Well, we are entering into the 14th year of the third millennium, and I would like to take a moment to look back on everything that MR-E has accomplished over this past year. The purpose of this reflection is to celebrate our successes and hopefully inspire other MRAs to take their activism into the real world by showing you what is possible. This reflection also allows us a chance to set the bar for activism the following year. This can also act as place for exact dates and relevant info for future reference for all things which transpired in 2013. Some information in this article will be redundant to a seasoned MRA, but it is presented here to provide the proper context to newcomers who aren’t totally in the know. Please bear this in mind as you read through.
January, February, and March were relatively uneventful. MR-E took this time to meet with it’s members and plan out events for the year. We designed posters and brainstormed on how to force these issues to the surface of public discourse. We printed posters and had professional business cards and car magnets made up with our logo on them. We also took this time to meet and recruit new members. Each of whom brought their own talents and assets to the table. These meetings would occur at regular intervals throughout the year. Sometimes we would get together to discuss projects and other times we would get together just to hang out and unwind.
On April 3rd we upgraded our website to it’s present wordpress format. This provided a place for people to go and see what we’re about. It also helped prospective new members and media personnel contact us.
On April 26th, we received the tragic news of Earl Silverman’s suicide. As every MRA is keenly aware by now, Earl founded and ran the only domestic violence shelter for men in Canada. Twenty years ago, Earl was a victim of domestic violence at the hands of his ex wife, and when he went looking for assistance, he found nothing but resources geared towards teaching men to manage their anger and stop their abusive behavior. So Earl founded M.A.S.H. the “Mens Alternative Safe House” in Calgary, Alberta. The final piece of research Earl produced reveals the Alberta Coalition of Women’s Shelters (ACWS) lists 43 women’s shelter locations in the province of Alberta. FInancial information on 9 of these shelters (mostly those on Indian reserves) was unavailable. These 34 remaining shelters received 44 million dollars of taxpayer funded subsidies in 2010 alone. For twenty years, Earl ran his shelter in Calgary out of his own pocket. He constantly petitioned for financial assistance, but in the span of 20 years, he would only get one $700.00 cheque from the government. After Earl was forced to sell the house, he tragically chose to end his life by hanging himself in his garage. On May 11, MR-E hosted a memorial service for Earl at an Edmonton legion. Our thanks to those who attended and to those who donated to help make this possible. If only Earl knew how many people cared about him and his work.
On June 8th, we introduced you to Tom Matty, a man fighting to regain access to his kids. In many respects, Tom’s case wasn’t remarkable, but it did demonstrate clear and undeniable bias on the part of the Canadian courts. Repeatedly, they ruled against the best interests of the children, and in favor of a woman who’s claims of abuse were totally unsubstantiated. In fact, regardless of the fact she wasn’t a Canadian citizen, Tom’s ex girlfriend had her entire legal representation paid for by Canadian taxpayers, while Tom (a Canadian citizen) had to pay for his own legal fees out of his own pocket. MR-E, AVFM radio and Mr.Matty partnered up to attempt to change the legal climate in the form of an appeal. If successful, this appeal would have set a new precedence for all men fighting to regain or maintain access with their kids by giving them an example of proven bias in the Canadian courts to refer back to. Due to the nature of this appeal, and the strong likelihood of success it had, those who wanted to see it fail slapped it with a $5000.00 legal surity, hoping this would kill it dead in it’s tracks. In truth, 99% of the time, this strategy works for them. But not this time. MR-E hosted a fundraiser to give this appeal a chance, and in an astonishing act of generosity and solidarity which should never be downplayed, mens rights activists all over the world rallied together and raised more than $6000.00 in less than 24 hours! Our appeal was funded, and Tom’s lawyers got to work preparing it. A third of the remainder of that donation money went to Tom so he could afford a trip to Thailand to see his kids. A third went to a supposed shelter for male victims of domestic violence in Montreal, (which unfortunately turned out to be a dud). The remaining 1/3 of that donation money went towards funding MR-E’s activist activities. Even though we would learn on September 5th, that this appeal had failed to succeed, the point for the take away is that we still showed up and tried. In the work we do, we will see many more failures and successes. The only guarantee is: unless we try we will never see any successes at all.
