A shameful week to be a man


Blunt Instrument

John Birmingham tells stories. Most of them true.

June 18, 2013 – 8:11AM
Mostly I dig being a man. It’s awesome. And being a middle class white man? Holy crap. I don’t need to buy a lottery ticket because I won all the things just by turning up. But sometimes … I dunno. Sometimes I am ashamed to have a dick, and I’m not talking about that time I woke up in a crowded train carriage with a gigantic travel stiffy.

This last week, it’s been a shameful dick week.

I mean, what is it with you losers? Do you genuinely hate women? Or are you just too stupid to live and breed? I mean that literally. The gene pool would be better without you. Yes, Sattler, I’m looking at you. And your mate, Akerman. And that restaurant owner with the sub-moronic sense of humour. And the misogynist fools the Chief of the Army is talking to here. And that slobbering waste of human skin married to Nigella Lawson. And seemingly 95 per cent of the commuters on YouTube. And the army of dickless wonders stinking up Xbox Live. And the celebrated rapists of rugby league. And that soccer coach with the delightful Dark Ages twist on marital relations. And and and …

Well, you get my point.

Or you don’t, because you are a misogynist dickless wonder who thinks the last week is all just a feminazi PC plot, or even worse just a bit of fun, or just what everyone is saying anyway. That’d be you, Piers, that last one. At least Sattler had the nads and the lack of sense to front Gillard personally and destroy himself in an explosion of shameful stupidity. Your smarmy, weasel words on the ABC’s Insiders, basically gargling and spitting up Sattler’s word vomit all over again don’t even get the grudging Jackass points that his suicidal performance demanded.

Seriously. What is up with you people?

All of you.

Do you not have wives and daughters? Do you not love them and want the best for them? OK. Scratch that. In Saatchi’s case we already know the answer.

Maybe the way out of this strangely primitive cultural moment in which we find ourselves isn’t to talk to, or even consider the actions of the so-called men in question. Maybe it’s the rest of us have some ‘splaining to do.

Because the truth is the world is not solely populated by misogynists and homophobes and embittered, deeply stupid and potentially violent males. It’s also full of calmer, gentler, more intelligent and wiser men who know better than these fools and who are perfectly capable of standing them down. Men who want better for women because so many of the people they care most about in the world are women.

Where are these blokes when a man puts his hands around a woman’s neck and starts to squeeze? Where are they when some idiot demeans and disrespects a prime minister, not because of what she’s done, but because of what she is? Where are you guys? Because if you just stepped up and said no at the very moment that it’s happening, not later, but right then and there, some of this wretched dickishness might finally die out.


18 thoughts on “A shameful week to be a man

  1. I feel embarrassed for vast swathes of humanity a lot of the time. So, no, I don’t feel embarrassed to be male because so many men are behaving badly, in the spotlight. Why not feel proud to be a man, because of the fact that privileged white man is standing up for women’s rights in the army, for example ? In both cases, it’s the actions of ANOTHER man, and while I can applaud one and deplore the other, neither has any say in who I choose to be.

  2. No. we woman do not see issues that affect won=man, as taboo. No, we will not stop talking, because it offended s the fragile nature of some men.

    Yes, we will be calling it as it is.

    If some men do not like that, they can lump it, as they tell us to do.

    I am waiting for the majority of decent men out there, to stop walking past, and take action.

    It is a men’s problem, not women. It is up to men th change things.

    Glad to see Nicola Roxon, in her valedictory is not backing off, nor should she.

    • I’m not sure there’s much that we ‘win’ by being men, not today. What exactly do you think men should change ? What do *I* need to change, in your view ?

  3. christian , I am surprise you ask. Simple, anytime you hear a man denigrating or abusing a woman, speak up. Tell him it is not acceptable.

    Now that is not hard, it is.

    One does not have to act the hero.

    One does not stand in a group of men, where such conversation is occurring, sniggering along with the rest.

    Well at least they should not, unless they agree with what is being said.

    • OK, I didn’t expect you to take that tack at all. Honestly, I don’t move in circles where people talk like that, but I would like to think that if I heard someone abusing someone else, no matter if it was for their sex, their race, or their choice of clothing, that I’d say something. One would hope that most people would do that. What makes you feel that this sort of thing happens often ? Perhaps it does, just not amongst the sort of people I associate with.

  4. I guess the other question is, if a man is being abusive to a woman, why is it only men who should stand up ? Shouldn’t we all stand up if someone behaves in a socially unacceptable way in our vicinity ? Again, I have no experience about this, so perhaps you’re used to big bogan men physically threatening women, and I understand why you’d be reluctant if a physical threat was present. But, the idea that no woman could stand up to any man is clearly sexist. There’s plenty of women who could beat the hell out of me if they tried 🙂

  5. christian , you have answered your own question. Most are decent, and I believe you would be shocked if men behaved like that around you.

