Chaya Raichik is an American anti-transgender activist best known as the creator of LGBTQ+ harassment account Libs of TikTok, from which she directs her audience of over two and a half million followers towards queer content creators and private citizens.
She has been temporarily suspended and then reinstated multiple times on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, and permanently banned from TikTok and LinkTree. Some describe her activity as “stochastic terrorism,” or inciting violence through public commentary.
The LGBTQ community has become this cult ... and they brainwash people to join, and they convince them of all of these things, and it's really, really hard to get out of it ... we discuss why this is happening, what's happening, and I think sometimes the simplest answer is: they're just evil. They're bad people. They're just evil people, and they want to groom kids. They're recruiting.
Prior to Libs of TikTok
Before seeing success on social media, Raichik was a real estate agent living in Brooklyn, New York. Her earliest social media activism was performed under the handle @shaya69830552, mocking the national pandemic and promoting a dubious sex ring scandal. After changing her username to @shaya_ray, Raichik tweeted about having attended the January 6th, 2021 capitol riots. She later stated that she was not involved in the storming of the capitol building.
Starting in November of 2020, she changed her Twitter handle to @cuomomustgo and called for the resignation of Andrew Cuomo, then governor of New York. She would later change her username to @houseplantpotus, styling her account as a parody of president Joe Biden.
Libs of TikTok
On April 19, 2021, Raichik changed her account handle to @LibsofTikTok, using the tagline “help you find your daily dose of cringe.” Initially presenting herself anonymously, Raichik compiled TikTok videos of primarily LGBTQ+ users and reposted them with mocking captions. Libs of TikTok received early attention from right-wing media figures like Joe Rogan, who described the podcast as “[curating] all the most crackheaded [sic] things.” Other figures who expressed support for Libs of TikTok included Donald Trump, Jr., Laura Ingraham, and Glenn Greenwald.
In December of 2021, Raichik tweeted that any teacher who “came out to their students” should be fired. In January of 2022, she promoted a false story about litter boxes being placed in a Michigan school for students who “identified as cats.”
In February of 2022, Raichik gave an anonymous interview to the New York Post, in which she described Libs of TikTok as a “mini Project Veritas,” a far-right organization founded by James O’Keefe and known for secretly recording strangers and releasing dishonestly edited footage. She said she had been called a Nazi, white supremacist and grifter, and stated that she felt bad about ruining her targets’ lives before going on to suggest that it was their own fault for posting videos of themselves in a public space.
In March of 2022, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ press secretary, Christina Pushaw, claimed that Libs of TikTok “opened her eyes” to the number of American educators teaching their students about “sex, sexuality, and LGBT issues.” Pushaw was a strong proponent of DeSantis’ “Parental Rights in Education” bill, colloquially known as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
On April 19, 2022, journalist Tayler Lorenz publicly identified Raichik as the creator and owner of Libs of TikTok in a Washington Post article. Lorenz described Raichik’s account as an “agenda-setter in right-wing online discourse,” drawing attention to the frequency with which Raichik’s tweets were the source of news packages from outlets like Fox News, or promoted by figures such as Tucker Carlson and Meghan McCain. In the wake of her public identification, Ron DeSantis’ office reached out to Raichik to offer her safe haven in a guest house at his mansion.
In May of 2022, Babylon Bee CEO and millionaire conservative Seth Michael Dillon stated that he would be funding Raichik’s work.
In June of 2022, Raichik shared the location and time of a San Lorenzo, California, Drag Queen Story Hour. The event was interrupted by five members of white supremacist group Proud Boys, who “behaved violently” and were escorted off the premises by police. That same month, Raichik shared the location and time of an Idaho pride parade, at which 31 members of white nationalist group Patriot Front were arrested carrying paramilitary gear and plans to start a riot at the parade.
On August 11, 2022, Raichik falsely tweeted that Boston Children’s Hospital was offering “gender-affirming hysterectomies for young girls.” Despite proof to the contrary being supplied almost immediately, hospital staff reported being victims of a harassment campaign that included threats of physical violence. Following this, Raichik continued to falsely tweet about more than half a dozen other hospitals, who each reported similar harassment campaigns and death threats.
After the November 20, 2022 mass shooting at LGBTQ+ venue Club Q in Colorado Springs, Colorado, multiple news outlets reported on the constant harassment the venue endured from figures such as Matt Walsh, Tucker Carlson and Chaya Raichik. Just hours after the mass shooting, Raichik drew similar attention towards a smaller pro-LGBTQ+ organization.
In December of 2022, Raichik appeared on Tucker Carlson’s since canceled show, Tucker Carlson Tonight. It was Raichik’s first in-person media appearance ever. During the interview, she claimed to have “helped educate people” and “helped create legislation” against transgender people.
Later that month, anti-fascist research organization Task Force Butler released an analysis of Raichik’s Twitter activity revealing that one in four tweets from Raichik that mentioned a specific location would generate harassment campaigns, and over half of Raichik’s targets experienced “real world consequences” within five days of her tweets about them.
In January of 2023, Raichik appeared on Shots Fired, QAnon conspiracy theorist and former Infowars host DeAnna Lorraine’s show. Later that month, former president Donald Trump hosted Raichik and other conservative influencers at Mar-a-Lago in Florida.
In March of 2023, Raichik appeared at a political rally outside the U.S. Capitol calling for TikTok to be banned in America. She stated that TikTok was “designed to attract our impressionable youth,” and that “groomers and predators know this and are using it to their advantage.”
In August of 2023, after a conservative superintendent of Oklahoma schools shared a post from Raichik’s account, multiple Union Public Schools received bomb threats.
In September of 2023, Raichik asked Twitter owner Elon Musk if he would release data regarding correspondence between Twitter, or “X,” and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), an international NGO focused on efforts against antisemitism. The request came after Musk claimed that the ADL had lobbied Twitter to remove hate accounts like Raichik’s. Musk later answered that he would do so, but that it might take some time to compile and deliver the data.
On September 25th, 2023, a Highland Park, Illinois, elementary school was forced to evacuate its students after receiving a bomb threat in the wake of Raichik sharing a picture of a pride flag in one of the school’s classrooms.
Raichik has been suspended from Twitter and Instagram for violations of their hateful conduct rules multiple times, but the suspensions have never been permanent. Her TikTok account remains permanently suspended.
Oklahoma State Department of Education
In January 2024, Oklahoma State Superintendent Ryan Walters, who last year approved the use of PragerU materials in Oklahoma schools, appointed Raichik to the Oklahoma State Department of Education Library Media Advisory Committee. Raichik is not a librarian, does not have experience in education, and resides in Brooklyn. According to Walters “Chaya Raichik and I have developed a strong working relationship to rid schools of liberal, woke values."