Some Lessons about Cancel Culture from a Former Refusenik

Feb. 12 2021

Last week, a New York Times reporter resigned after it was found out that, in 2019, he employed a racial epithet not out of malice, but in the context of an abstract discussion of the term itself. His departure was accompanied by a public apology that put some in mind of the confessions elicited at Soviet show trials, and seemed to many the epitome of the censorious attitudes that have come to be known as “cancel culture.” The former refusenik and Soviet dissident Natan Sharansky, writing with the historian Gil Troy, reflects on his own experience with the USSR’s suppression of thought and speech, and notes the parallels to the present climate. Although today saying the wrong thing can’t get a person executed or sent to the gulag, Sharansky nevertheless believes that both situations require people to live in constant tension between the ideas they believe and those they express:

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Read more at Tablet

More about: Natan Sharansky, Political correctness, Refuseniks, Soviet Union

 

The UK’s Ban on Hamas Is a Belated Step in the Right Direction

Nov. 29 2021

Twenty years after Britain outlawed Hamas’s military wing, the home secretary, Priti Patel, has decided to proscribe the entire organization. Stephen Daisley applauds this decision, but observes that London does not yet seem to recognize the dangers of what Hamas represents:

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Read more at Spectator

More about: Hamas, Palestinian Authority, Palestinian terror, United Kingdom