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Australian “Male Studies” initiative under fire because of its connections to raving misogynists; raving misogynists blame feminists

Antifeminist attorney, A Voice for Men contributor and and would-be Male Studies lecturer Roy Den Hollander bustin' a move on the Colbert Report.
Antifeminist attorney,  A Voice for Men contributor, and would-be Male Studies lecturer Roy Den Hollander bustin’ a move on the Colbert Report.

NOTE: See the end of the piece for an important clarification from the University.

So it seems the new “Male Studies” initiative at the University of South Australia is running into a few problems. Well, one big problem: members of the general public have discovered that some of the people involved with the initiative are raving misogynists, or have chosen to associate themselves with raving misogynists.

Yesterday, a story by journalist Tory Shepherd noted that two of the lecturers have written for a notoriously misogynistic website by the name of A Voice for Men. (You may have heard of it.) One of them, the crankish American attorney Roy Den Hollander, even suggested in a post on that site that men’s rights activists may have to take up arms against the evil Feminists who run the world.

The future prospect of the Men’s Movement raising enough money to exercise some influence in America is unlikely.  But there is one remaining source of power in which men still have a near monopoly—firearms.

Huh. That doesn’t sound like a very academic analysis of the situtation to me.

Den Hollander also likes to refer to “women’s studies” as “witches’ studies.” And if you don’t believe her, here’s the AVFM post in which he does just that; it’s in the first sentence.

Apparently pointing out some of these basic facts about Den Hollander, and about another of the lecturers, Miles Groth, who has also written for AVFM, is causing some trouble for Dr. Misan and his little Male Studies initiative — at least according to a post on AVFM by the always furious Paul Elam, who informs us somberly that

[s]ources close to the story report that [Shepherd’s article] is likely a terminal setback for the new initiative.

Elam fights back against Shepherd’s alleged “lies” in a paragraph that is itself nothing but lies:

The article by Shepherd is saturated with the typical lies, e.g.: that the SPLC named AVFM as a hate group, which they did not, and that this website regularly calls women “bitches and whores,” which it does not. She also implied a connection between AVFM and those championing the initiative which does not exist.

Actually, Shepherd said that the SPLC described AVFM as a “hate site,” not a “hate group.” This is in fact true, as the SPLC included AVFM in a list of “woman-hating sites,” which would make it a hate site, as the hatred of women is in fact a kind of hate.

And AVFM does in fact refer to women regularly as whores and bitches and other slurs. Indeed, in one notorious post about Rebecca Watson, Elam managed to use the word “whore” more than 30 times; as for the word “bitch,” well, check out this compilation of AVFM posts featuring that word in the title. As you’ll see from that post, Elam also likes referring to women as “cunts,” and once referred to the feminist blogosphere as the “cunt-o-sphere.”

Do your own searches for “whore” or “bitch” on AVFM to find more recent examples.

Shepherd doesn’t, in fact, imply any “connection” between AVFM and “those championing the initiative” beyond the undeniable fact that two of the lecturers have written for AVFM, and that AVFM has heralded the Male Studies initiative. Interestingly, it’s Elam, with his talk about  “[s]ources close to the story,” who implies an even closer connection than Shepherd does.

The rest of Elam’s post is a remarkable mixture of self-contradicting lies and self-delusion. First, he declares “Male Studies” to be a pure-as-the-driven snow example of non-ideological scholarship.

In writing this article Shepherd actually served as a mouthpiece for academic feminists invested in blocking the attempt to study human males in a non-ideological, scholarly fashion.

How exactly is someone who describes himself explicitly as antifeminist, who describes women’s studies as “witches studies,” and who’s written for AVFM on several occasions an example of someone who is trying “to study human males in a non-ideological, scholarly fashion?”

Elam then launches into one of his typical chest-beating fuck-their-shit-up ideological rants:

The Men’s Human Rights Movement is not going to go away. Indeed, even as we regret the temporary setback of an important and valuable initiative, we do welcome another opportunity to shine a light on the ideologically twisted agenda of people who would undermine an academic program with the ambition to enhance our understanding of an egregiously underserved population.

Yes, that’s right. The world’s men have been “egregiously underserved.”

