Saturday, March 1, 2014

Leave the Girl from Duke Alone

Internet bullies, judgmental bloggers and writers, critics, pundits, commentators, and especially anonymous cowards everywhere should lay off the girl from Duke who was recently (and perhaps inappropriately) outed as a porn star.

There's something about sitting behind a computer screen and passing judgment on other people that gives people a certain feeling of empowerment. Putting others down for your own psychological benefit is reprehensible behavior though, especially if you are doing it just for page views and you don't actually care about the content of what you're saying (certain posts on Gawker, etc.). While I'm disinclined to jump on the anti-bullying bandwagon (not because I disagree with the message, but because I don't think it's really that effective other than as a support mechanism for people being bullied).

There's something about anonymity that gives people an unfounded confidence and makes them feel like they have a blank check to say things they would never even think, let alone say to the person they are talking about in person.

It's fair to disapprove of what the girl is doing from various perspectives, and it's fair to criticize her feminist rationale for doing what she is doing, but it's totally unfair to slut shame her and say things about her with no basis to be saying them. With the exception of a handful of people, not one of them know anything about the girl besides a post she made because she was outed before she was ready to share what she was doing with the world. Granted, part of the deal if you're doing porn is that you're doing something very public, and part of what you get paid for is people seeing what you are doing. So, a lot of the outcry about her being outed as a porn star is probably overblown. But, the way in which she has been outed is not acceptable at all.

Personally, I don't really think what she's doing is a good thing, but it's her choice, and she shouldn't be vilified for it. I also don't really credit her purportedly feminist rationales for doing this on any level, especially when she is doing videos talking about liking to see the misery in girls' eyes when they are treated roughly during sex on terrible sites with names like "Facial Abuse."

People are entitled to their opinions about her very public acts, but they aren't entitled to level accusations against her personally as if they are in some privileged position with respect to who she is. The Internet bullies should be ashamed. Anonymous bloggers, especially. Free speech is great, and there are certain instances in which it's valuable to be able to criticize people in positions of power anonymously; nonetheless, most examples of anonymous blogging are just examples of cowardice in its purest form.