The Recipe for Cultural Fail: One Part Murder, Two Parts Rape

If recent events prove nothing else to the world, it’s that Americans are effeminate b*tches.  I refer, naturally, to the deluge of predictably worthless public reaction following the shootings in Aurora, Colorado.

Of course, I mean “effeminate” in a very specific way.  Not in terms of having two X chromosomes or regularly shaving one’s legs.  More in a sort of “thinking-that-‘Fifty-Shades-of-Grey’-is-something-other than-a-steaming-pile-of-dreck” way; a way that reinforces and insanely celebrates our culture of debility.

One persistent theory of gender relations is that females appear to be, on average, more passive than males because evolutionary biological pressures made them the default caregivers–therefore far more concerned with maintaining a stable child rearing environment than males, who were therefore free to pursue a more aggressively transactional approach to their undertakings.

I buy that, to a degree.  With the caveats of extreme individual variation around a statistical mean, and the awareness that current technological and demographic trends seem to mitigate against this being an immutable physically determinate characteristic.  In fact, I’d say there’s a good case to be made that the American impotence exhibited following the Aurora shootings is a clear symptom of the devaluation of of the transactional, male principle in contemporary culture.

Here’s what I mean:  following the death of those 12 people in Aurora, the airwaves were filled to bursting with panty-wetting, tear-filled sobs of helpless terror that would have embarrassed a North Korean anchorperson.  The Romney and Obama campaigns both suspended activity after issuing suitably conventional statements of feigned piety, as good girls will, but there was no shortage of hacky partisans publishing one of  the two ur-varieties of opportunistic polemical garbage:

Continued at Dystopia Diaries.

, , ,

  • Alex

    Oh gosh.
    This article could have made some good points. It really could.
    But unfortunately, as the writer is apparently so wrapped up in some pseudo-stereotyping (using really bizarre examples) that the point is utterly lost.
    Using gendered terminology to articulate ‘America gone wrong’, does nothing for the point being made. In fact, this whole article is too saturated in gendered politics for the basic nature of the assertion to be made. Females taking up a ‘biological/evolutionary’ pressures… first off, try centuries of patriarchal suppression/slave ownership, and second… what the hell does this have to do with the Aurora shooting? Could we go so far as to say that the deliberate upsurge of gun purchase post-massacre is a grand example of the ‘masculinist fantasy’ that we should all pursue? And ‘talking to be heard’? Wow. I must pause
    Secondly, a reasoned calculation of two sides as a masculine trait…? What the hell? Are not most wars, violence, ill-fated decisions and irrational behavior enacted by the male gender? Most snap decisions made in emotional potency rather than judgement are arguably made by males. For christ sake, the killer in this example was a male! And we’re using feminine semantics to describe the negatives of this situation? Give me a fucking break buddy!
    I’m sorry, sir, but this article is so deeply flawed by your apparent disrespect for anything you PERCEIVE as ‘feminine’ that it may as well be written as an anti-feminist critique rather than a political conversation point. Maybe get over your problems with gender, THEN write an article. Your point would perhaps be more universally consumable.

    • Liam_McGonagle

      Well, if you’re so interested in focusing on issues, why did you waste an apparent half hour of your own time to come up with some warmed over PC leftovers instead of enumerating those issues?

      My guess is that it’s because you did a quick scan instead of reading the whole article.  Which was an anticipated and (to me) acceptable consequence of my selected strategy.

      Out of the 5 people I expect to give even a cursory glance at this I predict:

      -3 expressions of outrage
      -1 expression of disappointment in perceived lack of conceptual continuity
      -1 expression of complete confusion–which could be expounded into a meaningful discussion

      Congratulations on taking the shallowest and least interesting interpretation possible.  That puts you firmly within the “Mediocre Majority”.

      • charlieprimero

        “…warmed over PC leftovers”

        :-)

    • TennesseeCyberian

      I’m always amused at gender stereotypes, despite my diverse experiences with tough bitches and bitchy men.  That you are offended by stereotyping baffles me.  Men who dog on women and tout hypermasculinity generally do so to deflect attention from their own girly tendencies.  So what?  Have a laugh at it.

