Not only is the internet a-fucking-wash with hideous internet trolls who threaten women with rape and generally be massive low-life scums (including the man who called my friend about her missing cat, telling her he was from a Chinese restaurant, they had cooked and eaten her cat and could she please pick up the skin. No really, that happened), but it’s also now a place where Said Victims of massive douchebaggery are fighting back.
Your hero and mine Caitlin Moran is engaging Twitter CEO or something about his company’s lack of response re: men threatening sexual violence against women. Note: Facebook is similarly crap on this issue.
It does no one any good to pat women on the head and tell them to ignore it and they’ll go away. That’s practically an endorsement of heinous unacceptable behaviour. These men are not sex-starved nerds who watch violent pornography in their parents’ basement. No, these are real, actual people with proper jobs and wives and children and EVERYTHING. These are your neighbour, your kid’s teacher, the nice man in the shop. But just as easily as the internet can mask these fucktards, so they can be exposed.
Threatening someone, anyone, with sexual violence is the lowest of the low. Picking on women who dare to have a public profile or speak their mind is retarded. We are 50% of the population, dickheads. We birth your children, or not. We read and write and run corporations and are fucking individuals. I question you as a human being when you feel the need to communicate with a woman who dares to have an opinion with a) commentary on her looks b) threats of death and/or sexual violence and c) misogynistic cuntery that should have been left behind 100 years ago.
To the young women of today I say:
There is still a gender pay gap that will affect you.
Being a feminist means you want things to be fair, not that you hate men
Sexual violence and assault are real and will happen to 1 in 3 women worldwide. Just because you are a middle class white woman doesn’t mean it won’t be you.
There is never a situation where you “asked for it”.
Make sure the men in your life value and support women.
Don’t take shit from trolls or idiots. It’s a hard road but you will have support. Sticking your head above the parapet is hard enough. Be proud of yourself. Pick your battles.
I know every time my headshot byline appeared in the newspaper I feared emails and letters being sent to me criticizing how I looked (and therefore what I said). These people are dumb. But they’re not all crazies with too much time on their hands in between masturbating to K-Mart catalogs of women in their underwear. Nope, they are people you know. And they can’t hide behind a screen name forever. They need to be exposed and shamed in front of the people they love. More than that they need to understand how and why what they did was so awful. They need education.
Watch all the porn you like. I don’t care. But when you hide behind the veil of anonymity and threaten women with rape as casually as you’d eat a chicken dinner, then we’re coming for you. There are men and women out there who are not taking the crap you’re doling out. You think its harmless and fun? It’s not. Words are powerful. Threats are real.
To every troll out there who writes bigoted, racist, threatening bullshit comments; the world is changing. You’ve had your day in the sun. The internet is NOT anonymous. Every hateful nasty awful thing you’ve ever written and posted is recorded. Your IP address is recorded. Just ask Snowden. If you think you can threaten and abuse people behind the cover of the internet; guess what? You can’t anymore.
Case in point: I’ll post above. It is a thing of beauty.