Ah, it’s another bright crisp summer morning, and I wake up to birds singing, the distant sound of the freight train moving through Morris, and the mad dinging of my email software, alerting me that there’s another flood of new hate mail on twitter, on youtube, and in my mail. Yes, it is August, and Thunderf00t has created a new video denouncing feminism. And me. And the accusations flooding in are so stupid and so wrong. I shall address them one more time, and then, please, slip on your nicest toe shoes and tutu and pirouette up your own anuses.
Here are a few of the bloody idiotic complaints I get.
“I am so disgusted with you and your war with Thunderf00t.” Aside from this post here, today, I have completely ignored Thunderf00t for the last several weeks. He, on the other hand, is making videos and twitter comments about me. There are certain people who, I think, don’t understand the internet: if I made a post two weeks ago or a month ago or a year ago, it persists. It doesn’t mean I’m sitting here right now, obsessing over something I wrote yesterday, even.
“How dare you violate Thunderf00t’s right to free speech!” This one is especially ironic, given that it’s made in response to Thunderf00t blithering away loudly and freely on the internet, again. We’ve done nothing to compromise his ability to express himself. We have said that this organization does not support his views, and will not give him our space or resources to do so.
“You and Rebecca Watson banned Thunderf00t!” No, we didn’t. We refused to support Thunderf00t’s dumbass crusade against feminism on our blog network. Also, do you realized that freethoughtblogs.com and skepchick.org are completely different entities? Rebecca Watson has no input at all on our management, and vice versa.
“You banned Thunderf00t for simply disagreeing with you!” No, we get disagreement all the time, and bloggers here have issues with each other frequently. What Thunderf00t was fired for was joining a network he clearly detested and immediately launching a campaign to tell everyone to stop talking about subjects he didn’t like. He hates freethoughtblogs, in case it wasn’t clear to you by now, so why the hell did he join at all? If it was to undermine it from within, his overt antagonism from day two onward made it clear he wasn’t going to be persuasive in the slightest. Dumbest fifth columnist ever.
“You promised you wouldn’t meddle with what he wrote!” Yes, and we didn’t. We didn’t edit or censor one word that he wrote: his blog is still here, completely intact and untouched. What we didn’t promise is that we’d give him space on our network forever and ever. I know he’s fond of complaining in academic terms about this, so digest this: he was never granted tenure here. He doesn’t get to complain that his tenure contract was violated, because didn’t have one. Now maybe if he’d built up some social capital with us, and demonstrated some ability to make an intelligent contribution, we’d have been more reluctant to let him go…but he didn’t, and showed no interest in doing so. He had no friends among the established bloggers here, and didn’t want any. That wasn’t a very collegial attitude.
Let me add one more thing: there’s this unfortunate idea that these attacks have to be personalized and focus on just me. I’m the guy who recruited Thunderf00t to join the network. He immediately raised the hackles of just about everyone here; we had a review committee that looked over his raw contempt for everything here, and the pile of disgusted emails we were getting, and his atrociously childish writing, and said, “Uh-oh, this was a huge mistake, this guy does not belong here.” And I was then the guy who asked everyone to hold off on kicking him out, he’ll settle down and start writing good stuff. And then he didn’t. And he didn’t. And he got worse. And every day I felt guiltier and guiltier, not to Thunderf00t but to this collective here where we’ve otherwise done such a good job in gathering good, intelligent writers…so when the whole group decided they could take no more of his abuse, I volunteered to deliver the axe in expiation. I was Thunderf00t’s sole advocate here (my big mistake). If you have a beef here, it’s not just with me, it’s with the whole damn network of about 40 writers who were unhappy to be saddled with a flaming asshole.
Now we’re done. We have been done for a long time. Thunderf00t is not and will not be a part of this network, and it’s quite clear he doesn’t want to be part of it, except to destroy it. I’ve addressed the complaints of his ignorant and indignant followers, so I’m putting it to rest — I’ve blocked him on twitter, I’m not reading his blog or watching his videos, so if you want to complain further, do your posturing for Thunderf00t, not me, because I don’t give a damn.