As if the banner photo on their site isn’t creepy and discrediting enough, the group “Men’s Rights Edmonton” (MR-E) has been giving Edmontonians and Calgarians the creeps for a few weeks now with their bevy of posters and literature. If you’re still wondering whether or not this group actually exists outside the head of a single twisted individual, the answer is an unfortunate “yes.” Rather than aggregating important issues for men, this group simply tries to make a mockery of feminism, as we saw with their cringeworthy “Don’t Be That Girl” posters earlier this year. And if that wasn’t enough, they now have a candidate in the upcoming municipal election.
When you look at the ballot for Ward 8 on Oct. 21, you’ll find the name of candidate Nick Reading, a member of the laughably small MR-E sect. While the group’s website has many vain and thoughtless publications and videos, the essence of the MR-E’s idiocy is distilled in Reading’s party and campaign brochure.
Rather than acting as a succinct, informative leaflet about the platform of the group, the brochure comes across as an opportunity for the “Patriarchy Party” — the name of MR-E’s political division — to punch the sensibilities of the average Albertan as many times as possible.
According to the brochure, Reading stands for blatant sexism in almost every form possible, from “ensuring governments do not represent women’s interests” to “reducing women’s protections against sexual and domestic abuse while enhancing men’s.” If you’re not feeling sick yet, maybe you ought to cast your vote for the “supreme grand wizard of patriarchy” later this month and join in their hailing of “the mighty phallus!”
But in all seriousness, a group like MR-E deserves nothing more than a few well-deserved middle-fingers and the inattention of their audience: us. With horribly-drawn wiener dogs, typos and inflated, bigoted language plastered all over their website, it’s clear that MR-E is a group designed to aggravate, not inform.
There are ethically sound groups that represent the rights of everyone when it comes to accusations of rape, abuse and representation. The role of protecting equal rights of genders should be left to them, not to the minds of egotistical chauvinists. For this reason, Reading should be ignored and laughed off by all of us.
This is all just preaching to the choir, though. The vast majority of people reading this will have already seen the posters or heard about the group through the grapevine and become angry and frustrated. The best thing to do now is ignore MR-E, denying them their audience in the next few weeks. Don’t feed into their exaggerated hatred and sexism by writing angry letters and complaints to them constantly, and don’t give them your thoughts as you go about your day. Instead, take comfort in the fact that we as a city will cause their demise through our ignorance of their principles.
Reading’s Patriarchy Party, and all of MR-E is just a joke — a sick and twisted joke. Let’s laugh it off because we know better, and especially since insane gibberish can only be interpreted as a joke in this modern day.