The Woman Card


Everyone knows that Donald Trump has called Hillary Clinton out about the woman card, and everyone can guess what the very predictable response was. Here’s an example from the BBC website and one from CNN.

The writer of the BBC article used the very predictable and shopworn method of writing these articles; they went out and asked a bunch of women, apparently selectively forgetful of how privileged blinds. Because that’s how you research something like this, right? You go out and ask the people labeled as privileged about whether or not they are privileged, right? Because that’s always who the experts on the matter are. As for the CNN writer , it’s completely unclear what methods they used.

The CNN article lists five non-benefit benefit s of the woman card. As feminists say, “Oh, the burdens of privilege!” Here they are, with what I think of them:

Unsolicited “compliments” – Well, as Mae West observed “It’s better to be looked over than overlooked.” Women invest so much into cultivating the dreaded Male Gaze that there must be some payoff in there somewhere.

Besides unsolicited compliments that aren’t complimentary, the woman card also allows you to make almost whatever visual sexual display you want on the street, to sexualize the whole atmosphere, and rub the nose of every [straight] man in it. And if they look, they are pigs, because God knows they have no right to decide what they do with their own eyes’ and if they complain, they are “slut-shaming.” Pretty sweet deal.

Wage gap – which study after study has shown to be a work gap. The question for society is to how to free women up to work as much as men do, at whatever reasonable level and equal level that might be. The other question for society is how to remove all the disincentives that release women from having to provide for themselves and remove the need to demand and get more pay.

Longer bathroom lines – Oh, the horror! Women are keeping other women out of the bathroom because they are spending so long in there and this is oppression! Oppression!!!! Why not insist that women’s restrooms have slit trenches for urination so that several people can do their business at once? Men’s restrooms do; they have urinals and always have had; why can’t women’s restrooms too? Privacy, you say? Men get by fine and so will you buttercup.

More expensive haircuts and dry cleaning – A buzz cut costs the same whether you are male or female. Just sayin’. So now look at the objection to that and it comes right down to whining about the choices people make for themselves and expect other people to subsidize. Anyone who does hair will tell you how much more work goes into to doing women’s hair, for a number of reasons all coming down to personal choice about how they want to look. Which is fine. Just pay people for the work you ask them to do.
From the article: “That 99-cents-a-shirt deal often only works for the men — dry cleaners have argued that ladies’ garments are fancier and more variable, which requires more time (and $$$) to deal with.”

Well, that’s an easy fix. I’m not a Maoist but I don’t see why anyone needs anything more than blue denim and if they do go for mere, that’s on them. “Woman, they name is vanity” etc.

“Longer life – but at a cost” – which you will very likely not bear if you are a widow with benefits – your dead husband and his labor will be bearing that cost. In the meantime, you’re still the one living. Stop trying to pass your blessings off as burdens.

These articles overlooked a whole range of benefits that also accrue to the holder of a woman card. Some of them are:

Rape – women in Anglophone societies have broad license to rape. In some jurisdictions, such as the entire UK, they simply cannot be charged with rape as a function of the legal definition. They get charged, but with a lesser offense. But even where supposedly there is better gender equality, women still have broad license to rape. If a woman rapes a female victim, well, that isn’t real rape is it? Not like some man forcing sex on her, right? And if the victim is male, a whole other set of options opens up. Of course a female rapist can rely on the same kind of rape denial and rape apology that immunizes her when she rapes a female victim, but with a male victim she can count on him being silenced by people telling him he “got lucky” so he should shut up and be grateful, people demanding to know why he didn’t enjoy the wondrous gift of sex with a woman, so why does he hate women; or people questioning how he could have been hard enough to forced envelopment unless he actually wanted sex, or people suggesting actually he was the rapist.

And this works. Plenty of male rape victims have been punished as rapists in one way or another. In one recent example a young man was expelled from Amherst after a woman had sex with him while he was so drunk he didn’t even remember the encounter, who then went on to accuse him of the rape – his own rape. The threat of a rape accusation was the tool James Landrith’s rapist used to force him into continuing with sex after he woke up with her on him having sex.

One last thing: this is one of those problems that is the fault of men, specifically of white knights who want to protect women no matter what. I saw this first hand in the teacher’s lounge when the subject of Mary K. LeTourneau came up in the news. The air was radioactive and those women could hardly express their anger and loathing. God knows what they would have done to her if she had been there. Teachers are pretty protective of students. Meanwhile the male-dominated legal system played pussy foot with LeTourneau even after she broke parole and raped her victim again.

This post for SYABM illustrates the attitudes that grant women such cover from accountability. (It’s Tumblr thread with nesting that I can’t reproduce.)
women are so fucking great because they don’t objectify each other. they aren’t predatory. when a woman appreciates another woman’s body, she is appreciating it as a part of her whole human being, not as a piece of art or a piece of meat. she is appreciating it as a part of a beautiful wonderful insightful emotional intelligent spiritual complex human being. she is appreciating the woman. and women should love and appreciate and admire each other

Today I learned from two different posters that the woman who sexually coerced me wasn’t a woman, since women are clearly so great and non-predatory and don’t take advantage of each other. I guess it must have been a lizard in flesh costume.

