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Actual discussion taking place on Reddit’s Men’s Rights subreddit

Just another day on r/mensrights, dealing with the terrible injustices facing men today in a thoughtful and compassionate way.

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Pecunium
10 years ago

Brandon: How intentionally thick can you be? The group saying that men are inherently attractive to younger women is an MRA/PUA argument. And I answered the question you asked in the response you are ignoring. But, one more time, I’ll repeat myself.

The argument (meta… that is to say the topic under discussion) is the question of power imbalance in a relationship where there is that large an age gap. If you were willing to read what I wrote (and repeated, because you seemed to have missed it the first time round), I don’t think that all age gap relationships are unhealthy. I do think they are suspect.

Your Martha Stewart/Zoe Saldana argument is a red herring. They are two different people, and one of them is known for being a sexy person, and the other isn’t.

You’d be more convincing if you were comparing an 18 year old sex symbol to a 36 year old one. Apples to apples, not Phaetons to Landaus.

Brandon
Brandon
10 years ago

@Pecunium: It isn’t JUST and MRA/PUA argument as there are a lot of non-MRA’s/PUA’s that believe on average that younger = more attractive/sexier. Although a large portion of MRA’s and PUA’s subscribe to that thinking.

So you think they are suspect. What is suspect (i.e specific power imbalances) about a 40 year old woman marrying a 25 year old man?

Fine, it is a red herring. Lets switch it up to a 1980’s Madonna vs 2010 Madonna. Same person, same sex symbol. Who wants to place money on 1980’s Madonna winning?

The point is that if you compare one woman at two different ages, more often than not, men will find the younger one more attractive. There are always exceptions that deviate from the standard (i.e men that like chubby and/or older women). With 3+ billion men on the planet, you can always find the exception to the rule.

The male corollary could be money (more specifically net worth). If you take the same man and show him with his net worth (say…$100K vs $1Million), more women would choose the higher net worth. Since it is the same man either way, the man with the higher net worth is just icing on the cake.

Kyrie
Kyrie
10 years ago

@ithiliana: At the very least Janet Howell is a childish twit that didn’t learn that “two wrongs don’t make a right” when she was an actual child. It is like her thinking was “Oh we don’t like this law. So instead of fighting it and improving women’s lives, let’s just make another bad law against all men (even the ones that support my position). Let’s not make improvements to everyone’s lives…lets make sure they suffer just as much as we do”. Instead of fighting for women’s rights she is fighting to force men to do something they might not want to do. That makes her the quintessential example of a feminist.

Or maybe she was making an argument reductio ad absurdum?

Kyrie
Kyrie
10 years ago

Blockquote fail… Well, it’s still readable.

Why does my avatar look so much like Brandon’s? Honestly that was my second reason to be glad when he wasn’t here.

Xanthe
Xanthe
10 years ago

Well, you could set up a Gravatar account corresponding to the e-mail address you post comments with, and then all of your comments could be changed to whatever graphic you want.

Oh, and happy birthday!

Kyrie
Kyrie
10 years ago

True, and thanks. I should have done it before, but now that he’s back… So, no login? I hope it works…

Kyrie
Kyrie
10 years ago

Yeah!

Xanthe
Xanthe
10 years ago

Like magic, all your previous comments are suddenly looking more beautiful 🙂

ithiliana
10 years ago

@PFKAE: yeah, that’s why so many students do it. As with most things in life, the “never do X” rules in writing lead to more problems than they solve. I’ve had students tell me their English teachers actually told them that paragraphs had to have X many sentences (*shakes first at stupid ass state test*).

Wow, Brandon is writing about things not just himself.

What he’s writing is absolute crap, of course, but at least he’s made progress.

(He is probably the reason why the “never use I” in your writing rule was invented!)

ithiliana
10 years ago

@Kyrie: Great bluebird gravatar!

Oh, and Brandon could never understand either reductio ad absurdam (or any form of parody or satire), because the only reason he has for doing anything is that which he attributes to Janet Howell.

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

Brandon calling anyone besides himself a childish twit is too rich.

Ithiliana, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone not get humor, satire, or parody like our boy Brandon. He must be quite the hit at parties.

ithiliana
10 years ago

Am I the only one sporfling happily when I look at Brandon’s comments because no matter what crap he’s spewing, I LOVE seeing it because of the fact that it means he had to buckle down and follow DAVID FUTRELLE’S RULES, and while he claimed he’d never do it, being the manly man going his own way, he CAVED. He came crawling back and posted about stuff that wasn’t just about himself.

DAVID PWNED HIM.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
10 years ago

Won’t Ashley miss him now that he’s returned? Won’t her weekends once again be desolate without him?

Brandon’s such a shitty boyfriend. So inconsiderate towards poor Ashley, who just wants to spend more time with him.

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

So much for all the sex they’ve been having, Ash must be so bummed.

Ithiliana, I’m totally digging the fact that he has to watch what he says. It’s probably the first time he’s been PWNED like this.

He could just go the hell away for good, but apparently his ego is so huge he’ll even bend to David’s will if it means he gets to try and “educate” us.

