Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. On the Perils of Wokesplaining

 

This past week, Phillipa Soo, who played Eliza in “Hamilton,” tweeted:

Cancel culture: If you are ‘cancelled’ but do not wish to be, you must WORK to EARN back people’s respect by owning up to the thing that cancelled you in the first place, LISTENING to others, EDUCATING yourself, and ADVOCATING on behalf of the people that you have offended/harmed.
[The CAPITAL LETTERS FOR EMPHASIS are all hers.]

This is what I’ll call “wokesplaining.” But the term “woke” is a misnomer, because the people who engage in wokesplaining are actually quite unconscious concerning its inherent dangers. Ms. Soo, for example, apparently presumes that she will always be absolutely correct in whatever she says, and that the slightest criticism, or deviation from the accepted script, requires not only apology but penitence. This is hubris of the highest degree.

I obviously don’t know her, and I assume that her heart is in the right place, and she truly believes that she’s trying her best to right a wrong. The trouble with wokesplaining, however, is that critical thinking is discouraged, or, as her tweet suggests, possibly punished by banishment. In order to be acceptably woke, you must accept, without analysis, everything that BLM advocates dictate. I believe in the essential message of BLM, but I am unwilling to give blanket pre-approval to everything that any group says, and I do not intend to grovel to anyone because I said something that was deemed “offensive” by the powers that be.

When Ms. Soo talks about LISTENING and EDUCATING yourself, she doesn’t appear to mean listening and educating yourself at all. She means to shut off your brain, shut your mouth, and do what I say, the way I say. I cannot understand why young people and those in academia do not comprehend the dangers of this type of mob rule.

As Gen. Patton once famously said, “If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.” And as Professor John Henry Wigmore once famously said, cross-examination is “beyond any doubt the greatest legal engine ever invented for the discovery of truth.”

If you are unwilling to expose your argument to critical dissection because you might be “offended/harmed,” then why should I LISTEN to you?

And lastly, the conflation of “offended/harmed” is disturbing. They are two different things. Sometimes criticism may sting your pride, but it helps you to grow up.

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  1. philo Member

    Gene Killian: I believe in the essential message of BLM…

    Where does the “essential” stop and totalitarianism begin?

    • #1
    • July 12, 2020, at 10:54 AM PDT
    • 9 likes
  2. Richard Fulmer Member

    Gene Killian: If you are ‘cancelled’ but do not wish to be, you must WORK to EARN back people’s respect by owning up to the thing that cancelled you in the first place,

    Oh, dear. Ms Soo used the word “owning,” implying a respect for private property and harkening back to a time when some Americans owned other Americans.

    • #2
    • July 12, 2020, at 11:02 AM PDT
    • 10 likes
  3. Gene Killian Coolidge
    Gene Killian

    philo (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: I believe in the essential message of BLM…

    Where does the “essential” stop and totalitarianism begin?

    I should have better defined “essential,” I suppose. I mean that black lives matter too, and I have no sympathy for cops who become bullies.

    • #3
    • July 12, 2020, at 11:06 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  4. Franco Member
    Franco Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Gene Killian: If you are unwilling to expose your argument to critical dissection because you might be “offended/harmed,” then why should I LISTEN to you?

    Yes, and the tables could be turned the other way. Why not claim that you are offended by their language and assumptions? ( aside from the fact you’d lose your job) but Alinsky tactics make your enemy live up to their own standards applies here too.

    • #4
    • July 12, 2020, at 11:24 AM PDT
    • 11 likes
  5. philo Member

    Franco (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: If you are unwilling to expose your argument to critical dissection because you might be “offended/harmed,” then why should I LISTEN to you?

    Yes, and the tables could be turned the other way. Why not claim that you are offended by their language and assumptions? ( aside from the fact you’d lose your job) but Alinsky tactics make your enemy live up to their own standards applies here too.

    But wokism is a one way street.

