by Shelt Garner
Because the issue of “wokeness” is so often demagogued by Right wing nutjobs, the whole issue is so conflated and muddled that generally in the minds of conservatives is just means “something I don’t like and may ruin my life.” But let’s try to break down not just what “being woke” means, but it’s causes as well.
A lot of the issue of “being woke” comes from generational changes combined with technological changes. It’s easy for the most idealistic and touchy voices of the Zoomer generation (or whatever) to be the one we all hear about the most to the point that even if you don’t agree with the most woke of concepts, you still somehow find yourself having to defend them.
I mean, in the 70s there were some spicy takes on the part of second wave feminists that were so extreme that even your most woke person today might blanch at them a little bit. So “wokeness” has existed since dirt, but technology — to a limited extent — has given these spicy woke takes a lot more potency. Add to this dramatic differences in what different generations believe on the hot button issues of the day and you have a recipe for conservatives getting really angry about people being “woke.”
Also, another issue is a matter of audience. Outside of the horrible men who were justifiably canceled as part of the #MeToo movement, most of the other people who have been canceled, well, just didn’t read the room. In my experience, there is usually some other factor that aggravates the situation whenever someone is “canceled.”
So, JK Rowling was far more suspectable to being successfully “canceled” than, say, Louis CK. And Louis CK is doing quite well for himself, even though he did, in my opinion, things far worse than what JK Rowling is accused of doing. But you have to give Rowling credit — she’s stuck to her guns, even though her audience loathes her as a person.
But that doesn’t stop conservatives from believing that, by definition, for the average person to be conservative is to risk having their life ruined. They think this in such an abstract manner that it’s easy for Republican shithead cocksuckers to demagogue the whole idea to the point that an already divided America gets more and more divided.