So, I sent a tweet Friday that was imprudent.
The left, having decided the tweet was literal violence, and fully resolved to eradicate racism and sexism in the world, proceeded to hurl every manner of racist, sexist insult they could think of.
Last week, four days before that tweet, I wrote, “Free speech is being attacked since words are apparently the same thing as assault … In 2017, words are considered violence.”
I didn’t realize how quickly the point of my last op-ed would be proven true.
Identity politics has made reactions like this to real or perceived offenses the go-to method of retaliation. Apparently, bigotry is fine if you believe the other person was a bigot first.
Don’t like something someone said? Make a list of assumed stereotypes based on race, sex, politics, wealth, religion and upbringing and then use those assumptions to craft hateful, brain-stem insults.
For example, if you find something someone said upsetting, it’s OK to encourage suicide.
Is the person you’re mad at white and female? If so, make sure to call her a Starbucks-drinking “awful white woman” who’s too “privileged” to understand the racism she embodies by virtue of the lack of color in her skin. Don’t forget to point out that she’ll never be able to understand, and therefore is condemned to a life of ignorance only fit to be shamed by her enlightened, non-white peers. More colorful language can always be used if “woman” does not accurately describe the female who offended you.
None of this is actual bigotry, though, because they started it with their words, and words are violence.
The current political climate promotes emotional lunacy with wild abandon. Words like “racist,” “Nazi” and “Hitler” are utilized as the best means to explain why one is angry about, or disagrees with, something. This is in part because my generation has never been taught how to process and deal with anything that causes unhappiness. They can’t articulate arguments because they’ve never needed to, and so they have not been taught how to. They can’t react with sympathy or pity because they’ve never been taught how to. The only weapon at their disposal is all-out emotional assault.
The fake news phenomenon illustrates this craziness perfectly; the phrase has been so overused and misunderstood that what was once a pair of words used to denote fictitious reporting is now thrown at people and ideas we don’t agree with.
Republicans are called Nazis because Democracy worked as intended and Donald Trump was elected. White people are called racist for daring to point out that our inner cities have problems. The only answer is Islamophobia if you’re concerned about the radical Islamic terror attacks committed in America.
Trump will always be anti-Semitic. Even if the prime minister of Israeli says he isn’t, even if he comes out against attacks against Jews, and even if his son-in-law — who is one of his closest confidants — and his daughter are Jewish, all that matters is that you believe he is anti-Semitic.
Another sad consequence of my generation’s emotional ineptitude is that all interactions with people who aren’t exactly like you instantly become malicious and adversarial. Differences are met with suspicion, not curiosity or openness. We as a country have gone from “innocent until proven guilty” to “shoot on sight.”
We expect the worst at all times, and that mindset becomes self-fulfilling the moment you have a bad experience. Identity politics and millennials’ “bubble boy” upbringing created the perfect environment to promote deep divides based on race, creed and color.
I will never be able to convince those offended by a one-off tweet about people causing traffic that it wasn’t racist. They believe it’s racist, and their reality reigns supreme over common sense. In their minds, no judge or jury is required to convict alleged prejudice.
As Batman’s Scarecrow said: “Your guilt has been determined. This is merely a sentencing hearing. Now, what will it be: death, or exile?”