Federalist writer banned from Twitter for speaking out against Iran
David Marcus, Senior Contributor to The Federalist and New York Post columnist has been banned from Twitter for advocating for a massive bombing of Iran, should they retaliate against the American killing of Qasem Soleimani, leader of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.
Classified as an enemy combatant by the State Department, Qasem Soleimani was actively engaging in terrorist activity against the U.S. and its interests. Plenty of progressive accounts posted in opposition to the U.S. strike, and actress Rose McGowan went so far as to beg the nation for mercy.
HuffPo, among other outlets, wrote about what a great guy Qasem Soleimani was.
Colin Kaepernick had his own take, claiming that the action against Iran was racist, and had nothing to do with legit concerns.
It was in light of these worries from Hollywood celebrities and progressive media, who fear an Iranian response, that Marcus suggested that an Iranian strike against New York would be ill-advised.
The Bulwark writer Molly Jong-Fast took issue with this.
The Post Millennial reached out to Marcus, a colleague of this author’s at The Federalist, to get a sense of his take on this Twitter ban. Having never been banned by the site before, he was a bit perturbed.
“The big secret is that if you’re on the right, you’re going to get banned, if you’re on the left, you’re going to get celebrated,” Marcus said. “I criticised Iran. I said we should take Iran down. They throw gay people off of roofs, and that’s what I got taken down from Twitter for? Go f*ck yourself, Jack.”
In July, Soleimani’s forces shot down a U.S. drone, and Trump declined to retaliate, since no one was killed. December saw these forces kill an American contractor in Iraq, and support a violent attack against the American embassy in Baghdad.
Marcus’ Twitter ban is temporary, but odds are that even when the ban is lifted, he will still be making a clarion call for liberty and swift action against enemies of the U.S.
Roxane Gay thinks Jeannine Cummins should go cry into her publishing contract. After Cummins’ publisher Flatiron Books cancelled her American Dirt book tour due to death threats, Gay said that was basically no big deal because lots of authors receive death threats. Gay dismissed the concerns of Flatiron and Cummins, saying that it’s “important to acknowledge the death threats people receive for daring to have opinions, for daring to be black or brown or queer or disabled or women or trans or any marginalized identity.”
Gay made the remarks at Antioch University in Culver City, CA, when she spoke on a panel with author Myriam Gurba as part of #DignidadLiteraria (#LiteraryDignity), a movement that emerged after the publication of American Dirt. The purpose of #DignidadLiteraria is to hold the publishing world accountable for not publishing enough stories by and about the Spanish speaking people of the Americas. This panel was part of a national week of action organized by the hashtag’s founders Myriam Gurba, David Bowles, and Roberto Lovato.
Cummins’ book was the subject of much initial fanfare. It was on The New York Times’ highly anticipated book list. It was a pick for Oprah’s Book Club. Movie rights were sold before the book hit digital shelves and Cummins received a seven-figure advance. All this indicates that the book was going to be a literary circle darling. Instead, it has created a crisis in American publishing.
While there were some positive initial reviews, most of the notices for American Dirt were incredibly damning. Once word got out why the book was no good, critics could not stop dishing on the white author who had the audacity to write a story about a Mexican mother and son running for their lives to escape drug cartels.
The complaints were that Cummins shouldn’t have written the story, that the story wasn’t hers to write. The authors who trashed her book know that the story sprang from Cummins’ imagination and that she spent years researching the subject. And primarily, the harsh critics of American Dirt were other authors, like Gurba and Bowles, who take issue not only with the work itself, but the fact that it was published at all. They’re using it as a bludgeon with which to beat the publishing industry into submission to identity politics.
It’s possible, however, that some of the reviews were written by people who hadn’t read the book. For example, this Jezebel review from Shannon Melero notes that “There is no sense throughout the book that Cummins is familiar at all with the landscape of Mexico, outside the names of towns. At times it reads as if she was purposely vague on the description of a neighbourhood so that the reader could imagine they were anywhere else. But the lack of specificity is precisely why such a book appeals so massively to a mainstream white gaze: they can put themselves in the story and imagine they are practicing a type of empathy, when in fact they’re just perpetuating erasure.”
