Vox posted a video by Roosh about a schism that’s going on in part of the manosphere. The first thing I saw claimed it’s between Roosh and Rollo, but the video makes it sound like it’s really between Roosh and a group of MGTOWs who dominate the red-pill subreddit. I’ve never been there, but based on the way many MGTOWs have been acting elsewhere lately, my immediate sympathies are with Roosh.
I’ve been following the general topic of socio-sexual relations since the mid-1990s, when I discovered Ross Jeffries’s work and the Usenet group alt.seduction.fast. Back then, the main focus was on practical results: how to be attractive to women and succeed with them – how to get the number, the date, the kiss, the lay, etc. Common topics were pick-up lines and specific techniques for the point of attack, along with self-improvement methods for looks and bearing. NLP and hypnotism were big.
Over the years, the scope and the body of knowledge have expanded greatly and shifted. There’s been an increased focus on overall philosophy and less on specific techniques. Christians have carved out a section of what was previously a completely secular movement, offering a scriptural alternative to the evo-psych explanations that had dominated. The scope expanded from getting a lay or relationship to include maintaining one, and even to cover marriage.
The vocabulary has changed too. How many guys in the manosphere today know what I mean if I say, “I went out sarging last night and split a mixed three-set with an AMOG destroyer, then took the HB8 for two venue changes before heading back to my place. Hit too much LMR, though, so I had to settle for the k-close”? Terms like manosphere and red pill came along later.
And yet, from my perspective, there’s been an ongoing, organic development from then to now. So Roosh’s “Manospherians, I am your father” routine just makes me laugh. (But as a rhetorical device to smack around MGTOWs: awesome, go for it.) He’s been one of the critical developers, but he built on the work of others just as others have built on his. The manosphere has many “fathers” who have changed or added to it, and it’s such a loose confederation that there may be no one man who could write an accurate history of the whole thing. One of the biggest influences for me was DeAngelo, whose DYD assembled a ton of good info and presented it well, but if you missed him and caught someone else, you might not count him at all.
One difference between now and then which this has brought to my attention, is that back in the “sarging” days, all the guys involved in the discussion liked women. Some only liked them for sex, but that’s why they were there: they wanted a woman/women and needed help to make that happen. It wasn’t until the last few years that the manosphere started picking up a lot of men who really don’t like women – they don’t want a woman at all, or at least claim not to want one. That wouldn’t be a problem, except that many of them seem to think it’s their mission to convince other men to emulate them. They’re not willing to Go Their Own Way alone; they’re determined to take all other men with them. My impression is that the thinking is, “If I can’t be getting laid and happy with a woman, no one else should be either.”
So if Roosh is under attack from MGTOWs, I’m on his side. I can’t say I’m thrilled about the term “neomasculinity,” though. “Neo” makes me think of “neo-conservative” and “neo-Catholic,” and in both of those cases the “neo” actually means “not really but pretending to be.” I’m willing to be convinced, though, or maybe someone will come up with a better term. (Obviously we don’t need a “new masculinity,” as original-recipe masculinity would work just fine, but I understand the need for a catchy term.) “Ortho-masculinity”? Nah, too much of a mouthful.
“Red pill” was a handy term because everyone saw the movie and instantly got what it meant – seeing the true reality behind the “pretty lies,” to use Roissy’s term. It was never perfect, though, and I’ve seen some confusion between red/blue pill and pink/blue science fiction (where blue is good), not to mention the backwards red/blue states in US politics, so maybe it’s time to get away from that anyway.
A last thought: one great thing about Men is that we can disagree, even beat each other bloody over it, and then shake hands and walk away as respectful associates, if not friends. We don’t have to do the SJW thing of deciding who/whom and then casting the whom into the outer darkness. Yet that’s increasingly how the vocal MGTOW subset works (which supports the recent observations I’ve seen about how they act like women). I hope Roosh and Rollo are both able to handle this like Men and not let the troublemakers drag them down to their level. I’m more familiar with Rollo’s work (he’s written a ton of foundational stuff) than Roosh’s, but they both deserve the respect and thanks of countless men. We wouldn’t gain by losing either of them.