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a voice for men a woman is always to blame advocacy of violence antifeminism evil wives evil women imaginary oppression judgybitch men who should not ever be with women ever misogyny MRA not-quite-plausible deniability paul elam playing the victim taking pleasure in women's pain why can't men punch women? yeah that's the ticket

Spinning out of control: Janet Bloomfield takes A Voice for Men’s reality-distortion field on the road

satirekoolaid

One of the benefits of running a cult – or so I have heard – is the ability to define reality for your cult followers. The principals at the cultish A Voice for Men do this all the time – pretending, for example, that former AVFM Number Two John Hembling had once faced off against a mob of 20-30 angry feminists brandishing boxcutters when his own video of the event showed him conversing with a handful of peaceful activists. And who can forget their attempts to cast their embarrassingly poorly attended rally on Toronto as a “huge success?”

However successful they are at redefining reality for their cult followers, cult leaders encounter problems when they try to do the same thing for those outside of their sphere of influence.

Take AVFM maximum leader Paul Elam’s continual attempts to recast some of the vilest things he’s written as “satire,” an explanation that only seems to fly amongst MRAs with a large capacity for the willing suspension of disbelief.

Well, now AVFM’s comically inept PR maven Janet “JudgyBitch” Bloomfield has taken on the project of trying to retroactively redefine Elam’s most despicable writings as satire.

In a post on Thought Catalog, Bloomfield argues, as best she can, that Elam’s notorious “Bash a Violent Bitch Month” post was not arguing, as it plainly seemed to be, that the best way to stop women from abusing their male partners was to let said male partners beat the shit out of them.

In the piece, you may recall, Elam said this:

In the name of equality and fairness, I am proclaiming October to be Bash a Violent Bitch Month.

I’d like to make it the objective for the remainder of this month, and all the Octobers that follow, for men who are being attacked and physically abused by women – to beat the living shit out of them. I don’t mean subdue them, or deliver an open handed pop on the face to get them to settle down. I mean literally to grab them by the hair and smack their face against the wall till the smugness of beating on someone because you know they won’t fight back drains from their nose with a few million red corpuscles.

And then make them clean up the mess.

Now, am I serious about this?

No. Not because it’s wrong. It’s not wrong.

But it isn’t worth the time behind bars or the abuse of anger management training that men must endure if they are uppity enough to defend themselves from female attackers.

There’s no reason whatsoever to believe that any of this is “satirical” or sarcastic or anything other than what it seems on the surface to be: a suggestion that the proper response to violence from women is violence against women – or that this would be the proper response, if this sort of “self-defense” from men didn’t result in jail time or anger management classes.

Indeed, the argument of this piece is entirely in keeping with a short story Elam published around this same time, titled “Anger Management,” that has as its hero a man unfairly punished for breaking his wife’s nose in a fit of righteous rage after she left him for his business partner.

But Bloomfield shamelessly if unconvincingly tries to argue that

What Paul Elam did in his article was engage in satire – he flipped the genders to highlight just how awful it is to hurt another person, and dramatically highlighted our double standards when it comes to who got hurt.

Yep, she’s honestly claiming that’s what he meant when he said beating the shit out of a “violent bitch” is “not wrong” just not “worth the time behind bars or the abuse of anger management training that men must endure if they are uppity enough to defend themselves from female attackers.”

The argument went over well with the small army of misfit misogynists populating the comments section to Bloomfield’s post on Thought Catalog. And perhaps she will see this as a victory.

But if you read the following comments critically, you’ll notice that the commenters — including her fans — aren’t buying the satire argument at all.

 Andrejovich Dietrich • 7 hours ago  Don't lecture me on measured response.. Teach the violent feminists to keep their hands to themselves.

Notice the upvotes. This was a popular argument in the comments.

 Doug Hart Andrejovich Dietrich • 5 hours ago  I had the hands off approach to dealing with crazy women pounded into me from an early age. If they want equality I say we give it to them.

This comment was a response to one of the only feminists who ventured into the fray:

 Diz Auntie Alias • 19 hours ago  Let it go. I've seen your posts at Manboobz, your agenda is clear. There is nothing wrong with knocking the shit out of someone who assaults you. Women don't get some kind of magical pass on this due to their gender. Maybe you should quit assuming men will give you a pass on violence and stop beating them if you have a problem with it.

