White Supremacy Infiltrated Silicon Valley and Gamer Culture. Ctrl-Alt-Right-Del Took Them On.
On this episode of George Takei's "Oh Myyy Pod!" podcast, host George Takei and co-host Todd Beeton speak with experts on the rise of far right hate groups about how we can combat them online and off.
Listen below and find out how Melissa Ryan and her newsletter, Ctrl Alt Right Delete, are keeping others informed in the fight against far-Right hate groups.
And listen to our previous Season 2 episodes below
Time and time again, people spreading lies about others for no reason has demonstrated the lack of humanity in our gossip-obsessed society.
People have nothing better to do other than to bring down others out of spite.
What's even more disappointing is that some of us have at one point played a part in perpetuating these rumors without even knowing it.
And other times, we are the subject of a rumor, and that's never fun.
Curious to hear examples of the situation, Redditor PieNo17 asked:
"What’s the worst rumor you ever heard about yourself?"
Kids can be so cruel.
Introduction To Antisemitism
"I was bullied in elementary school for being Jewish. I very much am not Jewish. Apparently there was a rumor going around school that I was a 'Jew boy.' I was utterly confused and didn’t understand why being Jewish would even be something to be bullied about."
"Ah, I used to get bullied for being Asian....I am not Asian. Turns out it was a rumor started by a kid who was actually half Asian. I think he just didn't want to be the only Asian kid at school."
Seeking Pleasure At The Buffet
"When I was in sixth grade our whole grade (~100) was on a field trip out of town. We stopped at an Old Country Buffet to eat. I had to poop while we were there, and another kid in my grade was peeking through the stall at me while I was on the toilet. He then yelled that I was pleasuring myself in the stall. This turned into everyone talking about it outside of the bathroom, and now I was the kid who m*sturbated in an Old Country Buffet."
"When I was a kid, I was in the (for lack of a better term) special ed program at school due to a muscular condition that affected my fine motor skills, which meant I got bullied mercilessly. Determined to change my rep, I worked ridiculously hard to improve my skills so I no longer needed that program in middle school. Somehow, a rumor got started that I'd been kicked out of that program because I'd tried to kill the teacher, and that became the rumor that defined me until the day I graduated high school."
These Redditors' friends thought they'd seen a ghost.
"I had a car wreck on a country road. Black Cow and calf in the road, and I hit both of them. My mother called into school the next day but pretty much just told them I was in a wreck and nothing else. Word got around that I was dead in a car wreck."
"Showed up at school 2 days later because car wrecks hurt and a couple of buddies actually cried when I showed up saying they thought I was dead."
"Once, at work, we came across the obituary of a former coworker. Due to the long hours we were working on this project none of us managed to go to the wake or funeral, but we sent flowers. Months later the dude turned up on another job site, very much alive. Apparently this dude that died was totally unrelated, had the same name and was also an industrial painter… we sent flowers, that must have been confusing for his family."
"Similar story happened to me. Had severe covid at the very beginning of the pandemic. Was out of work for 6 months. Someone with my exact name and in the same town passed away my coworkers thought it was me. Some people didn't even know i was alive until I was back to work for three months"
The Friendship Test
"That I had died. I woke up one morning to find about 50 messages on my phone and dozens of missed calls (my phone was on silent). It was my ex girlfriend of all people who I spoke with first as she was freaking out because (as it turns out) someone with my name had died. It got lost in translation and next thing you know a lot of my out of state friends thought it was me. It was nice to know they cared so much."
Rumors about crushes, love and relationships seem to be a commonality.
"My friend introduced me to a girl at his high school and we were into each other. She was having some friends over for a sleepover and took the opportunity to invite me over, cuddle and make out while everyone else was asleep. The next morning we groggily hung out for a bit and made plans to hang out again soon. I’ll never forget how she hugged me and kissed me before I left. I ran into our mutual friend while walking home and I told him where I’d been. I didn’t know that he had a crush on her and he was pissed. By the time I got home, she had blocked and deleted me. I found out later from another friend that our mutual 'friend' had told her that I had an STD and only wanted to use her for sex."
"Hey, this same thing happened to me! I moved around a lot as a kid and ended up in the same place for 7th to 12th grade. The first few people I met were some kids in the neighborhood, 1 girl and 1 guy. They weren't mutual friends, but I became good friends with both of them and ended up introducing them to each other. The girl and I would stay up late texting on old flip phones and sneak out with each other over the summer. Then, almost out of nowhere, she just stopped talking to me. Turns out the guy developed a crushed and spent literal weeks trying to convince her that all I wanted was sex. Luckily, I was able to find out and defend myself, but unluckily, I found out later that he did that with many, many people. He probably ended up ruining at least 30 friendships with people throughout my time in high school."
