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Defenders of A Voice for Men tell Time magazine reporter "we have to SCARE you into listening," you "stinky … human monkey."

The High Council of Feminism holds a meeting.
The High Council of Feminism holds a meeting.

Jessica Roy, a reporter for Time magazine covering A Voice for Men’s recent :”Men’s Issues” conference in Detroit, found herself the target of a vitriolic tirade from AVFM maximum leader Paul Elam before she even sat down to write her account of her time amongst the MRAs.

Elam, evidently incensed about a handful of sarcastic remarks that Roy tweeted during the conference, denounced her as, among other things, a “hack,” “a liar and bigot” and a practitioner of “journalistic scumtardery,” whatever that is. Commenters on A Voice for Men happily joined in the hate, denouncing her as an “airhead,” a “disgrace and a liar,” “lil’ miss hair-o’or-her-eyes,” and a “little asshole [who] will look like a right nazi in five-to-ten years time.” Amazingly, no one pulled out the c-word. Evidently AVFMers are still on their best behavior.

Roy’s “What I Learned as a Woman at a Men’s Rights Conference” appeared on Time.com on Wednesday. Far from the hack job Elam and pals were predicting, her piece turned out to be a long, thoughtful and nuanced account that, while skeptical of AVFM and its brand of hateful nonsense, displayed considerable sympathy for some of the troubled men she met at the conference, men who could benefit from a movement that truly tried to offer solutions for men in difficulty instead of encouraging them to scapegoat feminists and women.

Reflecting on her discussions with several conference attendees, Roy wrote,

When you talk to someone like 68-year-old Steve DeLuca, the legitimate need to remedy some of the issues raised by men’s rights activists becomes more evident. A Vietnam veteran who was injured in combat, DeLuca spoke movingly to me about the two brothers he lost to suicide, and the unfathomable toll the high suicide rate among men can take. There are men out there, like DeLuca and [rape survivor] Brendan Rex, who have a real stake in the movement’s success. The paranoia and vitriol of its leaders can’t possibly do anything for them.

So how did AVFM fans respond to this article? By defending their vitriol. On Time.com, several commenters denounced Roy as “bigot” and a “fascist,” and suggested that their “righteous anger” was the only appropriate response to the evils of feminism.

DennisMarkham 1 day ago  "The paranoia and vitriol of its leaders can’t possibly do anything for them."   Yes it can.  We are dealing with in irrational, incompassionate society.  When MRAs express their grievances with cool rationality or sadness, it just blows past people like you like a gentle breeze.  Only when we pack some sting does anyone actually listen.   Vitriol is the only way we've ever gotten society to listen.  The MRM has tried to be cool and calm for over 40 years and to no avail.  Maybe when you start taking male suffering seriously instead of dismissing it with "check your privilege" and "man up", that'll change.  But until then, you reap what you sow.  We have to SCARE you into listening.

Never mind that the quote Markham was responding to came from a paragraph in which Roy wrote with sympathy about the suffering of male Veterans and rape survivors.

Meanwhile, an anonymous commenter received upvotes for this, er, nuanced analysis:

Guest 1 day ago  @eltra Our hatred for fascist (mainstream) feminism is hardly rooted in misinformation.  You'd know that had you actually bothered to listen to Erin Pizzey or GirlWritesWhat speaking at the conference.   We ARE wronged because feminism is a bigoted, reverse-sexist, and female supremacist tyranny imposed on us by the male (and female) monkeys who puppeteer for popularity at the top of governments in the whole of the Western world.

In a followup comment, “Guest” doubled-down, suggesting that Roy was a “stinky twit” and a “human monkey.”

