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The F word, without the N word

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The furry fandom has a problem. At least that is what is heard when you go onto Twitter, Youtube, or any other social media gathering on the internet these days. As the United States continues to have moments of harsh self reflection as to what their country and leadership represent, the frustrations of those in the fandom from the states has seemingly turned inward on itself.

Many are debating over free speech, its boundaries, and how it is under attack. There is one large article by Rakuen about it on this site, and another by the creator of Dreamkeepers on DogPatch Press. In addition, one particular furry comedian who has received heavy criticism as of late, 2 Gryphon, has decided to join the group of Alt-Furrys in posturing opposition to those that would oppose his views on what freedom of speech should entail.

However, my definition of exercising free speech is a bit different than most would see it. For to me, the meaning of exercising here is not the commonly defined physical exertion required to talk, but instead to expose and cast out the demons schakeling one’s soul and community in hopes of ousting it from the spirit and freeing them from those binds.

So in that sense, let’s strap in and prepare for the long and painstaking process of this exorcism of free speech and its relationship to furry fandom.

The N/F ratio: Responsible coverage of speech

I would recommend giving David Lillie’s article a read, if not to understand what the definition of irony is.

In it he argues, quite accurately, that a particular radicalized white supremacist movement have been utilizing association tricks in order to give themselves a leg up on their opponents. In essence they take advantage of the fact that their organization is the most extreme version of freedom of speech. This means when many article writers put the pen to paper to talk about this topic, it is the default go-to example of the most abhorrent extreme examples of this freedom.

David argues that when people are using that four letter N word in tangent with “free speech” that eventually the human brain will wire itself to tie the words together. So when this occurs the person begins to subconsciously believe that a group that is against the freedom of individuals are actually the champions of it. So where does the irony come into play here? Let’s look at the article’s content, or more precisely, the words that it uses.

The “swahili coconuts” are mentioned 26 times in the entire article. The words free or freedom, on the other hand is utilized 9 times. Another fun fact? The word free or freedom was only used one time in the entire article where it did not share the paragraph with those abhorrent bunch of coconuts. And his paragraphs are short! I blame this on the habits of a comic writer.

So if you add up the words free/freedom (9) with all the times the fuehrer's fuzzy tree nuts are mentioned by their common 4 letter terminology (26) you get a total. Take the number of times the four letter word for those that swaddle themselves in their Swastika (26) and divide it by that total we got earlier (9 + 26 = 35). We get a percentage of 74.6% (26/35).

Let’s compare this to Flayrah article by our resident growlithe. He mentions the fuhrer's fascist frolickers a total of 12 times. He mentions freedom a total of 58! Good lord, Rakuen, you sure you’re not an American with that much freedom verbiage jammed in there? This gives us a ratio of 18.46%. This one is better, though one would note it was still not very well received at the time it was written. I would argue that in this case they used the word freedom in there so much it came off as a bit preachy.

However, preachiness is far preferable than what happened in the Dreamkeeper writer’s version of the free speech article. While his article accurately noted that the neo-coconuts were milking a tactic of word association with freedom to tie their organization with said freedom, David did nobody any favors by doing the very exact thing that he was warning his readership about.

So it’s important to emphasise that fascists do not believe in freedom. Instead, they want to build a cult of personality in the government to kneel to. Someone who works not for the well being of all people, but for the well being of their most loyal subjects. One could call it a government for brown nosers, which may explain why they like wearing that color. Because, hey, if you have no other skills to provide, then promote a government whose only demand is something as simple as never saying ‘no’ to the guy in charge. Unfortunately, for those who have a tendency to say ‘no’, such a government will try and influence your social and financial status based upon your loyalties to the symbol and to the dear leader. In such a society, freedom of speech is invariably crushed under the fear of consequences. Not just minor opportunity losses of who will be your friends over your beliefs, such as the fandom is dealing with now, but if the very government itself will take your life for them.

So how do you prevent the word association game that the fascists play? Well, if you weren’t paying attention to this section you can also use your own verbiage tactics to counter those giving a handy to Hitler’s ghost. Just don’t use the N word to describe this group. If like Candyman, Bloody Mary, Beetlejuice, or Voldemort; saying their name invokes their presence, then just don’t say their name. That doesn’t mean you have to do the dodgy eyes and come up with some serious synonym phrase for them either. Pick your favorite derogatory slogan from this section, or come up with your own, it’s fun for the whole family. The ultimate goal would be to get that number as close to 0% or 100% as possible; Avoid 50%. Also work on spacing of the words keeping the topics of freedom and fascism as segregated as possible.

So now that we got that out of the way, let’s discuss the recent radicalization of some segments within our fandom.

Len Gilbert - A “Nationalist Populist” in his own words

So let me get this out there so the record is perfectly clear. The leader of the Alt-Furry group, Len Gilbert, appears to be quite the Nazi.

Whoa, whoa, whoa!

I hear some of you saying.

There’s that N-word, clearly you’re just one of those Social Justice Warrior commie leftists who will call anyone and everyone who disagrees with you a Nazi.

First, put a pin in that statement.

Second, anyone who has read my words over nearly a decade of writing for Flayrah would know that is untrue on its face. I do not throw labels onto people, I allow people through their action or inaction to show me the content of their character. Even then, I typically wait to allow for the individual themselves to reveal how they label themselves to back up anything I see that’s notable.

Also, unlike Patch and others on the more activist side of furry press, I have never called 2 the Ranting Gryphon a member of the Fuehrer's Flunkies. My reasoning is simply this: being a crappy comedian doesn’t make one a neo-Nazi, but crappy comedians tend to attract neo-Nazi fans. If anything, I would consider the gryphon a mixture of a Bojack Horseman character, thirsty for a social clique to call his own within a changing fandom and culture (including the drinking problem), and the naive Papyrus from Undertale, ready to hug it out with characters who may very well be on a genocide run.

So where does my blatant definition of Len come from? Where is my evidence?

Well, Kothorix, a furry Youtuber who is famous (or infamous depending on who you ask) for doing interviews with furries who are seen as controversial in the fandom did an interview with this very same Mr. Gilbert. Given what Len is known for, of course, the question did eventually come up around the fourteen minute mark. It was a simple question: “Are you a Nazi?”

When watching the response linked to in the embedded video below, I want you to keep in the back of your head some famous words Samuel Conway said during his “Furries and the Media” panel when talking about the topic of people having sex within the fandom.

Notice how I didn’t say ‘no’.

There are a lot of interesting points to bring up in this interaction.

First, Len didn’t say “No.”

Second, instead of saying he wasn’t one directly, Len utilized a smokescreen tactic to try and appeal to those who have been falsely called one to try and imply that all such statements are falsehoods. He in essence is allowing such a viewer to lie to themselves about who Len is instead of Len directly having to do the dirty work on that himself.

Imagine if the characters in the classic children’s tale “The boy who cried wolf” were anthropomorphic. A wolf dressed in human garb approaches the sheep and a villager confronts, “Hey, are you a wolf?” The wolf answers, “Oh, well you villagers should know that whenever you hear the word wolf that it’s just some label being thrown around haphazardly. I mean, look at the boy over there calling it out at anyone and anything. So clearly the word has no meaning.”

As the story informs us in our youths. Even if an individual calls out a threat falsey does not mean the threat is non-existent.

Third, Kothorix at the start of the question had indicated confidently he already knew what the response was going to be. By the end it was clear he was caught a bit off guard by the response he actually got. Perhaps he was looking for the words “no” or “of course not” in there, somewhere, anywhere. In the grand scheme I can’t tell whether the poor dragon interviewer was confused by all the words that just got thrown at him and didn’t want to appear unread so kind of just let it go, or if it was more concern about the fact that the answer was not quite what he had in mind and wanted to change the topic as quickly as possible.

Other things I note about Len Gilbert is that in the entirety of the interview video he doesn’t talk about furry content or the general fandom all too much and that most of the conversation revolves around his political views. He has no fursona to speak of, instead choosing an anime styled character who wears German-esque military regalia of a particular era as his avatar. One of his statements revolving around the hearts and minds of the kids turning to ‘his side’ of the political spectrum is particularly chilling and should remove any and all doubts about his purpose in the furry fandom, to utilize the tools of anthropomorphism to radicalize the youth of today just as anthropomorphism had helped shaped our more benign worldviews when we were younger.

