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dozens of upvotes evil women hundreds of upvotes misogyny MRA oppressed men paul elam playing the victim reddit violence why can't men punch women?

New Men’s Rights hero: the Cleveland bus driver who punched and choked a female passenger

The bus driver winding up for the punch; the passenger’s arms are by her side.

Men’s Rights Activists have a new hero: a Cleveland bus driver who punched and choked a belligerent female passenger who had apparently refused to pay her fare.

The top post in the Men’s Rights subreddit at the moment, with more than 500 upvotes, links to a petition urging the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority to reinstate the bus driver, Artis Hughes, who was suspended after video of the incident leaked out. (See videos here and here.) According to the petition,

As a bus driver, mr. Hughes was lied to, insulted, threatened and eventually attacked by one of the passagers. He was clearly justified in striking back. Were he to suffer any negative consequences to his employment as a result of defending himself and striking back, this would set a disasterous precedent: he and other employees would legitimately believe that their workplace expects them to put up with harrassment, and that they will lose their jobs if they choose to stand up for themselves. …

As well as being a bus driver, mr. Hughes is a man, and [Shidea N. Lane, the passenger] is a woman. We continue to live in a world in which some people see fit to scold men for fighting back against the women who abuse them. After mr. Hughes struck ms. Lane, a woman could be heard protesting about it, saying “That’s a [censored] female”. Mr. Hughes responded by saying: “I don’t care. You want to be man? I’m going to treat you like a man!” This is a healthy attitude: if men refuse to strike back, fearing that the law will favour their female abusers over them, we create an environment in which women can harrass and victimize men with impunity. Instead, a man’s decision to fight back against a woman should be respected.

It is for these reasons – the fact that the bus driver was the real victim and was justified in hitting back; that he and other bus drivers should not fear the legal consequences of responding to attacks by passagers; and that men in general should not fear the legal consequences of responding to attacks by women – that we urge you to reinstate mr. Artis Hughes following the investigation on the incident, and hope that future policies will safeguard him and other bus drivers from legal assault whenever they respond to a passager’s physical assault.

There are a lot of things wrong with this statement, up to and including the spelling. But perhaps most germane to the discussion at hand is the fact that the various videos of the event circulating on YouTube make very clear that Hughes was not acting in self-defense.

Yes, it’s clear from the videos and the police report on the incident that the passenger was acting obnoxiously. And according to witnesses she struck first, spitting on Hughes, pushing him and apparently punching him in the head. (All I saw in the video was her pushing him.) That would be more than enough to charge her with assault, though Hughes declined to press charges.

But after she allegedly assaulted him, she backed off. When Hughes punched and then choked her, he was not defending himself; he was retaliating, and with disproportionate force – his punch literally knocked her to the floor.

In this case, Hughes’ victim was a woman. But what he did would have been equally wrong had he punched a man with similar force.

This isn’t the first time, by a long shot, that MRAs have defended the idea of responding to violence from women with disproportionate force. A year ago, you may recall, Men’s Rights Redditors and other MRAs jumped to the defense of Rayon McIntosh, the McDonalds employee who responded to an assault by two customers by beating them with a metal rod – and continuing to beat them after he knocked them to the floor. (See video of the incident here; TW for extreme violence.)

And as longtime readers here know, in one now-infamous post Paul Elam of A Voice for Men suggested that it would be proper for men abused by their female partners to

beat the living shit out of them. I don’t mean subdue them, or deliver an open handed pop on the face to get them to settle down. I mean literally to grab them by the hair and smack their face against the wall till the smugness of beating on someone because you know they won’t fight back drains from their nose with a few million red corpuscles.

And then make them clean up the mess.

In the wake of the bus incident, a number of commenters in the Men’s Rights subreddit reacted to Hughes’ assault on the young woman with something close to glee. (Click on any of the yellow comments to see them in context; they’re all from different parts of the thread .)

True, some suggested that the response was disproportionate, but they tended to get a much less enthusiastic response from the regulars than those reveling in the punch:

And MRAs wonder why some people describe their movement, such as it is, as “the abusers lobby.”

