A woman from Hackensack, New Jersey has come forward as the creative mind behind what used to be an anonymously-run “LGBT History” account on Twitter. Caroline Anderson created @LGBTHIS2RY as a joke in March of 2017. Her first tweet simply said “Jesus was gay.” She didn’t expect to get much of a reaction, but that tweet alone got over 300 retweets and gained her 60 new followers, so she felt encouraged to write more.
Next came tweets like “lesbians appropriated the trend of wearing flannel from bisexual men” and “same-sex marriage is legal because Rupaul secretly challenged members of congress to a dance battle and won”. Anderson was surprised to find that a lot of people took her posts at face value, and actually regarded her Twitter account as a legitimate resource for learning about LGBT history. She got such a good laugh out of people being so gullible that she never felt the need to tell them that she had made the stories up.
Anderson’s account is directly responsible for convincing a decent number of internet users that the first person to throw a punch at Stonewall was “a genderqueer Brazilian porn star who just happened to be in the neighborhood.” This particular post was retweeted over 500,000 times, and has been repeated so many times in real life that most people just assume that it’s true. In fact, during her local pride parade last year, Anderson watched as one of the speakers quoted that exact sentence before going on a tirade about how ungrateful gay men and lesbians have been to Afonso (the aforementioned genderqueer Brazilian) who paved the way for gay rights in the United States, and subsequently, the rest of the world.
“Afonso?” she thought. “Who the fuck came up with that?”
The answer was probably one of the hundreds of people who had retold the story in the months since it was first tweeted. After that incident, Anderson decided to come clean. She took to Twitter and wrote “That story about Stonewall is fake. Nothing I’ve written on this account is actual LGBT history. What is wrong with you guys?” Some people believed her. Others assumed that the account had been hacked. One user replied with “Afonso was definitely real. My grandfather did acid with them in 1969”.
Annoyed by all the stupidity, Anderson decided to delete her account. Her last tweet before leaving said “This was a mistake.”
This has been a fake news story