by Maria Albano
Friday, 19
March 2021
Reaction
11:47

Stop making excuses for men who kill women

Atlanta shooter Robert Aaron Long is not a 'sex addict' — he's a misogynist
by Maria Albano
Activists demonstrate outside Gold Spa following Tuesday night’s shooting. Credit: Getty

On Tuesday Robert Aaron Long was arrested and charged for shooting dead seven women and a man at the spas in the Atlanta suburbs. The explanation provided by one of the officials responsible for the investigation was chilling in its bluntness: “He was fed up, at the end of his rope. He had a bad day and this is what he did”. The only thing the officer didn’t do was casually shrug his shoulders.

Interviews with Long revealed that the alleged shooter had a ‘sex addiction’ and was ‘attempting to take out that temptation’ by targeting the ‘porn related industry’. According to the CNN, his addiction led him to spend hours watching porn and routinely visit the massage parlours for sex. But — lo and behold! — some of his former classmates remember him as the type of religious zealot who used to walk around school with the Bible in his hands.

How tired is this trope: a sex-obsessed man finds in piety a substitute for honest soul-searching, and tramples on women in the belief that this will rectify his own perversions. Parallels between the shooter’s words and biblical allegory will, without a doubt, not be lost on onlookers. The killed masseurs, mercenary sinners and inadvertent temptresses, are all Eve, responsible for the fall of the Adams of this world. But Long adds a twist, committing the ultimate act of self-deification.

Long is not the first young man with a God complex to inflict carnage as an attempt to purify himself of his frustrations: in 2014, Elliott Rodger killed six people and injured fourteen others — because, Rodger claimed, he was denied the sex he felt he was entitled to. Four years later, Alek Minassian was charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and 16 counts of attempted murder. Like Rodger, Minassian’s self-image was that of a man who was unfairly starved of sex. If Long killed women because they offered an opportunity to be sexually active, however, Rodger and Missinian did so for the opposite reason. Whether available or unavailable, licentious or chaste, then, women are reduced to the collateral damage of a man’s ‘bad day’.

It is an awful disservice to the victims that the police should play the offender’s game by preferring to mention his addiction to porn and sex over pronouncing the obvious sentence of misogyny. (Harvey Weinstein claimed to be addicted to sex to mitigate his crimes against women too.)

The desire to depoliticise men’s murders of women in respect of the victims’ families is understandable. But let’s keep in mind that our long history of excusing men’s crimes has produced atrocity after atrocity. Ugly forms of male entitlement continue to flourish. Until they’re properly addressed, days like this are bound to happen again.

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Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago

Well I’m not sure it is political actually. It’s a weird pervy man doing something terrible because he’s a terrible human being. Why should that have anything to do with “men” or “women” in general? I don’t judge all women by the actions of, say, Kim Kardashian. I don’t seek to implement public policy regarding women in general on the basis of Kim’s behaviour, or on the behaviour of the sizable minority of women who mistreat their families in various ways.
I don’t think this guy murdered people because he felt “entitled”. If anything he probably didn’t feel entitled enough. He did it because he is a murdering oddball. The public policy question that arises is “what do we do about murderous nutcases”?. It’s not “do men feel entitled?” He’d have done it anyway, regardless of whether “men” feel “entitled”, whatever that really means.
Also regarding this
“https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/soma-sara-teenage-sexual-abuse-didnt-merely-exist-when-i-was-at-school-it-thrived-f3lbdkq22”
I am a man. I went to one of those schools. Yes it was horrible, it there was a lot of sexualized bullying. I don’t think it was easier for boys, and I imagine claiming that it is all about female victims is harmful to the boys going through it at the moment. All of them are kids. The girls were vicious to each other and to the boys.

Last edited 1 year ago by Colin Colquhoun
Ian Barton
Ian Barton
1 year ago

Excellent response – thank you.

Alka Hughes-Hallett
Alka Hughes-Hallett
1 year ago

I have to agree with the article.
Have you heard of the recent football scandal? What would you say to the 800 odd young boys (now men) who were scouted as players and systematically repeatedly abused by 300 odd scouts and coaches ? I saw an abused white middle aged man with tears streaming down his cheeks on tv .

Women, children & other men are casualties of some men with entitlement & power. There is not enough emphasis & education on responsibility. This entitlement without the responsibility acts as a sort of free pass. Every event like this is a reminder to ordinary decent men have to reinforce the message to themselves & to each other that there is a fine line that CANNOT be crossed . The pain of this event should bring the masses out to condemn such actions and remind each other of what we (collectively) find deplorable.

This is not the time to gloss it over by saying “ men don’t have it easier either”.

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago

Well one thing I’d say is that I’ve been seriously misreated by a woman and so have loads of men. So should I get on your case about that? I must say it’s getting really, really tempting to do that at this point. I’m becoming absolutely furious. I don’t care even slightly about your problems. The righteous tone in which you’re speaking as you do exactly what you’re accusing me of makes me feel slightly nauseous.

Last edited 1 year ago by Colin Colquhoun
Penelope Lane
Penelope Lane
1 year ago

Well one thing I’d say is that I’ve been seriously misreated by a woman and so have loads of men.
So here’s the problem: you are a man, and you have been abused by women. I have no trouble accepting that, and you have my sympathy. Abuse is vile, whoever does it.
But—you go on to conclude that because women abused you, therefore women have no right to complain of being abused by men. Sorry, but that does not follow.
Actually, the reverse is true. Just because you have been abused, for that very reason, you should be able to have fellow-feeling for all others who have been abused. You can do this, because you know what it’s like. Gender or race or whatever are irrelevant. People who have been abused know what it’s like. They share that, and they can educate others about the dreadful effects of the experience.
That way, you increase your ability to empathise with other people and benefit the human race. The other way, you just contribute to hatred and rejection.
Have a think about it…

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

By your logic, if you are complaining about “men” I should be complaining about “women”.
You’re so locked in to your bigoted way of thinking, and your double standard that you don’t see that trivially obvious parity. And then you lecture me about empathy, and round it off with the monumentally patronizing “Have a think about it”
I’ve got three graduate degrees lady.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago

Be kind, Anne on, Penelope is showing the effects of systemic misandry.

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago

She’s just really young I think.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago

Sounds like it. But I’d guess that she would see how bigoted it sounds if you replaced the words man and men with black person and black people.
“why should a man (black person) doing something terrible have anything to do with men (black people)?”.
It has to do with men (black people) because he is a man (black person).

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago

You’re right it’s not very pleasant. It’s slightly different to generalise about a gender. But only very slightly. It’s basically bigotry.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago

It’s no different at all. Both are bigotry.

Penelope Lane
Penelope Lane
1 year ago

Well I’m not sure it is political actually. It’s a weird pervy man doing something terrible because he’s a terrible human being. Why should that have anything to do with “men” or “women” in general?
This is a radically confused comment: “why should a man doing something terrible have anything to do with men?”.
It has to do with men because he is a man!

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

You’re right! I totally get it now! So, as a man I take credit for Eric Kandell’s 2000 Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine. Since he is also a man. And I blame you, Penelope, as a woman for the two week hospital stay I enjoyed in 2015 when a certain woman thought I was doing a bit too well in my career and shoved me down the stairs.
That’s to do with you. Because you’re a woman. So you’re responsible for what women do.

Last edited 1 year ago by Colin Colquhoun
Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago

Yup, systemic misandry.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

Men and man are not the same thing. Anymore than women and woman are. Stop the labeling. What one man does is on him, not on anyone else.

