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Human relationships sometimes don't make a lot of sense. But there's nothing that says they have to be "fair." All of us have dreams and desires for the lives we would like to experience and who we think we might want to experience those lives with. Society has a way of making value judgments about a person if they're a virgin in their 20s or unmarried in their 30s. But the whims of the fates don't always give us what we want or who we want. Most people don't go on a shooting spree when they get turned down. However, some do.

As more details about the mass murders committed by Elliot Rodger near the campus of University of California, Santa Barbara last Friday come to light, it's renewed debates over gun access and whether or not Rodger's is a symptom of a rape culture within the United States. Given the views expressed in Rodger's manifesto and videos, the cup of blame has come around, as it often does, to wondering about the effects of pop-culture in this incident.

There have been various armchair psychiatrist explanations floated over the past 96 or so hours. Is this a reflection of a misogynistic male-dominated media that devalues women and results in shooting sprees and daily violence? To that end, is there an aspect to this where popular media has fostered a culture in which people have an unrealistic image of what love, relationships, masculinity and sex are supposed to be? Or is it just a situation where someone was in need of psychological help, didn't get it, shouldn't have had a gun and a calamity ensued?

Follow beneath the fold for more ....

I only have a minor in sociology and I'm not the type of "Doctor" that's going to psychoanalyze someone based on YouTube videos, nor am I going to play that kind of doctor on the internet. However, I do think the broader issue is an interesting one.

From Ann Hornaday at the Washington Post:
As Rodger bemoaned his life of “loneliness, rejection and unfulfilled desire” and arrogantly announced that he would now prove his own status as “the true alpha male,” he unwittingly expressed the toxic double helix of insecurity and entitlement that comprises Hollywood’s DNA. For generations, mass entertainment has been overwhelmingly controlled by white men, whose escapist fantasies so often revolve around vigilantism and sexual wish-fulfillment (often, if not always, featuring a steady through-line of casual misogyny). Rodger’s rampage may be a function of his own profound distress, but it also shows how a sexist movie monoculture can be toxic for women and men alike.

How many students watch outsized frat-boy fantasies like “Neighbors” and feel, as Rodger did, unjustly shut out of college life that should be full of “sex and fun and pleasure”? How many men, raised on a steady diet of Judd Apatow comedies in which the shlubby arrested adolescent always gets the girl, find that those happy endings constantly elude them and conclude, “It’s not fair”?

Movies may not reflect reality, but they powerfully condition what we desire, expect and feel we deserve from it. The myths that movies have been selling us become even more palpable at a time when spectators become their own auteurs and stars on YouTube, Instagram and Vine. If our cinematic grammar is one of violence, sexual conquest and macho swagger — thanks to male studio executives who green-light projects according to their own pathetic predilections — no one should be surprised when those impulses take luridly literal form in the culture at large.

Hornaday's column basically argues movies sell a myth that people believe the same way commercials sell toothpaste and fast food. And similar to critiques made by Anita Sarkeesian of Feminist Frequency and others, the stereotypes and tropes in those movies condition people to expect certain behaviors in the real world. Much has been made of Rodger's connections to the "men's rights movement" and the pick-up artist (PUA) community. And many see in those connections a culture of violence against women influenced by media stereotypes.

The entertainment industry is male-dominated, and the majority of fiction created today is from the focus of a male character (see the Bechdel Test). In most movies and television programs, we are taught that "love conquers all." In most love stories, persistence and patience eventually opens people's eyes to the love of others that they couldn't see. Even if they at first reject you, if you just stand outside their window playing Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes" they'll eventually see that you're destined to be together. If that seems dangerously close to the mentality of most stalkers, that's because it is.

Movies are also full of attractive female models, cute pseudo-nerd women and Manic Pixie Dream Girls. Usually those female characters exist to fulfill the male character's journey in some way. The problem is those kind of characters have no goals themselves, and it leads to an expectation that women and relationships with women exist to complete a quest for sexual satisfaction or help a man toward peace of mind.

However, the flip-side of this argument is that a movie is a work of fiction and fantasy. If we're going to say unrealistic depictions of romance are contributing to homicides, then I wince to think of all the damage the Cinderella story has done in its more than two-thousand-years of existence. The line of reasoning put forward by Hornaday and others is along the same lines of past debates over the effects of video games.

The problem with that sort of explanation is that it constructs white, middle-class killers as victims of the power of media, rather than fully culpable criminals.

Ultimately, if a person has a problem differentiating between how things work in a romantic-comedy and how relationships work in the here and now, or they think getting someone to have sex works the same way as in the movies, the problem isn't film. The problem is the mental health of the person. Furthermore, men have been treating women like crap long, long before widespread modern media. And men have been killing people over wounded pride and a sense of entitlement long before the development of the movie camera or celluloid.

It's interesting that Hornaday chose Judd Apatow as an example for her column. Say what you want about Apatow's films, but they're usually about how the "shlubby arrested adolescent" characters have to grow up, be honest and face their faults to be happy and get the girl.

Unless you're the luckiest dude on the face of the Earth, at some point or another most men on this planet have faced rejection in love. Men can either accept the rejection, be introspective and move on. Or they stew, blame others and wallow in pity. The latter choice leads to people saying "hey, I'm a nice guy, I'm being rejected because I'm too nice, and these bitches and sluts only like assholes!" The problem with that sort of pick-up artist thinking of Alpha and Beta males is that it's based on some iffy evolutionary psychology and it's predicated on a sexist notion that women owe a man sex, companionship or a relationship for being "nice." Part of equality is that women can be just as vain and shallow as men when it comes to picking a sex partner. And beyond that, most guys who fall back into "I'm not getting a partner because I'm too nice" have issues they don't want to deal with, and blame rejection on women and being nice instead of making an honest assessment.

Some conservatives have even taken up the torch of buying into the "women like bad boys over nice guys" argument after the Isla Vista killings. Jack Cashill at the conservative magazine American Thinker blames feminism for Rodger’s “sickness.”

A generation or so ago a woman might have looked for a man who was kind, loving, pious, generous, faithful, hard working. The women in Rodger’s circle, as he saw it, looked for men who were hot, hunky and/or rich, none of which he was.

Yes, there is a sickness afoot in the land, but feminists have no more hope of curing it with sexual harassment laws or enforced sensitivity training than Rodger did with his “day of retribution.”

The "sickness" was Rodger thinking because he drove a $40,000 BMW and wore $300 Giorgio Armani sunglasses it meant he automatically deserved to get laid because of it. And as much as Rodger railed against the cruelty of humanity and his rejection, I would bet dollars to donuts his anger didn't come from a rejection by all women. It was that he was rejected by the women he thought he deserved.

That sort of thinking didn't come from feminists. And that sort of male privilege may very well be societal, but I don't think its source was a movie.

