Category Archives: terrorism

Nuh-uh, YOU Are: Men’s Rights Activists respond to petition calling on the president to classify them as terrorists

Feminists: Always up to something

Feminists: Always up to something

So about a week ago, someone put a petition up on Whitehouse.gov asking the president to classify the Men’s Rights Movement as a terrorist group. The petition, posted in the immediate aftermath of Elliot Rodger ‘s killing spree, seems to be sincerely motivated. But it was a bad idea. The Men’s Rights movement is full of assholes, some of them potentially quite dangerous.  Still, not every MRA is an Elliot Rodger in the making, and this kind of hyperbole doesn’t help those who are trying to expose the true terribleness of the Men’s Rights movement.

After their initial outrage wore off, MRAs decided to treat the petition as a golden opportunity for self-martyrdom. Dean Esmay of A Voice for Men urged fellow MRAs – sorry, MHumanRAs – to sign it themselves, perhaps not realizing that it might prove difficult to convince the world they’re being oppressed by a petition if they’re the ones most actively collecting signatures for it. (Esmay also took a moment to compare me to Bull Connor, which seems a tad odd, to say the least.)

Well, now the MRAs are trying a new tack. Perhaps taking a tip from old school rap feuds and all the “answer records” they generated, or possibly just the childish retort, “nuh-uh, YOU are,” one AVFM commenter named Janet Wilkinson struck back against the evil feminists with a Change.org petition announcing to “The Government” that it was “Time To Class Feminism As a Terrorist Group.”

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A Voice for Men’s Threatener-in-Chief Paul Elam demands that feminists pay security costs for his group’s conference

Paul Elam, Man of Peace

Paul Elam, Man of Peace

Well, you have to admit, he’s got chutzpah.

You may have heard that A Voice for Men is sponsoring what it calls the First International Conference on Men’s Issues later this month in Detroit, featuring such notable celebrity speakers as “internationally recognized writer, lecturer and videographer” Karen “Girl Writes What” Straughan, “former mental health professional” Paul “Boy Yells A Lot” Elam, Warren “Boys Aren’t Hurt By Incest a Lot” Farrell, and, well, a collection of other equally exciting names.

But there have been some doubts about it happening from the start. It took some time for the AVFMers to sell enough tickets to enable them to cover the costs of the event.

And now it the costs of the event are going up further: according to a letter that Elam has posted to his site, the hotel that will be hosting the conference has gotten “numerous calls and threats” of a violent nature because of the conference, and is demanding that AVFM cover the costs of additional security at the event.

So Elam has decided that feminists should pay some of these costs, in order to prove they’re “not like that.”

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Why Elliot Rodger’s misogyny matters

A chart posted by Elliot Rodger, giving his chilling spin on a manosphere meme depicting supposed female "hypergamy"

A chart posted by Elliot Rodger, giving his chilling spin on a manosphere meme depicting supposed female “hypergamy”

When a white supremacist murders blacks or Jews, no one doubts that his murders are driven by his hateful, bigoted ideology. When homophobes attack a gay youth, we rightly label this a hate crime.

But when a man filled to overflowing with hatred of women acts upon this hatred and launches a killing spree targeting women, many people find it hard to accept that his violence has anything to do with his misogyny. They’re quick to blame it on practically anything else they can think of – guns, video games, mental illness – though none of these things in themselves would explain why a killer would target women.

In the case of Elliot Rodger, who set out on Friday night aiming, as he put it in a chilling video, to “slaughter every single spoiled, stuck-up, blonde slut” in a popular sorority house at the University of California, Santa Barbara, some Men’s Rights activists and other manospherians are doing their best to convince the world that misogyny had nothing to do with it.

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Paul Elam of A Voice for Men: In His Own Words

Paul Elam on 20/20

Paul Elam in a web-only clip from the 20/20 segment that never ran on television.

Paul Elam, the founder and primary animating force behind the website A Voice for Men, is probably, for better or worse, the most influential figure in the Men’s Rights movement (or, as he prefers to call it, the Men’s Human Rights Movement).

Elam is also a fierce misogynist with a penchant for angry, violent rhetoric full of only-slightly veiled threats. But don’t take my word for it. Perhaps the best way to get to know Mr. Elam is through his own words.

So here are some of Elam’s thoughts on a variety of issues, taken from postings on his own website.  I have linked each quote back to its source on A Voice for Men.

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TyphonBlue: “Aside from the minor … physical effects of abortion surgery, how is forced abortion different for men or women?”

