Misinformation can spread rapidly on social media under the guise of satire and parody, creating challenges for platforms and fact-checkers – Copyright AFP/File GREG BAKER
The word “woke” came into use at least 5 years ago. It’s now pretty old hat and only used by right-wing media. Conservatives gibber with iilliterate rage when the word is used, particularly on social media. News Corp has made the word a standard addition to headlines .
Being “woke” has been blamed for everything from America losing a basketball game by Trump to the SVB bank failure by “conservative pundits”.
All this proves is that when you plug in the world, you plug in the morons as well. There are several cases of conservatives not even knowing what the word means. Like everything, “woke” is all about the “left” the right invented to scare people who should never have been allowed to leave grade school.
The meaning of the word “woke” is right here. It’s not exactly hard to find. It includes anti-racism, so it must be “left”, mustn’t it? It’s interesting usage, though. There was a queue of people lining up to blame “wokeness” for the SVB bank fail.
Consider this elegant logic: Obviously, a $200 billion bank mess in Silicon Valley must be based on leftism. It can’t possibly be anything to do with your lousy debt management, can it?
Let’s just say the opposite of “woke” is “asleep”.
The other side of “woke”
To balance this, there are parts of “woke” which are quite irritating from a progressive perspective. Rewriting old books with new modern contexts is rewriting history to at least some extent. The last thing the world needs is more inaccurate, hyper-euphemized history.
You can make a case for less frightening stuff for kids, but they’re going to grow up sometime. Even conservatives occasionally encounter puberty. …And reality.
It also misrepresents the culture of the times, which was often highly racist. To mute the racism is to pretend it didn’t exist. …Which would fog up the perspective on the historical reasons for anti-racism, wouldn’t it?
Sexism is another subject. If you rewrote Virginia Woolf’s “A Room of One’s Own” to leave out the sexism, you wouldn’t have a book; you’d have a brochure at best. That would be a true literary atrocity into the bargain.
Comedy is often accused of being too sensitive. No. It’s just being less abusive. Reality is quite abusive enough for most people. However – If you get to the point where a comedian is saying, “It’s great to see all you mammals and associates here tonight”, it’s gone too far.
In practical terms, “woke” just means being aware of issues and trying to do something about them. The polarized opposite means being ignorant of issues and doing nothing about them.
The opinions expressed in this Op-Ed are those of the author. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the Digital Journal or its members.