Political Speech

Knitting Website Ravelry Bans All Pro-Trump Content

"Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy."

|

Ravelry, a website and forum for the knitting community, announced Sunday that it would no longer allow users to show support for President Trump and his administration, either by speaking in favor of Trump, or by designing Trump-inspired patterns.

"We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy," wrote Ravelry's site administrators. "Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy."

This is an absurd position to take—no, not everyone who supports Trump is a white supremacist—though the site is free to take it. Ravelry is a privately-owned space, and is within its rights to enforce all kinds of restraints on its users behavior. Anyone who doesn't like this should go find a rival knitting community, or start their own.

Still, it's a sad sign of the these incredibly partisan, increasingly tribal times that Trump supporters and Trump opponents cannot exist side by side, knitting in relative peace.

According to NPR:

Since Trump's election, there has been a scattering of politically based patterns posted to the site — which in turn have sparked impassioned discussions in its forums. Perhaps the most popular of these is the pink "pussyhat" that became ubiquitous at women's marches in 2017 and came to symbolize a feminist rallying cry against Trump for his remarks about women.

In another veer into explicitly partisan territory, one scarf pattern creates an illusion that makes it look like "innocuous stripes from the front, but says F*** TRUMP, when viewed from an angle."

There are also pro-Trump projects. A member called Deplorable Knitter has posted several hat and scarf patterns that echo the Make America Great Again slogan, along with "build the wall" and Trump 2020 images.

Ravelry's new policy claims that conservative members are not prohibited from discussing their political views, but that "hate groups and intolerance are different from other types of political positions." Being pro-Trump apparently falls into the latter category. I would expect that enforcing this ban will prove at least as divisive as the posting of pro-Trump content.

Here's hoping no one tells Sen. Josh Hawley (R–Mo.) about this.

NEXT: Keeping PROMESA?

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Bet they don’t ban Marxians, socialists, or even democratic socialists. Or socialist Democrats.

    1. There used to be some Democrats who were not socialists. They were racists. But some were racist socialists, and some were socialist racists. Some would say nothing has changed.

    2. Everyone is missing the major takeaway here. Apparently, in his spare time, Robby likes to knit. NTTIAWWT.

      1. Damn, you are right. Does he knit hats and scarves to hide his embarrassing hair? There’s the real story.

    3. I apologize for flagging your comment by accident. I was simply trying to scroll down.

      This new interface sucks.

    4. Let me guess…anti-Trump stuff is still OK though right, no matter how vulgar, nasty, etc.?

      WTF can’t these people just knit baby booties, scarves, and cat sweaters like normal people?

      1. Yes, anti-Trump stuff is still allowed. It is, in fact, enjoying a rise in popularity on the “What’s Hot Now” page.

        I’m knitting a diva sheep who has her own wardrobe and wears purple cat-eye glasses. Does that make me abnormal?

        1. eccentric maybe

  2. “Unite American Again” = “Shut the F up if you disagree with me.”

    1. It’s Groupthink vs Rebels. Those who couldn’t go against the group to save their lives “hate” Trump. Those who don’t like to be told what to think support him. Neither is quite rational.

  3. “We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all without making sure that certain unmentionable people are not allowed on this website.”

  4. So it appears the two options currently on the table are:

    1. Let websites moderate content however they wish (the status quo)
    2. Force websites to get government permission to prove that they are “politically neutral” (the Josh Hawley position)

    What other options, if any, should be considered for discussion?

    1. Force websites to be completely noninvasive (i.e. complete 1A free speech protection) is one that I have heard.

      1. I think that is basically the Hawley position though. Give the FCC the power to determine whether a website is “politically neutral” enough. Which is basically saying “equal time for Nazis and Communists”.

        I suppose I should mention that I have also heard the idea tossed around, from the right natch, about adding “political viewpoint” to the list of impermissible types of discrimination according to civil rights laws. But that would open up an entire other can of worms.

        1. It’s close but Hawley position still allows for bans for hate speech and such as long as it is politically neutral which makes it a very restrictive law requiring lots of oversight. The position I mentioned would bar any de-platforming of speech covered by the first amendment, let’s say. Of course, it would still be very anti-freedom. Let’s just stick with option 1.

          1. I agree with you.

              1. Oh no! Reason’s resident troll called me a liar! Whatever will I do? I must rush to my fainting couch!

                1. You’ll laughably scream context and then flee.

                  Because you know I’m right and you were lying.

          2. The Hawley proposal allows companies to do whatever the fuck they want. They simply wont recieved extra legal protections if they are not acting in a neutral manner. And it only applies to companies with over 30 million in revenue.

            The fucking bill was short. Why cant you fuckwits be bothered to read it?

            1. Well you got me there. I will never read this bill.

        2. Jesus fucking christ Jeff. The Hawley proposal is short enough you can even read it. It may take an hour or so at your level, but we believe in you kiddo.

    2. “So it appears the two options currently on the table are:”

      Yes

      “1. Let websites moderate content however they wish (the status quo)”

      I’ll take Option 1 with a large heaping of ridiculing the SnowFlakes and their obvious attempt to live in an ideological bubble. Only the ridiculously fragile need to ban the political opposition from a Knitting site.

      1. I am all for Option 1, but I also don’t blame people for not wanting their knitting site turned into a trolling war zone.

