Rightbloggers: Santa Barbara Killer Elliot Rodger's Sexist Rants Have Nothing To Do With Sexism (Or Guns)

tomt200.jpgThis weekend 22-year-old Elliot Rodger killed six people and wounded 13 others near the University of California at Santa Barbara in Isla Vista. He left behind a video complaint -- with references to women who wouldn't have sex with him as "blonde slut[s]" and to himself as the "supreme gentleman" and "true alpha male" -- and other ravings that sound like a standard-issue friend-zoned nice-guy routine taken to its logical psychopathic conclusion.

Any reasonable observer would look at this and conclude Rodger had problems with women, at least women who unfairly chose to live their lives as autonomous humans without regard for his needs. Rightbloggers saw it differently. To them, it might have meant any number of things, but what it certainly didn't mean was that sexism exists.

Conservative opposition to feminism is as old as feminism and perhaps time itself, and can be explained as part of the general conservative opposition to any interest group in the modern Democratic coalition and/or by misogyny, depending on how generously you choose to view it.

During the current Democratic Administration, which has made a point of reaching out to women and in consequence been rewarded with enough female and female-friendly votes to stay in office, rightbloggers have grown particularly embittered toward what they perceive as liberals' disingenuous "war on women" rhetoric and the voteresses who are swayed by it (call it friendmandering!), and have lashed out at such gynarchic abominations as expanded birth control coverage by health care plans and Lena Dunham. Not to mention abortion, and please let's not.

For background, let's look at some recent rightblogger complaints about feminism. National Review's Jim Geraghty, leveraging the Jill Abramson controversy at the New York Times, last week told working women to "Cut Themselves Some Slack" -- that is, abandon the nonsensical idea that men might want to exploit them, because "this viewpoint may in fact hold women back," perhaps because male bosses can read their minds, or perhaps because no one likes a whining bitch.

weirdfeministthing.jpg
Now what girl could resist a come-on like this? (Via.)
In the same venue, OG rightblogger James Lileks raged against the #NotAllMen meme that, as explained by Vox, makes a joke of the cluelessness of men who barge into women's discussions of their experiences with men to interrupt or undercut them, which joke Lileks considered offensive -- in fact, early in his post Lileks expressed impatience with the task of addressing it: "Most men, at this point, have no interest in being beaten about the head with reminders of their awfulness," he claimed, "and move along to Jalopnik, where like-minded individuals are criticizing cars." Nonetheless Lileks went on for 1,300 more words of mansplanation ("Who says he's 'butting in'? Couldn't this be a response offered calmly after a broad mischaracterization?") and strawmanning ("Okay. A woman says, 'All men at heart are rapists.' A man responds..."), before throwing his hands up and bailing, presumably to look at Jalopnik or something equally butch, leaving the field to "men who want to have tendentious arguments about male perfidy with the sort of person who might want to put a 'trigger warning' on Winnie the Pooh because a reader might have a honey allergy...." We bet the ladies really missed him when he was gone.

Elsewhere one could find easily find rightblog items such as "The Moving Reason Dana Loesch Never Believed in Government-Run Healthcare, Even in Her Days as a Liberal Feminist" and "ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL ACTRESS WHO'S NOT A FEMINIST -- Exclusive: Molotov Mitchell profiles lady celebrities who like men." Yes, believe it or not, this was a thing; at NewsBusters Brent Bozell and Tim Graham claimed that a few actresses disowning feminism had "thrown the country's most uptight feminists into a tizzy," and that "many people don't accept the term 'feminist' because it sounds like a very serious kind of pagan religion... others find feminists to be boors," etc. One could also find articles about how Hillary Clinton might be too brain-damaged to serve as President (written by men who worshiped the dotard Reagan), etc.

On Saturday Rodger rampaged, and it's fair to say his ravings -- suffused as they were with male entitlement and rage at women -- would sound extremely misogynistic to any non-crazy listener. Sample:

I don't know why you girls aren't attracted to me, but I will punish you all for it...You will finally see that I am in truth the superior one. The true alpha male. (laughs) Yes. After I've annihilated every single girl in the sorority house, I will take to the streets of Isla Vista and slay every single person I see there. All those popular kids who live such lives of hedonistic pleasures while I've had to rot in loneliness for all these years. They've all looked down upon me every time I tried to go out and join them, they've all treated me like a mouse. Well now I will be a god compared to you.
We have only read part of Rodger's 140-page "manifesto," available online; the first several thousand words are stupefyingly dull, like a YA novel written by a robot, and chronicle his life from childhood -- when he was proud of climbing a big rock, ashamed at his divorced mother's place in downscale Canoga Park, and "really traumatized" at first seeing porn -- through puberty and the inevitable "volcanic eruption of white sticky fluid"; at that point we skipped ahead to Rodger's closing gurgles, which are pretty much what you'd expect ("a few women would be spared, however, for the sake of reproduction," etc).

