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A 12-Step program to help A Voice for Men cure its addiction to hate

I'm pretty sure these guys thought they were a human rights movement too.

I’m pretty sure these guys thought they were some sort of  human rights movement too.

Asha James – otherwise known as TyphonBlue – has taken issue with something I wrote about A Voice for Men, the hate site she has chosen to affiliate herself with. In my post detailing the hundreds of horrendous and disgusting threats and abusive comments one Canadian feminist has received after she appeared in a YouTube video that was heavily promoted on A Voice for Men and other Men’s Rights sites, I wrote that AVFM had only distanced itself in a “superficial way from some of the harassment it has played a central role in unleashing.”

Ms. James, posting on Reddit, was unhappy with my use of the word “superficial.”

typhontwo

No, I do not think you are obliged to stop talking about her, or anyone you wish to talk about.

But you asked for suggestions as to WHAT MORE YOU CAN DO, and so I have some for you.

In fact, I have an entire 12-step Program to help you and your colleagues at A Voice for Men fight your addiction to hate.

1) Let’s start small. If you’re going to make such a big deal out of how you and your AVFM colleagues are removing the red-haired activist’s personal information from your site, you might want to, you know, actually remove her personal information from the site?  Links to her dating profiles remain up in the AVFM forum.

2) Recognize that doxing is not the only form of harassment there is, and remove the post and the comments referring to the Canadian activist as “Little red frothing fornication mouth,” which is, I think even you have to admit, a kind of a hate-y thing to say about somebody. Remove the comments calling her a “bitch” and a “cunt” and a “bint.” Remove the barely comprehensible but clearly hateful comment from AVFM contributor Dr. F (Ian Williams) comparing her to some sort of animal. Remove ImNotMraBut’s surreal, and exceedingly nasty, comment fantasizing about finding her body “at the back of the Women’s Locker room, crucified up-side down and set on fire with Lard from the Federal Pork Barrel Buffet used as a substitute for Napalm.” I mean, what the hell.

3) Of course, this isn’t the first time that AVFM has launched a giant hatefest aimed at a particular woman. Oh, no. Not by a long shot. Indeed, launching campaigns of hatred against individual women (and, once in a long while, individual men) seems to be AVFM’s primary form of, er, “activism.” And it’s certainly the only kind of, er, “activism” it’s any good at.

It’s telling that AVFM rarely targets truly influential or even particularly famous women for its attacks, with the notable exception of one comedic actress. No, AVFM instead tends to target women it thinks it has a better chance of really hurting – from female bloggers and journalists to individual student activists. Going after vulnerable individuals: In this way, as in many other ways, the principals at AVFM think and act like abusers.

And so, Ms. James, after you and your colleagues are done taking down the vicious posts and comments about the red-haired activist, I would recommend that you and your colleagues at AVFM renounce altogether, and apologize for, the site’s strategy of demonizing individual women. While you’re at it, go back and scrub all posts and comments of misogynistic terms like “cunt” and “bitch” and “fuckmuffin,” either directed at individual women or at large swaths of womanhood. Scrub all posts and comments of the term “mangina.” I would provide links here, but I would have to pretty much link to every AVFM post and comment thread. (If anyone can find posts and/or comment threads on AVFM that are actually free of misogynistic language, please let me know.)

4) Then take down Register-Her, your phony “offenders registry” devoted to demonizing feminist writers and activists as well as other women (from “Mommy bloggers” to comedic actresses) who have somehow managed to offend the AVFM crowd.

In no way are writers like Jessica Valenti, or actresses like Katherine Heigl, or any of the other women listed as “bigots” on Register-Her the “moral equivalents” of the “pedophiles, rapists, murderers and other violent criminals” you have listed elsewhere on that site. Most of the alleged “bigotry” cited on Register-Her is trumped-up nonsense. Putting these women on your phony “registry” is a clear and deliberate attempt to intimidate them, both by making them fear for their personal safety and by deliberately trying to tarnish their reputation and hurt  their chances of future employment. Again, these are total douche moves on your part.

