White Dreadlocks and the Pettiness of Social Media Justice
Did you know tattoos are cultural appropriation? You see, the Roman empire banned the European art of tattooing. It was viewed as a cruelty, given that Romans and Greeks used to tattoo the faces of their slaves. The Greeks did it to insult Persian royalty, who had facial tattoos. So right there tattoos are problematic, as they are both symbols of bigotry and slavery. But it gets worse, you see we’re not so sure Europeans even had tattoos outside of slavery. A few bog mummies and one Siberian Queen turned Popsicle do not make for a compelling argument. Tattoo is a Polynesian word, taken by imperialist sailors who raped and pillaged their way through the islands. Not to mention Thomas Edison owns the patent on the original tattoo machine, so there’s that. Saying that “every culture in the world has had tattoos in some aspect” negates how their were taken. Saying that “this is part if many subcultures” is racist in that it excuses cultural appropriation and imperialism. Saying “what about my bodily autonomy” is also racist, as it means you value yourself over the cultures you’re stealing from. In short, white people shouldn’t have tattoos. Now, if that convinced you to get your tattoos removed, you’re doubly the fool.
There are so many god damn holes in this argument that I could be here all day debunking them. Bad faith, misinterpreting facts, overreaching generalizations, intentionally lying about the history of tattoos, non sequiturs, false correlations, complete dismissal of bodily autonomy, etcetera, etcetera. Yet this marks a huge parallel to how we discuss dreadlocks. It also misses the point entirely about tattoo stigmatization and discrimination in the work place. As is the same with locked hair. The discrimination against it is part of a much larger problem of anti-blackness in the work force.
The “discussion” of “white” dreadlocks has always been a tumblr level of “discourse.” When we deal with online social media justice, we’re entering a surface level understanding of everything that gets reduced to black and white,… often literally. The arguments we see are like the stunt cum in porn. We’re promised a load of knowledge that will bear fruit, yet what we see is the semblance of faux facts dripping out of these holey posts and tweets. They cause a yeast infection of the mind and the bacterial vaginosis of social justice.
In this gigantic essay to no one in particular, I intend to whine loosely, shouting my bullshit into the void for the uncaring cancer that is the internet. I aim to accomplish nothing but venting. I hope to convince no one. If I am lucky, I’ll trigger the shit out of a few self important social media clout chasers. If I’m unlucky, this will go viral and there will be 5 hour breadtube essays on it. But if it wasn’t bad luck, I wouldn’t have been born. So I doubt even a single soul will read this.
Oh, and a few rebuttals to the imaginary people reading this.
- I am not denying any oppression, systemic racism, other shit parts of capitalism, etc. I’m bringing them up in how they’re used to silence people. Context is key. You know this. Why are you fucking lying about me denying or downplaying systemic racism, you fucking imaginary straw man piece of shit?
- I am not going to indicate what is and isn’t sarcasm. You learned what sarcasm was in first grade. Your social ineptitude and illiteracy are on you, straw boy. Addendum: I have been made aware that autistic people have trouble distinguishing sarcasm. That being said, just don’t read this then. You’re missing out on nothing but me ranting and raving.
- Restating the exact things I am rebuking, word per word, is not a rebuttal. It’s being a parrot. “You don’t understand, [same exact argument I’ve already addressed.]” Does Straw Poly want a cracker?
- Variations of ad hominems and comeback memes are not a counter argument. They never were. All they prove is that you’re clout chasing for attention. It’s the antics of a Reply Guy; just a performance piece for screenshots.
- “You don’t make any sense or have a narrative” isn’t a rebuttal, it’s proof of incompetence. Your inability to follow the plot ain’t my problem. If you can’t put 2 and 2 together to come to 4, there is no hope for you as a functional adult.
- This is not a college essay, this is the fucking internet. We’re all liars, losers, idiots, and dimwits here. If I was going to publish something well researched I’d do it in a political science journal and have professionals help me fact check and edit it. This is medium. You will find more articles about how birds aren’t real than on why we should give a shit about climate change. Fuck you, straw man imaginary critique. I don’t have to take this shit! I’m sick of you and your complete inability to keep crows out of the field! You had one job, straw man, and thanks to you the harvest is ruined and Jeremiah is gonna starve this winter. Hope you’re happy!
