|This isn't just your daughter, your sister, your mother.|
This is a human being assaulted. It could be you.
Photo: Twitter via SBS
- Julien Blanc is a businessman making money from young male insecurity
- There is an army of young, clueless, potentially-misogynist men out there - just waiting for toxic parasites like Julian Blanc to provide them with an "answer"
- It is uproars like this and the conversations we have which change the culture and reduce the violence and harm caused by men towards women.
Misogyny is a business
Julien Blanc is a businessman and we shouldn't forget that. He found a popular vein and turned it into a profitable business "Real Social Dynamics".
He didn't invent misogyny - he found an existing market to exploit for cash.
Yes, he is a misogynist and it's right that everyone is destroying him in the media right now.
But if it wasn't him, someone else would be hosting those seminars, because our world provides all the ingredients for it.
When I first read about Julien Blanc and saw one of his disgusting video presentations, it reminded me of Tom Cruise in Magnolia - a "narcissistic misogynist who is peddling a pick-up artist self-help course to men". Wikipedia describes, with disturbing accuracy, exactly what I wanted to say.
The difference is Tom Cruise's character was in his 30s. Julien Blanc is apparently just 25.
Age is relevant. Anyone my age (31) or over can see straight through his fast-talking misogynistic bullshit to what he is: an insecure fuckup who has clearly never had a healthy relationship with, or attitude towards, women.
So who are his audience? Who are these misogynists-in-waiting, paying good money to get tricks and tips on how how to treat women like sub-human pieces of shit?
They're male, and they're lonely, and/or lacking social skills, and/or already douchebags.
But they're clearly under 25, because no-one over that age would take him or his attitude seriously as a "guru".
The majority of misogynists aren't misogynists every day
I think it's pretty straightforward. Most people (most) who do bad things aren't bad people, deep down - they do it because they are in a culture of, and surrounded by, people who make bad things seem 1) not wrong and 2) normal.
That doesn't mean we shouldn't hold them responsible, or punish people for doing bad things.
But if you only punish individuals for crimes, you fail to see factors that cause them in the first place.
As a young man I learnt more about periods in Biology class than I did from anyone or anywhere else. We - the boys - were told nothing about them in Personal/Sex Education.
This made it easier as ignorant young males to rip into all women for anything that could be blamed on "moody bitch is having her period LOLZ".
The same goes for the female experience overall. Young men generally know nothing about what it's like to be a woman. And it's always been like this, because the system that makes it that way finds it very suitable to keep it that way.
It's not a conscious system - but it's still a system. It's not a conspiracy, but there's plenty of dickheads oiling the wheels.
So that's why a large chunk of young men find it easy, or favourable, or even beneficial to treat women like trash - because they have no idea what it's like to be afraid of rape, of physical violence, of misogyny and catcalls and discrimination, on a regular basis.
"Men are afraid that women will laugh at them. Women are afraid that men will kill them." Margaret AtwoodAt any one time there is a large mass of young males out in the population doing whatever they think will get them laid.
They are isolated by the same misogynist culture that causes violence to women. It is part of the same system.
It's easy to dismiss mass murdering fuckhead Elliot Rodgers as a "lone weirdo" - but the fact is his lunatic fuckery and sense of entitlement are on exactly the same spectrum as that homophobic prick Dapper Laughs, who has his own show on UK TV about - yes you guessed it! - how to fuck women.
Are you seeing it yet?
In any population of young men, there are some who are good people, and some who are definitely dickheads, and there is a broad mass in the middle who are awkward, frustrated, ashamed of failure, emotionally isolated, and fundamentally uninformed about what it's like being a woman.
They are not automatically misogynists but they are frequently reaching out for anything to escape the horror of failure that society dumps in their face.
And the whole time, people like Julien Blanc and Dapper Laughs define "failure" with one hand while offering misogyny with the other.
Because they are businessmen.
"We’re the number one threat to women! Globally and historically, we’re the number one cause of injury and mayhem to women. You know what our number one threat is? Heart disease.” Louis CK
Actually lots of people like being choked WITH CONSENT
There's a thing called "kink" where people do unconventional sexual things WITH CONSENT.
Human beings enjoy a whole variety of sexual activities which can include bondage, domination, submission, choking, and other kinds of humiliation WITH CONSENT.
Some people love having bad things done to them WITH RESPECT AND CONSENT.
What unites "kinky" and "vanilla" sex is that it should all be done WITH CONSENT.
I read a woman's post on the kink website Fetlife which described how she identifies as a slave, both sexually and as a non-sexual lifestyle choice. She gets sexual fulfilment out of being a slave to someone she respects, and a happy sense of belonging being treated like shit by someone she respects.
She then pointed out how the thousands of misogynists sending her disturbing alpha-male bullshit messages will never get to experience that, because they don't understand RESPECT or CONSENT.
Julien Blanc thinks women should be treated like pieces of shit. He doesn't even - even - say something like, "Deep down all women like it! It's in their nature!" He fails to clear the very first rape-culture hurdle because he doesn't even care what women think at all.
That makes him a rapist waiting to happen.
Once you, or I, or any of these lost young potential-misogynists understand respect and consent, we all get a million miles closer to not only achieving the productive and fulfilling sex that most people seek - but actually reducing harm as well.
The uproars merely show the mainstream what has been unsaid the whole time
Men are often blind to the shit women have to deal with, the same way white people get to walk around never knowing what it's like to have your race pointed out to you on a regular basis.
This lets a lot of men think 1) the world is equal, therefore 2) feminism is a scary movement about hating men and restricting men's rights.
The sad truth is, misogyny and violence against women have been around forever - it's just we've started to listen now, to people who are angry it's still going on.
That's why there's an extreme backlash against Anita Sarkeesian for pointing out the culture of misogyny and violence against women in video games. She's not making this shit up. It's always been there.
Part of me would love to see people like Julien Blanc arrested and convicted for inciting violence against women.
Think about it.
We have laws against inciting violence against people on religious grounds, on racial grounds, on grounds of sexuality.
Julien Blanc is telling paying customers it is A-okay to choke women and shove their head at your cock.
So yeah, have a think about that in terms of criminality and what businesses are legally allowed to promote.
But really, punishing dickheads and criminals does not solve the problem - even after a crime has been committed and punishment + rehabilitation are necessary.
The problem is solved by messaging. By communications.
These uproars often bounce around in the echo chamber of liberal/left social media - people shouting "AGH MISOGYNY AGAIN" at all their friends who already think the same thing.
The culture changes when the anger and the uproar become big enough to escape the echo chamber - when they spill over into the mainstream. When the media cover it - not just liberal media, but conservative media too, without trying to twist it into some victim-blaming bullshit.
When it's too big and too loud for potential misogynists not to hear it - people who normally get their information from shitty conservative newspapers and TV shows and internet personalities who sell misogyny.
When it gets to young men who are let down by institutions and social groups who fail to educate them about the realities women face around the world.
The uproars are part of the solution. Because exposing this bullshit is the first step towards destroying it.