Mel Bass
Mel Bass
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

‘It has to do with men because he is a man’? So are half the human race, and many of those men will be the police officers who bring offenders to justice, gather evidence, restrain offenders, put them before a court, get them convicted, jailed and hopefully punished. The vast majority of men are not evil predators or perverts and the same goes for women. Through work, I meet some very unpleasant and sometimes downright evil people, male and female (and occasionally trans), and while there may be slightly different trends in what types of crimes they commit, the fact remains that wrong-doers and murderers are simply bad people, whatever their gender. They are often highly manipulative and play the victim, making excuses for their own behaviour – favourites are along the lines of ‘it was his/her fault, it’s my mental health, he/she stole my drugs so deserved it, nobody helped me to stop doing bad things’ etc (the last is a favourite, no matter how much help has been previously given). Sadly, the society that we live in is also far too fond of making excuses for them. We can’t just call a spade a spade anymore, so rapists are frustrated, terrorists have mental health issues and killers have a ‘bad day’.

Tom Fox
Tom Fox
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

This is a radically confused comment: “why should a man doing something terrible have anything to do with men?”.
It has to do with men because he is a man!
Oh no you don’t.
It has nothing to do with me. I am only responsible for my own flaws, not those of other people. By the way – of course I abhor the vile behaviour of the twisted monsters in the stories quoted above, but don’t try and put their guilt on me and the majority of men who would never ever dream of acting like those monsters did.
Women in general have no responsibility whatsoever for the horrible crimes of Myra Hyndley and Rose West, anymore than men in general have responsibility for the hideous part played in those crimes by those women’s male partners. That this needs saying is laughable.

Terry Needham
Terry Needham
1 year ago

It would never occur to me to make excuses for men who kill.
I didn’t bother to read further.

Ian Barton
Ian Barton
1 year ago
Reply to  Terry Needham

I did read the article – in the hope that it would transcend the irritating clickbait title.
Sadly it failed to do so – which is unerringly common amongst postings on this subject.
Hopefully someone will one day at least make an attempt at a reasoned policy suggestion – that is worth serious consideration.
As this would take critical thinking – and expose the person who makes the suggestion to serious scrutiny – I expect to be “generalised to death” long before that happens …

Last edited 1 year ago by Ian Barton
Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Barton

And it blamed Christianity too, covering the bases, as it were, so we know who is at fault.

Penelope Lane
Penelope Lane
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Barton

Hopefully someone will one day at least make an attempt at a reasoned policy suggestion – that is worth serious consideration.
Here’s a suggestion: why don’t you do what you’re suggesting others do? Attempt a reasoned policy suggestion—please, we’re waiting to hear from you…

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

The death penalty for any man or woman who murders.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Barton

It almost seems like an unwillingness to actually look at what one person does and be willing to condemn them for it. A man who murders someone cannot be to blame.

Last edited 1 year ago by Annette Kralendijk
Richard Lyon
Richard Lyon
1 year ago

Stop barking instructions. It has a deafening effect and is harmful to your cause. Meanwhile, ascribing to an entire class the negative characteristics of a tiny minority of it is called “bigotry”, and we call those who indulge in it “bigots”.

Last edited 1 year ago by Richard Lyon
Penelope Lane
Penelope Lane
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Lyon

Stop barking instructions.
Oh dear! Sorry, but you don’t have the right to order us about. You are not the only one who has the right to issue instructions.
It has a deafening effect and is harmful to your cause. 
Oops! If you are feeling deafened, that is because you have a tin ear and have been unable to hear what others are trying to tell you. Please don’t try to scare us off by making pathetic threats. You don’t know what is harmful to our cause—you only know know what you would like to be harmful to our cause!
… ascribing to an entire class the negative characteristics of a tiny minority of it is called “bigotry
Goodness! You mean like, saying, “All whites are crap”, when only a few whites are actually crap, and actually, there’s lots of really lovely whites out there?
Problem is, there’s something called structural racism, structural misogyny.
Structural problems occur when lots and lots of individual instances add up over time to skew the way the rules and laws and mores of a society are formulated. Then the individual exception becomes the structured norm.
Mate,this isn’t rocket science!

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

This is bigoted. That was Richard Lyons point. You may not think of yourself as a bigot but what you say is indeed bigoted.
But here’s the main reason you can’t get any traction on your structural misogyny tactic. Most everyone knows some really wonderful, loving caring men. Their father maybe, or their husband, a brother, a son. And then there are fabulous male co-workers and physicians and bankers and gardeners and pilots and mailmen. So your structural misogyny ploy somehow misses all these fantastic men. One man hating women enough to kill a bunch of them says not one thing about men. It says something about that particular man. Refusing to face the fact there is evil in the world blinds you to it when it’s right in front of your face.

Last edited 1 year ago by Annette Kralendijk
Tom Fox
Tom Fox
1 year ago

I think this stuff you are commenting on may be less the contribution of a bigot, and more the contribution of a troll.
It seems to me that no adult person could really believe that men, or women, or people of a certain race, ought to accept responsibility for the deviant acts of others because they happen to share a category characteristic with them.

Joe Blow
Joe Blow
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

Here is a few very simple questions:
Why is the only “gender gap” that gets attention so-called the “gender pay gap”? (A “gender gap” which, incidentally, practically vanishes before the eyes of anyone with a rudimentary grasp of statistics.)
Why does nobody seem to care about the gender gaps in, for example:

  • being a victim of murder or assault
  • suicide
  • homelessness
  • industrial death or accident

Do you think it is a consequence of structural misandry?

Last edited 1 year ago by Joe Blow
Vilde Chaye
Vilde Chaye
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

except there is very little if any structural racism or mysogyny in most Western societies. Residual discrimination, sure. Individual instances of racism/sexism, of course. Systemic/structural racism: bullsh*t.

Ray Zacek
Ray Zacek
1 year ago

Robert Aaron Long will go to prison and quite likely, in Georgia, be given the death penalty. That’s hardly a shrug.

Tom Jennings
Tom Jennings
1 year ago
Reply to  Ray Zacek

I took the demeanor of the police chief as that of a man who thought he had seen and heard everything, was brought up short by this, and was still trying to process what he had heard.

Ray Zacek
Ray Zacek
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Jennings

But your senses aren’t as finely tuned nor are you as perspicacious as the average feminist author

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Jennings

its the demeanor of a police spokesman who is reporting/ paraphrasing what the suspect said happened ‘he was having a really bad day and this is what he did’. A little bit of research would find this out – research that the writer of thid article didn’t bother to do.
https://reason.com/2021/03/19/aaron-robert-long-spa-killer-atlanta-jay-baker-cop-bad-day/

Ray Zacek
Ray Zacek
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon Sharp

Why let research ruin a wonderful canard?

George Bruce
George Bruce
1 year ago

Actually, the main political use of this event has little to do with women. It is to link it to racism towards and attacks on Asians (American usage of the word) with whites, whereas the real perps are nearly always African-Americans.
So more fuel for the machine of the grand anti-white coalition that is getting going at the moment. The real devils behind this are not usually black, of course.

Elaine Hunt
Elaine Hunt
1 year ago
Reply to  George Bruce

One of the female victims was white.
It seems that his objections were that they were, in his eyes anyway, sex workers, not that they were non white.

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago
Reply to  Elaine Hunt

Exactly; considering how over-represented Asian women – often underage, poor, uneducated, and/or trafficked or undocumented – are in this grotesquely exploitative “industry”, it shouldn’t be surprising that most of his victims were of that demographic. “Sex work”, no matter how much a liberal and enlightened society tries to tolerate and regulate it, will always be dangerous and degrading work for women, making them far more vulnerable to predatory violence, both from their customers, their handlers/bosses, and just random psychos who treat them as scapegoats for all their own failings or society’s ills.

