"MA'AM" - MEN ALIGNED AGAINST MISOGYNY

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Created by Jen Kirkman

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@OfficialMAAM

A place for men - not afraid to call themselves feminists - to write from their heart to help educate men who may still hold some sexist attitudes towards women.

A place that women can link to when they are being harassed on the internet because sometimes men need to hear new ways of thinking about women...from men. Or just a place that women can go to when they need to know that men are on their side - they're just not always vocal about it. Hopefully this might make it cool to say, "I'm a guy and I hate misogyny."

A site that brings women and men together in the spirit of knowing that equality doesn't exclude anyone. And that the fight for other's equality is a fight for our own betterment.

Anyone man any race, sexual orientation/identity, religion or occupation can contribute an essay on the theme of gender discrimination in the lives of the women they know.

DEFINITION OF FEMINISM:
"The theory of the political, economic & social equality of the sexes."

MA’AM: Men Against Assholes & Misogyny.

puckett101:

It’s difficult to think of a place to start with something like this. Simple is good, my brain reasons, so let’s start simple.

I’m a dude.

Just a random dude living somewhere in the Midwest with three cats, a totally rad girlfriend, a significant amount of fabric for quilting, somewhere in the neighborhood of half a ton of comic books, a lot of video games, and even more old records and CDs.

No, you probably don’t know me and it’s unlikely you’d know or be even vaguely familiar with anything I’ve done. If you paid really close attention to punk rock for something like the last 25 years, you might have seen my name pop up in a zine or being thanked for something in the liner notes of a record, but really, at the end of the day, I’m just a dude, getting through the hours as best as I know how.

Along the way, I stumbled into the life of a child who was just a baby when I met her. Her mom and I split up years ago, but I’m fortunate that I’ve been able to remain in the kid’s life.

She’s 11 now. And I worry.

Read More

THANK YOU!!!

— 1 year ago with 141 notes
thestrengthtitanic-deactivated2 asked: Thank you so much for this blog. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate you. It really helps me stay hopeful to see a feminist blog run by men who aren't afraid to stand with us. That just means so much. I've been struggling a lot recently with dealing with a lot of internalized misogyny from my close male friends, and I've been trying to do my best to educate them, but it is really hard sometimes, and I get a lot of the whole "you're too sensitive" thing and it can be really discouraging.


Answer:

You are not too sensitive. - MA’AM

— 1 year ago with 20 notes
Egyptian Men Fighting Misogeny

I just believe this is an impressive story. Men standing up to other men and allowing women to safely protest in Egypt at risk of physical harm.


http://womensenews.org/story/sexual-harassment/130124/egyptians-patrol-tahrir-square-mob-sex-assaults?utm_source=email&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=email

— 1 year ago with 19 notes
I Am an Oversensitive Feminist Too

Just last weekend, Meagan Marie was called an “oversensitive feminist” for defending a group of women at a video game conference from the harassing and patently stupid questions of a male “reporter.” Ms. Marie and the women she was with are into cosplay, which - and my understanding is admittedly limited - is where you dress up like your favorite video game and/or comic characters. This happens a lot at video game and comic conventions and I can tell you that, when done well, cosplay is pretty awesome. A good friend of mine dressed up like a vault dweller from Fallout 3 at a convention a few years back and the people from Bethesda were so impressed by his work that they let him have an exclusive peak at the game and even gave him some free promotional goodies. 

The women Ms. Marie mentions in her blog post happened to be dressed like Lara Croft from the Tomb Raider games. According to the dipshit (we can swear on here, right?) reporter guy, the fact that some women dressed up like Lara Croft meant that they were “asking” to be dogged by overtly sexual questions that made them visibly uncomfortable. 

Which is bullshit.

There is no such thing as “asking for it” in any terms other than when someone explicitly asks you to have sex with them. A woman wearing clothes you think are sexy has the right to wear those clothes without you commenting on them. I can’t fucking believe we still have to talk about this. It’s 2013 and we still have far too many guys who don’t get it. 

A lot of dudes dismiss complaints of misogyny by accusing women (or feminist men) of being “too serious” or “oversensitive” which is a nifty way of protecting male dominance because it says that the problem isn’t my sexism, it’s your sensitivity. The fact is, if you say something -yes, even jokingly - and a woman (or any person, really) experiences that as humiliating, demeaning, dehumanizing, or sexual threatening, you have committed an act of violence against that person. Yes, you technically have the 1st Amendment right to say awful shit, but I also have the 1st Amendment right to call you out for it and suggest that maybe you need to write better jokes. 

Furthermore, as an oversensitive feminist, I have a duty - as do other men who share the unbelievably radical idea that women are human beings deserving of the same rights we have - to call other men out on their misogyny. Meagan Marie has challenged herself to be braver in standing up for herself against sexism and that’s a challenge that feminist men need to accept as well. 

