The FBI has amassed a 7,526 page file on cartoonist/essayist Molly Crabapple, as she tweeted the other day. Crabapple’s lawyer has filed to see the papers under the Freedom of Information Act, and the FBI will reviews them 750 pages a month and pass along ones they deem fit for Crabapple to see.

What has Crabapple done to merit such attention?

Created Dr Sketchy’s Anti-Art School
Documented and helped organize the original Occupy movement at Wall Street
Crowdfunded “Molly Crabapple’s “Week in Hell” performance art piece
Was arrested during a protest on the one year anniversary of Occupy
Kickstarted a series of paintings about “The Great Recession”
Visited the Guantanamo Bay prison and wrote about it for Vice
Obviously some dangerous stuff there. HOpefully they have equally large files on actually dangerous wackadoos.


  1. She’s a vocal, public dissident against the US government. Regardless of whether you agree with her, I think the FBI is obligated to do their due diligence on her. It seems like they’re not actively suppressing her freedoms and until they do, I don’t see an issue here.

  2. Interesting as this is, I think listing what is publicly known about her anti-establishment activities is well besides the point. A 7,000 page file means there’s a lot of stuff they’ve compiled that falls far outside of that. Is there merit to what they’ve compiled? We don’t know and can’t judge. And yeah, until they impede on her freedom, I don’t think this should be any of our concern either way.

  3. Dandru: I wanted to make a sexist comment about whether or not learning she had a file was a turn on. I decided against it. Thank you for taking the bullet.

  4. Martin: Sexist? What are you talking about? Based on a google image search it appears that a large portion of her career involves modeling. So commenting on her looks isn’t sexist. Sexist would be saying that she deserves to be monitored by the FBI because she is an uppity woman who should be in the kitchen. People like to throw words out that they don’t understand.
    Saying someone is good looking doesn’t make you a bad person. Its just an observation. If Dandru had attached a gender specific afterward to his comment that even implied that she was less valuable because she is a woman then yeah sure that would be sexist. But Dandru doesn’t do this. Dandru just makes an observation of his opinion on her looks. I don’t think the internet police can run in and snark about SEXISM.

  5. First of all, long slow clap for Molly Crabapple. ~8000 page FBI files are like if Andrew WK and LMFAO had a baby.

    Now Kevin, while you may not have found Dandru’s comment to be untoward, Martin thought it was sexist. I thought it was sexist and stupid. For everyone else here’s your easy TL:DR –

    In response to a story about a seemingly egregious level of scrutiny of an artist and journalist by the government following years of political wrangling over the lawfulness of government surveillance the week after another journalist was sentenced to prison for not revealing his sources within the hacker collective Anonymous the ONLY thing of value Dandru could come up to comment upon was her appearance. If this was an article about Manfried Crabapple – Calvin Klein underwear model – and his foibles with the FBI no one would have made THAT comment. I would be very curious how long it would take you find a comment on one of the half dozen articles I read last week about Barrett Brown that mentioned whether or not he was attractive.

    I found Dandru’s inability to say anything of value, importance, or intelligence frustrating in light of both the continuing and much needed conversation about acceptance and diversity in the media and its implicit acceptance of the state’s interest and scrutiny into one of its critics. That Crabapple was or is a model has absolutely no bearing on anything not related to modeling. Honestly, that argument makes you sound like a republican trying to amend articles of impeachment to a bill lauding Ohio’s pork production standards.

    Now I don’t think Dandru is a bad person based on that comment, but Dandru’s comment was sexist, and it was stupid, and your inability to see why it was sexist and stupid is part of the reason why comics, and games, and pretty much all of media has to have this conversation.

  6. Unnecessary yes. Sexist not really. And also- making that distinction doesn’t make me the symptom of an epidemic of our culture’s gender problems. That’s like saying “Well this guy disagrees with this jaywalking law which is evidence of a larger societal disregard for law and order and why the murder rate is so high.” Your point is insipid.
    The xkcd comic says that women on the internet are rare. I disagree with this. There was a time that the internet was populated almost solely with men but I think this time is long gone. Everyone is on the internet. Women don’t need special white knight protectors keeping them safe from people making positive non-threatening comments about their appearance. I think its more sexist that you think Crabapple needs you to stand up for her. I can agree with the xkcd comic in that it calls this sort of internet activity out as being annoying and stupid but I don’t see the word sexist used. Remember that words carry weight. Sexist is the gender equivalence of Racist. It means to view one gender as inferior to your own. Dandru’s comment doesn’t do this.
    Yourself and Martin should have simply said that his comment added nothing to the conversation and veered the attention away from the fact that the FBI is running an active surveillance operation on an American citizen who hasn’t broken any laws. These files are created to stop people from seeking power in the future. Say Crabapple someday wants to run for public office and maintains an anti-establishment platform, how long does it take for the FBI to come knocking on her door with this file to shame her out of politics. “Well it says here that you did such and such with so and so on Feb. 2nd 2014, you wouldn’t want that to become public now would you?” This is the tactics of the power to maintain power.
    I sound like a Republican?

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