Vóreios Paratiritís
Vóreios Paratiritís
1 year ago
Reply to  George Bruce

They are pushing the white supremacy narrative for this event so hard in the American establishment media (NYT, CNN, WAPO) that I am actually entertaining the notion that Robert Aron Long was coached into this crime by parties desperate to change the organically emerging narrative of AA violence on Asians, less the Democratic Party’s AA clientele come under cultural criticism and American Asians defect en mass to the Republican Party.
Hopefully, unlike Epstein, the truth will come out in this case.

David Morley
David Morley
1 year ago
Reply to  George Bruce

Actually I think there is going to be a bit of an unsightly squabble over this one, with feminists and anti whitists arguing over which victim group this is most about.

Matthew Powell
Matthew Powell
1 year ago

As we can see from the other comments this tragic event is being exploited for political purposes which is why the correct identification of the motive is important.

If the crime was purely misogynistic or racially motivated the killer would not have targeted only massage parlours and wouldn’t have killed those of other races as well.

None of this justifies his disgusting actions and the investigation is in its early stages. Further clarity will likely emerge over the motivations, but arguing that telling the truth about the motivation for these crimes is making excuses, once again chips away at the status of truth in modern society.

Last edited 1 year ago by Matthew Powell
Ian Wigg
Ian Wigg
1 year ago

I note the author rather conveniently ignores the man who was also killed. Guess he was irrelevant and just collateral damage.

G Worker
G Worker
1 year ago

The haters are those who want to make this about men. The racists are those who want to make this about race.

Derek Boyes
Derek Boyes
1 year ago

There is a lot of unsubstantiated speculation in this piece. It is more likely the official was simply relaying the perpetrator’s crude explanation, rather than offering an official, conclusive reason.
Thinking from a psychological behavioural point of view, these targeted killings are more likely to have been driven by an unbearable paradox of being a religious zealot, addicted to sexual gratification that is void of any emotional attachment. The suggestion that he might think such violence would rid him of such perversion seems unconvincing. Surely his actions are more likely to be a psychological consequence of the paradox rather than any conscious desire to remedy or purify himself.
To suggest that the police endorse his claims of sex-addiction as a reason for the killings, as opposed to pure misogyny is a ridiculous proposition and certainly not ‘obvious’ at such an early stage of the investigation.
Speculative journalism like this damages any genuine concern over male dominated areas of society that might encourage biased views on male crime.

Last edited 1 year ago by Derek Boyes
David Morley
David Morley
1 year ago
Reply to  Derek Boyes

Speculative journalism like this damage genuine concerns that certain male dominated areas of society are excusing male crime.

Aside from the criminals themselves, which male dominated areas of society are excusing male crime? And particularly, crime of this kind.
Agree with your point, but the problem is not so much that journalism of this kind is speculative, but that it always speculates in the same direction. It’s dogmatic, boring and unintelligent.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

BLM and the MSM glosses over the entire class of crime by male criminals when they take place against their own kind. Police in USA do not kill more of one race than another in a statistically significant amount, yet BLM shook up the entire country, even got British Cops taking the knee, along with Pelosi and most pro sports teams, for a White Policeman committing homicide on a Black Male, wile the homicide numbers in USA is statistically biased extremely highly towards Male Black on Male Black killings. Men kill Men a lot, always have, but we all accept that as just how it is.

Penelope Lane
Penelope Lane
1 year ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

Such a good comment, Thankyou You raise a valid and important point.
My best thought in answer to your query is that most media is white-race controlled, so it is biased in favour of the white point of view.
Some liberal whites don’t want to know about your intra-ethnic black crises because they are more preoccupied with their own battles of white vs. black.
This is just another aspect of the multiple problems we face, as human beings who share our humanity in common.
Thanks for drawing out attention to this perspective.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

The fact that Rupert Murdoch is ‘white’ does not mean I have anything else in common with him or that we share some clandestine sort of bond that I can call on.
And you can do that kind of narrative spin taken straight out the pages of Robin Deangelo is you want. But the reverse cold just as easily be done:
The left wing owned media doesn’t cover ‘intra ethnic’ violence because that doesn’t fit the narrative they are invested in of evil right win white Americans being the root of all evil.
yes its a bit of a silly massive over-generalization – just as your spin is.

Derek Boyes
Derek Boyes
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

I was trying to be generous by offering up the possibility that there may well be genuine evidence out there to support such a claim, but that I have yet to see any.

Last edited 1 year ago by Derek Boyes
Penelope Lane
Penelope Lane
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

Agree with your point, but the problem is not so much that journalism of this kind is speculative, but that it always speculates in the same direction. It’s dogmatic, boring and unintelligent.
Are you sure your own comment doesn’t suffer from the same deficiencies?
Try as I might, I am unable to find in your comment any source material, reasoned argument or intelligent discussion as to why the article is “dogmatic, boring and unintelligent”.

David Morley
David Morley
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

Try as I might, I am unable to find in your comment any source material, reasoned argument or intelligent discussion as to why the article is “dogmatic, boring and unintelligent”.

Have you read it? If someone tells you the sun is shining, do you ask for source material or reasoned argument? It’s there in front of your face.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

Yes, take any incident like this and I could already predict that certain factions will have the ready made interpretation ‘narrative’ for this. And on cue here it comes in this article.

Penelope Lane
Penelope Lane
1 year ago
Reply to  Derek Boyes

There is a lot of unsubstantiated speculation in this piece. It is more likely the official was simply relaying the perpetrator’s crude explanation, rather than offering an official, conclusive reason.
Excuse me? So you have privileged access to sources of truth which lie beyond mere unsubstantiated speculation? What a pity you don’t cite your sources!
Could it just possibly be that you are merely offering us your personal opinion here? That’s okay; you are entitled to have an opinion. Just don’t try to pass it off as some authoritatively sourced edict from an unimpeachable transcendent Beyond.
How can you possibly know what that offical was relaying? You can’t. So your remarks are unsubstantiated speculation every bit as much as those of the author of the article you criticise.
So why do you feel the need to put the author of the article down? Why can’t you just offer your own unsubstantiated speculations alongside theirs?
Might it just possibly be that your own unaddressed male sexism impels you to put the woman’s views down and substitute your own speculative, unsubstantiated views in place of hers? Because a man’s views must a priori be worth more than a woman’s?

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

Well, there is a lot of unsubstantiated speculation in this piece. Do you deny that? And you, in fact, are indulging in unsubstantiated speculation in your response to Derek. Could it just possibly be that you are merely offering us your personal opinion here?
What about the phrase “it is more likely” in Derek’s post do you not understand? Did you take it as a statement of fact or is it along the lines of this phrase in your response “might it just possibly be”?

David Morley
David Morley
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

Penelope – which bit of “it’s more likely” didn’t you understand? If you think you have the facts on the matter you say “the facts are”.
I also think Derek’s explanation is more likely. Do I know it’s true? Of course not? None of us do yet. But I think it fits best what we know so far. So I think it’s “likely”. And it hasn’t gone through any obvious ideological filter.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago
Reply to  Penelope Lane

well you could try watching the original full video where it becomes clear the spokesman was paraphrasing what the suspect had offered as his reasons for the murders. Here’s an article explaining that which also links to the original video.
https://reason.com/2021/03/19/aaron-robert-long-spa-killer-atlanta-jay-baker-cop-bad-day/

Marcus Leach
Marcus Leach
1 year ago

I’m afraid anyone using CNN as a reference source is asking to be misled and to have their credibility damaged. And so it is the case here.