This type of bullying and public deception is precisely what has catapulted the Men’s Human Rights Movement into rapid growth and increasing popularity in such a short period of time.

The only bullying and deception I’m seeing here is coming from your side, dude. Women aren’t talking about taking up arms against men. You’re the one who’s lying about what Shepherd said.

From assaultive, criminal demonstrators in Toronto blocking doors to a lecture on male suicide, to this – an obviously orchestrated attack on honorable academicians — the reality of what feminism has become, and the depths to which it has lowered, is again in full public view.

Uh, Roy Den Hollander isn’t an “honorable academician.” And, frankly, neither is anyone who chooses to associate themselves with your site. I’m not sure how Shepherd’s one article counts as an “obviously orchestrated attack,” but all she did was point out what Hollander said, and point out the sort of misogynistic shit you publish on your shitty website.

In other words, Mr. Elam, you guys have dug your own hole here — with you, personally, bringing one of the bigger shovels.

Just think: A Voice for Men may be in large part responsible for the collapse of this Male Studies initiative, because you and the others writing on your site can’t hide your raging misogyny, and can’t resist the temptation to call women “bitches” and “whores.”

This is the lesson of all the publicity you guys have gotten in the last year: when members of the general public learn what you guys actually believe, they are repulsed by it. The more attention you get, the more people oppose you.

After some more ranting that he might as well have cut and pasted from any of  a dozen previous posts of his, Elam ends with one of his trademark vague threats:

We will force their hand, again and again. And each time they demonstrate their moral bankruptcy; their limitless capacity for tyranny, the more they will generate the contempt and indignation they deserve. And the more people will realize that the only way forward is straight through them.

You’re just digging that hole deeper.

EDITED TO ADD: The Universityof Southern Australia has clarified a few things about the Male Studies initiatives. According to a piece in the Sydney Morning Herald, the school only approved one of the four proposed courses, and officially rejected (back in 2012) the one that would have included Den Hollander and Groth as lecturers. Here’s what the newspaper says:

The university has approved one of four proposed graduate courses, a certificate in male health and health promotion, which will begin online next month.

But an original proposal by one of the university’s academics outlined three further certificates, including a course called ”males and sexism”, which named lecturers who have been published on radical men’s rights websites. …

The university emphasised it did not endorse views of the suggested lecturers. It said the courses, which were criticised in the media on Monday, were rejected in 2012.

So that’s reassuring to hear.

I removed a portion of my post referring to Gary Misan, in charge of the course, because in light of this information it’s not clear if he was referring to all four courses, including those involving Den Hollander and Groth, or just to the male health course.

Oddly, though, Dr. Misan seems to think that the University has signed up for more than one course. On his official University of South Australia web site he describes himself as “program co-ordinator for a new suite of courses in Male Studies at UniSA, the first of which will be offered in 2014.”

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kittehserf
6 years ago

Thank ‘ee!

He knew when I came to be – the soul, not the earthly body. Interestingly enough he didn’t know what sex I’d be, or what our relationship would be like, or where it would happen. Could be romantic, could be different, could be any sort. He says we’re matching leaves on the tree. I’m just so glad I opened the book with his picture in it that day in 1981, even if it did turn out to be a perishing long wait before we got together!

Noxious scat, definitely. Even the most carefully shaped troll reverts very easily to its natural state.

dallasapple
dallasapple
6 years ago

That’s so sad about your father being killed, and so young, and I’ll bet that he does visit your mother. I’d guess he’s happy she has another loving husband, too.

Yes its tragic . Especially for my mom . But as a child you learn early .That at any moment anyone can “dissapear” and never come back . That’s just the hard reality . You don’t worry so much about your self anymore other than how it will affect someone else if you evaporate.

The importance of your life is how you affect others by living or dying. (or both) What other difference do we make ?

vaiyt
6 years ago

“”I do love her biography . Her grandmother had the “gift” as well. And showed her the ropes.I think Sylvia may have misused her gift or something .””

