April 28, 2015

Universities bring book-burning back, one page at a time

Patrick BissettRebel Blogger

On April 6, 1933 the German Student Association (GSA) made the most important announcement in its history. In what it described as an “action against the un-German spirit,” the association described plans for a “cleansing” by which texts, deemed incompatible with the sensibilities of resurgent German nationalism, would be thrown onto bonfires. 

They made good on those plans on the night of May 10, 1933, with the "Säuberung", or cleansing by fire, in which 25,000 books were incinerated in German towns. Texts from almost every field of human endeavor were taken from schools and libraries and cast into the flames, heralding an unprecedented era of censorship in modern Germany.

Today, children around the world learn about the book burnings in history classes. There are plaques and memorials at the sites where the bonfires took place. As a society, as a very species, we declare ourselves repulsed by those grainy, black and white images and are insistent that we will never repeat those mistakes. But despite such lofty protestations those mistakes are happening again and in a way that is likely more sinister than what took place over eighty years ago in Europe.

When a Tumblr feminist burned a copy of Christina Hoff Sommers' book The War Against Boys last year, predictable comparisons to the Säuberung immediately followed. Sitting by a hearth, a bespectacled, pony tailed young woman looked over her shoulder and smiled broadly. She wore a simple white t-shirt, and playfully rested her chin in her palm as she committed pages of Hoff Sommer's text to the flames.

Benjamin Weingarten, writing in The Blaze (sorry) argued that unlike the Säuberung, the point of this literary barbeque was not to eradicate unclean thoughts or ideas, but to make a statement on contemporary perceptions about feminism. Most North Americans view feminism with jaded disdain and increasingly, fewer people are identifying as feminist.

Resentment has grown in recent years against the never-ending laundry list of comically petty feminist gripes. The stereotype of feminists as joyless, prescriptive, overly sensitive and censorious gave birth to new a term in the vernacular lexicon, the “feminazi.” According to Weingarten, it is the existence of this caricature that makes the burning of Hoff Sommers' book “ironic”; our cheery fireside feminist is actually involved in a piece of performance, a visual representation of the reducto ad absurdum position of those, like Hoff Sommers, who oppose contemporary feminism.

It's a fair, but somewhat shallow observation. The pictures do show an antagonizing, trollish feminist at play but Weingarten's analysis ignores that whether intended or not, there is potent symbolism in those images. The burning of Hoff Sommers' book is a striking visual synecdoche for the malaise afflicting free expression across not only North American college campuses, but those of the entire western world. We have reached a point where ideas and conversations, similar to those espoused by Hoff Sommers in text form, are effectively verboten.

On November 16 2012 a lecture by Dr. Warren Farrell at University of Toronto turned violent when a large group of feminist protesters attempted to shut the event down. Farrell, a former head of the New York chapter of the National Organization for Women was at the university to talk about the “boy crisis” in America—a blanket term used to describe a panoply of issues affecting boys and young men such as addiction; suicide; educational attainment; and unemployment. Feminists, angered by Farrell's presence on “their” campus, blockaded the entrance to the event and physically intimidated attendees.

Kingston Ont. film maker Steve Brulé was at the scene and captured the incident which has since been viewed millions of times online. “When I got there the atmosphere was pretty hostile. There was a group of people who identified themselves as feminists blockading the doors,” says Brulé. “I started asking people what the protest was about. They [the protestors] said they were there under the direction of gender studies professors at the university.”

The images in Brulé's video are shocking, but are all too familiar for those who attempt to proffer views that confront feminist and leftist ideology. Dr. Janice Fiamengo, a professor of English literature at University of Ottawa (UofO) has also had her events disrupted. For Fiamengo, herself a former radical feminist, seeing her lectures protested was initially shocking. “I thought there would be angry questions but never protestors with masks on their faces or people pulling fire alarms,” says Fiamengo.

“I was shocked at first but afterward I was kind of satisfied that it proved my point; this ideology is repressive and is a silly, hysterical movement.”  Her last lecture, a discussion of the apparent double standards inherent in feminism, was successfully shut down by feminist protestors who took advantage of lax security measures to make the event unworkable.

According to Fiamengo, while it is students who are at the front lines causing mayhem, it is ideologically-aligned administrators and professors who are working in the background orchestrating the disruption. “Progressives have taken over the universities. They're not interested in educating students. They're interested in changing their minds and producing obedient, leftist revolutionaries. They've (students) been taught to think correctly. It's the embrace of various orthodoxies that their professors tell them about.”

Fiamengo describes a frightening picture. The notion that universities are indoctrinating Canadian youth with extreme ideologies is a disturbing one, but as recent events have shown, it is also an accurate one. While we may be thankful to never see another act like the Säuberung in our lifetimes we should still beware, and realize that even today, it is still possible to censor and to silence.

It just might not be as obvious.


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commented 2015-05-02 01:36:29 -0400
“Rape Culture” implies by its very wording that there is an overall prevalence and preponderance toward rape within the culture, and that the members of that culture have, in the forefront of their minds, the forcible act of sex upon a woman. Horseshit. Today’s culture is NOT overly concerned with forcibly having sex with a woman. There has been so much pressure on males for the past 30 years (anyone remember “No means No!”?) to leave women alone, to the point that a careless gesture can be interpreted as sexual assault (at the very least, “unwanted sexual advances”). Women themselves make the situation worse by demanding that they can wear whatever they want (and, in many cases, NOT wear whatever they want) with the expectation that they have complete freedom from consequences — like catcalls and whistles, at the very least. “Feminists” have, for the past 30 years and more fought for what they call equality, which has often been equated with the subjugation of men. The results of this has been, within society, the emasculation of men. (Are you seriously going to tell me that the most popular sitcoms on the air, which portray men as bumbling, incompetent, and moronic, are NOT brought about by pandering to the “feminist” movement? If a network brought out a series with overtones of the 1950s (in which it was expected that the man was the leader of the house), there would be such a hue and cry that the network would never get the series past the planning stage.) Due to “feminism”, men have no equality in family court, where women can do no wrong (including lying under oath, with no penalties for perjury (and I have personal proof of this)), and men are ALWAYS at fault. (When was the last time a man was awarded custody of children in a case? If he wins, he is in the vast MINORITY of the male “winners”.) Further, the crimes of sexism and discrimination are only a phone call away from the Human Rights Tribunal, with no recourse for the men. (But, of course, if the men are discriminated against by the women (how many male nurses do YOU know?), these same tribunals will brush it off.)

Now society is being told that, in post-secondary campuses, which are notorious for some study, a lot of alcohol, and questionable morals and conduct of BOTH sexes, that rape is prevalent and common. No proof, just statements. Hell, a huge article was written about this in Rolling Stone Magazine… which later had to retract and apologize for the article because the writer didn’t do his homework and check facts, which were missing.

Statements without concrete evidence. Innuendo. Lots of noise. Sounds like propaganda, to me.

(Or is this noise the calling-out of the immature males who make sexist comments and whose humor revolves around sexual innuendo? Hmmm… If this is the case, then I can sort of see their point. If this is, indeed, their “angle”, then these noisemakers had better clamp down on the female participants as well — sometimes the females are worse than the males! I don’t participate in this “humor”, because I find it crude and disrespectful (my choice). But words are a FAR CRY from claiming that rape (action) is “prevalent”.)

This is why men are so prejudiced against “feminism”, in whatever shape or form. I am all for the equality of women. If a woman can do a man’s job — and WANTS to — then the more power to her. I hang around feminine women; I hang around butch women (bikers come in all types). I meet female secretaries, I meet female roughnecks. I meet female nurses, I meet female electricians. I treat them ALL respectfully, and always watch my actions — because I can’t trust them. One wrong word/gesture from me, and there’s criminal proceedings against me. They don’t care my motive; they watch my actions, and THEIR PERCEPTION is the one that counts in the courts.

Don’t sell me female victimhood. Ain’t buying. Go after the religions and free THOSE women. Western females got it made, already.
commented 2015-04-30 07:38:54 -0400
Liza: “Who cares”? Well, folks who can still distinguish journalism from propaganda – or think that distinction matters.
commented 2015-04-29 19:44:03 -0400
Joan…so how many rapes has he committed lately? Joan. what the MRM opposes is the phenomina known as “witch hunting” I remember in the 1990s there was an entire FBI task force assigned to root out the Satanist led “ritual child abuse” taking place in hidden labyrinths underneath day care centres which were actually sought by bulldozers and back hoes….but never located in spite of the many “experts” on the phenomena who were actually granted standing in court and the many tales told by children who were coached by such “experts”.

So go ahead and put SEXO decals on Terry Dart’s fenders…I care not…if he is a convicted rapist duly reviewed by DNA evidence by the Innocence project…who have exonerated MANY.

It is the culpability by association by virtue of the fact that I have the key to the city hanging down my left pant leg that I care about. If feminists were granted all that they demand on this subject men would be subject to summary castration based on accusations made by anonymous phone call.
commented 2015-04-29 16:25:09 -0400
So what Terry, big important point, get over it. Who cares. Just because the organizers say it was voluntary doesn’t mean these guys weren’t told they might want to just do it or it could look bad on their record. Prove to me that didn’t happen.
commented 2015-04-29 15:03:43 -0400
Anonymous social media sources on a highly politicized issue? Yeah, they are reminiscent of an orifice on a horse, for sure. Just not the mouth.
commented 2015-04-29 14:11:37 -0400
The link I put in Gavins piece wasn’t partially blanked out. What are words out of the horses mouth worth anyway.
commented 2015-04-29 13:46:25 -0400
Two anonymous sources on Reddit, Liza? Ahem.
commented 2015-04-29 13:40:38 -0400
“Attendance is mandatory and if we miss it we get a negative counseling and a ‘does not support the battalion sharp/EO mission’ on our CDT OER for getting the branch we want. So I just spent $16 on a pair of high heels that I have to spray paint red later on only to throw them in the trash after about 300 of us embarrass the U.S. Army tomorrow,” one anonymous cadet wrote on the social media sharing website Imgr, IJReview reported Monday.

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/apr/21/army-rotc-program-allegedly-pushed-men-wear-high-h/#ixzz3YilcvDNU
commented 2015-04-29 13:00:27 -0400
Joan, the term “feminazi” is a synonym in the New Conservative Lexicon (Levant-Lilley, 2014) for “feminist”. There are a number of syntactical requirements(i.e, the terms “leftist” or “Muslim” may never be used without the modifier “radical”) that can help you find the proper tone on this site.
commented 2015-04-29 12:25:00 -0400
Glenn Craig. Like most will post online the names of those they know have been convicted of rape. Nice try to silence me but it won’t work. Because your bias assumes those of us who know rapists do nothing about it. You are so wrong, buddy.

I will give you the name of a repeat sex offender I became aquainted with in my neighbourhood who is now deceased. Derryl Dart. No middle name. I got him admitted to the London Psychatric Hospital where he stayed for ten years, longer than any sentence would have held him. He confessed to the rapes. Go ahead, ask your cop friends to run his name through CPIC.

I will also quote you OPP Michele Paradis who said that after Bernardo was arrested, “ten more just like him came forward to take over his sadistic child snuff video business”.

If no one rapes, for pleasure, profit or, as in the European Muslim rape gangs, for political advantage, why would she say that there was ten times the number of applicant rapists than the market demanded. And just check any database to see how big the sadistic child porn market is.

And while you are at it, ask your question of cops and military that have launched lawsuits for workplace sexual harassment including rape. Over 300 complainants in the class action suit against the RCMP.

Why are you denying rape is a problem?
commented 2015-04-29 12:04:28 -0400
Joan, If rape is so prevalent then you should have no difficulty naming for me the names of two men in your circle of acquaintance who YOU KNOW FOR A FACT AND NOT HEARSAY…rape women. Any reader of this thread…if you are convinced there is a “rape culture” you should have no difficulty naming the names of two men who you know for a fact rape women….if you are able to do so….why haven’t you done anything about it?
commented 2015-04-29 11:46:28 -0400
People tried to stop the transcontinental railroad by shout down demonstrations at the public meetings concerning right of way expropriation. Brigadier General Henry Martin Robert wrote a book of procedural order for conducting public meetings as a standard “Book of Hoyle” as to what are the rules of conduct at a meeting. Robert’s Rules of Order was required reading when I attended university and probably still is today and would certainly not be beyond the intellectual grasp of a university student.

This is the part I don’t understand why the campus police had difficulty with at U of T….I certainly understood it when I was a campus cop at Mount Saint Vincent. If you are warned that your conduct is “out of order” that is to say not in compliance with Robert’s Rules of Order…you can then be charged with “disorderly conduct” and be subject to removal from the event and academic disciplinary sanction.

The Feminist professor who cheered this demonstration would not have tolerated being shouted down in her own classroom.

Actually books get burned all the time…surplus library stock and inventory in book stores that just hasn’t sold.

And really…should every copy of Harlequin Romance be treasured as if it were the Dead Sea Scrolls? Even the Dead Sea Scrolls were originally a trash pile of reject copies that scribes had made minor errors in transcribing. The Nag Hammadi is a stash of texts that Gnostics were expected to burn if they did not want to be excommunicated….but I got to read the first draft of their translation. I also have a couple of Tibetan “terma” texts that are only given to a select few people and each copy has the name of who was entrusted with it in the fly leaf.

I have made it a point to buy and burn in my wood stove every copy of “The Women’s Room” by Marilyn French I could find at yard sales and such.

I have read the list of books the Nazis burned…and from their perspective I could understand why they found these books offensive and insulting. They knew they could not purge the world of these books…they were just sending a message that these books had no place on their book shelves….the bonfires were voluntary and enthusiastically attended…they did not go on a house by house search looking for them…but the message was clear to those who chose to retain them…it would be frowned on to display them.

But you can’t burn an idea…books do not create ideas…ideas create books.
commented 2015-04-29 11:26:25 -0400
I know all of you think there is no rape culture in the west. But it’s here and growing.


Consider who is funding the trendy fashion of condemning all women’s rights advocates as feminazis. If that so-called men’s movement fashion might be organized to make us accept rape is always the complainants fault. Just like happened in Rotherham, is happening all over Europe, and is invading our society too. Just think about it.
commented 2015-04-29 11:17:13 -0400
Do you condemn these self-identied feminists for their advocacy against oppression? I’ll note no men staged a similar press-sensational incident to bring attention to this injustice.

commented 2015-04-29 11:12:27 -0400
But should we, therefore condemn all feminists, including activists like Pussy Riot, as feminazis?

Or should we, rather, criticize bad acts and oppressive ideologies.

We must be careful. Canada’s jihadi enemies love it whenever I advocate for women’s rights and am condemned as a feminazi and told to stfu. That sort of bias is dangerous to democracy.

What our society needs is to bring back civility. Debate of all sides of issues by everyone whether you believe it or not. Get to know how others think and feel. Suspend prejudice. Listen to the other. Then launch a superior rationale for your beliefs … if you can. Convince others to think like you do not on the basis of name-calling or youtube fame-seeking acts of arson, but on reason.

commented 2015-04-29 06:46:14 -0400
Those teenagers leftist , don’t even have a decent vocabulary, anarchy rules universities, commy teachers mostly responsible for filling empty heads, patriarchal society, ??? make me laugh , in my home my wife rule.
commented 2015-04-29 00:18:12 -0400
This is really distressing to watch. Where have we failed these young women, to make them so hateful, and such an easy mark for the left. Because indeed, that is what this is about. Marxist. Sad, Dangerous. CUPE endorsement and all. These kids clearly have no idea. Their ancestors are weeping in their graves, their blood shed for only a fleeting moment of freedom of barely two generations. Communism is not dead. It has risen from the dead. These young women are being used as a weapon against the freedom of all of us. This has absolutely nothing to do with respect for women’s rights. These women make me feel so ashamed for my sex. They have stomped and trampled on every gain women have fought for. They do only a disservice, to themselves and to all mankind.
Quote mining is something we have had quite a bit of in recent discussions here on feminism, most notably, Lauren Southern’s “Why I’m not a Feminist”, also Gavin McInnis, “Walk a mile in her shoes” . It has been interesting to watch. But now that I am being more exposed to it, it helps me to identify those who would use it, for what they really are.
commented 2015-04-28 20:01:33 -0400
They sound like the Muslims at the Pam Geller Brooklyn College speech the other day, acting just the same and spewing hate
commented 2015-04-28 18:33:00 -0400
Feminism, especially that espoused in academic settings, he degraded into a Cult. When you analyse the behaviours thinking and language against known patterns it fits like a glove.

From the sacred science of Patriarchy and Privilege to the hysteria of Rape Culture and campus wide panics the coercive control of minds can be seen. Those who have been speaking out will go down in history, and the hysterics will be forgotten – maybe remembered as Footnotes, but I would wager most won’t even warrant that recognition.

I do wonder at the quality of academics(sic) in gender studies when they deliberately ignore reality and peddle mythology. Why do they avoid academic references so much, such as this one:

“Rape culture is a concept of unknown origin and of uncertain definition; yet it has made its way into everyday vocabulary and is assumed to be commonly understood. The award-winning documentary film Rape Culture made by Margaret Lazarus in 1975 takes credit for first defining the concept.”

George Ritzer (23 January 2007). The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology. Wiley. p. 3791. ISBN 9781405124331.

A Film – called Rape Culture – inspired by the work of Prisoners Against Rape (PAR) – and they worked with the DC rape Crisis Centre fighting Prison Rape. Is it ignored because the prisoners were men or because they were African American? The cry from Feminists that Feminism is about Equality for everyone rings ever so hollow the more shallow graves they have dug are uncovered. Cult Mentalities Indeed!
commented 2015-04-28 17:53:03 -0400
This type of rough protest began in the 1960s with instructions from the International Communist movement. It must be very pleasing for some personalities to exert power through mobs in this way. It has always been disgusting but why, after the collapse of communism, does it still attract young people? Do they not know the history of the twentieth century? The communists too burned and banned books and executed the authors or exiled them to Siberia. The dissidents faced death by writing and yet they did write. Now our university students have become thugs enforcing the agendas of some of the leftovers of the previous century. Very sad.
commented 2015-04-28 17:13:25 -0400
Feminism has morphed into a hate movement that terrorizes anyone that doesn’t strictly adhere to their supremacist agenda.