Radical Feminism Is Real Feminism Part II

Radical Feminism
Is Real Feminism

Bev Jo

Part II

 The Cons and Lies, and Ruling by Terror  

We need a truly Radical Feminist movement that welcomes all girls and women, where we can finally talk about the most radical of feminist politics, so we go as far as possible with our ideas, observations, and conclusions. We want the women who have been isolated and marginalized to know they are not alone and that they have finally come home.

In the Seventies, feminism was targeted by media ridicule and misrepresentation in order to confuse girls and women into rejecting even the thought of feminism. Now, it’s more difficult because porn and sado-masochism are mainstreamed as “feminism.”

Parasitized pretend feminism tells women to stop questioning and thinking, and to accept lies that can be comfortingly similar to the regular patriarchal cons. Real Radical Feminism is about questioning everything that we are told is “reality” or “just the way things are.” Radical Feminism shakes patriarchy to its core because it calls for the very ending of patriarchy.

That terrifies the pretend “radfems” because ending patriarchy means giving up their privilege. I say to the female pretenders gutting Radical Feminism, as I say to the male pretenders — call yourselves whatever you want, but stop trying to steal our name, our movement, our culture, and then parasitizing it for your own use.

I say the same to those who “don’t want to know” what harm a troll is doing to Radical Feminism and to individual women — please be responsible enough to recognize that we cannot have a movement of women who don’t care about each other — and if that troll, whether a paid agent or someone who just enjoys their game of power and pitting women against each other, is not named, held accountable, and stopped, then she will eventually hurt you too.

A major difference between Radical Feminism and pretend feminism is that we think of ourselves as community. What is done to one of us is done to all. If we fight only for ourselves and our interests individually, we not only have no movement, we have no culture or community.

Patriarchy is about individuals competing so they keep people pitted against each other and caring only about themselves. Radical Feminism is the opposite. We care for and protect each other. It is never about “Oh I like her and she hasn’t hurt me yet, so I don’t really care if she is classist, racist, Lesbian-hating, etc.” Of course you never just believe something seriously upsetting about another women without verifying if it’s true (because the trolls thrive on lies and slander), so look for yourself to see the evidence. Listen to those being harmed and ask the oppressor/troll their side of it. Often a mild disagreement brings out their rage and they quickly will be abusive to you too. If you are afraid of them, that should tell you something. Since I went to an all-girls high school where the girls were mostly very kind and caring to each other, I never understand when feminists say the cliques and exclusion among feminists are like high school. But that has been a lot of women’s experience, so I do believe some women are playing out the same dynamics from high school of in-groups and outsiders, where most want to belong, while a ringleader decides who is to be banned and ostracized. The result is a hierarchy based on fear so some women go along with targeting other women simply to not be targeted themselves. (Many of the girls and later women also competed with each other over males, and those dynamics are also brought into our feminist community.)

Liberal/reformist/mainstream “feminists” interfere when they constantly undercut Radical Feminism with illogical comments to “prove” it’s impossible to really say no to patriarchy. For example, when we mention some of the ways that women could end patriarchy — such as by refusing to be het and refusing to reproduce – the pretenders’ patronizing responses deny reality, saying women don’t have access to abortions (just stop fucking then), or that we want all humans to die out (as if that’s likely with the population already over seven billion), or that men would enslave us all. Seriously? How is that about to happen where many of us live, and so isn’t it even more important to say no when women in other countries are killed for resisting?

Reformism does not go past fantasy into reality. As painful as knowing the truth of reality, Radical Feminism is the only way to actually eliminate patriarchy and male violence towards all females and the earth. Some women are terrified to become Radical Feminists because they think they have to be angry all the time, but the truth is that it is ultimately very freeing. Women are already angry. When we hide that anger even from ourselves, we end up turning it against ourselves and each other. Knowing the truth and our real options is an incredible relief. And also women then don’t waste time on males.