It is not a difficult journalistic challenge to go online and actually watch the press conference that this article is based on, for context
A reporter at the press conferences asks the Atlanta Sheriff: “Sir, did you have the sense that he (Long) understood the gravity of what he did”
The Sheriff replies: “When I spoke to investigators, they interviewed him this morning, they got the impression he understood the gravity of it. And he was pretty much fed up and kind of at the end of his rope, and yesterday was a bad day for him and this is what he did”

The Sheriff was not excusing Long’s crimes. He was communicating what investigators had told him about Long’s current state of mind so he could answer the journalists’ question as to whether he now fully comprehended the gravity of what he had done.

I have to say that for a person to think that a senior serving police officer would just blow off a mass murder as someone having a bad day says something about their prejudices and perhaps having read too many books by radical feminists.

Last edited 1 year ago by Marcus Leach
Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
1 year ago

this desire to slap a political label on everything is beyond tiresome. He’s a killer. Just like a black guy who killed an elderly Asian man in San Francisco earlier this month. Just like everyone else who has killed another innocent person.
And it is interesting how the lone male victim is not even a footnote in this screed.

Meghan Kathleen Jamieson
Meghan Kathleen Jamieson
1 year ago

I’m not sure these things are meant to “excuse” anything. There seems to be this idea among some that any attempt to understand or explain the thinking of people who do bad things amounts to an attempt to minimise, or excuse the behaviour.
I suspect this comes out of an immature need to separate criminals from “normal” people and completely dehumanise them, which is usually a sign of a lack of self-understanding. These days accusations that motivation for crime comes from racism or misogyny or some other sort of “ism” seem to be understood as marking the individual as sub-human. I keep wondering when it’s going to be considered acceptable to send such people to gulags.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
1 year ago

Yup, this is garbage.
Actually it’s pretty wicked too. And stupid. Can’t decide whether more wicked than stupid. I hope for the latter, but fear it’s the former.
Next week I’m sure the author will redress the balance with an equally unhinged piece on how Myra Hindley and Beverley Allit are in some way representative of all women.

Last edited 1 year ago by Juilan Bonmottier
Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago

well – lets hope we don’t decide they were ‘sex addicts’ instead of ‘men haters’ because that wold be ‘making excuses’ for them and their actions.

Kelly Mitchell
Kelly Mitchell
1 year ago

OH, God.
How tired is this trope: a sex-obsessed man finds in piety a substitute for honest soul-searching, and tramples on women in the belief that this will rectify his own perversions.”
Is there anything feminists won’t complain about?
stfu.

LUKE LOZE
LUKE LOZE
1 year ago

Why is it excuses? Isn’t it more about understanding reasons that people end up being hate filled scum who’ll start murdering people? The author herself merely finds ‘misogyny’ – this is about as insightful as calling the KKK racists, so are bad men born like that, or are there reasons (or excuses)? The author could try to understand what drives mass shooting killers in general (almost always men, with mainly male victims), but sadly that might dilute her point.

The rest of the piece builds strawmen to attack before proffering a sequence of non sequiturs as a solution. ‘Fixing’ or incriminating schoolboys and girls in the UK will not fix the problem in the US, the only similarity is that like the UK the vast majority of innocent murder victims are men.

Wilfred Davis
Wilfred Davis
1 year ago

‘Stop making excuses for men who kill women.’

[Thinks to self] Does this title give me confidence to bother reading this, or just move on to something else?

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
1 year ago
Reply to  Wilfred Davis

The headline needs to read “Stop making excuses and feel guilty, you nasty Men.”

Sheryl Rhodes
Sheryl Rhodes
1 year ago

I think the most common reason (excluding severe mental illness) that certain men lash out and go on murderous rampages is because they are unbearably alone. They don’t fit in anywhere. They are confronted with their failure to connect to people and their failures to succeed in just about anything every minute of every day. To be trapped inside their head is a terrible place. In some, this builds up an all-consuming resentment and then rage against other people who seem to “have it all.” They have what he has realized that he will never be able to obtain for himself. Why should they get to live happy lives when he is in torment? He’ll show them—he’ll show them all!

G Worker
G Worker
1 year ago
Reply to  Sheryl Rhodes

What in psychology is called over-socialisation does explain the destructiveness of which you speak, although it is most in evidence in the psyche of white anti-racists, anti-fascists, and other versions of extreme left politics.

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago
Reply to  Sheryl Rhodes

It’s the same reason far more men commit suicide than women do. Trying to understand what leads people to do these terrible things is not the same as excusing it. I’ve always suspected that so-called “sex addiction” was about a lot more than simple physical frustration, which obviously can be easily relieved on one’s own. Maybe a lot of it just comes down to entitlement; the incel type, like some types of rapists, seems to feel entitled to access to women’s bodies for sexual release. But maybe for some of them it’s more complicated than that, and part of it is just loneliness and wanting to feel loved, but not having a clue how to make themselves lovable or even likable. I think every woman has known at least one man like this, when young, the annoying creepo who obviously had a huge crush but just knew she was totally out of his league, and took out his frustration by being a spiteful jerk. It’s a kind of arrested development, like even in their early 20s they haven’t matured socially beyond the little boys who pull girls’ hair in the third grade. Most of them, however, eventually get over themselves, learn how to make themselves more likeable, rather than becoming obsessed with punishing the women whom they can’t have.

David Morley
David Morley
1 year ago

the incel type, like some types of rapists, seems to feel entitled to access to women’s bodies for sexual release. 

I’m sceptical. The entitlement argument is popular with some feminists as it allows easy extension from the perpetrator/ oddity to all men – as if all men have the seed of crime within them.
What we need is unbiased, ideology free research.
I’m inclined to think that incels are lonely and bitter about their own failure – so they lash out, and latch onto ideologies that make them feel better about themselves and demonise women as “hypergamous”.
there must be an equivalent for unattractive women, who are bitter, and latch onto a man hating ideology which makes them feel better about themselves.
I just can’t think of the name of it at the moment.

Neil John
Neil John
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

Sharp, incisive, even cutting, but 100% accurate.

Claire D
Claire D
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

Made me laugh.

Stephen Morris
Stephen Morris
1 year ago

I’m a man and I’m not guilty of making excuses for any crime. Especially serious crimes against the person.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago

I think you mean stop engaging in sense-making about the latest mindless act of human violence that doesn’t conform to a feminist interpretation of ‘clearly systemic misogyny’
Maybe you genuinely think anyone remotely sane is ‘excusing’ the killing of multiple women. Or that anyone who isn’t a sociopath thinks Harvey Weinstein being a sex addict somehow excuses his abusive actions. But somehow I doubt it…
To interpret the police offer’s banal report on what the suspect said as being some kind excusing of a woman’s murder? That really does take an impressive level of ideological commitment. (lets put it charitably like that shall we?)

Last edited 1 year ago by Simon Sharp
Kirk B
Kirk B
1 year ago

Here in GA there’s lots of extra hype going about. Asians are claiming they’re all in danger, and the mayor want’s this to be about race. Much discussions as to whether it’s a hate crime. None of this will affect his sentence.

Ian Barton
Ian Barton
1 year ago
Reply to  Kirk B

I’m thinking maybe its time for a new Olympic sport ….. a race to the top of the victim hierarchy.

John Lewis
John Lewis
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Barton

I know what the winner of the women’s event will look like.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
1 year ago
Reply to  Kirk B

there’s been a rash of attacks on Asians on both coasts, including fatal events. Funny how no one yanked out the race card on those. Then again, the assailants were not white.

