Freedom, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These are some of the most sacred values that most in the Western Civilization hold dear. Freedom of speech is one of these principals, and we are all entitled to have our own opinion about anything and everything. But in our modern world, the lines between freedom of speech and public shaming have been blurred.
The cancel culture is a boycott of a person in order to make them pay, and it is usually done through silencing or shaming their opinions. In some ways this can be a good thing. The cancel culture of its day was successful in canceling sex offenders like Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein. So, people hailed the cancel culture as the tool that the public could use to prosecute anyone who was a convicted criminal. This sounded admirable, but the definition was loosened up to include “mere allegations,” or anyone who holds unpopular opinions about things such as politics, government bodies, gender, race, mass immigration and anything else that is politically, racially, or socially charged. It didn’t take long before people started to silence and cancel anyone who did not hold the same opinions or values such as identity, politics, bigger governments, more immigration, more taxes and transgender rights.
If history is any guide, this is textbook “authoritarianism” in disguise, silencing opinions that are not shared by all people. Soon after, it became an ideological machine that the mob could use to shame and cancel anyone who does not hold or embrace their values. Anyone who tries to challenge these ideas or criticize them, is destined to be ostracized.
People are taking notes of this and are not naive, which is why many people delete their accounts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and any other social media platform, so they can get rid of any possible allegations. What is even more frightening is that people are so afraid to speak their opinion to the point that they feel obligated to pile on as a sense of belonging, and to call out others who are deemed offensive. By de facto, they are joining the cancel culture mob. This mentality has reached a climax of becoming a situation where “you are either with us, or against us.”
Free societies should always allow the right for people to have other opinions, thus we are seeing a war on free speech. The cancel culture has developed a superiority complex where they think their ideology is the only way to survive and strive in society. Anything else, any other opinion or view, is racist, misogynistic and destructive. This culture thinks they are morally superior to anyone else who does not agree with them. They feel they are entitled to suspend someone’s rights, including the right to have free speech, free thought, free opinions—or free will.
There are, of course, deniers who believe that the cancel culture is another conspiracy theory, and they believe that the cancel culture does not restrict free speech, yet these same deniers only discuss or give lectures on the dangers of “hate-speech.” The irony of this rhetoric is that the cancel culture and the shaming of someone’s family and reputation is, in and of itself, hate speech. The problem with this proposition is that hate speech can be anything one wishes it to be.
Justice Potter Stewart once described his threshold for obscenity: “I know it when I see it.” Unfortunately, this litmus test for “hate speech” is left to the eye of the beholder. Hate speech can be against Jews, blacks, whites, and any group of people, but it can also be any speech deemed as hateful, such as speaking against mass immigration, obesity or an ideology.
Free speech, especially controversial speech, should be challenged as well, which means that anyone can argue for any point they like, otherwise, free speech would not exist. However, the danger of the cancel culture is that it threatens the livelihood of those that wish to speak freely. People would rather not lose their job, their friends, or their social media engagement, just for posting something they like. This will lead to more conformity of thought, and submissive behavior or subversion, which will kill free speech to a greater degree, giving the cancel culture greater victories and becoming even more aggressive.
This movement has gotten so progressive that even liberals who described themselves as left-wing back in the nineties are now considered moderate or right-wing. This evolution was exposed in Psychology Today in October of 2019 by an open letter from a group of psychologists, titled The Hypocrisy of Cancel Culture and Its Variants, who called for the end of the cancel culture insanity, and illustrated “how the left has moved more to the left of insanity in the past few years.”
To learn more about David Wallace (Former Mayor or Sugar Land) you can visit his main website: www.davidgwallace.com as well see him on the following:
Mr. Wallace was also featured in a news store in KTVN.
He has also has 2 other websites for his books.