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Comment Preferences

  •  So-called "nice guys" (18+ / 0-)

    if you actually talk to many of them are better described as "guys who act nice to women they want to sleep with but pricks to everyone else."

    29, white male, TX-07 (current), TN-09 (born), TN-08 (where parents live now)

    by TDDVandy on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:17:06 PM PDT

  •  true, Cinderella has done a lot of damage (16+ / 0-)

    as has Pretty Woman et al.

    but Cinderella and its clones, as powerful as they are, are greatly overshadowed in number and intensity by the onslaught of messages from the entertainment industry (and the entire rest of the culture) that send the dehumanizing message that a woman's only worth in this world is her ability to serve and service men.

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:17:26 PM PDT

    •  I always cringe at the old (13+ / 0-)

      I Love Lucy shows when Ricky would spank his wife.
      It wasn't funny then and it's not funny now.
      And it goes back even further than the '50s.

      I let my mind wander, and it never came back

      by arizonablue on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:26:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I never got the (3+ / 0-)

        supposed "humor" of the honeymooners.  Of course I was just a little kid but still....Ralph Cramden's constant threats to his wife.  Even as a ten year old I knew he was threatening to hit her.

        Why was that funny?

        “We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both.” Louis D. Brandeis

        by Jjc2006 on Wed May 28, 2014 at 06:52:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It was funny because they were bullshit threats (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bartcopfan, Alexandra Lynch

          Ralph Kramden was an adolescent imbecile, and it was his wife's love that held him together. The joke lay in the fact that she was so visibly unconcerned about his threats, arms folded calmly and rolling her eyes. She held the power of maturity and strength in that relationship, and Ralph knew it.

          The humor in such relationships is that the physically more vulnerable person, i.e. the woman, holds sway emotionally over a man--who requires the woman's approval in order to affirm his sense of self-worth. (I.e. Beauty tames the Beast.) Nothing in the world makes me feel more fulfilled than making my wife smile lovingly. When it works that way, it is IMO one of the wonders of heterosexual love.

          Battling psychiatric myths with sensible skepticism at www.makingsenseofpsychiatry.com

          by candid psychiatrist on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:56:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I understand that now (2+ / 0-)

            but as a child of 10 or so, I was perplexed.

            Perhaps because I was in a family that did not use physical punishment (guilt was their weapon of choice) and my parents arguments while loud were never violent (although I now get that they were both products of their times and their own frustrations.....my mother, not knowing it, fighting the status quo of women, and my father, uncomfortable in his role of the one in charge though bothe worked full time).  Years later my father admitted to me (my mother had died by then) that had it not been for my mother's skills at finances and her iron-fisted frugality we would probably be broke.  Many of their fights were over my dad's inability to say "no" to anything for his girls.  

            Perhaps that is why my dad laughed at "The Honey Mooners" while I was confused by it.

            “We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both.” Louis D. Brandeis

            by Jjc2006 on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:18:38 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Pretty Woman is probably a bigger culprit /nt (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cspivey, a2nite, Alexandra Lynch

      Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "If we appear to seek the unattainable, then let it be known that we do so to avoid the unimaginable." (@eState4Column5)

      by annieli on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:54:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Creepy Sexist Redemption Through Love Story (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        a2nite, StrayCat, Alexandra Lynch

        Lost Weekend - Ray Milland is hitting bottom, hallucinating, jobless, a terminal alcoholic.  Of course Jane Wyman falls madly in love with him, even though he shows little interest in her. But every gal needs a guy half dead from booze because her love will turn things around.

        Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

        by bernardpliers on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:11:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Well if it's any consolation, objectification is (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Alexandra Lynch

      a two way street these days.

      I'm an amateur writer; some of my writer friends are women who write erotica.  Now erotica is not my cup of tea; apart from the fact that I feel the need to wash my eyeballs out with bleach after reading their stuff, I'm a satirist at heart. I don't write sex scenes unless they're ironic.

      Believe me, women are just as capable as men at objectifying the opposite sex.  One of my writer friends regular posts beefcake pictures to her blog (which features "Mancandy Monday" and "Firefighter Friday", events that elicit many comical "hubba-hubba" responses from her female fans).  That, and her reviews of sex toys, make her blog extremely NSFW.  

      Sometimes her blog makes me feel a bit uncomfortable, but that doesn't make it wrong; nor does it make her a bad person. Far from it. She is an intelligent, kind and successful woman who just happens to like thinking and writing about eye-watering sex acts. And apparently doing them (with her very understanding husband). Her stuff is more politically correct than "Fifty Shades of Gray" because her heroines get to be "top", but personally I'm inclined to take the position that when it comes to fantasy, you like what you like.

      The cartoon that leads this diary is funny, but funny in a way that confirms our predjudices: men want sexual gratification, and women want intimacy.  That's a stereotype either way. Human beings actually want both, and it is just as wrong to deny women the existence and validity of their drives for physical gratification as it is to deny men their need for emotional gratification.

      To be human, Terry Pratchett wrote, is "To be the place where the falling angel meets the rising ape."  And, as it turns out, researchers have discovered that monkeys will actually pay to watch monkey porn. There was also the recent case of a female chimp who was given a TV as stimulation, and subsequently developed an addiction to human porn, which is really kind of disturbing.

      If people were perfectly consistent -- if they couldn't compartmentalize at all -- then objectification would be a horrible, unforgivable thing no matter whether men or women did it.   But people are absolutely terrible at being consistent, except in some kind of epistemic bubble they keep in their heads.  

      Women can slobber over pictures of shirtless firefighters with giant pecs and still talk to the men they know like human beings. They can even find sexual gratification with real men they actually know, even though those men almost certainly don't "measure up".  Same goes for men who like cheesecake pictures; or men who like beefcake pictures for that matter. Our inconsistency is often our worst feature, but sometimes it's our saving grace.

      I've lost my faith in nihilism

      by grumpynerd on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:55:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sure, fantasies are fantasies but... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        amyzex

        How are those fantasies marketed? How big of a market do those fantasies reach? How much is that market perceived as a niche rather than "mainstream."

        It's only relatively recently that women were seen as consumers and creators of erotica, rather than the subject of it. And certainly mainstream culture is very uncomfortable with not JUST portraying women as sexually active BUT ALSO as experiencing sexual desire. Not to mention, erotica is a niche market in and of itself.

        So, while nothing about your argument is untrue, I think there's a difference of kind and scale in terms of how much the male gaze and male expectations of sex-- as portrayed throughout popular culture (books, films, TV shows, music)  influence our mindsets (among other things).

        Meanwhile, I do think that an endless succession of princess stories CAN BE harmful to women. It's only recently that Disney films showed the main characters as having any agency in their own story. Usually they were acted on by events outside their control and saved by the handsome prince.

