Scroll down to the bottom of the page for the 2015 update, and why it is all even worse than I let on, in the original article.
Relatively recently, there has been a lot of heated discussion, accusations and counter-accusations over an alleged sexual harassment incident at Readercon 23 held in Burlington, Massachusetts back in July 2012.
If you do a Google search for ‘Genevieve Valentine’, ‘René Walling’, ‘readercon’, well I got 1660 hits!
In July 2012 Genevieve Valentine, an attendee at imaginative literature conference Readercon 23 (July 12–15), reported an incident of harassment by another attendee, René Walling, to the Readercon 23 committee and the Readercon board (the committee being the conference organisers and the board being the body that controlled the conference over multiple years).
On 27th July 2012, the Readercon board told Valentine that Walling would be issued with a two-year ban, in contravention of their own policy:
Harassment of any kind — including physical assault, battery, deliberate intimidation, stalking, or unwelcome physical attentions — will not be tolerated at Readercon and will result in permanent suspension of membership.
They initially refused to issue a public statement but issued one later on the 27th.
There was a very large amount of criticism of the board for contravening their own policy, even by people who felt that a zero tolerance/automatic lifetime ban policy was not idea.
On August 5 2012, the board revised their decision to a lifetime ban of Walling, and all five members of the Readercon board announced their resignation.
Here are just a few of the bloggers who have weighed in with an opinion:
And from Valentine herself:
Valentine herself gives an update over here.
Liz Williams, Adam-Troy Castro, Robert V. S. Redick (author of The Red Wolf Conspiracy!) give their support in the comments.
Liberal Jewish genre writer David L Edelman blogged quite heavily on it, www.davidlouisedelman.com/…/another-account-of-the-readercon-m… and even got into a bit of a (very minor) disagreement with the uh Jewish Rose Fox on that front.
I have authored several articles in which Fox has featured. Fox is willfully oblivious to China Mieville’s extreme and vicious anti-Semitism at the very least. I mean at the least. The same can be said for other genre Court Jewry, Charles Stross, Scott Edelman, Lavie “the Palestinians have become the true Jews” Tidhar, Laura Anne Gilman and Felix Gilman among them (just check my archives for the ugly details). In fact the responses from Court Jewry to my Mieville series is a scandal in its own right. At best, denial of Mieville’s anti-Semitism from Court Jewry. Perverse shooting the messenger (that means myself – red wolf) and pathetic self-loathing at worst (more on that further down). For now the lid is on this utter and shameful disgrace…
Compare and contrast this Readercon alleged sexual harassment incident with the very limp and pathetic responses (if we can even call them responses) to the late best-selling genre writer James P Hogan outing himself as a Holocaust Denier. In fact upon Hogan’s passing Tangent editor Dave Truesdale outed himself as a Holocaust Revisionist/Denier on the Asimov’s Magazine Discussion Forum (I was threatened with a banning from Asimov’s admin for speaking out against this Holocaust Denialism and calling a spade a spade in this regard). Truesdale would win support in his spat with myself from SF fandom and even pros (like short story writer and reviewer Marian Powell and genre editor Sam Hidaka).
And then it all went downhill from there…
Upon my publicizing all this at my blog, I was attacked and mocked over this self-same Holocaust Revisionism series by the anti-Israel liberal ‘Jewish’ genre fan Mark Pontin (who had no idea what he was doing). Nick Mamatas dismissed my blog as ‘not intentionally very funny’ the self-same day I published the last article in that 13 article series. On Holocaust Denialism. Up to that point in time roughly 80% of my blog articles pertained directly to Holocaust Denial among genre pros, and the support said pros got from fandom (at the Asimov’s Discussion Forum). Tim Lieder, hack editor and uh ‘writer’ and convert to Judaism, a Nick Mamatas suck-up, went even further than Pontin (and Mamatas, in attempting to defend the latter’s indefensible screw-up). Lieder not only dismissed my series on Holocaust Denialism as an embarrassment to myself, a series in which those I accuse of Holocaust Revisionism are not so guilty!! Lieder continued to do so after I pointed out to him what he had done. Repeatedly. Even Pontin realized he screwed up even if he couldn’t admit as much. Lieder (who calls himself a Zionist!) still has not taken in his obscene and asinine foul-up. To this day.