You can read more of the dirty details about Register-Her here, in case you’ve forgotten.

5) Stop using violent and threatening language when referring to your ideological opponents – and apologize for past instances in which such hateful language has been used. You might start off by having your boss Paul Elam apologize for his notorious comments suggesting that he finds feminist-bashing to be sexually arousing:

I find you, as a feminist, to be a loathsome, vile piece of human garbage.  I find you so pernicious and repugnant that the idea of fucking your shit up gives me an erection. …

We are coming for you, and we are coming for all the liars out there that have been ruining people’s lives with impunity. …

 You are SO fucked.

I know Mr. Elam is probably very proud of his work here, but you should know that to most decent human beings it comes off a tad, well, unhinged? As well as — here comes that H-word again! — hateful. Let’s put it this way: I’m fairly certain that this post by Mr. Elam will never end up next to Martin Luther King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” in any anthology of the writings of famous human rights visionaries.

6) And while you’re at it, drop the hateful and threatening (and rather potty-mouthed) slogan “Fuck Their Shit Up.” Is that really the slogan you want your site and your movement to be remembered by? Do you kiss your mother with that slogan?

7) Renounce the site’s policy “to seek out and make public the identities” of opponents, a policy reiterated as recently as last weekend by Mr. Elam. Now, Mr. Elam insists that this policy only applies to “individuals who break the law or who indisputably attempt to harass, bully or abridge the free expression of others in the furtherance of their ideology.” But a quick look at those listed in Register-Her’s “bigots” category makes clear that AVFM has an extreeeeeeemely broad notion of what counts as lawbreaking or harassment or bullying, at least when it comes to people who aren’t MRAs. How is Katherine Heigl breaking the law, or harassing or bullying or abridging anyone’s free expression?

8) After renouncing doxing as a policy, frankly apologize for each and every one of A Voice for Men’s threats to dox individual women in the past.

You might start by having Mr. Elam apologize for the comments he made on AVFM radio in which he said that Register-Her would be used to post the personal information of female “false accusers.” In case you have forgotten, here is the relevant clip from that radio show.

If for some reason that clip does not play properly on your computer, here’s the money quote:

[If] Mary Jane Rottencrotch out there wants to say that her husband beat her just for the sake of gaining leverage in a divorce, he will now have a resource where he can come and post your name, your picture, your work telephone number, your address, perhaps even your route that you take to get to work, if you bother to have a job.

Yes, that’s right: “the route that you take to get to work.”

In case you’ve forgotten this promise of his, you can find Mr. Elam’s comments on the AVFM radio show that ran on June 28, 2011 titled “FTSU Big Time.” They appear about ten minutes into the show.

Once Mr. Elam has clearly and publicly renounced this statement, I would suggest that he apologize for the $1000 bounty he once offered to anyone able to supply him with the personal information of a number of Swedish feminists.

No, that wasn’t a weird dream. He really did that.

9) Apologize for the cavalier attitude shown by AVFM’s principals to the possibility that revealing the personal information of opponents could  put these people in actual physical danger. You might start by having AVFM’s John Hembling (“John The Other”) apologize for these comments about the Swedish feminists targeted by AVFM, in which he frankly acknowledged the dangers that AVFM’s strategy could pose to the personal safety of those it was targeting:

Some individuals may criticize the intent to publish not only names, but also addresses, phone numbers, employers and other personal information – on the grounds that such exposure create a risk of retributive violence against individuals who openly advocate murder based on sex. It is the considered position of the editorial board of AVfM that any such risks are out-weighed by the ongoing hazard to the public of these individuals continuing to operate in anonymity.

Emphasis mine.

In case you are wondering, the feminists in question did not, in fact, “openly advocate murder based on sex,” or murder based on anything at all.  In an attempt to promote a theatrical production based on Valerie Solanas’ SCUM Manifesto, they made a brief video in which a woman pretended to shoot a man. You may find many examples of similar if much longer videos available on a site called Netflix. There’s even one called Basic Instinct in which actress Sharon Stone pretends to murder a man with an ice pick. No, really. With an ICE PICK! There are also videos in which men pretend to shoot other men, if you prefer that, and even some in which men pretend to kill women in a variety of inventive ways.

