This is What You Came For
You wanted a war, kids. War is Hell.
It’s been a rough few weeks for the crying garbage babies on college campuses across America. These kids are learning — or maybe not — a valuable lesson about the downsides of fighting a culture war. You see, sometimes there are casualties on your side too. For every Christian baker you took out there were thousands of very ordinary voters in Pennsylvania and Ohio who recoiled in horror at your social media hatemobs. For every dumb argument you made for men using women’s bathrooms there were voters in Wisconsin and Michigan who wondered why exactly they were all of the sudden on “the wrong side of history” even though they had been mainstream for their entire lives. You sewed the wind and now you shall reap the whirlwind.
On behalf of those who share my center-right, libertarian leaning views let me say this: fuck you. You assholes made it impossible for my party to nominate a mainstream candidate. You pissed off so many normal, decent people that they chose to back Donald Trump as their champion. So now you kids share a commonality with me: I didn’t vote for Trump either. But we’re now stuck with him and you entitled little shits have to accept some of the blame. Will you learn anything from this? Will you recognize that perhaps calling everyone racist, homophobic, Islamophobic, and transphobic maybe backfired? Are any of you future teachers, doctors, lawyers, social workers, moms, dads, and general taxpayers going to take seriously the role that you play in our culture? Because if you truly believe that you can cause change then you need to examine what the actual effect of your actions are. Try for a moment to walk in the shoes of others and imagine how they view you and your various movements. I can do this. I can absolutely understand why someone in Vermont who runs an organic dairy farm views an evangelical in Texas as a foreign species. I get it. Do you kids get why a coal miner in Belmont County, Ohio wouldn’t vote for Hillary Clinton? Do you get why they don’t give a damn about how Beyoncé votes or where Caitlyn Jenner takes a leak?
It’s become a bit of a trope now, but it looks like some of the “thought leaders” of this safe space movement are doubling down on their culture war wager. Teenage click bait site Buzzfeed decided this week that they should go after the hosts of a show on HGTV because their pastor thinks homosexuality is a sin. This is news to the young adults who write for Buzzfeed because evidently they’ve never had any exposure to the Bible or Judeo-Christian values. Every single church and synagogue across the world believe this. The mistake that the Buzzfeed crowd makes is assuming that “sin” is somehow synonymous with a sort of hatred or discriminatory policy. So a story like this one becomes chum for the mindless sharks of social justice. Now imagine this story being read by a rig-hand in Butler, Pennsylvania. You think she is going to get ginned up by the radical notion that a pastor has read the Bible?
Donald Trump sends out an idiotic tweet (now that is an evergreen sentence) about flag burning and what happens? The Snowflake crowd shows up at Trump tower and burns flags in demonstration. Do you want Trump? Because that’s how you get Trump.
You Lost Me
Congratulations on winning incremental battles over important issues such as getting more penises into women’s bathrooms and forcing religious people to make cakes for gay couples. Those were super important and now that we’ve got that out of the way you can go back to your lives doing whatever it is you did before the Outrage prion infected your brains. But probably not, right? Because you see there’s always at least one more thing that needs to be “fixed”. There’s always one more outrageous problem that demands attention right this very instant or else society will devolve into mass chaos and disorder. And while you’ve been diligently working to gaslight the populace into believing that words, logic, and science have no meaning when pitted against the feelings of others, you’ve lost sight of the teachings of Sun Tzu. Retreat to advance. All war is based on deception. The inter-temporal roundabout is the ultimate path to victory. You’ve chosen to win small, costly battles only to find that you’re losing the war. How do I know this? Because, kids, I’m opting out.
There was a time — not terribly long ago — when you could have a discussion with people and it didn’t immediately devolve into a vitriolic screed about how racist, homophobic, transphobic, Islamaphobic, xenophobic one person was and how Good and Virtuous and On The Right Side of History the other was. Those days are over and you, my SJW snowflakes, are the reason why. By attempting to distill all opposition down to some sort of moral failing you gave away the game. You chose the path of expediency over one of logical dialogue. You chose to — as you would say — marginalize those who didn’t goose-step with you and your world views. You divided by tribe. Not by tribe of race (though in some cases race was all that mattered) but rather tribe of thought. This sort of strategy is by all evidence an intellectually lazy and pedestrian one. But it is relatively expedient. And after all, the goal here was never clearly defined by any sort of philosophical underpinnings. It was a grab bag of grievances tossed into the blender with the hopes that a socially acceptable smoothie would eventually be made. Aimless shrieking eventually has to either evolve into an idea or merely be ignored and discarded. Spoiler alert: we are discarding it.
How do I know? Because I’m opting out. So are a lot of my contemporaries. You lost us. While some of you were in middle school I was voting against Ohio’s constitutional amendment to ban same sex marriage. While some of you were trying to find Clearasil at Rite Aid I was writing legislation for my university’s student government encouraging the school to give health care benefits to same sex partners. And I’m a Republican, kids. I wanted no part in the great social engineering that either political party was offering. Instead I wanted liberty and freedom, which I know leads to better economies, better families, and better lives. You had my support — and the support of possibly millions of others just like me — if you had wanted to engage in realistic conversations about how to make our fellow citizens’ lives better. But you fucked it up, bigly. I didn’t vote for Donald Trump, but obviously a lot of people who are traditionally down the middle ideologically did. Do you guys think that’s because they’re all awful racists (even though a lot of them voted for Mr. Obama, twice) or is it possible that they’re just fed up with your bullshit?
You lost me long ago. You lost a lot of us, frankly. So now it’s up to you to decide if you want to be grownups and actually engage in conversation with people of diverse opinions…or you can protest for a week, burn flags, harass religious people, gin up hatemobs on Twitter, and generally be assholes. It’s your call. Personally I’d like to see some of you grow the fuck up and learn how to engage in these things without the requisite gnashing of teeth, because unlike a lot of you I actually appreciate hearing all sides of an argument. Hopefully you’ve learned something. This country is better served when we have a very active citizenry who engages public debate in the most high-minded, deferential way possible. But I’m not holding my breath.