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7 Tactics of Highly Effective Harassers: How A Voice for Men's Internet Hate Machine works

A Voice for Men mocks the fears of one of its targets of harassment
A Voice for Men mocks the fears of one of its targets of harassment

The self-described “Men’s Human Rights” site A Voice for Men is a hate site trying — admittedly not very hard, or convincingly — to pose as a human rights organization. In reality, as I and various other writers have documented in considerable detail, it’s an organizer and amplifier of hatred, directed at feminists and women more generally.

Much of this hatred is directed at specific targets, mostly though not always feminist women who have offended A Voice for Men’s founder Paul Elam. The aim is generally to terrorize feminists into silence.

I’ve written at length about AVFM’s campaigns of vilification and intimidation in the past; for a recent example as well as numerous links to discussions of past examples, see here.

Today I will  look at some of the specific tactics that AVFM uses against its targets – providing, in each case, a recent example.

This, in other words, is how AVFM’s Hate Machine functions. [TRIGGER WARNING for abusive language, discussion of abusive tactics]

TACTIC: Professional Ruin

Example:

Stacy, if I find out that there was a link between your report and [another AVFM foe’s] own vendetta that endangered Sage, I swear that you will never work in peace again. I will follow your activities and call out every lie that threatens the livelihood of decent men, until people stop citing your publications and you tearfully watch your degree gather dust in the closet. I have the resources and the connections to make that happen, and I will use them if you so much as tell one more goddamn lie about a man you don’t know. Covering your ass will only make me work harder to expose your sins. …

We’re still looking into your history, Stacy. …
Just know that I always will learn more. If you think there is something, and I mean anything else in your conduct on Kennesaw State University that will embarrass you, then you better send Sage Gerard an email and try to make things right, because I will publish all of your mistakes. …

Admit you were wrong like an adult, or pack up your desk.

Source: Post by Paul Elam of A Voice for Men.

Explanation: Elam threatens to ruin the career of a woman who reported to campus police that she felt intimidated by KSU Men founder and AVFM ally Sage Gerard. He provides no evidence of any connection between her and the other AVFM target mentioned.

In the last two paragraphs I quoted, this threat becomes a form of blackmail, with Elam threatening to dig up more “dirt” if the woman in question doesn’t apologize to the man who originally caused her to become so concerned about her personal safety that she called campus police. See below for more on blackmail.

TACTIC: Offering cash bounties for personal information

Example:

Stacy Keltner is a fraud on the run. There is a $100 reward to whoever finds a picture of her that we can verify. KSU students, if you happen to see Keltner out in public, grab a quick shot on your phone and send it over. You would be helping end corruption on your campus, and offsetting the cost of your tuition and supplies.

Source: The same post by Elam.

Explanation: Elam has offered cash bounties on a number of occasions in order to encourage those who have personal information on his targets, or those who might be willing to search for it, to send it to him. In the past, the bounties have ranged as high as $1000.

In this case, he is searching for a photograph of a woman who has evidently gone to great lengths to avoid having her picture posted on the internet.

TACTIC: Inciting an online mob

Example:

If you need more convincing, I invite readers to contact you via your public contact info. We will notice if you delete that, too.

Hundreds of people here have donated to Zen Men, the organization your people have been messing with, and I figure they may want an opportunity to explain how they feel about your disrespecting their contributions to gender equity. Oh, and just a tip: The supporters will not threaten you. They will most certainly be angry with you, but you are not in any physical danger. You never fucking were. Just keep that in mind if some odd troll sends you a message you want to believe we endorse. Use your brain and try listening to thoughtful dissent for once in your miserable life.

Source: The same post by Elam.

Explanation: After vilifying his target at length – calling her “filth,” and “one of the most egregious, repulsive and vindictive professors on Kennesaw State University, if not Georgia or the United States” – Elam calls upon his readers to contact her en masse, knowing full well (as he admits) that some of these messages may well be threatening. He also mocks and attacks her attempts to protect herself by removing personal information from the Internet.

TACTIC: DARVO (“Deny, Attack, and Reverse Victim and Offender.”)

Example:

Stacy, you used fear to recruit thugs to attack a single student you personally do not like by proxy. …
You need to understand that there are people out there who will literally beat a man bloody if they believe that he is some kind of threat to women. Look at the murders carried out where victims are men falsely accused of rape. Perpetrators of this violence won’t investigate. They won’t even think. They will simply beat him until he is broken, and bleeding. You put Sage, an innocent and intelligent young man with a future, in a position where he has to keep looking over his shoulder every time he walks on campus.

