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“And what if they get killed?” A Voice for Men as an antifeminist Witchfinder General

So John the Other has responded to my post about A Voice for Men’s “bounty” on the makers of the SCUM video. It’s a fairly unhinged rant, even by his standards. Here’s the money quote:

It’s a bizarre bit of circular logic: if some deranged asshole literally kills one or more of the videomakers, this is proof that the Swedish justice system isn’t working, which therefore justifies the deranged asshole’s actions. So the existence of vigilante violence justifies vigilante violence that justifies vigilante violence.

Since when is making a video a capital crime?

After all this, John rather bizarrely claims that “[u]nlike David Futrelle, I do not and will not lend myself to the support of violence, or indeed, of murder.”

That’s because, according to his daft logic, shooting  the videomakers would count as “self defense,” because evidently someone posting a video on YouTube that you don’t like is equivalent to someone coming at you with a knife.

While challenging AVfM’s “bounty” — without actually defending the video in any way — apparently means that I support murder. Go figure.

Vincent Price as the Witchfinder General

But dwelling too much on the specifics of this one case is to miss the larger point. A Voice for Men has essentially set itself up as a sort of antifeminist Witchfinder General. In the 1968 cult film of that name, you may remember, the corrupt Witchfinder tested whether the accused were witches by lowering them into water; those who floated were judged guilty, and burned at the stake. Those who sank were innocent, but dead.

Paul Elam and his sidekick John have a similar approach. They intend to do feminists harm, to “fuck their shit up,” regardless of what they’ve done or said. None of those who have been placed in the Register-Her “registry” as “bigots” deserve to be smeared or harassed (or put on the phony “registry” in the first place). But if you look at what they are ostensibly there for, well, you’ll discover that it matters not at all to Elam whether they sink or float. The point is to harass feminists; almost any excuse will do.

One of those on the “registry,” a radical feminist who posts online as Vliet Tiptree , has indeed said some fairly vile things about the male gender; she is the only one who might conceivably be described as a “bigot.” But others are there on trumped up “charges” based on highly tendentious readings of some of their writing; it’s clear that they’ve been targeted mainly because they have been publicly critical of the men’s rights movement.

Meanwhile, another of the alleged feminist bigots is not a feminist at all, but rather a traditional-minded “mom blogger” who aroused Elam’s fury by saying that she didn’t want male daycare volunteers taking her daughter to the bathroom, and for suggesting (incorrectly) that men make up 99% of abusers. (She has since apologized, but remains on the “registry.”)

And one recent candidate for inclusion, a feminist blogger whom Elam has pledged to “stalk,” seems to have made it on Elam’s naughty list simply because she has helped to highlight how pervasive harassment of women and feminists is online. Complain about harassment; get harassed. But Elam’s “critiques” of her are all suspiciously vague. It’s not clear if he has read even a single one of her blog posts. Nonetheless, he promises her that

by the time we are done you will wax nostalgic over the days when all you had to deal with was someone expressing a desire to fuck you up your shopworn ass.

In a post from some months back, Elam offered a similarly psychosexually charged justification for his campaign to “Fuck Their Shit Up.” Directly addressing the “feminazi scumbags reading this right now,” he declared:

I am not going to stop.  You see, 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.

Let’s repeat that last bit for emphasis:

the idea of fucking your shit up gives me an erection.

Does anyone still doubt that the aim of A Voice for Men and Register-Her.com in publishing personal information of their enemies is to intimidate – indeed, to terrorize?

Does anyone still doubt that their campaign is driven by hate?

Does anyone still doubt that they don’t give a shit if their actions cause someone to be physically assaulted or even killed?

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Improbable Joe
Improbable Joe
10 years ago

Wow…

Although I’d disagree with your third question, because I think they would be pleased as punch of someone was beaten, raped, and/or murdered. This looks like nothing so much as the behavior of white supremacist and extreme religious fundamentalist militia nutters who are all members of the same websites, communicate extensively with one another, and yet somehow get legal cover by claiming that when one of their bunch acts on the violent rhetoric that it was a “lone wolf” and no blame or responsibility can be hung on the rest of them.

Rutee Katreya
10 years ago

Civil Rights Movements: Apparently look surprisingly like lynch mobs. Who knew?

ithiliana
10 years ago

*bookmarks to drop on trollz head in future!*

And yeah, witchhunt is perfect image for it.

