I appreciate your response, although ironically, you seemed to have glossed over some of the nuances. My point is, whether you hit someone with your car by accident or on purpose, they are still dead. For legal and even ethical purposes there is a distinction, but it makes no difference to the person who was hit because they are still dead no matter what.

As I’ve already said in the OP, most racism and sexism is subconscious. Just because you don’t have conscious intent to harm, doesn’t mean that you aren’t actually hurting people, and trying to use that as an excuse, which is quite common, does not fly. Many people are of the belief that racism means you vehemently hate black people when in fact most racism is of the garden variety. The same is true of misogyny. It doesn’t mean overt hatred of women, but it’s still an insidious thing that creates a lot of harm in our society. This is important to note because we cannot improve situations that we do not recognize even exist.

Women who resist or flout gendered norms and expectations may subsequently garner suspicion and consternation, which has less to do with their challenging gendered norms per se, and more to do with their challenging entrenched norms simpliciter. And for some people, feminism in particular has profoundly disrupted their sense of the social order. The hostility they display to women who disrupt or pose a threat to gendered social hierarchies, say, is compatible with their being egalitarians in the abstract. They may nevertheless perceive powerful women who do not wield their power in service of men’s interests as abrasive and threatening. For that reason among others, a misogynist social environment may be partly the result of more or less well-intentioned people acting out of disavowed emotions, or exhibiting flashes of aggression that are not consciously experienced. And indeed, such aggression may be acted out partly as a substitute for feeling it: the expression “acting out” is suggestive in this context.

Manne, Kate. Down Girl (p. 61). Oxford University Press. Kindle Edition.

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Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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