Steven Crowder

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Steven Crowder
File:Steven Crowder.png
Crowder in 2019
Born Steven Blake Crowder
(1987-07-07) July 7, 1987 (age 34)
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Citizenship Canada · United States
Occupation Political commentator, media host, comedian
Years active 1999–present
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Hilary Crowder (m. 2012)
Children 2
Website louderwithcrowder.com

Steven Blake Crowder (/ˈkrdər/; born July 7, 1987) is an American-Canadian[1] conservative political commentator, media host, and comedian.[2] He hosts Louder with Crowder, a daily political podcast and YouTube channel. He is particularly notable for a recurring segment called "Change My Mind". He is also a former contributor at Fox News.

In June 2019, Crowder's YouTube videos were investigated over his repeated use of racist and homophobic slurs to describe journalist Carlos Maza.[2][3][4] YouTube did not suspend the channel and said the channel did not violate the site's policies, but demonetized the account the following day, citing "a pattern of egregious actions [that] harmed the broader community".[5] In August 2020, his channel was re-monetized after YouTube said Crowder addressed his behavior and content.[6] In March 2021, his channel was once again demonetized after violating YouTube's presidential election integrity policy for questioning the legitimacy of election results.[7]

Early life

Crowder was born on July 7, 1987 in Detroit, Michigan. Crowder's mother was French Canadian, and at the age of 3, his family moved to the Montreal suburb of Greenfield Park, Quebec, Canada where he would live for the rest of his childhood.[8] Crowder attended Centennial Regional High School, and at the age of 18, he moved back to the United States.[9] Crowder attended two semesters at Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont.[10]

Career

Early career and Fox News

Early in his career, he worked as a voice actor for the character Alan "The Brain" Powers on the children's television series Arthur.[11] He began performing stand-up comedy at age 17. He then acted in a number of films, including the role of Doug Moore in the 2009 movie To Save a Life. From 2009 to 2012, Crowder worked for Fox News.[10]

By 2009, Crowder regularly posted satirical videos on politically conservative media, including Pajamas Media[12] and later at Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood. Crowder served as the master of ceremonies at the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference,[13] and generated some controversy with a rap video he premiered at CPAC 2012.[14] In October 2012, Crowder's YouTube video parodying Lena Dunham's ad endorsing Barack Obama was mentioned in the conservative magazine The American Spectator.[15] In 2016, Crowder created a short video for the conservative media company PragerU in which he criticizes democratic socialism as bearing little to no difference from Marxism.[16]

December 2012 union protest

In December 2012, Crowder and members of Americans for Prosperity were involved in an altercation at a demonstration in Michigan concerning the state's recently passed right-to-work law.[17] The incident began with an attempt by union activists to tear down the Americans for Prosperity tent, which was eventually successful. During the altercation, Crowder was punched several times by a union activist. Crowder posted an edited video of the incident to his YouTube channel that cut footage of the alleged assailant being pushed to the ground and getting back up, right before throwing the punches at Crowder. However, Fox News' broadcasts of the incident included footage of the man being pushed. The New York Times stated, "The same footage also shows that Mr. Crowder had his hand on that man's shoulder just before he tumbled to the ground, but, while the camera does not capture the whole sequence of events, it seems likely that the man was knocked to the ground as members of the two sides pushed against one other, not shoved down by Mr. Crowder."[18] Crowder later released an unedited copy of the video.[19]

An AFL–CIO spokesman, Eddie Vale, stated that the organization did not condone the tearing down of the Americans for Prosperity tent or the violence against Crowder and his group.[20]

In March 2013, Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings III declined to press charges against anyone involved in the December 2012 altercation. According to Dunnings, his office was originally sent an edited version of the video of Crowder's altercation. However, upon reviewing the unedited version, the prosecutor's office decided not to pursue the case because the union member had acted in self-defense.[21][10]

Louder with Crowder

In October 2013, Fox News ended its relationship with Crowder. This was announced shortly after Crowder made negative statements about Fox News host Sean Hannity and about Fox News.[10] In 2017, the Louder with Crowder program, featuring mainly comedic content and political commentary, became a daily program featured on Conservative Review's new streaming service, CRTV. On December 3, 2018, CRTV merged with Glenn Beck's TheBlaze, where Crowder continues to be hosted,[22] alongside his YouTube channel, which has existed since 2009.[10][23][24]

Francesca Tripodi, a sociologist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said that Crowder is "very popular, especially among young, conservative voters".[24] Becca Lewis, a Stanford researcher who studies extremism on YouTube, told Bloomberg News that while Crowder stays away from expressing white nationalism directly, his channel "has some of the most overt racism of any of the shows I've looked at".