Unsurprisingly women, who already have their hands full worrying about being killed by men they already know, were disturbed by this spectacular eruption of random violence by a misogynist asshole, and talked about it online. And what did rightbloggers think? They had a variety of views, but they shared a common theme: The massacre certainly had nothing whatsoever to do with any institutional hatred of women.

Richard Fernandez at PJ Media acknowledged that "Elliot had an enormous sense of entitlement and a paint-by-the-numbers view of the world." And where'd that sense of entitlement come from? "Whether he was born this way or the idea was subtly imprinted in childhood by his upbringing I leave to the pros," shrugged Fernandez. But he seemed open to a social explanation: "...I couldn't hate Elliot Rodger. He was too pathetic to hate, like a ventriloquist's dummy." And who was speaking for the dummy? "...on his last day of rage he was completely consumed by what in former times people called the Devil," wrote Fernandez. "But the Devil doesn't exist you know. Or so we are told. We've purged him from our modern, secular, shrink-ridden world..."

That's sarcasm, in case you didn't notice. "In the entirety of Rodger's account the one word never glimpsed was 'God', or an equivalent concept," preached Fernandez. "He lived in a world without the notation. Perhaps the Great Religions had a function we cynical moderns have long forgotten..." Well, there you go: It's not sexism, it's Satan. Fernandez never mentioned "misogyny" nor "sexism" in his essay -- though he managed to work in Benghazi.

"Colleges and Universities in this country helped cause the mass shooting," asserted Warner Todd Huston at Wizbang. You see, Rodger complained that he couldn't get sex -- and that's because colleges and universities have made students sex-crazy. "Unfortunately, that is what people have come to expect in college," reported Huston. "It is just a place to have sexual romps, not a place to learn. The colleges themselves reinforce this idiocy with foolish, anti-intellectual classes like 'porn studies,' gay 'studies,' and other such non-academic nonsense." In such classes, of course, students don't read or analyze anything, but merely fondle each others' genitals in new and interesting ways. It's an easy A!

"Colleges and universities stopped being places of learning when America's worst generation -- the yippies and other cretins from the 60s generation --successfully destroyed the authority of the college administration," continued Huston. Small wonder Rodger "expected that his every sexual fantasy would be fulfilled there," and that, when he couldn't get laid, he killed several people -- wouldn't you? Huston suggested that American business "eliminate the college education as a prerequisite for every last entry-level job," though he admitted doctors might need some book-learning, but "even that aside, we need to get sex out of education." Somewhere in eternity, Socrates is laughing his ass off.

A poster at Daily Kos, and other online writers, noticed that Rodger had frequented sites related to the pick-up artists (PUA) and men's rights activism (MRA) movements, two creep-clusters that are reliable dispensers of misogynistic crap. See, for reference, "Redditor's PUA Kickstarter Project Recommends Sexual Assault" and the easier-to-take PUA.txt Twitter feed, as well as this hair-raising MRM rant, "18 Things Females Seem To Not Understand (Because, Female Privilege)" ("6. Female privilege is being able to decide not to have a child." In some states, anyway!) and, well, just about anything at men-are-so-oppressed site A Voice for Men.

But Ann Althouse, a professor of law at the University of Wisconsin, cross-examined the Daily Kos article: "Subscribing to channels makes it somewhat likely that Rodger 'watched' and 'listened,' but we don't know that he did," she said. Furthermore, "is 'Men's Rights Movement' the right umbrella term for the 'pickup artist' genre?" she asked. "The goal of lots of sex is different from the goal of getting rights. These men want sex from women -- I take it --- not rights, which are something you get from the government." So PUAs are sort of like a dating advice site, and MRAs are sort of like the ACLU -- clearly they have nothing in common.

And where was this Daily Kos poster getting this misogyny stuff from? Althouse didn't see it. "So in [the poster's] fuzzy head, the pickup artists who want to bed scores of women using some fine 'game' they've worked out are supposed to 'hate' women, and a murderer who's been rejected by women hates women," she said, shaking her head -- imagine, pick-up artists hating women -- why, they're always trying to hug and kiss them! "And I guess men who've been stung by women and want some legal rights 'hate' women," she added. Did we mention Althouse is a professor of law?