M Spahn
M Spahn
1 year ago

Nonsense. This who nonstory was started by “journalist” Aaron Rupar at the fetid pile of sewage that calls itself Vox. As Robby Soave explainedIf you watch the full video, it’s clear the police spokesperson is summarizing the suspect’s explanation of his own actions to investigators. Vox journalist Aaron Rupar framed this to make it sound like the cop was making excuses for him. Remarkable dishonesty.”

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
1 year ago
Reply to  M Spahn

If what you’re saying is correct, and I’ve no reason to doubt you, then you ought really to report this directly to Unherd because it makes this ‘journalism’ about as shoddy and divisive as it could possibly be.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago

I have done that. It should be removed or revised.
Even the most basic research would have shown the utter silliness of suggesting the police spokesman was attempting to ‘excuse’ or ‘sympathise’ with a brutal murder by saying the guy was ‘having a bad day’. But the author of this article didn’t do that and joined in spreading this misinformation (because it fitted the narrative.)
https://reason.com/2021/03/19/aaron-robert-long-spa-killer-atlanta-jay-baker-cop-bad-day/
If Unherd is going to continue platforming token uber leftie intersectionality to try to prove they’re not ‘right wing’ – then they should at least try to find people who know what they are doing.

Paul Gilbert
Paul Gilbert
1 year ago

Trying to understand human behavior does not equal making excuses. A better understanding of root causes could lead to policies that reduce violence. “Pronouncing the obvious sentence of misogyny” doesn’t do much to improve understanding.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago

I really don’t think unherd should be participating in putting out this kind of shoddy work. The claim here has been shown to be false:
The explanation provided by one of the officials responsible for the investigation was chilling in its bluntness: “He was fed up, at the end of his rope. He had a bad day and this is what he did”. The only thing the officer didn’t do was casually shrug his shoulders.
The police spokesman was simply telling a press conference what the suspect had said NOT giving his own interpretation. Maria Albano is simply parroting the original misinformation spread by Aaron Rupaar on Vox Twitter which was subsequently spread further by the likes of Buzfeed.
You should consider removing or revising the article. I’m not a journalist and even I found this out with just a bit of research.
https://reason.com/2021/03/19/aaron-robert-long-spa-killer-atlanta-jay-baker-cop-bad-day/
Personally I consider the rest of the article extremely silly to even suggest anyone is ‘making excuses’ for the murder of multiple women or that ‘systemic misogyny’ must be the verdict on what this tragic event means. But that’s another matter..

Marcus Leach
Marcus Leach
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon Sharp

Respectfully, I disagree.
The radical feminists and “Progressives” are rarely faced with having their views challenged. They shout down, silence or simply run away from opposing argument.
It is a pleasant change to actually get to respond to the absurd and fallacious ideas of these people and to see how easily those ideas fall apart when exposed to factual refutation.
The more these ideologues, who have gained ascendancy in our government and institutions, are exposed the better.

Last edited 1 year ago by Marcus Leach
Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago
Reply to  Marcus Leach

On the basis of the pushback in the comments here yes maybe you are right- but from looking at her blog she is not reading them and is still basking in the glory that Julie Bindell and other leading lights have shared her article.
Considering the name of this publication this article is the epitome of group think.

Paul S.
Paul S.
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon Sharp

This is a case in which the subjunctive mood, now abandoned in English but still flourishing in French, would have possibly made the distinction clear.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago

Every time something like happens, I find it bizarre that so many people keep looking for a reason for it. We even ask people who murder others why they did it as if there is an actual reason. Oh, he said it was because he hated women. Oh okay. No. There isn’t a reason for it.
There is evil in the world. There are people who are murderers, why the frantic refusal to face this? Is it participation ribbon syndrome….we are all good people with who just have systemic problems and so kill others? No. We are not all good people. Some of us are very, very bad people and it isn’t race or gender based.

Mel Bass
Mel Bass
1 year ago

Very true. There are a few people who do terrible things because they are seriously mentally ill, but most of the murderers who I’ve met (through work, I hasten to add!) have not been clinically insane – they’ve just been a mixture of stupid, occasionally pathetic, frequently entitled and sometimes downright evil.

Dean Baker
Dean Baker
1 year ago

How about we delineate the lines as between stupid, and not stupid, minus the emphasis dividing everyone but still hold the consideration of specifics… or would that be too easy by making the focus on resolving the problem rather than some egocentric outrage delaying what you purport to wish dealt with?

Last edited 1 year ago by Dean Baker
Liz Walsh
Liz Walsh
1 year ago

The hapless young wretch who shot the “massage parlor” employees was only slightly less a victim of a decadent society than his victims. Societal child abuse — drugs, pornography and prostitution — had driven him mad. The woman were doubly victimized, as very few massage parlor employees are voluntarily earning their living that way. They too are victims of exploitation. Why absolutely no mention of the statistical profile of the massage parlor business? The American media/political establishment who weaponize it as an anti-Asian hate crime, willfully obscure statistics for propaganda purposes: the chances that the proprietors of these establishments are, as are the employees, anything but Asian themselves, is slim to none. (Slim’s on his horse, headed out of town)…Where is the condemination of the ruthless trade in woman’s lives, the trafficking? Misogyny and anti-Asian prejudice due to Covid (!) are red herrings here. An immoderately permissive society is doomed to fail in the formation of the young.

Graeme Caldwell
Graeme Caldwell
1 year ago

An explanation is not an excuse, although you are free to argue that the perpetrator’s explanation is nonsense.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago

Could any explanation for an act like this not be nonsense? If so, could you think of an explanation that would not be?

Joe Blow
Joe Blow
1 year ago

Explanations that can be “legitimate” (as in, comprehensible even if obviously deeply unsound) may derive from mental illness. So, if by “nonsense” you mean makes no sense, maybe that term can be applied – but that is a variant use of the term, I think.
I have personally cared for a patient with schizophrenia who, when quite florid with a psychotic episode, raped a woman at knife point – and was utterly clear in his own mind that he was providing acting lessons. Clearly horrific for the victim, and actually tragic for the ill man too.
Nonsense? Well, obviously his explanation is unsound, not accurate, not factual, not sane – but tragically falls within the scope of the phenomenology of major psychoses.
Anyone who thinks any of this is making excuses is obviously a fool and won’t get a reply.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  Joe Blow

No, that is not what I mean. I mean that any explanation given by anyone who murders six people is nonsense.
Your example of a schizophrenic patient giving acting lessons as an explanation for rape makes my point, not yours. As you note his explanation was nonsense.

Joe Blow
Joe Blow
1 year ago

I think we’re saying the same thing, but also engaging in a really precise and fine-point discussion of the meaning of “nonsense”. I agree that such schizophrenic reasoning does not make sense. It is not usually referred to as “nonsense,” but this is into the realm of the arcane.
I’ll suggest this formulation: there is a light-hearted classification in psychiatry. “Is the person mad, sad, bad or bad?”
To make sense of things, we must see what the perpetrators reasons were. The person who slaughters children in the name of a 7th-C Middle-Eastern god is not mad. They are bad; evil. A person who kills others because they are “told” to do so my the Arcturian transmission receiver they know has been secretly implanted in their brain is mad. For both perpetrators, their actions make sense.
I don’t find it helpful to dismiss either as nonsense – partly because in the first case, it avoids the responsibility to face the connection between that religion and ugly actions. In the second, because it opens a channel of comprehension that can aid management of the perpetrator – specifically, lock them up but also medicate.