— 1 year ago with 76 notes
Josh Martin is a MA’AM

image

I have never been remotely interested in proving my masculinity to anyone, in part because, even as a child, I was filled with contempt with the idea that I 

a) wasn’t allowed to wear dresses
b) wasn’t allowed to play with dolls
c) wasn’t allowed to wear tights on my head whilst indicating to all how lush and flowing my hair was.
Luckily, my parents were happy to let me do my own thing, but it didn’t stop other parents and kids expressing their feelings on the subject - even total strangers.
In my later teens, I became aware that embracing ‘feminine’ things was pretty much synonymous in everyone’s book with homosexuality, and though I doubted I’d ever be freaked out if indeed I did feeling attraction to another man, why was I not allowed to love women and the things typically associated with them? I smelled bullshit.
It came as no shock to anyone that I identified as a feminist the second I really understood the idea at university. Feminism, I quickly realised, was my way of looking at the world. If more men and women were feminists, the world would be an infinitely better place.
Frankly, if we stopped seeing every single miniscule aspect of our society as being gendered, the world would be blooming with smiley, helpful people who would no more bat an eyelid at a woman running a country than a man who always dreamed of six kid’s, his own brand of nail polish and a wife who works as a military general.
As far as I’m concerned, feminism isn’t an option, it’s something that desperately needs to happen.
Josh Martin
http://whatjoshwrote.tumblr.com/
http://tea-cigarette-go.tumblr.com/
— 1 year ago with 50 notes
Kit Lovelace is a MA’AM

I recently met up with a friend of mine who is an actor. We live in different cities, she and I, and sometimes we go years without speaking. This time round it had been two years since we’d last talked, so we had some significant catching up to do.

She had been doing well, generally speaking. She was writing and directing theatre under her own steam successfully and consistently, getting grants and good recognition for her stuff, but she had been struggling for acting work outside of that. Not because she wasn’t being put up for auditions, but because - almost exclusively - the parts she found herself up for involved nudity.

“I don’t know,” she said, “I know I seem ungrateful whinging about it, because there are offers of work there. I should probably just make my peace with it and do it.”

It made my heart wheeze to hear her talk that way.

I am doubly blessed not to be in her position. First of all, I have no impulse whatsoever to be an actor (something for which I give daily thanks to whichever universal force blessed me with the desire to channel my vanity into writing). But, more importantly, I will never be put in the position where I am asked to make a professional decision that hinges entirely on preparedness to strip off.

“Well,” a mocking cry rises up, “who would pay to see you take your clothes off?” Who, indeed. If there is a market for pasty, 6’3” boys who look skinny, yet somehow still wobble unattractively whenever they jog or jump up and down, I have yet to be made aware of it. But they get acting work.

I am not a prude when it comes to nudity. I’ve played countless practical jokes which have involved the use of my cock and balls. An entire calendar year went by in my late teens where there wasn’t a single photo taken of me in which I wasn’t mooning. These days I have better sense than to go about subjecting the greater public to the sight of my unclothed form, but I remain relatively comfortable with my body.

Would I go naked for a role though? I have no idea. None at all. I struggle to even imagine what that dilemma must feel like. To know that a wage was mine, that rent would get paid, if I would only agree to get my bits out. The concept is just completely alien to me.

This is not an occasional consideration for my friend. This happens constantly. So constantly that this is the sort of thing that springs to mind when she is asked the question “So what the hell’s been happening these last two years?” So much of her life is filled with this, that it comes to her lips as a topic of conversation the same way that the transport system here in London comes to me. This is what she has to deal with.

It’s one thing to have an industry which places such importance on a woman’s willingness to strip, but it’s quite another to get a woman who is a fiercely intelligent, political and strong to start questioning her correctly-held convictions just because some grubby director, or screenwriter, or playwright can’t let 90 minutes go by without a bra coming off.

I’m conscious not to be one of those “Hey ladies, I understand” sort of feminists. I don’t want to be the patronising, lap-patting sort of guy who pulls sympathetic faces whenever he hears stories of sexual injustice. I probably am though, and maybe I’m doomed to always be, but hearing my friend say the words “I know I seem ungrateful” made me so immeasurably sad I didn’t know what else to do.

Kit Lovelace @mylifeyourhands

— 1 year ago with 26 notes
James Walker is a MA’AM!
Daughters Who Will Change The World

I have been taking with my daughter, who is 12, recently about evolution. She already knows more than any creationist or IDer out there, which is a good thing.

Today I was reading Richard Dawkins’ The Greatest Show on Earth, which is a completely engaging and wonder evoking book about evolution. It brings the incredibly beauty of evolution to life in a way no other book I’ve read about evolution has.

I showed my daughter some pictures of the skeletons of different animals like a bat, a pterodactyl, a human, and a couple of other animals and which illustrate the wonderful similarity of all of these skeletons have to one another. Yes, some specific bones have changed, some growing, some shrinking, but it is obvious that the wing bone in a bat corresponds to little finger in a human, or the middle finger of a human corresponds to the hoof of a horse. You can see that the skull, the spine, the ribs and pelvis in all of these vertebrates all correspond to each other. It it thrilling and amazing to see.

