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Andrew Tate: Media Sensation, Former Professional KickBoxer, and Now Convicted Felon.

After his recent arrest by the Romanian police, following a video response he made for Greta Thunberg, the misogynist social media sensation is being held by authorities. Tate’s story serves as a cautionary tale for the kind of people we give attention to online, and the dangers that has for our society.

Emory Andrew Tate III, more commonly known as Andrew Tate was a professional kickboxer now turned social media sensation who has recently been taken into custody by the Romanian police for human trafficking charges. The ex-kickboxer is commonly known for being extremely masculine and extremely rich, attracting many young male followers. Yet, this popular ‘manosphere’ influencer has been criticized on the internet much before his arrest in late December 2022. Many of his behaviors and lines have been deeply criticized online due to their misogynistic and violent undertones. Recently, Tate’s blow-up on the popular TikTok app has led to a culmination of many extremely young male fans. This poses a concern for the type of people that as a society we choose to give attention to and the serious dangers they can cause in real life.

Andrew Tate is of British and American descent and was born in Washington D.C., but after his parent’s divorce, he moved back to England with his mother, brother Tristan, and his sister. He began kickboxing in 2007, and soon later in 2009 won a significant kickboxing award in a Derby championship, garnering him many fans from the kickboxing community. He acquired the nickname ‘King Cobra’, which is how he became known by many admirers, and where his social media name comes from. After the success he received from the sport, Tate and his brother Tristan, began a webcamming company where several women joined as a line of work. Yet it was later revealed that the arrangement was a scam, as the women were encouraged by the Tate brothers to lie to customers to garner more money from them. This is only the beginning of Tate’s long record of shady businesses, and exploitative arrangements.

It is arguable however that Andrew was only truly thrust into the spotlight after he participated in the reality TV show, Big Brother UK, in the 2016 edition. He was sent home by production, however, after only 7 days of confinement, the reason was that a video resurfaced online of him violently whipping a woman with a belt. To this day Tate denies the accusations of abusing the woman, claiming the acts were completely consensual, despite some discrediting his statement to his day, the woman from the video has supported his claims.

In 2017 Andrew makes the decision, alongside his brother Tristan, of moving to Romania, specifically to its capital, Bucharest. One of the reasons stated by Tate himself was that he wanted his large house to be protected by armed security guards throughout the entire day, which was something he couldn’t do in the UK. despite the nature of the previous statement, another extremely controversial reason Andrew said for his move was that despite him “not being a rapist” he liked the idea of being able to do “whatever I want”. The last line upset many people on social media, as it made reference to Romania’s less strict sexual assault laws, and had an extremely misogynistic nature.

Around the same year is when he began to embrace his controversial media persona, starting with his comments about the Harvey Weinstein case. In 2019, after years of investigation when the millionaire Hollywood producer was on trial, Andrew commented once again with allusions to rape culture and direct victim blaming. Victim blaming is the action of placing blame on a victim of an assault, usually sexual. He stated that if the victim puts themselves “in a position to be raped” then they “must bear some responsibility”. The statement in itself is incredibly rude and offensive not only to Weinstein’s victims but to any victim of sexual assault. Unfortunately, it would not be the first or last time that Tate has made disrespectful and outright hateful comments toward women.

Andrew Tate would always keep himself busy, especially with the founding of his online program “Hustlers University”. The program was promoted by Tate online as a masterclass in e-commerce, cryptocurrency, and the stock market, all for a monthly fee of $49.99 dollars. Yet, many had issues with the ‘university’ because in it Andrew would encourage the members to garner more members, and earn money on commission, which in other terms could be referred to as a pyramid scheme, and can be dangerous, proving itself to be a scam. Others have stated that Tate especially encouraged the sharing of the more ‘controversial’ videos, usually those in which he shared his opinions on women and other social topics, so as to start a war online. In August 2022 however, Hustlers University was shut down, but the damage had already been done, as many of the subscribers continued to spread Tate’s message all across social media.

Everything changed in 2022, as it was the year when Andrew reached further than his niche male following, garnering worldwide media attention. He gained immense amounts of success from clips of podcasts he’d attend, and videos he’d make of himself for other platforms, being shared on TikTok. Some accounts would solely repost clips of Andrew saying extremely sexist, and disrespectful things towards women, and the videos would gain several views with both negative and positive feedback. Throughout the popularization of his videos on TikTok, Tate’s following became majoritarian made of young teenage boys, who were very impressionable and formed an almost cult-like attitude towards the social media star.

On the 27th of December 2022, Andrew Tate decided to tweet out to the young environment activist Greta Thunberg, in his tweet he mentioned his numerous Bugattis, and an approximation of his carbon emission levels, through his many sports cars. In response, Greta directed Andrew to a fake email account, and the tag of the account made fun of the kind of energy the ex-kickboxer puts out. However, Tate would not let it be, deciding to make a long video response which he posted on his Twitter page, where he went into detail about his wealth and numerous sports cars and ranted about Greta, yet in the video, he is handed a box of pizza from a Romanian pizza chain and continues ranting. What Tate did not expect was that the pizza box was the confirmation Romanian police needed to arrest the media sensation, as they required proof that Tate was in the country.

Unfortunately, despite the humorous nature of his arrest, the charges are far from laughable, as Andrew Tate was arrested on suspicions of human trafficking and rape. These charges show that Andrew’s violence-inciting misogynistic rants online are far from the most dangerous things he does. Extremely serious charges of this nature raise questions regarding the kind of people social media and our society choose to give a platform to. Many young men idolize a person such as Andrew Tate because he speaks his mind freely without fear of repercussions, and several young men secretly agree with the things Tate speaks of, and consequently, he becomes a hero for them.

However, Tate’s violent online discourse affects people outside of social media, as they have effects on his audience’s mental stability. Many men begin to form hatred and strict boundaries towards women that are used for self-fulfillment. Women are also affected as these kinds of discourses and behaviors, especially when manifested in a school environment allow for lower self-esteem. The social media star can also encourage the rise in manipulative behaviors in his young male audience, as many young fans accompanying him have low self-esteem which leads to people-pleasing tendencies, which is why many follow Tate’s words blindly.

There are ways to fight against Andrew’s polarizing speeches, especially inside the home, with parents further instilling in their children the ideas of partnerships in relationships, not ownership. There is also hope in Andrew’s case as Romanian police have just extended his temporary arrest to 30 days, whilst he and his brother Tristan have. Despite the horrific nature of the media sensation, his story can be used as a cautionary tale for the people we give platforms.


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