That list is long, about all the stuff women in the labor force cause and the stuff feminism has caused: Unhappy women, latch-key children, the destruction of the traditional concepts of masculinity, alcoholism among young women, the hook-up culture, the death of the patriarchal family and the outright destruction of the Western Civilization. And now mass shootings! Clearly, we need to revert to the gender norms of Iraq or Afghanistan to get rid of all that violence!
Joking there, though the people saying all those things were not joking. They were Very Serious. The most recent example, the one about mass shootings really being women's fault, even though almost all mass shooters are men, comes from a wannabe politician:
Former New Hampshire state Sen. Jim Rubens is jumping into the race to defeat Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen Wednesday. Before he even reaches the starting blocks, Democrats are questioning his ability to reach women voters.
The reason? A 2009 post on his website that connects the rise of working women with what he says is a rise in mass shootings and other violence perpetrated by men.
“The collaborative, flexible, amorphously-hierarchical American economy is shutting out ordinary men who were once the nation’s breadwinners in living-wage labor and manufacturing jobs,” Rubens wrote. “Because status success is more vital to the male psychology, males are falling over the edge in increasing numbers.”
A “collaborative” and “flexible” economy is one that has opened the door to more women working, Rubens wrote. And the nature of the changing economy has had a detrimental effect on men, including an increase in violence.
“The collapsing number of male jobs in the increasingly female-centric economy just adds to the already harsher impact of OverSuccess on males,” he wrote, referring to the title of his 2008 book.
It’s a view Rubens still holds today, and he seemed surprised in an interview Wednesday that anyone would care about it.
“The point of this, if you read the whole thing, is that manufacturing jobs, which have been the basis for higher-wage working men during the post-World War II era have been in decline,” he said. “Men are more sensitive than women to external indicators of status, which is one of the points in my book — which you might want to read so you can understand the whole point of this — and it’s very important to all people, women and men, to have jobs, functions, and roles in life that are fulfilling and productive and engaging.”
The loss of manufacturing jobs that men often held in favor of “collaborative” jobs that favor women, Rubens said, “has increased stress in males.”
“It’s a tiny fraction of males that become stressed for whatever reason and engage in acts of extreme violence,” he said. “If you look through individual psychology of mass shooters over the past 10-20 years, you can see that in the profile. Often its a person who has been subjected to extreme stress in the form of social rejection, job loss and associated mental health issues.”
Tweaking the tax code to add manufacturing jobs would be one way to reduce this “stress” on men, Rubens said.
A female-centric economy! This guy is gonna win biiiiig! At least in the alternate reality he inhabits.
Now, it could be argued that he isn't blaming working women as such. He is just blaming the economic culture which makes it easier for women to hold jobs than was the case in the past. And so I was exaggerating at the beginning of this post. But, sweeties, that's the only thing that works in writing, these days! Click magnets.
In any case, I think Rubens' deeper views are pretty obvious: If we only returned to the old (mythical) male breadwinner days, then male violence would really really drop. Just ask people in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan! The point, naturally, is to take a problem in which women are almost as common as teeth on hens (as perpetrators of mass killings) and then turn that into a problem in which women have a large role to play. Note, also, that if the latest mass killing had been by a woman, then an anti-feminist probably would have written that it was caused by feminism which turns women into killers etc..
It's one of those you-can't-win arguments.
Mr. Rubens has now cleaned off the offending blog post.