So the post I did last about Herr Kommandant wasn’t a spur of the moment thing.
Specifically I started getting tips about three weeks ago, and poked about for more info on my own. I only decided to go this public because when I independently investigated, I found piles of corroboration. Thus, I can verify that Herr Kommadant does not have a good reputation in the Montreal community. I can verify that people believe they were emotionally, physically and financially abused by him and that bystanders believed they witnessed inappropriate behaviour.
The more public I get, the more feedback I get, almost all of it affirming the conclusion I reached. Tragically, when I started talking poking at this, the first thing that happened was not mass shock about how this person could possibly be bad, it was a collective shrug of frustration: “Oh him. Yeah. Everyone knows about him.”
So what followed the last post?
The guy behind Montreal Fetish Weekend reached out to listen to what is going on. He’s being professional and calm about this, and given all my interactions with him to this point, I would describe him as someone trying to hammer something functional out of the scene as-is. We’ll see how he handles this, but he did manage to dissociate himself from Dunter, so even if you aren’t a fan of the more commercial/traditional fetish side of the scene, he at least has past evidence of shaking entrenched toxic people from his projects.
I got a lot of private messages and gentle back pats that I bothered to make such a hard stand on the subject, and various people affirming either they saw things that made them uncomfortable or that they were victimized. The more I hear, the more I feel like I made the right call.
Other than that, I got two impassioned replies in the comments, from his business partner Opal Blacke and one of his current partners, PetiteFay_HK. Their arguments boiled down to claiming this was the ill words of vindictive exes (or other event organizers who were “jealous”). There’s a revealing problem with their arguments, though:
- Nothing I said about Herr Kommandandt claimed was an ex partner who was victimized, or for that matter any people who represented themselves as a partner past or present. This tells me that PetiteFay and Opal are both aware that there are multiple people who claim they have received abuse from him.
- As far as anyone in competition with Urban Dungeon I have heard nothing from them. Other event organizers have wanted a heads up to protect their own guests, but the flow of information has definitely not been vituperative stories about how they are so much better, but people unrelated and not in direct competition saying “really? shit!”.
Since Opal and PetiteFay reached out to counter my conclusion, I’m providing what hey said here- it was originally intended to go in the comments, but the nature of their responses demand additional attention- among many things both fall into the typical patterns of people making excuses for abusers and both have a surprisingly unified narrative suggesting they were aware that something was rotten in the metaphorical state of Denmark.
So, after the jump is two messages from PetiteFay and Opal, for the my more wordy rebuttal.
Talking about this at the world at large has an extra level of challenge, in that the conversation takes place in French as well as English and I’m only 100% confident in the latter- I can function in French but I lack the depth to confidently translate nuance. Luckily I have friends who are linguistically talented. It’s important for me not to take advantage of this person’s comparative fluency, so I got it properly translated to make sure that even if I think she is wrong, nobody is disadvantaged in the back and forth language issue.
Translation by D20, PetiteFay’s message is in Red:
I can’t say how disappointed I am to see your post against Herr Kommandandt, someone you do not know.
Not personally knowing someone’s side of things, or the person is not really relevant. I am not a legal court, but neither do you need to be best friends with someone to make a judgement call on their alleged behavior.
You know, it’s wise to look at the big picture and to hear everyone’s version before making your own opinion of someone. Of course his exes will speak against him… of course, those envious of him and other event promoters want him publicly shamed so they can take his place…. We don’t know each other very much, and I wouldn’t be surprised if you didn’t remember me.
Exes? Which exes? Can you be specific? What are the exes saying about him? How many are there? It’s not that remarkable to have one relationship that crashed and burned, but several?
But, I want you to know I am neither naive nor stupid: I have a bachelor’s degree, I have been a supermarket sales director and I am also a massage therapist. So I’m not just some idiot that would follow an asshole. With that said, for your information, Herr Kommandandt has never abused me or any of his friends. He gives everything he has for the scene.
