So. Elliot Rodger.
I don’t want to say much because I have no idea what his issues were, and I could only stomach his videos for a few minutes. What seems apparent, however, is that he felt entitled to a certain type of woman– blonde, pretty, popular– and that his entitlement was likely fed by the surrounding culture. Unsurprisingly, those women seemed to be the only ones on his radar, and even then, he failed to grasp their humanity. The other apparent thing about him was his loneliness, alienation, and anger. He was angry that “undeserving” men were able to get women, but his racism and classism fueled his perceptions of “undeserving.”
The main reason I’m bringing him up, however, is that he gives all us lonely, bitter, skulking, single bloggers a bad name!
At least some of the “ick” factor I got from him has to do with my own sense of shame. So I just want to say it’s easy to feel alienated when you are single and childless. It’s common to give in to to the impulse to skulk about Facebook. It’s normal to have WTF moments when observing that some seemingly terrible people manage to get married and/or have kids when you haven’t been able to do so. It’s hard not to lapse into bitterness occasionally. It’s ordinary to find oneself without close friends, as they have all disappeared into coupledom and parenting. It’s common— and healthy in the absence of alternatives– to turn to the internet as an outlet (ahem). None of this makes you a pathological freak.
I have known many lovely, sociable, competent, attractive women who have unintentionally ended up single and childless, who have felt all those things, and who have found a great sense of community and solace in blogs and forums and books aimed at them.
I have felt all those things. And yet, I’m once again seeing the silver lining in my situation (like the clouds, that silver lining comes and goes). As a single woman, you still have to work, and you are more likely to be stuck in a stressful job than the married women you know. You have to do all the household maintenance and sometimes have to take care of elderly relatives. But. You don’t have to go to kids’ birthday parties or to Disney movies or take a child to the orthodontist or help out with homework. There are still slivers of free time to pursue the self-development that often gets curtailed when people start the cycle of birth/childhood/schooling all over again by having kids.
Rather than continue to pursue what I’ve missed out on, especially when it’s becoming clear that that ship has sailed, I have an opportunity to develop in some unusual (if unheralded and even unnoticed) ways. I’m feeling the urge to seize that again.
Well…his ideas were lifted from the redpill sites and the manosphere. Even his diagrams. Specifically m3s ‘confessions of a reformed incel’ that I referenced a couple of weeks ago.
Yes, he definitely was picking up on all of that; however, I don’t know his entire history or psychological profile so am hesitant to say much more about him.
Five of Rodger’s seven victims were men. And Rodger hated pick-up artists. But you will see what you want to see I guess.
That is what the manosphere is saying, but the reporting of it is that he hated the men because they were the ones who got the women. And he had been posting on the redpill sites.
I agree with you, Fi.
I’m afraid, Mike, Rodger’s great animus against the hot women who rejected him in favour of unworthy men (explicitly stated in the lengthy document he wrote and in his video) reminded me of your own great resentment against the beautiful young woman who rejected you early in your life and now “boffs” – in your words – the local grocer .
One way or another the anger and resentment you seem to hold against women always seems to lead back to this one person – the person the very thought of whom can still make you cry. Of course – and thankfully – you are not Rodger, and seem content with the “revenge” that is already yours by virtue of that person’s current impoverishment and singledom.
I don’t expect you to agree, Mike. You might even see the comparison as grotesque. But it’s this palpable resentment born of a sense of entitlement – a sense of entitlement that is so enraged when frustrated – that as women we see all too clearly and sends chills down our spine.
There are a lot of postings on the manosphere trying to distance themselves from this guy using the line that actually he killed men too and therefore it doesn’t apply, and also saying that if only he had used the PUA advice he would have got a girl but actually what he has been reported as saying is lifted directly from the redpill sites. It is the same language and I’ve even seen the diagram (20 percent of men getting 80 percent of the women) that he used on there too. No wonder they are panicking however denying something does not mean it is not true and we might see more coverage of this aspect of it in the media.
Personally while I think it is good that the manosphere exists, there seems to be no restrictions on what people put on the internet and I’ve also seen Neo Nazi/white supremacist stuff brigaded under the manosphere label as well as this more extreme anger at women. – there seems to be no censure either – anything they want to write they do and they find an audience and support. It would really be better if the more rational spokesmen of the manosphere came out and distanced themselves from the more extreme ends.
I’m flattered you remember my story. That particular woman was my girlfriend for three years before she moved on and yes that experience had a powerful effect on me. Too bad we men are actual thinking human beings with feelings and not just the lifestyle accessories you’d like us to be. I’m genuinely sorry she made such terrible decisions that she wound up in her forties selling her body to the Pakistani “grocer” in the corner shop for a bag of groceries. From what she told me, the best part was when his wife found out what he was up to. lol.
At this point in my life I’m very little concerned about that and more about the spectacle of you women epically farking up Western civilization with your innate communist behaviors.
