“All you have to do is read through these screenshots and you’ll have the stepping stones and confidence to decimate any online alt-right nazi. And it’s just so, so funny.” — Owen Cooper, 2017.
Preface: A main thesis of the following text is that for these certain juveniles, the n-word is a toy. To them, racial epithets are a baby’s rattle, a noisemaker they like to shake around because they think it is fun to play with, but to everybody else it is an obnoxious annoyance. Then when you grow tired of their persistent pestering and try to take their toy away, the infantile miscreants throw temper tantrums as if they were petulant babies.
Everything in the following transcript was actually said, or rather written, between 7:00 p.m. and 12:30 a.m. (PST), June 25-26, 2017, in a private group Snapchat (much like the symposiums of Ancient Greece) between my brother, his friends, and myself. Still, it needs to be made clear that this is not a fully comprehensive transcription of the conversation, it represents approximately 95% of what was said, and the remaining 5% was removed for coherency. For instance, there was a man, renamed “Lawler” in the text, who lost his patience and left the chatroom before the end of the conversation, and so his messages were unable to be documented. His first message (after an hour-long lull in conversation) read something along the lines of: “Owen, I’m just going to sack up and say it because nobody else will, why don’t you just leave the chat.” To which my brother mockingly responded: “Waaah, Owen just leave the chat so we can say the n-word.”
I did not edit anything out in order to make anyone involved in the discussion appear any better for the sake of their honor or reputation. If I was trying to pull the wool over the reader’s eyes, I would simply make the edits and omissions without any further reference, rather than immediately addressing their removal upfront. What was removed made reference to people or events which would be otherwise nonsensical to the reader, and disturbed the flow of the dialogue more than necessary. The edited excerpts were only removed because I felt their abridgment raised the overall readability of the text. The entirety of the transcript is screenshotted for posterity’s sake, so I felt comfortable in making these minor alterations and insignificant (in my editorial judgment) deletions. Thoroughly meticulous readers are free to examine these archived documents, if they so choose, in order to come to their own conclusions. Most obscenities remain within the document to demonstrate that text was only removed, or rearranged, when it was considered beneficial to the overall text’s comprehensibility, and not just as arbitrary cuts made for the sake of sparing someone’s reputation. Removing petty insults, excessively redundant racial innuendos, or obscure references to occurrences outside the text does not detract, diminish, or undermine the ultimate premise of this piece, whatsoever.
The main objective going into this foray was to illustrate, in real time, the burgeoning thought processes, and alternative ideologies, of several different young suburbanites in early 21st century America. While at least trying to offer some practical methods, beyond the usual Socratic method, that others can use in the digital age to deal with contemporary bigots on a personal level. Methods which include fluidly adapting to their formless arguments, which they repeat in meaningless circles in an attempt to wear out whoever they are arguing with; and fighting fire with fire, i.e. hyper-aggressive and unnecessary verbal sparring. In other words, right-or-wrong (most likely wrong), simply by dealing with them in an oscillating manner, a mental disjunct is created within the dialectician due to the set of mental stereotypes they have built up over time. In this instance, fluctuating between cordial and brutal breaks their mental stereotypes of liberals as weak and feeble, or “triggered social justice warrior snowflakes,” in their propaganda — knowing and using a party’s lingo against them is a rhetorical device that perturbs people, on both sides of the political divide.
Like a stonemason using the plug-and-feather technique to split a great piece of granite in half by sledgehammering small wedges into specifically located holes, through consistent and repeated use of rational logic, imperceptible cracks in the irrational ego’s psyche begin to appear, and eventually, the boulder of inconsistent ideology is split in two.
Your statements, Euthyphro…run away and won’t stay where they are put. —Socrates, Plato’s Euthyphro
My younger brother, Owen, is a member of a private group Snapchat which contains several local teenagers who have been repeatedly using the n-word, and other thinly veiled racial innuendos, behind closed doors. My brother has condemned them routinely and repeatedly for doing so. After a few days of little racial antagonism, one of my brother’s stubborn former friends, “Rock,” breaks the peace and uses the n-word. My brother then justifiably chastises him. Another one of my brother’s associates, “Terse,” assumes that because the previous three days have been relatively quiet, my brother was finally over the matter, and was going to tacitly approve their use of the n-word whenever they started up again. So we begin our dialogue:
Terse: I thought we were over this, Owen.
Owen: (picture of Stephen A. Smith smirking while drinking coffee)
Terse: That dude looks like a bitch
Owen: The degradation of African-Americans continues…
Terse: If he was white and still made petty ass faces he’d still look like a bitch
His race has nothing to do with his dumb ass facial expressions
Owen: (picture of Stephen A. Smith looking incredulously)
Terse: His hairline’s fucked too
Owen: Judging another man’s hairline, that’s a soft move.
Terse: Getting triggered over an opinion is a soft move.
Owen: You’re the one who was triggered by me calling out Rock for using the n-word. Snowflake.
Terse: Wtf, I just called the gay looking sports reporter a bitch
You’re the snowflake nibba
Owen: No. I was talking to Rock and you jumped in and said, “I thought we were over this.” You were the one who was triggered first, quit tryna twist it on me. It’s the reason we’re talking right now, stupid. Are you purposefully going in circles? You derailed an entire conversation Rock and I were having, because you “thought we were over” the issue of you guys using racial epithets with no discretion.