        Disney changed the formula with... what came first? Little Mermaid, or Beauty and the Beast? But even then the romance was the FOCUS of the film. It wasn't until Frozen that the conflict centered on 2 sisters.

        For the slightty older than Disney-aged, it's always also been a publishing (and film) truism in middle grade and YA fiction that "boys won't read/watch stories about girls." (I edited kids books for a major publisher; I can testify to this belief. So, you publish books and make movies based on that belief and in essence, you reinforce the idea.) THAT is slowly changing, with books like The Hunger Games being among the first to be made into films that are successful with both genders. [And there's lots of reasons for this, including feminist critique of media that does not portray women as having agency in their own stories.]

        It came a bit earlier on TV with shows like Buffy, but even now Orphan Black is considered groundbreaking because it is overwhelmingly about the women's experience, often without reference to men, AND it's popular with both genders.

        That tells you something about how storytelling about the male experience is considered the default while the female experience is primarily thought to be for consumption by women.

        One of the problems with these discussions is that, as with all discussions of the problematic (or horrific) we want there to be a single easy answer. And there never is one. But there can be multiple factors - a culture that says...

        boys can't be men unless they have sex
        that sex is owed to men

        is problematic, at the least. And then you have nutjobs like the Pickup Artists or the... whatever that other group is... who take the not-so-good and twist it into hideous hatefulness and, well...

        It ain't good.

  •  He had problems with Asians (5+ / 0-)

    His mother is Asian. He had trouble not having the money he felt was his right. The dude had lots of problems. Dating might have been the least of them.

    Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity. Horace Mann (and btw, the bike in kayakbiker is a bicycle)

    by Kayakbiker on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:19:06 PM PDT

  •  He was disturbed (4+ / 0-)

    And latched onto this. But if it hadn't been this it would have been racism or something else. Even if there are a group that think like this I wonder how many would kill in response. Although there's room here to question whether such groups by their nature attract mentally unhinged individuals. I'd hypothesize yes but have no statistical evidence to back the assertion.

    http://jasonluthor.jelabeaux.com/

    by DAISHI on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:20:31 PM PDT

  •  this money quote is exactly on target (23+ / 0-)
    his anger didn't come from a rejection by all women. It was that he was rejected by the women he thought he deserved.
    as someone else put it recently, he felt justified in having ridiculously high standards for the women he wanted

    but he hated women for having high standards of their own

    or even a reasonable standard such as I don't want to be with a creepy guy with poor social skills who nevertheless believes he is entitled to demand sex from me regardless of whether i am interested in him.

    how dare women have standards?!!1one1!!!

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:22:45 PM PDT

  •  I don't know (19+ / 0-)

    But I do wonder if men will ever accept women as being individual people and equal.
    I really cannot believe that in the 21st century, there are groups of men that still do not regard women as equals - as people deserving all the rights and opportunities that men have in life.
    I'm having trouble wording this correctly but women are people and we are not lesser beings than men or boys.
    We should have the same rights and we shouldn't have to fight for equal pay, autonomy, and respect.

    I just don't know.
    I naively thought that the younger generation would be different, but they are not.

    I let my mind wander, and it never came back

    by arizonablue on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:22:55 PM PDT

    •  some in the younger generation are different (9+ / 0-)

      don't lose hope

      Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
      DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
      Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

      by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:24:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some, yes (5+ / 0-)

        But it should be more.

        I let my mind wander, and it never came back

        by arizonablue on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:27:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  this kind of thing changes slowly (6+ / 0-)

          it is the habit of millennia

          and it has only really been changing for the last two generations

          give it time

          Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
          DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
          Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

          by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:34:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Well, I can tell you this: (12+ / 0-)

          I'm 25 and live in Madison, WI, essentially a big glorified college town. From what I can tell of women my age (and younger), they're definitely getting more vocal about calling out misogynist bullshit, being respected for who they are and not their "assets", and generally not tolerating crap from men.

          It's one of the main reasons why the MRA's are so pissed off.

          •  Don't use MRA's.. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Vetwife, Jjc2006

            They're my initials and my mother named me.

            Seriously though, I can recall a time around the same age actually feeling somewhat like this jerk because I was very socially awkward,  but of course I never murdered anyone,  but instant gratification wasn't such prominent at that time. There was no internet and access to porn was pretty much limited to magazines or a trip to some seedy theater. I'm not blaming the porn industry, but it's probably contributed to some degree.
            Perhaps the difference was I have two sisters and my mother was an open,  honest person and I had a solid role model, my father who brought me up to respect women as he respected my mother and treated her every bit his equal.

            I have been thinking about the movies a lot of late and my contempt for most of them as more and more have one plot. The tough guy runs around for two hours kicking the shit out of everyone nonstop, never even bothering to take a breather then gets to screw the hot girl before the credits roll. The End.
            If he can't fight he can shoot and movies almost all have someone with an arsenal stashed somewhere just ready to kill "bad guys" and so now we have this insanity of hundreds of thousands of men armed to the teeth thinking they're all the good guy and women are so weak and defenseless that there's no way to get the hot girl unless you've shot your way out of impossible situations of drug dealers and terrorists.

            Now I'm not a self proclaimed stud, don't and never have owned guns, but to my credit have had sex with good looking women more than once in my life. I raised 4 kids so hopefully did something right.
            I assume some women like the types who have guns and like to fight, but to be honest I avoid those types probably more than they avoid me.
            Sure, we can easily place all the blame at the feet of Hollywood, but I'm thinking that if most of these murdering bastards had fathers who cared for them and their mothers without all the macho bullshit there might be a lot fewer of them. The big question is where do we begin rebuilding the bonds like this? So many families have been torn down with to many boys growing up without dads and being raised by moms who so often have to work all day and can't trust to many men around their kids or around themselves for that matter.
            Without sounding like some "family counsil" idiot I won't suggest sky daddy, but getting the guns out of so many hands would be a start, a damned good start.

            Jesus only performs miracles for people with enough time on their hands to make that crap up.

            by KneecapBuster on Tue May 27, 2014 at 10:06:59 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  And aside from all the garbage being spewed (0+ / 0-)

    If getting laid is all you care about, they're called "prostitutes."  Geez.  These freakin' guys...

    29, white male, TX-07 (current), TN-09 (born), TN-08 (where parents live now)

    by TDDVandy on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:33:14 PM PDT

  •  Cool header image. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DMentalist, Jjc2006

    No enforcing of stereotypes there, no way! Not really seeing why that was the image to use.

    As far as the way Hollywood portrays relationships, yeah, it's pretty fucked up, for both sexes. Especially when it comes to things like college. "Everyone's partying, everyone's having sex, and once that four years if over it's all downhill, baby!"