And then there’s Mr. Rodger. If you read Elliot Rodger’s narcissistic essay – and I’ve read some of it – you’ll see he was motivated by hatred of privileged white people, women and men alike. Elliot’s story is not the tidy little misogyny parable you’d like it to be. In fact it’s more the story of a hate-filled leftie liberal racist.
“Elliot’s story is not the tidy little misogyny parable you’d like it to be”
Heh! Talk about willful misreading…
I think I’ll leave this one to Shaenon over at We Hunted the Mammoth.
“Well, that settles it. There is absolutely no level of hate speech and violence against women that some woman-hating MRA asshat won’t deny is misogynist. You can write a 150-page manifesto about how much you hate women that ends with your wish that you could imprison all women in concentration camps and watch them slowly starve to death, make a bunch of videos threatening to kill women, then go out and try to shoot up a sorority house, and you’ll still get a, “Aw, come on, how is that misogynistic?”
I give up. Honestly. What qualifies as misogyny?
I’m very glad he wasn’t able to get into the sorority house. Rodger was about as competent a mass murderer as he was at everything else – not very.
His first three victims were his three male roommates who he stabbed to death. Not much misogyny there.
My objection to the way he’s been characterized as a misogynist is that the issue is framed as if that’s all he was. He was an equal opportunity hater, a misanthrope.
The Times reports “Campus killer Elliot Rodger hailed as hero on internet hate site” and says “Months before he murdered six people, Elliot Rodger found kinship in a misogynistic internet group where he became a hero by promising to craft a world in which women lived in fear.
Rodger, who committed suicide after going on the rampage on Friday in the small university town of Isla Vista, California, was an active member of PUAhate.com, an online message board that harbours a toxic culture of male entitlement. It is linked to the so-called Men’s Rights Movement, a nebulous group of male supremacists who frequently lament that they are not noticed by women and who believe that those who spurn them deserve retribution. They often identify themselves as “incels” — short for “involuntary celibate”.
Glad to see these sites are getting media coverage.
Rodger fantasised about locking all women up concentration camp style. He was of the opinion that women do not have the right to choose mates for themselves, they should accept whoever chooses them with gratitude. Men could pick the ones they wanted for breeding but those who were not chosen would be slowly starved to death in captivity.
Ironically there would be no need to starve women to death in some cases as the media promotes such self-loathing in many women that they develop eating disorders and starve themselves. In Ireland doctors want to intervene and force-feed an anorexic who has starved herself to a BMI of less than 11 (18-25 is normal). Incidentally, fashion models have a BMI of around 16 which is well below normal.
The Rodger case is tragic but it has exposed the more toxic aspects of the manosphere. If I had a son I would be very worried if he was spending time on those sites. Indeed if I had a daughter I would be equally worried.
Apparently Rodger was socially inept all his life and unable to make friends of any kind. There are reports that he had Aspergers syndrome but plenty of people with Aspergers are able to make friends. I would say that Rodger’s privileged but emotionally deprived background didn’t help.
I think that some of these sites are toxic. Not all of them, but some. And warped minds can find them and get support and agreement that their world view is the correct one. What ER has done is act on what the rest of the people are restricting themselves to saying.
I agree, Fi, and I actually believe it’s 80/20 tilted toward the toxic. I think most of those who post and blog are Male supremacists. The greater mainstream exposure of the Manosphere can only be a good thing, for two reasons:
(1) Women can learn how these men think and protect themselves from their manipulations and (2) Both men and women can be exposed to their good teachings that have the potential to transform gender relations for the better.
At the moment these keyboard warriors are twisting themselves into a pretzel trying to distance themselves from ER. I hope that out of this comes a schism where the 80% go off on their own to an island somewhere, and the remaining 20% embrace what is good in the Manosphere whilst rejecting its misogyny,
Nice post Ranty. Yes, I feel this story has only marginalized the common feeling of loneliness even more and will make life harder for outcasts, even if they are peaceful and nice. That is discouraging to be sure.
I wonder if Roger was aware of his own fixation on blonds? If he had not had that fixation and perhaps was open to other gals, even if they weren’t the “hottest” on campus, one wonders if he’d still be lonely.
Lots of issues here that you expressed nicely.
Thanks for this and all your other comments!
I wanted to add one more thing that I just thought of this morning as I was meditating and practicing appreciation. I appreciate this blog. I appreciate the courage you have in writing it. Writing about such sticky topics of loneliness, loss, all the stuff mentioned above is so important. Very few will be so open but it is so needed because so many of us have “holes” in our lives and need to discuss this. It’s part of healing and part of taking the shame out if. Thank you so much for your courage and providing this needed venue.
Thank you so much! Sometimes I wonder if the risk of exposure is worth it, so it’s nice to know people are getting something out of it. There’s very little out there in the way of blogs written by single, middle-aged women, particularly the childless and/or never-married.