January 27, 2016

Is There a Masculinity Crisis in European Culture?

By Marc Esadrian

european-men-feminism

On January 16th, a parade of Dutch men, reacting to Syrian immigrant sexual assaults upon women in Cologne Germany on New Years Eve, demonstrated solidarity with women against the rapes and muggings perpetrated upon them. How did they descend upon the Dutch capital so their voices would be heard? By dressing up in miniskirts. Of course.

So this tends to make one naturally wonder: did this brave march turn an otherwise urgent public discourse in the aftermath of these attacks in which women were openly assaulted with nary a man to help them into an embarrassing feminist white knight exhibition? Female journalist Iben Thranholm, in an op-ed on RT.com entitled Europe’s tragedy: Too Much Angela Merkel, Too Little Masculinity, seems to think so, having this to say about the ineffectual if not concerning spectacle of questionable manhood on the streets of Europe:

“Instead of a single-minded focus on imposing liberal feminist values on Muslim males, it might well be much more beneficial for Europeans to consider if the feminist war on masculinity might be the underlying cause of the weakness of European culture—feeble and defenseless as it is—against the culture of immigrants and refugees. The irony is that the vacuum feminism has created means that women become victims of an aggressive male culture.”

In a follow-up interview on In The Now, Ms. Thranholm further went on to make a point about the importance of masculinity in society:

“Many men today in society are insecure about their own masculinity. And [this] means that society is going to be unbalanced… there is a certain order in this world. And it’s based on the kind of [complements] between masculine and feminine—and if one part is lost, there will be consequences.”

Of course, this goes against everything we are told to discuss and hold sacred in polite company today, but a question niggles in the backs of our minds: is it possible the erosive coercion of mothering, multicultural politics in Europe has resulted in a less secure civilization there, overall?

“They [the attackers] felt like they were in power and that they could do anything with the women who were out in the street partying. They touched us everywhere. It was truly terrible.”

Has the polished trap of political correctness paralyzed its leaders and citizenry from questioning the brutally foolish things that are happening before their very eyes? My answer to both questions—not surprisingly, I’m sure—is yes. When we confiscate arms from men in general society, emasculate them with feminist indoctrination from the cradle, and encourage them to parade around in feminized solidarity with women in reaction to aggressive males from other cultures, how well does this bode for the health—or longevity—of that society in general? When the barbarians are at the gates, so to speak, who will be there to answer with adequate opposing force? Enfeebled men showing solidarity with women in skirts? I think not.

Ms. Thranholm, in my view, is absolutely correct in regard to the true culprits behind this problem and the pathway to address it, but her opinions, as educated as they are from her experiences in traveling the world, are simply not the accepted wisdom du jour. Atrophied by extreme left-wing politics, we have reached somewhat of a Tolkienish moment where the ring of the feminist world view that has been so seductively slipped upon the collective finger is now rather difficult to remove. How do we begin to recover the lost code of masculinity in the wake of feminism’s emasculating influence? How do we even begin to suggest going about doing so?

Indeed, feminist apologists have only been galvanized by the sexual assaults from the Syrian Muslim refugees. In a masochistic example of maternal European tolerance caught up in the faith of its own unrealistic beliefs, they seek to impose their ideas upon the flood of immigration entering their borders rather than examine the very faults of those ideas, which stand not a single chance against the inherent aggression of desperate religio-fascist outsiders. And the faults of such ideas are evident to those who pay close attention rather than obediently regurgitate tired, politically correct platitudes of far-left ideologies.

“Men of Germany, these people are killing your children, they are killing your women. We need your protection.”

When men are seen as enemies to women, when maleness is cumulatively demonized by feminist intellectualism and men and boys are made to feel guilty for being male, when men are conditioned to bend to the whims of modern women and made to believe the very word masculinity is a lie—a grand conspiracy of a bygone age—how can they regain their strength in the face of real and present danger to their society? When the time comes for male warriors rather than marching milquetoasts in skirts, who will have the courage to take up the spear, much less possess the stamina to wield one in the first place? Who, for instance, took up the task of protecting these women that night? One female victim stated: “They [the attackers] felt like they were in power and that they could do anything with the women who were out in the street partying. They touched us everywhere. It was truly terrible.” Other comments from victims go on to reveal that there wasn’t much help to be had that night. A sixteen year-old German female pleads to the men in her country directly in a self-made video: “Men of Germany, these people are killing your children, they are killing your women. We need your protection.” Indeed, one naturally wonders where all the good men showing solidarity were that night.

Now, add insult to injury in the form of the Dutch march. Indeed, the embarrassing and laughable pageant of men in miniskirts demonstrating their public commitment to women is irksome for a number of reasons. Not only is it about as ineffectual as writing inane anti-rape hashtags on Twitter, but the idea that men need to show “solidarity” with women in the first place is a political shell game from the very start. Males in any social system naturally show unity with and concern for their females. This makes up the protective fabric of a society, town, or tribe. It is feminism that sows division between the sexes by vilifying males in the first place, becoming that which, conversely, exposes women to more danger in an overly polite, hyper-inclusive, and excessively bureaucratic society. As one Internet user expressed to feminists in frustration, “defend yourselves. Aren’t you ‘strong and independent’? Fish and bicycles? Zero fucks given.”

Perhaps if it wasn’t for these divisive, paralyzing politics (and politicians) in the first place, the men of Cologne would have acted with far less restraint to the organized attack of a thousand drunk immigrants bent on rape and assault of its citizenry. Thankfully for women in Germany, it seems there are still men left willing to show real masculine solidarity with women, but they aren’t wearing skirts, I assure you.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

December 30, 2015

Year 2015: A Quick Recap and Outline for the Future

By Marc Esadrian

the_imaginary_dress_largeAs I write this, the year 2015 only has a few more hours to go. I’m not one to make a big deal out of New Year’s Eve. I don’t go anywhere in particular and I don’t throw lavish parties (or attend them) over the occasion. This does seem like a good time to sit back and take personal account of the year in review, however, and while I was doing that, it got me thinking about Humbled Females, a project close to my heart. I spent some time reflecting upon where it came from, where it has been, and most importantly, where it’s going.

Our community started out in 2006 with very humble beginnings on Livejournal. Since then, it has evolved into the forum that it is today. Our membership has almost doubled over the year, demonstrating that growth of the community is healthy. I believe that after three years since our re-launch, we have succeeded in making an indelible impression on the D/s sphere, even if ever so lightly. Our success doesn’t just have to do with the purity of our message, but the quality of our members and the sane, sophisticated conversations they bring into our forum. Humbled Females continues as a community marked by its authenticity and depth where we can talk sincerely about real consensual female submission, sans the neon glare of the fetish industry or the cudgel of political correctness. This makes us entirely unique. No one else online offers that sort of integrity and I’m quite proud of the people who have had a positive hand in making the Humbled Females project the safe haven that it is today. I can’t thank you enough!

As for the future, there are things in store for Humbled Females in 2016. Our site will be undergoing a major update this January, bringing responsive compatibility to tablets, mobile phones, and even large TVs. Not only that, but our overall site layout is getting a facelift to make it more visually interesting and easier to read. In addition, the software that runs our forums and social networking is getting a monster upgrade, bringing new features along with it. The improvements won’t stop there, either. Our private media area is going to get a face lift, too. New content will be added, including more in-depth articles (with arcanity ratings of three fleurdelis!), audio lectures, and visual media. At some point during this year, we’re also going to be flipping the switch and going fully dedicated with our server, which will increase our connection speeds. So long story short, we have a lot of stuff in the works. Stay tuned and Happy New Year to all! May the bonds of your relationships be strong in 2016 and may you all find the special sort of fulfillment you’re searching for.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

June 15, 2015

Against Men or Reason?

By Marc Esadrian

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An article mentioned recently in our community discussion was quite timely. It allowed me to comment on some thoughts I’ve had after having engaged in a debate (loosely termed) with a self-described radical feminist who unequivocally agreed with Taylor Swift’s recent smugly produced pot stir—in a lad magazine no less—that “misogyny is ingrained in people from birth.” The gratuitous count of young, blinkered heads bobbing in agreement over that pearl of wisdom is by no means a surprise to me, but it’s always far more curious to engage the dealers of extreme rhetoric rather than its mewing buyers, and so I inevitably ended up turning my attention to someone in the discussion with fiery feminist convictions that went far above and beyond Ms. Swift’s inane social commentary.

This person, who identified as a feminist, painted a pretty terrible foregone conclusion of men, if not a conspiratorial depiction of reality, to boot. Along with much of her angry and condescending argument, she brought out the laws protect rapists canard, too (which she could never quite adequately defend, of course). Weighing her ripostes after I cited failing marriages and declining male attendance in college, I saw vindictive, if not apathetic dismissal of men—a sort of callous, mean-spirited pleasure in hearing accounts of their disenfranchisement. I inevitably concluded, based upon this person’s willful bias and absolute contempt for anything male, that no, she wasn’t a liberal at all. Liberalism is supposed to consider the viewpoints and criticisms of all with rationality and compassion, not just favor a particular group. In the sickly light of her gross caricatures and hateful rants, I realized that I, the malevolent founder of Humbled Females, was more liberal in theory and practice than she could ever possibly be.

So it was with some considerable pleasure that I read Brendan O’Neil’s commentary entitled Feminism and the Turn Against Enlightenment, for I saw it concluded something similar, among its many points: feminism today, though it stands beside and interweaves itself throughout liberal politics like a pernicious weed, isn’t so liberal in theory or practice. I know that I have, time and time again, encountered incredibly close-minded people engaging in feminist apologia who insist that they are liberal, but it was not until recently that I realized this glaring contradiction. I’m sure the irony of that observation has dawned on others long before either O’Neil or myself, but it is a bit of a moment when, after having kept your mind open to hear out the views of the other side, you realize the crumby hypocrisy of it all.

But here is where O’Neil and I part ways a little: he claims that feminism isn’t really anti-male so much as a depart from reason. He goes on quite impressively to explain this point of view, and while I often do see feminism as anti-intellectual for all its verbose logical pretzelism and political correctness, I’m not certain how one making a critical commentary of modern feminism could not acknowledge its inherent anti-maleness. Its rhetorically negative slant on men, in fact, is one of the more salient reasons why I don’t think feminism is often of the liberal mind, though it may window dress as such. Despite the best of intentions that some of its constituents have, feminism, it seems to me, so often feels like an over-glorified hate group advocating for women, and I do feel it should be called out as such. This is not to say that what O’Neil says about feminism being anti-intellectual and thus effectively misanthropic is incorrect, but it is to put a finger on observations he himself makes about how the institutions of education are attacking maleness with plenty of straw:

“The new feminism is strikingly concerned with exposing what it—and the political and cultural elites more broadly—views as the folly of ‘male ideas.’”

If we recognize how feminism is shading something to be attacked because it involves male ownership, even something so unassailable as the sound arts of reason and the disciplines of the sciences, it’s really just one step removed from the premise of demonizing men in general, all the while conveniently tearing down the very ways in which we can call it out on its folly. While feminism railing against the supposed evils of structuralism is accurately described by O’Neil, the vehicle by which this attack on reason is justified cannot and should not, ever, be ignored. Attacking what is perceived to be male (whether it really is or not) is already a foregone conclusion as being good in the halls of higher education. How is this not a misandrous accomplishment of feminism, which claims to stand for the dignity and compassion of both sexes?

Demonizing men has gone beyond propaganda in education, however: it is a practice notably employed by feminist advocacy research, like the preposterous “1 in 5” rape myth produced by a poorly constructed telephone survey with overly broad definitions of rape by the CDC (which was later used, by the way, to justify federal funding for colleges in their fight against “rape culture,” a term RAINN itself denounced). The gender pay gap myth is another often reinforced and repeated lie, as O’Neil also points out, long after it has been pointed out that any perceived gap is a result of lifestyle and career choices between men and women. As I mentioned earlier, we just had one of the most popular female pop singers in the world declare that society is steeped in misogyny, despite the fact that it’s increasingly quite the opposite in developed nations.

And that is the crux of what I see as terribly subversive and erosive about feminism today. In debating feminists and their paranoid views about patriarchy and the ever-evaporating unicorn that is “male entitlement,” it seems, increasingly, that it doesn’t even matter if you bring good countering facts to the table, or a reasoned argument, for that matter. They will skip past the facts and instead of debating, engage in indignant deflection, ad hominem, or many, many political speeches. Speak about subjects like rape, equal pay, or the supposed scourge of the objectification of women with people randomly on the streets, in the neighborhood, or in your own family, and you’ll likely hear feminist myths regurgitated unthinkingly, to much head nodding of agreement. It’s for this reason that modern feminism is more akin to a belief movement (or a psychological disorder) that, as O’Neil points out, views all of humanity through a lens of distrust and a motherly need to control it. We shouldn’t discount how much of that mistrust has been directed at men, however, as well as feminist apologists attributing anything to males as corrupt and evil by default. If we can recognize the effigy that is “all things male” in feminist theory, we can certainly see how misandry is being spread, particularly when under the insidious rhetoric that it’s all “for a good cause.”

I understand that avoiding the fall into the typical anti-male argument is a reasonable attempt to move critical commentary of feminism away from its association with the train wreck that is the men’s rights movement. That men’s rights activists have lost their brand and have often become caricatures unto themselves does not mean they also don’t have some salient points about feminism’s double-standards, biases, and outright lies. Of course, most who identify as feminists are not hardened lesbians who wake up each morning with intense conscious hatred of men first thing on their minds. Many well-meaning feminists, young and old and male and female alike, will recite the mantra that they are advocating for the rights of men as well as women, but in reality, the larger gestalt of the politics they support does, in fact, perpetuate an ongoing anti-male bias, to lesser or greater degrees, no matter how much the political organism that is feminism attempts to rebrand itself away from the ugliness of it’s deeper, albeit “hidden” extremism. For those who actually believe feminism stands for equal consideration of the sexes, I would offer a simple thought exercise. Outside of pointing to examples of how both sexes are clearly not equally honored or advocated for by feminism, I’d ask anyone to consider how, if the genders were swapped out in the “ism,” it wouldn’t sound quite right. If masculinism doesn’t feel like it would be entirely sympathetic to women and girls, you’d probably be right. Why is it we can’t see this with feminism in the modern age, where men and women are, without a doubt, equal in their rights?

There is a movement unhappy with many of the current dispensations and inequities throughout the world today—a movement that desires equality not just for women, but for men, too, and for people of all colors and creeds. It’s not a deeply entrenched and divisive sociopolitical movement that manifests itself through biased research and corrupt philosophy, hiding behind a shield of political correctness. It’s not engaged in antagonistic information and media warfare, or angry polemics against crumbling vestiges of classical patriarchy. This force is as open-source as it gets and as humanitarian as any personal modus operandi could possibly be, though it’s not something up for lazy grabs by lazy minds that would rather regurgitate tired if not politically expedient platitudes. You could call it egalitarianism. You could call it secular humanism. You could simply label it the equal rights movement. I prefer to call it something else, and the sum of its goodness proves feminism has no exclusive rights to ideas like compassion and humanism, or modern thought on the sexes. That thing is, simply, sound reason.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

February 20, 2015

Christian Grey: The Disneyland Dom

By Marc Esadrian

50-shades-grey-humbled-females

Anyone familiar with my original thoughts on 50 Shades of Grey will likely not find this supplemental rant much of a surprise, but I suppose it’s necessary, being who I am, to say something. After all, it would be irresponsible of me to avoid commentary on a subject that hits so close to home (or as close as it can, at least) on the silver screen. So, begrudgingly, I dragged myself to the theater to see the movie adaptation directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson, starring Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey and Dakota Johnson as Anastasia Steele.