    •  Seriously... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Zack from the SFV
      As far as the way Hollywood portrays relationships, yeah, it's pretty fucked up, for both sexes. Especially when it comes to things like college. "Everyone's partying, everyone's having sex, and once that four years if over it's all downhill, baby!"
      One year in a relationship and 5 years of horrible luck vs the past year I've been having 2 years after college? Yeah, I enjoyed my classes in college, but my dating life suuuuucked in college.

      And I'll admit even though it's not easy, my frustration caused me to have some revenge fantasies. But fantasies I never acted out, cause I knew it would be awful to do what passed through my mind. Because nice guys aren't nice when it's easy to be nice, we try to be nice even when it's not beneficial. Otherwise, it's called being opportunistic.

    •  I LOVED my four years of (0+ / 0-)

      college despite lots of rejection.  I am female and yes, we get rejected too.  
      My roommate was THE "it" girl of the time: she was pretty, funny, and quite popular.  Being her roommate did not make me jealous, did not get me dates but I did get to hang out with some of the "in" crowd.  

      In movies of my time, like "Where the Boys Are" I was probably the Connie Francis character...the mild overweight, tried to use humor, average looking type (though in my head I always felt inferior from puberty until my mid twenties).  I suspect more had my experience than my roommate's experience.  

      I did improve with age as most do. I gained confidence and to this day try to tell young people, confidence does indeed add a layer of attractiveness to us.  CONFIDENCE, not arrogance, not narcissism, but the confidence it takes to get you out of yourself and focusing on others.  And that happiness is not created by relationships.  Rather you bring your happiness to relationships.  Or your misery.

      This pathetic young man, who somehow believed HE deserved what he wanted, when he wanted, seemed to me to be, at the very least, a narcissistic sociopath.  
      While media, from movies to the internet, affects all of our lives, blaming it seems off to me.  Access to powerful weapons, to me, is the primary issue.  This kid had access to mental health assistance, seemingly had parents trying to get him help.  But none of that meant anything when he also had access to weapons that allowed him to kill.  Yes, I know ..."the knife".  We cannot stop all killings.  However, out on the streets, killing randomly could have been stopped easier if ALL he had was a knife.

      “We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both.” Louis D. Brandeis

      by Jjc2006 on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:07:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  You don't want to psychoanalyze him... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mad Season, Steve CXS, josb, nextstep

    Anyway, entitlement mentality or no, it is true that driving around a $40k car with $300 sunglasses will get you laid more than the alternatives, all else being equal (or even unequal). So it's hard to blame someone for an entitlement mentality when being richer actually will get you laid more. Granted it is incorrect to think you "deserve" it, but...

    So when you complain about men getting these ideas in their heads, you might also complain about women who preferentially sleep with men who have money as opposed to those who don't.

    Or, we can admit to ourselves that sex and sexual selection are market phenomena like everything else. Being more sexually attractive, having a certain type of personality, and making more money are more preferable to the opposite sex than the reverse.

    (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
    Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

    by Sparhawk on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:37:28 PM PDT

    •  That's a really expensive way to go about it. (7+ / 0-)

      I paid $1300 for my car and I get laid.

      29, white male, TX-07 (current), TN-09 (born), TN-08 (where parents live now)

      by TDDVandy on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:43:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Lots of ways (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sparhawk, TDDVandy, Alexandra Lynch

        To get laid that don't involve money, as the parent mentioned. Looks, and height for men, are the main attributes that count, especially under 30 in my experience (people tend to become less picky as they notice their own assets declining - it's a market after all). And having low standards can help, too :-)

        Don't get me wrong - behavior isn't irrelevant of course, but it only really comes into play once the other criteria have been met. And obviously, that is where he went wrong.

      •  YECH! (0+ / 0-)

        'Get laid' huh? Thanks assswipe. And you guys wonder why women are walking away from marriage and relationships in greater numbers.

        We do -not- need that type of attitude regardless of how much your wheels do or do not cost.

        As a point of fact I met a brilliant woman [tops in her field]  a couple of weeks ago. She, unlike me, had the balls to say I'm doing artificial insemination rather than marrying one of the jerks roaming the countryside. She has a totally awesome child, has relationships with men when she feels like it and leads her life in a way many women would like too.

        So, as far as I'm concerned ...

        .... If you want a relationship, okay.
        ... Or a consensual sexual encounter, I'm down with that.

        Getting 'laid'? Go play with yourself.

        Peace.

    •  nope. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus, Nicci August, StrayCat

      I willcomplain about men thinking they deserve sex from women for having money. I won't complain about some few women whose standards for having sex include men having money. One is a woman choosing who she wants, the other is a man trying to say she shouldn't have a choice.  

  •  Hey, hey, hey...! (7+ / 0-)

    Dammit, people, this guy allegedly had AUTISM. Unless you KNOW what that is and what it entails and EXACTLY what it hurts in the brain and in relationships, you should be very careful of any society-wide conclusions you might make.

    My daughter has autism. I've studied it. This kid had NO IDEA of how to TALK TO PEOPLE. That's boiling it down to the bone.

    He was SICK. His concrete way of thinking was something that was not addressed and probably had no chance of being addressed. I've been taken to task for 'defending' him or 'stigmatizing' people with autism in other threads, trying to shed some real light on what this issue means for this horrible tragedy. Bottom line: Families of folks with autism need to keep a close eye on those in their families who suffer from this. They should not be allowed to own firearms. It is the very least we should take away from this.

    "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

    by DaddyO on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:38:25 PM PDT

    •  A good start. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dretutz, Alexandra Lynch

      In a civilized society, the problem would have been recognized when he was 6, his treatment would have short-circuited his self pity and we never would have heard of him.

      I wish I lived in a place like that.

      "Our problem is not that the glass is half empty or half full, but that the 1% claims that it is their glass." ---Stolen from a post on Daily Kos

      by jestbill on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:02:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  One problem is... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        StrayCat

        ...there are literally thousands of 'remedies' and treatments. Some of them are valid, others not. And think of the parents--how are they supposed to know what works? Because as of today, there is no comprehensive cure.

        I think another person with autism is going to do the same thing again someday soon--because our gun laws are so lax, and people are slow to 'blame' the coming violence on autism. Or to even recognize its basic contribution to the problem.

        It's a ticking time bomb. Like so many others in our gun-nuts nation...

        "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

        by DaddyO on Tue May 27, 2014 at 09:13:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Treatment to short-circuit autism? (0+ / 0-)

        I wish I lived in that world. But in the real world, there is no such thing.

        Even with the best of treatment (and we have no reason to believe the killer didn't get the best of treatment) an Aspie kid is probably going to reach the age of 20 not knowing how to start a relationship with someone he is interested in.

         

        •  Not always. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Throw The Bums Out

          The only reason my bioson doesn't have a girlfriend at 16 (he is friendly with girls) is because they aren't weather.

