First it’s notable that Philly Socialists did not make public announcements against me immediately upon my expulsion in April 2016. Why? Because honestly many in the leadership were torn by the contradictions of the thing; they were internally divided by hesitancy. They knew I was expelled on flimsy grounds for political reasons. But now they’ve had a year to bully each other into line and drink each other’s Kool-aid, and be annoyed by my continued political existence. Having expelled me as a “dangerous abuser,” they have to continue acting like I’m dangerous, or admit the charges were convenient pretext for a political maneuver. These Facebook announcements are a ritual they need to re-confirm the belief. Apparently a year is what it takes to swallow your own excuses.
But the Philly Socialists core wants absolute dominance over the Philadelphia Left and I am an obstacle to that dominance. I am their inconvenient truth.
They don’t want my story to be told because it makes them look bad so they bury me under as much crap as possible so I literally can’t appear anywhere.
The reality of social media in 2017 is for me to even be on the Internet is an intensely uncomfortable cognitive dissonance for them. Like the Guilty Remnant in The Leftovers, I am the living reminder of what they did. They don’t just want me to be gone from the Left. They want me to stop breathing. They want me to disappear. The pressure they exert on me is hard to describe, but I take heart in knowing that my simple being alive makes them feel the same exact way, or they wouldn’t be going over the top freaking out about me right now.
They are intensifying the drama with me because they are feeling the pressure of my courage, the pressure of my presence, the pressure of my refusal to politically and/or literally die, and under the pressure of this contradiction they are starting to crack.
They wanted me off the Internet. I stayed on.
They wanted me off the streets. I stayed in them.
They wanted me out of meetings. I kept going.
They wanted, when people casually namedrop “Philly Socialists” around me, for me to never mention that I got expelled. That I ran for chair, or was part of an opposition. I even bring up that I got kicked for sexual harassment accusations too – I don’t hide it, I don’t omit it, I put it right up front. People seem surprised that I’m so transparent about it. It’s because I’m not afraid. It’s because I have nothing to hide. It’s because the truth is on my side.
They wanted me to be silent about my victimization at their hands, like a good little victim. I wouldn’t be.
They wanted me to feel weird talking to women. Hell, when I tell some women I got kicked out of Philly Socialists for sexual harassment, they laugh, because most people are familiar with the type of the drama that goes on in the Left and know to be skeptical. Some have issues, it’s true, but the only ones who don’t seem to understand the context upon discussing it in depth are invested Philly Socialists members, who psychologically resist understanding, because they have an emotional investment in seeing their work as positive.
On one lighthearted note, I have now officially been denounced by the leader of a socialist group for believing that I’m a god (a god in a green onesie and an astronaut helmet, no less). This has got to be some kind of Guinness Book of World Records.
The fact that the Philly Socialists core even has to acknowledge my existence means essentially that my courage against their intimidation has born out – they tried to quietly sweep me under the rug, they preferred to silently undermine me by spreading rumors about me one-on-one to people without making a scene and risking their own organization’s reputation, but my refusal to die made itself enough of a problem that it just couldn’t stay quiet anymore.
Now they are exposed.