There’s no “gift” involved. Sylvia was a charlatan. All she did was cold reading (a trick older than print) and relying on people not bringing her up to task for her prior predictions (like how she managed exactly ZERO positive results in finding missing persons). She even missed her own death by 11 years.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
6 years ago

Dallasapple – I’ve never actually read Sylvia Browne (this was while I was idly browsing in a bookstore). That’s majorly uncool if she was using her gifts to fuck with people’s emotions. Too many “psychics” prey on desperate, gullible people. Why does second sight always have to be dramatic and involve dead bodies?

dallasapple
dallasapple
6 years ago

in your choice of plastic gemstones. 😉

Forget it then I’ll wait for the real thing. Unless you are talking like really really well made zirconia’s ?

Other than that I prefer black ruby’s and black emeralds with a sprinkle of diamond stardust .(throw me in an giant onyx surrounded by opal and turquoise…yes my crown is busy!)

dallasapple
dallasapple
6 years ago

Dallasapple – I’ve never actually read Sylvia Browne (this was while I was idly browsing in a bookstore). That’s majorly uncool if she was using her gifts to fuck with people’s emotions. Too many “psychics” prey on desperate, gullible people. Why does second sight always have to be dramatic and involve dead bodies?

I don’t know Buttercup but I was disappointed in her. A notch down on my respect belt. She has a gift I think she misused.

dallasapple
dallasapple
6 years ago

There’s no “gift” involved. Sylvia was a charlatan.

I respect your opinion .

kittehserf
6 years ago

lana, well, manboobz budget and all that, we can’t afford good jewels. 😛

Louis lost his father young, too – Henri was assassinated when Louis was eight.

He’s written about how good it was to pass over – he says it was like waking up – and have his father there to greet him.

dallasapple
dallasapple
6 years ago

lana, well, manboobz budget and all that, we can’t afford good jewels. 😛

Well choke it up! LOL!!

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

Pardon me for following this conversation in lurk mode, Lana and Kittehs, but I think the trolls are full of shit on the whole idea that a spirit-partner is just crazytalk. I did say I had an undeclared minor in Witches’ Studies at university, and I wasn’t actually kidding. I became a Wiccan priestess there at the ripe old age of 21, partly thanks to the teachings of the wonderful gay guy who is still my best friend today, and mainly because I’ve had flashes all my life — inklings that material reality is by far NOT “all there is”. What Wordsworth called “Intimations of Immortality”, in other words.

I had a strong sense even in childhood that the bible is a much-corrupted work that was edited by men with an agenda to the point of bad fiction, which was later confirmed for me by my own research. And the first Old Religion deity I met was Hathor, who reassured me that the dead cows whose bones I found in a gully on my grandparents’ farm were with Her, and in no pain anymore. I was 8 or 9 at the time, so that was quite a thing to absorb. Seeing a picture of one of Her statues in a children’s encyclopedia later was a moment of pure recognition. Right away I thought: THAT’s who I was talking to! She’s real! I wasn’t just imagining that!

And that was just the first of many weird experiences I had. The night my maternal grandfather died, he came to say goodbye to me. He was in Germany and I was at uni here. Somehow he hung around long enough to wait until I was asleep before coming to tell me he had died and was on his way to the next world. The dream ended when two men in white coveralls came and lifted him so that he was vertical. Then I looked at his sagging face and saw that he was really dead, and woke up shaking and crying in my dorm-room bed. It was traumatic for me, because I was not ready to lose him yet. But I’ve since had reassurance from more than one sensitive person that he is still there, watching out for me, along with my aunt Nellie, who died when I was 15, and who was like a second mother to me. I’ve since also felt the presence of my other grandparents after they passed, especially my paternal grandmother. Usually it’s a nonvisual, nonverbal clue, like a whiff of her cologne (which I don’t wear myself since she passed, and don’t have any bottles of lying around, either.) But once I saw her in a dream, too, in which she warned me of a coming illness with a German phrase meaning “contaminated water”, which I took to mean a urinary tract infection or kidney trouble. Sure enough, I came down with a bad bladder infection soon after that. Timely medical intervention stopped it from reaching my kidneys. She herself had suffered bladder problems after being cured of uterine cancer in the mid-1960s (radiation burns, which hospitalized her every three years with bleeding from the bladder), and kidney failure played a part in her final illness and death. It stands to reason that she would be watching out for me!

