The Sexist

Chris Brown: “I Love Women”

[youtube:v=eqxbimNe458]

Chris Brown appeared on the Wendy Williams Show on Friday, where he talked about his anger management classes, explained that his posture has been misconstrued by the media, and basked in the excessive fawning of Williams' female audience.

The whole interview was weird. Williams opens the segment by describing Brown in strangely passive language: "Our first guest has faced a firestorm of criticism for the past several months after a widely-publicized domestic violence incident which occurred with his former girlfriend, Rihanna." But the low point of the interview comes at segment's end, when William asks Brown if he's dating anyone. Brown responds, "Of course. I love women." And the crowd goes wild.

I hate "I love women."

Let's see what other illustrious male stars also "love women":

Tucker Max loves women:

I hate a lot of things, (stupid people and Duke basketball, for instance) but nowhere on that list is women. I LOVE women. Now, do I treat some women like shit? Yes, sometimes, but I treat EVERYONE like shit, not just women. Sexism is treating one sex differently from the other(s). I treat people as individuals.

Mel Gibson loves women:

I love women. They're the best thing ever created. If they want to be like men and come down to our level, that's fine.

Tom Cruise loves women:

Interviewer: You seem to have a real respect for women. What is it that you like so much about them?

Cruise:
They smell good. [Laughs]. They look pretty. I love women. I do.

Silvio Berlusconi loves women:

"I think Italians recognise themselves in me. I am one of them. I was poor, I am interested in the things that interest them, I love football, I smile, I love others and, above all else, beautiful women," he said to loud applause.

Christopher Walken, as the eternally skeevy dude in the SNL sketch "The Continental," loves women:

You look so lovely. It is as though Michelangelo sculpted you by hand . . . then kept you for himself.. in a closet . . . to visit on lonely nights. Would you care for a glass of champagna? I knew you would. I knew you enjoy champagna. How do I know this? Because I love women. I can read their mail . . . I mean, mind!

Why is "I love women" the worst thing you could possibly say?

(a) It assumes that all women are the same. I'm a heterosexual woman with plenty of men in my life. I love my father, my brother, and my boyfriend. I do not love Tucker Max, Tom Cruise, or the skeevy guy in The Continental. How could this possibly be? Because I understand that even though my boyfriend and Tucker Max share a couple of pronouns, they have little else in common. Men who announce that they "love women" fail to recognize us as individuals.

(b) When you say "I love women," you really mean, "I love having sex with women."

(c) The phrase is almost always evoked defensively. Accused of calling a female police officer "sugartits"? Just say, "I love women." Convicted of beating up your girlfriend? "I love women." Accused of frequenting underage prostitutes? "I love women." Rumored to have brainwashed a beloved female star in order to make her into your Scientology baby factory? "I love women." This statement is the misogynist's answer to the racist's "I'm not racist but," and the homophobe's "some of my best friends are gay."

(d) Note the context. "I love women" is almost always prefaced or followed by some seriously sexist shit. You love women because they smell good? Great. What about women who don't smell good? Possibly the most annoying "I love women"-related commentary is the sentiment that "women are better than men" (See: Gibson). When Gloria Steinem said that “A pedestal is as much a prison as any small, confined space," she was talking to all these skeezes, who hold women up to a high standard of fuckability, then degrade all the females who fail to live up to that standard.

  • Reid

    I totally disagree: Katie Holmes was never beloved.

  • Former Staffer

    "I wanna know girls
    don't want to know men
    I’m already stuck inside the head of one of them"

    Portastatic - I wanna know girls.

    "Now everywhere I look I get depressed
    I think I'll wear a dress
    to disassociate myself from men
    Oh but then again how would you know ooh"

    Portastatic - Autumn Got Dark

  • nick

    While I've with you on the disgust for Chris Brown, and annoyance at the celebrity quotes, this is an interestingly-timely post for me: I was just thinking this weekend that "I love women."

    And in the way that I love women, (a), (b), (c), and (d) are all false. I'm surrounded by women on a regular basis, and all of my closest friends are women. There's absolutely a little sexual attraction mixed into it all, but if I were challenged with your list directly, I'd dispute it passionately.

    I know men who don't particularly "love women," and not in a misogynistic way. These guys are much more 'homosocial' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosociality), and are much more 'dude' oriented.

    So I absolutely identify with "I love women." I agree that your list is applicable to some, but not to all.