I laughed, I winced, and shook my head in mild annoyance over the neutered and underwhelming spectacle before me. When the movie ended, I wondered how many people in the theater found it to be little more than a flat, safe, sterile, PG-13-like buzz kill. Afterward, I put my thoughts to keyboard, struggling with what I should title this commentary. 50 Shades of Fail? Not-a-True-Dominant: The Movie? Or how about Rich and Kinky Boy-Faced Beta Male Tries to Seduce a Smug, Temperamental Virgin? It was quite a conflict.

I finally settled on Christian Grey: The Disneyland Dom, for I think that among the movie’s many flawed premises, the one that irks me the most is the inadvertent message that women might be interested in male domination…permitting you’re a hot Armani-suited billionaire. While I’m happy to see the subject of consensual female submission going mainstream, I feel the idea of it, as conceived in this tale, is tied too closely to the mystique of wealth and bling. If we strip away Christian Grey’s expensive raiment, his luxuriant urban address, his stable of exotic sports cars, his private helicopter, and above all, his top notch “red room” that would make any professional dominatrix drool, what remains? Beyond image, where in this film is Christian Grey really dominant at all, aside from the entitlements afforded him through money? We see him chasing after Anastasia Steele, a woman who, despite her waking desires, repeatedly denies him (a common romantic cliché). In the wake of her rejections and sarcastic remarks, he chases her like a cross between a stalker, a wounded puppy, and a well dressed front-door salesman. And yet he dramatically avoids her at all the wrong moments. In many ways, this man acted like der uber jerken, getting up and abandoning her when he should have enriched their bond, shutting her out when sharing would have maximized intimacy, and wallowing in his own self-pity over a shiny piano while she stands half naked, a foot away. Which brings me to my next peeve.

Second in my list of grievances about the film (but just barely so) is the absolutely dysfunctional portrayal of male dominance we are subjected to, over and over. I understand that a story needs a conflict and that stories serve more as entertainment than enlightenment, but as I originally lamented regarding E. L. James’ trilogy, 50 Shades the movie had an opportunity to present the D in D/s in a more positive light—to show the world that you don’t have to be an emotionally (and psychically) scarred person to partake in these things. We are left, especially at the gloomy end of the first film, not only assuming that Christian’s interest in D/s directly and unequivocally stems from his dysfunction and romantic ineptness, but also feeling like that man is a bit of a wimp and pushover.

Segue to peeve three: Sassy Steele’s domineering and passive-aggressive vibe is tiresomely obvious throughout the film. So obvious, in fact, that no self-respecting dominant male I know of (real dominant men, mind you) would put up with her sneers, snide remarks, eye rolling, and condescending jabs. It’s here where I see the usual girl power scripting of Hollywood, likely uncomfortable with the subject matter to begin with, tinkering more than a little with her character to make her “hipper” and more palatable to the public’s genteel standards. Anatasia’s character was a little playful and opinionated in the books, though she was also naive and subdued. The movie made her much more bold and sarcastic, bordering on hostile, but I certainly didn’t find myself surprised in the least about that. I honestly don’t think anyone churning out films from major studios today is capable of presenting a woman as anything but strong and sassy (and I’ll add domineering, while I’m at it).

This presents a problem with the portrayal of submission for the D/s-illiterate yet nonetheless intrigued female viewers. Ana is not just a brat or a typical SAM (Smart Assed Masochist): she is disrespectful, dramatic, passive-aggressive, and tries her best to be as unimpressed as possible with her seducer throughout the film. Granted, Ana is what they call “vanilla” in BDSM terms. With that in mind, many of her lame reactions to lame dominance were plausible (even if her twenties-ish virginity isn’t). Still, her contentiousness doesn’t set a very good example at all for impressionable women who are on the cusp of taking marginal interest in this way of life. Women drawn in from the 50 Shades Effect who make the mistake of approaching authentically dominant men as their personal Christian Greys (it has already happened to me, and more than once, I’m sad to report) will likely have a very rude awakening when the face of mommy porn meets the concrete of reality.

But the movie isn’t all bad. For BDSM 101, the film did well with respect to consent, negotiation, and safe words. The War and Peace sized contract scene conveyed, at least, the detailed consent of kinky play partners. It took great pains, in fact, to inform the novice yet curious public that these interactions are based upon consent. Zooming out to see the big picture, the 50 Shades Effect helped to bring BDSM—and, to some degree, D/s—into mainstream discussion. This helps to “normalize” D/s a little more in our culture and foster an environment where more men and women can at least consider the idea of dominance and submission as something other than shameful and pathological interactions between deviant adults.

But normalizing D/s for the general public’s consumption might only swap out the old canards with new ones. It remains to be seen what effect E. L. James’ trendy story-made-movie will have on mainstream views regarding actual dominance and submission. Aside of being annoyed at how much of a cheesy cartoon D/s may now be in the eyes of some, my real concern is that instead of accepting the deeper and wider practices of our world, there will be a polarization between what’s deemed good and bad D/s, where a gamut of consumable acts and ideas are sanctioned and others remain stigmatized. In other words, some progress toward wider acceptance, but otherwise business as usual.

stars-two

 

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

February 3, 2015

On the Garish Ubiquity of Female Empowerment

By Marc Esadrian

katy-perry-feminism

I’m not what one would stereotypically refer to as a sports fan. In fact, I think my time spent at sports events, sports bars, or before games broadcasted live on cable equals less than 1% of my time spent for any given year. It’s not that I don’t find a backyard game of football—back when I used to play such things—fun, or that I’m adverse to physical activity (I run and muscle train on average four days a week), it’s just that, ultimately, I find that what a collection of athletes are doing on a field or court on any given day to be far less consequential than evolving matters of scientific discovery, state policy, or news about what conflicts arise in the world.

But on Super Bowl XLIX Sunday, I sat down and watched. When games matter—when something is on the line—I tend to find these events a little more interesting, especially when the team representing my home region of New England is in that final arena. And I must say, it was quite a game to behold, even if we had to tolerate Katy Perry’s flashy, somewhat incongruent halftime performance bringing all the usual specters of snarling female arrogance atop a leashed lion float (I personally thought the dancing sharks stole that show!).

That sort of thing is par for the course these days, but what really raised an eyebrow, for me, was the saccharine feminist commercial advertisement—featured during an overwhelmingly male-dominated television event, mind you—advocating for the confidence of little girls by none other than Always Tampons. In it, three women, a man, and a boy express all too predictably the stereotypical ways that girls usually run, throw, and fight. When good younger (see feminist idealized and pre-scripted) little girl-bots were asked to run, throw, and fight like girls, they confidently showed what they thought doing these things as girls meant: they ran a little less limply, punched a little less awkwardly, but beamed with confidence, nonetheless. These admittedly cute poster children were, apparently, teaching us the lesson not only to pre-program our children to fight against these deleterious and assuredly ingrained stereotypes that perceive women as weak, but change some of our own apparently baseless sexist attitudes about the weaker sex, in turn. All this, despite the very likely fact that, among boys, being called female will invariably be seen as an insult, for females are and always will be, for the foreseeable evolutionary future of our species, at least, the naturally physically weaker sex. Granted, the powers that be are trying incredibly hard, again and again, to make males and females goose-step to a new order, to equalize them and whitewash their obvious differences, and while this may yield some culturally reinforced results, the natural realities behind male and female difference will inevitably (and disappointingly, to some) prevail, I’m afraid.

Overnight and over the course of the day after, it seems, people on Twitter were all aflutter over the hashtag #likeagirl, though Always, our smarmy child-championing tampon company, probably didn’t anticipate the retaliatory remarks from the viral ripostes of the #likeaboy tag. The conflict is amusing in a light-hearted way, and while I don’t find myself taking the ad or its fallout too seriously, I do wonder what a company that creates intimate female products was doing spending millions of dollars for commercial time on a mostly male-oriented prime time cable event. The answer, I concluded, must have been to reach out to boys, men, and fathers with a blatant emotionally manipulative feminist message (surely, it couldn’t have been about selling tampons). But that’s not the only thing it did, in my mind. It also demonstrated the tremendous intersectionality between consumerism, the entrenched social engineering of feminism, and the smarmy servitude of corporations to its messages—even in the least likeliest of places.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

May 30, 2014

On Sex Slavery, Lies, and Palatable Politics

By Marc Esadrian

On the tail end of Newsweek’s recent cover story about sex, slavery, and the slippery truth, anti-sex trafficking activist Somaly Mam—considered among one of Time’s most influential women in the world—has resigned from her own foundation.

Road-of-Lost-InnocenceMam claimed to have rescued thousands of women and girls from the clutches of sex trafficking. Not only that, she has repeatedly asserted that her passion to help these women has come from her own abuse at the hands of sex traffickers.

That a former escaped sex slave from Cambodia would later on become the co-founder of AFESIP (Agir Pour Les Femmes en Situation Précaire, otherwise known as Helping Women in Danger) and rise to celebrity status in order to fight the evils of human trafficking rings with a magnetism of poetic justice that is irresistibly seductive—especially for the political climate in the modern West. It was an inspiring story—so inspiring, in fact, that it won over many high profile women, like Hillary Clinton, Meg Ryan, Susan Sarandon, and Shay Mitchel. Mam also attracted the attentions of Brandee Barker, whom the New York Times recently dubbed the most sought after image consultant in the start-up world, along with Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, an avid feminist (Ban Bossy Campaign), and author of Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead.

In Somaly Mam, the world had a pretty face for the fight against the sex trafficking of women and girls. Her ghost-written book, The Road of Lost Innocence, became an international bestseller in 2005. Since then, she has raised millions of dollars across the globe with her astonishing story and courted many influential figures in media, industry, and politics to her cause. She was larger than life, a saint bent on rescuing the exploited. She was a modern “from the trenches” heroine for the fight against the exploitation of women around the world, a figure standing up against untold evils of sex trafficking. And she was a complete lie, as it turns out.

Simon Marks of Newsweek wrote a scathing and rather thorough article alleging that Mam was, indeed, never kidnapped and forced into sexual slavery. Through tracing her roots back to her home village and questioning old relatives or neighbors who remembered her, Marks unraveled what later came to be discovered as a grandiose fabrication on the part of Somaly Mam.

The deception, as Marks went on to point out, doesn’t stop there, either. In 1989 she apparently coached Meas Ratha, another supposed outspoken victim—and subsequently one of AFESIP’s biggest stars—into giving a convincing performance on French television about how she was sold to a brothel and forced to work as a sex slave. Ratha eventually confessed that her story was a complete fabrication—and a carefully rehearsed fabrication, at that. In 2009, Nicholas Kristof of The New York Times wrote about a girl named Long Pross, who had her own dark tale to tell about her sexual slavery and torture, where she was beaten with electric wires and cruelly disfigured. Pross also told this heart wrenching story on Oprah to a moved audience, but as with Somaly Mam herself, Pross’s relatives and neighbors back home had a much different tale to tell, and one that eventually exposed her story as more than just a little misleading.

Following Simon Marks’ article in Newsweek, AFESIP began its own investigation, and shortly thereafter, Somaly Mam stepped down from the very foundation she found and helped to build. Mam’s scandalous fall from grace leaves quite a few high profile figures in a bit of an awkward position, you might say. What struck me about this story was how eager it seems many were to believe these sensational tales for the politically cohesive effect they had. Chief among those with egg on their faces would probably be our beloved feminist capitalist, Sheryl Sandberg, who took on the role of an advisory board member in Somaly Mam’s organization herself.

What inevitably comes to mind while contemplating the above is the absence of due diligence and the discipline of responsible scrutiny. Where was this diligence when powerful women, like Sandberg, aligned with the fashionable and politically expedient boost that Somaly Mam represented? Is it any wonder that so many of those who seek to champion feminine goals of “unity” can be so very easily duped into going along with a likely tale they are all too eager to believe in order to forward the goals of their victim politics?

And that question leads to another, far broader one: why do we, as members of the human species, so often enjoy bending truth or not looking for it well enough between the lines in order to rush along a power grab for our own causes? Where the subject of sex slavery is concerned, this raises another important if not uneasy question, too: how large of a problem is human sex trafficking, really? To what degree have we allowed the sensation of certain stories and accounts over subjects that capture our imaginations to warp our perception of what’s truly happening in the world? I’m not certain I can answer that question, as it’s really an unknown quantity and I certainly don’t have enough data to even begin fathoming it. I certainly don’t deny that the evil of forced sex slavery exists throughout the world, but what I do wonder, especially since the Somaly Mam scandal, is to what degree these ideas of sex trafficking have stimulated the West’s imagination and galvanized the politics of feminine protectionism.

If anyone questions that sense of feminine favoritism/protectionism within the forefront of our political consciousness, consider the recent kidnapping of 276 Nigerian girls by Boko Haram. By now, we’ve all heard of this atrocity from nearly every corner of the media and the Internet, but how many of you ever heard of Boko Haram attacking a dormitory and shooting or slitting the throats of 59 boys this past February 25th? If you never did, don’t feel bad: the event was almost completely ignored by Western media. Washington didn’t commit to dispatching American intelligence and military advisers to West Africa to investigate the matter, as they did recently with the news of the missing girls. It should also be added, to further underscore the point, that February 25th did not mark the first date of atrocities committed by Boko Haram—not by a long shot.

So we find ourselves wondering why the press was rallied so fervently when young women were kidnapped and possibly sold into slavery, but ignored the event of young boys being slaughtered. Could it be that anything scandalous or tragic having to do with the oppressions of women is the right reason to get alarmed in the Western media and even government today?  If so, what are the cultural reasons for this attitude? Does the scandal surrounding Somaly Mam and her cynical masquerade to pull at our heartstrings allow us all a moment to look into the mirror and ask ourselves some of these inconvenient questions?

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

March 6, 2014

Stalingrad

By Nina E.

stalingrad-rape-feminism

There is no difference between being raped
And being pushed down a flight of cement steps
Except that the wounds also bleed inside.

There is no difference between being raped
And being run over by a truck
Except that afterward men ask if you enjoyed it.

There is no difference between being raped
And being bit on the ankle by a rattlesnake
Except that people ask if your skirt was short
And why you were out anyhow.

There is no difference between being raped
And going head first through a windshield
Except that afterward you are afraid not of cars,
But half the human race.