So I’m quite certain that death is NOT The End, after all. I’m not sure exactly how the spirit-world operates, but it’s obviously nothing like the biblical place. And if reincarnation also happens, I wouldn’t be a bit surprised. Everything else in nature gets recycled, so why not? I’m pretty sure my friend and I have been kindred spirits in several lives.

Robert Ramirez
6 years ago

I used to call myself an atheist but like the great director Luis Bunuel said; I have become bored of that tiresome designation.

So I am now what people call a non-theist.

As for what Bina said, I think she is correct: material existence is not all there is. Why? Because basically every thing we know, everything we touch and see and taste are just one thing. The chiefest component, the thing that makes the stars, the sun, the moon and you is just one thing…information. Our universe is like a great big library or computer that stores this information, think of it as both. This library has many dimensions, it stretches across time and space. All the information that makes you up does not just disappear, it is stored within the very fabric of this universe. Energy does not die because energy at it’s very core is information. We live in a binary universe, a universe of binary information.

Neo-Platonists, Gnostics and Christians had a word for this chief component, this unit of information that informs everything, they called it the Logos. And please do not think this is voodoo, it fits well into information theory.

Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

And isn’t so far off fitting into string theory, though I guess both could be correct? Not my strong suit.

Y’all are gonna make me go for the same quote on new iPod as lost iPod (if it doesn’t turn up) — I believe in God // Only I spell it Nature.

Also, this is a smidge of why I love math, everything is math, and math is beautiful, and complex, and we only understand a fraction of it (somebody explain how the golden ratio exists so often in nature, it’s a fun question)

katz
6 years ago

somebody explain how the golden ratio exists so often in nature, it’s a fun question

Vihart made a vid about that.

Robert Ramirez
6 years ago

@Argenti

You can spell God; Nature but I will spell Nature; Kali.

“My Mother is the principle of consciousness. She is…indivisible Reality, Awareness, and Bliss. The night sky between the stars is perfectly black. The waters of the ocean depths are the same; The infinite is always mysteriously dark. This inebriating darkness is my beloved Kali”

Ever since I was young and even through my atheism I always had an affinity for Kali, she is the perfect representation of what is both natural and divine to me.

Kiwi girl
Kiwi girl
6 years ago

I’ve just been reflecting on the comments in this thread around how, e.g.

Angry MRA : I’d like to teach a new unit next year about how women can’t think rationally because they have periods and therefore they shouldn’t be allowed to vote.

Department Chair : That’s not actually true, you know. Perhaps you should read article blah blah in the Journal of Neuroscience which showed that women can make rational decisions just fine.

Angry MRA : Stop censoring me! I have a right to my opinions!

Department Chair : Yes, but not your own facts. The university cannot allow you to teach students things that we know to be complete nonsense. Also, who do you think is going to take a class like that?

Angry MRA : PC bullshit! Fuck you, I’m starting my own department.

Department Chair : What are you going to call it, the Department of Bad Science?

And there are some academics in some departments who are publishing bad “real science” and nothing is happening to their tenure or publishing ability.

So is there something deeper and odder going on in academia, and the misogynist courses are just one latest symptom of it?

kittehserf
6 years ago

Bina, thank you and big hugs for sharing that. (Big hugs to you, lana, I have been remiss!)

I had no idea that Wicca could be studied at uni. I’ve had a few Wiccan friends over the years (mostly in my Goth days, surprise surprise).

That was a lovely message from Hathor, and it would be a hell of a thing to absorb at any age, let alone as a child.

I guess I could say I’m a mehtheist (hey, it fits with Free Meh) – the people in the next life interest me far more than the nature of God or the gods, be that a Creator Spirit, ground of being or any other forms or designations we’ve known them by. A few years back I was more curious, when I was first in contact with Louis, and he said that (as far as he can figure it) the creator is “a consciousness but not a personality”. I’d never thought of it that way, and while it doesn’t look appealing in print, it was for me a satisfactory and comforting answer. It got away from anthropomorphic, debased Judeo-Christian notions.

Speaking of debased, “to the point of fiction” is an excellent description. My reaction to the usual “the Bible is rubbish and most of it didn’t happen, therefore no God” is that lousy fiction doesn’t actually negate someone’s existence. Hell, if it did, Louis would have ceased to exist the moment that turd Dumas wrote The Three Boring Drunkards Musketeers. For that matter, so would the real men he based the trio on, who lived a generation later.

