What a horrible world we are creating for ourselves. 

A young novelist named Natasha Tynes took a photo of a DC Metro employee eating breakfast on the subway, in violation of the rules. She confronted the worker — a black woman — about it, and was told by the woman to mind her own business. So Tynes did the prisspot Millennial thing, and tweeted out a photo of the employee eating, in an effort to get the employee disciplined.

That was a really jerky move. Yes, the DC Metro is famously crappy, but come on. You don’t do that to people. What is especially low-down about Tynes’s move is that she complained in a way that would humiliate this worker publicly. If she felt obliged to report the worker for this behavior, did she have to do it in such a way as to win points with her fellow DC commuters, at the expense of this subway worker’s dignity?

Still, the Metro mothership responded to thank Tynes, who is Arab-American, for helping to hold them “accountable” (their word). In other words, the authorities credited Tynes for helping them improve the professionalism of their workers.

But you know what happened next, don’t you? Yep — the social media mob racialized it:

Twitter soon became inundated with vicious critiques of the author’s post, with many calling her out for going after a black woman who was minding her own business and not bothering anyone.

‘Funny that your pinned tweet is about being a ‘minority’ writer and using that as a basis to sell your book yet you saw another minority person eating and you wanted to ruin their livelihood,’ actress Kelechi Okafor asserted. ‘You’re a trash individual.’

The sentiment was shared by journalist Ernest Owens, who added: ‘”People of color” like Natasha Tynes is the reason why I make it a point to directly name Black people within the spectrum, because there is anti-Blackness within people of color in totality. POC solidarity is often upheld by Black people, but not maintained by others within.’

‘Wow @NatashaTynes, you’re a f**king snitch,’ stated a professor Chanda Prescod-Weinstein.

Then Tynes’s publisher cancelled the upcoming release of her novel:

So much for intersectionality. Tynes’s being a Jordanian-American woman did not protect her book contract.

Nobody looks good here. I totally get being frustrated with the lousy DC Metro system. It wasn’t always this way. When I lived there from 1992-95, it was pretty nice. The last few times I’ve been there, it feels like a subway in a decrepit People’s Republic. Still, it wasn’t like this metro worker was being abusive. She was just being slovenly. Why bring trouble to her life?

But come on, cancelling the woman’s book contract over this?! Is this what we do now? What Tynes did may have been mean, but the metro worker, who is a public employee, was in the wrong here, and anyway, so what? Can people now no longer complain about slacker public employees if the employee is black, without fear of losing their livelihood?

In related news, science journalist Jesse Singal of New York magazine points out to more woke insanity. You should follow him on Twitter. Look at this thread:

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These are not not not cases of “oh, those crazy lefties, gotta quarantine ’em and keep the crazy from getting to the rest of us.” I strongly urge you to take this kind of thing seriously. The other night, for my upcoming book on the emergence of soft totalitarianism here, I interviewed a DC professional who was born, raised, and educated in the Soviet bloc before emigrating to the US. He works in fairly elite academic and technology circles in and around Washington. He is astonished and deeply worried about how quickly the professional culture is changing around these issues.

He told me (this is from the transcript of our interview):

I have a few friends who work in DC. A friend who works in the government said that if he actually told anybody that he voted for Trump, it would destroy him. Think about that: a government official for the United States who said that if he admitted that he vote for the actual president of the US, it would destroy him – that’s incredible. I have lots of stories like this.

Immigrants from the former USSR and the Soviet bloc are particular sensitive to this kind of thing. He told me that his parents brought home the lesson about watching your mouth outside the safety of home. More:

I was 10, and I made a joke about the Soviet foreign minister, Alexei Kosygin. My mom slapped me and said, “Don’t ever talk like that!” They talked like that too at home, but it was important for my parents to make sure I knew how dangerous it was to speak that way outside our home.

About Washington life:

This is happening all around me now. People are developing these double personalities, where they are afraid of saying anything. It’s not benign. If I said certain things publicly, it’s not just that people would think badly of me. I don’t care about that. It’s that they would try to destroy my career.

This man is not a fringe nut. I researched him before we spoke. He is accomplished in his field. He is going to put me in touch with other ex-Soviet bloc friends he knows. The man said that they are all pulling their hair out because they can’t get their American friends to take seriously their warnings about the cliff off of which progressives are driving our society.

Jesse Singal said that we are creating a Planet Of Cops — a phrase he got from an old Freddie de Boer essay. De Boer, who is not a liberal, but a leftist, wrote:

The woke world is a world of snitches, informants, rats. Go to any space concerned with social justice and what will you find? Endless surveillance. Everybody is to be judged. Everyone is under suspicion. Everything you say is to be scoured, picked over, analyzed for any possible offense. Everyone’s a detective in the Division of Problematics, and they walk the beat 24/7. You search and search for someone Bad doing Bad Things, finding ways to indict writers and artists and ordinary people for something, anything. That movie that got popular? Give me a few hours and 800 words. I’ll get you your indictments. That’s what liberalism is, now — the search for baddies doing bad things, like little offense archaeologists, digging deeper and deeper to find out who’s Good and who’s Bad. I wonder why people run away from establishment progressivism in droves.

To be clear, de Boer also trashed conservatives as being part of Cop Planet. Conservatives are by no means immune to this kind of thing — the religious-right stalwart American Family Association’s stupid online jihad against the conservative Evangelical writer David French for criticizing Franklin Graham’s double standards is a recent example. Still, I believe that equivalence is false. The most meaningful attacks are coming from the militant progressives, because they are the faction with real and growing influence within elite circles.

 

 

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