When he is done with that apology, Mr. Hembling may wish to apologize for another statement he made to me on the same subject:

jto

Mr. Hembling might want to then move on to apologizing for this statement of his, which he posted on AVFM and on the Men’s Rights subreddit as a sort of preemptive rebuttal to critics who might point out the obvious fact that posting someone’s personal information could put them at risk. (I’m not sure I’ve ever run across someone so insistently cavalier as Mr. Hembling about the possibility that something he’s done might cause someone else physical harm.)

If some pea-brain wishes to claim that publication and public accountability is dangerous because it might facilitate some bad-brained moron to engage in retributive violence – kindly provide a workable mechanism for public accountability which is totally and perfectly safe – then criticize us for not using it. Until then, SFTU.

And you, Ms. James, may wish to apologize for your own blithe dismissal of the sort of harassment that the red-haired activist has been receiving.

typhonkafoodle

If you had read the post of mine you were ostensibly responding to, you would have seen that the activist in question did in fact get one very blunt and direct death threat. (And she did report it to police.)

She also received not one, not two, but literally of hundreds of other threatening comments, many of them wishing death, rape or other forms of physical and/or sexual violence upon her, with one YouTube commenter going so far as to announce –TRIGGER WARNING – that he “would actually cum while cutting that bitch’s throat.”

It may be possible for some people to brush off one or even several “I hope you die” comments. It’s a bit harder to brush off several hundred of them – especially when some of these threatening remarks contain your address and phone number. That’s not really “kafoodling,” now, is it?

I’m a little perplexed that you didn’t understand this, as I posted literally dozens of examples of these comments in my earlier post. You did read that, didn’t you? I mean, you were offering your opinions about it in a public space, so I can only assume you read it, then somehow instantly forgot the dozens of horrendous comments I posted there, which were of course only a fraction of the total number received by the activist you and your colleagues hate so much. (There’s that pesky H-word again!)

10) Remove the personal photos of feminist writer Jessica Valenti that Mr. Elam posted to AVFM without her permission in an attempt to embarrass her. I won’t link to the post in this case; you can find it. I’m not quite sure that Mr. Elam realizes that by posting these photos he’s embarrassed himself far more than he’s embarrassed Valenti, as his actions reveal him to be a sad, angry, petulant old man, and one obviously jealous that Valenti, roughly half his age, has already had a far more successful career as a writer than he ever will. Also, she’s not a morally bankrupt asshat.

11) Publicly renounce and ban AVFM contributors and commenters who have engaged in doxing,  threatening or harassing of opponents. You might start by banning long-time AVFM “activist” Frank James Spencer, otherwise known as KARMA MRA MGTOW, who recently gave me a decidedly non-friendly phone call at 1:38 AM to inform me, in falsetto, that “feminism will die,” a classic example of the sort of personal harassment that you would think anyone purporting to be in a “human rights movement” would want to distance itself from.

12) And finally: Take down, and apologize for posting, the terrorist manifesto by Men’s Rights Activist Thomas Ball you’ve got up in your site’s “activism” section. You know, the one that calls on men to literally firebomb courthouses and police stations, and which frankly acknowledges that such firebombing could very well cause many deaths.

I can’t believe that any group purporting to advocate for “human rights” would want to have this on their website, especially in the wake of the recent events in Boston.

Do any of you people have any sort of moral compass at all? Do you even know what a moral compass is?

Of course, I am under no illusion that AVFM will take even one of the twelve steps I have recommended. I spelled them out mainly to make a simple point:

After years and years of this shit, after literally offering literal $1,000 bounties for the personal information of your enemies, and while a literal terrorist manifesto remains posted on your website, you don’t really get to pretend that you’re shocked – shocked! – to find doxing and harassing going on in your Men’s Rights movement.

And this has implications beyond A Voice for Men and those associated with it.

