Men’s Rights activists and others in the manosphere often complain that it’s unfair to link their movement to killers like the virulent antifeminist mass murderers Marc Lepine and Anders Breivik, even though the antifeminist, anti-woman ideology of these killers is oftem indistinguishable from MRA thought.
But the plain fact is that they make the links themselves. Whenever there is some sort of mass killing by someone who is driven at least in part by the hatred of women, it seems like it’s only a matter of time before some MRA steps up to, if not explicitly endorse the killer, at least suggest some sort of sympathy or empathy with him and/or to suggest that the killing in some way is an understandable or justifiable or even praiseworthy reaction to the the alleged oppression of men.
This time it seems to have happened with record speed. Over on the A Voice for Men forum, one commenter, GregA, compares the mass killer in Newtown today — whose motives are still completely unknown — with oppressed people rising up against tyranny in the Middle East:
So far the only reply he’s gotten challenges this odious comparison, so that’s a tiny bit comforting.
Naturally, the MRAs will say that this commenter is some sort of feminist troll. But he’s made dozens of comments on the AVFM forums that are standard-issue MRA stuff – he seems to be a bit obsessed with the notion that feminist commenters online are being paid for commenting – and his comments in the past (at least those that I looked at) seem to have been generally well-received there.
EDITED TO ADD: If you would like to discuss the Newton shootings without having to think about this horrible comment of GregA’s, I’ve set up a separate no-trolls, no MRAs, thread for that.
EDITED TO ADD MORE: Meanwhile, over on A Voice for Men itself, one of the first commenters in a thread on the subject blames the shootings on, you guessed it, misandry:
Meanwhile, AVFM “managing editor” Dean Esmay complains that feminists “will find some way or other to blame us in specific for this.” In case Esmay is reading this, I am not blaming the Men’s Rights movement for this shooting, mainly because we have absolutely no idea what motivated the shooter. What I am doing is pointing out that someone on AVFM’s own forum, someone who has previously posted there extensively, is comparing this murderer of children to some kind of freedom fighter, and another in the very thread you are posting in has decided (based on absolutely nothing) that “misandry” is to blame.
You may also recall the numerous comments from MRAs justifying or at least excusing, the Seal Beach shooter.
Here are some more MRA comments on the Seal Beach murders which I chose not to post at the time. These are from A Voice for Men. (In the original thread they weren’t next to one another; there’s more horrible stuff in the thread besides these two comments.)
Are these guys “feminist trolls?” No. They are both long-time commenters at AVFM.
But again, pointing out these horrible comments is not the same as blaming the MRM for that shooting, or for the shooting today.
In the case of Lepine and Breivik, people linked them to MRAs because they had (or in the case of Breivik still has) virulently anti-feminist worldviews virtually identical with much of the stuff posted regularly on Men’s Rights sites, and other “manosphere” sties generally.
Presumably we will learn more about this shooter’s motivations, and then we can decide if anyone besides the shooter himself is to blame.
EDITED TO ADD ONCE MORE: Elam has now shut down the thread on A Voice for Men; as I write this the thread on the A Voice for Men forum is still up. I suggest you take a look at it and make screenshots. Elam says it’s because I’m “using comments from the thread in order to push his lies.” It’s not clear how quoting his followers (in full, without edits) is a “lie.” Apparently he’s unwilling to let his followers continue to post comments because, we can only assume, he knows they will say more horrific things, and people outside the AVFM cult might see what those inside it actually think.
Not, at this point, that there’s much doubt about what they think.
EDITED TO ADD STILL MORE: Meanwhile, over on The Spearhead:
As most of the readers here will know, the shooter was 20 years old, wasn’t a father and the shooting had nothing to do with any custody battle.