Two of the most controversial local events of 2016 won't be happening.
Return of Kings, an organization founded by Daryush Valizadeh, better known as Roosh V, that is best known for its alleged advocacy for legalizing rape — a joke, Roosh stresses, although plenty of folks don't believe him — had scheduled more than 100 meetings worldwide for Saturday, February 6, including get-togethers in Denver and Boulder.
Now, however, those gatherings won't take place.
Why not? Roosh maintains that he pulled the plug over safety concerns.
The Return of Kings website describes the outfit like so:
Return Of Kings is a blog for heterosexual, masculine men. It’s meant for a small but vocal collection of men in America today who believe men should be masculine and women should be feminine.
ROK aims to usher the return of the masculine man in a world where masculinity is being increasingly punished and shamed in favor of creating an androgynous and politically-correct society that allows women to assert superiority and control over men. Sadly, yesterday’s masculinity is today’s misogyny. The site intends to be a safe space on the web for those men who don’t agree with the direction that Western culture is headed. If you are new, check out our top 35 posts of all time.
Women and homosexuals are strongly discouraged from commenting here.
Marijuana Deals Near You
Does Roosh really mean this stuff? Or is his commentary deliberately provocative as a way of gaining attention?
Whatever the case, he's clearly made a name for himself in a very short period of time via videos in which, for example, he explains how to get laid using toys to act out the scenario.
That clip can be seen below in the context of comics riffing on his advice.
And then there's his list of "36 Things Wrong With American Women."
"They're fat," Roosh explains in a different video. "Fat girls are simply unattractive, so why should you waste time dating a fat chick?"
Here's that clip.
Still, the piece that really got him into trouble was last year's "How to Stop Rape," in which he suggested that society should "make rape legal if done on private property. I propose that we make the violent taking of a woman not punishable by law when done off public grounds."
This excerpt offers a greater sense of the piece as a whole:
The benefits of eradicating rape laws would extend to honest men who unfortunately now live in fear over imprisonment in the case the girl they had sex with had a blood alcohol level of 0.04 instead of 0.05 or some other arbitrary, untested, and made-up value that may imply consent was not fully achieved. There is no more having to guess the interpretation of a woman’s mixed signals or to artificially amp up her base emotions with clownish banter. Because women will never enter a man’s apartment without accepting that sex will happen, he can escort her to his bedroom and romantically consummate a relationship after it was certain he proved himself to be a good and decent man the woman fully trusted. My proposal eliminates anxiety and unfair persecution for men while empowering women to make adult decisions about their bodies.
No surprise that the article caused a firestorm — so much so that Roosh has insisted the whole thing was intended as comedy, as in this recent tweet.
I'll state once again: the "How To Stop Rape" article was satire. Neither me or my supporters want rape to be legalized. The media is lying.— Roosh (@rooshv) February 3, 2016
Despite the controversy (or perhaps because of it), Return of Kings has become so popular over the intervening months that Roosh decided to go big on Saturday.
The original announcement reads:
We will have 165 meetings in 43 countries for our international meetup day on February 6, 2016 at 8 PM local time. Hosts have been instructed to wait at the meeting point from 8:00-8:20 p.m. before moving on to the final location. If you arrive at the meeting point at 8:21 p.m., you will miss the meetup. Arriving on time within the window is absolutely paramount.
To identify your fellow tribesmen, ask the following question to a man you suspect is there for the meetup: “Do you know where I can find a pet shop?” If you are asked this question, answer in the affirmative: “Yes, it’s right here.” You can then introduce yourself and get details about where to proceed at 8:20. If you ask someone for the pet shop and they appear confused or actually try to direct you to a real pet shop, they’re not there for the meetup.
But the situation quickly deteriorated as assorted groups assailed the meetings and made plans to protest them, as noted in this brief piece from WGN in Chicago.
Such demonstrations won't happen now. Yesterday, Roosh published the following item:
I can no longer guarantee the safety or privacy of the men who want to attend on February 6, especially since most of the meetups can not be made private in time. While I can’t stop men who want to continue meeting in private groups, there will be no official Return Of Kings meetups. The listing page has been scrubbed of all locations. I apologize to all the supporters who are let down by my decision.
This move hardly spells the end for Return of Kings. Expect Roosh to continue to offend people for as long as he can.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Westword's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Denver's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
Here's one more video — an interview with Roosh about a petition to deny him access to Canada last year.