—from “Rape Poem” by Marge Piercy

If truth be told, there is a huge difference between being raped and these other four fates. When one of the above events happens to someone, the results frequently involve blinding pain, broken bones, massive bleeding, organ shutdown, comas, or death. Those who survive these things are often disfigured or crippled for life, living with chronic pain. In other words, the physical effects from these events are profound. But unless a rape is unusually brutal and savage (a rare event) most women do not die from it and they might even suffer no physical damage beyond a few light bruises and a sore vagina. I’m going to talk more about rape, but first I want to talk about something worse than rape, worse even than the devastating personal traumas that the poem falsely equates with rape, before I return to the subject. I want to talk about war.

Wars are terrible, ugly, and, most of all, massive things. Their sheer size and effects make them hard to comprehend. The physical destruction of shelter, roads, farms, vehicles, food, clean water, and other necessary elements of human survival is only the tip of the iceberg of misery they visit upon us. Wars ruin lives, shatter minds, impoverish people, break up homes, and take from us the things or beings we most love. They tear apart families, drive people to utter despair, or embed immense hatreds in the victims’ hearts that ring like warped harmonics through several generations before they heal. A war causes so much pain, such intense physical and emotional suffering among so many that, in most cases, the scope of the evils wrought by it are incomprehensible in their vastness. How do you get a mental grasp on the reality of war? How do you imagine thousands, tens of thousands, even millions of people dying or suffering terribly and then dying? Even the most well-researched books, lengthy tomes that took years to write, can only convey to us a small part of a war’s grinding, immense horror. Their depictions of war’s effects, even when clear and focused, only spotlight tiny slivers of the total devastation to human lives and human hope.

Stalingrad

Yanina Studilina as Masha and Thomas Kretschmann as Nazi officer Kahn in a scene from Stalingrad.

Among the wars humanity has suffered through few equal the scope of World War II. The vast scale of suffering that huge war caused is indeed incomprehensible, and we are lucky that it is. A mind which could grasp the full extent of that monstrous mid-twentieth century event would likely go mad. The only way I’ve found to comprehend even a small part of such a wide-sweeping hell is to do as some experts do: to look very closely and carefully at a few microscopic bits of the whole and observe how they affected a single individual or a small group. I can’t possibly imagine the unique, individual pain of hundreds of thousands who died in concentration camps, for instance, but I can get a sense of the suffering of those masses by hearing the detailed stories of one or two individuals who experienced the camps and lived to tell the tale. Or I can look at the surviving photographs of skeletal and near-naked people trying to survive the bitter winters with almost no food and little shelter and then multiply that out by six or seven figures and shudder. I cannot begin to imagine the individual hells experienced by thousands of soldiers on the front lines but I can see the plight of a few from the horrific descriptions of those who survived it. And, once in a while, I can get a clear, realistic picture of what a minuscule part of a war must have been like from a work of very good fiction that doesn’t defy informed common sense.

In this editorial, I’d like to pay tribute to one such fiction: a movie I saw last week. This movie is being largely ignored at the box office (on opening night in our locale there were probably only 12 other viewers in the theater), perhaps due to its “old-fashioned” themes or “difficult” subtitles (it’s spoken in Russian) and panned by the critics for the very things I appreciated most about it. The film is called Stalingrad. It depicts the fate of a small group of Russian soldiers who are scouts for an advance force trying to take back the city of Stalingrad from the Germans by crossing the Volga. The beginning of the film is a scene straight from hell: it shows war at its worst and heroism at its best, as dozens of Russian soldiers, set afire by fuel tanks that were blown up by the Germans in an attempt to stop their advance, continue to run, while on fire, up from the river and into the enemy ranks, screaming and using their bodies as living torches to burn the defending German forces whom they grappled with. When I looked at those courageous, agonized running men, I asked myself, “Could I do that if I were on fire?” As the film progresses, we see highly realistic and detailed views of this once-prosperous Russian city, now reduced mostly to rubble but still continuously bombed. Nobody could possibly be living in those shelled out buildings but, lo and behold, thousands still are: both Russian residents and the German occupiers. The film focuses in narrowly on the half-dozen Russian soldiers charged with taking and holding a specific key building for a few days and the encounters they have with local residents and the Germans as they carry out their orders. This part of the film—the individual lives of a few men during a handful of days—is likely fictional but the circumstances surrounding them (and quite accurately depicted by the film) were not: this five-month siege and reoccupation of the city by the Red Army was the battle that finally turned this terrible war in the Allies favor.

The story of the Russian soldiers wasn’t very likely in one sense and the critics were right to point this out: while taking a building they discover a 19-year-old girl still lives there and refuses to leave her former home. She becomes their goddess, muse, and good luck charm. They treat her first with a level of distant gallantry and later with a fawning worship that is highly unlikely from men stressed to their limits by the extremes of such a war. But it’s a charming story, nonetheless, showing that happiness, smiles, gift-giving, sharing of fond memories, and cooperation can occur, at times, even among hardened fighting men who’ve been literally drenched in blood and seen the worst the world can offer. Great attention was paid to period realism and it was a delight to observe those details in the sets and the props. The intense, stressed boredom of the soldiers, who each live with great individual grief and know that they are the walking dead, simply waiting for their inevitable fate from the stronger German force nearby; their sometimes foolish or callous attempts to relieve their fears and sorrows; and their preoccupation with the brave young girl, who takes their minds off their individual sorrows and likely hopeless fate, are all expertly depicted.

But the film isn’t just about them: there are many other subplots occurring within it, including a few glimpses into the lives of German forces occupying the building across the plaza and who are determined to roust the six soldiers. One not-so-small subplot seems almost a cliché as it unfolds: a German officer is smitten by a beautiful Russian girl who reminds him of his dead wife. Despite her terror of and distaste for him (emotions she dares not express too boldly but which show plainly in her face as she watches him), he visits her regularly and brings her food, clearly courting her and attempting, in his own way, to change her alienation and abhorrence into affection. But things do not go as he would wish and one evening, deeply disturbed by worsening events and personal pressures placed on him by his commander, he comes to the little curtained alcove where the girl lives within a building housing a group of civilian survivors and catches her crouched behind a pillar with a raised knife, hoping to kill him. He easily disarms her and then, in a combination of rage, frustration, and confused desire, he rips off her clothes and viciously rapes her. When he is finished, he talks to her frankly and with great emotion, as men who rape sometimes do with their victims after the act, while she lies crying on the bed. Her pain and horror is apparent, but she listens to him as he talks about his destroyed personal past. When he leaves, she is insulted, hit, and dowsed with water by the survivors living in the same building. In their eyes she’s now a whore, a collaborator with the enemy, although, with just a tattered curtain for a doorway, they all must have known that she was taken against her will. But they desire a scapegoat, someone they can turn their hostility toward without getting shot in return, and this beautiful young woman makes a convenient target.

As the few short days that are the span of this film pass, the German officer and this young woman bond; in fact, they fall in love with each other. I was pleasantly surprised to see the makers of Stalingrad take a brave and bold step to honestly depict an alternate reality associated with rape that happens more often than modern feminist propaganda would like us to believe. In the tunnel vision that is feminism, victims of rape are always deeply traumatized and hate their rapists. In the much larger world that we all live in, things are not always that simple—or politically convenient. When it comes to real human reactions people are complicated and women don’t always end up despising their rapists. Human emotions don’t follow the convenient political scripts set out for them. We don’t always toe feminist propaganda and turn into traumatized victims of a terrible male monster who “fattens on fantasies…like a maggot in garbage” (Marge Piercy). And men who rape are not always vile animals who callously laugh at their victims or derisively kick them on their way out to their next “act of violence.” Rape is Sex, and as such it is a very intimate act that can affect the emotions of both parties in profound and unexpected ways.

Being a former rape victim, there is no question in my mind that rape is frequently a horrible experience for the female, an experience that can scar her emotions for years, but still, things aren’t ever as cut and dried, as black and white, as caricatured, as feminist anti-rape propaganda paints them. The “bad guy” is sometimes a good guy or, at very least, a “neutral guy.” Sometimes the “abused victim” is not badly affected by the rape. Sometimes she even attempts to tease and torment a man just to see if he’ll break down and take her despite his good intentions. And sometimes, as this frank look into the realities of war depicts, the event is a mixture of both bad and good. Something as pure and liberating to the soul as deep affection and even a dedicated, constant love can arise from an act that the feminists tell us is bestial and only signifies intense hostility.

The German captain in Stalingrad bares his heart to his victim after committing his acts of rape and then does his best to protect the woman he’s supposed to, according to feminist rhetoric, walk blithely away from without a second thought for her welfare. He does so at a deep cost to himself. But, as is so often the case in war, it is all to no avail. Ironically, her life is callously mown down by one of the alleged “good guys”—the Russian soldiers—a young, angry and careless sort who automatically assumes, like the other civilians, that she’s an evil whore who willingly has sex with the enemy. The German’s chilling scream of rage and horror when his woman is taken from him with a bullet to her forehead is the sound of a man who has just lost his soul and his reason to live, not the sociopathic chuckle of a cold, calculating beast, feeding his obscene hungers without a second thought for the helpless. I applaud the director of Stalingrad,  Fedor Bondarchuk, and its writers,  Sergey Snezhkin and Ilya Tilkinfor, for honestly depicting both the complexities of war and the complexities of rape, neither of which can be easily understood by the narrow good-guy/bad-guy generalizations that those with an axe to grind (or a political objective to obtain) so love to use to box in and limit rich human experience, experience which doesn’t always follow the rigid rules set out for it by blazing, “poor little female victim” or “men who rape are all pigs” rhetoric.

stars-three

 

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

January 8, 2014

Perspective

By Tina E.

Well, how about that: the holidays have passed once again, and after all the rich foods and drinks shared between family and friends, I resign myself to facing a season-typical struggle in the aftermath: I have gained a little weight and I need to lose it fast! I’m kept on a stricter regimen weight-wise by the man I adore these days and I really don’t want to disappoint him. I think staying healthy and looking your best for the man in your life is essential, but he gives me the extra incentive I need to get back on track!

It’s not always easy, dragging yourself to the gym or making time for a power walk. It’s not particularly fun denying myself the awakened taste for all those rich foods I made and conspired to consume over the holidays, either, but as I groan a little under my breath while putting on the sneakers after the holidays have passed, I almost always find myself reflecting upon the poor, the hungry, and the needy. It’s then I stop and consider how absolutely ludicrous my dilemma is. I realize that for someone who has a problem like mine, life is pretty darn good, in fact. My struggle with losing some extra pounds is nothing, really, compared to those who would love to be in a similar predicament. I realize that having some extra pounds while living in a place that, for many, could be considered a suburban paradise is a sign of comfort and security. I realize that I am one of the lucky ones, in more ways than one.

It’s not that I’m alone in such thoughts over the holidays. From Thanksgiving onward, people send tons of canned goods and money donations to their local shelters while getting into the holiday mood and dutifully reflecting upon the less fortunate. But what happens after New Years? The truth is, most shelters and soup kitchens see a marked drop in donations and support, and that’s just sad. Many such places are all set during the holidays, but for the rest of the year, they are in need of donations, helping hands, and financial support.

Please keep the hungry and less fortunate in your thoughts in the coming year and send donations to your local shelters and soup kitchens, if you can. Ten dollars here, twenty dollars there (these organizations have access to food at fractions of the price you find in supermarkets), a shirt you don’t want any more or those cans of soup in the cupboards that you probably won’t eat…it all can go so far and help so many people in need. But before you give, find out more about the charities you’d like to support. Be certain they use the resources you provide for charitable purposes that support the mission to truly help the hungry and dispossessed. I have provided some links below to some good organizations as just a start, but finding local shelters, kitchens, and food banks in your area is always a great way to make a difference in your own neck of the woods.

http://feedingamerica.org
http://www.breadforthecity.org
http://www.foodtodonate.org
http://www.oxfam.org
http://www.worldvision.org
http://www.goodwill.org

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

January 3, 2014

2014: The Year Ahead

By Marc Esadrian

Happy New Year to all!

2013 saw a lot of growth for Humbled Females. Our forum membership has tripled from last year, our site aesthetic and social features have evolved, and we managed to add more open access articles to the publications section. Overall, things are looking pretty good for the site’s reemergence. But there’s more to do, of course.

I’m hoping 2014 will bring even more quality articles written from new authors. I hope we’ll see first-class membership increase at a faster rate this year than last, and that we continue fostering an atmosphere of learning and productive exchange here. The latter point is particularly important to me. We’ve seen many “adult” networks rise and fall over the years, but when I consider their histories, I’m reminded of a particular thread of wisdom:

“Nothing is more damaging to a new truth than an old error.” —Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

It’s hard to know what the old errors are with networks and forums, exactly, but I do know one of the common pitfalls we see within many are the establishments of argument-prone cliques. I think we’ve all done a pretty good job at managing that “creeping crud” thus far. At Humbled Females, things have been done a little differently and I think it’s paying off. We don’t have ads. We aren’t just another “meat market” online. We don’t see jaded young ladies filing in to build monuments to their narcissism and little else. We don’t see the same old vacuous BDSM platitudes being parroted by self-appointed gurus. Our forums, for the most part, are free of the divisiveness and childish insults we see hurled regularly on other networks. Our membership count is not in the hundreds of thousands, so discussion is manageable. The people we do have here, however, are quality personalities with many good things to say.

I hope the trend of quality community, where newcomers are welcome to engage in conversation, ask questions, and explore a deeper shade of submission or dominance, continues strongly in 2014. I want Humbled Females to persevere being the beacon of no-nonsense talk on female submission that it has managed to be since its re-inception in the past few years. With continuing engagement, patience, and thoughtful consideration, I think that’s not only possible but a fairly easy goal.

Aside of that, new features and additions to the site are on the way. The environment is constantly being enhanced and tweaked with the end user in mind. The articles will continue to delve into the wilderness of female submission (and male dominance, for that matter) with clarity, depth, and pragmatism. The Humbled Females primer will be updated and more material will be made available in the pay area.

In closing, I wish everyone peace, fortune, and fulfillment in the new year to come. I have a feeling 2014 will bring more good things for us!

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

September 20, 2013

Men On Strike

By Marc Esadrian

menonstrike-title-artUnless you’ve been living under a rock or willful state of ignorance for the past several decades, you’ve probably noticed that modern society doesn’t think particularly much of men—when it remembers to think about them at all, that is. Feminist intellectuals, despite tremendous strides in education and job opportunities in which they are equal to (or in some cases, even outperforming) men, still eagerly jump on NPR talk shows and bicker ad nauseum about how much more work needs to be done for women in the areas of special programs, grants, corporate policies, and activist legislation. Researchers and health professionals don’t seem to be any more aware of the paucity of attention paid to men, either. When they do afford some leftover resources toward researching men, terms such as criminals, abusers, rapists, and delinquent fathers are often common in the language and focus. Ask anyone on the street if they know what the word misogyny means. Chances are, they’ll know it well, if not by the activism drilled into their heads while attending university, then by the collective osmosis from any number of books, radio programs, or cable talk shows perma-blathering about the supposed ongoing plight of women in every nook and cranny of human experience. Ask them if they know what misandry means, and you’ll likely get some quizzical, empty stares. Not that I necessarily fault them; some spell checkers today don’t even recognize “misandry” as a word. Imagine that.

