Saturday, April 03, 2021

Misogynistic 'radicalisation' of boys online has these experts calling for change

How surprising! The unhinged Leftist attack on men and maleness is provoking a backlash. Young men who don't like the anti-male messages that flood them from the educational system are reacting and seeking out more congenial messages. So abandoning moderation and balance leads to imbalance in the opposite direction.

Leftists are always surprised by backlash but their unbalanced messages will always provoke it. Unbridled hostility to men is highly likely to lead towards hostility to women. "For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction". That is nearly as true in sociology as it is in physics. If you treat men as the enemy they may well become that. And calling maleness "toxic" is a good way to bring that about

For many, misogyny on the internet is depressingly familiar. In Australia, 65 per cent of girls and young women have reported being harassed or abused online.

But some experts are arguing that in a "manosphere" of online anti-women groups, methods of communication and organisation are becoming more sophisticated.

At the more serious end of the spectrum, these experts say, are operators that must be seen and named as "extremist" or "terrorist" groups – particularly if anything is to be done to stop them.

UK author Laura Bates has spent most of the last decade educating school children about sexism. She says in the last few years she's noted an increasing sense of hostility, aggression and anger in boys' attitudes towards women, and argues online hate groups are to blame. "There [is] a kind of radicalisation, a kind of grooming happening online," Ms Bates tells RN's Life Matters.

She describes "a very gradual, slippery process" whereby young men's problems and insecurities are co-opted by organised online extremist groups.

In order to connect to young men, the groups cite real-world problems men are dealing with, such as workplace injuries, cancer, mental health and suicide. But instead of tackling those issues, the groups reinforce "the stereotypes that are actually causing them", Ms Bates says.

"So they double down on the idea that men have to be tough and manly, that they have to be strong, not vulnerable, that they shouldn't share emotions, that exerting power and control over women and over societies is what it means to be a real man."

Ms Bates says anti-women rhetoric is so pervasive online that it's normalised. In this climate, groups have emerged spouting dangerous ideologies, including "women being evil and about men needing to rise up and crush them, to rape women to force them into sexual servitude, and to murder them".

She believes they should be classified as terrorist groups.

"In any other case, where somebody goes out and attacks a specific demographic group with the intent of causing enormous harm and fear in that group because of radicalisation, because of the fact that they've been explicitly groomed to hate that group, we would describe it as a form of terrorism," Ms Bates says.

Joshua Roose, a senior research fellow at Deakin University who specialises in masculinities and extremism, echoes Ms Bates' call for a change of language. He says there's a strong "normative anti-women attitude in society" that feeds into online activities and behaviour.

His research, for example, has looked at the proposition that women deserve equal rights to men, and found that only one in 17 men disagree. But among men under the age of 35, that figure grows substantially to one in three men disagreeing.

Ms Bates is clear about not wanting to demonise young men. "It's important to say that this is not about maligning or accusing teenage boys. Many of these boys are very, very vulnerable. And these online communities are extremely adept and clever at preying on them," she says.

Rather, she argues that when boys are exposed from a young age to misogynistic messages and ideologies online, without other information being provided to them, "you end up with a very real sense of confusion amongst young people".

Both Bates and Dr Roose argue that misogynistic attitudes, behaviour and communities online can't be stamped out without broader societal change.


Gender quotas will be a minefield if introduced

I thought Scott Morrison erred when Andrew Laming announced he would quit politics at the next federal election after accusations of poor behaviour. The Prime Minister said he wanted a female candidate to replace Laming in the federal seat of Bowman.

What if the best candidate to run in the seat turns out to be a bloke?

And what happens if the local branch selects a male, say Henry Pike, who is subsequently sidelined by head office? Will the rejected Pike, a popular local character, have a case of discrimination or an appeal under Queensland’s shiny new Human Rights Act?

There is another problem. If a female candidate is chosen – and I believe there two excellent nominees waiting in the wings – that candidate will have to battle the perception she is a token woman planted there by ScoMo.

This is part of a broader gender debate that will make it hard for the conservatives to win the next election.

ScoMo did his best to appease what was described as a “gender revolt” amid allegations of rape and sexual harassment in the Canberra bubble.

Labor has successfully politicised the events and the LNP vote nosedived in the opinion polls.

ScoMo knows he will be dead man walking if he does not play the gender equity violin. He said: “These events have triggered, right across this building, and indeed right across the country, women who have been putting up with this rubbish and this crap for their entire lives, as their mothers did, as their grandmothers did.”

I thought he spoke with sincerity, yet woke tribalists of Labor and the green Left found fault and went on the warpath against him.

Back in Bowman, which overlaps suburbs of Brisbane and Redland City, it took the police less than half a day to dismiss a complaint against Laming that I’m told was over-egged.

Laming got national exposure. Compare the media reaction to the claims last year of dodgy accounts and sexism in the Redlands branch of the ALP. Some members from the branch behaved “more like a bunch of hooligans”, swearing and intimidating voters and political rivals at the last federal election, I reported.

Labor members told me of sexism and misogyny in the branch, with a woman “subjected to verbal abuse and howled down” simply for attempting to suggest it was improper to change the minutes of a previous meeting.

As Laming was being hung out to dry, ScoMo backed moves for gender quotas in selecting all candidates.

Most would agree that equal representation in our elected parliaments and councils is a desirable goal.

