There is a popular viewpoint in the manosphere that is often implied but rarely stated outright. Very few manosphere guys actually come out and say it. Vox Day is one of the few guys brave enough (or crazy enough) to state it on a regular basis, and I think Chateau Heartiste has said it a few times too. Most other manosphere guys talk around it and give it lip service, but most don’t actually say it.
It is a viewpoint I disagree with, regardless of the fact that it does have factual validity.
Sound strange? Well, yeah. It is. It’s a complex issue and I’ll do my best to describe it, as well as my stand on it.
This often-held but equally unstated viewpoint is this: “Women shouldn’t have all the same rights as men, because if they did, society would have problems, and we can prove it.”
Here are some examples of this viewpoint in action:
- The viewpoint states if women didn’t get married, have babies, and raise them, the human race would die out (or at least the white European-descended race would die out). Therefore, all women MUST have children. Women who choose to never have children are “worthless” (or “worthless as men”) and are being very selfish by “hurting society”.
- The viewpoint states that because women now have the right to vote, women usually vote in all kinds of harmful, nanny-state, socialistic policies. They always end up bankrupting countries and reducing citizen’s freedoms. Better to remove women’s right to vote…then we can maintain politically free and prosperous nations.
- The viewpoint states that women shouldn’t work, because of how supply and demand affects wages. All those extra millions of women in the workforce drive down wages for everyone. Better to have her stay home and not work, but continue to consume…then her husband will make way more money doing the exact same job, just like husbands did in the 1950s before women entered into the workforce in vast numbers.
There are many other examples of this viewpoint I could cite, but you get the point.
I disagree with this viewpoint…but not for the reasons you think.
The Viewpoint’s Facts
I don’t disagree with the viewpoint on its technical merits. The facts the manosphere guys state bolstering this viewpoint are indeed usually correct and I can’t fault them on their research. As I’ve said so many times to pro-monogamy people, facts are facts, and you can’t argue with facts no matter how repulsive, personally objectionable, or evil you view those facts to be.
Yes, if women suddenly stopped having babies, the human race would eventually die out. Yes, statistically women do tend to vote for more left-liberal, progressive, big-government garbage. Yes, history has indeed shown that in many countries when women start to vote in large numbers, taxes and government spending start to go up and personal freedoms start to go down. And yes, a valid economic argument can be made that if you increase the amount of labor in a workforce while keeping the number of consumers constant, real wages will drop (regardless of the gender of the workers).
I cannot argue with the facts even though I may not like them. My argument with this overall viewpoint is not with the facts. Rather, it’s with the ethics and morality of being an individual and the freedoms inherent within that condition.
The Individual vs. The Collective
I support the individual over the collective. Eventually, and sometimes it takes a long time, collectivism always results in evil. Ayn Rand was wrong about a few things, but she was 100% right on that one. I have said before, many times and in many ways, that I am an individual, free to live my life as I choose. The only exception to this rule is that I cannot physically violate someone else’s person or property.
You are also an individual. You own you, and assuming you’re 18 or over, no one else owns you. You are your own man. No one has the right to tell you what to do or not do. The only restriction to this is, again, if you choose to physically violate someone’s body or possessions. Assuming you’re not running around murdering people or stealing people’s stuff, no one has the right to pass any laws that restrict your behavior other than those basic ones like don’t murder, don’t steal, etc.
(We could now get into a huge political discussion about which specific laws would be appropriate or not under a libertarian vs. progressive or conservative system. I’m not having that discussion today because that’s not the point of this article, and such discussion would detract from the point I’m trying to make here. Any comments discussing this particular angle will be ignored.)
The rub in this system is that this right to self also applies to everyone else. No one has the right to tell you what to do, but you don’t have the right to tell anyone else what to do either. Oh, people hate that last part. As human beings, we love to do whatever the hell we want, but we also strongly desire to boss other people around.
Can’t do that. It violates the basic concept I’m describing.
You can try to convince people to do what you want. That’s perfectly fine. I can try to convince you that mowing my lawn is a really fun thing to do and you’ll really enjoy doing it. I can also try to convince you that mowing my lawn will make me really happy, and how that will make you feel really good.
