Freedom of speech means the right to criticize what other people are saying. But it might not always be the best use of your time.
Over the weekend, three threads were started on the Halifax subreddit (two now with the author’s account deleted), all regarding the same paranoid ravings that anarchist feminists are destroying free speech in this city.
“In the past few years, moral hygiene activists for the promotion of virtue and elimination of vice, orchestrated a string of political campaigns to abolish concerts, comedy shows and parties at nightclubs, which the activists deemed to be degenerate,” reads one post, about controversial events for Chris Brown and “The Slut Whisperer.”
Two further posts contain near identical language and match an email sent to The Coast over the weekend. All three pay lip service to Rehtaeh Parsons and the Dalhousie dentistry scandal before decrying how the author is “watching a city crumble to the demands of some angry young Dal students.”
The author’s hyperbolic concern stems from recent protests about the upcoming Daniel Tosh shows June 11 and 12 at the Rebecca Cohn. Last week, a group identified as “Halifax anarcho-feminists” hung some banners around town in protest of what they call Tosh’s transphobic and misogynistic comedy.
Daniel Tosh is the American performer who came under fire in 2012 for being the then-latest male comedian trying to crack the code of telling really funny rape jokes. He did not succeed.
Now, the “Maritime Anarchist Initiative” is planning a demonstration Thursday afternoon in protest of Tosh’s shows. They’ll be meeting at 1pm at the dentistry clinic on University Avenue and marching to the Henry Hicks Building.
“This is completely unacceptable,” writes spokesperson Storm Paradise in a release about Tosh's upcoming shows. “Unlike Dalhousie, we’re committed to fighting misogyny, rape culture, and transphobia on campus and everywhere else. We invite everyone who cares about the safety of women and trans people to join us in the streets.”
While Dalhousie University owns the venue, it’s perhaps worth mentioning that by all indications the institution isn’t involved in organizing the event. Still, damn poor timing for the school.
It’s unclear if the Maritime Anarchist Initiative is affiliated with the Halifax anarcho-feminists (as much as anarchist organizations can be affiliated, that is). Between the two groups and multiple Reddit threads, this may be the most serious attention anyone’s been paying to Daniel Tosh since Brickleberry got cancelled.
Tickets, meanwhile, are still available for Tosh’s four [!] shows on June 11 and 12, at $61 each [!!].