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Professional transphobe Graham Linehan has decided that Gamergate wasn’t really all bad, if you think about it

Linehan: “I’ve got a lot of revised feelings about Gamergate”

By David Futrelle

So Graham Linehan — the fomer comedy writer turned humorless transphobe — is having some second thoughts about Gamergate, and he wants the world to know all about them.

Linehan recently went on a podcast called TRIGGERnometry (no, really) to explain, among other things, his new and “revised feelings” about the sadly not-completely-dormant cultural counterrevolution that liked to pretend it was a crusade for game journalism ethics.

Back in the day, he told the podcast’s two hosts, he, like most of those opposed to Gamergate, thought that the supposed “consumer movement”

was a hate campaign aimed at women in the gaming industry that was … employing hings like swatting … Because it was women being targeted my anger reflex had gone up … and I just jumped into it … .

But now the scales have lifted from his eyes and he now thinks that maybe some of Gamergate was actually a good thing.

“What it really was,” he continud,

was a confluence of millions of different things happening at the same time … and I now realize there were a lot of young men [in Gamergate] who were much closer to the truth of what was happening in colleges and stuff that I was, [and] who realized that there was this censorious liberal canceling kind of culture that was really dangerous you know …

But alas, these noble free-speech warriors

were all mixed up with with with the real right-wingers and people like [Milo] Yiannopoulos who who it seemed to me was very cynically cashing in and trying to try to recruit young men into the right.

It’s weird how all the Nazis lined up with what was otherwise a blameless crusade for free speech, huh? It’s not like the free speech stuff was just a disingenuous PR thing and the whole Gamergate enterprise was rotten to the core or anything.

Anyway, Linehan also regrets that some of the women he defended back in the Gamergate days turned out to be — the horror! — trans.

“I thought I was defending women,” he remarked, “and … I was defending blokes.”

Now, because of the whole “free speech” thing and also the “defending blokes” thing, Linehan says he thinks he “may have made a few mistakes in the Gamergate time.”

This interview isn’t the first time in which Linehan has made clear that he’s changed his tune on Gamergate. In a tweet last month, he declared that

I realise with some embarrassment that some of the people I supported during gamergate were the kind of people I thought we were fighting.

And last week he picked a fight with Gamergate bete noire ANita Sarkeesian, accusing her of “male pandering” because she supports trans rights.

https://twitter.com/Glinner/status/1258350365096935424

In case you’re wondering exactly what he’s going on about, the “other group of men” he’s talking about are trans women.

If Linehan thinks he’s going to pick up a lot of new fans amongst the perma-Gamergaters who inhabit web forums like the Kotaku in Action subreddit, he’s going to be sadly disappointed. In a Kotaku in Action thread on his podcast appearance, the locals are mostly hostile.

“Don’t be fooled,” notes one commenter. “He ran out of friends on the SJW side of things over TERF drama and now he wants new ones.” After spelling out Linehan’s assorted crimes against Gamergate, the commenter concluded that “he made his bed and can go get fucked on it.”

In a followup comment, the same commenter suggested Linehan would only be welcomed into the Gamergate fold if he brought them dirt on other anti-Gemergaters.

Glinner can go get fucked unless he crawls on his ass over broken glass for us and leaks all the shit that he and his evil littermates were doing behind the scenes in ’14.

“Dig your own pit, Glinner,” wrote another. “This one doesn’t have room enough for your ego.”

Still another commenter offered a more detailed analysis:

It’s because he got cancelled by tr***ies when he dared agree with J K Rowling publicly. He is since basically out of the job. So now he is all about “freedom of speech” and anti-SJW when he is a SJW himself.

Same with the TERF, they were all about silencing “misogynistic gamers” until the bat shit crazies silenced them. Now they are forced to ask right wing think tanks to lend them some places to congregate and talk because nobody on the left wants to let them do talks in public places anymore.

Tough crowd, huh?

Political realignment is a bit more difficult than one might think.

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weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

“Don’t be fooled,” notes one commenter. “He ran out of friends on the SJW side of things over TERF drama and now he wants new ones.” After spelling out Linehan’s assorted crimes against Gamergate, the commenter concluded that “he made his bed and can go get fucked on it.”

You know you’ve fucked all the way up when some gamergoober is the voice of reason when it comes to your behavior.

Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy

It’s continually astonishing to me how he’s just devoted himself to this role, 100%. There’s all these other things he could be doing with his life, a myriad of possibilities… and he’s chosen to stick with this.

occasional reader
occasional reader
4 months ago

[…]with the real right-wingers and people like [Milo] Yiannopoulos who who it seemed to me was very cynically cashing in[…]

Is this not something english people usually comment with something like “pot, kettle…” ? (We are more with “paille (straw)” and “poutre (beam)” here)

Mogwitch
Mogwitch
4 months ago

@Mish. Yes, it’s bizarre. I think that about some of the Gender Critical group as well. If you genuinely think that trans women are just deluded men, even mentally ill as they so often say, why devote a significant proportion of your waking hours to complaining about a relatively small group of unfortunate individuals. Especially when cis people with real power, mostly men, are engaged in full on onslaughts against women’s rights and the laws and institutions that protect them.

If they think men want to be women because they want to identify as oppressed and special too ( another argument I’ve seen on gender critical reddit) then just ignore them politely and keep on fighting against the forces of systemic oppression. Instead they are constantly outraged that trans women suck all the attention away from “real” women, and then focus on them much more intensely than anybody who simply accepts them as a real woman.

Masse_Mysteria
Masse_Mysteria
4 months ago

Maybe I’m missing something, but I really don’t understand this “giving women’s rights away to men” thing.

Even if you thought (wrongly!) that trans* women were men, and opposed giving them “women’s rights” (whatever that means in this context), wouldn’t that just be extending women’s rights to a subset of men? Or are rights something tangible that someone can have only if they’re taken from someone else to be passed on?

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

Graham’s wife also appears to have left him (she changed her name on her social media back to her maiden name and they don’t appear to have been in the same room for a long time), so he really has picked this as the hill to die on.

My favorite take on his response to Anita was this one from Rebecca Watson:

“I put my ‘male ally’ tokens into this woman but there’s no transphobia coming out 🙁”

@Mish

It’s continually astonishing to me how he’s just devoted himself to this role, 100%. There’s all these other things he could be doing with his life, a myriad of possibilities… and he’s chosen to stick with this.

I think there’s a sunk cost fallacy involved: he’s already destroyed his career, lost his family, and made himself one of the most reviled men on the Internet, so he thinks there’s nothing to do but keep going.

@Masse_mysteria

Even if you thought (wrongly!) that trans* women were men, and opposed giving them “women’s rights” (whatever that means in this context), wouldn’t that just be extending women’s rights to a subset of men? Or are rights something tangible that someone can have only if they’re taken from someone else to be passed on?

I think it’s a few things:
1. Since TERFs often don’t think trans* people are real, they think anyone claiming to be trans* is doing so in bad faith, so they don’t want to give them rights.
2. As I’ve mentioned, TERFs are overwhelmingly white and wealthy, so they might subscribe to the view a lot of conservatives do that giving rights to other people means less for them.
3. They don’t want to acknowledge that trans* people mostly just want to live our lives, so they construct a false narrative to justify their hatred.

Lumipuna
Lumipuna
4 months ago

I think there’s a sunk cost fallacy involved: he’s already destroyed his career, lost his family, and made himself one of the most reviled men on the Internet, so he thinks there’s nothing to do but keep going.

As they say, “sunk cost” isn’t just the insurance claim for HMS Titanic.

danielrigal
danielrigal
4 months ago

So his new line is “Nazis good, except the gay one”?

Moggie
Moggie
4 months ago

How much did he “support” Anita Sarkeesian, really? Because she’s never hidden her support for trans rights. In fact, if you watch Feminist Frequency videos, you’ll have seen her working with Carolyn Petit, managing editor at FF and a good presenter. If Linehan is only now discovering that Sarkeesian is no TERF, I don’t think his support for her can have been very deep.

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

@danielrigal

So his new line is “Nazis good, except the gay one”?

The “Nazis good” part isn’t really new to him, he’s been embracing fascists for some time now (as have other TERFs, like Posie Parker being openly white nationalist).

@Moggie

How much did he “support” Anita Sarkeesian, really?

Any support he ever did was probably performative, seeing as Graham Linehan is the ultimate example of a NiceGuy™ who pretends to be a feminist to try to get brownie points and cover up his transphobia.