You can also try to bribe people into doing what you want. I’ll give you twenty dollars if you mow my lawn. That works too.
But you can’t make people do what you want, because you don’t own them. I can’t make a law that says you must mow my lawn or you go to jail. I can’t make this law no matter how badly I think you should mow my lawn, nor how well I could argue that society requires mowed lawns.
Here’s where things get interesting. This concept applies to all human beings. It doesn’t matter what gender you are. Male or female, you own you, no one else owns you, and no one has rights “over” you. The only restriction is that you must be an adult, however the word “adult” is defined in your culture. (Children correctly do not have the rights of adults because they do not have the physical or mental capacity of an adult. And yes, we could have a big discussion about what exactly is an “adult”, but not today.)
Your Obligation To Society
So I’m an individual who has the right to do whatever I want as long as I don’t physically violate someone else, and so are you.
What if I chose to do something that doesn’t violate anyone else’s body or property, but is nonetheless “bad” for society?
For example, many would argue that getting married and having kids is good for society. What if I choose to never get married? What if I choose to never have kids? I’m being hypothetical here, since I have been married, do have kids, and it’s possible (though not likely) that I may have more someday.
What if I choose to sit on my ass, never get married, never have kids, never work, never build anything, never vote, almost never buy anything, and smoke meth all day? And do that for my entire life until I die?
That’s bad for society, many would say. I’m not contributing as I should, many would say.
Here’s the question: Do you have the right to do things that are harmful for society, provided you’re not physically violating anyone else?
My answer is an unequivocal YES. You have that right, and so do I.
As long as you’re not stabbing people or stealing their stuff, you have every right to do all kinds of things with your personal life that might not be good for “society”. You have no “obligations” to society. If you do something you want that is not good for society, that’s society’s problem, not yours.
Society Takes Care Of Itself
All this hand-wringing about society is very silly. I’ve seen it my whole life from left-wingers, right-wingers, and centrists alike.
Society will take care of itself. It always does. Human beings have been around for 120,000 years and human civilization has been for 7,000 years, and I notice that society is still here. Human beings have not died out due to plague, war, nuclear weapons, terrorists, global warming, evil governments, poverty, drugs, guns, lack of babies, or Honey Boo Boo. Regardless of all these things, society is still chugging right along, despite all the millions of people now and throughout history who have chosen to do things in their personal lives that were “not good” for society.
I will never be monogamous. Some conservatives out there will say this is somehow “bad” for society. I don’t think it is, but let’s say for a minute I agree with you. It’s still tough shit. My life is my life, I can do what I want, and if society has a problem with it, that’s society’s problem, not mine.
It’s the exact same thing with a woman who chooses to never get married, or never have kids, or vote for Democrats, or work 50 hours a week for the rest of her life. She’s a sovereign individual, and that’s her choice. It doesn’t matter if she has a vagina, she still owns herself 100% just like you do. You don’t have to like it. There are times women make choices I don’t like either. Tough shit.
As I said above, you can try to convince this woman that what she’s doing is bad for society. That’s totally fine. Some women may listen, some won’t. I try to convince people of all kinds of things all the time. Some people listen, some people don’t, some people get pissed and call me names, some people eventually come around, some never do. Their choice. It’s all part of this wonderful, imperfect, integrated system called “personal freedom”.
This is why I will never support a society that restricts women’s freedoms at the governmental level. (Again remember, that doesn’t mean women can commit violence or forcibly take things away from people). Society cannot force women to have babies (or not have them) or limit women’s right to work or vote or whatever because of what “society” needs or wants. Society can go fuck itself. In a contest between the individual and the collective, I’m going to support the individual 95% of the time, woman or man. (That remaining 5% is only when someone is committing violence, theft, or similar.)
And just to head off an objection I can hear coming, this has nothing to do with feminism. While I do agree with the basic concepts of the historical feminism of decades past, I think most modern-day feminists running around like maniacs screaming about things like “rape culture” are completely full of shit. Still doesn’t matter. It’s their choice. They’re free individuals and they can do or say whatever the hell they want as long as they don’t physically assault me or steal my stuff.
You’re free. I’m free. Men are free. Women are free. Whether you like it or not.
It’s imperfect, but that’s the way it should be.