Cancel culture observed from differing sides


Clarence Thomas predicted cancel culture long before it came for him

The Washington Examiner explains how Clarence Thomas foresaw the development of the cancel culture even before it started to come after him.

Critics of Justice Clarence Thomas are working overtime to cancel him. That’s no surprise. A longtime thorn in the side of liberal causes, Thomas has evoked a particular hatred from the proponents of cancel culture since he put them on notice over a decade ago.

Thomas not only blasted their unseemly tactics, but he tried to do something about them. In a concurring opinion in the 2010 case Citizens United v. FEC, Thomas called for stronger privacy protections to fight this toxic trend.

The core of Citizens United was not about privacy at all. The case primarily concerned a nonprofit group’s ability to promote and distribute a documentary criticizing Hillary Clinton. But the Supreme Court also reaffirmed by an 8-1 margin its past decisions allowing certain invasions of privacy when citizens contribute to a campaign for election. The lone holdout was Thomas.

Terms such as “cancel culture” and “doxxing” were still years away from catching on, but Thomas described something almost identical. He wrote of political activists using new internet tools to wreak havoc on the lives and careers of ordinary people. He told the stories of everyday people who had lost their jobs, reputations, and even their sense of safety after supporting a California ballot proposition on traditional marriage in 2008.

“Some opponents of Proposition 8 compiled this information and created Web sites with maps showing the locations of homes or businesses of Proposition 8 supporters,” Thomas  warned . “Many supporters (or their customers) suffered property damage, or threats of physical violence or death, as a result. … The success of such intimidation tactics has apparently spawned a cottage industry that uses forcibly disclosed donor information to pre-empt citizens’ exercise of their First Amendment rights.”

The risk of harassment and retaliation may be even higher today, thanks to our hyperpolarized political climate. A majority of people hold political views they  do not feel comfortable  sharing and  believe  that our growing culture of silence and intimidation is a problem.

Fortunately, our history offers solutions. In 1958, the Supreme Court ruled that the NAACP could conceal its members’ names and home addresses from state officials in Alabama. The court  noted  that disclosing this sensitive personal information would result in NAACP members suffering “economic reprisal, loss of employment, threat of physical coercion, and other manifestations of public hostility.”

That precedent was reinforced and strengthened in subsequent cases. The court struck down laws forcing political pamphlets to list who sponsored them or public school teachers to report what organizations they belonged to. Causes on the Right and the Left benefited from the ability to meet and speak with one another in private.

(Read of the specifics of the Citizens United case at the Washington Examiner)

Just as when Senator Joe Biden led the opposition to the confirmation of Justice Thomas, this is a high tech lynching

Democrats, in large part, do not wander far from their racist past. It was Democrat Senator Joe Biden that eulogized Democrat Senator Byrd (formerly of the KKK).

Furthermore, it was Joe Biden who led the opposition to the confirmation of Clarence Thomas, stooping so low as to recruit Anita Hill along with her “pubic hair on the Coke can” story (despite the fact that she had followed Thomas from legal job to legal job).

The current investigations into trips sponsored by other people (something that all of the justices have taken part in, including RBG) stands as more of the same.

Liberal-leaning USA Today tries to swipe conservatives with the “cancel culture” brush

USA Today tries to explain how calling out cancel culture makes conservatives into hypocrites due to the way we have reacted to their liberal campaigns.

When Republican lawmakers and talking heads speak these days, this is what I hear:

“I HATE liberal cancel culture and believe in absolute free speech! I would also like to ban, do away with or silence Disney, NPR, Bud Light, the FBI and CIA, this big pile of books over here, M&Ms, Mr. Potatohead, college professors, any Democratic lawmaker I don’t want to hear speak, “wokeness,” any mention of diversity, drag shows, people who defend drag shows, people who defend people who defend drag shows, any mention whatsoever of the existence of LGBTQ people, this other big pile of books over here, the entire Department of Education, PBS and Oreos.”

It all makes perfect sense if you have too much time on your hands and too few functioning brain cells to process the meaning of the word “hypocrisy.” And it confirms that today’s mainstream Republican Party — the party of Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and former Fox News host Tucker Carlson — has become the party of cancel culture, a bubble-dwelling collection of right-wing caricatures who speak an intolerant and often conspiratorial language most regular Americans, and particularly most younger Americans, can’t understand.

And it’s happening all over the country.

DeSantis would welcome Twitter to Florida, but not any woke employees

Consider a recent comment from DeSantis when he was asked about the possibility of Elon Musk relocating Twitter’s headquarters to Florida: “You know, I know Elon Musk, and what I would tell him is like, ‘Ok, if you’re going to move Twitter to Florida, are you bringing woke employees to Florida or are you bringing just your people?’ If it’s just his people then it may be good.”

So the “woke” are unwelcome. People who disagree with DeSantis’ anti-woke stance — whatever that happens to be, since it changes from day to day — are unwelcome.

(Read more of this whine-fest at USA Today)

Conservatives need to follow the same playbook as liberals; therefore, they should expect more

In order to at least get on close-to-equal footing with the liberals, a number of conservative organizations and individuals have come to understand that we need to incorporate some of the tactics of the left. Therefore, Rules for Radicals will get applied to both sides.

Expect a mega-whine from the liberal press when they realize that they will get subjected to things they have been dumping on conservatives.

Conservatives have a habit of playing by the rules: passing laws and boycotting products

Up to this date, conservatives have been passing laws and using the market to punish those who put unreasonable constraints on conservatives. If the “woke unwelcome” really had any teeth to it (like the times that a small liberal group goes to Google and gets Parler deplatformed or one person complains to Facebook and gets a group banned), then they might start to scream. But it will not happen and they will not say anything beyond this little self-promoting complaint.