Kyrie
Kyrie
10 years ago

Oh, so now it’s clear: they admit they would like these young women to be killed for the crime of making a video about killing men.
Good to know.

So, where are all the moderate MRAs we hear so much about?

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

Elam qualifies as genuinely creepy. And if that’s shaming language, so be it.

captainbathrobe
10 years ago

Still not moderate, still not reasonable.

Holly Pervocracy
10 years ago

One of those on the “registry,” a radical feminist who posts online as Vliet Tiptree , has indeed said some fairly vile things about the male gender; she is the only one who actually deserves the “bigot” label.

She still doesn’t deserve to have people hunting down her real identity to harass, threaten, or actually attack her.

Even if someone is an actual violent criminal–literally violent, not she-said-mean-words violent–they still don’t deserve to be the subject of Internet vigilantism. Not unless the only purpose of it is to immediately give them over to the police along with evidence of their crimes.

But to put her information out there to a population of the most paranoid and discontented men you can find, along with lots of rhetoric about how she’s to blame if she gets killed–that’s not something to do even to real criminals.

Let alone people simply exercising their right to free speech in an upsetting way.

(Also: I’ve gotten the “How dare you claim men intimidate women! We’re going to get you for that!” paradox-threat recently too. It’s charming.)

Holly Pervocracy
10 years ago

So, where are all the moderate MRAs we hear so much about?

Sure as hell not speaking out against this.

Men's Rights Activist Lieutenant
Men's Rights Activist Lieutenant
10 years ago

Holly, I’ve said multiple times that I have a real problem with this, you can check the Reddit discussion in which I argued with Elam for proof (it’s linked on the Manboobz board, in a topic started by GamerLioness). But what am I supposed to do about it? We disagree, but it’s his site. I mean, I’m staying the hell away from AVfM from here on out, because this is morally wrong and also I would not be surprised if the law got involved pretty soon. But aside from that, I can’t do much.

Wetherby
Wetherby
10 years ago

Would it be appallingly nerdy of me to point out that Witchfinder General isn’t in fact a Hammer film?

(This was a rhetorical question, of course)

captainbathrobe
10 years ago

Yeah, when Paul Elam is consistently cited as being the “moderate, reasonable” voice of the MRM, you know there’s something seriously fucked up about that movement.

Improbable Joe
Improbable Joe
10 years ago

There are moderate MRAs? Sounds like an oxymoron… about morons.

thebionicmommy
thebionicmommy
10 years ago

Something else that bothers me about RH.com is that the records are permanent, even after the criminals listed have already repaid their debt to society. The already went through the criminal justice system and received their sentences. They don’t need a group of angry vigilantes keeping a hit list of them on the Internet long after they get out of prison. I feel the same way about government registries of offenders, too. Once people have served their time, they should get another chance to start life again on a better note. People don’t have a good chance to better themselves if they can’t get a clean slate after serving their time.

The site lost all credibility with it’s bigot and corrupt public official categories, though. None of those women were convicted of any crimes in the first place. They’re listed with actual criminals in a way to deceive people into believing they are also criminals, and to hurt their future chances of employment. It’s also caused some of the women listed to receive threats and harassment from radicals. Once a website endangers people and lies about them to make it harder to find a job, it is no longer protected free speech.

NWOslave
NWOslave
10 years ago

Feminism as a whole, and many modern women remind me of the neighbor who burns leaves when the wind is blowing directly into their neighbors house. They stoke the flames and when the wind is just right they douse the flames with wet leaves and the smoke pours into their neighbors home. They’ll plant wandering bushes along the property line that springs up in their neighbors garden. They’ll place a security light that shines in their neighbors window at night.

They’ll push and they’ll prod. They’ll irk and annoy. Their foul tongue’s wag incessantly, razzing the frustrated neighbor. They do everything just inside the letter of the law. Finally, when the aggravation becomes too great, the beleaguered neighbor lashes out. Then the neighbor who took such joy in tormenting her neighbor and pushing every boundary to it’s limit cries out, “See! See! He’s dangerous and violent! Lock him up!”