Some rightbloggers went even further out.

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24 comments
Pothead
Pothead

It's local hersay that Rodger's smoked alot of pot. How did a dude who got high so much become so violent. Maybe he should've shared the pot with the ladies that would have gott en  him laid more. 

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wkiernan
wkiernan

Warner Todd Huston, ha ha!  When I was 12 years old it was annoying to have weirdos like Spiro Agnew (the $40,000 man) blaming all the problems of Western civilization on young dopes like me and our dumb tastes in pop music.  But hey Mr. Huston, it's 2014!  It's like getting all worked up over the Teapot Dome scandal.

mo3871a
mo3871a

His manifesto and his youtube postings are so over the top that if it wasn't for the actual murders you would think he was a feminist man (gay probably) doing a PARODY of the people in the "game" and "PUA-Hate" and "incel" communities.  That's what makes this so strange. 

parsec
parsec

Hmmm. Thought of himself as a god who would kill those who didn't love him.


Yep, he's the real thing! Guess I better not piss him off. 

fsaulinsky
fsaulinsky

Elliot Roger had exactly the same amount of white DNA as Barack Obama.

RogerAiles
RogerAiles

Dear Penthouse Forum,

It's your old pal, Warner Todd Huston. I never thought this would happen to me, but I was studying in my dormitory late one Friday night, and no nubile young co-ed wearing a tight white t-shirt and running shorts stopped by my room asking for my notes from Introduction to French.  So I got out my Pringles can and did what came naturally.

MrWonderful
MrWonderful

Not being able to get laid *in Isla Vista* is like not being able to get wet in Lake Huron.  I'm hoping some of the girls Rodger struck out with will come forward and describe what he was like, and why they fled.  Especially because he was quite good looking.

joedee
joedee

Donald Douglas is a self described "neo-con", and an asshead of epic proportions whose arguments always amount to sticking your fingers in your ears, and calling the other guy a "poopy head". Worst of all that worthless buttwipe is an educator of some kind. 

christopher168
christopher168

Thoughtful members of Men’s rights group do not aspire to denigrate women but to challenge instances where they perceive inequity between men and women, in the same way feminists or women’s rights groups like to point out the inequity in a society that puts them at a disadvantage to men. Like it or not there are instances of unjust and inequity with respect to both genders and not to just one gender and it would behoove the media and journalists in general to keep this in mind rather than writing essays decrying the omnipresent existence of hate towards women. That is simply not the case.


And yet we are told at the same time that the reason Elliot Rodger went on a killing rampage was because he hated women. I think it would perhaps be fairer to say that Elliot Rodger hated humanity and women were an incidental desire given the rise of his puberty and his feelings of sexual inadequacy, rather than an abject loathing of women simply because of their very gender.


http://scallywagandvagabond.com/2014/05/elliot-rodger-really-kill-cause-misogynist-feminists-fallacies/

kiptw
kiptw

@edroso @villagevoice That's totally like how this one war had abz NIX to do with wanting to own other human beings as property!

nancyleong
nancyleong

@azbrodsky Yeah, right? @edroso gets serious credit for combing dark corners of the Internet so the rest of us don't have to.

roy84
roy84 topcommenter

That's an interesting comment. Is it relevant to anything besides your private obsessions?

glennisw250
glennisw250 topcommenter

@MrWonderful Echidne has an interesting post about him. She read the whole manifesto (I could not bring myself to) and she says that he doesn't describe a single episode where he made overtures and was rejected. He does describe going to a pizza joint and sitting around waiting for someone to approach him, with no results. Apparently, he expected women to offer themselves to him without his even asking them.

maxbaer
maxbaer

@joedee Here's a comment by Perfessor Don at Roy's link:


<i>I'm not white and Mad Jewish is a women, duh.</i>

Sadly, I believe English is his first and only language.

GeoX
GeoX topcommenter

@christopher168  "Thoughtful members of Men’s rights group..."


El Oh el.

roy84
roy84 topcommenter

@christopher168 "The first strike against women will be to quarantine all of them in concentration camps. At these camps, the vast majority of the female population will be deliberately starved to death... I would take great pleasure and satisfaction in condemning every single woman on earth to starve to death." -- Elliot Rodger in his manifesto.


If you don't see hatred of women in that, you just don't know how to read.

GFiasco67
GFiasco67

@edroso @villagevoice bashing the right wing nuts is easy (yes, fun). I was looking for rational reasons this occurred: trauma, abuse, meds.

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