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antifeminism antifeminist women gross incompetence lying liars MRA oppressed men

The E-Day Concert that Wasn’t: The Canadian Association for Equality turns a PR disaster into a PR catastrophe

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MRAs seem to think that they can spin their way out of pretty much anything. And on the internet, particularly in their own little echo chamber, they can kind of get away with it. It’s when they venture out into the real world that they run into some trouble.

Take, for example, the mad spinning that accompanied the implosion of the Canadian Association for Equality’s “E Day” concert scheduled for last weekend. CAFE, you may recall, is a Canadian Men’s Rights group that’s probably most famous for organizing a series of talks by Men’s Rights-friendly folks on Canadian campuses that, well, caused a tiny bit of a stir.

Oh, sorry. The group says that even though its “focus is currently on men and boys … [W]e do not consider ourselves a Men’s Rights Group.”

Anyway, so this non-Men’s Rights group decided to hold a concert on Toronto Island celebrating “Equality Day,” a holiday they made up just for the occasion. They found a venue, got some sponsors and even managed to convince a bunch of bands to sign on.

Everything was ready to go until a few days before the concert was scheduled to happen, when some of the people who had been roped into the event discovered just what they had gotten themselves involved with.

A headline from the Huffington Post sums up what happened next with admirable succinctness:

Men's Rights Concert In Toronto Cancelled Upon Discovery It Was A Men's Rights Concert

The exodus from E-Day kicked off after a post appeared on the lefty Canadian news site Rabble.ca pointing out what CAFE was really about. Musicians and sponsors quickly distanced themselves from the event, and CAFE lost its venue as well.

CAFE’s response to all this? A press release stating:

CAFE received overwhelming support from musicians, sponsors and the general public for Equality Day. After several months of productive collaboration, the original venue Artscape Gibralter-Point cancelled the use of their location after receiving a small number of misinformed complaints.

That’s a rather … odd way to describe what happened. According to a good number of those who had originally signed on for the concert, it was CAFE that was actively spreading misinformation about their own event and hiding its Men’s Rights agenda.

The musical group Giraffe posted a statement on Facebook saying:

We feel that we were not fully informed about what it was that is being supported here, and also that calling it a festival that celebrates “equality” as opposed to “men’s equality” was intentionally misleading to us in it’s effort to entice us to play this show.

Hogtown Brewers, one of the sponsors, offered a similar explanation for why they pulled out. “We’re kinda surprised that an event that built itself on being for equality turned out to be anything but that,” the president of the company told the The Star. “The minute that it came to our attention that it wasn’t a concert in line with our values, we moved to remove our support. We regret any involvement.”

Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for Artscape, the venue that was to have originally held the event, told The Globe and Mail that

[t]he premise of the event as it was given to us was a fair and equitable event that was family-friendly and a lovely music festival. It has since turned political and we anticipated that there could be health and safety concerns as well.

Perhaps the most amazing revelation: Jagermeister, which had been listed as a sponsor on CAFE’s publicity materials, said it had never agreed to be part of the event in the first place:

CAFE’s creative, er, spinning continued in an interview the group’s outreach director Denise Fong gave to NowToronto. I’m not even going to summarize this one. Go read it.

A scaled down E-Day celebration of sorts did go ahead last weekend. It consisted of some CAFE volunteers standing on a corner handing out pamphlets and talking to passersby about their support of “boys, men and families.” (That’s a strangely limited notion of equality, huh?)

In their press release last week, CAFE announced that

Equality Day musical activities will be postponed to next Sunday, June 8. Details to be announced.

So far no details have been announced. But, hey, they’ve still got a couple of days to go.

On a totally unrelated note, I will be holding “E-Kwalitee Day” in my apartment sometime this afternoon. I am proud to announce that I have managed to book some outstanding musical acts for this extravaganza. They don’t know it yet, but I have written their names down in my appointment book.

Here’s the headliner:

I support kittens, cats and families. Ask me why!

