SJWs and Leftist Media Work Together to Drive Outrage Culture
Since protests in Charlottesville that turned violent, there has been a laser-like focus by social justice warriors to remove statues commemorating those who fought for the Confederacy. To date, at least two dozens statues have been removed because of complaints, vandalism, or fear that they would be vandalized. Given the last eight years of a black, Democratic president, why is this the outrage du jour? Fox Business writer and comic Jimmy Failla correctly pointed out, “They weren’t taken down earlier because there was no currency to be scored.”
In mid-August Duke University announced that it would remove the statue of Robert E. Lee from outside its chapel. Duke President Vincent Price said in a statement, “I took this course of action to protect Duke Chapel, to ensure the vital safety of students and community members who worship there, and above all to express the deep and abiding values of our university.”
In other words, they feared that worshipers could be physically harmed if the statue remained among the many other statues outside the chapel.
Threat made. Ransom paid.
However, there is no peace when it comes to the left, only temporary appeasement. The pattern has been established; thanks in part to those who believe the Left can be satisfied. Self-proclaimed social justice warriors have already widened their circle of outrage by including Christopher Columbus and slave-owning founding fathers like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. As Greg Gutfeld said, “They got a hold of the thread in a sweater and they’re not going to let go until there’s nothing left.”
Case in point, an article appeared on both Alternet and Salon titled “It is time to examine the words and the origins of our national anthem, another neo-Confederate symbol”
Similarly, we saw social justice warriors call for the firing of former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon. Websites as diverse as The Hill, The Huffington Post, and People magazine, echoed Twitter rants as evidence of a growing social justice movement to fire Bannon. In addition to #FireBannon, #FireMcMaster and #FireKushner have also been trending topics by the Twitter mob. Now that Bannon has left the White House on his own terms, social justice warriors and their cohorts in the media are already looking for another scalp.
Newsweek proclaimed in a headline, “Steve Bannon’s Exit Won’t Make Trump’s White House Any Less Racist.”
The Democratic National Committee put out a statement saying, “There is one less white supremacist in the White House.”
CREDO Mobile’s PAC said, “Even after Bannon’s departure, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue will remain the White Supremacists’ House as long as Stephen Miller, Sebastian Gorka and the Nazi terrorist cheerleader-in-chief Donald Trump continue to occupy the Oval Office.”
On CNN’s “State of the Union,” Rep. Adam Schiff said, “There’s certainly a lot of people on the White House staff and NSC [National Security Council] staff that shouldn’t be there. People like [Stephen] Miller and [Sebastian] Gorka and others who not only I think represent the same thing that Bannon did, but aren’t capable of doing the job well.”
Giving weight to the demands to fire White House officials is the leftist media offering zero pushback against these false assertions that officials are Nazis or white nationalists.
As we saw last week, their hate for anyone connected to President Trump even goes beyond flimsy attempts at connecting officials to white nationalism. After Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s wife posted a photo on her personal Instagram account mentioning the brands of clothing she was wearing and responding to critical comments she received, social justice warriors took to Twitter with their standby battle cry — #FireMnuchin. (If Twitter takes into account all the misspellings of his name, it will be trending in no time.)
Social justice warriors specifically choose fights like removal of statues and demands for people to be fired because they have no end. They have successfully made outrage an industry and the goal posts will always keep moving. They will continue to be successful in their efforts thanks to the leftist media guiding and championing their cause. It’s a beast that feeds itself because social justice warriors will continue to up the ante to sustain media coverage.
In my upcoming book, The Social Justice Warrior Handbook, I write about how the media explicitly guides social justice warriors in their efforts. In the case of Confederate statues, the media is feeding the beast by keeping score on what statues have been removed, as well as suggesting other targets. NBC News lists ten Army bases that are named after Confederate officers. From the article: “Statues of Confederate figures are coming down all over the country, but the names of generals who fought for the South during the Civil War remain on U.S. military bases.” All that’s missing is a map with targets, but give it time.
One of the most egregious examples of the media blatantly driving the outrage train is hyping up boycotts of companies who advertise on conservative news sites. On January 7, 2017, the New York Times published an article titled, “How to Destroy the Business Model of Breitbart and Fake News.” Then on March 26, 2017, they published an article titled “Brands Try to Blacklist Breitbart, But Ads Slip Through Anyway.”
The New York Times printed an action plan, then a few months later in the March article, highlighted the complaints of a Twitter account that had only twenty-five followers, and continued to stoke the fire. As a result, multimillion dollar brands reflexively pulled their ads from a high-traffic website. In recent days, social justice warriors and the leftist media are reigniting the call for Amazon to stop advertising on Breitbart. Once again it is a campaign driven by the media, not customers.
If the weeks since the violence in Charlottesville have taught us anything it’s that if there are widespread racial wounds in the country that need to be healed, social justice warriors and their cohorts in the media want them to remain open for their own gain.
Caught up in the overzealous obsession with Confederate officers, ESPN pulled an Asian sportscaster from announcing a University of Virginia football game because his name is Robert Lee. Perhaps the greatest weapon we have against social justice warriors and the leftist media’s widening circle of outrage is mockery. They’re certainly giving us plenty of material.
Lisa De Pasquale is a columnist and author. Her latest book is The Social Justice Warrior Handbook: A Practical Survival Guide for Snowflakes, Millennials, and Generation Z (Post Hill Press). Follow her on Twitter at @LisaDeP.