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New Men’s Rights Posters Fight Misandry with Racism, Homophobia, and Giant Trotskyist Fists [UPDATED]

Even North Korea is better at propaganda than the Men’s Rights Movement. Text reads: “Come to North Korea! We’ve got, like, shitloads of fish.” (Note: I do not actually know Korean.)

It’s sort of reassuring how bad Men’s Rightsers are at communicating with those outside their tiny movement. I should amend that: how bad they are at communicating what they want to communicate — that is, that they are the 21st-century version of the heroic and in many ways successful civil rights movements of the late 20th century. What they tend to communicate instead is what they’d rather the world not see: how blinkered and reactionary and hateful so many of them really are.

Browsing through the Men’s Rights subreddit last night, I ran across a batch of graphics one MRA had prepared for other MRAs to freely use, whether as online graphics, dorm room decoration, or posters to wheatpaste on the nearest family courts building. While avoiding the hysterical misogyny of so many of the graphics up on the Artistry Against Misandry website we looked at recently, CAGeorge’s posters reveal a bit more about himself and the MRM than he perhaps intends them to. Take this poster, ostensibly a call to “resist feminist bullying.” How exactly do you resist such bullying? Apparently, with a giant fist.

Huh. Your movement is known for its violent rhetoric, for downplaying and whitewashing domestic violence against women by pretending that DV affects men and women equally, for promulgating a sort of false-rape-allegation hysteria in no way proportionate to the actual extent of false-rape allegations. In some circles, it’s labeled, fairly or unfairly, as “the abusers lobby.” Do you really think putting this fist on this poster is going to help?

Apparently not. Apparently that fist ISN’T GIGANTIC ENOUGH. Meet MEGA FIST:

So, yeah. Also, FYI, that particular version of the old clenched-fist graphic has been used by the far-left International Socialist Organization (ISO) for several decades. Take a look at the little ISO fist to the right here. Same fist. You may want to switch that out, dudes, lest you inadvertently convert potential MRAs to Trotskyism.

And while I have to give CAGeorge a few points for avoiding the crass misogyny of Artistry Against Misandry, he doesn’t do quite as well avoiding racism and homophobia. Hence this poster, apparently an attempt to scare potential false accusers by suggesting they could end up sharing a cell with a scary and probably dark-skinned dyke.

Naturally, CAGeorge’s artisty won mostly plaudits from the Men’s Rights redditors who stopped by to look and comment.

EDITED TO ADD:  Woah.  Strike that last sentence. Returning to r/menrights I see that a real, critical discussion of the flyers has erupted. Many of the regulars are unhappy with various aspects of CAGeorge’s choices. Numerous commenters are critical of the fist imagery, including ignatiusloyola, one of the subreddit’s mods, who objects in one highly upvoted comment. One person even mentions the ISO!

Our old pal Sigil1 (a.k.a. the legendary banned Man Boobz commenter Eoghan) is especially critical of the “roommate” poster, and for a good reason: that it essentially threatens prison rape for false accusers. (He doesn’t mention the racism or homophobia.) But he still can’t help but blame the posters on a conspiracy of evil “false flag” feminists trying to make the MRM look bad.

Paul Elam of A Voice for Men, naturally, thinks the posters are fine and dandy.

CAGeorge, meanwhile, defends his poor choices. Here he is dealing with criticism of the “roommate” poster:

The bit about “nullification” is of course a reference to Elam’s infamous suggestion that MRAs should undermine the legal system by voting “not guilty” in trials involving men charged with rape, “even in the face of overwhelming evidence that the charges are true.”

Still, this is a real discussion. If the Men’s Rights movement has any chance at all of transforming itself into something really resembling a real progressive movement, it’s going to need to have a lot more discussions like this — and those who really do want to improved the lives of men instead of simply demonizing women will need to make clear that Elam and his ideological comrades are no longer welcome in the movement.

EDITED TO ADD, PART 2: Now the legendarily cloddish MRA videoblogger Bernard Chapin has made a video attacking the posters and the dude who made them. He’s not worried about the violent imagery, or the racism, or the homophobia — as I pointed out recently, he is himself a bit of a homophobe. Nope. He’s mad about the use of evil leftist imagery, and accuses the maker of the posters of being a sneaky Marxist infiltrator trying to co-opt the MRM with evil Marxist symbolism.

Gosh. Paul Elam said he liked the graphics. Is he a secret Marxist infiltrator too?

