Mr. Hollander's Opus: A Trilogy of Antifeminist Lawsuits
August 19, 2008 9:43 PM   Subscribe

"Roy Den Hollander, a graduate of the Ivy League university’s business school, contends Columbia's Institute for Research on Women and Gender is discriminatory and unconstitutional because there is no equivalent 'men’s studies' programme." So Mr. Hollander is suing Columbia, thereby completing his "trilogy of antifeminist lawsuits." More at Gothamist.
posted by milquetoast (44 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
How could it be unconstitutional if the Equal Rights Amendment never passed?
posted by delmoi at 9:57 PM on August 19, 2008 [4 favorites]


Mr Hollander married to a Russian woman he met while working in Moscow as a private investigator and brought her to America.

But he is now determinedly single after divorced her when she began working as a stripper at a club in New York.

“Now all I am looking for is superficial temporary escapades with pretty young ladies,” he said. “It’s harder than it was when I was younger. I only go after girls who are in their athletic prime. But it’s okay.”


Classic.
posted by nasreddin at 10:00 PM on August 19, 2008


Yeah, this winner is a solid 2008 Douchewad of the Year contender.
posted by The Straightener at 10:07 PM on August 19, 2008


Yeah, they don't have a 'douchebag's studies' either, are you going to sue for that, huh douchebag?
posted by wfrgms at 10:14 PM on August 19, 2008 [5 favorites]


The complaint is actually kind of awesome. I wasn't expecting much, and I'm not convinced (and he launches with his worst argument), but he clearly put some thought into it.
posted by Mr. President Dr. Steve Elvis America at 10:20 PM on August 19, 2008


"I tend to be attracted to black and Latin chicks, and Asian chicks,” he said, citing the influence of the twelfth-century Provençal troubadour Guiraut de Bornelh.
CHIVALRY UR DOIN IT WRONG
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 10:33 PM on August 19, 2008 [7 favorites]


The complaint is actually kind of awesome. I wasn't expecting much, and I'm not convinced (and he launches with his worst argument), but he clearly put some thought into it.

Of course he did. He's clearly not doing anything else on a Friday night.
posted by felix betachat at 10:43 PM on August 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


The exact number of members of the class is not known, but it is estimated to be too large
for joinder of all members to be practical.


*giggle*
posted by felix betachat at 10:47 PM on August 19, 2008


Um... "gender" kind of includes "men". Dumbass.
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:49 PM on August 19, 2008


But Kim Gandy, president of the National Organisation for Women, said: “They have a men’s studies department: It’s called ’history’, ’politics’, ’business’. It’s the entire university. It’s all about men’s studies. It’s like asking why there isn’t a White Studies department.”

Hee.

My sense is that "women's studies" departments are one by one, very slowly, becoming "gender studies" departments. But that's a bitter and contentious debate, and a change that will probably take another generation to take effect.
posted by Forktine at 10:58 PM on August 19, 2008


“What I think will happen,” he said, “is that clubs will reduce the price for guys and increase it for girls. Every guy will have ten or fifteen more dollars in his pocket, which the girls will then manipulate into getting more drinks out of him. If they drink more, they’ll have more fun, and so will us guys. And then when she wakes up in the morning she’ll be able to do what she always does: blame the man.”

Are there honestly women out there who choose to sleep with this turd?
posted by Forktine at 11:02 PM on August 19, 2008


He reached into his pocket and produced a typed forty-one-point list headed “Discrimination against men in America.” (Sample gripes: child-custody laws, circumcision, “5% of females have borderline personality disorder.”)

I'm glad someone is doing something about the horrible prevalence of borderline personality disorder among women, and the fact that many of them keep this concealed until after marriage.

Back in the good old days, you could silence their manipulative whining with a quick cuff around the ear, followed by a stiff reduction in the housekeeping money until they're brought back into line.

