Leon Lemmer: Milo Yiannopoulos as ‘n problematiese regse verskynsel

Milo Yiannopoulos (gebore in 1984) se boek, Dangerous (Boca Raton, Florida: Dangerous Books, 2017, 288p; Amazon Kindle $11,39) sou aanvanklik, volgens ‘n aankondiging op Amazon se webwerf, op 14 Maart vrygestel word. Dit is eers op 4 Julie gedoen. Die uitgewer was nie meer Simon & Schuster nie, maar Dangerous Books. In plaas daarvan dat ‘n bekende uitgewer die boek gepubliseer het, was Milo verplig om dit self te doen (Kindle 3541). Simon & Schuster het sy kontrak met Milo gekanselleer (69).

“The tremendous outcry among social, online, and print media to this book being announced” het veroorsaak dat “Simon & Schuster was paralyzed by it” (182). “Even I was surprised by the onslaught. The Chicago Review of Books announced to great fanfare that they would not review another book published by Simon & Schuster, in response to Dangerous. The establishment’s real fear is that this book will deeply affect readers, especially young people. In particular, they fear that young people at the epicenter of political correctness in America’s universities will begin to question the ideologies foisted upon them, thanks to [this] book” (188). Elders is daar beweer dat Simon & Schuster die kontrak gekanselleer het omdat Milo pedofilie goedgepraat het.

JH du Toit het reeds oor die Milo-manie op Praag (11 Februarie) geskryf. Milo lyk en is in vele opsigte anders as die stereotiepe beeld wat aan regses gegee word. Dit maak dit moeilik om hom sonder meer te ondersteun. Lees bv die omvattende Wikipedia-artikel. Maar Milo het veral op Amerikaanse universiteitskampusse ‘n oorwegend heilsame invloed, waar – soos deesdae in Suid-Afrika – regse standpunte feitlik nooit gehoor word nie. In hierdie konteks word Hannah Arendt (1906-1975) soos volg deur Milo aangehaal: “The aim of totalitarian education has never been to instill convictions but to destroy the capacity to form any” (2955).

‘n Mens moet maar geestelik sterk wees wanneer jy Milo se boek lees. Hy gebruik in oorvloed wat hy noem “flippant language” (100). “I use exaggeration and bombast, often outrageously” (313). Milo “delights in causing outrage” (1999). In daardie sin is dit eerder ‘n Amerikaanse as ‘n Britse boek. Ann Coulter is een van die regses wat hy om haar vriendskap bedank (3561), maar die aanslag in haar boeke, hoewel makliker verteerbaar as dié van Milo, staan my ook nie aan nie. Ek beveel eerder die meer wetenskaplik-akademiese boeke van David Horowitz, wat ook deur Milo bedank word (3561), aan.

Van die groot voordele wat die lees van die boek inhou, is dat ‘n mens kennis maak met die huidige geestesklimaat in Amerika; veral hoedanig die alledaagse politieke ingesteldheid is. Die National Review, eens die fontein van behoudende politiek (Praag 4 Desember), word beskryf as “home of anti-Trump establishment conservatism” (120). Milo is ‘n sterk ondersteuner van Donald Trump, bv “We’ll put a lid on Muslim immigration” (140). Sommige van die Moslem-inkommers word “rapefugees” genoem (2570). “There is a real rape culture in the West. And there is real homophobia in the West. And there is real out-group intolerance in the West. It all comes from Islam” (2588). “Here is a religion that sanctions forcing women into submission, a religion that sanctions the execution of gays, a religion that sanctions the killing of non-believers. And they’re spreading” (2582).

Hy noem Trump “Daddy” (bv 1920, 1992). “I coined the nickname “Daddy” for him, which annoyed just about everyone” (2081). Wat deesdae regstelling, korrektheid en byderwetsheid genoem word, is eintlik almal polities oordraagbare siekte; tentakels van dieselfde sindroom. Sowel Trump as Milo is gekant teen verslawing aan hierdie soort politieke ingesteldheid (169). Sodanige teenkanting word deur die liberaliste as “hate speech” geëtiketteer (201). “‘Hate speech’ means anything they disagree with” (2971). Die liberaliste verkies die eufemistiese frase “undocumented American” pleks van “illegal alien” (201). In Suid-Afrika het dit ook mode geword om onwettige inkommers nie as misdadigers te beskou nie.