 

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fauxmy
fauxmy
6 years ago

@ Just Give Up

Nobody should have to live what I’ve been through.

you are right, nobody should, however, many do and you are not alone. i worked at my local battered womens shelter for many years, providing crisis counseling, referrals to social and psychological services, intake and house supervision for many years.

i urge you to see if there is anything similar where you live. if you are in the US and let me know which state/county, i can find the closest service where you live. you are also entitled to victim’s assistance through the local prosecutor’s office if your abuser is being prosecuted.

i urge you to get some help. what you are going through is unfortunately a very normal part of the process, but wishing death upon yourself and to the point of recommending it to others is a very bad place to be mentally. help is available, i promise. if you are in the US, i am more than happy to help you find it. if you are outside the US, let us know so we can see what we can do about finding other resources.

fruitloopsie
fruitloopsie
6 years ago

Just give up

There is always a way PLEASE reach out to us and tell others that we are here for them too.

piratejennie
6 years ago

Great point fruitloopsie.

Melissia
6 years ago

I find it really telling that one of the first conversations in teh comments section of the HuffPost article was a guy saying “women don’t have the right to feel safe”.

pecunium
6 years ago

and Avicenna showed up in the comments. Days of yore.

fauxmy
fauxmy
6 years ago

@melissia and enhanced vibes ~

here’s a great quote from one of the huffpost related articles, a man, relating how he was ‘raped’ 16 years ago and is still in ‘hell’.

crampdstyl

As a male who has found himself after a night of drinking waking up in the bed of a woman who I was adamantly opposed to even kissing, never mind sleeping with, and having absolutely no recollection of how I got there (or even where “there” was) – I can tell you that women do rape men. And following that rape came the conception, the birth of twins, and my joy at paying maintenance payments for 16+ years. My life became a living hell, and I have no memory of the act

of course, this is theoretically possible, but i would have to question how drunk they both were, how he managed to have an erection while ‘blacked out’ and how did he get to her house? it’s hard to imagine that she physically picked him up, threw him in her car, drove back to her place, carried him onto the bed and then had her way with him.

so he was apparently sober enough to participate in getting into this woman’s bed and to ejaculate in the right direction to cause pregnancy but was apparently speechless as he could not say ‘no’. it’s a tough sell, ain’t it?

katz
6 years ago

Fauxmy, I’d rather we didn’t go around trying to poke holes in rape survivors’ stories.

Bostonian
Bostonian
6 years ago

A man can ejaculate without wanting too, especially after being impaired with alcohol or other drugs, so no, that is not a tough sell.

damselindetech
6 years ago

Agreed with katz. Men can absolutely be sexually assaulted when drunk, and nit-picking recollections of their accounts is a big issue that prevents many of them from accessing justice and support.

fauxmy
fauxmy
6 years ago

i hear ya. sorry if i pushed any buttons. will simply say that the physical act of transporting his drunken self from drinking establishment to bed would be a challenge under most circumstances. i am an extremely tall, strong woman, my husband is the same size. although i can carry him for very brief periods of time, anything further is impossible without assistance. this is true for both of us.

i do however understand your point, completely.

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

@fauxmy

Wow, that whole comment is really fucking gross. Among other things, you seem to be confusing “blackout drunk” with “passed out”. I’ve never blacked out, but I’ve heard it described (AA meetings are educational in some ways), and all it is is a period of time you don’t remember. People can be conscious and mobile in a black out, they just won’t remember any of it. So all your speculation about how she’d have had to carry him, etc aren’t really relevant.

And I’m really not down with questioning the stories of rape survivors, especially since “how did you get an erection if you didn’t want it?” is a pretty common tactic for questioning male survivors.

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

Also, this:

but was apparently speechless as he could not say ‘no’

Failure to say ‘no’ is not consent. And we don’t even know whether he said it or not. This is just exactly what is said about women who are raped while drunk, or raped in any way really – “she didn’t say no” or “she stopped saying no” or whatever bullshit. The onus is not on the victim to object, ffs.

pecunium
6 years ago

fauxmy: Don’t. Just don’t. As to the difficulty of his getting there… I have a friend who drank too much in college. He would end up blackout drunk, and wake in places he had walked to… miles (like a dozen) from the last place he remembered.

I once drank enough that I had a few minutes which were sort of blacked out (I was quite confused until I recalled the events, as to how my shirt had gotten so dirty on the front).

So no, the not recalling is far from dispositive. And (as a man) erections/response are not things we decide to do.