Rutee Katreya
10 years ago

Indeed, Hellkell. I won’t say he’s the dumbest tech idiot I’ve seen on them thar intertubes, but he’s pretty impressive in how stupid he is to his relative knowledgebase. Usually to get an ego this big you need a big name attached (See: Every Engineer who you’ve heard of that opened his or her stupid mouth on Global Warming or Evolution). This one is just precious, though, because he’s an omnispecialist lawyer, a tech geek, a psychologist, Rambo, an economist, and so much else all in one package.

A jack of no trades, master of even fewer, I guess you might say.

Viscaria
Viscaria
10 years ago

Ha, Kyrie, I used to feel bad for you for having such a Brandon-like image. I like the new one!

Brandon, you said:

The point is that if you compare one woman at two different ages, more often than not, men will find the younger one more attractive.

And then you said:

The male corollary could be money (more specifically net worth).

I’m about to rock your world so I suggest that you hold on to something. Brandon, many women find younger men more attractive than older men. Many 20 year old women are going to reject a 35 year old man simply because they’re not as physically attracted to him as someone their own age. Much as I love him, if my own partner didn’t look a decade younger than he actually is I would probably not be attracted to him. This is ignoring, of course, all the other reasons why a large age gap can pose a problem — not being in the same stage in life, large income gaps,* etc. These aren’t just random problems I’ve invented to shame men for being attracted to younger women, just so we’re clear; these are challenges me and my partner face in our day-to-day lives.

In any case, given how many loving and happily sexual het couples I know in their 50s and 60s… I don’t feel at all worried that at some magic age, no man is going to want to touch me anymore.

*Yes, shockingly, the fact that my boyfriend makes a lot more than I do is a struggle, not a benefit.

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

I was over 30 before I ever became attracted to or dated someone in their 40s, and their net worth wouldn’t have made a bit of difference in their attractiveness to me.

Rutee:

I won’t say he’s the dumbest tech idiot I’ve seen on them thar intertubes

I dunno, I think most of them could sockpuppet worth a damn.

Pecunium
10 years ago

Brandon: You are getting partway there. Let’s talk more than looks. Let’s talk actually being in a relationship, as opposed to fuck and forget.

Let’s talk 18 year old Madonna vs. 30 year old Madonna. Let’s talk dinner, and conversation; and repeat it for weeks.

Thats what’s problematic about a 45 year old and an 18 year old (gender irrelevant, hetero/home, male older/female older). The relative lack of life experience translates to a lack of actual relation. The one partner is going to end up dominating things, because that partner has more which they can relate it to.

Which is why relationships with larger age gaps tend to founder more.

But you go right on believing that people who don’t go for the presently popular ideal (look at 18th century art, look at 19th century art, look at 16th century art. Now compare Italian to French to English to Dutch, in those periods) are some sort of outlier: rather than the small group which is being praised being the outlier.

And keep pretending women are all shallow bints who only care about the size of a man’s bank account.

Then again your example is inane… if it’s the same man, then as you say, it’s the same. You’ve not actually changed the person. Would I like it if my partner were as wealthy as the Cout of Monte Christo? Probably. I say probably because I know some people who are wealthy to the point that money really is no object. Most are no happier than anyone else who has enough. Some aren’t as happy. We have enough, so yes, a little more might be nice, but enough to not have to do anything; to live a life of indolent ease, I don’t think I’d like that. I don’t think she’d like that.

What that does to the ways in which one spends time, etc. would dramatically change the relationship, and the ways in which we relate to the world.

Not, of course, that any rational argument is going to persuade you, in the least, to change an iota of your prejudices.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
10 years ago

It’s funny how sexist dudes are always so attached to the idea that money is to men as beauty is to women in terms of sexual attraction. Brandon’s blown a gasket at me before for saying that I don’t find certain men attractive based on looks, and we all know how MRAL feels about that kind of thing. MRAL actually said something useful for once in one of the recent threads, that men like to feel like being attractive to women is something they can earn, and I think that is where the pushback against women expressing sexual attraction comes from, because looks are something people can only control to a very limited degree. They all seem to be attached to the idea that women are attracted to money because, in theory, anyone could get rich (obviously this is bullshit, because kyriarchy, but in theory). In reality, some women do take money into account when choosing boyfriends/husbands, but unless they have a rather unusual fetish it’s not because of anything sexual. Most women don’t go “oh, that gold card makes my panties so wet”.

It’s a weird thing because men like that seem to WANT women to choose men based on money and status, but then they get pissy at the idea of women actually doing so. But not nearly as pissy as they get when women make it clear that we’re choosing partners based on sexual attraction, because, like, that’s so shallow! And superficial! Men would never…oh. But that’s different because…evolutionary psychology.

BTW, how does one change one’s gravatar? I’m thinking that maybe it’s time to break out the icon I use on Jezebel, etc., just because it pisses sexist dudes off so much.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
10 years ago

BTW, in terms of age, the cutoff that I would list if asked is 45. I’m 38. The oldest man I’ve been attracted to recently was in fact 45. Via work I meet quite a lot of men with lots of money, and oddly enough I only ever want to bang the hot ones.

