Talking Back to Irish Feminist and Misandry-Denier Taryn de Vere

Posted on April 19, 2018


“Misandry, n. hatred of men.”

World Book Dictionary

“[A] satirical imaginary concept.”

—Taryn de Vere

This post is inspired by mockery of a group called Men’s Voices Ireland, which in November held a conference titled, “Challenging Misandry.”

Feminist Taryn de Vere, whom we might call “Miss Andry” for fun, felt compelled to remark beforehand, “In what could possibly be a first for Ireland, a conference has been arranged on the theme of a satirical imaginary concept.”

I don’t know for Men’s Voices Ireland or Irish feminists, but I do know something about semantics.

First, all concepts are imaginary. “Women,” for example, is a concept. It represents nothing that is real. It’s an idea. Real are this person and that person and that other one over there. We form the concept “women” by observing that this person and that person have common contours. That’s it.

If that’s difficult for feminists to hear, so much the better.

Second, “satirical” means sarcastic. Ms. de Vere may use “misandry” sarcastically; Men’s Voices Ireland plainly wasn’t.

So there’s her acid characterization neutralized. While I don’t have the resources of the late Bill Safire to trace the provenances of words, I’m assured by consultation with Webster’s New International Dictionary (second edition, which is the only edition I own) that the word misandry was around before Ms. de Vere was born and was not coined by the men’s rights activists she ridicules.

Ms. de Vere endeavors to support her dismissal of any societal manifestation of misandry today by quoting some academics who know nothing about the law, which is something I know quite a lot about after being the butt of serial prosecutions and false accusations for 12 years (and counting).

Ms. de Vere:

It is impossible to have an “ingrained prejudice” against men when we live in a world made by men for men.

For this to be true, there would have to be no such thing as “women’s law,” a phrase that explicitly expresses a prejudice in favor of women by the part of society’s machinery that no citizen can safely resist or defy.

For decades, law monograph after law monograph has charted the evolution of “women’s law” (see left for citations of a few): progressively harsher statutes with progressively broader definitions of “abuse” and progressively reduced thresholds of proof; judges and police officers, who’ve received inducements in the forms of massive federal grants, being “trained” according to tailored social science; etc.

That’s “engrained prejudice” to a tee.

The laws themselves are the stuff of satire. Accusers, who are predominately female, are nominated “victims” based solely on their say-so, and they may move a court to dismiss their allegations while defendants, who are predominately male, may not. Defendants are railroaded through.

That’s in the United States, but it’s likely laws and court custom in Ireland aren’t so different, and they should inspire protest. Ms. de Vere, who is the mother of five, might feel very differently very promptly about men’s plaints if she were abruptly to find herself the mother of none based on some random allegations (of child abuse, say) made to a judge during a few-minute interview to which she wasn’t invited.

For many or most of those who constitute Men’s Voices Ireland, the perception of misandry is probably empirical, that is, based on experience.

It’s Ms. de Vere’s concepts, which are ignorantly based on emotions, that aren’t concepts at all but fantasies.

Copyright © 2018

*“I’ve had a lot of super awful stuff happen to me in my life like multiple rape & domestic abuse,” Ms. de Vere says of her own experiences, which, however sympathetic, only make her willingness to understand men’s experiences that much more suspect. Most disappointingly, Ms. de Vere is a gifted humorist who calls herself “The Joy Bringer” yet is immune to stories like the one here—which is desolating and largely unexceptional. The “joy” she brings to her fans may derive, in part at least, from her derision of others’ agony.