        1. Are you lying about that too liar?

          “CONTEXT!!!” he will scream, then flee when it becomes clear he is lying about that too.

          Thanks Jeff. You gave me this by lying.

          1. Jesus, you’re a fucking tool. Shut up.

        2. They only banned trump support, though, while Trump bashing seems perfectly allowed. Which is perfectly legal, but it’s a questionable business practice that doesn’t keep political content separated, but instead shows preferences for certain political content, thus alienating a large percentage of their possible user base.

          1. thus alienating a large percentage of their possible user base.

            It couldn’t have been that large, if the management was willing to enact this type of measure.

            1. It’s very possible they had yet to perform analytics on the fallout from this decision. There are many people who don’t make the most informed business decisions.

              Knitting as a hobby, of course, is overwhelmingly practiced by women. Women skew to the left more than men (among white females, it’s like a 50/50 split, compared to white men who are about 60/40 on the right).

              There were probably a few loud and obnoxious pro Trump people on their platform, but I’d be shocked if the right-leaning portion of their userbase is under 30%. Those people likely do not agree that support for Trump is equivalent to white supremacy. If you’re pissing of 30% of your users just to appease a small portion of squeaky wheels, you’re likely not making smart decisions. And it’s entirely possible that it’s over 30% of their users, since women who knit tend to skew older, and older women skew more to the right.

              1. I hate to do the Ken Schultz double-post, but I thought I’d add a few details.

                From what I’ve learned (I’ve done a very cursory search of the lead-up to this decision, so it may contain errors), this started as a very limited dispute. One person, I suppose it might be the “Deplorable Knitter” referenced in the article, had many of their designs flagged for being offensive content-things like patterns including “MAGA” (fairly sedate) and “Build the wall” (More politically charged).

                There was at least one user who flagged that content and complained about it who was then harassed by Trump supporters. They started spamming them every day with images of Trump (I guess sending to their account? I don’t know) and then they tried to doxx them, to spread their address and personal information. Obviously, that’s harassment from someone who is a freaking tool. There’s no problem if Ravelry wants to ban that user, as well as any other users who might have been complicit, from using their platform since they’re harassing.

                The problem is that they decided the problem was not with the individual actors in this case, but an entire category of people who were completely uninvolved in that dispute. Because this one tool was a Trump supporter, they came up with a solution: Ban all support for Trump, thus solving this problem forever! Except it unnecessarily roped in perhaps thousands of other users who had nothing to do with the initial complaint.

                1. You’re wasting your time, Jeff is an unrepentant liar, facts mean nothing to him.

                2. Well, this one person may have been the straw that broke the camel’s back, but I highly doubt that just one person being obnoxious caused the management to declare everyone who supports Trump as being a “white supremacist”.

                  It reflects the values of the site’s management team, for sure, and that’s fine. This one person was probably just the catalyst which finally led to the change being made.

                  1. It may be, but I can’t attest to that. There are a few things worth noting. They said that they didn’t want to support white supremacy, so they banned all Trump supporters.

                    https://www.ravelry.com/content/no-trump

                    They included this quote: “Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy.” That’s them making a factual statement, and that statement is wrong. Not all Trump supporters are white supremacists. Them conflating the two things is definitely representative of the bubble they live within.

                    They also claimed within that statement (posted the full link above) that they are not condoning Republicans or supporting Democrats, though I’m not sure if that realistically follows given their new policy.

                    I think claiming that 46.1% of the voting population in the United States are white supremacists is an insane position for any company to take. I think it’s fine if they want to take that position, but it’s very likely to backfire and cost them much more than it gains. And I will cheer it happening because insane people deserve to reap the consequences of their insanity.

                    1. There’s no edit button: Read “condoning Republicans” as “condemning Republicans,” please.

                    2. Well I suppose it all depends on what you mean by “support” Trump.

                      If I understand the Ravelry folks, what it means *to them* is that it means someone who supports all that Trump does, lock stock and barrel. I DON’T think that includes every single Trump voter.

                      But maybe that is me just projecting. At least that is not what it means to me.

                    3. I dunno, Jeff. How would you qualify someone who says, “Well, I have some issues with Trump, but on balance I think he’s done a lot more good than bad.” Is that a radical Trump supporter?

                      Keep in mind that they’re banning EVEN THAT, because any and all support for Trump is banned from their platform.

                    4. “Well, I have some issues with Trump, but on balance I think he’s done a lot more good than bad.” Is that a radical Trump supporter?

                      If I take their words at face value, I would say that “it depends”. If the reason why you like Trump is because he’s put children in cages, but the reason you don’t like Trump is because of the tax cuts, then I think that might make the Ravelry management upset. But if your response is the opposite, then that probably would not.

                    5. You’re lying trash Jeff, no one cares.

                    6. No, Jeff – they mean ANY show of support for Trump – pro-Trump avatars, pro-Trump patterns, pro-Trump forum/blog posts. Anyone who shows ANY support for Trump will be banned. And they are encouraging their members to ferret out and report those who are in violation of the new terms of the site.

                3. So a small war was started because someone could not handle Trump political slogans being posted as patterns and tried to have them suppressed, leading to awful retaliation by some Trump supporters. The problem was started by by a leftist wanting to suppress speech they did not like.

                4. A Thinking Mind – no, you’re not incorrect about the events that led up to this. You also have to keep in mind that the owners of the site are exceedingly liberal, something I really couldn’t have cared less about for the 5 years I’ve been a Ravelry member. This though…this is something else.

      2. But where will you ridicule the snowflakes?

        That’s kinda the issue at hand

    3. Yes, but you’re missing an important element of option 1, which is:

      Berate companies that make idiotic decisions when it comes to how they moderate company, forcing them to take the bad PR hit. Make sure that awareness is properly spread so people can recognize that this company is completely bonkers.

      1. “Berate companies that make idiotic decisions when it comes to how they moderate company, forcing them to take the bad PR hit. Make sure that awareness is properly spread so people can recognize that this company is completely bonkers.”

        Yes, that’s important.
        So let’s post on Facebook about this knitting website’s decision.
        Uh oh, Facebook banned us/that topic.
        Ok, so we’ll post on Twitter about the knitting site, AND Facebook.
        Shit, banned there too.
        Fine. We’ll make a YouTube video documenting those dumb decisions of the knitting site AND Facebook AND Twitter!
        …and it’s gone. Banned again.

        Hey, anyone know what sites I can use to let the remaining 1% of people know how shitty the knitting site, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are?

        1. Okay, so what’s your plan?

          Do you support Senator Hawley’s proposal?

          1. I support endlessly mocking you for being a pathetic liar.

            1. That’s not something I plan on – it just turns out to be unavoidable

          2. Hawleys proposal is completely acceptable you halfwit. Youd know that if you bothered to read it it allows companies to act however they want. Full stop. They just dont get extra legal protections for being non neutral. Youd know this if you had an ounce of intellectual curiosity and read the short proposal.

            1. Well, you certainly do have some guts to sincerely take the pro-government-censorship position on a libertarian website.

              See my comment below. CDA 230 is not “special protections”. CDA 230 is basically permitting Internet forums to operate much like in-person forums. In-person forums routinely have moderation in choice of speakers and content. And yet if someone in those forums says something libelous, it’s not the forum or the moderator who’s responsible, it’s the speaker who’s responsible.

              If you go to a Bernie Sanders rally – moderated content, moderated participation – and you scream “LIZZIE WARREN HATES THE JEWS”, is Bernie Sanders responsible for your screams? No. Same deal with Internet forums.

              CDA 230 was in response to a terrible court decision which *incorrectly* analogized Internet forums to newspapers. They are not. They are much more like public forums, and they should stay that way.

              If we go by Hawley’s proposal, one of three things is likely to happen:

              EITHER the term “politically neutral” is taken at face value, which essentially means “equal time for Nazis and Communists”. Do you want more Nazis and Communists? Because this is how you get more Nazis and Communists.

              OR, the term “politically neutral” becomes itself a political weapon, and when Democrats are in charge of the FCC, it’s used as a weapon against conservatives, and when Republicans are in charge of the FCC, it’s used as a weapon against liberals. It would not only exascerbate the problem, but it would take authority away from the companies themselves to try to restore any semblance of balance (even if it’s imperfect balance). They would have no choice but to abide by whatever the FCC said.

              OR, instead, the companies themselves would not even bother with any of this social media nonsense, and either restrict their businesses to very small numbers of participants, or just give up entirely. You would have lost your voice in social media.

        2. You’re free to speak, man. Write an article about it, send it to your friends. Ask them to spread it. Send them to this article.

          You’re also talking about a hypothetical in which Twitter and Youtube are banning discussion on this, when I’ve seen actual discussion on this happening on Twitter and youtube. If we got to a point where Twitter and youtube and Facebook were constantly banning anything people would talk about, they would become so irrelevant that nobody would still be using them.

          1. Note that Nardz isn’t going to respond with what he favors.
            He is more than happy though to bitch and moan about Big Tech. (Which evidently now includes Ravelry.)

            1. It wouldnt matter if he did, you’d lie about your position, then insult him and flee.

              It’s like you think you can troll him into forgetting all about your history so he’ll respond to you.

            2. I don’t know what I support in this instance. Inaction has consequences. Action has consequences. Any sort of enforced neutrality, such that banning of “hate speech” is allowed so long as it’s equally applied is likely to have consequences that are more negative than positive, and gives power to people I’d rather not have it. At the same time, propping up collusive crony capitalist companies like Alphabet, Facebook, Twitter – as is the status quo – so that they dominate all means of online discourse does the same. Ideally, competition will arise to create a market for free expression. It’s tough thinking of any regulation that would acceptably do so. Indeed, the opposite is probable.
              The arguments I’ve found most convincing are those I’ve read from the comments here – appropriate application of 230 and withdrawal of artificial government intervention via protection for companies that act as publishers but are treated as platforms for legal purposes.
              The status quo is not non-intervention by government – it’s crony intervention.

              1. I’m not advocating a solution, I’m making the point that there’s a problem. Some of you would rather bury your heads in sand because you approve of the censorship going on, while others are uncompromising idealists

                1. I agree that there is a problem. The first step is to correctly identify the problem, and in my view, the problem is that social media is dominated by a very few platforms that are very large that are trying to cater to everyone, which is an impossible task. No platform run by anyone regardless of intent can possibly cater to *everyone*.

