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David Brooks: The Cruelty of Call-Out Culture

David Brooks: The Cruelty of Call-Out Culture

January 19, 2019 1:43 pmComments are Disabled

A couple days late reading David Brooks’ excellent new piece in which he examines the ‘cycle of abuse’ of the finger-pointing, witch-burning bullying of people across the internet who deviate from the ever-shifting ideological norm. It’s further affirmation of my growing and persistent fear that actually, no one is safe, and we should, as a society, be very very worried.

Do we really think cycles of cruelty do more to advance civilization than cycles of wisdom and empathy? I’d say civilization moves forward when we embrace rule of law, not when we abandon it. I’d say we no longer gather in coliseums to watch people get eaten by lions because clergy members, philosophers and artists have made us less tolerant of cruelty, not more tolerant.

At the end of the day, we don’t gain anything from tearing each other down, especially for such obviously minor offenses which often don’t even mean harm. Let’s save our online hate for the people who deserve it.

And stop trying to burn heretics. You’re not so innocent yourself.

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