If Andrew Tate is anyone’s ideal of masculinity, we’re in bigger trouble than I thought.
For all the misogyny, racism, homophobia and classism that the kickboxing champion and internet huckster embraces as his brand, he’s just a whiner.
Seriously. If anything goes wrong in Tate’s life, like last year when she was banned from all major social media platforms for saying, among other things, that women “bear some responsibility” for rape, or more recently when she and her brother Tristan were accused of human trafficking and rape in Romania arrested in connection with, he whines that there is an interplanetary conspiracy against him.
He must have thought (and I know this because he told podcaster James English) that he thought things were going well in Romania. She said she moved there from the UK five years ago, partly because she was fed up with countries where women could accuse men of assault and rape and, you know, be believed.
Apparently, Romania is one of those countries. Not because he sees it that way. “The Matrix attacked me,” Tate said as she stormed out of her house.
That’s right. Andrew Tate, a self-anointed alpha male who believes that anyone who isn’t rich is a loser and that women should never compete with men, doesn’t even have the guts to come up with his own conspiracy theory. Instead, he stole it from a series of films. It just has to be added by two trans women.
But then exploiting women is Tate’s chosen profession. He is in the business of turning socially anxious or disaffected young men into woman-hating narcissists and taking their money through a scheme to earn more with “Hustler University” if they are well-known on the internet.
But his fame and alleged fortune was built on the physical and other abuse of women.
He was kicked off Big Brother in 2016 when a video surfaced showing him hitting a woman with a belt and swearing at her. (He later said it was a concerted action edited to make him look bad.) He then started a webcam business with his brother. In this work, the women told the men sobbing stories and then paid them. At the time, Tate said in English: “I was a pimp.” (The webcam business may actually have led to the recent Romanian investigation.)
Somewhere along the line he decided that the Matrix was real and that he was the only one who could lead his (male) followers into the “real world” where they would rule by subjugating women and making lots of money from the internet. .
Well, money is not “earning”. As he explained, only governments can make money; the rest of us just “take it”.
He takes money from fans through Hustlers University, a $49/month get-rich-quick program that “teaches” people how to hack the Matrix and make big bucks through Amazon side gigs, freelance copyediting, and of course, the internet. -camera pimping.
Oh, and also by editing and posting videos of Tate explaining why she’s the only person who understands the “real world”.
This is one reason why many Tate videos are included in many young men’s tapes. And subsequently, why so many boys and young men are beginning to reflect Tate’s brand of toxic masculinity online and off.
If it sounds preposterous that Big Brother’s webcam-rejecting pimp-turned-con is nothing more than a warning, there’s one thing Tate is actually good at: grooming young men to follow in her footsteps with her hypnotic alpha brew. the male fantasy and the teenage “stop telling me what to do, mom” complaint.
Openly addressing the white male paranoia that fuels racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, homophobia and transphobia, Tate is earnest and relentlessly provocative. When she’s not flaunting her cash, cars, abs, and cigars, or talking about her fitness routine or all the millionaires she texts, she’s talking about how hard endless men are, how people don’t understand the world—the Matrix. – enslaves them.
His anger – whining with increasing volume – targets young men who are confused, angry or feel worthless. Young men are easily convinced that a diverse, just and tolerant society will disqualify them, that their behavior is criticized for being masculine, not for being abusive or violent.
Young people who want cash, cars, abs and cigars and believe Tate, who rejects the social norms of the 21st century and says they can have it all and more.
Before he was banished from most social media platforms, many parents, educators, women, and unbrainwashed young men expressed concern that Tate marked the fever pitch of the manosphere with online male communities promoting brutal male supremacy sexism, including violence against women. (One of the first notable groups organized on Reddit was The Red Pill, another reference to The Matrix, so Tate may not have picked up his conspiracy theory from the movies; he just got it from Reddit.)
While Tate presents himself as an uber-mensch prophet, the only thing that sets him apart from other manosphere whiners is his knack for social media’s scrolling, short-form spotlight. Young men who couldn’t stomach his 30-minute (often self-contradictory) diatribes simply loved the clickbait quotes he fed us through the social media paradigm.
Predatory behavior takes many forms on the Internet: non-consensual webcam chats; requests for nude photos shared afterwards; adults posing as teenagers to participate in exploitative and illicit “relationships”; revenge porn.
But there is also psychological exploitation, which can lure a young man into a terrorist cell, steal his identity, or turn into paranoid delusions where women (or Jews, immigrants, or whoever) are enemies.
This is exactly what Andrew Tate has been doing all these years and making a profit out of it. Elon Musk recently gave permission to return to Twitter.
But sometimes irony wins. Tate’s arrest might have slipped under the cultural radar if it hadn’t come so quickly after a brief Twitter war with climate activist Greta Thunberg.
A few days ago, Tate, who hates women who actually stand for something, suggested, against the grain of nothing, that she email Thunberg a list of all the purported sports cars and their emissions ratings. Thunberg told her she could be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tate, of course, couldn’t allow that. He made a pretty childish video to say that he’s the one with the little d and that he’s not going to recycle the two pizza boxes in front of him.
When he and his brother were arrested the next day, many people speculated that the pizza box labels had led the Romanian police to his home.
It wasn’t true, but before he got involved with Thunberg, a lot of people didn’t know who Tate was. So all explainers on platforms including this one. Now we’re all watching. “Join Hustler University now!” road. More “Wait, you’re the one following Andrew Tate” or “We didn’t give you a phone to watch this crap.”
On the other hand, it gave Thunberg what Tate most craved: The Last Word: “This is what happens when you don’t recycle your pizza boxes.”
If you’re looking for a true definition of masculinity, this is a pretty good one: Real men recycle.
This story originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.