                  Imagine for a moment that there were thousands of social media platforms, each one catering to different niche markets, such as – say – knitting. That way you could pick and choose the ones that were best suitable for you, and to hell with the rest of them. Who cares if all the others censored their content in ways that you didn’t like? That’s why you aren’t a member! You don’t have to give a damn about their censorship because it doesn’t affect your ability to express yourself in whatever way you wish.

                  The way I see it, the evolution of social media is following a similar trajectory as the evolution of online forums. In the beginning there were only a very few online forums, like CompuServe and Prodigy and AOL. Then, as the Internet developed more, those curated forum gardens died as the blogosphere proliferated. The same will happen with social media. In 10 years, Facebook and Twitter will be a nothing, because they will have been replaced by 5-10 niche social media networks that we will all be using instead.

                  But that evolution WON’T happen if government stomps in and tries to regulate it, because what will happen instead is, the regulations will be written by the social media companies themselves that will benefit them and entrench their own power. So we will never be rid of Facebook because Zuckerberg will make sure of it by telling Congress what they want to hear.

              2. The status quo is not non-intervention by government – it’s crony intervention.

                No, the status quo is “non-intervention by government”, and quite a few of us would like to keep it that way, Senator Hawley notwithstanding.

                Here is another view on CDA 230 worth reading (please take a look at it with an open mind):

                https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20190608/16433942358/explainer-how-letting-platforms-decide-what-content-to-facilitate-is-what-makes-section-230-work.shtml

                The TL;DR is: CDA 230 makes Internet discussion forums work approximately like how real-life forums work, and that is why it should stay.

                For example, take an in-person moderated debate, like those at the Soho Forum. I am sure that the moderator, Gene Epstein, has some role in choosing the topics and choosing the participants in the debate. Let’s suppose that in the middle of the debate, unbeknownst to Epstein, one of the participants says “Nardz is a dirty sheep fucker and kicks puppies for fun!” Now, how much liability should *the moderator*, or the Soho Forum, face for that type of libelous comment? My answer is: zero. Those aren’t THEIR libelous opinions, those are the speaker’s libelous opinions, and if you want to pursue a libel case, you are more than free to do so, against the *actual speaker*, but not against the forum or the moderator. Internet discussion forums, including social media, ought to operate in much the same way. If someone insults you on social media, the person responsible – at least in a moral sense – is the person who insulted you, not the forum that hosted the insulting comment.

                CDA 230 is not “artificial” government support, it is the same type of support that real-life forums enjoy.

          2. But would we know that all platforms were banning any particular speech? If they didn’t announce it publicly, how would you find out?

            1. Okay, so what is *your* plan?

              Senator Hawley’s proposal?

              1. I plan to lie about what I actually said over and over until people get bored of me and then claim victory!!

                That’s the ticket!!!

                1. Well look who is here demanding to be the center of attention.
                  Please, Tulpa, take your meds.

                  1. So, we’ve decided that concern trolling someone’s mental health is OK?

                    Because you whined like a girl when you thought I was doing it to SQRLSY, but you will of course justify it now.

                    When people come at me, it’s narcissistic!!!

                    That’s the ticket!!!

          3. “You’re also talking about a hypothetical in which Twitter and Youtube are banning discussion on this, when I’ve seen actual discussion on this happening on Twitter and youtube. If we got to a point where Twitter and youtube and Facebook were constantly banning anything people would talk about, they would become so irrelevant that nobody would still be using them.”

            First they banned ____, and I did nothing.
            Then they banned ____, and still I did nothing.
            Finally they came for me, and I could do nothing.

            Yea, melodramatic and cliche.
            But trends are a thing.
            Like I said, I haven’t figured out a solution that I’d advocate. The closest I can think of would be appropriate application of 230, but I’m not well versed enough to actually propose or support something at the moment.
            But there is a problem, and there isn’t a free market right now.

            1. I don’t think you have a right to use a specific platform or have a certain social media company host you.

              What you should do is to keep an ear to the ground, and look for alternatives. Obviously, the biggest tech companies are trying to crowd out anyone from establishing themselves, but there are places. Instead of Facebook, check out Minds. Instead of Twitter, maybe Gab, or Parler. These platforms are growing because people are sick of Twitter and Facebook.

              Instead of Google, use a different search engine.

              For now, the only thing I’m really stuck with is Youtube. There are content creators there that I enjoy following, and they’re not really available elsewhere. But I’m waiting, and I expect that Youtube, based on some recent actions, is going to start falling apart as well.

    4. Actually, the only option currently on the table, and a pretty sensible one is giving each company a choice:

      (1) If you want safe harbor provisions, you can’t discriminate based on viewpoint.
      (2) If you just want to be a regular private company with regular private company liabilities, you can do whatever you want, including discriminate based on viewpoint.

      Easy, huh?

      1. That’s basically the Hawley proposal.

    5. I wouldn’t mind if 1A was enforced against private institutions that are necessary to interact with. I know that’s an unenforceable standard, but it’s one thing to be denied 1A by a private individual in their home. It’s another thing to be denied 1A by a massive private organization that blocks you off from the general public. Private is private, but the former is one person blocking you from one place. The latter is one person blocking you from millions of places.

    6. “2. Force websites to get government permission to prove that they are “politically neutral” (the Josh Hawley position)”

      For them to get governmental protections, sure. If you wish to censor and edit, then you can get the same protections any publisher gets.