He doesn’t seem concerned about the polarization of politics in the fandom or society in general as much as he gushes about his dreams of a furtherization of tribalism in future generations. You can basically hear his voice titillating in bliss as he describes this abhorrent scenario:

I’m not interested in where the puck is, or where the puck has gone, I’m more interested in where the puck is going. Right now we are at what I would call peak millennial. The furry subculture is about as millennial as it’s going to get. I like to call myself the world’s oldest millennial. The millenials are going to cycle out of the fandom, and in some cases they already are a bit. And Generation Z, as we know them, is cycling into the fandom.

We don’t know alot about Gen Z yet because most of them are teenages and high school kids. They are also tribalistic. They are also very political. But their tribalism and politics are less about lifestyle and more about the demographic group that they belong to.

I’ll give you a very profound example.

There was a poll of highschool kids on, if they could vote for president, how they would have voted. They broke it down by race, and the amazing thing was that 80 to 90% of whites voted Republican. That’s Amazing! That is such a huge break from their Gen X and Gen Y peers. It’s a huge break!

What does that tell you? It’s tells you— it’s profound! It’s profound in the sense that white folks in that age are voting as a voting block in the same way African Americans are, in the same way Muslims are. That they’re voting with that same level of coherence.

To him I say, if that is where the puck is going, then be prepared for a goalie with a steady hand and a quiet eye to see these attempts for such a crass goal. And if that puck’s advancement is adverse to the goalie’s own motivations, such as the bettering of humanity as a whole and not in part, then you can rest assured that goalie is not going to let that puck advance any further.

Take a leader like this and add in evidence that members of this group are literally humans in wolves clothing by a Newsweek article where a real bonnfied neo-nazi who does not identify as a furry worked with the Alt-Furry group to plan an attack against Califur which resulted in logistical issues and forced the convention into a one year hiatus.

The most damning link between white supremacists and alt-furries is Nathan Gate, a young alt-right neo-[Swahili Coconut]. He does not consider himself a furry, but he helped create and moderate the alt-furry Discord channel. (He also set up the AltRight.com server for the news and commentary website run by alt-right leader Richard Spencer). Gate even organized the campaign against the Califur convention in Pomona, posing as a local reporter and calling the hotel, while mobilizing alt-furries to do the same on Discord. At the rally in Charlottesville, Gate recorded a two-and-a-half hour live stream of the day’s chaotic events. In the stream, he is surrounded by neo-[Swahili Coconut]s in white polos, armed militiamen and even David Duke, one of the country's most prominent white supremacists.

So much for the freedom of assembly loving alt-right.

For this section, I leave you with this quote by 2 the Ranting Gryphon about the death of the fandom and why the furry fandom is (or was?) dead in his eyes in a video he had made in the fall of 2017. When reading this remember that the one quoted had recently joined Len Gibert’s group indicating that he sees it as a quality furry group.

You can show up in a suit of armor with a hang glider and a chess board under one arm and the first question will be ‘Who did you vote for?’ ‘Oh you voted for our side? Great you’re a furry.’

However, if you show up in a full fursuit with comic books and an interest in furries, but you have a MAGA hat on? ‘Nope get out, you’re a Nazi, you’re a Racist.’”

Given what is known about the leader of Alt-Furry by his own words and the reveal by Newsweek, is it any surprise that an ever growing group of furs have seen the gryphon’s criticism as a double standard? By his recent embracing of the alt-furry, whose community is primarily connected to their political identity and not their furry one, any weight in which he criticizes furries in more left-leaning groups of similar behaviors falls flat under hypocrisy.

Even worse for the gryphon, if the comedian’s goal is legitimately to mend the social divides of the fandom, then he has through his actions promoted a community leader who gushes over a future where the very opposite occurs. And he isn’t the only one who may be going to down the wrong path for what they believe is a proper reason.

The Importance of Proportional Media Coverage

Patch from DogPatch Press recently made a Twitter statement in regards to the Fuhrer loving furries and their saturation rate within the fandom.

In this tweet he is trying to boost the morale of furs who have become exhausted by the feeling that there are what appear to be too many ‘coconut antics’ in the fandom these days. Also he wants to disuade a talking point used by the alt-right that the fandom is splitting down the middle.

He had to remind his viewership that these guys are actually a very verbose minority, gaming the internet systems to seem larger than they are. To me, this is the main reason that these abhorrent individuals are interested in the fandom. Even against the social grain we were able to grow from a shunned culture, exploited for laughs, to one that is treated more fairly by the media. These white nationalist groups want to know how to do the same. Any other feigned interest in furry I feel is a red, swastika wearing, herring.

But one does have to reflect why Patch’s followers may think the fascist threat may be a bit larger in the fandom than it actually is, and why Patch has to remind them this is not the case?

So, I went through DogPatchPress, his news site, to find all articles published by Patch O’Furr himself to get a count of the number of articles that included Nazi, Confederacy, the Alt-Right, and other topics surrounding white nationalism and compared it to a count of those that didn’t revolve around those topics. I excluded book review posts marked as being done by Fred Patten (Patch ghost-formats those on his account since Mr. Patten isn’t all that tech savvy and doesn’t have the markup language skills required for internet formatting his own works). One-off guest posts made on the account are counted. I counted articles for 1 year: June 20th, 2017 to June 20th, 2018.

One surprising thing was that there was no grey area during the sorting process. Either the article was fully dedicated to right-wing radicalism or it was not. At the end I was left with a count of 25 articles revolving around white supremacist movements, alt-furries, and the like and 77 articles about other items. This means that about 1 in 4 articles (24.5% to be precise) that were published by the Patch O’Furr account in the past year were about the group for furs he says comprises 0.1% of the fandom. Below are two pie charts to show the differences between these two numbers.

StickyPie_0.jpg

So if the writer believes that the group comprises so little of the fandom at large, why write so much about it? Well, it probably stems that these organizations present a real physical threat to the writer, so he feels it important to weed out said individuals, no matter how small their presence is. I mean, an organization of lawful evil foundations like fascism is certainly the antithesis of the chaotic good that makes up the base of the furry fandom, so it would certain invoke an immunity response from those that fall in that square.

However it is important to understand, despite the reach of one’s platform, words can only go so far. Repeating information over and over, no matter how correct, can make one appear from a point of weakness. It’s in essence the concept of utility theory in written form. The value that comes from reporting on the despicable behaviors of a group declines with each report if nothing new is seen. Those that trusted the first report see the same information and it may solidify their beliefs, but those who don’t trust the author won’t believe them even if they write it a million times.

What I am trying to say here is instead of re-writing a new article to bring up the similar issues already written about, just reference the older material in case people didn’t read it when it was new.

This is why this article is so long, I didn’t want it to be a drip feed and thus bring the percentage of coverage up, making it appear that I’m obsessed with this faction of the fandom. I wanted to collect as much information as possible and rip the bandage clean off. So this will probably be the last time I do comprehensive coverage of this sort of general politic on this site, short of an arrest or criminal event committed by said groups. Instead I will focus my time on the content that furs came to the fandom for on Flayrah.

