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7 May, 2018 18:17

CNN columnist faces backlash for ‘Patriarchy kills people’ op-ed

CNN columnist faces backlash for ‘Patriarchy kills people’ op-ed

CNN columnist and community organizer Richard Edmond Vargas is facing criticism for penning a column about how US “patriarchy” and male role models can be blamed for mass shootings.

Vargas, who describes his “anti-patriarchy work” in California prisons, wrote that American society relates to men as being “inherently violent, dominant and controlling,” and said he believes that society is “rewarding” men for being that way.

“Why are we continually surprised when a man takes up arms and commits mass murder?” the column asks.

Vargas points to cartoons, video games and politicians who exalt male violence. “Every social cue they've received since childhood declared violence their birthright, it's what makes them real men,” he wrote.

But not everyone agrees with Vargas’ reasoning and, as usual, Twitter was there to react.

Some people were quick to point out that according to the statistics, most mass killers actually grew up in matriarchal environments, with mothers and grandmothers, and that the problem might be a lack of positive male authority and role models in their lives, rather than a toxic patriarchy.

Others took offense at the assumption that most men are violent or aspire to violence, with one user pointing to factors like sociopathic personality disorder, drugs and gang culture as bigger problems than society supposedly rewarding violent behavior.

Some Twitter users pointed to higher rates of suicide and homelessness among men to pick holes in Vargas’ theory of a detrimental patriarchy.

Conservative commentator Ben Shapiro called out Vargas’ column as “intensely stupid” and penned his own response.

“There is zero evidence that video games lead to violence. And there’s no evidence that contemporary politicians are causing violence. But never mind that: it’s the propaganda that counts,” Shapiro wrote.