The following letter resulted from an inquiry from a new NCFM member (by the way, if you have not joined NCFM you may as well do it now, just click on the join NCFM button to the right and help us help you make the world a better place for all of us…):
NCFM doesn’t have a self-starter, activism kit for new members at this time, but it would be a good idea if we did. I think your email may be the motivation I need to write an article about that topic for NCFM.
As a 501 (c)3, NCFM is primarily an “educational” organization. We “educate” through a variety of ways, including letters and visits to elected representative’s offices. Politicians have become increasingly aware of the issues facing males in Western society, but much, much more needs to be done, IMO.
Networking is vital to the men’s and father’s rights movement(s) and NCFM encourages its members to network with other credible men’s and father’s rights organizations. Currently, NCFM members are linking up with Ed Bartlett at SAVE to call attention to the need for a more gender neutral domestic violence law. http://www.saveservices.org/ Please feel free to mention NCFM if you contact SAVE.
Activism within NCFM can take many forms, from writing articles that are submitted to Harry for the website, to street protesting, to even making buttons (similar to political campaign buttons). http://tinyurl.com/4ssy38 I certainly haven’t done it all, but have tried a variety of things. There’s always room for innovation in regards to activism/communication/education.
One of our members, an attorney, has guest lectured at colleges and universities. He’s also been interviewed for radio and TV, and more. This attorney’s efforts, and other attorney’s efforts, in litigation are beyond my expertise, but suffice it to say those efforts have been vital to the progress of the men’s rights movement.
Public access TV is not as abundant in our area as it used to be, but members have had their own TV show on a public access channel, addressing men’s and father’s issues. Youtube channels are also good outlets for promoting the issues.
A few years back I compiled a “men’s oppressions” list and the moderator of the Stand Your Ground website posted it on SYG. http://standyourground.com/forums/index.php?topic=16416.0
It’s a pretty good statistical resource if I do say so myself. Recently, Paul Elam, and others at AVFM, updated and added to that list and posted it at the “A Voice for Men” website. That website is presently undergoing an update, but should be back up and running in a few days.
In the past, we’ve had rallies in a large, local park on Sundays and got significant response from people just stopping their cars and dropping in. We even combined that effort with F4J (Fathers 4 Justice) to get more involvement.
Sending out press releases before a big protest is a good idea. It’s always a big plus to make the local news.
I’ve probably done as much street protesting by myself as with with other people, but a large group of people, holding signs, is definitely the most powerful attention grabber. http://tinyurl.com/y6an5ms Of course, documenting the event in photos and/or video, then posting a written story about the event on Internet sites is also recommended follow up.
For the graphically inclined, protest sign making has many possibilities. LAPD has restrictions on the size of wooden sticks that can be used to hold protest signs. “Grape stake,” or “plaster lath,” as it is sometimes called, is about 1/4″ X 1 1/2″ and is acceptable to LAPD, but check your local ordinances on protesting for your area.
I could offer a lot of detail on sign making, but will refrain for the sake of brevity. Protest signs can be made cheaply from simple cardboard and black markers, or more neatly made from 30″ X 40″ sturdy boards. I’ve found a good supply of sturdy boards at my local “Staples” store, but they’re not cheap, IMO.
Printing out protest sign images and words made from a desktop publishing program is probably one of the most convenient and expeditious ways to get the components of a sharp looking sign ready for mounting onto sturdy board. Just printout the images and words (trim with a scissors if necessary) and tape them on. There may be some trial and error in the making of the first few signs, but the learning curve is fairly quick and easy, and fun, in my experience.
I’ve also made large protest signs in desktop publishing software and had the files printed out at my local Kinko’s store on 30″ X 40″ paper, and the price was fairly reasonable, but the process to get my files converted from the .JPEG file extension into the Kinko’s file extension was kind of detailed – and I needed the Kinko’s file conversion program.
NCFM encourages all its members to engage in activism and educate about men’s, father’s and boy’s issues. The misinformation and ignorance about men’s, father’s and boy’s issues in Western society is monumental, and probably explains largely why male rights (over the past several decades) have been more trampled on than a door mat.
Hopefully, if this gets posted on the NCFM website, other members will share their NCFM experiences with men’s rights activism / communication / education, and yes, “/ litigation.” Like the old Proverb says, “As iron sharpens iron so one man sharpens another.”
I welcome correspondence regarding any suggestions, or questions, you may have regarding NCFM activism.