Men suffer from all those stupid lady afflictions too.

Men suffer from all those stupid lady afflictions too.

You may recall that post a couple of days back in which I talked about Dean Esmay of A Voice for Men — the alleged “Men’s Human Rights” site that hosts an open call to firebomb courthouses and police stations in its “activism” section — suggesting that unnamed Man Boobz “minions” might stoop to impersonating female MRAs in an attempt to make the Men’s Rights movement look bad.

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How bad ideas get started: The “Apex Fallacy,” the “Frontman Fallacy,” and the murderer Marc Lepine

Would blabla

Would MRAs still be into the Apex Fallacy if boards of directors looked like this?

So some Men’s Rightsers are up in arms because the powers that be at Wikipedia just deleted a page devoted to a phony “logical fallacy” invented by a friend of Paul Elam. According to the now-deleted Wikipedia page, “the apex fallacy refers to judging groups primarily by the success or failure at those at the top rungs (the apex, such as the 1%) of society, rather than collective success of a group.”

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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.”

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With courthouse violence on the rise, Men’s Rights activists continue to lionize the author of a terrorist manifesto urging men to burn down courthouses

Poster at a memorial for Tom Ball, an MRA who advocated burning down courthouses and police stations.

Poster at a memorial event for Tom Ball, an MRA who advocated burning down courthouses and police stations.

EDIT 6/15/13: Tom Ball’s manifesto is no longer posted on A Voice for Men, though it isn’t clear if this is a website glitch or a change in policy on AVFM’s part;  no announcement about taking it down has been made.

EDITED TO ADD: In the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing, it seems even more important to reinterate that influential Men’s Rights website A Voice for Men continues to host, in its “activism” section no less, a terrorist manifesto literally calling for the firebombing of courthouses and police stations. Until and unless that manifesto is removed, and A Voice for Men apologizes for hosting it, I will be linking to this post every time I mention A Voice for Men.

There has been another courthouse shooting. On Monday morning, the father of a man due in court for a child support hearing pulled out a semiautomatic handgun and shot his son’s ex wife and a friend of hers as they entered the lobby of the New Castle County Courthouse in Wilmington Delaware. After an exchange of gunfire with police that left two officers wounded, 68-year old Thomas Matusiewicz took his own life. The two women Matusiewcz shot were pronounced dead on arrival at a local hospital.

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A Voice for Men publishes a post by racist blogger Pamela Geller, whose Islamophobic writings helped to inspire Norwegian terrorist Anders Breivik [UPDATE]

Some of Pamela Geller’s other work.

NOTE: Man Boobz Pledge Week Continues! Big  thanks to everyone who has donated!

If you haven’t yet, and want to, here’s the button you’re looking for:

UPDATE: AVFM has taken the post down.

Men’s Rights Activists have had a serious hate-on for the Southern Poverty Law Center ever since the hate-group-monitoring watchdog wrote about the misogyny in the Men’s Rights movement last spring.

Since the SPLC devotes its time to ferreting out bigots and exposing them to the world, this has put SPLC-hating MRAs in some interesting company. While not everyone who’s criticized the SPLC is a bigot – both Harper’s magazine and the Nation have been critical of the group and its fundraising methods – many of the most virulent critics of the SPLC are far-right racists. On Reddit, for example, the anti-SPLC subreddit, called simply SPLC, is dominated by white nationalists; indeed, at the moment, one of the top links on its front page is titled “Interest for White Student Union grows.”

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Appeals court upholds conviction of a man who threatened to kill a family court judge — in a song on YouTube

Jeffries in his YouTube video.

Yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in Cincinnati upheld the conviction of a divorced Tennessee dad with the unlikely name of Franklin Delano Jeffries II who, in the midst of a custody battle, decided to post a YouTube video of himself singing a song with the sweet title “Daughter’s Love.”

The problem was that only a small portion of the song was actually about daughters and love; the rest was about Mr. Jeffries’ apparent desire to kill the judge overseeing the custody hearings, and possibly others.

As the appeals court judge put it:

The song contains sweet passages about relationships between fathers and daughters and the importance of spending time together. The rest boils into an assortment of the banal (complaints about his ex-wife), the ranting (gripes about lawyers and the legal system) and the menacing (threats to kill the judge if he doesn’t “do the right thing” at an upcoming custody hearing). Jeffries set the words to music and created a video of himself performing the song on a guitar painted with an American flag on it. The style is part country, part rap, sometimes on key, and surely therapeutic. 

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