the cut on tuesdays

How Did My Former Schoolmate Become a White-Nationalist Internet Personality?

Photo: Photo-Illustration: by Stevie Remsberg; Photos Getty Images, @faithgoldy/Instagram, @FaithGoldy/Twitter

On this week’s show, we’re taking a look at the roots of far-right radicalization and how the rhetoric of hatred is propagated online. And we’re also thinking about high school and the ways people change — some more than others.

In this episode, senior culture writer goes back to Toronto to find out how a girl she went to school with became a poster-girl for white nationalists. Back when Anna knew her, Faith Goldy was an outspoken feminist who was voted school prefect at their private all-girls school. Now, she’s a media personality on the far-right internet. She’s appeared on a podcast from , guested on misogynist Roosh V’s show ’ (far-right women who preach traditional values without upholding them), and , a white supremacist slogan. This year, she ran a far-right populist campaign for Mayor of Toronto. It was steeped in Islamophobic and anti-immigrant rhetoric and received an endorsement from .

Anna’s been reporting this story for months, but it takes on special weight in light of the events of last week, which showed how online extremism can spill over into real-world violence. Just last week, a far-right conspiracy theorist to people Donald Trump has labeled enemies, and a white-supremacist at a Pittsburgh Synagogue in one of the in American history. This violent extremism doesn’t come out of nowhere; it festers in the same parts of the internet where Faith Goldy is a star.

Click below to listen to episode two of Nouveaumonde on Tuesdays, and subscribe for free wherever you get your podcasts. (Also, look out for a longer feature about Faith running soon on the Cut.)

Nouveaumonde on Tuesdays

A weekly podcast from the Cut and Gimlet Media, with host Molly Fischer.

How Did My Schoolmate Become a White Nationalist?