Today though, they'll run off to work in a strip club where they can turn the symptoms of their BPD into cold hard cash, leaving us poor men forced to actually buy sex at extortionate rates if we want it from 'ladies in their athletic prime'. Is this fair? Is this reasonable? I think not!

What we need is a tax of 5% on womens earnings -- a tariff aimed at compensating us for the privations we suffer from all this BPD. And that money should be earmarked for expenditure on strippers and hookers in their athletic prime, spending which should also be tax-exempt, because its just not right to tax a man for something he absolutely needs to go on living. It's a bit like the taxes on tampons and sanitary towels. We won't object to a dropping of sales tax on these items, as long as we get income tax allowances to cover our Moscow hooker expenditure.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 11:09 PM on August 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


From his complaint: ". . . propagates the modern-day religion of Feminism through its lectures, seminars, . . . unanimity of thought labeled 'politically correct' . . . " !!

It's obvious he's never been caught in the crossfire between liberal, radical, 2nd wave, 3rd wave, racially differentiated (or differentiated by class, sexual orientation, disability, etc etc) feminists.

There's actually very interesting work being done that deconstructs historical and present-day concepts of "manhood" and "manliness" (and consequences of those concepts) that would be considered "Men's Studies" equivalent to Women's Studies, but not enough to make an entire program. Anyway, the depth and breadth of analysis and context in those pieces would hardly be in keeping with Hollander's self-righteously ignorant frothing at the mouth.
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 11:22 PM on August 19, 2008 [3 favorites]


somewhere (Ann Arbor) Catharine MacKinnon is smiling at someone who doesn't understand substantive equality in the best possible way.
posted by allen.spaulding at 11:31 PM on August 19, 2008


but he clearly put some thought into it

Not sure it is "thought", but calling feminism a religion definitely requires some creative mental gymnastics. For a judge to agree that feminism is a religion on the basis of Hollander's arguments would create some interesting precedent for how monotheistic religions as a whole would subsequently get treated in the legal system.

He really likes playing word games, too:

36. According to the IRWG course guide, “[p]rimary courses focus on women, gender, and/or feminist or [lesbian] perspectives.” IRWG has 71 members on its faculty but only four are males.

Replacing "queer" with "lesbian" is like reading the effluent of the AFA's agenda-fueled spellchecker, straining to replace "gay" with "homosexual" at all costs!

Females control over a majority of the assets in America.

Since 1973, abortion has allowed females to murder over 40 million incipient human
beings


Nightclubs often allow ladies in for free or a fraction of what they charge men, which
over time adds up to a significant transfer of wealth from males to females


The actual aim of Women’s Studies is not affirmative action but to create and perpetuate
a legal, social and economic substratum occupied by men toiling in a Fritz Lang
“Metropolis” like underworld.


There are so many utterly crazy statements in this document — it's like reading the manifesto of a delusional, obsessive psychotic. The hate he has for women just drips through in every sentence, burning brightly, stabbing indiscriminately in all directions, trying to score any possible injury.

What a great find, Dr. Elvis Steve. Behind obvious comedic douchebaggery, it really clarifies just how scarily insane this individual really is.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:49 PM on August 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


What a great find, Dr. Elvis Steve. Behind obvious comedic douchebaggery, it really clarifies just how scarily insane this individual really is.

As someone who's insane, I would like to distance myself from this guy's ramblings.
posted by xchmp at 12:18 AM on August 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


IRWaG is not a department. It's an institute. Those "faculty members" teach in a wide number of Departments, and are affiliated with the institute pretty much if they choose to be. If a Columbia faculty members is male and works on gender -- anything to do with gender -- s/he can seek an affiliation with the Institute. It happens, for good historical reasons, that the majority of scholars working on "gender" are still women who hipped to that perspective via feminist theory. But that's not everyone. It's not as if IRWaG were actually hiring *any* of these people as standalone faculty.