Be that as it may, the spirit of contempt for men is alive and well in Western society. One need only look to the all-too-common male bashing of men by the media or consider the near ubiquitous multi-institutional collusion with feminist agenda (going right up to the programs of government itself) to see common examples of this. I assume the reader will at least intuitively understand what I’m getting at here; I will not drone on over examples of these things, as they are fairly obvious to anyone with eyes, ears, nominally functioning brains, and a pinch of objectivity. The unspoken problem is all around us and that silence has become fairly detrimental for the advocacy of male interests and rights. That problem, in a nutshell, is the fact that women and all concerns having to do with them—both real and utterly imaginary—are being overexposed while sneering at men has become quite acceptable…even fashionable.

Every now and then, however, a body of work comes along that puts its finger squarely on this phenomenon, and the latest to do this is Men on Strike, by Helen Smith, Ph D. From the book’s description:

American society has become anti-male. Men are sensing the backlash and are consciously and unconsciously going “on strike.” They are dropping out of college, leaving the workforce and avoiding marriage and fatherhood at alarming rates. The trend is so pronounced that a number of books have been written about this “man-child” phenomenon, concluding that men have taken a vacation from responsibility simply because they can. But why should men participate in a system that seems to be increasingly stacked against them?

As Men on Strike demonstrates, men aren’t dropping out because they are stuck in arrested development. They are instead acting rationally in response to the lack of incentives society offers them to be responsible fathers, husbands and providers. In addition, men are going on strike, either consciously or unconsciously, because they do not want to be injured by the myriad of laws, attitudes and hostility against them for the crime of happening to be male in the twenty-first century. Men are starting to fight back against the backlash. Men on Strike explains their battle cry.

Indeed, one could see this very site, started in 2005, as some part of the backlash. We have long been discussing some of the observations Ms. Smith makes in her book within our community as blogs and other communities across the web have. What’s refreshing about this book is how it approaches the male discussion from what could be thought of as a “new” angle, at least for mainstream culture: not making men out to be overgrown children with Peter Pan complexes and condescendingly offering some “tough love” advice to all the degenerate penis-bearers who might be reading.  Instead, Smith holds that men aren’t removing themselves from responsibility or interest in women because they’re stuck in childhood, but responding rationally to the lack of incentive they see in society for being male, overall. They are shutting down and removing themselves from a society that punishes them, essentially, for having masculine traits. Punishing them for being male, in fact.

This is fresh and new for mainstream publishing and it took some degree of courage to publish something like this. It’s not the same old tired misandrist tripe repackaged by a patronizing feminist intellectual “concerned for men.” In her book, Smith goes on to speak descriptively and directly about many of the injustices facing men today (things you hardly hear a whisper about), like male paternity fraud, the inequity of marriage for men, the lack of men’s reproductive rights, college bias, declining male wages and eduction, and the harmful double-standards resulting from polarizing feminist interests. Smith also speaks unambiguously, if not pejoratively, about “Uncle Tims” and “White Knights,” the bleeding heart men who opportunistically lend a hand in bashing their own sex by joining the ranks of modern feminism and its culturally hip contempt of XY.

This book is not without flaws, however. Much of what is discussed in its pages is anecdotal and smacks slightly of right-wing (or at least “libertarian”) politics, mind you, and if there is one primary gripe I were to have about Smith’s work, it would be this, if not how many times she plugs PJ Media, where she is a columnist and blogger. This is not to say the material in this book is without good points or sources, however. One terrible statistic made available in this work is the alarming suicide rate of males. In 2010, Smith notes that 38,364 suicides were committed nationally, and that 30,277 of those were of men. That alone should tell us something about the hidden social poisons in culture today, should it not? Frankly, I find the contrast in that number quite staggering.

Another nit would be in regard to the rather casual sounding voice in Men on Strike, which borders on sometimes “bloggish” to, dare I say, crude sounding. The lack of a balanced and scholarly tone in the body is a bit off-putting. I’m sure others will agree. And that’s unfortunate, for the subject matter Smith seizes upon is critical and I fear the points she has to make in the book will be overlooked due to the lack of objective discipline afforded in her writing.

Overall, however, Men on Strike is definitely worth a read. It’s not a scholarly masterpiece, by any stretch of the imagination, but it does strike to the heart of many issues facing the male sex today and offers a scalding criticism of the subversive religion of neofeminism we have all too easily grown accustomed to tolerating in our schools, our entertainment, and our legal activism. If anything, it helps to offer those who have never stepped outside of feminism’s intellectual wind tunnel a chance to look at things from a different perspective: what it means to live in the modern Western world today as a man. Smith’s work is a great introduction to some very real and serious problems within a society that has become, more or less, anti-male.

stars-three

 

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

July 23, 2013

Why I Love Men

By Nina E.

Despite all of the advantages that contemporary women have, despite all of their advances, despite their achievements and the respect they have rightly earned for them, many seem strangely dissatisfied with the romantic or mate potential of the men that surround them. Ironic, as increasingly more men are adapting to the new egalitarian roles of the sexes: playing by women’s rules in the office, helping out in the home and with children, and abiding by the increasing number of rules and regulations that women in charge think essential. Most men quietly bear the scathing and sometimes blatantly dishonest media stereotypes of themselves as clueless, doltish, thick-headed animals in need of training and, often without complaint, accept the modern feminine mythos that women are spiritually, emotionally, and mentally superior to their sex in all ways. Other men, still a minority, choose quietly to opt out and not play by female rules which cause them to deny their true selves. After being disenfranchised by a vagina-positive society they are now self-disenfranchising as a response: they don’t go to college, they don’t enter the increasingly feminized workplace, and they are, in rising numbers, refusing to marry or even engage in long-term romantic relationships. Young women, in fact, are becoming increasingly resigned to the “hookup” (temporary fuckbuddy) culture and even adopting it as their own.

Once the heady draught of freedom and wide-open opportunities has worn off, once the busy intensity of striving for success and competing in one’s early adult years has passed and a woman finds herself well-established in her career or other endeavors, she, more and more frequently, looks around at the available men and feels a bleak, sinking feeling in her stomach. The members of the mating pool she finds herself in just don’t turn her on. Assuming some of these males meet the modern woman’s illogically high achievement/professional standards for a man (no matter how successful women are—and the converse: how unsuccessful men are in a female-run society—the majority of women still want to “marry up” into a more privileged class), the men seem emotionally lacking. Boring. Unexciting. Toadies. Yes Men. Passive. Weak. Overly Cooperative. Feminized. Repressed. Office Boys. Factotums. Metrosexuals. Milquetoasts. Unvirile. Manginas. These are some of the words that go through a dismayed woman’s mind when it finally turns to love, marriage, and family and she starts to survey that unfamiliar and surprisingly bleak landscape, looking for something out there, someONE out there with potential. The old adage, “A good man is hard to find,” has taken on a special meaning in the minds and hearts of many contemporary women.

The core truth being experienced in these “wonderful, exciting times” by thousands of successful, modern women is that they emotionally (and, some would say, illogically) crave a “real man,” someone they can look up to and respect, someone with “traditional” male traits, someone their bodies and hearts, despite the mental overlay of feminist propaganda, tell them is an “appropriate” mate. Sadly, this man is almost nowhere to be found—particularly in the places such women are looking. The boring, repressed, politically correct behavior and roles we’ve forced on most males in developed countries just do not stir our loins. He’s a breeze to work with (or to “organize,” if you happen to be married to him), he may be extremely skilled at pleasing in bed, but he just doesn’t inspire the sort of passion, intensity and deep, exciting, committed romance that most women crave in a relationship with a man.

Why is that? There are many reasons as this is a complex issue, but the primary reason is simple: we (members of rich, developed societies) simply do not allow men to be themselves these days and somewhere deep inside both men and women know this: both sexes recognize this social-political lie. What is a man like when he is most himself? That is what this editorial will explore, in the hopes that it will provide a compass for women who feel lost at sea when it comes to love, relationships, and romance.

There are certain personality features and inclinations that most men are born with and that naturally emerge as he grows, if not artificially stifled. Some of these traits are purposefully repressed by parents and teachers as boys transform into men. Others have little place to express themselves in today’s world and so are ignored. It’s a sad fact of life that up until as recently as 40 years ago, the majority of men used to express these traits naturally, exuberantly, and, dare I say, aggressively. But male aggression is a big-no-no these days, along with many of the other traits I am about to discuss. Nevertheless, they are what make men “men,” and, when you look at the secret fantasy lives of many women or examine the “bedside books” they read when nobody is around, you’ll find they abound with romantic male characters that embody these basic male traits, despite their political incorrectness. Sadly, the only place real men are allowed to exist in most women’s mental landscapes is in this lets-pretend world of fantasy, wishes, and idealistic dreams, a landscape built by thinly-disguised BDSM dreams and male-dominance romance novels. We cannot accept the genuine article when we encounter him because he doesn’t follow the neat, orderly, and overly safe feminine rules for behavior. No matter how much our deeper selves crave his guidance and energizing touch, that latter fact really pisses us off. He is a real man: he is himself and there is nothing a rules-bound overly feminized society hates more than someone who won’t play by “their rules.”

Of course there are evil men (and evil women, too). But I’m going to speak below of the very best traits that men can possess and that the majority of good men will express, if given the freedom to do so.

 

Their Minds

What woman who has been around men much has failed to notice that they think differently than us? I’m not talking about differences in interests or focus, I’m talking about the thought processes themselves. Male brains, at their best, travel down logical, clean, brightly-lit paths. They take few side-trips down the murky emotional byways that constantly waylay female minds and, as a result, the conclusions men quickly arrive at are often sane, coherent, and objective. Listening to a man reason and then come up with simple and often elegant conclusions feels like diving into a fresh pool of cool, clear water. Men’s minds get quickly to the point. They do so often by ignoring the emotional overtones of an issue. While this is sometimes confused with a lack of subtlety, I see it more as a clean, strong focus on the point itself, rather than how it makes one feel.

I’ve tried to imitate this style of thinking, but even at my best I have a tendency, present in many female minds, to overcomplicate issues and worry about things that have not happened. This causes me to find convoluted solutions to problems that, while they try to avoid or prevent possible contingencies, do so by jumping through far too many hoops. They are not optimal solutions because they waste energy and resources getting around imagined “bad stuff that might happen.” Most men do not have this conservative, risk-avoidance instinct and, as a result, their solutions are clearer, more elegant, and, in my experience, far more likely to work than my own. They are able to see what is important about a situation because they are less distracted by the trivial. They see the forest, the big picture, not the trees. Seeing the trees has its place, mind you, but not when making sweeping decisions or when facing a serious crisis. At those times you need to see the whole picture, not the tiny aspects of it that many a female mind will hover around and get lost in contemplating.

Most men seem quite facile at thinking spatially, abstractly, and tactically. These are traits I (and many women I know) have admitted are not our best. I get easily lost, for example. I have trouble with even simple math, and I suck at strategy war games. I greatly admire the average man’s ability to think well in these practical, and, at one time, essential-to-survival areas.

 

Their Emotional Sets

One of the reasons I believe men think more clearly than women is because they are not besieged by tidal waves of emotion that rock their mental boats and steer them off course. While I enjoy the company of sincere, good-hearted women, I enjoy even more being around men because they seem immune to the emotional tsunamis that plague even the best female minds. Men are generally positive and upbeat, and, if not overly influenced by female-dominated online culture, far less snide and snarky than the average woman. Overall, men seem to give women a lot more credit than they deserve. When the typical modern woman looks at a man she thinks, “Guilty until proven innocent!” When the typical modern man looks at a woman, he feels she is innocent or good until proven guilty. This noble and charitable attitude is one that would improve many woman if they were to practice it. It is the unsuspicious and magnanimous attitude of someone well-born, someone with manners who has been taught to respect all individuals unless they’ve clearly demonstrated that they are unworthy of it. The word for this simple quality that so many men naturally possess is “nobility.”

Part of a man’s positive emotional force comes from the ways in which he thinks: he does not start out overcomplicating matters by worrying about “what-if” scenarios. If he wants to do something, he simply does it. If it’s something he’s never done before, he doesn’t spend hours researching it and figuring out from others the best route to take: he just plunges right in. This lack of overcomplication and worry is incredibly refreshing to be around and helps ground me when I get lost in the paralyzing fantasy clouds of “what if THIS happened?” Men live their lives by that old Nike slogan: they Just Do It. It’s a marvelously simple and free way to live.

Overall, men seem more patient, accepting, and forgiving than women. They certainly put up with far more emotional games and subterfuges from us than we are willing to accept from them! Men can get very angry when they are roused, but, at the same time, most men have a slow fuse. Not only do they not fly instantly off the handle but they seem willing to put up with a huge about of female BS before they finally decide they’ve had enough. Even the firm, dominant men that I associate with do this. You don’t, for example, see most men viciously and vindictively trashing a woman’s reputation online simply because she was late once for a date.

Men are far less prone to hysteria and “losing it” in emergencies. Should I find myself in a terrible crisis, I would be greatly relieved if a man were there to help plan the best course of action. Far too often women in a state of crisis succumb to panic or irrationally focus on trivialities that have little bearing on the overall problem.

Men, at their best, are wonderfully direct and transparent: what you see is what you get. I greatly admire a man’s natural, bright honesty and directness and strive hard to act the same. Men, when compared to women, have a strong sense of fairness, justice, and balance. They don’t hold grudges because someone used the “wrong” word or wore the same outfit that they are wearing. They lack the pettiness that all too often plagues the female heart and causes her to place deep import on irrelevant events, magnify imagined slights, and even delight in causing discomfort to others.

 

Their Powers of Creation

When something breaks in the house, who does the average woman turn to? A man, usually. Throughout history (and, I suspect, prehistory) men have been the primary builders, makers, fixers, and general creators in this world. Most lasting, most “great” creative works of art or music, books, theories, architectural marvels, and so on have a male mind behind them. There is a creative force in men that is at the heart of their virility, their maleness, and when they harness it to a worthwhile project or vision, they often come close to making miracles happen. Feminist “scientific” literature is full of theories about why most great creative works were done by men. This impolite little fact of life makes them furious. (Because we all know women are supposed to be better than men in everything, right?) But the fact of the matter is, the average man is better at making things, better at fixing things that get broken, better at conceiving of paradigm-shifting ideas that profoundly change the ways we think about the world, and, overall, far more creative than the average woman.

Perhaps some of this is due to a man’s ability to make sense out of spatial information, his often superior eye-hand coordination, or the fact that the skills men exercised throughout history encouraged and supported the development of creative thinking. Whatever it is, I deeply admire men for their ability to envision something new that has never been seen or heard before and then create it. Or perhaps they envision it as they create it? However it’s done, it’s extremely impressive and often makes a profound difference in the ways we all live. When I drive a car instead of walking to work or read a cell phone text instead of waiting days or weeks for a letter or ride in an elevator instead of climbing the stairs, I am quite aware that I wouldn’t have such useful conveniences if a male mind hadn’t conceived of and then solved the complex problems around building them. I rejoice in and am deeply grateful for men’s immense creativity and practical genius.

