On June 23 2022, a Twitter screenshot of a purported Fox News article about a “they/them” summer spread virally:
OH SHIT NOW ITS OFFICIAL WE IN THE THEY/THEM SUMMER YALL pic.twitter.com/YytV5UliW5
— Lily Simpson is They/Them Summer (@LilySimpson1312) June 23, 2022
An appended screenshot depicted what looked like an article published on the website of Fox News. Text on the screenshot read:
Los Angeles • Published June 19, 2022 10:07am EDT
‘They/them’ summer: a new far-left extremist plot to undermine American democracy
Experts warn that the ‘deoedipianized theys’ are a far greater threat than Islamic terrorists
By Danielle Wallace | Fox News
Twitter commenters appeared to take the screenshot at face value, responding:
“Since American democracy was originally designed for rich white dudes, I can see why they’re worried. Don’t want any of that democracy without qualifiers.”
“I can’t find this article at all. Has it been deleted, maybe?”
“Is it so hard to understand the English grammar regarding how to use “they” and “them”?! I understand grammar can be hard – but being a greater threat than Islamic terrorists sounds a bit extreme. And democracy – yeah, you need to understand the language to participate;plausible.”
“Boy, they sure do have an extremist reaction to (checks notes) having to use one other word as someone’s pronoun – something that makes no difference in their own day to day lives[.]”
“There are so many far-left plots, it’s impossible for me to keep up.”
“I see they are saying that Islamic terrorists are not a threat. That is a refreshing change from their usual islamophobic fearmongering.”
One reader remarked that they had difficulty locating a Fox News article with the title seen in the image. Visiting the putative author’s page on Fox News led to a complete list of articles attributed to them.
Fox News writer Danielle Wallace did write an article published at 10:17am on June 19 2022. However, the headline and subheading had been altered for the screenshot.
It originally read:
LAPD form skirmish line after officers pummeled with fireworks, bottles during ‘street takeover’
LAPD responded to calls of a ‘street takeover’ in Boyle Heights
A Twitter screenshot of a purported Fox News article, “‘They/them’ summer: a new far-left extremist plot to undermine American democracy,” was virally popular in June 2022. The image appeared to be edited as a joke or as political commentary, using a real June 19 2022 article about the Los Angeles Police Department as a template.