Last edited 1 year ago by Joe Blow
Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  Joe Blow

People who murder other people don’t have a reason other than that they are murderers. That’s it. Why the refusal to admit that some people are murderers? If you can murder, then you are a murderer.
Some people are liars too. Do you refuse to admit that as well?
Stop trying to find reason in someone murdering. Regardless of what they say, it’s nonsense. There is no reason to murder that is not nonsense. People murder because they want to commit murder.
There is no connection between religion and murder. The fact that people have blamed their murdering on religion is just…..nonsense. Nonsense that you are apparently willing to abide.

Last edited 1 year ago by Annette Kralendijk
John Jones
John Jones
1 year ago

Certainly. If he was suffering from a brain tumor, for example, and had psychosis as a result, that could be an explanation, don’t You think?

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
1 year ago
Reply to  John Jones

Would you call that murder? The definition of murder is the unlawful premeditated killing of one human being by another. Would someone suffering from a brain tumor causing psychosis be capable of premeditation? Not to mention any consideration of the lawfulness of the action.
There are all kinds of killing, there’s accidentally killing someone else, I.e. a car accident, there’s execution which is the lawful termination of someone’s life, there’s killing in self defense. But these are not the same as murder.

Last edited 1 year ago by Annette Kralendijk
Peter KE
Peter KE
1 year ago

Murder, killing another person should be treated the same regardless of the victim or perpetrator. The penalty should be execution.

Joe Blow
Joe Blow
1 year ago

YET ANOTHER journalist who is very careless with concepts.
Every murder is a unique and horrible crime. Some are usefully seen as part of a pattern that can have (a really small amount of) predictive value or a significant element that is useful in detecting the perpetrator.
Yet even then, layer-upon-layer of BS is applied. “Domestic abuse” is argued to be predictive – it is not (just as baked bean consumption isn’t). Klan membership is seen as relevant in racist violence (it is, and perhaps even predictive); recent conversion to a 7th C religion is not allowed to be seen as relevant (it is, and perhaps even predictive).
Being male, however, is neither predictive nor usefully explanatory. And dimwitted efforts to create a category of “men’s violence” is counterproductive.

bob alob
bob alob
1 year ago

He was obviously suffering from mental illness if his classmates described him as a religious zealot, the police needed to close down the racial motivation and were quick to show this as a motive and they were right to do so but mental illness is the root cause of those murders, not misogyny.

S H
S H
1 year ago

What? You can’t be both?

Annette de la Cour
Annette de la Cour
1 year ago
Reply to  S H

‘Is there anything feminists won’t complain about?’, ‘victim hierarchy’, ‘unhinged piece’ and more scorn poured all over this article. Do those denying the existence of misogyny and the risk of violence towards women that it poses know the statistics regarding the level of physical abuse including murder of women?Or that while the great majority of all violence towards men and women is committed by men, by far the most acts of violence towards women occur in the context of a close personal.relationship between the perpetrator and the victim and frequently following months and years of emotional and physical abuse?

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago

The thing is I’ve only ever been attacked, and attacked seriously, by a woman. Since I’ve never reported it, or the misery of the life which preceeded it, and since there appear to be many men on these forums saying the same thing, and since you appear hostile to me…..basically I don’t care about you or your anger.
the great majority of all violence towards men and women is committed by men”
What I think is that this may not actually be the truth. It’s not my experience. You absolutely have no time for me, in fact you deny my experience. Yet you think I should apologise to you for things other people have done!
I don’t think so. I don’t want anything to do with you at all, so surely that’s enough to please you.

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago

It depends on what kind of violence. Looking at crime statistics, it’s clear that the most of the most serious types of violence, the kind resulting in serious injury or death, is committed by men, mostly against other men, but sometimes women. But yeah, as a woman who also was a victim (as a child) of violence at the hands of only women and girls, it bugs the hell out of me how female violence and cruelty is ignored by most feminists (there are a few notable exceptions, eg. Phyllis Chesler). Most child abuse is committed by women, and most child homicide involving children age 2 and under is committed by women. Growing up, I’ve seen mothers being very physically abusive to both boys and girls. Maybe part of the discrepancy is simply down to men’s significantly greater physical strength, i.e. a man hitting with the same amount of force as a woman is much more likely to cause injury. And of course, in a lot of cases of homicide committed by males, there is some female enablement. This is especially true in cases of child homicide committed by men. But it’s also happened in some cases of serial murder, eg. the Paul Bernardo/Karla Homolka murders.

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago

I’m only talking about domestic violence. When it comes to violence, men and women seem to differ in terms of when, how and exactly why they do it. But women certainly do it. Hospital staff know all about it. Outside the home, violence against strangers seems more a male thing, against other males. Men fight other men less as they age, but the fights they do have tend to be more serious. I got in a few minor fights as a boy but not as a man. That’s pretty normal. That stuff is not as hard to handle as domestic violence. I think male and female domestic violence are hard to compare, but they are both forms of violence, both can cause serious injury, and both are about controlling the other person. So the differences are really details not substance.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
1 year ago

‘Is there anything feminists won’t complain about?’, 
Ironically, there is. They are stone silent when a man claims to be a woman and uses the claim to rob women of opportunities. Feminists won’t defend womanhood itself.
Men are more likely to be crime victims than women, too. Does that make them misandrists in addition to misogynists?

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

To be fair many feminists do object quite loudly about the men claiming to be women.

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago

Yes, and those feminists have my respect. I’m outraged about what’s happening with women’s and girls’ sports, in particular. Transwomen have every right to compete in sports, but they should compete with other biological males only. It’s a question of natural physical advantages, the reason separate female sports leagues exist to begin with.

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago

yeah that’s obviously unfair. It will be interesting to see whether transwomen are excluded from women’s sport in future years or decades.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
1 year ago

Okay -classic strategy here -broad brush phrases intended to have general application in order to achieve a political score against a class of persons (men) but sufficiently ill defined to avoid scrutiny.
Define please what you mean by “the existence of misogyny” – enlighten us -how widespread? some people? all people? Where? To what extent does this misogyny pervade and prevail?
What does it prove about men as a class of persons if the vast majority of violence to men and women is committed by men? (Which it undoubtedly is, but what does that prove about men?). At best it proves that a small, very small, minority of men act badly, or that some have bad manners.
What does it prove that most acts of violence towards women takes place in the context of a close personal relationship except perhaps the same thing?
Men are more outwardly aggressive and physically stronger -therefore are likely to use force and aggression in many ways -and they are far better at it than women. You and your forebears depended on men’s capability to use force and aggression in order to ensure the survival of our species, and our culture, in countless ways, and it’s still necessary. And many women find this capacity in a man (strength/ aggression) extremely attractive because they know just how useful it is.
Is it just envy that you don’t have the same strength? Well, it was feminism that stoked that envy and resentment in its idealisation of the power they think men have, entirely forgetting man’s dependence upon women for their own survival.
‘Men’ don’t hate ‘women’ -but feminism certainly appears to hate men and, I think, now, men hate it right back. For the record most women seem to dislike modern feminism too -because it’s ugly and divisive and it seeks to pervert the history of relations between men and women.
For every woman who got told in the past she was not allowed to have a career, marry the person she loved etc… there was a man forced down a coal mine out of necessity, conscripted to fight in a war not of his making, raised in a particular set of values which might not have entirely suited his personality or desires, ‘living lives of quiet desperation’ and dying about 10 years earlier on average because of it. Only feminists could rewrite history in such a skewed and one sided fashion as if all men have been enjoying cakes and ale for the whole of recorded time whilst all women have lived lives of endless and unremitting drudgery. It’s a ridiculous reductionist narrative, just like the one which says ‘all men’ are creatures of violence towards women.

