The breaking news (at least if you are paying attention) that Zoe Quinn’s reckless accusations on Twitter against another game developer has resulted in him committing suicide is going to cause a major flare up. It will lead to another #gamergate hate fest, and another mass reaction against these developers that will very likely include unpalatable things. What will be missed is the human tragedy that has occurred. A family lost a son and brother. Friends lost someone they cared for. Game developers lost a talent (no matter if it was modest or not). What has Zoe Quinn lost? She deleted her Twitter so that she could hide from what she had done.
The real story here is that we need to stop rushing to judge people. Before the howling about how I am rushing to judge Quinn, no I am not. This is not the first reckless and, very likely, false accusation she has lobbed. She is a huckster of the highest caliber. This is not taking into account the almost $100,000 she suckered people out of for a game that will never materialize. This all started because she was losing clout and attention of the weirdos on Twitter. She was not in the headlines anymore. In order to win that dopamine hit, she decided to just claim she was raped (again). With that Tweet it was on. Three other women jumped on the bandwagon and swore on Twitter that Alec had done the same thing to them. Why in the hell did these women 1.) not go to the fucking police if they had been assaulted and 2.) wait for ten fucking years to claim this happened?
The answer is ugly and simple. Victim hood has overtaken commonsense in this nation (and several other Western democracies). The chances that there was even evidence that supported these claims is highly unlikely. Like with Vic and Andy Signore all it took was a woman saying “I was sexually assaulted.” It is the same mentality that led to Smollett thinking that faking a hate crime was a good idea. It leads college students to post racist and sexist messages on doors, cars, and internet message boards then claim they were “victims.” But the question remains “Why do we rush to defend these people?”
We defend these people because we want to defend those who have been hurt the most. No sane person wants women to be raped, African-Americans to be targeted as it is 1950s Alabama, or any other terrible, hateful acts. But, we often rush to judgement. These claims are often made in echo chambers where they will be believed. They are not made to police (most of the time) or to authorities that could actually investigate and punish those who are responsible. They do this because they know that the most powerful court in the world is that of the Public Opinion.
Alec did not have to be convicted by a court of law because a bunch of people who think that Twitter is the real world claimed it was true. Vic did not deserve due process because people on Twitter had said he was a rapist and a pedophile. Who needs the protection of legal proceedings when we already know the accused is guilty. Except we do not know. We cannot know without a fair and unbiased investigation.
The Supreme Court once said that “cross-examination is the greatest engine for the discovery of truth.” When we rush to say “That person is such a monster!” we deny them the right to question the accuser. We deny them the right to be heard. If you ever watch one of these threads where a person is accused, check for the responses to someone who says “Let’s hang on for a second and let the process work.” See the below image in response to someone trying to say “Cool your jets” to the Kavanaugh fiasco:
Can they prove that it “already ruined her life?” No. In fact, the woman who accused the now Supreme Court Justice has a really good life. She has a loyal husband, a good job, and from all appearances a fairly healthy social life. How dare someone point that out!
In the end, Quinn is a sociopath who revels in destroying innocent people. This will not be the first time, and I fear it will not be the last. It is sad that it took a man taking his own life for people to understand the dangers of this behavior are real. We should mourn that this has gotten this far. We should also take a moment in our lives to learn to be cynical of people who make claims on social media, years after the fact. We should learn to let the police and other authorities do the job that we pay them for. Social media companies need to start taking these people off the sites. More damage will be done before we come to our senses, but I know that we are capable of stopping judging accusations without evidence.