A Voice for Men has, for better or worse, made itself the most influential Men’s Rights site online, and has begun bringing its particular form of “activism” to the real world as well. As such, helps to set the tone for the Men’s Rights movement as a whole, and to define the movement in the eyes of the public. And you guys are doing a bang-up job of it, he said sarcastically.

By sometimes excusing, other times encouraging, and in some cases directly fomenting, campaigns of bullying and harassment aimed at individual women, AVFM is helping to ensure that the entire Men’s Rights Movement, such as it is, goes down in history not as a human rights movement but as a reactionary hate group that has more in common with the White Citizens Councils of the 1950s and 1960s than with, say, the civil rights movement of Dr. Martin Luther King.

Ms. James: The people harassing and doxing and threatening to dox women are your people – some of them quite  literally your regular readers and commenters and contributors, and others “your people” in spirit. That is, hateful, spiteful misogynists and would-be terrorizers of women. These are your people, and you’re welcome to them.

But there are a lot more of us out there than there are of you, and ultimately you and the rest of the so-called Men’s Rights Movement — sorry, Men’s Human Rights Movement — will go the ways of the White Citizens Councils you’re increasingly growing to resemble.

NOTE TO MRA DOOFUSES: Yes, I am using the real names of the AVFM folks. Lest you assume I am doxing them, you should probably know that the AVFM folks, after several years of hypocritically doxing people while claiming it was unfair for anyone to know their real names, finally gave up and started using their real names on their site. Heck, I didn’t know That Typhon Blue wasn’t actually named Typhon Blue until I read it on AVFM recently. This makes me wonder about other weird names I’ve run across. Might they be fake too? Surely “Wolf Blitzer” can’t be that guy’s real name. It’s probably just “Wally Blevins” or something like that.

NOTE TO FANS OF CORRECT SPELLING: Sorry for the typo in the name of the sound clip. I’m not sure how to fix it and too lazy to find out.

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Posted on April 18, 2013, in a voice for men, advocacy of violence, antifeminism, are these guys 12 years old?, bullying, douchebaggery, evil women, FemRAs, harassment, hate, hypocrisy, johntheother, manginas, men who should not ever be with women ever, MRA, not-quite-plausible deniability, paul elam, rape culture, shaming tactics, straw feminists, taking pleasure in women's pain, terrorism, the c-word, TyphonBlue, unsolicited penis updates and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 312 Comments.

  1. @pecunium

    Yeah. I have all the rants about sex ed (you guys tell me if you want me to drop it, I just am taking this opportunity to vent a lot.) Even more disconcerting is that I didn’t really notice that stuff when it was happening :/ I just sort of went through it like a ‘this is what I’ve got to write down to get an A’ stuff. Heck, only when my mom asked me what the heck they were telling the boys when they were telling the girls not to have sex if they respected themselves is when I realized they weren’t telling the boys anything. Bloo. Bad sex ed is bad. And she was mad about that. I love hearing my mom’s righteous rants about the school system. Anyway, /ramble.

  2. @AK

    Thanks for info :) Just never had to have a tornado warning in the apartment years, luckily, and I figured I should know ahead of time. Thanks again :)

  3. @Pecunium

    From what I’ve read around on the internet, I think they normally teach guys more about their bodies than girls. I mean, I guess it’d be harder to pretend penises didn’t exist? Lol (TMI ahead) I remember thinking that my clitoris was where the pee came out before I knew what it was, because what else is it doing there?

    I remember this article (I can’t remember whether I bookmarked it) where the author (a woman) learned that the boys were taught about masturbation, but the girls weren’t, and when she called her principle to ask why he made it sound like the only reason a girl would masturbate would be if there’s something wrong with her.

    Heck, I didn’t even know what masturbation was until I started reading Cracked (because the authors referenced it so much). So yeah. The fact that people can give themselves orgasms instead of needing a partner I got from an internet humor site.

  4. @fade

    Our (as in my class) sex ed wasn’t segregated, so no one got masturbation. :/ Kinda sad, cuz I ended up with a bunch of questions about my body I ended up having to guess, or find out from reading pervocracy.

