Why We Need To Stop Dismissing Genuinely Hateful People As “Trolls”

Trolling is a fine art form – a skill that must be honed over many, many hours of montages and substantial amounts of training under waterfalls and in steamy jungles. It is the extremely calculated science (it is both an art and a science) of presenting someone with something so stupid and so infuriating that they can’t engage with it without looking like an idiot, but at the same time presenting them with something that’s just believable enough that they can’t tell you’re fucking with them.
From Urban Dictionary:
“The most essential part of trolling is convincing your victim that either a) truly believe in what you are saying, no matter how outrageous, or b) give your victim malicious instructions, under the guise of help. 

“Trolling requires deceiving; any trolling that doesn’t involve deceiving someone isn’t trolling at all; it’s just stupid. As such, your victim must not know that you are trolling; if he does, you are an unsuccessful troll.”
You could argue that the Australian sense of humour is built on an analogue form of trolling, in the sense that we ruthlessly make up complete bullshit to confuse tourists. We might be a nation of trolls but, as mean as it might be, it’s not harmful. If anything, we’re keeping tourists safe from falling branches by convincing them that the trees are full of deadly drop bears.
Milo Yiannopoulos is many things but he is not a troll. The alt-right figurehead is discussed almost exclusively in terms of being a “provocateur” or “master troll“, which, while being a convenient internet shorthand for someone who is an unrepentant piece of shit to other human beings (we’ve used it ourselves a few times), it ignores that the beliefs he’s espousing are genuinely his own and gives the abhorrent shit he says an air of playfulness instead of the seriousness it deserves.
The difference between what Milo does and us lying to tourists about riding kangaroos to school is that we aren’t enabling people to become more hateful; we aren’t using a very large platform to confirm people’s worst prejudices. Milo delights in being a gay man who expresses what can only be described as homophobia, because he believes it infuriates the left, and his supporters delight in it as well, because finally they’re being given permission by an ‘actual gay’ to laugh at those ridiculous homosexuals.
How can a gay man be homophobic, you ask? Here are some delightful quotes from the man himself, who believes he “went gay” by choice (talking about sex robots):
“Most of the reason I went gay is so I didn’t have to deal with nutty broads. Imagine how much worse they’re going to get when the passive aggressive manipulation tactics stop working because the guy can get himself off with a thinner, hotter robot any time he wants to. 

“They’re going to go mental. In the West, women are surging ahead into positions of dominance in the media, the arts, academia, politics, you name it. Some people will find this offensive, but: matriarchy is a problem for the rest of us.


“When men start checking out en masse, as is already happening, you can say good-bye to all of society’s best astrophysicists, mathematicians, philosophers, composers and chess players. Scientific progress will effectively stall, because men are just as happy beating a video game as they are solving the riddles of the universe — and they’ll take the entertainment option if they have no interest in impressing women. 

“Women will not take men’s places in these disciplines, because there simply aren’t enough women with IQs over 120. Again, sorry if you find that offensive, but it’s just a fact. IQ isn’t a perfect measure, by any means, but it’s the best gauge we have of whether someone can perform the higher-level functions needed to be a game-changing scientist or transcendently brilliant artist.”
Oh, I forgot to mention that he’s also a huge misogynist, whoops. Despite now milking campiness and playing into weird 90s stereotypes (see: pearl jewellery, fur coats) as much as possible to act out the fantasies that conservatives have of knowing a gay person who hates gay people as much as they do, he’s written in the past that he absolutely despises that sort of ‘over-the-top’ queerness:
“All these preening poofs in public life do is make life more difficult for regular young gay people by reinforcing the stereotypes about gay behaviour: reminding a struggling child’s myopic dad that queers are uppity, in-your-face, camp-as-tits faggots who’ll rape you as soon as look at you.”
On Joe Rogan’s podcast, Milo has said straight up that he hates gay people:
“They’re awful. I love dick but I hate queers. Do you like hanging out with gay people? All of their fucking tutus and madonna? I have my moments with Mariah Carey but, no… The way they behave, the music they listen to, the way they dress, the way they speak.”
It’s not trivial, either. It stops people who hold prejudices against same-sex attracted people from ever having to critically view their beliefs. It means that homophobic conservatives don’t have to stop and think whether they are acting without empathy when they have a gay person they respect willing to tell them that they think gay people are awful too.
Not content with throwing gay people under the bus, he gives those same conservatives permission to treat trans people with utter contempt as well. For a lot of conservatives, a voice (theoretically) within the LGBT umbrella telling them that trans people are mentally ill deviants is a free pass to be transphobic, because they saw someone they respect do the same, and that someone (Milo, we’re still talking about Milo) has an identity that seemingly automatically makes them a valid voice on all queer issues.
Noble Milo believes that bullying trans people (who are already in a remarkably vulnerable position) is a selfless pursuit:
“Never feel bad for mocking a transgender person. It is our job to point out their absurdity, to not make the problem worse by pretending they are normal. Much like fat-shaming, if our mockery drives them to get the help they need, we may save their life.”
Appearing last week on Bill Maher’s program ‘Real Time’ he went out of his way to deliberately misgender a trans woman he mocked at a recent talk, describing her as a man who was confused about his gender, he also (very falsely) claimed that transgender people were disproportionately represented in sex crimes.
Even if we assume the very best (which is still very bad) about Milo – that he’s just joking – what does that matter to the homophobes and transphobes who are laughing at it because queer people are the punchline?  As someone so wonderfully put it:

Milo’s not a troll, he’s a huge cunt.
Photo: Facebook / Milo Yiannopoulos.