It is probably safe to say that most people with a Twitter account on Inauguration Day saw video of white nationalist Richard Spencer getting cold-cocked in the face by a protester. The same individuals who lit a vehicle on fire and smashed the windows of businesses in Washington, D.C., also decided that street beatdowns are now acceptable for political opponents.

Marvel writer Nick Spencer entered the social-media stage and rightly defended the rule of law. His own followers predictably lashed out for the heresy, but at no time did it dawn on him that his regular rhetoric helped create the mob monster he now fears.

Check out my latest YouTube video, where I break down exactly why the Captain America scribe should take a step back and acknowledge his own culpability in terms of creating our worrisome political landscape.

Advertisements

About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

5 comments

  1. I think you’re quite right, our rhetoric creates the mob mentality that often leads to violence. In a Christian context we can speak life over ourselves and others…..or we can speak fear, panic and hysteria. Regardless, our words have consequences in the world. By far the mainstream media are the worst offenders.

    The problem I have is that it’s become so political that everyone believes they’re engaged in a war. The far right thinks the far left is fair game, since they engaged in it first. So while no one should beat up on Richard Spencer, the alt white is still a real thing in the world, fueling hyperbole and hysteria, using Spencer’s name as if he’s an ally.

    And yes, misogyny and assorted microaggressions are all over played and blown out of proportion and yet there really is a hostile Alt Wanker branch advocating outright hatred towards women. Combine that with some of Trump’s sexual comments during the election and you wind up with millions of women marching in protest today against…well something, they aren’t quite sure what.

    1. “The problem I have is that it’s become so political that everyone believes they’re engaged in a war.”

      I was talking to a guy the other day and telling him that we have it so good in America that many people are just looking for dragons to slay. The dragons aren’t really there, so they have invented them. We have amazing technology, food, shelter, entertainment of all kinds, etc., but people are still unfulfilled. They don’t know what to do to give their lives real meaning, so they ratcheted up the political rhetoric. They turn the guy next to them into the devil and then pat themselves on the back for fighting the devil…they invented!

  2. I think the thing that stuck out most to me about Nick Spencer’s tweet is that it wasn’t condemning the violence perpetrated. He was condemning the “cheering” and vocal encouragement by others of the violence. In that tweet he does not state that violence against a person you disagree with is wrong. he doesn’t even say that cheering it on is wrong, he says that doing so looks bad. It looks bad for the narrative and ideology they are trying to push.

    But that’s why it occurred, I don’t think the person who did it, Nick Spencer, and those who “cheer” these violent actions see Richard Spencer as a person. He is an object of fear and hatred, a dehumanized entity that any violence acted upon is justified. The rhetoric they spew about the persons and groups that disagree with them is so venomous and vile that those who listen see these persons and groups as an enemy to be destroyed, as a justified target.

    What people like Nick Spencer have done is place everyone who disagrees with the regressive ideology they seek to expand at the same level as a white nationalist. “Trump is the Devil”, “There are no good republicans.” “The Nazi Red Skull says the things you agree with”. They now have a nice category of “Alt-right” they can group anyone into, and a label of “deplorable” for individuals who disagree or fight their opinions. Voted for Trump? You are part of the alt-right. Disagree that Trump is the next coming of Hitler? you are a deplorable person. There is no leniency or shades of grey with those who say these things, it is a simplistic black and white struggle against good and evil for these people and you are either with them or against them

    So when you have effectively dehumanized groups of people and individuals through this rhetoric, violence becomes justified. It’s perfectly acceptable to punch Richard Spencer, it’s just fine to wish Paul Ryan be raped to death by a Rhino. So the adults that never grew up, who have been told to fear and hate all that disagrees with them lash out as a child would: in violence.

    They take their rage and fury and destroy businesses and vehicles, they mask themselves in the garb of criminals and commit criminal acts because they know of no other way to respond. They commit violence against others, throw tantrums in the streets because they did not get what they wanted, And the admonishment they receive is to not to make their support of this violence known. To anyone with a sense of reality these acts are wrong, but to them they are the heroes. And those they follow and listen to will not tell them otherwise.

    1. “I think the thing that stuck out most to me about Nick Spencer’s tweet is that it wasn’t condemning the violence perpetrated. He was condemning the “cheering” and vocal encouragement by others of the violence. In that tweet he does not state that violence against a person you disagree with is wrong. he doesn’t even say that cheering it on is wrong, he says that doing so looks bad. It looks bad for the narrative and ideology they are trying to push.”

      Very interesting observation, Carnage. As always I can count you to tease out a relevant and important angle. Well said.

      “So when you have effectively dehumanized groups of people and individuals through this rhetoric, violence becomes justified. It’s perfectly acceptable to punch Richard Spencer, it’s just fine to wish Paul Ryan be raped to death by a Rhino. So the adults that never grew up, who have been told to fear and hate all that disagrees with them lash out as a child would: in violence.”

      Exactly.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s