Of course the Real True God is Ceiling Cat, as we all know. Everyone else just fills in because after CC made cushions on the sixth day, She rested, and has been resting ever since.

Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

Robert — I just almost addressed this to Kali XD because that’s lovely.

Arctic Ape
Arctic Ape
6 years ago

Our universe is like a great big library or computer that stores this information, think of it as both. This library has many dimensions, it stretches across time and space.

Ook.

(Sorry, had to make a reference to L-space in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld. Not so much because I’m a sceptic, but because I’m an ape.)

closetpuritan
6 years ago

Robert Ramirez:
That bit about information reminds me of this passage from Greta Christina that I’ve always liked:

Here’s the second thing. Imagine, for a moment, stepping away from time, the way you’d step back from a physical place, to get a better perspective on it. Imagine being outside of time, looking at all of it as a whole — history, the present, the future — the way the astronauts stepped back from the Earth and saw it whole.

Keep that image in your mind. Like a timeline in a history class, but going infinitely forward and infinitely back. And now think of a life, a segment of that timeline, one that starts in, say, 1961, and ends in, say, 2037. Does that life go away when 2037 turns into 2038? Do the years 1961 through 2037 disappear from time simply because we move on from them and into a new time, any more than Chicago disappears when we leave it behind and go to California?

It does not. The time that you live in will always exist, even after you’ve passed out of it, just like Paris exists before you visit it, and continues to exist after you leave. And the fact that people in the 23rd century will probably never know you were alive… that doesn’t make your life disappear, any more than Paris disappears if your cousin Ethel never sees it. Your segment on that timeline will always have been there. The fact of your death doesn’t make the time that you were alive disappear.

And it doesn’t make it meaningless. Yes, stepping back and contemplating all of time and space can be daunting, can make you feel tiny and trivial. And that perception isn’t entirely inaccurate. It’s true; the small slice of time that we have is no more important than the infinitude of time that came before we were born, or the infinitude that will follow after we die.

But it’s no less important, either.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

I had no idea that Wicca could be studied at uni. I’ve had a few Wiccan friends over the years (mostly in my Goth days, surprise surprise).

As a formal discipline, no…at least not when I was there. I did it on the side, first borrowing books off my friend and then buying my own. It made for interesting moments when I studied Old Norse, though. Reading up on Loki and Thor made me chuckle. Especially the one saga where Thor had to dress in drag (as Freyja) to rescue his hammer from a giant who’d stolen it. The giant wanted her as his bride, or he wouldn’t let go of the hammer. Much hilarity ensued…

I guess I could say I’m a mehtheist (hey, it fits with Free Meh) – the people in the next life interest me far more than the nature of God or the gods, be that a Creator Spirit, ground of being or any other forms or designations we’ve known them by. A few years back I was more curious, when I was first in contact with Louis, and he said that (as far as he can figure it) the creator is “a consciousness but not a personality”. I’d never thought of it that way, and while it doesn’t look appealing in print, it was for me a satisfactory and comforting answer. It got away from anthropomorphic, debased Judeo-Christian notions.

Yes, that sounds about right. I was an agnostic myself (a = without, gnosis = knowledge). So I had less to unlearn than most of the people who later joined the pagan study group my friend and I set up. The conclusion I’ve come to over time is that what we call the Gods are thoughtforms, created by people from the energies present in nature, in a collective manner to guard and help them, eg. by protecting their homes, guiding them to good hunting, helping crops grow, cure illnesses, etc. Creation myths are made-up stories; end-of-world myths, likewise. People crave narratives to give shape to their thoughtforms, to amuse themselves, to speculate on what they don’t know, etc. The idea of a Someone who made us, and who can punish us if we go astray, is the bastard child of all this. Early people were not so concerned with divine approval and propitiation; they just needed help feeding and housing themselves, fending off enemies, etc. The idea of jealous gods didn’t really take shape until nation-states were established, and each tribe was always chest-thumping to the effect that their guy was the only real one, better than all those “false” others. Well, they were all right — and all wrong! Each one was no less valid than the others. Whoever conquered the most territory could claim the strongest gods.