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Posted on June 4, 2012, in a voice for men, antifeminism, artistry, bullying, homophobia, MRA, racism, rapey, reddit, violence. Bookmark the permalink. 151 Comments.

  1. Argenti: I think VD chose that metaphor because of that staffer. It’s not coincidence, but intentional repetition. It’s part of why I don’t credit the, “satire defense”. VD thinks (from previous writings) that terrorising his opponents his good practice,

  2. Just to clarify a point about asking for damages, in many US jurisdictions, if the plaintiff’s attorney asks for monetary damages lower than those the jury elects to grant, unless they fall under narrow exemptiona, the plaintiff’s malpractice insurance picks up the difference. So typically, the plaintiff petitions for more than they think they will ever receive. So, if X sues Y for five million, this often means that X actually wants a number far lower and X’s attorney doesn’t think any award over that number is at all likely. Also, in some jurisdictions it is a common practice for appeals courts to lower very large awards, trial courts know this and so they often inflate the award so that the end result after the appeals courts lower it will be what the trial court would have wanted in the first place (NY Courts are known for this, I’ve heard more than one lawyer joke about it). Outsiders sometimes look at these large asking numbers and large trial court awards and don’t really see the procedural contexts around them.

    h

  3. Oh, about the Liebeck case, here’s a Journal of Commercial and Consumer Law piece about the case which contains facts and citations to the record, for those that are not yet aware of the actual facts of the case vs. the media myths that McDonalds and their corporate goons pushed http://www.jtexconsumerlaw.com/V11N1/Coffee.pdf

  4. pecunium: the acid attack reference actually came straight from the PZ Meyer post that VD was attacking, so I think it really might have been a coincidence. Which is all the more disturbing in a way.

  5. Psychodan: I’ll have to go look at pharyngula. I suspect the topicality is related; just at a remove, which does remove intention from VD.

  6. Argenti Aertheri

    That pharyngula post does explicitly ask about acid attacks, and VoxDay is properly presenting PZ Meyer’s questions. Of course, the original questions also include links, this one being the one for that question. So while the original question was posed before the staffer went and said that shit, the answer to 5 (How does stoning rape victims benefit women?) seems to suggest VoxDay is capable of seeing that some things are actually not beneficial. Idk, maybe his answer about acid attacks isn’t remotely related to that staffer’s comment, but I don’t think he’d have been so brazenly in support of the idea if not for the apparent support of at least one member of the republican party.

    That’s also the part that includes “If PZ has turned against utilitarianism or the concept of the collective welfare trumping the interests of the individual, I should be fascinated to hear it.” — so it does seem to be more than a one off point, but idk. For reference, this is wtf that staffer said:

    “Listen to Tom. What a little bee he has in his bonnet. Buzz Buzz. My question today … when is Tommy boy going to weigh in on all the Lilly Ledbetter hypocrites who claim to be fighting the War on Women? Let’s hurl some acid at those female democratic Senators who won’t abide the mandates they want to impose on the private sector.”

    That one does stand out as being both particularly violent, and having nothing like logical support (not that letting women die to save fetuses is logical but that “logic” is a common enough “pro-life” fail that it’s not surprising to see it). I’m not buying the satire defense because he hedges is all the wrong ways.

    He specifically says “It’s important to understand that one need not find these answers to be absolutely conclusive or even convincing to recognize that they are scientifically valid answers…” But then goes on to present his answers full of “does PZ wish to claim” and “…he’s quite clearly not thinking rationally at all.” — Way too many personal attacks for satire.

  7. VD has, IMO, a bit of a problem with not getting the recognition he thinks he deserves, in any of the arenas he chooses to spend his time in. He’s fortunate enough that he doesn’t seem to need to work to live, and yet he’s not lauded to the skies as a brilliant thinker.

    Ann Coulter gets more press than he does (and always has). He never got a specific smackdown from William F. Buckley (Coulter did, it was a thing of beauty… Buckley demolished, “Treason” or whatever her book on Clinton’s Scandal was).

    Nope, VD has to toil away in the darker corners of the internet and feel put upon that PZ won’t make an exception to his non-debate policy, just for him.

  8. @pecunium

    that was ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’

    no, ann coulter is not good at titles

  9. Better at titles than content.

  10. “Telling men that rape is bad doesn’t seem to have worked. In fact, they will either deny that rape happened, or say that it isn’t important. Either way, rapes continue. Women’s lives are destroyed – don’t you understand? …all I want is for one rapist to see something he hasn’t thought of before…that there are consequences for his actions.
    This is a war. We didn’t start it, but now we’re here”.

    FTFY.

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