 

Their Fighting Spirits

I love and deeply admire male bravery. Men constantly take risks in life, they leap in when things are unsure, they are willing and able to fight for what’s important. They don’t constantly try to avoid danger like the average risk-aversive woman; instead, they will respond quickly and decisively in times of crisis. The typical man is far more likely than a woman to face danger with aggression and try to overcome it. Men value the development of their physical skills and thrive in competitive environments. Quite clearly, many of the recreational sports most enjoyed by men employ lightly disguised versions of battle practices. Men enjoy excelling physically: being faster, stronger, more agile, more stealthy than the other guy. They enjoy physical action immensely, even simulated physical action, and seem to thrive on danger and risk—things most women dislike and do not seek out.

If you visit Youtube.com and watch some guy’s game video where he’s running from monsters who are everywhere and dying constantly in horrible ways he’s usually chortling with intense glee. As a woman watching these scenarios I think, “Is he out of his mind? What is fun about this extremely stressful situation?” I don’t get it but I’m very glad men are naturally physically aggressive and even enjoy it, as I am not. I’d rather hide in a closet from the monsters! Seriously, I feel safe and protected when in the company of a man. I know his fighting skills are better than my own and that if we did face a crisis he would be able to direct the best course of action to take in response to it. On my own, I’d be likely to panic or freeze up, and then perhaps face, as I do over and over in video games, a needless death due to my unwillingness to take a risk and engage in a stressful, fast-paced confrontation.

 

Their Natural Abilities to Lead

All of the traits described above make a man into a natural and logical leader. A man’s objectivity and ability to think clearly and strategically without the confusing haze of emotion or fantasy; his action-oriented, risk-taking personality; his creativity and trailblazing abilities; his natural aggressiveness; and his overall largeness of spirit makes him an ideal person to follow. Unlike the current cultural myths, many men, if allowed to be themselves, will rise to greatness, will take charge of situations and make rational, fair decisions that result in more people being helped than harmed. They are natural leaders. Men are protective and possessive, as well, toward those in their charge. If he is allowed to develop naturally and with strong male role models, it is second nature for a man to take good care of those he leads and cares for. When needed, they don’t operate on automatic or “by the rules”: they are flexible and strategic risk-takers. Finally, men have an extremely valuable trait that all good leaders need: they are persistent. They do not give up easily, at the first or even the tenth frustration. They keep looking for a solution, a way through, a way to fix things. For all of these reasons, I find it deeply disturbing that men’s natural leadership talents are so often these days ignored, seen as unimportant, or even ridiculed in favor of the overly-detailed, inflexible, monotonous, fastidious rules-following corporate mentality that far too many women today identify with leadership.

 

Postscript

To anticipate a question that may be in the minds of some as they finish this piece, yes, of course, women have good qualities too. Whoever said they didn’t? In fact, these good qualities are talked about everywhere—absolutely everywhere. Every place you go, everything you read in this “girls rule-boys drool” society is immensely female-positive, often at the expense of men who are contrasted with the “greatness” of women as bumbling but trainable  fools at best; insane and violent criminals at worst. But where is the goodness, the greatness that is man, talked about? The honest answer is: almost nowhere these days. I’m simply trying to redress that immense imbalance with a few reminders of why we are all not lesbians, why so many of us women still love and even adore the  delightfully-different-from-us man in our lives…provided we can find one.

 

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

July 1, 2013

Girl Power in the Media: Does it Protest Too Much?

By Marc Esadrian

feminism-media-tv

While I’m not the type of person who watches much cable, I have taken a liking to the Starz show channel from time to time. I admit, Spartacus, the half serious, half soft adult porn series was one of my guilty pleasures. What’s not to love about gratuitous sex and violence in the ancient Roman world? These days, I’ve taken a particular liking to Magic City, a smooth and sexy hotel/casino mob story set back in the 1950’s. Between catching up on reruns of that show, however, I was subjected to the repeated teasers of an upcoming series entitled The White Queen, a story that, in its own part cheesey, part historical fictionish sort of way, tells the tale of the “War of the Roses,” a dynastic struggle among rival houses for the throne of England—the facts of which historians still quibble and argue about today.

But I’m not going to go too far into scholarly conflict about actual facts relating to these episodes in history and I’m quite sure, given the reality that cable programming is meant more to entertain than enlighten, The White Queen won’t either. What struck me as particularly eye rolling about the trailer for this series is its service to the usual girl power propaganda. While treated to flashes of hyper-stylized bits and pieces of scenery related to the series, we’re informed in heavy gold letters across the screen that “Men go to battle…Women wage war.”

It’s particularly irksome, how entertainment media today gushes, drools, and fawns over women in a conspiratorial circle-jerk to stroke the increasingly inflating egos of (particularly) young women. I suppose the marketing powers that be know now that if you want to sell anything, you really need to appeal more to notions of female supremacy than just equality. For how much more obvious must the repeated propaganda of female primacy hidden in plain view be, I ask? What particularly amused me about the men go to battle, women wage war line is how banal it insinuates the role of men to be. Men, who have been over thousands of centuries the primary agents of action—the warriors, despots, messiahs, tyrants, prophets, kings, and emperors—are reduced to brainless wooden figures in a medieval game of table hockey between scheming female nobles. The gist is, “men are petty and do the stupid fighting, but women are the real movers and shakers…high five!” What a wonderful thing to insinuate to young male and female minds. And come on, who cares if this marketing line lends to bogus history or overlooks some important details in the least; it makes a great punch line and gets across, for the umpteenth time, that chicks rule and dudes drool (in case you weren’t aware, by now).

This show is but one of many in a long line of movies and cable programs that are increasingly making female characters the polestar powers of the script in a politicized sort of way. In Oz the Great and Powerful, the bumbling buffoon that is Oz is surrounded by three witches, the truly great forces in the story who are in a war for control of their world. In Snow White and the Huntsman, the male characters are fairly incidental to the most powerful characters in the story: the wicked Queen who is evil incarnate (and I must admit, played wonderfully by Charlize Theron) and Snow White, who, we’re told, represents the essence of all life. Of course. For upcoming movies, try the charming title of Girls Against Boys, where “misandrist overtone” is more of an understatement.

Movies aren’t nearly where the silliness ends, however. Cable shows like American Dad, Everybody Loves Raymond, or The Simpsons tend to portray men as generally goofy, stupid, and inept. Much of children’s programming today isn’t free from such meta messages, either. In the very least, they are guilty of inspiring young girls to be as sassy, conceited, and as cutely arrogant as possible. Remembering Hannah Montana, a show that was and still is avidly consumed by the young female cable viewing population, we may find ourselves noting what type of girl the veritable pissant Miley Cyrus, who regularly snarls at the camera in her videos and threatens her father publicly on Twitter, has grown up to be. Some food for thought, perhaps, about the personalities that are raising our kids when we’re not?

This may seem like a petty gripe. In some ways it is, I suppose, but in some ways it’s really not. Our entertainment, as much as we may like to think so, isn’t just a harmless diversion that ends when we turn off the screen or amble out of the theater. Movies, just like music and the arts, help to inspire and influence the sentiments of the masses. The mythology these stories create conspire to tell us what is true and right, as stories throughout the centuries always have. Books, plays, and orations, which were once the primary media for this story telling, have simply stepped aside for the medium of cinema, roughly 40 years of which have been increasingly devoted to dissing men and boys in commercials, talk shows, cable programs, and the silver screen.

I think it’s about time, if you haven’t done so already as a parent, to guard your young minds against this new sexist media onslaught when at all possible. In the very least, I think it’s vital to balance out the increasingly hostile attitude writers and directors show toward the male sex by having conversations with your children and teens about what they are digesting on a daily basis. Teach them how to spot misandry (you’ll likely need to define what that word even means) and dysfunctional feminine glorification in the media today, if only to balance their perceptions.

Yes, I know…this commentary is coming to you from a site entitled “Humbled Females.” Who are we, exactly, to be complaining about sexism, of all things? A casual visit to our about page will reveal, however, that our way of life is consensual and that, societally speaking, we are not advocating revoking women’s rights to have a job or to vote. The message in this entry today doesn’t have to reside only here, but, perhaps in a space like this, what needs to be said can be said without fear of reprisal or rebuke from sponsors or employers, who are ever on the look-out for anything they perceive as anti-feminist—the new Satan, apparently. I say this not to advocate female submission so much as to put a sober sticky note on the forehead of this agenda called “anti-sexism”—an agenda that modern society, so we’re told, is supposed to support and uphold. And I think it’s time we all, male and female, black and white, liberal or conservative, god fearing or not, recognize that feminism today is often not so much about ending sexism as it is about fashionably asserting a new form of sexism. So please join me in saying that the male bashing has to stop. We can have female equality in society without lowering the perceived value of men and boys. I encourage all who are reading this to boycott films and shows that cater to this increasing cultural disease and counteract the effects of its rhetoric in your children, if you have them. Make an effort to raise awareness about misandry in the media and speak out against it when you can.

You may not subscribe to the message and attitude of our site. After all, we do believe women, generally, have a place in loving service to their men—a place of loving submission. We aren’t afraid of articulating our opinions on the female sex, which certainly aren’t always politically correct. This all is beside the point, however, that the future of real harmony and equality between the sexes in society, if you really value that sort of thing, partially depends on rejecting these condescending attitudes and messages about men.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

April 16, 2013

Money: An Ultimate Litmus Test

By Nina E.

Females are, by nature, weak creatures. There are many dangers that we can fall prey to along the path of complete submission to a man. There are, figuratively speaking, deep pits we can stumble into and never escape from; fanged snakes whose venom spreads quickly through our bloodstreams; and enticing detours to restful glens along the side of the road that cause us to forsake the “straight and narrow.” If you are a submissive female, such metaphorical dangers to submission are actually within you. They are part of your mental and emotional makeup, specifically, the part of yourself that seeks to subvert your progress.

In actual life, such dangers may include jealousy, possessiveness, self-importance, resentment, deception, carelessness, bad habits, stress, and fixed ideas that run counter to slavery. While such are the traits of a normal and, for the most part, “healthy” woman, these symptoms of humanity’s common cold sabotage genuine submission and are a particular bane of women who crave to be slaves. Dangers confront the aspiring slave when she allows her inner weaknesses to lead her away from the clear and simple path set down by her master. How she handles such trials reveals a great deal about her nature and can help a prospective master determine whether she can serve him successfully.

Let’s take a closer look at one such danger. Imagine that you are a bird, flying high above the winding, dangerous road that leads to complete surrender and submission. You swoop down now, right above a spot where a well-defined fork occurs. One fork is muddy, dark, and riddled with stones. It heads toward the storm-covered peak of a forbidding mountain. A slave knows this is the way she must go. The other path is grassy and smooth. The sun shines brightly upon it and in the distance can be heard pleasant music from a guesthouse just ahead. Which fork does she choose? In every submissive reader’s mind I can hear the resounding answer, “Up the dark path to my master, of course!” Of course. In painless fantasy the choice is clear and one is certain of oneself. But when it comes time to choose the real-life equivalent of this fork, something very different can happen.

Picture yourself as a prospective slave. You’ve sworn to do anything for the man that you serve. You’re thrilled that he’s given you a chance to prove yourself worthy of him and are determined to show him what a marvelous servant you are. You follow his rules for your life to the letter, overjoyed that this wonderful man has taken an interest in you. You’ve got many of the things that trip up other slaves under control. It’s smooth sailing and everything is perfect. It’s so easy: all you need do is obey him.

Then it happens. The other day, he told you out of the blue that you would be sending him regular, large sums of money from each paycheck. Without fail. But you aren’t even his slave yet! You haven’t even been collared. And yet he’s demanding money from you. You are shocked to the core and you start to panic. You have excuses. Dozens of them. The amount is far too large. You can’t live on what’s left. You can’t save anything, take the vacation you’d planned, get your hair colored and cut, buy a needed car. The excuses, the rationales for needing the money race endlessly through your mind and the stress builds to a head. You’re now determined to show him how unreasonable all this is. It’s too much for you to bear, far too much.

But that is just the start of things. He is not talked out of this demand. He will not see reason. He continues to demand money from his potential slave. So next, the suspicions begin.

“He’s a lazy shyster who doesn’t want to earn his own living, like a real man would. Instead he sponges off hardworking women.”

“He’s going to take all my money for a year or two and then dump me. I’m just a flesh piggybank to him.”

“I don’t really feel comfortable giving money to a relative stranger who hasn’t enslaved me first/isn’t even living with me yet/hasn’t promised to control me for life.”

“He hasn’t even given me an idea of what he’s going to do with the money. OMG! Is he going to use it to shack up with that other slut who serves him?”

With such suspicions (which also provide her with convenient excuses not to obey), the prospective female slave forgets that this is the man she swore to do anything for, the man she vowed to obey fully and serve for the remainder of her life. But apparently doing “anything” for him includes everything except handing over her hard-eared money.

This is what happens with many a woman who considers herself prime slave material. She loves her money far more than she loves her master or else she sees it as some sort of bargaining chip: “You make me your slave or commit to always be there for me and I’ll gladly turn over my paychecks to you. But if you don’t, well, sorry, but I just feel, you know, uneasy about that.”

The demand for money hits most starry-eyed women who imagine they are slaves squarely where they really live.  It quickly uncovers the inherent selfishness in most females, even those who claim they will do anything for a man. It is also a good indicator of how a given female will respond to other serious commands that don’t quite fit into her romantic plans for herself—or for him. If she makes loads of excuses about why she needs to keep most of her money to herself, a man would be wise to count on her doing the same with any other order she dislikes. If she swore absolute devotion to him but then decides he’s a common criminal or user when he demands she provide proof of her devotion, guess how she’ll regard him when he requires something even more difficult. If she suddenly starts finding all sorts of problems with the relationship that she never mentioned before, it’s a sign she’s seeking a way to weasel out of sending him a cent by finding fault with the other things he does.

I’ve seen all of these responses and worse from submissive females as soon as their masters start to demand that they literally “put their money where their mouths are” by handing over a good percentage of their incomes. All of a sudden their carefully hidden greed, parsimoniousness, suspicion, and demands for special consideration that lie nascent in their shriveled little hearts crawl to the surface. It’s extremely ugly to observe.

Why does it happen? Why do most women so tediously and predictably swear to lovingly do a man’s will in all things and to give him anything he might require then completely go back on their word as soon as money is mentioned? To many of us, money represents energy, it represents hard work or perhaps something that was handed down to us and that we “deserve” to have. It is “our” energy and we feel this deep in our selfish bones despite our romantic self-beliefs that we can give up all in order to serve a worthy man. Theoretically, submissive women are thrilled by the idea of taking that hard, cold, road up the mountain. But then, when faced with their first true difficulty, their gigantic me-first SELF jumps out of the bushes and says, “HEL-LO?” The female predictably thinks, “To hell with this s–t,” pulls out a few lame excuses that make her disobedience OK in her own eyes, and then trots down the far more conventional (and certainly more comfortable) grassy path to the warm comfy guesthouse that awaits her around life’s easy bend.

