A Canadian trans cartoonist is being forced to go into hiding after her website was hacked and replaced by Nazi imagery.
Sophie LaBelle, who created the Assigned Male cartoon, was known for taking on transphobia and transmisogyny with her well known strip.
But then an orchestrated attack deleted every comic, she was sent thousands of death threats, and her address was published on several forums.
‘I just want people to be aware this is what you get for being trans on the internet and for reframing transness into something positive and empowering,’ the cartoonist wrote on Facebook.
‘I’d also like to acknowledge that this attack was mostly planned because of four explicit reasons :
- I am a woman
- I am trans
- I support non-binary people
- I support intersex people.
‘I will keep making my comics, no worries. Folks at Facebook are currently making sure this won’t happen again before I can put my page back up. Nothing was lost.’
The comics were LaBelle’s primary source of income, and so far her website remains down. However, her work is still available on her Tumblr.
Warning others in the trans community, a campaigner who spoke on condition of anonymity told Gay Star News:
‘This attack was dangerous and orchestrated. It was planned centrally, using a range of social media, and in large part out in the open.
‘We are still identifying posts online from individuals inciting this action, as well as people agreeing to join in. The motive is clear: many on the alt-right hate trans people with a passion, and they would like nothing better than to drive us out of the public gaze altogether.
‘Many of those participating in this attack are cowards. They are too afraid to identify themselves publcly – and are unlikely to follow through on their threats. However, any threat should be taken seriously.’