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a voice for men harassment johntheother misandry misogyny MRA rape culture rape jokes slacktivism that's not funny!

A Voice for Men attacks a male activist — with a rape joke reference

John Hembling (John The Other) has rape on the brain.
John Hembling (John The Other) evidently has rape on the brain.

In an apparent attempt to prove that they’re not misogynists, the folks at A Voice for Men have decided to take a temporary break from their practice of vilifying individual female activists to vilify a male activist – University of Toronto Student Union VP for University Affairs Munib Sajjad.

As far as I can tell, the folks at A Voice for Men decided to target Sajjad, perversely, because he told Toronto’s CityNews that he was afraid he was “going to be targeted” after announcing publicly that he thought a campus Men’s Rights group should be banned. The A Voice for Men post about Sajjad is a typically long-winded, and largely content-free, rant from the excitable John Hembling (“John The Other”).

But what’s more disturbing than Hembling’s empty bloviating on Sajjad is the way A Voice for Men has framed the attack. “Munib Sajjad, it’s your turn in the barrel,” the headline declares, and Hembling repeats the phrase “your turn in the barrel” in the post itself.

I wasn’t familiar with this phrase, so I looked it up, and found that it derives from a rape joke. Here’s the definition of the term, from Urban Dictionary:

To say someone is “in the barrel” or “taking a turn in the barrel” means it’s their turn to do an unpleasant task or to suffer an unpleasant experience.

Click on the “definition” link above to see the gang rape joke it’s derived from.

Rape jokes aimed at men — even men you don’t like — are certainly a, well, counterintuitive way of showing “compassion for boys and men,” as the A Voice for Men slogan has it.

EDITED TO ADD: Looking again at Hembling’s piece, I realize I hadn’t noticed his, er, argument that the term “mansplaining” — which I find useful from time to time — is somehow equivalent to the incredibly offensive term “[racial slur redacted]splaining,” which Hembling has just made up. (The slur in question starts with an “n.” You can figure it out.) This is ridiculous on its face, not to mention that it’s frankly racist not only to compare the alleged oppressions of men — who are not systematically oppressed — with those of black people — who are — but also to use a racial slur in doing so. Of course this isn’t the first time that A Voice for Men has used the n-word in an attempt to suggest that men, collectively, have it as bad as a historically disadvantaged and still systematically oppressed group.

Rape jokes and racial slurs: A Voice for Men has it all!

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bahumbugi
bahumbugi
7 years ago

my feminist early christianity prof showed me a lot of instances in which women were cut out of the original texts (she specialized in gnosticism, i believe, from a feminist perspective). apparently there were female disciples of jesus…maybe lesbians! i am not going back to research that, but it’s cool to think about. and unsurprising. silly paul et al., he and others messed up a lot of stuff.

freemage
freemage
7 years ago

Oh, as an Atheist who occasionally makes pretenses at writing, I will say that the KJV is one of the most engaging to read, at least of the better books. There’s a poetic lilt that many of the more accurate and scholarly translations lack. Which leads me to an opportunity to repeat one of my favorite stories!

I went to a book-signing/tour thing for American Gods by Neil Gaiman. Neil’s a marvelous storyteller, so in addition to doing a reading from the Chicago chapter, he also talked about some of the things he did while writing the book–one of which was traveling the country a lot, to see it the way his protagonist did. I’m going to relate one of those tales, as best I can–any inaccuracies are the result of my memory.

So he’s mostly done with the book, but he’s still doing some polishing, when he’s visiting Las Vegas. He’s staying at a hotel that’s in the process of closing out before demolition; so as he remains, he’s in an increasingly empty building.

He is pulling out chapter header-quotes, and realizes that he wants to use the description the Queen of Sheba from the Bible for the Las Vegas chapter. So, being an American who travels a lot, he immediately goes to the nightstand; sure enough, there’s a copy of the KJV, provided by the Gideons.

He starts flipping through the book, and discovers that the page he wants has been badly misprinted, rendering it illegible. So, he calls down to the front desk.

