The Real Losers in Rape Threats: Men, Of Course!C. Rhodes (croguesberg)4/30/14 4:28pmFiled to: rape threatssexism41275EditPromoteShare to KinjaGo to permalinkThis past weekend, I attended the Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo*, going to a whole bunch of panels and meeting some really amazing people. I left feeling happy about my hobbies, creative, hopeful and overwhelmingly like I was part of a really great community of nerds who look out for each other. I heard stories of creepshot guys getting called out for taking gross pictures of cosplayers, I heard about a woman confronting a jerk who said a cosplayer was "too fat" for her costume, I listened to women and people of color talk about the changing tides in comic books, sci-fi, fantasy and video games. In short, I was inspired.AdvertisementBut there were two guys that I encountered on Friday night that almost had the power to ruin the weekend for me. I was attending an evening panel about fostering inclusive and diverse geek communities. There were six panelists: three women of color (at least one of whom is queer), two white women and a white guy. The moderator was a black man. I outline this not to pat their backs or anything, but to demonstrate that this group is more than well qualified to discuss the subject. Four of the five women shared personal stories of the threats they are subject to as women on the internet, and the white man recounted listening to a protege and colleague cry as she read to him the rape threats that he hadn't realized constituted so much of her "hate mail" because it looked so very different from his own.It was a moving panel. I really appreciated hearing so many perspectives that reinforced my own anecdotal understanding of what being a woman means in these spaces. But the two young men who stood up and spoke at the end of the Q&A time nearly got my fist in their mouths; I judiciously decided that getting arrested when I had so much other stuff to do that weekend wasn't the best plan.AdvertisementOne young man ended a rather long "question" with:I'm attracted to trans people, and I'm upset the LGBT community doesn't talk about or include people like me.GIF I'm fairly certain that most people will understand why this is so ludicrous, so I'll just leave it here. (Hint: if you're not a member of the community, you don't get a seat at the table. Be a good ally, don't demand a cookie or attention just because you're LGBTQ-adjacent.)But that gem was immediately followed up by another young man starting off his "question":SponsoredI'm really pissed off no one has mentioned the fact that men get raped, too.GIF He went on to speak about how race plays an important part in sexual expression and sexualized violence (absolutely true) but then doubled down on the "men, too" point, saying that it's important to talk about when men threaten to rape each other.