However, forced parity is profoundly undemocratic. Quotas may stop the LNP endorsing the best candidates, as they have done in the ALP.

Quotas treat women as the weaker sex and victims. Quotas are condescending and demeaning and discriminate against men. The conservatives are already bickering over proposed quotas.

Alex Dore, a NSW party executive said quotas went against traditional Liberal Party ideals. In an email reported in the Sydney Morning Herald, he said: “These quota motions are an astounding betrayal of fundamental Liberal beliefs – in our unwavering belief in the power, potential and dignity of the individual, in equality of opportunity and in liberalism.

“It is no exaggeration to say that this is a battle for the very future of the Liberal Party. “If quota motions are successful, there will be no mainstream political party in Australia left to stand against the dehumanising instruments of collectivism. Who will remain to fight against identity politics when even the party of the individual has abandoned it?”

Dore is right. Women don’t need quotas to succeed. The number of women in state and federal parliament – and in company boardrooms _ is increasing as thousands of years of patriarchy is gradually swept aside.

The federal executive of the Liberal Party has a goal of 50 per cent female representation in parliament by 2025. Many hope to achieve that without quotas.

In his recent Cabinet reshuffle, ScoMo promoted several women and established a special women’s taskforce to drive a pro-woman agenda. He even said he hoped a woman followed him into his seat of Cook when he retired. He was doing his best to smooth the unlevel playing field.

But the media wasn’t listening


Brisbane City Council’s Greens Cr Jonathan Sri takes cycling fine to court

I guessed as soon as I saw the headline who the offender would be. I have met Mr Sri. He seems complacent and arrogant to me. He is a habitual "protester"

The councillor for Brisbane’s Gabba ward was fined by police on January 26 for allegedly running a yellow traffic light on his bicycle in South Brisbane.

Cr Sri confirmed he was fined at the intersection of Stanley and Vulture streets while cycling home from an Invasion Day protest

The outspoken politician, who graduated from the University of Queensland with law and arts degrees, was initially fined $400, but has elected to take the matter to court.

“In Queensland, the road rules state that you must stop for a yellow light unless it’s not safe to do so,” he said. “I’ll be explaining to the magistrate that considering the circumstances at that specific intersection at that time, it wasn’t safe for me to stop.”

Cr Sri said he would be asking to see the video evidence before entering a plea. “It’s not the first time they’ve had a go at me as I’ve been heading home after a lawful protest,” he claimed.

“It’s a little frustrating when Queensland Police Service officers tell me they don’t have the resources to enforce rules about cars not giving way to pedestrians, or trucks speeding through residential side-streets, but apparently they do have the time to fine cyclists for running yellow lights.”

It’s not the only court matter Cr Sri has coming up after deciding to take on his own council over another fine. Cr Sri said he was fined by Brisbane City Council for a protest against the federal government’s expansion of the cashless welfare card system in Queen St Mall.

He wrote on Facebook that the 15 minute protest occurred in September last year and involved five people.

In relation to the traffic matter Queensland Police said a 32 year old Woolloongabba man received an infringement notice for allegedly failing to stop for yellow traffic light before reaching the line.

The matter will come to Brisbane Magistrates Court on May 13.


Job vacancies hit record levels before end of JobKeeper

The national jobs market is in a strong position to absorb many of the 1 million Australians coming off the government’s JobKeeper wage subsidy, with figures revealing a record number of vacant positions.

Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Thursday revealed there were 289,000 job vacancies across the country in February, up 61,000 on a year earlier just ahead of the coronavirus pandemic.

There have been fears the jobs market would struggle to accommodate those still relying on JobKeeper when it wound up on Sunday. Treasury estimates up to 150,000 people supported by the wage subsidy could end up unemployed, while others may lose hours.

The ABS data revealed that since May, when vacancies all but disappeared, they have more than doubled in almost every state and territory.

Victoria in February became the last area to have as many vacancies as before the start of the pandemic. The most vacancies are in NSW, at almost 95,000, while there are 65,600 in Victoria.

ABS head of labour statistics Bjorn Jarvis said vacancies had increased by 14 per cent since November.

“This reflected the pace of recovery in labour demand over the second half of 2020 and early 2021, and labour shortages in some industries,” he said. “When we asked businesses experiencing labour shortages the reasons for this, more than usual noted difficulty in filling vacancies for lower-paid jobs.”

In a positive development, there was a 14 per cent jump in the number of private-sector job vacancies in the quarter to be 29 per cent higher than a year ago. The private sector accounts for nine of every 10 vacancies.

Public-sector vacancies rose by 11 per cent in the quarter to be 13 per cent up on a year ago.

The biggest increase by industry has been hospitality, with vacancies up by 88 per cent, while construction is up by 60 per cent. Despite this increase, the actual number of people employed in these sectors is still well short of their pre-virus levels.

The national jobless rate dropped half a percentage point to 5.8 per cent in February, its best result since March last year. But there are still more than 800,000 people unemployed in Australia and another 1.2 million under-employed people.

CommSec senior economist Ryan Felsman said despite the end of JobKeeper, jobs growth was expected to be solid over 2021 outside of areas such as tourism, arts and recreation.

“There are reports of skills shortages emerging across the strongly performing sectors of the economy and mismatches between workers’ skills and employer’s job specifications. Prolonged international border closures could exacerbate skills shortages,” he said.




No comments: