Okay. Now, with all that said about RooshV and Dean Esmay’s article about him, and after reading an article from Paul Elam and then listening to a video discussion he and Roosh had back in January of this year as well, then reading Parts One and Two of an interview with Roosh conducted in 2015 on AVfM, then watching Roosh’s press conference tonight from February of this year (plus a bunch of related comments — because I obviously got all kinds of time on my hands at the moment), here’s where I personally stand at present on the matter.
The man does still have a right to free speech, even though I don’t like him or his ways or what he’s advocating or selling. I can rail against what he puts out, call him every name in the book if I so desire, and even warn others to leave him alone. BUT, while I can understand the common interpretation of the quoted text in question from Roosh’s book as being considered a confession of rape, just as I can also grasp it as a snub directed toward American legal definitions of rape pertaining to alcohol intoxication (he being outside of the U.S. at the time), I’m still a bit uneasy with the idea of asking people to come forward and assert that they are victims of this man if they have not done so already on their own accord. Something about public witch-hunts tend to make me queasy, especially when the potential consequences are to lock somebody up under ambiguous pretenses. Had he wrote that sort of stuff AND had women independently going to police in their jurisdictions claiming he had raped them, then we’d have more to go on.
The man’s a liar and into using bravado to sell his stupid (and dangerous) ideas, we can see that. And sure, put him down all day long — that’s our freedom of speech to do so. Now, don’t get me wrong, he chose to write that shit and make it public so most of the consequences are on him, I get that. If countries out there wish to ban him from entry, that’s their prerogative and I can’t speak to that since I don’t live there. But here in the U.S. we do things differently, or at least we did, and hopefully we’ll keep in mind the tenets that made this country so great in the first place, protecting freedom of speech being at the top of the list.
Even when we don’t like what someone has to say.
Hell, I didn’t like what I read in the book 120 Days of Sodom by Marquis de Sade (couldn’t even finish the thing it was so incredibly disturbing), BUT I’m not going to protest it out of existence and seek to have it banned everywhere on earth. Would only wind up on the black market anyway. That’s how shit rolls, whether we like it or not.
I really don’t like most of what Roosh V has to say. Really, really don’t. I most certainly do not want to see young women (or young men, for that matter) taken advantage of like that by scumbags with chips on their shoulders. And I am fucking sickened by people writing disgusting shit and then playing it off as “satire” as if that erases their moral culpability. People love to call me a “concern troll” for raising my voice and calling that shit out when I see it.
BUT, I’m not asking for full-on censorship, just that people take into consideration what the fuck they’re advocating and its real-world potential consequences. THAT is my way of simply arguing, debating, reacting, venting, attempting to persuade (either the person in question or others who may follow them). And that’s what we do in a democratic setup where exchanging of ideas is tolerated.
Where do we draw the line? Some say at verbalizing threats to do bodily harm on others with clear intent expressed. Okay. That makes sense since it’s signaling a potential crime is about to be committed and is an extreme form of coercion. How about so-called “hate speech”? I loathe that term and do not subscribe to the notion that offensiveness directed toward another based on race, sex/gender, creed (or lack thereof), handicap, or whatever else needs to be a criminal matter (though it certainly may be a moral matter) all unto itself. The exception there may be when it transgresses into actual harassment (which is typically considered to be an ongoing and seemingly relentless form of coercion that becomes extremely difficult to ignore) or libel (which is publicly publishing false statements on someone that are reasonably known to be false). Laws exist to help protect people from extreme forms of defamation and harassment, but, IMO, the Law is not there to protect us from simply having our feelings hurt. Hurt feelings happen. Welcome to life.
Getting back to the crime Roosh is accused of confessing to… Yes, he is one hell of a disrespectful punk, I’ll give him that. And if all that he chose to write about is accurate and reflects honest reality, women certainly deserve to be warned about leaving his ass alone. No question there. But here’s the thing — we don’t actually know what actually goes on behind closed doors for that man. For all we know he’s a lying POS who’s jerking into a hanky most nights and just dreams this shit up to sell books. Wouldn’t be the first time an author lied or stretched the truth about his exploits. His words are enough to make plenty of us not like him, and apparently they’re enough to make countries like Australia refuse him re-entry (which, again, is that country’s prerogative), and they’re enough to get some of us howling about how wrong he is for trying to encourage young men to follow in suit, putting themselves at risk as well as doing no favors for the girls they wind up dealing with. So, sure, call him out, explain to others, tell him off publicly, excommunicate his ass. Go ahead! BUT, how far are we willing to take this?
Let me put it like this. I deeply despise the “Islam Lite” he’s pushing under the guise of “Neomasculinity” and consider what he’s selling to young men a toxic recipe for a bunch of problems, some of which they may never walk off if they follow his advice too closely. And that’s really sad. No question. But if I try to support encouraging others to come forward to make claims (false claims for all we on the internet know) against him, what ground will someone like me have to stand on someday if or when others try to turn on something unpopular I’ve stated publicly or somehow been demonstrated to be involved in in my own personal life? Or turn on someone else I care about? Or someone belonging to a cause I feel isn’t so worthy of ill repute despite others’ claims to the contrary? It always looks different when it boils back down to ourselves, doesn’t it?
