Why I'm Not Afraid of the Internet
Excerpted from The Geek Feminist Revolution
by Kameron Hurley
My grandmother grew up in Nazi-occupied France. When she was nineteen, she and her friends
found a Nazi boot containing a severed human leg while walking along the river. For every Nazi
the French killed, the Nazis would kill ten French citizens. So how many would the Nazis kill, my
grandmother thought, for a severed leg? She and her friends huffed the boot and its fleshy
occupant back into the river and spent the next month waiting to hear how many of them would
be shot in the street.
There's nothing I experience online that can rival what my grandmother went through.
I've been living loudly online for ten years, getting my fair share of abuse and threats,
but--vastly more often--grateful notes for having the courage to speak boldly. My
grandmother's stories gave me a great deal of perspective--both on life and on the tactics of
terror, and how silence serves a darker future. Unchecked hate can be insidious, and can creep
up and consume whole swaths of a culture before they even know what's happening. Which is
why you have to keep speaking, and fighting for a better future.