It's also one of the most interesting, balanced, and *non*-dogmatic gender studies research groups in the US. Its classes are not teaching some sort of doctrinaire feminism -- quite the contrary. As someone noted above, there is hardly any unanimity of perspective even among so-called 'feminists" these days.

Universities have become favorite targets of right wing agitators with loose screws for brains, and Columbia especially has become a favorite target of the wacko right. First it was the Israel-first wackos; now it's the patriarchy protection league.

Total idiocy.
posted by fourcheesemac at 4:50 AM on August 20, 2008


They have a men’s studies department: It’s called ’history’, ’politics’, ’business’. It’s the entire university. It’s all about men’s studies. It’s like asking why there isn’t a White Studies department.

This is such a tired joke of an argument. It's actually not all about men's studies. It's about 'history', 'politics', 'business'--which for centuries has been dominated by white men. There's a difference.

And can someone please explain how Ladies Night isn't flagrantly discriminatory?

Den Hollander held forth on Title IX (“Sports isn’t a big thing to girls, but it’s a big thing to guys”)

Sorry, Den... you can't have it both ways.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:58 AM on August 20, 2008 [2 favorites]


Mr. President Dr. Steve Elvis America: The complaint is actually kind of awesome. I wasn't expecting much, and I'm not convinced (and he launches with his worst argument), but he clearly put some thought into it.

Holy crap, that is awesome... the article didn't even mention that he was going after them under the Establishment clause. He even brings it up before the 5th and 14th Amendment violation bit! On the vanishingly small chance this ever makes it to a courtroom, I hope there's coverage, because it's going to be a perfect storm of crazy. Bonus points to Mr. Hollander if his explanation of establishment of the religion Feminism at Columbia invokes the 4-corner-simultaneous-4-day-in-only-1-earth-rotation defense.
posted by Mayor West at 5:02 AM on August 20, 2008


The actual aim of Women’s Studies is not affirmative action but to create and perpetuate a legal, social and economic substratum occupied by men toiling in a Fritz Lang “Metropolis” like underworld.

RULE 34
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 6:13 AM on August 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


And can someone please explain how Ladies Night isn't flagrantly discriminatory?

It's interesting because it totally is. I wonder how that case went. Private businesses price discriminate based on gender all the time: salons, insurance companies, etc. So I guess it's not against the law?
posted by bluefly at 6:36 AM on August 20, 2008


And can someone please explain how Ladies Night isn't flagrantly discriminatory?

Some places are beginning to agree with this. There was a recent article about this in the Times, about the same issue in Las Vegas:

In a decision that could alter the way businesses on the Las Vegas Strip operate, the state’s civil rights panel has found that a health club discriminated against men by charging them more for membership than they charged women.

The panel, the Nevada Equal Rights Commission, found that the Las Vegas Athletic Club’s offers of reduced rates to women were discriminatory. But it also said that the gym’s decision to provide private workout areas to women, but not to men, was not.

The ruling could also affect the ability of casino-resort operators to offer different prices for men and women at nightclubs and other attractions.

...

Courts and civil rights panels in California, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Maryland and New Jersey have ruled that price discrimination against men is unlawful.

In Illinois, Michigan and Washington, judges have stated that it can be part of an acceptable business strategy.


I'd assume that eventually someone will file a case that will wend its way to the supreme court, and there may be more clarity on this, or it could remain a purely local issue forever.
posted by Forktine at 6:45 AM on August 20, 2008


I'm not a big fan of pointing and laughing at people. But, honestly, in this case; go for it.
posted by oddman at 6:59 AM on August 20, 2008


This guy is being interviewed on the opie and anthony show on XM radio now. In the course of destroying him, and pointing out that his entire agenda is based on his inability to date women, Mr. Hollander defended himself by revealing that "I take a hip-hop [dancing] class because there are like 30 or 40 girls in it." Then, during the course of an argument , a frustrated Mr. Hollander challenged one of the show's hosts to a duel, and lamented that they weren't having the argument in Peru, where "the government looks the other way on dueling."

