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Should we really be targeting men?

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Lizard3eyes has forfeited round #4.
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/19/2018 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 626 times Debate No: 114085
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (8)
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It seems that my previous debate on this topic seems to have magically disappeared (haven't been able to find it). Unfortunately for some of you, I copy and paste things into my google documents. Nice try.

Part of the feminist movement seems to be targeting men for almost anything. Some women complain that there's "toxic masculinity" and that men should feel free to express their emotions. Meanwhile, the people saying that are sipping coffee out of their "male tears" mug. I agree with this to some extent, but the myths and/or ideas about men being worthless is getting out of hand. Yes, I can understand wanting men to express emotion rather than being all "tough", but many articles I've read seem to imply that all men are this way. When those ideas of what men are like are applied to someone like me (who is part of a small minority of boys who actually AREN'T trying to be "tough" and "cool"), one could understand how that can be extremely frustrating.
An article in my school newspaper was recently published that claimed that boys watch 40 hours of TV a week, play 15 hours of video games, and watch 2 hours of inappropriate videos (and I think one can guess what I'm trying to say here). When that's put somewhere for any student to read, people are going to remember that and possibly think about that in the back of their mind when meeting or talking with a guy. Frustrated, I had sent my friend this text:
"Saw school newspaper today. It doesn't say ALL boys do this, but still; it's ludicrous. Their ideology is completely asinine. I shouldn't be a victim of this and discriminated against because of someone else's wrongdoings and, to put it nicely, idiosyncrasies. The idea that men are trash simply because testosterone is just so ridiculously stupid it makes the person seem like the incompetent trash they accuse others of being (SEEMS like, not that they actually are). These days it seems inevitable that people would think this but the idea is just so inconceivably ridiculous."
My friend then sent this:
"Uneducated opinions from ignorant people."
I responded back:
"Uneducated opinions from ignorant people are unnecessary, gratuitous, and irrelevant, but arguing against the feminist movement is both fruitless and complete social suicide."

Maybe I can have a debate where my opponent and I can actually come to a conclusion about men being trash and toxic masculinity. I'm fine with talking about other things (wage gap, rape culture, societal pressures, etc.) if my opponent truly wants to.

I'm mostly debating this to see a feminist's take on this. I totally understand if I lose no matter what I say; debating this topic is social suicide as I said earlier.

Additional note:
I support women's rights, however don't really know what it is they're lacking now. Overall, I consider myself an egalitarian and will support equality for almost any group even if I don't completely agree with them.

Yes, I'm a boy talking about feminism so I simply MUST be uneducated about the topic. However, the movement will inevitably be challenged. Besides, feminists are protesting to (mostly) men, so you have to educate them somehow.


