NOW and Marxism <lnp3 at panix.com>

nancybrumback at cs.com nancybrumback at cs.com
Sat Aug 10 14:44:40 MDT 2002


To: marxism at lists.panix.com
Subject: Re: NOW and Marxism
From: Louis Proyect <lnp3 at panix.com>
Date: Sat, 10 Aug 2002 08:23:35 -0400

>>>Louis: Nor do we need to say things like
>>>kiss my lesbian ass. We should view any misguided post by one list
>>>member as an opportunity to raise everybody's consciousness. We need
>>>history. We need data. We need theory. Unsubbing or making rude comments
>>>is not the answer. Okay?

>> Erin: And I resent the idea that any (especially heterosexual) man
(even you
>> Lou, who I respect very much) would tell ME, a lesbian woman, that I
>> have been a very bad girl (more or less) by reacting with anger and
>> defensiveness to "family-values" rhetoric. I find it paternalistic and
>> further evidence of the low-level of feminist analysis on this list.

>Louis: Actually, there is not much out there at all in the Marxist wing of the
>Internet. I peek in on the Marxist-Feminism archives from time to time
>(http://csf.colorado.edu/m-fem/2002/) and in the month of July there
>were only 10 messages, all of which were announcements or crosspostings
>from the bourgeois press, etc. In other words, all the symptoms of a
>moribund list.

The above is the continuous record of the exchange between Erin and Lou
following Erin's comment about "the lesbian ass." I appreciate very much
what you says you are are trying to do on this list, so in the spirit of
"critical examination," I want to point out that in this exchange,
you have not at all addressed Erin's complaint about how you responded
to her comment. It is as if you were talking through her or past her,
rather than regarding her as a person. For more enlightenment on this
issue, compare how you responded in this thread to another nasty comment,
this time from Jose...

<<Oh, what a load of bullshit.
<<He's parroting fascist propadanda, either because he is a right-wing troll,
<or because he's too fucking clueless to stop himself from writing like one.
<<ANYONE who parrots fascist propaganda in his first paragraph gets what's
<<coming to him when he gets his ass flamed.

<Jose, we should be a little bit more circumspect, shouldn't we? When you
<raised your ideas about school vouchers, it would have been easy for
<people to jump ugly on you because this is a fundamental plank of Focus
<on the Family and every other Christian fundamentalist sect in the USA.
<We need a calm and objective forum here, not a food fight.

In your response to Erin, you do not really respond to her. In your
response to Jose, you call him by name and phrase your criticism as a
nice, polite question -- well, we should do this or that, shouldn't we?
Now I totally doubt that the difference in tone to Erin and to Jose was
conscious, but that *is* the problem. Instances like this definitely
help to keep women off your list by making them feel isolated and
unwelcome. (Already, in the 60s, we learned that the personal is political
and the political is person!)

If you truly want feminist consciousness on this list, then you have to
stop slighting the women while supporting the men.

nancy

PS: All of the above is *my* perception, honestly reported. I apologize
for any hurt feelings -- that was absolutely *not* the intent.

~~~~~~~
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