I Was Attacked by “Social Justice Warriors,” but My Morals Did Not Change

If your morals change all because of how someone treated you, then either your morals sucked, or you had none from the start

Savannah Worley

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A metal pole with a sticker that reads, “Every Human Has Rights”
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Once upon a time, I was accused of being a neo-Nazi con artist on Tumblr. Looking back on it and knowing what sort of person I am, it’s kind of funny. If you read most of the stories I’ve written on Medium, it becomes even funnier.

I mostly wrote about anti-racism along with other bloggers. We were called “social justice warriors,” or “SJWs,” by right-wing trolls who, in later years, became the alt-right. They then became Trump supporters. I wouldn’t be surprised if some of them ended up participating in the January 6 insurrection.

One day, one prominent anti-racist blogger didn’t like how I criticized her. The accusations and the smear campaign that followed absolutely destroyed me psychologically and emotionally. I was doxxed, harassed, and had hundreds, if not thousands, of people believing I was a “sociopathic con artist who worked with neo-Nazis.” The blogger then made up very wild stories about me, including but not limited to the suggestion that I slept with my mother’s boyfriends when I was a teenager. That was how outrageous all of her lies about me were.

People believed her because she was a popular blogger. I was accused of being a “con artist” because I panhandled online, which I’m not proud of, but I was facing a difficult time financially and needed help. And I guess the “sociopathic neo-Nazi” part came from the fact I simply criticized how the blogger was handling situations. She also distorted my posts and photoshopped some screenshots to make it seem like I was in cahoots with people she also alleged were neo-Nazis. She performed every classic smear campaign move, and unfortunately, she was effective.

The smear campaign was so severe that I ended up withdrawing from grad school and was even hospitalized for suicidal thoughts. It is part of the reason why, up until 2020 when I created this Medium account, I never published anything about myself online. Although this happened about eight years ago, to this day, I am still afraid of her or her supporters finding me and attacking me.

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Savannah Worley

Essayist who writes about social justice, racism, and mental health | she/her | Buy me a coffee: https://ko-fi.com/skworley