Stop Telling America's White Nationalists They 'Just Need to Get Laid'


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After seeing a mass of white men encircle the small, anti-racist opposition in Charlottesville, VA over the weekend, actor and comedian Michael Rapaport published a short, but angry video on Twitter, calling the assembly of white nationalists "revenge of the nerd protesters."

"You know your life ain't shit [if] you're a college student on a Friday night during the summertime, and you ain't gettin' no ass, and you decide to come out for a protest carrying tiki torches, talking shit," Rapaport exclaims. "Eat some pizza, take a few bongers...it's Friday night, try to get to second base with a girl, you fucking losers." The video is currently one of the most widely shared reactions to the events in Charlottesville, clearly emphasizing that Rapaport's sentiment is far from isolated. The framing of white nationalism, and fascism, as expressed by men, as being reactionary orientations—or inevitable backlash—against virginity or sexual frustrations is a destructive yet often heard maxim. This characterization, regularly dispensed in joke form, is espoused by not only the diverse cadres fighting against these depraved ideologies but those who ascribe to them.

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After torch-wielding white nationalists marched on the University of Virginia on Friday, chanting Nazi slogans such as "blood and soil," and later surrounding an outnumbered counter-protest, arguably well-intentioned outsiders watching events unfold began justifiably mocking and satirizing the overwhelmingly male, and all-white march. The most common insults center around virginity, and sex, the latter of which is prescribed as both a threat to and a remedy for their unrestrained white supremacist convictions. But sex will never serve as treatment for racism, and even the most well intentioned jokes reaffirm unsettling patriarchal attitudes which argue that sex, specifically with women, is not only a rite of passage, but has the power to change deep-seated, bigoted views.

The most common insults center around virginity, and sex, the latter of which is prescribed as both a threat and a remedy for their unrestrained white supremacist convictions.

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In an inaugural piece for Babe, author Dana Schwartz wrote "an answer to fascists," telling them in part that "if you're a 20-year-old pretending to be a Nazi, you're not a bad boy; you're a racist virgin so humiliated by his own sexual inadequacy and terrified at rejection that you'll blame your feelings of weakness on some unseen Liberal Agenda." Schwartz admonishes this violent, racist coterie, declaring that "women do not want to fuck the neckbearded neo-Nazi who fancies himself an edgy anti-hero whose only hobby is the internet. We see you, and we are disgusted by you. We are laughing at you."

Schwartz's anthem builds on the historic weaponization of sex, and virginity, while discounting the pressing issue of reality—that not only will some women have sex with every strain of white supremacist, but that they've long played a central role in their movements. In Women of the Klan: Racism and Gender in the 1920s, author Kathleen M. Blee writes that in order for the Klan to define the political role for women, as "helpmates" of men, the WKKK was formed. The Invisible Empire would soon move from strictly relegating women to the confines of the home to sending them off into the public, political arena. Blee's Inside Organized Racism: Women in the Hate Movement, a follow-up to Women of the Klan, explains that racist women regularly take part in traditional, often non-threatening activities within their communities, thereby building up the appearance of normalcy. Blee argues that women joining these movements are seen as valuable assets to organised racism, not only for their role in producing a new, white generation, but for their ability to bolster social networks, and recruit other women.

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Not only are white women having sex with white supremacists, they are actively joining their movements and organising with them.

For those who aren't already having sex with racists, it's easy to see how "don't have sex with racists" and "Nazi's just need to get laid" became prevalent reactions to racist violence. The weaponization of the construct of virginity, and the wider concept of the attainment of sex as a liberatory, man-making endeavor, has long served as a means to embolden violent masculinity, and foment greater patriarchal control. Sex, positioned as a prize to be attained, or—more destructively—a right for those who are "good," is a concept widely held by misogynists, including the reshaped pick-up artist (PUA) movement, whose access to sex in some cases is as unbridled and brutalizing as their misogyny and racism.

Positioning sex as an unmitigated good, and virginity as a direct insult to manhood, is a prevalent attitude that creates a social stratum of sexual power which fosters and even legitimizes violence. The clearest example would be the case of Elliot Rodger, who the media would refer to as "the virgin killer." The 22-year-old went on a shooting spree on May 23, 2014 in Isla Vista, California, leaving six dead, and injuring 14 others. His manifesto would reveal a building, obsessive rage that was focused almost entirely on his virginity, or "involuntary celibacy." Rodger's acquiring a girlfriend, or finally having sex, would likely never have diminished his unwavering contempt for women, and his entitlement. And yet his virginity, the very excuse he used to justify the deaths he caused, was offered as a swift explanation. To a society that still holds tight to the archaic myth of virginity, Rodger was an aberration, one that could have been saved should he have had sex, like a "real man."

Positioning sex as an unmitigated good, and virginity as a direct insult to manhood, is a prevalent attitude that creates a social stratum of sexual power which fosters and even legitimizes violence.

The way in which manhood and sexuality—concepts that are so intertwined that they bleed into one another—are discussed as though the act of sex is what produces manhood, has proven unreservedly destructive for all of society. The male virgin stereotype and its association with weakness, and inexperience creates feelings of shame and powerlessness. But offering sex as a reward for good behavior—or, in the case of white supremacists, for meeting the lowest bar possible of not being a racist—is not a solution to their chauvinism and rage, and only furthers the objectification of women.

Engaging in sexual intercourse will not liberate the rising scourge of white supremacists of their racism, just as it will not liberate them of violent masculinity. The fight against this modern cabal of white nationalism won't be found between the bedsheets but in de-platforming them, and turning the fear that they have thrust upon countless communities against them. White supremacists will be followed at the heels by women who support their ideology, who organize with them, and have sex with them, so we must put a price on their hatred, beyond carnal intimidation. Let them fuck. We will fight.

From: Elle
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