A Bad Romance
"i think the only rumor that i ever really heard back in highschool was that i communed with satan. and when a few people asked, i just went with it. i was just like ya, satan and i talked last night, hes doing well. we have dinner plans for the weekend. just stupid stuff like that."
We never know how the rumor mill picks some of these out and seemingly distributes them to everyone in our community, no matter how big or small or far away. But we're glad these Redditors were willing to share!
It's a teacher's job to leave a lasting impression and set a good example for their students.
With this in mind, particularly in this age of viral videos and social media, teachers have to be very careful of what they say during class hours.
Even so, there are very few teachers who haven't said something they've regretted when teaching a class.
Sometimes to control unruly students, other times when they've simply had enough.
Then too, sometimes teachers leave their students baffled and perplexed by what they say in their classroom, well aware of what they were saying.
Always making for a memorable story.
"What’s the wildest thing you’ve ever heard teacher say in class?"
And Anyone With Such Closed Minded Views Shouldn't Be Teaching...
"Had the Head of the Department in college claim in class that anyone who actually needs accommodations for mental health issues should not be in college to begin with."
"This was while we were discussing 'Death of a Salesman' and the discussion had veered over to unhealthy pressure and social standards for success."- RavensQueen502
"My very well-respected Biology teacher in college spent almost an entire lecture telling us that Jamie Lee Curtis was a hermaphrodite."
"It seemed oddly personal to him."- Urbane_Cowboy
Sad On So Many Levels
"Not heard but my freshmen year high school teacher once pulled a bottle of Jack out of his desk and took a shot during class."
"He was dying so towards the end I think he just stopped caring."- Mangothefello
Can't Take The Heat, Then Stay Out Of The Classroom...
"High school science teacher told my class that a kilometre was longer than a mile."
"Refused to budge when refuted and kicked out several students for doing so."- SupersonicDebris13
"5th grade teacher: 'Mount Whitney in California is the tallest mountain in the world'."
"5th grade me blurts out: 'No it isn't, Mount Everest is."
"Whitney is not even the tallest mountain in the USA, which is Mount McKinley in Alaska'."
"I got in trouble for 'contradicting the teacher'."- gtmattzget out GIFGiphy
It's Not Just Students Who Are Bullies...
"I had a teacher ridicule a fat kid about his lunch choices in front of the whole class."
"He ran out crying as she was making fat guy blimp gestures and telling him he was going to be huge as an adult."- SnooOwls5859
Some Dramatic License It Seems...
"I had a literature teacher who told the class that he didn't believe in dinosaurs, because the universe is only a couple thousand years old."
"The bones were put there by Satan."
"Thank f*ck he wasn't a science or history teacher."- AllBadAnswersof montreal dancing GIF by Polyvinyl RecordsGiphy
Everyone Deserves Nice Acomodations...
"My English teacher told us that he genuinely believes that the Rothchilds own a hotel for aliens in the Bermuda triangle."- TroyLear77
"We had this kid in our 6th-grade class."
"Very dark skinned kid from Africa."
"His name was Tajak."
"Every now and then when we'd line up to go to another class or lunch and the lights would go out some of his friends would go 'where Tajak at?'"
"Anyway one day we had a sub and we we're lining up for lunch, the lights went out and there went the 'where Tajak at?' and the SUBSTITUTE TEACHER who was also black went 'Boy you darker than night'."
"6th grade was f*cking wild."- 11221mikew
"Psych teacher in high school told us that 1 in 10 of the people were friends with in high school would be dead within 5 years of graduating."
"At the time I thought it was hyperbole, but it turns out he was being conservative."
"3 of the people in my high school friend group were dead by the time I was 22."- Reddit
Do They Really Need A Reason?
"'Now girls, don't you let them boys touch your breasts'."
"'It'll give you cancer'."- jondru
Maybe Should Have Checked With The Geography Teacher?
"A teacher in Elementary school claimed during history class that the Colosseum was in Greece, as an Italian kid I was very confused, this was in Mexico."- Spascucci
So Much For Instilling Hope...
"Didn't hear this personally, but read in a book about a guy who recalled his teacher skipping chapters in a textbook and saying 'You will not need to know this when you are down in the mines'."- futanari_kaisa
The mark of a good teacher is that students will take everything they hear from them with them for the rest of their lives.
Though, the less-than-wonderful teachers may also say things their students will never forget.
People Who've Had A Serious Illness Describe The Exact Moment They Knew Something Was Really Wrong
As a kid, I never raised alarm bells even when I started to feel sick. My mom got stressed easily and was busy taking care of my younger brother, so I never wanted to be a burden by making her take me to the doctor only to find out nothing was wrong.