MR-E then learned Dr. James Brown was taking his message on the crisis facing boys in education on tour across Canada. When we were notified Dr.Brown was including Edmonton on that tour, we did everything we could to advertise this lecture and set up a proper venue in the Edmonton Public Library. We hung our posters on kiosks, universities and anywhere else we though we could attract the attention of those who would be interested in this sort of discussion. Dr.Brown’s lecture took place on July 8th, and it was a resounding success. We had a great turn out and some very generous people donated to help pay for the cost of the venue and compensate Dr.Brown for coming out and sharing his knowledge on this topic. We strongly encourage you to watch the footage we captured at this event here:
<iframe width=”750″ height=”420″ src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/iS-QwfwJAhQ” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>
Please keep in mind that in between these major events, MR-E members constantly participated in smaller forms of activism. Individually and sometimes collectively, MR-E members did things like drive the car with it’s magnets advertising our website through busy streets in the middle of the day. we would also hand out business cards to those who we feel deserved our message. And several times a month we also hung mens rights themed posters all over Edmonton city streets. It was a fairly predictable routine. We put posters up, and like clockwork, the local feminists would slither out of their dark holes as soon as the coast was clear to tear them down. We exercised our right to free speech, and at the same time we gave our attention starved dissenters a sense of accomplishment. As mentioned before, one of these poster runs was done to advertise the Dr. James Brown lecture. And one of the areas we made sure to hit was the University of Alberta campus. Our logic of course being, that who would be more interested in a lecture on education than the academic community. Since we were out there, we also put up our other posters as well. Among them was a poster which we had never put up before. It sat in the cue waiting for it’s time in the rotation, like a goon on a hockey bench. As luck would have it, today was that day. The poster spoofed a previous poster campaign which was concocted by feminist ideologues which essentially gendered the crime of rape, insinuated women were helpless objects with no control over what happens to them, and insinuated rape was a crime of opportunity, and given that opportunity, most any random male would take it. So, “Just because she’s drinking, doesn’t mean she wants to have sex. Sex without consent equals sexual assault. Don’t Be That Guy”.
On July 10th, MR-E put up posters reading “Just because you regret a one night stand, doesn’t mean it wasn’t consensual. Lying about sexual assault equals a crime. Don’t be that girl.” Through some ridiculous coincidence, Lise Gotell (as in “Go tell it on the mountain, that it’s moron hour up in here!”), a bigot extrodunaire who is the chair of the UofA’s women’s studies department, happened to notice these posters herself as she was arriving to work the following morning. She was one of the masterminds behind the original “DBT” poster campaign and when she saw how we violated her brainchild over and over on every flat surface in sight, well, she threw a royal knipshit. At some point the media was notified and a complete shit storm ensued. At work the following day, I struggled to manage the interview requests which relentlessly poured into our MR-E email. Articles about this parody poster campaign would be written all over the world. Our website traffic for that week alone spiked a ludicrous 122% above our per week average up until that point, and has maintained a level several times that original average ever since. Radio shows were aired, pathetic law suits were filed, panties were ruffled, and countless comment sections were inundated with arguments both for and against the messages of these two poster campaigns. Control over the discourse on rape was instantly wrenched from the hands of bigoted ideologues, and for the first time ever, honest discussions about this topic took place on mainstream platforms. This event certainly put MR-E on the map, but most importantly, it brought the entire MRM to the forefront of the Canadian public’s eye for at least one 24 hour media cycle (which in Canada, lasts about 1 month, eh). We had no idea when we set out that day that this poster would spark this kind of a reaction. If we did, I guarantee you we would have put them up a hell of a lot sooner.