Last edited 1 year ago by Juilan Bonmottier
Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago

As a “recovering feminist” who bought all this tripe about women’s historical oppression in my youth, I try to explain to angry young women of today that men throughout history have never had it any easier than women, and often had it significantly worse. They don’t want to hear it. I’ve also been constantly surprised at what they consider to be the distant past, i.e., any time in history prior to the 1970s. They seem to see this as some kind of dark pre-enlightenment era in which everything was just dreadful for anyone who wasn’t a white, heterosexual, Christian male, while for those people it was like living in paradise. It’s the same thing with the race issue; I’ve laughed in disbelief when I’ve heard young (usually white) people say how terrible and awful life MUST have been for every black person in the USA way back in the terrible, awful, backward era of…the 1940s and 50s. They have no clue how insulting and patronizing this attitude is to black people who actually lived in those times, did just fine, and who don’t see themselves as victims of anything.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago

A – people are ‘excusing’ rape and murder and brushing it off like its not big deal..look at the police officer and his offhand comments etc etc
B – What are you talking about? Literally NO ONE remotely sane is ‘excusing’ the murder of multiple women..plus that officer was just repeating what the suspect had said not giving his own ‘sexist’ spin on things.
A – why are all you misogynists on here denying that women experience sexual abuse?
and on and on and on……

Mel Usina
Mel Usina
1 year ago

Desperately sick of “not all men”. It’s like the recent articles pointing out that virtually all women have been sexually harassed or assaulted by men at some point in their lives just flew over these people’s heads. Cover your ears when facts contradict your deluded world view. Women are constantly threatened by men in public, in large ways and in small. Any woman who denies this is lying, to herself or to the world. It happens so often that I can’t even remember all the incidents. You just accept that they happen and they become invisible, a part of daily life you have to accept. Men approaching you in Leicester Square, telling you you’re beautiful and they have a job for you and not leaving you alone until you get aggressive. Men following you down the street and yelling insults when you ignore them. Strangers demanding hugs and cursing you when you refuse. Male “friends” giving you backrubs and continually claiming they are innocent despite obviously trying to grab your breasts. I couldn’t tell you how many of these incidents I’ve experienced, and I’ve average as hell. Not all men. Whatever. It’s still too many, and by denying what you’re brethren are doing, assuming you’re innocent, you are helping them get away with it. Listen to women. And not the capitulating idiots who don’t think misogyny exists. Listen to women who tell the truth.

Mel Usina
Mel Usina
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

The comments here are always overflowing with grotesque misogyny. That’s why I won’t buy a membership. I like a lot of the articles, but I don’t want to be one of these people. Wish Unheard would cater harder to the thinking left.

G Worker
G Worker
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

What thinking left? Do you mean the prisoners of Critical Theory and post-structuralism or those of classical Marxism?
The real left was an advocate of working class self-help, political awareness and political right. It was replaced by a constituency of hate about ninety years ago.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

Suspicion breeds its own mistrust. You insist on finding misogyny everywhere and I’m sure you find it, as you think you find it here just because others don’t agree with you and your world view. People don’t want to listen to this barracking of men any more. Why don’t you listen to men instead, for a change? You make daft statements like; ‘Women are constantly threatened by men in public, in large ways and in small’ -what does that mean? All women? Constantly? Clearly hyperbole. If it was even remotely true you wouldn’t see women out and about, on the streets, at work, in bars and clubs, freely enjoying themselves, unthreatened. So I think you’re talking garbage.
You don’t have thinking -you just have an hysterical ideology that imputes collective guilt and malignity in everything it seeks to strip ‘power’ from. It doesn’t believe in individual agency -just power. It worships and idealises power, and with it, control, over all else. And it will defame, debase and destroy any group of persons to get it.
I think your last sentence should more correctly read that you wish Unherd would cater to the hard left. It does from time to time, as with this piece, but everyone smells it out pretty quickly for the manure it is.

Last edited 1 year ago by Juilan Bonmottier
Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago

I agree that rants like this don’t help; for a woman to claim that “all women” are “constantly threatened by men in public” doesn’t reflect my own reality or experience as a woman, at all. So am I just inordinantly privileged? I don’t think so; I don’t have a high income, I live in a large city, and I travel on public transportation everywhere. I’ve gotten my share or unwelcome and annoying male attention, mostly when I was young, but in most cases unwelcome and annoying was all it was, not threatening. It didn’t destroy me or make me afraid to go out on my own.

John Tyler
John Tyler
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

I take it you consider yourself part of the ‘thinking left’. You do yourself no favours in garnering respect for your cause by stating that ‘comments here are always overflowing with grotesque misogyny’. No! Some comments, maybe even many, demonstrate a different perception to yours of how to respect people of a particular sex (or gender); a very few may actually demonstrate some hatred or disrespect for women as a category. Personally, I have never seen an example of truly ‘grotesque’ misogyny on UnHerd, though I cannot pretend I have read every comment! Perhaps you need to step back a little and consider the possibility that you are no more perfect than anyone else, and might gain the respect you seek by acknowledging other people’s right to hold views at variance with your own.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Tyler
Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

That is a grotesque exaggeration.

David Morley
David Morley
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

Wish Unheard would cater harder to the thinking left.

Me too. Though I fear we may not mean the same thing by that. There are smart people on the left, but their voices are being drowned out by the woke brigade.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

Quite agree -moderate left is being woked to death at the moment.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

“The thinking left” includes the vocal trans movement, which at this pace will eliminate your concern as womanhood itself is reduced to being no more than a concept. A woman who notices the difference between a bio woman and a man in a dress is treated like garbage. By the thinking left.
Listen to women who tell the truth. What of the ones who don’t? Because they also exist, and they harm the ones who do. Your misandry speaks for itself.  

Last edited 1 year ago by Alex Lekas
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

I really disagree with your political views. But I hope you wll continue to participate in the debate. It would be unhealthy if this turned into a monoculture.
Anyway, I checked with my wife. She does not recognise the world you are describing.

Elaine Hunt
Elaine Hunt
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

Yes. One of the very few benefits of the whole COVID protocol has been that casual male acquaintances don’t feel entitled to kiss you.

Last edited 1 year ago by Elaine Hunt
Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
1 year ago
Reply to  Elaine Hunt

Yes, and as a man I’m jolly glad I’m not obliged to receive hugs and kisses from women who I don’t wish to be hugged and kissed by. Who’d have thunk it could go both ways!

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
1 year ago
Reply to  Elaine Hunt

Speak for yourself. I carry on hugging both men and women.

David Morley
David Morley
1 year ago
Reply to  Elaine Hunt

I could be wrong, but I’d always thought this thing about kissing friends and acquaintances was introduced by women. Men aren’t generally that huggy. I found it a bit over the top to begin with, but have got used to it now.
And of course in other cultures kissing is quite acceptable and normal.

Scott Carson
Scott Carson
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

I always feel uncomfortable when anyone (male or female) tries to embrace, kiss, or even touch me, unless they’re close family, my girlfriend, or someone in need of comfort (for example, at a funeral.) It’s a continental habit which has taken far too great a hold here, imho.

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago
Reply to  David Morley

Yes, in British and (Anglo) Canadian culture hugging and kissing acquaintances has never been much of a thing. Even hugging between male family members was something I rarely saw when I was growing up; the first time I ever saw my father hug another man was when he saw his father again after a 10-year separation, and even then my sisters and I thought it was funny. He told us later that that was the first time he had ever hugged his father since he was a little boy.

Brendan O'Leary
Brendan O'Leary
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

The left will have credibility on misogyny they day they disown the abuse they gave Margaret Thatcher.

Rick Sharona
Rick Sharona
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

So are men and women equal or is the “weaker sex” description true after all?

