What is Cancel Culture?
Cancel Culture is a hiveminded philosophy that many people have today, mostly those on social Media. It involves the use of a ‘court of public opinion’ to decide whether or not someone should be punished based on accusation and not evidence. It is in short — Mob Rule.
Let’s take a look at a few cases. People who’ve been thrown into the machine and marked to be deleted. A brief analysis will show us how they fared, and what they lost because of Cancel Culture.
Chris was accused of sexual abuse by his former girlfriend Chloe Dykstra. She wrote a scorching expose in the popular blogging website, ‘Medium’.
He was immediately fired from his job, had his name scrubbed from the company (The Nerdist) he founded, and his reputation was ruined.
What saved Chris Hardwick from oblivion was his wife, Lydia Hearst. She demanded due process and her family had the money to pay for it. Still, his reputation had already been destroyed, the damage to his brand done. Compared to most, Chris got off easy. There are many out there who lack his resources, and companies too often capitulate to the mob in fear of losing public appeal. Often firing employees based on hearsay without any examination whatsoever.
Destroying one life is enough, but often Cancel Culture has consequence that ripples well beyond the accused.
Andy is the founder of ‘Honest Trailers’ and ‘Screen Junkies’. He was accused of sexual harassment by several of his fans and coworkers in 2017. He was immediately suspended without pay, his name slandered throughout media, and his life irrevocably changed.
For two years, he’s fought for the right to work again, and for his own righteousness. He’s worked with attorneys and provided evidence to refute the claims of abusing or coercing women into sexual acts. He also readily and reluctantly admits that he let himself get caught up in his own celebrity.
In a legal sense he’s cleared his name, but the consequences linger. The damage done by publicly accusing him of being a sexual predator has affected his ability to procure future work, and his relationship to both his children and his parents.
What must it be like to have to explain to your children or your own parents that you’re not the monster everyone says you are?
What must it be like for them to explain to others that their father or son is not the monster everyone wants him to be?
James was accused of pedophilia based on inappropriate messages found on his twitter.
They were very old, and according to him, had come from a different point in his life. He apologized for what he had done, but Disney chose to capitulate to the angry masses. They fired him, and removed him from the project he was working on.
This isn’t about choosing who is right or wrong.
This is about maintaining the absolute truth that due process and ‘innocent until proven guilty’ mean something. It’s about a stand against regressing into emotionalism, and realizing that everyone must get their day, not in a court of public opinion, but in a court of justice. Where both sides of any argument will be heard, and a judgement will be passed by someone who’s spent years understanding how to adjudicate faithfully.
I choose this over someone outsourcing their grief, suffering or pain to an e-celebrity or authority, and vicariously attacking their accused. The lasting consequences of this type of mob-rule mentality are only just now coming to light.
Zoe recently accused Alex Holowka of physical and sexual abuse. She tweeted out a series of messages across her social media about how she met him, and how he allegedly abused her.
She has a tremendous following and Alex was immediately beset on all sides by bad actors. This included his own sister, who condemned Alex openly and in the public eye. He lost his job shortly after that.
There was no official investigation done. There was no probative evidence available, only circumstantial anecdotes from former colleagues. Alex had no recourse, and no retreat. He was judged and castigated without so much as swearing in.
Alex may have been guilty of something, but we’ll never know. He killed himself shortly after these accusations went public. You see, he was already mentally ill, recovering from his own abuse, and this was just too much for his soul to bear.
This isn’t a game any more.
How many more people have to die?
How many lives ruined before we remember how to be civil again?
If someone has wronged you, or done wrong, then file charges with local police and get them arrested. This takes them off the streets so that they can’t do it again.
If you’re a victim, don’t let someone else speak for you, and don’t wait to press charges. Believe it or not, despite your political leanings or possibly dissonant ideology, I will defend your right to due process to the death. I’m willing to believe I’m not alone.
Don’t give in to mob-rule. This is a regressive spark, that lights a fire which will burn us all. As Projared found out recently, everybody likes being a part of ‘the public opinion’ until it’s their turn to be judged.
When we give in to Cancel Culture, nobody wins and everybody loses.
The only winning move is not to play.