1.) The Pay Gap
I don't deny the existence of the pay gap. One does exist. However, it is an ignorance regarding the causes of the pay gap. The common figure is 77 cents on the dollar. Most, if not all, of this is explained by differences in hours worked, preferences for work, choice of occupation, and, yes, time out of the workforce due to child rearing. Direct pay discrimination, at the most, is one of many factors explaining this gap. More likely, it plays a negligible role in the gap.
Clever feminists respond by pointing out that it is possible that occupational choices, hours worked, etc could be the result of indirect discrimination and gender roles. I disagree with this assessment. But, for the sake of argument, we'll assume this is correct. Even in this case, the feminist solution is still wrong. Anti discrimination lawsuits, which feminists want to strengthen, are designed to fight direct pay discrimination. They would not, in any way, solve or mitigate these indirect channels for gender discrimination and are thus a bad policy option for solving this problem.
Ironically, the only real effect of things like the Lily Ledbetter Act would be to reduce the hiring opportunities for women because it raises the potential risk of legal action if a woman is to be hired. In other words, an act designed to reduce the pay gap would probably have the opposite effect.
2.) Lack of Compassion for Disadvantaged Men
Disadvantage can mean a lot of things. So, a disadvantaged man could be disadvantaged in money, looks, intelligence, or even things like social interactions. Feminism is incredibly insensitive to such men.
I understand that the feminist movement is, supposedly, about advancing women. But, my problem isn't that they don't talk about the problems that these men face. My problem is the vitriol and hatred aimed towards these men and the lack of interest in the fact that if society were to go in the direction that feminists propose, these men would be the losers.
Feminists like to think they are fighting male privilege. But, in fact, the actual men who are the targets of feminist criticism tend to be incredibly disadvantaged. For instance, there's been a lot of talk about a certain youtube channel devoted to a woman who "confronts" her "street harassers".
The woman in the video is, likely, attractive, white, wealthy (relatively speaking), and intelligent. With a couple exceptions, her harassers are black and disadvantaged. And, in most cases, they aren't harassers at all. They're simply men who aren't rich and white and decide to hit on her.
She may not like it when men she doesn't find appealing say she is pretty but that does not make it harassment. It's hard to imagine that she gets as upset when rich, white, good looking men hit on her in a more stereotypically "classy" way.
A sample of one of her videos is here:
3.) Ignorance About the Problem of Male Isolation
Most remember the tragedy in Santa Barbara a few months ago where Elliot Rodger killed 6 people before taking his own life. Feminists took this as an opportunity to push their own agenda. This is forgivable as the videos Rodger took displayed both profound arrogance and misogyny.
However, feminists seem to mistake correlation for causation. Elliot Rodger didn't kill because he was a misogynist. Instead, both his misogyny and homicidal (and suicidal) tendencies stemmed from a combination of insanity and isolation.
The insanity part is self explanatory as anyone who could kill 6 people in such a manner is obviously insane. The isolation part is, from a cultural perspective, more important.
It is much easier for a man to become isolated than for a woman. Women are, by nature, more social. Yet, they aren't in more need of social interaction. They are merely more aware of their need for social interaction. This is something of a paradox.
The bigger difference, however, comes with regards to intergender social relations. Feminists constantly complain about women getting unwanted male attention. This is, at times, unpleasant and uncalled for. However, there seems to be an ignorance of the corresponding problem males face: lack of female attention.
Humans are social animals. Males left out of social interactions have it at least as hard as women who are subject to non violent and non threatening but still unwanted male attention. Men who are socially awkward or unappealing do not receive female attention. And, if they attempt to talk to females, they are often labeled as "creeps" or "harassers" by women which discourages them from future interaction.
The same is not true of socially awkward or unappealing women who still tend to receive male attention and some degree of social interaction. It is simply much more common for men to become isolated.
It was this isolation that lead an already mentally unstable individual like Rodger to take so many lives in such a senseless manner. It is this isolation that contributes the fact that men are much more likely to commit such senseless murders.
It is also this isolation that leads to men being dramatically more likely to take their own lives than women. At the same time, women are more likely to attempt suicide. That is to say that women may see a suicide attempt as a "cry for help" because they know that some people will care if they think they tried to commit suicide.
For men, suicide is simply a way to end pain and isolation. It is, unfortunately, true that for a lot more men than women, nobody would care if they committed suicide.
One of feminism's core tenets these days is to discourage men from talking to women they don't know, even in a non threatening way. It's not hard to see how this may negatively effect the men who are already isolated to begin with.
4.) Feminism and Multiculturalism
Women are severely disadvantaged in many parts of the world. I don't believe women are disadvantaged in the modern, Western world. Even if you disagree with that, I'm sure we can agree that women are much more disadvantaged in, for example, the Muslim world.
Feminists, at least from my perspective, seem much more upset about magazine covers than the fact that Muslim women can be legally raped if they are married to their rapist in some countries. Of course, feminists have responded to such criticism before.
One common response is that the fact that some women in other countries have a worse deal than women in Western countries does not mean that the women in Western countries should be minimized. That's a fair point.
However, I do think the concerns of women should be correctly prioritized. Maybe it's because of my male privilege, but I simply believe that the plight of women in the third world is much worse than of women in the first world. It's quite difficult to argue that feminists talk as much about the problems of women in poor countries as compared to those in wealthy countries.
Feminists may respond by saying that since they are (mostly) in the first world, they are mostly going to be talking about the problems within the first world. This is also a fair response.
However, feminists should be more forthright in saying that they care much more about the utility of women in wealthy, predominantly white countries than women in poor, predominantly non white countries. Most feminists I know or know of would not exactly be receptive to such a message.
But, given how the feminist movement seems to prioritize, what other conclusion could one come to?
Modern feminism in such a light would look a good deal more like a racial and nationalistic women's movement than a global social justice movement. In my view, that's probably correct and one more reason I am not a feminist.
5.) Biological Differences Between the Sexes
To say that all behavioral differences between men and women are artificial social constructs is rather absurd. However, this implicit assumption underlies much of feminist thought on issues ranging from the pay gap to relations between the genders.
Even if there were no social influences or gender expectations, women and men would still behave differently simply for biological reasons. Once one realizes this, it is clear that not every inequity between the genders is indicative of discrimination. In other words, when it is claimed that the vast majority of CEOs are men, that should be the beginning of the conversation on whether or not discrimination is the cause of this. It should not be an automatic call for major action that ends "discrimination" before we even know that discrimination explains the difference here.
6.) Traditional Monogamy
It has been well documented that the traditional, nuclear family structure has been slowly deteriorating for years. Feminism oftentimes portrays this as a positive development. I have a different perspective.
"Hookup Culture" has become quite popular among the younger generations. The increased availability of birth control and great societal acceptance of non marital sex has led to a more promiscuous culture with sex becoming less about commitment and child rearing and more about pure pleasure. Feminists tend to see this as a triumph of sexual liberation.
However, marriage and monogamous relationships, in my view, have been a great source of social strength. And, intimacy was a key part of this. With intimacy having a lot less to do with such commitment, it is easy to see why marriage has been on the decline.
Monogamous relationships tend to contribute to more emotionally stable childhoods and more economic security. They also help mitigate the aforementioned problem of isolation that many males (and even some females) face.
I'm not saying that feminism is too blame for the decline of marriage. But, at the very least, feminism has been something of a cheerleader for this trend. I see this as problematic.
These are just 6 of the reasons I don't consider myself a feminist. Of course, I'd love to hear other perspectives. Both those who agree and disagree.