Guest 15 hours ago  Look. Based on both their ideology and their behavior, mainstream feminists ARE fascists. The reason they became POWERFUL PC fascists is because good men and good women have mostly been too faint hearted or deluded to condemn them.  Clearly, Biden, Obama and the stinky twit who wrote this article are human monkeys because they damn well do know better but the keep trotting out the same traitorous and misandrist monkey business year after year. It's time remove feminist monkeys from power and find a social cage wherein they can chatter bigoted nonsense to one another more harmlessly. That already happened to the KKK. In time, feminist bigots will also be banned from civil discourse rather than lauded as heroic victims of the patriarchy.  Vitriol is appropriate for fascist bigots who have been defecating an endless load of baseless bigoted vitriol themsexes since the monkey movement began in Seneca Falls. You also need to stop already with the false accusation of misogyny. Sadly, not all feminists are women but, happily, not all women are feminists. To loath the women and men who back Roy's officially coddled hate movement is perfectly REASONable. Be nice to see men pitch to help destroy Erin Pizzey's 'Evil Empire' so that bigots like Roy cannot mock, roidicule and silence anti-feminists and MHRMs on the pages of Time too.

Roy made clear that she learned a good deal at the conference. The defenders of AVFM’s vitriol seem to have learned nothing.

NOTE: Picture of monkey party borrowed from here.

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farkennel
7 years ago

David are you that scared of the feminist lobby that you will call out ALL men who feel in need of help?

daintydougal
daintydougal
7 years ago

Conference covered in Time? STOP SILENCING US!

Melissia
7 years ago

She gave them more benefit of the doubt than I would have given.

Owl Cake
Owl Cake
7 years ago

“Despite a shared feeling of disenfranchisement, most of the attendees I spoke with struggled to recall a time in their lives when they were discriminated against for being men. When asked, two different attendees mentioned losing out to a woman for a job opportunity, though one conceded that she could have simply been more qualified.”

This is a pretty revealing quote to say the least :/

Michael Tague
Michael Tague
7 years ago

So that’s *not* a picture of Elizabeth Cady and her chimpy ilk? I had wondered why it was in colour.

But seriously, Seneca Falls? I guess if you’re going to be anti-feminist you might as well go all in.

katz
7 years ago

“Despite a shared feeling of disenfranchisement, most of the attendees I spoke with struggled to recall a time in their lives when they were discriminated against for being men. When asked, two different attendees mentioned losing out to a woman for a job opportunity, though one conceded that she could have simply been more qualified.”

This is a pretty revealing quote to say the least :/

Was it a job at a Pepsi bottling plant despite his genius patent that was stolen from him for being a man?

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
7 years ago

The Dennis Markham comment seemed to be saying, “Don’t tone police me,” which would be legit if tone policing were being done. So I read the Time article looking for tone policing and … came up with something kind of meta. It definitely criticizes the MRM’s collective tone, but does address the message also (what there is of a message). I’m torn on whether that counts as tone policing.

The meta is this: I’m not sure if it’s possible to actually get around a tone critique when the tone =is= the message. When “women are [gendered slurs]” is the message, that’s also the tone – they are the same thing. It becomes impossible to critique the message without also critiquing the tone. Since tone policing is problematic, it’s a tidy way to immunize a very shallow message from criticism.

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
7 years ago

We tried not throwing tantrums when we didn’t get enough ice cream, but that didn’t get us any more ice cream.* We throw tantrums now. Conclusion: the ice cream is on its way!

*We didn’t really try that.

Bonelady
Bonelady
7 years ago

Wow. Talk about bad PR. They get a surprisingly sympathetic report and their response is to trash the author. Way to dazzle the reporters Mr. Elam.

sparky
sparky
7 years ago

Vitriol is appropriate for fascists bigots who have been defecating an endless load of baseless bigoted vitriol themsexes [sic] since the monkey movement began in Seneca Falls

Here is the “Declaration of Sentiments” from the Seneca Falls convention. I guess “defecting an endless load of baseless bigoted vitriol” means advocating for women’s suffrage, right to own property and right to an education.

Basically saying, “Those feminists are so hateful! They want to be able to vote!”

And they have to scare people into listening to them.

daintydougal
daintydougal
7 years ago

I would very much like to hear all these chaps’ definitions of bigotry and fascism. I believe it would be most enlightening for all concerned.

enhancedvibes
enhancedvibes
7 years ago

The problem with the MRM is that most of their issues are not about rights, as in legal rights. They mostly require cultural change and MRAs prop up a culture that flies directly in the face of any of their issues. And that is why the “movement” is ineffectual.

Omnicrom
Omnicrom
7 years ago

My mother always says “Hurt people hurt people”, and the article taps into some of the tragedy that leads people to become vile hatemongers. Of course the MRM immediately demonstrates those charming traits of its that immediately kills any sympathy I might be able to muster for the men in it. The article is completely correct, the Men’s Rights Movement does absolutely nothing for men except as an ironically misandrist example of men at their very worst. So congratulations MRM for once again burning any bridge towards self-improvement, and proving once again you don’t give a shit about any of the alleged issues you’re fighting for.

Alison Jones
7 years ago

Hm. I haven’t read Jessica Roy’s article yet but will definitely do that. I did come across this article by Kelsey Miller – http://www.refinery29.com/2014/07/70393/mra-mens-rights-conference – and got a *little* involved in the comments section of that article… hard to resist, I’ll warn you. I had no idea the man I was replying to, who was making zero logical sense in his declarations of accusing women, blaming women for Everything, and calling me a dumbass, selfish princess, and other assorted names — was a mouthpiece for MRMs, Dennis Markham. Well. 🙂 If THAT is one of their spokespersons, I think there is very, very little to actually fear from this “movement.” That guy doesn’t seem to understand critical thinking, staying on point, making logical arguments… he does seem to like to call his dissenters childish names…. yeah, he’s about as good of a mouthpiece for MRM as a feminist could hope for – misogynistic, illogical, and just sort of plain old dumb.

brooked
brooked
7 years ago

Mr Futrelle,

We were concerned when one of our operatives mentioned that your blog has recently published a photo with the caption “The High Council of Feminism holds a meeting”. Much to our relief, we discovered that it did not feature the actual FHC and instead is a photo of an instillation of realistic toy monkeys that are an unsettling mixture of adorable and terrifying. You have again implemented our denial and deception protocol to great effect, which is a key aspect of the disinformation campaign that cloaks our radical feminist agenda from the prying eyes of our many enemies.

Carry on calling out ALL men who feel in need of help until further instruction. That further instruction will include an explanation of what “David are you that scared of the feminist lobby that you will call out ALL men who feel in need of help?” actually means. A team of linguists are unpacking that sentence as we speak and we are confident that they will make sense of it by the end of the month.

Yours in Sisterhood,
The Feminist High Council
A Secret Bunker, CA USA

Auntie Alias
Auntie Alias
7 years ago

Are they using the word fascist more often lately or am I just beginning to notice it?

leftwingfox
7 years ago

Policy of Madness: I agree. The trouble with tone policing is that it attacks the emotion, vulgarity or colloquialisms in an argument to avoid or implicitly invalidate the content or facts of the argument. It really shouldn’t overlap with dealing with criminal actions, (harassment, threats, or incitement) or hate speech (slurs and demonization). Pointing out the argument is misaimed is also dealing with the substance of the argument.

To that end Roy’s piece is nearly the opposite of tone trolling: She accepts the emotions as valid, but disputes the substance of the argument (feminism is to blame) and notes the dangerous levels of vitriol aimed at that scapegoat.

leftwingfox
7 years ago

Auntie Alias: Bit of both?

I just came from a thread at the Lawyers Guns and Money blog, where the resident troll started by calling Obama a fascist being held in check by the supreme court, DEFENDED Pinochet as “respecting the rule of law”, then fantasized about the day all of us commies would be killed as we needed to be.

The original topic? The Wheaton College contraception mandate ruling.

I’m a little twitchy about people throwing around the word “fascist” right now.

