A Few Optimistic Observations From the Fringe of Cancel-Land

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No one would ever accuse me of being a cock-eyed optimist. In fact, if you’ve watched any of our recent VIP Gold live chats, which we’ve dubbed Five O’Clock Somewhere, you’ve seen me wax a bit dour about the state of play with respect to cancel culture and what it says about the future.

Simply put, cancel culture is a grave and ongoing threat to present freedom and future progress. Those who control the ramparts of our technology, education, and culture are wielding power against history, the arts, and humanity itself. These things tend not to end well if they are left unchecked.

But perhaps, maybe, cancel culture isn’t being left unchecked here anymore.

People seem to be getting more than tired of it and some even see it for the political madness that it is. And they’re starting to push back and get results.

Maybe it started with the French. President Macron and several top French officials denounced wokeness — critical race theory, cancel culture; they’re the same thing — as a threat to their republic. They’re right: it is, and it’s a threat to ours, too.

French politicians, high-profile intellectuals and journalists are warning that progressive American ideas — specifically on race, gender, post-colonialism — are undermining their society. “There’s a battle to wage against an intellectual matrix from American universities,’’ warned Mr. Macron’s education minister.

Emboldened by these comments, prominent intellectuals have banded together against what they regard as contamination by the out-of-control woke leftism of American campuses and its attendant cancel culture.

Wokeness doesn’t stay on the campuses anymore. This week it exploded in several absurd directions. Disney censored the Muppets, and being too big to care, hasn’t backed down.

I haven’t backed down from canceling Disney+ and ceasing to care about Star Wars.

But Coke got caught teaching its employees to hate themselves and each other, and the soda giant did back down or, at least, try to weasel its way around the training. So did LinkedIn. It deleted the noxious junk training. Then even Robin DiAngelo, the Marxist White Fragility author behind the “be less white” nonsense, even distanced herself from the training and went private with her social media.

Perhaps DiAngelo got a little taste of the cancel culture she has fostered and profited from. She’s distancing herself from…herself.

That’s three victories right there. They may not last forever, but they do have some meaning.

These events keep coming, but they’re not going unnoticed. Hasbro announced it was deleting Mr. Potato Head’s gender and even justified that with some surveys and polls.

Fierce mockery erupted online immediately.

Now Hasbro is saying Mr. Potato Head and Mrs. Potato Head are keeping their genders. They changed the website and scrubbed the genderless tripe from it. The corporate giant panicked and responded to mockery.

People are starting to rat this stuff out wherever they find it.

A school board vice president went all woke in a meeting that was supposed to be about letting kids return to school. That got exposed and mocked quickly. Even the other liberals in the meeting with her weren’t buying her tripe.

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Some goofball leftists in education are trying to cancel Dr. Seuss, of all people. Ted Geisel was an anti-Nazi when it mattered, but to the cancelbots, facts don’t really matter. Just like Abe Lincoln being so anti-slavery he abolished it and died for it doesn’t matter to these idiots. The dopes found something they cast as objectionable in Seuss’ many wonderful books and are telling other lemming-like mis-educators not to have their kids read those books.

It’s stupid. But they’re getting called out on it. Most people won’t buy it and won’t follow. It’s too stupid to follow.

In fact, the more the cancelers try to cancel, the more likely they are to try to cancel something that most people clearly see doesn’t need canceling. This has happened to an extent with San Francisco schools’ taking Abe Lincoln’s name off of schools. Did you hear that the school district “paused” that stupid thing? Did you hear that even the far-left San Francisco Chronicle mocked them for it?

Backlashes against cancel culture’s total and undeniable stupidity do bring some success against it. So we have to keep mocking them every time they try it. Mockery may be our greatest weapon against it.

A few defeats for them doesn’t mean they’ll quit trying. They’re still going after the Bachelor host; he made the mistake of apologizing. We need more courageous people like Jodi Shaw, who hammered Smith College for its woke insanity on her way out the door (and someone on our side needs to hire her, pronto — she’s got real mettle). So we’ll have to keep fighting.

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While all this is going on, I keep coming back around to this thought. For all its bluster, cancel culture is weak and brittle and it knows it. If it had true strength and if it was honest — which it’s not at all — cancel culture wouldn’t always resort to the personal attack, it would allow some room for dissent and disagreement, and it would go after one of the world’s biggest targets with one of the world’s worst historic records on race. That target actually instigated insurrection against our nation by their own definition. That target fought a full-on war to preserve slavery by their own definition. That target imposed racist laws on the country to segregate it, by cancel culture’s own definition.

That target is of course the Democratic Party itself. The Democratic Party of the United States has one of the world’s absolute worst records on race. Why hasn’t cancel culture tried to cancel the Democratic Party?

Because cancel culture is to a great extent that party’s political shock troops. It’s a political terror movement disguised as a moral movement.

The more they try to cancel, the more they expose their own hypocrisy, and more Americans they enrage and invite to oppose them and mock them and fight them.

Hail Mr. Potato Head! Promote him to general. He won one for freedom this week. Man your mockery stations and get ready to repel the next attack.

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