A Voice for a Select Group of Men With Too Much Time On Their Hands

by | September 1, 2012
filed under Feminism

by Matilda Branson

There is a website that I don’t like very much. Originally I was not going to write about it, because I hated the thought that through writing a blog post about it, I’d be indirectly promoting something that makes me feel nauseated when I read it.

But then I thought – if you don’t speak up about things you come across in life that strike you as fundamentally damaging and unnecessarily vicious, then it will always nag at you – that you said nothing, did nothing.  And so I write.

This is the site: http://www.avoiceformen.com. The Southern Poverty Law Centre considers these guys a hate group.

Their Mission is “Don’t Get Fucked”.  It doesn’t get any better from there.

Despite misgivings, before making a snap judgement on the site, I had a good read of a number of articles on the site written by various members of “A Voice for Men”. In all things gender, it is important to give things the time of day, consider new perspectives on gender issues – new theories, articles, research findings- to be open minded and try and see where people are coming from.

The more I read, the sadder I felt. A site filled with misogynistic and vitriolic articles railing against women and the feminist movement (just the whole thing generally, of course, with little nuanced analysis of different aspects of the feminist movement or its different forms. So I feel no shame in analysing the site as a whole in turn).

Paranoid ramblings, self-pitying accounts by hard-done-by men, personal attacks on women, self-righteous articles parading a few facts and figures to support bogus claims and sensationalist article titles make up this site. And the authors, just hanging out for people to respond to their claims with outrage and feminist rhetoric, hoping desperately to engage with their own perceived quick wit and words in troll wars. So petty, with too much time on their hands. So for any potential trolls out there, don’t bother me, because I’m really not interested in responding to you.

Whilst gender inequality exists throughout the world, when I read of the oft-claimed woes lacking any legitimacy of poor little men suffering at the hands of women in their comfortable bubbles of their Western, developed worlds, I have little sympathy. Get out and see what’s beyond your own backyard, and see what actual oppression is, the situations of marginalised men and women in the many developing countries throughout the world.

If you feel so passionate about giving a voice to men, then dedicate yourself to a real cause. Hop on a plane and go to a country where you can put as much effort as you put into your articles, into work on the ground. Work to legalise homosexuality in countries where to be gay is a death sentence. Support young angry men who were recruited as child soldiers and taught nothing but violence and how to fight whilst being plied with alcohol and drugs all the time so they were alcoholics and drug addicts by the age of 10- help them to develop new livelihood skills and integrate back into society. Help bright young boys who come from families living in absolute poverty receive an education, to become future leaders. Advocate to governments about the non-obvious, un-sexy issues issues (please – everyone gets on the circumcision bandwagon- there are so many other things to advocate for).

Be constructive and do something to be proud of. There are so many men from marginalised groups you could work with to help find a voice, help them build their own capacity, to help create spaces for the voiceless to speak, in what are often very closed, limiting and threatening environments.

If you want to contribute, then do it meaningfully and constructively. Don’t act like wronged ten year olds and shit-stirrers, campaigning for a site that is based on hatred and misogyny. Don’t ring up women pretending to be someone else, to oh-so-cleverly ‘catch them out’, record the phone call, and put it on your site touting it as “the real voice of feminism”. Grow up, and use your talents and time for more productive endeavours.

(photo via Wikimedia Commons)


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  • Blow it out your ass

  • Kilbert

    Looks like linking to the site will entice a number of hard done by men to leave insightful comments like the one above.

    Very pertinent article, shining a light on a dark part of the internet.

  • @ Kilbert

    The comment mirrored the “insight” in the OP precisely.

    When gender ideologues start penning articles that even attempt to be balanced, they will get a largely different response.

    Oh, and this from Arthur Goldwag of the SPLC, who spearheaded the attacks on men’s activists:

    “It should be mentioned that the SPLC did not label MRAs as members of a hate movement; nor did our article claim that the grievances they air on their websites – false rape accusations, ruinous divorce settlements and the like – are all without merit.”

  • Constance

    Roosh V (real name Daryush Valizadeh) has announced plans to visit Montreal later this month to conduct research for his next sex tourism guide. Roosh is also listed by the SPLC as a misogynist who promotes rape and abuse of young women. He will use a false identity, but his physical appearance is distinctive. I’d like get the word out among the feminist community in that area to keep an eye on him.

  • Not buying it

    I am not necessarily hard done by women as a collective at all after all I do have a mother, sisters, aunts, very close women friends & mates, not to mention coworkers from fairer sex whom I adore, on top of that I am originally from a war torn third world country, miss/madam, nevertheless I can see the point a website like (aVfm) & few sites like at are trying to make, including a famous great thinker/ egalitarian humanist / researcher/ writer, who was elected three times as a member of the national organization of women(largest feminist entity) , with few daughters of his own, Dr Warren Farrell !!!

    He is an open minded enough as a human being that he can question the fairness & usefulness of his deep held beliefs that might had been justified in the past with today’s realities, without any malaise, hatred or misogyny towards you or anybody else I urge you to just look at this gender fairness issue through his work & not necessarily through (aVfm ) articles since it will not give you an understanding through anger.

    Deep held indoctrinated beliefs rightly or wrongly have a way of hiding the truth that stares us in the face for fear of proven to be misguided for so long or at least holding on to them even when the reality of the society we live in now had changed & please do not compare your situation & women here in the west with women where I came from!!! It just doesn’t do justice. & by the way as an Ex child soldier (by force) , I have seen what can happen to women there, have a good day.

  • Justin

    I was hoping to see some examples from this “hate” site that prove to be so misogynistic.

    Feminists are not known for their sense of honesty and impartiality. Matilda Branson is a feminist and her opinion as a result will be biased, moreover discovering the opinion libel piece by the SPLC is poisoning of the well. ddLdoesn’tddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd

    the draer

  • Who Cares

    Keep up the good work. It’s feminist biased articles like the one above that are helping to swell the ranks of the mens movement.

    Thank you.

  • I’m guilty of visiting AVFM often, but I’m not misogynistic and in fact I love women. I’m different then most MRAs in that I hope that we (all of us) could work together to solve gender issues. I do disagree that men’s issues are however “without merit”. For instance the trending decline of boy’s education is a factual reality. Only 40% of boys end up going to college. This is a lot worse for racial minorities. Men also have issues with health discrimination, negative stereotyping, depression (including higher suicide rates), and lack of recognition that we are equally likely to be victims of domestic violence (CDC data).

    I don’t look to minimize women’s issues but frankly I don’t see how feminism is working to address these and other issues (i.e. parental rights). So as a man these issues are important to me and that’s why I keep in touch with AVFM and other men’s rights websites. However if you’re a feminist and have concrete information that shows how feminism is also helping men (with the issues I’ve listed) please email me sources at womenandmenlove@gmail.com.

    Personally I hate it whenever I see MRAs and feminist engaging in a gender war. I believe we both have issues and sometimes I can’t help but think what type of synergy we can have if we all sat down together to work out our issues together. Then after cleaning up our own house we could move on to the rest of the world where this article rightfully recognized the most serious gender problems exist.

    Peace!

  • Grim Reaper

    I’m sure what seems to you to be rape and abuse is actually a man who is linking a person with a product to a buyer. Simple as that. ALL females expect to gain from having sex. Some are more open about it than others.

    Are you going to expose the prostitutes for exploiting men’s sexuality and then march against them? Or are you going to let them keep selling their sex?