Rolling Stone magazine is a liberal rag, and editor Matt Taibbi is unquestionably a liberal. And yet, by some miracle, Taibbi has seen the light and isn’t afraid to point out what is so clearly obvious to conservatives. “It feels liberating to say after years of tiptoeing around the fact, but the American left has lost its mind,” Taibbi wrote. “It’s become a cowardly mob of upper-class social media addicts, Twitter Robespierres who move from discipline to discipline torching reputations and jobs with breathtaking casualness.”
“The leaders of this new movement are replacing traditional liberal beliefs about tolerance, free inquiry, and even racial harmony with ideas so toxic and unattractive that they eschew debate, moving straight to shaming, threats, and intimidation,” Taibbi continued.
They’ve conned organization after organization into empowering panels to search out thoughtcrime, and it’s established now that anything can be an offense, from a UCLA professor placed under investigation for reading Martin Luther King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” out loud to a data scientist fired* from a research firm for — get this — retweeting an academic study suggesting nonviolent protests may be more politically effective than violent ones!
Taibbi then examined what’s been happening within the media itself. “By my count, at least eight news organizations dealt with internal uprisings (it was likely more). Most involved groups of reporters and staffers demanding the firing or reprimand of colleagues who’d made politically ‘problematic’ editorial or social media decisions.” Taibbi lamented about Intercept writer Lee Fang being denounced as a racist for daring to ask if a black life only matters when a white man takes it. The outrage that followed forced Fang to make a public apology.
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Taibbi’s acknowledgment of the collective insanity of the left is refreshing but misses a major point. This kind of outrage politics is not new or limited to the Black Lives Matter movement. The right has been repeatedly targeted by the outrage mob for years—decades, actually. Taibbi’s concern seems to be rooted in his fear of a liberal circular firing squad, and the casualties among the left because of the outrage mob. Where has Taibbi been all these years when conservatives were branded racist for opposing racial quotas and taxpayer-funded abortion. Where was Taibbi when Republican support for Voter ID was was likened to Jim Crow laws? Or 2007 onward when Republican opposition to Barack Obama was branded racist by default? How many years now have black Republicans been dismissed as “Uncle Toms” and token blacks?
Should Taibbi really be surprised that eventually, this racial virtue-signaling would result in casualties on the left? It was inevitable that the hunters would ultimately become the hunted when the left became so consumed with their own self-proclaimed righteousness that they’d compete with each other for who won the medal for the most un-racist.
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Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis