Because there are always some people out there who don’t get it

And they are on blogs and forum posts and in IM telling us we are wrong because we are supporting One Billion Rising in Second Life, an event about women.

So let’s get a few things clear.

Why is this event not acknowledging the fact that violence is far more likely to occur against men than it is against women?
Because it is an event that focuses on violence against women.  There are other events that focus on different issues, and we give active support to some of these too.  At the moment we are supporting an event that focuses on violence against women.

Later in the year we will be focusing on an event that is about cancer.  That doesn’t mean that we don’t think heart disease and strokes are problems too.  But we have chosen to get involved with an event about cancer.

Why can’t you change the event to make it more inclusive? It’s anti-men!
One Billion Rising is a global event. In the real world, there are events associated with it going on in many, many different countries. I’m in the UK, and today I had an email from an MP saying how she and other MPs want to raise the issue in the UK parliament, using One Billion Rising as an occasion. A group of us decided to bring the event inworld to Second Life – as part of this huge global thing.  We are a part of the global event now.  Men are very welcome to join in – we have men on the team pulling the event together in a variety of roles. In addition, some of the artists you will see will be men, so will some of the performers. This is not a men-hating event, any more than an event about cancer would hate the healthy.

Why are you supporting an event which favours one gender and provides no support for the other? This event is one-sided!
Supporting One Billion Rising is s a choice we have made. Violence against women occurs. It should be stopped.  We quite agree that violence against men should be stopped too.  But supporting a campaign against one isn’t a denial of the other.

If we chose to support a campaign to raise awareness of prostate cancer, that wouldn’t mean we were ignoring breast cancer, or saying that prostate cancer was the more important issue or or that more people are affected by prostate cancer than breast cancer, or that resources should be directed to one and not the other.  We would be choosing to raise awareness of prostate cancer, and another time we might support a campaign to raise awareness of breast cancer or epilepsy or kidney disease.

Wanting to support a particular cause at a particular time is, actually,  rather sensible – of course you could have campaigns that oppose all violence, everywhere, just as you could have a campaign against all forms of illness.  But, historically, it has proved more fruitful in terms of raising funds and raising awareness, to focus on aspects of an issue.

If people know of a campaign that is holding an event against violence against men, let us know. We’d very likely be interested in lending our support. And we wouldn’t complain that it wasn’t including women or children or elders. We’d support it as a campaign against violence against men.

10 comments

  1. The real shame is that a post like this even needs to be written….people are just trying to help other people!

  2. How ridiculous that such things (evidently) need to be said. And well done for handling it so well. I’d have been too tempted to reply with little more than “Check your privilege, caveman.”

  3. Wow, really? I also can’t believe this even needs to be addressed. If this were a push to raise awareness about prostate cancer, I seriously doubt any women would be making stink about it; we’d just be going to the events and buying up the special items, or dancing or whatever in support. Whoever is doing this stupid complaining needs to grow the heck up.

  4. I imagine it’s the usual crowd of misanthropes and misogynists, for the most part. While I personally DO support recognition of women on male violence – or just plain non-gendered partner abuse, I think that in many ways that a sequential approach is most appropriate – and I think it silly of people to complain that someone is doing hard work that doesn’t benefit them.

    Before awareness can be raised, discussion needs to occur, data needs to be gathered, issues and resources need to be identified and … not exactly the least point – what would *help* look like. :} And I think that women are doing much of the legwork and giving courage to the sorts of men who are likely to be abused.. (which are not always the sort you would immediately think of.)

    In a sense, the complaints do serve to illustrate that need – and perhaps it is an opportunity to remind people that “to complain is to volunteer.”

  5. The detractors of the One Billion Rising campaign conveniently forget to notice that women never said “anti-war campaigns condone violence against women because they make no mention of violence against women.”

    This is enough to destroy any “argument” put forward by the misogynists and their buddies.

      1. They wouldn’t. I’ve yet to see an anti-war person try to denigrate a campaign that tries to raise awareness of the violence perpetrated against women (or against children). In fact, they’re usually among the first to join and help these campaigns.

  6. What *people* did not get it? Who are these people *usual crowd of misanthropes and misogynists* seems to be a very WIDE brush being used here. I think if anyone is NOT getting it it might be right here. One person stated they could not support something that did not INCLUDE ALL ALL forms of violence and suddenly gets compared to a serial killer? Really? Do not blame one person for preventing you from discussing . I also do NOT support censorship.

    I support One Billion Rising , I also support any cause that put ALL violence against everyone in the spotlight.

    1. This is my blog, and I have disallowed a few comments here where people have made very pointed and provocative accusations against others. I have attempted to contact people in these cases and explain why their comments have been disallowed. Unfortunately, not everyone uses a valid email address.

      The people who do not get it are those I have seen in forum threads, on SL message boards and who have IM’d me personally. In some cases I have had what I hope has been a thoughtful discussion with people. But, not having time to explain my points to everyone individually, I did a blog post here.

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