However, in fifth grade, my ears started to hurt and I knew something was wrong. I told my mom, she took me to the doctor, and I found out I had an ear infection.
Now, an ear infection isn't serious at all, and it was easily treatable. Still, I learned something from that experience: no one knows your body better than you. You know if and when you're sick and how serious it is, even if you don't now exactly what is wrong.
Redditors can corroborate this. Many of them have experienced symptoms that told them they were sick in some way -- usually with a very serious illness -- and are ready to share those experiences.
It all started when Redditor thelearner18 asked:
"People who have had a serious disease (cancer, MS, organ failure, etc) when did you realize something was really wrong?"
A Lesson Learned
"Hust found out i have rectal cancer. 42 yrs old. multiple stools per day, not fully emptying, thin poop. so got a colonoscopy. bam! cancer. starting chemo next week. lesson learned for everyone....if your stools or stool schedule changes, go see a doctor"
A Lucky Break
"I had been having a lot of pain in my midsection, and all around my torso for several weeks. I went to the doctor and it was dismissed as gynecological cramping (menopausal?). It remained. After several weeks (6-8) I couldn’t take it anymore. I went to emergency in the middle of the night. I got a CT scan that showed a large kidney stone. They also found a mass on my ovary. The kidney stone lead them to finding a rare ovarian cancer. If not for that stone, I wouldn’t have known about the cancer and might not have caught it in time. I have been in remission since September 2021."
Cause For Concern
"My kid, who was 14 at the time, kept throwing up in the morning and having weird headaches. Her doctor thought it was migraines. She went back a couple of times, but the doctor was not concerned. Then one day she complained of a whooshing noise in her ear. Went to the children’s hospital and found out it was a brain tumor near her cerabellum. She was in ICU for a month, but turned out it was non cancerous and it never grew back. She is doing great now."
"I heard a whooshing noise in my ear a few years ago I only really heard it at night when it was quiet it would sometimes switch ears now I basically never hear it. I'm pretty sure it was just pulsatile tinnitus but still scary."
It Was The Salt
"I have Cystic Fibrosis (terminal lung disease) and it was found out when I didn't sh*t for 3 days after I was born and then my mother gave me a kiss and said I tasted REALLY salty."
"Now I'm on a gene modification drug called Trikafta and this is some serious witch craft a** sh*t because I no longer feel sick to death and I basically feel like a normal person. It's f*cking wild!
"Went from 19% lung function to 87% in 3 months. I no longer cough my a** off or feel like I'm suffocating from mucus. Go science!"
A Funky Optic Nerve
"I was diagnosed with MS when I was 22 after having blurred vision in one eye after a ski trip. I went to the optometrist and they said I had a dry eye probably from not wearing goggles while snow boarding. So they gave me steroid drops. After a week it kept getting worse, so I went back and they told me my eye looked much better so they did a field of view test, which showed I couldn’t see anything out of the lower half of one eye. They sent me straight to the emergency room since nothing was wrong physically wrong with my eye. They did some tests and I was diagnosed with MS and ended up going completely blind in one eye. My vision eventually came back and I got on medication within a month so haven’t really had any symptoms or issues since thankfully. I’m only 29 now though."
Caught It In Time
"This isn't me, but this happened to my best friend VERY recently. Like in the last couple of months."
"Was perfectly fine and healthy one day. Then the next he started feeling a little bit of pain in his kidney. He'd had kidney stones before, so he figured it was that again. Then he started peeing blood. He thought it was still part of the kidney stone thing so let it go for a couple days, but he was still peeing blood and the pain was getting worse."
"That's when he decided to go to the doctor. They did an X-ray and found a mass in his kidney and told him that based on where it was located they can't remove the mass, and they can't do a partial kidney removal, and it's about a 90% chance it's cancerous, but they wouldn't be able to do a biopsy without removing the kidney first. They did the whole insurance dance, but it went fast and within two weeks he was in surgery having his kidney removed."
"He's still recovering at home right now, but they got the biopsy results last week. It was indeed cancerous, but they caught it before it spread."
Happily Ever After
"I couldn’t walk anymore with my crutch I had been using to get by. Had Been on Percocet for 8 months because of the extreme pain. Nobody was finding answers to my pain but I knew something was wrong, badly. After finally having an ultra sound on my hips at the age of 26 I found out I had to undergo a double hip replacement to walk again due to a serious rare disease. I was stage 4 Avascular Nercrosis. Took a year to recover from both. But Happier ending, I’m doing good now. However it was very very upsetting news to get over a phone call at 26."
