Hey, you know how you feel like you just have to say something in a comment section? Don't worry, you don't. Actually, if I really, really, really feel like I have to say something I should just wait ten days and see how it sounds then. Because it's exhausting to ride the wheel of internet samsara.
Remember this? Can A Man Be A Feminist? Well, I went back there to look at this: The Trouble With Male Allies. It was pretty good, except when it said this:
"I, of course, see this often as men try to comment here on this site by authoritatively stating “AS A FEMINIST______,” demanding that we lend him more credibility in these discussions because he self-identifies as an ally. These men tend to be become quickly irate when you tell them that their opinion on feminism or what is wrong with feminist ideology isn’t of much concern."
When I was called a Douche bag on Feminist Current ...
WAIT I'm sorry, no one actually called ME a douche bag, it went more like this:
Me:"I'm a feminist"
Comment: "Men can't be feminists"
Meghan: "Men who call themselves feminists are douche bags"
I've been told over and over again that Meghan didn't mean me. I have a really tough time seeing this and I give up. Maybe I need to rework my neural path ways.
Anyway, when I was offended on Feminist Current, I didn't say anything but, "I bow out." And then I read that men who are called out when identifying as feminists are "irate?" So I say:
Red Legged Frog Lover,
You know, they really thought the frog add in was over the top, but I still disagree; there are even less Red Legged Frogs then there are male allies, and at least we can learn to speak human languages.
Secondly, I said something about the effectiveness of the feminist movement.
Right here, I'd like to extend my criticism that Nothing Is Getting Done to all movements. How do I know this? Because when I go to a protest the cops bring their guns and I have to leave mine at home. Okay, so I don't have a gun, but what I mean to say is that we are still facilitating the down hill flow of violence...My dad always said don't bring a knife to a gunfight...you know what I brought to the last "gun fight"? A sun flower. Then I "risked" arrest, only widely "escaping" as it took police at least an hour to arrest 20 people (though over 200 patient ones "succeeded"). Feminism included, all these movements seem to populate the board with pawns against a kingdom of queens, or rooks, or some fast moving powerful piece. So please, yes, we're building culture, we're educating ourselves and others, but largely things remain unchanged. The only real change I've seen is mutation: we have a black man in office who is known in the papers as the "king of drones." Drone strikes, brown person dropping bombs on other brown people. Why should white men alone be suspect? I say be wary of all in power.
Lastly, about DGR, my awakening movement, to who I owe my approach to activism, I mean how did the leadership make such a huge deal about the transgendered issue that Aric left. This, after my experience with Austin, TX chapter collapsing (with no response from the founder, nor anyone I talked to from DGR) and that the Bay Area chapter is non existent (I think? Can't find anything. Spoke to a DGR table person last year in Berkeley and he said there was nothing going) I can say that DGR seems like a cluster fuck. Great hearts, rallied the eco warrior spirit, but fell into the same in house fighting they warned against. I still love them, but good god.
And about the transgendered issue, why couldn't the non-cis women just stand down and accept that cis-women wanted their own space? My personal policy is that if someone feels uncomfortable with my presence, I'll give them space. No justification necessary. It's not about me, or transgendered women, it's about some humans that want a space they feel comfortable in.
Given that, I reject that transgender is a post modern manifestation and a coup of gender co-opters. That's some Scientology shit right there. Transgender has roots that reach back 3000 years. Hell, 9/8 of our Buddhist statuary looks trans and manifest as male, female, non-male, non-female.
And that's what I learned in the hell realm of Feminist Current. And I'm thankful. There are so many mean spirited comments over there directed at me, at least 10 people can't be wrong; there's something for me to look at.
1. I mansplained ( in clever enough way that I didn't notice and no one else called it our either-the worst)
2. Why do people have to voice they're not comfortable for me to leave on my own accord?
3. I derailed the main point of the blog post (which is actually a very good post).
Yeah, so, I don't fit in over there. Does anyone know of a movement that actively combines resistance to patriarchy, capitalism, and ecocide from the Buddhist perspective that these things spring forth from greed, hate, and delusion, which cause the suffering we see in our world?
Maybe Buddhist Peace Fellowship will be nice. But who cares, really. Feminist or male ally, I think back to last month as me and my friend Claudia waited to be arrested. There was a calm as we wrote the Know Your Rights hotline on our hands with big black markers; Feminist or not, we didn’t feel so separate then. The gravity of big men in black armor suits with practical baseball bats brought together the IWW, Idle No More, Earth Sangha, some socialists, some anarchists, and our little contingent of robe wearing Ecosattvas from a Zen temple in the hills, aged 20-70. As we were rounded up, these titles fell away. Elbow to elbow, sweating on hot black pavement, wishing for sunscreen and water, it didn’t matter, and it sure didn’t matter to the fucking police department as to what faction they should place us with once protesters were zip tied.
For the record, I'll never call myself feminist again. I agree with Meghan here- it's not for me to decide. And it doesn't really impact my actions.
May Avolokitsvara lend me her ears so that I might hear more suffering in the world. May Manjushri help me cut through the delusion. May Samanthabhadra give me courage to move toward obstacles.