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Pierce Harlan, "false rape" activist, gives up blogging in disgust with fellow MRAs. Then he doesn't.

Some other impressive flip-flops
Some other impressive flip-flops

We’ve seen a lot of epic flip-floppery from Men’s Rightsers in the last few days on the subject of the Occidental College fiasco — that is, for those who haven’t been following it closely, the organized spamming of Occidental’s anonymous online rape reporting form with false reports by Reddit MRAs and 4channers. Notably, the Men’s Rights subreddit mod known as sillymod went from blaming the false reports on trolls one day to hailing them as necessary activism the next.

But a reader has alerted me to an even more epic flip-flop, this one from Pierce Harlan, a blogger obsessed with what he sees as an epidemic of false rape accusations.

Harlan started out as one of the voices of reason — at least by MRA standards — on the Occidental College spamming.  Refraining from the hysteria of his fellow Men’s Rightsers about Occidental College’s anonymous form, he actually pointed out in one post that the form wasn’t being used to punish anyone and that anonymous reporting may be “a necessary evil” in order to get a true picture of the extent of rape.

On Friday, he went further, announcing in a post on his blog The Community of the Wrongly Accused that he was so disgusted with the behavior of his fellow Men’s Rightsers in the Occidental fiasco that he was planning to give up blogging entirely. The phony reports from MRAs, he sadly noted, “did no favors for the wrongly accused,” and this sort of “activism” only served to make MRAs look bad.

[T]he actions of the spammers were misguided at best, puerile and malicious at worst. They’ve given those of us who are trying to raise awareness about these issues in a serious way a black eye. I couldn’t care less how some radical feminist characterizes this incident, my concern is how it plays to middle America — and this can’t be spun in a positive way.

The incident, he wrote, was

the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back. We’ve long sought to engage our readers, both here and via Reddit, to take certain actions that we felt could actually make a difference for the wrongly accused. These efforts invariably were met with either a lukewarm response or the sound of crickets chirping. …

Yet, now, someone suggests men’s righters spam a school’s rape reporting site, and for that they come out in droves. Hundreds of false rape reports. …

If we could have had this kind of support for the various initiatives we’ve tried to launch, I think we actually could have made a difference for the wrongly accused. We didn’t.

And so, he concluded in frustration,

the time has come to hand this blog over to others who will continue to raise awareness about the injustices to the wrongly accused. I will continue to follow the issue and offer my two cents on issues I think are important, but I’m not going to run this blog any longer.

Yep. That’s right. MRAs are such shitty “activists” that their most notable and attention-getting work of “activism” since I’ve started this blog drove the MRA most dedicated to that issue to such disgust and despair that he announced he was basically giving up the fight.

But Harlan’s retirement didn’t last long.

Apparently deciding that his camel’s back could handle a bit more straw after all, Harlan quickly took down the post announcing his retirement — though it’s still up, at least for now, in Google cache, and when that goes away, here’s a handy screenshot. (In case you’re not an ant, click to see it full size.)

Community of the Wrongly Accused- The Last Straw 2013-12-21 15-38-19

On Saturday, Harlan came out with a new post suggesting that maybe he’d been wrong to challenge the hysteria of the false-report-submitting MRAs in the first place. Remember that bit from above in which Harlan said that the actions of the false-report spammers “can’t be spun in a positive way[?]” Well, Harlan decided he was going to give it the old college try:

Progressives are having a bona fide conniption over the Reddit Men’s Righters who spammed Occidental College’s anonymous rape reporting system with fake “rape” claims (from what we can tell, they were not really false rape claims, just snarky comments about the injustice of anonymous reporting). The righteous indignation from feminists is deafening. The spam attack, they tell us, is typical men’s rights hysteria, the result of an undeservedly privileged class being stripped of its power.

The men’s righters were out to prove that it’s too easy to abuse the college’s anonymous reporting system. We disagreed with the men’s righters and said we weren’t much concerned about the anonymous reporting system, but the more we read the progressive take on the incident, the more we wonder if we blew the call — maybe we should be concerned..

