Struggle cancels anti-woman conference in Detroit

first_imgProtesters target Doubletree, June 7.WW photo: Kris HamelOn June 11, just five days after it was targeted by hundreds of protesters and thousands of petitions, Doubletree Hotel in Detroit confirmed it had canceled reservations for a conference organized by a group called “A Voice for Men,” which was scheduled to hold its first national conference there June 26-28. The group then announced it would convene at a Veterans of Foreign Wars hall in the suburb of St. Clair Shores, Mich., some 18 miles from downtown Detroit. Anti-sexism, pro-woman activists declared the cancellation an important victory.This MRA (“men’s rights advocates”) group, based in Houston, promotes violence against women and is pro-rape, according to its website. It is part of a reactionary movement that claims men are somehow discriminated against and oppressed in modern society. They deny the existence of male supremacy, rampant sexism and widespread violence against women. The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate crimes against oppressed people, has designated MRAs as hate groups.The June 7 protest included progressive women and men of varying ages, nationalities, abilities, genders and sexual orientations. It included UNITE HERE union organizers promoting a boycott of Doubletree (part of the Hilton empire) and other hotel chains because of low wages and poor working conditions. The participants took over the street in front of the Doubletree for an hour, demanding a hotel representative accept over 3,000 signatures on a petition to cancel the violence-promoting MRA conference. More than 3,500 signatures in total were directed at Doubletree.MRA supporters have inundated the media and Internet with lies about alleged threats of violence directed at their conference. In reality, it is they who advocate violence against women. Progressive activists warned women in the Detroit area, and those working at the Doubletree Hotel, that they face very real threats from these men. Emma Howland-Bolton, a leading organizer of the June 7 march and rallies, told Workers World, “[W]e recognized the necessity of protesting the decision of a private corporation to prioritize profit over the safety of its workers.”MRAs menacingly followed women activists and videotaped the June 7 protest. This reporter received an email claiming to be from Marc Angelucci, a Los Angeles attorney and leader of the National Coalition for Men, who said he is a “socialist-leaning [sic] person who has done lots of human rights work” and that the feminist protesters were a “reactionary group.” The defensive email, which at least one other activist received, confirms the right-wing nature of MRAs.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Spafford Hits Terrapin Crossroads For Packed Two-Night Run [Audio/Video/Photos]

first_imgLoad remaining images Photo: Ron Adelberg This past weekend, Spafford continued their extensive 2018 “For Amusement Only” tour with their first-ever stint at fan-favorite bay area venue Terrapin Crossroads. While they were originally scheduled to play just one show on Saturday, March 3rd, a second date was added the following night due to overwhelming demand.Saturday’s first set opened with a well-executed “Todd’s Tots”. The band was clearly locked in as it soared to a blissful peak landing before the tune’s closing theme. Next came the John Hiatt tune “Memphis in the Meantime”, which quickly picked up steam as the band led the audience through a dark, spacey section that built up to a ripping solo from guitarist Brian Moss. “Memphis” finally dropped into a swanky groove before melting into “Backdoor Funk”. By this point, the room was bursting with energy as a smiling Jordan Fairless sang out the chorus to this fan favorite. Spafford then moved into a gleeful “Hollywood”, which surprisingly launched into an incredible jam that segued into a glorious set-closing “In the Eyes of Thieves”.Set two began with an energetic rendition of “Lonely” that continued into a crunchy segment of sonic synths from keyboardist Red Johnson, electric drums from Cameron Laforest, driving bass from Jordan, and mind-melting guitar from Brian. After landing smoothly back in “Lonely” territory, the band continued onwards with a bust out: their first performance of “Too Close” since 8/3/13 (269 shows) and third-ever live rendition of the Alex Clare tune.“America” came next, almost immediately dropping into a wonderful improv session. Initially, Red’s keyboard lines sounded similar to “When a Fire Starts to Burn” by Disclosure, but the group swiftly delved deeper into a serene cohesiveness. Next came staple live cover “On Fire” (originally by JJ Grey & Mofro) followed by a newer tune, “My Road (My Road)”, debuted last October in Madison, WI. This pensive song started with a leisurely gait but soon evolved into an intense aural force. As Red’s vocals closed the tune, Spafford eased into the happy melodies of “Salamander Song” to close the set. The band finally finished out an incredible night one at Terrapin Crossroads with “The Reprise” in the encore slot, the band effortlessly bringing it to one final, soaring peak.Spafford – Full Audio – 3/3/2018[Audio: Matt Moricle]Setlist: Spafford | Terrapin Crossroads | San Rafael, CA | 3/3/18Set 1: Todd’s Tots, Memphis In The Meantime, Backdoor Funk, Hollywood, In The Eyes Of ThievesSet 2: Lonely, Too Close, America, On Fire, My Road (My Road) > Salamander SongEncore: The RepriseSunday night’s “bonus” show started off with “Eternity”, a fun and lyrically inspiring opener. Next, Red signaled in a roaring rendition of “The Remedy” that had the packed room instantly dancing. From there, Spafford landed into a cool, placid “Legend”, which showcases their mastery of dynamics by weaving through crescendos both instrumentally and vocally.One of the highlights from the show was certainly the “Electric Taco Stand” that followed. Brian’s guitar playfully bounced along as the band harnessed an increasingly faster groove, evoking emotion via fluttering guitar before fading into an incredible “Alternate Ending” and, finally, back into “Electric Taco Stand”. The band closed out set one with a pair of newer tunes, 2017 debut “Lovesick Melody” and 2018 debut “Soil”, which sported a ripping jam along with its swaying melody.“All In” kicked off the final set of the run, leading the audience through its characteristic heavy-hitting groove. That moved into an easy-going section, which in turn built back up to a penetrating pinnacle. The opening drum hits of “Slip and Squander” cooled things down momentarily before the group launched back into the musical cosmos. From there, the band kicked into a thumping electronic jam behind Red and Cameron before moving into their fan-favorite cover of Tears for Fears‘ “Mad World”.Next, Spafford provided the perfect thematic counterpoint to “Mad World” with “Beautiful Day”. As the song’s final notes faded out, Jordan and Brian hit the throttle and steered the band into a set-closing “Galisteo Way”. To cap it all off, Spafford treated the crowd to elusive favorite “Double Time” for the first time since night two of their incredible Asheville, NC run in 2017.Spafford – Full Audio – 3/4/2018[Audio: Matt Moricle]Spafford – Set One Video – 3/4/2018[Video: Must Have Media]Spafford – Set Two Video – 3/4/2018[Video: Must Have Media]Setlist: Spafford | Terrapin Crossroads | San Rafael, CA | 3/4/18Set 1: Eternity, The Remedy, Legend, Electric Taco Stand > Alternate Ending > Electric Taco Stand, Lovesick Melody > SoilSet 2: All In, Slip And Squander, Mad World, Beautiful Day, Galisteo WayEncore: Double TimeBelow, you can check out a gallery of photos from Spafford’s 3/4/18 show at Terrapin Crossroads courtesy of Ron Adelberg.Spafford continues their “For Amusement Only” tour tomorrow, Wednesday, March 7th in Bend, OR. For a list of upcoming Spafford dates, head to the band’s website.Spafford | Terrapin Crossroads | San Rafael, CA | 3/4/18 | Photos: Ron Adelberglast_img read more