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harassment internet tough guy men who should not ever be with women ever misogyny MRA paul elam

Yelling at people on the Internet IS our activism, A Voice for Men's Paul Elam declares

Paul Elam, "talking without fear or capitulation" on his internet radio show with "Dr. T." Yes, "Going Mental" is the actual name of their show on mental health issues.
Paul Elam, “talking without fear or capitulation” on his internet radio show with “Dr. T.” Yes, “Going Mental” is the actual name of their show on mental health issues.

I‘ve often pointed out, as many others have noticed as well, that the so-called Men’s Rights movement does pretty much nothing to help men in any practical way.

MRAs complain that there are no domestic violence shelters for men, but they (with literally one exception that I know of) aren’t willing to do the work necessary to actually set up such shelters. They point out the truly horrifying numbers of rapes in prison, but they don’t actually work with groups trying to stop rape and other forms of sexual abuse in prison — nor do they try to fight against “the war on drugs” and other policies that put an astounding number of young men of color in prison. I could go on and on and on with more examples, but you get the idea.

Well, it turns out that the Men’s Rights movement’s utter failure to help men in any practical way isn’t a bug; it’s a feature. At least according to PAul Elam, head cheese at A Voice for Men and probably the most visible and influential man in the movement.

In a post on AVFM earlier this week, an obviously angry Elam took aim at what he described as a “wave” of “concern trolls” — there were two of them — trying to suggest that the Men’s Rights movement needs to do more than talk.

Elam disagrees. Essentially appointing himself not just A but The Voice for Men’s Rights,  he declared:

You want to know what this movement is about? It is very, very simple in my opinion. The MHRM I envision is about one simple thing. Talking without fear or capitulation.

Seriously. That is it. It is about nothing more than people talking to each other, openly and freely, in a world that does not want them to.

Huh. I’m pretty sure something like that already exists. It’s called “the internet.” As much as you enjoy doing it, Paul, you’re not the first person to come up with the idea of yelling at women on the internet.

Anyway, what about, you know, lobbying the government for redress of your grievances? Elam says no, declaring that what he perversely calls the Men’s Human Rights Movement

is not about passing a Violence Against Men Act or any other form of government reliance on justice and personal liberty. I, Paul Elam, am not running for office. I don’t give a fudgsicle or a rat’s ash who likes me and who doesn’t. I am not looking for a men’s rights parade on Men’s Rights Victory Day in Washington, D.C. …

Neither I nor AVFM has a legislative agenda, nor any politicians to endorse, nor lobbying to accomplish because none of that is of any value in a society that still refuses to accept reality.

What about the idea of setting up shelters or raising money for men’s health or something, anything, that might help troubled men? Again, Elam says no.

There are no plans to form a committee for research for testicular cancer or to build a men’s shelter. AVFM does not have a program to reform family courts.

But what about all the stuff you talk about in your mission statement? You know, like getting rid of rape shield laws, “dispens[ing] with child support except in special circumstances,” making paternity tests “mandatory on demand by any alleged father at any time.”

Sure, if you look at our mission statement you will see many items that will require political and judicial remedy to ultimately accomplish. That, however is not our job at AVFM to accomplish directly.

I suppose that’s just as well, given that most of AVFM’s demands are backwards and ridiculous.

If Elam and his followers just wanted to run an online publication rather than an activist group, that would certainly be their right. But unfortunately their idea of “talking without fear or capitulation” includes libeling and doxing and harassing their opponents.

That’s a form of “activism,” I suppose, but it has a lot more in common with the strategies of those who oppose human rights than it does with the strategies of those actually trying to protect human rights.

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Demetrius - Tao of Indifference

When the GQ article came out I asked a question of the MRAs in the comments: What work do you do to further your cause outside of blogging, engaging in debates, making youtube vids, and podcasts, etc. I then asked for links to like…actual evidence of activism (fundraising, advocating for causes that actually impact more than just white men, etc.)

After that I was told to do some searches online (Vladek Filler, Joel Kirk, Pauley Perrette, University of Toronto, Queens University) instead of say, being directed to fundraising causes for defense funds for men who they believe are being shafted by Family courts, you know, the rights they complain they don’t have.

When I said yeah…but like what do you actually do I was told that they engaged in “raising awareness” and “behind the scenes political activity”.

Point being…they really think that harassing people online is “raising awareness”

anemonerosie
5 years ago

Reminds me of this article that came out yesterday: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/relationships/leah-mclaren-are-men-really-the-victims/article23426535/
I wonder if they’re on the defensive.

Tabby Lavalamp
5 years ago

Isn’t this pretty much the definition of “slacktivism”?

Paradoxical Intention
5 years ago

Y’know, when I was a kid, and I was asked to help my siblings with chores, I’d often try to (and they’d try it as well on occasion) pull a stunt where I would sit back and watch them do the work under the guise of “supervising”.