      What amaze me is that the author chose to respond to your aesthetic criticism rather than to remain confidently silent and allow his work to speak for itself.  He even goes on to predict that some might criticize his lack of a clearly elaborated thesis or coherent theme. 

      Pegged that one, Sparky.

      • Calypso_1

        Aesthetic?

        • Liam_McGonagle

          Vladimir just can’t get over being made an *ss out of over the whole George Zimmerman thing.He still thinks the grass stains on the back of Fauntleroy’s head are a clue that Col. Mustard did it in the Conservatory with the drainpipe.

          His shame over that one just won’t let him see that whole line of reasoning is pointless in the context of an imbecile like Zimmerman wandering around with a loaded gun and ignoring police orders to get the hell out of there.

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Now you’re just being silly.  You displayed bitch-like obstinacy during that exchange, and now your extensive commentary on your own article makes me wonder if you might actually have a vagina.
             
            Another piece of free advice, from my experience:  Better to let your last sentence resound than to become a feeble echo of yourself.  “Liam McGonagle” should only appear in the byline.

            Unless someone challenges your facts.

          • Liam_McGonagle

            ” . . . piece of free advice . . . ”

            And worth every bit I paid for it.  Because your vast experience in not ever having anything published is worth its weight in fertilizer.

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Did it really take 18 hours for you to come up with that? Another piece of advice: Never assume things about your opponent, at least not in public.

            And another: Don’t let internet comments get you so worked up.

          • Liam_McGonagle

            “Did it really take 18 hours . . .”

            ” . . . Don’t let internet comments get you so worked up.”

            I don’t.  That’s why I sometimes wait 18 hours to READ a reply.

            Assuming I bother to read it all.  Your avatar is a pretty good indication that I’ll be doing all the heavy lifting, so I often don’t.

            But on a more positive note, how’s your book, “Geoge Zimmerman–A Love Letter” coming along?

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Are you a secretary by trade? Because your responses have the tone of a catty secretary with a hatchet face and fake nails.

            If you insist on bringing up that Zimmerman case again and again, presumably because your butt’s still sore, I should remind you that every update on that story has validated my argument and made you look like a torch-bearing, fact-warping doofus competing for the 2012 Anti-Racist Award.

            A little secret between you and me: black people hate bitchy secretaries, so it won’t do you any good to suck up by joining their torch mobs.

            Now quit fucking up your articles by getting snippy with strangers in your own comments section. I really am trying to help you out here. Why do you make it so difficult?

          • Liam_McGonagle

            Pretty quick on the trigger, McGraw.

            You keep one session open with Disinfo on it to monitor my comments at all times, don’t you?

            LOL!

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Hope you stay hydrated as you wave your “Justice For Trayvon” sign while wearing that sheepskin hoodie in the hot summer sun. Better luck next time, homeslice.

          • Guest

            Hope you stay hydrated as you wave your “Justice For Trayvon” sign while wearing that sheepskin hoodie in the hot summer sun. Better luck next time, homeslice.

          • Andrew

            Talking to yourself? That took a lot longer than 18 hours.

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Is that your face in that picture?

        • Liam_McGonagle

          But to respond to the aesthetics of the piece, yes, it is framed by a large amount of what I’d call “pre-rational” content.

          I don’t see myself writing a formal style manifesto on “pre-rationality” in the near term, because I fear that throwing an elaborate theoretical structure on it so soon would rob it a bit of its immediate impact.  Even if it comes at the cost of alienating a few people.

          But, in summary:

          I’m coming to the view that embedding a few islands of mundane analysis (e.g., invasiveness of violence prevention measures and the inevitability of violence, etc.) against an apparently discontinuous background of highly charged rhetorical tropes like gender stereotyping kind of forces the reader to build his/her own bridges.

          For the reader to become a more active participant is really all any writer can reasonably hope for.

        • TennesseeCyberian

          I’d say that taking issue with gender stereotyping is a matter of taste, not of fact.

          That is, unless the author had described all women as black-palmed grease-monkeys, or something like that.

