibilities. Name one instance, for example, where feminists have, as a matter of principle, campaigned for anything that reduces female advantage and increases male rights without an obvious quid pro quo hidden somewhere in the legislation. As far as I’m aware, this has not happened in decades of feminist activism, which gives the lie that feminism is only about female equality.

 

I POSE these questions just weeks after the Respect@Work: Sexual Harassment National Inquiry Report (2020), otherwise known as the Jenkins Report, was released.  It contains recommendations of which hard-core feminists would approve but which are antithetical to the everyday understanding of feminism I cite above. Embedded in the report are words and concepts that should worry anyone dedicated to justice and equal rights. The Jenkins Report has, sotto voce, introduced intersectional feminism, gender politics, and wokeness, into the political and legal system. The new model is evidence-based, victim-focussed and framed through a gender and intersectional lens. Group rights, rather than individual rights, are now the default method of adjudicating sexual relations between men and women, with the entire legal system deliberately tilted in favour of women and minorities, including minorities who demand adherence to self-identified status rather than biology. The more points you score on the intersectional discrimination scale, according to this philosophy, the more you are a victim of institutional sexual harassment, which the report states ‘occurs in every industry, in every location and at every level, in Australian workplaces’. In other words, systematically, which is the obverse of the intersectional matrix because, conveniently, intersectional theory holds that sexual harassment and other forms of discrimination are so embedded in society that they are like the fish which doesn’t know it’s in water. Here I am reminded me of an aunt who joked that every child should be smacked because if they haven’t yet done anything wrong, sooner or later they most certainly will.

First, we’ll give men a fair trial and then we’ll hang them. That’s a fair paraphrase of the Jenkins Report’s main recommendation.

Intersectionalism explicitly rejects any conception that justice is blind or the idea that immutable characteristics should have no place in adjudicating claims in a legal system. Intersectional feminism claims that minorities, all the time and permanently, suffer different and mutually enforcing forms of discrimination. Women are  discriminated against because they are not men. Black women are doubly discriminated against because of their colour and their sex. A black lesbian, then, is triply discriminated against. The problem for liberal democracy and a legal system based on individual rights is that intersectional feminism rejects objectivity as a white male way of understanding the world. Only members of a group can understand and speak for members of that group, intersectionalism preaches, stressing an extreme form of in-group relativism. How a person within a group feels about a perceived incident trumps objective fact. Lived experience determines truth and, because power bestows privileges on dominant groups, truth is always judged by the yardstick of relative victimhood.

Where one is placed on the intersectional scale determines the justice or injustice of an accusation. Everything else, including neutral, traditional concepts of justice, are discrimination. The irony is that, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, we have returned to a pre-modern conception of rights. It’s not too long ago that this experiment was tried in different forms which were not a success. Communist and Nazi conceptions of justice, for example, were based on group identity — proletarian and völkisch conceptions of justice respectively. We should know better, looking back at recent history, to privilege the group over the individual. Intersectionalism corrodes any notion of individual rights.

Social justice, that hazy catch-all for instituting the latest feel-good trend is also embedded in the Jenkins Report. The report states that inequalities lead to greater levels of sexual harassment among the poor. If ‘minority’ is a synonym for being poor then the statement is obvious. But it’s a platitude to say that the less money you have the less power you have. Unless the report’s authors know how to cure relative poverty and its attendant social ills, the holy grail of First World economics and which is impossible because human beings are not machines, they’re blowing smoke into an empty bottle, deliberately gaming the system to advantage women. Or, more likely, the feminist establishment.

Intersectionalism, or wokeness, which is partly based on the postmodern, feminist theory of social construction — and which some feminists are now rejecting because of, in a supreme irony, its effects on women’s genuine rights — is like a stealth bomber: you don’t notice until the blast goes off and plane is gone. The Jenkins Report is a perfect illustration of this tendency: it was either written by a group of, to paraphrase Lenin, woke useful idiots who don’t know they’ve been played, or diehard feminist ideologues who, like all extremists, should be kept at arm’s length in any civilised society.

