Twitter is the real world

I deleted Twitter last night after I found I couldn’t silence my own opinion. I deleted it because all the things I have been accused have been perpetrated by all of my critics but they have stifled any retaliation. They are bigger in numbers and their actions trigger a collage of white voices; manipulative and powerful.

When I first joined Twitter, I unfollowed anyone RT’ing the EDL into my timeline. I wasn’t being ignorant but trying to protect myself from mental harm. I don’t belong in this country and I found, after visiting the ‘homeland’, I didn’t belong there either. As a 31 year old woman, I am still affected by the subtle ways in which WoC are controlled. It is very easy to monster us and depict us as damaged and untrustworthy, heck, we’re so often used in this way, we start believing it.

Tell me how, any woman claiming to be intersectional can allow discourse that alienates another woman? Why is it EVER ok to allow TERF voices into an intersectional movement? Because they are women we must listen to their bigoted views and allow them that power? If trans* women are fair game, how long before they allow similar discussions for WoC? Cos that’s how they used to talk about us y’know? TERF allies can lie until they’re blue in the face that they are intersectional but when they haven’t grasped the very basic concept of TRUE EQUALITY for ALL WOMEN, which means zero tolerance of ‘other-ing’ any woman, they are the facilitators of oppression. I’ve been watching them for some months now. They gush and eat cake and use the word sister without the slightest hint of irony. Then they stab you in the back. Mendacity is not a feature of my feminism.

This behaviour affects me so because I have had a lifetime of it. ‘Sister’ doesn’t mean anything in my world. Unless you fall into line, pray to the same God, ask your oppressors for forgiveness for your clearly demented individual ways, nobody is interested. You are not allowed to challenge, or grow, or make amends. And that’s what’s happening right now. Growing up, I was the minority voice. I was bullied and beaten for acting like “a white girl”. Today, I am facing the same again; I am a minority WoC. I am a minority ally of trans/non gender binary comrades. I am the antithesis of the mainstream white rationale and reasoning. And I am glad.

The hypocrisy of the last few weeks is not lost on me. There is nothing honourable about these people. When you have the privilege of a position that allows you an opinion and then PAYS you for making it, it’s a given that criticism is part and parcel of the package. The commentariat get PAID to use an immense platform. They remind me of spoilt film actors, playing the camera when it suits them and then bemoaning their lack of privacy when they inevitably fuck up. I don’t get paid to do anything. I do it because it is my reality and I have no choice. But I also cannot handle the onslaught of abuse I have been subjected to. I managed a week of engaging, of methodically deleting every comment calling me a whore. Do you know how mentally exhausting it is to be abused on a daily basis? I didn’t ‘flounce’, that’s what white women do when they can’t be bothered to engage you anymore and want it to look like they’ve been bullied off (remember: manipulation). I chose to delete my account before I said something really hurtful. Hurtful because it is painfully true.

I started doing Twitter because I had a cause. I found some wonderful people who now exist in the real world. These are the allies I’m going to continue to work with. I will never forget the rest of you though, I will remember your faces and your thoughts and when you fuck up, as you inevitably will (just like we all do but some of us are more allowed to than others) I will be there. I will be watching.

I am disengaging for today but that doesn’t mean I am gone forever. I am waiting for the bullshit to subside and for intersectionality to rise up again. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time.

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24 comments

  1. I’m not sure if you know me (I’m @AutistLiam on twitter) but thank you for this. I know the feeling of getting so sick of defending yourself from ridiculous accusations from those who refuse to engage with what you *actually said* and attack you for what they imagine you’d say, so fed up you just stop and watch them and try to ignore them but it still hurts and it’s so hard not to say “Fuck the world and the horse it rode in on”.

    Solidarity from this neurodiverse disabled queer white trans man. Nobody should have to put up with this just for daring to be alive and have their own perspective on the world and their place in it.

    The idea of intersectionality is as old as I am but I have a feeling this year or next year is when it will really, really take hold. I hope I’m right.

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  2. Twitter is poorer for your absence, and it sucks that so much hate was focused your way, for so long, over something that should’ve lasted half an hour.

    Personally, I’m way more interested in what you have to say than in what most of the overly-narrow range of people who get paid to write have to say.

    If friends/allies can help, e.g. moderating comments so you don’t have to read the more awful garbage people send, don’t hesitate to ask. Your voice is valued and there are lots of people who’d be willing to help ensure you can still use it.

    But, most of all, take your time and come back when you are ready.

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  3. I’m sad to see you’ve left, your voice was much appreciated, and so sad that I won’t be seeing it for the foreseeable future =[ Solidarity.

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  4. I will say from the offing that, as a self-confessedly Conservative, Upper Middle-Class, White Englishman, I do not share a single one of your ideals, goals or ideological stances. I won’t pretend I give your movement or struggle or whatever you chose to call it a moments thought in my daily life. That said, I have stumbled upon this ‘blog and have loosely followed the events that have lead to your departure from Twitter and I do however, respect and admire your forthrightness and determination in the face of what was a rather bizarre onslaught. I could easily mock it as a perfect microcosm of everything that renders the British Left so utterly impotent in this century, but, I would say I do appreciate the eloquence and insight of your writings, and the way in which you cope with the situation; racial-social-cultural, that you find yourself, and wish you good luck and hope you continue your work.

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  5. “Don’t let the bastards grind you down.” ~I have no idea who said this but it’s my mantra when people start making me feel less than. You are MORE than! Remember that. 🙂

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  6. It was awful what happened. By there are so many people out there who support and agree with you. It may take a time but as you say “intersectionality to rise up again” and eventuayl it will win out. Attitudes do generally improve over time. It is such a shame that often it has taken generations for any significant change.

    I really hope you are ok and I really appreciate what you do in trying to make the world a better place.

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  7. Thank you all for your wonderful messages. I just realised I can do all the things I need to without having to deal with the silencing tactics. Have a new account on Twitter. Find one of the people I love and ask them where I am. It’s locked, want to keep as private as possible. See you there! x

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