A court case in Canada is shedding light onto just how entitled and unreasonable certain members of the feminist movement have become. The term feminist, if these lunatics have their way, will come to be associated with the humorless draconian ideologues who dominate the Twittersphere and not with reasonable people seeking progress.
These extremists are regressing their greater cause. For most of them it will be an unfortunate phase. Maybe they took one of their professor’s lectures too seriously. These people are characterized as being exceptionally annoying and self-righteous, favoring catty arguments limited to 140 characters and childlike attacks over discourse.
Their actions, which they hold in high esteem, are often exceptionally trivial. Besides the incessant tweeting, they write letters to Disney demanding apologies for the slut shaming of comic book characters. They seek out any government officials, college administrators, or corporations forced to heed their complaints out of fear of being deemed insensitive or having to deal with ensuing legal action.
They think their Twitter accounts are super important.
Stephanie Guthrie epitomizes the worst of this new breed. Guthrie identifies her profession as Gender Justice Consultant, meaning she gives speeches about her uneventful personal life and how society can glean certain morals from it, and is sometimes featured on television as a pundit on the topic of feminism, because programmers know dingbats make for more interesting shows.
Guthrie, together with a friend of hers named Heather Reilly has accused a man named Gregory Alan Elliott of criminal harassment, which has led to his prosecution in a Toronto court. Elliott, a father of four has since lost his job, presumably because it is widely assumed he actually harassed these women. The alleged harassment took place solely over Twitter, and the lead investigator in the case, Detective Jeff Banglid, has stated he found no threats present in any of Elliott’s tweets.
The crime Elliott is guilty of extends simply to tweeting at the accusers and mentioning them in tweets, never in a threatening manner. Some would call this a discussion.
In Canada, the Criminal Code of Conduct lends more protection to the accuser than in the United States, basing the charges as much on their perception of the actions than the conduct of the accused. A well intentioned law which is being abused by Guthrie and her ilk, who believe their unyielding views should be accepted by any means necessary. Progressiveness is often taken advantage of.
Although all of the theoretical criminal misconduct towards the women on the part of Elliott took place online, he and Guthrie did meet once in real life.
Elliott, like Guthrie, was exceptionally active on Twitter, particularly in the area of local politics. Both followed the popular hashtag #TOpoli (Toronto politics) and often used it when tweeting. Guthrie had posted a request for someone to design a poster, for free, under the #TOpoli tag for a public political event she was hosting. Elliott offered, and they met at a local restaurant. The meeting apparently went fine, yet after filing charges Guthrie claimed she found Elliott creepy, kind of. As she testified:
“We live in a world that forces women to second guess those feelings… Did I really feel creeped out? So I second guessed it.”
Victimization to these people is akin to taking their first hit of dirt weed in junior high. Do you feel it? Yeah I think I feel something. It must be society’s fault that you’re feeling wishy washy. Not that you don’t have any evidence for your claims and want to be offended the same way a thug in a bar wants someone to step on his shoe.
After their sole meeting Guthrie and Elliott continued their occasional interactions on Twitter until they had a disagreement and Guthrie blocked him.
The circumstances of this historically important Twitter block are as follows: Another Canadian feminist named Anita Sarkeesian had started a crowd-funding site to produce a much needed documentary on the portrayal of women in video games. Some misogynist gamer was offended by this, and in protest developed a repugnant app where the user punches Sarkeesian in the face until she is severely bruised and bloodied.
Guthrie, a desk bound avenger of injustice, found out the guy’s Twitter handle and his real name and made it her mission to expose him and disrupt his life as much as possible. She tweeted:
“So I found the Twitter account of that fuck listed as creator of the ‘punch a woman in the face’ game. Should I sic the Internet on him?… I want his hatred on the Internet to impact his real-life experience. ”
Clearly a rhetorical question, she proceeded to write a letter to the newspaper of the small town the guy lives in as well as warn potential employers that he likes to meddle in apps which encourage violence towards women. While her actions more than likely accomplished nothing she probably got a fleeting thrill out of it.
Elliott found the tactic of breaching the fourth wall of the internet to be petty, so he tweeted, curiously in a more civil tone than Guthrie, that he thought her course of action was:
“Every bit as vicious as the face-punch game.”
That was it. Guthrie and the other accuser, Heather Reilly, then blocked Elliott, presumably after conferring on the potential nationwide impact of their decision. Elliott continued to monitor #TOpoli on Twitter, and would often join discussions where Guthrie and Reilly were present, sometimes referring to them in the context of an argument or responding to their tweets even though he was blocked.
This is where the alleged harassment came into play. Reilly tweeted at Elliott to stop mentioning her:
“@greg_a_elliott Please do me a favour & not reply to my posts. You don’t follow me- were you creeping the #TOpoli tag to find my tweet?”