Isabelle
Isabelle
7 years ago

It seems to me they are panicking. Their whole movement has just demonstrated how much feminism is still needed while pointing out that the MRM is unwilling or unable to deal with the real problems faced by men. Comments like those of “guest” stink of the death-throes of the beheaded chicken.

brooked
brooked
7 years ago

@Auntie Alias

I think feminazi has that accusation built in, but the increased attention brought on by the conference really has whipped them into a tizzy.

estraven
estraven
7 years ago

MRAs live in a world totally alien to me. In my world, couples (whether straight or gay or polyamorous or whatever) mostly love each other and don’t view a relationship as a transaction. In my world, women like me have several male friends and a husband, son, and nephews I cherish. The vitriol and hatred coming from the MRM astounds me. And I agree with Roy–how does that help men? There are indeed valid issues affecting men but where are the people to organize effectively to change things? Feminists worked very, very hard to make changes in law, employment, education, etc. It took organization and years of effort. I’m pretty sure feminists would be willing to work with men in good faith to address the suffering of men. But I don’t see the “good faith” part.

Robert Ramirez
Robert Ramirez
7 years ago

The MRA’s seem to live in Bizarro World and do everything backwards. They seem to believe that paranoia and vitriol will bring them respectability instead of making love like a bunch of fools, they seem to think that having a PR person call people whores and admit to doxxing is a great way to win over public opinion.

cloudiah
7 years ago

I like that “Guest” called it Erin Pizzey’s Evil Empire. Sometimes truth comes right out of the mouths (keyboards) of asshats.

brooked
brooked
7 years ago

Mr Futrelle,

Your new FHC uniform is still being knitted, but we encourage you to continue gathering the male tears required to keep your uniform clean enough to pass weekly inspection.

Yours in Sisterhood,
The Feminist High Council
A Secret Bunker, CA USA

Isabelle
Isabelle
7 years ago

I thought Jessica Roy did a wonderful job at disarming the MRAs who accuse the feminists of not caring about men. If any of these twerps had brain, they would study and emulate successful movements instead of blaming one of them of all their problems.

zoon echon logon
zoon echon logon
7 years ago

@enhancedvibes

The problem with the MRM is that most of their issues are not about rights, as in legal rights. They mostly require cultural change and MRAs prop up a culture that flies directly in the face of any of their issues. And that is why the “movement” is ineffectual.

See, there’s “Equality MRAs” and “Gender MRAs”…

estraven
estraven
7 years ago

@Isabelle– I agree.

fruitloopsie
fruitloopsie
7 years ago

Omnivore
“My mother always says “Hurt people hurt people”, and the article taps into some of the tragedy that leads people to become vile hatemongers”

It’s not always the case, people who are not taught and was given everything to them can turn them into the same thing. Or they can have a balance life and still turn to hate.

Here is some brain bleach
http://youtu.be/hCRDskZrUMU

fruitloopsie
fruitloopsie
7 years ago

Omnicrom sorry

WatermelonSugar
WatermelonSugar
7 years ago

I found Roy’s article to be incredibly sympathetic to the actual men who seek the movement–truly, I felt she understood them. Her twitter feed continues to echo the same idea–that there are valid issues that men face, and that those are what need to be talked about, sans the finger pointing that the MRM goes about in the guise I “activism.”

She agreed with them. She just didn’t agree with the self-appointed leaders of the movement.

How is that anything that the MRA extremists are accusing Roy of? I think it just proves that the MRM as it’s stands is not about change, just about blame. Elam needs to reevaluate his tactics.

evilsoup
7 years ago

It will be seen that, as used, the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless. In conversation, of course, it is used even more wildly than in print. I have heard it applied to farmers, shopkeepers, Social Credit, corporal punishment, fox-hunting, bull-fighting, the 1922 Committee, the 1941 Committee, Kipling, Gandhi, Chiang Kai-Shek, homosexuality, Priestley’s broadcasts, Youth Hostels, astrology, women, dogs and I do not know what else. — George Orwell, What is Fascism?, 1944.

I mean I know it’s a relatively minor thing in comparison to their overwhelming horribleness, but I do wish these guys would get with the program and stop flinging insults that were old 70 years ago.

Kootiepatra
Kootiepatra
7 years ago

@Auntie Alias:

Are they using the word fascist more often lately or am I just beginning to notice it?

I wonder if they got bored with using the word “solipsistic” in every other post and needed a new go-to.