  • http://www.eythink.com Lindsay

    I just need to say how CREEPY that video is. It has a significant stalking vibe to it, and he sounds delusional.

  • http://jessicasideways.com Jessica Sideways

    You know, most of these misogynists probably don't even recognize all women as women. I am a transsexual woman and some people elect to disrespect me by referring to me as a male.

  • Jenn

    Dammit, Amanda. You keep reading my mind, then articulating my opinions better than I ever could. Which actually works well for me, because now when I have to explain why I HATE guys who say "I love women!" I can just point to The Sexist and viola! My work is done.

  • http://sarahwurrey.com Sarah

    I'm so with you on this in the case of the Tucker Max's of the world. Especially with regards to (b).

    But I can see giving some guys who say this a pass--as Nick points out above, sometimes men might just say this because they are frequently surrounded by awesome women. I myself say "I love men" at times, without really meaning to include the douches in that blanket statement. I just mean I love the men I love (boyfriend, dad, friends, etc.)

    Regardless, this is a great post. I despise when people say this--it's always some sketchy celebrity. I don't want your love, Chris Brown! Keep it, please.

  • I_am_a_person_too

    I've always hated that phrase "I love women". It's always used defensively and condescendingly.

    And quite honestly, I don't want their "love" if their "love" means disrespecting me and taking away my person-hood.

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  • Amanda

    "I love women." What a funny thing to say. If men love women so much, why are they so disrespectful. Don't get me wrong, I'm not speaking for all men, but 93% of them. Most men refer to us as the "B" word or other negative names. Loving us does not include smacking us around. Men if you love us so much, show us some RESPECT!!! Thank you to the 7% of men who show us the love and respect that we should have.

  • I_am_a_person_too

    That phrase also relates to abusive behavior. "Well I don't want you going out with your friends because I love you so much, I want you all to myself" Or "I'm just jealous because I love you so much"

    Eww eww eww.

  • Cowcharge

    I love women. Women are a joy to be around. Except for bitter, hateful, every-man-is-a-lying-cheat women. So I guess I love about 7% of women, to use one of the above commenter's scientifically-arrived-at percentage. Want to find a guy who doesn't lie, doesn't cheat, and doesn't smack you around? Then stop choosing men by their patter, their abs, their hair, their cars, their gifts and their wallets. Wake up, for Christ's sake.

  • Kel

    Yeah, maybe he shouldn't have said that. But I think everyone could take what he meant was that he loves dating women. And being a 20 year old guy, I don't think that's atypical. The only thing that I think that would put off people is that that statement seemingly contradicts his actions at the time of the "incident" that occurred between him and Rihanna. If anything, that is what is annoying about the statement.

    His actions I don't think are particularly representative of his feeling for "women". To me it demonstrates a deep character flaw of someone who has/had major anger problems. Which is why he is taking anger management classes.

    And on a completely different note, what was up with those ridiculous, Steve Urkel-reminiscent glasses? Does he even have bad vision? Not a great fashion statement to wear fake glasses, especially comical-looking ones. And I don't even care about fashion. But I know what looks absurd.

  • Charles

    I disagree with a couple of your points:

    A) I don't think it assumes all women are the same. Yes, it's a generalizing statement, but I think it refers to the general characteristics that a lot women share. I think that statement reasonably implies that they will be outliers. Sure it would be more accurate to say I love women that [and then list characteristics that you admire] but who has time for all that.

    B) Yes but not always. I would imagine that they are gay men out there that say that they love women. And there are straight men in committed monogamous relationships that say they love women. But I do agree attraction (though not just physical) usually plays a role in the statement. I'm not sure what that's a bad thing though.

    C & D) Context definitely matters. And I'll grant you that the context surrounding the "I love women" statement is usually as an excuse for some poor behavior. But I can assure you from personal experience that that is not always the case

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  • kieha

    hey u are sexy chris i stil like you and that thing that u where wit that is uhh im better than her

  • Chucky

    Commentary. So. Depressing.

    #3 'my love for women is pure because I'm not secretly gay' is a hilarious out that seems to explain why you obsessively surround yourself with women. Who only hangs out with one gender? You just cut your entire community in half.

    #13 you sound creepy and self-deluded. You are the topic of the article. Don't immediately get all entitled and reach for your keyboard; let it sink in.

    #14. please. be. joke. please. please. please.

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