I say things on the internet that annoy people. It is my lot in life.
I annoy them a lot. I annoy them back into the stone age.
When I annoy people I tend to get comments like this:
The Pophat guy would be pretty smart is he wasn't completely incoherent.
Congratulations, Ken. You've used this situation to make yourself feel more pious. And that's what's really important, right? To be correct, and to lecture people who get involved.
A hit! A palpable hit!
Sure, on very rare occasions I draw a murder fantasy by an unprincipled oily lunatic, but for the most part, the reactions I get aren't threatening, and don't make fun of my appearance (despite it being a prime target) or sexuality.
But then, I'm a guy, aren't I?
Other people have other experiences.
Take this young woman, who posted a very annoying YouTube video expressing her disapproval of Louisiana State University ending its illiberal and frankly unconstitutional "free speech alley" policy that confined student expression like petitioning and leafletting to a single thousand-square-foot area on campus. Watch her video yourself, but I would characterize it as expressing resentment of expression she doesn't like, entitlement to be protected from views she doesn't like as part of a "safe environment," and sneering disdain at the concept of free speech. I found her video thoroughly dispiriting coming from a university student. I said as much.
We can see your fattits through your cheap shirt you unenlightened cunt.
That comment seems to have very little to do with the young woman's regrettable attitude towards free speech. It seemed to have more to do with the fact that the young woman is a young woman.
It doesn't happen to me, even though I annoy a very large number of people. I don't want to brag, but Popehat's traffic increases every year, and I still find time for recreational comments elsewhere, and I think that I have been getting steadily more skilled at being annoying, although I hope I still have my best days ahead of me.
But nobody calls me anything comparable to cunt. They don't make fun of my manboobs. They don't tend to make fun of my body.
I think it might be because I'm a guy.
I've thought about this more as I think about the experience my daughters will have on the internet. I've thought about it as I have talked about how talking about internet abuse makes some people go so completely around the bend, and watched with dismay as those threads become the most vicious and unpleasant at Popehat.
I've carefully considered the input of people who tell me that men get treated just as badly on the internet. I've thought about the contributions of people who say that women are being oversensitive about this or misrepresenting their experiences for political benefit. I've evaluated the suggestion of people who say this is political correctness.
I think they are full of shit.
Last 5 posts by Ken White
- Gawker, Money, Speech, And Justice - August 18th, 2016
- Lawsplainer: No, Donald Trump's "Second Amendment" Comment Isn't Criminal - August 9th, 2016
- Why Openness About Mental Illness is Worth The Effort And Discomfort - August 9th, 2016
- A Rare Federal Indictment For Online Threats Against Game Industry - July 28th, 2016
- John Hinckley, Jr. and the Rule of Law - July 27th, 2016