Neil: Hello. I’m in room XYZ, and I was wondering if I could get a copy of the Bible.
Night Clerk: Well, sir, there should be one in your room.
Neil: Oh, yes, there is, but this one’s got some damaged pages, right in the section I was looking at.
Night Clerk: … So you want a non-defective Bible?
Neil: Yes, please, if it’s not too much trouble.
Night Clerk: Of… course, sir, room service will be right up with it.

Several minutes pass, and then there’s a knock at the door. Neil opens it, to find, not only the Night Bellhop, but also the Night Clerk, and one other guy (I think it might’ve been the night security watchman); the Clerk is in the center, holding the new Bible in his hands and offering it with reverence.

“In all of my years working here, no one has ever ~asked~ for a Bible.” Clearly, in this city of sin, such a rare action merits unusual attention.

So Neil trades holy texts with the man, who goes on his way with his co-workers, obviously believing they’ve just had the honor of meeting one of the True Devout.

And then Neil realizes he has just gotten a distinctly non-poetic newer translation (probably the Good News Bible, or some other modern-English work). He closed the story by saying, “I just didn’t have the heart to call them back and tell them I needed another one.”

Marie
7 years ago

@bahumbugi

my feminist early christianity prof showed me a lot of instances in which women were cut out of the original texts (she specialized in gnosticism, i believe, from a feminist perspective). apparently there were female disciples of jesus…maybe lesbians!

That sounds awesome 😀 I’d love to know more about the original texts…should probably do some research on it when I have time.

freemage
freemage
7 years ago

Even just the KJV gives you some interesting commentary on homosexuality, actually. While Paul is death on man-on-man action, of course, he actually just dismisses lesbianism as a curse God laid on a city to punish the men–so God ~created~ lesbians that way, and we’ll have lesbians until all the men shape up.

Marie
7 years ago

@freemage

Wow Paul sounds like a massive dick. Another way dudes (at least Paul-dude) tries to make everything lesbians do about men.

Ug-Piriǧ
Ug-Piriǧ
7 years ago

@pecunium
I thought -im (ים-) was the masculine plural suffix, ain’t it supposed to be a -t/h- in the feminine?
/late night grammar… word-I-can’t-remember-at-the-moment

Aaliyah
7 years ago

Wow God’s kinda a dick then. Luckily I don’t think God wants people to get raped, or that zie thinks we should ‘make the best of a bad situation’ and accept marrying a rapist/ carrying babies of our rapist. Because I would have a really hard time worshipping a god who thought rape was okay, and even if I knew for sure that such a god existed, I still would not be able to worship them.
That reminds me of the obsessive emphasis of gratitude in so many religions. I hate it so much. Recently I got a stomach virus, and when I told my father that it was made worse by anxiety and stress (I didn’t tell him about the cause of my anxiety and stress for obvious reasons), he bluntly told me that I’m only feeling stressed out because I’m ungrateful to what Allah has given me.

Aaliyah
7 years ago

Oh dear, I fucked up the blockquotes again. V_V

Marie
7 years ago

Recently I got a stomach virus, and when I told my father that it was made worse by anxiety and stress (I didn’t tell him about the cause of my anxiety and stress for obvious reasons), he bluntly told me that I’m only feeling stressed out because I’m ungrateful to what Allah has given me.

🙁 Jedi hugs for if wanted. Also, did you change your avatar? I love it (either the new one, or the old one I didn’t notice XD)

Aaliyah
7 years ago

Yep, I just changed it. It’s Okinu from Ghost Sweeper Mikami. I’ll seriously be shocked if anyone here knows about that manga.

pecunium
7 years ago

Marie: O_o Why? I mean, I like the New Testament better than the Old one, mostly cuz I’ve heard more from it in recent memory, and mostly cuz Jesus sounds a lot nicer than God in the Old Testament.

The Argument is that the Covenant of the NT replaces that of the OT, and that Paul has good interpretations (as evidenced by his epistles being more strongly represented than any others; add Acts (the account of his deeds/a political text about struggles for primacy of interpretation in the early churches, and that case is even stronger).