He also might just be mad that a woman has agency without his approval, seeing as the majority of his harassment is generally directed at cis women who dare to support trans* rights but his cover story is feminism.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

On the TERFs are privileged white women front,

Their new thing is arguing that their housekeepers should be forced to come in to work because they couldn’t possibly clean up after themselves or get their teenagers to pitch in

https://twitter.com/destroyed4com4t/status/1260771997815992320?s=20

Bakunin
Bakunin
4 months ago

The man sure is dedicated

kupo
kupo
4 months ago

This is apparently his (soon to be ex?) wife’s account.

comment image

Source: https://twitter.com/mimmymum/status/1259276358901010434?s=19

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

@kupo
I saw that post a few days ago. Accurate description, though a bit unfair to cacti. The cacti don’t deserve to be compared to Graham.

I’m not sure if she is a TERF, she’s voiced agreement with him before but I know that abusers like Graham often coerce people into agreeing with them to avoid further abuse (there is no doubt in my mind that Graham is abusive to his family).

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko, Regicidal Beast-of-Burden
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko, Regicidal Beast-of-Burden
4 months ago

I fully expect Glinner to become an MRA any second now.

TB Tabby
TB Tabby
4 months ago

He’s in a no man’s land: too evil for decent people, not evil enough for the Gamergaters.

Shadowplay
4 months ago

Does that guy NEVER have an avi that’s not smug city?

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

@Shadowplay
It’s worse than that. His current avatar is a zoomed in version of this commissioned art from TERF artist Nina Paley:
comment image
Yup, his avatar is literally of him as a white knight using women as a shield. It replaced his previous smug avatar because the artist who made his old one isn’t transphobic enough for Graham.

He briefly changed it a few weeks ago to an androgynous generated cartoon image to make fun of trans* people using cartoon avatars:
comment image
Then he changed it back when he got tired of the joke (around the same time he also added “announcing my gender soon” to his bio and apparently even TERFs thought it wasn’t funny).

Moggie
Moggie
4 months ago

A flaming sword? Did he learn that from V*x D*y?

Snowberry
Snowberry
4 months ago

If it wasn’t for the different art style, I would swear that knight picture was made by Ben Garrison. Well, maybe he wouldn’t put a pipe in the horse’s mouth, that’s not his usual style of goofiness, but everything else about that screams “it’s Ben”.

Shadowplay
4 months ago

Thank you for the explanation.

That horse looks like it should belong to Dennis the Menace. (UK, version, not the annoying cloying US one)

The flaming sword is a pretty neat touch though – a flaming weapon for a flaming idiot.

Moggie
Moggie
4 months ago

I assumed he thought of himself as a comedian who also did some TERFing on the side. But if he commissioned that art, that suggests it’s now the other way around. That’s pretty odd. We need to identify who is grooming and radicalising these vulnerable oldish white men!

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

@Snowberry
It does have a very Ben Garrison look to it. The artist seems to unironically think Graham is a feminist ally. She had this to say about it:

Graham is a true ally to feminists, and although my depiction is hyperbolic, it’s also sincere.

Her blog also has lots of other assorted TERFiness (a word which she uses to describe herself), to the point where it overshadows pretty much any other art she’s done (she also seems a bit obsessed with goddess worship and gender essentialism, and it shows in her art).

@Moggie
Well, he’s mentioned that he can no longer get work as a comedian because of his bigotry, so he probably thinks this is all he has left.

We need to identify who is grooming and radicalising these vulnerable oldish white men!

Cishet theory courses?

In related material, there’s this somewhat more accurate parody of Graham’s avatar:comment image

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

We need to identify who is grooming and radicalising these vulnerable oldish white men!

Grifters who send spam emails and direct mailers. At least that seems to be how my uncle was radicalized.

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

@WWTH
Facebook also seems like a popular source for older adult radicalization. My great-uncle was reposting Russian bot propaganda within a few weeks on there.

Viscaria
Viscaria
4 months ago

The horse and sword and shield avatar is so apt, since Graham is just like those dudes who are super into their folklore version of chivalry. Have you met those guys? Their chivalrous act involves a lot of door opening and condescension and expecting you to thank them for being so nice to ladies, such a rare thing these days, you know. And then one time you’re like “I can carry my own bags, thanks, Thom,” and he’s like “Fuck you, you bitch,” and you’re like “I thought you told me you were the only man left in the world who is nice to ladies,” and he’s like “You’re no lady.”