Milo tref ‘n duidelike onderskeid tussen liberaliste (hulle word veral in die Demokratiese Party aangetref) en libertyne (wat meesal in die Republikeinse Party is). Hierdie twee groepe het verskillende opvattings van vryheid. “Libertarians and conservatism are the new counter-culture” (182; ook 3179). Later skryf Milo: “I’m no libertarian” (1595). Elders noem hy homself ‘n “cultural libertarian.” Hy haal ‘n universiteitsrektor, Robert Bachi, soos volg aan: “Freedom is fundamental to our [Rutgers] University, our society, and our nation” (3248).

Die saak waaroor Milo die sterkste voel, is vryheid van uitdrukking; dat ons so vry moontlik moet wees om te praat, skryf en publiseer wat ons wil, gebaseer op vryheid van denke; uiteraard verkieslik kritiese denke (214): “Your right to speak freely, honestly, and rudely, no matter who doesn’t like it” (140). Milo noem homself “a free-speech fundamentalist” (169, 2479). “The only cause I represent is that of free speech, where I consider myself part of a long list of boundary-pushers who shocked the mainstream” (1180).

Ek dink valse stellings en laster moet vermy word en daar moet nie onnodig aanstoot gegee word nie. Maar in polities byderwetse geledere is daar oordrewe sensitiwiteit vir die moontlike gee van aanstoot aan enigeen wat nie wit is nie. Daarvolgens moet alle uitdrukkings “inoffensive” wees (221), wat meebring dat diegene wat die samelewing skade aandoen, nie die waarheid vertel en aangemoedig word om te verbeter nie. “The Left … seeks to patronize [American] minorities by preventing them from coming into contact with anything that might offend them” (1653). Kritiekvrye ruimtes, “safe spaces,” word vir diesulkes geskep.

Die linkses redeneer “‘free speech should not trump safety’ … These students truly believe that open discourse is a form of violence” (2995). “I was freely romping into their cherished safe spaces” (3014). “Well-educated people are generally unshockable … progressive students … have no intellectual hinterland and no curiosity about the world around them or about anything that has preceded their own lives. Centuries of history, culture and wisdom are dismissed as the products of ‘dead white men'” (3051). Dieselfde misleide geestesingesteldheid het die plaaslike studente-opstand van 2015/16 gekenmerk.

“Progressive intolerance had gone too far on college campuses” (3279). ‘n Kultuuroorlog (of “cultural lunacy” – 554) woed waarin Westerse/Europese waardes ondergeploeg gaan word as daar nie openlik en daadwerklik ‘n veldtog ter behoud van daardie beskaafde waardes gevoer word nie. “It’s culture that matters. ‘Politics is downstream from culture,’ as Andrew Breitbart [1969-2012] used to say. Politics is just a symptom” (401).

Selfs Barack Obama het hom uitgespreek ten gunste van die blootstelling van studente aan idees wat vir hulle vreemd en moeilik verteerbaar is. Dit klink asof hy ten gunste van akademiese vryheid is, maar dalk is dit omdat hy weet hoe oorweldigend linksgesind die klimaat op Amerikaanse universiteitskampusse is: “I don’t agree that you, when you become students at colleges, have to be coddled and protected from different points of view. Anybody who comes to speak to you and you disagree with, you should have an argument with ’em. But you shouldn’t silence them by saying, ‘You can’t come because I’am too sensitive to hear what you have to say.’ That’s not the way we learn either” (3273).

Nicholas Kristof, ‘n linkse joernalis, het in 2016 met ‘n uitsonderlike erkenning vorendag gekom: “Universities are the bedrock of progressive values, but the one kind of diversity that universities disregard is ideological [political] and religious. We’re fine with people who don’t look like us, as long as they think like us” (3279). Wanneer ‘n universiteit soos Stellenbosch deesdae diversiteit propageer, gaan dit om die obsessie om ‘n verskeidenheid rasse en kulture op die kampus te hê; nie om die studente ook aan nie-linkse, bv regse, idees bloot te stel nie.

Jay Ellison se benadering is meer aanvaarbaar: “Diversity of opinion and background is a fundamental strength of our community [the University of Chicago]. The members of our comunity must have the freedom to espouse and explore a wide range of ideas” (3292). Met ander woorde, ‘n universiteit “is not a ‘day care'” (3372).

Milo verwys na “Facebook’s policy of discrimination against conservatives … ‘We choose what’s trending'” (741), dus wát polities byderwets is. “The #BlackLivesMatter [BLM] movement originated on Facebook” (754). Milo bestempel BLM as “one of the most destructive movements in the country’s history” (1633). Hy noem Twitter “a sharia-compliant conservative-free zone” (811). “If conservatives thought mainstream media bias was bad, just wait until they see the effects of search engine bias” (992). Google “display[ed] negative search terms for [Hillary] Clinton’s primary opponent, Bernie Sanders … and for Donald Trump” (972). Google het ‘n intieme verhouding met die Obama-administrasie gehandhaaf (978).

