Congratulations to Lindy and the New York Times! Lindy West, who got her start at The Stranger and has fought off some of the worst trolls the internet has to offer, has a new weekly column in the paper of record.
As evidenced by West's first column, her contributions are needed now in the NYT more than ever. "Save Free Speech From Trolls" tackles the question of why accusations of "censorship" are often directed at criticism from women and people of color and then latched onto by hateful trolls.
"Criticism is not censorship," West writes, "and no matter how insistent Twitter’s free speech brigade might be, I felt safe knowing that we could always go back to the text. The Constitution was on my side."
But times have changed since internet trolls first started accusing West of being too politically correct for the Constitution back in 2012:
Since then, the anti-free-speech charge, applied broadly to cultural criticism and especially to feminist discourse, has proliferated. It is nurtured largely by men on the internet who used to nurse their grievances alone, in disparate, insular communities around the web — men’s rights forums, video game blogs. Gradually, these communities have drifted together into one great aggrieved, misogynist gyre and bonded over a common interest: pretending to care about freedom of speech so they can feel self-righteous while harassing marginalized people for having opinions.