Two dimensions collided last week, the real world and woke Twitter.
Khiara Bridges, a law professor at UC Berkeley, found out how using woke terminology usually reserved for a private classroom or an online mob works in an open forum where you can’t simply shut students down or press the “block” button. When asked by Senator John Cornyn whether she believes a baby has value even a day before birth, she responded, “I believe a person with the capacity for pregnancy has value.” When Cornyn responded, “No, I’m talking about the baby,” she reiterated, “I’m talking about the person with a capacity for pregnancy,” and declared in front of Congress that she was “answering a more interesting question to me.” How convenient for her.
When Bridges was then pressed by Senator Josh Hawley to clarify whether she meant women, she retreated to one of the woke’s favorite lines of defense by declaring that Hawley’s line of questioning was “transphobic” and “it opens up trans people to violence.”
On Twitter, the progressive left promptly called it a win for Bridges. Yet then something unexpected happened. Several more moderate journalists sounded the warning that the hearing did not go the way their woke colleagues thought it did.
Megan McArdle at the Washington Post was the first to sound the alarm, writing, “Unlike a Rorschach test, however, this one has a right answer, and the progressives have it wrong. Moreover, the fact that they can’t see just how badly this exchange went for their side shows what a big mistake it was to let academia and media institutions turn into left-wing monocultures.” This went over on Twitter about as well as expected.
CNN host and analyst Fareed Zakaria then warned at the Washington Post that the Democratic Party was heading for ruin by obsessing over things like pronouns. Zakaria said that instead, “Democrats need to become the party of building things.” He’s right, but in the insular world of Twitter, it didn’t matter. The Post changed the headline of the piece, caving to an outraged hoard of wokesters, which in turn, kind of proved Zakaria’s point.
Democrats are facing a bloodbath in the November midterms, yet these warnings seem to be falling on deaf ears. That’s true even with polling staring them in the face. Per Axios, more Hispanics and minorities are drifting away from the Democratic Party, while more educated white and coastal elites are embracing the new campus hegemony. 2022 and 2024 could thus become elections at least in part about basic human biology.
When a Supreme Court nominee has trouble defining a woman in front of the entire country, that country may decide to simply move on. The mainstream media, which is a cultural and political ally of the left, has recognized this and is sounding the alarms. The left has responded the only way they know how, with rage and backlash. Perhaps it’s going to take a couple of devastating elections for them to finally start listening. At the very least, they may just need to open up a biology textbook.