For example, let’s say that one day a few years back when I was out in a public space and got into an argument with my boyfriend and felt justified in slapping him had someone else had an iphone trained on us, capturing the footage and then uploaded it to the internet. What if a bunch of busybodies decided it was their business to not only cast judgement (since that would be inevitable) but also felt the need to try to intervene in my life and get me charged with assault when my own partner wasn’t interested in pressing charges and didn’t want the police involved? Ya’ll would be overstepping your boundaries there, in my goddamn opinion. And the same would be true if the sexes involved were reversed. Because that’s our business. You don’t have to like it. The establishment it occurred in could’ve banned me at that time had they desired to — that would’ve been understandable since they have their own rules. But the rest of the outside world really has no business doing much other than gawking and forming opinions and flapping gums if that’s what you feel the need to do. [Though I can understand people talking to one another and speaking their piece, even aggressively, but that’s a far cry from calling the cops on folks over matters that ultimately aren’t in need of police intervention. On a slight side-note here, sadomasochism springs to mind and the reality that people can and do choose that for themselves, whether we agree or not. Upsetting as that may be. Welcome to human life. It’s a tangled web and never will be wiped totally clean of all discomforts.] Lots of shit is interpersonal, not fodder for some political cause to use for its own purposes. Who we choose to have sex with (in reference to competent adults here) and the types of sex we consensually engage in is also a personal decision that doesn’t concern the rest of you. Regardless of what you’ve been led to believe.
Didn’t care to throw myself under the bus by raising that example, but I’ll go ahead and do so, not in defense of Roosh since he’s an asshole but in defense of our interpersonal boundaries. Meaning what a couple chooses to do is none of the outside world’s business, by and large. Unless a person is asking for your help, your help isn’t wanted. We can handle our own issues without outside interference, thank you very much. Some might say: “Well then don’t do things in public.” Try not to, but we live in societies and sometimes shit spills out whether we intend for it to or not. And in these scenarios we’re not talking about people being beaten into bloody pulps or severely restrained and forced to accept mistreatment. He’s talking about drunken coercion (absent of threats or harsh mistreatment so far as we’re aware) and calloused disregard for women’s feelings (because he’s a grade-A asshole), and I’m talking about relatively mild interpersonal violence that can and does happen between couples the world over that goes on undeterred regardless of what laws may be on the books.
Look, I do keenly know what it’s like to go home with men from a bar who turned out to be opportunistic jerks. Even know what it’s like to make the mistake of going home with one who at first seemed really nice and professional (and openly agreed when I clearly stated I wasn’t interested in sex and just wanted to relax and listen to his records with him) but then behind closed doors proved to be too rough and degrading and held me down despite my protests (that being in 2008 — the last of my encounters of that sort). Roughly held me down and fucked me raw under photos of his children and crucifixes all over his wall, the sick Catholic son of a bitch. AND transmitted my first and only STI — trichomoniasis (which thankfully is easily curable). Hell no, I wasn’t okay with that! And I told him so. Told him directly and concisely, measuring my words when it all was over, clearly stating that if I were any other woman he’d probably be facing a rape charge most likely and that he better understand this is his warning. Said it straight to his face and watched his sneery smile drop, because he needed to hear it. Probably hadn’t heard it explained to him like that before. So, yes, I understand how wrong some of these guys are behaving as (and that isn’t my only story of that nature, just the last), and I will make no excuses for it. BUT, yes, there are indeed certain risks we take when we drink more than we can handle and go home with strangers (nevermind that the bartender vouched for him being a good guy). That sort of thing doesn’t happen often, but it CAN happen, and much worse than that can happen too (heaven forbid — am grateful to not have been a victim of more severe violence considering how many risks I did take). And no, it’s not okay. But that doesn’t always automatically mean every incident is a matter for the police to get involved in either. That’s something to seriously weigh for oneself. In the case I just described I’d like to believe that man heeded my very assertive warning and will think twice in the future before he behaves like that again. If he doesn’t, maybe another woman will fix his little red wagon. I didn’t even know how to contact him to tell him about the STI diagnosis since I didn’t know the joker. And see, that right there is a problem. It undeniably is.
This isn’t fun shit for me to admit to or to explain where I went wrong. But I know I’m certainly not the only one to be too trusting or just not discerning enough or to not wait a while to know somebody a little bit better before going somewhere private with them. So, perhaps we need to start having that conversation publicly, whether some of us want to necessarily or not. Maybe it just has to happen. Because the club scene (which I never had much affiliation with) is only growing in popularity among young people and they’re not experienced drinkers capable of knowing their limits or how to maintain while under the influence, nor are they experienced enough in life usually to have yet developed enough intuition to figure out who’s best to avoid in those settings, especially when their senses are impacted by intoxicants renown for lowering inhibitions. This being a popular weekend scene for young people all around the world.
It’s not being debated here that Roosh has demonstrated himself to be a predatory, empathy-lacking (by his own account), inconsiderate, opportunistic low-life (regardless of how much his mom might be willing to defend him, as he mentioned in his press conference linked above). I see that clear as day. But so are lots of people out here in the world. Yes, he’s trying to encourage that number to grow so as to fill his own wallet, and that sucks. But a bigger question winds up being what we’re gonna do about it. How do you want to combat this sort of shit? SJW-style by making everything a police matter? In all areas of my life, I am just not cool with inviting the police into my business unless I absolutely have to. Blame that on my libertarian leaning if you must, but I cannot in good conscience get behind willy-nilly reactionism that more often than not winds up robbing us of our own power in an attempt to punish others. That is a tactic to use sparingly, I’m telling you folks. Be careful with it because it tends to keep opening Pandora’s box in ways we hadn’t predicted and end up eventually feeling stifled and alienated by. This should be obvious to so many by now.
Not that I expect people to read these words. Just felt the need to write them. People are gonna do what people are gonna do regardless of how I feel about it. That’s a given. Just another opinion out in the internet wilderness.
Roosh has been behaving like a piece of shit fool, I get it. Even went so far as to document it in books and on his website, clever as some claim him to be. Won’t dispute that. But how might we, as individuals, react in response to that sort of thing where we don’t further screw ourselves in the process?