Journalist Jesse Signal points out many passages that show the specificity of the location Cummins writes about.
This is not the first time a book has been trashed by people who probably didn’t read it. A year ago, Amélie Wen Zhao’s unpublished novel Blood Heir was brought up on charges of being racist. It was mostly a play to get people to buy the books of the complaining critics, instead of the one that received the big advance and heavy push from publishers.
In Gurba’s review at Tropics of Meta, she writes that she was predisposed not to like the book based on a publisher’s letter, and she hates it thoroughly. “Unfortunately, Jeanine Cummins narco-novel, American Dirt, is a literary licuado that tastes like its title,” Gurba writes eviscerating both Cummins and the work. “Cummins plops overly-ripe Mexican stereotypes, among them the Latin lover, the suffering mother, and the stoic manchild, into her wannabe realist prose. Toxic heteroromanticism gives the sludge an arc and because the white gaze taints her prose, Cummins positions the United States of America as a magnetic sanctuary, a beacon toward which the story’s chronology chugs.”
For this review and for speaking out, Gurba says that she received threatening messages as well. To Gay, the threats Gurba received are more worrisome than the threats Cummins received.
“People need to realize what real censorship looks like,” Gay said. “They need to understand how unsafe it can be to challenge authority and the status quo. These are not things that should be taken lightly, nor should this level of harassment be dismissed as mere trolling. You never know when one of those so-called trolls is going to take his rage from the internet into the physical world.”
Ideally, well-known authors would decry all threats made against authors for their work. Gay was asked about the intimidation that caused Flatiron to cancel Cummins tour. “This woman is going to be set for life,” Gay said to the panel. “This book is going to earn royalties in perpetuity, and so it just reinforces what publishing already knows, which is as long as white people are translating the experiences of people of colour, it will sell very well.” Perhaps she thinks that the threats don’t matter if the author is successful.
To publicize the threats made against those authors who wrote against American Dirt, an online “death quilt” was organized so everyone could see. While Gay is saying that this is what “real censorship looks like,” neither bad reviews nor cruel missives from internet trolls are what censorship actually looks like. Censorship looks like a political and cultural ideology that demands adherence to rules about who is entitled to write what due to the fact of the genetic background. Locking people into prisons of ancestral experience is what censorship looks like, whether it comes from government or organized advocacy to correct publishers for transgressing these rules.
South Park is trending on Twitter these days. People don’t like it. Well, many do, but they just quietly enjoy the show from the comfort of their own home. The ones who don’t like it, need you to know about it because it’s not too late for you to change and be like them. I don’t know what it is these days but activists hate comedians.
Wait, I think I might know. It’s probably because while many activists are atheists, they are vehemently religious about their particular cause and if you don’t share that same passion, you’re a heretic. You, as a comedian may joke about a broad range of issues, just not their issues.
This seems to be a recent trend on social media, funny how politics today is just like fashion. I’m curious to see what’s next, what are going to be the new hot political spring issues. I never want to be behind on the times.
In an interview with CBC, feminist author Lindy West said of the show, “South Park is obsessed with irreverence. … But I think that irreverence needs to be deployed strategically, tactically.”
In other words, only deployed when I, Lindy West, agree with the premise. She went on to say: “And I deploy irreverence to tear down, or to sort of puncture ideas that I think do not deserve reverence, whereas South Park has always fetishized irreverence in this way where it’s like irreverence for irreverence’s sake—anything that anyone holds sacred deserves to be lampooned and satirized. I think it’s really tragic that we’ve sort of let some of these institutions be so completely defined by a certain white male sensibility that they become inaccessible to everyone else. I can’t watch South Park and not feel kind of gross.”
I guess my question to Lindy West is why keep watching it then? Surely being an author she’d have better use of her time than to watch a show that makes her feel kind of gross. I’m not much for gore myself, it makes me feel kind of gross, haven’t watched a horror film in years. They keep making them, I keep not watching them, somehow it all just sorts itself out.
