Business is booming for feminism as the modern world has awoken to the injustices women have faced since the dawn of time. This surge in awareness sexual equality has sparked a profitable industry off the back of activism (who remembers the “We Should All Be Feminists” t-shirt created by Dior, which retailed at $645. (A price many would argue is another injustice…)
Despite the mass interest in feminism and the profits that can be made from the movement, these women are focussing their attention in the opposite direction. The Lovely Ladies of the Men’s Movement are working to try and generate the same interest for male empowerment. The group hope to “raise awareness of the struggles men experience on a day-to-day basis,” which is enraging some feminists across the globe. The group was founded by Vanessa Lussier, also known as Modern Medusa, who likens feminism to cancer. “To me, feminism is a good idea that got taken advantage of by bad people,” Lussier tells BarcroftTV. “What are they fighting for? Women’s rights? We got those, we got those a long time ago,” she asks in one of her YouTube videos, clearly oblivious to the fact that women across the globe are still denied many fundamental rights.
“While historically men have had more authority in society, no society is perfect. It can lean in different ways and now that women basically have all their rights, you have to think, you know, well men have issues too, why can’t we talk about them?”
“I found of that feminism is actually pushing a lot of myths. Feminists bring up, you know, an issue of, you know, women are…raped, you know. One in five women are raped, or whatever the statistic is. But, you know, when someone brings up, well one in six men are sexually abused, they’re like well you know this is a women’s issue, we don’t need to talk about men.”
To insert some facts: In 2012 an FBI study found that of all rapes reported that year, 67,345 were against women and 12,100 against men. Together the group have crafted a calendar, featuring pictures of themselves, to help inspire a conversation about men’s issues. To fund the calendar, the girls established an online fundraising page, which has currently collected $2,577 for the cause. It is yet to be confirmed where the profits from the calendar will be invested. Explaining why the group will be focussing solely on men’s issues rather than equality in general, Lussier simply said: “Women have so many groups supporting them, [so] speaking about women’s issues isn’t really necessary on our part.” Many were confused by what “men’s issues” specifically included, so to clarify any confusion, Lussier explained one of the problems that men face and women don’t:
“Female genital mutilation is illegal in the United States, while male genital mutilation, also known as circumcision, is still a regular tradition among American families.”
Female genital mutilation is only illegal on women below the age of 18 in the US, with only 24 states having laws against FGM as of 2015, meaning that it is still a prominent issue which effects thousands of women across the country. Equally, circumcision is a prevalent issue which many activists are trying to establish a conversation about. Lussier, who calls herself a “non-feminist”, was inspired to create the group due to her believe that feminism is like “cancer”, which eclipses the rights of men.
“The waves of feminism has brought us different things. Like, you know, the right to vote and such. It also isn’t perfect. It’s grown into something that causes almost more harm than help. While there are feminists who promote gender equality, there are also many misogynists who are among the feminist community who like to push myths and say that men are evil.”
Their cause has met fierce backlash online. “These women seem very uneducated in what they are fighting for,” writes one user, whilst another types: “If there is a stance that you are taking. Even if it’s popular or not make sure you’re educated in the matter. Please.”
What do you think? Do the girls have a valid point, just poorly executed? Or, are they totally off the mark? Will you be investing in one of the calendars?
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