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Activist Says LGBT Protest Over Leaked Linton Johnson Photos Called Off

| August 26, 2011
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Update Monday 8:50 a.m. On KQED Radio’s Forum at 9:30 a.m., a discussion on the dissemination of the Linton Johnson photos as they relate to the ethics of hacking.

Listen live here. The show will be archived here later in the day.

Update Monday: Chris Andoe, who was organizing the LGBT counter-protest, posted this in our comments section over the weekend:

LGBT DISPUTE WITH ANONYMOUS TENTATIVELY SETTLED. COUNTER-DEMONSTRATION CANCELLED.

San Francisco, CA August 28, 2011
Monday’s counter-demonstration against Anonymous by members of the LGBT Community has been cancelled after Anonymous made assurances that they have no malice against LGBT people.

While many people speak for Anonymous we have been told the group was largely against the release of the Linton Johnson photos, and that they are not planning any similar tactics (sexual images) in the future.

Some community leaders, such as La Mesha Irizarry of the Idriss Stelley Foundation are skeptical but had grave safety concerns for demonstrators. “A counter protest pinning commuters against protesters is itself a dangerous, unstable mix” said Irizarry.

The LGBT group had planned to demonstrate alongside the “Commuters Take Back Bart” group, which is still planning to demonstrate.

Lead organizers will be at the Civic Center in the event community members who aren’t aware of the cancellation show up to demonstrate.

Contact:
Chris Andoe
chrisandoe@gmail.com

You can read here the online debate that went on over this planned action, including the back-and-forth between Andoe and some Anonymouses.

Also, related to this topic, Matier & Ross’ column in the Chronicle on Sunday:

Last week’s online posting of partially nude photos of BART spokesman Linton Johnson – in apparent response to the transit agency’s cutting off cell phone service Aug. 11 to avert a protest in downtown San Francisco – has Johnson’s spouse furious.

“These are blatantly homophobic and racist attacks from what I’ve seen,” Jeffrey Johnson, Linton’s partner of 12 years, told us Friday…”I’m not sure where those photos came from,” Jeffrey Johnson said, insisting they were not from the couple’s Facebook pages.

However they were released, Jeffrey Johnson says gay and African American friends with whom he has talked are just as angry as he is. And judging from the calls we’ve received, at least some of them plan to be downtown during Monday evening’s BART commute to greet another planned Anonymous protest with their own counterdemonstration.

Original post
KQED’s Mina Kim today spoke to Chris Andoe, a San Francisco-based LGBT activist who says he is rallying the LGBT community to join a counter-protest on Monday to what anti-BART organizers have threatened will be a weekly action. A series of protests against the transit agency have disrupted commutes in recent weeks.

Andoe says he was spurred to action by the leaking this week of partially nude private photos of BART spokesman Linton Johnson, who has drawn the fury of the loosely knit hacker group Anonymous for suggesting and then defending BART’s disabling of cell-phone service to disrupt a planned protest that never materialized.

Andoe labeled the tactic of disseminating the photos, by someone affiliating with Anonymous, as “gay-baiting,” and says many in the LGBT community who were ambivalent or supportive of the recent actions against BART have now swung the other way.

Here’s the interview, below; an edited transcript follows the audio.

A gay community organizer decries the leaking of the Linton Johnson photos

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Andoe: I was ambivalent at most about the protest. I was troubled by the shooting in Oakland in particular. What made me align with the angry commuters was the recent gay-baiting sexual terrorist type tactics that were used against BART spokesperson Linton Johnson.

What was your reaction when you saw that?

I think a lot of us in the gay community thought of it as a declaration of war against us. A lot of us had really been ambivalent at best about the protest. Or supported the protest. But when they came out and used the tactics of right wingers like Andrew Breitbart or Karl Rove or something we were just shocked. This is San Francisco. What they were trying to do was delegitimize this man for being gay. Very few of the photos were sexually explicit, most of them were of him clowning around at a gay bar with glow sticks or glitter, hanging on guys. And then they promoted his personal web site, which had his gay marriage photos and vacation pictures. This had nothing to do with anything.

But if their goal was not to discredit him for merely being gay, then what was that? It’s obvious that’s what they were doing.

Are you planning on taking part in a counter protest on Monday?

I am and I know a lot of others in the community that will be joining me out there. These tactics have basically swung many in the community to the other side. We’re outraged that in this enlightened city this is the tactic they decided to take.

Are you helping to organize the protest?

The protest was already planned by the commuters’ group. What I’m doing is helping to organize the LGBT community to join with that group.

How many people so far who share your view may be out there with you?

