Help the VIctims of the Oklahoma Tornado: Foundation Beyond Belief »« Some Thoughts on Secular Meditation and Depression/Anxiety

#mencallmethings: “fucking ugly. Kill yourself.”

Comment from Kali Dali, in the discussion on the post Some Thoughts on Secular Meditation and Depression/Anxiety:

goddamn you are fucking ugly. Kill yourself.

#mencallmethings

A few notes:

1: Who the hell tells someone to kill themselves… as a comment on a post about clinical depression?

2: In the context of this weekend’s Women in Secularism conference: If anyone is still wondering why so many of think atheism needs to pay attention to sexism and misogyny, at the absolute minimum as an internal matter within our own movement, and why we need to actively work on making atheism more welcoming to women… wake up and smell the coffee. Wake up and smell the toxic cesspool that women, especially vocal feminist women on the internet, swim in every day. I don’t even get the worst of it: other women get it worse than I do, and more consistently. (Documentation; more documentation; still more documentation.) If you’re wondering why we need events like Women in Secularism, and other pieces of unique attention paid to to the experiences of women in this movement… this is Exhibit A. Except it’s not Exhibit A. It’s more like Exhibit W. It’s more like Exhibit W (2) h (iv).

3: Who the hell tells someone to kill themselves… as a comment on a post about clinical depression?

4: I’m going to issue the standard request that I always issue when the #thing that #menhavecalled me is some version of “ugly”: Please, unless you’re a personal friend or someone I’m having sex with, don’t try to make me feel better by saying that I’m not ugly. If I write about fashion or post the hot pic of myself in the Skepticon calendar, you can say nice things about how I look… but please don’t do it here. I’m not calling this out to garner reassurance about my appearance. I’m calling this out to show people the kind of shit women routinely deal with. I have a thick skin, and I don’t get my feelings hurt by sexist jackasses calling me names. That isn’t the point.

The point isn’t that I’m not ugly. The point is that it shouldn’t matter.

5: Who the hell tells someone to kill themselves… as a comment on a post about clinical depression?

6: The #mencallmethings hashtag does not say #allmencallmethings, or #mostmencallmethings. If you want to learn more about the history of this hashtag and why people started using it, please read But How Do You Know It’s Sexist? The #MenCallMeThings Round-Up and Why Are You In Such A Bad Mood? #MenCallMeThings Responds! on Tiger Beatdown, where the hashtag originated. And please do not start a “but not all men are like that, so the #mencallmethings hashtag is reverse sexism!” argument. That has been addressed, at length, in the comments in the #mencallmethings: “FUCKIN HOE,” “FUCKIN FEMINAZI SLUT” post, as well as elsewhere. Please read Why “Yes, But” Is the Wrong Response to Misogyny if you’re wondering why I will not take kindly that that particular line of conversation.

7: WHO THE HELL TELLS SOMEONE TO KILL THEMSELVES… AS A COMMENT ON A POST ABOUT CLINICAL DEPRESSION?!?!?

Do you understand that it’s fairly common for clinically depressed people are suicidal? I’m not, as it happens… but it’s a very common symptom of the illness. Who the hell goes to someone with an illness that puts them at risk for suicide, in a space where they’re talking about this illness, and tells them to kill themselves? I mean, who the hell tells someone to kill themselves anyway, ever… but seriously? Who the hell tells someone to kill themselves… as a comment on a post about clinical depression?

I’m just sayin’, is all.

Comments

  1. says

    Horrible. Seriously, what the actual fuck. The commenter is showing us what ugliness really is.

    “What monstrosities would walk the streets were some people’s faces as unfinished as their minds.” – Eric Hoffer

  2. cotton says

    To answer the admittedly rhetorical questions 1,3,5 and 7 with a southern colloquialism: The type of people without any raising. I find it incomprehensible that people actual sit down and write such bile. I wonder if at the end of a screed they are gleeful over what they feel is a particularly erudite use of crude female anatomy and gender-based slurs.

  3. Jackie, Ms. Paper if ya nasty says

    Hate filled bigots would do such a thing.
    I’m so sorry.

    You’re an excellent writer and this world needs you in it.

  4. Jackie, Ms. Paper if ya nasty says

    Cotton, I’d like to believe that they struggle to sleep at night, but that isn’t true. You need a conscience before something can weigh on it.

  5. Martha says

    That may be the single most mean-spirited comment I’ve seen in the last year, and that’s saying something. Does this person not understand that there as another human being at the end of the comment? Does s/he think you’re a character in hir video game?

    I’m glad you have a protective shell, but I sure as hell wish you didn’t need it.

  6. screechymonkey says

    What, you’re not going to invite that commenter to have a dialogue? What a tragic lost opportunity.

  7. Onamission5 says

    Oh, a bastion of rationality, that one. What stellar wit, what prose!

    I am sorry you are dealing with this, Greta. Who the hell indeed.

  8. says

    Who the hell tells someone to kill themselves… as a comment on a post about clinical depression?

    Someone Justin Vacula would call a “brave hero”?

  9. kellyw. says

    Greta, I’m sorry you have to deal with these assholes. I’m glad you and others keep calling attention to the problems within the atheist community—thank you.

    I am over movement atheism because it’s too much shit to wade through. At least A+ exists. And it’s no longer surprising when yet another white dude “leader” privilege shits all over women (the latest being Ron Lindsay).