  5. Oh also, I agree on Dune. I’m a bit nerdy in my TV/movie tastes but don’t care for a lot of scifi/fantasy reads (with the exception of Pratchett and Doctor Who novels), but I really enjoyed Dune. I tried to read a few other books in the series and really didn’t care for any of them, not sure I finished any of them. But the original, absolutely worth a read.

    And re: sex ed, mine was….decent, probably about as good as you can get in US public school anyway. We got at least a cursory mention of protection (although with a healthy dose of CONDOMS WON’T PROTECT YOU FROM EVERYTHING!!!! AND WHAT IF THEY BREAK!!!!) and maybe a vague mention of hormonal BC? Maybe. We did get a tolerable explanation of anatomy and how pregnancy and childbirth work. Of course we spent a lot of time on slideshows of what STDs look like (and by “what they look like” I of course mean those super-extreme cases that happen in <1% of infections, as well as advanced cases of things like syphilis and chlamydia that can be cured with antibiotics and don't really get to that stage anymore in nations where treatment is available). There was a very clear IF YOU HAVE SEX YOUR GENITALS WILL ROT OFF message.

  6. Fade: Thing is, sex ed was part of biology, it was requied and just another couple of days in class. There wasn’t any male/female difference in the curriculum, because you were all in the same room, and tested on all the material.

    Masturbation was talked about, and the location of the clitoris/urethra were discussed (and shown on a sterile line drawing). My “health” class had an instructor who included her own (benighted) views on homosexuality (and showed a lack of imagination in what that said about heterosexuality), but that wasn’t part of the curriculum, just some (really stupid) asides.

    Both classes covered all the available forms of BC, no one was sent from the room when menstruation was discussed, etc.

    And when I took psych of sex classes in college I learned how deficient in so many areas my sex ed classes had been.

  7. Thing is, sex ed was part of biology, it was requied and just another couple of days in class.

    This sounds much more sensible than sticking it in health (well, when our health was all sex ed it wasn’t really much about health) or even worse, a week long “creating positive relationships*” course

    *the creating positive relationships were the paper heart guys

  8. Okay, I was thinking of buying the e-book for when my family and I saunter over to San Diego.

  9. thebionicmommy

    thebionicmommy: Hugs, re your tornado problem. That (the trying to wait out the impending) is why I never want to live in the mid-west again. I remember doing that all to clearly. At the age of 8, when we moved to Calif. the first thing I asked when got to the house (before we went inside) was, “where’s the cellar”. I was incredulous when I was told there wasn’t one. “What do you do when the tornadoes come?”

    Thanks, part of me is embarrassed to admit that kind of fear, but the other part of me feels like it’s better to be open about it, especially if that helps other people with PTSD. I was also wanting the guy that made fun of trigger warnings to understand what he is making fun of.

    You guys are making me all scared. Maybe kinda good. I’ve never had to deal with one being close enough to do damage, though I know for sure tornado warnings have been issued, and I’ve been in the midwest for…wow about nine years (longer than I thought it’d be). Also I’m in an apartment now, w/o cellar, so kinda more paranoid. Rambling, but anything I should know about apartment tornado safety?

    The other advice given so far is good. Go to the lowest level of your building, whether it’s a basement, crawl space, cellar, or the first floor. Find the most interior room and put as many walls as possible between you and the outside. I will emphasize again to stay away from windows. A bathtub is a good place to hide, too. If you can, bring a mattress and cover up when you hide.

    TW: Some of the advice here deals with death and injuries.

    The things I would add is wear a whistle. If you get buried under rubble, you need a way to alert people above where you are. Your voice can get tired, but it’s easy to blow a whistle over a long period of time. Make sure everyone has one, too. What if the person you are with has the only whistle, but is dead or unconscious and you can’t get to their whistle? Wear a helmet, too, to protect your head from flying debris. There were children here in Joplin who were saved by bicycle helmets. Cover up with blankets, to give some protection to your skin. If you have small children, use your body to cover them. There were several children found here in Joplin completely unharmed under the bodies of their mothers and grandmothers.

