On empathy

red and black

Empathy is the experience of understanding another person’s condition from their perspective. You place yourself in their shoes and feel what they are feeling. Empathy is known to increase prosocial (helping) behaviors. While American culture might be socializing people into becoming more individualistic rather than empathic, research has uncovered the existence of “mirror neurons,” which react to emotions expressed by others and then reproduce them.

Psychology Today

A person who has empathy for another cannot hurt that person without feeling the hurt as if it is happening to themselves.

Empathy makes us want to help others, not hurt them.

Those who suffer from a lack of empathy are unable to step outside themselves to experience what other people experience, especially those who feel, think and believe differently from themselves.  They have an adversarial attitude towards groups of people who differ from themselves in their beliefs, traditions or ways of life.

A lack of empathy makes us not care when we hurt others, because we don’t feel their pain.

A lack of empathy for another human implies that we perceive that human as less than human.

On antifeminists

ice falls 2

Hating feminism is hating women.  Full stop.  There’s no way to hate feminism without hating women.

Those who oppose feminism are generally privileged men who have it pretty good and don’t want to rock the boat, and women who oppose feminism have aligned themselves with those men in order to get the short-term rewards of male attention, social approval, and access to male-controlled resources.  And then there are the women who have feminist sympathies but have been scared off from feminism because they are afraid of being called ugly man-haters.

There are also a contingent of white lower-class males commonly described as “losers” who hate feminism because their lives are shitty and they want to take it out on people more marginalized than they are.  Hence why they also tend to be virulently racist and homophobic.   These men are unwilling to recognize that despite their shitty lives, they still wield privilege.  They falsely believe that to be privileged means to be rich and leading a great life.  They’re conflating economic privilege with sex- and race-based privilege, when all the latter means is that as bad as these men’s lives are, women and nonwhite people of their socioeconomic class have it even worse.  They don’t want to recognize this, because the toxic masculinity they are steeping in has robbed them of empathy.