      Why should platform protections go to publishers?

  5. Good for Ravelry. Not only is Drumpf a Russian intelligence asset who colluded and obstructed (proven by the Mueller Report), we now know he has established literal concentration camps for black and brown bodies. No decent person can support him.

    #AbolishConcentrationCamps

    1. Your hashtag #HillaryWouldLegalizeHeroin was classic, OBL.

      1. #LibertariansForOcasioCortez is still his all-time greatest.

    2. Obl is just what jeff thinks.

  6. I bet that they permit Communist paraphernalia, even though the Communists included over 110 million people in their mass murder activities.

    1. Knit them a coffin.

      1. Nice.
        That got a big grin

  7. “We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy,” wrote Ravelry’s site administrators. “Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy.”

    I am sure supporting the Party of slavery (Democrat Party) is A-okay though.

    1. Democrats are as much the “party of slavery” as Republicans are the “party of Lincoln”.

      Which is to say, only from a historical context that doesn’t inform you anything regarding where the parties are now.

      1. Which is to say, only from a historical context that doesn’t inform you anything regarding where the parties are now.

        Oh, things have changed less than you believe. Democrats still are the party of slavery and racism, it’s just that the plantations are now called “inner cities”.

      2. Escher believes the southern strategy flipped all racists. Escher is a fucking idiot.

    2. “We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy,”

      Ok, so that’s obviously contradictory.

      But here’s what I want to know – are we going with “dog whistles” or “open support”?
      If there was a change, when was it?
      It’s so hard to keep up with the paragons of the tolerant on how I should properly be intolerant of the intolerant to be a rightthinking tolerant person…

    3. So it’s come to this — people tremble in fear and rage if someone mentions the duly elected leader of their country, someone supported by 50 percent (okay, maybe 45 percent) of Americans.
      And an inclusive and optimistic phrase like “make America great again” is considered hate speech and un-American.

      Can they knit snowflakes on their sweaters?

  8. Nothing says white patriarchy like little old ladies knitting.

    1. You know those photos from the 60s, of young white women or white teens screaming and shouting at black kids trying to go to school?

      They’re in their 60s and 70s now.

  9. Anyone who doesn’t like this should go find a rival knitting community, or start their own.

    BS – You know full well Robby that Ravely is THE knitting site, and all others are a distant second. This aggression can not stand.

    1. Can I start a knitting community with blackjack and hookers?

  10. Even Stalinists are less ignorant and hateful as Trumptards. Can’t blame them.

    1. Well, that’s not fair. I do think Trump supporters can be broken down into a few rough categories:

      1. The truly radicalized ones, who want to build the wall because they want to keep the darkies out. Those really are the scary deplorables but I don’t think there are all THAT many of them. They are the ones who get the outsized attention though, like any radical fringe of any group.

      2. The ones who will always vote for Team Red because they have always voted for Team Red. They just support Republican policies general and so will vote for any elephant no matter what. It’s hard to fault them for supporting Trump per se, but it may be fair to blame them for just being so automatically reflexive with their vote.

      3. The ones who really did think Trump represented the new type of “hope and change” that Obama never did deliver – bringing back manufacturing jobs to the Midwest, etc. I feel sorry for a lot of these people, because frankly they were just sold a bill of goods. Trump is just a huckster. He can’t turn back the clock to the 1950’s, he knew it, but he sure tried to convince people that he could.

      So yeah I don’t have a lot of sympathy with the radicalized Trump bootlickers, but I don’t want to cast everyone who voted for Trump as some type of shameless degenerate.

      1. God damn no one is reading that steaming pile of lies, liar.

      2. 4. The people who think he’s uncouth and ineffective, but far less damaging to the republic than any of the Dems.

        1. But honestly, if you’re going to vote against Team Blue – with good reason – voting for Team Red at this point just seems like endorsing a different category of wrong, at least from a libertarian perspective.

          “I want to avoid hitting myself in the head with a hammer, so instead I’ll hit myself in the head with a baseball bat” doesn’t seem much better.

          1. “But honestly”

            Pull the other one. It’s like you think we don’t know you.

            1. Well look who is just craving more attention to feed his narcissism.

              1. I’m so stupid I think when someone explicitly makes it about me, it is actually about them!!!

                That’s the ticket!!!

          2. “I want to avoid hitting myself in the head with a hammer, so instead I’ll hit myself in the head with a baseball bat” doesn’t seem much better.

            I mean, is “I want to avoid hitting myself in the head with a baseball bat, so instead I’ll hit my self in the head with a hammer” any better? Six of one, half a dozen of the other……

            1. No, it isn’t. Which is why I don’t support hitting yourself in the head with either a hammer or a baseball bat. That is, not voting for either Team Red nor Team Blue. Fuck them both.

              1. “Which is why I don’t support hitting yourself in the head with either a hammer or a baseball bat”

                Which is definitely not how I ended up this stupid!!!

                That’s the ticket!!!

                (concern troll my mental health now, like you whined about me doing to SQRLSY)

          3. It’s more: your held up against the wall, and your assaulter lets you choose gut or face.

            I might prefer not getting hit at all, but until enough people agree with me I might as well choose the lesser evil.