Kootiepatra
Kootiepatra
7 years ago

Aaaaaand my first blockquote monster sacrifice.

ginatingles
7 years ago

From one of David’s earlier posts about the news coverage –

Goldwag: “It will be interesting to see how much bridge-building A Voice for Men engages in from here on out …”

David: Well, I think we already have an answer to this question.

This made me laugh so hard. HOW DID YOU KNOW?!?!

(also, hi everyone!)

Winter Walker
7 years ago

I thought Jessica Roy’s article was quite wonderful, and treated the conference organizers and attendees with more sympathy and fairness than many of them deserve. Ironically, I think she likely treated the rape victim and Vietnam Vet. she spoke of with far more compassionately than most MRA’s would. And I’m beginning to come around to the idea that these men *do* need a hand from the feminist movement in general. Not because we owe them a thing, but because these are real humans, experiencing real suffering, and their own movement doesn’t seem ready to do shit all for them.

My predictions for World Pride over the last week were borne out fully by observation. There were plenty of feminist groups in evidence, allied with the LGBTQ community, and nary an MRA to be seen. Unless I missed “MRA Night” at all the leather bars…

throwaway
throwaway
7 years ago

> Jessica Roy, a reporter for Time magazine covering A Voice for Men’s recent :”Men’s Issues” conference in Detroit, found herself the target of a vitriolic tirade from AVFM maximum leader Paul Elam before she even sat down to write her account of her time amongst the MRAs.

> Elam, evidently incensed about a handful of sarcastic remarks that Roy tweeted during the conference, denounced her as, among other things, a “hack,” “a liar and bigot” and a practitioner of “journalistic scumtardery,” whatever that is. Commenters on A Voice for Men happily joined in the hate, denouncing her as an “airhead,” a “disgrace and a liar,” “lil’ miss hair-o’or-her-eyes,” and a “little asshole [who] will look like a right nazi in five-to-ten years time.” Amazingly, no one pulled out the c-word. Evidently AVFMers are still on their best behavior.

I have no j school experience.

Is it commonly accepted journalistic practice for a reporter for a magazine like Time to “tweet” sarcastic remarks about her subjects? To describe how what she heard at a conference made her cry without describing what it was specifically and why she was forced to cry?

I believe these sorts of sarcastic remarks didn’t use to be considered acceptable by reporters aiming for objective, neutral, insightful reporting.

I also wonder just what it was she heard at this conference that was so shocking, so damaging, as to make her cry. If she truly did end up crying in response to the speeches there, I question her temperament and her fitness to be a reporter in general, much less a reporter trying to cover the men’s rights movement.

leftwingfox
7 years ago

Ugh… CAFE is just SO… damn… sleazy…

marinaliteyears
marinaliteyears
7 years ago

What I find amazing about this whole Debacle is that they even get angry and attack people who are relatively neutral, or helpful to their “Cause”, Since The article in question may not have been the most positive for them, but it was still more glowing then what many would give them.
And instead of.. you know, examining what the article says, looking for self improvement, and generally getting on track to actually helping men with problems, They all treat her just as harshly as people who did nothing *but* criticize. (not that they are more justified in their bullshit on people who are critics of them.)

Of course, the reason is because it was never about helping men who are suffering. Its about blaming women and feminism. its about getting away with saying nasty things and feeling justified in it. Its probably even about being with others who feel the same way, to reinforce the feeling, Though I note their loyalty to eachother is.. sometimes lacking.

daintydougal
daintydougal
7 years ago

I suppose they think continually using the word fascist makes them seem more legit. Also it’s not gendered which is refreshing in a way. Also its quicker than having to type out ‘that group of people I dislike are not only continuing to exist but actually doing stuff as well!?!?!’

deniseeliza
deniseeliza
7 years ago

The meta is this: I’m not sure if it’s possible to actually get around a tone critique when the tone =is= the message. When “women are [gendered slurs]” is the message, that’s also the tone – they are the same thing.

Yes, this! Anger is useful to a movement if it spurs people to action. But if anger is the whole point of the movement, and you never do anything other than find various ways and venues with which to express your anger… that’s just a bunch of people yelling. That doesn’t accomplish much.

