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Feminist video game critic forced to leave her home after online rape and death threats

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Game critic Anita Sarkeesian speaks in a YouTube video (Screenshot)

Anita Sarkeesian, creator of an online video series analyzing problematic representations of women in video games, was forced to leave her home on Tuesday after death threats made online against herself and her family, Polygon reported.

“Some very scary threats have just been made against me and my family,” Sarkeesian posted on Tuesday. “Contacting authorities now.”

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After confirming she had found a safe place to stay, Sarkeesian posted a screengrab of the threats, posted by a Twitter account calling itself “Kevin Dobson,” which identified her address and her parents, as well as several vulgar threats, including one to “ram a hot tire iron up [her] c*nt”:

Sarkeesian threats

“I usually don’t share the really scary stuff,” Sarkeesian wrote on a post accompanying the image. “But it’s important for folks to know how bad it gets.”

Sarkeesian reported the threats a day after she released a new episode of her series, Feminist Frequency, dealing with games that feature sexualized female victims or female characters introduced solely to highlight either a villain’s aggression or provide motivation for players to complete their missions.

The effect of introducing these “mature themes,” she argues in the episode, is the trivialization of painful experiences that are all too common. Sarkeesian alludes to a 2011 study by the Centers for Disease Control that found nearly one in five U.S. women reported having suffered either a rape or an attempted rape, while one in four reported having been beaten by a domestic partner.

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“When games casually use sexualized violence as a ham-fisted form of character development for the bad guys, it reinforces a popular misconception about gendered violence by framing it as something abnormal, as a cruelty committed only by the most transparently evil strangers,” she says in the video. “In reality, however, violence against women — and sexual violence, in particular — is a common everyday occurence, often perpetrated by ‘normal men,’ known and trusted by those targeted.”

Sarkeesian was also the target of an intimidation campaign last year, with opponents of her work posting fake pornographic images of her online, falsely “flagging” her videos on YouTube, and threatening her personal safety.

Watch Sarkeesian’s latest commentary, as posted on Monday, below.

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Maddow reveals how one state stood up to Trump’s USPS cuts — and won

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MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow's opening segment on Friday focused on a positive story of political pressure stopping one of the Trump administration's attacks on the U.S. Postal Service.

Maddow reported how NBC Montana reporter Maritsa Georgiou had doggedly reported on the removal of postal boxes in Missoula, where she is based. Missoula has been a long-time Democratic Party stronghold.

Montana has a competitive U.S. Senate election in 2020, with Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock challenging first-term Republican Sen. Steve Daines.

As Georgiou chased the story, she learned there were also plans to remove boxes in the battleground of Billings. And more planned for the blue town of Bozeman. And other towns.

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2020 Election

Pepsi joins the chorus of people dunking on Tucker Carlson over Kamala Harris

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The Pepsi soda company mocked Fox News personality Tucker Carlson on Friday evening.

On Tuesday, Carlson flipped out after a guest attempted to teach him how to pronounce the name of Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), who is running for vice president on Joe Biden's ticket.

Video of the exchange was posted on Twitter by Nikki McCann Ramirez, a researcher at the watchdog group Media Matters for America.

Tucker Carlson loses it when a guest corrects his pronunciation of Kamala Harris's name pic.twitter.com/1fHIrPGuwN

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Trump supporter shut down on Fox News: ‘Turns out Stephen Moore is not a very good epidemiologist’

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University of Michigan economics professor Justin Wolfers mocked Trump 2016 economics advisor Stephen Moore on Fox News over the administrations bungled response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Let's not have economists play epidemiologists here, mate," Wolfers said in his Australian accent.

"We actually tried Steve's prescription, which was not shutting down, that's what the sunbelt states did," he explained.

"What have you got? You've got spreading disease everywhere and you've got the economies there forced to shut down," he explained.

"We tried what Stephen Moore wanted -- it turns out Stephen Moore is not a very good epidemiologist," Wolfers concluded.

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