Yesterday a gunman, who may have posed as a delivery man, shot and killed the son of U.S. District Court Judge Esther Salas and wounded her husband. According to the Daily Beast, the gunman — who died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound — was identified as 72-year-old attorney and men’s rights activist Roy Den Hollander.
Den Hollander was a fixture in the men’s rights scene, and was known for filing ridiculous lawsuits against everything from Columbia University for offering women’s studies courses to nightclubs that offered women discounts on drinks for “Ladies Night.” Den Hollander was mocked for the latter by Comedy Central’s Colbert Report in 2011.
On his personal website Den Hollander wrote lengthy diatribes against women and feminism. “So what’s to be done with the Feminists?” he asked rhetorically. “Strap them to missiles and drop them on the Middle East. They’ll know how to deal with them.”
But Den Hollander appears to have had a personal grudge against Judge Salas. In 2015 Hollander challenged the male-only draft in a lawsuit that was partially dismissed by Judge Salas last year. Another part of the suit was still pending before Salas.
And as Ben Collins and Brandy Zadrozny reported for NBC, Den Hollander left a “memoir” online in which he called Salas a “lazy and incompetent Latina judge appointed by Obama.” They further reported Den Hollander “also wrote about his hatred of his mother and other women and raged about female judges, including fantasizing about the rape of another judge who presided over his divorce case.”
He was also popular with right-wing, anti-feminist media outlets. In 2008 he made a guest appearance on Fox News’ Your World with Neil Cavuto. And in 2010 the male supremacist website A Voice for Men published an article by Den Hollander, making this — as Dave Futrelle of We Hunted the Mammoth noted — the “first alleged murderer to be linked directly to the hate site.”
That same year, Den Hollander railed against feminism and the landmark Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) on the late Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum Live radio program.
Den Hollander began by telling Schlafly that his issues with VAWA “ended up being personal” and that he “took it up to the U.S. Supreme Court, but none of the courts wanted to hear my constitutional challenges.” Den Hollander had particular disdain for his ex-wife, a Russian national whom he maintained manipulated him into marriage so she could obtain a green card.
Schlafly alleged that VAWA was originally passed as a “pay off to Bill Clinton for the feminists supporting him and getting him elected in 1992.” Den Hollander said Schlafly was “absolutely right” and added that “feminist groups are the ones who wrote the law, including whom I refer to as the National Organization of Witches and the Feminist Majority.”
After Schlafly mocked the law’s title as “very sex discriminatory,” Den Hollander said the law “definitely discriminates against guys” lamented that “every special interest group always says the same thing: ‘All we’re looking for is equality. Equal treatment.'” But Den Hollander claimed that what they really wanted was “preferential treatment.”
At one point he said the law was passed under the assumption that “Men are the batterers. Men are evil. Men are responsible for all the evil in the world, and females are naturally good and naturally angels and therefore we have to protect them against evil American men.”
The line about “evil American men” was likely a reference to his own life. Throughout the conversation he made numerous references to his ex-wife, claiming that the law benefited “alien female[s]” and eliminated procedural due process for “American men who marry or date foreigners, foreign ladies.”
Den Hollander claimed that the “moment she makes allegations of abuse to the Department of Homeland Security, they hold secret hearings to determine whether the guy actually committed this battery and this abuse.” He said that the “alien wife” can eventually apply for citizenship, even if she’s a “member of al-Qaeda” or a “Russian mafia prostitute.”