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Nova
Nova
8 years ago

When are people going to understand that it’s just not okay to hit people, unless you’re in grave danger.

From what I could hear from the garbled audio, she was being pretty obnoxious verbally. So was he, to be really honest about it. Funny, I deal with obnoxious (sometimes drunk and/ or stoned too) people every day that I go to work and manage to do it without hitting them.

If she hit him and backed off, it’s no longer self defense to hit her. I don’t care how mad he was, I don’t care how much people think she deserved it. It’s no longer self defense but another assault. He was wrong. She was wrong too, but that fact doesn’t make him any less wrong.

And, on a related, but not germane to the main discussion note… if she was behaving so obnoxiously, why in the world did he start driving the bus with her standing there? Every passenger on that bus was in danger.

MKlein
MKlein
8 years ago

Yeah, hitting and choking a belligerent and non-fare-paying passenger seems SLIGHTLY excessive. Like not exactly how 99% of the people I know would handle that.
It’s a testament to how tired and immature I am that when I first started reading this post and I read the description of the incident, my first thought was literally this: http://cdn.uproxx.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/anchorman-well-that-escalated-quickly.jpg

Steele
Steele
8 years ago

Agreed. This was a disproportionate reaction and the driver was in the wrong; as someone who has seen what “justified escalation” can lead to when growing up in a rough neighborhood, I do not applaud this man. Which does not mean I don’t empathize and understand his reaction.

Steele
Steele
8 years ago

That is, the instinctive reaction is understandable; not the excessive force.

MKlein
MKlein
8 years ago

Seriously, though, this is not a gender issue, it’s a public safety issue. Someone who reacts that way and/or finds such a reaction easy and acceptable should not be driving a heavy metal death trap full of people down a public road. Bad idea.

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

Oh, so close Steeley. You almost made it through a post without being an ass.

Soooo close.

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

Wait, no I saw your clarification. I take it back. You actually said something reasonable.

Well done!

ithiliana
8 years ago

Countdown to NWO appearing to spew a huge amount of obfuscatory and dipshit rationalizations…..three…two…

ShakaKhan
ShakaKhan
8 years ago

These people. If they’re not complaining that all (read: no) feminists care about whether or not a door gets held open for them, they’re demanding the right to punch women in the face. Maybe that should have come with the vote, for everyone. One vote, one sock to the jaw. No taxation without brutalization.

someguy bored with your schtick
someguy bored with your schtick
8 years ago

If you were honest, you would note the video had been linked to on previous days from
/r/wtf
/r/videos
/r/funny
/r/justiceporn
/r/distortedview
/r/ohio
/r/gifs
/r/news
/r/adviceanimals,
/r/cleveland,
/r/imgoingtohellforthis

and at FARK and at HuffPo and at 4chan and in many many places around the net and that the responses in all those places were identical to /r/mensrights.

>But after she allegedly assaulted him, she backed off. When Hughes punched and then choked her, he was not defending himself; he was retaliating, and with disproportionate force – his punch literally knocked her to the floor.

I agree with you, his punch was way out of line, and could not be claimed to be self defense.

I disagree with you that “backing off” should give her any amount of leeway ever. This is not to defend him, and I don’t know how to state this legally, but hey, if I beat you up and then stop, and then you come over and deck me, no one should applaud me because I backed off until sometime before you shoot me as I am running away. It’s one thing to defend me legally because you shot me in the back, it’s another to applaud me for backing off before you decked me.

So that’s the crux of it. You and I would both agree that if she had hit him and he had responded immediately with that punch, we’d probably groan over what seemed to be too much force, but agree he had acted in self-defense.

That he waited a moment, and yes, (to me this is worst) stood up and walked over to where she was, well, that’s not right, but if the police decline to charge him, I see no reason he should not keep his job. He’s a bus driver, not a cop, not a blogger, and should not be subjected to abuse like that.

I haven’t followed the case since then.

Have the police charged the bus driver with a crime?

If not, why shouldn’t anyone support this guy, a hardworking employee and the victim of an assault.

ARE YOU SO SURE YOUR DECISIONS HERE WOULD BE THE SAME IF THE GENDERS WERE FLIPPED?

