My friend, the sexist

by

I’ll preface the story say simply stating I’m a male feminist.

I have a fairly equal smattering of both male and female friends, and I love them all to death. There are times however when my male friends seem to lose all tact whatsoever around (or behind the backs of) my female friends. It’s embarrassing to say the very least.

Once a male schoolmate came in to see my work for the first time, I work in a pretty cool record joint so visiting friends is totally acceptable. He and I were just shooting the shit when one of my female co-workers who is also a dear friend came up to me, announced she was going home for the evening, gave me a hug and left. I bade her good night, and as she walked out, my friend from school’s eyes almost jumped out of his head and followed her ass out the door. He turned to look at me again and exclaimed loudly, in front of the rest of my friends and co-workers “Damn! I’d love to take THAT ass home!”

There is no polite way to dance around a comment like that.

I became very stern with him, and said “excuse me? Dude, that’s my friend, and she’s also a person, show some damn respect.”

He did not take what I said seriously at all, and was too smug to suck it up and apologize for his comment.

I mean… I understand that we’re men, okay? and men are attracted to women. I’m not some fucking eunuch who’s scared to acknowledge a beautiful woman, which… my friend most definitely is, in spades, but why do you think I’m okay with hearing you talk about my friends this way? Cuz she’s a lady, and somehow, therefore less deserving of respect, it’s all good to simply announce your crude intentions to bone her? I guess I should be agreeing with you and joining in with your witty banter, because I’m a man, and I only have female friends because I intend to bone them myself. That’s why men have female friends in the first place, right? What a fucking loser.

Interesting addendum. This guy is fucking lucky that he only received MY vitriol, because if SHE had heard him say that… holy crap… he’d have had all kindsa new assholes torn into him. #MFIF

Knave Murdok, California, USA

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20 Responses to “My friend, the sexist”

  1. sarah Says:

    Good on you for saying something. Sometimes I really dread to think what my male friends say when there aren’t any women around, and I think it’s really important for guys to call other guys out for this kind of thing in order to challenge sexist behaviour. I’m pleased to hear there are some out there who aren’t scared to do so.

  2. H Says:

    Same response as Sarah – I’m so pleased to read that you challenged your friend, even if it didn’t get through this time.

    I’m sure there are a lot of men who are uncomfortable with the things their friends say about women when in all-male groups, and if more of them were able to speak out about how they really felt like you did, we’d make a lot of progress. Unfortunately a lot of male bonding seems to revolve around hating women, so anyone who does speak up runs the risk of being ostracised. The dilemma of the male feminist…

  3. Pavlov's Cat Says:

    Thanks for saying something about it to him.

  4. Abby Says:

    Seriously, this made my day. Thank you so much for sticking up for her. I wish all men would do this!

  5. Enoon Says:

    I’ve got more than a few female friends who talk in such a manner about men and women when they’re not around (and occasionally when they are). It’s far more a “how comfortable are you with people who openly express their sexual thoughts,” than anything else. If you’re not comfortable with people talking in such a way, THAT is what you should have told your friend. What you did here, was take something YOU found uncomfortable, project the discomfort onto your friend, and then use that opportunity to not only act as a “white knight,” but then go out of your way to seek praise for it? I get the feeling you’re one of those male “feminists” who’s interest is nothing beyond fishing for the admiration of women.

    • H Says:

      I really do see your point, but how else is a man supposed to talk about sexism on here without being labelled an attention seeking ‘white knight’? It seems like we could always say that a man talking about discrimination against women with a bunch of feminists is trying to ingratiate himself with us. We can’t start suspecting all male feminists of entryism, otherwise it makes us look like we can’t understand the possibility of there being male feminists.

    • hk Says:

      regardless of your comfortability of expressing your sexual thoughts, no woman is just a “piece of ass” in the same kind of way that no man is just a “piece of ass” (imagine how that would make a MAN feel.) and also, fishing for compliments is not a bad thing. to know that there are men who will stick up for a woman is a wonderful thing.

      • Enoon Says:

        Fair points. There’s just something about the tone of this OP that really rubs me the wrong way.

    • H Says:

      Yeah I get what you mean about the tone too, but I put it down to (please don’t attack me for this, Americans!) him being American, and perhaps expressing himself differently to me as a reserved Brit, or just to a personal writing style. The ‘i got really stern’ and some of what follows could sound a bit like asserting that he’s the hero of the piece – the real man – but I don’t feel like that’s what’s intended. Thanks for pointing the tone thing out, it is worth being aware of.

