On Monday, shortly before he drove a van onto a crowded street in Toronto’s North York, killing ten and injuring 15, Alek Minassian posted a cryptic status on his Facebook page.
“Private (Recruit) Minassian Infantry 00010, wishing to speak to Sgt 4chan please. C23249161,” it reads. “The Incel Rebellion has already begun! We will overthrow all the Chads and Stacys! All hail the Supreme Gentleman Elliot Rodger!”
Global News reporter Catherine McDonald posted a screenshot of the Facebook post on Twitter late Monday. The post was later verified by Facebook as belonging to Minassian’s account.
Among the references in the post — which include a nod to the notorious chat site 4chan and a misogynistic community that call themselves incels — the 25-year-old Minassian also referenced Elliot Rodger, who killed six people and injured 14 other in a killing spree in 2014.
Who Was Elliot Rodger?
In the spring of 2014, 22-year-old Rodger embarked on a killing spree that ended with him shooting himself in his black BMW, following a shootout with police near the University of California, Santa Barbara. On May 23, 2014, Rodger first stabbed his three roommates to death before heading to a sorority house near the university, where he shot three Delta Delta Delta sorority sisters on the front lawn, killing two and wounding one. He then drove off on a shooting spree through the Isla Vista community, wounding several more and killing one, before crashing into a parked car and killing himself.
Rodger’s Viral Infamy
Before the attack, Rodger uploaded a YouTube video of himself sitting in his car, discussing the events that had led up to this moment in his life. Called “Elliot Rodger’s Retribution,” Rodger explained that he intended to punish women for never having sex with him, calling himself “the perfect gentleman” and lamenting the fact that he was still a virgin at 22. “I will slaughter every single spoiled blonde stuck up slut I see in there,” he says, referring to the sorority house.
He also emailed a 107,000-word manifesto to his parents, therapist and several others. It detailed his inability to lose his virginity because of the “cruelness of women” and outlined his plans to enact mass violence.
While the video is disturbing to watch, it remained publicly available online following the massacre and has been republished by several news outlets. Rodgers channel is still online too, and it’s an intense window into a world of alienation and misogyny of a mentally ill young man who has been indoctrinated by some of the most violent rhetoric of the men’s rights movement. It also spurred a large public discussion about toxic masculinity, rape culture, and the violence that women face every day.
The group that Minassian references, incels, stands for “involuntary celibate,” a group of men who blame women and “alpha” men for their inability to connect with women and have sex. The group congregates to complain and post misogynistic content online, and Rodger was known to post on at least one incel chat board before he went on his killing spree. On forums like Reddit’s r/Incel — which is now banned — Rodger became something of an idol, referred to as “Saint Elliot.”
It’s not known yet whether Minassian was a contributor to incel chat forums, and police have not yet released a motive for the attack. He is charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and 13 counts of attempted murder.