Because unfortunately, despite our good intentions, there are uncomfortable questions that media needs to ask themselves that can quite frankly make us uneasy. We who journalize would like to believe that we write stories about facts, just note the events that are actually occuring, and that those articles have no influence on future events or how people behave. However, let’s take a look at some of these scary questions:

  • If we write about an uncommon belief or event frequently, does that raise the uncommon to something that people grow used to? Or manifest the belief it is more common than it actually is?
    • People are interested in the weird, the strange, and the unusual. It is a good way to draw attention. Furries of all people know this.
    • Because of the above point, it is tempting for press of all stripes to post more articles of the unusual to get more views.
    • If people do grow used to it, will they grow numb to the presence of the oddity?
    • Many would argue that Trump took advantage of this very first question to obtain more press coverage. He would say provocative things to get more free press coverage. Its success in the election has influenced many copy-cats. Basically that’s what Alt-Furrys and Alt-Right groups are, those who utilize Trumpian tactics so that they gain popularity similar to Trump’s methods.
  • If a furry is looking for fame, but has no other talents, then infamy could be the easiest route. So are we being used as an end to a means?
    • If the above is true then joining the alt-furry group gives you a 1 in 4 chance of getting featured in an article written by Patch O’Furr. All without having to go through the hard work of writing a furry novel, learning to be an artist, or performing in fursuit.
    • Thus, this risks growing Alt-Furry from being a group of just abhorrent white-nationalists to include narcissistic egomaniacs who have no interest in their politic.
    • One particularly dark example of this infamy press tactic outside the fandom is school shootings. There is a theory that press coverage that is centric around the shooter can create a cult-of-personality around people who commit such heinous crimes. Thus inspiring future actions by people looking of easy fame.
      • Suicide through Sadism, what I call this Western phenomenon, is where self inflicted suicide is seen as passive and cowardly. So a suicidal person who believes this will instead kill other people in the hopes that they take as many people with them before their own life is taken, by themselves or another.
      • The day 2 Gryphon had lost me as a fan of his comedy was when he had promoted one of these suicide by sadism perpetrators on his livejournal post called “Be a Tiger”.
      • We in the media need to figure out ways as a society to make these paths less appealing to people including:
        • Focusing on the stories of the lives taken instead of the life taker.
        • Socially honoring those who commit peaceful suicide so that it is seen as a better action than committing it sadistically.
        • Not releasing any statements from the killer, and any press seen as doing so should be punished by their consumers.

Ethics like the above were something an old user of Flayrah would debate quite often on some of the more controversial articles here. Xxydex was once an active member of this site, back in the pre-2010 days when it was more a sort of reddit messaging board than a place for longer form non-fiction pieces on the fandom. That change had come in the form of GreenReaper taking the Editor in Chief position in 2010. It was this change in direction and the new style which had gauged my interest and brought me in as a reader, and eventually a writer, to now an editor.

The squeaky pony was none too pleased about the change himself. Primarily due to some contention between himself and GreenReaper in the past due to Wikifur pages revolving around the inflatable community. At least that is what I had heard, I never understood the whole beef between the two back then. However, another thing he didn’t like were the news features that made the fandom look bad. Particularly the occasional article about bad furs being arrested for sexual crimes.

Back then it was a different world, with the older individuals in the fandom on guard over the media and their desire to make us look like deviants, younger furs like myself at the time were a little less guarded and I felt it would be irresponsible for us not to report when someone in the community did wrong. That not doing so would make it seem like we were trying to cover for our worst members to those outside the fandom. The squeaky pony was afraid of the opposite, people using our own logs of bad behavior making the world at large see us as deviants.

To say the debates between Xxydex and myself grew heated would be an understatement. In those days as soon as things got going between us, the entire comment section would brace for what would be a slew of passive aggressive slugs being lobbed over the internet wire. All leading up perhaps the lowest point: where he had used a diagnosis of bipolar I had received as a point against my ability to make sound and rational arguments.

Why does this throw the entire fandom under the bus? Are you saying Mitch is the entire fandom? If you believe that I'm sorry for your loss.

If I had a website whose goal was to make the entire furry fandom look bad, I would loath Flayrah's existance. Because if you come to Flayrah, you may see an event that might make "the fandom" look bad, but you'll see it surrounded by reviews of good works, and stories of those who are good. It'll drive traffic away because, as I already proved, people in general don't want a site that's mostly negative unless they're mostly negative themselves (which is a loud minority as it always has been).

Which brings me to the next point. Why is it you only choose to comment on the negative stuff? You seem to have nothing of kindness to say. Even on articles where good furries are killed you seem to be pretty silent, but see fit to come here to point out every time one of these articles come up.

Face it Xydexx, your behaviors show you thrive on this stuff at least as much as the ones who you ire. Seek psychiatric help, lest you loathe yourself.

-My statement to Xydexx's complaints that Flayrah only covers "bad things"

"Seek psychiatric help, lest you loathe yourself."

Heh. Right back atcha [Xydexx links here to my LJ post about my diagnosis]. It's always ironic when people crazier than I am offer an armchair diagnosis.

-Xydexx's response to my comment above

That’s right, the same guy on Twitter who promotes only allowing “good people” in your social circles and can come off as if people are either good or evil with no lapses between the two, had his own lapse into the darkside. Using someone’s mental diagnosis to try and strengthen his argument on something other than its own merits. Now to be fair, I included my lead-in statement which is arguably also low-brow and wasn’t necessarily positive or empathetic to those going through legitimate mental health issues, which lead to his counter statement. Such interactions aren’t things I’m proud of, but they happened.

So why am I even bringing this up? For petty vengeance? To show some sort of ideological hypocrisy about the fallibility of individuals in Xydexx? Well no, that’s not the primary reason (but it is a nice bonus). It’s to prove another point. As low and vicious as our verbal brouhahas got, there was a word that was never used by my adversary to describe me.

Remember that statement I told you to put a pin in? Let’s go back to it.

If you disagree with them, then they’ll call you a Nazi

This statement is a classic example of an “if...then” statement. Those of you in technical fields know what logical statements are and how to analyze them. For those not familiar I would suggest this linked webpage to brush up on this. If anything I think this section may inspire someone to take a college discrete mathematics course; which was the most useful, and favorite of the math courses I took.

To sum it up, you seperate the statement into two parts, the “if” and the “then”. If the first part is true, and the second part is false, then the whole statement is deemed as false. In all other cases it is either true, or cannot be proven false, in which we assume it to be true. Basically the statement is presumed true until the ‘if’ case provides us the conditions that we can prove it’s true or false (innocent until proven guilty of being wrong).

So let’s take the two parts of the statement:

“If you disagree with them”

Is true. I showed an example of Xydexx and I disagreeing. Xydexx fits within the scope of them for he is one of the most vigilant anti-fascist voices on twitter at the moment and therefore falls within the group being defined as ‘them’.

“Then they will call you a Nazi”

False. At no time in any of our moments of uncivil disagreements on the future of Flayrah or furry media did the squeaky pony call me a swahili coconut. He only called me a plain old regular nut.

Therefore the entirety of the popular statement utilized as justification by the alt-furry is deemed as false. I disagreed with them, and they didn't call me a Nazi.

But of course this is where language like this gets hazy because they could counter that Xydexx isn’t the ‘them’ they refer to, it’s just as long as one person does it then the statement is true. But I think this is where discretion is needed. If one person commits a fallacy why does everyone else in the world have to own it as if they did it themselves? If that’s so then, well I have another statement to do the logic test on.

“If you disagree with a Furry Raider, then they will call you a communist.”

The if part of the statement is true. I made a video in which I had disagreed with the premise of the banner and said that the symbology was too close to the coconuts for most people’s likings. So if one really didn’t stand for what that symbology stood for, then get rid of the banner and pick up another one. I also had suggested that Foxler take up the name Fox Miller, since that is what he told the press his name was inspired by and not a combination of Fox and Hitler. I mean Mr. Miller is a Star Fox fan it seems, so I thought it would be quite a reasonable request to change his name to Fox, but…

“Then they will call you a communist”

So yes, Perri Rhodes, the Visionary Director of the Furry Raiders concluded that my request of them made me a communist. Below is a part of a comment they had left in the video.

Seriously, I don't understand how any self-respecting American would back the agenda of a violent terrorist organization marching under real Communist flags, against a fur bravely standing up for his rights at no small risk to himself, simply because you're carried along with some unreasoning hysteria artificially built up around the symbol of your own fandom on a red background. Who does an American journalist have a responsibility to oppose, real Communists attacking freedom of speech, or furs obviously being falsely accused of being [Swahili Coconut]s who stand up for free speech? Please, for the sake of our future, take some time to give that a serious ponder.

