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No, Salon, Hallmark movies aren’t ‘fascist,’ but your magazine proves that wokeness is a new form of ‘cultural imperialism’

Michael Rectenwald
Michael Rectenwald

is an author of nine books including his most recent work, ‘Google Archipelago.’ He was professor of liberal arts at NYU from 2008 to 2019. Follow him on Twitter @TheAntiPCProf

is an author of nine books including his most recent work, ‘Google Archipelago.’ He was professor of liberal arts at NYU from 2008 to 2019. Follow him on Twitter @TheAntiPCProf

No, Salon, Hallmark movies aren’t ‘fascist,’ but your magazine proves that wokeness is a new form of ‘cultural imperialism’
When Hallmark pulled ads featuring lesbian wedding couples, the network was denounced as ‘homophobic.’ But even after agreeing to woke activist demands, its movies were equated with ‘fascist propaganda’ by the media.

The latest in a line of targets that includes the Peloton exercise equipment company – whose stationary bicycle ad raised the ire of feminists for allegedly fat-shaming women – Hallmark has been savaged by the woke brigade. In December, One Million Moms – a division of religious conservative group the American Family Association – pressured Hallmark to remove four Zola.com ads that end with lesbian wedding couples engaging in the traditional deal-sealing kiss.

The family entertainment network complied – until, that is, the woke crowd caught on to Hallmark’s “wrongthink.” An LGBTQ+ boycott of Hallmark was called – as if the LGBTQ+ community had been avid Hallmark card or movie fans in the first place. But facing the bombardment, Hallmark soon succumbed to the LGBTQ+ activists led by GLAAD.

Hallmark issued a tweet reversing its decision not to air the same-sex wedding ads, and went even further: “Hallmark will be working with GLAAD to better represent the LGBTQ community across our portfolio of brands.”

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However, the woke media did not relent. In one of several examples of piling on, Salon politics writer Amanda Marcotte argued that the “family-friendly” channel’s sentimental movies “constitute the platonic ideal of fascist propaganda.” Whatever that means. Who knew that fascist propaganda followed a platonic ideal? Marcotte further suggested that Hallmark’s holiday programming is particularly fascistic: “It’s like watching ‘The Stepford Wives,’ but scarier, since the evil plot to replace normal people with robots is never actually revealed.”

Could it be that Hallmark’s “evil plot to replace human beings with robots is never revealed” because it doesn’t exist? Or that Hallmark’s “very narrow, sentimentalized version of Christmas” doesn’t equal fascist propaganda? Typical of woke rhetoric, it’s Marcotte’s expression that constitutes propaganda, as well as including a logical fallacy. Because some fascist propaganda is sentimental, Marcotte assumes that all sentimentality is fascist. Yeah. Only in the warped worldview of woke hysterics.

The 1944 Italian poster below represents real fascist propaganda. It features a child menaced by the hands of three “evil” forces – portrayed as threats during the interwar years – Judaism, communism, and freemasonry. The head of an innocent and terrified child is lodged within the boot of Italy and featured on a black background of doom. Notice how sentiment is used to elicit bigotry and fear.

RT

To suggest that Hallmark’s “patented holiday season schmaltz” remotely resembles such graphic propaganda represents the hallmark of political illiteracy and historical myopia.

Rather than demonstrating that “empty-headed kitsch fits neatly in the authoritarian worldview,” Salon’s Amanda Marcotte shows that wokeness itself tends toward cultural imperialism, or “the imposition by one usually politically or economically dominant community of various aspects of its own culture onto another, nondominant community.”

Hallmark joins the corpses that continue to mount in the killing fields of wokeness. In January 2019 in the UK, Harry Miller – whose situation and name recall the great American playwrightHenr Arthur Miller and the sex-scandalous American novelist Henry Miller – was investigated by the police for retweeting a trans-skeptical limerick on Twitter. Although not (yet) a criminal, Miller was informed that he was under investigation for thought crimes: “We need to check your thinking,” the Kafkaesque officer told the dock worker.

The casualties from 2019 include not only cultural but also scientific and technological quarry as well. In December, a group of 16 computer scientists – from labs at universities including Cambridge, Oxford, the University of Toronto, and others – wrote a letter to the journal Nature to denounce the use of the term “quantum supremacy” in an article on the “superiority” of quantum over “classical” computing. The use of the word “supremacy,” they wrote, “risks sustaining divisions in race, gender and class. We call for the community to use ‘quantum advantage’ instead.” It’s a wonder that the word “classical” wasn’t also denounced for being “Eurocentric.”

In August, CNN reported on a study entitled “Robots and Racism” released in 2018 by a team at the Human Interface Technology Lab in New Zealand. The article asserted that it was problematic that most robots were manufactured out of white plastic, since it smacked of imperialism and white supremacy.

The litany could go on and on. Soon cumulus clouds will be denounced for their puffy white faces and snow for its white supremacist implications.

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The seizure of Hallmark by woke activism amounts to nothing less than the “colonization” of yet another frontier by cultural imperialists. Not satisfied with their incursion into and control over the vast majority of culture, including social media, establishment media, establishment news, and 99.9 percent of Hollywood products, they demand that every expression of humanity conforms to their desiderata.

What will become of Hallmark now that it has agreed not only to run ads with enraptured gay, lesbian, and transgender couples but also that it will bow to the demands for the “inclusion” of everything that its current viewers and card buyers apparently oppose? According to the hegemonic ethos of wokeness, such niche markets catering to specific groups must now be abandoned.

Perhaps it’s due time that traditionalists turn woke rhetoric against wokeness itself and “reclaim their traditional culture” in the next wave of cultural decolonization.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

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