I think there’s going to be a significant number. This just happened. Wednesday was the shot across the bow that took us all by surprise so I don’t know how many we’re going to get this first time. But the tide has strongly shifted. Just from a tactical perspective, this was a monumental error for them to take this kind of approach in targeting someone the way they targeted Mr. Johnson.

Are you concerned about reprisals from Anonymous?

Absolutely, I think there’s a strong risk. They obviously have no scruples, so yes; I do realize that I’m putting myself at risk to be hacked. They are masked – that’s their whole point, that they’re operating in secret. So it is very dangerous to oppose them; I feel most people do understand that so I don’t know how that will affect turnout.

But you are wiling to take that risk…

I feel like it’s absolutely necessary. The people have got to stand up to this. I was outraged with the Anthony Wiener thing that happened. I’m outraged when the right wing does this and I’m outraged when these far left protesters do it. I think it’s the wrong way to go about things, to single out an individual and try to destroy them based on sexual orientation using gay baiting tactics or sexual terrorism. It’s a bizarre approach for them to take. But when those types of things happen, especially in this world-class city we live in, we have to take a stand against it.

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  • John

    When and where is this counter protest meeting? I found the gay baiting of Mr. Johnson despicable also. Details please.

    • Chris Andoe

      The counter demonstration is Monday at 5:00 at Civic Center Plaza.

      • http://whatistheplan.gov anonymous

        who decided it was “gay baiting”? i can not speak for every member of anonymous mostly because there are no memberships. I can speak for myself and for many anons and we agree that this was not a act of hate against a gay man, this was merely a re-post of the pictures he posted. No matter his sexual preferences, these pictures would have been posted…… I and others are tolerant to all views of life as long it doesn’t brainwash and/or injure people. We want the gay communities support, and hope that they are not using this as publicity. We do not want you all to protest against us we are not against gay people. We do not want you all to forget WHY we are protesting, remember the men who have been killed watch the videos, do NOT turn this into some competition and war between anonymous and the gay community. We need all of your help against the system we do not want to fight amongst ourselves. Also we are NOT just hackers, we are activists against the wrong doings in the world only some of us are hacktivists. Do NOT label us, we are for the people! We are all anonymous you must wake up now! EDUCATE YOURSELVES.

        WE ARE ANONYMOUS
        WE DO NOT FORGIVE
        WE DO NOT FORGET
        EXPECT US

        • johann kugelberg

          >WE ARE ANONYMOUS
          >WE DO NOT FORGIVE
          >WE DO NOT FORGET
          >EXPECT US

          OH NOEZ!!!! I so scared!!! seriously, you are barely above competent on yr computers, completely failures IRL. you are the most failure-prone collective since the minutemen border patrols.

          AUTONOMOUS pwns U.

          • anonymous

            quite troll

        • Anders Tate

          Chris decided on his own that it was gay bashing. Apparently it’s gay bashing to release a picture of a gay man exposing himself in a public place. But it’s ok to release a nude picture of a legislator if he’s heterosexual.

      • anonymous

        Chris font do this its a mistake dont make urselves look bad in the public eye accusing us of nothing. don’t make this some sick publicity stunt

        • barry friedman

          Chris, u r a hero. standing up to neckbeards in basements exposing the privacy of everybody in their way. They dropped personal information of BART riders, and they exposed Linton. They believe in privacy for themselves, but not anyone else. They will have to go back 2 High School soon enough. IRL people should keep them from “victory”.

  • Courtney Groves

    I love you Chris! :)

  • Courtney Groves

    If we had more people like Mr. Andoe in our midst our society would be able to focus on what is really important.

    • Susan Bauman

      Because dead homeless people are not important at all. WTG.

      • http://whatistheplan.gov anonymous

        u r disgusting……

        • warm leatherette

          sarcasm, dear.

  • emma press

    Andoe is way off base here. Anonymous marched in 2008 San Diego LGBT Pride (documented online, google, with pics cuz it happened!). Linton photos would have been posted had Linton been mugging with women. Photos, publicly available on Facebook and his me.com blog, would have been posted if he had been a women posing with men or women. No one cares if he is gay; more like, “Linton Johnson had no respect for the CIVIL RIGHT OF SAN FRANCISCO CITIZENS, so here he is pulling down his pants and acting really goofy.” To assume it was gay-baiting is to take a victim’s stance. Look at the big picture and please stop thinking that an action done to a person is a because they are in a protected class. The fact he is gay had nothing to do with it, it’s cuz he acted in a stupid, high handed manner, violating the First Amendmenrtrights of >9000 BART riders, put people at risk (including the disabled) and plus he didnt get BART board approval, then was a jerk in the press. PS I am Anonymous, liberal, and an advocate for LGBT in my work and charitable contributions.

