Beliefs Brian Pellot: On Freedom Culture Ethics Institutions Opinion

Get rich quick! How to crowdfund your intolerance in 3 easy steps

Money!
Money!

Warning: Satire

Money!

Money!

Once upon a time it took chutzpah and perseverance to publicly hate on disenfranchised minority groups. The KKK and neo-Nazis staged marches to intimidate non-whites, gays and Jews, publicly posting flyers and burning crosses along the way. It was hard work, all that bigotry.

Then along came the Internet, offering cheap and easy platforms to spread polarizing vitriol further than even Hitler could have dreamed. With the rise of crowdfunding, you can now make thousands of dollars spewing misinformation and intolerance from the comfort of your own home. Achieve hatemonger gold with these three easy steps:

  1. Spew intolerance

Say or do something controversial. The best part? It doesn’t even need to make sense!

Memories Pizza in Walkerton, Indiana gets a gold star for this tactic. At the height of the state’s “religious freedom” hubbub this spring, co-owner Crystal O’Connor announced that Memories would refuse to cater to theoretical (i.e. non-existent) gay couples who want their wedding guests to eat pizza. Nonsensical, yes, but it worked! Social media trolls threatened to burn Memories to the ground. Memories closed its doors for eight days, reopening to a packed house after a GoFundMe campaign brought in nearly $850,000 from more than 29,000 pizza lovers/gay wedding haters.

Riling up the liberal media by attacking something they love is crucial. This Nebraska woman is suing ALL OF THE GAYS, and just look at how much media coverage she’s getting. Try peeing on an atheist’s lawn or kidnapping a bunch of puppies.

Creativity is key. Don’t fret too much about actually believing in what you’re advocating. Just play along until that million-dollar check comes in. No one will know the difference.

  1. Claim persecution

Anyone can spout intolerance, but convincing people that you’re being discriminated against for your discriminatory views takes some skill.

Last December, Florida woman Susan Hemeryck pulled on a “Catholic Warrior” T-shirt and vandalized the Satanic Temple’s display at her state’s Capitol Building. She pled not guilty on misdemeanor charges of criminal mischief because, by her logic, the state was attacking Christians by hosting the display. Prosecutors dropped the case, but Hemeryck spotted an opportunity. Claiming she lost her home and job for taking “a stand against this evil,” Hemeryck has raised more than $3,000 towards her personal living expenses on GoFundMe.

Pamela Geller claims she’s being censored on the regular (sometimes she’s right) and earns more than $400 an hour peddling hate for her American Freedom Defense Initiative.

Sometimes it’s more effective to let others claim persecution on your behalf, but be careful. When a Washington woman was fined $1,000 for refusing to provide flowers for a gay wedding, supporters raised more than $174,000 in her name. Things looked promising for the florist until GoFundMe shut the page down, saying the woman had violated anti-discrimination laws. Be sure to make your persecution claim marginally convincing or you’ll risk losing that prized jackpot.

  1. Monetize, monetize, monetize

Terry Jones could have cried persecution and made a pretty penny after police thwarted his plan to burn nearly 3,000 Qurans in 2013. Now he sells french fries. What went wrong? Jones failed to properly monetize his intolerance.

Pamela Gellar

Political blogger Pamela Geller, American Freedom Defense Initiative’s Houston-based founder, speaks at the Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest, which is sponsored by the American Freedom Defense Initiative, in Garland, Texas May 3, 2015. Two gunmen opened fire on Sunday at the art exhibit in Garland, Texas, that was organized by an anti-Islamic group and featured caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad and were themselves shot dead at the scene by police officers, city officials and police said. REUTERS/Mike Stone

Many crowdfunding platforms prohibit hate projects, but some, presumably motivated more by profit than principle, seem happy to turn a blind eye. In 2013, Geller raked in more than $40,000 to finance an Islamophobic advertising campaign on Indiegogo despite the site’s prohibition of “anything promoting hate.” She created fun incentives to motivate backers, including a “Defeat Jihad Bumper sticker” for donors who gave $50 and a “DVD Ground Zero Mosque Film” for those who chipped in $100.

Take Geller’s lead. For $25, promise to shout an obscenity at a minority. Up the ante for $100 by vowing to destroy an object your enemy considers sacred.

Stretch goals are important. For a $10,000 donation, pledge to instigate genocide or join ISIS. Just be prepared to follow through so as not to disappoint your fans.

