This article raises some interesting points, but it’s problematic in ways the author might not realize. He calls himself liberal, but his take on most of these issues, particularly in believing rape victims, falls squarely inline with typical conservative positions. And in support of that take, he makes several leaps in logic that he doesn’t support with evidence:
“ [Rolling Stone journalist] Erdely took Jackie at face value. Why? Because, at the behest of millennial social justice advocates, we are told not to question rape victims. To do so is “victim blaming” and can potentially “re-traumatize” the victim.”
How does he know that’s the reason? Maybe she was just being a lazy journalist.
He goes on to unfairly summarize the rape debate. He cherry picks quotes from articles that are much more thoughtful and fair-minded than he gives them credit for. Maxwell in her article never says that someone should be given ‘a blank check’ when they come forward with a rape accusation. She correctly points out that false accusations are rare and simply asks that the accuser be taken seriously while an investigation is being conducted. Given that this is the foundation of our criminal justice system, it doesn’t seem an unreasonable request.
Like many who pen these sorts of arguments, the author writes in a social and historical vacuum. Women are second class citizens throughout the world and throughout history. They struggle every day for basic rights in ways that men will never understand. But never mind the thousands of women that, globally, are raped everyday, all the author can focus on is how some men might be injured by a ‘false’ accusation from “the millennial social justice advocate” who bows at the altar of the currently-in-vogue ideological Trinity: Marxism, Feminism, and Post-Colonialism.
He doesn’t realize — again, because he’s writing in a historical vacuum — that these theories were in “vogue” thirty years ago. It’s actually the backlash against them — Rush Limbaugh and his ‘femi-nazis’ is one of many examples — that has been in ‘vogue’ in the popular culture (as opposed to academia) for some time now.
But by far the weakest part of this editorial is its supposed reason for existence: his nebulous term, “millennial social justice advocates,” whom he despises for ‘violently sabotaging genuine opportunities for progress,’ but whom he never really identifies (whatever opportunities for progress he means are likewise vague). He says that ‘they’ are predominate on social media, but never says who ‘they’ are, other than that “they’re often petty, usually mean-spirited.” He decries ‘identity politics’ but this entire piece is in the service of stereotyping and negatively branding a group that he doesn’t even define. They are just ‘other.’ Despite all his evocations of 1984, it never dawns on him that Orwell was cautioning as much against this sort of vilification as anything.
The author is smart and articulate, but he’s blinded by his passions, and he doesn’t yet have the experience or wisdom to recognize the gaps in his logic or the massive contradictions in what he claims to believe and what he really believes.