Content warning: This article mentions rape, racism and homophobia.
Andrew Tate has recently gained notoriety due to his controversial opinions about various groups, from women to the LGBTQ community. Particularly, he has recently been banned from most major social media networks, which has incited a conversation about the extent of freedom of speech. Additionally, this situation brings up the harmful impacts some prejudiced opinions can have when they are cast around the world through social media networks.
Before diving into the harmful opinions and strategies Tate has and utilizes, it is important to understand how he became a public figure. Tate first became famous through the reality television show Big Brother, from which he was eliminated under circumstances that foreshadowed his current stance on gender inequality. He was eliminated due to a video depicting him allegedly abusing a woman, though he denies these claims.
After further growing his following through his kickboxing career, Andrew Tate started to teach online courses under the name “Hustler’s University” talking about cryptocurrency, stock analysis and other money-making tactics. Even though the affiliate program ended when Tate was banned from Facebook and Instagram, it was an essential part of Tate’s strategy in spreading his propaganda. Those who paid the $49.99 entry fee could earn commissions for posting videos of Tate on social media and enticing more people to join.
This strategy provided Tate with an unstoppable way of sharing his misogynistic, controversial and dangerous views, as he could not be held accountable when his videos were being widely spread by others. Additionally, by multiplying the amount of Hustler’s University subscribers, he was still making money off the spread of this content.
When it comes to his views, it is important to note that though his sexist views are widely known, he has shared controversial and prejudiced opinions on almost every social issue. In addition to posting racist and homophobic slurs on Twitter, which led to him being banned from the platform, he has also tweeted that “depression isn’t real,” viewing it as a way for people to justify their “laziness.” Besides the fact that his statements are incredibly hurtful to a range of communities, his choice to ignore science and genetics is beyond appalling.
Tate’s controversial statements also include likening women to dogs, stating on a podcast that “you can’t be responsible for a dog if it doesn’t obey you, … or a woman that doesn’t obey you,” which highlights how inhumanely he thinks of women as a whole. He has also said that women are partially responsible for rape. He is problematic on so many levels, blaming women for his own immaturity, for his own lack of ability to control his primitive instincts and for his disgusting mentality, and all with an audience of millions.
Tate is not just joking, as he and others have sometimes claimed, as he has openly discussed allegations of abuse that he faced in the U.K., which led to a police investigation. Tate discussed his reasoning for the move to Romania in a YouTube video, stating corruption is “far more accessible” there. “I’m not a f—–g rapist but I like the idea of just being able to do what I want,” Tate said in the now-deleted video. In August, his house was raided by Romanian authorities, who said that it was part of an ongoing investigation involving human trafficking and abuse allegations.
Ultimately, it was the right choice to ban Tate from social media platforms. It may feel like a good idea to provide people with platforms through which they can share their opinions freely and without judgment. In this case, however, Andrew Tate’s ban from most social media is well-deserved, as his content has been actively harmful. Teachers around the world are highlighting the impact his viral videos have had on young men in their classes and, in particular, the way they treat their female classmates and teachers. Andrew Tate’s ban should continue to encompass all platforms.
Scrolling past a video when his face appears might be the best move you could make to protect your mental stability, sanity and inner peace. Tufts students might be grown-up enough to realize what he is saying is wrong, but not everyone who is exposed to him and his outrageous ideologies is. His impact on the younger generation must not be ignored. His influence on a young and impressionable generation of people, especially young men who are just beginning to form ideas about their surroundings and the world, is thus very important, and so access to his content should be as limited as possible.