Some of my friends are with men they trust. I try not to worry for them. “Exceptional” men might exist, but more likely they haven’t been caught or haven’t taken the risk to rape. (Remember how Ted Bundy was considered the ideal man?)  I always say that we never know what a boy or man is doing when he is alone with human babies or animals. There certainly are enough male horror stories. I know a Lesbian whose friends caught their male gardener raping their dog. A dear friend was abused by her mother’s boyfriend, who was known to have orally raped his baby daughter to death. None of this is rare. Almost every woman I know has been sexually assaulted as a girl and/or adult, often multiple times. All have been sexually harassed. This isn’t about “crazy” or “sick” men. These are men who measure “normal” on psychological tests. And even if some men are trustworthy, why do some women who claim to be feminists spend so much energy trying to find them, making them more important than women?

Ironically, men know about other males and often will be quite honest when talking about how dangerous they can be. One male psychologist recommends never allowing adolescent boys to babysit. Michael Moore, the documentarian, said on television, “We want to fuck anything in front of us.” Meanwhile, too many women ridicule being wary of males as sexual predators and say it’s oppressive to even think it.

Real Radical Feminists are motivated by love for other females. Hatred for those who harm us comes afterward. A woman who believes the trivializing, superficial stereotype that feminism is primarily about hatred of men rather than love for females is a woman who is more likely to betray us. Sometimes het women who are trying to bond with me send me bizarre images of men being tortured, assuming I’ll like that.  I’d rather not think about males at all, if they would just leave us and the earth alone. When a “radfem’s” masthead and posts focus primarily on hating men, I’m wary because “she” seems like a troll. (I’m thinking of one “woman” in particular who has no images of herself or friends on her page, uses Valerie Solanas’ photo as her avatar, and has a masthead of a woman wearing a see-through, black, lacey bra with tiny men hanging by her armpit hair. That just looks like a man’s fantasy of a man-hating feminist. The posts seem like trying too hard to prove she/he is a Radical Feminist. Plus, a lot of the women we later find out are trolls use the photos or names of famous dead feminists.)

For our own safety, we need to recognize who is and who isn’t truly Radical Feminist. Men can’t ever be women, so they also can’t be Radical Feminists, but a woman who is not yet a Radical Feminist could yet become one, which keeps us hooked in to trying to reach them. But no matter how theoretically good a woman’s politics are, if she is oppressive and insulting, there is nothing to work with. Trying repeatedly to accept or get through to bullies and trolls is done at the expense of real Radical Feminists who need our support. Trolls bleed us dry as they drive women out of our movement. It’s almost as bad as trying to reach men.

I never fully understand why some women claim to be Radical Feminists who aren’t, but it’s the same reason women claim to be Dyke Separatists when they aren’t – some sincerely are drawn to the truth, while believe it’s a trendy way to feel superior as the “most radical” and to bully other women. Of course real Radical Feminists are a constant reminder that they are frauds, so they are determined to silence and eliminate us, which is similar to how the trans cult tries to erase female existence. Mind-fuck is nothing new. Truth and facts are irrelevant when it comes to fighting dirty.

Re-defining Radical Feminism is also similar to how the words “Lesbian” and “Dyke” have been re-defined to include bisexuals, het women, and even men. They also attempt to divide us into “waves.” “Second Wave” is used to refer to real Radical Feminists, while the “Third Wave” are not feminists at all, but are presented as if they are the logical evolution of feminism. This plays on ageism (with young anti-feminists being called “Third Wave” as if there has been a break in the continuity of our movement), while ignoring that real Radical Feminists do not have an age divide. I refuse to use these divisive, meaningless terms. https://bevjoradicallesbian.wordpress.com/2012/09/23/ageism/

