Given some of this week's hubub, and the continuing veiled vitriol, I think it's now my turn for a post concerning how to kill a community. Of course, given that even I can find and follow these steps, albeit in retrospect in this case, it's almost like somebody wrote a book. These are condensed steps here. As the "community leaders" aren't naming names, I won't do so here.
Step 1(all others rely on this): Get into the community, start by establishing yourself. Appeal to the leadership to make your group more respectable. If somebody shows up with similar, yet differing goals to the original leadership, create tension and divisiveness to force that leader out. Worst case scenario is, they fork their branch of the community.
Step 2: Install leadership that doesn't care about the original goals, or
comprehend how to accomplish goals. Ideally, this leadership should be
as appealing to your community's opponents as possible, so if they
accuse you of being "straight white Mormon males", for instance, your
new leaders should be Atheist, feminist womyn, preferably with a history
of being oppressed, that are more than happy to promote alternative lifestyles.
Step 3: As the new leadership takes over, make it clear the new direction is to be as accepting as possible, and increase the broad appeal to the include opposition members. Don't state that any ideas are correct, or give clear direction. Keep talking about how much work your doing, and how you're building the community, distracting everyone from the fact that you aren't pursuing the goals of the community. You won't really accomplish anything as a group at this point, and that's what you really want.
Step 4: Let's assume you're at a transition point here, and you're going to shift purpose. An up and comer in the community might attempt to relate the group back to the original purpose of the group. If this happens, don't react rationally and deal with the matter privately, and quietly. React loudly, preferably with your aides, and lie, misconstrue the past, belittle, disqualify, and definitely keep going. The sooner you can stop their success within the movement, the better. Ignore, downplay, or insult their accomplishments that are relevant to the group. Note: Don't ever publicly name this actor, but only in private groups.
Make sure everyone knows you and yours are in charge, and will disavow anyone who acts out of turn.
Step 5: Shift purpose quickly. Change the goal so that you are more acceptable yet to the authorities in the field of your movement. Downplay the original goals as much as possible, as they no longer interest you. If possible, expand your new focus to a field that actually doesn't have the rampant issues the original one does.
While you're doing this yourself, your support structure needs to keep focusing on the actor in the previous step. Now, veil the attacks as potentially relevant material to a group project that is only tangential to the community. As before, NEVER put forth a name. Others might research what happened, and sympathize, and God forbid this person's friends actually have a clue.
Step 6: Honestly, by now your community's going downhill with the original members at all levels of activity. On the upside, you're popular with your personal fans and now with the authorities that hated the originators of the movement. You've won, and the movement is now a joke.
This week's events serve as yet another reminder:
When you play Social Justice, the world loses.