YouTube is a huge part of the media we consume and there are a huge variety of YouTube personalities on the video site. You have your beauty gurus, your comedians, your activists and musicians to entertain and inspire you. However, beyond the trending music videos by our favorite artists and new challenges uploaded by huge internet personalities, there is a darker corner of the internet lurking there, which are the people who have the intention of “debunking” ideas that progressives put forward.
The political climate recently has undoubtedly been changing very fast since Trump became president – or indeed began running for president. We have gone from a successful Obama presidency to suddenly having to hear an old white privileged man tell us about how “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best… They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” The Alt-right community which prefers the label “Skeptic Community” are using alternative facts to justify Trump’s controversial comments and acts.
Notable YouTubers in this community include Blaire White, a transgender woman who has uploaded a video called “Black Lives Matter is Trash”, Hunter Avallone, who has continually spread islamophobia with his platform and Sargon of Akkad, an English man who claims to be a “Classical Liberal” but clearly does not understand the nuance of the social justice movement today. They use outrageous clickbait titles to attract curious teens, then proceed to their poorly informed propaganda. The shocking reality is that these individuals each have over 200,000 subscribers and all together have over 1,000,000 viewers.
These YouTubers all believe that the media is untrustworthy and political correctness has gone too far, and see advocacy for equality for all as a threat to freedom of speech. However, seeing the number of people influenced by these personalities is truly astonishing, as people claim in the comment sections or on Twitter that these people have changed their minds on topics like feminism, black lives matter and the validity of non-binary people. Many of these videos have been reported for not meeting YouTube’s new community guidelines and many of their channels and social media accounts have been taken down but they always come back with a new rant about censorship and some conspiracy theory that media nowadays is forcing “radical social justice” down our throats.
In this community, the use of buzzwords such as “cuck”, “r*tard” and “SJW (short for Social Justice Warrior)” are frequent to dismiss feminist and anti-racism activists such as MTV’s Laci Green, Franchesca Ramsey and even some celebrities like Emma Watson and Beyoncé. They have waged war on male feminists by portraying them as spineless and weak, reenforcing traditional gender roles that men have to be strong and sexist. They use humour to make their questionable rhetoric more digestible and claim that this is all in the name of freedom of speech.
Freedom of speech is something that all decent people believe in, excluding threats, incitations of violence and hate speech. Despite the fact that there has been no instance of threats coming out of this community, they still are avid that hate speech is still included in free speech and it is okay to misgender transgender people because it is protected by the first amendment. However, when they make response videos to activist YouTubers, the so-called pro-free speech
community show hypocrisy by attempting to silence their often queer or black voices.
The truly most shocking part is that people are buying it. Not only people are now literally buying shirts that claim that the gender wage gap “has nothing to do with discrimination”, these channels are growing and getting paid more and more by the day. Blaire White in particular has been publicly endorsed by mainstream comedic YouTuber Shane Dawson and was allowed to come onto his podcast “Shane and Friends” where she claimed that Caitlyn Jenner was “a cross-dresser who had the money to buy t*ts” and also said that transgenderism is now a trend, “the emos are gone, the tr*nnies are here.” White seems to be completely ignorant to how much of a disservice this is to her fellow transgender siblings, and is being brought into the public eye. What the world needs now is more activists speaking out against this agenda which is promoting suicides in the transgender communities, distrust for a movement in favour of not killing black people and equal rights for women.