The trademark, copyright “White” can best be summed up as the average flyover state American. Someone who has long since been distanced from their immigrant origins. A person with no cultural traditions or ethnic identity. A blank slate for Americanization. These are the people who fly from Bumfuck, Nowhere to major cities to get art degrees. They take a political science course and are now the vanguards of the revolution. They are like sponges who soak up any leftist sounding ideas. Hot takes on tiktok, breadtubers grifting, dumb viral tweets; the junk food for thought. These are the same people going “I H8 YT ppl” on social media. Yet they don’t do it out of self hate. That would require self awareness. They say these things out of narcissism, exceptionalism, and to play white savior. Don’t worry, BIPOC, the guy who says “Eye hate WT PPL” is here to save the day! And how shall they save the day? By hijacking BIPOC talking points, causes, and politics and being the speaker for all.
These are not people who give a shit about the cultures they “defend.” They can’t be bothered to learn the difference between Santa Muerte and La Catrina when talking about The Day of the Dead. To them, all “foreign” culture is meant to be kept separate and safe by nagging people online. What is Jata? What is the significance of dreadlocks to Rastafarians? Who cares, not important. Of course, there begs a few question. When they say they hate white people, does that include Jewish people? Are Jews white? What about immigrants from impoverished Eastern European countries? I’d ask “does this hate include trans women” but we already can see the answer to that is a resounding “YES!”
These people are the ones who bring the weakest arguments to the table. They do this not because they actually give a shit, they absolutely do not, but because of a few factors. Those being right wing mentality & morality, a child’s understanding of privilege, and bigotry.
The Great White Lie
The very concept of “whiteness” is a fairly new invention. It is a useful one in the class war. If you are not part of the “chosen few,” then everyone on the other side of the skin pigment line looks like a millionaire. After all, that white janitor has an infinitely easier life than if he was a black janitor. Firstly, the obvious. Class trumps all. A multimillionaire or billionaire will never be subject to anything. We see it time and again, the law does not apply to the rich. Second, American trumps underdeveloped world. To be born in this shit hole, fascist dictatorship of the technocrats and their puppets is to somewhat benefit from the American empire,… Even in a small way. We have electricity, most places have clean water, most of us have food or at the very least can fish it out of a dumpster after the cafe throws out their perfectly food pastries. Those garbage donuts tho. I once got a still hot chicken wrap from the garbage! It wasn’t even expired that much.
Our own pettiness is at the heart of our inability to seize the massive, bulging means of production by the shaft. Yet what are we producing and from where? Our whole economy is based off exploitation of the entire underdeveloped world. Whiteness is how the elites keep us in line without realizing just how vast the system really is. Are the women of Afghanistan white because of their skin pigment? Are the women of Iraq, whose husbands were shot to shit by Blackwater psychopaths, white? What about Vietnamese who huffed agent orange? Are they whiter then black Americans? Are their kids who had their limbs blown off by leftover landmines whiter? After all, their skin color is lighter. Lighter = whiter = more privilege.
Our current racial system of oppression is just a small apparatus in the greater imperialist machine. Fascism runs of populism. Racism runs on pseudoscience. Together, they make “White” as a brand to be sold to us. It is not a hard rule carved into stone like the 10 commandments. It is a commercial that airs during the Superbowl. It plays loose and fast and snags up markets to appeal to a larger demographic when it needs more buyers. White is a product sold to the marginalized and improvised. White is a brand, not a race. Buy white now and you too can look down on dark skinned people! Only while supplies lasts, terms and limits may apply, not applicable to current scapegoats. But it’s a product only available in the developed superpowers. Get outside the distribution zone and you see how little difference it makes when you are an American or from any rich superpower nation. When you have money privilege of that citizenship, you become a titan of influence. The ugly American tourist to the rest of the world. The world was bent over backwards and broken to accommodate us.
Suffering Olympics and Right Wing Morality
The right wing mentality is that there can only be one. Sharing is losing. Compromise is losing. You win it all or you lose it all. Right wing morality is you do anything to win. Be it lie, cheat, steal, or slander. If you win the argument, and winning is defined by your side cheering for you, you get to decide what is and isn’t real. Conservatives do this all the time. They lie their ass off and if enough of their lemmings cheer, like, and retweet they win. Thus reality now accommodates them. This is the same attitude woke mobs have internalized.