You’re not fooling anyone, Elam. You just don’t want to do the work, but you want the credit.

M.
M.
5 years ago

Sure, if you look at our mission statement you will see many items that will require political and judicial remedy to ultimately accomplish. That, however is not our job at AVFM to accomplish directly.

… Then, by definition, it’s not a bloody mission statement, is it?

Paradoxical Intention
5 years ago

“I know we said we want to do a thing, but it’s just not possible with the amount of work we actually want to put into it! So, we’ll just ‘supervise’ this until it happens, and then we can take the credit for it! Uh, I mean, celebrate in our newly-formed cis-gendered, white, straight male utopia, yeah, that’s it!”

isidore13
isidore13
5 years ago

What’s shocking about this is that he’s finally admitting to it.

zoon echon logon
zoon echon logon
5 years ago

Yelling at women is not a means to the end of helping men. “Helping men” is the pretext that justifies the end of yelling at women.

Anne Mette
Anne Mette
5 years ago

It is pretty clear that they are NOT pro-men – they are anti-women. Period.

Adam
Adam
5 years ago

Well gee, Paul, thanks for making it easy for us.

Dreadnought
Dreadnought
5 years ago

My word, what a maverick! In a society that virtually guarantees the freedom of speech Elam has boldly stepped up to his keyboard and spoken his mind. Elam is the only person who possesses the bravery and strength to go against the grain and say to society “You want me to express my opinions freely without risk of persecution? OK.” Not only is this man a rebel, but he is a genius for he has determined the formula for societal change. Too long have men and women sacrificed countless hours of their lives to work towards a brighter future, too long have the engineers of our modern society sacrificed family and lesuire to pour labour into shaping the world. Elam boldly rejects this and insists that speech alone can shift mountains. In the eyes of Elam the Industrial Revolution was achieved by the written word and it was Churchill’s rhetoric alone that saved Europe. Elam truly is a revolutionary. /s

isidore13
isidore13
5 years ago

And naturally, in the comments, anyone professing discomfort with this notion that they don’t intend to do any actual activism is banned for trolling.

Viscaria
Viscaria
5 years ago

But Paul’s going to need you to pay up at the next fund drive, gentleman, because doing fuck all for men is expensive.

potterchik
potterchik
5 years ago

It almost kinda seems like he just made up a fancy reason to behave like a jerk, doesn’t it?

Judas Peckerwood
Judas Peckerwood
5 years ago

AVFM’s motto: “We do nothing constructive, and we do it better than ANYONE!”

PussyPowerTantrum
PussyPowerTantrum
5 years ago

I think we need a new acronym for MRAs, since their leading site dropped any pretense of activism. I propose MRS, for men’s rights slacktivists.

M.
M.
5 years ago

@PPT

Nah, MRA still works. It just stands for Misogynistic Rape Apologist now.

sunnysombrera
5 years ago

Next post on AVFM: “Why Feminism Should Be Doing All The Men’s Rights Work That We Can’t Be Arsed To Even Start.”

Anne Mette
Anne Mette
5 years ago

On AVfM they don’t even bother to LINK to relevant NGOs or organizations…It might be too tempting to go and spend money there. Lame Paul is pretty easy to understand…

katz
5 years ago

I’m glad they’ve finally outright admitted that they expect someone else to do everything for them.

PussyPowerTantrum
PussyPowerTantrum
5 years ago

Oh yeah, the sense of entitlement is endemic, every comment thread these losers came onto is full of whinging about “what has feminism done for men.” Well if you’re so big a jerk that you don’t see that making life better for half of humanity is a good thing overall…

Buttercup Q. Skullpants

Men’s rights is really about women’s wrongs.

suffrajitsu
suffrajitsu
5 years ago

In his own words, the MRM “is about nothing more than people talking to each other.”

So it’s official! Paul Elam himself has admitted that it’s about nothing at all.

yutolia
yutolia
5 years ago

“talking without fear or capitulation”

Wait, so… are those things usually present when he talks? This admission could blow some holes in his image…

Paradoxical Intention
5 years ago

I’m just going to sit back and wait for one of these chucklefucks to wander in here and start screeching about context and how we just “twisted” Paulie’s words to make it sound like he’s not actually doing anything at all.

Dreadnought
Dreadnought
5 years ago

“Cultural revolutions are not products of a social popularity, business as usual ethos. Real social change is not legislated or determined by Nielson rankings. It is not approved or disapproved by the Southern Poverty Law Center. They are not fomented nor are they broken at the ballot box.”

Instead Elam has decided that cultural revolutions are products of stongly worded articles posted on a public forum. Oh dear me, I think I can hear the collective trembling of all feminists. All Elam needs to do now is type his articles in all capitals and end each sentence with a bunch of exclamation marks and the feminists will capitulate.

