Notes On The Tribunal: Cancel Culture

Anything you have ever done or said, in any context, is grounds for moral condemnation today, if that word or action is deemed inconsistent in any possible way with current progressive attitudes. And the condemnation is absolute, disqualifying you from employment, public service, public discussion — in effect from anything that the Tribunal or its millions of ideological allies (or self-protective cowards) wish to bar you from, on the basis of that past sin.

This perspective of accordion-like and retroactive judgment on your entire past, no matter how distant, is grounded in certain premises: that all morality and immorality exist independent of context, or even conscious choice; that all moral truths are abstract; that past sins, at least until acknowledged and atoned for through public shaming and apology, are irredeemable and comprehensively nullifying of the sinner’s human worth; and of course that today’s progressive vanguard, the neo-Marxist thugocracy, has supplanted all other gods as the unquestionable and final judge in all human things.

Cancel culture is so important to progressives — as it has been, under different names, in every progressive revolutionary society for over a century — because it is essential to all totalitarianism (whether “hard” or “soft”) to deny the legitimacy of the past outright, which above all means to inoculate the present against the possibility that any past way of thinking or acting might be regarded as a living, viable alternative. It is in this respect more than perhaps any other that progressivism reveals itself as fundamentally a religious dogma: There must be no question, no debate, no dissent, no reflection, no doubt. For each of those would indicate a failure of absolute faith, which in the final analysis is the one cardinal sin that progressives will not countenance. You must believe (and that includes changing your belief on a moment’s notice, as required) without hesitation or any need for rational justification. This entails accepting the progressive truth of the day not merely as “the new moral code,” but as eternal certainty, such that all past thought and action inconsistent with this certainty is damnable as impiety — even if the new truth was in fact only minted two weeks ago. Cancel culture, as we call it today, is thus merely a mechanism for enforcing purity of allegiance to the totalitarian power.

We have altered the truth today. Are you prepared to proclaim, right now, that you have never known any truth but this one, to acknowledge any violation of this unquestionable truth that you have ever committed — which, of course, we know about and will expose to all if you do not willingly confess it — and to offer yourself to the public as a guilty sinner worthy of social ostracism for your violations of the new reality of the collective?

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