Do you use your blog to rail against how the media and pundits give women that initiate violence a pass? Or even support it with phrases like “You Go Girl”? And that can range from murdering men, to various assaults to even genital mutilation.

And while you rail against mens rightsers here, why aren’t you talking about /r/wtf and /r/videos and HuffPo and FARK?

Is it because you are willfully blind or a knowing hypocrite?

If you wanted to be an honest you would update your post with this:

http://www.reddit.com/r/MensRightsMeta/comments/11dp56/reques_to_make_all_posts_to_rmr_be_text_posts_and/

Because the truth is, /r/mensrights was trolled for at least a day with that video before it snuck past when the mod was offduty.

It snuck into /r/mensrights after /r/mensrights mods had rejected 20 submissions of it. It was accepted when a troll with only 2 other entries on reddit prior to this video got it in.

And in many places when it was entered in /r/mensrights, there were plenty of people calling out the behavior of the driver as wrong, and saying this was not a /r/mensrights issue.

So, I know you’re smart enough to know what real journalism is, and you’re not doing it.

You claim to mock misogny, well fine, mock it then. But mocking a distortion is pretty low on the bar for mocking humor.

“And MRAs wonder why some people describe their movement, such as it is, as “the abusers lobby.””

Just so long as you know why some people describe you David Futrelle, as a liar, a hypocrite, and a terrible journalist who is eager to distort reality.

So you win David Futrelle, you caught MRAs signing a world wide petition to give a victim of assault a break.

someguy bored with your schtick
someguy bored with your schtick
8 years ago

Have you discussed the reaction on twitter #uppercut or #getoffmybus?

The crime of /r/mensrights in supporting that position is to be behaving like the vast bell curve of the internet.

Weak tea Futrelle, you can do better.

someguy bored with your schtick
someguy bored with your schtick
8 years ago

This is not to defend the Cleveland bus driver’s actions which I think were not self defense and a huge over reaction, this is the environment they drive in.

This incident, where a bus driver was actually knocked out, took place less than a week earlier, about 800 miles away:

http://www.kansascity.com/2012/10/03/3846396/bus-riders-skip-fare-one-punches.html

Okay, since I’ve been partia-banned by David, I’m out of here.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
8 years ago

Do shut the fuck up with your whining about David, boringmoron. You’re a really tedious one-note whinger, and your obsession with David is really old. ‘Cos that’s all this is, isn’t it – “David! David! Look at me! I’m over here! Talk to meeeeeeeeee!”

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

Aaaaand after a surprising moment of reasonableness from the MRM, it returns to form.

I wonder if schtick-for-brains has ever actually read a newspaper. I honestly don’t know where he gets his ideas on journalism from.

Nova
Nova
8 years ago

Hrmmm. A few things, Schticky.

1. If a customer* at my club grabs or gropes me as I’m walking by and I return to where he’s sitting, for the sole purpose of hitting him, I’m going to lose my job. It doesn’t matter if charges are filed or if the police are called. My employment guidelines state that assault or fighting on club property is grounds for immediate termination. People who commit assault at work usually don’t have a job anymore.

2. She’s a victim of assault too. Where’s the outpouring of sympathy for her? Why aren’t we giving her a break?

3. Going back to the club analogy, if I beat up a customer, I don’t expect that it’d be viewed any differently if the customer beat me up. One human being assaulted another human being and it should be condemned and prosecuted equally.

*Given the type of club that I work at, 99.9% of the customers are men, so the male gender is assumed.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Jesus, Bored Stick, GO AWAY. David should full-on ban your tedious ass.

Everyone was wrong in the OP.

Magnesium
Magnesium
8 years ago

I think someguy bored with your schtick is my new favorite troll. He has his “I’m so over u gais, I’m outa here” badge right in his username, but he comes back ten times a day, ever single day, to post complaint essays about how over and above it he is. And he’ll probably keep doing it for the remainder of his natural life. It’s adorable <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

amandajane5
amandajane5
8 years ago

Can anyone still wade through Bored Stick’s interminable posts?

