At first glance, the ‘Bye Felipe’ Instagram page seems comical in its absurdity.
Established to highlight the level of aggression men display towards women who reject their sexual advances, it is a fascinating look into the fragile male ego, all laid out on one, long page.
One post (albeit laden with fewer expletives than most of the others) shows a classic exchange between a would-be suitor and his female victim. Yes, victim.
“Too bad you aren’t single,” Josh asks via Facebook messenger.
“I like being un-single,” the woman responds.
Unperturbed, he asks: “Well can I still take you out?”
“No thanks,” she writes back.
“Wow that was a b*** move and I even have playboy models that flirt with me and ask me out that I’ve met at mansion parties (insert emoticon with raised middle finger and a screen grab of said flirtation).”
On the surface, this is so ridiculous it’s easy to dismiss. Angry, silly man hits out at woman by saying even Playboy models want him. THAT’S how attractive he is.
Implicit in this is that the woman doesn’t know what she’s missing out on, but hey, that’s too bad because she rejected HIM.
However, as you scroll down, a pattern emerges: it doesn’t matter if a woman is polite, rude or does not respond to a solicitation; the mere concept of rejection seems to bring outbursts of violent masculinity and a sense of entitlement towards women’s attention – and bodies.
“Fat, ugly girl”, “b***”, “ugly a** hoe”, “you’re not hot enough anyway”, “single mum trash” and “Jubba the hut looking hoe” seem to be the preferred insults directed at women.
Social and gender expert Dr Lauren Rosewarne is not surprised.
“If ever a woman says anything men don’t agree with, the default attack is on sexuality or appearance: that’s the way women get insulted,” she says.
“The value of women has always been attached to [sexuality and appearance], and it is the way we culturally reward women who are sluts or not beautiful – we attack them.”
Dr Rosewarne says men who sign up to hook-up apps and dating websites treat them like a “buffet”: they expect to do the picking, and if their overtures are not accepted – as they are socialised to believe they should be – they lash out.
“A woman on a hook-up app or dating website is not allowed fair choice or discretion,” she says. “She is expected to be acquiescent and agree with men and put up with what’s thrown at her.”
Perhaps one of the most devastating modern examples of male entitlement is 22-year-old California student Elliot Rodger’s 2014 shooting rampage against “every single blonde s***” who refused to have sex with him.
In his final manifesto, posted on YouTube, he outlined his plans to slaughter all those women who so cruelly denied him sex.
“College is the time when everyone experiences those things such as sex and find and pleasure. In those years, I’ve had to rot in loneliness. It’s not fair. I don’t know why you girls aren’t attracted to me. But I will punish you all for it,” he wrote.
Five people – including three men – were killed and countless others were injured in the ensuing violence.
The posts on ‘Bye Felipe’ shed light on a culture so steeped in misogyny that routine male-to-female exchanges end in threats of violence.