    • #5
    • July 12, 2020, at 11:37 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  6. Richard Fulmer Member

    philo (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: If you are unwilling to expose your argument to critical dissection because you might be “offended/harmed,” then why should I LISTEN to you?

    Yes, and the tables could be turned the other way. Why not claim that you are offended by their language and assumptions? ( aside from the fact you’d lose your job) but Alinsky tactics make your enemy live up to their own standards applies here too.

    But wokism is a one way street.

    So, outwoke them. See #2.

    • #6
    • July 12, 2020, at 11:56 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  7. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Richard Fulmer (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: If you are ‘cancelled’ but do not wish to be, you must WORK to EARN back people’s respect by owning up to the thing that cancelled you in the first place,

    Oh, dear. Ms Soo used the word “owning,” implying a respect for private property and harkening back to a time when some Americans owned other Americans.

    Yes, it seems that many times the Woke’s words come back to bit them. With all the proscriptions, the accepted vocabulary continues to shrink.

    • #7
    • July 12, 2020, at 12:31 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  8. RightAngles Member

    “Shut up,” she explained.

    • #8
    • July 12, 2020, at 1:22 PM PDT
    • 16 likes
  9. Flicker Coolidge

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    “Shut up,” she explained.

    Yes, you put it better than I would have. But here goes:

    Whites can’t argue against the cancel culture because they are the oppressors. Non-whites can’t argue against it because they’re race traitors. Logic can’t be used against it because logic is a tactic of whites supremacy. And apologies can’t cut it because there is no forgiveness.

    There is only kneeling in acquiescence and obeisance. It’s quite a fool-proof ideology.

    • #9
    • July 12, 2020, at 4:09 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  10. Gene Killian Coolidge
    Gene Killian

    Flicker (View Comment):
    Whites can’t argue against the cancel culture because they are the oppressors. Non-whites can’t argue against it because they’re race traitors. Logic can’t be used against it because logic is a tactic of whites supremacy. And apologies can’t cut it because there is no forgiveness.

    I do wonder what people like Dorie Miller, Benjamin O. Davis, the members of the Tuskegee Airmen, or, for that matter, the soldiers in the 54th Massachusetts would have to say about exiling people because they “offended” you.

    • #10
    • July 12, 2020, at 5:09 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  11. tigerlily Member

    Gene Killian:

    I obviously don’t know her, and I assume that her heart is in the right place, and she truly believes that she’s trying her best to right a wrong.

    I think it’s wrong to credit these totalitarians with good intentions. It’s all about power over others and she is obviously fine with flexing this power as she sees fit.

    • #11
    • July 12, 2020, at 6:45 PM PDT
    • 9 likes
  12. Dotorimuk Coolidge

    philo (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: If you are unwilling to expose your argument to critical dissection because you might be “offended/harmed,” then why should I LISTEN to you?

    Yes, and the tables could be turned the other way. Why not claim that you are offended by their language and assumptions? ( aside from the fact you’d lose your job) but Alinsky tactics make your enemy live up to their own standards applies here too.

    But wokism is a one way street.

    That’s why white historical figures are portrayed by black actors without a peep, but my screenplay of Richard Kind portraying Malcolm X, with songs by Hank Williams, will NEVER be produced.

    • #12
    • July 12, 2020, at 7:31 PM PDT
    • 11 likes
  13. Giulietta Coolidge

    What gets me about the endless parade of Phillipa Soos isn’t in the words they write. It’s in the grotesque sense of moral authority they feel they wield over the rest of us. They will never believe the link that their opponents make between what they are doing and the Soviet apparatchiks who knocked on Osip Mandelstam’s door in the middle of the night because he wrote a silly poem about Stalin. They genuinely believe that they are on the right side of history because they can write a post about protecting the disenfranchised and about how to “rehabilitate” your reputation once it’s been shattered- when in reality it’s their own people who have done the shattering. It’s left up to their followers to feel a nagging in their gut that something feels wrong to quietly abandon the cause. The whole thing is poison. 