Source: The same post by Elam.
Explanation: The woman in question did not “recruit thugs to attack a … student.” She called the campus police because she felt threatened by that student. AVFM is attempting to portray the frightened woman as the aggressor. The student in question was not charged with anything, nor was he attacked by the campus police officer who responded.
AVFM frequently uses what some psychologists call DARVO in an attempt to portray victims as aggressors. When women who claim they’ve been attacked or threatened call the police, AVFM often recasts their call for police protection as an attempt to inflict “violence by proxy” on innocent men. AVFM also uses DARVO to cast itself as a victim.
IRONY: Tara J. Palmatier, a therapist with close ties to AVFM, has argued on numerous occasions that women who claim they have been abused by men may be using DARVO tactics to smear them. In one post on AVFM, Palmatier suggests that so-called “high conflict individuals” are likely to resort to “smear campaign and mobbing tactics when they target someone … .” Ironically, this is a perfect description of AVFM’s own preferred style of “activism.”

TACTIC: Blackmail

Example:

If you choose to stand by your dishonest image, I will dig through all of your connections, your history and your publications, then email your colleagues and superiors all of the reasons they should consider working with other people. I’m sure the network of anti-feminist YouTubers and bloggers looking for content would also have a field day if I pointed them to ISD’s publications. …

Tom, if you and your buddies own up to your crap like grown-ups and make amends with Sage, then I will back off. …

Staying silent is not going to save you.

Source: Another blog post by A Voice for Men’s founder Paul Elam.
Explanation: Blackmail is defined by the Macmillan Dictionary as “to make someone give you money or do what you want by threatening to tell people embarrassing information about them.”

In this case, Elam is threatening to dig up dirt on KSU professor Tom Pynn and pass it along to his colleagues as well as to a group of videobloggers known for their harassment of feminists, unless Pynn recants a previous statement claiming that AVFM is a hate group. No, really: It’s a hate campaign targeting a man because he called AVFM a hate group.

Elam is angry that Pynn wrote an email to KSU Men’s former faculty advisor in which he stated that the Southern Poverty Law Center had declared AVFM a “hate group.” While this is not technically true – for one thing, websites do not meet the SPLC’s definition of a “group” – it is also true that the SPLC included AVFM in a report on misogynistic websites, describing in some detail AVFM’s doxxing and harassment of women, which at the time included setting up the phony offenders registry called Register-Her to smear feminists, and offering bounties for personal information on the site’s foes.

TACTIC: Revelation of deeply personal information

Example:

A simple text search reveals something very interesting. [Target of harassment] was at [identifying info redacted] the same time as [name redacted], a woman who was brutally murdered in a random attack by a deranged psychopath who received the death sentence for her murder. [Target of harassment] and [murdered woman] were friends. Further investigation reveals that [murdered woman] had fought with a friend before she was murdered, and the relationship was never repaired. The friend was left to grieve and to live with the knowledge that her last words to her friend were unkind. [Target of harassment] is quoted in the newspaper article, but she is not the friend who testified at the trial. The entire faculty is described as being traumatized and in shock at the murder.

Is [Target of harassment] the friend who was mean to [the murdered woman] before she died?

Source: A blog post by AVFM’s”social media director,” who posts online as “Judgy Bitch” and “Janet Bloomfield.”

Explanation: There is no possible justification for posting this. It has no relevance to AVFM’s “charges” against the woman. It’s clearly intended to use the facts of a murder case to hurt someone whose friend was brutally murdered.

Irony: “Bloomfield,” a staunch supporter of and practicioner of doxxing, posts under a pseudonym.

Note: Due to “Bloomfield’s” posting of personal information, I will not post a link to her post or the name of the targeted woman. I will provide the link to journalists and others with a legitimate need to see the original.

TACTIC: Social media harassment

Example:

jackbarnesharassmentwillcontinue

Source: The Twitter account of Jack Barnes, a contributor to AVFM and co-host of that site’s Blue Collar Red Pill Radio show. Link to tweet.

Explanation: Barnes threatens endless “harassment” of feminists unless and until they are completely silenced. Barnes directed his tweet at cultural critic Anita Sarkeesian, the target of a massive, several-years-long campaign of harassment online.

In an earlier Tweet, also directed at Sarkeesian, Barnes joked about the death threats that at one point led her to flee her home.

barnes2This bit of nastiness was retweeted by four other AVFMers. This is typical: Twitter harassment from individual AVFMers – there is no need for the ironic quotes around “harassment” – is almost always amplified by a squad of other AVFMers eager to flood their target’s Twitter mentions with a flood of insults and abuse.