Some of us deeply feel, down to our very core, that our money is ours and ours only to dispense as we will, not at the command of another. Our ability to hand it over or not rests largely on what is inside us: are we truly as unselfish, giving, generous, and trusting as we claimed we were? Or are we the standard female product of this day and age: a greedy, suspicious little grubber always looking out for her own best interests but at the same time proclaiming loudly how pure she is? Money is energy, and if we are willing, even joyous, to provide that energy to the one we serve so that he may grow stronger (even if as a result we grow weaker) and if we do this passionately and without care for our own situation or survival then we prove our real worth to a master. We prove that we actually do care about him more than we care about ourselves.

I am convinced that relinquishing money is one of the primary tests of a woman’s genuine desire to be a slave. It is not the only test she will face, but it can be a pivotal one: it can accurately predict her future behavior as a slave. There is nothing that will tell you more about a woman’s true attitude toward servitude than how she responds to a demand for a significant amount of money from the one she serves. To judge this truly, a man can’t trust what she says about her willingness to pay up. She may just be slyly mouthing the expected words.  Instead, he has to observe how she actually performs when repeated demands for money are made. Does she give it instantly, willingly and cheerfully, thrilled to be of service? Can she see it as a sacred privilege and a strong sign of her master’s trust? Even more importantly, is she still providing it six months from now, without missing a single tithe or coming up with excuses for why it’s not available? (This assumes that you have demanded a reasonable sum that doesn’t make it impossible for her to live.) And now that she’s giving you cash, does she still treat you with the same loving respect and awe that she first expressed when she was trying to win your favor and prove herself? Or has she become irritable and demanding, suspicious or even snidely condescending? Does she act like she has “bought” you? Has she started to resent you, to suspect you of treating her falsely? These are all signs that money’s corruption has seeped deep into her soul and that she cares far more about protecting “her own” than giving everything she has and is to you.

Women would do well to bear the following old, but relevant, wisdom in mind before embarking upon the hard road of slavery:

No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.  —Luke 16:13

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

March 30, 2013

There, away, and back again

By Katie B.

Then Hwin, though shaking all over, gave a strange little neigh and trotted across to the Lion. “Please,” she said, “you’re so beautiful. You may eat me if you like. I’d sooner be eaten by you than fed by anyone else.”

I read these words from a children’s book when I was a little girl with a sense of wonder and deep curiosity. I liked the image evoked by the words, “I’d sooner be eaten by you than fed by anyone else,” and I wanted to know what sort of person could make me feel that way about them. I wondered what it would be like to want to give myself so completely to someone that I would be willing to be consumed by them? I wasn’t sure, but my instincts told me that I would like it.

I spent most of my adolescence feeling lost. I was more “serious,” I suppose, than many of my peers and I felt like I was constantly searching for purpose. I struggled with feeling out of step with what girls my age wanted from their interaction with boys. While my peers were enjoying the full range of teenage girl emotions and the experience of having boys fawning over them, I wasn’t drawn to the guys who would let me lead the way. The part of me that the passage from the book had touched when I was young stuck with me, or more accurately, touched something within me. Even before I could really name what it was that felt missing from my life, I was searching for someone who would make me feel the way that little “Hwin” had felt.  I found myself attracted to men older than me, mostly because I felt secure around their confidence and I liked their natural ability to command authority. I felt it was important for them to notice me, not for the sake of having their attention (although I liked knowing that they were pleased with me) but for the sole reason that I wanted to be useful to them. This was completely different than the “girl power” message all around me and I was beginning to think something was wrong with me.

The moment I first learned about submission—overt submission—is not a moment that I will ever forget: it was as though a secret door had been unlocked and there were answers to so many of the questions I hadn’t even known how to ask.

After my initial introduction to the world of dominance and submission I learned that it would still take time, effort, and understanding to really find fulfillment in being a submissive female. I was ravenous for this information, so I sought out every outlet the Internet could afford to get more. I learned that there was a lot of conflicting information to wade through, but there was a glimmer of something that felt right, and so I pushed on.  I never bought into the “scene.” To be honest, it was really confusing to me. What I was looking for was something simple, with less fancy terminology and rules, more actual service. I didn’t want to be the glamorous slave girl who spent half her time in an alternate reality, and the rest in the “real world,” I wanted submission to be the reality I lived in. I did enjoy, nonetheless, having an outlet where it felt OK to be myself and interacting with other submissive females. I learned a lot from hearing their stories and I began to recognize that the females who best exemplified what I longed to experience in submission had one thing in common: Masters who understood that being a master was not just a role to play.

I realized, at some point, that I had become so distracted by everything the D/s community had to offer in the way of telling me about submission, that I had forgotten the thing that had drawn me in the first place: the idea of the truly dominant man. At that point my attention began to shift away from the shiny new world of D/s and settled back where it had started with that feeling of wanting to be utterly consumed. There had to be a man somewhere who could draw me to himself, trembling, and begging to be devoured.

Meeting Dominance

When I finally met real dominance it was an eye opening and life altering experience, as it should be! From the very first time I read something he’d written in the community we both participated in, I knew he was different than any other man I had come across and I wanted desperately to talk to him. I was drawn to him like a moth to a flame. There was something striking about the way he expressed himself. His conviction was so solid, he never hesitated to say the things that other men would only let themselves think. I felt compelled towards him, but finding the courage to actually send him a message was another thing altogether. It literally took months for me get myself to type something and press send and I don’t even remember what I wrote! I was certain that he got a million messages a day and that there could be no chance of him ever responding to mine. But I was wrong.

Under his instruction my life began to change drastically. I felt like I was finally able to focus and see clearly. I was happy and healthier than I had ever been, it seemed that my femininity blossomed under his guidance. Like the females I had wanted to be like, his dominance brought out in me real submission.  It was such a natural response, I didn’t have to contrive how I would submit: it was an automatic response to his will. It felt right to let go of my own will and take instruction. Letting go of things I’d struggled to control and putting them into his hands gave me a sense of rest and security that I’d never known before.

I was so close to realizing the type of life that I should have been living, but unfortunately, I was less mature than I’d believed and wasn’t able to see the small things that I allowed into my head that would eventually lead to doubt. I’d gotten so good at trusting myself to know real dominance when I finally found it, that trust was the one thing that I didn’t know how to surrender. I had myself convinced that I trusted him through and through, but what I was really invested in was my own ability to predict how dominance would act.

This, of course, meant that the first time something I couldn’t have predicted came up, my whole world shattered and everything I’d found security in suddenly seemed unsure. I blamed him for having broken my trust, but the truth was the only person I had trusted was myself. I started to wonder if I had been wrong about it all, so I panicked and ran. It’s funny, I realized enough to know that I needed to be dominated by someone who knew his place in the world, but I couldn’t see that I wasn’t fully accepting mine. I had trusted myself so much to know what was best for me, but when I took submission fully into my own hands, it was a disaster. Without the balance and wisdom of a man to guide me, the very things that had been making me a better female began to destroy me. I was angry and I thought I was angry at him, but the truth was that I was angry at myself: I was grasping for things to control, but the reality is that I don’t want control and the effort to try to be in control was tearing me apart. The physical and mental consequences of my failed attempt at being my “own master” were appropriately severe, in fact, though there are times when I think they should have been worse. The experience taught me, however, that submission isn’t simply beneficial to me as a female, it’s essential to my femininity.

What I Know Now

The trouble with trying to run from submission was that no matter where I ran, it was still there because it’s a part of who I am. No matter how far I thought I had gotten from it, it still managed to manifest itself in all areas of my life, and I found that I was most happy when it did. I’ve learned that the “trust” that we talk about a lot of the time really isn’t trust at all. How can trust demand security with no risk? As females, trust is something we must learn to give as an act of faith rather than expect to have earned. We can’t give of ourselves completely until we can trust blindly and openly. Is that scary? Yes. Does it make you vulnerable? Absolutely. But if we can’t cross that line, face the fear, and submit our trust, we are regarding ourselves and not our masters as the ultimate authority.

Today I realize that the only way to find fulfillment is to truly submit without expectations about what the future will look like, except that whatever future comes I will face it as submissive female. No running, no hiding, no withholding—just humility.

When I was younger I wanted to submit because it seemed right, now I serve because I know that it’s right and that there is no other way for me.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

December 19, 2012

Unification

By Marc Esadrian

humbled-females-unification

Over the past 12 months, a great deal of effort and planning went into making the Humbled Females website. That work wasn’t only relegated to the administrative side, however. The community itself has done its share in building what this site is today and it’s something we can all be proud of, I think. There’s still more articles to write and theory to hash out in the forums, as I suspect there always will be, but so far, so good.

One of the recurrent problems throughout the existence of the revitalization, however, was the presence of the preexisting site, humbledfemales.netm, which was a reboot of the previous original effort (yes, the history is a bit confusing). An enthusiast of the original Livejournal community, back in the days of 2006, who went by the name of “Justine” acquired the domain name after it lapsed and subsequently republished the copyrighted materials from the old, original site that I owned. I wasn’t sure how I felt about that upon discovery, given that I had inevitably let the site close in 2009-2010. We got in contact and hashed out our differences. In doing so, I learned her intentions were merely to bring what was dear to her back to life, and while we didn’t fully see eye to eye on everything per se, I gave permission to republish the articles from the old site as she added new ones. As for the Livejournal community, I agreed to her co-managing the site with me, and so all was fairly well.

In late 2011, however, I decided to rebuild the original vision of Humbled Females. Why? I felt the community needed direction again, especially in light of the Livejournal’s stagnation and the fact that the new domain owner and I didn’t quite see eye to eye on everything. Since I didn’t own the .com domain name, I purchased the .net and .org domains instead, and, voila: the site we have today was born. All along, however, I had been attempting to convince the .com’s owner, “Justine,” to merge our domains together. Because of our mildly conflicting visions, it has not always been the easiest of dialogs between us.

But today I’m happy to announce that the confusing rivalry of the two Humbled Females websites haunts the Internet no longer. In a pleasing turn of events, Justine gracefully decided to give in to my call for unification. As of today, Humbled Females spans the three major domain extensions: .com, .net, and .org.

What this means

The reacquisition of the .com domain extension, along with established copyright and trademark protection, carves out a much stronger and more stable presence online for Humbled Females. Our visibility in search engine results will increase markedly, meaning we’ll be a little easier to find on major search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, Dogpile, Mahalo, and DuckDuckGo. That means more sign-ups and more support for the site. Most importantly of all, however, it means we now speak with one voice. And that’s a very good thing.

I’d like to take this opportunity to publicly thank Justine, the previous owner/manager of the .com domain from 2010-2012, for her help in unifying the domains. Her cooperation in bringing our sites together was critical, and so my personal appreciation runs high for her in doing so.

Happy Holidays to you all and I hope to see more growth and continued good news for Humbled Females in 2013!

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

October 10, 2012

D/s and the Digital Cult Of Personality

By Marc Esadrian

The Internet: it’s a wonderful thing, isn’t it?

Especially for those who practice dominant-submissive relationships, the creation of the Internet was a watershed moment for anonymous and remote communication. Pre-Internet, the fear of being stigmatized for one’s prurient interests were walls that kept social exploration of such interests effectively hammered down among all but the most daring. But when the Internet did arrive, it became a means of connecting to others by shared interests without the risk of personal exposure. If you had long been haunted/blessed by strongly submissive or dominant motives and unable to practice these things for lack of finding a willing partner to take the opposite role, the “information superhighway” and all its wonderful anonymity tore down those barriers for minds across the globe that, until the advent of such communication, would have never have had the chance to make union before.

So here we are, all together online in a big melting pot of collective consciousness, all sharing our ideas, all learning and evolving from all the experiences and perceptions we have to share. We’re so much more well-rounded now because of the Internet. Or are we?

As anyone who has even the slightest notion of how news blogs react to scandal before having any solid facts, how libelous mere Tweets can become, or how much anger and argument drives the larger proportion of Internet message boards, one will inevitably concede there’s more to the Internet than merely a superhighway for information. The Internet has a dark side: it’s just as easily a misinformation superhighway, too.

This is the digital age in a content-rich medium of countless sources and opinions. Today, we can easily “choose our news” and preset the spin that suits us best. On the Internet, we can all too easily elect association with personalities and ideas that stroke our world-views and perpetuate comforting half-truths without verifying anything grounded in reality. This monster has a tentacle in the “BDSM” community as well, on message boards and groups that associate with terms such as master and slave, owner and property, or total power exchange. Within these groups the phenomenon of politics and popularity is alive and well and it’s not long before visitors begin learning who the celebrities are. In the virtual world of M/s chat, the cool kids are those who identify as having “a lot of experience.” After all, they’re in relationships that have lasted X amount of years. Their profiles say so. But beyond that, they may seem popular, well-liked, and tend to garner applause from whatever group in which they have their roots firmly settled. This network of users quite often chats behind the scenes, forming alliances and intimate dyads with other users. Beneath the floorboards of public discourse, another current of communication is always buzzing through PM and a network of remote relationships begins to develop. Before long, the group is marbled with these alliances. Suddenly, critical discourse isn’t so much about being critical over the heart of things discussed: it’s about influence, affirmations, and communal back patting. It’s about backing up your buddy at the expense of intellectual honesty. In such places, the fate of group discussions becomes a smarmy strength in numbers game, no matter how ignorant or creatively dishonest those who make up those numbers are.

Ironically, it’s “submissive females” I see doing this quite often online (which reflects, no doubt, the indirect aggression of female cliques in real life). How many times, for instance, have we seen an individual who identifies as a dominant male make an open statement, only to have the “submissive female mafia” descend upon him and tell him how wrong he is in a dog pile that grows increasingly belittling and mocking? Within the course of a few replies, this hapless visitor has somehow managed to personally insult dozens of users who find it perfectly justified to pitch ugly jabs his (or her) way and take his (or her) words completely out of rational context for the sake of snark. Just what exactly is going on in these scenarios? Is it that the newcomer’s ideas are universally abhorrent or is it that such ideas have not properly genuflected and observed the delicate feelings of a tight-knit cyber support group? Things to contemplate, I think.

There’s certainly nothing wrong with liking the personalities people present online and forming friendships that occasionally migrate to the real world. There’s nothing wrong with friends list building and finding yourself among said groups online. But is wanting to be liked and accepted (and continue being accepted) by a group reason enough to forgo critical discourse or keeping a truly open, fair, and balanced discussion? Is it reason enough to ignore basic courtesy? Is it reason enough for a submissive female to forget that no matter wherever she goes in the world, she is a reflection of her master and should thus demonstrate the better angels of her nature? Perhaps for some, it is.

I feel a little differently, however. I like to keep politics and the cult of personality out of good debate and discussion. I think that when we make the discourse at hand about the subject and not about the person and his/her popularity or ability to tow the politically correct line in a group, a chance for the expansion of good discussion (and freedom from from groupthink) comes into play.