Because, yes, suggesting that a furry just change the name they gave themselves based on the very etymology they presented is a classic Marxist move. My video’s purpose was to help their group to stop being “falsely accused” in a very simple way. Clearly though the logic in Perri’s argument is not sound, it makes the ‘then’ portion of my statement true, and thus the statement as a whole is also true. If you disagree with a Furry Raider, then they will call you a communist.

I also want to take this opportunity to add that after I was accused of being a communist, I didn’t become one. I didn’t start putting the hammer and sickle on my Twitter handle. I didn’t start reading Lenin, Stalin, or even the big mustachioed Marx. I didn’t start waving around arrowed flags, or anything of the sort. Despite the false labeling, I did not change to fit the image another had given me.

Which is why it always makes me scratch my head when people start changing their behaviors due to the name another calls them and then they blame the one that gave them a label on said behavior. Because if someone giving you a label then makes the person that label or pursue that path, then me not being a communist nor pursing that line of political ideology after being called one makes that statement false.

But hey, they’re free to call me whatever they like, it’s their first amendment right after all. And I’m not talking the speech part. The freedom of religion is there for those that need to believe there are grand cosmic communist conspiracies against them to give them a sense of purpose. In speaking of freedom, we should probably get back to talking about an important concept surrounding it.

Freedom of Speech is more than just words

When talking about freedom of expression, it is important to look upon the history of the individual promoting it, when they promote it, and how they promote it. This more than any measurement can highlight whether there is a weight to one’s words or if they are merely a glorified carbon dumping. When 2 the Ranting Gryphon was removed from his platform at Anthrocon, he lead a cry that the fandom was attacking the spirit of free expression by losing his platform.

However, we need to look back and ask, are there other examples of those in fandom that would be a more blatant example of censorship? You don’t have to go too far. Only about a year prior, the creator of the documentary Fursonas was permanently banned from, at the time, the largest furry convention. His crime? Releasing his project to the public which had utilized some footage from that convention and the board disagreed with the spirit of the film which had some pretty sharp critique in it’s commentary toward the their chair Kage.

I had found this action quite concerning. A filmmaker that was a furry themselves was banned permanently for a crime so heinous that after Trump’s election most of the fandom had forgotten this film existed. Or as Crossaffliction here notes, under the release of Zootopia, whose art book beat the documentary for best furry nonfiction in the category’s pilot year.
Even back then my thoughts were construed to the following questions the fandom should ask itself regarding free expression:

  • What threat is Dominic Rodriguez to the proceedings of Anthrocon since what has been published has been published?
  • Kage is still the Chair of Anthrocon, so clearly even though the movie was critical of him it did not do lasting damage to the reputation of the individual, convention, or the furry fandom as a whole.
  • Did the punishment fit the crime? Should we be giving members a proverbial convention death sentence over behavior that was not disruptive to the convention’s function or operation?
  • Why are all organizations founded on the internet into the concept of “binary law” where one is in good standing or banned with very little warning or punishment in between?
  • Wouldn’t it be better to have him suspended from the con for a finite time like 5 years for the violation of media policy?
  • Shouldn’t their work be recognized as one by a furry, thus we shouldn’t treat him as a hostile outsider looking to “destroy the fandom” but instead bring a different viewpoint of it?

In the meanwhile, what was our self-proclaimed gryphon champion of free speech doing? Well there was a few comments that phonetically stuck out as belonging to him.

“I'm FUCKING triggered!
Dominik Rodriguez - FUCK you! You greedy scandalmongering POS!”

[...]
This idiot is just damn negligent - plain and simply[sic]. He's just like "ah my audience is smart enough, they will look past three decades of misinformation and see that this portrait of the Fandom ISN'T representative of the Fandom."
Openly shitting on Uncle Kage - a man who is just GENUINELY working his ass off to set the record straight about Furries - and portraying him as a kind of dishonest Troll!
What the actualy [sic] fuck, Rodriguez? What the fuck?
Why is anyone defending this garbage?
He literally operates from the premise that SELF EXPRESSION and "BEING CAREFUL about how to portray the Fandom" are two opposing things.
What is this guy smoking? I'm just... so damn... disappointed about this shit...

2; anonymously “advocating” for the free speech of a documentary maker

So for anyone wondering why I, as someone who advocates for freedom by using my actions and not merely my words, had more of an ‘eye-roll’ approach to when 2 the Ranting Gryphon was deplatformed from Anthrocon, his history of behaviors like the above are why. Where was he when someone he clearly disagreed with was making a critical video about his friend Kage? Apparently praising the decision designed to censor intra-fandom criticisms utilizing a rule that was originally designed with the intent to prevent extra-fandom exploitation by a vulturous press.

Mr. Gryphon certainly wasn’t defending to the death Video the Wolf’s right to say it. Sadly for the gryphon, hiding behind his position amongst the fandom elites didn’t save him for when eventually the pendulum swung back in his direction and knocked him square on his arse.

It is plainly obvious to most observant parties that Mr. Gryphon has only clung on to the first amendment and free speech advocacy as of late to try and decry his waning platform within the fandom. Because when the Gryphon had actual power to stand up for the freedoms of those whom had less, he did not. I can be fairly certain, given this evidence, that if 2 had not lost his stage presence within the fandom that he would still be as indifferent to these types of freedoms of individual furries when it came time to do more than just speak.

Schrodinger's Philosopher

It also has to be noted that there is also an important difference between 2 Gryphon’s removal from his platform at AC and Video’s ouster. No matter what Kotherix and others will have you believe, 2 is not banned from Anthrocon like Video was. He can still attend and hang out with friends, but he refuses to. The optics of this action can easily make it seem that he doesn’t care to attend a convention unless he’s important or on the stage. That without him up there he finds no value in the fandom’s institutions. The fandom, in this light just seems to be a means to an end to him.

Of course it is at this time his fan base will beg to differ. That he is not attending the convention because he is afraid. Because he fears that a large hate group is taking over the fandom, waiting to jump out of the bushes and crack his skull the minute he steps foot upon the convention floor.

However, once again, you need to take a step back and look at the larger picture. A few months ago I critiqued a tweet that he had made indicating that hate crimes were less frequent than drowning pool fatalities. I had indicated that the scope of the two were not equivalent as the pool statistics he referenced were for the entire continental United States and the hate crime statistics were from only major metropolitan areas. I had made a longer version breakdown video of this on my Youtube channel.

In response the gryphon had made a video (to my surprise) and moved the goalpost. He indicated that I had helped him prove his point because he didn’t compare fatalities to fatalities in his original statement, in which the official recorded tally was seven in 2016. So he tied it back to his original tweet’s premise, you shouldn’t be afraid to live your life because of hate crime, because hate crime is rare.

At least, that was his argument in Bird Bawk #9. A few suns set and rose to bring us Bird Bawk #10. As I had managed to predict in my video, the Gryphon would eventually debate himself. I couldn’t have expected that it would be in the very next video in his series that he would counter the arguments made in the one prior.

In Bird Bawks #10 he uses his words to spread fear that there is a hate group that is destroying the fandom and that it is those that oppose the alt-furries, which is ironic that someone could destroy something already declared dead by the gryphon a few months back. But let us be clear, the people he refers to include those in the fandom like Patch and Xydexx who may be flawed individuals, as covered earlier, but they are not in any FBI or Southern Poverty Law Center recognized hate group.

After all, that is the standard that we set up in Bird Bark #9 about hate crime statistics, isn’t it? That we use official statistics to talk about actual occurrences instead of personal feelings? Because if we are going to consider it a hate crime just on the word of the alleged victim and not from the actual police report, then that seven number becomes quite a bit higher. In fact one of the articles referenced on my video’s sources indicated that there were about a score of transgender related homicides that were not officially recorded as hate crimes where the witnesses felt that the motive could have been hate motivated.

But I digress, if hate crimes are hate crimes just because the victim feels they are, then well, I’ll have to accept 2’s apology on using inaccurate statistics in his video response to me. What was it he said in his video? That being the victim of a hate motivated homicide is lower than getting struck by lightning? And yet that same man in that video, trying to tell me and other furs not to be afraid of hate crimes because there are larger dangers out there to be concerned of, is using that very same fear as an excuse to his audience as to why he no longer goes to conventions.