At the hight of the DBT girl poster campaign controversy, internet celebrity GirlWritesWhat and members of MR-E were invited to appear on the infamous Tom Lykis podcast. Even though I sat in the cue for 2 hours and never got a chance to speak on the air, I enjoyed listening in as our own GWW expertly fielded Tom’s questions about MR-E, what we stand for, as well as our activist activities. Great job Karen!
On August 12th, MR-E attended the Edmonton 2013 SlutWalk. We were there waving signs which said “I love sluts” and “Whor-Ah for sluts!” Video here:
<iframe width=”750″ height=”420″ src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/SRoKSMOKhkU” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>
We bet that even if we showed up to this supposedly pro-slut demonstration with signs expressing our support of sluts, the feminists would be so intellectually deficient that they would go through all sorts of mental gymnastics just to take offense by our signs by virtue of the fact they were being waved by their sworn enemies. And they didn’t disappoint. Only a few short days after this event, on August 18th, a mental midget named Ryjin Vander Hoek published a video criticizing MR-E. Talk about your low hanging fruit.
On September 11th, MR-E fired up the shit-mobile and invaded Calgary. We lost a good car magnet that day, but we also helped establish Mens Rights Calgary. As is our nature, we postered the crap out of cow-town and had a blast with some local MRAs there for a whole day. Mens Rights Saskatoon, Mens Rights Sydney and A Voice For Men branches in the UK and Romania also became active in 2013, our best to each of these new groups and their fledgeling broods. Here’s to a long and hopefully productive era of cooperation and success. That’s our official stance. Unofficially, if any of you punks think you can out-activist us here at MR-E, then well, you’re freaking dreaming! It’s on now, bitches!
September 14th, we finally did something we hoped to do for many months. We managed to capture two feminists tearing down some of our posters. These two cowards were fine with censoring those messages they disagreed with, but when confronted with their fascist behavior they didn’t seem to have anything to say. Apparently feminists think their right to free speech includes their right to censor us. So once again, showing up and winning.
By the 15th of September, the hype surrounding the DBT Girl poster campaign was noticeably dying down. Sure a few feminists were just getting caught up, but to those that mattered, it was yesterday’s news. So MR-E put up a new controversial poster. This time challenging Lise Gotell herself. We put these up AROUND the UofA campus so we could not be accused of trespassing on their precious property where contrarian points of view are not welcome. Once again, MR-E was in the media spotlight where we belong.
On September 24th, MR-E submitted a candidate for city council in the Edmonton elections. Yeah we did. Our candidate ran on the “patriarchy” platform, and promised to further the systemic oppression of women and breed animals to more closely resemble the almighty phallus. Most people got the satire of this fake campaign instantly. For those slightly slower individuals who didn’t, please allow me to break it down for you now. The point of this patriarchy campaign was to demonstrate just how ludicrous this “patriarchy” theory truly is. If a patriarchy existed, THIS is what it would look like. We used feminist’s own definitions of patriarchy to write that platform. It literally came straight from the pig’s mouth. Juxtapose this obviously phony campaign platform with the society we actually live in and ask yourself; how insane would we have to be for somebody like this to win in an election. To anybody sympathetic to feminism, always remember this patriarchy is what feminists claim YOU believe in, and according to them, only their social justice programs and social engineering can restore us to sanity. On election day, our candidate received the fewest votes of everybody. Even the anarchist who told people “not to vote for him” beat the pants off us. So the next time some brain dead blow hard tries to claim we live in a patriarchal society, use this example to take away their argument. And by all means, feel free to rip this material off and replicate it in your local community.
On September 28th, the much anticipated mens rights rally took place in Toronto, Ontario. Duckman, GirlWritesWhat, and my humble self were in attendance representing MR-E. The lecture on the need for men’s centers was very interesting, but the highlight of the trip (for me at least) was getting to meet and party with the great men and women behind this movement in person for the very first time. It was very reassuring to learn such genuinely good and decent people are fighting along side us in this effort. People who’s integrity and commitment to fairness and justice was simply unrivaled. Except Paul Elam. What an ass! That man stands 10 feet tall and has absolutely zero moral fiber to speak of. LOL, well obviously I’m joking here. Paul is probably more like 8 feet tall.
