Richard Paul Evans to speak at Pleasant Valley Library

Author Richard Paul Evans will be featured at the Christmas in October fundraiser from 2:30 to 4 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 12, at the Pleasant Valley Library, 5568 S. 500 East in Washington Terrace.

Shazam! As if these nerds didn’t already have a hard enough time getting dates.

It may be an unfair stereotype, but the enduring image of these geeks who attend comic-book conventions is that of an adult white male who still lives in his parents’ basement and couldn’t score dinner and a movie with a member of the opposite sex if his half-life depended on it. And the recent controversy swirling around FanX — the Salt Lake City-based comic book convention — isn’t going to make these guys any more popular among women.

After accusations of sexual harassment were leveled against FanX, co-founders Bryan Brandenburg and Dan Farr found themselves in hot water over their less-than-enthusiastic response to #MeToo moments at the annual convention that celebrates the heroes, villains and sidekicks from movies, TV, comic books and video games.

RELATED: Handling of harassment claim shakes up Utah comic convention

A number of authors and other celebrities have announced they’re pulling out of the SLC comic con that attracts more than 100,000 geeks and nerds each year, insisting there’s a culture of condescension, sexism and harassment surrounding the male-dominated event.

Much of the grief is over the handling of sexual-harassment accusations made against popular Utah author Richard Paul Evans, following his appearance at the event.

Evans burst onto the literary scene back in the 1990s with the New York Times bestseller “The Christmas Box.” The mercifully short book is a heartfelt tale of loss and redemption at the holidays.

RELATED: Sexual harassment persists at Comic-Con

And indeed, over the years Evans has gone on to churn out any number of heartfelt tales of loss and redemption at the holidays, including “The Christmas Candle,” “The Christmas List,” “The Noel Diary,” “The Noel Stranger,” “The Mistletoe Inn,” “The Mistletoe Promise,” “The Mistletoe Secret,” and about a thousand other books featuring Christmas-y titles of three words or less.

Why, single-handedly Evans has produced enough of these stories to keep Lifetime Network in made-for-TV movies well into the next century.

Evans also penned the books “The 5 Lessons a Millionaire Taught Me About Life and Wealth” and “The 5 Lessons a Millionaire Taught Me About Life and Wealth for Women.” But apparently, those 10 lessons the millionaire taught Evans didn’t include important ones like “Don’t touch/hug/kiss women without their express consent” or “Don’t make creepy, unsolicited comments about a woman’s physical appearance.”

Evans recently became a part of the #MeToo movement when a female author accused him of being overly physical with her at last year’s FanX. Not only did Evans deny the allegations, but he subsequently went on television to prove that no hole is so deep that one cannot dig it just a little bit deeper.

In an ill-advised interview with KUTV Channel 2 aimed at setting the record straight, Evans went full-on victim — claiming that there is a “movement” afoot in society to try to hurt men. He said that white men are under siege; oppressed by a changing culture and victims of an extremist feminist agenda.

By the time he got done talking, I felt like we downtrodden white males ought to have our own annual telethon. Or at least a poignant public service announcement on late-night TV featuring singer/animal activist Sarah McLachlan.

Evans said: “There are books written that say, again, that men should be taken out, that they should account for no more than 10 percent of the population. Well, that makes men feel like Jews in Nazi Germany.”

Oh. No. He. Didn’t.

Please tell me that wealthy, privileged author Richard Paul Evans did NOT just compare the plight of his fellow white males to Jews in Nazi Germany.

“We’re in a culture right now that it’s war on men,” Evans said.

And to combat that war, the author started a fraternal organization he calls Tribe of Kyngs. (Clearly, spelling is not one of the requirements for membership.)

Evans says he started the men’s rights group for his fellow brethren, who are lost.

“I’m hoping that society will correct itself in a positive way,” Evans concludes. “There is less racism today than there was — unless it’s directed towards white males, I mean — but there’s less racism today than there were in our parents’ generation.”

So, let me get this straight. According to Richard Paul Evans, today’s white males actually have it worse than:

A) Jewish people in Nazi Germany

B) Black men in 21st century America

C) Women

In his defense, Evans later issued an “apology” for his comment about Nazis and Jews.

“That was a very poor comparison,” he began promisingly enough, before stupidly adding, “though also slightly misunderstood.”

So much for the RPE Apology Tour.

Evans went on to clarify that he was referring to the “Pre-Holocaust phase when the Jewish people were being unjustly blamed for everything that was wrong in society.”

The obvious difference, of course, being that the Jews weren’t in charge of German society at the time. So yes, blaming them would be totally unjust. Whereas, white males today control all aspects of our society — everything from politics to business — so blaming them for many of the ills of that society actually makes quite a bit of sense.

But not to the author of “The Christmas Box,” who seems to think white males are more persecuted than women, blacks and Jews combined.

It’s no wonder there’s a war on us when we keep producing white males like Richard Paul Evans.

Contact Mark Saal at 801-625-4272, or msaal@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @Saalman. Friend him on Facebook at facebook.com/MarkSaal.

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