Just because you personally have not had a negative experience does not mean that person is not capable of bad things. Furthermore your level of education has no bearing on whether or not abuse may be present- abuse of all kinds happen at prestigious universities and organizations, by and to people from all levels of social prestige and power. Multiple people have made allegations. It is unlikely he is the victim of an elaborate conspiracy.
Yes, he can be scary to some sensitive people, but he IS NOT an abuser. I am convinced that you won’t go back on your decision, even if you take the time to read this message, but it wouldn’t feel right not to ask you this.
So basically even people close to him admit that he routinely makes people uncomfortable. But it’s the fault of “sensitive” people. I wish I could say this was a huge misunderstanding based on appearances, but this is very common camouflage abuse behaviour. A red flag is where a group at large is expected to make exceptions for someone who makes them uncomfortable, and is extremely ill becoming of a person who wants to be a community leader not to take steps to remedy that.
Please, delete your post. It is sadly wrongful.
Original, en francais:
Je ne dirai pas a quel point je suis décue de voir ton post contre Herr Kommandandt, quelqu’un dont tu ne connais pas.
Tu sais, il est sage de voir le portrait d’ensemble et de comparer les versions des gens avant de se faire sa propre opinion sur quelqu’un. C’est sure que ses ex vont parler contre lui… c’est sure que des envieux et d’autres promoteurs d’évènements souhaitent le voir couvert de honte pour prendre sa place….
On ne se connait pas beaucoup, je ne serais même pas surprise que tu ne te rappelle pas de moi. Mais pour de dire je ne suis pas naïve ni stupide: j’ai un baccalauréat, j’ai été directrice des ventes d’un magasin de grande surface et je suis aussi massothérapeute. Donc je ne suis pas une des greluches qui suivrait un connard.
Cela dit, pour ton information, Herr Kommandandt n’a jamais abuser de moi, ni de ses amis-es. Il se donne corps et âmes pour la scène. Oui il peut etre effrayants pour les gens sensible mais ce N’EST PAS un abuseur. Je suis convaincue que tu n’en fera rien, si meme tu prends le temps de lire ce message, mais je ne me sentirais pas bien si je ne te faisais pas la demande.
SVP Retire ton post. Il est malheureusement non fondé.
Opal Blacke, who is a business partner with Herr Kommandandt, weighed in.
As co-owner of the Urban Dungeon, I’m shocked to read this post.
Good. It would be horrifying if you were complicit in his alleged behavior.
You’ve never set foot in our dungeon or talked with us to get both sides of the story yet you write this hatefull and judgemental post which bashes on both the alleged abuser AND the alleged victim by presenting them as “marginalized populations (sex workers, the mentally ill whom he can say are just “crazy”).
Wow! There is a lot to unpack here. It’s not bashing someone to say they have mental illness or work in the sex industry. One is a legitimate health concern and the other is vocation. I’m very much pro-sex work, whether you are a fetish model, a prodom, a stripper or an escort. Or you run a fetish venue, as you do. So not only is Urban Dungeon co-run by someone with a reputation as an abuser, but you openly discriminate.
I’ve personnally met HK’s partners and got to know them and they were not crazies or hookers nor is Herr Kommandandt the monster you make him to be. They had issues in their relationships and it was overly publicised but they have all moved on.
That’s pretty appalling whore-phobia AND able-ism you are showing. Given your fixation on past partners, you are acknowledging this guy has a lousy reputation.
As nothing concrete is presented and no one has contacted us on such issues, it is unclear what the reproach to the Urban Dungeon are alleged to be or why people should avoid it based on difficulties within a personnal relationships.
Why would people who believed Herr Kommandandt abused them contact his venue? If you are not clear what I am talking about, I would say you lack any familiarity with the larger Montreal BDSM community because it took me very little time to find people who claimed to witness everything from getting a newbie drunk past consent, to erratic tantrums.
Even the people who are closest to him describe him as someone with as a string of exes who had abuse seeming issues with him and as someone others might find scary. Egads.
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