Shortly thereafter, the hosts of the show concluded the interview with Mr. Hollander with the observation that "you, sir, are a cornball."
posted by Pastabagel at 7:36 AM on August 20, 2008


Oops, should be "In the course of destroying him, and pointing out that his entire agenda is based on his inability to date women, the show forced Mr. Hollander to defend himself by revealing that "I take a hip-hop [dancing] class because there are like 30 or 40 girls in it.""
posted by Pastabagel at 7:42 AM on August 20, 2008


And can someone please explain how Ladies Night isn't flagrantly discriminatory

Well, a lot of women wouldn't care if it went away, because it's not for our benefit. It's to pack clubs with lots of hawt ladies so that the menz have a better chance of picking them up, preferably when they're good and schnockered. Same principle as the "date lines" you can sign up for; ladies, it's free for you! So you can talk to a lot of bottom-of-the-barrel dudes, the ones so desperate they'll pay 2.00 a minute to talk to any random chick! What a deal!

So please, make them illegal. Because those places are usually skeevy wet-T-shirt type of places anyway.
posted by emjaybee at 7:44 AM on August 20, 2008


Reduced admission prices for women at clubs is discriminatory. I'm not personally affected (since I hate loud music), but it is wrong.

Just like charging women more to cut their hair is wrong - and that is something that really gets my dander up. My hair is long, and all I need is a super simple straight trim along the bottom, a few snips at my bangs, which my mother could do (and would, if she were in the same country), but they still want to charge me more money than a man who has a complex styling and shaping to his hair.
posted by jb at 8:20 AM on August 20, 2008


Well how about the ubiquitous female only gyms emjaybee? Why aren't they considered flagrantly discriminatory?
posted by Mitheral at 9:00 AM on August 20, 2008


When I become king, I will -- as a lesson to all lawyers -- annually choose one of their number to be slowly and horribly executed. Although I will do only one a year, I will make sure lawyers like this know they are on the short list.
posted by joaquim at 9:33 AM on August 20, 2008


The actual aim of Women’s Studies is not affirmative action but to create and perpetuate
a legal, social and economic substratum occupied by men toiling in a Fritz Lang
“Metropolis” like underworld.


This guy would love Zardoz.
posted by gompa at 9:40 AM on August 20, 2008


Outstanding use of the batshitinsane tag.

This guy must be totally pissed that women control 100% of the p**** on the planet.

Not that he's getting any of it.</small
posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 9:41 AM on August 20, 2008


I hosed the HTML but y'know... it sort of works for this.
posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 9:42 AM on August 20, 2008


The long-range goal of my law suits is that I am, in my own small way, trying to give all those feminists equality - not the equality of all the best in life, but the equality of the worst in life.

“Make them register for the draft, make them go to war and die, make them work in the worst occupations,” he said.


And ladies?.. He's single!
posted by quin at 9:50 AM on August 20, 2008


Also this?

In Den Hollander v. Flash Dancers Topless Club et al., Den Hollander sued his ex-wife and her employer under the auspices of a civil RICO statute. The suit was dismissed.

This is one of the all-time great lines in the annals of just-the-facts journalism. And Den Hollander v. Flash Dancers Topless Club et al. is the greatest case name in legal history. I'm gonna cite it all the time, at every opportunity.

"Well, madam, if you would consider the precedent of Den Hollander v. Flash Dancers Topless Club, you would understand that your shirt is discriminatory and must be removed."

"Uh, excuse me, my good lady, but in fact I can go around ogling your breasteses for as long as I'd like. If you were more familiar with your RICO predicates under Den Hollander v. Flash Dancers Topless Club, you'd understand it counts as property seizure."
posted by gompa at 9:54 AM on August 20, 2008


Prospective partners must enjoy themselves greatly when googling him.
posted by ersatz at 10:25 AM on August 20, 2008


Mitheral, does one chain of women's-only gyms count as "ubiquitous"? And women aren't getting free memberships that are denied to men, in that case. Just freedom from ogling by dudes while they sweat, which, if men want the same, I am all for. Men's-only clubs ahoy! If you open one, I promise not to sue to get in.

