Baseless accusations against Twitter’s former head of trust and safety Yoel Roth caused Roth to flee his home due to an escalation in threats against him after the release of the “Twitter Files.”
“Yoel Roth, who resigned from the social media company in November, has in recent weeks faced a storm of attacks and threats of violence following the release of the so-called “Twitter Files” — internal Twitter communications that new owner Musk has released through journalists including Matt Taibbi and Bari Weiss,” CNN reported.
Elon and the people he assigned to “cover” the Twitter Files drop published internal messages of former employees, leading to the Nazi conspirators to mass harass Roth because he was involved in the decision, among many (back in the days when Twitter had an actual responsible board and a Trust and Safety team of serious people), to ban former president Trump after January 6th.
But things got even worse over the weekend when Elon tweeted what amounted to a failure-to-comprehend-words take on Roth’s 300 page doctoral dissertation in reply to another baseless tweet suggesting the former employee was in favor of pedophilia.
This is an accusation conservatives are lobbing at gay and trans people so consistently that it’s become shorthand trigger cue to harass and threaten the target. It’s based on a Q-Anon theory going back to the complete lie of PizzaGate.
Musk worshipers (and bots) and the far Right pro-Nazi types swarming Twitter after Elon’s takeover threatened Roth and called him a “groomer.” Then the conservative (formerly banned until Musk freed her) terrorism-inciter (she incited attacks on hospitals that give gender-affirming care) account “Libs of TikTok” attacked, conservative media amplified, and threats followed.
Elon insinuates that Yoel Roth is a pedophile then Chaya Raichik tweets about it and her replies are filled with violent death threats against Yoel. pic.twitter.com/tmEnLrM2ol
— Alejandra Caraballo (@Esqueer_) December 11, 2022
A rogue’s gallery of dishonest influencers have spent the last couple hours attempting to smear former Twitter Trust and Safety head Yoel Roth as a pedophile via old out-of-context tweets.
Predictably, the far-right hate mob is now spamming Roth with death threats. pic.twitter.com/CEQeVzCGtQ
— Conspirador Norteño (@conspirator0) December 10, 2022
So that stewed over the weekend to the point where Roth had to flee his home.
“A person familiar with Roth’s situation told CNN threats made against the former Twitter employee escalated exponentially after Musk engaged in the pedophilia conspiracy theory.”
Roth is Jewish and is openly gay. Twitter has become fertile ground for far Right neo-Nazis trolling Jewish people and conservatives continue to harass gay people with grotesque and baseless accusations that do real harm to actual victims of child sexual assault, while also putting the person being lied about in harm’s way.
Listen: Twitter is Putting the Right’s Adoration of Hitler on Display for the World:
Given some of the politicians, religious leaders and sports heroes of the far-Right, the accusations of “groomer” read more like an attempt to justify and normalize sexual assault than a real accusation. This is not a crowd that seems to care about actual sexual abuse of anyone… unless they can use the accusation as a weapon to harm a target.
But facts don’t stop the mob. The mob has been summoned to go after Roth. It did. Violent threats followed. He had to leave his home.
This is being done under the guise of “free speech” by Twitter’s owner, who is pretending not to understand that hate speech and inciting violence are not conducive to a “digital town square.”
Let us all hope that Roth is safe and can return to his home soon. This is political terrorism and none of us are actually free if we live in a country that allows people to be targeted like this over and over again and does nothing to stop it.
Sarah has been credentialed to cover President Barack Obama, then VP Joe Biden, 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, and exclusively interviewed Speaker Nancy Pelosi multiple times and exclusively covered her first home appearance after the first impeachment of then President Donald Trump.
Sarah is two-time Telly award winning video producer and a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.