Graham has always only extended his “allyship” to a certain subset of women (cis ones who are really really nice to him), and he’s happy to keep kicking more and more of us out of that club unless we bitches start acting like ladies and suck up to him.

Moggie
Moggie
4 months ago

OT, but this seems important: Michigan cancelled a legislative session to avoid another threatened protest in the capitol building by heavily armed men. So I guess the message is that terrorism works, at least if you’re white. This is certain to embolden the armed right, and not just in Michigan. Expect more of the same.

Fishy Goat
Fishy Goat
4 months ago

Time for Michigan to do all their legislating remotely.

Jenora Feuer
Jenora Feuer
4 months ago

Canada already is doing a lot of its legislating remotely. The current setup has a mix of limited in-person sessions with a small number of people sitting apart (some form of in-person sessions are constitutionally required if they want to actually have Parliament be open) with virtual sessions so everybody who isn’t within driving distance of Ottawa can also take part. And a lot of committee meetings are being done entirely remotely because there’s no legal requirement for anybody to be in the same room anyway.

The Conservative party tried to block it, but when every other party agreed that in-person meetings multiple times a week was a bad idea, that wasn’t going anywhere.

(And, honestly, given how much of the core Conservative power base is in the Prairies anyway, you’d think they’d be happy about being able to attend from home. Scheer’s just being bloody contrarian.)

Nequam
Nequam
4 months ago

If it wasn’t for the different art style, I would swear that knight picture was made by Ben Garrison.

Not muscle-daddy enough.

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

Ok, I forced myself to watch some clips from the podcast. The ending was especially incomprehensible, he went off on a weird tangent about the Cambridge Five and that somehow segued about porn and how trans* porn stars with pigtails are destroying children’s sexuality (a bit creepy that he’s clearly spent time thinking about children’s sexuality). He sounded even more out of touch with reality than usual, it seems like he really is breaking down.

End clip:
https://twitter.com/maleallyman1/status/1260773927963459584

tim gueguen
4 months ago

Jenora Feuer, I wonder why Scheer is playing tough guy right now. The Conservatives aren’t going to change their minds and say “Hey, Andy, you’re a better guy that we thought, the tough leader we need. So let’s forget that whole leadership thing and keep you around.” And the caucus isn’t going to support him getting too intransigent and forcing an election, because they know they’ll pretty much certainly lose again.

Randy F McDonald
4 months ago

I am sad about Nina Paley. Her animated Sita Sings The Blues was funny and smart, something that helped me when I was going through a breakup. Why she went this way …

Cat Mara
Cat Mara
4 months ago

Linehan’s downfall is particularly saddening considering how movingly he & his wife spoke during the campaign to repeal the Constitutional ban on abortion in Ireland about their own experience with a fatal foetal abnormality. To see him reduced to… wherever tf he’s at now, it’s hard to believe it was the same guy.

His trajectory reminds me of another Irish public figure, John Waters (no, not that one 😉) Back in the ’80s, Waters was a firebrand young journalist excoriating the conservative nature of Irish society & the undue influence of the Catholic Church on it. Then in the 90s, he abruptly flipped, started espousing MRA talking points (likely as a result of his partner, the singer Sinéad O’Connor, being awarded custody of their child after their relationship broke up), and hanging out with paleo-Catholic groups like the Iona Institute. His most recent wheeze was a High Court case with another journalist-turned-conspiracy-monger, Gemma O’Doherty, questioning the constitutionality of the COVID-19 lockdown measures, which was thrown out by the Court in no uncertain terms:

[The judge] said Mr Waters and Ms O’Doherty, who had no medical or scientific qualifications, maintained the numbers were overstated and the Minister for Health was following fraudulent science.

There was no factual basis or any supporting expert opinion put forward to support this.

The judge said the applicants gave unsubstantiated options, speeches, engaged in empty rhetoric and sought to draw an “absurd and offensive” historical parallel with Nazi Germany.

Unsubstantiated opinions, speeches, rhetoric and bogus historical parallel were not substitutes for facts, he said.

(Nelson voice) Ha ha!

A glimpse of Glinner’s future, perhaps?

Crip Dyke
4 months ago

David introduces the quote from Graham:

these noble free-speech warriors

were all mixed up with with with the real right-wingers and people like [Milo] Yiannopoulos who who it seemed to me was very cynically cashing in and trying to try to recruit young men into the right.

So, uh, this can be difficult to parse. Let’s run this through GoogleTranslate, shall we?