But…. Jesus says that’s not true (“The Law shall not pass, not one jot, not one tittle“).

I think (based on some recent cultural analysis done by Classical scholars) Paul was so successful because his basic message was, “be nice to each other” but subsequent interpretations have clouded this.

Take the issue of covering one’s head. In Rome the right to cover one’s head (for women) was limited to “matrons”: that is the wives of citizens (and not all citizens, but only citizens who were not infamous. That is freeborn, and not taking part in any number of unsavory professions).

So Paul said, “all who are in church are equal,” but more than that, all are equal at the highest level of society.

There is a lot more of that sort of lost cultural baggage which we don’t have a visceral (and in some cases we do, but a reaction which is viscerally opposite to Paul).

The issue with shellfish is that, under the Laws of Moses shellfish (and pork, and rabbit, and a large number of fish, and beef stroganoff, and any animal which is legal to eat, but not killed properly; or blemished) is against the rules.

Peter had a vision (not Paul, though it’s in Acts) where God tells him, “what I have made is none of it unclean”. There is a wider context for this too; a Centurion was at the door, i.e. a Gentile, one to whom Peter thought, “The Word” shouldn’t be preached (this was the fight over circumcision; and it related directly to the question of superseding covenants). Paul appropriated Peter’s vision to promote his wider view of to whom Jesus’ message was meant to be applied.

It’s complicated, and it’s an ongoing battle among Christians.

Marie
7 years ago

@pecunium

Thanks for the info 😀 I’m learning a lot of bible stuff today XD

Aaliyah
7 years ago

In the Pentatuech (the books of Moses) and the rest of the OT abortion is not only condoned, but required (the life of the mother is more important than the life of the child). For an Orthodox Jew abortion can be religiously required.

My mind has been blown. I had no idea that abortion was completely allowed in Judaism. o_o

There’s a similar thing about Islam. Contrary to popular belief, Islam actually allows abortion in the first trimester. I doubt many devout ultraconservative Muslims care about that, though.

Shadow
Shadow
7 years ago

Completely O/T, but my cousin sent me this link and it was pure sunshine through the clouds after this craptastic week.

http://pvaras.tumblr.com/image/48524868487

Warning, picture may be dusty because I found a few motes in my eye

ArchaeoHolmes
ArchaeoHolmes
7 years ago

@Buntzums Thanks for the link. I found watching the mras talking a bit nauseating though!

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

Regardless of which god we’re talking about, if they were real I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t be going around saying “here, have some e-coli and puke for a few days, that’ll make you love me more”.

opheliamonarch
opheliamonarch
7 years ago

@shadow, so lovely, thank you.

Regarding Boston, just to say, Hubby and I send our best wishes to all in the U.S. So sorry, the world can be so cruel. Sorry that sounds so lame.

Kittehserf
7 years ago

@Kielbasa – is it as simple as that? I hold the yarn in my right hand, so English.

I can see myself getting all kinds of confused trying to swap. I haven’t figured out how to do rib on circular needles yet. Turns into moss whichever way I go. 😀

Viscaria
Viscaria
7 years ago

Here is the part where I shamelessly show off my work.

It has some pretty major flaws, but I’m still proud of it!

Viscaria
Viscaria
7 years ago

Huh. I guess the goddesses have punished me for shamelessly tooting my own horn by borking my link.

http://viscariaflower.tumblr.com/image/45721601754

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

Huh. I wish I knew someone who knitted, I’d pay them to make something with a Canadiens logo as a present for Mr C.

Kittehserf
7 years ago

I think it’s like spelling, us Brits do it differently, and some would say more correctly than others 😉

Reminds me of the writing website I used to frequent. It seemed to attract a lot of very parochial USians, and the rest of us – from all around the English-speaking world – got pretty tired of being told that “you spelled color/humor/aluminium wrong, you should use a spell check”. One of the Brits had as his motto “It’s our bloody language, we’ll spell it how we want.” 😉

clairedammit
7 years ago

I have the patio lights, firepit, and citronella tiki torches. Guess the party’s in Texas, y’all.