Elliott responded that Twitter is a public forum and he would continue using it as he pleased. Particularly when browsing a subject as broad as the political scene of the town in which he lived:
“@ladysnarksalot how’d you feel if I was so delusional to ask you to not retweet me? You want “control” use your email, not Twitter. #TOpoli”
Clearly angered at the audacity of some to suggest they could write their own rules to Twitter, rules which must be abided by or else, with Twitter being an open forum and publicly traded company and all, Elliott’s tweets became more aggressive, starting with calling Reilly a “Fat ass” and culminating with an ominous observation in relation to a meeting that Guthrie, Reilly and their group of feminists were having at a local bar, and which was publicly advertised on Twitter under #TOpoli:
“A whole lot of ugly at the Cadillac Lounge tonight.”
Proving this fiasco is nothing more than a bunch of sophomoric blowhards on a platform designed for fourteen year old kids, Guthrie and Reilly then conspired to accuse Elliott of being a pedophile, which they admit is not true, and is by far dirtier and creepier than anything he ever did to them. Reilly tweeted to another user:
“First he propositions a 13 year old…”
The account was a fake, set up by another member of their klan, more than likely with their knowledge. Elliott and the troll’s interactions are as follows:
“I don’t know you yet. Let’s fix that sometime”
@greg_a_elliott no, you’re a pedophile.
“Fuck off. How old are you? if you’re under 21 I’ll be glad to unfollow.”
@greg_a_elliott I’m 13 you creep!!!!!!!!!!!!
During testimony, Elliott’s lawyer asked Reilly if she thought someone who actually feared for their safety would participate in such behavior:
“When you tweeted out allegations that Mr. Elliott is a pedophile, did you think that would anger the person stalking you?”
It seems these women aren’t as smart as they think.
Stephanie Guthrie recently gave a Ted Talks about the danger of trolls on the internet. How they instill fear in their targets. Yet here she was trolling, feeling she had the privilege to do so, and regarding reciprocal behavior as a criminal threat. Put another way, I can disagree with you, but you can’t disagree with me or I’ll tell the principle. Nothing better sums up the attitude of these spoiled brats. When Elliott’s lawyer asked Guthrie about this double standard, she buckled down:
“He’s entitled to defend himself to the world, he’s not entitled to do it to me.”
“No matter what you say about or to him?”
“Not to me”
When asked about the inconsistencies in her narrative, Guthrie replied that feelings “develop over time”, and aggressively stated that she was sorry she wasn’t “a perfect victim.” Questioned whether Elliott’s actions constituted harassment versus typical Twitter behavior, the unwavering Guthrie batted around some increasingly feeble ideas to see if anything would stick:
“It doesn’t make it any less harassing or stalking because he was obsessed with my politics.”
Your politics, as opposed to what, your physical being? Here Guthrie sneakily, yet transparently, attempts to characterize any discourse not matching her opinion as a personal threat. It’s the same pattern: Feigned victimization, and an appeal to authority as an attempt to wield punishment against those who don’t agree with you. It’s an abuse of the feminist cause. Her own personal beliefs, in Guthrie’s mind, are afforded special protection and anything else should be punishable in a court of law.
At this point in the testimony the judge received a letter from someone claiming to be an acquaintance of the two accusers, which stated they “conspired, in my presence, to fabricate a criminal harassment complaint” against Elliott. The case is now adjourned and will be ruled upon soon. It’s amazing it even went to trial.
Should Guthrie and Reilly succeed in criminalizing Elliott’s dissenting commentary, Canada’s free speech laws would take a major hit. It would set a precedent that disagreeing with a certain group of people, the ones who complain or claim to feel victimized the most, is illegal. A fascist sentiment if there ever was one.
More importantly this is an affront to common decency. It’s more of the same. Hiding behind whatever entity will procure a response in a futile attempt to validate their outrageous claims. In this case, it was the Toronto Police Department. It’s the ultimate form of trolling, except this is real life, and it’s taking away valuable resources from the people who actually need them.
Across America, feminist college students have been utilizing this tactic, forcing university administrations to investigate their paranoid self-obsessive complaints. A student at Northwestern University filed a Title IX (equal protection clause) complaint against a tenured professor because she wrote an essay which argued professors and students should be able to date. Agree or disagree, opinions should not be subjected to a statute aimed at protecting equality, nor an ensuing investigation.
Increasingly these people care only about equality for themselves and their little group and not for others, which is of course, not equality.
There are countless examples of this culture bestowing paternalistic credibility unto authority. Their first course of action in dealing with someone they don’t agree with on Twitter is usually to Report them. Try and get them kicked off. In other words, have them censored. That’s what Guthrie and Reilly did, but Twitter didn’t care because the whole point is to say what you want.
Often times these people solicit responses from the same authority they’re rebelling against because these institutions have been mandated, in good faith, to abide no matter how ludicrous the complaint. It’s pathetic.
Feminism at its heart is rooted in independence. Yet in an attempt to validate their fringe beliefs often riddled with hypocrisy, these people are selling it out to any establishment that will listen, making a circus of something which should be taken seriously and taking the initiative away from the people involved, fostering a culture of dependence.
At this point they’re a mockery and they must be mocked as thoroughly as possible.