In Suid-Afrika laat die gedrukte hoofstroomkoerante en elektroniese media skynbaar ruimte vir meningswisseling. My ondervinding is dat dit meesal slegs toegelaat word in soverre dit polities byderwets is. Soos Milo dit stel: “It’s okay to laugh at white people but no one else” (271). “White men can’t dance, jump or sexually satisfy their partners. These are all socially acceptable jokes” (459).”Leftists are the cultural elites, censoring dissident conservatives” (296). Hy haal George Orwell (1903-1950), vir wie ek groot waardering het, soos volg aan: “In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act” (277).

‘n Ander ding waaroor Milo sterk voel, is om nie slagofferstatus te aanvaar nie. Hy verwys na die “victim-centric doctrine of Cultural Marxism. The Left is committed to defending a worldview which arranges women, [American] minorities, and gays in a league table of oppression, with straight white men as the eternal oppressors at the top of the list” (428). Daarvolgens word “a fat black disabled [homosexual] Muslim woman” (434) een van die uitnemendste voorbeelde van slagofferskap. “[American] minorities, both real and imagined, engage in an endless competition for supreme victimhood status” (490). “In an America where victimhood is a currency, it’s highly profitable to be oppressed” (1495); ook in Suid-Afrika, as jy die status van ‘n voorheen benadeelde, dus tans bevoordeelde, het.

“I never saw myself as a victim” (76). “Even though it seems like victim status is the best way to earn a living right now … I assure you, it’s not … No matter how bad your experiences, victimhood and self-pity are … We must challenge the forces of oppression in society, and we can’t do so from a therapy session” (82). “We’re going to do so without self-pity, without a cult of victimhood, and certainly without safe spaces” (140). Milo noem “safe spaces” ‘n vorm van ‘n “return of segregation on campuses” (1167). Hy rebelleer teen die establishment. Terwyl hy in Wes-Europa gereis het, “I developed my love for all things anti-establishment” (94).

Naas die Nuwe Regses, waaroor dikwels afkeurend berig word, is daar die Nuwe Linkses. Let op hoe knap Milo omgaan met ‘n hele reeks hedendaagse Amerikaanse politieke verskynsels: “The New Left, as they came to be called, were responsible for the early stages of the Left’s pivot away from the traditional class politics and towards the divisive, politically-correct world of gender, racial, and sexual politics we know today. They were the ones responsible for making issues like abortion, the reversal of gender roles, ‘racial justice,’ pacifism, and multiculturalism into major platforms of the Left. If they could keep their ‘rainbow coalition’ acting and voting as a bloc, and focus all their hatred on the weary white male working class, then political dominance would soon be assured. Thus began the reign of identity politics” (365).

“Identity politics is universally attractive because it enables failures and weaknesses to be spun as the products of oppression and historical injustice. Personal responsibility is removed from the equation” (484). “Another byproduct of the 1960s leftism is the unabashed hatred of white males, who are (correctly) identified as the architects of western culture” (395). Die linkses is gepreokkupeer met ras- en geslagsake. “I joked that after transgender people, the next frontier of left-wing identity politics would be transracial. I didn’t expect to be proven right so soon (1495).

Milo is teen hedendaagse of derdegolf-feminisme gekant; nie teen tradisionele feminisme nie. “The fight for women’s rights started in the late 19th century, and focused almost completely on women’s suffrage … This is known as the first wave of feminism. The second wave, starting in the middle of the twentieth century, was broader, but also grounded in laudable goals: ending sexual harassment in the workplace, ending discrimination, repealing archaic laws enabling marital rape, and, above all, establishing full equality of opportunity for women” (1039). “Third wave feminism reared its fishy head in the 1990s … Look at what they spend their time on now. Manspreading: a term used to describe the practice of spreading your legs apart on public transport” (1045). “Mansplaining: the grievous sin of explaining something to a woman whilst being male. Manthreading: doing the same, on social media … Eggplant emojis* … [are] ‘the next frontier in online harassment.’ Eggplants look too similar to purple penisses … Instagram banned the eggplant … Air conditioning is also sexist. Men can deal with the cold better” (1050). [* Emojis: Small digital images or icons used to express ideas, emotions, etc, in electronic communication.]