Thank you radfems for showing me the light

Oh, how wonderful. Someone else telling me that the women who sexually harassed me and threatened to rape me at an all-female college before I transitioned to male didn’t treat me like a piece of meat, because I sure as hell felt like they were.

I actually felt less threatened by men catcalling me because I knew that they were being sarcastic 99% of the time (as in “who would ever remotely fuck you, you look so much like a drag queen it’ll make a guy gay”) and not completely sincere about their sexual feelings like the women who repeatedly directed rape threats at me and kept calling me with pick-up lines and telling me I needed to become a lesbian for my own good (even by force if need be) because I would have made a “hot butch”. Even though I had zero interest in women at the time, and my parents forced me to go to an all-female school ironically because they didn’t want men to rape me. (And I couldn’t tell them either because they were the kind of people who thought all gay people were rapists, and I didn’t want to make them more bigoted than they already were.)

Guess my ex girlfriend raping and sexually abusing me was perfectly okay since she was a woman. I’m so glad I have shitstains like OP to tell me that.

The girl who tried to sexually embarrass me by publicly attempting to reach into my pants when I was fucking 11 wasn’t a female then

And there is institutional support for these attitudes. This is what Mary Koss wrote when she was at the CDC researching the incidence of rape:

“Clinical psychologist Mary P. Koss of the University of Arizona in Tucson, who is a leading scholar on the issue, puts it rather bluntly: “It’s the man’s penis that is doing the raping, and ultimately he’s responsible for where he puts it.”

Intimate Partner Violence – women enjoy overwhelming advantages in the area of domestic and intimate partner violence. First there is the wall of denial about female on male IPV, which serves as cover for abusers. You will hear constant assertions that women are overwhelmingly the victims and men the perpetrators of IPV. This macho, patriarchal myth not only serves to bolster the egos of men but also serves to once again, minimize and trivialize misconduct by women.

This is a huge subject and I can’t explore it fully here, but I’d like to make two points. One is that male abuse victims face the real chance of being arrested as the perpetrators and an even greater chance of being threatened with arrest to shut them up. The second is that the cultural narratives around this allow women to present their violence as justified. Look for instance at this piece of rationalization and self-pity to cover some pretty extreme physical abuse.

Parenting – Anyone who denies that the custom and law and the family courts and the Guardians Ad Litem and the entire social structure is not biased against fathers is simply arguing in bad faith and it is a waste of time to continue with them unless you are holding them up to ridicule before a third party. It is like arguing with a Creationist – simply pointless. These people will not change their minds; they will simply die out with no new lurelings to follow them in their error.

Whether it is the use and the usefulness of false sexual abuse accusations to influence custody awards, debtors’ prisons for fathers (never mothers! – even those very rare times they are required to pay CS) who fall behind on their payments, society’s resolute refusal to penalize custodial parents who engage in parental alienation or even just interference with visitation, the suspicion fathers encounter at parks with their children, or just the general culture convention that mothers are the main parents and men are adjunct – you have to be willfully blind not to see the biases that fathers face.

Let’s leave the sentencing discount and mass incarceration for another time, and also the general reluctance to even charge women when they do break the law.

The woman card spares you from all of this. The woman card is in fact the list of female privilege that numerous people have drawn up and refined. The woman card is real.

Jim Doyle
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Jim Doyle

<span class="dsq-postid" data-dsqidentifier="154975">6 comments</span>

  • And it’s power depends on it’s most powerful rebate, the victim rebate. Not only are you spared for having the woman card, but the woman card is the greatest victimisaton of all. Otherwise it has no power at all.

    Why would people continue to feel pity and rationalise pedestalising you if they weren’t reassuring themselves that doing so constituted the greatest oppression?

    The rest of us look on in eternal nonplussed slack-jawdom. What a mess the human emotional matrix truly is.

        • Only the patriarchal parts of it, which is basically all of its core assumptions about how society is organized. When feminists call for what amounts to chivalry – special protections for women, special exemptions for women, favoring women over men – that’s all patriarchal.
          The patriarchy rewards those who conform to its norms and one of those is treating women like princesses. Feminists used to oppose that stuff but modern feminists seem to insist it on it as the natural order. Women and men who do not conform to these norms are in for a hard time.

  • “This post for SYABM illustrates the attitudes that grant women such cover from accountability”

    You forgot the link. Add “/embed” to the end of the URL, before any “#” in it, and you’ll get a linear post.

  • “Longer bathroom lines”, and this has nothing to do with that women regularly go to the bathroom in groups (I’ve read it’s to avoid missing out on gossip, or share info about a guy), or spend forever fixing makeup and hair.

    “Haircuts and dry cleaning” – note the underlying attitude that a woman is entitled to have complicated feminine haircuts and clothes. I won’t be surprised to hear, “we should come up with a way to permit women to have their long hair down while operating heavy machinery, or else we’re punishing women for having long hair, especially when that’s something patriarchy expects of us” one of these days.

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