Saturday, December 08, 2007

Justice is a woman with a sword on her way to a gun fight

On Dec. 6 every year since 1989, women, mostly women, hold vigils to commemorate the Montreal Polytechnique shooting massacre of 14 women merely for being women. As much as it is for the women who died, this yearly tribute continuess because not enough has changed for many of the rest of us in the intervening 18 years.

Women working fulltime still make .73¢ on every dollar made by men in comparable jobs and thousands of battered women still seek shelter in not enough shelters. Certainly Marc Lepine's battered mother could have used one. Yet despite this, last I heard the only street-level women's advocacy group in Victoria, the capital of BC, was still operating out of a storage locker.

Since 1991, The White Ribbon Campaign, almost all men, pledge to do what they can to end violence against women and children in their communities. Hats off to them.

Some other people wish we'd all just shut up about it. It's an unseemly public display, they say, and besides it's unfair to men. Usually they go on to state that more men than women die violently every year while neglecting to mention that those men are almost always killed by ...other men. Mostly they complain that the memorial is divisive and that destructive attitudes towards violence cross the boundaries of sex, class, and religion. I am willing to concede this last point; in fact I'm willing to prove it.

The following three sets of statements regarding the Montreal massacre were taken from texts written by Marc Lepine, the Let Freedom Reign group blog of a Calgary aldermanic candidate, and National Post columnist Barbara Kay, those last two just a couple of days ago. I challenge you to guess who said what.

"...male heroism was considered a quality deserving of public recognition. But now, a "grandfathered" Nov. 11 is the only day of the year when feminist ideologues refrain from overt misandry....male-bashing is often justified by the fact that more men kill women than women kill men."

"However my Christian upbringing isn’t good at telling me to go out and kill feminists. Even though they sanction the death of over 50,000 of their sisters each year. While everyone is agonizing over violence against women “today” more men in Canada fall victim than women to violence every year."

"...the feminists always have a talent for enraging me. They want to retain the advantages of being women (e.g. cheaper insurance, extended maternity leave preceded by a preventive leave) while trying to grab those of the men.... They are so opportunistic that they neglect to profit from the knowledge accumulated by men throughout the ages. They always try to misrepresent them every time they can."

Answers in comments.

H/T bastard.logic


Alison said...

1)Barbara Kay, Nat Post
2)Let Freedom Reign
3)Marc Lepine

Anonymous said...

How sad...

'Seems every year there are a few nutters who have the nerve to use December 6th as a pretext to bash feminists, whine about the "loss" of traditional male privileges, and deny that male violence against women is an actual problem.

Or worse: defend Marc L├ępine's actions on the ground that he was truly oppressed by women, or play down the gravity of his actions by saying that he didn't hate women, and that he just wanted to get rid of all those ball-crushing feminists...

What enrages me the most is that (1) the media already don't seem to care about gender-based violence, and that (2) they don't seem to condemn at all such blatant instances of December 6th revisionism and hate speech against women.


Anonymous said...

Violence against women is actively condoned by society, and with good reason. Every time average folks spend their time focusing on relatively trivial inequities, they miss the big one. Whichever side of the issue they are on, everyone gets sucked in enough to ignore the basic fact that a tiny percentage of the people on this earth own basically everything, and endlessly exploit the rest of us, while we fight over crumbs.

You can not fix the system working from the bottom up. Sexism, racism, religious intolerance, homophobia, all of these things will remain endemic to our society as long as there is a powerful elite class who are able to shape social discourse, and who need to distract people from the real reason they're getting screwed over.

Unknown said...

while a sister of mine was the fund raiser for the women's monument project and my daughter and i have a stone with our names on it....i never get there for the gathering. it just never works out. WMP was built so we would remember THEM, and not HIM, and not have to say his name.

there's an 'illegal' woman's camping space in hawaii....created so we can just hang around being ourselves and not have to endure the physical and psychic space that men take up. it's a sacred spot and the local men know not to enter.

lo and behold , every year white men find out about it and try to break through it's energy bounds......just to be able to brag to their buddies that they could and did. nuh uh. that's an unspoken of violence, so unwelcome it's infuriating. at least the indigenous men know that mamma is in charge of the land.

if women have to work at keeping something as simple as space for themselves, then you know from there on thing aren't right in the world.

yet you see it still, prevelantly, moms and dads raising their kids with different thoughts in mind......the boy must succeed and do chores like mowing the lawn. sister must marry someone with money and her chores are cleaning.

where's the sense?

Budd Campbell said...

The figure 73 cents on the dollar is somewhat misleading if taken in isolation. This is based on average annual earnings taken across all men and women who worked full-time for the whole year. However, if hourly wages are used as the measure, the ratio is more like 80%. An excellent article on this subject is by StatsCanada's Marie Drolet in the Dec 2001 issue of Perspectives on Labour and Income:

"The Male Female Wage Gap"

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