When the social media justice people get involved in anything, a pecking order is established. He who suffers most is right. All others are part of the system. This is determined by who can shout the loudest and shame the most. Jewish people are at the bottom of this pecking order. After all, they’re “white” (when it’s convenient). Therefore, they suffer not. Anti-semitism is a thing of the past. Zionism makes them guilty by proxy. Never mind Neo Nazis blaming the world’s problems on Jews. After all, there are rich Jewish people. Ergo they’re doing just fine. Same with “white” trans women. White cancels out trans. A black trans woman would suffer more oppression for being black… oh and trans. While a white woman, who just so happens to be trans, is always white first. Therefore, lower and should be quiet and make room for those higher in the hierarchy. Indigenous people don’t count because no one ever counts them. Everyone forgets they exist 90% of the time. We won the pipeline thing, right? Problem solved. Queer women, well women are half the population of the planet. White > women > queer. Shut up, females. You’re just a bunch of Karens with dyed hair. Of course, none of this is used to justify continuing bigotry. We’re just pointing out privilege and how racism benefits homeless white trans women more than homeless black trans women. Check your privilege, bum and no I’m not giving you spare change to just buy more drugs. Also homeless “people” don’t count because they’re a problem, not actual people.
Solidarity is a bold faced lie. It is dropped the second someone you are bigoted against speaks up and wants recognition. I see the queer and trans communities bend over backwards to try and accommodate BIPOC members, while BIPOC cis-het people decry this as either not existing or being just lip service. The bigotry runs strong and deep. There is only room for one. There is only room for those who have suffered the most. Everyone else’s experience is not as valid because of their disqualifies. Some people are simply more valid than others. Those “others” being the same people society has always oppressed and tormented and stigmatized is a mere coincidence. This all ties directly into…
A Child’s View of Privilege
You’ve all seen that screenshot from Family Guy where Peter is at the border, and a border guard is holding up a guide to what skin colors are acceptable and what ones aren’t? This is about the same level of understanding of privilege as we can expect from the social media justice bloggers. It comes right back to the right wing pyramid system of hierarchy. Some are more oppressed than other, those who are less oppressed are privileged. A black trans person trumps a white trans person in the suffering hierarchy. Less privilege = more important. More privilege = shut up. Identity politics are the politics of the establishment.
Of course, in action the privilege argument is used exclusively to tell each other to shut up. Is a white, homeless trans woman complaining? Well it would be worse if she was black. “I’m not invalidating your struggle, but you didn’t acknowledge your privilege. Your cardboard box would be in worse shape if you were BIPOC.” The implicit end of the sentence is “… so shut up.” The privilege argument is now so endemic of bad faith and poorly hidden bigotry it might as well but a right wing dog whistle. It exists within leftist spaces as a “Go to Jail, Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect 200 Dollars” card to be played when you don’t have a convincing argument. Having theoretical privilege is a complete negation of whatever it was the other person was saying.
The real world doesn’t work like this at fucking all. There are very few racists who are trans friendly. There are very few homophobes who are feminists. The vast majority of stigma and bigotry cast wide nets to discriminate as many outsiders as they can. This goes for queer, trans, Jewish, Muslim, and all flavors of “not a clean cut, cis-het WASP.” This also applies to subcultures. From tattoos, to locked hair, to piercings, to dyed hair, all outsider styles are taboo.
The “W” Word
As late as the 1990s, there was a variation of the N word used to describe white people who took any interest in black culture. I.E. listened to rap. It stood for White [N word]. American culture looks down on those who cross the racial culture lines. Especially those it has deemed “white.” To participate, to partake, or even appreciate black culture marks a white person was a race traitor. To the black community, it is an insult to have someone who might as well be an emissary of the oppressor suddenly take interest. To the “whites,” they must hate themselves. To some members of the black community, this person is clearly a privileged thief in the night, coming to steal culture like the Grinch steals presents. A one man minstrel show who intends to mock and denigrate black culture. They are a clown whose act is in poor taste.
While the open racism of looking down those culture traitors has been swept under the rug, the reality is that to this day, this is deeply frowned upon for reasons of racial purity. Respecting the black community means staying out of it. Those cultural boundaries must be respected. Which of course comes with the added bonus of self enforced segregation for the system. American culture already took some blows with the popularity of jazz, rock, and hip hop. African American English spreads like wildfire. The system of racism is losing the culture war. It’s hemorrhaging whiteness everyday. So what better way to stem the bleeding than to convince those doing the cutting to slap some bandages on the wounds? If the people can race police themselves, than it can recover just enough to keep the races from mixing physically. The end of “whiteness” would be the end death knell of racism as an all powerful institution baked into our everyday lives. A cultural segregation is the solution to this. The best part of this (for benefiting this system of racism) is that we came up with it ourselves.