Reformist/mainstream/liberal “feminists” trying to get a better deal from patriarchy often means accepting male goals and betraying women. That has led to segregated “communities” where more oppressed women are treated like dirt and are condemned to “knowing their place” or are not allowed in at all (Doesn’t sound too different from how the right wing or Male Left treats women, does it?).  Women invested in patriarchy don’t want to make real changes because they will lose their privilege. I mean, my god, if patriarchy ends, what good is that law degree, and how will they keep their servants? That isn’t even describing the rich, but simply the middle class who don’t think of their housecleaners, gardeners, dog-walkers, home organizers, self-help gurus, masseuses, nannies, etc. as “servants.” I’m not talking about disabled women who need help, but about those who could at least clean their own toilets if they are hiring cleaners. They solve the embarrassment of seeing their Radical Feminist servants at “radfem” events by making the event unaffordable for anyone but the most privileged. It took me a while to recognize that having servants is “normal” for them since most grew up with servants.

Every year, I see how glaring the class differences are in the remnants of my old Lesbian Feminist community. I never thought I’d see women hiring other women to work at below minimum wage (and saying their servants don’t mind because they enjoy working for them!), or women charging astronomical amounts for rent in what is substandard illegal housing in their garages or basements. Yes, men and het women have been taking advantage of the increasing homeless for years, but I never expected to see “Lesbian Feminists” I know doing this. https://bevjoradicallesbian.wordpress.com/2011/03/16/classism/

Some of the mercenaries left our Lesbian community to return to patriarchy to get more privilege, but others stayed when they found a way to make careers off us. They brought academia, heterosexism, porn, sado-masochism, and genderqueer propaganda into our Lesbian Feminist community at the end of the Seventies. The main “Lesbian” sexologists, pornographers, and promoters of sado-masochism, like Pat Califia and JoAnn Loulan, were bisexuals who made money off their “Lesbian Sex” books and workshops, while defining us out of existence. At first, Califia was clever enough to use classic Lesbian Feminist terminology like “womyn” and “womon” to sell us Samois and sado-masochism. Similarly, many of the men who insist they are Lesbians call themselves “feminists” and even “Radical Feminists.” (Those two female-hating cults merged when Pat Califia claimed to be a “gay transman.”) https://bevjoradicallesbian.wordpress.com/2012/08/04/

Censoring Real Radical Feminism

One way I differentiate who is radical from mainstream is how they react to “givens.” Do they just believe things we are told in patriarchy or do they question? Do they join in mainstream put-downs like calling women “anti-vaxxers” or “conspiracy theorists,” or do they think about why those women don’t trust the medical industry or government? https://bevjoradicallesbian.wordpress.com/2017/06/26/a-chance-to-survive-cancer-doctors-are-not-god/

If they question mainstream beliefs, do they then believe the supposed alternative or do they go further? Refusing to believe in a god does not mean believing in a goddess, or saying “oh goddess” instead of “oh god” when swearing. Another example is refusing the most harmful forms of cancer “treatment” does not mean that the only other option in trying to survive is becoming vegan or to go to a fraud “alternative” clinic that costs a fortune.

I definitely see more questioning by women who are marginalized (like by classism and racism) and those who are not from the US. If a “Radical Feminist” believes government propaganda about history, assassinations, “terrorist” acts and even health misinformation, then she is going to be limited about how much she will explore Radical Feminist ideas. This is based on how invested she is in the patriarchal system. When an issue of feminism becomes confusing, always look to see if the problem is because the women disagreeing are deeply invested in males or patriarchy.

Again, the goal is to divide us and too many unthinkingly join in, so they will be accepted. I know some older Lesbian Feminists who patronizingly call young Lesbian Feminists “kids,” implying they are less wise or radical when that is not true. (That particular insult was used against me even when I was in my fifties by my mother since I was never going to be a “real” adult to her because I hadn’t gotten married or reproduced.)

The new anti-feminists pretend Feminism is a cult where no thinking is allowed. Women who dare question male values are immediately shamed into mindlessly obeying. They then are trained to police other women who step out of line.

