Conservative ‘woke’ critic stumped when asked to define the word – New York Daily News



Conservative pundit Bethany Mandel correctly predicted she would go viral during in an interview where she criticized “woke” culture, but struggled to define the term when pressed to explain.


Mandel’s “brain fart” occurred on The Hill’s web program “Rising” when host Briahna Joy Gray stopped her mid-sentence to define the term “woke” after she used it in a sentence.

“What does that mean to you?” Gray asked. “Would you mind defining ‘woke’? Because it’s come up a couple times and I want to make sure we’re on the same page.”

Immediately flustered, Mandel fumbled “Woke is, sort of the idea that… um… I… this is gonna be one of those moments that goes viral.”

She further stammered, “Woke is something that’s hard to define,” then pushed her new book, which she said tackles the topic at length.

Struggling to regain her composure, Mandel attempted to explain that “woke,” to her, means a push to “totally redo society to create hierarchies of oppression.” She then claimed, “It’s hard to explain in a 15-second soundbite.”

“You can take your time,” Gray calmly replied.

“Rising” co-host Robby Soave then butted in and bailed out the “Stolen Youth” author.

Mandel later gathered her thoughts and came up with a definition for “woke” on Twitter.

“So, everybody’s seen my viral brain fart from ‘Rising’ this morning,” she tweeted. “I can see why it went viral, of course.”

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The author sportingly posted a clip of her embarrassing appearance and offered her written definition of “wokeness.”

“(Woke is) A radical belief system suggesting that our institutions are built around discrimination, and claiming that all disparity is a result of that discrimination,” Mandle tweeted. “It seeks a radical redefinition of society in which equality of group result is the endpoint, enforced by an angry mob.”

Many conservatives believe there exists a “woke mob” that “cancels” people who say things some find bigoted or otherwise insensitive.

Mandel’s fans showed support on Twitter, encouraging the writer not to be too hard on herself.

Fellow author and sports reporter Jemele Hill praised Gray for her performance Wednesday.

“This is why I tell journalism students that open-ended questions are better than questions that sound tough,” she tweeted. “When conservatives first hijacked ‘woke,’ every journalist should have asked them to define it. Cause these meltdowns would have happened a lot.”


Prominent Republicans, including Florida governor and potential presidential candidate Ron DeSantis, have made opposition to “woke-ism” the centerpiece of their political agenda.

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