  6. Louise Says:

    Not all men are attracted to women.

  7. JD Says:

    I guess she needs you to stick up for her because she’s female? If her mates had been talking about how they want to take you to bed, I doubt you’d have thought she was valiant if she’d had a go about it. We don’t need you to stick up for us, we don’t need you to stop people from saying they’re attracted to us… it was hardly harrassment and it wasn’t even that disrespectful. Your attempts at being a ‘white knight’ certainly don’t impress me in the way you clearly want them to.

    • kktwain Says:

      Really? Because I would be really insulted if I found out a guy said something like that about me. I am not an sex object, thank you very much. If the guy had said, “wow, she’s pretty,” that would be a compliment. But “Damn! I’d love to take THAT ass home!”? That’s very sexist and disrespectful.

      Also, he isn’t sticking up for her “because she’s female”. He’s sticking up for her because she’s a person and deserves to be treated like one, instead of an object of sexual desire.

      Ugh. I HOPE no guy has ever said anything like that about me.

    • xchx Says:

      No… he stuck up for his friend because she wasn’t there to do it herself.

      I found this really refreshing actually. I have had male teammates who would watch the women practice and rank everyone by who had the “best breasts.” It would have been nice to know that someone stood up for us and actually treated us as though we were whole people (and athletes) and not just body parts.

      And I honestly don’t mind giving him some credit, its hard to stand up to friends who say obnoxious things. It’s cool to me to see people who are willing to do it in awkward situations.

  8. julianagain Says:

    Aw, don’t all be so mean. Male feminists need to rant too! It’s so easy for a guy to sit there silent even if they felt like telling another guy to STFU, so I’ll say well done to the OP for actually bothering to say anything when it would probably have been easier to say nothing or gloss over it. I don’t think the OP was trying to glorify himself with a big ALLY badge, I think he was grumpy about how his friend was treated. And that’s fair enough.

  9. breathofawen Says:

    Something about this post rubs me the wrong way. I’m not sure if it’s the tone, or simply my own assumptions.

    I guess I’ve just had way too much experience with “nice guy” white knighting types that seem to want a cookie just because they aren’t assholes. #MFIF

  10. sz01 Says:

    Oh god, he just can’t win can he?

  11. darlingvioletta Says:

    Poor guy. Genuinely trying to help, I think.

    However, I do get what people mean about the ‘tone’ of the post. It was the “I became very stern with him, and said “excuse me? Dude, that’s my friend, and she’s also a person, show some damn respect.” “. I think the reason that I read the post in this way is because I have a friend who talks this kind of talk all the time, in an attempt to frame himself as some kind of sensitive, non-threatening ‘new man’. Which would be lovely if he walked the walk, but he actually has very little respect for women.

    It just makes me wary, you know. Men like my friend seem to have woken up to feminism as a way to get girls, spouting feminist platitudes instead of chat-up lines. I don’t like it at all – it’s patronising and cynical and somehow more offensive to me that than the ‘damn that’s a fine ass’ comments.

  12. knavemurdok Says:

    I’m sorry a lot of you feel that I’m not genuine in my defense of my friend.
    I obviously can’t change your mind about my actions, because you don’t know me, and obviously your suspicion is based more on the prior actions of people that you DO know.
    I was pretty aware that I was going to be accused of this “white knightery” before I even posted this, but I did it anyway, having said that, all I can do is clarify.
    I didn’t defend her because she was female and I thought she needed defending. I didn’t defend her just because she was my friend and I knew her. I defended her because she wasn’t there to do it herself. Like I said, if she’d heard him say it with her own ears, there’d be no need for me to say anything at all, she’d have taken the fuck care of it herself, because she’s awesome like that.
    I ALSO did it more of his sake than for anyone else’s. People like him with big mouths will get themselves in trouble one way or another. If he’s not called on his bullshit now, then it’s just a matter of time before he says the wrong thing to the wrong person and maybe gets himself punched out, instead of just a talking to.

    I understand that maybe this is an attitude a lot of guys adopt because they think it will get them laid. Maybe some intentions are not as pure as others. I’d go as far as to say that this “attitude”, this perception of equality among the sexes and mutual respect, simply leads to better understanding and relationships plain and simple.
    Do I think this way because I think it will help my chances, as I troll the internet for booty? No, that’s insulting. Do I think that relationships, personal and societal as a whole would be better if more people thought this way? Most certainly.

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