For the uninitiated, Feministing is a community blog for feminist causes - they report on gender-related news events, laws, have interviews with feminists, promote conferences, and have other opinion pieces. I value them for information about gender rights and equality, but sometimes they just irk me.
Today was one of those times. It was this article in particular: Public internet shaming and sexism.
Do you remember Kenny Glenn? He was a stupid teenager who posted a video of himself throwing a cat against a wall onto Youtube. A horde of angry internet vigilantes (mostly from 4chan) found it and got extraordinarily pissed - as the saying goes, you do not mess with the Internet's cats. They found out his name, address, school, family - anything and everything they could get their hands on - reported him to local police and generally just ruined his life. Kenny Glenn is now infamous, and I suspect he will have a difficult life ahead of him.
Well, this shit goes down all the time - Glenn is just one of the more notable examples of internet vigilantism. And, as the other saying goes, history repeats. And it occasionally contains cats.
Basically, it happened again. Except this time it was a video of a woman throwing a cat into a garbage can. The owner of the cat posted the video hoping to find the woman responsible for harming their pet. Well, they found her. One Mary Bale, identified by the masses, came under incredible scrutiny and criticism and will probably also have her life ruined because of it. Seriously, you do not mess with the Internet's cats.
This is where Feministing comes in. Feministing posted their article, and here's the bit that got me pissed:
As friend to the felines, I am appalled by anyone that hurts animals. Ever. And I do think those that abuse animals should be fined. But there is something uniquely troubling and sexist about the protests against Bale. Beyond a Facebook group that had to be removed asking for her death, someone created a video stuffing a woman into a trash can. To me, that smacks of opportunistic sexism in the name of justice. Of course, no one should throw a cat in a trash bin, but suggesting that a woman should be, is well just sexist.
I am all for holding people accountable when they do things that are deplorable. But there is a unique type of public shaming that occurs to women when they are “accused” of things online which allow others to air their grievances online irrelevant of how sexist, racist, ableist, or just generally messed up those characterizations may be. This is one example, but there are countless examples of women being publicly shamed online for things they may are may not have done. That’s not vigilante justice, that’s just another opportunity to hate on women in new and unique ways.
I tried to register on their site so I could post a comment (all their comments are heavily and slowly moderated) but they won't send the confirmation email. I tried registering again and... same deal. So I'm even more pissed, and as such I am going to be more scathing in my response than I would normally have been.
Get your prissy, victim-syndrome heads out of your goddamn asses. Not everything that happens to a woman is an attack on women as a whole. Women can be assholes too, and deserve criticism and wrath just as much as the men that do the same shit. You didn't utter a peep when Kenny Glenn was in the same situation - and he's a minor who will have to deal with this for the rest of his life. You are so quick to jump to "this is sexism and promotes violence against women!" without actually looking into the acts or their history. A prime example is your post about GWAR burning an effigy of Sarah Palin in one of their concerts. You jumped to the same conclusion - that GWAR hates women - without knowing anything about the band or their shows. Luckily, you were thoroughly schooled in the comments, and I can only hope that will happen here.
The hypocrisy you've demonstrated here is astounding - you claim to be all about full gender equality, and yet your posts clearly display that you think women should have a special status, not allowed to be ridiculed or criticized or made into scarecrows and burned. You are making fools of yourselves and your causes by displaying such hypocrisy and ignorance.
Fucking cut it out. Your uneducated, harpy-like shrieks of "sexism!" make me ashamed to identify as a feminist.