Real Radical Feminists are censored and silenced, patronized, called “stupid” and are told we need “educating” (who do they think invented our movement?) or that we are “old-fashioned” (this erases young Radical Feminists and ignores that truth doesn’t change with time.)  In a desperate attempt to shame us into silence, we are even called “misogynist” with no explanation – which are the same tactics and words that the trans cult uses against women who say no to them. It’s all projection. Just look at the issues being discussed and our history, and it’s absolutely clear.

One of the most destructive things I’ve seen is the gutting of our old politics of holding women accountable for harming other women. Women pretending to be Radical Feminists can be incredibly racist, classist, Lesbian-hating and otherwise oppressive online, yet it’s ignored or tolerated. Only the most courageous will confront or unfriend them. Any attempt for justice is answered with accusations that trivialize the seriousness of the betrayal as “horizontal hostility” or being “unsisterly,” etc. Some feminists say how heart-breaking the “infighting” among women is, but objecting to women being overtly, deliberately oppressive is not “infighting” since infighting happens only among members of the same movement. It helps protect us as a community, and protects our hearts individually, to recognize clearly that the women dismantling Radical Feminism are not part of our movement or culture. Unless we say no to everything that harms women, we end up agreeing to our own destruction.

Some of this is because some women confuse conflict with being mean. Not obeying middle class bland, cold, dishonest culture, which often is about being cruel while pretending to be phony “nice,” is not the same as being oppressive. Similarly, playing “polite” when dealing with male rules and using “etiquette” to obey the trans cult especially backfires.

We already know that there are trolls in our online international Radical Feminist movement. Some have been revealed to be MRAs (Men’s Rights Activists) but others are women betraying our movement and playing a double game. Too often the women trolls get into positions of power, and even name themselves our leaders. When they are exposed, they just start new pretend “radfem” or Radical Feminists groups, and often real Radical Feminists, not wanting to be left out of the cliques, join, ignoring what these women have done, and so give credibility to the troll groups, draining our movement.

At online sites, the “radfem” imposters will ban you and then lie to explain your disappearance. Other women in the group withdraw in terror of being the next to be banished. (By the way, if anyone does hear bizarre misrepresentations of my politics, feel free to ask for the truth.)  Many online feminists are isolated and lonely, and fear rejection. It’s in women’s nature to be social and want a community of friends. Yet too often the price of joining the cliques gutting real Radical Feminism is agreeing to abandon common sense.

 “Radfem” versus Radical Feminist

Of course not all women who name themselves “radfems” are fake Radical Feminists, but still, “radfem” is the newer trendy word used by some of the snobbish cliques who are opposed to original Radical Feminist politics. Yes, “radfem” is an abbreviation, but so is RF (Radical Feminist) and so is the trivializing term “women’s lib,” which no feminist would ever use.

It’s easy enough for pretend Radical Feminists to read our extensive history. When they say what we’ve done hasn’t worked, telling us to weaken our politics, they are ignoring how governments and media and Men’s Rights Activists have been undermining us for decades, as well as have the majority of women who betray females for males. With the worldwide change in economics, many more Radical Feminists are poor and barely surviving now than in 1970, which has made it very hard to organize. In the Seventies in Oakland and Berkeley, rooms rented in Radical Feminist group houses were $50 a month, and houses $100. Spaces could be easily rented for women only events where we could do political work and socialize. Since surviving was cheaper, Radical Feminists had more time. Nothing was wrong with our movement and politics, considering a handful of women were fighting all of patriarchy and creating an entirely new culture. What Radical Feminists did all over the world was amazing and we continue.

Then we lost our spaces and publications. The internet provides a whole other way to meet and share support across the earth, but some women wanting fame started blogs plagiarizing feminists’ writing from decades earlier, forming elitist cliques with their own “radfem” language that automatically excludes true Radical Feminists and requires those wanting to join to submit to the humiliation of asking what the bizarre terms mean, even if they were the original writers of the plagiarized work. Some of these “radfems” avoided being questioned about the hypocrisy in their own lives by presenting themselves as courageous man-haters while still keeping their own “exceptional” men (as feminists used to sarcastically say.)