          • Calypso_1

            If you see taking issue with gender stereotyping as a matter of taste, do you also see gender identity itself as such?  

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Interesting question. I would say yes and no.

            No, in that people are born with certain inherited gender characteristics that form the foundation of gender identity.

            Yes, because we can enhance or suppress those natural qualities according to our own tastes.

            Some gender exaggerations are more tasteful than others, but then, that’s just a matter of my own taste.

          • Calypso_1

            If you see taking issue with gender stereotyping as a matter of taste, do you also see gender identity itself as such?  

  • Alex

    And perhaps if you had focused on the issues without so much gender bashing stereotype, it would be easier to see the point through the fog. You dig? I didn’t cloud the point my friend, that was your doing. I’d have a reasoned discussion on your subject matter, but that is not what I’m commenting on, because that’s not where my problem with your article lies. 

  • The Baffler

    Very interesting.

  • http://buzzcoastin.posterous.com BuzzCoastin

    > impotence exhibited following the Aurora shootings
    is a clear symptom of the devaluation
    of the transactional, male principle in contemporary culture.

    impotence = contemporary culture
    media coverage = opportunistic polemical garbage

    the recipe for cultural fail is:
    place yourself ahead of others
    respect your rights first
    disregard the rights of others
    take as much as you can, while giving as little as you can
    tolerate no opinion other than your own
    divide the culture between warring factions
    invade other countries to exploit & profit

    bake in the USA for 400 years
    & voilà, failure soufflé

  • Aurora Bore

    This is one of the most cissexist pieces I’ve read on here in ages. Effeminate bitches? Really? You give us paragraphs of overwrought intellectual drivel peppered with offensive and problematic statements and then write off any criticism because some of us “didn’t get it?”. I don’t care how much you claim you can, you don’t get to reclaim effeminate when it’s used as a slur against queer people. If you’re critiquing the reaction to the tragedy of the Aurora shootings, how about be mindful of intersectionality, queer folk and I don’t know, women? 

    • TennesseeCyberian

      But what about “bears”?  Those cats are so manly, they don’t even need women for sex!

  • http://www.facebook.com/rthoneunomia.celine Threedinium

    I don’t know, “human race = whinging bitches” works for me.

    I’m only sorry I lack the education to appreciate the delivery. I mean… pre-rational aesthetic? The mind boggles.

    • Liam_McGonagle

      I think “pre-rational” is a good working title for the idea.

      “Unconscious” doesn’t work because by definition no sentiment can spring from a lack of consciousness.  Also, the inclusion of these themes in this piece is definitely an act of premeditation.  “Subconscious” doesn’t work for the same reason.

      It’s not really “ir-rational” either, because although it clearly doesn’t represent a higher order, mature value judgment, the supposed “male”/”female” dichotomy is definitely a kind of judgment.  It is an affirmation of the association between gender identity and the concepts of passivity and aggression.

      I think “pre-rational” should be acceptable on the grounds that the element “pre-” conveys a sense of definite sequence which complements the higher order logical processes, and does not negate them.  These type of crude value judgments occurr BEFORE any meaningful discussion of higher order social or policy preferences beging–it’s just a shame that they go largely unexplored.

      The borderline mysoginistic outlook inferred by many from my gender stereotyping frame for this piece is definitely NOT some praiseworthy, high-minded eutopian ideal–but it accurately describes the perspective from which most Americans–be they on the right or left–approach issues.

      I agree that throwing word “pre-rational” reeks a bit of intellectual preciousness.  Which is why I didn’t want to publish a boring piece of straightforward theoretical exposition.  That piece might have had more conceptual integrity, but it would have been just soooooooooooo easy to write it off as programmatic propaganda.

      Like I mentioned to Jesus Borg above, writing is no longer an artifact–it’s an experience.  I think at least half of the work belongs to the reader.

  • Jesus Borg

    I get the feeling Liam, that you have no idea what you are going to write when you start typing until you are done. That’s not really a bad thing. kind of like thinking out loud. Its kind of a guilless way to be, but it sure can get you in trouble, especially with really ideologically driven people, that like to be really calculated and enforce codes of political correctness on people.

