The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Friday, February 01, 2019

Blood Heir

Far too many progressives and virtually all social justice warriors (SJWs) among the hard left love to use the word "extreme" when characterizing the position of anyone or any entity that somehow offends them or opposes their worldview. Of course, that's when they aren't using direct ad hominem attacks, calling such offenders "racists," or "misogynists," or "white supremacists," or ... you get the picture.

But as the Left ascends with the support of its trained hamsters in the media (who would never, ever question its positions), it is itself becoming more and more "extreme."

Consider the case of Amelie Wen Zhao, a young Chinese-American author who just penned her first novel, Blood Heir. Somehow, SJWs got wind of the plot and ginned up their outrage machine prior to its publication. Cathy Young comments on the details:
Fifty years ago, during the Cultural Revolution in Communist China, artists, writers and scholars deemed guilty of promulgating “bourgeois ideas” and “old culture” were terrorized into public “self-criticism.” Today in the United States, a Chinese-American immigrant writer has been driven to somewhat similar self-abasement in the name of social justice — not by violent coercion, but by social media shaming. This should alarm us all.

Wednesday, Amelie Wen Zhao, a New Yorker raised in Beijing, not only apologized for the “pain” and harm” caused by her forthcoming young adult fantasy novel, “Blood Heir,” but announced she had asked her publisher “not to publish [it] at this time.”

How did we get here? Zhao’s debut novel, originally for release in June, had received enthusiastic praise. Then review copies went out, and a chorus of online critics began to attack it as racist.

On what grounds? For one, “Blood Heir” takes place in a world where some people including the heroine, Ana, have dangerous supernatural powers that make them reviled and hunted; their outcast status is used as a metaphor for real-life oppression of racial minorities. Detractors found that “repulsive.”
So. The hard left (in the guise of "social justice") has decided that it can now participate in the 2019 version of book burning. Or maybe they simply feel that Ms. Zhao needs to be "re-educated" after she has been sufficiently shamed.

Maybe it's just me, but I'd characterize the leftist attack on Amelie Wen Zhao as "extreme." In fact, it seems that much of the "extremism" we see today isn't coming from the usual suspects on the Right, but instead is coming from a growing cohort of "activists" and SJWs on the Left. What's worse is that supposedly moderate leaders of the Democratic party refuse to outright condemn extremism on the Left, preferring to look the other way. We should ask someone like Bernie Sanders or his protege, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex, what they think.

No wonder there's a slow but steady trickle of Dems (think: Howard Schultz) who have decided to #WalkAway.

After recounting a number of recent cases of metaphorical book burning, Young writes:
The online mobs, unlike actual mobs in Mao’s China, can’t beat and maim people or trash their possessions. But when they have the social power to coerce self-censorship and groveling apologies, our freedom is diminished.
Only if the rest of us don't push back. Hard.