“There were these good kids, and they weren’t acting like Nazis at all. They were just acting in ways that made Nazis think, ‘Whoah! Those folks are doing just what we like. They would make excellent Nazi recruits, what with they’re doing things that make them proto-Nazis already!’ And then things got confused, because the Nazi recruiters showed up, and you could no longer tell which person was acting like a good Nazi recruit and which person was acting like an actual Nazi. But looking back, I can tell the difference, and I think we should celebrate the contributions of the good Nazi recruits who attract Nazi recruiters. I just don’t want to celebrate the Nazi recruiters themselves.”

After all, what does “acting like Nazis” mean, anyway?

TacticalProgressive
TacticalProgressive
4 months ago

@Crip Dyke

After all, what does “acting like Nazis” mean, anyway?

It think “acting like Nazi’s” is just double speak for “actually being Nazi’s and claiming to do it ‘ironically’ for the lulz but secretly not being ironic at all”.

In my book it’s the same logic as saying that “I’m fucking a Chicken Ironically”. Aside from being the sort of claim I wouldn’t buy for a long retired Canadian Penny for; it doesn’t matter if your doing it “ironically” or not. Even if you say that your “fucking a chicken ironically”: you still fucked a chicken.

Graphic allegory I know, but Nazi apologist excuses and bs is a real gear grinder for me.

Demonhype
Demonhype
4 months ago

@Naglfar

Okay, iguve. Wtf is on his androgynous avatar’s cheek. A booger? A bandaid? A bizarrely stylized pipe?

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

@Demonhype
I’m not sure myself. A very large mole?

When he changed it he didn’t really say much about it other than that there was an option to add pigtails (he’s a bit obsessed with pigtails) and that he could have said his pronouns were she/her.

Snowberry
Snowberry
4 months ago

It’s almost certainly a bandage. He’s wearing it for “charm points”, a superficial and often feigned flaw which draws attention and makes one seem vulnerable. Other charm points include a medical eyepatch, a slight limp, stumbling, stuttering, cutesy verbal tics, a pacifier worn around the neck, a small stuffed animal one takes everywhere, a chronic cowlick (“ahoge”), a crooked incisor tooth (“yaeba”, there are Japanese people who get cosmetic surgery to have a yaeba on purpose), and so on. Usually it’s a “girly” thing, but not always.

Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy

Sunk cost perfectly explains Glinner, thanks mammotheers. In fact, it’s really the only thing that does.

Also, I tried watching those clips that @Naglfar linked to and I just cannot. It’s literally, physically, painful. I made it to one minute on that Cambridge spy one…

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

@Snowberry
Ah. That makes more sense. Thanks for the clarification.

Crip Dyke
4 months ago

@Mish:

Sunk cost perfectly explains Glinner, thanks mammotheers. In fact, it’s really the only thing that does.

Yeah, I’m sure you’re right … at the very least in significant part.

Naglfar
Naglfar
4 months ago

Unfortunately, Graham is now back on Twitter. I thought he was refusing to delete the tweets in protest, but it appears somehow he’s gotten back on. Hopefully soon he gets himself permanently banned, but seeing how Twitter tolerates bigots I’m not holding my breath.

Moggie
Moggie
4 months ago

After Linehan returned to twitter, Shaun brutally murdered him:

https://twitter.com/shaun_vids/status/1261724298353487872

I wish we could embed tweets here.

Ghost Robot
Ghost Robot
4 months ago

Between this, and the recent allegations within the Brit GC community, it feels like a major fracturing is going on. It might snap some people out of the militancy of the GC mindset, but some are definitely pushing out further to the right. I can totally see Linehan going full MGTOW once the TERFs finally punt him. It’s just a matter of which horrid right wing subculture will have him.

Could well end up with the white nationalists, given the intersection of transphobia and white supremacy in Brit TERFdom. Maybe we’ll see his byline on Breitbart UK down the track. Nothing would surprise me, really.

Ack
Ack
3 months ago

The funniest thing about all this is that “feminist” Graham Linehan is apparently ignoring the fact that GamerGate has always been, first and foremost, an anti-feminist group. The mere fact that they embraced Jack Thompson when he went after Anita Sarkeesian is proof positive that they will even sell out the very act of gaming in order to own the feminists. If Linehan wants in the club, he will need to disavow feminism and frankly I think he’s just about ready to do that.