I absolutely have sympathy for the men who commit suicide, who are homeless, who are jobless, who are angry at the world for expecting flawless displays of masculinity at all times. But I don’t have sympathy for “activists” whose activism consists entirely of asking feminists why they haven’t fixed these problems yet.

There are a lot of problems in the world. Feminism can’t fix all of them. That’s why feminism isn’t the only activist movement in the world. Somehow, other movements manage to do their work without spending all their time wondering why feminists haven’t already done it.

estraven
estraven
7 years ago

@daintydougal, do you think they have any notion of what “fascist” actually means?

emilygoddess - MOD
emilygoddess - MOD
7 years ago

Should Dennis Markham’s name be familiar? Have we met him before?

Here is the “Declaration of Sentiments” from the Seneca Falls convention. I guess “defecting an endless load of baseless bigoted vitriol” means advocating for women’s suffrage, right to own property and right to an education.

Basically saying, “Those feminists are so hateful! They want to be able to vote!”

And they have to scare people into listening to them.

I mean, they kinds do, since most people will dismiss this bullshit out of hand. Screeching, threatening and spamming until people notice them is about the only way they can get people to spend more than five seconds listening to their crap.

WatermelonSugar
WatermelonSugar
7 years ago

Ever the activists, JudgyBitch and DeanEsmay spend their 4th of July going after Jessica Roy on Twitter.

Did JB get fired yet? Geeeeze.

Winter Walker
7 years ago

Dammitt, damselindetech! They slipped past my jerk radar! How did I manage to miss the smell of douchebag right in front of me?

weirwoodtreehugger
7 years ago

Can someone explain to me how any men are helped by society listening to their vitriol? Sure, it gets them attention. But what practical, real world things does it accomplish? Absolutely nothing. I’m still waiting to hear about anything the MRM has done in terms of actual activism.

Here’s someone called Diz complaining in the Jezebel post on the conference that we block them from doing anything,http://jezebel.com/the-most-inane-moments-from-last-weekends-mens-rights-c-1599277038/all

I wouldn’t say that these things are caused by feminism. More that feminism blocks all attempts for men to take the initiative. Which is a huge problem because if feminism is working on the issues as you say, they are very, very incompetent at it.

MRA’s are essentially fighting a battle on 2 fronts, both against traditionalists and feminists that try to stop them.

When someone asked him what they planned on doing about it, this is what he said.

Here’s an idea, and it’s super simple. Get the fuck out of our way. Seriously! That’s all you have to do! We’ll do us, and you can do you. We aren’t the ones that started this war, after all.

As it stands, feminism only stands to lose with all the anti male crap. You can save yourselves so much grief if you just stand aside.

Of course, he didn’t provide any evidence that feminists are stopping the MRM from doing anything. Nor did he respond when anyone asked him for evidence or asked him to get off his arse and do things himself.

Winter Walker
7 years ago

Oh shit – I just read the article, and now I’m REALLY pissed! They claimed to be with the Sherbourne Health Centre! I’ve been going to the Sherbourne for years, and they must be even more pissed over those creeps using their name! Considering that the Sherbourne does so much real social justice work, runs street health busses, are home to a fantastic LGBTQ family practice (where I can be honest with my GP about where I got those bruises 😉 ), and have the best programs for trans people around? Yeah, they’re no doubt pissed.

I’ll ask my doctor about it when I see her next week. The look on her face will likely say it all. My awesome leatherdyke doctor is awesome.

Ally S
7 years ago

@weirwoodtreehugger

[CN: abuse, rape]

diz was a troll who used to come here occasionally (now banned). I tried arguing with them once in an old thread here. It ended with them triggering the fuck out of my PTSD, telling me that I deserved to be raped, abused, murdered, etc. because I’m an horrible and worthless person for not being an MRA. I told them that they were triggering me, but all they said was that I deserved to be triggered and traumatized for the rest of my life. They are very dangerous and abusive so while I have no say in whether you engage with them, please be careful.

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