    • #13
    • July 12, 2020, at 7:46 PM PDT
    • 14 likes
  14. Flicker Coolidge

    Gene Killian (View Comment):
    Benjamin O. Davis

    Oo. That hurts to think about.

    • #14
    • July 12, 2020, at 7:58 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  15. Nohaaj Coolidge

    Gene Killian (View Comment):
    I should have better defined “essential,” I suppose. I mean that black lives matter too, and I have no sympathy for cops who become bullies.

    I have been struggling with this concept for a bit. The struggle primarily lies in the contradictions of the BLM politic, and the real struggles associated with growing up Black. The BLM politic is an anarchist, Marxist, anti-family, intersectionality group. It truly has nothing to do with making Black Lives Better, much less Matter. I believe in the MLK Mantra of judging people by the content of their character, not by their skin color, and continuing the growth of our country to the ideals of every man being equal. That is the essential part. That however is not the same as supporting the BLM political movement. Re: police abuses: Of course! Police abuse can and does occur, and we need to vigorously address that, regardless of, and particularly when it involves racism.

    • #15
    • July 12, 2020, at 8:13 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  16. Architectus Coolidge

    Gene Killian (View Comment):
    the soldiers in the 54th Massachusetts

    But wait! They cannot speak up either, as will be clear when I reveal the white supremacy at the heart of that group: Massachusetts begins with “Massa”, which is a colloquial form of “Master”, which we have learned is verboten. Waiting for the state to initiate the name change…

    • #16
    • July 12, 2020, at 10:09 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  17. Joshua Bissey Coolidge

    Gene Killian (View Comment):

    philo (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: I believe in the essential message of BLM…

    Where does the “essential” stop and totalitarianism begin?

    I should have better defined “essential,” I suppose. I mean that black lives matter too, and I have no sympathy for cops who become bullies.

    That is not the essential message of “black lives matter.” Sure, there are people who believe that, and get sucked in because of the rhetoric, but the movement is about everything other than protecting life.

    • #17
    • July 13, 2020, at 4:22 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  18. philo Member

    Joshua Bissey (View Comment):

    Gene Killian (View Comment):

    philo (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: I believe in the essential message of BLM…

    Where does the “essential” stop and totalitarianism begin?

    I should have better defined “essential,” I suppose. I mean that black lives matter too, and I have no sympathy for cops who become bullies.

    That is not the essential message of “black lives matter.” Sure, there are people who believe that, and get sucked in because of the rhetoric, but the movement is about everything other than protecting life.

    Where does the potemkin message stop and the operative agenda begin?

    • #18
    • July 13, 2020, at 4:28 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  19. Sisyphus Coolidge
    Sisyphus Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    philo (View Comment):

    Joshua Bissey (View Comment):

    Gene Killian (View Comment):

    philo (View Comment):

    Gene Killian: I believe in the essential message of BLM…

    Where does the “essential” stop and totalitarianism begin?

    I should have better defined “essential,” I suppose. I mean that black lives matter too, and I have no sympathy for cops who become bullies.

    That is not the essential message of “black lives matter.” Sure, there are people who believe that, and get sucked in because of the rhetoric, but the movement is about everything other than protecting life.

    Where does the potemkin message stop and the operative agenda begin?

    Their webpage, which advocates the dissolution of the family and the defunding of the police, and their tactics in the field which involve the orchestrated violence and destruction.

    • #19
    • July 13, 2020, at 5:10 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  20. Gene Killian Coolidge
    Gene Killian

    tigerlily (View Comment):
    I think it’s wrong to credit these totalitarians with good intentions. It’s all about power over others and she is obviously fine with flexing this power as she sees fit.

    This is a fair point.

    • #20
    • July 13, 2020, at 5:31 AM PDT
    • 2 likes