Talk about someone who should start his own blog already. Of course, it’d probably end up just as popular as our friend Steelepole’s, because I can’t even get through one of his “comments” much less want to read anything on any of the multiple topics he proposes that David should write about.

Also, what’s up with picking a username like that and then sticking around and sticking around just in case we might have forgotten how bored he is?

Nova
Nova
8 years ago

@Magnesium: I’m starting to think that Schticky is a sockpuppet for B who shall not be named…

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Amandajane5: David set him up with his own blog. Bored Stick’s too dumb to use it.

clairedammit
clairedammit
8 years ago

Shorter sticky: “You wrote about this thing but you didn’t write about these ten other things. JOURNALISM!”

clairedammit
clairedammit
8 years ago

David set him up with his own blog. Bored Stick’s too dumb to use it.

I’ll bet the password is “password” too. Or “passw0rd.”

Nepenthe
Nepenthe
8 years ago

Sticky, is your contention that we ought judge /r/gifs with the same moral rubric with which we judge a self-declared human rights movement?

Rhetorical question, since you aren’t capable of answering for at least two reasons.

Myoo
Myoo
8 years ago

@someguy
No one is lauding her for backing off, they are condemning the guy for attacking her after she backed off. Why is it that you fucking asshats can’t tell the difference between “what happened to this person was bad, no matter if they were an asshole previously” and “this person is a hero for being an asshole, all hail assholishness”?

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
8 years ago

2. She’s a victim of assault too. Where’s the outpouring of sympathy for her? Why aren’t we giving her a break?

And of course this is what it’s all about. If the passenger had been a man, the MRM wouldn’t take any notice of the case. This is all about them getting hard-ons at the idea of a woman being beaten up, and the INJUSTICE of it actually being against the law.

Myoo
Myoo
8 years ago

I’m off to bed, I leave you with kittens with mustaches, to alleviate some of the crap that’s happened recently.

Biot
Biot
8 years ago

“…and hope that future policies will safeguard him and other bus drivers from legal assault whenever they respond to a passager’s physical assault.”

Legal assault? The petitioner must have overlooked that ambiguous statement. I can read it as either meaning “justified assault” or “lawsuit-based assault,” and that doesn’t help the petition in the least.

Gads, I don’t want to even imagine what life as a MRA would be like.

Nova
Nova
8 years ago

@ The Kittehs’ Unpaid Help: Exactly. And if the sexes were reversed with a female bus driver and a male passenger, they’d be up in arms and calling for her execution. They like to see women get beat up, regardless of context.

I need to figure out how to post videos here, because brain bleach.

PosterformerlyknownasElizabeth
PosterformerlyknownasElizabeth
8 years ago

In more important news than whatever Bored is spouting, I have a kitten on my chest.

And bus drivers are supposed to call the cops not deck people.

clairedammit
clairedammit
8 years ago

Yeah, I don’t get why this is a men vs. women thing. Passenger was acting like an asshole, bus driver over reacted, both are wrong.

Nova, just drop the youtube link in. It should have the http:// in it and not have extra stuff strung on the end, so that it looks like http:// plus http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QVYyWAxZgg8
(crosses fingers that this works!)

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

If you are a bus driver and a passenger is verbally insulting you, you’re justified in insulting them right back. Choking them? No.

As others have said, this isn’t a gender issue at all. That’s a red herring, only relevant to misogynists who like seeing women get beaten up. If this bus driver had got up and choked a male passenger he’d still deserve a suspension. There are very few jobs in which you don’t get in trouble for physically attacking customers.

@ Nova

If the video you want to post is from YouTube, just cut and paste the URL.

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

He’s a bus driver, not a cop, not a blogger, and should not be subjected to abuse like that.

I know reading Schticky’s nonsense is a waste of time. I know this is just a little piece of ‘huh?’ floating in an entire sea of WTF…

But…huh?