Easton: Owen, what I find funny is that you don’t have anything better to do over the summer than get triggered over political correctness. Yeah, I will tell black person “nibba” if I’m chill with him. I wouldn’t say it if I don’t know him. It goes the same with being friends, we tease and make fun of each other in private, but we wouldn’t do that to strangers. Anyways I’m out peace.
Owen: Yeah exactly, you wouldn’t say it to somebody you don’t know, because you’re a pussy. You’re not a real man, you’re a fake who puts on a facade.
Terse: Another personal attack
Owen: You insulted an entire race of people, Terse, and you wouldn’t even say it to their face. I wasn’t making a personal attack, you’re just a super-sensitive, little snowflake. If I wanted to make a personal attack, I would have said “Easton, maybe your girlfriend left you because you’re a white supremacist piece of shit.” But I’m not going to say that! [Trumpian apophasis]
Terse: I would not use it in a harsh manner, no. I would use it with proper context any day, I’d argue that you’re the most triggered of anyone because every time anyone so much as mentions the n-word you feel the need to make them feel like shit and give them the history of the word as if they don’t know it.
Owen: You’re a white male and have no right in declaring what the “proper context” of using the n-word is, you stupid motherfucker. You obviously don’t know the history, because you keep saying it. That’s why I have to keep having to bring it up to you, moron.
Terse: So because I’m a white male, that makes me instantly privileged?
I know the history
Owen: When did I mention you’re privileged in this entire conversation? All I’m saying is you don’t have the privilege of using the n-word. You completely deconstructed your entire argument on your own, Terse. Now shut the fuck up or meet me outside.
Terse: Well when stating someone is a white male, the only assumption is that a privilege lecture is going to follow.
Owen: I thought you knew the history, so why should I have to lecture you? How about you leave your mansion and go say the n-word, “nibba,” “ninja” or any other thinly veiled innuendo in front of a black person you don’t know, pussy.
Terse: Are you by my house? Maybe you could come in and see the dirt on my shoes from working for your ungrateful ass 12-18 hours a day so you can eat bread, or have corn, or go to the grocery store and eat beef. And all you’re doing is lecturing, so it’s not an unfair assumption.
Owen: Are you saying that because you farm for money, you earn the right to say the n-word? Do you really know your history?
Terse: I’m not saying farming gives me that right, I’m saying you assuming I’m privileged because I’m white is a stupid assumption. [Ricochet argument]
Owen: Sooo why even mention that? I never called you privileged, I said you don’t have the privilege of using the word, Terse. I can’t explain myself anymore.
Mr. All-Facts: So like, how about we uhhh, shut the fuck up?
Terse: I agree
Easton changes the name of the group chat to “Owen Being a Cunt to Everyone”
Owen: (picture of Cam’ron pointing and laughing, captioned “UMAD”)
Aww, poor Baby Easton throwing a temper tantrum because he got his toy taken away.
Rock: I think I’d know if I’m racist.
Like I love Black People.
Owen: Yeah Rock, you’re definitely not blind to your own cognitive biases and psychological blindspots.
Rock: Dude it’s not a blind spot.
I like black people.
No blind spots.
Owen: Rock, everyone has blind spots. Nobody’s perfect, and your refusal to change is a serious character flaw that you’re obviously oblivious to.
Rock: What’s wrong with showing love to black people
And cracking some edgy jokes
Owen: Being nice to black people on a superficial level in public, meanwhile talking all this racist nonsense in private IS the infection that causes oppression
Rock: But it’s a snap chat group
Owen: So it’s only ok to say in a private chat?
A black person
Or any white person
Owen: And why isn’t it okay to say it around a black person you don’t know?
Rock: Cause you don’t know how big of a pussy they are
Owen: You code switch. You think it’s okay to use it in private but not in public.
Owen: Why don’t you think saying the n-word is okay in public?
Rock: Cause you don’t know if you’re around a bunch of pussies
Owen: Define pussies
Rock: People who are overly sensitive
You retarded or something
I even know that word
Owen: Thank you for your correction, kind sir. What I mean was, why are they pussies? A) they don’t like white people, B) because they hypocritically use it themselves, or C) a combination of both.
Pussy is a subjective term. To you, they are overly sensitive, but to others they are not.
So we need to be more specific.
Rock: I’m not very good at multiple choice
C looks right
Mr. All-Facts: I don’t think hurting someone’s feelings is oppressing them. Look at religious oppression in Africa, that’s oppression. But just because someone can’t handle someone’s use of their first amendment right doesn’t make them oppressed.
Honestly people need to stop being pussies.
Rock: Owen, Mr. All-Fact’s is literally black
You don’t know what It’s like
How can you speak for them?
Cause you’re telling someone who’s African-American that they’re wrong
Think about that
Owen: That’s anecdotal evidence
I’m speaking about you
I’m saying you’re wrong, Rock, stop bringing Mr. All-Facts into this
Mr. All-Facts: ^
Owen: You know using the n-word is racist, so you don’t say it in public, but in private you do.
