Reasons why I won’t leave the radfem community that have prompted others to:
Intra-community criticisms, infighting, and subgroups
1. Intra-community criticisms, infighting, and subgroups are a normal and common part of sociopolitical communities.
1.a: Different subgroups or sections, such as an academic-wing and/or a grassroots-wing or direct actionist-wing, are normal and common parts of sociopolitical communities.
1.b: All sociopolitical communities consist of human beings with a diverse range of situations, personalities, and thresholds. Being a radical feminist (or any other kind of political idealist) does not inherently involve having a positive moral value or virtue ethic. Being a radical feminist does not inherently involve having a polite or pleasant personality, nor is it a guaranteed indicator of good character. All sociopolitical communities are composed of a combination of good and bad people. There will always be some jerks.
1.c: All sociopolitical communities have range. There will always be people who think you’re either doing too much or doing too little and there will always be people who will express that in either constructive or negative (i.e.: derogatory, insulting) ways. There will always be newcomers, skeptics, learners, moderates, centrists, hardliners, loyalists, political purists, or extremists, and cultists (to be avoided). There will always be former members and detractors.
1.d: All sociopolitical communities have standards and limitations. In order for any political descriptor, alignment, or community to mean something there needs to be a set of standard beliefs that unify the political category. There will always be people who are perceived as falling short of set ideals and will be criticized for this and encouraged (or pressured) to have deeper political convictions more suited to the community.
1.e: All sociopolitical communities have issues. There will always be disagreements of some sort happening. Whether personal disputes between individuals or subgroups having ideological and strategic disputes over who has the clearer more accurate analysis and stronger organizing strategy. There will always be debate. We cannot expect to have a community that upholds critical thinking and feminist sociology and be surprised when there’s so much contention.
Intra-community criticisms, infighting, and subgroups are a normal part of politics and should be expected if we’re going to be realistic about the condition of our community or any other community.