From Marcus Garvey to Malcolm X, breaking off from American culture at large has always been floated around as the solution to racism. It’s a knee jerk reactionary one that plays into the cathartic fantasy of complete liberation. It’s viewed as the solution to a system and culture broken beyond repair. Yet it completely overlooks how much cultural integration has done to damage racism. The view that integration is a form of black cultural genocide is the recycled world view of white supremacists. It is working within the system. Nowadays we look back poorly on Marcus Garvey meeting with KKK members to agree on not mixing races. Today we have a similar understanding with culture instead of ethnicity. With friends like these, who needs the W word?
The argument for this requires a tremendous amount of dismissing of other cultures. Remember that straw man argument I made about tattoos being strictly Polynesian? In order to make the argument that locked hair is cultural appropriation, it must belong to strictly one culture. I have seen black authors make this assumption and in turn, white washing Hindu, Native American, and other cultures and religions along the way. Perhaps the most outrageous claim was that Hindus were accomplices in cultural appropriation.
American narcissism is at the heart of claiming complete ownership of dreadlocks for the black American community, and only the black American community. The cognitive dissonance of reciting the history of locked hair as an argument against white dreadlocks, while taking sole possession of it in spite of that history, is staggering. It appears in every “non-white” culture, goes the argument. Imperialism and racism make it an appropriation of those many, many cultures. Yet that imperialist, racist view of “taking advantage and consuming” stops when it becomes a counter narrative. A more oppressed American has still inherited the empire. They have inherited the land that belonged to the native inhabitants. It is land claimed by genocide. And not just of Native Americans but immigrants and sometimes even citizens. In the International District of Seattle, Japanese immigrants and citizens had their property taken away and sold to black Seattleites during World War 2. Those same citizens came back from concentration camps to see their entire lives sold in whole to Americans for pennies on the dollar. All this done to spite their race. No one is innocent when you are an American.
Yet American exceptionalism claims locked hair as the sole possession of Black Americans. It is their fight and theirs alone. It is their hairstyle and theirs alone. It is theirs to police, theirs to claim, theirs to defend, and theirs to define. To hell with Rastafarians, to hell with indigenous Americans, to hell with Hindus. A tenuous connection to Africa is all that is needed, despite the hairstyle coming in through Jamaican cultural exchange.
What’s in a Name?
The black American community has decided the word “dreadlocks” is racist because of the stigma attached to it. I wonder if any Rastafarians were consulted for this. Like always, religious belief is removed from the argument because it is inconvenient. How many Rastafarians agree with this decision? How many Rastafarians disagree? Nobody asked them because they are not American, by the standards of woke. Woke is just for Americans to espouse. Specifically about American issues with the American mindset and American narcissism and American myopic views.
When In Doubt, Blame Hippies
Ah our good old scapegoat, the hippie. The very definition of “if you stand for nothing, you’ll believe in anything” summed up into a single word. From anti-vaxers to crystal healing to essential oils, our good friend the hippie is to blame for it all. When shit talking dreadlocks, one need only find the nearest hippie. Right wingers have always had a field day with them. So too do right wingers who repeat leftist dog whistles. If you need a quick example of how stupid something is, social media will provide you with some stoner Californian whose mouth will not shut up even if their life depended on it. What is a hippie, anyway? A stooge, a general consumer of other people’s cultures, a clown in tie-dye? They are trend chasers and relics for certain. An amalgamation of liberal American consumerism. They devour everything perceived to be alternative but safe mindlessly. Idiotic ideas, pseudoscience, piss poor philosophy, and other people’s cultures. They are the blank slates on which west coast bullshit can be pressed onto. They are the NPCs of Burning Man. They are also convenient straw men.
Religion Never Counts
The spiritual beliefs of people are useless when arguing over American culture. Spirituality requires conviction, which Americans are sorely lacking. What is American spirituality anyway? Mega churches, evangelicals, wiccans who buy conflict crystals, Scientology, the Jewish residents of New York whose culture is grossly distorted for the basis for antisemitic stereotypes. Dreadlocks play a large role in many forms of devotion, but all spirituality is suspect in America. Pagans exist to be part of the pagan market, to buy books of paganism and crystals. Christians give to anti abortion lobbies. Catholics alone, and no one else according to common knowledge, are protecting pedophiles. Scientology exists to (allegedly) blackmail closeted celebrities (in my opinion, just joking, I kid, I kid, no lawsuit bro). All beliefs are inherently dishonest. For a nation founded on “religious freedom,” we have culturally decided that religion is a scam. Spirituality is cult shit. Might as well put on your Nike's and drink some Koolaid, why don’t ya? So the idea that someone “white” might have dreadlocks out of spiritual conviction or religious belief is simply impossible. And if they believe in something? Fuck ’em. The new atheist movement only helped spread Islamophobia and gave us the alt-right but hey, at least they said “religion dumb.”