Mr. All-Fact’s original statement was “hurting people’s feelings isn’t oppressing them” regardless of skin color, he’s wrong by definition. Hurting someone, physically or emotionally, is exerting power and dominance over someone, which demeans them on a human level. Creating a hierarchy, which the superstructure of society mimics.
Rock: What the fuck?
It doesn’t effect anyone
Mr. All-Facts: I’m saying that people need to stop being “oppressed” over a word
Owen: Words are how people become oppressed. Papal decrees start crusades [or the religious oppression in Africa]. Politics: Jim Crow Laws allowed the disenfranchisement of southern African-Americans. Words are always used to oppress. People need to stop using words to oppress. And privately using epithets in a joking manner contributes to this.
11 That which cometh out of the mouth,
12 this defileth a man…
18 those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.
19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, — Matthew 15:11-12 & 15:18-19, King James Bible
Mr. All-Facts: BLACK PEOPLE IN AMERICA TODAY ARE NOT OPPRESSED
I’m tired of black people always playing the victim
Owen: African-American incarceration rates prove you demonstrably wrong, Mr. All-Facts.
Mr. All-Facts: Black people have opportunities to do whatever the fuck they want
12% of the population committing 51% of the crime? Hm…
Owen: Metics in Ancient Greece had some legal rights, but it was still okay to kill them. Like the murder of African-Americans by a militarily-industrialized police force.
Are you saying African-Americans are inherently more likely to commit crimes, Mr. All-Facts?
Rock: Here we go
Mr. All-Facts: Statistically speaking yes
I’m more of a facts guy
Facts > Feelings
Owen: Are you saying African Americans are genetically predisposed to commit crime…
Owen: Why don’t you tweet you think African-Americans are genetically predisposed to commit more crimes than whites, Rock? Why are you so scared to tweet what you just said?
Rock: Because it’s an unpopular opinion
Their side claims to base their arguments on facts, that’s why they brought up specific crime statistics, so it shouldn’t be an “opinion.” This shows they don’t truly believe what they’re saying in terms of using objective facts and rational science as the basis of their arguments, and not subjective opinions, emotions, or feelings. Additionally, criticizing people for being “pussies,” but admitting to being afraid to voice an unpopular opinion is itself inherently illogical. Digging their argument’s grave even deeper.
Mr. All-Facts: No, I’m saying ON PAPER African-Americans disproportionately commit crimes compared to other races.
Owen: That’s how you read the situation, even though multiple drug czars have said the war on drugs was an utter failure. I’m saying you’re deliberately misinterpreting the situation and distorting the facts, Mr. All-Facts.
Mr. All-Facts: How so?
I’m using facts not stating my feelings.
Owen: Mr. All-Facts, you know there’s two ways of reading the situation. Feeling are always involved. What do you believe, 1) blacks are genetically more likely to be criminals (a brutally racist opinion science has already disproven), or 2) the American justice system is a system of injustice and oppression that unfairly targets African-Americans
Mr. All-Facts: 3) Neither
Owen: And who constructed the social environment?
All white founding fathers
Mr. All-Facts: BLACK PEOPLE ARE KILLED BY OTHER BLACK PEOPLE
People have watched so many shouting matches on television where one side screams and yells over the other in order to get their point across, as opposed to presenting any actual rational arguments, that people resort to using all capital letters in online discussions. As if writing in all capitals drowns out the other side, or makes your side more correct when, in actuality, it just makes you look ridiculous.
The irony is, neo/paleo-conservative factions have convinced themselves that they are the logical, strictly by the facts party of William F. Buckley. Meanwhile, they believe that liberals are the sentimentally pathetic party which consists of inbred protest groups born on university campuses with no actual real-world objectives. They actually take pride in being emotionless and calculating, as if compassion for other human beings makes you an idiot. So when you get the side who claims to be “using facts not stating my feelings,” to begin angrily typing at you in all capital letters (anger is still a feeling right?) it deconstructs their own position so you don’t have to, and creates a small crack in their false consciousness.
Owen: Please, spare the all capitals, Mr. All-Facts. We’re better than that.
Mr. All-Facts: IM TRIGGERED
Owen: Mr. No-Feelings All-Facts is triggered?
Mr. All-Facts: Because you’re being very ignorant, and also it was a joke.
Rock: You really are, Owen
You don’t even respond to people’s argument
You just repeat the same shit
Mr. All-Facts: Essay incoming
Owen: You haven’t offered a single counter-argument, Rock, we went over this.
Rock: Yes I did
Owen: Rock, you said you think African-Americans are more likely to commit crimes, your opinion on humanity is stuck in the 19th century. I’m talking with Mr. All-Facts about why he thinks African-American crime rates are so disparaging.
He said “environment,” and then yelled at me in all caps, and now we’re here. So please, Mr. All-Facts expand on what you meant by environment.
Terse: Bro ur still going Owen?
Mr. All-Facts: Sorry for yelling at you, did I oppress you?
Is it wrong that blacks are more likely to live in unsafe environments?
Owen: But why are they unsafe? Because black people create unsafe environments, or because a larger societal structure oppressed them into their environments to put pressure on them to commit more crime.
Is it the fault of voiceless people who have no power, or the fault of colonialists who controlled the country for hundreds of years?