AVFM’s Twitter army was once led by the AVFM “social media director” who posts online as “Judgy Bitch” and “Janet Bloomfield.” But she has been banned from Twitter, evidently for her “targeted abuse” of feminist writer Jessica Valenti, which included the deliberate dissemination of falsehoods about Valenti.

As Barnes and other AVFMers have made clear, this sort of harassment and abuse is likely to “continue and accelerate.” AVFM’s hate machine will not stop, Barnes contends, “until no one will openly admit to being feminist.”

That’s not going to happen. So it’s up to us to document and denounce and do what we can through all legal channels to shut their hate machine down.

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lith
lith
6 years ago

Shaenon:

Yeah, it’s right there in Paul’s smug little threat. “We won’t physically attack you. Other people will. But they’re not us! You can’t prove it! Tee hee hee!”

I feel there should be a chibi version of Elam to go with this.

Anenome
Anenome
6 years ago

@ WithAZ

What choice do they have? Face the self-evident truth that they fail, that they are useless and that even by their own modest measurements, they have failed time and time and time again?

Of course they celebrate their inane “victories”, but on some level they’ll realize how absolutely sordid and inconsequential they are.

I agree with you wholeheartedly, by the way.

Elam is the greatest enemy of his own movement. He is a rallying point for feminists. If he didn’t exist, feminists would have to invent him.

Let’s imagine Dean Esmay was in charge. Sure, he’s an appalling public speaker and a buffoon, but he doesn’t consistently write purple prose that can be used against him every time a light is shone on him. Hembling was cut from the same cloth as Elam (but is far brighter than him), and Mr Gerard could have been credible were it not for this latest escapade.

On a macro level, avfm is gold for feminists. A recruiting sergeant. Sadly, they are poison for those who genuinely advocate for men.

It’s worth repeating. Avfm have changed no legislation, have not helped a single man, have no electoral support, are ridiculed in the mainstream press, are riven by inter and intra faction fighting and literally couldn’t sell out an extremely modestly sized conference, despite world wide media attention and offering to give tickets away at reduced rates.

They’re an embarrassment. But that doesn’t take anything away from the stress that their latest target will feel.

lith
lith
6 years ago

Anenome:

Maybe they’re really ultra-feminist and are deliberately rallying everyone to feminism by acting like hateful misogynist buffoons.

M. the Social Justice Ranger
M. the Social Justice Ranger
6 years ago

Is that his real name?
I always assumed it wasn’t given Elam = Male spelled backwards.

I honestly thought it was a pseudonym too, but nope, just turns out to be a Cruella De Vil-level aptronym. =P

It’s the same kind of behaviour I’ve recognized in people with personality disorders that include non-bizarre delusions as symptoms. Combined with Elam’s violent lashing out at people he disagrees with, even those he previously considered allies, I think there’s a serious case to be made for him having borderline personality disorder.

Don’t keyboard-diagnose or demonise people with mental disorders/illnesses, please. His behaviour is no different to that of millions of other hate group members, and hell, why does it even matter? Despite what Hollywood would have you believe, most people with disorders/illnesses aren’t raging shitweasels, and most raging shitweasels don’t have a disorder/illness. Just call him what he is – an egotistical, hateful polyp on the anus of humanity.

WithAZ
WithAZ
6 years ago

@ M. the Social Justice Ranger

You’re right, I overreached here. I apologise.

lkeke35
6 years ago

Anenome: Amen!

proxieme
proxieme
6 years ago

M – That’s hilarious.
I now want to find someone with the surname Stac and insist that they study and advocate for cats.

Newt
Newt
6 years ago

Elam is the greatest enemy of his own movement. He is a rallying point for feminists. If he didn’t exist, feminists would have to invent him.

He may be the most obvious focal point, and a reliable source for a hateful opinion on anything affecting women, but I think feminism could manage just fine without him. If he/AVfM didn’t exist, there’d still be all the other raging, fact-repelling, controversy-hungry word spewers regularly featured on WHTM.

Myriad
Myriad
6 years ago

Is that his real name?
I always assumed it wasn’t given Elam = Male spelled backwards.

I’m willing to admit that I am slow on the uptake at times, but I never even thought of that. I simply took his name at face value. Consider my mind blown.

That really sucks, proxieme. I am sorry your picture was sold like that and the comments said about the the pic. Yeah, exactly-how dare you wear a t-shirt and shorts in the summer. WT-ever-loving-F! The kitty is adorable though.

