Bleats

Reddit Banned Incels But They're Still Very Much Around

Unfortunately.

Remember a few months ago when every regular human being that used the internet rejoiced as Reddit banned a bunch of awful incel subreddits? What a glorious day that was. The main subreddit that went down was r/Braincels, a popular hangout for misogynists, racists and their mates – just a really great part of the internet.

There were a number of other incel subreddits that got banned as well. They included r/misogyny, r/incelistan, and r/whiteliberation. Yep. Funnily enough, this latest crackdown came right around the time that the US Military was warning of incel violence at cinemas playing Joker.

Unfortunately, just like a family of cockroaches behind the fridge that you can’t quite get rid of, the incels are back. There was an r/Incels subreddit taken down in 2017, and as much as we all wished that was the end of them then, it definitely wasn’t.

The new iterations involve boards like r/CommunityCels, r/TruestCel, and r/ProudMaleFeminists. Some are only a few weeks old, so who knows how many others have been popping up recently. 

The face I pull when reading about incels

Banning things rarely works. Drugs, books, porn, it doesn’t matter, people will find ways around rules if they’re determined enough. Banning the forums that incels like to hang out on has clearly only inconvenienced them a little bit – we’ve got two examples of them reconvening now. 

We need to address the cause and not the symptom in this case. Look, I know how much easier it is to say than do, but we really can’t ignore these people any more. Incels have killed people because of how much they hate women, it’s as simple and as terrifying as that. 

We’ll never be able to simply get rid of a particular community online – the depths of the internet have gone way past that point. What we can address is the underlying issues that manifest as misogyny and eventually violence from the people who lurk in these forums. 

Being lonely and frustrated are the main feelings that come up over and over again. Loneliness and frustration are infinitely easier emotions to work with than rage and violent urges, as long as they’re dealt with early on.

In the meantime, staying as vigilant as we can about the inevitable return of these forums is the best we can do.

Only Four US Presidential Candidates Think That Sex Workers Deserve Safety

You've got to be JF-Kidding.

Sex work is legitimate work, we should all know that by now, and as we close in on the 2020 USA election the topic of decriminalisation is one being raised loudly and clearly. But it turns out that our new potential ~ leaders of the free world ~ aren’t quite as on board with letting sex workers just live their lives as we’d hoped. 

My face while reading these statistics

At the moment, the only state that brothels can legally operate in is Nevada, and even then it’s still illegal if you’re working somewhere that isn’t a brothel. You can be arrested and thrown in jail for it everywhere else.

Clearly this hasn’t stopped anything. You won’t be surprised at all to find out that sex work is still very much happening across the country, but the lack of any legal protection is making the job far more dangerous than it needs to be. One Colorado study estimated that the death rate for active sex workers in the state was 5.9% higher than that of the general population. 

So what are the people who want to be put in charge of the country going to do about this? Disappointingly… not a lot. 

FFS

Buzzfeed asked every single one of the 26 candidates whether or not they were in favour of decriminalising sex work. All but four either said no or dodged the question. 

Cory Booker, Tulsi Gabbard, Kamala Harris, and Mike Gravel were the ones who said they’d absolutely support decriminalisation of sex work. The fact that I’ve been following the US presidential race relatively closely and still had to Google all of these people doesn’t bode well for my hopes of a President who would stop people arresting sex workers for their job.

Now for the ones you’re more likely to have heard of. 

Elizabeth Warren tweeted that she was “open” to decriminalising sex work. Bernie Sanders says he’ll consider it. Maybe I’m just cynical, but it doesn’t fill be with hope tbh. As for Donald Trump, he didn’t even reply to the question, so there’s your answer.

I’ve got my fingers crossed that we’ll see some movement on this. Realistically thought, I’m worried that if the States are still arguing over whether or not the President should have his Twitter account taken away, the safety of sex workers might be forced into the background, like so many other aspects of their lives. 

I’m hoping not.

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