VoiP
VoiP
10 years ago

I’m staying the hell away from AVfM from here on out, because this is morally wrong

Thank you, MRAL. Everything sounds sarcastic on the Internet, but I really mean that. You’re doing the right thing.

darksidecat
10 years ago

A professor of mine from last year recently published a book making the case against sex offender registries (and, no, mra twits, he was not roundly accused of being a misogynist for doing so, because his reasoning, unlike yours, was not grounded in misogyny). Well, I am just saying that I think there is plenty of solid grounds to debate them as a social policy. However, I think they are a red herring in this discussion, because register-her is in no way comparable. It is not something done and maintained by the justice system as part of a legal sentence after a criminal conviction, it is a bunch of internet vigilanties who throw names on it as they please. So, apples and oranges, regardless of how one feels about sex offender registries as a social policy.

xardoz
10 years ago

HAHAHA I can’t believe Elam said this shit gives him an erection. People should dust that quote off every time he opens his gap.

AVFM’s response was a bowl of word salad and immature insults, they’re losing their grip on sanity rapidly. The disturbing thing is that their flying monkeys, like Alek Novy, STILL eat it up like pigs from a trough! Anyone impartial comparing AVFM’s articles with Manboobz will instantly see who the adult in the room is. Hint: It’s the one NOT advocating stalking.

I suspect John the Otter and Paul Elam have no one to cook them Thanksgiving dinner, and they need some nice burning rage to keep their tummies warm. I hope that’s the only thing wrong with them, but if they’re really going nuts, they can use all the unused tinfoil to make a hat to keep Big Daddy’s thought control out of their skulls.

Holly Pervocracy
10 years ago

Holly, I’ve said multiple times that I have a real problem with this, you can check the Reddit discussion in which I argued with Elam for proof (it’s linked on the Manboobz board, in a topic started by GamerLioness). But what am I supposed to do about it? We disagree, but it’s his site. I mean, I’m staying the hell away from AVfM from here on out, because this is morally wrong and also I would not be surprised if the law got involved pretty soon. But aside from that, I can’t do much.

I, and I’m really trying not to be condescending or sarcastic here, really appreciate that, MRAL.

ithiliana
10 years ago

MRAL: Joining in with the others to thank you for trying to address Elam’s hatred and then boycotting the blog. Good for you!

Holly Pervocracy
10 years ago

And I stand corrected; this thread has Scandinavian MRAs going “dude not cool” at Elam:

http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRights/comments/mlnzf/some_questions_from_sweden_a_swedish_newspaper/

Holly Pervocracy
10 years ago

NWO’s example is actually great. The female neighbor does something annoying but entirely nonviolent, the MRA neighbor responds violently, and then everyone calls him violent.

Sounds about right, yeah.

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

Aaaand now we know what went down in NWO’s neighborhood. The man is not that creatively inclined.

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

MRAL, I’m proud of you, thank you for speaking up.

Xanthe
Xanthe
10 years ago

John the Other really has parted company from rationality if he thinks David has supported violent retribution in any way whatsoever in this entire series of threads.

Pretending the Swedish video is a threat of murder to men, everywhere, is a ridiculous beat-up: it’s not a threat issued at any one particular person, but a repellant piece of sensationalist agitprop to publicise a play. This is clearly not the same as the barrage of abuse and threats directed at individual women as highlighted by the #mencallmethings twitter hashtag, which are in the exact style of intimidation and bullying utilised by AVfM when it posts the full names, address, and contact details of women on the R-H.com website.

I called it a witch-hunt in yesterday’s thread and I’m chuffed to find with David’s great taste in movies (well aside from featuring Human Centipede a few days back, yuck!), he’s found a yummy image of Vincent Price as witch-hunter to adorn this thread: now take note, there’s a man who could be creepy in a good way. Paul Elam, you’re no Vincent Price: you’re wrong creepy.

Improbable Joe
Improbable Joe
10 years ago

And did we need NWO to show up with bullshit victim blaming? Really?

KathleenB
KathleenB
10 years ago

MRAL: Thank you for standing up – it might not feel like a lot, but sometimes all it takes is one pebble to start an avalanche.

Xanthe
Xanthe
10 years ago

MRAL: dix points
NWOS: null points

Naira
Naira
10 years ago

NWO’s example is actually great. The female neighbor does something annoying but entirely nonviolent, the MRA neighbor responds violently, and then everyone calls him violent.

And the “violent neighbor” interprets every annoying thing as a direct threat, a personal insult, and otherwise perfectly crafted to annoy or aggravate him.

Because anything the annoying neighbor does is perfectly crafted torture, as opposed to, you know…being a twit, ignorant, not realizing that her actions are annoying?

Kollege Messerschmitt
10 years ago

Chiming in to thank MRAL for his decision. It is really appreciated.

