If you’re looking at what’s happening on FB and Tumblr and are thinking “wow, it’s like basically EXISTING as a sex worker or queer/trans person is now against the rules”, you’re exactly right, and that was the plan all along.
The GOP has been losing the culture war largely because of the internet. It’s allowed marginalized folks to speak with way more voice than we’ve ever had before. It’s humanized us to the masses, and turned the general cultural tide away from Christian Conservatism.
So, the Right needed a way to strike at the places of safety, congregation, and conversation that let marginalized people connect, organize, and speak out.
This is where SESTA/FOSTA was born.
The spectre of “trafficking” (especially of children) has been used as a politics cudgel against sex work for years— by both left and right alike.
Attacking sex work is one of the last areas of bipartisanship. And so it was easy to play on Liberal tears to get this through.
And, even with so many of us screaming about exactly how dangerous the legislation was, Congress gleefully passed legislation that turned the Internet from a haven into a dystopian censorship nightmare.
Except, for the cishet white civilian polulation, they barely notice.
Cisgender heterosexual folks don’t use the same social media corners as we do, and their lives are sexualized by rhetoric the way ours are, their content is unaffected. They just don’t see anything we post/write, killing our outlet that helped had turn the tide in our favor.
Meanwhile, we have propaganda machines from Russia and the Ultra-Right flooding social media with the their messages. That’s been happening for years. And it’s been like obviously having an effect...see 2016. And w/o marginalized voices to push back against that, we’re fucked.
So if you think this is all a coincidence, I have several bridges to sell you. The Right is very invested in pushing what it deems “sexual deviants” out of public life. That’s queer folks, trans folks, sex workers, etc. We disgust them, and they resent that we’ve come out.
Here’s the thing. None of this is new. The Right has been playing this game for DECADES, and the Dems fall for it EVERY GODDAMN TIME BC “THE CHILDREN”.
Gayle Rubin wrote about this 30 YEARS AGO in “Thinking Sex”!