Mr. All-Facts: Black people have equal opportunity
But they just kill each other instead
Owen: So do you think it’s genetically inherited that they do that? Or is oppression from white people forcing them into situations to commit crimes?
Further, there isn’t equal opportunity. For instance, entrepreneurial women receive on average less money from banks than men when applying for loans.
You can’t just say things that aren’t true.
Duck: I think it’s hilarious how this all started by Rock saying one word in a private group chat like it’s effecting so many people.
Terse: Zzz I sleep
Mr. All-Facts: Owen, I’ll pick this up in the morning, but I’m going to sleep because I have to get up early so don’t say some “So I win” shit.
For the record, he did not “pick this up in the morning,” most likely because he realized “Owen” would just continue his assault ad infinitum as long as they continued to shake their rattle, and say racist things like “Black people have equal opportunity, but they just kill each other instead.”
Owen: There is no “winning.” Mr. All-Facts, I have a final question regarding your statement:
“BLACK PEOPLE IN AMERICA TODAY ARE NOT OPPRESSED”
From the enslavement of Africans from the 1600s to the 1860s, post-Civil War sharecropping and Jim Crow laws, the rise of the KKK in the 1920s, the flooding of Vanport in Portland, the murder of civil rights activists in the 1960s, to the Reagan era where racist minimum sentencing laws on crack/powder cocaine led to the escalation in incarceration rates.
When do you see the torch of disenfranchisement being snuffed out? Because if you’re trying to tell me hundreds of years of structural oppression was overcome in the twenty-odd years since Reagan, you’ll have to explain how and when that happened. As for the rest of you, you’ve been asleep this entire time, you demented bastards.
Duck: Life’s unfair, get over it if you’re caught up in all the inequality do something about it. I’m winning, I live in a free country, goodnight y’all zzz
16I will spue thee out of my mouth.
17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked
King James Bible, Revelations 3:16-17
Owen: Duck, I am trying to do something about it by addressing the symptom at a personal level. What more do you want me to do?
Duck: Just get over it. Rock has apologized and there is nothing more needed to be done here, we understand your opinion and that’s fine. I’m glad you are standing up for something, but it’s not needed here. We are just a group of high school boys in a snap group chat, we all need to calm down.
Owen: He hasn’t apologized and continues to say the n-word.
Duck: It’s because you continue to ridicule him for it. That’s Rock’s issue, if something happens to him, and gets in trouble or whatever, he can learn a lesson. But he’s not oppressing anyone directly, or meaning to be hurtful. It’s just gotten too heated for no reason, and that’s fine to have difference in opinion, but it gets old after a point and loses meaning.
Owen: But I’m the problem, Duck?
Duck: It just creates more problems, but if we let it go in a group chat, then there is no need for argument, or whatever, we all just don’t need to be so caught up in it.
And all I’m saying is let Rock choose what he wants to do, and if he has consequences, then so be it.
Owen: No, he just needs to stop using it. These are the consequences. Take it like a man.
Duck: Haha, alright dude, whatever, I need some sleep. Putting people down doesn’t make you right, either.
Owen: Using the n-word puts people down.
Duck: And so do the remarks you make to defend yourself, but I really don’t care anymore. I’m not going to continue to argue, but hey good for sticking with your opinion.
Owen: Don’t start a conversation you can’t finish. Go to bed.
Duck: Alright, thanks mom, sure thing. I’ll make my bed once I wake up, too
Owen: Ok son
Rock: Stop fucking screenshoting, it’s annoying as fuck. I mean fuck.
Owen: More annoying than you saying the n-word? Probably not
Rock: No. It’s definitely more annoying. Like 50 screenshots. You tryna write a book?
Owen: Why do you care? You don’t read.
Rock: That’s true
I really don’t care
“Ion…you do not deal fairly with me, and after all your professions of knowing many, glorious things… and promises that you would exhibit them, you are only a deceiver…You have literally as many forms as Proteus; and now you go all manner of ways, twisting and turning, and, like Proteus, become all manner of people at once, and at last slip away from me…in order that you may escape.”
—Socrates, Plato’s Ion
End of Dialog
“I first heard the phrase “politically correct” in the late 1940s and early 1950s…The term “politically correct” was used disparagingly to refer to someone whose loyalty to the CP [Communist Party] line overrode compassion and led to bad politics.”
— Herbert Kohl, “Uncommon Differences: On Political Correctness, Core Curriculum, and Democracy in Education”
The notion of political correctness has ignited controversy across the land. And although the movement arises from the laudable desire to sweep away the debris of racism and sexism and hatred, it replaces old prejudice with new ones. It declares certain topics off-limits, certain expression off-limits, even certain gestures off-limits.
—Commencement Address to the graduating class of University of Michigan
President George H.W. Bush, May 1991
Easton: Owen, what I find funny is that you don’t have anything better to do over the summer than get triggered over political correctness.
To clarify that brief, final, exchange: Duck believes that Owen is the person who is creating the problems by ridiculing people, and not Rock, the person who continues to use the n-word (which is a ridiculous thing to do). This means Duck thinks words can create problems (when Owen criticizes them for using the n-word, for example), but the only argument their side presented for why it was okay to use the n-word in the first place, was because they claimed words do not oppress, and that people who are offended are just overly sensitive. Thereby deconstructing their own position. No original arguments necessary.
