Gretchen R. Hammond, a transgender reporter, was personally threatened, subject to sexist and anti-Semitic abuse and Neo-Nazi slurs as retribution against an article she wrote, losing her job as a result – and the National Review is the only major American publication reporting on it. How did this happen? Hammond was the first reporter to write about the Chicago Dyke March removing three Jewish women from the march for having Jewish symbolism on their flags. While the Dyke March holds that there is nothing anti-Semitic about forbidding Jewish symbols while allowing other religious imagery, they were evidently unhappy with anyone reporting on their totally not anti-Semitic actions and letting the public draw its own conclusions. Shortly after the article was published, Hammond and her employer, the LGBT newspaper Windy City Times, began receiving insults and threats, which included anti-Jewish and sexist slurs. Shortly after, Hammond was forced off of reporting and placed into sales, which she blames on harassment from the Dyke March.
Instead of condemning this harassment, the Chicago Dyke March bragged about it, tweeting “Zio tears replenish my electrolytes.” ‘Zio’ is an anti-Jewish slur popularized by the KKK, and the Dyke March initially defended the comment before deleting and replacing the original tweet.
If other organizations used derogatory slurs towards or celebrated the abuse of an individual by people angry at her reporting, the outrage would be deafening. After all, when CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski faced harassment from redditors after publishing an article perceived as threatening to dox the private individual responsible for a gif that president Trump tweeted, Vox and the New York Times were quick to document the harassment that he faced. When a bunch of angry videogame fans harassed feminist journalist Anita Sarkeesian and game developer Zoe Quinn for criticizing sexism in videogames, it kicked off a 3+ year cycle of story after story on what became known as “Gamergate.” Surely, harassment that cost someone their job and that has the support not just of fringe internet users, but a large mainstream institution is the sort of bullying and intimidation that people would be up in arms against. And yet, the same organizations that have long campaigned against what they see as harassment and intimidation of progressive writers are suddenly silent, or even supportive of this bullying when it’s done by supporters of the Chicago Dyke March. Are journalists falling for the disingenuous invocation of “LGBT rights” by the March to distract from the racism, sexism, harassment, and courting of fascism that their movement is engaging in? Or have journalists seen what happened to the last left-wing writer who tried to expose intolerance and hypocrisy in the Chicago Dyke March and decided that is safer to turn a blind eye? Whatever the answer, the Chicago Dyke March’s successful war on the media should be deeply disturbing for those interested in a free and honest press.