The report claims, for example, that 33 per cent of Australians in the last five years have experienced sexual harassment at work. If that figure seems astonishingly high, that’s because it is. The old feminist ruse of redefining words and concepts is at play. “The two most commonly reported types of behaviour were sexually suggestive comments or jokes and intrusive questions about private life or physical appearance, ” we are informed. This is casting the net so wide that anyone, in any situation, could be deemed guilty. Entirely subjective feelings about sexual harassment are proclaimed the measure of whether sexual harassment has occurred! The report also states that “overwhelmingly … gender inequality was the key power disparity that drives sexual harassment. Gender inequality related to the unequal distribution of power, resources and opportunity between men and women in society….”

 

THE TRAP is set and there’s no escape: sexual harassment is pervasive, it’s whatever the purported victim believes it to be, and because women are somehow denied the “power, resources and opportunities” which are thought to be routinely afforded to men, it’s always men’s fault. Of course, to arrive at this conclusion — that disparities between men and women are drivers of sexual harassment — numerous examples of male inequalities in relation to women must be overlooked, the most obvious being that, by any actuary’s reckoning, men die younger than women, which I would argue is prima facie the greatest evidence of ‘systemic’ discrimination that has ever existed. If we are honest, though, the discrepancy in life expectancy could be linked to biology. But, of course, biology only exists when it suits feminist rhetoric.

The constant equivocation of feminists between the common understanding of feminism and what extreme feminists believe, which is a subset of what I call the feminist two-step, is intellectually and morally dishonest. Feminists can’t claim, to give just one example, there is no difference between the sexes and then ask for extra rights for women. If men and women are the same, because biology is a social construct, there is no reason why women should need rights not afforded to men.

Women are either rational and the intellectual equals of men, which is what I believe, or they’re not. One of the great ironies of the age is that it is feminists, who once railed against claims that women are childlike, overly sensitive, irrational and immature creatures, have systematically legislated to treat women as if every ancient stereotype and caricature is true.

Unfortunate things happen, bad people do evil, and men and women misunderstand each other all the time. But legislating that some people are to be classified as perennial oppressors while others are always their victims is the quintessence of injustice. Adopt the everyday understanding of feminism and dispense with the linguistic equivocation.

Man-hating, no matter what pseudo scholarship it’s dressed up in, is as great a crime against equality as any other form of discrimination.

12 comments
  • Ceres

    A title of Respect@work: Sexual harassment National Enquiry Report (2020}, tells me all I need to know on what their conclusions will be. Sure enough exactly as predicted. Another feelgood waste of money and preferential treatment for women, especially if you’re a black lesbian as outlined by Declan.
    As a woman I am appalled at the demonisation of men by the MSM and also appalled at the appointment of so many incompetent women to high profile positions, where you know men need not apply. Gender trumps all in far too many instances. The likes of the vile Clementine Ford who studied “gender studies” at University should ensure such mickey mouse courses are abolished immediately.

  • lbloveday

    Quote: “Women are either rational and the intellectual equals of men, which is what I believe, or they’re not”.
    I believe from personal observation, reading and discussing that men’s intelligence is more varied than women’s and thus while the average may be the same, this greater variance means there are more men than women at the extremes of ability – more male geniuses and more male idiots.
    .
    As a renowned friend said “So obvious when it is pointed out”.

  • Stephen

    In my experience men and women are equal until there is a loud noise down stairs in the middle of the night.

  • lbloveday

    Stephen,
    In my case it’s until there is a snake in the garden.

  • Daffy

    The mad feminism seems to skip over a couple of things: we are all members of a ‘group’; human. Men are needed for women to reproduce, and men come from women. All seems pretty even-steven to me. But of course modern feminism has as its project its self-destruction. No men….then no women. No next generation. This mutual dependence seems to have escaped them. Or are test tube babies the way to go, with sex selective abortions of males?

  • tommbell

    @ Daffy: “No men….then no women” Maybe.

    Men with the “right” characteristics could always be kept in breeding pens. No need for any of the physial stuff these days.

  • Doubting Thomas

    lbloveday,
    A mouse in t’house is sufficient here.

  • talldad

    Daffy, it sounds as if you understand Princess Ida by Gilbert and Sullivan.

    Indeed the feminist claptrap has been evident for a long time, hasn’t it?