I showed some of these to my daughter and she got visibly excited, “Oh! Are there more pictures of animals in there?!” So I showed her some more and we talked about how these different animals had changes to suit their environments, but are still very much the same from a skeletal point of view.

Later, as I was reading about Darwin’s discoveries in the Galapagos, she asked what I was reading about now. I told her about Galapagos turtles and finches. She became excited again, “Oh yeah! You mean that guy Darwin’s finches! That’s so cool!”. So we talked about how on islands only a few miles apart, different species of turtles and finches had evolved to take advantage of their environments.

It really excited me to see her so interested in evolution. She’s a smart girl and I’m doing everything I can to encourage her to study and learn about everything that interests here. I try to teach her how to think critically and how to avoid the pitfalls of logical fallacies. She still just 12 so not everything I say automatically clicks, but a lot of it does.

She’s already thinking about what she’d like to do when she grows up, with zoology being one of those things. I try to share my wonder and excitement with the beauty and breadth of life here on earth with her, hoping to encourage her to continue learning.

I have also taught her to believe in herself and it shows. She doesn’t let herself be put down or put upon. She calls out anyone who would try to treat her as anything other than an equal. I wish every father (and mother, for that matter) would do the same with their daughters.

We have come a long way since I was 12, when it was openly taught that a woman’s place was at home in the kitchen. I was just reading in The Atlantic that women now make up 60% of the workforce in the U.S. It postulated that in 10 to 20 years, woman may dominate most sectors of society and the economy as they become better educated and more literate than men.

I want my daughter to know that she can be and do anything at all, with nothing to hold her back. These trends make me hopeful that she, and other girls the world over, will be able to be all that they can be.

I privately hope she will stick with zoology or some other science. Having women in science, I think, just might lead to the break throughs that we need if we are to survive as a species. I think this because I believe that women bring perspectives and ways of thinking that just don’t exist in most men and it is these novel (to us men, anyway) ways of seeing the world that will allow insights into the deepest questions of science, and subsequently to break throughs that will dwarf almost any that have come before.

And who knows, maybe my daughter will be one of those women who will change the world. After all, a father can hope, can’t he?

James Walker http://freethinkingfordummies.com @jpwalker1960

— 1 year ago with 22 notes
Real men love and respect strong independent women

My mom, now 83 and going strong, was raised by a single mom in NYC at a time when this was not done. She graduated from Hollins College in Roanoke VA with a BS in Chemistry and went to work for Sperry-Rand on LI working on inertial guidance systems for USAF bombers. She, and to a lesser degree my dad, raised my sisters and me to see and treat everyone equally - to see beyond apparent differences in skin tone, who one loves, abilities and of course XX/XY chromosomal differences. This was not easy in LI in the 60’s and 70’s - Archie Bunker was alive and well in West Babylon. My kids have been raised by their mom and me with the same outlook and have grown into loving, tolerant champions for the underdog. Thanks for this awesome site!

— 1 year ago with 27 notes
Faruk Ateş is a MA’AM
“Dame Faruk Ateş” is what someone once thought would be an insult to call me, attempting to mock me for being an outspoken voice against the ongoing sexism, misogyny and abuse that women face on a daily basis, especially online. “It’s irony! Satire!” was the proclaimed excuse for their rampant bigotry. 
Such people deserve nothing more than an eye roll before blanket dismissal. Unfortunately, they are a very vocal minority who get far more attention than they deserve, and that’s why I continue to speak out, loudly and publicly and in as many places as I can, against the sexism, against the misogyny, against the harassment and vitriol and mistreatment of women (and other underrepresented demographics in our society). And I am proud to use the privileges of my life in service and dedication for good.

Faruk Ateş is a MA’AM

“Dame Faruk Ateş” is what someone once thought would be an insult to call me, attempting to mock me for being an outspoken voice against the ongoing sexism, misogyny and abuse that women face on a daily basis, especially online. “It’s irony! Satire!” was the proclaimed excuse for their rampant bigotry. 

Such people deserve nothing more than an eye roll before blanket dismissal. Unfortunately, they are a very vocal minority who get far more attention than they deserve, and that’s why I continue to speak out, loudly and publicly and in as many places as I can, against the sexism, against the misogyny, against the harassment and vitriol and mistreatment of women (and other underrepresented demographics in our society). And I am proud to use the privileges of my life in service and dedication for good.

— 1 year ago with 12 notes
electrafemme asked: THANK YOU! I hate (straight white cis) men a little less now. After many a horrible experience as a queer femme with these types of men, it's reassuring to know that they actually don't all suck and some of you even get it and care! Feminism helps you too, and I'm so grateful Jen cared enough to create this space.


Answer:

Wonderful news!!

— 1 year ago with 5 notes