Response Part VII

In section B.1, Matthew Johnson plumbs new depths, as he attempts to frame my oft-satirical responses to repeated attacks on me by former SFWA President John Scalzi, current SFWA Board member (who has not recused herself from the process) Lee Martindale, SFWA Associate Member Teresa Nielsen Hayden, and others over the last eight years as “attacks on members”.

1. Attacks on members

Attacks on members which occurred through SFWA channels or in SFWA-controlled spaces are addressed in part A. The following looks at attacks and threats which were made in his blog and other public space.

Personal attacks

Beale has made numerous attacks on fellow SFWA members which may be seen as going outside the bounds of professional conduct. The best-known and most consistent is likely his use of derogatory nicknames, such as “McRapey” for John Scalzi and “McRacist” for N.K. Jemisin (see Fig B.1). He has also compared Amal el-Mohtar to an Egyptian cleric who has, according to Beale, called for the ethnic cleansing of Egypt (Fig B.2); accused James Enge of “despicable behavior” (see Fig B.3); accused Ms. Jemisin of plagiarism (see Fig B.4); and has published a blog comment claiming that Teresa Nielsen Hayden has herpes. (See Appendix I for the question of whether and why to consider blog comments. In this case, though, Beale actually reprinted the comment in one of his own blog posts, making him more clearly the publisher of the comment: see Fig B.5)

Threats by commenters

Beale has permitted and, arguably, encouraged threats of violence against SFWA members on his blogs and elsewhere. (See Appendix I for the question of whether and why to consider blog comments.) As we have seen, Beale allowed one threat of rape against Ms. Jemisin to remain in the post that was published through the SFWAAuthors Twitter feed; a similar threat was made in the June 13 post “SFWA Forum: the moderated posts”:

“Jemisin libeled him. the SFWA is aiding and abetting her in this libel. come get some, bitch.” (See Fig B.6)

On June 18 an implicit threat was made by a commenter against member Aliette de Bodard:
“Didn’t we used to drop bombs on Europeans who were fascinated by racial literature? Eventually people like de Bodard will need the air raid sirens.” (See Fig B.7)

Another series of threats was made against Lee Martindale following a comment she made on Jim Hines’ blog (see Fig B.8) to which Beale took offense (see Fig B.9). Commenters to Beale’s blog post posted threats such as suggestions that she should commit suicide (see Fig B.10), statements that “she needs to get punched or laid… or maybe both in quick succession” (see Fig B.11), requests to “Post her home address, I dare you…” (see Fig B.12) and detailed descriptions of her murder: I’m pretty sure that Bane [a former commenter] would have had a long, eloquent post about seeing an eye through a scope and then the brilliant crimson & grey spatter when he caressed the trigger, or maybe something about the slippery, warm feel of entrails spilling over his hand. (See Fig B.13. Note that Beale ended this post with “This post is dedicated to the memory of Bane”; see Fig B.14]

One comment provided instructions on how to “SWAT” her (send a police SWAT team to her house): “If you want to SWAT at the gnatstys [Internet spelling of “nasties”], you could use skype from a café and call into the police phone number local to the threat, impersonating the threat and saying something like you’ve just killed your family, are going to blow up a school, etc. and watch the militarized blue-coats go after them.” (see Fig B.15)

A few notes may be valuable in providing context. First, the suggestion that Beale should provide Martindale’s home address was not an idle one: on at least one prior occasion Beale has posted the home address of a reviewer (not an SFWA member) he felt had not read his book before reviewing it (see Fig B.16. for the post in which this happened. Although the full address was removed by the time that screenshot was taken, the comment seen in Fig B.17 shows that it had been posted.)

Finally, on June 15 2013 (two days after Beale’s attack on Ms. Jemisin went out via the SFWAAuthors Twitter feed) Martindale also received a threat by e-mail which, while it cannot be traced directly to Beale, echoes threats made against her, and the specific language used in them, on his blogs:

“Keep on doing what you do, keep on following the same routine, you will be located, and you will be dealt with just like you deserve to be. My friends are starting a bail fund for me. See, you’re not the only one who can make veiled threats of violence, you fat, stinking, ugly cunt. Kill yourself now and save someone else the trouble you rotten, repulsive piece of human trash.”

With regards to my “attacks on fellow SFWA members”, I will simply note the following:

1. John Scalzi, the former SFWA president to whom I refer by the derogatory nickname “McRapey” has publicly referred to me in the following ways since 2005:

  • the lunatic fringe
  • a jackass, and a fairly ignorant jackass at that
  • your head is pretty far up your ass
  • there’s a definite head-ass conjunction on his part
  • his sphincto-cranial position
  • stupid and sexist
  • a sexist pig
  • he deserves a thumping, and a thumping is what he’s getting
  • Racist Sexist Homophobic Dipshit
  • sociopathic assbag
  • that pathetic ball of issues

There are hundreds of references on Mr. Scalzi’s blog and several other SFWA member blogs such as Electrolite referring to me as either “Racist Sexist Homophobic Dipshit” or “RSHD”. It would be informative to learn if the SFWA Board considers that to be inside “the bounds of professional conduct”. Mr. Scalzi has also referred to the readers of my blog as:

  • VD’s tribe of sexist assbags
  • your own pit of manstink
  • the gibbering follow monkeys of that Racist Sexist Homophobic Dipshit who has an adorable mancrush on me
  • his clutch of equally insecure racist sexist homophobic dipshit admirers
  • gibbering monkey followers 
  • dipshits

Note that in addition to demonstrating that the “derogatory nickname” I use for John Scalzi is well within the bounds of professional conduct as demonstrated by the SFWA president’s own example, this would appear to indicate that it is John Scalzi who is truly the racist, as I am a Writer of Color and I have a large number of black and Hispanic readers to whom the presumably white Mr. Scalzi openly refers as “monkeys”.

