November 2nd, 2018. A man killed two women in a Tallahassee yoga studio on Friday and wounded five others. After that, he killed himself with his gun. He was a self-proclaimed far-right extremist, misogynist, incel, racist, who spoken against minorities and women online.
Incels are a hate group devoted to the dehumanization of women. The dehumanization of a social group is a direct source of violence against that social group. They continue to sell the myth that their philosophy is not bloodthirsty, the root cause is mental illness, and their political ideology is an accident.
The Tallahassee shooting comes after an outburst of deadly violence from the far-right in the past weeks. On October 24th a man shot two black people in Louisville, Kentucky, in an attack authorities have described as a hate crime. On October 27th, a far-right extremist shouting anti-Semitic words opened fire in a synagogue in Pittsburgh, killing 11.
“There are whores in — not only every city, not only every town, but every village,” he said, referring to women in interracial relationships, whom he said had betrayed “their blood.”
Let’s see what we know about this man:
- His LinkedIn page says that he served in the U.S. Army from 2008 to 2010.
- He posted a series of misogynistic videos and songs online and identified as an incel.
- For a few years, he lived at an apartment complex in Tallahassee, where he, according to his neighbors, didn’t fit in easily with the younger students around him.
- Arrested twice, in 2012 and 2016, for grabbing the butts of young women on campus and at his apartment complex, according to police records. In both cases, the charges have been dropped.
- Uploaded several videos of himself containing racist and misogynistic rants, in which he called women sluts and whores, and spoken against the girls he had gone to high school with.
- In one of his videos, he referred another famous incel, who committed his crimes in 2014.
“He was very weird and made everyone uncomfortable, it worried me at the time. There was concern for sure. But there wasn’t enough evidence, and I would have been wasting the police’s time if I had made any kind of report. I had nothing.”
– Julien Brown, former roommate
His political opinions were not clear to me at first. Both his Youtube and Soundcloud accounts have been terminated, but people have archived them. After getting to them, I quickly realized he was a far-right, racist, misogynistic type. He was highly critical of the Obama administration, for the wrong reasons. In one of his videos, he claimed he “resented having to subsidize as a taxpayer for the casual sex lives of slutty girls” through the Affordable Care Act’s contraception aid. In the same video, he said immigrants seeking asylum in the US should be deported.
These things happen all the time, and we have to take action. We can’t settle again for the claim of the police and the alt-right that this person suffered from mental health issues and that this incident isn’t inherent to how we shape our society. We can’t pretend that the alt-right incel isn’t a toxic masculine movement which is a grave danger to all minorities and people they don’t agree with.
“He asked her if he could put sunscreen on it,” the police report says. “She thanked him but told him no. The suspect then introduced himself and said nice to meet you. He then slapped her butt, grabbed it and shook it. The suspect then got up and left the pool area.”
This is why we need the #MeToo movement too. Somehow after being prosecuted for two sexual harassment cases, the charges against him have been dropped. What’s the use of the legal system then?
Stopping sexual harassment might be crucial to saving lives. Maybe if this man had been arrested and labeled as a sex offender when he first started attacking women, people from the yoga studio would be alive today? Of course, jailing people is no long-term solution, but we need to do some action right now.
Youtube, 4chan, Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, Soundcloud, and other site owners and communities are complicit of giving this kind of people platform to share ideas online and grow in an echo chamber. These places harbor angry, sad men and provide them with a community and a language and a tool.
Let me cite a Reddit user’s Diogenetics rant:
I’m sorta spamming this reply in various threads about this, but because Reddit harbored far-right, misogynistic, violent incel communities for so long out of some misguided attempt to preserve “free speech”, I feel like it’s worth repeating:
Reddit needs to stop putting some abstract philosophy over the reality of hate speech and extremism being spread on this site – in this case, the incel community that avoided any consequences for too long.
A few excerpts:
- Post-ban, hate speech by the same users was reduced by as much as 80-90 percent.
- Members of banned communities left Reddit at significantly higher rates than control groups.
- Migration was common, both to similar subreddits (i.e., overtly racist ones) and tangentially related ones (r/The_Donald).
- However, within those communities, hate speech did not reliably increase, although there were slight bumps as the invaders encountered and tested new rules and moderators.
For the definition of “work” framed by our research questions, the ban worked for Reddit. It succeeded at both a user level and a community level. Through the banning of subreddits which engaged in racism and fat-shaming, Reddit was able to reduce the prevalence of such behavior on the site.
Shortly before Friday’s shooting, he uploaded one song called “Fuck ’Em All,” with the lyrics: “To hell with the boss that won’t get off my back / To hell with the girl I can’t get in the sack.”
“I believe in karma,” he said. “What comes around goes around, and those that engage in treachery ultimately will be the victims of it. Hopefully there has been justice in some comparable regard.”
How much longer are people willing to defend this? If you’re a virgin and not a misogynistic, racist man, I beg you to drop the incel label. If you don’t, then it’s safe to assume that if you use the term, you’re a piece of garbage not worth anything, and act accordingly.