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Saturday, January 3, 2015

Hate-Speech on Facebook - "Go Truck Yourself" (Leelah Alcorn)

Hello, Darlings. Your favorite Sparkly Unicorn has been a very busy equine this evening. I've been sending a lot of emails to LGBTQ advocacy groups, locally and nationwide, to try to draw attention to some ugly hate-speech that recently showed up on Facebook, relating directly to the suicide of transgender teen Leelah Alcorn.

Facebook, though receiving hundreds of reports that this content is extremely inappropriate and falls under the categories of hate-speech, bullying, AND encouraging suicide of LGBTQ people, has stated that the page does not 'violate community standards'.

So, some of us have been taking it up a level. In addition to local resources, I've also reached out to HRC, The LGBT Task Force, and GLAAD. Taking it too far? Maybe. But someone had to.

If anyone else would like to report this scumbag and his/her disgusting hate-speech page, you can find it by searching FB for "Go Truck Yourself". Yeah, it's every bit as gross as you think.

For anyone who would like to write (either to some of your local LGBT advocacy groups, or to the Big Guns nationwide), but may not be sure what to say, I'll share what I've been sending. Feel free to borrow, if you need a start.

** UPDATE** The page and posts have been removed!!

A great-big, sparkly THANK YOU to everyone who spoke up! This shows that we CAN make a difference.

"I'm writing to you now to enlist your (and your readers') assistance in drawing public attention to an ugly bit of anti-trans hate speech thinly disguised as a 'community page' on Facebook:

This page consists as a series of slurs and derogatory remarks directed to those who support the late Leelah Alcorn, a transgender teen who committed suicide by walking in front of a semi truck after being rejected and condemned by her mother, her 'counselors' and her peers. (Leelah left a note detailing this treatment. You've probably seen it online already.) This page, along with hateful remarks, also includes a link to an article and photo of Leelah Alcorn, and celebrating her suicide, with the phrase, "Go Truck Yourself", an obvious statement that other trans*people should end their lives the same way that Leelah did. And, as I'm sure you've noticed, the URL of this horrible page is "no more degenerates".

Many of us on FB have reported both the page itself and numerous of the posts ON the page as being 'hate speech' or otherwise inflammatory, discriminatory and inappropriate. We have all also received what we HOPE is an automated message from FB stating that they have looked into it and found that nothing on the page violates their 'community standards'. I say that I hope it is an automated message, because the possibility that someone who works for FB has reviewed this page and those disgusting posts and found them to be anything OTHER than hate-speech is too horrifying to consider.

Having had no luck in using the only recourse FB gives us (reporting the page and posts as inappropriate), we are now turning to our own local LGBT publications for assistance. Facebook needs to be made aware (1) that this hateful page glorifying and encouraging suicide for trans*people exists, and (2) that we will not tolerate this kind of material, which is CLEARLY hate-speech and therefore not protected.

I would appreciate it if you would share this situation with anyone that you feel can assist us in drawing the proper attention to this shameful situation, with the hoped-for twofold goal of holding FB accountable for this material (since we have been reporting it to no avail), and having the page shut down.

Thank you and best wishes."

Darlings, we CAN make a difference. Pick up a pen, type an email, or pick up the phone and call someone to let them know this is NOT OK.

Always remember: If not you, WHO?

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