Friday Ephemera
Friday Ephemeraren’t

Piety Detected

Via Ben Sixsmith, a new forbidden word. Please update your files and lifestyles accordingly: 

A tough guy talks.

When not publicly threatening to assault people who use the word woke, and being pleased about it, having wilfully construed the term as somehow racist, Mr Anderson writes for Slate, where he tells the world how things really are. Some of the comments by Mr Anderson’s Twitter followers, and their endorsements of his sentiments, are also worthy of note.

Ah. I see a theme developing.

Perhaps Mr Anderson is titillated by the idea of assaulting people and spends his time searching for some convoluted pretext. And having attracted the like-minded, we see people wrapped in a drag of progressive piety – with pronouns gratuitously stipulated, rumblings of opposing some unspecified “fascism,” and the word “ally” in their bios – who thrill to the prospect of white people being walloped simply for using the word woke. It’s a strange kind of righteousness.

Readers may recall former Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger denouncing the word woke as a “meaningless sneer,” one “designed to stand in the way of thought or discussion.” That the word in question - which was deployed unironically in his own paper - is often used to denote a particular kind of contrivance, censoriousness – and above all, self-flattery - was apparently lost on Mr Rusbridger and his Twitter followers, who promptly equated wokeness, and thereby themselves, with “people who are thinking outward and forwards rather than inward and backwards.”

Update, via the comments:

Speaking of wokeness.

Not that the term has anything at all to do with practised, insufferable, self-flattering pretension, you understand.

Over at Instapundit, regarding Mr Anderson, Glenn Reynolds adds,

Guys who work for big media corporations telling people what’s racist and encouraging violence is the very definition of “woke” in 2021. And because people understand that, the word carries a lot of baggage that guys like Joel don’t like. But the problem is, they are the baggage.

And Damian Counsell has some thoughts: 

You can tell when a label is embarrassing to the media class when they start claiming it’s “racist” or “sexist.” They were fine with “Karen” when they were using it against less-well-off white women. When posh gals started being on the receiving end, it was suddenly “misogynist.” “Woke” was first co-opted from black people by white “progressives.” Then, non-progressives started calling exactly the same people who called themselves woke “woke” too. It was only because the behaviour of the woke was so appalling that it acquired such negative connotations.

Oh, and on Twitter, Mr Anderson has subsequently urged his followers to “not engage” with people who may disagree with Mr Anderson. His tweets, he boasts, have “stirred up a nest of racists,” by which he seems to mean people who dislike threats of racially-motivated violence. He’s also used the term “sons of Stormfront,” which appears to be directed at readers of this item in The Federalist, a characterisation that is, to say the least, a bit of a stretch.

Also, open thread. Share ye links and bicker.