I AM SARKEESIAN
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CLBR applauds friend Marc Randazza’s eloquent blog statement in response to GamerGate and death threats made against feminist filmmaker Anita Sarkeesian (and other women gamers). After reading it you will see what so many people are fans of Marc for his direct and passionate defense of the First Amendment.
Y’see, she was supposed to speak at Utah State University. But, someone didn’t like her perspective, so they wrote this:
“I have at my disposal a semi-automatic rifle, multiple pistols, and a collection of pipe bombs,” the letter said. “This will be the deadliest school shooting in American history and I’m giving you a chance to stop it.”
“You have 24 hours to cancel Sarkeesian’s talk … Anita Sarkeesian is everything wrong with the feminist woman, and she is going to die screaming like the craven little whore that she is if you let her come to USU. I will write my manifesto in her spilled blood, and you will all bear witness to what feminist lies and poison have done to the men of America.”
Sarkeesian initially didn’t let it bother her, but after she figured out that USU would not ban guns at the event, she cancelled her speech. (source) I don’t necessarily applaud this. She seems to be blaming the venue for its unwillingness to violate the Second Amendment. But, I’m not the one getting death threats, so I won’t pretend to be an authority on what she should do.
You know what I am an authority on? Fucking asshats.
Fucking asshats who think that silencing the other side through intimidation or interruption is how you debate.
I want to stand next to her and yell “I AM SPARTACUS!” I’m sure that she would think that is totally fucking weird. I’m also sure that she wouldn’t really give a shit if “the likes of me” wanted to support her. But I don’t need to agree with her to want to stand with her — because she has a goddamned RIGHT to speak. And some cowardly little fuck made an anonymous threat, and now MY marketplace of ideas loses Sarkeesian’s wares?
Some little douchebag was so threatened by feminist theory in the context of video games that he threatened to kill people if she got to speak?
First of all, dude, if you’re gonna commit – commit over something thatactually matters.
Second of all, you now turned it into something that actually matters.
Sarkeesian has a right to participate in the marketplace of ideas, and the marketplace has a right to have her.
. . . .
Today, I want to speak directly to her detractors. The greater principle here is that she has a right to speak, and some asshole took that away from her. Further, we have a right to hear her, and that asshole took that away from us.
I don’t care if you despise her. What happened here is wrong. Even if you disagree with her, stand up and say “I am Sarkeesian.”
And to the little shit who issued the threat: If you want to threaten her, you threaten all of us. And I guarantee you, she could probably kick your ass just fine, as the rest of us stand around and laugh. But, if she’d rather not get her hands dirty, I’ll volunteer to do it for her. (Although, I’d rather have a girl beat you up).
And if Sarkeesian wants to give her speech in Las Vegas, I will personally pay for a security detail to ensure her safety.
I am Sarkeesian.
I’ve never tried to coin a hashtag, but I’m going to today. Show Sarkeesian and those who would try to silence her that there are more of us than they could have imagined. #iamsarkeesian
See separate blog post.