And what if they get killed David? What if rather than be arrested – as promoters of hate, and public advocates of murder, what if these depraved and murderous female supremacists come to harm at the hands of a citizen.

Holy shit, it’s like Elam just proudly outed himself to be Chaotic Evil. This shit is vile. Do the AVfM folks actually understand that this is not a little game? That it is not fucking okay to be so nonchalant about purposefully trying to place real living people in danger because they posted a tasteless video?

Bostonian
10 years ago

So NWO is confessing to assaulting his neighbor? For being annoying? That would be surprising, except not at all.

Kollege Messerschmitt
10 years ago

*Fuuuu, John the Other, not Elam.

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

The Nordic guys Holly linked from Reddit sounded downright reasonable. Our MRAs could take lessons.

Improbable Joe
Improbable Joe
10 years ago

In NWO’s example, it is more like this:

The misogynist neighbor blows all of his leaves and throws all of his trash in a feminist’s yard. She puts up a fence and plants hedges, so in the middle of the night the misogynist neighbor plants his ladder against the fence and flings his waste into the feminist’s yard. She puts up security lights which he shoots out with a BB gun, so she hires a security company and gets a dog. The dog barks when the misogynist neighbor starts flinging his crap into the yard, so he blames his victim for her dog waking his kids.

When she burns HIS leaves and trash, some random gusts of wind touch the sensitive nose of the misogynist, and he decides that his best option is to burn down her house in retaliation for her reactions to his initial and continuing semi-criminal behavior.

Xanthe
Xanthe
10 years ago

(Also: I’ve gotten the “How dare you claim men intimidate women! We’re going to get you for that!” paradox-threat recently too. It’s charming.)

Holly, yes it’s charming, in a sort of “irony has gone out for lunch and never returned again” manner. My favourite example of this is a poster from a pro-Islam demonstration cited by Richard Dawkins that had a similar level of disconnection between how and what it was asserting: “Behead those who say Islam is a violent religion!” I’d like to say the anecdote wasn’t true and the protestor couldn’t have been that unaware, but I suspect it’s too easily verifiable.

PosterformerlyknownasElizabeth
PosterformerlyknownasElizabeth
10 years ago

MRAL’s post is cheering in an otherwise dreary day.

BigKitty
BigKitty
10 years ago

@ MRAL – just want to chime in and tell you, you’re awesome to take a stand on this. Support, respect and admiration to you from this feminist!

@ NWO – God, am I glad I don’t live anywhere near you. You know, living in a big-city apartment building, I hear all kinds of stuff all the time: pounding rap music, not-NEARLY-ready-for-primetime opera tenors howling Puccini’s “Nessun dorma,” car alarms that go off for hours at a time, garbage trucks at four in the morning, etc.

It often annoys me, but I have never once (a) assumed it was all directed towards me personally, on purpose to make me nuts, or (b) decided that assaulting or killing my annoying neighbors would be an understandable, acceptable response to my discomfort.

NWO, you are just a pathetic, sickening creep, and I am eternally grateful to the universe that I am not you.

Lauralot
Lauralot
10 years ago

Thanks, MRAL.

Naira
Naira
10 years ago

@BigKitty:

I’ve already googled Elam out of curiosity and I’m quite relieved to find I don’t live in the same time zone as him.

@MRAL:

I agree with your view on it. Staying the heck away is the best idea right now, particularly if you think that authorities will be getting involved. Saying “No, that’s not right” is a good, moral stand to take, for which you get kudos from me. And hell, it is intensely practical if you avoid any trouble too.

Spearhafoc
10 years ago

I’m a little uncomfortable with giving MRAL a cookie for this.

I guess MRAs are so messed up as a group that it seems like a Herculean task to not support someone who targets women and threatens them with violence. Oh well.

NWOslave
NWOslave
10 years ago

Hey gang, I was just over at the fantastic What men are saying about women blog and I stumbled upon some juicy info. It seems the director over at the SCUM theater, Josefin von Zeipel Segerberg has also dabbled in a bit of straight hate. Hey that rhymes! It seems this gem of a mainstream feminist is also involved in a performance in celebration of “Straight Hate Day,” an attack on heterosexuality in Swedish culture.

She claims she just hates the promotion of heterosexual normalcy. Of course if I say I hate the promotion of LGBT normalcy, I’m a bigot and a hater. So what we have here is your average feminist actively promoting hatred of straight men, and that guy that got shot in the head looked awful white. We know everyone here hates whiteness, that’s a gimmie. Everyone one of you continually tosses out white man/male like it’s a foul curse.

I mean feminists don’t even hide their hatred of straight white men anymore and are shocked, shocked I tellz ya, if men so much as disagree. Anyhoo, I thought you’d enjoy this bit of relevant information on your…….equaltiy movement?

Bee
Bee
10 years ago

Assuming arguendo that there is a completely innocent Neighbor A who merely wants to be left alone by his malicious and intentionally reckless Neighbor B, there are about a million nonviolent things that Neighbor A can do to protect his property and his sanity before he resorts to violence, milkslave. Including trying to talk to the neighbor, bringing a grievance before his HOA board, filing for an injunction, bringing in a special interest group to help you try to enact change in local laws, or moving.

Someone who looked past all those options and resorted to violence would indeed deserve to be labeled violent. As do the folks at AVFM. Activism, not vigilanteism, is a correct way to produce change.

Improbable Joe
Improbable Joe
10 years ago

@spearhafoc

I think that it is a positive thing to give credit where credit is due, even if the person being given credit has never before earned credit, and maybe will never again earn any credit. One of the negative things about radical extremists is that they can never see anything positive in people who they have declared to be enemies. The folks here aren’t radical extremists, and therefore can grit their teeth and admit when someone who they generally dislike is on the right side of an issue.

Holly Pervocracy
10 years ago

Spearhafoc – MRAL is stubborn, often obnoxious, and quick to lapse into Tantrum Mode FUCK, but he’s not dumb, and I say give credit where it’s due.

I think it’s important not to treat any person as scorched earth from which nothing good can ever come.

…except NWO. (Who I’m guessing has actually not assaulted the neighbor, but is either fantasizing about it or he verbally raged out at her in a way that made him That Guy in his neighborhood. Try a polite letter followed if necessary by a civilly worded complaint with the city/town government, dude…)

Hershele Ostropoler
10 years ago

Slavey:

Feminism as a whole, and many modern women remind me of the neighbor who burns leaves when the wind is blowing directly into their neighbors house

It’s weird. This makes less sense than what he normally posts … but not much less.

Conversely, I have hope for MRAL. I’ll join the chorus, that realizing that major voices in the MRM say shit that’s really not okay is the first step, and that alone puts you miles ahead of people who haven’t realized it.

Seraph
Seraph
10 years ago

I’m a little uncomfortable with giving MRAL a cookie for this.

He’s young. You never know when a bit of encouragement might make a difference.

What makes me sad is the near-certainty that it won’t; that he’ll go right back to his old behavior within a day or two.

It doesn’t have to be that way, MRAL. You don’t have to be NWO or DKM when you grow up. Hanging out at MRA sites is just feeding your resentment and bitterness. Why don’t you try staying away for awhile? Hanging out with real people instead would be ideal (it’ll certainly blow all those MRA “all women are like this” delusions right out of the water), but the people here have tried to help you before.

Men's Rights Activist Lieutenant
Men's Rights Activist Lieutenant
10 years ago

I’m not looking for a cookie, but I’m just calling it as I see it. I think Elam is not all bad, but this is just really disillusioning for me. I really value internet anonymity, in fact, since MRAs’ viewpoints are out of the mainstream, it is MRAs who most benefit, we won’t face ridicule or whatever in the real world. Also, as said, I think Elam is destroying the website’s effectiveness from an MRA POV, because it has less weight if it’s just a political shit list, as opposed to, you know, an actual criminal registry.

I’m not going to go over and bitch to Elam anymore, though, because I’m sort of afraid he’ll put ME on RH for being a “collaborator” or some shit. I really feel like he’s gone a little nuts with power.

KathleenB
KathleenB
10 years ago

Spearhafoc: I can see where you’re coming from, but I disagree. Just getting past his own personal issues surrounding women to admit that an MRA has gone too far is a pretty big step for MRAL. If he can get from point A to point B on this, there’s hope that he’ll connect the dots on other issues. From previous experience I don’t old out a lot of hope, but I’ve seen people overcome worse prejudices. It may be stupid, but I have to have some hope for this tired old world…

KathleenB
KathleenB
10 years ago

MRAL: Unless it’s put up by actual law enforcement, sites like ‘register her’ will never be anything but political shit lists.

PosterformerlyknownasElizabeth
PosterformerlyknownasElizabeth
10 years ago

I would rather praise someone for doing the right thing then have to once again criticize them.

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