I mean what, does being a member of the Alt-Furry require you to jam a lightning rod up your arse, and that’s why the Gryphon is so fearful for them? I guess that gives a whole new meaning to the word Blitzkrieg.

2 is arguing that the cat is both alive and dead. That hate crimes are being over pushed by the lefty social justice warriors as an issue, but for people like himself they are a very real thing and are influencing his decisions. Human beings don’t live in the world of quantum physics, the box is open Mr. Gryphon, look in the box and tell us, is the cat alive or dead? Because between the 9th and 10th Bird Bawk videos, you seem to be saying that hate crimes are both an over exaggeration and a very real and imminent danger.

However, this is getting a bit off topic. It can be easy to get distracted in details surrounding cults of personality. So much so that this is what American politics has become as of late. So let’s get back on topic before we conclude.

The problem’s roots are outside the fandom

If one thinks about it, every politician currently in governmental office has used tactics to get hired that have separated families. Using ads and rhetoric they tear apart mother and daughter, father and son. They use their fears of the world around them to get them to get us to fight one another over their fears, and don’t care about the consequences as long as it results in them winning. So the fact that the United States government would now go one step further and physically separate families as of late could appear as shocking and appalling. However, I would argue that it is the inevitable conclusion of our continued course of divide and conquer politics.

From my understanding, when political parties were first founded, they were supposed to be about the assembly of people to try to figure out which direction they wanted their government to go. As time has gone on and the party apparatus has manifested itself into our system it feels as if their function has changed. That political parties instead are how the government assembles in order to subvert the will of the people from their position of power.

Let’s take for instance when 2 Gryphon or others in the fandom call themselves “centralist”, however many don’t see them that way. They could argue, correctly, that their positions did not change over the course of the years. I mean, 2 could note that he is just as horrible a comic today as he was back then. So what did change?

The Republican Party is now the party of Trump. Since it is, it has dynamically shifted the way people see left and right in this country. The alt-right is the right, as much as they would like to try and lie to themselves and to the public to see them as the outsiders in the discourse. In turn this has thrown the classic Conservatives, Libertarians, and fiscal hawks to the curb. All that’s left in the right is godless, excessive, decadent, cults of personality.

And something else changed as well. This “new right”, because they can no longer be called “alt right” since they are the ones in power in the government, is the only administration in my history of listening to 2 that he has not criticized as vehemently as those that criticize the administration. Since Donald Trump identifies as a Republican, then repeatedly protecting him from critics will begin to make you be seen as one regardless of what you label yourself. Believing in religion, or Jesus, is no longer a prerequisite, in fact it’s a hindrance. For your Lord is the government as noted by Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions:

“I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13, to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained the government for his purposes.”

Back on the shifting definition of party, this isn’t the first time there has been quite a massive change in the beliefs of the left and the right. Lyndon B. Johnson had changed the definition of ‘left’ from “racists” to “race traitors” almost overnight in his support of the civil rights legislation in the 1960s. Many would argue this was a more positive change for that party, but at the time it was certainly a risky venture.

But what I’m trying to say is, that the people should have more control over their party and the government should have less control over the people’s priorities by using their own tribalism against them. The freedom of assembly was made for the people to assemble to change their government, not for the freedom of those in power to conspire to shape their people through the party apparatus. The decisions the government makes should be pragmatic, and the mistakes they make should not be able to be excused by the mere existence of another party within the government.

Until this foundational problem is fixed, politics will continue to spiral into its cult of personality. It will continue to be exploited by foreign governments whose own governments suffer from the same afflictions. And until this occurs, this illness will continue to slip into the fandom as well. While many have been fighting the political fight inside the fandom, those fights will be for nothing if the world outside continues down a more authoritarian route. It also can't be all too effective, if as Patch notes, only 0.1% of those in the fandom are part of this problem.

Which is why I will be spending this summer and contemplating all I’ve learned about politics, peoples, systems, networks, and other such things to come up with a prototype 28th amendment for the United States Constitution which will redefine and solidify the political party as a place for people and not as a bullwhip of the government. Because the two party system has eroded at a three branch government so that there are only two branches: the Republican and Democrat branch. Who are now trying to bend as many rules as possible to make themselves the only branch, and eventually one of them is going to succeed, and it will be the most underhanded of the two more than likely.

Until we reinforce the system so that the three branch system can work as intended again, efforts made within the fandom will merely be putting a bandage on a wound that needs stitches. This very issue we are facing with the party system was warned to us by George Washington, the first US President, on his parting words, and thus the words I will also part with:

"However [political parties] may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion."

Comments

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Yuge article.

Every time I post something critical about trolls, their go-to attack is "fake news, didn't comtact me!" - while others can see the evidence that they're trolls and trolls don't deserve respect of being taken at face value.

However in this case you shoulda contacted me. :) I would have given honest feedback about "interpretations" that aren't as super as can be. Super effort otherwise though.

Speaking of trolls, reporting about them, and nazis, Nathan Gate told Newsweek he wasn't a furry. So they referred to him as a neo-nazi (link: one of their sources.) That's 100% true but not the whole story. Since trolls are always two faced, here's him calling himself a member of the fandom in 2015. Later he decided to lie about it to look better to other nazis. If you do deal with a troll, always show both faces at the same time.

Speaking of calling 2 Gryphon a nazi (this referenced me doing that but didn't link...) I carefully avoided that (link is the first time I posted criticism about 2). When he doubled down on representing them, he wasn't pushed, he went there himself.

Speaking of trolling and Dave Lillie, I'd recommend don't take anything at face value from someone who did fan art for the alt-right. (That's why the article has a long header showing him pre-planning to manipulate, then the footer shows his own backers, a bunch of altfur trolls, calling him a troll in their own estimation.)

Personally I don't agree "word association" of nazis + free speech is real. Regular people don't think that. And pretty much any discussion of "free speech" inside a subculture should be dismissed as a goalpost-shifting waste of time, if not specifically between individuals and government. In other words if you aren't being arrested for it, it's not the issue. It should be replaced by the topic of community moderation (where even anarchistic style community doesn't imply chaos.) Moderation is not censorship, dictating, etc and is healthy.

Very good point about affirmed nazism via non-denial in the "Len Gilbert" section. Of course, I think Kothorix (who *did* take a troll at face value, or at least gave one undeserved air time) only got something that was already plain to see...

(continues below)

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The "Proportional Media Coverage" embeds a tweet from me. It wasn't to "boost morale" or "remind my viewership". Articles at my site spread far outside of usual readers because most of it comes from open sharing on social media. And it never fails... someone who hasn't done their homework comes to wring their handpaws about the "division"-that-isn't-one.

Grrreat example: Huffington Post did it. First they asked several furries to answer questions (including me) and then they failed to allow enough time for answers before their deadline, rushing to publication without us. That's why I worked really hard to get them to correct their reporting.

That's why I post about proportionality. Not because my followers "think the fascist threat may be a bit larger in the fandom than it actually is." The fascists do that themselves, that's their own bunk, and it helps to debunk it.

Mathematically sorting meaning-and-quality is pretty silly, isn't it? A plane crash gets numerically more headlines than happy puppies. Efforts by the alt-right to recruit kids gets more than "here's a cute fursuit/cool book". Please don't do silly graphs without asking about intentions or meaning... saying to avoid "re-writing a new article to bring up the similar issues already written about, just reference the older material" really shows unfamiliarity with what is going on.

Showing the two-faces of trolls requires sustained peeling-back and documenting. When you lift rocks, the nasty squirmy things under them dig deeper and others say "we didn't see anything" and then you show them.

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In the "Freedom of Speech is more than just words" section - I loved 2's performance (he was the punch line) when he decided to become the PR department (in their own words) for the altfurry-neo-nazi club - then Eurofurence became the final con to dump him. Of course he whined about being fursecuted. Who could have guessed that a mouthpiece for Holocaust deniers might be unwelcome in Germany? What a shock right?

