Some enlightening weekend reading. We non-lefties are most just annoyed by the woke nonsense, but for the 'honest, traditional' egalitarian Left, it's crippling. Some extracts here from a great essay that deserves to be read in full (my emphasis, towards the end):
Here’s a fun tip for you all: if you have the power to get someone fired or otherwise ruin their life you are not a powerless, marginalized Other … a bizarre liberal discursive culture where, if you dress up what you’re doing in vague language about oppression, you can operate however you’d like without rebuke and attempt to ruin the life of whoever you please …
The left-of-center is in a profoundly strange and deeply unhealthy place. In the span of a decade or less a bizarre form of linguistically-radical but substantively-conservative identity neoliberalism descended from decaying humanities departments in elite universities and infected social media ... through which it conquered the media and entertainment industries, the nonprofit industrial complex, and government entities as wide-ranging as the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights and the brass of the Pentagon. That movement now effectively controls the idea-and-story generating power of our society, outside of explicitly conservative media which exists in a large silo but a silo all the same. On any given day the most powerful institutions in the world go to great lengths to mollify the social justice movement, to demonstrate fealty, to avoid its wrath. It’s common now for liberals to deny the influence and power of social justice politics, for inscrutable reasons, but if the current level of control over how people talk publicly is insufficient, I can’t imagine what would placate them…
because the social justice movement’s first dictate is to establish a hierarchy of suffering, and to tell those that are purported to suffer less that their problems aren’t problems, no such mass movement is coming. The social justice movement is not just incidentally antagonistic to organizing everyone and recognizing all kinds of people as worthy of our compassion and support. That antagonism is existential. When you ask many people within the movement, “what could we do to convert the white working class to our values?,” they will simply tell you that they don’t want to convert them, that they are not worthy of being a part of their movement. They would rather have targets than converts, to lose as an exclusive moral caste than win as a grubby populist coalition.
Core to understanding this moment is to realize that the vast majority of people who enforce these politics don’t actually believe in them. They don’t, that is, think that social justice politics as currently composed are healthy or just or likely to result in tangible positive change. There’s a core of true-believers who do, and there’s a group of those who profit directly from the hegemony of social justice politics in elite spaces… There’s conservative critics, who are both the most natural targets of social justice ire and yet those the social justice movement seem least interested in targeting. There’s an island of misfit toys of left and leftish critics of social justice politics like me.
And then there’s the great big mass of people who are just scared … Why wade in those waters when the potential consequences are so severe, and when the upside is so limited? … no one feels empowered to speak truth to bullshit.