Poisoning the Internet with its bald-faced misogyny and malice, a blog post that lists "5 reasons to date a girl with an eating disorder" has triggered an outpouring of outrage on social media sites this week.
"Nothing screams white-girl problems louder than a good old-fashioned eating disorder," starts the blog post, written by an author using the pseudonym "Tuthmosis." The post goes on to list a compendium of so-called reasons why a woman struggling with an eating disorder could be seen as a preferred mate.
Posted Nov. 13 on the relatively obscure website Return of Kings, the post is one of the vilest things we've ever had the misfortune of reading -- and the contents are so horrific that we shan't reproduce any more of it here.
Understandably, the post has triggered a firestorm online, with people of all stripes slamming the list's author for mocking and invalidating the trauma and sickness that people with eating disorders experience.
"Clearly you have no idea what an eating disorder is," wrote one infuriated commenter on the Return of Kings site. "I have been in and out of treatment facilities for anorexia for over 4 years of my life. For starters, eating disorders are not 'white girl problems' -- I know girls (and boys) of all races who suffer from eating disorders. And anorexia is not about vanity. … Anorexia and bulimia are literally diseases, they are serious illnesses."
The Twitterverse has also erupted with rage.
Sick to my stomach. Eating disorders aren't a joke. http://t.co/sIYFxRNz4d
— Joely Milazzo (@Joelymilazzo) November 18, 2013
this is the most appalling, piece of shit article i've ever read: "5 reasons to date a girl with an eating disorder" http://t.co/JhLbHKHUr0
— alex (@alexleung77) November 18, 2013
Wow, really? There has got to be something that can be done to force this site to take this down... http://t.co/62J8Jmuo4B
— Red Bess Read (@RedBessRead) November 17, 2013
Tuthmosis, who did not immediately return The Huffington Post's request for comment, does not seem too bothered by the negative backlash.
The writer, who has also penned such misogynistic gems as "24 Signs She's A Slut" and "Don't Work For A Female Boss" for Return of Kings, has been proudly retweeting the angry protestations of netizens condemning the blog post and calling for it to be taken down.
On Monday, Tuthmosis wrote:
All these angry, hater girls don't see the irony in talking about "throwing up" over an article about girls with eating disorders.
— Tuthmosis (@tuthmos) November 18, 2013
As netizens continue to fume over the blog post's awful message, some have pointed out that the piece may have been a vicious trolling attempt to attract more readers to the Return of Kings site (which, according to its "about" page, is dedicated to producing content that appeals to the "small but vocal collection of men in America today who believe men should be masculine and women should be feminine.")
"The post went viral so they got what they wanted and made whatever revenue they did off it," activist and lawyer Brian Cuban (business magnate Mark Cuban's brother) wrote in the comments section of the blog post, adding that it was "one of the most appalling pieces of crap" he's ever read.
Indeed, the International Business Times points out that the post seems to have generated so much traffic that the Return of Kings site was knocked out for at least an hour Monday.
Thus, we hesitated before sharing Tuthmosis' post here. We didn't want to draw more undeserved attention to the writer or his list; yet starting a debate about this horrible phenomenon -- of sites spewing hurtful, hateful content for the sake of advertising dollars -- seemed like it may be worthwhile.
The dark underbelly of the Internet, full of venom and vitriol, will likely (and sadly) continue to exist in some shape or form. The question then is: How do we react to it in ways both constructive and meaningful? Should we stand up and add our voice to the fray, hoping to educate or, at the very least, to stand in solidarity with those who are being maligned? Or should we stay silent in the hope that by keeping the haters in a cold, dark place for long enough, they will eventually be silenced themselves?
Tell us what you think below, or tweet us @HuffPostWomen.