As I said, ladies' night is not really for the ladies, but for the dudes who want to be able to find large groups of them, in an inebriated state, and will pay for the privilege. More creepy than unconstitutional.
posted by emjaybee at 11:15 AM on August 20, 2008


And can someone please explain how Ladies Night isn't flagrantly discriminatory?

It may be, but to sue (1) you'd need legal standing (as an injured party) and (2) you would have to want to sue and (3) you would have to have the resources to sue.

It may be that this is just the first time someone fulfilling all those requirements has come forward.

(The other option is a politician who would be portrayed to their constituents in a favourable light if they crusaded on the issue in question - but discriminatory pricing at seedy clubs isn't a big issue with American voters.)
posted by Mike1024 at 1:49 PM on August 20, 2008


emjaybee writes "Mitheral, does one chain of women's-only gyms count as 'ubiquitous'?"

There are three different female only gym chains in my little town alone, "Ladies Only (multiple locations)","Curves", and ... I can't remember the name of the place in the mall. At any rate, there are a lot of them around. Plus they tend to have more visible retail or store front locations compared to other gyms giving them a higher profile that makes them seem disproportionately represented.

I'd imagine some selective observation happening too in my case. Blatant discrimination like this pisses me off so I tend to remember the Curves gym more than Gold Gym.

emjaybee writes "And women aren't getting free memberships that are denied to men, in that case. Just freedom from ogling by dudes while they sweat, which, if men want the same, I am all for. Men's-only clubs ahoy! If you open one, I promise not to sue to get in."

I feel the same. Unfortunately there are numerous examples of women suing for admittance to men only clubs (most famously golf clubs and tournaments).

And somewhat ironically many of the women only gyms I can picture have huge expanses of exterior glass in at least some of there facilities.
posted by Mitheral at 5:55 PM on August 20, 2008


Christ, what an asshole.
posted by bumpkin at 7:25 PM on August 20, 2008


Well how about the ubiquitous female only gyms emjaybee? Why aren't they considered flagrantly discriminatory?
posted by Mitheral at 12:00 PM on August 20 [+] [!]


Actually, I'm kind of against them too, though I understand why some women feel more comfortable in such an environment.

For one thing, Curves isn't just a gym, it's actually a specific program - and from what I've heard, a good one for people who don't like typical gyms. I think my husband and I would prefer something like that to any regular gym, and we would like to go together, but we can't because he has a Y-chromosone.

It's not an easy answer - clearly there is a balance needed between different people's needs and rights. I understand both sides, though I would be happier seeing Curves move to a woman-encouraging policy rather than only women. Considering they already market themselves to heavier and older women, I suspect that they probably won't be overrun with men looking to gawk, but they might find some men just really would like to try their program.
posted by jb at 8:55 AM on August 21, 2008


Ugh, what a choad. This post could use a 'batshitinsane' tag.
posted by the_bone at 11:33 AM on August 21, 2008


Lawyer's Suit Challenges Women-Only Gyms

(Mr. Foster is a stickler on such points. Years ago, when he lived in Manhattan, he filed complaints against several bars that offered free drinks to women during happy hours)
posted by UbuRoivas at 8:24 PM on August 21, 2008


The complaint is actually kind of awesome. I wasn't expecting much, and I'm not convinced (and he launches with his worst argument), but he clearly put some thought into it.

"97. Without a Men’s Studies program, Columbia male students and male alumni are
disadvantaged in competing with females on America’s current uneven playing field of life."

Yep, a lot of thought clearly went into that.
posted by UbuRoivas at 8:34 PM on August 21, 2008


Interview, from IvyGate
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 12:54 PM on August 25, 2008


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