Aside from the radical marxist feminists who made an appearance on the second day, to protest our peaceful public demonstration in Queens Park, the entire weekend went off without a hitch. We even found time to leave our mark on the Toronto light posts (not what you think) before flying back to Edmonton.
In early November, another group of genius manginas took their best shot at denouncing us with predictable results. By this time the smarter feminists had learned to ignore us, as we represent the turning of the tide. I have a theory that the feminists must have though that our DBT Girl parody poster was the product of some uninformed pranksters who were just having a laugh and would surely crumble under a little pressure from them and scrutiny from an intense media spotlight. They raised the alarm thinking they could bully whoever was responsible into denouncing this parody poster and use this as an opportunity to renew their rape culture bullshit on national TV. Instead, they got Karen Straughan, an entire movement of well informed counter-feminist MRAs and a local group of rag-tag activists who can’t be shamed into compliance and who don’t give a fuck. Suddenly they realized there is nowhere for them to go from here but down and the more they struggle the more they hasten their decline. However, even though the smartest of our foes know to stay away from us, there will always be the more impulsive types like the dopes in this video who can’t help themselves. This re-affirmes a simple truth: when they show up to challenge us, they make fools of themselves. When we show up, we win!
On the 16th of November, MR-E launched a new series called “Great Moments in MGTOW”. Instead of telling people what MGTOW philosophy is about, we aim to simply demonstrate it. If you know of a great moment in MGTOW, please submit it to our email (MensRightsEdmonton@gmail.com) Thank you.
<iframe width=”750″ height=”420″ src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/B3AygjimgyY” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>
On November 20th, in keeping with our penchant for performing public services, MR-E exposed a local post secondary teacher, Barret Weber’s rampant anti-semiticm. Yes, we are heros.
And finally, in December, MR-E helped our new contributor Fidelbogen launch the “Feminism poisons women” meme. Spread this around, would you? Spreaad it!!
Now I’m going to take off my humility hat for one second, just to stress something I feel very strongly about. And that is the need for MRAs to form real life activist groups like ours. Get out there and take this into the real world. You have no idea what can happen as a result. “Postergate” as it is now being referred to, was an accident! We didn’t plan on that, it just sort of happened as a result of the work we were doing. Imagine the change that would be possible (both accidental and deliberate) if dozens of activist groups like ours and other branches of AVFM were in operation all over the world. You think the feminists could stand up to that with their message of guilt, shame and submission? Despite all their ill-gotten power and finances, I tell you right now, they would be absolutely DEVASTATED by the cultural shockwaves we would create. They could hardly be called our opposition. We have the logic and the facts on our side. Use them! When local feminists put on a demonstration shaming or blaming men – show up and MOCK THEM! When manginas stupidly stray from their flock and engage you in an argument – make them pay by exposing their ridiculous beliefs in full view of the public. Let’s get to work making the term “feminism” fall into the same level of disrepute as “nazism”.
And that about wraps it up. All in all I’d say it was a damn good, bloody good, damn good year. Our thanks to all our friends at AVFM and to all of you who pitched in to help us with these projects, be it in the form of your time, or your effort, or your financial contributions.
Special mentions go out to:
Every single person who donated
and me, Razlo (okay humility hat has now been put back on).
One thing I can guarantee you is that we will be relying on you again in the coming years. Your contributions make what we do possible and open up new options and possibilities for us. And trust me, we got some BIG plans that are lying in wait until we have the funding to do them right. Seriously, you haven’t seen anything yet. Can’t wait to see what 2014 has in store for us. Let’s make it a big one.
Oh, and one more thing.
It’s “Mens Rights Edmonton!”
Not “MRA Edmonton”, or “Edmonton MRA”, or “MRE-Edmonton”, or whatever else. Enough is enough!