So please, just don’t.

fauxmy
fauxmy
6 years ago

as i stated above. i hear you. i apologize. the mans many other comments were quite difficult for me, i wish i had not seen them or reacted here. i sincerely apologize for my comment above.

Melissia
6 years ago

Agreed, just don’t. Everyone has a right to feel safe– this includes rape victims, regardless of gender.

mildlymagnificent
6 years ago

Thank you, fauxmy. Everyone appreciates that.

And here we have a prime example of the right way to do things.

Get it wrong. Make a mistake. Choose the wrong words. Whatever we do tripping over our own shoelaces – a short, sincere, proper apology gets it all over and done with in less than 3 lines.

If only the dopey visitors who get here by clown car taxi could learn such a simple lesson from the Decent Person 101 handbook.

pecunium
6 years ago

fauxmy: No worries. I understand. On the face of it I don’t really think he’s arguing in the best of faith, but that’s a different issue (if there are kids, then they need to be supported).

Jo
Jo
6 years ago

The link in David’s post that says ‘go read it’? Read it.

I know that sometimes links here take you to ugly places. This is not one of those. Read it.

I know some of you read this blog to quickly find out what’s happening in the MRM and don’t have time to read all the links. Read that one.

scott1139
scott1139
6 years ago

I strongly disagree with TERFs but that doesn’t make them not feminists.

How can you be a feminist if you hate a certain group of women and actively contribute to their oppression? Am I just missing something?

Viscaria
Viscaria
6 years ago

TERFs identify as feminists. Their (awful) ideas are drawn from a long history of radical feminist thought. Pretending they are not feminists is a way to disassociate with them, rather than trying to tackle the problem they represent in the feminism movement.

There transphobic/transmisogynistic feminists, racist feminists, ableist feminists, the list goes on. They all believe they are supporting women but they define “women” as cis, white, neurotypical, often straight women. Some of these feminists are very influential. That’s a huge problem! We need to face bigotry within the feminist movement to try and eliminate it. We can’t just stick our fingers in our ears and sing “NA NA NA NA.” 🙂

scott1139
scott1139
6 years ago

There transphobic/transmisogynistic feminists, racist feminists, ableist feminists, the list goes on. They all believe they are supporting women but they define “women” as cis, white, neurotypical, often straight women.

Oh, okay; I think I understand now. Thanks for taking the time to explain it to me, Viscaria; I appreciate it.

If a feminist excludes certain groups of women from zir definition of ‘women’, is it okay to say ze is bad at doing feminism?

Lea
Lea
6 years ago

Just Give Up,

I”m sorry you have been treated this way and it has been so hard to go on. Don’t give up. You are not better off dead. Women do get away from their abusers and go on to live their lives. I don’t know where you are, but if you call a rape crisis line in the US they may be able to get you some counseling. Also, we’re here and you can talk to us.

Lea
Lea
6 years ago

scott1139,
Sure you can. They’re the worst.

scott1139
scott1139
6 years ago

scott1139,
Sure you can. They’re the worst.

Okay, will do.

IIRC, someone here posted a link to a PDF version of Lundy Bancroft’s book. We could refer Just Give Up to it; it might help zir.

Viscaria
Viscaria
6 years ago

Just Give Up, I am so sorry for what your abuser has put you through, and I’m sorry that the law has not protected you.

Luzbelitx
6 years ago

I don’t have the link to the PDF, but here is a summary of the abusers’ profiles in the book:

https://www.facebook.com/notes/becka-nan-amos/abuser-profiles-from-why-does-he-do-that-by-lundy-bancroft/480862655302912

Lost of hugs for Just Give Up, if you want them!!

freemage
freemage
6 years ago

Scott1139: The best descriptor of TERFs, in my opinion, is simply “Wrong”. They’ve started with certain key ideas, some of which are fatally flawed (but which were, to be honest, helpful in terms of morale-building during the early days of second-wave feminism–it’s one reason those ideas took hold). Faulty premise leads to false conclusion; hence, the TERFs end up targeting an already oppressed group with yet more bigoted bullshit.

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

On the face of it I don’t really think he’s arguing in the best of faith, but that’s a different issue

Yeah, the “child support = hell” thing pinged my bullshit radar, but like you said, different issue.