            On the other hand, I have a shirt I always wear on Election Day. “Cthulhu For President. Why Choose the Lesser Evil?”

      3. Trump opponents can also be broken down into a few rough categories:

        (1) Privileged pricks of the “let them eat cake” variety and their ignorant social circle.

        (2) True racists and authoritarians.

        (3) Russian trolls.

        Some, like you, span all three categories.

        1. You know, I really did try to give a good-faith breakdown of what I thought were reasonable categories of Trump voters. Ones that did not cast them all as demonic white supremacists who wanted to execute all the browns. But of course that’s not good enough for you, and this is what I get.

          Maybe you should try to investigate the true reasons why someone might vote for Team Blue. Here is a hint: it’s not because they’re all Stalinists desiring to march conservatives into (real) concentration camps.

          1. Right, it’s because they’re elitists (or they’re just doing what their parents did and haven’t thought about it).

            Let’s try that economic system that seems like the most equitable if it worked, but has never actually yielded net progress any of the times it’s been tried, but only because the Right People weren’t in charge, which we’ll definitely get right this time…..

            Or it’s because they can’t think about hard things, so anytime there’s a shortage it must be because of bad actions by the Other Guy and since they don’t want shortages they must oppose the Other Guy.

            Or it’s because they’re extremely narrow voters who don’t look outside their specific issue, or over longer time periods (environment, abortion, guns, recreational drugs, sexuality, slavery, etc) and the Blue Team changes its position with the changing winds.

            Don’t get me started on Team Red though…..

          2. “true reasons why someone might vote for Team Blue”

            Decadence.

          3. “You know, I really did try to give a good-faith breakdown of what I thought were reasonable categories of Trump voters”
            I did!!! I swear!!! Good faith, that’s the ticket!!!

          4. Nobody gives a fuck what you think Jeff because the only consistent part of your posts is the ignorant base you build all arguments on.

  11. “This is an absurd position to take—no, not everyone who supports Trump is a white supremacist—though the site is free to take it. Ravelry is a privately-owned space, and is within its rights to enforce all kinds of restraints on its users behavior.”

    I wish more people appreciated this principle–that free speech is about private parties being free to say or prohibit whatever they want. Outside the concept of private property, progressives might not be free to ban any speech at all. If someone comes along and puts a sign in your front yard that reads, “I hate LGBTQI+” and you don’t want it there, the most robust defense of being free to take it down is that it’s on private property.

    Property means the right to make choices about how something is used, and no one has the right to use your property for their speech if you disapprove. When progressives fight against the right of private property owners to say and believe what they want, they are undermining the legitimate argument for the freedom to censor hate speech.

    If you want to decide what other people can or can’t say on a piece of property, there’s a way to accomplish that within the context of the First Amendment. No one should be forced to rent a room in their home to racist, homophobes against their will. No one should be forced to tolerate Trump voters on their own property against their will.

    Using the government to force people to tolerate something on their property against their will is as pro-bigot as it is anti-bigot because it undermines the principle that no one should be allowed to make choices about your property is used without your consent.

    1. Amen to that, Ken.

      Someone tell Senator Josh Hawley that in order to own the progs, he is turning into one of them.

      1. Someone tell Jeff everyone is laughing at him because I caught him lying.

      2. Stop proving you didnt bother to read the bill jeff. You fucking quarterwit.

    2. I’m completely fine with this as a policy. I also think the policy should include a provision where you can publicly mock a company that has openly stated it only caters to Democratic voters (plus Republic voters as long as they’re willing to stay quiet about it).

    3. “No one should be forced to rent a room in their home to racist, homophobes against their will.”

      But they should be forces to rent a room in their home to blacks and gays.
      Or no?

      1. Sometimes, when you don’t say things explicitly, it emphasizes it even more than if you spelled it all out in red letters with flashing lights. When you ask people what they remember about Reservoir Dogs, they often mention the scene where the guy gets his ear cut off. It’s interesting because the film never actually shows the guy getting his ear cut off. The camera pans away while it happens–but people remember seeing it. Tarantino said they shot it with the ear getting cut off in plain views, too, but the one where you don’t see it made people react to it even more.

        1. I know you, ken.
          It’s a rhetorical rejoinder.

          Because with many who say things like: “No one should be forced to rent a room in their home to racist, homophobes against their will.”
          They’d also believe that yes, they should be forced to rent a room in their home to blacks and gays.
          See people like chemjeff, escher, eunuch (CMW for those unfamiliar, but insightful people would’ve guessed that on their own), jfree, etc – maybe Leo, zeb, but (somewhat surprisingly) NOT square=circle.

          Thus, it’s a point worth making explicitly.

          1. We aren’t required to fall into the traps the left sets for us. We can choose to avoid them.

          2. I got name-checked! It’s like a little badge of honor!

      2. I realize this was supposed to be a rhetorical point, but you can actually look this up you know: [Link]

        Simply put, no, renting out a room in your house is not covered by non-discrimination laws. You can refuse to rent to anyone you want for any criteria you want.

        And I don’t know of anyone that’s arguing to amend that. Adding new categories to the law in general? Sure. But remove the owner-occupied exception? Pretty sure no one finds it objectionable.

    4. but signs on your property invade my eyesight on my property. so the First Amendment has got to go.