19 But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.
— Matthew 10:19, King James Bible
Their untenable positions will offer ample opportunities to point out their logical inconsistencies. It is better to spontaneously rebuke their polymorphous arguments in the moment, rather than present one’s own preconceived rebuttals, because devising solid counter-arguments in advance will only offer them chances to reach into their bag of tricks for their patented, mystifying rhetorical devices. Leading them in a rationally ordered method to speak their own minds eventually leads them down twisted garden paths, because their positions are inherently invalid and inconsistent. Some of you may be saying to yourselves, “You wrote this. These are obviously fictitious characters. Nobody blatantly says things like this.”
Owen: Are you saying African-Americans are inherently more likely to commit crimes?
Mr. All-Facts: Statistically speaking yes
I’m more of a facts guy. Facts > Feelings
“This is obviously a fabricated account you made up after skimming through alt-right websites to suit your own personal devices.” This is what I’m telling you. They actually said these things. This all happened. All of these words came out of their minds. The only editing done to the text was insubstantial. Besides some quotes for emphasis from the King James Bible, I only added interlinear marginalia: [Trumpian apophasis], [Ricochet argument], [or the religious oppression in Africa], and a few other longer critiques, each instance marked with the traditional editor’s brackets. Everything else was theirs.
Every. Single. Stupid. Bigoted. Word.
All of this happened, in the world. While you were doing whatever it is you do between the hours of 7 p.m. and 12:30 a.m. (PST) on June 25th-26th. Meanwhile, my brother and I were judging a pageantry of stupidity. A sophomoric dialectic instigated by the degenerated progeny of Oswald Mosley and William F. Buckley. A fallacious phalanx of heir apparents to Dinesh D’Souza, Roger Kimball, George H.W. Bush, and all the other malformed warriors on the ill-fated crusade against “political correctness.” Tilting at windmills, fencing with phantoms concocted in their own discontented psyches, the sinister byproducts of malevolent superegos. Bush’s is the party of political correctness. Telling someone to stop using racial epithets and sexist language, isn’t “political correctness,” run rampant, it’s called being a decent human in a civilized society. Political correctness is what allowed Jewish communist party members to espouse hypocritical, anti-semitic viewpoints against their greater moral judgement. Political correctness is what allows a party to convince themselves that saying the n-word is okay, and that the only reason people use the n-word is because the other side continues to ridicule them. The same way that in 1940s New York, being a Stalinist, anti-semitic Jew implicitly deconstructs its own position at a cursory glance; the belief in 2010s Oregon, that words can be used to ridicule, but that the n-word isn’t a source of oppression, so too implodes its own argument. This means that the conservatives are the party attempting to maintain political correctness — doing what doesn’t make any logical sense because your political party tells you it is the correct thing to do. The transparent tactic of accusing your opponent of exactly what it is that you yourself are doing, is one of the more childishly hilarious, politically pathetic, and universally common. Examples can be found from former KGB officials, ranging to current GOP upstarts.
Distempered conservatives castigate their comparatively meek opponents with claims that they are merely “overly sensitive” armchair-activists acting as thought police trying to make society “politically correct.” This is all in step with the modern alt-right’s backwards, bastardized, conspiratorial, historiographical theories that manipulate and distort any and every fact for their own corrupted personal agendas. This was exemplified in my previous essay, “Poetics and Politics,” by a youtube comment made by someone with the screenname “LereJete,” which stated an equilateral triangle has a right angle. Even third grade geometry is up for grabs in their inverted and illusionary mirror-world. This isn’t any different to how conservative commentators like Kimball and D’Souza reverse the traditional definition of political correctness in their spurious assaults on “post-modern” academia. Since the time of Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan, neurotic fabrication has been a crucial rhetorical device for neoliberals, neoconservatives, paleoconservatives, alt-right conservatives, and fill-in-the-blank generational conservatives alike. Rather than present a rational argument for the other side to contend with at eye level on flat ground, they manipulate the topology of discourse for their benefit, and alter the political terrain to suit their critical needs. Redrawing and reterritorializing boundaries and definitions at their leisure, “the map is the territory.” From the offset they assert something patently absurd and utterly ridiculous, leaving the person they’re speaking with confused, stunned, and perplexed. One doesn’t know where to start with a disassociated person whose argument begins “A is B,” because it is hard to even imagine how there could possibly be any further claims, and yet there are, and with great rapidity, which increases the listener’s cognitive dissonance to a state of pseudo-aporia.
