Why does Tory Shepherd support mass murder and terrorism, but oppose programs on male health?

Tory Shepherd, a writer for the publication Adelaide Now who has recently written a hit piece on the emerging Male Studies program at UniSA, is a supporter of mass murder and terrorism. How do I know this? Because she has been “linked to it.” Don’t worry; as you’ll see in this article, it all makes sense.

As this site reported earlier, The University of South Australia will be offering courses in male studies in 2014. Contrary to the fraudulent assertions of various Feminists and their friends, the only courses available currently are for a certificate in male health.

There have been so many lies publicly circulated by Feminism & Co. about the nature of the course that the university had to make a public statement saying:

The certificate has been developed by the University and consists of two short courses – one covering male health in perspective, another dealing with health promotion programs that target males. No other courses have been approved and any proposed courses will be evaluated through normal university processes.

Contrary to its description in some media reports, the certificate is framed for people already working in health and allied health industries, and has been developed by and will be taught by University of South Australia staff only.

There is incredible need to study male health issues. Men die five years earlier than women and more often from nearly every major disease. They are also 80% of suicides and 93% of workforce deaths (see here for sources). Due to unrealistic standards about male psychology, men and boys are deterred from engaging in help-seeking strategies that may help them resolve these issues.

But apparently this is too much for some people. Tory Shepherd has taken it upon herself to launch a fusillade of distortions and smear attacks against male studies in a recent article. Upon pulling it up, the first thing one sees in bolded letters is this:

LECTURERS in a “world-first” male studies course at the University of South Australia have been linked to extreme views on men’s rights and websites that rail against feminism.

In case there was any doubt, this is a hit piece. Note the shady use of the phrase “linked to,” presented in the passive voice. We’ll be coming back to that soon.

Let’s conduct a little experiment as we dig into this. Looking at the original article at Adelaide Now, let’s count how many paragraphs and lines of text it takes before Shepherd actually allows the course instructors to define the course in their own words. Or at least, let’s see how long it takes her to simply state that the courses are about male health.

We’re already at one paragraph and three lines (again, looking at the original article). Let’s continue.

The lecturers’ backgrounds are likely to spark controversy, but organisers of the predominantly online course, promoted as the first of its type in the world, insist they are not anti-feminist and “it’s very difficult for anybody who has opposing views to get a word in”.

I don’t like it when we are only given quotes that in and of themselves appear very likely to be taken out of context, with no way to find the original context of the conversation ourselves. The fact that this is more or less used as a lead-in to the article is even more questionable.

Opposing views on what, exactly? Opposing misandry? Opposing Feminism? Opposing waffles and snow cones? Opposing dishonest journalism? What is being “opposed,” exactly? Indeed, with the kind of quote clipping that appears to be going on here, it seems that it is indeed difficult for them to get a word in edgewise.

That’s six lines, two paragraphs. We still aren’t told that the courses are about male health.

Two lecturers have been published by prominent US anti-feminist site A Voice for Men, a site which regularly refers to women as “bitches” and “whores” and has been described as a hate site by the civil rights organisation Southern Poverty Law Centre.

The SPLC? The extreme left-wing political hack group that frames everything it disagrees with as “hate”? The one that tried to slime this site by implying it had some kind of extreme right-wing agenda and wound up with a dozen eggs on its face? The one that classifies pick-up artist websites as “hate sites”?

Let’s see how Shepherd’s own tactics would look if applied against her. Recently a man in Virginia decided to go on a shooting rampage against the Family Research Council, taking his information about them from the SPLC’s “hate map” of conservatives. He got 25 years in jail, and the government labeled it terrorist activity.

So I suppose that makes the SPLC a terrorist organization rather than a civil rights organization. Given that Tory Shepherd seems to have a lot of faith in this organization, I suppose we need to ask why Tory Shepherd supports mass murder and terrorism.

I’m sure she would disagree with the notion that she supports mass murder and terrorism. But she has been “linked to it,” so that must make it true. Right?

That’s the kind of slime I could throw at Shepherd if we acted like her. But I won’t do that. I’ll transparently acknowledge that I am writing satire. And why am I being transparent? Because I don’t want to sink to the level of Tory Shepherd.

And technically, one could just as easily say that A Voice for Men is a civil rights organization. After all, one of their chief slogans is that men’s rights are human rights. AVFM has consistently advocated due process for men and boys who are wrongly accused of sexual misconduct, and due process is indeed a civil right.

Oh, and that’s nine lines and three paragraphs of Shepherd’s article with no mention that the courses are about male health, but plenty of slime-coated attacks against the people teaching them. We continue:

The US site specifically welcomed the UniSA course as a milestone, editor Paul Elam saying it marked the end of feminists’ control of the agenda.