If a feminist excludes certain groups of women from zir definition of ‘women’, is it okay to say ze is bad at doing feminism?

I hope so, because I do it all the time.

pecunium
6 years ago

One of the things about bad feminists, as well as those whom one merely disagrees with, is they are feminists. We have to accept them.

If you want an example of what happens when one refuses to accept that some members of a philosophical tradition are both bad; and wrong, and still members of the group, look at what the MRM does when a Sodini, or a Rodger shows up.

They are quick as all fuck to No True Scotsman his ass; so they can ignore the things in their movement which he agreed with, and which supported him. It’s hard to to say Rodger can’t be an MRM, because what he did was so terrible that no “true” MRA would do it when the MRA has been lauding Lepine and and Ball and Breivik and Berge.

If we own our extremists we can show how we differ, and how we are working to put better feminism out in the world.

The MRM can’t. They deny the effects of their actions, so they can continue them; even if they cause real harm.

That’s why the “but Jezebel says” nonsense is nonsense. 1: I am not “Jezebel”. 2: I have never advocated for violence. 3: That Jezebel has advocated for violence doesn’t have anything to with Elam, et. al, saying violence is acceptable, even laudable. 4: Jezebel isn’t the “go to” source for feminism; in the way AVfM is for the MRM. 5. Jezebel doesn’t pretend to be such.

wtfdude
wtfdude
6 years ago

Isn’t the Jezebel article sarcastic? Joking about violence is BAD, but I don’t think they were serious.

pecunium
6 years ago

wtfdude: No, I don’t think they were either. But the MRM can’t see that. I suspect it’s because they want to be violent toward women. They certainly think that were they treated as badly as women are they would rise up.

They praise those who do, “strike back”. So they can’t conceive of an oppressed group which isn’t violent. One which wants to reduce (ideally remove) the structural aspects of society which encourage violence.

They don’t want that, so they refuse to admit anyone could.

Also, if they refuse to accept that the frame of pieces like that one is sarcasm/satire/black (and bitter) humor, then the overt calls to violence in their rhetoric stands out in sharper contrast.

RubyRubyRuby
RubyRubyRuby
6 years ago

I don’t get the “TERF” controversy or how they are bad feminists. Some trans-people actually call for violence against feminists for being a “TERF”, that’s a result of male privilege. TERF is a new term to me and I’m still learning, but it sounds like radical feminists don’t believe in gender to begin with. If feminism achieved its goal of abolishing gender, then no one would have any need to change their biological sex or spend thousands of dollars on hormone therapy or cosmetic procedures and genital surgery.

Ally S
6 years ago

@RubyRubyRuby

I don’t have male privilege. I’ve never had male privilege. And I never will have male privilege. Yet TERFs continue to misgender us trans women and accuse us of perpetrating male violence. They have also joined hands with conservatives and made transition healthcare difficult for us to afford or even access.

You know, one of the fucking reasons we have such difficulty in transitioning is because of assholes like Janice Raymond, who was a TERF. And many TERFs not only agree with her, but also find her inspirational.

If you think that TERFs are good feminists, you are part of the problem. You support power structures that contribute to all of the erasure, violence, and dehumanization we face for being trans women. In short, you’re a fucking asshole. So just fuck off.

sparky
sparky
6 years ago

RubyRubyRuby:

I don’t get the “TERF” controversy or how they are bad feminists.

Of course you don’t. ::roll::

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

Ruby,Ruby,Ruby

Trans women both identify as women and experience misogyny. To exclude any group of women from the movement is shitty and I think, dangerous because trans women are especially likely to be the victims of bullying and hate crimes.

Also, abolishing gender is not a mainstream position among feminists so I’m not sure where you get that idea. Abolishing oppression based on gender is more like it.

katz
6 years ago

If feminism achieved its goal of abolishing gender, then no one would have any need to change their biological sex or spend thousands of dollars on hormone therapy or cosmetic procedures and genital surgery.

Unless they, you know, wanted to.

Turns out that regulating what other people are allowed to do with their own bodies is not being a good feminist.