    Designate your safe spot ahead of time, and keep your helmets, blankets, flashlights, batteries, whistles, some bottled water, and non perishable food there at all times.

    If you have enough time to grab these, bring them with you to the spot during tornado warnings–a battery powered weather radio, your cell phone and charger. You need a way to know what the weather situation is, and a way to call for help, assuming your nearest cell phone towers aren’t destroyed. They were here in Joplin, so our phones were useless.

    If you are in a second floor apartment, ask someone in the first floor if you can go there during storms. Do not drive somewhere else to get to their shelters unless you know the storm is far away. It’s better to be in a building than a car.

    It’s actually really unlikely that you’ll die in a tornado. Some high profile ones kill multiple people (like that massive one in Joplin), but usually it is limited to minor injuries and property damage. Heat waves kill more people every year than tornadoes do, as a risk comparison.

    This is very good advice. Some door to door counselors (yes, that’s a thing) told me that the odds of being in another F5 even here in Joplin is only 1 in 10,000. The majority of tornadoes are much smaller. You should take them seriously, of course, but they are not nearly as destructive and deadly as the big wedge ones. Even if a big tornado forms, it is also unlikely to hit a specific spot where you are. The path of our tornado was a mile wide and six miles long. Any place outside that six mile path was fine.

    I hope this was helpful. I wanted to explain what to do in the worst possible scenario, but also reassure you that it’s also unlikely. So prepare for the worst, but hope for the best.

    And holy schnikeys, I was wordy. Sorry.

  10. Clintiskeen’s name fills me with the dread of dramas past, but I still can’t find the posts on SF_D (I got a little distracted byt he news this morning). Still, if Dave or anyone else wants to see why I was thinking “ban plz” the second he popped up, I’ll keep hunting.

  11. @thebionicmommy

    Thanks for the info + advice :) Probably going to think about getting helmet somewhere then…I used to have a bike helmet, but no idea where it went in the midst of two moves. I kinda liked it in our house better though, cuz everyone just went down to the basement during tornado warnings and tried to ignore it. Again not sure if that was a good thing, but it’s what we did.

  12. emilygoddess: clint has been banned; mostly because he was too stupid to avoid indicting himself.

    He boasted (here) of making a community with hidden rules, and talking it up (some) to try and get MRA types to flock to it, and thus get feminists to show up, and have them be unable to respond, because certain phrases were banned.

    This wouldn’t be clear, all they would get is,”your comment cannot be posted”. He then said it wasn’t as much fun as it should have been because he didn’t manage to get enough MRA types to take part, and so the people who might come to argue never got interested.

  13. thebionicmommy

    @Marie, I’m glad you’ll take that advice. I find helmets all the time at consignment sales and garages sales for under $5. If anyone teases you for wearing a helmet during storms, tell them to read about Augie Gonzalez He was hit in the head by a toilet, but didn’t even get a concussion.

  14. @thebionicmommy

    Yay :D Only problem I can think of is that I’ll need two (one for my dad’s and one for my moms. In theory three, since I hand out with his fiance a lot, but my dad and her are moving in soonish, so two.) Still not a huge problem, since I’ve got spending money atm, so, um yay? yay :D just rambling. Yes. I should get helmets. Maybe this weekend, since I”m already going shopping for a new guinea pig cage. (there current one seems to small.)

  15. Just a warning on the helmets…if you’re buying them used, they may not be up to ASTM/SEI standards anymore. Helmets work (more or less) by using closed-cell foam that absorbs impact, and even a relatively small impact can significantly reduce its ability to do that in the future. This won’t necessarily be obvious from the outside. In addition, things like exposure to heat (like if the helmet is stored in the car for a week during the summer) or even age (helmets are supposed to be replaced every 5 years) can reduce its efficacy. If you’re just buying one for emergency protection like that, it might be okay…all these things don’t make them *useless,* just less effective (and a big problem is that you never really know by how much). But if you’re buying a helmet to use for bicycling, skating, horseback riding, etc., be sure to buy it new from a reliable retailer (as in, one that will write it off if they drop it off the forklift or something). You can buy a new ASTM/SEI certified horseback riding helmet (not sure about other types of helmets–and if you are buying it for a sport, it is important to get the right kind as they’re designed for different types of impacts–cyclists fall differently and onto different surfaces than equestrians do in general) for like $25 now in the US…it won’t be stylish but it will protect your head.