Where online discussion board celebrities are concerned, I’d warn to be vigilant of their sociable influence while they quietly murder rational thinking in the other room. Liking someone is not a good enough reason to ignore the validity of their opponent’s points and to do so is tantamount to being an enemy of truth. And while we’re on the subject of truth, I’d like to remind everyone to take what they see and read online with a certain grain of salt. There is no defacto arrangement of words, phrases, or story telling that guarantees someone can be verified as “sincere” in what they’re showing or expressing online, but this often doesn’t keep people from assigning certain online characters more clout in a discussion group, due to their charisma and bold claims of experience.  Online, we can dress up in words in any way we wish with impunity. That is the virtual nature of the Internet. One really needs to keep that in mind when considering expressions of “experience” online and how much we invest in them.

Ultimately, I look at the thought or argument or idea expressed, not the person’s credentials formed of a self-styled resume, their number of years lived “in the lifestyle,” or their popularity level in a group. What I care about is the thread count of their ideas, described experiences, visions, and what can be gleaned from them. And I trust they care about what I have to contribute, in turn. That is the atmosphere I hope Humbled Females continues to contain and project well into the future as our reader membership increases.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

August 25, 2012

The Humbled Females Primer and Other Updates

By Marc Esadrian

It has been a long time coming, but the primer is finally here. When I announced it this past May, I had no idea it would take this long to set up credit card processing. The verification and compliance hoops a merchant has to go through and the money one needs to put forward in getting set up for this is a little obscene, but we did it! The Humbled Females Primer On Ethos is at last available for access for a very reasonable cost.

Additionally, the Subscribers area will provide a slowly growing collection of imagery, video, and audio media content. Those who sign up will have access to this material for one full month. The sign-ups are non-recurring for the moment, as the content is pretty sparse. That will change in the future, of course.

To purchase our recently published primer and access our media area, click here.

With all that said, I want to make it very clear to everyone that everything but the private subscribers area will be 100% free. We still have an endless amount of articles to write and a limitless amount of subjects to discuss in the forums. Our site does have to find a way of supporting itself, however, and having a subscription area is the best way to achieve that. When we’ve raised enough money, Humbled Females will be moving to a dedicated server, meaning we’ll have a hosting system in place running strictly for Humbled Females. Things will be faster and more responsive on the site. Download speeds will increase and social functions will be instant.

We are gradually making little improvements to the forums as well and a new profile design is in the works. All things considered, we have been pretty busy behind the scenes to make this site more stable and solid. We’ve slowly been getting more members, too, and that’s always encouraging to see. Please tell your friends (of like-mind) about this community and encourage them to join and participate in the conversations. Unlike many of the popular social pools surrounding the acts of fetish, our site is solely devoted to the subject of authentic female submission and male dominance without the usual hyper-inclusivity and politically correct nonsense one finds in the larger networks. As long as we stay true to that goal—and we plan to—I think we’ve cut out a very unique space on the web for those who take relationships such as these seriously and I hope that your support continues in the years to come!

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

May 25, 2012

50 Shades of Grey

By Marc Esadrian

50-shades-review

“If I do this thing, will he be my boyfriend?”

Well, someone has finally done it, as you probably know by now: BDSM erotica has been brought out of the shadows and into the garish light of mainstream “mommy porn” publishing. Indeed, there is still a buzz going on about the book, 50 Shades of Grey, by E. L. James.  After a thorough review of the books (yes, it’s a trilogy, for those of you who have been living under a rock and still haven’t had the details of this book crammed down your throat yet), there isn’t much to be excited about for those with a lick of real-world experience.

We’ve read such things before and in various iterations with far greater intensities, aside of having lived the commonly described scenarios out in real flesh. Delve into the history of erotic literature and you’ll find the legacy of shady erotic fiction present with us since the days of De Sade and beyond. Delve into human history and you’ll find the practice of bondage and discipline during sex isn’t exactly new. But for a very wide swath of impressionable readers, these subjects might as well have come from Mars—sexy Mars, that is.

50 Shades of Grey may not be such a revolution to the erotic literature world or those who practice master-slave and dominant-submissive relationships, but it may very well be a great example of the viral power of e-publishing and the practical use of writing fan fiction. Perhaps all those Harry Potter and Twilight fan fiction writers now feel just a little more justified with their keyboard hobbies? As a tale that is apparently interwoven with “shades” of domination-submission and what some might naively label darker sexual themes, the result, ultimately, is still a typical romance story pattern dressed up in saucier threads. Good woman Anastasia Steele meets Mr. Tall, Dark and Handsome, Christian Grey, who is a bit shady, but she gradually tames him as he obsessively courts her under the enigmatic guise of reserve. Of course he’s terribly young and handsome. Of course he is a billionaire with his own private helicopters, and a man who buys mansions upon a whim. Of course he speaks fluent French, is well-endowed, and incredible in bed. Of course he treated all the other women like servants and deviant paramours—until the female protagonist steps into his life. Then he’s smitten, but tells her nonetheless to keep her distance—such delicious conflict. And, of course (spoiler alert), they eventually live happily ever after and—ta da!—married with children in a palatial home dripping with wealth. A perfect teen vision, perhaps?

Banality aside, the books are amusing reads…for guilty pleasure reading, that is. It’s clear Ms. James is an entertaining writer, if not a little repetitive. The slanted subtexts in the story leave much to be desired, however, and as much as I’m happy to see the mainstream bestsellers list contain a book associated with the pariah that is BDSM (that is, the pariah it tends to be when Rhianna or Brittany Spears aren’t singing about it), I’m not entirely thrilled about the stereotypes it portrays about those who are partial to these practices—playtime or otherwise. For instance, we learn that Christian Grey, the dominant male character in the story, is the way he is, for the most part, due to severe childhood abuse. Well, of course he’s that way; his mother was a crack whore. And now the fact that he’s an eccentric deviant with a penchant for dominating women makes perfect sense! I’m sure the American Psychological Association would agree, as well as what remains of Kraft-Ebing’s cliff notes.

Little gems like these in the story are pretty toxic to the idea of accepting the practice of domination-submission positively and looking at it as thus. We learn as the tale progresses that Christian Grey is basically a freak tormented by demons of his terrible past, where his mother’s pimp would put cigarettes out on his chest, for instance. He’s taken in by rich foster parents and by the time he’s a grown young man in his late twenties he is the head of a multibillion dollar enterprise. The protagonist, Anastasia, is required to sign a “contract” that gives Grey complete control of her life—including her sex life (they haggle over the details by email—an enchanting discourse, without a doubt). Grey, being the eccentric, control-mad pervert that he is from his childhood of abuse, introduces our virgin 21 year-old flower (why are virgins always more attractive as romantic heroines in these stories?) to bondage and Sadism, and for her, it’s oh so very overwhelming, but exciting, and it’s not long before she’s rattling off orgasm after orgasm and listening to her “inner goddess” as she navigates the path of submission. Excuse me?

I could go on, but I won’t, as that might prove to be rather boring. The plot, stretched over three books, serves as little more than staging for the next sex scene—but this is par for the course with romance novels, is it not? Needless to say, this trilogy is enjoying popularity because it somehow found its way into the mainstream, and we all know the topics in these books are seldom explored in the mainstream. In that light, the 50 Shades series of books successfully exploited an interestingly untapped niche. But does it truly deserve to sit pretty there, enjoying all this hype? Is it possible a better series of books could be sitting in its place? I doubt I have to explain my obvious position on either of those questions.

Without a doubt, 50 Shades has its flaws. My primary contention is how silly—and toxic—the story casts the practice of dominance and submission. Readers are aligned to view these practices as a result of damage, emotional instability, and an inability to properly seek intimacy. In that sense, how far along have we come in this book compared to such wonderful television shows as CSI or Law & Order, which chronically pathologize master-slave and BDSM relationships for the sake of entertainment? The crumby reality is it hasn’t really come too far at all, and that’s a shame, for the opportunity to present male dominance as something positive and natural and female submission as something actualized and informed has been lost once again. I have no doubt these books have helped a large demographic of people to find interest in such practices, though I tend to wonder what preconceptions will need to be debunked and outright smashed as they proceed to explore the reality of dominance and submission. In this sense, 50 Shades Of Grey has conspired to support the mainstream’s perfect cognitive dissonance on the subject of personal subjugation, which is to say, a distanced love-hate relationship with it all. I hope you’re ready, ladies and gentlemen: the next wave of the kinky and slightly confused are already among us.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

May 17, 2012

The Humbled Females Primer

By Marc Esadrian

I’m happy to announce that the Humbled Female’s media area will be up and running soon. Along with an initial offering of images, we are providing a small booklet outlining the overall premise of our community and its core philosophies. It’s not an incredibly large body of work (just under fifty pages), but it does officially make the founding principles and convictions of the Humbled Females community clear. A dissertation on the sexes follows a brief overview of the Humbled Females effort since its inception, after which attention will be given to describing, more than in previous efforts, what constitutes the dominant male and submissive female, as idealized in this small but particular world of ours. In reflection, the virtues of the female which make her a natural servant are explored, too.

Obviously, the primer discusses male/female behavior and interaction, relationship philosophy, and, as it goes perhaps without saying, feminism and sexual politics in society. Why do we cover all that ground in this publication? Simply, because it’s time to start dispatching some myths that have built up over the years about Humbled Females. There are some people—most from the BDSM community itself, interestingly enough—who believe we represent nothing but thinly veiled misogyny, that we are a community based upon hate, sexism, and non-consensuality.

In truth, Humbled Females is many things, but some lines had to be drawn somewhere for those all too eager to paint us with a particular brush. First and foremost, Humbled Females is about identifying, harnessing and fostering submission in females and encouraging authentic dominance in males—it’s not about simply despising women. If that were the case, we’d have much less to say on our site, without a doubt. In fact, we wouldn’t have much of a site at all, as the message would be pretty repetitive. Are we sexist? Apparently, but it’s not so much a prejudice as it is a passion and heartfelt belief that drives our philosophy and way of life. Prejudice—the heart of sexism—is a preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience. Our practices and beliefs are quite the contrary: we have thought about male/female relationships, to put it as succinctly as possible, a lot. Our convictions, as shocking and upsetting as they may be to many, are certainly based upon some pretty good reasoning, not fantasy, disinformation, or wishful thinking. Desite claims to the contrary, there’s plenty of truth behind the convictions, goals, and overall expressed direction of the Humbled Females community. That direction has zilch to do with raw hatred and ignorance.

While we’re at it, it’s time to tackle the absurd non-consensuality canard as well. Let me be very, very clear: Humbled Females does not condone non-consensual acts perpetrated against females. Cyber snarks and self-important leather celebrities can insinuate such things until they’re blue in the face, but Humbled Females will always advocate consensual acts and relationships between male and female. We may not quite dig the “SSC” thing, or subscribe to the “100 Rules of Responsibility for Masters,” but all relationships we advocate and envision are consensual. They have to be. Submission is always far better by choice, not mindless tyranny.

With that all out of the way, look for our primer soon. It will be available for download at the price of $8.95, and your purchase will go toward helping us maintain and continue to build the Humbled Females website and community—the bulk of which will always be free of cost.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

April 5, 2012

The Crux


Is your love strong enough?

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

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March 18, 2012

Let Us Name Abusers?

By Marc Esadrian

As those who are associated with me on Fetlife know by now, I’ve been involved in the “let us name abusers” (a result of the minority movement born of the “culture of consent”) dialog over the past week. By now, it’s fairly clear where I stand on this issue. While joining in with others in articulating dissent to the suggestion, there have been some interesting if not revealing developments in the thread which go well toward outing more than a few of the usual suspects who would no doubt join in a morality-based class action lawsuit against Bitlove (the company that runs Fetlife) if they could. This is the same group, who, while hurling cynical venom and conspiracy theories at the network within its own environment, wonder openly why Bitlove has a rigid, two-tiered system of legal protection that keeps user ability to do harm at bay. Some mystery, indeed.

The expressed opposition others have to this idea hasn’t been well received in the discussion. We are called rape apologists, misogynists, and above all, devoid of morality and decency if we so much as question the good intent behind this concept. The management itself was accused of willfully siding with rapists by a certain someone who is perhaps the most vocal of supporters for this idea. I too was labeled (among other things) a “misanthrope” for my mistrust in others for what users would do with this freedom if Fetlife relaxed its policies. For those of you who may not be up on the meaning of that word, it means “a person who dislikes humankind.” Isn’t it amazing what people can ascertain about us in these little plastic windows?

While I may indeed have accrued a weary view of my fellow humans over the years, I’m a firm believer that if anyone has a cursory understanding of the social evils waiting in the wings of our fellow men—and women—they wouldn’t be completely optimistic about letting human nature run amok in a grandiose naming and shaming experiment, either. We can convince ourselves that acts of mob violence, social or otherwise, against someone else is absolutely justified, despite lack of fair evidence. All most humans need is an authority figure or “good cause” to give the green light in doing so. Nazi Germany is the most obvious example of abhorrent and clearly immoral acts carried out by thousands of people, which was a result, ultimately, of a clever disinformation campaign bent on perceived crimes of European Jews. Even people who had been year-long friends with their Jewish neighbors turned against them because they believed some ungrounded lie about them from someone they didn’t even know.

This is, of course, why we strive in society, however imperfectly, to create a fair and sound system of representation within a court of law, where the premise of innocent until proven guilty is upheld and not up to a (however well-intentioned) mob to decide, as was the case with the nine teenage “Scottsboro Boys,” who were accused of rape in Alabama in 1931 and nearly lynched by an angry white crowd crying for justice, too. I could go on with more wonderful examples of what violence and wrong has been committed in the name of decency, but that effort would span the breadth of a novella, in the very least. Needless to say, human history is a catalog of persecution, often in the name of some good intent gone awry or bad intent pretending to be good.

Figures Don’t Lie, But Liars Do Figure

The natural concern that openly naming rapists and criminals in a public forum on Fetlife could be used for ill isn’t much to worry about, according to those in support of the idea. After all, the FBI’s false rape allegations statistics are “only” 8%. Using that statistic, 2 out of 25 people accused of rape in a community of over one million on Fetlife will likely be innocent.

Oh well. A few innocent people getting ground up in wrongful accusations from cunning liars is worth the risk, right? Even if you think that collateral damage is acceptable, you’d do well to consider how anyone who has soberly addressed the research on false rape allegations will note there isn’t any truly reliable data upon which to base the falsity factor. Susan Brownmiller cites 2% (later debunked as entirely unfounded), David Lisak 6%, and Eugene Kanin 41-50%. In approximately 25% of the wrongful convictions overturned with DNA evidence, defendants themselves made false confessions, admissions or statements to law enforcement officials. Where the real number lies in truth and fiction of rape and other crimes remains inconclusive, but one thing we know for sure is that half-truth and outright deception will be and is much easier to spin behind the comfort of a keyboard.

“Simply let the accusations come fourth, so the accused can challenge his accuser openly,” they say. Lost upon them is the fact that no one should have to commit to a second full-time job in repairing unjust character assassination amongst his peers on-line and off-line in the first place. Pin on to that the fact that false accusations, once lodged, are quite difficult to call back, if possible at all.