Ally S
6 years ago

I have radical feminist views, and I even believe in gender abolition. But gender abolition has nothing to do with erasing people’s identities and everything to do with dismantling binary oppositions central to patriarchy, rendering the concepts of gender and sex meaningless beyond a few social contexts (like matters of personal identification and biological research, respectively). I am so fucking sick of radical feminists like you who think that contributing to our abuse and oppression is a valid way of overthrowing patriarchy. You are all misogynistic, racist, and colonialist shitheads who deserved to be called out at every opportunity. I am ashamed of even saying I have radical feminist views because of people like you.

Ally S
6 years ago

Oh, and are you wondering why I called TERFs colonialist and racist? Because they ridicule indigenous two-spirit trans women and call them “special snowflakes”. I’m not joking – I’ve seen this first hand.

Ally S
6 years ago

And just so you know, I’m not okay with trans people being abusive towards TERFs. But since you want to derail the conversation, I’ll do it as well.

Who emotionally abuses trans women and taunts them for having dysphoria and being attacked in public? TERFs.

Who outs trans teenagers at their own fucking high schools for the sake of revenge? TERFs.

Who advocates literally murdering trans women? TERFs.

Who advocates denying transition healthcare to trans women, thereby making their ability to alleviate their dysphoria severely limited and therefore cause health issues for trans women? TERFs.

Who accuses trans lesbians of being rape apologists just for pointing out that cis lesbians’ aversion to trans women may in fact be rooted in lesbophobic transmisogyny (not that they are even obligated to be in relationships with trans women in the first place)? TERFs.

Who shames trans women for being “masculine” whenever they speak up against transmisogynistic assholes and demand respect and equal treatment? TERFs, and also people like you, as you have just shown.

I’m sorry, I’m not usually this upset. But I am so tired of TERFs and their sympathizers. They are even worse than transmisogynistics MRAs, IMO.

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

I was confused by that too. Is zie saying that trans women who make threats are violent men? Because, no.

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

Or maybe Ruby was trying to say that passing privilege is equivalent to actual privilege?

Either way, that comment was full of fail.

LBT (with an open writeathon!)

RE: gillyrosebee

It’s feminists who are keeping those boys down and not encouraging them to get the educations that can lead to good, well paying careers.

Ennnnh, in the USA at least, the economy is messed-up enough that pretty much all the folks I know, colleged or not, are working either temp jobs, part-time jobs, or low-level jobs like retail, customer service, and cleaning. Knowing the number of folks with crippling debt in my life, I actually don’t blame folks at ALL for leaving college; I know I quit grad school for economic reasons, and it was one of the smarter decisions I made.

RE: Just Give Up

I tell women now just don’t bother telling it asking for help, just go home and honestly give up and wait until your time to go.

…you tell victims of violence to just die?

Wow. I mean, do whatever you like with your own life, lady, but that’s a terrible thing to do to other people. Get help.

RE: RubyRubyRuby

If feminism achieved its goal of abolishing gender, then no one would have any need to change their biological sex or spend thousands of dollars on hormone therapy or cosmetic procedures and genital surgery.

Go be trans for a decade and THEN come back and tell us that shit. Go fuck a cactus. Yes, I totally quit school and moved across the country for a “cosmetic” procedure. Just for shits and giggles! I totally became homeless and lost my job because teehee, I was too stupid to know gender doesn’t actually exist!

You don’t know jack shit.

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

Ally — that was way more polite than I’m about to be, no apologizing to TERF sympathizers seems needed!

Now then!

First off, Ruby! Ruby! FUCKING RUBY! Thanks for shitting on my parade. I was doing a happy dance about my utterly backwards meds psych from hell leaving the clinic and then you barfed on my shoes! I really like these shoes!

“If feminism achieved its goal of abolishing gender, then no one would have any need to change their biological sex or spend thousands of dollars on hormone therapy or cosmetic procedures and genital surgery.”

Oh yes, surely meds psych from hell was completely right and accepting how society views my biological gender would make me pick an appropriate binary gender. Err wait, she implied that, you’re implying the opposite? If binary genders didn’t exist I’d magically be all happy pants with my anatomy? And I could wear my wonderful boots with a skirt and tie and no one would think twice? Well the later one maybe, but fuck you if you think that’d make me magically happy with my anatomy.

