Thank you. Seriously. Towards the end of New Labour's time in government, I was starting to think that it would be good for them to be out of office for a while, to think about what they'd done, and hopefully decide that being more Tory than the Tories was not a super-effective long-term plan. Central to this was the question, "How much worse can a Conservative government be?"
So thank you for answering that with such aplomb. Because even after Iraq, tuition fees, and a childhood spent blinded by Tony Blair's gleaming grin, all it takes is something like this to remind me - yes, the Tories really are worse.
And now to specifics: three, two, one, go!
Isn't it conceivable, though, that this is due to the dying-but-still-with-us idea that men should go out to win bread while women stay home to bake bread? Which is a "sexist" idea - the old fashioned kind, where women are discriminated against, not this fancy new-fangled "reverse sexism", which I recommend you have a good hard think about - so really, this "discrimination against men" is a direct result of "discrimination against women". And feminists are against it, by the way.
Also, earlier in your article you attribute the gender pay gap (whereby women working full-time earn 15.5% less than men) to individual "choice" - women choosing less well-paid careers. Surely, then, this "raw deal" men are saddled with is primarily their own fault? Why aren't they choosing less demanding jobs? Or opting to take a career-break to care for children? (Which is never stressful.) No one's forcing you to be an MP, for example.
You then rail against (amongst other things) "anti-male discrimination in rights of maternity/paternity leave", and the way in which you say "divorced or separated fathers are systematically ignored by the courts". Again, this is symptomatic of the separate spheres model which insists that women should do virtually all child-rearing. And again, feminists aren't in favour of this - we're actively campaigning against it. Making parental leave transferable, as you advocate, is one of the feminist movement's central demands.
I'm with you on this. It's annoying as hell.
Feminists are now amongst the most obnoxious bigots.Hold on, what? How did you get from "people express prejudiced attitudes" to "feminism itself is the cause of prejudiced attitudes"? We're against that! Honestly! I rant about it all the time!
Okay, you've now seriously lost all contact with reality. You're blaming feminists for John Gray now? Men Are From Mars is a feminist text since when? Since we all got zapped into Bizarro-World? Hey, Dom, guess what my very first blog post was: a tirade about how ascribing discrete and opposing traits to men and women is (a) balls, and (b) never taken to its logical conclusion. This kind of thinking is described by a (feminist!) concept known as "oppositional sexism", and - I feel I'm repeating myself here, but still, it needs to be said - WE. ARE. AGAINST. IT.
You then move on to your ideas for practical solutions to address inequality. Firstly, as discussed above, you advocate for transferable parental leave, which - I've said it before, I'll say it again; go on, Dom, say it with me - is a feminist goal, supported by and campaigned for by feminists.
The other is the married person's tax allowance, which you lament was "mocked" by those who saw it as "socially regressive". Well, yeah, because it is: why do you get to decide what kind of relationships are worth subsidising? You claim that the policy "would support women who choose to stay home, when their children are young, while helping them save for childcare, if and when they choose return to work" - firstly, I thought you were complaining about having to work for a living? Won't this just increase the burden on the long-suffering manployee? And secondly, I have to ask - if this is primarily meant to help people raising kids, why is it reserved for married people?
You seem to subscribe to a surprising number of feminist views, Dom, from what I can gather from your article on how feminism is inherently bigoted. It's as if you've come across a lot of phenomena that wind you up - gender stereotyping, prescriptive gender roles, the culture of overwork - and decided that feminism is to blame for all of them. I'm really not sure how you got there, but I invite you to take this as a learning opportunity: take a look around. Find out what we actually believe, rail against, fight for. I think we'd agree on a lot of things.
Your article was kind of arsey, but hey, feminists can be arseholes too. It's a big tent.
Welcome to the team.
A Feminist Bigot