    When all is said and done, there are only a small number, that has taken over the debate. Most men are decent.

    Where do you then stand, with all the abuse that has been aimed at this PM, since day one.

    Do you believe the PM earns the abuse she gets,

    If so, why?

    • I am only vaguely aware of abuse levelled to the PM, which is gender specific. I’ve never seen any first hand, only news stories about it, so I don’t know how much of it actually occurs. I confess to not thinking much of her government, but I also don’t think much of the opposition, so I’m not sure where that leaves me, politically speaking.

      I think that people who insult her based on her sex, are probably small minded people who don’t like her, and lack the vocab to express why, so they look for what seems to them to be a valid cheap shot that doesn’t require swearing. I don’t think it’s acceptable, at all, but I’m not sure that much is gained by making too big a deal of it, either. Personally, I’d just express my disdain for people who talk that way and wait for them to go away. Certainly I don’t think they should be allowed to take over the debate. Intelligent people should discuss the job she is doing and if they approve of her policies, and ignore people who are obviously not capable of intelligent discussion. At the end of the day, you will always have morons in the world. It becomes a question of how much time you want to waste on them ? Are they even likely to change ? The most you can do is push a standard of behaviour that teaches them to shut up, I think. But, giving them too much publicity ( as I fear this blog sometimes does ), just helps them turn in to bogan heroes amongst their own kind, which only can serve to encourage them.

  6. christian , because it is a man’s problem. Woman do stand up, but find it impossible to bring change. What occurs, you are accused of playing the gender card, deserve what you get, or are thinned skinned.

    I am sure, you have heard all of this, this week.

    The final insult, is that women’s issues should not be raised, as they derive the community.

    Get the picture.
    Treat your women well, bring up your sons with good values. Do not turn a blind eye to such behavior when it crosses your path.
    The behavior will disappear quickly.

    • I agree with your last comment. As a father, I feel I need to provide a strong example to my son to treat women with respect, and to my daughter to demand respect from everyone in her life, male or female. However, I don’t think, if I had the chance to stand up in the sort of situation you describe, that the person who was likely to deride a woman for doing the same thing, would say ‘he’s a bloke, he must be right’. Sure, it’s EVERYONE’S job to create the society they want to live in, by not accepting behaviour that is wrong. But, you can’t reasonably expect that just because a man said something, that every man who hears it will take note. Some people are always going to be disposed to bad behaviour, the best we can hope is to encourage them to keep it to themselves, I am afraid.

  7. Yes I do. Zero tolerance is the way society is changed. Does not take much, just that is not on, do not agree with you etc. Not asking one to get on a soap box, just let your feeling be known.

    Your children are lucky. Good on you. Thankfully there are many of you, out there.

    I hope there is enough, so your daughter never suffers the indignity of behavior from the few low life.

    • Well, I am clearly aware that some men may not treat my daughter with respect, and may model bad behaviour to my son, for me to be especially aware of it, but I hope that it’s becoming less and less likely, over time. Society will never be perfect, and you’re right, zero tolerance is the way that those who hold a reasonable standard, make that standard known, and hopefully spread reasonable norms. I’ve been shocked on these pages to read about racist rants on buses and so on. I really thought we’d moved beyond that. I still think most of us have.

  8. christain, go back and look at episodes of QT from over the last three years. Look at many of the Oppositions banners, they proudly stand under.

    Sadly, it can be found in both houses, from both men and women, aimed at all Labor women.

    It is gutter politics. Yes the PM is tough, and can lob it back, if she so desires. That is not what it is about, it should not be there in the first place.

    Sadly christian, one does not have to look hard.

    I am a old lady, with many children, grand and great grand children It sadden me, we are still talking in this way.

    • I gave up on politics as a shameful game a long time ago. I do agree that when it comes to sexism in particular, our politicians should do better to model acceptable behaviour, but it’s just like the school yard. Their insults are not meant at face value, they decided to pick on someone, then looked for a cheap shot. I do wonder – I am sure if someone made a racist comment in parliament, that it would cause quite the scandal. So, I didn’t know, but I am more disappointed to have my views confirmed, than shocked or surprised 😦

  9. Travel stiffy…haven’t laughed at something like that for ages, I used to call it a travelers fat but hey stiffy works lol. Collectively none of the people mentioned in the article have any remorse that isn’t confected. Sattler has been polluting AM radios in Taxis for years, dickhead joins Bob Maumill and others in the arse hat leadership gang.

    • Thank fuck that’s a thing I thought I was the only one who needed a few minutes to stand up on the train after a long trip, not even joking.

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