It was historically inevitable that monotheism would arise out of all this, as imperialists sought to consolidate their empires, and nations jostled for turf. Egyptian pharaohs were mostly in the habit of adopting and syncretizing the tribal gods of those they conquered; Akhenaten (or Ikhnaton) was deemed heretical for making one of the first stabs at One-Godism by doing away with all but one (and his reign was a bad mess for trying that). And of course there were those stateless wanderers, the Hebrews, who tried to get land by claiming that the one and only God who had chosen them had granted them some…which, inconveniently, belonged to other people, with their own (“false”) gods. The fact that it took a war for them to obtain it, rather than the sheer awesomeness of all this “my god is the only god” talk to persuade the locals to hand the land to its conquerors, is constantly being glossed over, to this day. And their book of heavily edited creation myths…well, we all know how THAT’s been abused.

I was quite tickled, though, to find out that the Ten Commandments were, in fact, cribbed from a set of vows Egyptian novices had to swear before being initiated as priests. There were dozens of them. They had to affirm that they had not committed this and that sin, in order to be worthy of temple service. Moses, who was raised by a pharaoh, must have heard these recitations several times, and eventually condensed them down to a convenient number, altered some details to suit his own purposes, and passed them off as the word of the One-God.

Anyhow, long story short: Spirituality is possible without organized religion, and need not be at odds with science, either. I don’t “get” string theory, but the idea that matter and energy are two different ways of looking at the same thing works fine for me, and explains why I still feel the energies of those who have gone before, even if their material being is long gone.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

Oh shit, forgot to burn a hecatomb to the Blockquote Beast.

fromafar2013
fromafar2013
6 years ago

@ Bina

“The conclusion I’ve come to over time is that what we call the Gods are thoughtforms, created by people from the energies present in nature, in a collective manner to guard and help them, eg. by protecting their homes, guiding them to good hunting, helping crops grow, cure illnesses, etc.”

All of what you said, but especially this part, really touched me. I just recently left my coven to become a solitary exactly because I had the same feelings about deity and such. A lot of my fellow witches have a very literal relationship with deity (called hard polytheism) where they believe the gods and goddesses of all pantheons and religions ever actually existed and walked the earth at some time. I was an atheist before finding Wicca, so my skeptic mind couldn’t rationalize that. But what you described, perfect!

I’m redoing my year and a day with no expectations or labels on my spirituality (or names for my deities) in the hopes of discovering something that feels more true for me. Thanks for sharing. It helped remind me!

House Mouse Queen
6 years ago

I am peeing my pants over that Hollander video. His dancing looks like a combination of bullfighting and bull charging. That’s because he’s a libra.

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

(So it’s not really correct to call psychopaths “crazy;” evil would be more appropriate, as their lack of conscience makes them so.)

People aren’t evil. They may choose to do evil things, but I’m really uncomfortable calling a person evil. And even then, I think a person has to be aware of the harm they’re causing in order for the word to apply. If a person lacks a conscience, meaning they do not have the ability to distinguish right from wrong, their actions cannot be considered “evil” because they’re not deliberately choosing “wrong”.

It drives me up the wall when the news media gives equal air time to global warming skeptics, or schools mandate the teaching of intelligent design, in the name of promoting academic freedom of thought. All they’re doing is muddying the waters.

I once read a study that found that the reason NPR (that’s U.S. National Public Radio) appears to have a liberal bias is that they don’t give equal weight to cranks and their crank theories, which in the US in this decade will tend to mean only reporting the “liberal side”.

And please do not think this is voodoo, it fits well into information theory.

So, Voodoo is a living religion, and a widespread one (if you include its Caribbean children, it has more adherents worldwide than Judaism), and I’m like 99.9% sure the the reason people use “voodoo” to mean “patently false and something you’d be foolish to believe in” is because of white Christian missionaries and slave owners who would have regarded anything done by non-whites and non-Christians as “patently false”. Add in some Hollywood shit-stirring in which those scary brown people and their scary brown gods are used as horror fodder, and you have a recipe for misunderstanding and denigration of something that’s actually really important to a lot of people (who happen to be a historically and currently marginalized group). tl;dr I’m really uncomfortable with people dismissing someone else’s religion just because it’s not Western and its adherents aren’t white.

fromafar2013
fromafar2013
6 years ago

Thanks emilygoddess, I somehow missed that part about Vodou.