Paul Graham Raven would tweet obscenely and obliviously on my series on Holocaust Revisionism (a tweet that got a thumbs up from the uh Jewish genre writer Charles Stross no less. Same link). Court Jew genre writer Felix Gilman made a similar foul-up: when scrolling down through my blog, he hit my series on Holocaust Revisionism, and tweeted dismissively and obliviously! See a pattern here? You wanna talk cognitive dissonance?! [UPDATE I actually make no bones about the fact that Raven, Stross, Gilman are horribly anti-Semitic in later articles at this blog]
NOT A SINGLE GENRE PRO – JEWISH OR GENTILE – has publicly condemned Tangent editor Dave Truesdale for his Holocaust Revisionism. Not one. As the above sketch reveals, it’s been way worse than mere deafening silence! There has been a grudging admission from Mamatas on my series in this respect, but he couldn’t bring himself to mention Truesdale by name, despite dismissing Truesdale as a “dipshit” years before! Not a single genre pro has publicly condemned Nick Mamatas for his odious and oblivious foul-up in this respect (re his timing in dismissing my blog out of hand). On the contrary Mamatas would be defended by his fan club in this respect (when Mamatas simply and grossly misrepresented what went down between him and myself in the most harebrained fashion). I have also authored several other articles on Mamatas detailing his numerous rabidly anti-Semitic associations and odious, repugnant blather. Liberal Jewish genre pros (such as Tidhar, Stross and others) remain on very good terms with Mamatas.
Since that Holocaust Revisionism series and its chilling and sinister aftermath, as I allude to above re Rose Fox and other liberal genre Jewry, I have published a detailed series on far Leftist genre writer and editor China Mieville and his relentless and rabid anti-Semitism. I give tons of evidence for his prejudice. I have published articles on the horrible anti-Semitism of editor Kathryn Cramer (wife of editor David Hartwell) and evidence for British liberal writers Iain Banks and Ken MacLeod’s extreme anti-Semitism. Also a series on British liberal genre writer Richard K Morgan’s hero worship (by his own admission) of the hardcore radical Left Jew-hate journalist (an anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist for one) and staunch Hezbollah supporter John Pilger. Also a series on Night Shade Books head honcho Jeremy Lassen and his fawning reverence for vicious anti-Semite Glenn Greenwald. Other articles include an exposé of Cory Doctorow’s odious political blunders; his warped defense of the indefensible, anti-Semite Kathryn Cramer’s slur on murdered security contractor Michael Teague in Iraq as well. Also articles on Hal Duncan (who has equated Zionism with fascism and Muslim extremism) and other stuff.
I have published a three article series on Aussie liberal ‘Jewish’ genre writer Anna Tambour’s in-your-face anti-Semitism. She put up a link approvingly to a ‘greedy Jews’ article from a Muslim extremist website (at the now defunct Night Shade Books Forum back in 2005) whilst telling us said article was “milder than it might have been”! My reply to her uh incredible response on that front (yes she responded at her blog!).
There has not been a single word of condemnation of the ‘Jewish’ Tambour for her indisputable anti-Semitism from genre pros or fandom, NOT ONE WORD; even though my blog was popularized (in a very negative and entirely dishonest light) via the pro-Palestinian Israeli uh Jewish genre writer Lavie Tidhar (at his own blog, facebook and via twitter) the self-same day my last article in that Tambour series was published. You know the self-same day Tidhar accused me of sending him a (non-existent) ‘death threat’ via e-mail. He did so by misrepresenting in the most harebrained fashion my e-mail to him (and other writers). He didn’t even mention Tambour in that blog entry of his (when it was fundamental to my e-mail and what I was actually getting at re my allusion to Tidhar’s political credibility being dead in the water).