    • Liam_McGonagle

      You’re not wrong.  My recent writings have a lot of very impulsive content–which, paradoxically is by design.  Because I’m beginning to suspect that a highly imperfect act of sincerity may be a thousand times better than an extremely polished bit of ‘work’.

      By any classic standard for rhetorical clarity and organization, Prieur’s statement that you quoted is a lot better than mine.  My only critique is that the changing nature of the media environment kind of militates against the effectiveness of the classical standard.  Writing is no longer an artifact–it’s an event.
       
      Coming up with a more expanded discussion on these themes to be published as a blog post.  Took a bit for me to come up with a format that engaged my attention.

      • Jesus Borg

         Cool. I’ll be sure to check it out.

  • Jesus Borg

    Anyway, I liked the article and pretty much had the same reaction. I think a lot of Americans are pussies, ruled by fear which causes them to want to be control freaks. And either ban all weapons or else rigorously test everyone for psychological issues.

    Its not the fault of our leaders its more that their constituents are a bunch of pussies. Few people want to accept that shit happens. How many people die in car accidents in a day?

  • Jesus Borg

    Here is Ran Prieur’s take on it:

    “You can see where I’m going with this. Whatever their personal motive,
    mass-shooters are testing the cultures that they strike. Now America can
    either add expensive, exhausting, and useless security to movie
    theaters, just like we did with airplanes, or chill the fuck out. And
    consider: every time we add a new layer of security, it’s because our
    collective ego is unwilling to take risks; but meanwhile, as the economy
    declines and society feels less meaningful, individuals will become
    more and more willing to take risks.”

  • Linsang811

    I absolutely object to the use of the term “effeminate” here. It does
    indeed seem as though you’re using it in the way misogynists often do
    (equating femininity with weakness, inferiority, and ineptitude). And
    anyway, I promise you, my effeminate, 3-inch high heeled Prada clad foot
    could kick your ass inside-out any day of the week. ;)

    As to the rest of the article, it’s really, REALLY easy to sit in the
    comfort of your desk chair, lazing about, gobbling Cheetos and sipping
    Pepsi to soliloquize about how people should act like sociopaths in the
    wake of a terrible tragedy which included the killings of innocent
    people (one of which was a 6 year old child). You talk big and scary but
    I wonder how long it would take you to shit yourself if you’d been
    inside that theater.

    • Liam_McGonagle

      I think you might be responding out of the assumption that I endorse the mysoginy implied by the gender stereotyping I used to frame this piece.  That’s understandable, but largely misses the point. 

      The point is that a paradigm of public discourse  designed to achieve perfect social cohesion is utterly counterproductive to tackling serious problems.

      I chose the framing device of gender stereotyping because it’s a perfect illustration of the way sterile posturing seduces us into futility.  You kinda walked right into the trap yourself.

      I understand that your direction of violent imagery against me is intended to prove that you’ve overcome patriarchal mysoginy, but ironically, it vividly demonstrates the fact that you’ve totally bought into it.
       
      Because the opposite of aggressive patriarchal oppression isn’t consensus-driven matriarchal nurturance–it’s bisexual liberty.

      • TennesseeCyberian

        This sort of backpedaling is the best reason to avoid commenting on one’s own article. It comes off as weak.  

        And it’s spelled “misogyny.”  If you are going to write from a hypermasculine perspective, at least spell that right.

        • Jesus Borg

           I always liked miscegenation better than misogyny, especially while in Brazil. maybe that’s what he was trying to spel.

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Miscegenation is misogyny if you are a racist!

          • Jesus Borg

             And misspelling is schizophrenic if you are a dyslexic misanthrope!

          • Andrew

            But then who gives a shit what misogynists or racists think?

          • TennesseeCyberian

            Feminists and multiculturalists seem to pay an awful lot of attention.

  • Kate

    LOL I love how buddy actually tries to intellectualize gender stereotyping. It’s pretty much the easiest thing to do. Rather than come up with actual articulations of circumstance that pose to enhance the bulk of the subject you toss around machismo and claim it adds higher-level substance to the discussion. Sad face.

21