Detroit, Michigan: Women and supporters march against “men’s rights” conference at the Doubletree Hotel, June 7, 2014.
"Hotel refused 3,000 petitions with our demand until after a long standoff, with protesters refusing cops’ orders to leave."
Photos and report by Kris Hamel
This was quite possibly the most amazing experience I’ve ever had at a protest. It was just a great day all around.
Reblogging because I’m still super proud of this protest and being able to help organize it. It was a fantastic time and we were able to find so many amazing speakers, including myself, to talk about why feminism and men’s issues are not antitheses but instead should be understood through an intersectional politic.
The issue is that MRAs blame feminism and think feminists simply hate men and boys. To paraphrase one of our speakers, I hate that our society takes boys who are complex, thoughtful and well rounded people conforming them into men who are expected to perform a masculinity that is harmful and oppressive.
Yesterday was everything.
> “The issue is that MRAs blame feminism and think feminists simply hate men and boys.”
MRAs came into existence because Feminism wasn’t properly addressing men’s rights. So your response is to… protest men talking about male issues? To talk about how men allegedly created the patriarchy to oppress men, and therefore blame men for all female problems?
I don’t get it.
I’m not an MRA so I really need someone to come in and explain why feminists are protesting a conference on men’s problems instead of, idk, ACTUALLY HELPING PEOPLE or providing correct information.
…because they hate men…?
like, did you not get the memo?
"MRAs promote gendered violence"
what is projection
So was their goal to shut down the conference? Because ‘fuck the system’ seems like a good slogan then if it involves trying to smother views that disagree with their own in a system that supposedly promotes the right to hold that conference.
I went to the site of A Voice For Men (AVfM) who will be hosting the conference and checked out their mission statement:
- Promote the dissemination of information that will expose misandry and gender-centrism on all levels in our culture;
- Oppose any form of gender-centrism. We propose to foster the equal valuing of men and women socially, regardless of sexual orientation and identity, as well as their equal treatment under the law;
- Recognize the institution of marriage and the family unit as the foundation of civilized society. However, we support the trend away from that institution until the current legal zeitgeist making it unsafe for men and children is corrected. We support an end to “no fault” divorce and support default shared physical and legal custody in the event of divorce. We seek to promote awareness of information designed to protect men and fathers who are already married;
- Promote a rejection of sex based chivalry in any form or fashion.
- Promote the legal and nonviolent antagonism of all agents of misandry and gender-centrism, from members of academe, to holders of public office, to law enforcement and other state functionaries, to popular bloggers and to corporate agents who promote misandry and gender-centism for profit;
- Support peaceful acts of civil disobedience when necessary;
- Educate men, women, girls and boys about the threats they face in feminist governance and to promote an end to that governance;
- Debunk sex based lies and distortions wherever they occur;
- Offer a more reasoned, cogent and intellectually honest view of sexual politics;
- Address the variety of problems faced by men and boys under feminist governance and attempt to ameliorate those problems;
- Push for an end to rape hysteria, domestic violence hysteria and false allegations;
- Promote a culture that values equal treatment under the law for all human beings;
- Facilitate a new social contract between men and women, leading to mutual respect, accountability and expectation.
- AVFM’s sole ideology is compassion for men and boys that is equal to that of women and any other identified group.
So some pretty evil misogynistic stuff here like putting a stop to stereotypes like ‘all men are rapists/wifebeaters’ and ending sex-based chivalry, promoting absolute equality between men and women regardless of sex or gender identity. These men obviously must be part of Satan’s high-council or something. Well, one third of the speakers at the conference are educated accomplished women too but they’re probably all just brainwashed right??1
AVfM even states itself in its about page that ‘AVfM does not speak for the entirety of the men’s movement’. And clearly so. Their take on the presence of “feminist governance” and the “institution of marriage and the family unit as the foundation of civilized society” already puts them on the fringe, and something that many MRAs would not associate with in the first place.
And here’s the original tumblr post about this gathering to stop the MRA conference, opening up with that fun classic line of Elliot Rodger’s manifesto “that mimics the writing of MRAs”, which has already been disproven a multitude of times. This post about stopping the the conference also talks about and links to articles about the deaththreats surrounding the conference, in which AVfM claims that they’ve received deaththreats for the conference and this Feminist site questions the validity of them. Honestly I’m not interested in that part because there’s no way of knowing at this point.
All this said, trying to shut down a conference of this nature is immature and counterproductive to begin with. Protest against ideas, sure, do all that jazz, but as soon as you send the message of ‘fuck your opinion whatever it is you’re not allowed to disagree with me or you’re scum’ and try to literally have them removed from a conference they themselves will have organised; that’s going to make YOU look like the crazy ones and THEM the victims of exactly what they’re organising against.
I keep hearing about how evil the MRM is. The MRA as well. Get not once have I ever heard the protest a conference, or silence the opposition. so why is feminism supposedly so great, when it is simply silencing the opposition? Quite frankly…its as if they are concerned now with image and not goals.