There was, of course, no reference to his post from the previous day, no acknowledgment that the “activism” he was now defending was the very same “activism” that had led him only one day earlier to decide to quit blogging altogether.

Down the memory hole it went. (But Google cache remembers.)

I guess when you’re a Men’s Rights activist, you have to take what you can get, and incredibly shitty slacktivism is about as good as it gets.

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kittehserf
7 years ago

::shudder::

Even worse than Dick Emery.

canuck_with_pluck
canuck_with_pluck
7 years ago

@Bad_dog and serrana: Well, our illustrious mayor was supposed to announce the locations of “warm-houses” for people with no heat. Given that city council stripped him of all his other powers, he should have plenty of time for that. I’ve been texting my friends to make sure they all have warm places to go. I don’t know what is happening in other cities. I know my family all still have power. We were supposed to be having our big family christmas today–that did NOT happen. Hopefully this doesn’t get to be like Montreal–that was horrible. Ah…Canada. Now I feel bad that I’ve been eagerly awaiting winter…

Thanks for the good wishes! I worry about the city’s homeless–it’s not actually THAT cold yet, but for them…

dallasapple
dallasapple
7 years ago

I’ll give it a try, never drunk green tea! 🙂

I think you will like it . I make it good. My supreme for you however would be white tea. But we will save that for after the shots of tequila !(with salt ,lime and beer chasers!)

dallasapple
dallasapple
7 years ago

Canuck ,

(((HUGS)))

We went through that about 2 weeks ago .30 hours no power and teen tempts outside. I was complaining then I thought about the homeless. We had a place to go .(if got below 50 in our house) ..i felt grateful .even though I was inconvenienced its nothing in the grand scheme of suffering .

dallasapple
dallasapple
7 years ago

I like sex.

Serrena ,

You too funny!

Bina
Bina
7 years ago

This has nothing to do with the post, but I hope anyone on here who lives in Southern Ontario is ok, and has power and wasn’t hurt in the storm! I lost power yesterday, but was ok today.

South-Central Ontario here…and our outage was 18 hours long. I just noticed the power going off around 2 a.m., and it wasn’t restored until around 7:30ish this evening.

And on that note, I like hydro linemen, bucket trucks with orange flashers, pizza, hot showers, and brandy with a shot of Angostura afterwards.

Bina
Bina
7 years ago

The men’s righters were out to prove that it’s too easy to abuse the college’s anonymous reporting system.

And ironically, they abused it and failed…their bullshit was in fact easily spotted, and will no doubt be discarded accordingly. At most, all they’ve done was inconvenience the study’s compilers for a short time. The form remains, and once their own little hissyfit dies down, the tracking of campus sexual assaults will continue as it has for the past four years…quite unremarkably.

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Power outages…*shudder* I start panicking after an hour — the fish. An hour all but the most sensitive fish will be fine, might want to give the surface a quick blow so oxygen exchange occurs, but no major worries. 1~4 you’re going to need to hand (mouth) aerate the tank, but blowing through airline tubing is annoying, not a big deal…after, eh, 8? hours pretty much all fish are getting cranky, more importantly, your bio filter is dying. More than 12 hours and keeping your fish alive just became a full time job. I do NOT ever want to deal with this.

Transporting them has the perk that car movement keeps the surface moving, so oxygen exchange still happens…still, the 8+ hours between PA and here I always heeded the advice to starve them for 3 days so they have nothing in them to shit in their transport container (a bit of starvation is far less dangerous than ammonia)

Point here? 30 hours no power would have me making cold brew coffee because no way am I sleeping. I really can’t imagine how stressed I’d be. Y’all have my sympathy, I can’t imagine it’s much easier to deal with without fish.

Also, thank you, I keep failing to look into a small DIY solar generator so I have some backup power for my fishies.

Bina
Bina
7 years ago

Solar power is helpful, no doubt about it! The only electric light that worked here all day was a humble Moonray out on the deck. Even on the shortest day of the year, with an overcast sky raining ice on us, and no sun to be seen, that thing worked. Anyone who thinks Canada doesn’t get enough sun to make solar power feasible can eat my Moonray!