South Park is undoubtedly dangerous, if creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone get you in their sites, look out. They lampoon with ruthless ferocity and that’s what people watch it for. The Caitlin Jenner character is a good example of this. When everybody, and I do mean everybody, was scared to talk about an incredibly famous person who’d been in the spotlight for decades coming out as trans, South Park drew a scathing depiction of Caitlin Jenner and routinely had her carelessly running over pedestrians with her car. This, of course, is a reference to a car crash that killed someone with Jenner behind the wheel. Any mention of it, however, is misconstrued as being transphobic, so it’s rarely discussed in the media outside of South Park references.
South Park has always run head-on towards controversy in the name of laughter and the only way they ever manage to come out unscathed is because they happen to be just so damn funny. You have to be pretty funny to go after Scientology, Mormonism, Islam and China. They are pretty hard on Christianity too, but who cares? The others are all well-organized groups who could seriously retaliate, many did in fact threaten to do so violently. It doesn’t just take enormous talent to do what these guys do; it also takes brass.
It’s not as if they’ll set the jokes aside momentarily if it’s convenient for them personally either. Trey Parker and Matt Stone received a rare invitation to the Oscars after being nominated for best original song “Blame Canada.” A once in a lifetime career opportunity right? Anybody in show business should be so lucky. So what did Parker and Stone do? They shaved their legs, put on wigs and dresses, took a couple hits of LSD and walked the red carpet. They have never wanted acceptance from any revered institutions, let alone a social media mob.
Let’s face it: these guys are badasses. They are a couple of high school buddies from Littleton, Colorado who bonded over their mutual love of anti-authoritarian comedy and don’t look like they’re stopping anytime soon.
A month after 57 Canadians were killed by the Iranian regime, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been pictured greeting Iran’s foreign minister Javad Zarif with a smile—and bowing.
Trudeau met with Zarif in Munich, Germany, at a security conference. Trudeau is currently on a world tour, attempting to drum up support for a seat on the UN Security Council.
The footage of Trudeau bowing was captured on Iranian state TV, and was shared to Twitter by Brian Lilley.
Social media users were outraged to see what they see as “subservience.” Simon Jefferies tweeted: “A bow. A happy grin. A 15-second handshake. I can’t even begin to imagine how the families of the 57 Canadians on that plane would feel seeing this.”
The pictures of Trudeau and the Iranian delegation were taken by an Iranian state photographer as Canadian journalists were prevented by the Prime Minister’s Office from witnessing the event. Iran insisted that no Canadian journalists could take photographs.
In January of this year, the Iranian regime shot down a Ukrainian passenger plane, killing all 176 civilians who were on board. 57 Canadians died from the plane being shot down.
Over the past few weeks, Trudeau has been meeting with leaders of foreign countries in order to win support for his Security Council bid. Earlier this week, Trudeau met with Senegalese President Macky Sall, where he discussed an “oil and gas partnership,” despite killing oil and gas projects in Canada.
Trudeau also promised the African Union $10 million in funding that would go to the empowerment of African women.
American actor and conservative commentator James Woods has returned to Twitter, the censorious social media platform that suspended him last year.
The occasion for his return? Woods claims that he was inspired by a recent soundbite by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Woods tweeted: “I’ve tried so hard this past year to live without the wealth of knowledge available on Twitter, but this kind of blazing insight can be found nowhere else, so… I’m back!”
Woods shared a clip of AOC ruminating on the metaphor of “pulling yourself up by your bootstraps” that went viral earlier today.
AOC said, “This idea of a bootstrap—you know this idea, this metaphor of a bootstrap started off as a joke because it’s a physical impossibility to lift yourself up by a bootstrap, by your shoelaces. It’s physically impossible!”
Many prominent conservative Twitter voices rejoiced at the news that Woods was back.
At the time of his suspension last year, Woods said, “Until free speech is allowed on Twitter, I will not be permitted to participate in our democracy with my voice. As long as Jack Dorsey remains the coward he seems to be, my Twitter days are in the past.”
it’s clear from the instant reaction on Twitter that many are glad that Woods changed his mind and came back to speak his mind.