    Sorry, just had to throw that out there…I suffered a head injury in a horseback riding accident and I also taught riding lessons for years, so it’s something pretty personal for me. ;)

  16. @AK

    Thanks for sharing :) I haven’t bought a helmet in…about forever, so it’s extra good to know.

  17. Publicity for AVfM = increased awareness of their being a hate group. I’m all for it. Let’s keep talking about their lack of human rights activism and continued targeted abuse and harassment.

  18. Yes helmets are, by and large, one time use. A lot of manufacturers have “replacement” plans (e.g. Troxel) will, for a nominal fee, replace your helmet after a fall. They have a pair of vested interests.

    1: Knowing how falls affect helmets makes it easier for them to design better helmets.
    2: Keeping a rider in a new helmet reduces the odds of someone being in a fall on a helmet which has been degraded, which both reduces injury (a good thing) and prevents bad PR (why yes, there is such a thing) from someone who was wearing a helmet suffering a serious/fatal injury.

    The last time I had to replace one I think the fee was $25. The helmet was about $100.

    Motorcycle helmets are a bit different. If you recall having your head hit the ground, swap it out. If you don’t, and there is not scraping, get it checked out. US DOT standards on motorcycle helmets are strange (the “hemisphere test is unrealistic) and it’s probably better to get a European standard helmet; but you have to go to Europe to get them.

    If a helmet has a DOT sticker on it (and you are getting it from a reputable dealer; the “skid-lids at rallies are often plastered with stickers; and aren’t up to spec; they are for people who don’t want to wear one, but don’t want the ticket for non-compliance) is as protective as any other (by and large) because the constraints of meeting the DOT specs limits some of the g-force mitigation techniques which might be used, again I digress.

    So find a budget, and get the most comfortable helmet inside that budget.

  19. thebionicmommy

    @AK, thank you for that good advice. I did not know that when I mentioned buying garage sale helmets. My cousin is a firefighter so he told me similar advice after I bought a used carseat. He said that they should be thrown away after a car accident, but you never know buying one at a garage sale whether or not it’s been in an accident. So after he told me that, my brother bought my son a carseat for his birthday, which was around that time anyway.

    Addendum to my advice: Garage sales are a great way to save money on clothes, dishes, or appliances, but if it’s a safety item, buy it new.

  20. Way late to the the conversation here, but the one major tornado in this area was an F4 — one person died and it was from high winds earlier in the day (and a falling tree branch, stay indoors)

    And I just startled the cat by cracking my neck!

  21. @Pecunium

    He boasted (here) of making a community with hidden rules, and talking it up (some) to try and get MRA types to flock to it, and thus get feminists to show up, and have them be unable to respond, because certain phrases were banned.

    Yes, he said he did it to troll the community I know him from. That’s why I told him his obsession with said community was sad (it really is). I saw him being put on moderation; must have missed him being banned. Hooray for David!

  22. I was going to go “Has he ever actually been on the internet? Because real people aren’t going to obsessively try to post in one unimportant place and get totally frustrated when they can’t. They’ll realize they can’t post/have trouble posting/are selectively prevented from posting and just go somewhere else.”

    And then I remembered how trolls think. These guys really are obsessed with the need to post somewhere and they really will keep trying and getting more and more frustrated and feel like it’s totally unfair if you don’t let them.