FromAfar
FromAfar
7 years ago

Does it say something about me that I’m just bored with them (and this ‘incident’) now? It’s almost like I had some fear in the back of my mind that some critical mass of average people was at risk of believing a single MRA thing, but now, it’s just gone. Poof. It is just now so painfully obvious to me how fringe and irrelevant their little bowel movement really is.

And if I may, I like computers, the internet, reading and commenting on blogs, going outside EVER, and interacting with other human beings (especially women) at all, EVER.

I hate backing up my opinions with research, citing anything, and thinking about what I say before I say it. 🙂

fromafar2013
fromafar2013
7 years ago

@ canuck

Loosing power is probably one of the worst things that can happen in bad winter weather. I hope it isn’t out for long and people are able to get help. People underestimate how quickly you can freeze to death. Depressing really, especially considering how many people don’t have the means to keep provisions and back up heaters in case of emergency.

When I was really young our power was out for almost a week. The only reason my family and a few of our neighbors survived the storm (that prevented us from leaving, just to make matters worse) was because we had a wood burning fire place. I remember sleeping huddled around it in sleeping bags. My mom made my sister and I think we were all having fun and ‘camping out’ in the living room. It’s silly, but it’s one of the reasons I insisted on the house I bought having a wood burning fire place that I never use :/

FromAfar
FromAfar
7 years ago

@ canuck

Loosing power is probably one of the worst things that can happen in bad winter weather. I hope it isn’t out for long and people are able to get help. People underestimate how quickly you can freeze to death. Depressing really, especially considering how many people don’t have the means to keep provisions and back up heaters in case of emergency.

When I was really young our power was out for almost a week. The only reason my family and a few of our neighbors survived the storm (that prevented us from leaving, just to make matters worse) was because we had a wood burning fire place. I remember sleeping huddled around it in sleeping bags. My mom made my sister and I think we were all having fun and ‘camping out’ in the living room. It’s silly, but it’s one of the reasons I insisted on the house I bought having a wood burning fire place that I never use :/

PS: Sorry if it double posts, I had been logged out when I posted last and it went into moderation.

Shadow
Shadow
7 years ago

Finally got power back here. Large swaths of Toronto/GTA are still without power though. I spent two hours last night de-icing the driveway, only to wake up to a driveway that’s basically just a sheet of ice. Took another three hours to de-ice that only to find out that I’m down to my last little bit of salt and all the stores are sold out. I’m just praying that we don’t get any more ice rain cos I’m screwed if we do (they aren’t predicting much more than ice drizzle though, so I’m clinging tightly to that hope :P). I can’t even bear to think about the homeless out there. It’s fucking unconscionable that we allow people to be homeless in cities that are susceptible to this kind of weather (not that it’s much better that we allow people to be homeless anywhere else). Hope everyone keeps safe and warm tonight, and here’s hoping the winds tomorrow aren’t going to be as bad as they’re fearing.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
7 years ago

Feminists like personal hygiene, but they hate lemon juice on paper cuts. (This game reminds me of Fannee Doolee, if there’s anyone else on here who remembers “Zoom”)

We’re getting the ice storm now, and it sucks. Our street hasn’t lost power yet, but driving/going outside is treacherous and I had to delay Christmas travel plans by a couple of days. Hope Santa’s got chains on the sleigh runners this year.

Shadow
Shadow
7 years ago

@dallasapple

The system that hit us was supposed to have come out of TX, so it may well be the same one that hit y’all earlier.

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Bina — turns out it’s cheaper to just buy battery powered bubblers, but yeah, I’m guessing north of the artic circle in the winter is the only place that doesn’t get enough sun to power solar panels. Because it isn’t the temp or anything, it’s the sun. You have sunlight, you can have solar power. Obviously more sun means more power, but for a low power device like a (LED?) light, a little goes a long way.

