Andrew Tate, hate, and the rise of anti-women rhetoric

An online subculture of individuals are filled with rage

As per usual, the internet continues to be a multi-dimensional space filled with conversation. It begins to rear its ugly head when certain communities form on the basis of shared hatred for a particular group or groups of people. 

Currently, the online world has been regressing into a divisive, polarizing state filled with intense opposition. A space now prizing ‘traditional’ values, and for men to become, for lack of a better word, ‘alpha.’

Andrew Tate, Jordan Peterson and others have nurtured the movement. 

“Who is Andrew Tate?” first reached its all time high in terms of searches on Aug. 21, 2022, following a steep increase of popularity. His path to fame was paved by controversial statements. 

Most famously, Tate’s talking points would consist of how men could be more “dominant”, and famously mentioned that “Masculine life is war.” Some of the core ideas he has built his brand on have been physical strength, even calling those who have heart attacks “weak men.”

Over the course of his career, Tate has created multiple outlets to spread his message by using popular platforms like YouTube, Twitch and Twitter, until he was banned from all platforms. Specifically looking at Twitter, Tate was banned in 2017 for his offensive comments regarding the #MeToo movement, and then created a new account, that was banned in the summer of 2022 for once again violating community guidelines, and then later reinstated by Elon Musk. Andrew Tate now provides content on Rumble, a site that platforms many who have been banned on other services. 

Jordan Peterson, a clinical psychologist from Canada, has fueled the growth of anti-women rhetoric, claiming in an interview for the New York Times that, “chaos is feminine,” and that “the masculine spirit is under assault.” 

In this interview, Peterson further claims that women are to blame for all crime.

“Violent attacks are what happens when men do not have partners, society needs to work to make sure those men are married,” Peterson claimed.

So how do people like Andrew Tate and Jordan Peterson amass followings? How do they become so popular?

The most popular platform for individuals like these to thrive is TikTok, where content can be easily uploaded, reposted, and pushed due to the algorithm. The more times a user likes, or even just interacts with a short, 30 second video, the more times similar content will be suggested for them on their ‘For You Page.’ If a user becomes tired of content they have previously interacted with, it becomes difficult to rid the For You Page of it, creating a space where the only content  people, predominantly men, suggested are that of ‘Strong masculinity’ and ‘Alpha male’ videos. This seemingly small corner of the internet consumes one’s entire internet usage, and thus creates echo chambers where no other opinion or perspective is offered, forcing one to believe in these ideals. 

The effects are taking their toll in the classroom, as female teachers have now been facing the impact of these online subcultures. 

Male students, usually in their early teens, are now refusing to be taught by female teachers. One teacher claims that 7th grade boys have been referring to women as ‘holes,’ (an objectifying comment). Another teacher claims that 14-15 year old male students have blatantly been quoting Tate, explaining that “women are inferior to men.” Other teachers claim they have heard male students say that girls who are sexually assaulted are ‘asking for it’ because of ‘what they wear.’ Now, tons of articles exist with guides for teachers who have to deal with such rhetoric. 

On December 25, 2022, the words “Andrew Tate” hit an even higher search rate, following his arrest for rape and human trafficking charges. Multiple women have claimed to be sexually assaulted by Tate, with Tate’s response being: “The matrix has attacked me.”

Harmful rhetoric and extreme points of view, like that of anti-women commentary, along with internet echo chambers constantly circulating these ideas, have lasting societal effects.