Moreover, given that Mr. Scalzi has openly, (however satirically), written I’m a rapist. I’m one of those men who likes to force myself on women
without their consent or desire and then batter them sexually”
and was recorded stating “John Scalzi is a rapist” on Canadian radio, it can hardly be deemed outrageous to satirize him as “McRapey”.

2. The comment “claiming that Teresa Nielsen Hayden has herpes” was clearly satirical, considering that it was written from the perspective of a Sonoran Desert Toad. As in, the warty little frog-like animal that hops.  The full quote was: “I would point out that
licking *me*
brings on a state of euphoria and a series of pleasant
hallucinations, while licking Ms. Nielson would cause spastic
uncontrolled vomiting and give you herpes.”

Moreover, Ms Nielsen Hayden has addressed me in the following professional manner since 2005:

  • It’s really, really obvious that VD is not acquainted with actual women. (2005)
  • he’s had little or no social interaction of any sort (2005)
  • VD fears and dislikes women (2005)
  • a third-rate intellect (2005)
  •  a tad unbalanced (2005)
  • a generally unpleasant fellow (2005)
  • He is a wuss. (2007)
  • You’re also a singularly inept sockpuppet, O Bane/Vox/Theeeeeodore. (2007)
  • Vox Day’s true opinion of women has always been clear to me: he’s terrified of them. (2007)
  • out-of-the-closet racist (2008)
  • obviously unbalanced (2008)
  • been known to put in a good word for the Nazis (2008)

3. In the interest of keeping this less than entirely tedious, I will address the other accusations in my actual response to the Board.  In the meantime, I will simply point out that my “attacks” have almost always been responses to the attacks of others.

With regards to the various statements made by commenters, both here and at other blogs, I will simply point out that I maintain a very light moderation policy with rules that are clearly posted, which is one reason why my blogs are among the most popular in the SFWA, with 1,170,000 pageviews last month alone.  I find it strange to have to point out to a professional writer’s organization that I am obviously not responsible, in any way, for anyone’s words or actions besides my own.  Nor have I ever incited anyone to do anything; quite to the contrary, I have actively dissuaded my readers from responding to various forms of attacks in kind.

I have already shown in my response to section A.3 that Mr. Johnson’s assertion of a previous “rape threat” to Ms Jemisin was, in fact, not a threat at all, and the following three comments, all of which still remain on this blog in addition to many other similar comments, should suffice to demonstrate that my failure to delete a comment does not indicate either permission for, encouragement of, or agreement with the comment, its sentiments, or the commenter.

  • “You sad, silly little fuck. Your father really screwed you over for life, didn’t he?” (Phoenician February 04, 2013 4:16 PM) 
  • “I own your mental space. First Scalzi made you his little bitch. And now I’ve made you my little bitch. You’ll have to face up to the fact that this isn’t a coincidence. It seems to be in your nature to seek out a dominant male and make him treat you like a bottom.” (Pheonician February 09, 2013 8:53 PM)
  • “What a strange, depressing man you are. And how fearful and strange and depressing many of the folks in the comments are. This post is full of logical fallacies that sort of laugh in the face of psychology and history, but . . . it’s not even worth getting into them with you. If you’ve ignored facts up to this point in your life, there’s no real any evidence that you’d start taking them into consideration now.”  (Maggie Stiefvater June 14, 2013 3:14 PM )

Of the 136,270 comments presently available on this blog, a statistically significant percentage of them contain sentiments of which I do not approve, assertions with which I disagree, and claims which I believe to be false.  I am not responsible for any of them.  And I am most certainly not responsible for any threats made here or elsewhere to others by others.

Unlike many members of the SFWA, I believe in unmitigated free speech and free expression.  Calling speech “hate speech” does not justify limiting it any more than calling it “blasphemy” or “uppity negro speech” does.  I find it absolutely and utterly reprehensible that the SFWA Board has abandoned the organization’s formerly strong position on free speech and is not only prosecuting a member for his own free speech, but for permitting others free speech as well.

Stephen Brust might be thinking to mock the critics of SFWA with his “Anthem of the SFWA Fascists, but the simple fact is that the SFWA Board is acting as if it wears “rainbow-colored jackboots” as it actively attempts to limit the ability of its members to freely express their opinions in a hypocritical and one-sided manner. And I find it extremely amusing to observe that Mr. Brust has turned off comments for the video.

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