          I suspect that the two boys I've birthed who are on the spectrum will grow up, get secure in careers, and then calmly pick out a wife.

          But for now, women are not computers or weather, and they're happy with that.

          Help me get my utilities on! I can't eat this elephant by myself. http://www.gofundme.com/8xw014

          by Alexandra Lynch on Wed May 28, 2014 at 04:22:50 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  men want and need love and intimacy (6+ / 0-)

    but do they want it bad enough to accept it from an ordinary looking woman when they feel entitled to a supermodel?

    isn't that what fear of commitment is about?  fear of settling for an ordinary woman when a supermodel might be right around the next corner?

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:46:03 PM PDT

    •  no (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      StrayCat

      that is not what "fear of commitment" is about.

      and given that 95% of heterosexual men do in fact settle down with ordinary-looking women, it's pretty clear that there's some willful self-deception going on in this discussion.

      To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

      by UntimelyRippd on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:31:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  what is fear of commitment about then? (0+ / 0-)

        Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
        DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
        Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

        by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:35:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  uh ... being committed? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Progrocks

          To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

          by UntimelyRippd on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:54:58 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  LOL but why (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Odysseus

            if you want sex and love and you are getting it from someone, the only reason to avoid commitment is because you think someone better is out there somewhere

            Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
            DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
            Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

            by TrueBlueMajority on Wed May 28, 2014 at 03:33:15 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Doesn't need to be a supermodel (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              TrueBlueMajority

              Don't women have this fear as well?

              •  i guess so, but (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                StrayCat

                anecdotally, more of the women I know are happy with who they have and ready to settle down, and the men are not

                Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
                DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
                Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

                by TrueBlueMajority on Wed May 28, 2014 at 06:45:25 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I suggest that the "fear of commitment" meme (0+ / 0-)

                  is pop-culture psycho-babble, created and promulgated by the people who sell magazines and books to women, in order to validate the objectives of women and invalidate the objectives of men.

                  To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

                  by UntimelyRippd on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:02:25 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  I think that if you meditate on it for awhile, (0+ / 0-)

              other reasons may occur to you, the most straightforward being, "Good right now" does not necessarily imply "Good for the rest of my life".

              To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

              by UntimelyRippd on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:00:00 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  i think you are making my point (0+ / 0-)

                isn't what you said another form of "this is good enough for now but I may get better later"

                Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
                DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
                Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

                by TrueBlueMajority on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:12:58 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  no, it's not the same. (0+ / 0-)

                  at different times in our lives we're looking for different things ... but in any case, the most common human experience is that any given monogamous relationship loses its charm somewhere between 3 and 7 years in. That's what I meant by "for the rest of my life" -- it's less about hoping for someone who is universally, objectively "better" than one's current mate, it's about the expectation that eventually one will lose interest in one's current mate, at which point someone who is new will come along.

                  people don't rearrange their furniture because they've suddenly realized that all along they've had it arranged sub-optimally, they rearrange their furniture because human beings crave occasional novelty.

                  To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

                  by UntimelyRippd on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:44:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  I think it may be more about having (2+ / 0-)

              to fit a pattern.

              There is a tremendous stress to Follow The Pattern. I see it instead of merely bending to it because I am a bi polyamorous woman married to a bi polyamorous man, and there's a lot of pressure once you Get Serious to Get Married, and they then start asking about kids, and kids mean you have to give up your hobbies and buy a house in the suburbs and a minivan and, and.....

              I think sometimes it's "I don't want to turn into my dad!" but they don't know how not to other than to totally resist.

              Help me get my utilities on! I can't eat this elephant by myself. http://www.gofundme.com/8xw014

              by Alexandra Lynch on Wed May 28, 2014 at 04:26:22 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  cinema may have little to do with Rodger's (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    yoduuuh do or do not, Dretutz

    motives since he does not reference those kind of cultural constructions in his "manifesto". It's just not quite so easily dichotomized as media or mania, since the culture of unrealistic relationships goes back much farther in Western history although mass culture has made those fantasies more vivid.

    His desires to annihilate others may have root in an acquisitive male gaze and a superficial consumer materialism but it goes to the complexity of development within a deeply fragmented family which has a cinematic and televisual genre but which so few adolescents actually watch. His issues lie with his parents' divorce, the abuse by his stepmother, his numerous nannies among other forms of neglect cosmetically addressed by parental gifts.

    The desire to support a misogynistic culture argument represents the analysts' goals (with which there certainly is little argument about the global role of the patriarchy) rather than the empirical reality of how this killer went as so many of the other mass killers - the ones in Newtown and Aurora for example, into whatever technical term for depression and psychosis that allowed his managing the presentation of self to buy guns, bamboozle the cops, and frustrate equally diffident parents that in Rodgers' case he chose not to kill even though he had plans for them as well.

    There certainly are things that contribute, the move to nominate media as "conditioning" might be overstating the instrumental role of media in "causing" such killers. This is a reflection rather than a transmission argument although it certainly allows some writers to remain gainfully employed by reproducing such mechanical speculation Apatow's complaints about scapegoating notwithstanding:

    Movies may not reflect reality, but they powerfully condition what we desire, expect and feel we deserve from it. The myths that movies have been selling us become even more palpable at a time when spectators become their own auteurs and stars on YouTube, Instagram and Vine. If our cinematic grammar is one of violence, sexual conquest and macho swagger — thanks to male studio executives who green-light projects according to their own pathetic predilections — no one should be surprised when those impulses take luridly literal form in the culture at large.

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "If we appear to seek the unattainable, then let it be known that we do so to avoid the unimaginable." (@eState4Column5)

    by annieli on Tue May 27, 2014 at 07:53:17 PM PDT

  •  No no people. Get the facts straight. (12+ / 0-)

    Yes Rodger wanted the women he couldn't "get" dead.  But he also wanted to kill all the "successful" men who did "get" the girls, the pick-up artists especially.  They enraged him most of all. He wanted them out of the way so he could get his narcissistic pick of the remaining hot blondes. His reference to showing who's the "alpha male" is sarcastic - he rejected the pick-up artist, Game lifestyle.  That's why the site he frequented was PUA HATE - hating PUA's.  Not admiring them.  It's all there in the video we keep selectively quoting, ignoring these parts.  Try telling that dad on CNN that his son was expendable and his death didn't count, we have a bigger cultural narrative to promote.

    And he fulfilled his mission.  Killed 4 men, 2 women.  Three of the men his roommates - stabbed, not shot.  Which took more will power.  

    The real comparison should be obvious: David "Son of Sam" Berkowitz from the 70's.  Who had a similar manifesto, targeted women with long hair, but shot men too.  He just didn't have YouTube to victim-puke on like this psychotic one-percenter did.  (Though Rodgers also believed he wasn't rich enough, that bugged him too).

