Chimamanda stated, in her viral essay, “it is obscene”
“I have spoken to young people who tell me they are terrified to tweet anything, that they read and reread their tweets because they fear they will be attacked by their own.”
This speaks to the cancel culture that is perpetuated in the zeitgeist of today. Cancel culture is a modern form of calling out, where a person is thrust out and ostracized from their social circles, or online community. Such an ostracized person is said to be “cancelled.”
In a way, this conjures up images of a leprous person being cast out from a community as a precaution. “Do not infect us with your negative tweets.”
It is an understandable reaction to hold people in power accountable when they marginalize minorities.
However, cancel culture is starting to become a good way to use the power on numbers to shut up anyone who does not agree with you and drag the corpse of their social life across the waste field of the internet, saying “See, this is what becomes of those who don’t agree with what I think is right.”
I think we should take more precautions before cancelling someone for the slightest faux pas. Cancelling can soon turn to bully where people are not only ostracized but threatened and insulted.
People are scared to express their opinions because they worry about what backlash would stem from it. And if a large portion is silent because they think their thoughts are cancel-worthy. Then the goal of bringing people to rethink their actions has not been reached. We have only developed a society where people parrot whatever is the “woke culture” of the day.
People have been cancelled for tweets tweeted as far back as 2011. We need to decide whether we believe people are incapable of change. And if so, is cancelling a way to get them to change, or a warning for the watching audience, “Your pasts can be dug out at any minute, careful now.”
Even children are not left out in getting cancelled. And it is understandable that children should be held accountable to some level. But children aren’t tiny adults and should be given some leeway, rather than being socially ostracized. This generation growing in the age of the internet has allowed the stupid mistakes of childhood to be on full display for the world to see.
While cancel culture has actually marked good social changes in many cases, we should not forget that it can really be a two-edged sword.
In my not-yet-cancelled opinion, I think we should really reconsider how quickly our fingers type out ” #cancelled.”