I hope I’m not late to the party! If hellkell’s back yard isn’t big enough for everyone, mine is. I’ve got the firepit and patio lights too, and picnic tables. Also, I have outdoor speakers that are hooked up to an HTPC inside, so we can listen to internet radio or anything we want. I have a blender that will make some great Margaritas. I’m about to run out of tequila, but I can definitely offer some Grand Marnier and other liqueurs for mixing. LBT, if y’all want to bring that tea, I have a sangria recipe that uses fruity tea.

By the way, I’m going to follow the lead of some of you and change my nym. Remember my kitty. REMEMBER THE KITTY!

hellkell
hellkell
7 years ago

My backyard’s pretty big, but I don’t have outdoor speakers. Mr. HK could probably score those ones that look like rocks for cheap though.

LBT: no need to bring anything but yourself!

I also have shit tons of Zrtec and Benadryl for anyone with cat allergies. Or just Texas allergies. This place is trying to kill me via my sinuses.

Kittehserf
7 years ago

@Freemage –

“If I weren’t an Atheist–if I actually believed that the God of the Bible was real, I’d have to spend my entire life opposing the motherfucker. As it is, the character of “God” is the sickest asshole in fiction, ever.”

I’m not an atheist, as you know, and that’s exactly how I feel about that character of God. It makes Joe Stalin look good.

katz
7 years ago

Also, since it was the first major translation into English, it’s regarded as the ‘purest’.

No, if you don’t count the Wycliffe translations (which were from the Vulgate rather than the original texts), the first major translation would probably be the Tyndale Bible (1526), followed by the Geneva Bible (1560), both extremely important. The KJV was the unofficial official Bible of the Church of England, which of course did a lot to popularize it, but it’s really endured so long for the reason people have already mentioned: It’s a fucking gorgeous translation, to this day still probably the most fluent and lyrical English translation.

And its endurance and place in tradition is, of course, why that demographic thinks of it as the only “real” English translation. Nothing more to it except that they’ve heard the KJV version of the Lord’s Prayer a million times and got the idea that that’s what the Bible sounds like. And, really, these guys are hard to find. Never met one IRL and the only one I can think of online is Jack Chick.

Kittehserf
7 years ago

Hey, the Mister’s and my back garden is huge and we’ve just finished all our spring planting, so yez’re all welcome to come visit us! 🙂

pecunium
7 years ago

Cassandra: I know knitters. I could enquire after their interest in commissions.

clairedammit
7 years ago

Ooh, Kittehserf, France! I’ll bet it’s lovely there right now. Will there be wine?

Falconer
7 years ago

@Marie: Someone brought up creationism and bananas, but no one seems to have posted the source yet:

The Australian guy is Ray Comfort. He has since recanted the banana argument because the video blew up on the Internet and people were laughing at him.

The guy sitting next to Comfort is Kirk Cameron, Former Child Actor. His career peaked with Growing Pains, he found Jesus, made himself a pill to everyone on the show, and has since made a living shilling for creationists. He has not recanted his most famous “argument,” that evolution isn’t true because ducks don’t suddenly grow crocodile heads.

Marie
7 years ago

@Falconer

Wow. I’ve never seen the whole banana argument before. I had to love the ‘bananas are atheists worst nightmare’ thing XD My former rant about bananas still stands 😉

Valerian
7 years ago

As I recall, the KJV obsession is about making a “virtue” out of a necessity: most of the modern translations were still under copyright, the KJV was not.

Kittehserf
7 years ago

clairedammit, there will certainly be wine for anyone who wants it! And cider (Louis’s favourite). And what I can only call apple wine, it’s sort of sparkly but lighter than the cider I’ve had (which is nonalcoholic).

Plus of course there are our nine doggies to get underfoot and ten kitties to be patted/steal food/ignore eveyone.

Falconer
7 years ago

@Kittehs: As long as it’s mostly apples, I don’t think people will mind.

Kittehserf
7 years ago

@Falconer:

I saw what you did there.