On that note, at least online, ikea has a bunch of solar powered lights.

And seriously guys, thank you for reminding me to get that potential problem solved before it becomes a fish crisis. I freaked during Nemo, had everyone else here on orders to wake me if we lost power. We, unlike everyone around here, never lost power. My mother joked it was because I’d have walked through the blizzard to raise hell until it was back on (our phone never went out either and you can damned well bet I’d have become That Person if we lost power but not phones)

Ah aquarists, we’re an odd bunch. I may well go out in a blizzard for my fish.

serrana
serrana
7 years ago

Our power was out for 16 days after Ike and I was stressing about the fish. It wasn’t cold, though, it was hot. So, so hot. We borrowed a generator that we’d run in the evening so we could charge things up and get cable, and of course, run the filters. We didn’t lose a single fish, thank goodness.

serrana
serrana
7 years ago

*cable=internet

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

16 days running the filters for a few hours and no dead fish? What magic filters do you have?

Shadow — it won’t melt the ice, but sand and kitty liter both provide traction. You can also try a fish store, it’s more expensive (probably, I’ve never bought de-icing salt) but they’ll have aquarium salt is large quantities.

kittehserf
7 years ago

Hey, Shadow, how did the trip Down Under go?

HeatherN
7 years ago

MRAs: We hate false rape accusations we’re going to spam a university with HUNDREDS of false rape accusations.

Hey, shouldn’t they all be arrested for perjury right now, like they are always hollering about whenever a woman accuses someone of rape?

cloudiah
7 years ago

Stay safe, Torontonians (or whatever you call yourselves) and everyone else.

dallasapple
dallasapple
7 years ago

<blockquote
@dallasapple

The system that hit us was supposed to have come out of TX, so it may well be the same one that hit y’all earlier.

I think you could be right.

dallasapple
dallasapple
7 years ago

OOPS!!! I have had blockquote monster sex TWO times now!

dallasapple
dallasapple
7 years ago

@dallasapple

The system that hit us was supposed to have come out of TX, so it may well be the same one that hit y’all earlier

Could most likely be.

opium4themasses
opium4themasses
7 years ago

On the topic, oof. The only thing I can say is feminists love working in information technology and posting on Reddit!

@serrana
Storm stories!

1. I remember Ike. We luckily dodged a bullet there. However, that night my cat decided to go out and catch a rat, bring it inside, and drop it at my feet. If only she had killed it first. Instead of spending the night worrying about a hurricane, I got to chase a rat around the bathroom it ran into. Damn thing squeezed between the bathroom cabinet and the wall. Finally caught it and released it into the wild. (Didn’t seem fair to kill a rat which came into the house against its will.)

2. Living in Omaha we had 3 days of rain followed by a cold snap and early ice storm. The leaves were still green on the trees. A lot of the trees exploded and there were piles of dead trees for years afterward. This was a big deal in Nebraska. Arbor day is a state holiday.

3. Living in Northwest Iowa we had a blizzard and terrible wind which caused snow drifts the size of houses and ice almost an inch thick on the road outside my house. I remember as a kid being amazed at seeing bits of branches suspended in the ice.

I am sure other people have better stories. Toronto gets lake effect snow, doesn’t it?

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Opium4themasses — when I was a kid we had an F4 tornado, well, close enough my mother’s rose bush got swept up (it’s okay, somebody else’s landed in the yard…which is so weird in its own right). Lost power for 3 days, just before my 4th birthday. My father lost all his fish. Amazingly, no one was killed, though the damage was impressive. This was, fuck, 25 years ago come July. Until fairly recently you could still find buildings with damage and spots where, if you knew there’ debentures (dafuq autocorrect?) there’s been a tornado, it was obviously wtf happened to that tree, etc.

Now, for perspective here…this was in Connecticut. We just don’t get tornados like that, or at all really. We get fucking blizzards, not F4s.

