By Rachael Barnes
A petition, launched on Saturday, calling for the denial of a visa to American “pick-up artist” Julien Blanc, has been signed by nearly 25,000 people. Blanc has already been removed from Australia, for organising a tour of seminars “teaching” men how to prey on women by “short-circuiting their emotional and logical mind”. His seminars and Youtube videos are not only verbally derogatory to women, but are racist and contain solid evidence of him harassing and sexually assaulting women.
He provides tips on how to overcome LMR (last minute resistance [to sex]). Similar social media campaigns, which have already proved successful in Australia, are also currently in place in Canada and Japan. Whilst it is crystal clear Blanc is a danger to society, and more specifically women, using state measures to ensure he doesn’t enter the country sets a dangerous precedent. Sure, arrest the man as soon as he sets foot here (there is surely enough evidence to do so!), but strengthening the state’s ability to revoke and refuse visas is not our policy.
This misogynistic culture of “Men’s Rights Advocates” and uploading videos of women being sexually harassed has become extremely prominent. You only have to google names such as Sam Pepper and Dapper Laughs to see it. And while the response from the large majority of people is promising, it is clear the politics of such responses needs to be discussed and thought out a lot more.