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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Trending tweets make farce of feminism

Valerie Teegardin

To find misogyny, sexism and the occasional degrading meme all in one spot, look no further than the trending Twitter community, MenistTwitter.

A male spinoff of the term “feminist,” the concept of using social media as a platform for advocating men’s rights had the potential to give men a voice that may be other-wise silenced.

Keyword: had.

After reading a few tweets with #MenistTwitter, it became blatantly clear that this isn’t a group of activist committed to social justice. This trend is disjointed heteromasculinity in all its glory.

Tweeting “It’s rape when you say no, but ain’t it rape when you spent my money when I said no?” or “How DARE you tell me to wear a condom? You DO NOT control my body,” are not the marginalized voices that should be amplified on an activist platform.

I’m sure there are ignorant men behind these tweets, chuckling to themselves over their clever but horribly misguided satire.

Perhaps this crude humor is why the trend is increasing in popularity, because people develop a sense of camaraderie when bonding over shared experiences and commonalities.

Unfortunately, it’s only the most boisterous and unrestrained comments that get heard online. Go figure.

Unlike the creator of #MenistTwitter, who is too busy making a joke out of real activist communities, I actually set aside my own opinions and looked beyond the surface of the situation after my initial disgust had me ranting about men with no solid reasoning other than my rage.

I’ve come to realize that these trending tweets, though riddled with satire, hold an underlying truth that shouldn’t go ignored.

It’s indisputable that men hold most of the privilege and power in society, but women are continuing to believe the stereotypes placed upon men and masculinity, which is indeed a form of oppression.

However, if men are as bothered by the reinforced stereotypes as the MenistTwitter tweets suggest they are, then the solution isn’t to retaliate against women by throwing out generalizations of their own. The key to ending male oppression is to first address the unjust treatment of females.

Only when women gain equal standing as men in all aspects of society will the destructive cycle of stereotypical beliefs and sexist behaviors from both genders on social media platforms be put to an end.

Valerie Teegardin can be reached at [email protected] or @vteegardin on Twitter.

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