Melissa Brewer @catsrimportant has been my friend for about a year and a half now. Readers may remember her post about being stalked and harassed by anti-abortion fanatics, including the execrable Jason Wade Taylor. A couple of months ago, the same fanatics convinced a group of right wing bloggers that she was Xenophon Gryllus of Breitbart Unmasked.com, and the chorus behind this “faildox” only seemed to grow louder after Brett Kimberlin filed a lawsuit against those bloggers for harassment and stalking. Sure that Melissa is Xenophon, Robert Stacy McCain spent most of the last ten days haranguing and doxing her again, touting an irrelevant arrest record in yet another attempt to shame and silence her. Admittedly, this bullying behavior made me a bit angry, so last night I took it upon myself to make contact with Xenophon by Twitter DM and then briefly by Skype. I have also spoken to Melissa Brewer on the phone two or three times, and I can definitively say that Melissa is not Xenophon. Before anyone asks, no, Xenophon is also not Neal Rauhauser, whose voice is familiar to me as well.
I realize this news runs contrary to the fervent hopes and fevered obsessions of many people. But just like the last time I made this basic fact-check, those people will simply have to deal with their disappointment and get over it. Had they done some basic journalism in the first place, McCain and his friends William Hoge, Aaron Walker, Ali Akbar, and Kender McGowan would not be getting sued right now.
Having wasted much time trying to prove something that is not true, they have managed to hurt Melissa’s feelings and slut-shame her without gaining anything by the damage. I’m sure they are quite proud of themselves, and not a bit embarrassed to be wrong, but they are absolutely wrong, and McCain has not helped his litigation cause one bit. If anything, he has made things worse for himself.
While Xenophon allowed me to talk to family members in order to establish their bona fides, they asked me not to give away any details about their identity — not even their time zone! — since it is already clear that McCain and his friends will not shrink from the most vicious behaviors. Xenophon has already curtailed almost all conversations on the @X3n0ph0n Twitter account because it seems hazardous for any friendly correspondent, which is probably the intended point of McCain’s behavior. Xenophon recently published spoof DMs from a hacked cell phone belonging to one of his followers.
If you make it dangerous to talk to someone, you have effectively shut down their human rights. McCain has had enough of Melissa’s cat pictures and tweets, and would have her hang her head in shame and walk away forever. He attacked her this way simply because she included Breitbart Unmasked in her Twitter account’s RSS feeder. McCain and friends love to trumpet their supposed free speech victim status, but they are really just bullies, and stupid ones at that.
McCain was even spotted tweeting about the arrest record with one of Jason Wade Taylor’s many Twitter accounts, @TossingTomatoes. They seem friendly, which is not at all surprising. Taylor’s former co-blogger Jill Guidry also appeared as @Cajun_Fury. She is the original Melissa-stalker, and the DC Police Department has an open case with her name on it. So now that we know who McCain’s friends are, we know what he is really about. And we know that they will not stop until they have shut up everyone who offends them with their tweets.