Editorial - Issue #35
Of the Poets, Professors, and Free-Speech Advocates
What you find is that there’s never just one cockroach in the kitchen.
The SILENCE is deafening. The SILENCE is foretelling. The SILENCE is Orwellian. Poetry Foundation and its Poetry magazine are highlighted on this issue’s front cover. Send a critique, as I’ve done, to its editor, Don Share… and SILENCE. Ask the Foundation, as I’ve done, why it refuses to list The American Dissident with the other poetry magazines listed… and SILENCE. The SILENCE is incarnate in “post-truth,” word of the year for Oxford Dictionary. Dolores Granger brought that to my attention, while a Wall Street Journal editorial had brought it to hers, noting the term indicates “a time in which truth becomes unimportant or irrelevant.” And that of course explains… the SILENCE. Post-truthers hate truth. Ideology hates truth.
Interesting things, perhaps even unimaginable ones, can occur when one openly criticizes the feeding apparatus of a post-truther and tests the waters of democracy. Imagine, for example, that Quillette, a conservative magazine, banned me from its “free-speech platform”! (See cartoon on page 5.) Perhaps it should be the poet’s prime job to speak the rude truth that will shake and break the fragile backbones and egos of editors, poets, professors, cultural-council apparatchiks, and journalists. If one pushes an ideology, which inevitably conflicts with truth, the best response to such truth is always… SILENCE.
Still it is perhaps surprising that so few intellectuals, even purported free-speech proponents, will respond to uncomfortable criticism. National Coalition Against Censorship is a pitiful example, refusing to address criticism. Why? Does its SILENCE indicate the criticism to be on target… or the critic to be a mere plebe and thus unworthy of response… or perhaps both? Recall the Charlie Hebdo massacre over three years ago. Today, that liberal magazine is located in a secret “bunker.” One to two million dollars per year is spent on security, which the magazine, not the government, has to pay. Seven Hebdo journalists died, while others were wounded… by Muslim assassins. And what about the Pulse Nightclub massacre by a Muslim extremist in Florida and the Muslim would-be butchers at the Garland, TX Draw Muhammad contest? But for the ideologues at NCAC, Islam somehow is not a threat to free speech. One journalist, Fabrice Nicolino, wounded at the Hebdo massacre, recently said, “Chez moi, où je suis connu, des voisins d’extrême gauche ne veulent plus me dire bonjour, car ils ne sont surtout pas Charlie.” (Where I live, where I’m known, my extreme leftist neighbors will no longer say hello to me.) Why not? Well, because Hebdo criticized Muslims… just like it did everyone else.
Inside Higher Ed is yet another sad example (see last issue’s front cover). I’ve questioned its editors on a number of occasions. Their response? SILENCE! Poets & Writers magazine is equally pitiful. I dared criticize its front-page story, “Ten Poets Who Will Change the World.” Was it a farce? Well, if you know poets, you know damn well it wasn’t. So, I wrote an essay (see p27) and sketched cartoons for six of those world-changing bards and sent them to the editors, the 10 poets, and even some of the latter’s academic colleagues. SILENCE!
Most recently, I wrote a counter-essay regarding a piece published by a Bridgewater State University professor in Bridgewater Review and sent it to the editors, the author, and even the student journalists of the university newspaper, The Comment. SILENCE! Then I drew a cartoon on some of the characters, including the university president and shot it out to the targets. SILENCE! The literary letters section at the end of this issue includes other instances of SILENCE, as modus operandi of those who hate free debate…
n another note, George Carlin once said, “Government wants to control information and control language because that's the way you control thought, and basically that's the game they're in.” With that regard, poets, writers, editors and journalists, who quote someone who said SHIT-HOLE, should write SHIT-HOLE, not s-hole. The same goes for NIGGER and any of the other vocabulary on the forbidden list from BITCH to SPIC to CRACKER. And why isn’t NAZI on that list? Isn’t it highly insulting to call any white person, who disagrees with PC-Antifa, a Nazi? Writing the n-word or b-word does not automatically give someone the moral high-ground. Instead, it gives a person the low-ground of a common self-censoring conformist. Saul Alinsky perhaps was on target: “He who controls the language controls the masses.” Do you want to be part of the masses or a staunch individual? Clearly, an army of Alinsky acolytes have been toiling away at controlling the language in the universities. When one writes s-hole or n-word, then clearly one is being controlled and needs to contemplate those who seek to control and pressure. Faceless bureaucrats! Faceless academics! Faceless SJWs! Well, I for one will fight against control by them. And if that means they’ll call me a racist, islamophobe, homophobe, or sexist, so what!!! My ma taught me, sticks and stones… What the hell are the mothers teaching their kids today?