SIO84: Interview with Jessica Xiao; Sargon’s Persecution Complex

Today’s episode is a bit of a double feature. First up is a conversation with feminist writer Jessica Xiao! Jessica had a post about male feminists that I found very interesting and I’m so glad she agreed to come on to talk about it. We also discuss her background and where she sees herself (if at all) within the atheist movement. Check out Jessica’s website for more about her and her writing!

After that, I break down just how much dishonesty and victim complex there is in a video Sargon made about me. I wouldn’t bother, except that it so perfectly encapsulates why Sargon and his followers feel so persecuted all the time.

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3 Replies to “SIO84: Interview with Jessica Xiao; Sargon’s Persecution Complex”

  1. Feedback on first half- (started as a voicemail draft but its too long)

    Hey Thomas, it’s Oscar. I wanted to respond to last episodes section on feminism. There were two claims kind of lumped together, the first I totally see. That a man opening with “I’m a feminist” is a warning sign, just like the “Look, I’m a nice guy” tactic.

    But the second thing, that men shouldn’t call themselves feminists, I really take issue with. I’m perfectly happy for there to be feminists that think male feminists are less progressive on average. In fact I agree, but to say men have no input here honestly offends me.
    Primarily as I’m a somewhat feminine man, and it seems so obvious that the manly “man-up” bootstrap trickle-down narrative is so reductive to the male psychology.

    Is it just cis men? Are trans men and trans women acceptable as feminists?

    I strongly believe discussions must be inclusive to be effective, and as a feminist, I see feminism as about; reaching for equality between the genders.

    To single out men, to me, seems binary and regressive.

    And it’s always said with the “race analogy” which, in this instance, is like one black person telling another they’re not the “right kind of black”.. I’ve identified as a feminist for over a decade, and the person I care for most in this world is both female and black, so my being offended, or getting defensive, I think is perfectly justified here.

    I’m not trying to say I know what the female experience is like first-hand, but I’ve heard plenty on the topic. I am not blinded by the patriarchy. Furthermore, gender equality and the erosion of gender roles in society, is something that will help men too.

    This culture – western civilisation, is so deeply repressed sexually and emotionally, basically all thanks to religion.

  2. Carl Benjamin sees a communist under every bed. He is stuck in the McCarthy era, suffering from arrested development.

  3. Total agreement with Oscar. I am already careful about identifying as a male feminist, despite being urged to do so stridently and frequently by female feminists I know. On top of the performative aspect mentioned above, I run the risk of alienating people like Jessica. She seemed to like ‘ally’ better, but said that was problematic also.

    Is this a common belief? In my circle most feminists belong to the third-wave/intersectional school that emphasizes inclusiveness and rejects the gender binary rules that seem to define Jessica’s worldview. I always want to listen to every point of view (and would try to avoid offending anyone I’m speaking to) but I could not find any suggestions to take away from this discussion. The fact alone that trans men and women are excluded from her definition of feminist means she should rethink it imo.

    Would definitely like to hear if this is a more common issue, especially from guests who are in gender studies.

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