Instagram(@jamescharles) / Liberty Hangout
On Monday, February 17th, conservative YouTuber Kaitlin Bennett visited Ohio University with her friend Joel Patrick to film a Presidents Day trivia video. Questions she planned on asking students included “who were the first 3 presidents?”
Within minutes, an angry mob formed around Bennett and her crew, and she was only able to ask one single person a trivia question. The crowd quickly grew in numbers as hundreds of students came out to heckle Bennett.
Over the course of the next hour, students threw toilet paper, water bottles, and other projectiles at Bennett’s head. Some shoved her and her crew as they attempted to move through the crowd to safety. Campus police neglected Bennett’s plea for help and walked away after she asked for assistance. Students then began to throw drinks at her and even poured hot coffee on her, which Bennett says burned her leg.
As Bennett and her crew left in a truck, the mob threw drinks through an open window of the vehicle and banged on the windows, as campus police stood by watching.
The incident drew national attention and has many, including Bennett, urging President Trump to strip the school of its federal funding for refusing to protect Bennett. While many on the right have united in standing against the violence portrayed by Ohio University students, liberals online have praised the mob’s actions.
One such person to praise the rioters was internationally known makeup artist and YouTube personality James Charles. After the YouTuber known as Keemstar publicly defended Kaitlin Bennett against the violent mob, Charles responded “Uhh this one should’ve stayed in the drafts chief”. Keemstar proceeded to ask, “Do support people bully this girl , aussulting this girl because she has different beliefs? I hope not.” Shockingly, James Charles responded, “She deserves it.”
After Keemstar told Charles, “If you were surrounded by people that were bullying you & assaulting you for your personal beliefs I would defend you too James”, James Charles said, “I’m not harassing, provoking or threatening to pull a gun on people with beliefs that are harmful and oppressive tho” – all accusations against Bennett that are provably false.
False accusations such as these are what resulted in an angry mob attacking Bennett in the first place. During her visit, numerous students at Ohio University accused Bennett of being a racist. When asked to give evidence for their claims, no one had any.
Prior to advocating bullying against Bennett, James Charles took part in a bullying prevention campaign in 2018. “Because of your negative comments online, I’ve almost quit doing the one thing that makes me happiest in life,” Charles remarked in the anti-bullying ad.
Charles is a 20-year-old gay makeup artist with a YouTube following of nearly 17 million and has his own makeup line with Morphe Cosmetics. Charles is often promoted in the trending tab of YouTube and is a favorite of YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki.
Thanks for coming over today @SusanWojcicki 👑💞 We had a lovely conversation about YouTube, it’s creators, important issues, and some awesome ideas! 😊 So excited for the future! pic.twitter.com/9UdPGYrguU
— James Charles (@jamescharles) April 18, 2019
Charles’ tweets condoning violence against Bennett are in violation of Twitter’s terms of services, which state, “You may not engage in the targeted harassment of someone, or incite other people to do so. This includes wishing or hoping that someone experiences physical harm.” Twitter’s rules also “prohibit the glorification of violence.”
Twitter’s Glorification of Violence Policy states:
Under this policy, you can’t glorify, celebrate, praise or condone violent crimes, violent events where people were targeted because of their membership in a protected group, or the perpetrators of such acts. We define glorification to include praising, celebrating, or condoning statements, such as “I’m glad this happened”, “This person is my hero”, “I wish more people did things like this”, or “I hope this inspires others to act”.
As of now, Charles’ tweets are still up and to be seen if Twitter deems them to be violations of their guidelines.