One commenter recalled a famous passage in Shakespeare:

 Emilio Lizardo • 8 hours ago  I have stopped being a decent guy.  When a woman in the street tried to snatch away my glasses (she didn't like I was taking pictures of an accident) I decked her. Hard. Called the police on her too. She willingly described the battery she committed and her attempted robbery, because she couldn't conceive of being in the wrong. The police were willing to arrest her.  No women thinks of her violence as violence. They. really. don't. Oddly, at the same time we have VAWA defining women as natural born victims we have Feminist claims that women are qualified for combat. Both can't be true.  I've been hit by women and even had to take knives away from them. Give them the equality they've been asking for.  When confronted by the martial competency differential between women and men, keep in mind Shylock's complaint: The Merchant Of Venice Act 3, scene 1, 58–68.

The passage in question in A Merchant of Venice is Shylock’s famous “if you prick us, do we not bleed” speech. You may recall that Shylock used this argument as a justification for revenge, declaring that

[t]he villany you teach me, I will execute, and it shall go hard but I will better the instruction.

This is Elam’s argument as well.

In other words, none of these commenters — and those who upvoted them — believe that Elam’s post was satirical. None of them see Elam’s argument as being anything other than what it was: a Shylockean paean to righteous “revenge” upon abusive women.

They know he was serious. And they agree with him.

EDITED TO ADD: Bloomfield has responded to this post with a detailed and lucid critique. By which I mean she tweeted this:

https://twitter.com/JudgyBitch1/status/480512762393944064

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Robert Ramirez
8 years ago

I used to have that Kool-Aid Man comic.

Stuffed Fantod
8 years ago

Grandiose claims, gaslighting, consistent overreaction to perceived persecution, and constant projection.

Nope. I am not going to look at my old DSM.

Leum
Leum
8 years ago

@Stuffed Fantod: No. Pointing out that you could armchair diagnose someone but are choosing not to is exactly as problematic as armchair diagnosing someone; all it does is attempt to deflect the criticism by pointing out that even though you could do it you technically aren’t.

mildlymagnificent
8 years ago

Why try to armchair diagnose in the first place? The only wrong with these people is that they’re nasty. That turns out to be a lot wrong, but it’s in the same category as chronic malapropism. Yes, you can choose to use clear language without confusing anyone and everyone within earshot – but you prefer to let your mouth run free without learning any vocabulary.

These people could choose to acknowledge that they’ve said or done the wrong thing and they could have made better choices. They could even choose to withdraw the wrong things they’ve written from public view and choose to behave better in future. They could even apologise for expressing themselves poorly in the past and write something new that better expresses the non-offensive idea they were originally aiming for if that’s the problem.

But no. The only thing these folks can do when they find themselves in a hole is to keep right on digging.

strivingally
8 years ago

Right now there’s an asshole trying that defence in the Supreme Court of the US: Is this man trying to gaslight the Supreme Court?

[Content note for violent imagery and misogyny]

In one post, Elonis wrote about smothering his wife with a pillow and dumping her body in a creek so it would look like a rape. In another he wrote: “There’s one way to love you but a thousand ways to kill you. I’m not going to rest until your body is a mess, soaked in blood and dying from all the little cuts. Hurry up and die, bitch, so I can bust this nut all over your corpse from atop your shallow grave. I used to be a nice guy but then you became a slut. Guess it’s not your fault you liked your daddy raped you. So hurry up and die, bitch, so I can forgive you.”
[…]
At his trial, the jury was told that the legal standard for whether something is an unprotected “true threat” is if an objective person could consider Elonis’ posts to be threatening. Elonis claims that the correct test should look at whether he intended for the posts to be understood as threats.

Can anybody else see the huge fucking Get Out Of Jail Free loophole there? “But Your Honour, I didn’t *mean* to scare her when I told her I’d slit her throat if she ever tried to leave me! Now you have to let me go.”

strivingally
8 years ago

Oh, I should have mentioned, this guy is using the word “art” and trying to claim that some of this stuff was “rap lyrics”, despite there being no real evidence of any musical impetus. Also he has a track record of being a douche with no self-restraint:

Elonis exhibited what the government called “troubling behavior” at his work, including allegedly starting to undress in front of a female co-worker.

Yeah, totes someone I feel safe with when they starts talking about how much they’d love to see me dead.

LBT
LBT
8 years ago

You know that old saying, “eye for an eye?” These guys seem to think, “ears, throat, and eyes for an eye.”

Which is of course what all the great humanitarians of history have said. Also love how they seem to think women “get a pass” on violence when uh. Domestic violence is still overwhelmingly common.

