by Julian Christopher
You are a soldier in a war being waged right now.
You. Reading this. You’ve been unknowingly drafted into the greatest fight of our generation, and worse, there’s a good chance you’ve already fallen prey to the enemy, or even been turned yourself.
Before I get to who the enemy is, let me offer some comfort; until recently they were rather hard to identify. And whatever you may or may not have done in their name, it was likely for good reason.
You want the world to be a better place, I’m sure of it. In fact, let’s wipe the slate clean entirely — You, for all intents and purposes, cannot be held responsible for the way things are right now.
The thing is, that’s all about to change. We are all about to be culpable for the state of the world. No matter our net worth. No matter our reach. No matter our intention.
Haven’t you noticed a change lately? There are a small but growing number of social issues that seem to demand lip service from everyone regardless of occupation. And God help you if you get it wrong.
If you say the wrong thing, within earshot of the right person, or the right camera, you just might find yourself on the receiving end of a severance package, or a mob of angry online strangers intent on ruining your life.
These issues don’t just come up in private conversations anymore, they are the center of advertising campaigns, workplace initiatives, and now, they are working their way into public policy. They have not yet become reason enough to interrogate anyone, but that is where they’re headed.
The lines are being drawn quite clearly — some on public streets by city workers in bright yellow paint. Sooner or later, everyone is going to see which side of these issues you’re standing on, whether you like it or not.
It is crucial to understand that the outcome of humanity’s next chapter will define our path forward in an unprecedented way. It is not often the case that society’s source code is up for grabs. There is so much that is poised to change, that we really do stand a chance of fractioning off and destroying ourselves if we don’t all start paying attention.
Let’s really hammer home exactly what’s at stake in this war of ideas we find ourselves in. It’s very easy to do. Ready?
Everything is at stake.
Once again — Everything you hold dear is under threat of corruption. Your job, your home, your husband or wife, your children, your beliefs, and most important — your identity itself. If they claim that, the rest is won. Who are “they” you ask?
They are The Woke.
At this point you may be tempted to call me dramatic. “Oh, it’s just a bunch of kids with funny haircuts,” you might say.
The problem is, all those kids graduated. They found jobs in our institutions, in our human resources departments, in our governments. It is not just a bunch of kids anymore. This movement of Wokeness has its talons dug in, and it’s doing real damage.
Take a step back and ask yourself how we in the West came to enjoy everything it is we enjoy today. Roofs over our heads. A police force to deter crime. Roads on which to drive. Heat to keep us warm. Food to satiate the masses. It is very simple. Everything we have, we generated through a shared, objective understanding of reality.
Of course, this shared understanding doesn’t mean we must agree on every subject, or strategy, or value, say. But it does mean we all agree on what certifies any given claim as “true”. If not, how can we agree on what’s real?
For example, if you don’t accept that 2+2=4, we can’t very well build an apartment complex, can we. We can’t bake a cake, build an functioning airplane, set a timer, or run an experiment. We can’t make assessments, predictions, coherent arguments or draw sensible conclusions if we can’t agree on what’s real.
We simply must agree on objective reality, or everything is forfeit. And it is this objectivity that is under full attack.
It’s under attack by people motivated first by compassion, then by anger, and now by power. It began in the 90’s, in a distant corner of the humanities, and no one took it seriously. By 2016 it had grown strong enough to plunge the Evergreen College campus into full on race riots, and still, no one took it seriously. Now it’s begun taking our institutions, our workplaces, our political systems, our schools, our streets, our Facebook feeds, and our social circles.
Where do you think this ends? Let me submit to you all; if we let this force of destruction into our courts, we are lost. The only thing left after honest conversation between reasonable people, is violence between savages. We are on a collision course with civil war. And all we have to do to get there is nothing.
The logic is as follows:
a) Our shared understanding of what constitutes objective reality is under attack. b) You live in reality. c) Everything you know is under attack.
Now, you may be asking yourself, exactly who am I to tell you this?
I am a nobody. I am a regular, everyday person whose mind has been increasingly consumed with where we are headed as a society. This is my first article. I am not a columnist. I am not a practiced intellectual. I am not an authority on anything. I am not special. I am just like you.
I want us to survive and flourish together. And that really has to be enough, because it’s going to take normal people like us to protect our way of life. Decent, thinking people with a commitment to but one single value: Reason.
Reason is why we are still here. It’s how we grew crops. It’s how we got to the moon. It’s how we’ll get to Mars if we don’t destroy ourselves in the meantime. And if you don’t like Mars, pick literally anything else. There is nothing without it.
It’s the single greatest invention of mankind. It’s not what, but how to think. It is on this foundation that everything we enjoy is built. Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics. The tools of Reason are how we have survived the worst of times, and created the best of them. And they are under attack by those who have either forgotten how to wield them, or were never taught.
Here is what has happened already:
A growing number of increasingly controversial issues no normal person wants to touch, such as race and sexuality, have been occupied and distorted by an anti-scientific concept called Critical Theory.
Its creators and supporters, many of whom occupy positions with impressionable minds under their influence, have politicized and weaponized these issues, taken advantage of their radioactivity and therefore lack of suitable defenders, and are attempting to modify the function of truth within them, which will by extension redefine what constitutes objective truth itself.
Having achieved a sufficient normalization of the tenants of Critical Theory through academia and pop culture, they are now marching steadily into every institution that exists, under a banner of compassion, to serve their ultimate objective wherever they are granted entrance: control.
If they can maintain territorial dominion over these kinds of social issues, and successfully edit the rules that govern them, they will crusade onward, referencing them with one hand, while slashing at all else with the other. It is on this ground of controversial topics that this war must be fought and won. That is, while logical arguments still hold value.