In a similar way Anthrocon refraining from rolling out the red carpet was not some attack on speech. But when it happened to Dom Rodriguez and Fursonas, I think Dom was very mature about breaking their terms and it was for a good reason, and he accepted it was their prerogative to ban him. What a difference! (I don't speak for him of course, but he's local to me now, sometimes we do unamerican activities together like getting tacos.)

For the rest of the political bits, good luck man :) Yes such conflict is located outside fandom, it's actually way better and more positive here, but also this isn't separate from the world or made of real cartoon animals. It's not just escapism to look at fandom belief/expression either. It contains a model of doing and being better anywhere. Any time you invent a fursona (or take someone else's as their self) it's using that power.

On the topic of online communities and moderating them, check out the excellent comments between Seth Rogen and Sleeping Giants about pleading for change from the CEO of Twitter, and why Twitter, Facebook, Youtube etc are fundamentally not going to stop profiting from bad-actors taking over their platforms. That's why attention from the bottom matters.

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PS if you want to see Len Gilbert admitting to recruiting kids for the alt-right, here it is, and here's him calling himself an alt-right troll.

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Lazy, feckless ignorance leads to "fearmongering" comments, so let's take stock of damage involved with the nazi issue in fandom so far.

If ever furries have been targets of terroristic crime, one could hardly pick a better example than the 2014 chemical attack on MFF where nobody was charged so far. There's an open FBI investigation and several furries in stories that Sonious cited from my site are implicated. I identified one as an FBI suspect and published an interview with him where he admitted being a suspect for strong circumstantial reasons, but didn't clear himself.

Two cons so far have closed because of cost involved in targeting their hotels with harassment. After RMFC there was a $24,000 cost to Califur due to harassment organized by Len Gilbert (Casey Hoerth) with Nathan Gate. These are the only provably responsible parties and in that way they're like thieves caught raiding your neighbors after your house was hit by unknown parties. Any other finger pointing fails credibility so far. Damage to a third con has gone unpublished and there's interest from law enforcement about racketeering charges.

On the violent side again, the Charlottesville nazi march had several furries identified in stories from my site that Sonious cited, which were sourced for national coverage. Again Len Gilbert and Nathan Gate organized for that. Nathan helped Len found the altfur Discord organizing group while sharing the same role for nazi leader Richard Spencer. He then was revealed at my site as a witness in the beating of Deandre Harris at the march, which had (I lost count) 4 felony convictions so far (?)

Along with the murder of Heather Heyer at the march, there was another death of a subject of stories Sonious cited from my site. This is so far unpublished, I was called by police about a criminal investigation that totally refutes what altfurs and alt-right leaders have said about it.

Discord Inc and Furaffinity/IMVU have done high profile formal action with this info. There's a swing towards action by Twitter, policy changes at cons and elsewhere. Former popufurs like 2 Gryphon found themselves at odds with the fandom. Membership in the hate groups has stalled out and left them handfuls of fringe members who only tread water with organizing. Recognition of their agenda and how they recruit has gotten cited in national news and by mainstream activist hubs (Deo's articles on Medium about altfurs and the alt right are followed and retweeted far beyond fandom.) Furries are being called a model for other fandoms with this.

If someone has better coverage they should bring it, or sit down and get informed.

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"Along with the murder of Heather Heyer at the march, there was another death of a subject of stories Sonious cited from my site. This is so far unpublished, I was called by police about a criminal investigation that totally refutes what altfurs and alt-right leaders have said about it."

I believe on of your previous articles indicated that persons in the group were under criminal investigation. So bringing it up again doesn't provide any new information you had not already provided to your readership. If there is additional information along the lines of what direction the investigation on them is going, it may give you bragging rights about having "insider information", but wouldn't providing such information to the general public allow the individuals under investigation to prepare a proper defense? Just use due caution on not revealing the investigation's hand.

My noting of the percentage of articles was along the lines of quantity and not quality, so if you're insinuating that I was critiquing the quality of the information in you works that is not the case.

I avoided referencing your reports in my own article for one important reason. It's to show that even if your works didn't exist one can craft a case about the foundations of the alt-furs being of promoting fascist ideological points. The false sense of comfort that "Len" got from talking with Kothrix revealed information that is publicly available without any subversive means that they can just talk away as being "photoshopped" or "rigged out of context".

Mr. Gilbert isn't as good a dog whistler as they seemed to believe in this case. Referencing this is a way if they dismiss you as being emotionally compromised to cover this fairly, they don't have anything to stand on. Unless they're going to claim I'm emotionally compromised as well, which they're going to find a harder sell.

In fairness if I'm going to feature a person in an article I either interview everyone on the article on their public facing statements, or I interview none. If I give privileges to one in which I do not to the other, they will bark bias faster than Sonic on Monster energy drinks. People are going to interpret other people's statements, especially if they are a public figure, and there is no rules about asking about those statements prior to assessing them.

The press is going to note that Trump says "Fake News" to try and de-legitimize reporters without bothering to ask him what he really means by the term "Fake News".

Just don't take it personal, it's just a different method.

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Luckily my paws are dexterous enough to type long responses after you post it, anyways :)

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Well, I expect I will hear no more comments on the length of anything I write from now on.

Potentially there's a lot to talk about here. On the whole, I'd say agree with most of what you say although I found it got a bit unfocussed near the end. Perhaps that was me getting more tired. There is some interesting background, particularly about 2, that I wasn't really aware of.

One thing I did like here was you comparison of Patch's claims about the alt-right in the fandom and his coverage of it. That's the sort of fear mongering that helps lead to massive splits and tensions. If it's something small, then you can mostly ignore. He is making it into a big issue and there's very little upside.

It's not limited to him but it is a weird aspect of the internet. There's always been a focus on negative events in the news and global news means you see those events from all over the world. What I think is new, is obsessing about non-events until they become events. For example, there was a lot of coverage on Twitter and proper news media about some guy in the US who was an admitted paedophile, raped his wife and was running for a government position. Those media portrayals even mentioned he only got ~300 votes (which was expected amount for people voting randomly) and then next lowest candidate had something like 10 000 votes. He was a complete non-entity that should've been ignored but people blew up about him and suddenly everyone knew about him. The coverage couldn't make him less relevant, the only possibility was that it would help him.

If the above is true then joining the alt-furry group gives you a 1 in 4 chance of getting featured in an article written by Patch O’Furr. All without having to go through the hard work of writing a furry novel, learning to be an artist, or performing in fursuit.

This annoyed me because it's wrong. Yes, 1/4 of Patch's articles are about the alt-right and whatever but that doesn't mean any particular fur (or group) has a 1 in 4 chance of being written about. That's not how those statistics play out.

I also want to take this opportunity to add that after I was accused of being a communist, I didn’t become one. I didn’t start putting the hammer and sickle on my Twitter handle. I didn’t start reading Lenin, Stalin, or even the big mustachioed Marx. I didn’t start waving around arrowed flags, or anything of the sort. Despite the false labeling, I did not change to fit the image another had given me.

Equivamp was pushing me more to anarchist communism. :p Okay, I was pretty far on that spectrum already but now I had better things to read which make some good points. I don't know if anarchism could work in the current world with global trade and expertise necessary for advanced industries but it's still fun to speculate.

"In essence they take advantage of the fact that their organization is the most extreme version of freedom of speech. This means when many article writers put the pen to paper to talk about this topic, it is the default go-to example of the most abhorrent extreme examples of this freedom."

The thing is, talking about it in the present time, those are the topics where it is coming up. There are plenty other areas where free speech can be addressed. There was a ridiculous incident (more than one actually) of people in the UK being arrested for burning poppies or even just posting pictures of burning poppies. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/9671394/Burning-poppy-phot...

Probably lots of other stuff to talk about but I'm sure it will come up in comments. Last note though, when you said Swahili coconuts I thought it was some sort of racial slur.

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

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I was reading this wondering how the threads of thought you were building up in each section were going to tie together at the end, and I gotta say, announcing you're drafting a proposed Amendment to the Constitution definitely caught me off guard

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DAMMIT, SPOILERS, EQUIVAMP!

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Though, seriously, this article really does have everything, up to and including inflation fetishes.

