Skip To Content
BuzzFeed News Home Reporting To You

A Popular Knitting Website Banned Posts Supporting Donald Trump, Accusing Him Of "Open White Supremacy"

"We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy. Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy."

Posted on June 23, 2019, at 4:11 p.m. ET

Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Ravelry, a community website for knitters, crocheters, and other textile fans, has banned all content supporting President Trump and his administration in what it described as a stand against white supremacy.

In a statement posted to their website, the administrators wrote that posts, projects, patterns, and profiles supporting the president are no longer allowed. The site is the most popular online forum for knitting fans and counts millions of users, as well as 80,000 followers on Instagram and 100,000 on Twitter.

"We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy," the Ravelry statement said. "Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy."

We are banning support of Donald Trump and his administration on Ravelry. We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy. More details: https://t.co/hEyu9LjqXa

People who support the Trump administration are still welcome on the website, but are asked to keep their views to themselves, the administrators added. The site said it's not banning anyone for past support of Trump, and users would also not be allowed to antagonize people with conservative views.

"We are definitely not banning conservative politics. Hate groups and intolerance are different from other types of political positions," the new policy said.

A Ravelry spokesperson didn't immediately answer questions, including why the site enacted the new policy now, but the rules were adopted from another popular online community, roleplaying site RPG.net. RPG.net banned support for Trump and his administration in October 2018, before the midterm elections.

"We will not pretend that evil isn’t evil, or that it becomes a legitimate difference of political opinion if you put a suit and tie on it," RPG.net's announcement of the policy said. "We can be welcoming to (for example) persons of every ethnicity who want to talk about games, or we can allow support for open white supremacy. Not both."

Conservative critics on Sunday called Ravelry's new policy a form of censorship that hurt users' freedom of speech. (An attorney pointed out that as a private company, Ravelry can ban any type of content it pleases.)

Some knitters questioned the need for the site for making a political statement at all.

But others applauded the stand against hate.

Wow! This bold step arises out of months-long discussions in the knitting community about how crafters and designers of color are marginalized, and reaffirms the long-standing, firm commitment of Ravelry for the LGBTQ+ community. No half measures in support of core principles. https://t.co/gLK9MZVwMS

Knitters shared their experiences on the site.

@artesepam @ravelry As one of many mods of busy (NON-POLITICAL, SOCIAL) ravelry forums, I can say that the emotional labor of defusing angry & ugly situations where casual hate & intolerance is directed at queer, non-Christian, or minority people is frakking exhausting. Thank you @ravelry ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Ravelry is 8 million members strong. I’ve been with them since 2007, and believe me, they do not take these steps lightly. This is a watershed moment. https://t.co/c9SgBbQVGi

I have never been more proud of @ravelry than right now. https://t.co/6MiZFtgaZN

And people on Twitter joined in to welcome Ravelry's announcement.

the knitting community has it more together than @Twitter https://t.co/VDrQlqKuIV

Twitter: We couldn’t possibly ban nazis, it’s impossible Ravelry: Hold our beer https://t.co/jYcQbVw2jI

One craft shop owner said she'd be increasing her ad spending on the site.

We will be increasing our ad budget with Ravelry today, doing our small part to increase our support for a company that is supporting our community. https://t.co/nBOIBtRQyF

"My yarning heart is happy," another community member said.

When you see Ravelry trending and fear they’re shutting down and instead learn that they are as awesome, awesome, awesome as you always knew they were. My yarning heart is happy. https://t.co/gsxvG92Vbg


ADVERTISEMENT