Pelagic
Pelagic
6 years ago

Thanks, AVFM, for being the poster children endorsing harsh censorship laws.

I am seriously baffled they suffer no legal repercussions at all. Can’t the targets of their hate speech litigate them into a lifetime if destitution? And then deny them food stamps and unemployment, because as lolbertarians (which that most definitely are) they’d be super behind that.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
6 years ago

This is why I can’t stand free speech absolutists: for all their self-aggrandizing horseshit about caring about free speech more than anyone else, they obviously can’t stand hearing certain opinions and fault others for expressing them at all.

I kind of like it when people Free Speech their way into this corner. It shows that they haven’t thought this through all the way. There is an element of “I’m not going to tolerate your intolerance” in it that makes it seem reasonable, but the people who are objecting to street harassment have never in my hearing advocated that street harassers be arrested. Freedom of speech always means freedom from state interference with speech.

Besides, is there any reason to protect the act of street-harassment? You can claim it’s all part of “free speech” all you want, but I sincerely doubt it is anything more than assholes being gross and profane to people why don’t know and who are not interested in talking to them.

At least in the United States, there are classes of speech that are more protected than others. Political speech is a highly protected class. So is religious speech. Obscene speech receives almost no protection. Street harassment would therefore have very little protection, but objections to street harassment, which are political in nature, would have nearly ironclad protection. So the folks who want to silence those who complain against street harassment on free speech grounds actually have it backwards.

mistressoflarry
6 years ago

I just want to add my yes to the “Doxxing is never ever good” vote. That is such a horrible thing to do, but with little shit-stains like Elam we never have to. He displays his horribleness for everyone to see already on his very own blog. Thank you David for wading in to document it, I really don’t have the stomach for that.

The best way to get rid of mold is to air it out and shine the light of day on it. -then wash with bleach, in the case of internet mold, that would be copious amounts of kitteh pictures.

http://assets.nydailynews.com/polopoly_fs/1.1269592.1361443092%21/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_635/daisy-kitten-4.jpg

RAWR!

Shut up, Woody!

Pelagic
Pelagic
6 years ago

@policy of madness

It’s even less complicated than that. Street harassment is essentially assault, a verbal attack on someone’s person.

I might not read this blog anymore. I just get angry and want to break someone’s neck.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

I snorted at that too, like he’s imagining students going “Wow! That is so much money! I can finally pay off all my debt!”

Based on the paltriness of that sum, I bet there won’t be many takers. “Stalk and photograph some woman for $100? Yeah, RIGHT.”

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

I’m new to all this and have only heard about AVFM and Elam recently but do these people actually WANT anything?

By which I mean, is their abuse a means to an end (i.e. they genuine think they’ll achieve some victory over women/for men) or is it merely and end in itself (i.e. they just get some sick satisfaction out of abusing/terrorising women)?

isidore13
isidore13
6 years ago

One doesn’t want to assume things about the motivations of other people, but for Paul Elam, at least, it does seem to be a little bit of 2 things. 1. as you say, an end in itself; and 2. collecting as much money as he can in the form of cash donations and ebook sales.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
6 years ago

@Alan

I think it largely depends on who you’re talking about, exactly. Most MRAs want to return to an imaginary bygone day when women knew their place, and their place was to care for all the needs of men and do whatever the men wanted.

I mean, that’s not what they say they want. However, we know them by their works, and that’s what their actions indicate. Their stance on abortion, for instance, seems inconsistent until you put it into the framework where men are able to completely dictate a woman’s reproductive decisions for her.

Elam has an additional goal, to leverage the yearning of ordinary MRAs for Leave It to Beaver into a mortgage payment. I think he both genuinely believes that he ought to be able beat the crap out of women with impunity, and is, simultaneously and cynically, manipulating other men who share that belief into funding his lifestyle.

Falconer
6 years ago

@Bina:

The anti-choice movement works the same way: “Tiller the Killer” was a leading meme of theirs until a so-called “lone wolf” killed Dr. George Tiller.

In church, I might add. On a Sunday. The killer could probably have shot Dr. Tiller at his house or at his clinic — it wasn’t the first time someone had shot at him — but I think that the fact they chose to shoot him in church was a message that nowhere is safe.

Either that or they thought they’d caught him in some massive hypocrisy.

@proxieme: d’awww, snuggly naps with fuzzy kitten! You deserved that (and much, much more) after all the shit you got that summer. Timey-wimey internet hugs for twelve-year-old you, and more for your daughter.

Oh, and I went to school with a fellow named Elam. It’s a legit last name.

@Myriad: I thought “an sold picture” was a typo.

mistressoflarry
6 years ago

@Alan

From what I’ve seen on this site Elam gets sick satisfaction out of terrorizing women while also making money off of it. As for what he wants it’s the return to a time, space, and reality that’s never existed: a place where his every need is taken care of and women obey his every whim.

Elam’s main problem is he suffers from a terminal case of privilege.

I snorted at that too, like he’s imagining students going “Wow! That is so much money! I can finally pay off all my debt!”

Did Elam even attend a college? If he did someone must have footed the bill for him. My first thought on the “ransom” was,”Well, it’s so little at least there won’t be any takers.” So, very, very little… much like the man offering it.

mistressoflarry
6 years ago

ninja’d!

Fnoicby
Fnoicby
6 years ago

Great analysis David, thank you so much for what you do here.

I didn’t know Janet Bloomfield was not her real name?

Falconer
6 years ago

I didn’t know “Janet Bloomfield” was a pseudonym either, Fnoicby.

I don’t have cute kitten pictures to share. I’ll have to make do with these obviously lower-quality toddler pics.

http://i.imgur.com/OHaISsS.jpg

(The link to that one includes the segment “OHaI” (o hai) by the way.)

http://i.imgur.com/jc6BA8G.jpg

Falconer
6 years ago

Huge-mongous!

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

@ Everyone who’s been so kind as to respond

Yeah, it does seem hate is the primary motivation. Like people have pointed out, they do nothing (or even pretend to do anything) to positively promote men’s issues (and that’s notwithstanding the issue that these ‘problems’ have nothing to do with women anyway).

It just seems to be a little clique for men who get a kick out of fantasising about violence towards women. For example, I saw on a Facebook page someone saying that he looked forward to equality so he could punch a girl in the face.

It would be almost morbidly amusing if there wasn’t the real undercurrent of genuine realisable threat.

freemage
6 years ago

Mods/David: Is there any way we can get a fixed statement at the beginning of comment threads (or maybe just a banner-thing posted immediately after the tags, above the comment bar) that reads: “Seriously, please do not indulge in keyboard diagnosis of other people, even those that are being mocked in these articles. Asshole is not a psychological disorder.”? It’s almost never done with malice, but it seems to happen in virtually every thread about these misognyistic shitstains, and it has a fifty/fifty chance of derailing, depending on how the person reacts to the pushback that invariably follows.

maistrechat
6 years ago

Ooh are we posting cat pictures?

http://i.imgur.com/MFGMgp6.jpg

Public safety announcement: Do not attempt to touch the owl.

maistrechat
6 years ago

w/r/t keyboard diagnoses – maybe it would be worth adding this to the comments policy, as it’s not currently mentioned there.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

In church, I might add. On a Sunday. The killer could probably have shot Dr. Tiller at his house or at his clinic — it wasn’t the first time someone had shot at him — but I think that the fact they chose to shoot him in church was a message that nowhere is safe.

Yeah, that’s the impression I got, too. If a church isn’t sacred, no place is. Plus, there’s the fact that the most militant wing of their movement overlaps with that of the NRA gunsuckers, who actively want to see people toting guns in church. Which is really an odd place to be standing one’s ground against anything, considering. Maybe they want to send the message that their god loves guns? (Never mind that there was no gunpowder in biblical times, and if there had been, some longbeard would have pronounced it a tool of the devil, or some such.)

And yes, Elam IS a real last name. It’s quite a delicious irony that Paulie really is a backward male, though!

Miss Diketon
Miss Diketon
6 years ago

It just seems to be a little clique for men who get a kick out of fantasising about violence towards women. For example, I saw on a Facebook page someone saying that he looked forward to equality so he could punch a girl in the face.

Unfortunately, I don’t think its a little clique. I’ve seen it a lot on Reddit, where there is a strong undercurrent of sheer glee in the hateful responses to posts where women are physically attacked, humiliated, fail at something (especially something male dominated), or aren’t “hot.” Redditors love to “put women in their place” or advocate for “equal rights and lefts.”

ktrantingredhead
6 years ago

Whenever an MRA bothers me, I just write back, “THAT’S MAH PURSE! I DON’T KNOW YOU!” I repeat if necessary, then report and block if necessary. Of course I’m not one of the “big dogs” so it works pretty well.

Myriad
Myriad
6 years ago

@Myriad: I thought “an sold picture” was a typo.