But then again, pretty much all the “female privileges” they think exist only exist in very select situations.

contrapangloss
8 years ago

StrivingAlly…

What the ever-loving spaghetti? Reading your link, and wondering how in the world a defense lawyer would even be willing to roll with that.

Seriously? No!

judgybitch
8 years ago

Great article, David! I upvoted that first comment. Think it’s making fun of the “teach men not to rape” campaign, but meh. It’s all good.

And hey, the 4 articles I have up there have more than 83K shares! Looks like our cult might be getting a little bigger?

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
8 years ago

There really is nothing that a man can do to a woman that society isn’t capable of writing off as no big deal.

strivingally
8 years ago

@contrapangloss: in a country where “open carry” is supposedly just a neat expression of rights, and TOTALLY NOT a way of pre-emptively intimidating people into not disagreeing with you, ever, in case they get shot, I guess anything is possible.

strivingally
8 years ago

@JB: if making snarky comments on the blog of people who are already disagreeing with you is your idea of managing public relations, you might want to re-think your life choices.

contrapangloss
8 years ago

Oh! Hi, JudgyOne!

You seem busy. Did you get the memo about not saying misogynistic things during and about the conference? It might be good to start practicing now, since you’re PR director, or something.

LBT
LBT
8 years ago

RE: JB

And hey, the 4 articles I have up there have more than 83K shares! Looks like our cult might be getting a little bigger?

I can’t fault your optimism.

Robert Ramirez
8 years ago

They have a PR director who calls herself “judgybitch”? Do they have any clue has to how PR is supposed to work?

Auntie Alias
Auntie Alias
8 years ago

I’m surprised they haven’t kicked her out of the cult after all the damage she’s done lately. I wonder if she’s on notice and that article a form of penance.

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
8 years ago

Isn’t JudgyBitch the one who wrote a post about how she’d like to leave a scathing letter to “princess cupcake” women on college campuses about how her fantasy son is too good for them?

Yeah, that’s about the level of PR savvy I’d expect from AVFM.

strivingally
8 years ago

Robert: given that AVfM’s followers seem to think that saying nice things at the conference will be all that counts, and that all the woman-hating on their discusion forums is somehow invisible, I’m guessing that JB is assuming/hoping that her online activity as judgybitch will never be connected with Janet Bloomfield, the meatspace PR director for AVfM.

Marie
Marie
8 years ago

@stuffed fantod

Grandiose claims, gaslighting, consistent overreaction to perceived persecution, and constant projection.

Nope. I am not going to look at my old DSM.

well, please remember not to get back to us, because I don’t give a fuck about your armchair diagnosing ass.

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
8 years ago

JB is actually the creepiest person at AVFM, imo. That thing about her son was just…wow, please TMI somewhere else about your inappropriate relationship with your children.

A Wolverine
A Wolverine
8 years ago

@JudgyBumblefuck
Oh boy 83,000 shares.
thats exactly the fucking same as helping someone.

except no, you and the rest of your reality challenged sycophants have yet to do ANYTHING to actually address the actual problems (false accusation of rape isnt one of them) that men face.

And you’ll NEVER accomplish anything as long as your group suffers from that inability to read, do math and empathize with people.

Get bent.

judgybitch
8 years ago

I’m guessing that JB is assuming/hoping that her online activity as judgybitch will never be connected with Janet Bloomfield, the meatspace PR director for AVfM.

That is 100% my goal! Never make the connection! Guess my Twitter tag shouldn’t be @judgybitch1, huh? And I shouldn’t have used my JB avatar at TC. Gosh, I sure am doing this PR thing wrong.

Lol!

mariangela
mariangela
8 years ago

It saddens me to read a woman of some intelligence sacrificing her integrity for this destructive cause.

judgybitch
8 years ago

Curious that you failed to mention the 40% of Jezebel senior staff that admit to beating male partners. They thought it was pretty funny. Not talking about it. Not thinking it. Actually physically beating men. What would your reaction be if 40% of AVfM senior staff admitted to beating real, live women and then laughed about it?

wewereemergencies
wewereemergencies
8 years ago

I… don’t get it? Yes you are doing this PR thing wrong? Like immensely? Is she seriously this oblivious? HOW DO YOU EVEN EXIST I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THERE IS SO MUCH FAIL IN YOUR CHOICES WHAT ARE YOU EVEN DOING APART FROM FAILING AT EVERYTHING?????????

Ahem. If judgybitch’s aim is to confuse ABSOLUTELY EVERYONE who has any concept of logic then I guess she has succeeded? But that… is basically the exact opposite of PR.

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