But when the alt-right adopted the term, they give it a far-right, socially conservative anti-feminist connotation - one in which someone who "takes the red pill" has had an alt-right awakening and rejects liberal or progressive ideology.
Musk's message refers to a scene in The Matrix, where Keanu Reeves' character is given the choice between taking a red pill (seeing the truth of things), or a blue pill (existing in peaceful ignorance).
On Sunday, May 17, Musk tweeted, "Take the red pill".
The Matrix co-creator Lilly Wachowski snapped at Elon Musk and Ivanka Trump on Twitter, after Musk tweeted about taking the "red pill", which is a phrase from the movie that right-wing Americans have appropriated.
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"Fuck both of you", tweeted Wachowski, and later added another tweet encouraging people to donate to Brave Space Alliance, an LGBTQ social service organization.
Musk has shared many political tweets lately, focusing on the coronavirus lockdown.
On Sunday, after posting his cryptic tweet, Musk also tweeted a meme of "Matrix" star Laurence Fishburne, who, playing Morpheus, had said the "take the red pill" line. She created The Matrix with her sister, Lana. He threatened to sue the county where the factory is located, and move production out of California.
It's a great day when Elon Musk and Ivanka Trump get owned online for misunderstanding and misappropriating a movie's theme by one of its writer-directors. We can only hope that a new Matrix for a new era will stop the trolls from misunderstanding the franchise's message, but, unfortunately, a lot of them took the blue pill a long time ago, so we're not holding our breath.