Potentially the best part? My father was at work, heard about the tornado and called to ask my mother to go outside and get his cooler. She refused. She did, however, chase my kiddie pool in a circle before realizing wtf was going on and shutling us to the basement. Us being nearly 4 year old me, my 10 month old brother, and my fucking ex-step-grandmother. She’s insufferable at the best of times, stuck in a basement hoping the house above you stays there? And I, of course, knew just enough of what was going on to acquire a serious fear of tornados.

Folks in tornado alley — idfk how you do, those things scare the shit out of me.

takshak
takshak
7 years ago

@ argenti: one of the nice things about living in southern Ontario is we never show up on any Discovery channel disaster specials.

Parts of Toronto are still out. I don’t know why, given we’re less well funded, but we are rarely out more than an hour or so no matter how bad the weather is. Lost power yesterday for 25 min & 10 min. I have nothing but respect for the lineworkers & forestry folks for going out in this crap. I have a gas stove & lots of scented motherfucking candles to keep the warm if it does go out.

No matter what happens, the MRA shitweasels will not change, they’ll just double down. David will never lack for material & popcorn shares will never lose value. I’ve seen crazy like this before, no amount of reality will impinge on them.

alternatesteve90
7 years ago

@takshak: I live just outside D/FW and so far, we haven’t either, although I’d argue a large part of it might just be sheer luck more than anything else…..

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

*sigh* so close to 24 hours. Cloudiah, I need another unicorn.

Takshak — Clicky to see why calling MRAs crazy doesn’t fly around here.

kittehserf
7 years ago

opium4themasses – wasn’t your kitty kind, distracting you from worrying about Ike! Cats are so thoughtful like that.

Yutolia
Yutolia
7 years ago

<blockquote
@dallasapple

The system that hit us was supposed to have come out of TX, so it may well be the same one that hit y’all earlier.

I think you could be right.

Yes, but thanks to you I’ve finally figured out how to quote on here! *said with joy and embarrassment of not being able to figure this out myself 😉

hellkell
hellkell
7 years ago

I’ve seen crazy like this before, no amount of reality will impinge on them.

That sound you all just heard was my head.

STOP THE “CRAZY” TALK ALREADY. THE BABY JESUS IS CRYING, HAPPY NOW?

I mean shit, is it so hard to do?

alternatesteve90
7 years ago

@Takshak: Also, I’ll have to second Argenti…..and also, he put it better than I could.

@Yutolia: Still having trouble with that myself…..glad to see that you’ve figured it out, though. 🙂

Ally S
7 years ago

@alternativesteve90

I’m not sure if Argenti told you yet, but Argenti’s pronouns are ze/zir/zirs, not he/him/his.

sparky
sparky
7 years ago

Just throwing this out here:

Maybe putting a link to the article Argenti linked to in the Welcome Package would help? And a statement about ableism?

I know there’s been a recent string of “crazy” comments, and there was a discussion about WTF was going on and calling people out about it and how to do that. Maybe having the statement and link in the Welcom Package and/or a “please read this before you comment” would help cut down on it.

I don’t know, though.

Ally S
7 years ago

sparky, that’s a fantastic idea! I’ll go ask cloudiah what she thinks.

Bina
Bina
7 years ago

We had another outage here this morning, but it only lasted about 15-20 min. Hoping that’s the last. Toronto is really having the worst of it this year, though, and Robbo won’t call an emergency, because that means the deputy mayor gets all the glory, and His Frodness has to stand there looking all red-faced and useless. Fuck their luck…

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Ally — thanks, I don’t think I had done my usual introduction.

alternatesteve90 — thanks, but I didn’t write that post, just saving that link since seriously, I’m going to have a herd of unicorns at this rate. (I’m collecting virtual unicorns for every 24 hours we fail to go without an ableist comment, after saying I thought a unicorn more likely than 24 hours without such comment on Saturday, I now have two unicorns)

Regarding adding it to the Welcome Package, I love the idea.

cloudiah
7 years ago

I like the idea of adding something to the Welcome Package, and will do it when I get a chance. Ally, will you email me the link just so I don’t forget what thread it was on?

