Legalizing Misandry: From Public Shame to Systemic Discrimination Against Men
By Paul Nathanson and Katherine K. Young
McGill-Queen's University Press
"There are some things you cannot make up unless you are gifted with an imagination far more fertile than my own. Take, for example, the case of the student who suddenly disappeared from a class I was teaching on "Feminist Politics and Theory" many years ago at a large state university. The student had clearly disapproved of my critique of radical feminist separatism. I suspected her abrupt departure from class meant she was dropping the course. Three weeks later, she appeared during my office hours looking both disconsolate and dishevelled with a furry ball of a puppy in hand. Her hair was cropped short, the make-up was off, and she wore the costume of the moment, farmer's denim overalls.
I asked her what had happened. The story, in brief, was that she had decided to leave school in order to advocate the radical feminist cause full-time. To complete her commitment, she had moved into a separatist feminist collective. Tears began to flow at this point. She had gone grocery shopping and noticed some children giving away puppies in front of the store. Beguiled by puppies, she took one home. But the puppy was banished by order of the collective. Why? It was a male puppy, and hence toxic.
Nor was this an isolated incident..."
"The second volume of a projected trilogy, Legalizing Misandry tells a dismal story. The first, Spreading Misandry (2001), concentrated on the way 'negative stereotypes of men' became 'pervasive', their goal being to 'demonstrate that misandry had become deeply embedded in popular culture'. This second volume explores the many ways in which what the authors call a 'legal double-standard' has emerged in Canada and the United States, a standard that accepts as fact depressing accounts of male-female interactions, whether in marriage, work, education, or other fields of human endeavor."
"The authors interweave public perceptions of men with what is happening in our laws, our educational systems, our welfare institutions, and our workplaces. Ideologically drive 'misandric' notions are perpetrated by an elite culture that is tough on anyone who dares to dissent. The evidence they have amassed is impressive and concerning."
"Anyone who cares about the human goods of justice and equality should take note. Nathanson and Young conclude their book 'on a note of pessimism. Like many other segments of our increasingly fragmented society, women now have a very heavy investment in the rhetoric of victimhood' - one reason why ideological feminists cannot unambiguously celebrate all the advances and significant gains of recent decades. If the 'underlying problem' is 'maleness itself', there is no possible correction. You can never do enough by way of compensation and 'pay-back'. Nathanson and Young do not find attractive a society that makes ugly assumptions about half of its members. None of us should."