I haven’t talked about Gamergate, or even really followed it much, for some time; I’ve been too busy with the zine and my new writing gig at Castalia House (both of which have been going fabulously!), but this article rubbed me the wrong way, particularly the attempt to link the term “cuckold” to racism.
This is rather disappointing coming from Cathy Young, especially as one of the few in the media who gave gamergate fair coverage. As someone who was close to gamergate, she should know that “cuckold” is not the racial term she claims it is. As a slur, it has come back to prevalence in the last few years, not in reference to race or the supposed black “cuckolding porn” she describes, but by and large to male feminists who are perceived as not being able please feminist women.
Cathy admits in the twitter thread that she knows the actual origin of the term (having to do with Cuckoo birds; it was never a racial term to begin with and has been around in English since the days when most Englishmen had never seen black people and probably thought they were mythical).
It’s pointed out to her that the term “cuckservative has nothing to do with race” to which she replies “Except those who use it say otherwise”, linking to not to someone using it and claiming that they’re using it as a racial slur but to a National Review article full of people complaining that they’re being called cuckservatives and the people calling them that must be racist, claiming that in addition to being called cuckservatives, they’ve also been called “kikeservatives”. The National Review article’s first linked source? Washington Post. Because those guys are in touch and know what they’re talking about, amirite?
It’s sad to see someone who supposedly took up the cause of ethics in journalism spreading and repeating silly falsehoods. It’s even sadder to see very few people calling them on it.
First, let me preface this next bit by saying that it is not an endorsement of any candidate or policy, but conclusions drawn based on my own observations.
The Trump phenomenon is not difficult to explain. Many who have, in the past, supported the Republican party as an opposition to the Democrat party and progressive platform have come to realize that there is no such thing as a RINO and those who’d been labeled RINOs actually represent the strategy and consensus of the party as an organization. In a two party system, Trump represents the only opportunity for those who are opposed to the Democrat platform and who are tired of the GOP’s perpetual betrayal of its base. It also represents a backlash against conservative eggheadery; for all of the think-tanks and institutes and scholars supposedly promoting conservative thought and ideology, where does any of it show up in Washington? It’s a vote against policy wonks and think-tanks as much as it is against other candidates.
In an effort of the established pseudo-conservative intelligentsia to stop Trump and thereby maintain their control and relevance, the fear mongering about the straw-alt-right has been ratcheted up. This is backfiring, however, because when taking Europe into account, people are able to see “there but for the grace of god and another few years of social democratic policies go us” (and I’m not just talking migrants and refugees, but failing social programs and the economic turmoil of the Eurozone as well); the people haven’t changed much in their core ideologies and beliefs, but in their desperation. Voting “conservative” in the last several election cycles has failed them and many refuse to take the gamble again when 3 cycles in a row Republican majorities in Congress have failed to bring about the policy changes the electorate had voted for. People have moved from conservatism to nationalism because they feel like they have no other choice. The GOP is far more responsible for this change by being an ineffective opposition party than the institutional left. The GOP must paint their failure as being the responsibility of a fringe group of far-right lunatics because otherwise they will be forced to admit that the American people have abandoned them utterly; yet by making concerted efforts to destroy their own front running candidate, they are proving how little the American people need or want the Republican Party to have anything to do with anything at a national level, because they are willing and active participants in the modern American Kleptocracy. The desire for any alternative at this point is the biggest shaping factor of the 2016 race.
The Republican party IS an institutional cuckold; in the case, the egg is the statist agenda. Once a pro-statist social agenda in place, they tend to it like it was their own.
For those on the left, whether middle or far left, this should be an object lesson in the importance of not going all out to destroy opposition to your agenda; if opposition to your agenda is ineffective or non-existent, those who object to what you’re doing will go to desperate extremes to shift the balance. We haven’t seen anything yet, here in the US. Again, Europe and the backlash that the social democratic left may be about to face there on a continental level has potential to be a bloody demonstration of what happens when any one agenda goes too far without reasonable opposition that is not simply dismissed and denigrated as “alt-right”.
Even many of those who support Trump probably wish that it never had to come to this. But after a longstanding betrayal predicated on a falsehood of shared conservative ideologies, America’s relationship with the GOP may finally be coming to grisly end.