Hello. I found your argument to be intriguing and fair and i hope i can do the same with mine. Firstly i dont think you have said anything to directly attack or belittle the feminist movement nor do i think you have commited social suicude with your opinions, as they are, in my opinion, respectful. I dont want to speak for the entire feminist movement as i am not an authority figure on the matter nor am i fully educated in all the issues relating to the matter. With that in mind i plan to argue exactly what the argument prompt states with a feminist view. Should we be targeting men? Yes, and heres why. When it comes to the moral responsibility of respecting rights of all human beings, men and women included, men have not had the greatest track record. And although we cannot assign the immorality of our forefathers to their progeny we can see a clear effect that their ideas have on men in our current society. You stated that you had evidence of men being built to not express emotions and be "tough". While i am sure your sources are to some extent correct, we also have mountains of evidence supoorting the fact that men do not neccesarily have to act or feel the way they were reportedly built. For example. There are many societies in the past and even now that are primarily matriarchal. Leaders of these communities would even take multiple husbands to show their dominance and authority. This behavior is similar to how men acted as leaders in other societies as im sure you know. This seems to imply tht dominant behavior associated with men is less about gender and more of a product of social structure. And if this is true, that would mean that the oppression tht has plagued the female gender for centuries is a social construct that expresses itself through all participants of that society. This is arguably not a biological problem, but one that can be changed by people deciding to change how they view norms that are seemingly harmless. And people have started to recognize these norms and identified them as harmful. This would be, in my opinion, the driving force behind the controversy that feminism has wrought. People who stand to benifit from these norms can feel targeted and victimized, namely men. And on the other side of the controversy, women who fight against the powers that be can overcorrect and publish or otherwise distribute information that are portrayed in an exaggerated or untruthful light which you have observed in the article published in your school newspaper. This fight has people who are being hurt and slandered unnecessarily but that has caused many people to overlook the overall cause. The main objective of this cause is to give women the right to be regarded by other people, all people, as equal in every regard. This extends past wages and sexuality and other topics related to this debate. It extends to just simply how a man views others in a given patriarchal society. That view is changing. And it is changing in favor of equality. And the main drivers of that change has been due to women targeting men as oppressors. While not all men are oppressive towards women, I would argue that most if not all men participate in potentially oppresive behavior on some level indirectly or directly without being conscious of it. Its hard to recognize our own shortcomings. And that applies to all genders. And this argument is not as simple as, "whose to blame?" But. If we must reduce the directive of the feminist movement to. "Who should we target?" It should be men. Due to the fact that society is in favor of men on a historical, sociological, and ideological level and has time and time again used that power to oppress women. And this methodology has proved to be the single most effective tactic used to bring change. For the better.
Again. I think you have many valid points which in my experience isnt typical when dealing with people who have strong opinions for one side or another and so i hope i can provide an equally stimulating argument. Im not aiming to change your or anyone elses mind nor do i aim to provoke or agitate you in any way. This is an opportunity to hone my ability to formulate and present arguments of any kind regardless of my real life feelings or opinions. So i hope you don't feel a need to restrain yourself. Seriously, go all out. I hope we can learn something from eachother and hopefully something about ourselves. Thank you
Debate Round No. 1



Thank you for being extremely respectful in this debate! I'm extremely pleased with the result! I was worried that I would get some feminazi as they're called but, fortunately, I got a very mature opponent. I'm also extremely pleased that you claimed to not know everything about the feminist movement. That's very mature and deserves respect.

I understand where you're coming from; overall, men should be the one to be spoken to. It's not that they are FULLY to blame, but rather that guys have most to do with it. Because of hormones, they are wired to want control and be dominant. This isn't as strong in women so they didn't fight back very much (of course it is shown throughout history; I'm not denying that).

Everything else is amazing in the argument, but I don't recall saying anything about men being built to not express emotions. I myself express A LOT of emotion and expression with my voice, hand movements, and facial expressions even when I don't speak; that's simply how I always have been and likely always will be. Society expects men to be tough and protectors rather than be open and expressive. It's not that I have PURPOSELY gone against these expectations and acted outgoing, it's mostly just that I don't find any reason to follow the social norm.

My main problem with this the whole idea of feminism is that now it seems to be going to the extremes where the male gender is now being oppressed socially. Though we were mostly expected to be collected and strong, it now seems to be expected that we're all perverts, rapists, and desperate for the position of alpha which isn't always true (though I do know an overwhelming majority that are perverts and like to show off). The idea that all men sports is also frustrating for not just me but also some of my friends who like music and art more. It's expected that if someone likes the fine arts rather than sports that the person is gay (if they're a boy). Though a lot of my friends are and are for the most part okay with that, I also have a few straight friends who don't like this idea. Of course, they don't go crazy if someone expects that, it's not the most comfortable accusation to have put onto you.

Sorry if my ideas are a bit scrambled. It's a little bit hard for me to keep all of my ideas in order right now with finals coming up...Lol...