    5. Do you extend those same “private property rights” to the phone companies? Would it be okay for all phone companies to deny use of their private property phone infrastructure to “white nationalists”, and to monitor phone calls to make sure the wrong people aren’t saying despicable things?

      1. Yeah, I think freedom of association is a real thing that includes the right to say “no”.

    6. Ken… a business can still choose how to run their site with hawleys bill. They might just not qualify for extra legal protections.

      Did any if you actually read hawleys bill?

  12. Pro tip: If you find yourself on a kitting website, you’re doing it wrong.

  13. Et tu, Robbie? Writing for a 90% male audience is different from running a knitting site for the 5% of voters targeted for Constitutional Amendments overriding 14A and requiring the ladies to squeeze out conscripts. Shucks, the alternative, according to YAF and Teedy Rosenfeld, is “race suicide.” One can see how you wouldn’t want that, but seriously, grate screech?! Against a girls’ website?! How unbecoming!

  14. A Catholic school fired a teacher for being gay recently (reported by the Washington Post, I believe). Do the clingers who believe Ravelry should be forced to accommodate bigots (or appeasers of bigotry) — or should accommodate white supremacists, although not forced to — have a different standard* for institutions that fire employees for the offense of being gay?

    * Other than the ‘it’s OK if the organization has engaged in long-term, systematic facilitation and concealment of the sexual abuse of children, revictimizing those children in many cases in an attempt to preserve the institution’s personnel, prestige, and opulent wealth’ standard, of course.

    1. I kind of lost you after “A Catholic school”.

    2. So they are cleaning out the ranks then?

  15. Intolerant leftists who knit? At least they could change their name. How about “The Defarge Group”?

  16. As much as this kind of thing tees me off, in the end it really falls in the category of ‘better to let the assholes reveal themselves.’ If the owners of Twitter, Youtube, Google, and–sure, why not–Ravelry were forced to respect the First Amendment like government, we’d never know how far the neo-Trotskyite rot has set in. But instead, the leftwing revanchists have come out loud and proud in all their censorious inglory, and everyone, or at least 63-some million of us, can see the clear and present danger and vote accordingly.

    1. Sure. I don’t think Robbie is advocating government intervention, where they’d be forced to host political content they disagree with. I think he’s just spreading the information that they’ve made a horrible business decision that might be of interest, given the current culture of deplatforming.

      There’s a difference between wanting a bad company policy punished, and wanting government to punish a bad company policy. I can want the gay-bashing bakery to go out of business, rather than wanting the government to force them to bake a rainbow-technicolor wedding cake.

    2. and everyone, or at least 63-some million of us, can see the clear and present danger and vote accordingly.

      What would you expect your presumed vote for Trump to occur vis a vis Google & Facebook?

  17. They’re making it very difficult to argue that TDS isn’t a thing.

    1. https://www.ravelry.com/content/no-trump

      That’s their official statement. It includes this gem:

      “Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy.”

      There’s no way to spin that as anything other than TDS-inspired insanity. They’re claiming nearly half the voting population of the country are white racists.

      1. Of course we don’t know if they really believe this, or if they feel they can fire off hyperbole to shame people out of their support for Trump, or if they’re simply virtue signaling for standing or as free advertisement. Maybe a prerequisite for running a knitting site is to be governed primarily by emotion.

        1. I’m just trying to think if there’s any comparable right-leaning example of someone taking that position.

          I don’t think I’ve ever seen the phrase, “Support for Bernie Sanders is undeniably support for Stalinism, so we’re banning all pro-Bernie content.” Maybe there are a few right-wing platforms who ban mentions of Bernie or AOC, but I’ve never heard of them.

          1. “Support for Bernie Sanders is undeniably support for Stalinism, so we’re banning all pro-Bernie content.”

            That essential idea is expressed right here in these comment forums almost on a daily basis. That any vote for anyone on Team D is a vote to put conservatives into concentration camps. And some of them even say that they want to “destroy the Left”. Of course it’s hard to pin down exactly what they mean by “destroy” beyond the metaphorical level.

            1. Even if true, the second part of that would be essentially missing here. The idea of an outright and official ban on an opposing viewpoint is somewhat different than simple broad brush characterizations.

      2. I cannot highly enough recommend that everyone read that link. It’s short and it’s as fair as possible to take their words completely within their own context.

        It’s also ridiculously entertaining to see how trapped they are within their own bubble.

        1. More fun to think how 4chan is gonna troll the fuck out of them.

  18. Of course, most Trump supporters aren’t card-carrying white supremacists, but their positions amount to the same thing.

    1. Unlike the Democrats, who have always been, and continue to be White Supremacists through and through, holding primarily the opinion that minorities need the protection and guidance of white elites like Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren for their survival. Heck, Bill Clinton put it like this: “A few years ago, this guy [Obama] would have been getting us coffee”.

      1. They worship the eugenicists like sanger still. And do so openly.

  19. “We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all”
    This should have been their statement, because it is true.
    My question is this; how do we find out who is running ads on that site so we can boycott? Clearly no freedom loving individual is going to visit that site, but we need to know who to stop buying from to put free speech pressure on the site. This is a real problem.
    See, I really want to boycott some company to show my political affiliations, but it is turning out that I don’t buy left wing products by default.
    When the rage was to boycott the NFL and its sponsors because of whats-his-name, I couldn’t participate. I hadn’t watched pro football since back when the facemasks were a single bar. I don’t drink beer, and use an electric razor, and there was no Papa John’s around. Who could I stop buying from?
    This is the same problem, moved into the web.