    Rodger's ASD no doubt contributed to his social awkwardness, but I agree it was not a cause of what he did; ASD is neurological.  He was mentally ill, first and foremost a narcissist, who was able to cover up and "play nice" just enough to throw the cops off his trail and avoid getting treatment.

    He is no more representative of all modern cis-gendered men than Jodi Arias is representative of young single women, or Andrea Yates of stay-at-home moms.  Stop with the shaming.  It's tiresome.

  •  The D.E.N.N.I.S. System (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Doctor RJ

    I think the woman he stalks is his real life wife.

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:04:26 PM PDT

  •  What "nice guys" don't understand. (2+ / 0-)

    Assholes don't get women because they're assholes.  They get them because they're confident.

    •  Confidence Is Often A Sign Of Insanity nt (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      josb

      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

      by bernardpliers on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:07:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Sorta... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Alexandra Lynch

      IME, the asshole/confident type usually, at least at first, encourages women to transgress a bit, to be more opinionated & confident & selfish than people-pleasing gender conditioning generally allows.  That's what's so appealing about them, even if they later turn on the women & start criticizing every move (as often happens with real assholes).  But early on, when a confident-seeming guy who doesn't care about others' opinion encourages you to also not care about those opinions so much... well, that's incredibly freeing.

      "Conservative principles" are marketing props used by the Conservative Movement to achieve political power, not actual beliefs. -Glenn Greenwald

      by latts on Tue May 27, 2014 at 10:13:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It's about perspective (0+ / 0-)

        Before the break up: he's so attentive!
        After the break up: he was so controlling!

        Change gender as needed.

        •  Sure, but (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Alexandra Lynch

          my point wasn't even about attention specifically; it's more about license.  The appeal  of the "bad boy" or "alpha" or generic jerk is that they often initially give women freedom to be a little more jerkish themselves, or at least freedom to be somewhat unconcerned with societal expectations.  There's a sort of rebellion factor there, with a particular type of man enabling it.  It's actually a pretty empowering feeling to be with someone who not only seems to like you, but specifically likes and encourages traits you've been conditioned to suppress-- rebelliousness, snark, etc.

          I just think this is a point that's often missed in the bad-boy narratives; they're always not just nice girls led astray, or hopelessly trying to win the love of (and reform) a sociopathic man, or even shallow bitches (per Rodgers) but can be women who actually want to not have to constantly conform to societal expectations.

          "Conservative principles" are marketing props used by the Conservative Movement to achieve political power, not actual beliefs. -Glenn Greenwald

          by latts on Tue May 27, 2014 at 11:44:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Point taken, but I don't see how giving a woman... (0+ / 0-)

            Point taken, but I don't see how giving a woman freedom is unique to so-called bad boys, because I don't think it is. Rather, I think there are certain attractiveness traits these men have that result in them being able to exhibit that kind of behavior without negative consequences.

  •  I think it is disingenuous for Apatow to act (5+ / 0-)

    as though his movies were given as anything but an example of how most movies are written for the fantasy life of white, straight men.  (And they are.)

    It's also disingenuous for us to pretend we are not influenced by popular culture.  We do internalize its messages, whether we want to or not.  The fact that women are awarded as prizes in our movies, over and over and over, is not happenstantial to the male-centered culture that is all around us every day.

    I encourage everyone to read this, and then think about the multiple instances where people blamed girls for turning down boys who then turned violent:

    The teacher, who used to be a sergeant in the police force, told us a story of something that had happened to a girl he knew when she was in high school. There was a guy who obviously had a crush on her and he made her uncomfortable. One day he finally gathered up the courage to ask her out, and she said no.
    The next day, during an assembly, he pulled a gun on her in front of everyone and threatened to kill her if she didn’t date him.

    He was tackled to the ground and the gun was taken from him.

    When my teacher asked the class who was at fault for the crime, I was the only person who said the boy was. All the other kids in the class (who were all boys) said that the girl was, that if she had said yes he would’ve never lost it and brought a gun and tried to kill her. When my teacher said that they were wrong and that this is what is wrong with society, that whenever a white boy commits a crime it’s someone else’s fault (music, television, video games, the victim) one boy raised his hand and literally said; “But if someone were to punch me and I punched him back, who is at fault for the fight? He is, not me. It’s self-defence. She started it, so anything that happens to her is in reaction to her actions .It’s simple cause and effect.”

    Even though he spent the rest of the calss period ripping into the boys and saying that you are always responsible for your own actions, and that women are allowed to say no and do not have to date them, they left class laughing about how idiotic he was and that he clearly had no idea how much it hurt to be rejected.

    The idea that nothing is more important that what men want, and women should accede to it, isn't just the message of popular culture.  It's the message of the entire culture.  It's why even a responsible adult (male) couldn't convince seventeen-year-old boys that girls didn't owe them their company/bodies.

    And it's not just boys:

    There's a reason why significant portions of both boys and girls will excuse violent rape.  Pretending it's just one mentally ill young man with a gun doesn't solve the bigger problem.

    © cai Visit 350.org to join the fight against global warming.

    by cai on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:06:41 PM PDT

  •  The bottom line is that as a species, we are not (3+ / 0-)

    even nearly what we wish we were.

    The evolutionary psychology may indeed be iffy -- indeed, that might be a generous assessment -- but when push comes to shove, we are animals, motivated by animal drives, evolved to be driven, and to strive for the satisfaction of those drives, but not evolved to be sated.

    The "problem" of male/female relationships is the first and most fundamental question that any human society -- from the smallest clan to the most sprawling civilization -- must address. I venture to assert that no human society has ever "solved" this problem.

    Men aren't demons, and women aren't saints, and there will never be a utopian world where everybody is happy, because on average, the drives of women and the drives of men intersect but do not join. There will always be men who exploit women, and women who exploit men, etc., and within that realm of exploitation, there will always be those who fail to claim the role they desire.

    We can hope to create a society that generates the least possible horror with respect to this conundrum, but at the same time we must recognize that the signal property of technology is that it amplifies the actions of individuals. Thus, even as we work to find ways to mitigate and attenuate the social tensions that derive from sexual biology, we are thwarted by the fact that each failure has the potential for tragedy of ever-growing scope.

    To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

    by UntimelyRippd on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:12:10 PM PDT

  •  It's easy to write off this one guy as sick, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Nicci August, DSC on the Plateau

    as autistic, as this and that... but the fact is that the beliefs he had about (hot) women owing him sex are very common.


    And there are enough of them that they reinforce each other's rage and sense of sexual entitlement.  And far from enough societal push-back from men as well as women telling them that they are wrong.

    © cai Visit 350.org to join the fight against global warming.

    by cai on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:14:40 PM PDT

    •  I'll give you points on this one (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Vetwife, Cardinal Fang

      Rodger was influenced by Internet idiocy; he came upon it, it made sense to his mal-developed brain; he embraced it and even acted on it.