We must expel this cult of anti-science from our institutions, close the gates afterward, and throw away the key forever.
Mind you, this is much easier said than done, for a few reasons. One, The Woke enjoy perhaps the greatest advertising campaign ever created. Two, their funding is virtually limitless. And three, to stand against them could cost the average person their job.
It’s a pickle, no doubt.
The Woke’s method of preying upon one of humanity’s greatest strengths—our compassion—and transforming it into a weapon of oppression to fire at anyone who doesn’t fully adhere to their tenets, has been very effective so far. How can you not support an organization entitled “Black Lives Matter”? Surely you know that refusal to do so makes you a confirmed racist. Does any normal person want to deal with these kinds of charges? Of course not. That’s the whole point. And as soon as you cave they own you.
This is the new religious fundamentalism. And make no mistake, to be silent against it, is to tacitly subscribe to it. If there is one thing to take with you, it is that. We must all stand against this in our own way, and on our own level.
The truth is we are going to have to take some hits here. Every war has casualties. But marching as one, we could overpower the enemy and emerge victorious in defense of Reason. This is a matter of numbers and at the moment we have more. That may not be the case for long.
One thing is for certain. This battle between the Woke and the Reasonable is about to be everywhere in a way that it wasn’t before. There is nowhere it will not reach. The actions of normal, decent people like yourself, are about to have more impact than ever before. You are on the battle front here, not the elites, not the prominent intellectuals — you.
Speaking of you, let’s run an experiment that should serve to demonstrate just how lethal these issues have become. It’s no wonder no one wants to say the wrong thing. And it’s precisely this fear that will be our collective undoing.
For example, how comfortable would you be making one of the following statements in public? Say, at a work function, or at a friend’s BBQ, or maybe on your personal Facebook page. Let’s assume the appropriate topic is raised or posted about, and you have an opportunity to give your opinion.
Choose from the following:
- “It is impossible to change your sex.”
- “Hormone replacement therapy on children has irreversible effects.”
- “Black people happen to commit more crime than everyone else.”
- “White people are not inherently racist.”
- “All lives matter.”
No doubt a small, brave portion of you would attempt this. But for most people I’m guessing there’s nothing I could give you short of enough money to retire on to make one of those statements to your co-workers, your boss, your social circle. And every single statement on that list is objectively true. This actually isn’t a matter of opinion. Are there more to these facts? Absolutely, but that’s not the point.
Now, imagine the reverse. How easy would it be to utterly destroy the person making such a statement? You would have no trouble doing this, because most of the room would immediately dog-pile them into submission like sleeper cell agents activated by the code-word. Racist. Sexist. White Supremacist. Bigot. These charges still carry weight despite their overuse.
Speaking truths about certain topics has become incompatible with employment. It’s becoming incompatible with human progress. We are unable to use certain words, make certain arguments, notice certain facts without committing social suicide. This is a problem. It’s the kind of problem that, left to fester long enough, can take down a democracy. A country. A people.
I will close with my idea of a solution. It is rather simple. It does not involve becoming an expert on anything. It does not require schooling, memorization, or debate training. It is something every normal person can do. Let’s call it what it is — A Commitment to Reason.
Do not compromise on the truth. Do not cede the land of objectivity. Do not give in to emotional arguments, subjective anecdotes, or appeals to authority. If a claim is false, call it false. If you’re not sure, say so. Ask for clear reasoning in plain speech. If someone begins to sound like the side of a prescription bottle, request simplification. If simplification is not offered, or your request is insulted, the source is suspect.
Anyone that knows anything should be capable of communicating their knowledge to you in simple terms. If they can’t, they just aren’t a trustworthy source. Ask yourself, if their concept is so obvious, why is it so difficult to explain? Why doesn’t it make any sense? They either don’t know what they’re talking about, or you’re being scammed.
If I present a conclusion and seek your agreement, and you request further explanation, or challenge its statements, I should not respond with attacks on your character. My reasoning should not include appeals to popularity or attempts at telepathy. When good faith requests or challenges are met with such actions, the claims in question become functionally invalid.
As far as logic goes, this is really all we need to turn the tide here. Most of us have the critical thinking skills necessary to defeat poor arguments. The rest is simply courage.
Think of it as civic duty. We have got to get over this inability to have uncomfortable conversations about reality for fear of hurting someone’s feelings. If you get offended by me referencing the biological fact that men cannot change into women, I’m sorry, that is simply not my problem. I have not erased someone’s experience by making statements contrary to their deeply held beliefs, this is nonsense — not to mention, an invalid supernatural claim.
Do you want to spend the rest of your life with your head down when it comes to certain topics? Hobbled like a prisoner? Muzzled like some animal? Do you really want to live in a world where a handful of subjects are so hazardous, you could lose the food on your family table for discussing them improperly?
Perhaps you could tolerate it for a while. We seem to be doing so happily. How about your kids? Is this the life you imagined for them? What happens when teaching them simple mathematics invites charges of white supremacy? How hard is it to imagine a world where state policy requires ordinary citizens to attend “Implicit Bias” workshops to qualify for government services?
If you think Critical Race Theory can’t make that happen, you’ve got another thing coming. The foundation for this has already been laid.
Ultimately, the outcome of this war is a matter of subscription. If we all wake up now, we stand a fighting chance. If we ignore this much longer, there is no going back.
They are hoping you have better things to do. That you won’t notice. That you’ll keep your mouth shut.
It is time to show them how wrong they are. Show them we will not stand for this. We will not go backwards into the darkness. We have come too far.
I have decided to join the fight myself the only way I know how. I don’t know what else to do at this point. The thought of raising children in this world is scarier than it should be. We are hurtling toward totalitarianism.
We must all unite in defense of Reason.
This article was originally published at Medium.