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
7 years ago

Speaking as an atheist myself, my worst nightmare was being attacked by a vicious dog while I was peeing on a fence.

On the other hand, I quite like bananas.

katz
7 years ago

Oh no–bananas cannot compare to atheists’ crippling fear of peanut butter. And this is why atheists hate Elvis.

Kittehserf
7 years ago

Should I be glad I have no sound, so I can’t succumb to the temptation to listen to why atheists fear peanut butter? I don’t know if my brain could take such an influx of stupid.

Marie
7 years ago

@katz

…I…I have no words. Creationists* don’t make any sense to me. He does know that evolution took a loooooonnnnngggg time right? And that this analogy is ridiculous. I mean, I’m still trying to find my words here. It’s not so much as offensive (in this situation) as baffling.

*that’s what they’re called, right?

Marie
7 years ago

@kittehs

Atheists fear peanut butter because the fact that life does not grow in our peanut butter without outside interference proves evolution does not exist. Apparently he thinks the theory of evolution was that the earth was sealed like a jar of peanut butter with no outside interference.

Fade
7 years ago

Even if life did evolve in peanut butter jars, it would be too small to see with the naked eye. They have to know this. When they were talking about evolution in the simplistic terms of matter + energy = new life they seem to think it is, they showed a cell or something through a microscope! So they obviously know that life can be too small to see!

Shadow
Shadow
7 years ago

@opheliamonarch

In the wake of all the bullshit racism and islamophobia that came about, it was like a healing balm to see it.

I can’t help but wonder if this is Kirk Cameron’s worst nightmare

Shadow
Shadow
7 years ago

Damn you html!! this

Karalora
Karalora
7 years ago

@hellkell

No worries. It was a long time ago at this point.

Weirdly enough, some Christians would probably say Jesus was “negging” me. Only they would use the word “testing” instead. Far be it from me to understand what the purpose of such a test would be.

Actually, in more recent years I’ve come to suspect that it’s not that Jesus didn’t want me, but that he couldn’t have me, because I’d already been claimed by Someone Else.

Marie
7 years ago

@shadow

Are those gorillas eating bananas god designed for our hands!!!!eleventiy!!!! The horror!

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
7 years ago

The funny thing is that the spontaneous generation of multicellular life is a belief that goes back to Aristotle, and which was accepted by Christian thinkers for hundreds of years.

I remember reading Isaak Walton’s ‘The Complete Angler’, in which he discusses not only the subject of fishing, but also his Christian faith. Oh, and he also claims that eels are formed by the action of the sun on river mud.

Shadow
Shadow
7 years ago

@Marie

Even worse, she’s wearing the smirk that God designed for OUR face while doing it!!!!!!!!!

@Cassandra

I can find anything Habs related out here. And since my best friend’s a womb-to-the-tomb fan, I’ve been innoculated to supporting the enemy once in a while 😛

Kittehserf
7 years ago

Damn, and here I was thinking it was going to be that peanuts don’t spontaneously evolve into peanut butter, or something.

@Shadow, love that photo – especially gorilla mum’s expression. “Am I gonna give the kid this banana and stop the complaining, or eat it myself and put up with even more whining? Decisions, decisions.” 🙂

CassandraSays
CassandraSays
7 years ago

He already has a jersey and a hat. And a Barcelona jersey. Oh noes, feminist married to a sports fan!

As long as he doesn’t make me watch football games with him we’re cool. Not because ew icky macho sports, just because football is too slow for me.

Falconer
7 years ago

@Kitteh’s: Oh, they’ll go on about how Coke cans are made at a factory, therefore God QED if you let ’em.

@Marie: It’s an ongoing, kind of simmering debate over whether creationists are liars or are just stupid. Me, I’m a both/and kind of guy. Fortunately there are plenty of Christians who accept all the evidence for an ancient universe.

Me, I don’t think I could ever become a young-earth creationist. Their God is so small, responsible for a single planet in a single solar system that lasts for a handful of millennia, and then everybody goes and sings hymns to Jesus for all eternity. Plus he’s a liar if they claim that he created a young universe that looks old.