    1. Don’t buy a Lexus? Or don’t they advertise on football games anymore?

    2. Their advertisers are exclusively yarn/fiber/pattern/accessories purveyors, so unless you’re a knitter/crocheter/spinner/weaver, you can’t really boycott them. And they WILL lose ad revenue because of this – they have a very vocal contingent of SJWs on the site, but I can’t imagine the businesses who spend their ad dollars there are going to take this lying down. I know I wouldn’t.

      As a someone who is an avid knitter/crocheter/spinner, I am amused and appalled by this action in fairly equal measure. The Trump supporters are engaging in massive pearl clutching, but the really funny folk are the liberals, who suddenly are ALL in favor of a company being able to decide with whom they do business and how. Of course, if the reverse were true, and the site was banning dissension about the president (they whole “respect the office” argument), they’d all be screaming about First Amendment rights and censorship.

      What’s so disturbing is that it IS blatant censorship and discrimination and so many people are okay with it. And not just okay, but all in favor of it. It’s like they don’t understand that because it’s being done to someone else, it can be done to YOU. Of course, if you say that, they jump all over you, screaming you MUST be a Trump-loving white supremacist. What’s even more disturbing is that Ravelry is encouraging their members to report any other members who are in violation of the new policy. That is downright frightening.

      I don’t know how I’m going to handle this turn of events. I haven’t deleted my account yet (I already avoid purchasing items from the stridently political on both ends of the spectrum) – I’m waiting to see how it all effects their bottom line and what stance they take after they’ve lost money because of it.

  20. Support of Ravelry is undeniably support for Maoism.

  21. If only the entryists would confine themselves to knitting communities and the academy and stay the fuck out of formerly-libertarian think tanks and a certain long-running cosmotarian magazine.

  22. Of course, most Trump supporters aren’t card-carrying white supremacists, but their positions amount to the same thing. christmas greetings

  23. A more inclusive website would simply have a separate forum for political content.

    But let’s face it. All of these hobby sites eventually have some sort of melt down. This one just happens to be political.

  24. Knitting website.

    Do whatever you want.

  25. “Still, it’s a sad sign of the these incredibly partisan, increasingly tribal times that Trump supporters and Trump opponents cannot exist side by side, knitting in relative peace.”

    The Left silences the Right, and Reason tut tuts “Both sides!”

  26. “are not prohibited from discussing their political views, but that “hate groups and intolerance are different from other types of political positions.” Being pro-_____ apparently falls into the latter category.”

  27. As someone who disdains both major parties and their elected bossy idiots, I find it’s getting harder to avoid politics. It’s sad that something as innocuous as a site for knitting has be tainted with the perpetual struggle of douchebag vs giant turd.

    In my own life, I’ve increasingly had to politely ignore friends who say the dumbest things about the ridiculous false choice of the major parties. It’s like noticing a drunken friend has peed himself and you’re torn between wanting to tell him to go change and just leaving in disgust, so you just try not to look and mutter some unrelated platitude.

    1. Certain political segments used to argue for limiting the scope and reach of government specifically to avoid the problem you confront.

      Of course, those voices were (and still are) largely ‘on the right’ so therefore are icky and must be dismissed by all ‘free thinking’ people.

      Meanwhile, foreseeable consequences are not unintended consequences.

      1. I said good day, Xer.

  28. It’s not in the federal trademark database, but there might be some kind of product which uses that name and established a trademark through usage………………….gocash7.com++
    Don’t copy “++ ” with web addresst

  29. Ravelry’s a niche site with a tiny budget, and something like 5 full time employees. Calling them “big yarn” or whatever’s silly. While they haven’t spoken about why they instituted the ban, the mods at rpg.net (who they credited in their statement for their similar ban) have. A huge portion of their workload was dealing with drama caused by pro-Trump people specifically, so they took action to reduce their workload and prevent burnout.
    It doesn’t have to be every Trumpist. If 20% of the pro Trump people on your site are causing 50% of your support issues (numbers completely made up), then a blanket ban might be a win for support. It quickly gets rid of the loons, and the more rational supporters can take their political discussions elsewhere.
    Rpg.net also recently had a 2 week blanket ban on all US political discussions, for similar reasons. People who couldn’t handle that were vigorously invited to go elsewhere.

    1. They SAY it’s because Trump is a white supremacist, but it’s because things got ugly in the comment section of a pro-Trump pattern on the site, and someone’s personal information got shared publicly and the individual (a liberal) was incessantly harassed and threatened (by conservatives). As a member and user of Ravelry, I can tell you that in my somewhat limited experience on the site – I mostly browse and purchase patterns there – the liberals are the squeaky wheels. You often hound the conservative forums and troll the posters mercilessly.

      1. Sorry – THEY hound the conservative forums. Oops.

  30. […] content that promoted white supremacy and lumped in with that anything that promoted Donald Trump on the grounds that “Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white […]

  31. […] content that promoted white supremacy and lumped in with that anything that promoted Donald Trump on the grounds that “Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white […]

  32. […] “Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy.” […]

Please to post comments