What I get when I ask atheist anti-feminists for substantive arguments against feminist claims: rawstory.com/rs/2013/05/20/… They got nothing.
— Amanda Marcotte (@AmandaMarcotte) May 21, 2013
The challenge Marcotte made on May 22:
Two days in, and ZERO people who have come up to argue against feminists in the atheist movement have been able to provide a single, substantive argument against feminist claims. Every single detractor's only point was to reassert that feminists shouldn't complain about being tone policed. Apparently, the ever so important anti-feminist arguments that require so much devoted protection from feminist detractors stifling them with the P word are also too precious to be stated out loud.
In all seriousness, clearly feminist arguments within the context of secularism are great, and instead of bullying and tone policing and screeching endlessly at feminists in an effort to get them to leave, they should be allowed to make those arguments in peace. Though, if anyone actually wants to bother arguing against an actual feminist argument one day---instead of coming up with double standard rules-lawyering about HOW we make those arguments---that'd be interesting.
She continues her challenge in a response to another commenter:
The request has been for feminist detractors to stop tone policing, whining about "silencing", etc. and to bring substantive criticisms of the ideas of feminism. If you cannot do this, please leave.
There is only one problem.
Just what are the 'feminist' ideas?
The 'ideas', so far:
- Ron Lindsay is a meanie
- Vacula is a meanie
- Shermer is a meanie
- Richard Dawkins is a racist
- Feminists are the only ones that care about black people
- Rape threats happen and are bad
- Republicans are assholes
- Libertarians are assholes
- Rape culture exists and is bad
- Habitual body monitoring is an epidemic
- Harriet Hall may have wore the same shirt for three days
- Dongle jokes are awful
- Elevators are scary
This is not a complete list of the insanity, this is just a start.
By and large, the ideas fall into a few buckets:
- Complete ad-hominem disgust with specific people
- Arguments that are clearly hollow smears against "anti-feminists"
- Rants against things that nobody argues in favor of
Put another way, nobody is going to tell Marcotte that she is wrong when she says Ron Lindsay is an asshole. She thought his speech was condescending. She will feel that way. There is no concrete counterclaim to be made.
Second, "feminists" aren't backing up their own 'ideas'. After they label Dawkins as a racist, for example, many wouldn't dare to share that opinion twice. Other ideas, such as "habitual body monitoring" didn't take off as it was so obviously ill-developed as a provable hypothesis and didn't translate into something actionable.
Finally, 'feminists' are often arguing with an empty room. Do they really think their critics are pro-rape? Do they think their critics universally view privilege and rape culture as entirely imaginary?
As long as 'feminists' expect their opponents to argue with their feelings, they will find no convincing responses to their 'ideas'.