It Really Sneaks Around
"My wife started getting numbness in her right arm. The breast cancer had spread to her right shoulder and the tumor was crushing the nerves. She has stage four breast cancer in her bones."
A Turn For The Worse
"For me, it started May 14, 2014. I went to work and was having a good morning. Then, at about 9:00 in the morning or so, I started to feel some lower abdominal pain. Not to be crude, but it felt like that cramp you get when you really need to go to the bathroom. I did so, but the pain didn't go away. It got worse. I started to feel chills, was sweating, and felt nauseated. My employer has a clinic on site, so I went there. After some poking and prodding, the nurse asked me if I wanted to go home or if I wanted to go to the emergency room. I decided to go home, and if the pain didn't subside, then I'd go to the emergency room. As I was saying that, though, I noticed that my pain had gotten a LOT worse. They always make you rate your pain on a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 being no pain at all and 10 being the worst pain you've ever felt. When I went into the clinic, I was mostly uncomfortable, maybe a high 2 going into a 3. On that very subjective scale, I was now a 6 or a 7."
"I changed my mind and decided to go straight to the nearest emergency room. My boss drove me, and by the time we got there about 15 minutes later, I was now a 10. This was the worst pain I'd ever felt. My previous definition of the worst pain I'd ever felt was when I broke 7 bones in my wrist, it was misdiagnosed as a sprain, and I had to have them rebroken 2 weeks later. The pain in my abdomen was now worse than that. The emergency room admitted me and put me in a wheelchair. They wheeled me to a room, I curled up on the bed they put me in, and passed out."
"At some point, a nurse came in and gave me some morphine. Great stuff. No pain at all anymore. A doctor came in and told me they suspected a kidney stone. He wanted me to get a CT scan to confirm it, and I agreed. An orderly wheeled me off to imaging. I got scanned without contrast and was wheeled back to the room. My wife had arrived while I was getting scanned. Shortly later, the doctor who told me he thought it was a kidney stone came into the room. With another doctor. And two nurses. They all crowd around me with solemn looks on their faces."
"The first doctor told me it was a kidney stone. A 2 to 3 mm kidney stone had been lodged in the ureter of my left kidney. That's the tube that goes from the kidney to the bladder. It passed into my bladder when they gave me the morphine, but they could see evidence of it on the CT scan. Then the other doctor said they were more concerned about the 6 cm mass they found on my right kidney. They had my attention."
"They did another CT scan, with contrast this time, and it was impossible to see anything but a tumor in the pictures they showed me. They made an appointment for me with a urologist for the next day, as well as an appointment in a few days time to get it biopsied. It was an after-hours appointment for the urologist, but he was nice enough to stay late to see me. He looked at the CT Scans and cancelled my appointment to get it biopsied. He said there was nothing else it could be but cancer, and the kidney would have to go."
"Two months later, I had the kidney and the tumor removed laparoscopically. I was incredibly lucky. They caught it in stage 1. The doctor said there were signs it was going to start moving soon. I have no idea how doctors can look at a softball sized lump of cancer and tell anything other than 'gross', but that's why they're the doctors and I'm not."
"My recovery was smooth, and I've been cancer-free for 9 years. I was incredibly blessed. I didn't have to deal with chemo, or radiation. While those can save your life, they are also horrible experiences with nasty side effects. I didn't have to deal with any of them. I was bracing myself to have to. They said it was a possibility. But I didn't. I have every respect for those not as fortunate as me, and wish them all the best in recovery."
Reason #5,622 To Start Exercising
"I started jogging again to try and get back into running shape. I kept noticing that just after a mile or so, I'd stop and get REALLY lightheaded. Kept thinking, "oh, I'm really out of shape" and kept going. Went in a few weeks later for my annual physical and doctor said "you ever been told you have a heart murmur?", no. Two months later I spent Christmas of 2017 in the ICU after having a section of my aorta cut out and a new valve put in. Surgeon said it was bad. Said it wouldn't have made it too much longer."
"Edit: for clarification, it was an aortic dissection."
Slow And Steady
"My dad's friend went on a hike with a doctor who knew him and he was winded not far from the car. The doctor clocked it right away and told him to get his heart checked. He had 98% blockage in his heart arteries."
"He tells my dad so my dad gets the test to see how his arteries are doing and they found a massive aneurism on his aorta. He is getting it removed tomorrow. He had no symptoms but the doctors said if he had overdone it he would be dead before anyone would even know what was going on. Crazy how a random friend's hike may have saved his life."
It Takes A Village
"I never did, my teacher and parents did."