Hedendaagse (veral Amerikaanse) feminisme gee uitdrukking aan “a vindictive, spiteful, mean-spirited festival of man-hating” (1058). “The lynchpin of the feminist argument that women are made, not born, is the claim that girls are socialized into their female roles during their early childhood” (1303). Volgens Milo toon navorsing egter “gender roles are largely governed by nature, not nurture, as feminists would have you believe” (1296). Milo som sy standpunt oor hedendaagse feminisme soos volg op: “Feminism in the West serves little purpose other than hating men, making absurd demands, lying about inequality and obsessing over trivial issues. It has poisoned relations between the sexes, nearly destroyed due process, and constantly saddles businesses with pointless gender diversity requirements based on bogus economics” (1429). “Everywhere feminism exists it is a threat to happiness and freedom” (1455). Ter bevestiging van die waarheid hiervan, lees gerus Amanda Gouws se rubrieke in Die Burger of Christi van der Westhuizen se periodieke uitbarstings. Ek vermoed dat mans iets het wat hulle nie het nie en dat hulle jaloers daaroor is; iets waaroor Sigmund Freud reeds in 1908 geskryf het.

Aansluitend by sy besware teen hedendaagse feminisme is Milo se teenkanting teen aborsie. “Abortion is obviously bad for the future women it murders (sex selective abortion is becoming common in the UK and other countries with growing Muslim populations), and also has disastrous effects on the lives of the women that kill their children. It doesn’t surprise me that feminism promotes abortion, because feminism seems to always go against the actual interests of women” (1251). Dít kan deels verklaar word met verwysing na die prominente rol wat lesbiërs in die feministiese beweging speel. “Abortion is particularly horrifying given the widespread availability of contraception” (1251).

Om oor lewe en dood te beslis, is ‘n gewigtige saak. Dit is dalk relatief maklik om ten gunste van aborsie te wees by groepe wat geneig is om meer kinders te hê as waarvoor hulle kan sorg. Maar die tragiese gevolge van ongebreidelde aborsies is by my tuisgebring toe ek gelees het oor die huidige situasie in Duitsland. Die invloei van miljoene moeilik integreerbare inkommers word deur sommige goedgepraat omdat die ekonomie glo jong werkers nodig het. Terselfdetyd word erken dat hierdie inkommers die plekke inneem van Duitsers wat weens aborsie nie die kans op lewe gegun is nie. Hierdie situasie geld eintlik die hele Wes-Europa, insluitende Brittanje.

[“Europe’s future depends first and foremost on whether it bears and raises its children or kills them in the womb and then throws them into the garbage bin” (Jürgen Graf, White world awake! Stopping the planned extermination of our volk, Marlboro, Maryland: Barnes Review, 2016, 540p; Amazon Kindle $4.55, 4342). Dít is ‘n “shameful crime against humanity” (4329). “A people which within 38 years kills off over 7 million of its children for ‘social reasons’ but, at the same time, entices millions of people of other religions, cultures and race to their country, is guilty of a sin, whose payment is their death” (595).”Brussels economists claim Britain and other EU states will ‘need’ 56 million immigrant workers between them by 2050 to make up for the ‘demographic decline’ due to falling birth rates and rising death rates across Europe” (5726). “Europe runs the risk of turning black from illegal immigration, it could turn into Africa” (4763). “Those who are fleeing the African countries are needed most [in Africa] to help overcome their underdevelopment” (545).]

Daar is so baie dinge wat deesdae skeefgetrek aangebied word en dan aanvaar pleks van gekritiseer word. Uitsluitlik blankes word oor slawerny verwyt. “There are no movies about Ottoman or Middle Eastern slave-owners. I suppose we’ll have to wait for Muslim guilt to become a thing” (459). “A conservative in Hollywood is like a gazelle in a pack of lions” (2202). Uitsluitlik blankes word as rassiste uitgekryt. “There are some people who argue that racism against white people doesn’t exist” (1673). In ‘n artikel in The Huffington Post word geredeneer rassisme by nie-wittes is onmoontlik “because racism is ‘prejudice plus power’ and whites ‘control the system and economic structure in society'” (1673). Maar in Suid-Afrika is die blankes deesdae polities magteloos. Die oorweldigende swart massa is (ondoeltreffend, chaoties) in beheer. Is swart rassisme in sulke omstandighede steeds onmoontlik?

In Suid-Afrika voel dit deesdae (soms) asof die Menseregtekommissie en die howe as die “culture police” (3396) en as Orwell se denkpolisie funksioneer, met blankes feitlik deurgaans die enigste slagoffers: “About how we should shut up if we knew what’s good for us, about how we need to make up for a history of racism, sexism, and every ‘phobia’ under the sun, about how entertaining this dangerous thought or making this dangerous joke [comparison, proverb, etc] would be the end of our careers” (3427).

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