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William Shatner Uses Alt-Right Language in Twitter Fight With Outlander Fans 

William Shatner Uses Alt-Right Language in Twitter Fight With Outlander Fans 

William Shatner

The Star Trek legend also claims to be a victim of misandry at the hands of feminists. 

Add Star Trek legend William Shatner to the list of deeply problematic celebrities. The 86-year-old actor, who appears to spend an inordinate amount of time on Twitter mixing it up with and taunting various fandoms, has lately adopted the language of the alt-right to tear down detractors.

His most recent tweet tirade occurred over the weekend when he fought with "shippers" (fans who cheer for their favorite fictional relationships to become real) of the Starz historical series Outlander, resorting to calling them "snowflakes" and "SJWs" (social justice warriors), making ageist comments, and claiming he was a target of misandry at the hands of feminists. The hurtful language Shatner spewed was an affront to geekdom, essentially the fan group that launched his career when he starred in the original Star Trek television show 51 years ago.

While shipping involves an element of fantasy with fans searching for hints of clues that people could secretly be together or that they one day could be, Shatner took it upon himself to dash the hopes of Outlander fans who would imagine two of the show's stars -- Sam Heughan, who plays Jamie, and Caitriona Balfe, who plays Claire -- to become a couple in real life, although Heughan, an acquaintance of Shatner's, has a girlfriend, according to New York Magazine. Shatner's beef with Outlander fans began over a year ago, but he's back to fighting with them in the language often used by misogynists on sites like 4Chan and Reddit, the former being a place that Shatner has admitted to frequenting.

Fifty years ago, Star Trek inspired some of the most ardent fans of all time, in part because of the show's progressive themes, including Shatner's Captain Kirk and Nichelle Nichols's Lieutenant Uhuru making history with television's first interracial kiss. But Shatner's antagonistic, troubling tweets are a long way from history-making progressive art.

His Twitter rant included the following gems:

It's one thing for Shatner to defend his friend Heughan and his actual relationship with his girlfriend, especially since fandoms can become very intense, but his continual use of language adopted by the alt-right is a troubling action from the man who starred in one of the most groundbreaking TV shows of all time.

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