Let us briefly examine the case at hand. According to alt-right definitions, asking someone not to use disparaging racial epithets makes you a “social justice warrior” who is trying to maintain “political correctness” at the expense of someone else’s first amendment rights. Or put even more plainly, certain liberals repress free speech under the guise of “political correctness.” I do not believe many on the conservative side of the debate would harbor much resentment toward this definition. I am not attempting to fill any men full of straw, nor “mistreat the orphan child of Protagoras.” I believe this to be a fair and accurate representation of their views. If this is their widely held opinion, then they are completely glossing over — in a predictable fashion that is both totally mistaken, and shockingly contradictory — Herbert Kohl’s original definition of political correctness. An etymology Kohl can personally trace back to the early 1940s in New York City, when Jewish members of the Communist Party were forced to defend anti-semitic policies of Joseph Stalin for the sake of party solidarity. In the true definition of “political correctness,” one must defend a position which is otherwise unconscionable to oneself for the benefit of the larger group’s herd mentality. To be politically correct, one has to take up a political position which can only be justified because it is what other party members say is the correct thing to do, no matter how demonstrably incorrect that platform policy may seem to oneself on an individual level. I think it would be fair to say of the Stalinist-era Communist Party, that they actually took “pride in being emotionless and calculating as if compassion for other human beings makes you an idiot.”
Telling someone not to use the n-word is just common sense. Like telling a dog not to urinate on the carpet. It seems to me that most people do not go around casually sprinkling racial epithets into everyday conversation. Even in the dialogue, Rock himself acknowledges that he does not use the n-word in public. Racial epithets in the past were used to racially oppress and to openly acknowledge oneself as a racist, during a sadistic period of time when being an unabashed bigot was something to be proud of, as it demonstrated unwavering obedience to the malevolent social order. Due to distorted fact manipulation, however, suburban teenagers are growing up with the unfounded attitude that using racial epithets in private is merely an extension of their freedom of speech. Meanwhile, they are the same suburban teenagers who privately contend scientifically debunked beliefs that African-Americans are genetically predisposed to commit crime. Because these individuals have been raised waist deep in the sludge of fervent political rhetoric and cultivated in the odious ideology of their time and place (alt-right conservatism in early 21st century suburbs), they have become “someone whose loyalty to the CP line overrode compassion.”
In Kohl’s original example from 1992, CP stands for “Communist Party,” but in ultra-alt-right circles of the 2010s (tepid and unintimidating crypto-fascists/fedora wearing cyber-nazis), CP stands for “Cheese Pizza,” which itself is a codeword for “Child Pornography.” They believe that this is all entwined with a sinister conspiracy by the Democratic Party, who, they allege, use coded language in their private emails to schedule and maintain an underground, pedophilic sex trafficking ring, often using pizzerias as fronts. This is all a completely deluded conspiracy, of course, and in fact the underground online image forum 4chan, which served as the internet’s primary cesspit for all things depraved and inhumane in the early 21st century, was the original propagator of the initials “CP,” as “Cheese Pizza” or “Child Pornography.” A twisted, tongue-in-cheek, inside joke created a full decade before the alt-right even came into existence. I know all of this first-hand, because as a member of the lunatic fringe, a techno-outcast of the digital age born in 1994, I, unfortunately, bore witness and can attest to all the horrific and criminal acts, plus the excessive amount of unfathomable gore, which was posted frequently on the aforementioned, accursed website. Countless threads of soulless, faceless, “anons” half-seriously asking for “CP” being ironically inundated with .jpgs of cheese pizza would “anoint thine eyes with eyesalve,” and was a welcomed visual palette cleanser to the usual abhorrent atrocities that took place in that unspeakable dark corner of the internet, that diseased den of leprotic wolves, that derelict hellscape full of monstrous demons, that underground sewer of shame which seemed to spawn all things vile — a subterranean asylum full of mutant trolls, administered by mods who always slept, with a Poole that was always closed.
While some reading this, especially in the future, may laugh at this seemingly harmless, Rorschachian, free-association of the initials “CP,” especially in lieu of the fact that some deject web forum made it all up as a joke at least a full decade before any emails from Democratic party officials became leaked to the public. The disturbing facts of the matter are, that a deranged man was so enthralled with this flagrantly fabricated online hoax that he fired several live rounds from an assault rifle into a Washington D.C. pizzeria. An innocent business, which was supposedly linked with the fictitious underground cabal through misperceived symbolic messages hidden within their company logo. This further demonstrates the completely backward and willfully ignorant attitude alt-right conspiracy theorists maintain. Nobody thinks shooting up a pizza place is the right thing to do, but if everybody else says that pizzeria is where a clandestine secret society of Democratic party leaders, with connections throughout all levels of local and federal government, meets to devise devious plots and schemes, then it becomes almost the opposite; if one truly believes that nightmarish occult situation to be the case, then not shooting up the pizzeria becomes the unconscionable thing to do. Sparing individual rational judgment for the sake of maintaining the party’s beliefs, is political correctness. Telling people to stop using the n-word, is not. Conservatives completely twist reality in harmful ways, because it is the only way they can psychologically justify to themselves their political platforms. This is why they write some of their more insane opinions in all capital letters; why boisterous cable pundits shriek like wailing banshees over guests that were invited onto the show; why Donald Trump makes exaggerated insults (just the most recent Google search of “Donald Trump insult,” yields “low I.Q. Crazy Mika, along with Psycho Joe,”), or why Trump hyperbolizes every personal moment in his life to the point of operatic and carnivalesque self-mythopoesis, “It was the most beautiful chocolate cake you’ve ever seen.” They aren’t shouting loudly to convince me, they’re trying to convince themselves. “Satan knows his time is short, and he is very angry.”