  10. francesc says

    Appart of a wicked, perverse and evil person, I was thinking in a brainless, ignorant person -he doesn’t understand what “depression” means-, an irresponsible individual -he can’t imagine his actions/words do have an impact on other real humans- or an unempathic entity -he doesn’t view the other people as being also humans “like” himself.
    So, basically I would choose between a jerk, a dumbass and a machine, but probably it is some combination of all of them

  11. Russell Glasser says

    Greta,

    You may remember the post I first wrote first about The Amazing Atheist’s Reddit meltdown. The title was, “Horrible people don’t realize they’re horrible.”
    http://freethoughtblogs.com/axp/2012/02/08/horrible-people-dont-realize-theyre-horrible/

    The point I made before discussing TAA is that there seems to be a sort of Dunning-Kruger effect for bigots. The more bigoted they are, the harder they work to justify it to themselves and to the people they hang out with, and this has the long term effect of convincing them that nothing is off limits.

    I know people HAVE been driven to suicide by online harassment, and that the reaction was not “My god, what have we done?” It was something along the lines of “Stupid bitch should have had a thicker skin” or whatever. I don’t think there are any depths to which such a person will not sink. Take that seriously, we don’t want to lose you and you’re not responsible for their stupidity.

  12. karmacat says

    I tried to figure out why there is such hateful reactions on the internet. What I found, of course, is that the internet just amplifies the hate. I also wonder why people need to post their hateful reactions. The 2nd blog I list has one answer to that question. I think when a person’s world view/view of themselves is challenged, that person lashes out and tries to hurt others. The following are writers who have gone through dealing with hateful responses.

    http://you-monsters-are-people.com/2013/05/15/the-peace-of-mind-want-ad/

    http://www.chicagonow.com/mary-tyler-mom/2013/02/internet-hate-what-you-dont-know-might-hurt-me/

    In the end, what is most important is letting people know what they say is hurtful. I know people will argue that it is not up to them to worry about other people’s feelings. But if you want to be a good human being, you need to be think about what you say. The commenter who said kill yourself is selfish and doesn’t deserve any consideration. I am sorry you have to deal with people who throw their shit around

  13. says

    Who the hell tells someone to kill themselves… as a comment on a post about clinical depression?

    Someone who is spectacularly ugly on the inside. Someone – dare I say it – who really ought to shut up and listen a bit more.

  14. jamessweet says

    It’s kinda depressing that about half this post is boilerplate stuff about how to respond to the #mencallmethings hashtag. Bah.

  15. Uncle Ebeneezer says

    “1: Who the hell tells someone to kill themselves… as a comment on a post about clinical depression?”

    A: An immature, psychopathic asshole.

  16. pianoman, Heathen & Torontophile says

    I get the impression from assholes like Kali Dali that they would never have the bravery to make the remarks they do once the anonymous username is gone and they are asked to come up from their mother’s basement to own up to it.

  17. says

    I’d say that disturbing, evil, misogynistic, bigoted assholes say things like that. Probably sat there sniggering and saying “IRONY!” to himself (you know, like Daniel Tosh is “ironic” when he “jokes” about gang rape)

    And of course you shouldn’t. You are awesome.

    That is all.

    Oh… and thanks for signing my book.

    Seriously.

    I’m tempted to frame it. :D

  18. smhll says

    You are awesome, Greta. I want you to have an awesome life. I hopefully believe it is within reach, just barricaded behind all the obstacles and barriers that depression throws up. (So, not necessarily imminent.)

  19. flask ehrlenmeyer says

    you are awesome.

    i don’t care what you look like. you do not exist for the visual pleasure of others, except as it pertains to your own interest.

    if you are not visually pleasing to me, that is my problem. you continue to be awesome.

  20. imthegenieicandoanything says

    Who? Lots of stupid, thoughtless, viciously insecure people.

    Lots of people who have never met you, like myself, however, are very much in your corner – on this and most other issues – and, when we happen to disagree over something, certainly will remember how many common ideas we share.

  21. llewelly says

    There are some vile people in this world who love to attack the vulnerable. That is part of the stigma against depression. (There are much more subtle but still dangerous parts.) It is part of a prejudice that harms people.

  22. says

    Young man, I am afraid your speech was a trifle short. You could have said at least one hundred other things, varying the tone of your words. [...] Unfortunately, you’re totally witless and a man of very few letters: only four that spell the word “fool.”

    -Cyrano de Bergerac, by Edmond Rostand (unknown English translation)

  23. says

    Greta
    I’m sorry you have to deal with those assholes

    +++
    leni

    Someone who is spectacularly ugly on the inside. Someone – dare I say it – who really ought to shut up and listen a bit more.

    But, but, but, but, that is a bäääääd wöööörd. That is what real oppression looks like. Makes the guy a brave hero.

  24. Jackie, Ms. Paper if ya nasty says

    you are awesome.

    i don’t care what you look like. you do not exist for the visual pleasure of others, except as it pertains to your own interest.

    if you are not visually pleasing to me, that is my problem. you continue to be awesome.

    QFMFT

  25. A Hermit says

    Anyone who would write something like that is simply beneath contempt; a product of fear and ignorance.

    I know you’re not looking for affirmations here, but I’m going to say it anyway; Greta, we all love you for your mind…and for your courage and your outspoken, honest writing.

  26. UnknownEric the Apostate says

    I’m just going to channel Flavor Flav for a moment here and give this opinion of the anonymous coward who left that message:

    (Bleep) him and John Wayne.

  27. great1american1satan says

    I don’t know if anyone here has mentioned it, but it’s actually just an in-vogue thing to do right now. The tumblrverse is well-acquainted with “go kill yourself” as a response to pretty much anything. And as a stupid (disturbing, horrible) catch-phrase, it’s probably meaningless to the people saying it. I mean to this creep, it may have just been regurgitated words, rather than a supreme disregard for human life.

    Cold comfort, or just a reminder that society is pretty effed up right now? I also like how this heel prefaced it with an insult to appearance, when body dysphorias are already responsible for massively increased rates of suicide.

  28. says

    Does me saying you’re the best blogger in the entire secular community count as calling you things? Just, you know, checking.

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