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
8 years ago

Yeah, I noticed that too. Apparently bloggers are now official first responders. Does this mean we all get one of those little flashing lights to put on top of our cars?

clairedammit
clairedammit
8 years ago

CassandraSays, you do! You can have a red one or a blue one, your choice, but you can’t have one that flashes both red and blue, and you have to use it on your dashboard. You do get a magnet to put on the back of your car when you’re on the job, though. Be sure to requisition your light and sigh on the blogger intranet.

clairedammit
clairedammit
8 years ago

light and sigh, ahahaha, I’m going to go pour myself a glass of wine now

timetravellingfool
timetravellingfool
8 years ago

YOu know, the guy behind the counter at macdonalds I almost get- if someone came, over the counter at me I would be absofuckinglutely terrified and maybe my reaction would be to keep swinging in pants-shitting fear that they’d get up and try and kill me again. But the uppercut dude? That dude just wanted to hurt people.

Nova
Nova
8 years ago

Okay… let’s hope this works… because it’s ferrets!

http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dquzvmzARgg

Nova
Nova
8 years ago

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
8 years ago

In more important news than whatever Bored is spouting, I have a kitten on my chest.

I haz a serious case of kitten envy now.

Sarah
Sarah
8 years ago

That cat’s polydactyl! =O

Nova
Nova
8 years ago

@ timetravellingfool

I kind of get the McDonalds guy too. Kinda.

The bus driver wanted to teach the passenger a lesson, which is why he did what he did. The shit he was talking made it pretty clear that he was a willing participant in the situation.

princessbonbon
8 years ago

I haz a serious case of kitten envy now.

She moved to my leg. And is purry.

timetravellingfool
timetravellingfool
8 years ago

I am house-sitting with three cats. One of them used to be feral and her meows sound like tiny squeak toys. The other is a total jerk (but insanely cute). The third is the normalest cat in the known universe, but seems just a titch confused all the time- all of her meows sound like they have question marks on the end. And since their owners left their routines are all messed up and it has been total chaos- food is being stolen from dishes, cats are chasing cats into basements and one of them pooped on my towel (I totally blamed the jerk cat because I wouldn’t let her beat up squeaky and she got mad at me). Fin.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
8 years ago

Princessbonbon – you’re just doin’ that to torment me! 😀 Dang, I wish I could get a kitten or three. Just not possible, alas. And my two grownup *cough* cats would be mightily pissed if I did. But ohhhh, kittens … sigh.

Timetravellingfool – your question-cat sounds like she might have the dreaded rising inflection thing so many humans do. Or at least, they do here in Australia. Every statement sounds like a question … the cat isn’t an Aussie, is she? 😉

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
8 years ago

Now, I wonder if this video will embed … I don’t know how to do them from Photobucket.

The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
8 years ago

Well, poop, that answers that question!

cloudiah
8 years ago

I have one kitten drooling on my knee right now, and one drooling on my shoulder. Sure, my cats drool but that’s their only flaw. Except for destroying my leather armchair, and my curtains, and my carpet, and a lamp, and … I’m going to stop now and just note for the record that they’re cute.

timetravellingfool
timetravellingfool
8 years ago

@ kitteh’s unpaid help- Either that or she’s a Valley Girl. I just wish she’d meow with a little more confidence. If you say meow, say it like you mean it!

clairedammit
clairedammit
8 years ago

Oh, but grownup cats are awesome too!

Nilla does the question thing, too. We have no carpets, so meows echo. He likes to meow loudly in the hall just as the sun is coming up. It sounds like “Where? Where?” When I say “hush” to him a few times he’ll do one of two things – open the bathroom door, go into the shower stall, and meow very quietly into the tile corner, or jump up on the bed and sit on my head.

Nilla, recently: http://i.imgur.com/OGf6l.jpg

His brother Nutmeg hardly ever meows, and when he does, it’s squeaky and funny.

Nutmeg, recently: http://i.imgur.com/KjXFz.jpg

amandajane5
amandajane5
8 years ago

Y’all are making me miss my cat so much! See avatar. I’d made a cartoon kitty like y’alls, but Unpaid Help’s looked so much like mine, that I switched to a picture of my real buddy, because you can’t really capture his intensity in toon form. I just visited him on Thursday (my cousin’s been keeping him since I’ve been ill) and I miss him SO MUCH. I know he misses me too, he let me pick him up and hold him for more than five minutes! (A rarity with that one.)

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