"I was seven, usually an active kid and my first grade teacher noticed that rather than running around at recess I sat down and took a nap. It happened a couple more times and after I fell asleep in class (totally out of character), she gave my parents a call, we had been visiting the doc fairly regularly cause I was also complaining of joint pain and frequent ear infections combined with the new symptoms and a new doc at the practice I was finally diagnosed with leukemia."
Thank goodness for that teacher (and of course, the parents)!
When in the beginning stages of dating, it's important to know as much as humanly possible.
The element of surprise is no longer a fun aspect of romance.
Ask the small questions. Ask the hard questions.
Interrogate. Grill. Investigate.
Of course, you should do it with a subtle hand instead of an interrogation lamp.
The truth is all we have.
Redditor RedditPenguin02 wanted to make a list of the best inquiries to make when starting a relationship, so they asked:
"What is a good question to ask before you start dating someone?"
From what I've learned in my past, always ask... "Are you into Buffy the Vampire Slayer? The TV show."
If it's a no, then it's a dealbreaker.
I DoShocked Schitts Creek GIF by CBCGiphy
"Are you married?"
"I would ask that. If they said no, the next question was 'Would your wife agree?'"
"If they laughed, they were telling the truth. If they got indignant and pissed off that I thought they were lying…they were married."
"Worked every time."
"Do you clap when the plane lands?"
"I swear people used to do this all the time when I was a kid (early 2000’s), and I don’t think I’ve heard anyone do it in 5+ years. I guess 9/11 really made people afraid of flying for about 10 years and then most folks decided they didn’t need to applaud when the plane landed safely?"
"Do you want kids in the future? If one person wants kids and the other wants to stay child-free, then they are not compatible. And it is better to try dating someone else."
"It confuses me whenever some couples who disagree on this end up in a conundrum because one expected the other to change their mind. This is something I bring up early cause I see no future with someone who wants kids when I do not."
"You should always put childfree on your dating profile. It's not a small thing. Either you agree on it or not. If I had to date, I would put childfree on my profile too."
Carb it on...
"Do you like bread? That is the extent of my flirting skills."
"Being German, bread is like a frickin' cultural phenomenon here, we have around 300 kinds of bread, there's a bread museum, every time I go on vacation I'm like yeah it's nice here but the bread ain't it yall, never as good as home lol. So yeah, valid question and the only answer to this is an enthusiastic yes."
Room TemperatureFrosty The Snowman Winter GIF by filmeditorGiphy
"What temperature do you set the thermostat to throughout the year?"
"Haha this one always gets me as someone who needs low temps - you can always put on more clothes, I can't peel my skin off to get cooler."
The thermostat is a dealbreaker for me.
It's gonna be 60. Love it or move on.
DiscoveryBlown Away Wow GIF by AminéGiphy
"When was the last time you changed your mind about something?
"Opens a window to how they think."
"If that was really early on in the dating I’d think it was a bit of a head-f**k question. I’d probably find that question a red flag, tone dependent, although I agree with the sentiment."
"Aside from major differences about finances, kids, politics, or religion, a big one is; What are your hobbies? If they don’t really have any, you may be the next hobby, which isn’t going to work unless you’ve got that kind of time. If the hobbies are time-consuming ones generally done with a SO."
"But you have no interest in them, that could be an issue as well. If only one of you likes camping, wanted to spend vacation lounging instead of exploring, didn’t like sports, etc either that partner is annoyed or the other feels like they don’t get to enjoy what they love."
"Ask them about their exes. If they think every single one of them is an a**hole... they are likely the real a**hole."
"I have mixed feelings about that - I've been in three previous relationships and all three were emotionally abusive towards me (one wasn't nearly as bad as the other two, though) in various ways. I know this is a common sentiment and it always makes me afraid that people won't believe me or something.
"I mean, I realize in your comment you said 'likely' and not '100% sure' and there's plenty of room for nuance."
"I would try to take care of any dealbreakers. If I find out that she has different political values than I do, it's not going to work out in the long run, so I wouldn't bother. Same thing with other factors (religion, financial values, etc.). I would also ask how much cuddling she likes to engage in, as I prefer a lot."
EssentialsTell Me More To Do List GIF by Disney ChannelGiphy
"When I was dating my three essential questions were always kids, sex, and money. If you're not on the same wavelength for any of those three things, just don't even try."
"So, how much personal debt do you have?"
"Source: the guy who dated a woman with huge debts and was asked to pay for everything and then some".
"After that, I'd go with, 'Have you ever been diagnosed with borderline, narcissistic, or histrionic personality disorders?"
The questions are basic.
Just ask for the truth.
Do you have any good Qs to add to the queue? Let us know in the comments below.