    • AnotherBird

      The Anonymous of 2008 isn’t the same Anonymous of the BART protest. The publishing of the picture has absolutely nothing to do with the issue relating to BART, and was wrong. Anonymous has been accused of many other prejudicial behavior. Anonymous is just a blanket name for those who support a particular action done in the name Anonymous. Anonymous has no respect for anyone rights. I am Independent, Liberal, and support the rights of everyone.

      • anotherAnon

        youre kidding right? this is in fact he same group, and most of the protesters are straight out of the SF/bay area. Anonymous holds many varying views, and i cant speak for all (because of the shear volume and variety), but most Anons are Pro LGBT.

        But seriously, Linton Johnson is a major target for Anon, specifically because: 1) he was the source of the cell tower shut down and the one who told us what he thinks of our rights, and B) he is a HORRIBLE PR representative and has a track record to prove it. What better ammunition than to show the Face of BART uploading obscene pictures of himself that are publicly accessible. You just dont do it, look at Anthony Weiner; he ended up resigning from the shame and he shares the responsibility that Linton does of maintaining image.

        if you want to protest against a BART involved group for being anti-gay, try the workers union that posted a picture of Linton and reffered to him as a “forbidden Fruit”. though that whole thing was overblown and was likely just someone trying to be funny and witty but came off as insensitive. In fact, the first release by Anon regarding the Linton pics, the tag line “if Linton Johnson is going to be a dick to his customers, he probably doesnt mind showing it to his customers” was appended.

        Anyway, Anon is a civil rights group only looking for justice, and is a civil rights and freedom from oppression organization.

        This is just going from what i know, and while i like to think i keep up with Anons ongoings rather well, if any of you have any credible information discussing the source and intentions of the original release i’d like to read them.

        • anotherAnon

          oh and regarding the objectives of the protest, i would like to think it would be a legitimate move for bart to remove the man who has tarnished their image.
          And as far as BARTpd, they seem to have a bad habit of escalating far too quickly (in both the shootings and the protests) and a bit of training as well as taking away firearms until they have sufficient competency to use them couldnt hurt.

          • barry friedman

            ITT: tryin’ too hard. anonymous seems to have a bad habit of escalating far too quickly (in the release of innocent people’s info, and the asperger’s protests). and a bit of parenting until they have sufficient competency to use a computer in their bedroom couldn’t hurt.

  • http://www.skeptictank.org/ Fred

    Oh how stupid. The LBGay people just want to capture some of Anonymous’ world-wide fame.

    • anonymous

      yup

  • Not Me

    As a homosexual, I find it insulting that this man feels he can speak for the entire community. Anonymous may be childish and amoral, but to say these photos are an attack on the LGBT community is silly – They were clearly published to shame one man in particular because he had the poor judgement to put naked photos of himself on the public internet when he’d pissed off a bunch of hackers. Let’s not kid ourselves, these photos would have been published regardless of his orientation.

    • http://whatistheplan.gov anonymous

      we are not just hackers educate urself!

    • anotherAnon

      i’d like to add it didnt take a hack to get these, they were basically available to the public. :P

    • warm leatherette

      you’re right.

  • EG

    emma press is correct. Anonymous did not “publish” the photos, merely reposted them. If Mr. Johnson’s johnson was private to him, he would not have uploaded the photos in the first place.

    If you stand against the BART protesters on Monday, you stand in favor of police brutality. Just a heads up.

  • Wolfie

    Wow, is this jerk a tool for the police? Does he like the police murdering innocent people who are unarmed? What a moron, it doesn’t matter weather Linton is gay or just a fuckwitt the photos weren’t published in any relation to his orientation, they were published to publicly humiliate him and show him for the fool he is.

    Secondly I’m gay and I’m sick and tired of being treated as a victim because of my protected class. If you want to end discrimination end protected classes and learn to stand up for yourself and work to ensure everyone even bigots get an equal shake. No more victims, no more pampering minorities, no more coddling the government and the police, be proud to be who you are and learn to stand together on your own.

  • AnonOpsReport

    For the record Anonymous did NOT post pictures of Linton Johnson,Linton Johnson did. And that’s the point, the total lack of judgment. And for the record, Anonymous is all inclusive, and do not have time to waste with racism or homophobia.

    And for the record: this is a fluff opinion piece until you fill it with facts.

    • warm leatherette

      WELL SAID.

      • anonymous

        nice bro :)

  • warm leatherette

    this guy sounds like an agent provocateur working with BART cops. conflating this brutality protest, no matter how amateurish the tactics are, with “gaybaiting” is the silliest thing i have ever heard. this is one SF dyke who won’t be “counterprotesting”. you might see me marching with the real activists though

    • anonymous

      awesome tht is rly great thx! :) ))))

  • http://whatistheplan.gov anonymous

    who decided it was “gay baiting”? i can not speak for every member of anonymous mostly because there are no memberships. I can speak for myself and for many anons and we agree that this was not a act of hate against a gay man, this was merely a re-post of the pictures he posted. No matter his sexual preferences, these pictures would have been posted…… I and others are tolerant to all views of life as long it doesn’t brainwash and/or injure people. We want the gay communities support, and hope that they are not using this as publicity. We do not want you all to protest against us we are not against gay people. We do not want you all to forget WHY we are protesting, remember the men who have been killed watch the videos, do NOT turn this into some competition and war between anonymous and the gay community. We need all of your help against the system we do not want to fight amongst ourselves. Also we are NOT just hackers, we are activists against the wrong doings in the world only some of us are hacktivists. Do NOT label us, we are for the people! We are all anonymous you must wake up now! EDUCATE YOURSELVES.

    WE ARE ANONYMOUS
    WE DO NOT FORGIVE
    WE DO NOT FORGET
    EXPECT US

    • http://whatistheplan.gov anonymous

      also Linton E. Johnson is a evil man that threatened the integrity of freedom of speech while at the same time made up amendments out of his ass now he takes whats coming to him and we do not judge him for his orientation or his lifestyle just for what he has done {ILLEGALLY.} :@

  • Sean Alexander

    If someone would like to show solidarity with a government employee who A) supports police brutality B) sees the Bill of Rights’ First Ammendment as optional, provisional and revokable and C) willingly gave away the expectation of privacy by publically posting pictures of himself, then go ahead. Actions A-C are not things that citizens should put up with. Actions A-C are being criticized, not a person nor his personal identity. If this harms his ability to find employment in the public or private sector, it is because he sees government obliging its citizens, rather than having responsibilities to tax-payers. Anyone supporting him- no matter what guise it may be- is saying police brutality is ok to endorse, blanket and far-reaching censorship is justifiable, and being shown in a light casting him as human as everyone else is somehow equivocal to bullying an entire demographic of people. If by “LGBT” you mean “people who are ok with police brutality without accountability who wipe their bum with the constitution,” then protest all you want- unlike LGBT, who neither you nor this misguided PR rep represent, the “pro-brutality, anti-rights” platform is never going to be very popular.

  • anotherAnon

    I’d like to personally condemn the author of this piece for either:
    a) not checking their facts before publishing a piece designed to incite a misinformed mass movement, or
    b) inciting anger and unrest within the LGBT community

    (read: agent-provocateur)

    • http://whatistheplan.gov anonymous

      i do not understand this rant plz just dont…….

  • http://whatistheplan.gov anonymous

    who decided it was “gay baiting”? i can not speak for every member of anonymous mostly because there are no memberships. I can speak for myself and for many anons and we agree that this was not a act of hate against a gay man, this was merely a re-post of the pictures he posted. No matter his sexual preferences, these pictures would have been posted…… I and others are tolerant to all views of life as long it doesn’t brainwash and/or injure people. We want the gay communities support, and hope that they are not using this as publicity. We do not want you all to protest against us we are not against gay people. We do not want you all to forget WHY we are protesting, remember the men who have been killed watch the videos, do NOT turn this into some competition and war between anonymous and the gay community. We need all of your help against the system we do not want to fight amongst ourselves. Also we are NOT just hackers, we are activists against the wrong doings in the world only some of us are hacktivists. Do NOT label us, we are for the people! We are all anonymous you must wake up now! EDUCATE YOURSELVES.

    WE ARE ANONYMOUS
    WE DO NOT FORGIVE
    WE DO NOT FORGET
    EXPECT US
    (also Linton E. Johnson is a evil man that threatened the integrity of freedom of speech while at the same time made up amendments out of his ass now he takes whats coming to him and we do not judge him for his orientation or his lifestyle just for what he has done {ILLEGALLY.} :@

  • Anon2World

    U Gay Bro? Who cares? Not Anonymous. We re-posted the pictures he already had up on his website. What would happen if any other politician had nude photos up? Hmmm.
    Do not fight Anonymous – because you would be fighting yourselves. This entire article sounds like a big psyop job to me. Linton Johnson got his panties in a bunch and called a bunch of buddies… that is what happened. If LGBT shows up, they will get hugs from us. :)

  • dtra

    Again the followers of the Anonymous cult (yes I used cult here and before you Anons troll lookup definition) refuse to see the point. The use of the pictures was to try and discredit in the hopes that those who are homophobic will sympathize with Anonymous. I suspect largely to the fact homophobes are in great numbers. It’s obvious Anonymous will resort to any tactic. Also note the anti-protest is planned by commuters tired of being delayed getting home. Face it Anonymous, you have lost the support of the majority of people.