Society hates subcultures of all verities. Punk, goth, metal, what have you. Even industry plant subcultures like the Emo brand of the 2000s were despised by the very people marketing it. Dreadlocks came into the punk scene in the 80s. This was the same time they came into American culture in general. They came via Jamaica and the Ska and Reggae influence. Rude Boys and Punks have always crossed paths, it was only natural that in additional to musical exchange there would be other cultural exchanges. Dreadlocks became a crust punk staple. If you’re living rough, rarely have access to showers or housing, locked hair makes a lot of sense. It was protest hair in many ways, political, culturally, and just utilitarian. It made its way into the Industrial music scene and finally grunge. Many of those early “grunge” bands viewed themselves as punks, or hair metal, or just metal. White dreadlocks did have a time in the sun… in the fucking 1990s. Over two decades have passed since then. Like how Grunge is dead, so too is the popularity of white dreadlocks. Yet it lives on in punk and goth subcultures. Oh, and the fucking hippies.
Yet the incredibly racist stereotype that all alternative cultures are just for rich white people persist. Bands like Death and Pure Hell are left out of the discussion. We’re seeing more and more representation of BIPOC, queer, and trans alternative people. Goth is no so ubiquitous it has ceased to be a subculture and is now mainstream. Yet punk in its true form can never cross that line. It is still stigmatized, hated, and generally looked down upon by all. These subcultures started as a rejection of mainstream cultures and all they stood for. They were a protest against what is wrong with our consumerist, bland, safe, sexless product of a culture. Now they are being commercialized. Goth is dead thanks to social media influencers. Punk is being made safe for consumption by tenderqueers. The war against mainstream beauty standards is fading into nothing thanks to two generations of capitalist indoctrinated posers. Punk as chic is no punk at all. Which brings us to the vain, aesthetic side of things.
A Hatred of Locked Hair
One of the things disguised as valid criticism is a barrage of insults against how locked hair looks. It is done under the pretense of being aimed at “white” people. Of course this neglects the nature of most locked hair that is for religious purposes. Hindu Jata is unkempt. It looks chaotic, uneven, and does its own thing. The same is true of Rastafarian dreadlocks. The point is religious devotion. To have it maintained would defeat that. Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat had famously chaotic hair. The insults levied against locked hair are not to insult light skinned people who get them, but a complete hatred of locked hair in its entirety. It completely irreverent to cultural appropriation. It perpetuates the stigma against locked it. It paints it as dirty, disgusting, gross to look at. That is the point of White Trademark Copyright social media warriors insulting them. It is a petty excuse to flex old bigotries in a safe space. One where stigmatization is rewarded as long as you pick the right target.
A Hatred of Women
When Rob Zombie released his meh remake of Halloween, there was a firestorm on the internet. Talks of why this rich, famous musician and director was still wearing dreadlocks at the time. It hit the social justice sphere with massive force. He was flooded with hateful comments and tweets. The same happened to Al Jourgensen of Ministry when he went on tour in the late 2010s. While Jonathan Davis continues to commit crimes against humanity by releasing more Korn albums, he was also the target of this hate. Of course, none of this happened. Sure, they get mentioned here and there when the topic is written about but they aren’t harassed and cancelled. They are passive examples of celebrities from a previous era. Of course, Zombie has since cut his locks. Uncle Al is pretty much only known in industrial music circles. And the continued existence of Korn is a far worse atrocity than Davis’s hair. But with Lana Wachowski, a trans woman, it’s open season boys!
Women, queer women, and especially trans women are the target of the woke mob. They can and never will be pure enough. The queer community and American leftists have always been a crab bucket, dragging each other down, but femme is more of a trigger than most other factors. People often hide behind black queer and trans people when telling light skinned queer and trans women to shut up. “You have more privilege than a black person” is a shit argument and an even poorer excuse for this kind of dog piling. Dreadlocks are just one tool in the giant play bin of bad faith toys to be broken out. Make a chart of who was cancelled in your social circle. Rule out sexual assault allegations, and you’ll be left with an almost entirely femme / trans femme list of names.