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I don't think not saying Nazi matters; I mean, just as a for furry example, just because we decided to stop calling it "yiff" as much had no change on our output of sexually explicit material.

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I'm doing running commentary here, sorry guys if that's annoying, but I just got namechecked, and I just want to clarify I don't think Fursonas lost because it was censored by Anthrocon, but instead lost because it sucked.

Or, more precisely, the Fursonas versus Zootopia thing was political, but it was actually furry politics, i.e. Fursonas represented the "furries are fans of themselves" wing of furry, while Zootopia (and by extension it's art book) represented "furries are fans of an artform" wing of furry. In other words, I am still excited that furries recognized actual furry art (even if it wasn't made by furries) over a navel-gazing look at yourself. Or, more ambiguously, you not care about how Kage ended up looking in it and still end up hating it.

And I believe that's why it lost; it was a navel-gazing look at a limited section of a group of people most furries are already familiar with and has actually gotten less relevant (Kage's Anthrocon wasn't the center of the furry world then, and certainly isn't now) and was therefore, ultimately, boring while Zootopia was something that used actual anthropomorphic animals (oh my God, like, the thing we're supposed to give a shit about as a fandom, what a fucking concept!) to tell an interesting story that has not stopped being relevant, and was therefore, something furries were (and still are) excited about.

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Okay, one final off topic tangent; I ever tell you guys the time I met 2?

So, Oklacon 2004, he was maybe the GoH, maybe he was just performing, I should look it up, it's probably on WikiFur, but anyway, I'm telling a story, there was a DJ (I mean, duh) doing a dance set, and 2 starts dancing, and my lucky song comes on (why is it "lucky", you ask? Well, I'll tell you why, this one time, I was bowling, and I was losing really badly, and then that song got played, and I got two strikes and a spare! And I get that wasn't probably the "lucky" you were hoping for, but it's the "lucky" I've got, so deal with it.), so I decide I'm going to dance, and apparently 2 has already decided this himself, so I'm doing something dance-like, probably, and he keeps getting closer and closer to me as this song plays and eventually he leans down to me (because I'm short and he's kind of tall), leans so close to my face I can smell the alcohol on his breath, and I'll never forget what he said to me next.

"MOSHPIT!"

And I was all like, "Dude, it's, uh, just a techno remix of Guns 'N' Roses 'Welcome to the Jungle', I mean, I love this song, but it's not actually that hea...ARRGH!"

I said that last bit because that was the point he shoved me and I fell down and somehow hurt my leg and had a limp for the rest of the convention.

So that was the time I met 2, OKAY, BYE!

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Sonious, perhaps you would appreciate this; a defence of free speech without a single reference to the N word. Partly, because nobody cares about Nazis in South Africa.
https://www.huffingtonpost.co.za/michael-morris/opinion-the-thin-line-between-pr...

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

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Well to be fair the US didn't either in the 1930s, until a Hawaiian incident brought the crap a bit closer to home.

That's the unfortunate part about socialism on the basis of nationalism, eventually the nation starts going to blows with other nations, so even countries that don't care, eventually are forced to.

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It's good to see that referenced. So often I hear the whole "America fought for freedom and against tyranny" canard while ignoring that they were happy to sit around and let Nazis conquer Europe until they got attacked. There's been a very good rewriting of it being about principles since then.

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

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Yes Rakuen, a fierce struggle between isolationists and interventionists in a country hurting from a Great Depression and a previous world war was the same thing as "happy to sit around".

Stick to dismissing Apartheid in your country or running your fart hole about Pokemon, please

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I wonder if there's a reason for that.

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The Furred Reich is surely a-comin'!

Well, I'll be...

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The article is way too long for me to consider it.

Also, I disregard any POV left wing or right wing that includes the word "Nazi". Reductio ad hitlerum is just too common nowadays. Reason dictates if you can't posit an argument without mentioning Nazis, you are not fit for discussion.

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If it walks and quacks like a duck, call it a duck...

Here's the original "Godwin's law" guy saying the same thing. https://gizmodo.com/godwin-of-godwins-law-by-all-means-compare-these-shi-1797807646

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You can do that… but when it comes to the Internet, chances are it's a carefully-constructed fake.

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Neat story, didn't know that! Unfortunately the nazis we're dealing with openly march in the streets, and some of them are unquestionably exploiting fandom like any other subculture where entryism may happen. :/

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You don't need to call them Nazis though, it's an overused rhethoric. If their ideology is bad, you should be able to tell why without resorting to "Nazi". Nazis weren't bad because they were called "Nazis". They were bad because they advocated totalitarian government, territorial expansion, anti-Semitism, Aryan supremacy, they did the holocaust, and they lead to a world war.

If they're so patently evil you think you'd be able to point it out without saying "Nazi". Unless you're a stand-up comedian and it's a joke.

I don't think you get the desired effect by crying out "Nazi". Get creative with your name-calling.

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It's not name-calling when that's the name they call themselves. Furthermore, these people (and I quote YOU) that "advocate totalitarian government, territorial expansion, anti-Semitism, Aryan supremacy" and they admittedly haven't gotten around to a new holocaust/World War: The Soft Reboot (yet), but the people that Patch is referring to Nazis are not metaphorical Nazis. Yes, maybe we all should have calmed down a few years ago with the Nazi rhetoric, when the people we were griping about weren't Nazis-that-called-themselves-Nazis, but now it's not rhetoric. It's not a metaphor. It's not an insult.

Calling, I don't know, Jeff fucking Sessions a fucking Nazi would be metaphorical, sure. He probably has comparable politics, but he's just a giant racist fucking asshole, which is admittedly close to, but not the same as a Nazi. Now, five years ago, calling Jeff Sessions a fucking Nazi would have been kind of silly because because we used the term to describe everything we disagreed with until it became trite (your argument, and also the, for instance, point of the Jon Stewart "Rally" with the "I disagree with you but I'm fairly sure you're not a Nazi" signs that HAVE NOT aged well from about five years ago).

But it's not five years ago, is it? Okay, calling Sessions a Nazi now is also silly, because there's a dude just down the corner goosestepping along in full SS regalia telling everyone he can find that he really likes that Hitler dude, and also, by the way, fuck Jews and the Aryan race is so obviously inherently superior we should probably just kill everyone who isn't white, and that guy is obviously actually a Nazi, while Sessions is more into the Confederacy as his preferred form of historical racism. Probably.

Now, if Fox Hitler wants to call himself literally Fox Hitler, I think it's fairly appropriate to call him Fox FUCKING Hitler; now, admittedly, he does a play "tee hee, I'm only KIDDING, you guys, I made you say Nazi, isn't that funny?" game, well, fuck him for that too, that's a really shitty game, and he deserves to be called out for that, too.

And perhaps it should be noted that maybe, technically what Patch is dealing with in his articles are neo-Nazis, but that's not what you're arguing.

Sonious's "beef" with Patch (if I can even go that far) is that by constantly bringing up the (let me repeat, not metaphorical) Nazis is that it manages to empower them, either by his (admittedly not super well argued) theory that this associates them with the idea of free speech, or at the very least a "no publicity is bad publicity" sort of thing. Jon Stewart's "beef" approximately half a decade ago with everybody calling everyone a Nazi was that, when actual Nazis eventually showed up, we'd be so fucking used to the term as a generic insult that we couldn't even recognize the real thing when they fucking "Sig Heiled" right in front of us, and that the new actual Nazis would be able take advantage of this.

And he was right to worry, because I'm watching you miss the Nazi forest for the Nazi trees!

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Oh, hahaha, holy fucking shit, perfect timing.

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Dressing up like Hitler Fox with a moustache for a furry convention is far from building concentration camps for the systematic killing of minorities. Being anti-semitic is not being a German nationalsocialist from the 30s. You keep missing the part where Nazis did government-sanctioned manslaughter. It's why the stuff is in history books and they held the Nuremberg trials. It's actual real human tragedy, unlike this back and forth online bickering.

And you're admitting I'm right in this because "technically what Patch is dealing with in his articles are neo-Nazis". Well that's a start. If you tell me there are neonazis at main square I'll be vigilant and jog past through. If you tell me there are nazis I'll think you're talking about some costume party or historical reenactment or they're playing The Producers.