I cannot promise that a Democrat will oppose cancel culture, but this one opposes one facet of it

“I don’t think it’s fair:” Robert F. Kennedy Jr. voices opposition to transgenders in women’s sports

Breitbart opens a perspective into Democrat presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Junior and his stance on biological males competing as transgenders in women’s sports.

Presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has come out in opposition to transgender athletes participating in women’s sports, a departure from the Biden administration.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who will be opposing Biden in the 2024 primary, told CNN on CNN on Saturday that “biological males” threaten women’s sports.

“I am against people participating in women’s sports who are biologically male,” Kennedy said. “I think women who have worked too hard to develop women’s sports over the past 30 years I watched it happen and I don’t think that’s fair.”

Kennedy said his opposition to trans athletes in women’s sports represents another area where he and Biden “differ really dramatically.” The politician also recently came out in opposition to cancel culture because his wife, actress Cheryl Hines, allegedly lost jobs for supporting his candidacy.

President Biden has been a fierce supporter of transgenders in women’s sports. As Breitbart News reported, the Biden administration’s Education Department has been moving to block schools that receive federal funding from “categorically” banning biological males from girls’ sports.

In its proposed rule, the Department of Education said it would “establish that policies violate Title IX when they categorically ban transgender students from participating on sports teams consistent with their gender identity just because of who they are.” However, the proposed rule also says that it will recognize “in some instances, particularly in competitive high school and college athletic environments, some schools may adopt policies that limit transgender students’ participation.”

(Read more of Biden’s evisceration of Title IX at Breitbart)

So, we will see if a sane Democrat can stand up to a Democrat who wants to make men eligible for women’s rights

This may be worth watching.

Clarence Thomas and the Declaration of Independence

Clarence Thomas and the Declaration of Independence

West News Magazine and Star Parker share the judicial wisdom of Clarence Thomas in his reflections on the Declaration of Independence and this nation (emphasis is mine).

On Sept. 16, Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas arrived at the University of Notre Dame to speak about the Declaration of Independence.

Speaking invitations like this that Thomas accepts are few and far between.

Anyone who cares about our country and listens to this address will wish that he would agree to speak more. His presentation was a brilliant and profound articulation of what America is about at its core.

It is what every American needs to hear in these troublesome and divisive times.

Thomas tells his own story and how his life’s journey led him to understand what America is about.

He grew up poor near Savannah, Georgia, raised by his grandparents, under the tutelage of his grandfather, a devout Catholic and American patriot.

Thomas’ grandfather understood that the injustices of the country were not about flaws in the country but about flaws in human beings in living up to ideals handed down to them. What needed to be fixed were the people – not the nation.

This insight strikes at the heart of the divisions going on today that are so bitterly dividing us.

But Thomas left his grandfather’s house and went to college in the midst of the civil rights movement. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, and Thomas became filled with bitterness and the sense that America is an irredeemably flawed, racist nation, which is so much in the spirit of the times today.

In his own words, “What had given my life meaning and sense of belonging, that this country was my home, was jettisoned as old-fashioned and antiquated. … It was easy and convenient to fill that void with victimhood. … So much of my time focused intently on our racial differences and grievances, much like today.”

“As I matured,” Thomas continued, “I began to see that the theories of my young adulthood were destructive and self-defeating …. I had rejected my country, my birthright as a citizen, and I had nothing to show for it.”

“The wholesomeness of my childhood had been replaced with an emptiness, cynicism, and despair. I was faced with the simple fact that there was no greater truth than what my Nuns and grandparents had taught me. We are all children of God and rightful heirs to our nation’s legacy of equality. We had to live up to the obligations of the equal citizenship to which we were entitled by birth.”

As he continued work in the federal government, Thomas became “deeply interested in the Declaration of Independence.”

“The Declaration captured what I had been taught to venerate as a child but had cynically rejected as a young man. All men are created equal, endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.”

As I had rediscovered the God-given principles of the Declaration and our founding, I eventually returned to the church, which had been teaching the same truths for millennia.”

Despite the strident voices dividing us today, Thomas observes “there are many more of us, I think, who feel America is not so broken, as it is adrift at sea.”

For whatever it is worth, the Declaration of Independence has weathered every storm for 245 years. It birthed a great nation. It abolished the sin of slavery. … While we have failed the ideals of the Declaration time and again, I know of no time when the ideals have failed us.”

The Declaration of Independence “establishes a moral ideal that we as citizens are duty-bound to uphold and sustain. We may fall short, but our imperfection does not relieve us of our obligation.”

(Read at West News Magazine to find Ms. Parker’s summation of the message of Clarence Thomas)

Earlier, Justice Thomas had commented on the ideals of the Declaration

As recorded at Angelus, Justice Clarence Thomas shared his thoughts on the wisdom of the Declaration (again, emphasis is mine)..

We have failed the Declaration of Independence, but it has not failed us. It endures because it articulates truth,” he told a crowd of about 800 people attending the 2021 Tocqueville Lecture for Notre Dame’s new Center for Citizenship and Constitutional Government.

Thomas, who was nominated to the Supreme Court in 1991 by President George H.W. Bush, stressed this document — signed by the Founding Fathers with its emphasis that all are created equally — has “weathered every storm” and still has something to say today.

He also said he has seen signs the values inspired in this text still hold true, something he observed firsthand this summer when he and his wife, Ginni, spent three weeks traveling across the country in their RV.

“There is something true, something transcendent, something solid, something that pulls us together rather than divides us,” Thomas said, referring to campground conversations he had with people, before they recognized him, and the proud America flag displays he and his wife noticed.

(Read more at Angelus)

There are reasons that the Left wants to impeach Thomas. These reasons are based in his respect for people, his theory of equality before the law, his love of God, and his desire to maintain a system of governance established through much prayer and deliberation.