Fuckers like you who think that anyone…ARGH!! I can’t even say “not conforming to gender norms”, because you want to abolish those. But at the same time think that doing so would somehow…ARGLEFUCKINGBARGLE!!

Ok then.

No, doing away with gender roles would not make those of us who aren’t cis magically stop having a need for surgeries and hormones and such. In your little ideal I WOULD STILL BE UNCOMFORTABLE IN MY SKIN!

Is that clear?

*awaits claims that my anger is male privilege*

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

“Is this some sort of “men use violence more, so male violence is oppression, so trans women (who are actually men) using violence is oppression” argument?”

Bingo. And what you said is the politer version that doesn’t accuse all trans women of being rapists and shit like that.

Also, yes, meds psych from hell, the one unable to grok that I don’t have to pick a binary gender for my gender to not be the result of trauma (seriously) is no longer at the clinic. Now, let’s see if they’ll ditch the borderline personality disorder she decided, upon meeting me, without reading my records, that I must have. Cuz, ya know, non-binary poly queer person? Clearly it’s a personality disorder! Oh, and sarcasm, that’s a sign of repressed anger. Things only someone who’s never seen me angry could say!

Marie
Marie
6 years ago

@rubyrubyruby

Some trans-people actually call for violence against feminists for being a “TERF”, that’s a result of male privilege. TERF

Ok, I know I’m repeating other commenters by now, but trans women do not have male privilege. And it’s transmigosynistic to say that they do. It both ignores trans women’s experiences and is phrased like trans women are male, which they are not.

@ally

I have radical feminist views, and I even believe in gender abolition. But gender abolition has nothing to do with erasing people’s identities and everything to do with dismantling binary oppositions central to patriarchy, rendering the concepts of gender and sex meaningless beyond a few social contexts (like matters of personal identification and biological research, respectively).

So that’s what it means. that makes a lot more sense. I always assumed it had to do with erasing people’s identities. Thanks for explaining.

@auggz

I don’t even see how it’s “male privilege” even if trans people were advocating for violence against TERFs.

I think often that terfs try to act like trans women are socialized as boys while growing up, and therefore have male privilege, despite being women, and not benefiting from male privilege :/

g? Is this some sort of “men use violence more, so male violence is oppression, so trans women (who are actually men) using violence is oppression” argument?

I think that’s the intent when they say it. But I could be wrong.

Ally S
6 years ago

@Marie

Yeah, even in a post-gender society some people will probably still identify as men, women, etc. It’s just that the structure of oppression will be absent, so those identities won’t play any role in oppression. And they will no longer be associated with what we now know as biological sex.

Marie
Marie
6 years ago

@Ally

again, thanks for the explanation 🙂 Since you explained more in that comment, too.

yeah, that makes waaaayyy more sense than what I’d originally assumed.

kittehserf
6 years ago

There are instances where trans people have gained or lost privilege after transitioning, though. I’ve read cases of trans women losing privilege in the workplace – their ideas and work, treated with respect when they were perceived as male, become devalued (by the *same people*), they are talked over; one woman reported getting rape and death threats over her research project. Conversely trans men found their work, ideas and so on suddenly became important and worthy of respect once they transitioned.

Is this about trans phobia or misogyny, or are they inextricably linked?

Ally S
6 years ago

@kittehserf

Passing privilege isn’t really genuine privilege. It allows certain oppressed people to escape certain effects of their oppression, but at the end of the day they are still oppressed.

Take me, for example. I present as male, but I still face transmisogyny daily. In the form of frequent abuse, harassment, being told that I’m “girly” in a negative way or called a “f*gg*t”, and so on. I face an additional lack of privilege internally; privilege affects how one subjectively navigates the world, and I have navigated the world as a girl, not a guy. In other words, even as I present as male, I experience social treatment as someone who is still female. A good example of this is that I have a strong fear of abusive men that pervades my mind very often, just like cis women who grow up with a fear of men hurting them.

In short, while social perception is a part of privilege, privilege is also determined by the nature of the privileged group’s subjectivity in the world. I hope that makes sense.

kittehserf
6 years ago

Akkk – if I’d remembered the term passing privilege I’d have thought that through much more clearly! And yeah, it is purely the external thing. Sorry, Ally. I know full well you don’t get male privilege.