@Falconer. LOL! Yeah, on second look that does appear that it could be a typo. I’m finding more and more that my thinking is more literal than conceptual. It is something I’m working on.

Vanir (@Vanir85)
6 years ago

Redditors love to “put women in their place” or advocate for “equal rights and lefts.”

– Miss Diketon

It’s probably the same people doing it. Misogynist creeps love dragging their taint all over the place.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

I saw on a Facebook page someone saying that he looked forward to equality so he could punch a girl in the face.

What an idiot. Someone should inform him that women don’t get away with hitting, that they get charged with assault for it all the time. Just like men. So, if he wants to punch a girl in the face, he can…and he can face the same consequences she would if she did it to him. Equality!

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

@ Bina

Indeed, but I have seen that sentiment expressed quite a few times; often as memes.

I must confess though I am one of those people who thinks there’s a world of difference between a woman hitting/slapping a man and vice versa.

Maybe it’s an age thing (I’m in my 40s) but I’m not bothered about a woman hitting a man, but to me, it’s never acceptable for a man to hit a woman.

I appreciate that there’s an argument I’m being sexist or falling into stereotypical gender roles but I just don’t feel that. It’s not even that I regard women as delicate weak flowers or anything. You could be Wonder Woman or something and I’d still think it unacceptable.

There’s probably an interesting discussion to be had around this.

proxieme
proxieme
6 years ago

@Myriad – Oh, gah, sorry – yeah, that was a typo.

An OLD picture.

I’m often typing on my phone and kind of suck at it, especially first thing in the morning.

Falconer – Aw, thanks. It’s more that these these assholes don’t get that (1) “sexually mature looking” =/= “emotionally/mentally mature” and (2) no, really – even women who can “handle it” don’t deserve to hear their opinions.

It just still pisses me off.
Yeah, I’m over it, but when I think about how abruptly so many other young girls* have been/will be THRUST into the sexual gaze of grown-ass men it starts to get my blood up.

* And, TBF, also young boys, though (while in popular culture there’s almost the inverse of slut-shaming tied to older women pursuing/exploiting underage boys) it’s also (rightly) viewed as a more atypical behavior – like, it’s not assumed that women are going to leer at boys, but it is assumed/accepted that men will leer at girls.
And that’s if you just want to stick to a heteronormative narrative – my husband (who’s straight), recounts multiple instances of older men pulling up to him while he was walking to ask if he was “working” while he was living in Orlando.

*~*~*~*~*~
BRAIN BLEACH FOR EVERYONE!:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=QQYK5vT9TBI

akemp0013
6 years ago

I just peeked at Janet Bloomfield’s blog and it really did horrify me to see that she compiled and published a list of women who simply *look* like they could be this woman. How does someone this awful exist?

ParadoxicalIntention
6 years ago

akemp0013

I just peeked at Janet Bloomfield’s blog and it really did horrify me to see that she compiled and published a list of women who simply *look* like they could be this woman. How does someone this awful exist?

Easy. She’s convinced that she’s “Not Like THOSE Women”, and that she’s an exception to the MRAs #1 rule of “ALL Women Are Terrible”. She’s not a target, and she gets a feeling of superiority, and she likes that.

Little does she realize that she’s not the exception to the rule, she is EXACTLY like THOSE women. She’s just complacent. However, the moment she slips, they’ll be all over her, and she’ll be the next one doxxed.

As long as she goes with what Elam says, and does all these terrible things against women, then she’s fine, and can stay in the “Boys Only Club*”

*Which can include women as long as they’re obedient and agree with everything we say in the Boys Only Club.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

Maybe it’s an age thing (I’m in my 40s) but I’m not bothered about a woman hitting a man, but to me, it’s never acceptable for a man to hit a woman.

I’m in my 40s, too. I’m a lot less bothered by women-hitting-men than the other way ’round, too, but I suspect there’s a different set of reasons for it: One, when men hit women, it tends to be in reinforcement of a sexist status quo, and two, when women hit men, it’s more likely to be in self-defence, and less likely to be a sustained pummeling/battering, as it would be in the opposite scenario. When a man murders a female partner, he’s usually doing it to keep her from leaving him or escaping his control; when a woman murders a male partner (which is much more rare), it’s usually because she has no other way of leaving him and/or escaping his control. Motives, and modes of operation, are highly tied to gender.

freemage
6 years ago

It’s also just a flat-out statistical truth–domestic violence by men results in far worse consequences for the victim than DV by women. It’s never a ~good~ thing, but if reality matters to you at all, it’s pretty clear which is worse.

