There’s a series of age worn black and white photographs out there of Charles Bukowski. In them he is depicted with a cigar in his mouth as he smiles with some young woman on his lap. The photos depict him, at first, grasping her ass tightly as she looks into the camera and he’s leaned back proud and happy. The second one has him, sans cigar and sucking on her nipple (did I mention she’s totally nude, yeah she is?). In the third he’s fingering her with a determined look on his face.

I don’t know the context of the pictures or who took them. For what I’m about to describe I don’t think it matters. The content of the photos is important, but their origins don’t have much need here. You see, earlier today I watched a guy mount a defense against feminism based on the fact that people call Bukowski a misogynist. His evidence was these pictures.

It would see that somehow having sex with women means you couldn’t possibly hate them—in much the same way that I guess befriending blacks or being one means you can’t be racist…

It’s always funny to me how much effort people put into changing the minds of people who they disagree with. And really there’s all this talk about debating and making points and outreach, but there’s no reaching out to someone who has this kind of false logic. At least not from what I can see.

What do you tell someone who attributes something like that to being proof of this sweeping claim that requires a lot of looking over of years of work? I believe that we need to point out injustices when we see them and that it is the right thing to do, but I don’t think that we’re serving a purpose by going after someone so far gone that they resort to this kind of logic.

Why waste your time?

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