Controversial blogger Roosh V has cancelled an international meet-up day – including one in the North East – amid safety concerns for his followers.
A group of supporters for Roosh V – whose real name is Daryush Valizadeh and publishes inflammatory views about women – was due to meet at Grey’s monument in Newcastle but that will no longer take place.
Valizadeh drew worldwide criticism when he published an article titled How to stop rape, which suggested sexual attacks should be legalised, if done on private property.
In a statement on his website, Roosh said: “I can no longer guarantee the safety or privacy of the men who want to attend on February 6.
“I apologize [sic] to all the supporters who are let down by my decision.”
The news of the cancellation was well received by protesters in the North East who had planned to congregate at the same time and place as the neo-masculine men to show that they opposed their messages and ideas.
Protest organiser Roweena Russell was delighted that pressure from people like herself have caused the demise of the event.
She said: “It shows that people with these opinions are in a tiny minority and that we can very quickly get hundreds of people together who are willing to show that.
“I want to say thank you for the support from all the people we had the opportunity to work with.”
Another protester, Joseph Devitt, suggested an irony in the reasons for cancelling the meetings, saying: “I think it’s ridiculous that someone who encourages violence against women has cited safety as one of the reasons for cancelling the meet-ups.
“These are misguided people, following a man who preaches hate. This shows that the rest of the world think it’s nonsense and he will not have his revolution.”
Protests and petitions against Roosh have been branded as ‘stupid’ by the ‘pick up artist’ but today it seems those protesters are the very people stifling his message.
Ms Russell said that those who wanted to show their support could attend the Tyneside Rape Crisis Firewalk on Thursday, February 18th. Details of the event can be found here.