Colin Colquhoun
Colin Colquhoun
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

OK. You’ve said your piece. According to you, your problems are my fault even though I clearly have nothing to do with it, literally other than being male. Now give me a reason to care. Because I don’t at all. I’m not sure that telling random strangers “you’re beautiful” counts as hatred and mysogeny. That sounds more like someone who’s a bit thick trying to pick you up. It may work for him with women who are a bit thick, so that’s why he does that.
I am not thick. I am not trying to pick you up. I absolutely would not pay attention to you in the street, and I would avoid you and never speak to you at work.
I do not care one way or the other what happens to you. So what do you want from me?

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

I’m not trying to deny anything you claim; I’ve been there myself, as a young woman trying to make her way in the world, to be free and independent and frequently suffering the annoyance of unwelcome male attention. But in the vast majority of cases, that’s all it is: annoying. A drag, a gripe, a peeve; something that legitimately pisses you off and sometimes ruins your day and that you dearly wish would not happen. And we do have the right to go about our day without it happening.
However, I don’t know exactly what you expect decent men to do about this problem. Try looking at it from their point of view. When a man who has never bothered a woman in public hears a woman claim that “all men are pigs!” he can’t help but get a little defensive and take it a bit personally. And then when he hears specifically what you are complaining about, he can’t help thinking you are making a bit of a mountain of a molehill, when being annoyed by asshole people in public or even the drunken misbehaviour of casual friends and acquaintances, is a fact of life they’ve long since accepted and learned to live with. They also know when they hear about “male violence” that they themselves are overwhelmingly the ones likely to be hospitalized by it. In fact, they know excatly what the stakes are for them, if they try to stop a man from bothering a woman in public. It could end a lot worse for them than for the woman, who ends up only in a sour mood. This is the reason men often overlook bad public behaviour in other men; it’s not because they approve of it, but because they know exactly what they’d be risking if they did or said anything, and they have to make that judgment call every time, as in: “Is saving this woman from, at worst, having a bad day worth getting myself killed over?”
I don’t personally know a single woman who was seriously assaulted – as in, physically harmed – by some random stranger in public. I do, however, remember a chilling conversation with a woman whose 18-year-old son had his throat slashed with a boxcutter by another young man – in fact, barely escaped being murdered, owing to the assailant just missing his jugular vein – when he tried to verbally intervene in an assault on yet another young man in a convenience store parking lot.
It’s always been far more dangerous out there for men. Mothers of teen girls worry about them being verbally harassed or groped, mothers of teen boys worry about them not getting home alive.

Simon Sharp
Simon Sharp
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

I do listen to women and plenty of them will disagree with you (its your word against mine- but perhaps i can guess that some of those women will be the ‘wrong sort’ ..ie ones that don’t agree with you politically). 2nd – its not hard to find men who agree and admit that sexist behavior towards women does happen and that it would be better if it didn’t. Misogyny exists – as does racism, missandry and many other nasty behaviors….
But I guess you want to do the usual thing and connect some moron coming on a bit strong with someone who rapes and murders as if one is not even that different from the other.. and then package the whole thing up into the ‘systemic misogyny/patriarchy’ doctrine, And if people don’t agree with that package then that’s evidence that they’re misogynists.

Last edited 1 year ago by Simon Sharp
Derek Boyes
Derek Boyes
1 year ago
Reply to  Mel Usina

I consider myself a member of the ‘thinking left’ and don’t doubt the shocking statistics on sexual harassment and violence that many women experience during their lifetime. I can therefore grasp the idea that experiencing so many instances could make someone feel like misogyny is out of control, BUT… I’m almost certain the reality is that these perpetrators make up a significantly small minority of men, that they commit multiple attacks on multiple woman over several decades. Also, if you were to put these statistics in context, for example, by comparing these experiences with ALL the other encounters you’ve had with men that were not violent, abusive or sexually harassing, the statistics would not look so bleak.

Last edited 1 year ago by Derek Boyes
Elaine Hunt
Elaine Hunt
1 year ago

However, when this bloke was walking around with a bible in his hands ( hearsay evidence), he didn’t have a gun in his hands which he used to kill people.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
1 year ago
Reply to  Elaine Hunt

In the lefty journalism the two are conflated.

Karin Esevik
Karin Esevik
1 year ago

Interestingly enough, here (https://www.svt.se/kultur/kanda-skadespelare-och-artister-vittnar-om-rasism-mot-asiater), the shootings in Georgia are said to be motivated by racism against Asians.

Sharon Overy
Sharon Overy
1 year ago
Reply to  Karin Esevik

Which doesn’t seem to be true – some of his victims were white. There have been a spate of attacks on Asians in the US by black people – there’s a political inducement to frame this crime as the work of a ‘white supremacist’ to divert attention.

John Jones
John Jones
1 year ago

Many posters are criticizing the writer for jumping to the conclusion that the killer was motivated by misogyny, rather than the explanation that he was merely insane.

Others have pointed out that terms like “male violence” are a form of gender stereotyping, that in fact you are a sexist who is weaponizing this terrible event to push your own misandrous narrative.

You can silence all of this criticism by providing the evidence that the killer hated women, and that’s his primary motivation.

We await your response.

Mikey Mike
Mikey Mike
1 year ago

I’m not sure the biblical allegory you see in this tragedy is actually there. It probably is not. I do agree that the officer’s description of the shooter’s motive is weird where it isn’t total horses***, but that doesn’t justify your weirder politicization of the murders as a response some perceived depoliticization.

It is an awful disservice to the victims that the police should play the offender’s game by preferring to mention his addiction to porn and sex over pronouncing the obvious sentence of misogyny.

I don’t think I’m alone in recognizing that the Georgia shooting isn’t so much an act of misogyny as, you know, murder. Yours is the same brand of mangled logic that makes every crime committed by a white person against a black person an act of racism (but never the inverse). In this case the murders appear to be a clear cut case of a mentally ill person with a gun killing innocent people without a motive that is coherent to non-mentally ill people.

Barbara Williams
Barbara Williams
1 year ago

I am a climate and environmental activist. To me it seems that we in the affluent countries are daily destroying people’s lives both current and future by persisting with consumerist lifestyles and endless growth which is destroying our environment. Yet we prefer to spend endless column inches discussing human issues whilst the biodiversity on which we depend to survive is dwindling daily. We have skewed our priorities for decades, and are now in the midst of ecological collapse. Many have died already from extreme droughts and floods, but we prefer to preoccupy ourselves with an isolated murder. The fact that we are currently using our money to operate like a massive killing machine goes unmentioned. I would urge the author to learn about our predicament from this book, her perspective is a consequence of the deficiencies in our modern education and culture. https://poemsforparliament/sufo/

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
1 year ago

If you really believe that “endless growth” and “consumerist lifestyles” is killing our planet, what are you personally giving up in order to alleviate that? Do you grow all your own food, whilst living in a tiny solar-powered off-grid home, never travel by air, use only electric vehicles, buy nothing new? Are you busy lecturing people trying to escape poverty in developing countries about the virtues of having nothing?
Droughts and floods are an unfortunate fact of nature and – like earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis, forest fires, diseases, etc. – have plagued humanity from the beginning of time. Do you seriously believe we can make them stop happening?
Human beings are basically insignificant bugs in this ecosystem. We make the best of it, as all other species do; our big brains just give us a slight advantage. But some natural catastrophe (asteroid wiping out the dinosaurs, anyone?) could end it all for us at any time.
As you seem to be a fan of poetry, read Sara Teasdale’s “There Will Come Soft Rains.” This planet will do fine long after we’re no longer here to worry about it.