Not after they understand how I clung to those ideals through a decade when I wanted to die.And any teenage male nerds who read this blog, and who find themselves in a similar hole, will know that they too can get out without giving up on feminism.
When I started writing comment 171, I filled it with anecdotes from the happier part of my life (roughly, from age 24 onward): the part where I finally became able to ask; where women, with a frequency that I couldn’t have imagined as a teenager, actually answered ‘yes’; and where I got to learn about their own fears and insecurities and quirks.
In the earlier draft, I also wrote about my wife’s experiences as a woman in computer science, which differed from Amy’s in some crucial ways.
I’m equally grateful to have gotten interesting, compassionate responses from feminist women.
The most striking was that of Laurie Penny in the —a response that others of Penny’s views should study, if they want to understand how to win hearts and change minds.
I don’t promise to agree with you, but I promise to try to engage your ideas thoughtfully, whether you’re a man, woman, child, AI-bot, or unusually-bright keyboard-pecking chicken.
Indeed, I spend a nontrivial fraction of my life doing exactly that (well, not so much with chickens). I believe no one has the right to anyone else’s sexual affections.
Two weeks ago, prompted by a commenter named Amy, I wrote by far the most personal thing I’ve ever made public—what’s now being referred to in some places as just “comment 171.” My thinking was: I’m giving up a privacy that I won’t regain for as long as I live, opening myself to ridicule, doing the blog equivalent of a queen-and-two-rook sacrifice.
But at least—and this is what matters—no one will ever again be able to question the depth of my feminist ideals.
Ironically, Aronson [sic] actually writes a lot like Dworkin- he writes from pain felt and relived and wrenched from the intimate core of himself, and because of that his writing is powerfully honest, but also flawed …