- Since pointing out that gendered language is being used to add an extra layer of derogation to the political criticism tends to result in accusations that one is simply refusing to address the criticism contained in the argument by addressing the gendered language used instead (as if this is somehow an obviously totally unreasonable stance to take);
- since responses that seek to insist upon acknowledgement of the fundamental sexism embodied in expecting casual acceptance of gendered slurs as the rule tend to be vigorously objected to as irrelevant because obviously the gendered languaged used is not ‘really important”;
- and since the subsequent interaction tends to be non-productive of any change in behaviour and also derails the original thread, leading to further accusations about teh wimminz and their unreasonable fixation on sexist marginalisation;
… the following tactic is suggested. How about responding with a simple “here, let me recast your criticism in de-gendered language”, then do exactly that, then address the de-gendered argument directly? This negates their criticism of feminists allegedly hiding behind accusations of gendered language to avoid addressing particular points.
Then, perhaps on open threads (on blogs which regularly host such things), a weekly tally might be presented by various regular commentors of how many times each one has had to employ the above tactic, and then the open thread could host a discussion of what that tally might indicate about prevailing attitudes to feminist critiques without leaving the commentors open to such accusations of avoiding direct arguments.
I have no illusion of this tactic being any magic bullet, but it might well make some headway as an effective demonstration of the scope of the problem. I suspect that some of the usual vociferous decriers of how it’s all so irrelevant to call out gendered slurs or assumptions (because we’re only imagining that they are being used as a marginalising tactic against women by anybody there (by nasty sexists elsewhere maybe, but not there)) might prefer the old way where they get to pretend how unreasonable the feminists are instead of my suggestion here, but hard cheese if they weren’t willing to listen any other way.