  23. @bionicmommy, no worries. :) And that is a great addendum…safety equipment should always be purchased new! Otherwise I am a huge thrift store/garage sale fan myself (like literally…all of my legit new items are either gifts or things that absolutely could not wait until I found them at a secondhand sale), so I’m all about that for most things. :)

    Also with equestrian helmets, it can be particularly nasty as safety helmets are modeled after old-school hunt caps, which have a hard shell but no real protection. So if you get the wrong hunt cap (they were very common through the ’80s and even ’90s, and are still available for sale today although they’re pretty rare now), it may be “for apparel only” (starting in the ’80s at least they had to label them, not sure of the exact date)…basically it is just a flimsy plastic shell in the right shape. I grew up at a stable where those were considered safety helmets and I remember even at 9 years old I recognized that it was a problem (reading is a good thing haha).

    @pecunium, thanks for the info on motorcycle helmets. I have a bike but I just did the bare minimum of research–DOT sticker, fitting, and assumed that it should be new and replaced after any insult. But I assumed a helmet designed to protect in a typical motorcycle accident may need different standards than most sport helmets. I really appreciate the info you gave, though it doesn’t really change anything I do. ;) Might keep me from making mistakes in the future though.

    And Troxel’s helmet replacement policy rocks. I think IRH has one as well in equestrian helmets. I’ve personally replaced helmets multiple times with Troxel and once with one other company that I’m like 80% sure is IRH (they’re the only other company I regularly buy helmets from…and I buy a lot as I have my schooling show helmets, my stylish show helmets, my schooling helmets, my trail helmets, etc.–it’s all about fashion though, one would do just fine to protect my head), but I can’t remember offhand exactly.

  24. @ katz

    Yep. I was thinking that when he first posted that comment – he honestly doesn’t understand that not everyone thinks like he does.

  25. AK: Motorcycle helmets suffer from cost (I have an “Arai” head. It’s about $600 to get a decent helmet). An X-ray costs about $50 (assuming you can get it done) and the vendor ought to deduct it from the price.

    If you have a doubt… replace it.

    Try to find a shop which has a return policy. My Calif. helmet fits well, up to about 60 MPH, then it starts to slip when I do a lane check.

    It’s a comfort, not really a safety issue, but I suspect the next trip to Calif. I’ll replace it.

  26. Sorry reposting this to a more active thread:

    Random and off topic, but super annoying. I posted on cheeseburger and my comment got moderated. What got posted was…..not okay.

    When I said vagina (because that was what the post I commented was about) it got changed to “special area” and when I said penis it got censored to P***s. WTH.

  27. Wait, what? You can’t say “penis” and “vagina” on an online humor site? Are they afraid they’ll get cooties?

  28. I’m mostly annoyed that vagina got changed to “special area” and penis only got changed to p***s.
    I sound stupid. Instead of reading as “except he referred to all women as vaginas” it says:
    “except he referred to all women as special areas.”
    That sounds dumb. At least censoring penis to p***s people still know the word I was saying. Meanwhile, with vagina it reads like it is I who can’t say the word rather than them changing my post.

  29. Indeed, they should be fair and at least change “penis” to “wee-wee” or “man-flesh.”

  30. @AK

    Otherwise I am a huge thrift store/garage sale fan myself (like literally…all of my legit new items are either gifts or things that absolutely could not wait until I found them at a secondhand sale), so I’m all about that for most things. :)

    Related-ish, but recently I’ve been getting a bunch of my clothes at goodwill, since they’ve got them cheap, especially pants. Though I may stop for the moment since I want clothes I like the look of better and I’ve got a job (still living with mom + job= lots of free spending money. I should help her with rent soon though) and I want to get some pants I actually like the look of, instead of ‘fits okay, and not tripping over them’. /ramble.

  31. Wow, after reading this, I’m pretty sure that I should stop commenting on a post of theirs forthwith. I’ve already dealt with a piling-on of at least eight people, some of whom you mention in this post, and the language towards me has become more and more abusive… even though I’ve been nothing but moderate and inclusive in my language. Scary, scary people.

  32. Just listened to that clip. Aside from the awful potential consequences, one other thing stood out:

    “If she’s bothered to have a job.”

    Hmm… Elam’s job I AVfM, as far as I can see.

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