One of the most quoted of these privileged pretend “radfems” admits she came to feminism as a “funfem” (women who participated in the female-hating pseudo feminism that men promote, such as glorifying male-invented “femininity,” porn, and sado-masochism.) She’s a cruel, racist, classist, and heterosexist bully who loves to ridicule and particularly enjoys targeting Lesbians. We have no idea how many girls and women we lost from our movement because they were searching for feminism and ended up being her victim. When I first saw her referred to reverentially, I asked what she had said that made her so worshipped and was told in almost hushed tones that she was writing against “PIV.”  (That’s “penis in vagina,” as if the women who choose men are so fragile that they must use a twee euphemism instead of “fuck.”) But why act as if this issue was something new when it had been extensively and more radically written about as basic feminism almost fifty years ago?  I believe it was her and other bloggers’ het privilege that gave them more authority and appreciation since het women are generally far more valued than Lesbians by feminists, including Lesbian Feminists.

No one seemed to notice that the more radical question of why would feminists even be sexual/intimate with men was completely ignored, since patriarchy literally could not go on without women helping. And that, of course, was because the pretend “radfem” bloggers certainly did not want to lose their het privilege.

Even worse for Radical Feminism, it somehow became a crime to question women’s choices, which had been the basis of even liberal feminism in the Seventies. To further deflect, gaslight, and mind-fuck, the new parasitized feminism’s rules say that not only are women’s choices not to be questioned, but that women have no choices!

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About Bev Jo

I’ve been a Lesbian from my earliest memories and am proud to be a Lesbian. Lesbians are my people and my blood. My life’s work has defending Lesbians and our culture and existence against those who oppress us. Working-class, ex-catholic, mostly European-descent (with some First Nations, probably Shawnee, ancestry), from poverty class culture. I’m a Lifelong Lesbian, born near Cincinnati, Ohio in 1950. I became lovers with my first lover in 1968, became part of a Lesbian community in 1970, and became a Dyke Separatist in 1972. I helped create Radical Lesbian Feminist and Separatist community and worked on some of the earliest Lesbian Feminist projects, such as the Lesbian Feminist Conference in Berkeley in 1972, the newspaper “Dykes and Gorgons” in 1973, the women’s bookstore, Lesbian coffeehouse, and taught self defense to women and girls for ten years. I’ve been published in journals and anthologies, including “For Lesbians Only,” “Finding the Lesbians,” “Lesbian Friendships,” “Amazones d’Hier, Lesbiennes Aujourd’hui,” “Mehr als das Herz Gebrochen,” the Journal for Lesbian Studies, Lesbian Ethics, Sinister Wisdom, Trivia, and Rain and Thunder. With Linda Strega and Ruston, I co-wrote our book, “Dykes-Loving-Dykes: Dyke Separatist Politics for Lesbians Only” in 1990. Our book and my more recent articles have been updated at my blog https://bevjoradicallesbian.wordpress.com/ I’ve been disabled since 1981 with ME/CFIDS (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) and MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity.) I love nature and plants and animals — and especially the animals who are feared and hated and killed by people who don’t even know them, just as Lesbians are. I’ve learned to love rats especially, who I do not consider inferior to humans. I’m a spiritual atheist, but I’ve found out that there is definitely life after death because a little rat returned from the dead for three days to comfort us. These hated little animals are so kind and loving, and willing to die for someone they love. I say, in our fight to protect the earth — distrust all “truths” we are taught by patriarchy. The true truth is often the opposite.
This entry was posted in Dyke, Dyke Separatism, Feminism, Lesbian, Lesbian culture, Lesbian Feminism, Lesbian history, Lesbian politics, patriarchy, Radical Feminism, Trans, Trans cult, women and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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