You can go ahead and bring up a few other issues that I had mentioned in my intro if you would like to. Go ahead! :)

Could you separate some of your ideas with paragraphs like I've been doing? It would help a little bit for me to read better and provide better arguments. If you can do that, it would be great! :D


I am grateful that you consider my argument to be valid and appreciate the respectful tone of this debate. Sorry about the formatting, this post should turn out better in that regard. First off, just for clarifications sake, in terms of what specifically we are debating about, I will be arguing that men should in fact be targeted in the context of feminism. It is my belief that you are arguing that men should not be primarily targeted in the context of feminism. If i am mistaken in these assumptions i ask you to inform me accordingly. Otherwise for the purposes of determining a victor for this debate I would ask anyone who might choose to vote one way or the other to make their decision based on the argument topics i previously mentioned and how well my opponent and I defend these positions. Any discussion uninvolved with these specific points of contention should be viewed as just that, discussion. With that in mind i will start the debate related portion of this post.

I have, in my previous post, presented several points to defend the idea that men should be targeted primarily. To clarify, when I say men should be targeted, I only mean that men more than anyone else should have their behavior monitored and if necessary rectified in a civil and humane manner. The methodology implied does not allow for degradation of anyone, much less men, merely the recognition that men are brought up and taught in such a way that creates an implicit and often explicit oppressive atmosphere for anyone that is not a man. As far as I know feminism as a movement employs these ideas and methods in a respectful manner and anyone who, as you say, expects men to be perverts, rapists, and power hungry if you will, is not in alignment with what feminism stands for fundamentally. To that end i would say that you are not arguing against the feminist movement but rather against those that twist the feminist ideology to defend generalizations and uninformed opinions. These people are harmful to any cause that defends equality and informed discussion. However, these types of people do not warrant a cessation of the scrutiny of men. Allow me to explain.

Men have, from ancient times to present day, maintained oppressive behavior as normal or even morally in the right. Does this mean that all men are naturally oppressive? To say this is true would go against all that feminism and equal rights activists have fought for all of these years. It is far more likely that it is societal structures and beliefs that perpetuate the notions that empower men and take advantage of women, and as i said before, social structures and beliefs can be changed. Change occurs when the weak in a given society rally against the powers that be and appeal to empathy, reason, and morality in a way that changes the social consciousness in a real and meaningful way. The issue that arises when this type of movement rises to a platform of influence is that people are, if you'll forgive my candor, stupid. This results in groups and individuals forming unfounded beliefs and act in ways that harm the very institution they believe themselves to be apart of. This in turn leads to mass generalization and controversy. These people who promote ignorance should not be agents for change and should not influence the opinions and beliefs of those who promote empathy, logic, and morality. In this respect, men should be targeted in spite of these people, men are to be held to a standard because they are more than anything else, people, and people are equal and should regard each other accordingly, men are often brought up in ways that undermine this idea and thus are primary targets of regulation. This concludes the debate portion of this post.

Now to address points of discussion. I see what you're saying about the extremes thing. However I think it's because women didn't have a lot of ways to defend themselves socially in the past, but now feminism has accrued enough influence to where women now have tools and social contexts to feel safe and defend themselves in. For example, rape was not taken very seriously in the past and due to this when women claimed to have been raped, the claim did not get the recognition it deserved and men were almost never given the punishment they deserved. However, we are getting to a place in our world where rape is taken much more seriously, and due to this victims of this are given a voice, they are given a platform in which their words are valid and hold power equitable to that of the power that men held and hold in their words. But, power corrupts. This goes for anyone, period. Women can use the fact that most rapists are men to generalize most men as rapists. This is, of course, absurd as it reduces people to an unjustifiable label, namely men. This is unfortunate and causes damage to the establishment that gives people this power. but again, i want to be clear, literally everyone abuses power, whether that power is negligible or impactful. It's just that now that women are given negligible power socially people are noticing the positives and negatives of this fact. In a way, it's a sign that things are getting better.

Again, i appreciate you having this debate with me and i enjoy any discussion we may have. I hope you dont think im trying to limit our discussion or trying to wrestle a win out of this, I just wanted to make the terms of our dialogue perfectly clear to anyone who might care about what we're doing here. Sorry if i rambled a bit, i have a hard time focusing my ideas, part of the reason i'm here, to practice organization and presentation of my thoughts and arguments. I look forward to your response. Thank you
Debate Round No. 2


Thanks for adjusting the format! It made it much easier to read.