The arguments of cultural appropriation are compelling reasons not to go full weeb and wear a traditional Kimono everyday, attempting to imitate Geisha attire. Cultural appropriation has legitimacy when it comes to certain articles of clothes, jeweler, makeup, and the like. But there is a god damn hard line it can never cross; bodily autonomy. Our bodies, especially the bodies of women, are not owed to anyone. The entitlement to control women’s bodies is sewed into almost every culture. It is the primary reason why my first straw man argument against tattoos is complete bullshit. Who am I to tell people what to do with their bodies? Who are you to tell people what to do with their bodies? The social media warrior of the tumblr school of woke have ingested enough leftist talking points to slyly cover their own bigotry. Yet they are still shackled to the old world, old views, old bigotries, and right wing mentalities. An ideological or cultural boundary is a perfect place to establish dominion over women’s bodies. After all, it’s cultural appropriation and white privilege, ergo fair game. The rules do not apply when you are the enemy. All’s fair in love and woke.
The Complete Breakdown of the Internet Left
The internet is a mind rot that nothing seems to cure. It gets its disgusting tentacles around every god damn thing in existence and makes them into puppets, mere caricatures of their former selves. It is like a Lovecraftian beast. At its core, it’s a bigoted, childish boogieman based on fear of humanity and all of human complexities. Leftist ideologies, culture, social justice, all turned into shadow puppets. The fine details reduces to a basic outline, or outright concealed. Insanity brews beneath a surface of spectacle. Hot takes are nothing more than the refurbished and rebranded idiot small talk of high school cliques. Social justice is as effectual as wearing “Free Tibet” pins were in the 90s. It is a shadow puppet of activism. A caricature of political science. It is a mindless noise that is pumped into your mind.
The right wing insanity is a rabbit hole. To take “the red pill,” you have to intentionally follow the algorithm to its darkest depths. You must abandon your empathy and eventually your own humanity. To “get woke,” you turn up the volume on the internet hugbox. You check in like watching a TV show. It is your daily dose of self righteousness. If “the red pill” is horse blinders you put on your soul to lead you into darkness, “woke” is a white noise machine to keep your mind from critical thinking and introspection. One preys upon selfishness and hatred, the other plays your morality and empathy against you. To be “woke” is akin to the Black Mirror episode “Fifteen Million Merits.” Your outrage is profited from. Your desire for a better world is commercialized. Even rebellion against the system now serves the system.
White dreadlocks are just one of those shadow puppets along with a great deal of “cultural appropriation discourse.” Another flat bit of paper, projected against a screen by the gaslights of the internet, to entertain a mass of show goers and not activists. The internet is gameified. Retweets and likes are points. Get more subscribers and followers for the next level. “Leftist” is a career as a streamer or youtuber, not a political position. We have reached a peak level of capitalism Marx could only have dreamed of. The capitalization of human thought itself. Bought and sold en mass by tech corporations.
I’m going to adapt and take creative liberties with Hideo Kojima’s penultimate villain’s speech from Metal Gear Solid 2. You might say to all of thee above, “I’ll decide for myself what to believe and what to pass on!” To which the internet replies, “But is that even your own idea? Or something [someone else] told you? That’s the proof of your incompetence, right there. You lack the qualifications to exercise free will.” This taunting, fascist AI’s words can only be rebuked with “critical thinking” as the qualification.
All knowledge is inherited, all human thought is simply “monkey see, monkey do” but what makes us sentient is critical thinking. The ability to stop ourselves, look back at a convenient half truth, and ponder it over a bit. Wonder if its appealing to us is enough to justify it. To reflect and sometimes say “no, that doesn’t make any sense.”
The internet runs on ignorance and impulsivity. Naturally, so does internet politics. To decide what we will and won’t believe, what is and isn’t truth, requires far more than to simply find our convenient half truths leaked to us by social media. You can google anything to find your “proof.” Look at anti-vaxers. It is not enough to read articles. Sometimes, you just have to sit down and ask “why?” I did this with “white dreadlocks” and what I saw upon reflection was a torrent of half truths and bad faith arguments. I saw bigotry, hypocrisy, and outright lies. I saw leftist theories twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools. What I saw was ugliness and ignorance, misogyny and clout chasing. I saw the sum of what capitalism does to a cause. I saw the internet, tentacles and all.