Libel, Defamation, Cyber Bullying, and the Evolving Nature of Internet Law

Second are the legal ramifications involved, not only to individuals who may have their real identities exposed without just cause, but with the site itself if it’s somehow perceived as cultivating an environment of open criminal accusation. This too is waved off as a “straw man,” even while the legal protections in the terms of use were obviously written with protection of the network itself well in mind.

What were Bitlove’s lawyers thinking? The requirement that nothing constituting defamatory libel (a crime in British Columbia Canada’s Criminal Code) is said against another user and that all civil legal disputes with the network’s management must be settled in binding arbitration in Canada gives us insight as to what Fetlife’s legal counsel saw as the challenges in running an international “Fetish Facebook” community online—an effort entirely different from, say, Facebook itself.

Mainstream consumption of BDSM continues to grow, but the stigma attached to BDSM, while it continues to lessen in light of increasing activism from organizations like NCSF, still exists, but stigma and negative perception is not only asserted by religious conservatives from the bible belt; one of the biggest enemies to our freedoms is the BDSM community itself. I, personally, don’t consider this ironic, given how widespread the gamut of alternative sexual practices and sadomasochism has become. Those who haughtily consider themselves in a different social reality by virtue of their sexual practices fail to realize they are so often agents of the mainstream themselves, seamlessly and unknowingly importing into this assumed counter-culture all the same moral cognitive dissonance and stereotypical thinking found anywhere else. This makes the BDSM collective itself an unknown quantity in terms of intellectual responsibility and ethical vagaries. Bitlove clearly understood the threat from within and without when building its network, and was wise to take solid steps in protecting itself from a community of such disparate parts.

Disenfranchisement’s Ironic Effects

The third quandary with this idea lies in the very minds of so many of its supporters themselves, who are filled with conspiracy theories and lack of trust in the proper channels to pursue real retribution. RAINN, the nation’s largest anti-sexual assault organization, strongly advocates the use of the criminal justice system for all victims, but this doesn’t keep advocates of naming abusers from asserting the legal and support system is useless and broken and that the only real way they can extract revenge is by engaging in a he said/she said campaign on Fetlife, of all places.

At this point, statistics inevitably get rolled out again, citing how high the lack of conviction rate is for sexual assault and how high the number of unreported rapes are purported to be. The breach in logic is somewhat astounding in this instance, too: how do we help the rate of unreported sexual assaults go down if we insist that going to the police is utterly and completely pointless? The reality is we won’t. And people asserting so would do well to consider how much they themselves are scaring victims from coming forward. If anyone really wants the right to name an abuser, they would first work toward a conviction. Once someone is found guilty of a clear crime, you can legally talk about the realities of his or her crime all you want, but until due process has been achieved, it’s unwise and simply wrong to support an environment where you or I could be accused of anything at any moment without any shred of proof. We are not a community of informed lawyers and honest journalists. People can lie and they will lie if this idea is implemented. That’s really the bottom line.

While the idea behind outing violent abusers may be a noble one in theory, it would be a logistical nightmare to manage and would surely be abused in every way one could imagine. I’m sure I don’t have to go far in describing likely scenarios; most can conceive of them quite easily. What’s strange is how doggedly the camp in favor of this idea fails to recognize this, but it’s clear there’s more to the heart of their passion than the subject of good sense or honest concern; there is a political element present to this idea, too, and it’s fighting bitterly for the soul of this network. Leaning in on the entire discussion is that familiar taste of authoritarian political correctness (with a touch of misdirected feminism) which takes ugly swipes at anyone for daring to question the validity of the idea in “naming abusers.” Proponents also framed the argument strictly in terms of evils visited upon women, up until they were reminded that men can be victims of rape and abuse, too (in addition to false accusations of rape, of course). Nonetheless, going by much of the tone in favor of the proposal, one gets the idea this is being subconsciously framed as a “women’s rights issue” and that anyone who would question the likely sock puppet free-for-all resulting in accusing others of criminal acts on Fetlife is likely affiliated with Fox News or angry men’s rights activism.

An attempt at my credibility was made as well because I’m the owner of Humbled Females and, according to the insinuation of one user, there isn’t a single word about female consent to submission on my site. It’s true that I do operate Humbled Females. The idea consent is not a part of that community, as any member here well knows, is a bold-faced lie, and only serves to illustrate the lengths the crowd in favor of this proposal will go to caricaturize those who oppose their ideas in the holy cause of protecting those women who may be future victims. They condemn our culture’s eagerness to believe the “myths of lying girls,” but one could just as well assert that the “women don’t lie” myth is alive and well and perhaps more asserted today than many might be willing to admit. Ultimately, this is a matter of humanity: humans lie, humans deceive, humans manipulate—both men and women.

That aside, it’s important to keep in mind that not only men will be hurt by this idea. Women will likely be hurt, too, in ways that perhaps aren’t at first obvious. If we create an environment of open accusation rife with the fiction sure to follow, what will that do to the validity of a woman’s real complaint? How do we separate the wheat from the chaff in this respect, once the accusations, false and not, start flying? How are we, as readers, to know what’s true and what isn’t? Further, men won’t be the only victims of false accusations. Women themselves will be branded “liars” in the court of public opinion, even when they aren’t. Their words may not be accepted in favor of influential figures good at disinformation campaigns. Dominant females will also be attacked by men in open forums by being labeled mentally deranged and/or cruel, manipulative users. If you question the validity of that idea, just try starting up a conversation about financial domination here or on collarme.com’s boards and watch the caustic venting unfold.

The cry for outing the identities of alleged abusers has somehow been linked with overall site reform, where other subjects like underage sex and bestiality are now being imported in and railed against. They want Bitlove to be more accountable for what’s being allowed on the network and what isn’t. They angrily decry the fact that some posts hidden somewhere within the labyrinth of the fora going unmoderated is evidence of conspiracy and bias, when in fact it’s all the more likely that Bitlove’s resources are limited in having to parent a network of 1,272,980 children in over 38,000 groups (as of the date of this posting). But are we children or are we adults? Do we need a big leather collective to keep us safe in approved traces, or can we handle that responsibility on our own? The question, ultimately, is a matter of personal accountability. If we are all accountable for our actions and decisions and if we are all well informed on how to navigate our interests to the best possible outcome in the community, we’ll all be safer. That is the philosophic undercurrent needing to be driven home to newcomers and the young, not the collective morality and approval of a group think tank concerned with “protecting us.” Objectors assert that part of shouldering accountability is also watching out for your fellow man and that can only be done with community caring (see: policing). The obvious hitch with community policing is that it won’t be able to escape political machinations based upon who knows you and who approves of you or who doesn’t. With enough entrenched clout and social capital, both men and women in the community will have unfair advantages over others in what will become an increasingly more hostile popularity (and morality) contest, all at the expense of the greater good. We shouldn’t, if we consider ourselves sensible and responsible to ourselves, the D/s community at large, and Bitlove’s network as a whole, allow an environment like that to flourish.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

February 12, 2012

Cynicism

By Marc Esadrian

If one happens to frequent online social networks all about BDSM in mind, a few patterns may be seen eventually—some of them positive and some of them, well, not so positive. Challenging mainstream ignorance about sexuality has always been a strong suit of the BDSM crowd. I say crowd rather than lifestyle because BDSM, as it is now, has metastasized into something so large and inclusive that it’s impossible to speak of it with any particularity.

One thing the group has managed to do with its hyper-inclusiveness is foster an environment where words like “master” or “slave” mean little more than anything you want them to mean. Indeed, when perusing any board centered around these concepts, you’ll read such pearls of wisdom as “the difference between a submissive and slave are the letters,” or “we all know this isn’t real slavery,” or (my personal favorite) “there’s no such thing as truth in master-slave—it’s all up to the people involved to decide what the words mean.”

In a world teeming with cliques of milquetoast “masters” and sycophant “slaves” all conspiring to further a culture rife with somewhat lazy thinking, it’s easy to get a little cynical about the vision you hold dear to your heart, a vision where a woman may serve wholly and completely, in purity, love, and sacrifice, and a man may enthusiastically enforce the servitude and worship of his woman (or women) without any spiders in the milk, so to speak. It’s easy to become jaded by the illusions one sees in a plastic online world of paper lords and narcissistic “kajiras.” In places like Fetlife, for instance, we see these types all the time, stirring the pot, flaunting their self-obsession, ignorance, and disdain. And then there are, of course, the horror stories we hear of the mirages people have fallen prey to. We hear about the fakers and takers and about the disappointments and betrayals of trust. We hear, inevitably, about the blind leading the blind in a nefarious garden of fantasy, half-truths and outright lies. Navigating this underworld of ours is challenging, to say the very least, so challenging it sometimes feels like an exercise in futility.

What conspires to poison the ecosytem even more is the cynicism that naturally arises with all of this, and nowhere is the cost of this cynicism more toxic than in those who yearn to find a master or consensual slave who is the real deal. At some point, one may decide enough is enough and be done with the circus of commercialization and window dressing that gambols around these sincere human drives—drives that aren’t half as prolific as we would be led to believe in the fetish collective. The abhorrence of all this kinky silliness and smugness masquerading as something other than it really is becomes quite understandable, but I think we all have to be careful about throwing the baby out with the bathwater, as they say, when combing humanity for those rare beings we desire.

Humbled Females isn’t only about master and slave, but those who are inclined to pursue such a way of life would do well to reflect upon the simple fact that relationships of such extremes have never been the majority of even the select group of alternative lifestyle folk who find it easy to toss such words around. Men with enough self-actualization, dominance, caring, and leadership ability to be masters are very rare individuals and women suited to serve as consensual slaves are perhaps just as rare. In short, we have to do a reality check about the candy-coated online world of so-called power exchange. We should remember that supply and demand for the deeper shades of control and surrender, in reality, is often within the minority and nowhere near clustered around the casual mean.

It may be tempting to write everyone off in this little universe of ours as players or grudgingly conclude that master-slave is really about nothing more than creative sex for couples and deviant paramours. At times, it may seem affectation and sensual frivolity is all there is to it, but don’t write us all off as nothing but that. Some of us, believe it or not, are the real deal and take leadership and responsibility to another level. We may not be easy to find, but we’re out there, scattered far and wide amid the blandlands.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

January 17, 2012

On Intellectual Property and Copyright Protection

By Marc Esadrian

As most who are familiar with my creative values will know, I am highly supportive of the idea copyright should be enforced regularly and fairly across the Internet. I detest thieves who steal the original work of artisans and content producers, only to pawn it off as their own so as to profit from it in some form. We all know intellectual property and content theft is indeed a problem on the Internet. We also know the digital world, overall, is a magnet for these unscrupulous practices. With a simple drag and drop and a few clicks, Internet thieves and careless users can severely harm the creative or monetary rights of others. Something does have to be done about the way we protect copyright on the Internet, even if in small steps.

At the same time, however, we don’t want to stifle the very essence of what makes the Internet so viable and worthwhile for all of humanity. While ensuring the protection of copyright and intellectual property, we don’t want to smother free speech and free expression, or the freedoms needed in the digital age to make worthwhile human use of the Internet beyond the almighty profit motive.

Currently, there are two bills working their way though the United States Congress and Senate, both backed by large corporate interests (MPAA, GoDaddy, etc.), to give government the power to work in unison with these corporate interests to change the way the Internet works, from Google search results, to social networking sites, to websites in general, in and outside the United States. These two bills are the United States Senate’s Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) and the House’s Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) bills. Unlike the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), PIPA and SOPA make little to no compromise between the Internet community and its producers. These bills, while perhaps well-intentioned on some level, go too far; they would effectively give government and big business too much power to change the Internet as we know it today, allowing authorities to block a site’s web and search traffic using the same website censorship methods used by China and Iran. These bills would likewise flood the digital economy with substantially increased legal risk. Certainly, the “Land of the Free” can do better than that.

Here’s a fairly good video summary of what these laws intend, if you would like to learn more.

SOPA, at the time of this posting, has been “shelved” (for now), but PIPA is still active, and a potential threat. Please help the Internet community reject these bills in favor of better or existing alternatives for user freedom and copyright protection. Write to your local state representative and let your voice be heard. You can write to your representative easily with Mozilla’s help by clicking here.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females

January 1, 2012

Humbled Females Begins Anew

By Marc Esadrian

It has been some time since the first Humbled Females website was rolled out and its corresponding Livejournal community was created back in 2006. The launch of this website on the first of January, 2012 marks a new beginning in the direction of not only a website, but a philosophy about males and females we believe contains some degree of wisdom, even for the mildly curious passerby. This philosophy was free from being framed in terms of bedroom bondage mystique, the leather/latex crowd, campy fantasy novel cults, religious mythology or 1950’s lifestyle nostalgia. In short, Humbled Females, since its beginning, was about getting away from these structures and stereotyped forms, to place a hand upon the neck of consensual female submission, unclouded by limited orthodoxies and canons of value that have long since lived out their intellectual worth, though do generally serve to illustrate a pattern of human obsession with humbling the female and keeping her (ideally) submissive. We continue the original precept of Humbled Females by focusing upon the ethos of female submission to male dominance without apology. What makes women tend to gravitate toward domestic roles, even though it’s not “fashionable” to do so? Why are female humans almost always physically weaker than their male counterparts throughout the discernible timeline of our species? Why have male-dominated religions and societies ruled the course of humanity since we can remember? Why do a great number of women secretly fantasize about being dominated and kept by their masculine ideals, even while they attempt to uphold the images of “alpha women” in modern society? Why do so many men dream of keeping and possessing their women as servants to their desires? We believe there are real answers to these questions. We also believe the answers to these questions and musings can rationally support a way of life that encourages female submission to overt male authority in intimate relationships. We believe it is a key to happiness and fulfillment between the sexes.

Not all people will agree with our point of view on Humbled Females, of course. In fact, we don’t expect a tremendous number of members to sign up for its publications and forums. For a number of sociopolitical reasons, contemporary western individuals who tend to believe in and embrace the natural good of authentic female submission beyond fetish are not exactly as numerous as those you’d find in any general “BDSM catch-all” community. For this reason, we expect the Humbled Females community to grow slowly and gradually in number, and that’s quite alright with us. We are not for everyone, nor shall we ever attempt to be.

The litmus test for our value to you is fairly straightforward. With such simple yet polarizing (and one might say “impolite”) directives, it shouldn’t take you long to decide if this site is a site you’d find worthwhile. If you do find value in intellectual discussion focused squarely upon female submission to male dominance, if you’d like to mention the words “female submission” or even “slave” without the usual fetish trappings and t-shirts, if you believe in the good of authentic male authority over the female in a consensual relationship, if you believe that a woman is happiest when pleasing the man she loves with all her heart and soul, and if you believe a woman by nature of her sex should be kept by an insightful, intelligent, and capable male possessor, Humbled Females may well be the forum you’ve been looking for on the Internet. We welcome you with open arms and encourage you to join our community.

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© 2005-2015 Humbled Females