These posts will likely start getting shorter and shorter as the discussion progresses; it already seems that we are close to reaching a conclusion. I don't expect to see eye-to-eye with you (but who knows?), but I know that my opinions have and will continue to change on this topic.

I understand what you mean by people morphing feminism into something it shouldn't be (at least that's what I got from one of your paragraphs); some people are socially attacking men rather than focusing on promoting the idea that women should have equal rights. That's not what the feminist movement is about.

It wasn't completely the fact that we should be targeting men (though it was a part of it), but rather a question of whether or not the methods used are effective and should be used at all. As it's probably obvious, I completely oppose some of the methods because they are both incorrect and have something to do with me (because I'm the same gender). When those false ideas could affect me in any way, you can imagine why I get frustrated.

Rape hadn't been taken as seriously as it has now, but also think about how many people could accuse others for the sake of having the spotlight on them for a couple of minutes. Some of them are completely false and could seriously affect the victim of the accusation negatively. Now, I'm not saying that ALL accusations are false, but a woman can hold someone's future in their hands with the words: "He raped me". Because of all these cases where it can be a total lie as a desperate way to get attention, many people think that the possible victim is lying to destroy the person's life or, as I said before, trying to get a couple of minutes in the spotlight. Because of false cases, almost no accusations are taken seriously at first without any evidence because of how easily and often it happens.

My opinion on targeting men is that it should not be the primary focus. Yes, it should be a part of the movement, but it would be better to encourage other women to stand up for themselves and not let these things go on without saying something immediately (things like rape, sexism, etc.); it would be more of a positive thing that wouldn't be so looked down upon as it recently has been if this was the main purpose of feminism. The characteristics of men should not be what's attacked; it should be their actions.

Thanks for participating so respectfully in this debate! It's very much appreciated. If I left anything out please don't hesitate to let me know.


I apologize for misinterpreting the debate, however I believe it would be impractical to change what I've been arguing thus far and so, for simplicity's sake, i will continue to defend the position I've held previously. This is not to discredit or belittle your other conversation points, but rather it is me laying in the grave I've dug for myself. I will be addressing the argument you made related to my position on this issue in a debate format. The other points I will consider to be normal discussion and i will identify it as such. I hope these terms are okay with you.

You state that targeting men should not be the primary focus of the feminist movement, and that it would be better to encourage women to stand up for themselves without relying immediately on incendiary words and terminology. I ask you to offer alternatives for women in terms of defense. I will not deny that people take advantage of the power that they are given in almost every situation, women included. But where i think we disagree is that i do not think that the people who do take advantage of this power in the ways you state are the majority, or even a large portion. I have no doubt you have had many encounters with people who did the things you speak of, and i have certainly met and heard of countless people with abrasive characteristics. But i do not think this is indicative of all those who do use these terms being intentionally abusive to men. Women who do use these terms i think are genuine about their intentions and trying to defend themselves as well as identifying the danger accordingly.

If we are indeed equal and both have an equal burden in our society then i propose this example. If a random heterosexual man randomly appeared in a roomful of naked women, odds are he would be delighted. If a random heterosexual woman appeared in a roomful of naked men, odds are she will be terrified. Apologies if the example is too vulgar but i feel that it illustrates my point well. Women do not often make false accusations and most accusations dismissed as false in the past have not been entirely false or have been improperly investigated. As i do not have sources to corroborate these claims i would not blame you if you were to dismiss them. However, most rapists are men, most serial killers have historically been men and their victims have been mostly women. This is a reality both men and women have to deal with. So how do they deal with this problem? By targeting the people most statistically likely to be dangerous.

This is not to say every man is dangerous and to say so would be an absurdity never to be taken seriously. But one can see why women would live life with a higher sensitivity to provocation. Women face certain social pressures that men +never experience based exclusively on the fact that they are female. Therefore targeting men based on the fact that they are men would equalize that pressure onto both genders. Not in a dehumanizing way, but in an instructive and informative manner. Women do not have a lot in terms of defense mechanisms on their side compared to men. And this is not due to men being naturally better at defending themselves. This is due to a fundamental unfairness in society. And so i ask you, how would you teach women to better defend themselves if not by using what power they have and assessing potential danger? That is my case for this post.