(Obviously I’m not going to, because that would be unprofessional.)

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

Cassandra, to change your gravatar, click on what’s there go to gravatar and either make an account or log in and upload your pic.

PosterformerlyknownasElizabeth

@Elizabeth: They might look unhealthy to you. Relationships are about mutual agreement. A relationship isn’t classified healthy because you could substitute yourself and say “I would enjoy being in this relationship”.

They look unhealthy because they are unhealthy. If you have a 40 year old dating a 20 year old (and this is dating, not the “oh wow, look at that pretty girl over there who happens to be 20” thing that I believe you are conflating with actually dating) the power difference is easy to see and it is too easy to abuse the one without the power.

Over time those differences can fade so a 60 year old dating a 40 year old is not going to have the same distorted power dynamic.

@Elizabeth: If you are old enough to vote for your leaders, take full responsibility for committing a crime and be sent to war in the name of your country…you are old enough to choose to be a sex worker.

That is possibly the weirdest use of that old adage regarding drinking.

1. The age for voting used to be 21 because people wanted someone to be more mature when voting for their leaders. It was switched because of Vietnam. Which leads me to two:

2. A person who is sent off to die for their country is generally not handed a gun (at least in the US) and told “good luck!” They are given extensive training. They are not allowed to go near a battlefield without that training. So the difference is a bit on the stark side.

3. People who are 18 and charged with serious crimes do have their ages taken into account when sentenced. It is part of mitigating circumstances that are part and parcel of any sentencing report.

Again, the objection seems to be not “we are not treating teenagers as mature responsible adults” but “I want to get my hands on teenagers for money.” The difference between the twain is important and you are not paying attention to that because you are why some of the founders feared giving the rabble the right to vote directly for leaders.

Pecunium
10 years ago

Cassandra: Shhhh…. wanting to bang the hot ones shows agency. That would reveal that men and women are alike.

Which, of course, is what the MRAs, and Brandons, of the world don’t want to admit. They want to pretend that the differences that come from removing one chromosomal arm (the dangly one on the X) can somehow control huge aspects of character. All the rest of the genome is the same, so all these amazingly subtle evolutionary things (like money… the fuck? Money?) are tied up in changes to the X chromosome, and some (like money) are less than 5,000 years old.

They will try to backtrack, and say, “The guy with the most prowess at hunting got more tail, and so acquisitive nature in women goes way back… but hunting/gathering societies (from Africa, to New Guinea, to Australia, to North America, to Central America, to South America, to the Arctic), have never been found to work that way.

So it’s 5,000 years to cause this shift they believe is innate.

It’s rubbish, and any reasoned examination shows this to be the case, but if so… then they have to admit women are people just like them. I think that’s what scares them, because they are shallow, immature and selfish; they don’t want to have to admit to it, so they pretend it’s innate, and project it onto women. They just change the parameters for which women are selfish to money; because that will let them stay immature, shallow and selfish.

Kendra, the bionic mommy
Kendra, the bionic mommy
10 years ago

If both parties are willingly participating, what possible power imbalances could arise between an 18 year old prostitute and a 45 year old customer that wouldn’t arise if we changed the age of the prostitute to 21?

A person can mature a lot between the ages of 18 and 21. Many 18 year olds are still in high school trying to decide what to do after graduation. There would be a huge gap in life experience and wisdom between a middle age person and a high school senior. By the time someone is 21, zie has spent some time in the real world outside of high school. Zie may be in college or working a job. It’s easier for a 21 to be financially self sufficient than an 18 year old still in high school or right out of school.

That’s why I’m comparing a 21 year minimum age for sex work to the laws against student/teacher relationships. Both of those laws are intended to minimize power imbalances that make sexual coercion likely.

The US has had fewer drunk driving fatalities since it changed the minimum drinking age to 21. Mothers Against Drunk Driving has the statistic

More than 25,000 lives1,2 have been saved in the U.S. thanks to the 21 Minimum Legal Drinking Age.10,11

This law continues to prevent tragedies—decreasing crashes by an estimated 16 percent and keeping young people safer from many risks.13

source, MADD

Choosing to become a sex worker has risks, just like gambling or drinking alcohol. It is better for society if everyone involved in sex work is old enough to understand these risks and how to minimize them.

The only argument the MRA’s have against the minimum sex work age is they believe all women in favor of it are just jealous of teenagers. That’s not a convincing argument, especially since I know that it’s not true for me at all. They don’t speak for me or know my motives in taking this stand. I’m also not going to shed any tears for MRA’s that think 21 year old sex workers are too old for their tastes.

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
10 years ago

The “but I’m just thinking of the rights of the theoretical 16 year old sex worker! she deserves to be treated like an adult!” line really is hilarious. Sure, dude, you totally have her best interests at heart. This is not at all an expression of blatant self-interest, and your clever rhetoric definitely has us all fooled.

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