Then again Tidhar dismissed my series on Mieville and the tons of evidence I presented for Mieville’s vicious Judenhass as “increasingly rabid, if incoherent” that same day (in the self-same blog entry. See same link above). None of the writers who gave public support and sympathy to Tidhar’s slander (taking Tidhar at his word, and clearly not skeptical of his description of my Mieville and Mamatas articles as ‘rabid and incoherent’) against my person – that includes Ian McDonald, Rose Fox, Laura Anne Gilman, Paolo Bacigalupi, Chesya Burke, Paul Graham Raven, Paul J. McAuley, Alastair Reynolds, Charles Stross, Hal Duncan, Tobias Buckell, Charles Coleman Finlay, Scott Edelman and others – had or have anything to say on Anna Tambour’s vicious anti-Semitism. Nothing at all. This was despite the fact that my Anna Tambour articles were front and center at my blog at the time; and my reply to Tidhar’s slander followed within 24 hours, in which I published the actual e-mail I sent to him, pointing out Tambour’s anti-Semitism was central to what I was actually getting at. Liberal UK genre writer Michael Cobley (defending Tidhar at his blog) did even worse (or better! depends how you look at it), actually denying Tambour’s anti-Semitism and Mieville’s by the by.
The whole Readercon alleged sexual harassment incident reminds me of the Connie Willis/Harlan Ellison ‘breast incident’ during WorldCon back in 2006. Thousands of hits via a Google search (I got over 45oo with a fairly specific search). Of course Willis and Ellison are very well-known genre writers. That appears the big difference between these two respective and unfortunate alleged sexual harassment affairs. And Ellison hasn’t been banned of course, from anything. Plenty gossip and fur flying over that earlier incident of course!
Yet google ‘Anna Tambour’ and ‘anti-Semitism’, google ‘Kathryn Cramer’ and ‘anti-Semitism’ or ‘anti-Semite’, friggin’ ‘Holocaust Denial’ and/or ‘Holocaust Revisionism’ and ‘Dave Truesdale’, and the only returns are to my blog (or aggregators and ‘URL bots’ in which my blog is picked up). That’s it. I include TWITTER likewise. Yet Cramer came in for plenty of criticism over the so-called racefail controversy alone! The only criticisms of liberal Brit genre writers Mieville and Banks for their indisputable anti-Semitism comes from non-genre folk or to a very muted degree, fandom (see my series on both of them for the details). Not a single genre Jewish pro writer/editor/agent has anything public to say about Mieville’s horrible anti-Semitism. As I allude to above, the reality is even worse… (Tidhar takes the cake here)
My advice to those of you contemplating what you can and cannot get away with in the genre community…
You cannot get away with sexual harassment, at least man on woman sexual harassment. In fact lifetime bans may result (well if you are a relative nobody at least, without any clout). However not only can you get away with the most vicious Jew-hatred, especially in its modern guise (witness Mieville, Kathryn Cramer, Iain Banks, Ken MacLeod and others); you can even get away with Jew-hatred in its old-fashioned in-your-face guise. Witness Anna Tambour and her ‘greedy Jews’ blather, citing a Muslim extremist website as her trusted source! And what of conservative editor Dave Truesdale’s Holocaust Revisionism? No problem. No matter. Genre Court Jewry will be the first to cover up all this and sweep it under the carpet (and shoot the messenger besides). Among my biggest critics are the uh Jews…
Clearly it is a taboo to even acknowledge the most extreme and indisputable anti-Semitism within the genre community. I touch on the reasons why here and here. Keep the monster in the cupboard, out of sight and out of mind.
But that monster ain’t going anywhere…
UPDATE Adam-Troy Castro would be the only Jewish genre pro to go on public record responding to this article (to his credit). Inadvertently though, Castro and his crew would end up proving my point, that is the taboo of facing up to hardcore anti-Semitism coming from within the genre community. For why exactly that is, consult my final ‘Zombie Chronicles’ blog overview article, and the relevant commentary in that article to the Adam-Troy Castro article, and pertinently the commentary of mine (in the ‘Zombie Chronicles’ article itself) to the follow-up article in reply to Chuck Rothman and Dave Truesdale.
The consequences of the whole desperate and pathetic denialism by genre Jewry of the extreme Jew-hatred in the genre pro community, would come to a head in the most absurd way, with the Dave Truesdale Petition Affair in February 2014.