To be honest i do think that people who jump to incite confrontation using unnecessary generalizations to take away the validity of another's thoughts and opinions are pretty messed up and I hope you know that i do understand your frustration. Interaction between all people should ideally be for the purposes of growth and people who employ tactics that subvert that growth hurt their own chances to become better for reasons i have yet to comprehend. Basically what i'm saying is, i see where you're coming from and don't disagree with all that you're saying. But i will continue to defend the point i chose til the end of the debate. I appreciate your conduct and plan to reciprocate. Thank you
Debate Round No. 3


It's not really a misinterpretation on your part; it's mostly on me and how I worded my target for this debate. The terms are completely understandable and I definitely accept them.

This is likely going to be the part where we disagree the most: the primary focus of who to encourage. What I've gathered so far is that I think that feminism should motivate women to stand up for themselves and not let misogyny get in their way. You seem to believe that men should be the focus because they have been the oppressors. I hope I'm getting this correct! Both of these I think makes sense but our disagreement seems to be on which gender the feminist movement should try to speak to.

The example is a bit vulgar but it makes sense. It's not COMPLETELY related to the topic of false accusations, but it does tie in there in a few ways. My argument was that some women may falsely accuse men of rape simply because they can. It would destroy the supposed rapist's career and possibly even life. I won't COMPLETELY dismiss what you said, but it would be great if you could find examples. I understand it though; you know something from somewhere but don't remember where the information is from. I get it.

Thank you for being understanding! This is a great debate/discussion and it's nice to get opinions from someone who can identify as a primary source (at least I think you can). Thanks!
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Debate Round No. 4
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Debate Round No. 5
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by 32doni32nido32 3 years ago
That's okay! I'll forfeit my round so you can post your argument; it'll give you more time.
Posted by Lizard3eyes 3 years ago
Really sorry. I got a ton of stuff dumped on me this week so i really didnt have time to respond. Im still happy to continue this if you are. I was just really busy is all
Posted by 32doni32nido32 3 years ago
Lol thanks! :D
My opponent is actually very good! I'm pleasantly surprised. Tell me what you think. :)
Posted by Fiasco 3 years ago

That last one is right on the mark! Too much fun.
Posted by 32doni32nido32 3 years ago
Exactly! I think I'm going to change my gender to a flying chocolate chip inside of a lampshade. Oh actually nevermind; I change my gender now to a key lime pie made at Panda Express who dug underneath the curtain to get all the way to my window. Actually I think I'll change it again to-

Im actually extremly much tolerant of ppl who agree with meh bcaws they r sew rite like srsly y cant every1 b like that. All thos other ppl who disagree wit meh i stil am much tolerant of butt i actualy h8 them. rape culture! Ignorant bafooooons!1!!! u wil b sorry when womun rul tge world!!11!1!!
Posted by Fiasco 3 years ago
@ 32doni32nido32

It ought to, haha! Yet somehow they'll only accept that if it works for them. That kind of person loves to talk about how they're very tolerant...of everyone who agrees with them! It's pretty silly. I guess I'll be a 61-year-old purple shark who lives in the clouds! And by the way, that makes me a minority...I could have so much fun with this! :)
Posted by 32doni32nido32 3 years ago
Thank you for your comment!
If gender is whatever I choose I think I'll be a Walgreens gift card who rode on a unicorn in the middle of Saturn where it rains pencil boxes. Does that work?
Posted by Fiasco 3 years ago
Con, you're completely in the right. Social Suicide, it sure is! One thing that never did add up for me is the apparent hypocrisy of people who say both "men are trash, women are great" and "gender is whatever you choose". Great, if I were a man who was getting bashed for being a man, then hey! I'll just say I'm a woman and everyone's happy. lol. Anyways, best of luck to you in this debate! :)
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