I’ve been dwelling for awhile on how open I want to be about politics, both in my writing and on social media. I have created and deleted whole Twitter accounts, countless tweets, Facebook posts, and conversations across various platforms because I changed my mind on the political presence I wish to have. I can’t imagine it’s terribly wise to discuss anything controversial at all for a hopeful creative, unless you’re strictly a political commentator and don’t want to pursue anything else. Once certain cultural views become a known quantity they can’t be taken back, but they can most certainly be used against you.
When I do write about political issues I try to remain dispassionate about the subject matter and keep my biases in check, but in this current cultural climate that isn’t good enough. Criticism of anything “social justice” can be seen as an attack on minorities, women, or whatever other victim classes they hold dear. Speaking out against these “progressives” in general could potentially be alienating to a huge chunk of readers, but not for the reasons you may think; and writing strictly to please them isn’t advisable to anyone. The progressive target is moving too fast, and there are so many interpretations of their doctrine that it would be impossible to please all of them. People who are looking for outrage will always eventually find it, and while that isn’t a group of readers I would lament losing, the truly insidious aspect of social justice comes when you are a known critic of the movement itself. That is when they make it a point to destroy you.
If you’re a content creator who just happens to upset a feminist, but aren’t actively speaking out against them, you can usually wait out any heat they bring by ignoring it and never-ever apologizing. The situation gets infinitely worse once you post a single tweet, article, or even have a conversation that gets noticed about their garbage ideology. Once you have the gall to become a known critic of social justice or any of their sacred cows it would be best if you were anonymous. From the moment you make the progressive shit-list you can expect everything you write, think, or do to be under constant scrutiny. No matter how much time you have to defend yourself, they have more time to attack, and they’ll dig up everything you’ve ever neglected to delete and find some way to use it against you. Even if your average reader would find nothing offensive or morally questionable about your work, once a wave of hit pieces are written about you the well is poisoned. Many people aren’t aware that there is a small but powerful collective of keyboard warriors abusing words like “racist” and “misogynist” until they have no meaning. In the world outside the internet buzzwords still have power, and now the worst of them are attached to you.
As someone who would like to eventually write literature, it makes almost no sense to have a stance on anything culturally controversial. Instead I should present whatever views I may have subtly in my work. I like strong female characters, and I believe that even the deeply flawed can find their paths to happiness in the most fucked up situations the universe can throw at them. The first serious piece I want to write could be considered downright feminist by 1990’s standards, but once my thoughts about third-wave feminism are out they’re out, and I’ll be a misogynist in their eyes forever. It does not matter to the socially progressive that I could still be considered a liberal. As soon as they hear that I’m critical of Islam I may as well be the most conservative, right-wing, Christian, Republican that ever lived; and they use these terms with such derision it’s hard to imagine they know that none of these things are insults. Beyond using political terms that aren’t insults as insults they are known to throw around words like “neo-NAZI” and “white supremacist” without much care if they ruin people who don’t deserve it.
All of this is a good reason to keep my thoughts to myself, but that’s no way to live. Besides, the longer that bad views go unchallenged the more entrenched they become, and some of this shit has been stirring for awhile. There are numerous examples of authors, critics and media personalities who have challenged the social narrative of progressives and lived to tell about it, but the risk is in becoming pigeonholed. The quickest way to alienate half of your audience is talking about religion or politics, but the perks are attracting a more loyal audience once you’re known for being “incendiary.” A few noteworthy personalities have managed to transcend this quagmire of bullshit and reach mass appeal, people like Joe Rogan, but in order to do this your creative product has to be exceptional. That’s really the question one has to ask themselves before wandering too far into these waters: am I, or will I at some point be exceptional?
Despite the obvious risks of being open about my views, there is a potential silver lining. I have written in the past about my love of alternative social media, namely Gab.ai and Minds.com. Both of these places were created as oases in the desert of political correctness. Both platforms have tightly knit communities that are eager to welcome new members, talent and ideas, while rejecting the tyranny of modern social justice. I don’t mesh perfectly well in either place, and I regularly disagree with people on Gab, but we have a lovely argument and become friends. This is in stark contrast to Facebook and Twitter where you can find yourself suspended or worse for simply disagreeing with the wrong someone. There’s enough of an audience waiting out there for me to not accept compromises and wear a muzzle, but on a long enough timeline it is going to get heavy. I’ll get back to you once the protests start and they hang my effigy, because that sounds neat.
Author: Ryan Hostility
Ryan Hostility is not a writer. He is a nihilistic shit-disturber and he should probably be stopped.
Also, sometimes he writes. You can find him on Twitter @HellToSay and Facebook @dontgoanyfurther