The general consensus, according to Wikipedia (all hail), is that in the late 20th century, books such as Allan Bloom’s The Closing of the American Mind (1987), Roger Kimball’s Tenured Radicals (1990), Dinesh D’Souza’s Illiberal Education (1991), and others, placed a greater emphasis on the university system’s apparent trouncing of constitutionally granted civil liberties in the name of promoting secular, humanitarian, common decency. From these author’s perspective, this crusade took place under the banner of “political correctness.” My point is, this is a completely ill-informed, and outright incorrect definition of “political correctness,” thus their entire argument that liberals are using “political correctness,” to stifle their inalienable liberties is invalidated because their definitions of “political correctness,” are either themselves nonsensical, or are otherwise devoid of meaning altogether, as they often refuse to even attempt to justify their definitions, nor even consider that such a thing would or should be necessary in order to have a well informed, rational, working discussion. I present another sub-dialogue, a serious discussion on the issue of comedy, which exhibits protean conservatives terminally unjustified, mercurial manipulation of facts and definitions. I take you to Twitter, on the night of June 24th, 2017:
Clueless: Self deprecating comedy is fine to an extent, but it’s gotten to the point where it isn’t even used right, people just aren’t even funny
Owen: Who left it to you to decide what’s funny?
I-Like-Turtles: At this point, self deprecating humor has been relegated to the “Le random funny” sorta meme, which just isn’t funny outside of inside jokes
Owen: You have a naked fat guy as your profile pic. So it’s okay for YOU to make fun of fat people, but they can’t make fun of themselves? Hm…
Clueless: My opinion
Owen: So “your opinion” gives you the right to tell other people what they should think is funny or not…
Clueless: Still never did that, stated my opinion and people can still have theirs dude, it’s all taste and opinion
Owen: If you think it’s okay to tell other people what to think is funny or not, don’t get upset when people do the same to you in the future.
7 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
— King James Bible, Matthew 7:1-3
Clueless: Not really telling people what they should think is funny, I’m saying what I find to not be funny
Owen: You’ve repeatedly deprecated Ryan in the past, and mocked him because you thought it was funny, yet it’s not funny when a person deprecates themselves? Okay…
Owen: You start a conversation you can’t even finish it/You’re talking a lot, but you’re not saying anything
Clueless: There’s nothing to say, you’re bringing up something that wasn’t used for comedic value and trying to use it against me
Owen: My point is you don’t have any right to tell other people what the correct use of self-deprecation is.
Clueless: I’m not telling them what to think, again, I’m just saying what I think is funny in my opinion. And it’s a valid opinion because it’s justified to myself.
Owen: You don’t know the meaning of “justified.” You need to have a rational counter-argument, and all you’ve provided is yourself as the sole adjudicator. In your first post you stated “[self-deprecation] isn’t even used right.” So you obviously think there is a right and wrong way of using self-deprecation.
Clueless: I just think that people sometimes use self-deprecation in a way that isn’t even funny. For example, I used to like Amy Schumer, now all her jokes seem to revolve around how many men she’s had sex with that month, and I don’t find her funny anymore.
Owen: You don’t find her jokes funny, but all this means is that she isn’t funny to YOU. Other people do find her jokes funny, which means the jokes make sense to them. You don’t find her jokes funny, because they do not make sense to you. If something doesn’t make sense to you, then anything you say about it will be devoid of any sense. So, I am asking why would you say something that is devoid of sense, which means it is ultimately meaningless?
Clueless: I see, I was wrong to say there was a “right” way of using self-deprecation, yet I still feel as though others seriously misuse it. Does this mean any time I do not find someone funny, I should just remain silent?
Owen: This was only a superficial example on the surface level. The deeper point is that whenever you do not understand something, then you cannot make any sense of it, so anything you say about it will be nonsensical and meaningless. So, as the exemplary figurehead of 20th-century logical positivism, Austrian philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein, stated in his Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus: “Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.”
Clueless: I stand corrected.
Those of you who are more familiar with the technical inner-workings of Twitter may realize that around halfway through the Clueless dialogue, the character length increased beyond its 140 character limit. Even those who are not social media savvy may have noticed a strange disparity between sentence style and length. I guarantee the dialogue is accurate in theme and genuine in context, however, in this digital age tweets somehow miraculously seem to “disappear,” (get deleted) before one has the chance to sufficiently archive them all, especially in those instances when someone is reproached publically. It is considered uncouth when the twitter thread sprawls on-and-on in an endless stream of babble. While I denounce his views and do not subscribe to any of his tenets, the fourth of Robert Greene’s 48 Laws of Power, is “Always Say Less than Necessary” as “the more you say, the more common you appear, and the less in control.” This is often why alt-right conservatives adamantly maintain their arguments, and stubbornly refuse to concede even the remote possibility that their staunchly held positions could potentially be shallow and misguided. Conservatives realize people feel uncomfortable breaking this social taboo against mindless rambling, so they drag the conversation into the ground, by going around in repetitive cycles of mindless sophistry, making the same circular arguments in an attempt to besiege, beleaguer, and bedevil the person who was simply asking them to justify their positions.