Until Hatestarter Firestarter launches, you’ll probably need to use platforms that hate hate groups. Try not to get discouraged if one of them suspends your campaign. Just hold your head high and stick to your intolerant principles. You’ll be rich or incarcerated in no time, guaranteed.

About the author

Brian Pellot

Brian Pellot is based in Cape Town, South Africa.

17 Comments

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  • It’s a free country, the gofundme can be used for good, too! At least people get the money and its not lost via a Charity’s bureaucracy.

  • Many today want blessings and that’s it. They don’t want the God of the Bible
    just blessings and only talk about gay marriage/abortion so they don’t have to
    face their own sins like so many on this website who are jealous,mean,have a
    major inferiority complex so they belittle people/say something mean and laugh
    after like that makes it okay or they that say “I was just joking” trying cover it up.

  • Did Brian Pellot bother to read what recently happened in Garland, TX, before he named Geller and “Islamophobic” in the same sentence?

  • Its a well established fact that Conservative Christians are by and large terrible with their money and prone to flushing it down the toilet for many silly reasons.

    This is why most televangelists are wealthy and their flock is largely living well below middle class.

    It is why coffers for “social conservative” politicians always seem to stay full, yet they never can deliver on pushing their agenda forward in any meaningful fashion.

    Its what keeps many Evangelical Christian colleges in business despite terrible academic reputations, ridiculously disproportionate tuitions and rapidly diminishing employment rates of graduates.

    Its why so many ponzi schemes are successful when they target conservative christians.

  • Why are you picking on Memories and Baronelle Stutzman? Memories got ambushed by a reporter despite having never turned anyone away (and saying they would serve gays in any context except a wedding) and became a pariah for it. Baronelle served the man who ended up suing her for years, only declining when it came to his wedding. This “satire” of yours just makes you look petty and naive about the real dangers in 2015 of having traditional views of marriage.

  • Because they were flat out scams to bilk people like yourself out of money for spurious reasons.

    Stutzman traded in her florist shop for speaking engagements on the right wingnut circuit.

    Memories made more money from their nonsense statement than the business could have produced in years.

    Greg, the situation is petty.

    The whole “I oppose marriage equality so I will engage in business discrimination” is the epitome of pettiness. Its childish malicious behavior that people are being called out on. Pettiness is fast becoming a quick way to make tons of cash off the prejudices of some very gullible people.

  • Larry
    I am not challenging you, just asking a question.
    Do you have details on the evangelical colleges you referred to?

  • This is simply an anti-Christian bash piece.

    RNS should be so proud of their free speech rights being used to allow another gay activist to spew hatred towards Christians and stoke the fires of all of the liberal, progressive, atheist, secularist and of coursevLGBT supporters that love nothing more than hating Christians while pretendIng they don’t.

  • We Greg-s should list ourselves as 1, 2, 3. Your are barking at the wrong Greg. BTW, we could always give money to the Clinton Foundation. Now that is a Charity worth giving to. Ah! forgot, I need at least $1Million to get started.

  • Of course there is no tolerance, either, expressed toward those who because of deep-seated honestly held convictions can’t accept same-sex marriage and don’t wish to have the children of this nation (or any nation) destroyed by a culture that has a moral attitude virtually identical to the book of Judges. It’s a shame that folks like you who once pled for dialog now shut down honest debate with name-calling.

  • When those people with “deep-seated honestly held convictions” start upholding the bible’s prohibitions against divorce and eating shrimp, maybe I’ll start to take them seriously. For now they are just hate-mongers cherry picking from a “holy” book to justify their bigotry.

    Oh and Massachusetts has allowed same sex marriage longer than any other state in the country and boasts the lowest divorce rate of any state. So it seems your worries about the decline of our culture are not founded in reality and data.

  • Check the rankings for many Christian colleges in US News/World Report.

    Aside from BYU and several Catholic universities which have become largely non-sectarian in practice (Notre Dame, St. Johns…), they generally hover at the bottom of the rankings or refuse to submit statistics.

    Especially their graduate schools. For example: Liberty, Ave Maria, Regent, are all are in the lowest tier rankings.

  • If you were the Greg who asked,
    “Why are you picking on Memories and Baronelle Stutzman?”

    Then, I got the right one 🙂

  • If your, “deep seated honestly held convictions” are spurring you to discriminate against customers in your business, it doesn’t say much for your convictions.

    If there was an intent to do something besides turning gay customers away, such “convictions” might be taken seriously. But it appears to be merely an excuse for one’s personal animosities. A way to express bigotry but avoid personal responsibility for such views.

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