  • colin_jory

    I hope I will not seem to be caviling when I point to a fundamental weakness in Declan Mansfield’s otherwise very impressive article, and that is Declan’s assumption that the feminists are genuinely pro-woman and seek to advance the interests of women generally. Modern feminism did not arise as a spontaneous movement of women “trapped in the kitchen” demanding to be unchained from their traditional families to become career-women. It arose as a miniscule minority-movement of emotionally disturbed, mainly campus-oriented women whose anti-family values stigmatised them in the eyes of ordinary men and women as low-status and unsavoury, and who despised ordinary, happily-married and family-first women because they enjoyed far higher social status. Support for the feminists and their values came mainly not from women, but from the traditionally anti-family male Marxist Left, and male anti-family sexual libertarians such as Hugh Heffner. It was these males who were mainly responsible for the ascent of the feminists to political and cultural power.

    Consider the following. As I well recall from the teachers’ union of which I was a member , and which from the late 1970s was dominated by the feminists and their Leftist male groupies, the feminists were vehemently against government family assistance for women who wanted to look after their own young children instead of crechifying them: any such assistance, they howled, was a “disincentive” for the women to enter the wage-force. They reserved the term “working mothers” for mothers in paid employment, thus implying that mothers who looked after their own children full-time were undesirable bludgers. They detested the Baby Bonus introduced by the Howard government because it went to all women, and they succeeded in having that mega-woke posturer Malcolm Turnbull, when Prime Minister, abolish it altogether. Even before then they had the pathetic career-women-dominated wimp Tony Abbott, when Prime Minister, introduce the massive baby-bonus for career women alone, spread over six months, and dishonestly call it “paid parental leave”. This was despite the fact that the hand-out is given to mothers who are not employed at the time of giving birth and are thus not on leave from anything, provided they can prove that they have a record as career women. Mothers who cannot prove themselves to be career women get zilch — nothing! For the feminists, there is no “right to choose” full-time motherhood!

    When the feminists denounce male mistreatment of women, do they ever instance males who walk out on their wives and children? No, they never do, because they regard anything which busts up families as, ipso facto, at least partly a Good Thing. Do they ever instance males who try to cajole their wives or girlfriends into having an abortion? Again, they never do, this time because they consider an abortion to be an initiation into, or a confirmation in, feminism and thus as always a Good Thing. I dare anyone to show me any feminist propaganda which confutes these observations.

    In the feminist-regulated government school curricula and textbooks — again I speak from experience — the fact that until the very recent past women overwhelmingly aspired to marrying, promptly beginning a family, then looking after their children full-time on their husbands’ salaries until the last of the children had reached at least middle secondary school, is represented as evidence of patriarchal brainwashing of women which gave them a “false consciousness”. Once again the choices and values of ordinary women are considered “valid” only when they are the choices and values which the feminists prescribe for them.

    No, Declan Mansfield, the modern feminists have never sought to represent the values of normal women. In reality, contrary to their rhetoric, they have always been more deeply anti-female than anti-male.

  • Watchman Williams

    Feminists fondly imagine that they are going to change Australia by demanding that all legislation accords with their “feelings”, as opposed to rational principles. But they’re not changing it, they are destroying it by dividing the country into a vast array of special interest groups who each demand that their “feelings” be legislated. What will emerge from the wreckage of the nation will make them look back upon the traditional culture of the Australia they destroyed with a mixture of grief and nostalgia. But by then it will be too late. Indeed, it is too late already. The damage is done and is irreversible.
    But let’s not blame the sisterhood. Generations of weak and cowardly men have facilitated the trashing of our Constitution and the corruption its of legislative and judicial processes to serve special interests, to the detriment of the national interest. This is what happened in Nazi Germany and, in like manner, those narrow sectional interests having sown the wind, we must all reap the whirlwind.

  • Rebekah Meredith

    Thank you, Watchman. I readily admit that the sisterhood has caused a lot of harm, but it is easy to blame the entire problem on militant females and forget that, as you point out, spineless men have cause a fair bit of the damage.
    Graham Hood, a career Qantas pilot who lost his job over the vaccine mandates, has stated his belief that much of our current situation stems from men not being men. For what it’s worth, I agree.

  • gerardcassina

    https://avoiceformen.com/featured/if-abortion-rights-then-the-right-of-parental-surrender/

    In that site, there comments from gastirad 39, on victimisation that are pretty similar to those of Declan Mansfield

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