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Platforming a bigot is always bad

So, I follow a few different feminist accounts on social media and the vast majority of them are very aware of the larger context. However, there is one that consistently seems oblivious to it, unfortunately.

I'm not going to go off pointing fingers at them, but today they posted content from a known transphobe. There wasn't anything transphobic in the content, as such, it's just that the author is transphobic. This account has posted content from them before and has had that pointed out to them more than once. They keep doing it. This is bad.

First of all, I don't really abscribe to the broken clock theory. In other words, it's irrelevant if a bigot makes a valid point from time to time, elevating their voice is always going to be wrong. One of the ways that people fall into radicalization traps is through more innocuous content. This is why hate groups will post happy animal stories. They're sucking you in.

Second, it immediately makes the space feel unsafe. Another account I follow did that today by creating a post that referenced and used material from the notorious wizard author bigot from the UK. Instant loss of safety. That one was even more surprising because they have historically been really good at paying attention to these things. 

The thing is, a lot of that content can be found without turning to bigots. Platforming a bigot is always bad, it gives them channels they didn't have before and that is not good. Disappointing to me to see that happen but cis privilege sometimes misses the obvious.

Addendum: I also unfollowed the account across social media. At the end of the day, calling yourself an intersectional feminist while reposting content from transphobes is plenty of evidence that you are not. Not cleaning up your posts where transphobic harm is happening is also evidence that you're not. Either way, lots of other places to engage on that do better.


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