Author: has written 5299 posts for this blog.

Jill began blogging for Feministe in 2005. She has since written as a weekly columnist for the Guardian newspaper and in April 2014 she was appointed as senior political writer for Cosmopolitan magazine.
Return to: Homepage | Blog Index

10 Responses

  1. a lawyer
    a lawyer January 18, 2010 at 4:36 pm |

    I’m glad I’m not in New York. I’d hate for my bar dues to be funding this crap.

  2. Comrade Kevin
    Comrade Kevin January 18, 2010 at 4:59 pm |

    I wouldn’t object to this if women lawyers critiqued male lawyers, as well. And to be honest, allegations of sexism aside, sometimes other people with other perspectives reveal things about ourselves that we ourselves often overlook. We shouldn’t get up on our high horse out of some belief that only women can criticize other women or only women have the solution for only women problems, and the same goes for men, too.

    Full integration requires us to shelve our righteous indignation. The Civil Rights Movement required both white and black support and to conquer Patriarchy, it will need both male and female support as. I can advance the same ideas that a woman sets forth and based on the inequalities of our current world, my words might be taken more seriously than that of a woman. Lament that it is wrong if you wish, but know that until true equality comes, male feminists and male allies are essential to success and might very well be the means by which the movement succeeds.

    And…we’re all in this together!

  3. Personal Failure
    Personal Failure January 18, 2010 at 5:07 pm |

    Oh, Kevin, I . . . I . . . shouldn’t commit my feelings to print. They could be used against me in a court of law.

  4. MsTexasJD
    MsTexasJD January 18, 2010 at 5:39 pm |

    Wow, that is incredible. Thanks for sharing.

  5. debbie
    debbie January 18, 2010 at 6:25 pm |

    Wow, Kevin. Thanks for the mansplanation. Clearly, it has never occurred to Jill, or any of the posters or commenters on Feministe, that feminist men exist, and/or that men’s support is necessary to end patriarchy. Or that men might have a different perspective than women. This is truly groundbreaking stuff.

    I mean, why would we include a silly little thing like power in our analysis?

    Or maybe there’s secret code in Jill’s post that says that only women can criticize other women, or offer solutions to women’s problems, because I don’t think she actually said that. Maybe you’ll note that she did say:

    Now, don’t get me wrong — I’m sure that both panels would have helpful information. I’m sure that the distinguished gentlemen on the second panel are indeed distinguished, and are probably very smart and nice people who do genuinely want to help female lawyers. And female lawyers do face specific challenges in our field. But the Bar association really framed this one poorly. And maybe we would face fewer challenges if it wasn’t always assumed that we’re the ones with the problem.

  6. j-bird
    j-bird January 18, 2010 at 9:23 pm |

    Kevin, take a deep breath and then read your post again.

    I wouldn’t object to this if women lawyers critiqued male lawyers, as well.

    I daresay you wouldn’t. It’s a lot easier to consider criticisms objectively, brushing off the unfair and unfounded ones, when you are a member of the group that has occupied the profession exclusively for centuries, losing ground only in the past few decades.

    And anyway, no one is saying that there shouldn’t be any men on a panel discussing gender and law. It’s just that having a panel of only (or even mostly) men telling women how to be better lawyers is directly replicating the old power structures.

    I’m pretty much repeating what debbie said, but I feel like it needs to be emphasized. Kevin, I’ve read your comments before and recall them being reasonably intelligent. I’m a little surprised to read what you wrote here — pre-coffee, perhaps? If you’re just trolling here, then fuck you and thanks for wasting my time.

  7. Sailorman
    Sailorman January 19, 2010 at 8:28 am |

    But I still wonder when we can expect the New York State Bar Association to feature a panel of men asking, “What’s Our Problem?” and discussing all the ways that men as a whole could be better at their jobs — whether they’re currently in or looking to re-enter the field — followed by a panel of women explaining it all.

    They probably do the first part, except that they give it some title like “Finding Your Work/Life Balance In a Rapidly Changing Economy” or “When Good is Bad: Pros and Cons of Client Interaction.” Of course, they would staff it with all men, and claim it applies to everyone.

    Men, you know, don’t have problems. We have Life Challenges. Or perhaps Opportunities for Change. ;)

    I doubt they do the second part though. I’d love to see it.

  8. P.T. Smith
    P.T. Smith January 19, 2010 at 11:22 am |


    I think you’ve made a mistake that a lot of us guys make sometimes, myself included for sure. You ended up hearing a criticism that wasn’t there, one much bigger and inaccurate than what was actually said. There could be lots of reasons for this: general defensiveness, fears, a result of the way some people try to teach a perception of feminism as attacking massively and blindly. I don’t know, but it happens. And it sucks, because then the whole point of the actual, existing, legitimate critique gets missed.

    I don’t know. If there is a critique of something, I try to check myself, and if I’m feeling defensive, reread the critique and make sure I am not getting defensive over a point that isn’t even being made.

  9. matlun
    matlun January 19, 2010 at 1:49 pm |

    As a side comment on this – doesn’t the female panel (“What’s Our Problem”) look strange too? It is labeled as “current issues facing women” but the detailed agenda seems to be very general (non-gender-related) issues.

    Do women need extra, special training in “legal analysis and problem solving”?

    To be fair this is probably just me being in a bad mood.

  10. The Czech
    The Czech January 19, 2010 at 9:17 pm |

    OH MY GOD.

    I have to say it really helps the ridiculousness come out when you reverse the genders in the situation and consider how unacceptable *that* would be.

Comments are closed.

The commenting period has expired for this post. If you wish to re-open the discussion, please do so in the latest Open Thread.