In Brief

Toronto van attack suspect posted ‘cryptic’ Facebook message

Message appears to link driver to misogynist ‘involuntary celibate’ subculture

The suspect in the Toronto van attack that claimed the lives of 10 people on Monday reportedly posted a “cryptic message” on Facebook shortly before he began his rampage.

The message, which Facebook has confirmed as genuine and was posted by van driver Alek Minassian, included a reference to the “Supreme Gentleman Elliot Rodger”.

In 2014, Rodger went on a stabbing and shooting spree in California, killing six people before taking his own life.

CBC News says that before that attack, Rodger posted a video on social media in which he “raged about a number of women turning down his advances, rendering men like him ‘incels’”, a term used to describe people who are involuntarily celibate.

Minassian’s Facebook message also included a line that read: “The incel rebellion has already begun. We will overthrow all the Chads and the Stacys”.

“‘Chads and Stacys’ refers to attractive men and women who are perceived as better than or unavailable to ‘incels’,” the BBC says.

During a press conference, Toronto Police Detective Sergeant Graham Gibson said that the victims of the van attack were “predominantly women”.

The incel movement has grown steadily online on a number of sites, including Reddit and other dedicated public message boards.

“The big incel hubs are often viciously misogynistic and regularly feature calls for rape or other violence,” The Guardian says.

Reddit administrators banned the 40,000-strong incels group from the site in November last year, after members of the group began discussing ways a man might get away with raping a woman.

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