Sunlight is the Best Disinfectant

The dude has a million followers on Twitter. He and his opinions are by no means inconsequential. If they don’t matter to or impact your life, fine. But please don’t criticize others for making sure they’re known.

8 Likes

You see that Ken Burns joint? Nazis got plenty of sunlight. People don’t care about us.

Antisemites are getting more and more attention these days, and it doesn’t seem to be hurting them. Kanye got suspended from twitter for a day.

I’m not saying it’s better to let it slide. Definitely not.

I’m saying I’m a pessimist, and I’m not sure if there’s really much of any way to deal with antisemitism. I mean, education helps, but it feels like a wine cork stemming a dam that keeps cracking every day.

1 Like
9 Likes

I saw it. It confirmed what I’d read elsewhere: lots of downplaying or ignoring in the bulk of the American press of what was going on in Germany under the Nazi regime until late 1939. During that same period, Nazi-aligned Americans like Coughlin, Lindbergh, the America First Committee and the Bund were able to spread their own normalising propaganda about Germany without a real countervailing narrative from most mainstream media outlets.

No-one is claiming that calling modern-day American bigots on their dog-whistles or outright hate speech is a panacea. Pretending it isn’t happening, however, is tantamount to normalising it and minimizes the current and future impact on its targets.

The Holocaust Museum in Washington DC was established in part as a rebuke and belated corrective to the willful ignorance that was happening in the U.S. prior to 1939 re: fascist regimes. Some stats from their Web site:

Visitors to the Museum

Since opening in April 1993

  • Total: More than 47 million
  • Demographics: Currently 24% school children; 12% international; approximately 90% non-Jewish
  • Dignitaries: More than 100 heads of state; more than 3,500 foreign officials from over 132 countries
  • Members: 175,637

Visitors Online

  • Websites: In 2021, 28 million visitors representing 238 countries and territories (58% international visitors)
  • Holocaust Encyclopedia: Available in 19 languages; in 2021, visited by 21.6 million people worldwide
  • Facebook: 1,562,777 fans
  • Twitter: 342,136 followers
  • Instagram: 163,812 followers
  • E-mail Community: 836,000 subscribers
  • YouTube: 74,500 subscribers

So yeah, education helps de-normalise anti-Semitism and bigotry, whether it takes place in a big building on the National Mall or in a public TV documentary seen by millions or on Web sites or in schools.

This topic exists because too many people here accept the premise that just ignoring expressions of racism and fascism will make them go away. That’s just another form of defeatism.

11 Likes

The current situation sucks, for sure. But i don’t have it in me to give up and let the assholes win. I owe that much to my kids, both biological and professional. Once more, into the breach, dear friends.

11 Likes

Honest and sincere question here:

Are we undoing the deplatforming of Former Guy by reporting widely on everything he says? It was such a win when we got him off Twitter, but now every outrageous thing he says over on Truth Social gets reported here and everywhere anyway.

10 Likes

When he says something truly dangerous, that cannot be ignored. His daily musings about how great he is don’t reach nearly as wide of an audience these days, so deplatforming is doing something at least.

19 Likes

The press and the public largely ignored Trump’s bigotry for decades and look where that got us.

I figure if he’s going to rile up his followers to commit antisemitic hate crimes we owe it to ourselves to pay attention to the growing threats.

14 Likes

I hear that, but this idea is in tension with deplatforming, which we also believe to be an important tool for defusing the power of these nut jobs.

Is there a middle ground we need to strike between marginalization and awareness?

3 Likes

It’s not platforming if you’re critical about what the fascists are saying and take a firm stand against them. The failure of the corporate media is that they don’t do those things, or downplay and euphemise what he’s saying. People need to understand that, in addition to his many other repulsive characteristics, he’s an anti-Semite.

19 Likes

Ah, yes- that’s a helpful distinction. The difference, then, is taking what they say and surrounding it in proper context and critique. Not letting them speak to their audience unchecked, in other words.

That’s helpful, thank you! This was bothering me this morning.

Ugh, yes. So much this. It’s so frustrating that big media still won’t take a stand against fascism and call this stuff out. They are clinging to their “both sides get an equal voice” nonsense so hard that they’re going to sink us all with it. Objectivity is good in news reporting of course, but there’s a point where they’re trying so hard to find an objective voice in a crazy situation that they completely lose the plot.

14 Likes

It is a delicate balance but I think the key distinction is that we cannot allow the bigots a direct platform to broadcast their bigotry unchallenged.

Trump’s followers aren’t coming to platforms like BoingBoing to hear what he has to say filtered through a critical viewpoint. They’re getting the message straight from the horse’s ass.

14 Likes

Only a fraction of the stupid and self-aggrandizing bile he spews makes the news.

We don’t need to know what he had for lunch. We do need to know when he’s riling up his followers to commit hate crimes.

13 Likes

Pretending you can rid yourself of Nazis by ignoring them is like pretending you can rid yourself of cancer by ignoring it.

11 Likes

It’s ironic that Trump had his Twitter account suspended and yet we still have to constantly be bombarded with his posts from other platforms as though nothing ever happened. Why do we give this shirtbird a platform? You’re just giving him what he wants.

2 Likes

15 Likes

so so tired of hearing about this guy. if you had a guy like this living next door to you, with antisemitic rants and conspiracy theories all the time, would you continue to sidle on up to the fence line to engage? why encourage that? this is the same case on a larger scale. let him shout into the wind.

2 Likes

Please proceed directly to Sunlight is the Best Disinfectant

12 Likes

sorry, i don’t agree.

I don’t particularly care, I was just pointing you to the topic where this is discussed. To death. Innumerable arguments for and against calling assholes out for their behavior. Have fun if that’s the discussion you want to have.

14 Likes