According to the tenets of the toxic new religion, victimization accrues power. Here’s how it works:
First, the religion sees reality entirely within the Marxist framework of oppressor and oppressed. Further, the principal oppressors are white, Christian or Jewish heterosexual males. They are uniquely oppressive, “white supremacists” who have abused cultural power and privilege at the expense of every other group.
These are givens. They function as “core doctrines” of the new religion. Try arguing these points with adherents; they will be incredulous, as if you were asserting a flat earth. These are simply “self evident” realities. If you are not white, male, Christian/Jewish, heterosexual, you are, by definition, a victim, and victimization accrues power. Ben Shapiro explains how this works:
[The toxic new religion] ranks the value of a view not based on the logic or merit of the view but on the level of victimization in American society experienced by the person espousing the view. An LGBT black woman is automatically considered more correct than a straight white male, before any speech exits either of their mouths.
If a straight white male, or anyone else who ranks lower on the victimhood scale, says something contrary to the viewpoint of the higher ranking intersectionality identity, that person has engaged in a “microaggression.” They have engaged in “hate speech” or “violence,” and violent action is justified to silence them.
The fact that victimization accrues power helps explain the wild exaggeration and hyperbole employed by so-called victim groups. The more victimized and oppressed you paint yourself, the more your voice counts. If you say (of your experience as a black, female student at Yale University) “we are dying here!” you are setting yourself up to be taken more seriously.
But this is a dangerous delusion. Yazidis in Iraq, or Christians in North Korea can truthfully claim that “we are dying here” without exaggerating. But to make the same claim as a privileged student at one of America’s most prestigious universities is to mock actual violent oppression.
Victimization warrants mob tactics, riots, and violence
Examples of this abound in the news. In just the past year we’ve read about mobs of students shouting down those who disagree, almost always combined with vitriol, cursing, property damage, threats of violence and actual violence: Berkeley, Evergreen, Missouri State, Yale, Middlebury, and the list goes on. According to Deion Kathawa, the students who engage in these mobs,
… fervently believe that they are the front-line troops of an infallible moral vanguard, locked in an epic struggle for the very soul of their generation — and of their nation, rotten to the core … [Given this] it is not quite so shocking that they understand themselves to have entirely legitimate grievances and are accordingly motivated to act in extreme ways.
In the video below, Professor Bret Weinstein describes the recent mob protests at Evergreen College in Olympia, Washington. (Go here if the video does not appear.)
Another (white female) Evergreen professor wrote about her own experiences of the riots.
Student activists gain license to harass and intimidate members of the Evergreen community in an effort to achieve their ends. Last Wednesday on two separate occasions I was followed by white students who yelled and cursed at me, accused me of not caring about black and brown bodies and claimed that if I did care I would follow their orders and join the protest in the library. They stood in front of me, blocking my way as I attempted to walk across campus.
In the first occasion, three female students and one male who claimed to not be a student surrounded me with raised voices and twisted my words when I responded to them. When I stopped to try to talk with them they refused to actually engage in conversation. The only thing which they would accept was my obedience, which you won’t be surprised to learn I was not going to give. They followed me all the way across Red Square … while berating me. By the time I got to the venue for the faculty meeting, I was shaking.
When I left the faculty meeting I was followed by two new students who were waiting outside the door for me. These two followed me and asserted that nothing I could possibly be doing was more important than following their orders. If I did have something important to do, I should tell them what it is so they could evaluate whether my decision to leave was valid. I tried to get them to question their own assumptions but they were incapable of engaging in dialogue. Their passions were running too high. High enough to violate principles on which this institution depends to exist at all.
All they could say to me was: Imagine what it’s like for black and brown people to experience that kind of threat all the time. They have no idea how or whether throughout my life and in spite of appearances (my white skin) I may have had to deal with and overcome intimidation, threat and harassment. I’m not saying that my trauma is worse or more important or the same as that of people of color. I’m not competing with anybody. But it’s simply wrong to erase someone’s humanity in the name of not erasing someone else’s.
And while this was a terrible experience for me, I’m much more concerned with the students lack of understanding of what they allowed themselves to do, which was to willingly erase their own humanity by treating me in the way they did. I’m telling you about this because I’m also concerned that the students are being egged on by faculty who approve of this kind of thing and ignore the tactics for the sake of the goal. Some of you, in essence, are telling the students to do it again. Maybe they’ll show up in my classroom next week and demand my resignation because I’m a racist. I wouldn’t be at all surprised.
The letter was included in an article by John Sexton, who added this:
These students are behaving like Maoists at a struggle session. They are literally demanding this woman justify her right to do anything else but obey them. It’s reminiscent of students telling Evergreen President George Bridges he could only go to the bathroom if accompanied by two of their minders.
And yet, it seems none of the students who shouted and cursed at this professor have been disciplined. On the contrary, as the letter points out, some of the professors were egging the students on in this behavior.
Here’s what jumps out at me: First, the students and faculty behind the riots “ignore [inhumane, totalitarian] tactics for the sake of the goal.” Second, this mob behavior is part and parcel of the movement on many US college campuses (not only Evergreen).
This is the same totalitarianism of the Maoist Cultural Revolution or the Russian revolution!
Victimization endorses raw power
When you jettison the truth—Christian morality and a biblical worldview—this is what you get. Raw power.
This set of tactics to fight so-called victimization is increasingly used beyond college campuses as well, in places like Ferguson Missouri; Baltimore; Portland, Oregon; Chicago and elsewhere. It is powered by a vast array of revolutionary networks, enabled by social media, and underwritten by incredible amounts of money provided by far-left donors and foundations.
The goal is to disrupt and silence foes. It has been described as “the heckler’s veto.” Noah Rothman writes,
For an unacceptably large number of progressive activists, a violent response to speech has not only become excusable but obligatory. Such undemocratic behavior is the natural outgrowth of an increasingly mainstream progressive worldview in which the distinctions between speech and violence have been blurred beyond recognition.
To advance their belief system, adherents of this toxic new religion are using Nietzschean tactics, behaviors void of any aspect of Christian charity or morality. Civility, open discourse, dialogue and debate are thrown out, replaced by coercion, lies, deception, distortion, emotional outbursts, threats, and violence. Whatever works to further the cause and prevail—whatever it takes.
This should send a chill down our spines. We are in for a long and difficult struggle.
- Scott Allen