      But my basic point still stands. Rodger was extremely frustrated because he could not communicate effectively. He literally had no idea how to talk to people or women to get what he wanted out of life. This is practically the DEFINITION of autism. With all the other points made in this discussion, this one needs to be remembered first and foremost.

      He was trapped by his own brain. And there are many more just like him all over the world.

      "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

      by DaddyO on Tue May 27, 2014 at 09:20:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Even when given opportunity (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        milkbone

        He turned down female social coaches procured by the therapist, and invitations by neighbors to get out of the house. Men of lesser means don't necessarily get those. He had tons of opportunities handed to him based on his privileged upbringing and instead decided to throw coffee at couples instead.

      •  Met, he just sounded clueless (0+ / 0-)

        In some sense, he had it easy. All he had to do was change his behavior. If only it was that simple to win the heart of the person of your dreams.

  •  our puritanical idiocy substitutes violence (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    yoduuuh do or do not, cspivey

    for sex in the movies.

    been that way a long time.

    and, cruelty and avarice so rule the conduct of the Establishment power structure that any attempted veer toward fair sharing and justice is near impossible to perfect.

    my deduction always has been that lies at the top cause murder at the bottom.

    mentally ill people soak up sadness and desperation. dishonesty and hypocrisy hurt them as a cause of general unease and dissatisfaction.

    if people were nice to each other, top to bottom, there'd be much less misery and explosive rage violence.

    and, the mistreatment of women so ignorantly maintained is thoughtlessly passed on, moron to moron, generation to generation, healthy and defensive of our cowardly scapegoat inadequacy bloodlust, celebrated with alcohol and hollow guilt laughter where nothing funnier than the bad jokes who tell them have despicabilities to display.

    decent wages don't eliminate jobs. Republicans eliminate jobs; and workers, and prospects, and then excuse it all and call for more austerity. there is no end to their ignorant, arrogant avarice. only political dinosaurs support their treachery.

    by renzo capetti on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:15:37 PM PDT

  •  When Women Refuse. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cspivey, lotlizard

    A Tumblr of women assaulted, raped, or murdered, for daring to refuse a man.

    TRIGGER WARNINGS: GRAPHIC VIOLENCE AND IMAGES OF INJURIES.

    And, hours after the original incident, a man shot at women who refused to have sex with him and his friends.

    Is there something fundamentally wrong?  Yes.  But I don't think what any of these men are demanding qualifies as either intimacy or love.  It sounds like they want sex and worship, for they have been born with penises, and therefore it is their right.  /vileness

    © cai Visit 350.org to join the fight against global warming.

    by cai on Tue May 27, 2014 at 08:43:44 PM PDT

    •  Not to argue, not to flame... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      annominous

      ...but no woman was ever allowed to refuse to have sex with Rodger. HE NEVER ASKED A WOMAN FOR ANYTHING.

      Because he was sick. So...this really is not germane to a discussion about HIM.

      "I feel a lot safer already."--Emil Sitka

      by DaddyO on Tue May 27, 2014 at 09:21:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The question in the title is whether there is (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        frostieb

        something wrong with our societal expectations of intimacy and love.  It's not just about this one man.

        You may be right or wrong about this particular individual, but my answer the question in the title stands: yes, there is something wrong with our societal expectations around sex.

        I hear your point about how autism affected this shooter.  But the discussion has gone beyond this individual.

        I encourage you to read up on the links I've provided.  Then, instead of trying to find a specific reason why each of the individual men in each story may have gone off the rails (each will have a history, just like every abusive husband, gang member, terrorist, torturer, etc., has a story), look for the patterns.  

        They didn't just go off the rails and hurt somebody.  They went off the rails and hurt women.  They went off the rails and hurt women because they wanted something from women they were not getting.  Something they felt entitled to.  Why?

        In Rodger's case, autism played a role.  But not in all of these cases; not in most of them.  (And, indeed, I've read comments by autistic people pointing out that while they may have difficulty reading social cues, they work hard to do so, and would never commit violence.)

        Now, if you'll excuse me, for my own peace of mind, I'm going to take a break.

        © cai Visit 350.org to join the fight against global warming.

        by cai on Tue May 27, 2014 at 09:31:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The scary part is that I understand Rodger (0+ / 0-)

    I can undersatnd Rodger's point, even though it is sick and repugnant.  What Rodgers failed to consider, and this may have been part of his illness, was that he wasn't the center of the universe.

  •  The overall theme is narcissism (0+ / 0-)

    Amplified by the "selfie" generation. The misogyny is there, but also the racism and classism inherent in the manifesto. But as far as I can tell he never attempted to have a meaningful conversation with a woman, even for practice. His only communications really were either online where he was bullied, or in person with people he found contemptible because of race, habits, etc. Privileged background who thought he should get to home plate just for being born on third place.

  •  As A Teenager I Had A Dream (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    josb

    Maybe we were all swimming some place, and there was a girl I liked but had not spoken to.  There seemed to be some sort of cave man rules in effect because some guy scooped her up and started to carry her away.  She looked over at me, shrugged, and said "Hey, you didn't ask."

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Tue May 27, 2014 at 10:42:20 PM PDT

  •  Oxymoronic, icky-moronic Cashill (0+ / 0-)
    Jack Cashill at the conservative magazine American Thinker
    Dear diarist:  "conservative" and "thinker" cannot logically exist in a single short description unless both words are empty of meaning.

    Poverty is not an accident. Like slavery and apartheid, it is man-made and can be removed by the actions of human beings. —Nelson Mandela

    by kaliope on Tue May 27, 2014 at 11:36:05 PM PDT

  •  Idealized View Of Romantic Love (0+ / 0-)

    Guess I am jaded divorced 54 year old man but you have to be impressed how that ideal holds up in the face of the high divorce rate not to mention all the failed relationships that one has before they get married. A good portion of society has an unrealistic view of romantic love and what it can deliver. Narrative fiction relies on the conceit of romantic love. I wouldn't blame any particular artists in Hollywood. It's like blaming the 3 stooges for slapstick. But the popular culture view of romantic love adds to the unrealistic expectations. When the bridezillas and the people with multiple marriages have a hard time getting the unreality, it is not surprising that this troubled young man couldn't.

  •  Isn't the whole point of pick-up artistry (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PoliMorf

    that women owe men nothing, so you've scheme and work for it?  Or did I miss a connection somewhere?

    •  No youre right (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rduran
      The problem with that sort of pick-up artist thinking of Alpha and Beta males is that it's based on some iffy evolutionary psychology and it's predicated on a sexist notion that women owe a man sex, companionship or a relationship for being "nice."
      The OP  clearly doesnt understand that the whole point of PUA is that women dont owe you anything and you need to present yourself in a new manner.
    •  Have A Vasectomy, Tell Women You Want Lotsa Kids (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rduran

      That was my evil scheme back in the day....

