An Open Letter to Men’s Rights Edmonton

Screen Shot 2013-07-11 at 1.18.43 PMDear Men’s Rights Edmonton,

Your recent poster campaign has garnered you a lot of attention. CBC, Edmonton Journal, even the Huffington Post had you up as a top story for your “Don’t be That Girl” satirical campaign, obviously playing off of the internationally acclaimed and award winning “Don’t be That Guy” campaign.

This isn’t your first tirade into the realm of public postering to promote your organization, but this time it seems you hit a real soft spot on people and got what I think you were exactly looking for: controversy.

You’re out to polarize opinions, gain as much negative attention as you can for the sake of finding maybe a handful of people who will listen to what you have to say and an even smaller handful that will jump on board with you and your cause.

You attacked a well loved campaign in this city that has helped many victims be able to stand up for themselves and be able to report crimes perpetrated against them. By satirizing this campaign, it once again demonizes the victim and is a clear-cut example as to why less than 10% of sex crimes are actually reported.

Screen Shot 2013-07-11 at 1.16.24 PMDo girls yell rape when it was in fact consensual? I don’t know, I’ve never been put in that position nor anyone in my current social circle has been put in that situation. Rape obviously happens and every situation is unique so I won’t be as ignorant as to say that it never happens. But I have to wonder if perhaps you’ve been the victim of one such incident that then spurred you to take this on as a cause to wave a flag for.

The problem is, no one knows who you are. I’ve been looking into your Twitter account (@MensRightsEd) where you have three (3) followers and have tweeted less than ten times and I’ve been exploring your website (mensrightsedmonton.com) looking to find who is behind these posters and which local intellectual is behind taking on such a controversial topic. You’ve cited work from PhDs such as Dr. James R Brown and there are a few images of a pale-faced gentleman in a red backwards hat, but only when you watch your first Vlog do we get to know who you are, Mr. Eric Duckman (though, I have to wonder about your name being the same as the private detective cartoon voiced by Jason Alexander) yet we know virtually nothing about you except for that you spend a lot of time thinking about why feminism is so wrong and that perhaps you daily use a protractor to figure out that perfect angle to wear your hat.

Screen Shot 2013-07-11 at 1.16.15 PMNormally, I don’t bother with Internet controversy groups who sometimes poster and wear sandwich boards: if that were the case I’d spend all my time talking about Westboro Baptist Church. But you’ve especially caught my interest for two reasons: number one, you’re in my city, and number two, I don’t find your messaging deplorable as much as I find it horribly misguided.

As a men’s advocacy group, you focus a lot of your time on women.

Further, I have to ask, aside from postering and posting thing son the Internet, what exactly do you do for men?

There are so many more constructive ways for you to act as an advocate for men’s rights: you could work with legal councils on high profile rape cases to ensure the defendant’s rights are not being infringed on due to the emotional content of the case. You could work Public Relations during controversial cases where you would discuss the public stigmatization even before rulings are made in a court of law. There are so many more beneficial ways you can get your message across without constantly attacking feminism and demonizing women. Yet when I explore your website, every page has at least one comment, post, or wise-crack about how “dumb feminists are.”

duckmanAgain, because we know nothing about you, I can only speculate as to what your motives are. Have been shot down at a few too many frat parties? Been beat up by a few too many boyfriends of girls you hit on? Been generally always awkward with women so now your only reaction is to call them stupid? Have you yourself been accused of rape and had to deal with the social stigma of being a rapist?

I don’t know if I’ll ever know. All I know right now is you’ve garnered some attention for yourself, have a small web presence, and just like so many of your predecessors, you’ll fade from people’s minds in no time.

Enjoy the attention while it lasts, because it won’t.

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2 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Men’s Rights Edmonton

  1. steven says:

    When I first started protesting male bashing decades ago I received the same insults Duckman is getting: Must be a fat dweeb sitting in his mom’s basement mad because he can’t get a date. I was a self defense teacher for women and girls, a karate teacher, a personal fitness trainer, and popular with men and women but for daring point out the bigotry and lies of feminists, and worse, sharing the views of well-educated women that agreed with me, I was greeted with insults. When some women knew that I was taking care of my son and daughter while my wife worked on her masters, or that I was teaching self-defense to women and girls, or working as a houseparent with boys and girls, or working with girls in Hawaii I was a super hero. When I pointed out that in 1964 my twin sister was not drafted for war, and I was, and that 58,000 guys died in Viet Nam and six American women, while the Feminist Mystique was claiming that only women had a “problem with no name” … women sitting around having coffee bitching about not having the corner office, or raising children while not using college degrees (And whose idea was that?) And what were the husbands doing, oh ya, they GOT TO GO TO WORK to turn their money over to their wives…for sharing a different view of gender instead of dealing with concrete issues like very high death rates for men in work and war, or related to health issues… while few cared, I was seen a sexist. It’s harder to call women sharing similar views sexist or naive if well-off, bright, independent, and honest: Read PC MD by Sally Satel MD or “The War on Boys” by Christina Hoff Sommers and get over thinking you know everything about gender … one of my best friends, female, used to teach women’s history and was angry with men. Then she went deeper into the studies and learned how much she had been MSlead by feminist teachers. Some feminist teachers from back in the day are worried about the fascism of third wave feminists. You won’t “get it” from my note but this story isn’t over just because bigoted women have had the podium for decades… people are starting to see the social price being paid by men, women and children by those who use feminism to guide them… sd

    • Hey Steven,
      You bring up a lot of very fair points.
      Any extreme stance or view is detrimental and can only cause reactionary thinking. This can especially be the case for extreme feminism. It tips the scales and causes inequalities.
      Feminism was a reaction to the inequalities that came before it. Women were not receiving a fair deal, but of course that has changed over the years. It was necessary for its time and place but I believe the proper feminist now does not believe in supremacy, but believes in equality.
      But, we’re not just talking about feminism when it comes to Mens Right Edmonton, are we? We’re talking about something else completely.
      Mens Rights Edmonton doesn’t just focus on its anti-feminist standpoint. It goes into issues with rape.
      You can disagree with feminists all you like and no one will pay attention. Mens Rights Edmonton hopped on the rape issue solely because they wanted publicity. Good or bad, it got people talking about this group.
      Even you have to admit that trying to excuse rape allegations is taking things way too far (which is probably why you omitted mentioning anything about this group’s stance on rape cases in your reply, despite it being my main thesis in this essay).
      There’s nothing wrong with disagreeing with the feminist movement but creating attack campaigns that puts fear into women about reporting rape cases is another extreme reactionary movement that is detrimental to all people and can have nothing good come from it.

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