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

Brain bleach // Daily Fail didn’t fail for once! Sulcata babies!! (Iz tortoise)

[TW: kids being mean to a tortoise, but it has a happy ending]

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2076582/African-Sulcata-tortoise-keeps-pace-45-babies-Linton-Zoo.html

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

@ Bina

I think you’re spot on with your reasons. I’d also add though that there’s also a ‘background’ element.

So even if, say, a woman slaps/hits a man because of some seemingly trivial matter (she’s annoyed or even as a semi joke because we’ve done something daft) there isn’t the whole context of how inter gender violence normally plays out.

A woman hits a man, and that’s likely to be the end of it; there’s no element of menace or continuing danger. Whereas if a man hits a woman, even if there’s no actual harm (in the sense that just be a transient shock) there’s always that peripheral awareness that it could just be a prelude to escalation or even that the man always has the option to take things further.

I also have to admit that, for me, there is something of a “Dulcinea effect” going on. Like I say, I don’t think of women as defenceless helpless damsels just waiting to be rescued. In fact most of my female friends are very strong confident assertive women, more than capable of taking care of themselves. And I’m an avid promoter of women being able to kick arse (I teach self defence; but that’s another interesting debate in itself!).

I do see it however that a man should always be someone that a woman in distress can run to, never from.

Gosh, I realise how horribly patronising that sounds. I *know* women can take care of themselves, but I can’t help believing that on those occasions they might not be able to, it’s a man’s duty to assist if appropriate and that ‘real’ men don’t hurt women.

Ha, guess after 40+ years you can take the boy out of the patriarchy but….etc.

NickNameNick
NickNameNick
6 years ago

Not only that, but not everyone getting harassed is a fucking adult.

I recently ran across an sold picture of me:

(Profile of my face blurred.)

Anyone want to guess how old I was?
I had literally just turned 12.
I was in the 6th grade.
In some areas, that’s still elementary school. The blotch on my knee? From falling off my bike.

Was that as “developed” as I became in the next few years?
No.
But that sure didn’t stop assholes from assholin’ all around and at me for DARING to wear a t-shirt and shorts that summer.

I didn’t deserve it and *certainly* couldn’t handle it as a pre-teen; and NO ONE ever deserves it, no matter their age, even if they can “handle” it.

Fuck that lady and all fear-mongering apologists.

That’s why it annoyed me – she never seemed to consider that there are cases of street-harassment where it gets worse, or even targets underage girls, or that people who are dealing with numerous other problems in their life shouldn’t have to deal with this bullshit simply to walk down the street.

Of course none of that matter, ’cause it was all about her and how every other woman should do what she proclaims.

I kind of like it when people Free Speech their way into this corner. It shows that they haven’t thought this through all the way. There is an element of “I’m not going to tolerate your intolerance” in it that makes it seem reasonable, but the people who are objecting to street harassment have never in my hearing advocated that street harassers be arrested. Freedom of speech always means freedom from state interference with speech.

Right. All I’ve heard is the rather reasonable suggestion that the behavior be admonished inter-personally, given it is a pretty disrespectful and gross to do out in public. Not to mention kind of childish for men to do – since they aren’t 13-year-olds.

At least in the United States, there are classes of speech that are more protected than others. Political speech is a highly protected class. So is religious speech. Obscene speech receives almost no protection. Street harassment would therefore have very little protection, but objections to street harassment, which are political in nature, would have nearly ironclad protection. So the folks who want to silence those who complain against street harassment on free speech grounds actually have it backwards.

They always have things backwards. A friend of mine once said that the Westboro Baptist Church have every right to protest at funerals, which I found absurd – given funerals are generally private affairs involving grieving friends and family. They should have every right not to deal with that nonsense, moreso than the WBC to protest wherever they want and whenever they want – nevermind they could do so at any other event than funerals. Those should be exceptions to the rules and, honestly, I don’t give a shit about “free speech” in that instance because that isn’t the fucking venue for it.

…But apparently disturbing someone else’s privacy is to be excused with “free speech” now, as well as threats and harassment for reasons…

NickNameNick
NickNameNick
6 years ago

Gah, blockquote monster!

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
6 years ago

NickNameNick

Well, I’m guessing your bit starts at “They always have…”?

If so, I would just say that, whist I’m not an expert on US law, I am given to understand that there’s a “time, manner and place” element that features in First Amendment interpretation. So it would be theoretically constitutional to prohibit such protests.