Even if this statement is true, why is that a bad thing? Why should the conversation on gender equity be dominated by a group of people who are gynocentric to the core? Aren’t there two sexes, rather than just one? Isn’t intellectual diversity a good thing? Or is conformity for the mere sake of conformity a virtue?

It’s also worth questioning whether this singular program – which, again, is about male health – really has the capacity to mark the end of the Feminist hegemony in academia. It’s a grand claim, but one that is – in my assessment – unrealistic. Male Studies is an excellent milestone and its developers have done an extraordinary amount of work to create it, but it simply does not have the resources to carry out such a task, even if that was its intention.

Also, that’s eleven lines and four paragraphs without Shepherd telling anyone what the courses are about.

Another, US psychology professor Miles Groth, says that date-rape awareness seminars might be deterring men from going to university.

Again, why is this a bad thing? Many “date rape awareness seminars” are really just cultish male-bashing indoctrination programs. We all remember Dr. Keith Edwards’s “She Fears You” seminar at over 60 colleges and universities, don’t we? Here’s a picture of it for you (video here):

Imagine if the presentation was about gang violence, required only blacks to attend, and was titled “Whites Fear You?” Wouldn’t that be deemed racist? This kind of institutionalized bigotry was preached at 60 colleges and universities, and that was considered A-OK by those who claim to be all about “gender sensitivity.”

“She Fears You” is not alone, not by a long shot. As this site has documented time and time again, academia has been a refuge for poisonously anti-male attitudes for decades. While this atmosphere has been accepted by academics and Feminists of many stripes, apparently one program at one university on male health is unacceptable.

Mr Den Hollander has tried to sue ladies’ nights for discrimination against men. He has likened the position of men today to black people in America’s south in the 1950s “sitting in the back of the bus”, and blames feminists for oppressing men.

This is something that needs to be framed carefully. While the disadvantages men and boys face do sometimes function in similar ways as the oppression of blacks, it is of course not the same in terms of degree. I advise all men’s advocates to not only make sure they understand this distinction, but also to make that distinction clear in their advocacy if and when they attempt to use such comparisons.

Twenty-one lines, eight paragraphs. Eight paragraphs with no mention that the course are about male health. Not some crazy patriarchal conspiracy. Just illness, death, and dying.

The course, which has no prerequisites, begins this year and will canvass subjects from men’s health to gender bias. Course founder Gary Misan, from UniSA’s Centre for Rural Health and Community Development, said they were “not anti-women” and that lecturers were associated with a range of groups.

At last, after dumping a barrel of verbal feces on the course instructors, we are told what the courses are actually about. Male health! Indeed, a matter of life and death. What a terribly misogynistic thing – to be concerned about the death of men. How dare they? Shouldn’t these academic upstarts know their place after decades of Feminist advocacy?

“I wouldn’t say any of them are extreme or anti-feminist,” Dr Misan said. “The aim of the courses are to present a balanced view and to counter some of the negative rhetoric that exists in society in general and in some areas of academe about men.

Those “some areas of academe,” in my experience and observation, are most often the humanities and certain administrative sectors.

“It’s very difficult for anybody who has opposing views to get a word in. As soon as somebody mentions anything they perceive as being anti-feminist, they’re pilloried, and in some cases almost persecuted.”

Dr Misan also said that writing something for a specific website did not necessarily suggest an affiliation.

I can agree with that, depending on how you define affiliation. If you define it as two entities each sharing their entire missions, then what Dr. Misan said makes sense. Also, you can appear and make statements at various venues without agreeing with everything that is said at that venue, especially in the comments section of various online websites.

Let’s be honest here: the opposition to male studies has nothing to do with equality. This is about a gang of hateful ideologues seeking to maintain their dominance over the conversation on gender issues in higher education. Contrary to their lies and insinuations, the knee-jerk reactionaries are not those concerned with men’s health, but those stuck in the 1970s era of gender advocacy who oppose any change to the ideological status quo.

This isn’t the 1970s anymore. They seriously need to bring themselves into the 21st century.

There’s a lot more that I could unpack concerning Shepherd’s article, but I’ll stop there. Not that I can’t, but the gist of Shepherd’s article has been established by now. Go read Tory Shepherd’s article here, and lend some comments in support of male studies.

Male Studies: canceled?

Some people have made the claim that the male studies program has been canceled. All I can say is that my information from a reputable source, which is current as of noon today, is that registration for the program is still open.

So please, if you are interested in the study of male health, if you would like to support male studies, and if you have the time to do so, please register. It is usually the case that whether a significant number of students show interest in a course will determine if it remains open, and for how long.

Although the politics of the current situation may render that general practice uncertain, it is nonetheless a point that needs to be made.

Official course information and registration links are here.


Editor’s note: this item originally published on A Voice for Male Students. –DE

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