"Change My Mind"

"Change My Mind" is a regular segment conducted by Crowder in which he sits at a table with a sign including the phrase "Change My Mind" and invites people walking by, often students on university campuses, to change his mind on a controversial subject. One of these segments, in which Crowder was seated behind a sign that read "Male Privilege is a Myth / Change My Mind" outside the campus of Texas Christian University, became an Internet meme based on a photograph of Crowder.[25][26][27][28] After Crowder uploaded it on his Twitter account on February 18, 2018, the photograph quickly became a means for others to change the signs about different situations, often mocking and parodying Crowder.[29] In June 2018, Complex rated the meme at 18 on their list of "The Best Memes of 2018 (so far)".[30]

Violations of online policies

In June 2019, YouTube investigated Crowder for using racist and homophobic slurs targeting Carlos Maza in multiple videos reacting to the Vox series Strikethrough, which Maza hosts. Crowder referred to Maza as "Mr. Lispy queer", an "angry little queer", and a "gay Mexican", and mocked him with a stereotypical gay voice, sometimes while wearing a t-shirt with Che Guevara on it that said "Socialism is for f*gs [sic]".[2] In addition, Maza said that Crowder's fans have doxxed and harassed him.[31] Maza said Crowder's videos about him are "dehumanizing, and it's something I thought YouTube would be more protective about because it brands itself as being a queer space".[2] According to an analysis by Vox Media's The Verge, Crowder's videos "routinely contain egregious violations of YouTube's policies against cyberbullying".[32]

Crowder responded with a video where he said his use of slurs was "playful ribbing" and that "it's funny, it's a comedy show". He said that the investigation was a "war we will fight to the bitter end" and that "this is an example of a giant, multinational media conglomeration ... attempting to squash a competitor". He also stated that he is opposed to doxxing and harassment.[33][34]

YouTube concluded that the language used by Crowder "was clearly hurtful", but "the videos as posted don't violate our policies". It determined that Crowder had not encouraged his viewers to harass or dox Maza either on YouTube or other platforms and that the main point of his video was to respond to opinion.[35] The decision to not suspend the channel drew considerable criticism.[2] The next day, YouTube suspended the channel's monetization, blaming "a pattern of egregious actions [that] harmed the broader community".[36] Republican Senator Ted Cruz, who had previously appeared on Crowder's show, criticized YouTube's demonitization of Crowder's account, and Crowder stated on his Twitter account that, "Vox is still going to be pissed" because he was not removed from the platform.[37][38]

In August 2020, YouTube re-monetized some of Crowder's content on the site, stating that Crowder had satisfactorily addressed the issues with his behavior and content.[39]

Crowder announced in February 2021 that he filed a lawsuit against Facebook, alleging he was unfairly censored by the platform.[40]

In March 2021, YouTube suspended Crowder's channel for one week for violating its presidential election integrity policy by questioning the legitimacy of the election results in Nevada and again indefinitely demonetized the account.[41] The next month, his account was given a second strike on the platform for "reveling in or mocking" the killing of Ma'Khia Bryant in a video he posted; the following month, Crowder announced that he filed a lawsuit against YouTube seeking an injunction.[42]

Personal life

He married his wife, Hilary, in August 2012, and wrote about the benefits of remaining abstinent prior to his marriage.[43]

In July 2021, Crowder underwent a surgical operation in which titanium bars were inserted into his chest in order to counteract his congenital condition of pectus excavatum, or a sunken chest.[44] The surgery caused fluid to accumulate in his lungs, which he called "excruciatingly painful". Several weeks later, he was rushed to the hospital due to a collapsed lung.[45] In August 2021, as Crowder was still recovering from both treatments, Hilary gave birth to twins: a son, Magnus, and a daughter, Charlotte.[46]

Filmography

Year Film Role Notes
2000–2001 Arthur Alan 'The Brain' Powers Voice
2000 Arthur's Perfect Christmas
2001 Two Summers Friend
2004 Arthur's Halloween Alan 'The Brain' Powers Voice
2005 3 Needles Depanneur Manager
2006 The Covenant Party Kid
2007 The Secret Classroom Boy
2008 Bend & Break Blake
The Velveteen Rabbit Baseball Boy #1
Greek Jace
2009 To Save a Life Doug Moore
2017 A YouTube Carol Ebenezer YouTube

References

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  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Rosenburg, Eli (June 4, 2019). "A right-wing YouTuber hurled racist, homophobic taunts at a gay reporter. The company did nothing". Washington Post. Retrieved June 5, 2019.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  43. "Waiting till the wedding night—getting married the right way". Fox News. September 14, 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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External links