no appeasing the incels

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Adam Lee looks into the threat of incel terrorism and remarks, "I noticed a comment from a few weeks ago on my Lawrence Krauss post that got trapped in the spam filter." The commenter had opined that "Krauss is the victim here of a toxic femininity that cannot for one second countenance a non-chad in the sexual marketplace," to which Lee replied:

The author's terminology marks him as a member of the "incel" community. Short for "involuntarily celibate", these are lonely, sexually frustrated men who gather online to commiserate over their inability to find women willing to have sex with them. Supposedly, this is because attractive women ("Stacys") are shallow and vain and only want to date similarly attractive and shallow men ("Chads"). Incels believe they're the losers in the genetic lottery, forever shut out from female companionship because they're ugly or scrawny, short or fat, or whatever the flaw of the day is.

"As you'd expect," he continues, "incel communities are a toxic smog of misogyny. They spend their days marinating in self-pity and resentment, lusting after women while also raging at them:"

Needless to say, self-improvement isn't a goal among incels. They view love and sex as something they're owed, period, regardless of what they bring to the table. The idea that their own obnoxious, hateful behavior is the problem, and that they'd have a chance of finding companionship if they learned how to treat women with respect, is something they never consider.

But in the most radical corners of incel communities, their ideology sinks to darker extremes. Some of them take to penning lurid, violent fantasies of exacting revenge against a world that hasn't treated them as they feel they deserve. When that sense of frustrated entitlement boils over, the result is terrorism and mass murder.

Elliot Rodger, who killed six people in California in 2014, was the first incel terrorist of the modern era. Last week in Toronto, another one followed in his footsteps:

Alek Minassian, the man who killed 10 people by driving a van down a busy street in Toronto on Monday, is a terrorist.

We know this because he told us so. On Tuesday afternoon, Facebook confirmed the authenticity of a post in his name, in which he pledged allegiance to something called the "Incel Rebellion."

Lee notes, sadly, that "it's likely that he won't be the last, considering the way incel communities idolize killers:"

They've adopted the habit of literally calling Elliot Rodger a saint, and they're already doing the same with Minassian (although the fact that he was taken alive is likely to dim his luster).

"The mindset of toxic entitlement," he concludes, "can't be appeased:"

In some cases, men can be talked out of it, but I don't think that's a viable strategy at scale. What will help is treating it as the malignancy it is, focusing police attention in the right places. It can also only help to support #MeToo and other movements that amplify the social and cultural power of women. The more people are used to women exercising power on an equal basis with men, the more we'll perceive ideologies like this as an aberrant attitude rather than the norm, allowing society to catch more lone wolves before it's too late to stop them.

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on May 2, 2018 10:28 AM.

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