If you want to see a textbook example of how to take down a ridiculous misogynist with eloquence, intelligence and humanity, take a look at this post by Avicenna. He responds to an anonymous bit of hate (and stupidity) mail he received recently and this is a cerebral ass kicking of epic proportions. His correspondent begins by insulting him:
You call yourself a feminist but what you are is a beta male. You have to kiss up to women to make yourself seem better. You are short, weak and ugly.
Avicenna’s pitch-perfect response:
Let’s start with me. Your statement is categorically incorrect. I am a shade under 5 ft 11 (177 cm) and while overweight I am trying to diet. In fact I was planning to make a statement of intent online when I read your charming e-mail. As for weak? I don’t work out. And work kind of gives me repetitive strain injury and carpal tunnel. However, we don’t live in a world where strength is determined by muscles or by how much grain I can lift and how hard I can drive a spear in order to turn a deer into a kebab. I think strength is doing what you believe in and what’s right. To make the difficult and necessary choices and stand by it…
And if all I am to you is short, weak and ugly then let that be the case. That would be like describing Stephen Hawkings as disabled, weird and weak. If all that matters to you is physical appearance rather than what people are capable of doing then you will never value anything about a person that makes them human. You value humans like you value dolls. Unmoving creatures to fit into boxes.
Indeed. The anonymous asshole then moves on to Avi’s girlfriend and feminists in general:
Good looking, physically fit man with a high power job and large income who treats women like candy and walks around high on his own sense of entitlement? Feminists swoon over him, but never attack. I bet your girlfriend keeps you around just to show you off. I bet the only reason you dated her was that you had to cock block some better man.
Notice how incoherent this is. On the one hand, women just swoon over (imagined) high-status males so they can show them off, but Avi’s girlfriend Tiga wants to show him off even though he’s “short, weak and ugly.” Avi’s response:
So what if I am scarred, bald, tubby and currently lacking a job? I will be a doctor. I can lose weight. I think the scars remind of things I have done. Things I am proud of doing. I was willing to risk my life to get some of them and some of them are the price I paid that I would happily pay again to help someone.
Because I am more than scarred or bald or fat.
Damn straight she shows me off. The more I don’t buy into the fact that I am useless, the more I realise that I am awesome. I am smart, funny, caring and empathic. I don’t need to pretend to be a badass.
I am one. I am the real deal. I run towards natural disasters, I bet you run away from them. I have ploughed through Indian traffic to save lives and I have constructed spinal braces from my white coat. I have done medicine with nothing but knowledge.
Nothing can or will stop me from being a doctor.
Maybe I cockblocked someone better than me. But that’s your definition of better. You see your “man” is only better in your eyes because you think he gets a lot of women. But then you have to think this through. Firstly? What sort of person would be attracted to that? And secondly? What sort of woman would stay attracted to that?
It just goes on and on like this, one moronic statement after another and Avi patiently eviscerating his pathetic critic. Please do read the whole thing. It makes me very proud to have him as a blogger here and as a friend.