In the wake of the Isla Vista killings, severe criticism has been aimed at the so-called Men’s Rights Movement and their aggressive, dehumanising attitude towards women. Well, I’m just one man, but I’m doing what I can to counteract this blatant misogyny.
Ladies, I promise that if you reject me romantically, I won’t go home to seethe with an ever growing hatred of your gender. I’ll probably just have a beer and play a video game while experiencing a slight sense of ennui.
If I try to strike up a conversation and you tell me that you’re uninterested, I won’t react negatively or add this failed encounter to a mental list of perceived slights made by your entire gender against me. I’ll just forget about it and go hit on your friend.
If I express a desire for a sexual encounter and you establish that you aren’t physically attracted to me, I won’t write about the incident in an angry, hate-filled manifesto that blames the complex biological and social factors of the mating process entirely on you. I’ll instead quietly masturbate to the mental image of an idealised fantasy female figure (not an image of you personally). It will be generally enjoyable, but tinged with a hint of loneliness.
If you ever feel the need to express that I am making you physically or emotionally uncomfortable, I will apologise and explain that it was not my intention to do so. I will also do my best to ensure that my public pornography browsing is more subtle in the future.
If you would like to have an intellectual discussion on the role of pornography in society and its effects on the dignity of women, man’s perception and attitude towards women as sexual beings, and/or any other relevant topics, I would be happy to do so. I can’t promise that I won’t have an erection, but if I do it will be because I find the topic both intellectually stimulating and physically stimulating on an abstract level, and not because I am physically stimulated by you specifically. Furthermore, I will do my best to disguise it so you don’t even notice.
If I want to be more than friends, I promise to be open about my feelings rather than hope you will suddenly feel the same way if we spend enough time together. If you don’t share my feelings I will be happy to continue our friendship, and at no point will the term “friend zone” be employed unless it is clearly and unequivocally ironic.
If you’re already in a relationship, I will respect that and wish you both the best, aside from feeling a quiet melancholy ache when I see you express affection for your significant other. I may also idly consider bittersweet what-if scenarios during the occasional long and sleepless night, which I cannot prevent because the vagaries of the human heart are cruel and ever-meandering.
If I feel the need to use a gendered profanity, I promise that the insult will have a non-gendered motivation. For example, I will not call a woman a bitch if she refuses to go out with me. I will call a woman (or a man) a bitch if she or he doesn’t bother to hold a door for me, even though they made eye contact and I was clearly in a hurry.
To my fellow men, I promise that if you are finding yourself romantically successful during a time which I am not, I will not reduce your success and excuse my own failures by implying that you are only finding love because most girls want “douchebags” like you rather than “normal” guys like me. Please note that it is possible I may still think of you as a douchebag, and that this pledge is meant to reflect on the lack of commonly perceived correlation rather than your own personality.
I could go on, but I don’t wish to dominate your equally valuable time. I will simply state that I will do everything in my power to support the cause of gender equality, and that I proudly consider myself a feminist at all times aside from the rare, emotionally trying moments where I pine for the one that got away because I just know I didn’t try hard enough, which concludes with a guilty and unsatisfying ejaculation followed by a period of self-introspection and a reaffirmation of my gender politics.