    • Archie

      At last, the truth comes out. Far from trying to humiliate a man–whose sexual orientation is entirely incidental–using racy pictures he himself posted, Anonymous was instead trying to win over the crucial homophobe vote.

      “Ah!” say the homophobes. “I may not know anything about these people or what they want, but they posted a picture of a man’s penis without comment, so sign me up!”

      • Archie

        All this having been said, “Secret Dogwhistle Homophobia” sounds like a Japanese rock band. Moving on…

    • anonymous

      dude ur prob fed just stfu… y u hate anonymous so much ur just doing it for publicity! we are not a cult dont label us, we could say the gay community is a cult… we are ur friends not ur enemies! WE DID NOT SHUT DOWN THE STATIONS THE POLICE DID! commuters need to wake up!
      how old are u 10?

      • Imrubberyerglue

        Are you seriously asking someone if they are 10 years old. Please observe the manner in which you communicate dude. Stfu? What are you, 12? These protests are hurting the very people anon says they fight for. Do us all a favor and feed the homeless, mentor our at risk youth and start being proactive instead of reactive within your community. You are currently part of the problem and no where near the answer. So stfu.

    • anon1550

      Ok, this was not any attempt at gay bashing in easy terms he had these pics posted by himself publicly, which shows a lack of inteligence. Anonymous is not a cult…. cults have leaders and no discusion of beliefs which is exactly how Anonymous DOES NOT OPERATE. It wasn’t an attempt to get homophobic ppl to “sympthize”; actually i personally wouldnt want a homophobic person standing next to me at any anonymous protest or in a chat room with me because they usually dont have the intelegence to participate in an intelegent discussion, otherwise they wouldnt be homophobic or would be seeing a “professional” to assist them with dealing with their homophobia. FYI : anonymous didnt just pop into extence for BART it has been around for longer than 2008 also check out other anon ops before you decide.simply because someone has something agianst someone who happens to be gay doesnt mean its BECAUSE they are gay. My problem with Mr. Johnson is that he defends cutting off the phones. If he had said “oops, I didnt think it through we never should have done that.” instead of the BART stand of “we can, did, and would agian” anonymous users wouldnt have REPOSTED his pics that HE POSTED on the world wide web to begin with. Unlike some info released by some anonymous users this wasnt “hacked” material it was already available on the world wide web. One of my best friends from childhood to now is gay and had this been an action ment to slam gay rights or the right to be gay I personally would have slammed the person who reposted. also note and look with the reposting there were no anti-gay slogans attached, just one pointing out he is a prik by another name.
      We are Anonymous
      We are Legion
      We do not forgive
      We do not forget
      Expect Us
      PS: We do things anonymously not to hide from law enforcement, and not as much from fear(though there is some) but because it isnt about 1 person or 1 person’s ideas. it is about humanity as a whole and no one person should be placed on a pedistal because as part of the human condition…. none of us are perfect. Anonymous strives for perfection through group understanding, but agian none of us are perfect.

  • Sean Alexander

    No one discredited him. He did. He defended police brutality, obstructs justice, and shills for restrictions on free speech and assembly. For a government employee, collecting US and Ca-state dollars, that’s more like “treason” than “lifestyle.” As for the pictures, they are remarkable not for what he does in his spare time, but, rather, his lack of discretion in doing so. People lose their jobs (or job prospects) for posting fully clothed party pictures online; why would you argue that someone who pisses on the constitution is being discriminated against? His willingness to abandon things like police accountability, right to a fair trial, and free speech and assembly are the antithesis of the struggle for recognition LGBT have had to go through. No one who shills for oppression should be felt sorry for.

  • SFanon

    Dtra supports police brutality and oppression? I think so. Let me remind you that the anons in this “cult” have done more for San Fransico & the LGBT community then you will ever be aware of. So how about you save yourself the trouble and ride the cab home. Some of us have been defending our rights for decades now. And we arnt goin to protest in behalf some shortsighted hypocrite who is defending the very wrong thats been done to our community for years. Linton Johnson is to gay people, what the DC sniper was to blacks. I don’t want him to be a representation of our community. Yuck!

  • anonymous

    lol wut? Siding with the BART police because someone reposted pictures of a public official’s dingaling? Seriously? I’m sorry but people need to realize that the internet is less forgiving than we are. You post a picture of your dingdong on here, it’s here forever.

    Those BART police will shoot you too. They’ll put you face down, hold your arms and legs down and shoot you in the back. Don’t believe me? Watch the video. We stand in faceless masses, for everyone, for everyone’s rights and freedoms.

    We are anonymous. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us.

  • SFanon

    Thats it! I am holding a Protest for pro-Anonymous LGBT members against, Anti-Anonymous protesters! You people are being hypocrites and no better then the repub homopobes if you’re going to stand behind Linton Johnson. >:(

  • Sean Alexander

    Much more worrisome is observing that of all BART members, it has to be a “gay, black man” who takes the fall. Whether it was just following orders or actually coming up with such a jingo-ist, ridiculous, illegal scheme, he’s taking the brunt of BART’s actions qua individual, while other BART decision-makers are only being scrutinized qua BART member. Justice, as fairness, would demand dox be found on all other voting, complicit members responsible for this. He may just be mouth-piece (and one in need of a 9th grade civics refresher).

    • anonymous

      no he had the idea to shut down service of phone and train

  • denise

    Who’s next after Mr. Johnson, isn’t he low hanging fruit. Shouldn’t they go after the board and the chairman of BART. Anonymous is happy they got an “uppitty nigger”, who didn’t know his place. So congrats to Anonymous

    • anonymous

      dont be racist

  • Chris Andoe

    I know Anonymous doesn’t forgive and forget.
    That must be why the human beings that make up the organization feel they have to agree with it 100% of the time or pretend that a questionable action was not taken by Anonymous- even after credit was taken.

    It’s really disheartening that so many people see the world in black and white. You agree with us and any tactic we take or you support cold blooded murder.
    I’ve gotten your threats and I’ve gotten the point.

    The Puritans used sex to shame and marginalize people. If you think this cutting edge movement should rely on Puritanical methods of targeting people I will stand up and disagree.

    I have to agree that Anonymous is beginning to seem like a cult. Agree with us 100% or get hacked, get threatened or worse.

    • Archie

      It seems as though you may be misunderstanding how Anonymous works. It’s completely amorphous: There IS no verification process for membership, ANYONE can attribute their individual actions to the larger collective, and there’s nothing that larger collective can do about it. Sure, some of the main bullhorns can (and did, in this circumstance) denounce the actions, but do you think the media or public at large pays attention to that? To say that Anonymous is some sort of all-or-nothing hivemind betrays a distinct misapprehension of their actual workings. One need only look at some of their public forums to see that, far from unanimous, there is actually a pretty massive amount of dissent and difference of opinion on even extremely trivial matters.

      Anonymous (and some of us who don’t identify as such) feel frustrated with this counter-protest because it seems to be trying to force a charge of gay-baiting into a situation where there really isn’t any. A previous comment said “these photos would have been published regardless of his orientation”, and I think that’s entirely correct. It was an attempt–Using sex, unfortunately!– to humiliate a single man who had put himself in the incredibly awkward position of being vocally against rights of free speech and free assembly, while simultaneously having publicly available (that is to say, easily found and not hacked) photographs of himself being, shall we say, less than diplomatic.

      You must understand that there IS a significant amount of backlash within the Anonymous community (many of whom are themselves LGBT) against the posting of these photos, REGARDLESS of the sexual orientation of the man in them. Sexual shaming should not be okay, but to denounce a movement against police brutality (of all things, in San Francisco!) as homophobic because of the actions of a small uncontrollable segment is not okay either.

    • anonymous

      dude thts just propaganda we do none of those things…. educate yourself

  • anonymous

    who decided it was “gay baiting”? i can not speak for every member of anonymous mostly because there are no memberships. I can speak for myself and for many anons and we agree that this was not a act of hate against a gay man, this was merely a re-post of the pictures he posted. No matter his sexual preferences, these pictures would have been posted…… I and others are tolerant to all views of life as long it doesn’t brainwash and/or injure people. We want the gay communities support, and hope that they are not using this as publicity. We do not want you all to protest against us we are not against gay people. We do not want you all to forget WHY we are protesting, remember the men who have been killed watch the videos, do NOT turn this into some competition and war between anonymous and the gay community. We need all of your help against the system we do not want to fight amongst ourselves. Also we are NOT just hackers, we are activists against the wrong doings in the world only some of us are hacktivists. Do NOT label us, we are for the people! We are all anonymous you must wake up now! EDUCATE YOURSELVES. Everyone STOP im saying officially form 10,000 diff mems of anonymous we love the gay community and we do NOT want u all to protest us. rather help us, thr is police brutality, we are NOT gay baiting that is so ridiculous! don’t do this its pointless.

    WE ARE ANONYMOUS
    WE DO NOT FORGIVE
    WE DO NOT FORGET
    EXPECT US

  • anonymous

    im so madd right now this is ridiculous……… i do not like Chris not because he is gay either this is soo crazy zomg. ppl at the protest tomorrow ignore all protesters from LGBT do not provoke and remain peaceful. its thr fault if thy want to destroy thr public image by counter protesting for publicity, or Chris might just be doing it under the command of Linton.

    • Imrubberyerglue

      Yes, you’re correct. Someone doesn’t agree with you so they must be working either for the fed or for ‘the man’ himself. This whole “either you’re with me or against me” mentality is less than intelligent, teeters on rediculous and would lead one to believe you are less than educated yourself.

  • Chris Andoe

    Against police shootings. Against using sex as a weapon.

    I’m positive MANY of you Anon people have similar photos somewhere. When someone pulls them out to marginalize you, question your moral character, or say because of a photo you
    shouldn’t have your job look me up and I’ll stand against that BS then too.

    • Archie

      I thought this counter-protest was about gay-baiting? Now it’s against using sex as a weapon? You seem to be deliberately misinterpreting a lot of things surrounding this (or at least ascribing your own meanings to them), which is disappointing since there actually ARE legitimate grievances to be had here.

      Oh well!

      • Chris Andoe

        You know in these threads and even in the hate mail I haven’t seen signs of an anti-gay bias. Not even in the most angry posts/email.

        I with Anonymous would issue a statement disavowing pushing the photos and reassure people that this tactic is not what they’re about.

        • Chris Andoe

          wish

        • Archie

          The main Anonymous bullhorn accounts on Twitter did post messages to that effect on the 26th, along with vows to never provide links to the pictures. Before that, (before the pictures were released) they issued apologies for even bringing the subject up in the first place. Unfortunately, once the subject was brought up someone out there was bound to ferret the pictures out and release them. After that there was nothing to stop them slapping the Anonymous name on it. Standby, I’ll find links to the apologies in a moment.

        • Archie

          I can’t find a way to link directly to the post, but the text of it (echoed on all main Anonymous accounts having to do with the situation) reads:

          “Never tweeting the Johnson pics, I still apologize for the insensitivity toward gays by some members of #Anonymous #opBART”

          • Susan Bauman

            Of course you can’t find a way to link. Who are the ‘main anonymous accounts’ so I can look for myself?

        • Archie
        • Yet Another Anon

          “Anonymous” doesn’t do anything as a group.

          The inability and unwillingness of the press or Old People to comprehend what is meant by “anonymous” is an interesting symptom of the generation gap. Even though anonymous has been operating for 3-4 years in the public eye at this point, there is this insistence on identifying “leaders” and applying other, old-fashioned concepts of organization to a group of people that can barely even be called a group. It demonstrates a new sort of technological-social self-identity and it’s fascinating to see it spring up in the first and second generation of people to grow up with computers.

          I don’t get how radically decentralised operations still confuse so many people.

          Demanding an “official statement from Anonymous” is just nonsensical.

          • Chris Andoe

            Was more looking for assurance that the group is not in favor of this tactic, which I think I’ve got.

            I already got the sense that there wasn’t an anti-gay agenda.

            Thanks for your help Archie. I’m talking to people now.

    • warm leatherette

      yo just a reminder that linton johnson made a public statement as follows:
      “We survived for years without cellphone service. Now they’re bitching and complaining that we turned it off for three hours?”

      not only is that a completely idiotic thing to say in regards to paying BART customers, it’s also a gendered pejorative. linton johnson is no bastian of equality.

      • Chris Andoe

        We’ve never claimed he was.

        People were upset about the photos independent of Johnson.

        • warm leatherette

          haha you’re calling for a march to support a dude who uses “bitching” blithely, free speech-stifling, police brutality supporter. dont get my LGBTI causes mixed up in johnson’s hate and incompetence, you’re making all of us SF queers look bad

      • anon

        To add to what leatherette pointed out, which I agree with, reminder also that the FCC agrees with the BART protestors that what Johnson did in shutting down the phones was complete garbage:

        “Federal courts have, however, curbed the ability of state and municipal governments to shut down communications on some types of government property. If BART’s subway platforms fall into the legal category of a “limited public forum,” then the agency would be subject to strict First Amendment scrutiny.

        Put another way: BART is under no legal obligation to provide phone service. But once it chooses to, the First Amendment applies.

        Federal telecommunications law, which is overseen by the Federal Communications Commission, may also prevent BART from disabling cell phone service. (BART says it turned off the electricity for about four hours.)”

        Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20096683-281/fcc-commissioner-bart-critics-may-be-right/#ixzz1WMdIuIHN

  • Chris Andoe

    I am actually listening.

    • Anonymous

      You continue to completely contradict yourself at every turn. From gay baiting to puritanical sexual targeting to weaponized sex, you have ceased to make any sense at all. Add to this your comments regarding Anthony Weiner, and you have replaced indisputable facts with your own biased narrative. Anthony Weiner tweeted a very risque photo to a 20 year old Seattle student and claimed he was hacked. He consistently lied and misled the public which was his downfall. He brought this all on himself. Linton Johnson posted the photos that were released. He was not hacked either. He bears all of the responsibility for them being made public, similar to the beauty pageant queens that post photos to their Facebook accounts holding beers or posing provocatively. To deny any accountability and claim gay baiting is laughable given the facts.

      • Chris Andoe

        What was the purpose of posting photos of him hanging on some guy at a bar?

        • Chris Andoe

          I’m willing and looking to find common ground.

        • Yet Another Anon

          We don’t know, we don’t speak for those anons and don’t know who they are. You would have to ask them as individuals.

          The people who located and republished the photos probably assumed that most professional businesspeople and public speakers would be embarrassed by having pictures of their dongs brought to the attention of taxpayers.

        • Yet Another Anon

          Furthermore, that you are willing to literally take to the streets to express your displeasure at the frankly piddling matter of Johnson’s public party photos being pointed out by hackers, but don’t care enough about the murders of Charles Hill or Oscar Grant to join activism targeted at the police department that needlessly and brutally killed them, speaks extremely poorly about your priorities, and the priorities of those who would show up to such a counter-protest.

          We understand that you do not speak for the LGBTI movement as a whole, but as has been demonstrated with the total lack of understand about what Anonymous is or how we operate, others will not.

          As one anon pointed out above, if we see self-identified LGBTI protestors on Monday, we will welcome them with open arms. LGBTI people have a history of enduring and fighting police brutality, and understand why citizens need to be constantly vigilant for it.

  • Chris Andoe

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
    LGBT DISPUTE WITH ANONYMOUS TENTATIVELY SETTLED. COUNTER-DEMONSTRATION CANCELLED.

    San Francisco, CA August 28, 2011
    Monday’s counter-demonstration against Anonymous by members of the LGBT Community has been cancelled after Anonymous made assurances that they have no malice against LGBT people.
    While many people speak for Anonymous we have been told the group was largely against the release of the Linton Johnson photos, and that they are not planning any similar tactics (sexual images) in the future.
    Some community leaders, such as La Mesha Irizarry of the Idriss Stelley Foundation are skeptical but had grave safety concerns for demonstrators. “A counter protest pinning commuters against protesters is itself a dangerous, unstable mix” said Irizarry.

    The LGBT group had planned to demonstrate alongside the “Commuters Take Back Bart” group, which is still planning to demonstrate.

    Lead organizers will be at the Civic Center in the event community members who aren’t aware of the cancellation show up to demonstrate.

    Contact:
    Chris Andoe
    chrisandoe@gmail.com

    • http://whatistheplan.org Anonymous

      i am soo happy it was canceled ty chris remember anonymous is for the people

  • Anonymous

    Thank you Chris. It is impossible to speak on behalf of Anonymous, but I apoligize for the 10 year olds who joined this conversation, claiming to be Anonymous, and we are glad we have settled this. For another example, I identify myself as an Anonymous and and a huge LGBT rights supporter.

  • White Power

    These sick sodomites need to be shipped to an island and NUKED!

  • White Power

    Ok so I’m gay and grumpy today. I play a terrible White Power hater.

  • Lee White

    Although Anonymous has certainly alienated many BART passengers by disrupting the commute and releasing private information of riders, the LGBT community was correct to cancel its counter protest. Linton Johnson is a highly-paid public official who is essentially the face of BART. The fact that he apparently exposed his private parts in a location where he was not assured of privacy was an exercise in poor judgment that should cost him his job. In any other city in this country, he would have been gone by now. It also seems quite apparent that he uploaded said photos to some unsecure web site — again, an exercise in poor judgment by a man who is old enough to know better. Johnson’s sexual orientation is a non-issue. Johnson’s displaying his Johnson in that manner is reprehensible behavior whether one be gay or straight. The LGBT community would do well to distance itself.