Seriously though, all Elam wants to do is whine and complain and cares only about his wallet.

Tina S
Tina S
5 years ago

Uh, ok. So what do you do? This makes no sense.

Ibis
5 years ago

So does this mean we can stop calling them a “movement”? Please? Or “activists” for that matter? And…since they admit they’re not really about rights–men’s or otherwise–can we just stop calling them MRAs too?

Lady Mondegreen
Lady Mondegreen
5 years ago

Cultural revolutions are not products of a social popularity, business as usual ethos. Real social change is not legislated or determined by Nielson rankings. It is not approved or disapproved by the Southern Poverty Law Center. They are not fomented nor are they broken at the ballot box.

That’s nice, Pauly. But anybody smarter than an MRA (ie, everybody not an MRA) is bound to notice that it’s a non sequitur. It does fuckall to explain why you can’t be arsed to use your influence–or the money your deluded followers donate–to actually do anything concrete to help men.

weirwoodtreehugger
5 years ago

I am going to link to this anytime I see an MRA whining about feminism not addressing men’s issues. If they aren’t going to do activism for themselves, they sure as shit can’t expect anyone else to do it for them. If they won’t do it, Katie won’t either.

Using social media for activism has its uses but there needs to be meat space activism too or it’s not a movement.

ktrantingredhead
5 years ago

-sings- D is for douchebag, that’s good enough for me….

Kestrel
Kestrel
5 years ago

I recommend we reclassify Elam and co. as MRW i.e MR Whiners.

Kestrel
Kestrel
5 years ago

Umm. I am a little confused about “Katie” that people have been referring to. Could someone please give me a hint what I need to look up in the archive? Thank you.

Citizen Justin
5 years ago

I hope this makes the people who donate to Mr Elam see just how deserving he really is.

isidore13
isidore13
5 years ago

It was in the comments, Kestrel. A troll made reference to zie’s feminist friend Katie and it caught on, as these things do.

fruitloopsie
fruitloopsie
5 years ago

The men’s rights movement to the men who need help from them
http://youtu.be/rFSJ9LWGvgs
All Pr*ck elam cares about is money, he certainly has something in common with mr krabs
http://youtu.be/LzNL7Opf0bU
We shouldn’t call the men’s rights movement a ‘movement’ or ‘activism’ it’s a terrorist group

Annie Squidface
5 years ago

Helping men by disgusting the public to such a degree that they DON’T want to help men. Great.

KSRay
KSRay
5 years ago

Point being…they really think that harassing people online is “raising awareness”

It is. The He-Man Woman Haters Club, aka MRAs, are raising people’s awareness of what assholes they are.

Bina
Bina
5 years ago

Point being…they really think that harassing people online is “raising awareness”

Well, in a way, it is. It raises other people’s awareness of what trolls and bozos they all are.

Bina
Bina
5 years ago

…and gazumped!

Tessa
5 years ago

They point out the truly horrifying numbers of rapes in prison, but they don’t actually work with groups trying to stop rape and other forms of sexual abuse in prison

And had lots of fun joking about rapes in prison at their convention. Why try to stop it when it’s great for joking about and using it to try to silence feminists.

Tessa
5 years ago

That and the fact he has no intention of activisting anyway.

soren287
soren287
5 years ago

Hey, I know it says soren287, but it’s Chroniclurker. I’m just popping in to see if the icon thing I did is working.

soren287
soren287
5 years ago

nope…

Kootiepatra
5 years ago

Assemblage of Virulently Fuming Misogynists.

I get the feeling that Elam is trying to steal a page from the White Ribbon (the real one) playbook, “Well, we never claimed to run DV shelters; our goal is to raise awareness. We say that in, like, all of our publicity materials.” I seem to remember him castigating them for this.

But I guess since people came to White Ribbon’s defense, he decided this is now a bulletproof excuse for not doing activism. Except he’s missing the part about actually explaining your purpose accurately in your mission statement. And the part about actually raising awareness through organized campaigns. And the part about focusing on legitimate societal problems.

Tessa
5 years ago

Another thing… Men’s Rights Activists? More like Men’s Rights Inactivists!

wordsp1nner
wordsp1nner
5 years ago

In honor of Friday the Thirteenth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M71Qj11UhDE

wordsp1nner
wordsp1nner
5 years ago

Huh. Trying again on the embedding:

Tigerbos
Tigerbos
5 years ago

Can his followers continue to be so stupid that they give him money hand over fist when he refuses to DO anything? Yes please, continue to give this man money so your movement continues to sit there and do nothing. He is doing what MRA’s are best at – sitting around bitching while doing NOTHING to help in the areas they say need fixing. What a crock.

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