Basically, there are guys who have
accepted the rhetoric of feminism as many men have throughout the
country, however, like many other men who speak the rhetoric of feminism,
when it comes to actualizing theory into personal and political action
it seems that National Organization for Men Against Sexism (NOMAS)
organizationally does what many men do individually.
has not realized what many people thought of as its promise.
It's an Old Boy Network
that militates against any kind of real activism and on-going
The best thing that could happen to NOMAS is for it to
collapse and be transformed into an activist organization.
As a person
involved in activism I find it less and less supportive.
In fact the conferences
have become problematical rather than a source of ideas
NOMAS fails to encourage pro-feminist
organizing and instead has a national structure that saps energy and
resources.There is not enough grass roots pro-feminist organizing
to justify a national structure. A more decentralized structure would
better facilitate local grassroots organizing. NOMAS doesn't take
a strong enough stand and as a result it attracts men who do not have
strong feminist principles. So there is a lot of time wasted on in-fighting
trying to clarify positions and issues.
"The conferences are useful as an important place for me to meet people and talk about pro-feminist issues and it provides a place for EMV to meet as well. Other than that it's not been exactly clear about what NOMAS offers."
Billy Warters on National Organization for Men Against Sexism
I feel really good that
I never joined NOMAS. Otherwise I would have had to resign
last year over the disinformation campaign waged by senior
NOMAS members covering a racist decision to bust the Arizona
boycott. NOMAS doesn't have any kind of accountability.
In fact the organization has an unerring ability to get
basic process and politics wrong. There are probably many
men who would be active and accountable in support of women's
rights. But I can't believe that more than a dozen of them
will be found in NOMAS.
My concern is that NOMAS is too much
of a secondary, reflective, academic, two-levels removed sociologically-based
organization too entrenched in observing rather than doing. In the
early eighties the NOMAS conferences had been an annual feel good
event for me then I realized it was providing a false sense of action.
When I realized this I began to put my energies more into Men Against
Pornography and New York Anti-Sexist Men's Action Network. At the
same time I was dismayed at Bob Brannon's (and others') insensitivity
to multi-cultural issues, and their refusal to apologize for holding
the conference in Tucson during the boycott. Brannon's elevation within
the organization - especially after we asked him to leave Men Against
Pornography - has been such an embarrassment to me that I have withdrawn
my association with NOMAS ever since.
Dick Bathrick on National Organization for Men Against Sexism