      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

      by bernardpliers on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:23:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rduran

      The entire pick-up artist philosophy is based around the idea that women aren't logical, and markets its techniques to men by feeding a rejected man's belief that there's nothing wrong with him.

      From The American Prospect:

      Pick-up artistry argues that men who can’t get laid are fine the way they are, and it’s women—the entire lot of them—who are broken. And that by accepting that women are the ones to blame here, the student of PUA can finally start getting the sex he feels entitled to.

      Most PUA philosophy is based in a half-baked pseudo-scientific theory of the genders derived from evolutionary psychology. The argument is that women are programmed to overlook “nice guys”, sometimes called “betas,” who are gentlemanly and kind and and instead are drawn to cocky assholes who mistreat them, usually nicknamed “alphas,” Often, women are accused of “friend zoning” the betas, exploiting them for companionship and gifts while getting sexual satisfaction from the alphas. (It’s taken as a given that “alphas” are bad men who can’t treat a woman right and “betas” are nice, though the seething misogyny of many self-identified betas gives lie to that notion.)

      There’s no scientific evidence to support this theory, but since it allows adherents to believe themselves to be unimpeachable victims and to blame women for their loneliness, it remains wildly popular, so much so that men seeking non-misogynist dating advice cannot find it in a sea of PUA literature.

      •  So both MRA and PUA are steeped in misogyny (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PoliMorf

        Still feels like there's some conflation going on here; the two camps seem diametrically opposed on how to react to their common beliefs regarding mate choice.  MRAs seem to just stew in resentment, while PUAs seem to argue "it is what it is" and encourages adherents to use deception and manipulation to game the system.  Both sides seem to hold each other in contempt.

      •  pua (0+ / 0-)
        it allows adherents to believe themselves to be unimpeachable victims and to blame women for their loneliness,
        I think the PUA idea is to no longer be a lonely  victim as opposed to wallowing in their loneliness like the shooter was.
  •  His documentation (0+ / 0-)

    speaks for itself. I listened to the video and read all the salient points in his manifesto.  The young man was under care yes, but not for the correct issue - nor would he ever open up enough to be treated for the correct issue.

    It has nothing whatsoever to do with Hollywood, or video games or any other trope.  He made it pretty clear in the video but it is even clearer, much clearer, in his written work.  This was a classic case of slut/madonna syndrome.  He was sexually attracted to women, turned on by sex, but at the same time had been conditioned somehow (I don't know how) to think that sex was evil, the root of all other evils and should be destroyed so that men would be healthier.  He thought women were beasts, and ultimately evil and used sex to control men, and he thought that because he couldn't control (nor can or should any boy even try to) hsi desires that something was terribly wrong.  He wanted sex with every "hot" woman he saw, and he felt rejected by them -- BUT at the same time..., READ the manifesto and tell me that he did not think that all sex was evil.  So his desires and his lust warred with some sort of puritanical view within himself, leading him to his fantasy about starving all women to death except for some kept in labs for artificial insemination to produce children - thus "freeing" men to be healthy and the world to have peace.

    It is CLASSIC, when you read it, easy to discern and plain as the nose on your face.  His Psychiatrist did not know ANY of this, I guarantee, because in our culture, you can't openly express the type of combination feelings he had.  Such combinations are common in some cultures (remember the grandmother beaten to death in front of her 8 year old grandson by the Taliban, back before 9/11?  I certainly do. She accidentally showed her ankle, so they killed her in front of a USA Today reporter ) Further he was trying to hide what he felt because he thought it made him weak.

    He even expressed at one point that if he couldn't have "them" (implying he wanted in his lustful stage to copulate with and control all "hot" women) then he would destroy them so no one could have them....

    It really is classic.  The slut/madonna syndrome is pretty well understood - historically it led to things like Jack the Ripper and more recently to the various serial killers and probably some other mass murderers, though none with the reasons so well documented.

    Kind thoughts.

    •  I intepreted it very differently (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      renska

      To me it wasn't the slut/madonna at all but rather the guy's incredible narcissism. His manifesto showed an obsession with status in every way: social, financial, racial, geographic, occupational. He pictured himself at the top of the heap, receiving adulation from everyone.

      When he hit puberty, suddenly the social pecking order had a lot to do with sexuality. His own strong urges in that direction made sexual success even more important to him as an indicator of status than it probably was to anyone else, a real idée fixe. His failure in the one area he'd decided was the measure of self-worth was too much for him to stand.

      He wanted, ideally, to go back to a world before sexuality loomed so important. But that doesn't mean he disapproved of sex in any moral way. Quite the contrary. He just came to hate it because it constantly - literally constantly - reminded him of his own poor status.

      His idea of eliminating the sexual pecking order among followed solely from the fact that he couldn't be atop it. Indeed, he often referred (first class flight, movie premiere, expensive cars and clothes, etc.) to how much he loved lording his fleeting superiority over others. If he'd walked out in the world and pretty college girls threw themselves at him (there's no indication he had the ability to actually engage them in conversation himself), he'd have been just fine with rampant sex.

      “Republicans...think American standard of living is a fine thing--so long as it doesn't spread to all the people... And they admire of Government of the United States so much that they would like to buy it.” Harry S. Truman

      by fenway49 on Wed May 28, 2014 at 11:35:56 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Never accept some framing of an issue uncritically (0+ / 0-)

    Especially if the framing is from an unquestionable nutcase.

    Yeah, Rodger told us this was all about wimmin, but he ended up killing (not counting himself) four men and two women.  Going by what he did, he was lashing out against humanity, choosing targets of opportunity.  Had the third roommate he chopped to death with a machete managed to overpower him, we'd have a much clearer idea of the nature of his rampage.  But the fact that he successfully killed two women and wounded another have led us to accept his claims about his motivation.

    Or maybe the fact that his male victims weren't white has something to do with the indifference people are showing about them.

    So by all means have discussion about the state of relations between men and women in our society, but don't take this event as somehow being the paradigm for the way men treat women.  

    We are ironically accepting his framing of his actions because of our society's deep seated sexism. He knew we look upon women as needing protection, and look at men who fail to protect themselves as unworthy. Our erasure of Jams Hong (20 yrs), George Chen (19) and David Wang (20) from the picture has shown Elliot Rodger understood us, at least how to manipulate us, better than we understood him.

    I've lost my faith in nihilism

    by grumpynerd on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:51:39 AM PDT

  •  You Ought To Read Some Wilhelm Reich (0+ / 0-)

    Yes he later went kinda nuts, but his early work was focused on the broad social role of sex especially in young men and how sexual frustration contributed to war.  

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Wed May 28, 2014 at 07:58:54 AM PDT

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