Also it’s only speech/expression that’s protected. If the speech/expression is an element of an offence the protection vanishes. Try running a First amendment argument in relation to “Hand over your wallet” for instance.

I suspect you could build a case against the AVFM lot’s actions (as described in the article). You almost certainly could *if* some ‘lone wolf’ did commit a violent act under a ‘joint enterprise’ or even conspirator doctrine (it’s not necessary for parties to know each other or even have met for such offences).

That’s leaving it a bit late though. Until there’s an act then arguably the offence is still ‘incohate’ as we say in the trade. In England it’s be easy to prosecute just on the words as either harassment, various public element offences or incitement. Not sure abut the US though.

Dizzy
Dizzy
6 years ago

THIS IS MY CAMPUS.

I love We Hunted the Mammoth and I try to check back here often (as often as I can, anyway, but sometimes I have to steer clear for self-care). I’m just… I’m so, so, so deeply disappointed that my campus is being featured on this website. D:

It’s been a little hard for me to keep up with what Sage is doing, since there’s a lot of conflicting information going around, but I’m not surprised that Elam has taken up the torch.

I don’t really have anything firm to add, I really just wanted to vent my unhappiness.

Ellesar
6 years ago

Alan – I get infuriated whenever I see this ‘equal rights re hitting’ argument because it is usually by a man who wants to discuss hitting women in detail, or is attempting to derail a discussion.

I am also in my 40s and I did NOT teach my sons not to hit girls. This is for the very simple reason that kids are evenly matched when equal sizes, and plenty of girls are aggressive before it has been socialised out of them. As they have grown older they are perfectly able to come to the conclusion for themselves that hitting people to resolve conflicts is crap and they avoid those sort of people.

The way these men (who are clearly getting sexual kicks out of talking about hitting women) want to hit women clearly has NOTHING to do with equality. How could it anyway? They seem to want a woman to hit them so that they can hit her back with the maximum power they have (and of course I am sure they are all massive power lifters!). They like the prospect of breaking her nose, having blood all over her face, etc etc.

I don’t know HOW this fits in with any argument about self defence, because disproportionate response leading to serious injury does not go down well in the court room. But then I guess that these may be the sort of men who believe that shooting someone because they knocked on your door asking for help after an accident would be a perfectly reasonable thing to do.

Ellesar
6 years ago

On the subject of children being sexually harassed – absofuckinglutely! I was 9 when I was grabbed and groped in the street, and my friends and I were often running away from dodgy looking blokes. I was 14 when first ‘flashed’ at, and by that age I had had SO much low level harassment that it was normalised. No one cared. No one EVER challenged these sleazebags. I guess it was my fault for being ‘cute’ and developing a womanly body by 12 (thought there are plenty of men who like a child’s body too).

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

Dizzy,
I hope your campus is big enough to avoid Sage.

proxieme
proxieme
6 years ago

Alan – Nick’s started with “That’s why this lady annoyed me […]”

Nick – Right?
Whatever happened to “your rights to swing your fists stop where my nose begins”?
Legally, street harassment seldom rises to officially “menacing” (though it does certainly sometimes), but I don’t get harassers and harassment-apologists since of entitlement to another person’s attention and sense of well-being.
I know that MRAs /hate/ this phrase and I’ve tried to think of another way to frame it, but it really is indicative of “rape culture” – that another person’s body is yours on which to impose your opinion and will, unsolicited and and unprovoked save for existing.

Ellesar – Virtual hugs <3
I can say that I very quickly became quite uncomfortable with my body, largely due to the attention it garnered (largely from much older men).
I didn't know how to process or deal with it, and I'm sorry that you had similar experiences.

Argenti Aertheri
Argenti Aertheri
6 years ago

I’m also kinda of the “it’s worse when men hit women” camp, and I can’t pinpoint WHY. Which bugs me. It’s not that women should get free reign to hit men (hitting is bad m’k?), but I’m picturing a slap from her and a punch from him, which isn’t really equivilant on any level, so maybe part of it is just what sorts of violence we’re socialized to associate with women v men? Cuz it doesn’t take many brain cells to say punching is worse than slapping. Idk, I’m thinking aloud here. I don’t think it’s just a gender thing though — because hitting kids is obviously wrong, but less terrifying when it’s a woman doing it. Like, I’d much sooner yell at a woman hitting a kid than a man, but unless he’s a tiny fucker, I’d be little more match than the kid is. Which is maybe where Alan’s thing about men being people someone in danger can run TO comes in? Cuz man hitting kids = find a dude bigger than me to tell the asshole off.

*is musing out loud here*