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/632819/Vodou

Interestingly, Vodou as practiced today has lots of Catholic influence. Their main deity Bondye is essentially a nicer version of Roman Catholic God.

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

As for the theological discussion, I lean agnostic because I find it literally unbelievable that our tiny little ape brains, evolved under conditions on this one tiny little planet, are equipped to know everything there is to know about the cosmos. I’m pretty sure there’s no God as the Abrahamists understand him, or rather, I’ve seen no evidence that there is, but I’m certain there are things in this universe that we’ll never understand, so I choose to remain open to the possibilities.

Religiously, I adhere to the two tenets of Druidry as espoused by the Reformed Druids of North America:

1) Nature is good.
2) Likewise, Nature is good.

Which is mainly because, unlike gods, I can be sure that nature exists. If there are gods here, they’re probably as much a product of the specific conditions on this planet as we are. Which poses awkward questions for such an avid sci-fi reader, like “what will I worship if I move to another planet”?

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

Interestingly, Vodou as practiced today has lots of Catholic influence. Their main deity Bondye is essentially a nicer version of Roman Catholic God.

Haitian Voudou, yes, because the slaves who practiced it were brought there by French Catholic people. But Haitian Voudou, like Santería and Candomblé and several others, is derived from the Vodun (also colloquially known as “Voodoo”) of West Africa.

fromafar2013
fromafar2013
6 years ago

I find it sad, not surprising, but still sad that people felt like they had to adopt Catholic symbols just to make it less likely they would be killed for their beliefs. I would consider it clever but I feel like that might be insulting since it was more than likely a matter of survival and not a choice. At least Vodou as a tradition managed to survive for the most part separate from the dominant religion. Can’t say the same for many of the European pagan beliefs that spreading Christianity managed to assimilate. *cough christmaseaster cough*

JoJo
JoJo
6 years ago

I dated a wiccan priestess for a bit. She was fun, but wanted a bit more control over my life than I strictly felt comfortable with (mostly because I had just come out of an abusive relationship where she even dictated when and where I was allowed to make bowel movements and would throw crying fits and scream that I hated her when I had to take a poop when she didn’t want me to. I mean, if I was crapping on the floor or something I could understand that reaction but I wasn’t…)

I don’t feel comfortable calling myself an atheist because I don’t own a single fedora, don’t follow MRA or MGTOW blogs, and generally don’t feel “euphoric” at any time. Mostly, my spiritual journey discovered that religions were all the same boring crap and I had no interest in any of them. (Laughed when they made a Metalocalypse episode where one character came to the exact same conclusion, lol).

That being said, I also know that mocking and openly desecrating religious things is just asking for bad things to happen to you, so I keep to myself mostly.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

I just recently left my coven to become a solitary exactly because I had the same feelings about deity and such. A lot of my fellow witches have a very literal relationship with deity (called hard polytheism) where they believe the gods and goddesses of all pantheons and religions ever actually existed and walked the earth at some time. I was an atheist before finding Wicca, so my skeptic mind couldn’t rationalize that. But what you described, perfect!

Awww, thank you! Glad to have been of help!

Melissia (@MelissiaKuromoi)

Thank you, Futrelle, for maintaining this site, and meticulously sourcing your arguments like this. It’s been a great service to help me get some people in my life to stop and really think about what the MRM really represents.

kittehserf
6 years ago

I don’t feel comfortable calling myself an atheist because I don’t own a single fedora, don’t follow MRA or MGTOW blogs, and generally don’t feel “euphoric” at any time.

::snicker::

I present a fedora worn by someone who’s definitely not an atheist, absolutely not an MRA or MGHOW (they’d be terribly confused as to whether he’s an alpha, because he used to be a king, or a mangina, because he’s happily married AND has lots of kitties). He does get euphoric at times but that sort of goes with the territory.

kittehserf
6 years ago

Oh, just go away, willya, blockquote monster? Go harass some other site!

Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

That bit about viewing time like you’d view a place reminds me of my trip to the Adirondacks…being able to see for fucking miles, most of it trees and other mountains, is this weird combination of feeling very very tiny, and like your standing on top of the world at once. I can understand why people risk their lives on Everest, K2 and the like. Everest has gone way too commercial for me, paying your way up is against everything right about climbing (I.e. If somebody is in danger, fuck the summit, it’ll still be there for another go)…K2…nearly as tall and far more dangerous. Too bad there’s no way I could physically take a climb of that magnitude, need to find somebody to drag up the local hike with me though — my mother will happily do the family trail, but I want to do the red trail, not just the bits that intersect the family trail where I can meet her at the top of my scramble up rocks…

Lol, I’d also love to try the cliff face there, but with proper gear and a climbing partner and no booze, unlike the dozen people who have to get rescued from it every year. Probably dumb even with gear and a partner, pesky rattlesnake den at the base…

sparky
sparky
6 years ago

Hey, remember how Elam & co. don’t use words like “b—-” and “wh—?”

Well, here’s an article written by JB that calls Michael Flood and Tory Shepherd “wh—s.” In the title of the article. Then goes on to claim that AVFM doesn’t use those words, and even if they did, that’s okay, because cites like Jezebel routinely use the words “asshole” and “creep,” which are gendered slurs equivalent to the b-word and wh-word. And she completely misses the point.


http://www.donotlink.com/cY3

kittehserf
6 years ago

Asshole is gendered?

Does this mean JB doesn’t have one?

That would explain why she’s full of shit, I guess.

Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

Asshole is inherently a terrible thing to call someone? It’s on the list of things my brother and I jokingly call each other. To the point he just came upstairs, I went “hey asshole!” and got told about cat lateral damage (it’s a game, no idea how many words that is, but you’re a cat and the goal is to knock stuff off shelves, fitting)

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
6 years ago

(mostly because I had just come out of an abusive relationship where she even dictated when and where I was allowed to make bowel movements and would throw crying fits and scream that I hated her when I had to take a poop when she didn’t want me to. I mean, if I was crapping on the floor or something I could understand that reaction but I wasn’t…)

??! Ignore the question if it’s triggering, but if not, why was this woman so obsessed with your bowel movements? Controlling people are everywhere (and horrible), but that’s a pretty damn weird thing to key in on.

kittehserf
6 years ago

you’re a cat and the goal is to knock stuff off shelves, fitting

Closely related to the game of “sit on stuff on shelves you’re not supposed to and see how long it takes the humans to notice”.

treef
treef
6 years ago

Lionel Tiger’s little blurb for his male studies course explicitly mentioned that the course would reject certain conclusions and attempt to examine masculinity in a framework (a framework full of assumptions, such as the existence of a rigidly gendered brain and a notion that biology trumps socialization, not to mention that the objective “gendered brain of man” would somehow correspond exactly with current male identities) that he clearly set out. This is inductive reasoning which generally only happens if you have an axe to grind. Of course even most good scholarship eventually ends up offering an interpretation (though deductive and evidence-based) that is “ideological”, and I wouldn’t claim that any piece of work in the humanities or social sciences is free of ideology. But it’s far less obvious than here and usually the ideology comes AFTER the facts and not before. So I don’t know how they can claim male studies is non-ideological at all. If anything it’s a reaction to the level of “acceptable ideology” in academia by being as blatantly ideological as possible, and trying to reinscribe that ideology as a fixed objective reality. Either

JoJo
JoJo
6 years ago

Cassandra: It wasn’t so much about my bowel movements, it was more like she insisted on controlling everything I did. I picked that as a random example; but it expanded to literally everything. And how I did it (if I made one single motion she didn’t approve of she threw a fit.)

I don’t focus on those bad times. (I didn’t get this until I got older: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anz91PPMPw8 ).

Felisha
Felisha
6 years ago

This reminds me of Roy’s attempt to sue a club for ‘ladies night’. I suppose he forgot that the Catholic church is tax free and won’t allow a woman to rank up to bishop and pope?
Not that I care, I’m agnostic… but isn’t that discrimination as well?

Maybe Roy should consider that next time he calls feminism a religion.

Point is, MRAs often pick and choose their battles subjectively, using the ‘equality card’ to suit their narrative. They ignore injustices towards women around them. Such reasons, among others, is why the fanatics of avfm and like minded idiots aren’t taken seriously.

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