It’s been Ableist Comment of the Day around here lately. What’s up with that?

Shaun DarthBatman Day
7 years ago

“MRAs: We hate false rape accusations we’re going to spam a university with HUNDREDS of false rape accusations.

Hey, shouldn’t they all be arrested for perjury right now, like they are always hollering about whenever a woman accuses someone of rape?”

Not at all because of WPS (White Penis Syndrome). WPS means that you will not be held criminally liable for anything you ever do. Examples include Dominic Strauss Kahn, George Zimmerman, and Julian Assange.

Shaun DarthBatman Day
7 years ago

And I’d like to add my echo for the end of all the “crazy” flinging.

Ally S
7 years ago

Ally, will you email me the link just so I don’t forget what thread it was on?

I sent you an email like 45 mins ago. =P It has the link.

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Cloudiah — I’ve started collecting them for the Borg, I may steal “Ableist Comment of the Day” off you if people keep doubling down (I won’t mock innocent mistakes, though at this point I’m not feeling too generous since we’ve said this Every Damned Day for like a week now, maybe longer)

cloudiah
7 years ago

Yeah, I’m not even reading all the comments and I’ve noticed a lot. 0_o

I’ll draft something for the Welcome Package when I get home tonight; I might send it to you and Ally to see if the wording is good. Or if you have suggestions for where it might go, and how to introduce the link, email me.

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

How’s your mother doing btw? Hope she’s doing well.

As for the link…I’m feeling snarky, maybe introduce it with “you know your other -isms, but how about ableism?”

Or put it at the end of the Welcome Package itself as “also introduced — a quick guide on why not to call MRAs crazy”

Argenti Aertheri
7 years ago

Introduced? Included. Spellcheck says I need sleep. I won’t get loopy for another 4~6 hours, but then I get my second wind and pull at least six more and going to bed at 4am on 34+ hours awake means getting up at dusk and FAIL.

Mmm, insomnia.

Oh and LBT’s Borg critters are up, took care of that earlier. Also, folks who don’t read their email, pop over to the post on monthly themes and weigh in for January’s. The Hivemind needs minions!

kittehserf
7 years ago

I read the email, but I’m afraid I’ve no idea for themes, Argenti, even without the “preferably do some writing for said theme” rider. The only writing I’m even thinking about these days is what goes in these comments.

Brooked
Brooked
7 years ago

As someone who has personally battled against misconceptions about mental illness while using clever phrases like “bat shit crazy” in conversation without a second thought, this board’s stance on ableism led to one of my Top Uncomfortable Realizations About Myself of 2013.

IIRC, I avoided saying something monumentally stupid when I first posted here by lurking and a getting a feel for the place before commenting. That’s an overall policy I highly recommend, because it prevented me from making my own “The MRAs are crazy nuts!” post.

The regulars here have always been patient with new posters who kick things off with “MRAs are crazy nuts!” and have also been good about turning it into a teaching moment. Yet it seems like it’s turned into a endless chore, so I understand the frustration and the need for a stock statement.

A statement would also be beneficial because while the regulars do a good job of pointing out
how ableism can reinforce pervasive social bias and negative stereotypes associated with mental illness, a few posters have cast the problem as merely bad manners run amok. I flinch every time someone corrects ableist language by saying many people on the board are dealing with mental illness, so you need to be more “sensitive” in order to avoid hurting their feeling. This board isn’t populated by fragile flowers or the language police, just people with a low tolerance for shitty behavior.

The real problem with ableism is that equating bad ideas, failed logic, idiotic behavior and social bias with mental illness supports the idea that douche bags who commit fucked up, socially unacceptable and morally wrong acts and the mentally ill should both be judged, ridiculed and stigmatized in the same manner.

TL/DR
Statement about ableist language, especially regarding mental illness = good idea

lensman
lensman
7 years ago

OK, Dave, I got the “Suspicious Site” warning again, and this time I got a screenshot:

http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i236/gyalakias/manthreat_zps1bcf312b.jpg

Seriously, have somebody look into this.