I have been reprimanded more than once over at manboobz for using "ablist" language by referring to some of the manosphere writers as "lunatics" or wishing that they would climb out of their basements and get "real jobs." And today I note, with some chagrin, that someone on the bluepill reddit was offended that I dismissed the redpill boys as "morons" instead of more kindly conceding that they are "misled." Well, in fact, I think they are both. Morons are, after all, easily misled.
When I am in another forum, such as manboobz, I try to conform to the rules of that culture. As a visitor, I show respect to the community over there by parsing my thoughts in ways that do not offend other members. In my blog, I write exactly as I please, and I try to express myself as truthfully as I can. Similarly, when I was in the middle east, I wore "hijab" out of respect to the mores of the culture that was hosting me, and did not consider myself a hypocrite in doing so. In my own home, I am not obligated to avoid offense; I am obligated to live and speak my truth. And I wear whatever I damn well please. (Which today means a t-shirt covered in bird poop and riddled with cigarette burns, so there!)
Granted, my "truth" is based on my own life experience, on what I have been exposed to through reading, observing, reflecting, and just plain hanging out (as a white, bisexual middle-class woman) on this planet for nearly sixty years.
And truthfully, I do believe that many of the New Misogynists suffer from personality disorders. And I truthfully believe -- based on reading many, many, many comments -- that their followers are not only poorly educated, but suffer from real intellectual deficits.
And, yes, I am somewhat contemptuous of people who do not try to better themselves. Ignorance is not a sin, but willful ignorance is the greatest sin in my book. If someone tells me I am wrong, and explains why, I try to exercise enough humility to consider that he/she might be right, even if that means I must (gasp!) be wrong. Because experience tells me that when I am feeling most defensive is when I am most likely to be encountering an important learning opportunity.
People who cling to ideas that are not only wrong, but also harmful to others, in the face of all evidence to the contrary (whether this is creationism, misogyny, denial of privilege, denial of climate change, or transphobia) are ignorant. And that ignorance is either stemming from (1) some willfulness on their part, (2) pathological delusion, or else (3) plain old garden-variety stupidity.
People who are not stupid, but who take advantage of others' stupidity in an attempt to gain power or prestige, are, on the other hand, bad. (Think Karl Rove / Dick Cheney and Bush Jr.) One of the things I find most despicable about "Roosh" is that he appears to have started out in life with the requisite number of brain cells and support to have done something useful (he has a B.S. in microbiology), but he squandered his gifts because his need to be perceived as a "leader of men" (an alpha among betas) trumped his willingness to achieve success through hard work and self-discipline. He's a very bad person who chooses to treat women badly and who encourages stupid men to follow their worst (most base) impulses.
There is so much cognitive dissonance in the manosphere, it makes my head hurt. Sometimes I wonder if these leaders (i.e., Paul Elam) really started out believing the crap they now spew, or if they simply, over time, have acquiesced to their own lies. Of course, in the hot house environments of manosphere blogs, where no received wisdom is challenged or examined, everyone's mind becomes duller, even the most critical (hostile) reader's.
Look, I'm no brainiac either. The worst thing about aging is that every day, I feel myself slipping, cognitively. I struggle to keep abreast of the information and skills I need just to do my job, for example, and joke (?) that as soon as I retire, I will refuse to adapt to one more technological change. Every day I am aware that I have less control over my future, so no wonder I find myself looking backwards. I need to exercise more, both physically and mentally, just to maintain basic function.
If there's one reason I will quit following the manosphere, it is because I cannot afford to expose my already-deteriorating faculties to so much Stupid. Ditto watching television. In the same vein, if there's one reason I hate teaching remedial English, it is because exposing myself to so much bad writing is eroding my own writing skills. Sometimes I find myself embroiled in some internal argument with, say, Bill Price's wife, or recoiling from some new horror from Matt Forney or JudgyBitch, and I wonder what the hell I am doing. I should be taking a physics class or learning to crochet instead.
That's just how this tired old lady sees it on a cold, cloudy Friday morning.