Leave Nora Loreto Alone

April 13th, 2018 | R. Rados
nora loreto

When conservative provocateur, Gavin McInnes, wrote a piece for TakiMag about transgenderism being a mental illness, the advertising firm he founded fired him. A lot of people, including McInnes, believe that transgenderism is a mental illness—or, at least, they believe transgenderism is something that should be treated psychologically rather than with surgery and hormone therapy. After McInnes was fired, people rallied behind him in support for what they believed was the truth. Fast forward to 2018 and those very same people are calling for Nora Loreto to be fired.


In a follow-up piece to the controversial transgender article that cost him his job, McInnes wrote:



In the article that shut down my life, “Transphobia Is Perfectly Natural,” I likened sex-change surgery to self-mutilation. As the mob chased me through the village with their torches, I yelled back, “They have BIID!” (body integrity identity disorder), referring to nutbars who have decided they don’t want their limbs.



That was in 2015. In 2018, a freelance writer on the opposite side of the political spectrum is experiencing much of the same. Her name is Nora Loreto and she made a controversial tweet about the amount of money raised for the family of the Humboldt hockey team members that lost their lives in a tragic accident on April 6th.  

 

Just like you, I disagree with her tweet almost completely. It seems insensitive and tasteless to mention race and privilege as factors in how much money has been raised, but that doesn't necessarily make it wrong. More than a thousand people probably died in Canada that same day, but we aren't donating money to their families or wearing any specific kinds of clothes to commemorate them. That's just a fact. Whether you agree with Loreto's views about that fact doesn't change the fact that it's a fact. As a society, we've collectively decided that these lives should be treated differently than the various other lives that were lost that day. Our reasons for treating these lost lives differently might differ, but Nora Loreta stated what she thinks is the reason. Agree or not, Loreto strongly believes her own statement—just as McInnes and his followers believed his.


Since she made her infamous tweet, Loreto has been bombarded with death threats, taunts, insults and calls to be fired. She has been posting screenshots of them on Twitter, in case you're skeptical. Prominent people on social media have encouraged their supporters to contact Maclean's and other publishers to have her fired. It's probably safe to bet that many of these same people are conservatives who rallied behind Gavin McInnes—in fact, I know they are, because I follow some of them on Twitter.


The free speech warriors behind Ontario Proud were some of the first to call for Loreto to be made "famous for all the wrong reasons".  

Speech has consequences, I agree. Forming lynch mobs to take down people we disagree with, on the other hand, is dangerous and disgusting. If your right to speak is ever taken away, it'll be at the hands of angry lynch mobs who let their emotions overtake their logic. The tit-for-tat war between the left and the right will end with both sides eventually being silenced.


It's time to start defending the people we disagree with. Instead of giving in to the temptations of anger, hatred and bias, we should start fighting to protect free speech at all costs. It will end badly for all of us if we continue to selectively choose which kinds of opinions to protect. Before jumping on the bandwagon, we should double check the direction it's headed.  


People from all sides have attacked Nora Loreto, which makes it even more important to defend her.


As for her timing, it doesn't matter. Some people say she should have waited to express her opinion. But, what exactly should she have waited for? For some people, one year is too soon. For some, one minute isn't soon enough. There is no way to regulate or enforce a totally subjective timeline. Furthermore, telling someone when they're allowed to express a controversial or unsavoury opinion is the equivalent of telling them they can't at all. There is no right time to speak.


You can sit back and say things like, “whatever, that bitch deserves it.” Or, you can defend her right to offend you. In the long term, you might be better served by putting your emotions aside in favour of free speech.


You might be better served by not being such a fucking snowflake.