I think it is quite clear through my multiplicitous, verbose forays with alt-righters, that I have certainly broken through this traditional wall of stoic laconism. Though I still practice the art of silence at the right moments, as Greene also suggests, this has less to do with conscientious strategy, and more to do with simply being stunned by some of the utterly bewildering things some people say in the course of these dialogues. Jewels that have been mined out after chipping at the walls of a dark cave with a needle. Absurd statements which I consciously log in order to relay them back to others at a later point, others who I can only assume will find the absurd declarations just as ridiculous as I did originally. Still, in the dialogue over the nature of self-deprecation, Clueless eventually did enter a state of aporia and direct messaged my brother to privately admit to wrongdoing (hence longer character lengths and different sentence structures). Our outgoing response to Clueless’ original apology was, “If you truly felt this way, you’d say so publically” and Clueless did so, before later deleting the tweet — or at least I can no longer find it anywhere on his profile page. His original concessions remain in my brother’s private inbox, so no matter how many deleted tweets, the epistolary exchange back-and-forth remains to support my claims that Clueless did eventually admit to not knowing what he was talking about, and asked what this meant on a deeper level. Which is really the only thing we can ask of a person when it comes to these sorts of philosophical investigations. An acknowledged state of aporia, an admittance of self-doubt, along with an individual request which inquires how one should proceed further.
Whether that person truly means what they say, or is simply trying to gain additional information in private that may be used as ammunition for their camp in a future debate, is irrelevant. If it is merely a sham, then it does not matter, because no matter how much material they have stockpiled for their arguments, as long as their arguments are unsoundly founded, any premises they build on top will be easily dismantled through basic logic. Similar to how an architecturally flawed building will be demolished from the inside by simple structural laws of physics and nature.
26 Like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.
27 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.
— King James Bible, Matthew 7:26-27
They can build their tower as high as they want, so long as they do not comprehend the concepts behind constructing a skyscraper, it is forever doomed to collapse. And if they did understand the fundamental concepts, then they would not present the arguments they were making in the first place, because anyone with elementary, rational, critical thinking skills can see that they are making unjustifiable claims based on illogical man-made beliefs and opinions, rather than inherently soundproof analyses based on scientifically objective, fundamental rules and codes consisting of logical proofs. The only laws that one can use to build a structure. Rather than following common sense and intrinsic rules of logic, they follow winding dead-end paths created by crazed souls before them, and articulate positions which could only have manifested through years spent steeped in a perverted cultural hegemony. Consuming a poorly imitated and almost unrecognizable, generic version of dialectical materialism, pieced together through disparate fragments of a false reality which was shattered by hypocritical fractures created long ago. An ideology which provides a poisoned perspective on the history of the world, in order to suture what’s left of 21st-century humanity’s broken psyche back together. Appearing to offer a re-united, transcendental identity that one can hold onto, so long as one maintains a radical, paranoid-schizophrenic weltanschauung.
There is enough circulus in probando, ignoratio elenchi, and false premises throughout these interactions to keep any rhetorician bemused for an afternoon. In contemporary society, the flippant use of logical fallacies are expected ornamentations of political dialogues. In the past, the staggering amount of inconsistent paradoxes may have mattered, but to anonymous juveniles on the internet, nothing matters. Or so they think, it is an inverted existentialism. The same way “political correctness,” stemmed from the left side of the aisle byway of the Communist Party, so too does the nihilism and existentialism which the pseudo-philosophic alt-right manipulates in order to rid themselves of compassion, or to totally ignore the facts when they cannot distort them to suit their purposes. They could not use the term “politically correct,” in its proper context, because that would belie the phrase’s original left-wing origins, and it is difficult to have a political argument against someone whose ideology you are secretly co-opting, so they re-invented their own clichéd version of the term with a counter-definition that completely contradicts its original meaning, negating its proper context, and thus imposing their own opposing worldview by erasing the correct usage of the phrase.
In the same way, they use obfuscatory subversion to disguise the left-wing origins of nihilism (from 19th century Russian anarchists), and existentialism (from 20th century French communists), in order to distort the philosophies until they are no longer recognizable, allowing them to misinterpret these ideas so they can serve as the basis of their politically pessimistic ideologies. To disguise their lack of identity and existential emptiness, they steal masks from the left-wing philosophers, like Marx and Sartre, and paint over them so as not to be detected as thieves in the masquerade ball taking place behind a mirror in their parallel universe. Underneath their war paint, is a stolen mask, and beneath the mask is a chaotic flux of indiscriminate nothingness. The Frankfurt School, Critical Theory, and loathsomely dreaded Cultural Marxism are the bane of the alt-right’s existence, yet their movement could not exist without the nauseating unconcealment of reality offered by the likes of fellow travelers Sartre and Camus. They distort facts and theories in a laissez-faire way in order to create their own Frankensteinian, conspiratorial realities. A pessimistic Bizarro World where everything is inverted and the Super Friends are people like Donald Trump, Steve Bannon, and Alex Jones. While the secret Legion of Doom, which is supposedly causing the catastrophic demise of reality, is headed not by Gorilla Grodd and Lex Luthor, but by Herbert Marcuse and Theodor Adorno. Antonio Gramsci as the Riddler. Walter Benjamin as Toyman. Is Noam Chomsky Brainiac? We may never know…