Calling these whatever dudes "Nazis", either themselves doing it, or others doing it, is invariably met with eyerolls, and you know it. If Sonious' long-winged argument here is that calling them "Nazis" is a bad idea, then I agree on all serious fronts: metaphorically, literally, rhetorically, politically, morally, and aesthetically.

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The point is the only reason they haven't started systematically killing minorities is because we keep pointing out that they really, really, really want to.

BY CALLING THEM NAZIS.

You know what, you wanna eyeroll at that, fine that's your problem, because we're too busy trying to save lives to worry whether you think it's embarrassing or not.

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Buddy, that's semantic misinformation.

They're "neo nazis" because the German NSDP was made illegal after 1945, but their fascist movement continued to this day. Groups of original nazis fled to Argentina and invented Holocaust denial propaganda that spread from there. Ones in Europe continued as cryptofascists or kept power in various governments during the cold war. The dissolution of the Soviet bloc around 1990 unleashed some of them in the former Yugoslavia states and there was genocide. Anti-Soviet backlash began formally elevating nazi collaborators into "anti communist freedom fighters". Holocaust denial got a facelift with the "double genocide" theory they're putting in place as official government policies right now. So yes, Nazism is alive now since the end of WWII. Neo-nazi simply means they want to whitewash it, "hide their power level" and it's mixed with new generation skinheads and splinter groups, and ultra-right National Front type parties reaching for mainstream power.

They aren't systemically killing minorities *yet* because they haven't gotten the power *yet* because people are resisting it. Which yes, includes "online bickering" as you call it, AKA informing people and organizing real protests and pushback. There is no separation of "internet vs real life" in 2018, everyone is online.

And have you seen what they're doing to families seeking asylum in the US? Those detention camps are concentration camps, dude, that's the technical definition.

Germany didn't start slaughtering Jews right away either, it was step by step, and you don't wait until people are dying to start doing something about it or *calling them nazis*. If you wait it's already too late.

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You think Hitler announced his intentions to everyone in Mein Kampf in the 1920's, but the "Final Solution" wasn't even put in place when the German nazi party consolidated power in 1933, it was 1942. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wannsee_Conference

That stuff happened "boiling frog" style and you know where they got the ideas? America - Jim Crow laws and Indian reservations.

https://www.history.com/news/how-the-nazis-were-inspired-by-jim-crow
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-nazis-as-students-of-americas-worst-...

Luckily we have hindsight now and can actually see it coming at the top when the President of the US supports white supremacy, or even when that alt-right ideology tries leeching in on the fringes of a little fandom. If you go and actually *look* at it, what they're doing in their chat rooms, that's exactly what it is.

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It really comes off as sanctimonious to complain that people are using "Nazi" as shorthand for white supremacist, antisemitic, right-wing authoritarians when that's how you, yourself describe what Nazis were.

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Mike Godwin pointed put it's not rhetoric, it's the literal actual truth. We can't say "Godwin's law" about it any more because we need to say nazi.

I've provided names and locations, photos of them in hate marches, thousands of pages of hate-filled racist chats, recordings of phone calls and audio where they discuss recruiting kids for the alt-right and making special channels to spread "the Jewish Question" and Holocaust denial, historical citations sent to me by the Southern Poverty Law Center showing how altfurries are spreading literal Nazi propaganda and not just being dim, and examples of them acting out hate on innocent target people, conventions, and out-of-fandom businesses who tell them no that's not welcome here.

Still we get see-no-evil rhetoric that's one of their own main talking points. That's why we need to call them what they are.

We have people who fetishize nazis and pretend it's *just* fetish which doesn't wash any more than having child predators tell you don't mind their crime records or what kids they're talking to, it's just role play. The entryist ones we know act as door-holders for others with an agenda to normalize white supremacy and genocide and things that will never be acceptable or defensible. It's a hard sell to say so openly, so they pretend not to mean what they mean, using dogwhistles and peekaboo and "the i'm not touching you game" and two-faced doublespeak and playing identity-cards and haha just a joke trolling, and #1 talking point, "you're calling everything nazi".

It's a 21st century version of the same old mysticism and widely straddling all positions to push an incremental, slow drip of the core one. Cryptofascism is the other good word. And fascist-creep.

There isn't a better word than nazi. If there aren't a lot of them, it's because we're exposing them, not sitting there and doing see-no-evil. Some people are so stubbornly opposed to seeing it, it requires sustained peeling back to show it.

This is a great read I've shared many times now about why you don't even let one nazi in the door.
https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=1935124890100282&id=1000080836...

However, if someone doesn't like being called a nazi there is a great solution.

Don't be one!

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@ Sonious

I don't have time to read the whole thing at the moment,
but I was skimming it and wanted to point out a typo I hope you can correct.

The "Schrodinger's Philosopher" section includes:
"and Xydexx who maybe flawed individuals".

I think that "maybe" should be split into "may be":
"and Xydexx who may be flawed individuals".

(it's a minor typo... but will still bug me until I mention it and get it out of my mental queue)

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Fixed it, someone else had tried to fix it but stuck a rouge 'g' in there.

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I tried to read this massive Dead Sea Scroll of your infinite wisdom but dude, it's going to take a very long time for me to be able to read anything of yours an not have this mental image of you in your fursuit, with those dead-ass eyes staring at me while doing the "2 Is Wrong Dance" the whole time. Honest to God, man, what the fuck even was that?! It was like watching a cringey, awkward, slo-mo version of one of those flower girls at Woodstock "dancing" on acid. Or maybe one of those spastic, spergey displays Charles Manson was known for when he had no words to describe his state of mind, without the manic energy or charisma. And 2 mocked the hell out of you for it in his response, and I think for once it wasn't even to be mean, but because IT WAS JUST THERE AND YOU HAD TO USE IT. IIRC he even said something along the lines of "WTF are you even communicating with this?!" and that's a reaction I think you probably get a lot, but not as direct as I'm being right now.

I'm saying this because I've tried to sit through the length of your videos and read the whole of your articles many times, because it's another furry trying to do his thing, expressing opinions you don't normally hear, trying to put some real critical thinking into a fandom that, frankly, is probably more vapid, self-unaware, shallow and just downright stupid than even the general public. The lack of critical thinking and self-reflection on the part of furries, who really need to develop these skills even more than most, that's something that's infuriated me basically from the day I joined OldFAF, so I always WANT to be behind a guy trying to swim against the current of raw sewage that passes for consciousness. But I can't side with someone or their message when I still don't even know what that is.

Since this whole exercise is ostensibly about racism (I think?), there was a Native American once, the last of his tribe who through a series of desperate acts and small miracles ended up befriending white people and became more or less accepted in whatever part of California it was at the time. Anyway, he had this to say about the white man; that the white man is clever, but not wise. He was talking about shit a lot deeper than internet articles and their titles, but when I see white people try to fight racism, like (I think?) you might be trying to do here, in your own way, this is often where they stumble. You probably thought the title of your article was very clever, with "the N words and the F words but SHOCKING SWERVE, I don't mean those ones, ha ha!" but it just creates instant confusion and unravels from there.

Kothorix is by no means perfect but he does a far better job of what I think you're trying to do, and there's an entertainment value to a lot of his "rants" that even 2 often doesn't have (for me at least) and maybe the reason is you're just trying too damn hard. Too hard to be clever, making the result too hard to be wise.

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Brevity works in some cases, but sometimes more detail is needed. When it comes to the evolution of social dynamics in a group of people brevity doesn't work as the cause of them is typically complex.

One could say that if the complex isn't simplified for a general audience that is a failure on the part of the writer, and if that is what occurred here, then that is my failure.

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"Brevity works in some cases, but sometimes more detail is needed."

Sadly, that distinction is not recognised when it comes to Twitter. Or you get long, multi-message threads which is a clear example of using the wrong tool for the job.

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

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About the author

Sonious (Tantroo McNally)read storiescontact (login required)

a Kangaroo from CheektRoowaga, NY, interested in video games, current events, politics, philosophy and writing