Let this article be proof of the nature and character of many of the people who oppose progress for Men’s Human Rights. And let this issue be a rallying point for those who truly oppose violence and advocate social justice.
The first First International Conference on Men’s Issues is scheduled to be held on June 26-28 in Detroit, Michigan. It is scheduled to be a great event. Never before has such a diverse a group of people met to engage in an exchange of ideas from a perspective of compassion for men and boys.
This event will unite academics and advocates from diverse backgrounds and across the political spectrum. Included among them is Dr. Warren Farrell, three-time board member of the National Organization for Women-New York, Senator Anne Cools (the first black female senator to be elected to Canada’s upper house), Erin Pizzey (the founder of the first-ever battered women’s shelter), and many more.
Unfortunately, this is apparently too much for those who oppose the idea of a men’s human rights movement. Organization against the conference for a planned protest on June 7 appeared on Facebook, where threats of violence were made by anti-MHRA commenters were allowed to remain but comments by men’s advocates requesting an open dialog were repeatedly deleted. In the characteristic Orwellian nature of those who oppose men’s issues, the administration of the group rationalized this by claiming that they need to “make a safe space.”
As A Voice for Men has recently publicized, the threats have since escalated well beyond simple comments on a Facebook page. On May 29 the conference organizers have received a letter from the hotel management which says:
The threats have escalated to include death threats, physical violence against our staff and other guests as well as damage to the property. The callers have indicated that they will be stationed within the hotel as guests, which raises our level of concern.
The hotel management has placed the onus on the conference organizers to pay what will likely turn out to be a very onerous security fee:
light of the nature of your Event.
Based upon the nature of these threats, we have determined that adequate security measures include the engagement of the Detroit Police Department (DPD) to secure the building. Based upon the number of access and egress points we will require 2 Detroit Police officers in the lobby and 3 officers on the meeting room floor, each on a 24 hour basis. As the threats include accessing the guests floors another 3 officers on the guest floors on a 24 hour basis. This is a minimum of 7 officers at all times, 24 hours a day but could increase based on further threats or circumstances that warrant the addition of security.
This is not the first time that this sort of thing has happened. When Karen Straughan was due to speak at Ryerson University the administration fined the Canadian Association for Equality (CAFE, the group sponsoring her) a $1600 “security fee” due to the history of violence and criminal behavior on the part of Feminists and their allies at their previous protests of academic events.
Some may be discouraged by the violent tendencies of these people. I would heart. These people are putting their values (or lack thereof) on display for the world to see. They are not organizing to attend the event, listen to what is being said, and ask incisive questions. On the contrary, the only thing they are interested in is shutting down the event. They are destroying their credibility before the world.
Suzanne McCarley, one of the editors at A Voice for Men, had this to say on Facebook:
I’d like to encourage everyone who cares about these issues to either donate to AVFM or purchase a ticket to attend the conference. These are among the best ways you can show your support. At this point, given the wide array of speakers who are going to be at the conference presented, given the pathologically violent tendencies of those who have made it clear that they are hell-bent on opposing any voice for men and boys, this goes well beyond the politics of the men’s movement. It goes well beyond whether you like or don’t like A Voice for Men.
If you are unfamiliar with the history of censorship and repression of men’s advocacy, I encourage you to peruse some of our in-house articles regarding freedom of speech.
Threats of violence are common among those who oppose the human rights of men and boys. During the 2006 Duke lacrosse false rape case, Feminists and their friends paraded around a banner reading “castrate,” an open call for sexual violence against the three young men who were falsely accused of rape. Again, in their typical Orwellian fashion, they rationalized their call to violence by saying they were “opposing sexual violence.” Of which there was none.
Last year those who opposed the Men’s Human Rights speakers sponsored by the Canadian Association for Equality (CAFE) called for violence if their demands were not met that the university close down the event. In pursuit of a sexual misconduct policy which defined rape so broadly beyond its legal definition that it essentially eviscerated due process, the Feminist group “Radical Womyn of Antioch” threatened Antioch College with violence if they failed to adopt the policy they proposed .
These are not “progressive” people whose tolerance, enlightenment, and evenhandedness will take humanity forward. These are hateful, bigoted ideologues whose primary defining feature is their hypocrisy.
It’s time to stop running from these people.
Notes: The excerpt is from page seven of the book Rape on Campus, a collection of academic essays regarding rape.
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