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How wokeness undermines the constitution

James Lindsay

October 15, 2020

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“We live on stolen land.” So we’re told - repeatedly - and so we’re increasingly forced to repeat to ourselves in public-facing “land acknowledgments.” Solidifying this spurious message is one of the primary objectives of the Critical Theory of Postcolonialism. It is echoed in Critical Race Theory, which reminds us ad nauseum of an even more inaccurate claim that the American economy was built on stolen labor through the institution of slavery. To the casual observer, these narratives might spur reflective thought or even a critical consciousness, or they might only induce an eye roll, but they have a far more sinister application that can be seen quite clearly when one understands the subversive method of political activism employed by Critical Theory (“Woke”) activists.

 The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects individuals in our society from illegal search and seizure of property without probable cause and a duly issued warrant consistent with it. It does not apply to stolen property. Suddenly, then, in the instant the popular Woke narrative above is juxtaposed with this idea, the property rights ensured by the Fourth Amendment come crashing down around us even while their guarantor remains fully intact and in precisely the same black and parchment print it has always been. With a narrative about stolen property, the Woke can gut the Fourth Amendment and subject “warranted” search and seizure upon anyone they so choose, if duly empowered. Those who are said to benefit from systemic power dynamics will be the victims of this narrative-writing, and those who are said to be oppressed by them will be their protected beneficiaries so long as the Woke hold power.

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Put another way, as the Woke narratives about society and its “true” machinations gain sway, the fundamental protections of the Bill of Rights will increasingly be subverted. They will not be done away with but will be reinterpreted in total according to the usual double standards the Woke so successfully employ for themselves everywhere they gain the power to do so. This will happen without the need to change a single word. This sounds hyperbolic, but consider these words from Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic’s Critical Race Theory: An Introduction:

Unlike traditional civil rights discourse, which stresses incrementalism and step-by-step progress, critical race theory questions the very foundations of the liberal order, including equality theory, legal reasoning, Enlightenment rationalism, and neutral principles of constitutional law. (p. 3, third edition, emphasis added)

It isn’t just the Fourth Amendment that can be subverted and repurposed to a Critical double standard within the purview of the Woke ideology, then. Equality, legal reasoning, rationalism, and neutral principles of constitutional law are all on the chopping block. Thus, any policy or contract can be manipulated in similar fashion, either by changing the meaning of the terms used in writing it or by changing the context in which they are to be understood. It is the latter of these that we see able to be employed against Fourth Amendment protections in the United States. 

Consider the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which protects against self incrimination and ensures due process of law. To say nothing of the “stolen land” narrative, which will demand proving one’s innocence from a presumption of complicit guilt, the assumption under Critical Race Theory is that systemic racism is the ordinary—not aberrant—state of affairs in society (this can be read five pages later in the same book as above). That is, there is a presumption of guilt in racism and other systemic power dynamics, which could easily be construed as being in violation of the relevant titles of the Civil Rights Act of 1964—again, without changing the wording of anything. On its own, this subverts due process of law, undermining Fifth Amendment protections, but it gets worse when the context is allowed to shift with Woke narrative-making. “Silence is complicity.” “Silence is violence.” Pleading the Fifth is an admission of guilt for those who find themselves on the “privileged” side of systemic power, as the Woke define it. 

Given the context, this could turn the Thirteenth Amendment into a Woke weapon of ferocious power—as wouldn’t a fitting punishment for complicity in a system that enabled and profited from slavery be some involuntary servitude, once one is duly convicted by a Woke court? The Eighth Amendment would offer no protection against this as a “cruel and unusual punishment,” as that idea risks being interpreted under a Woke rubric where one’s privilege mitigates or even eliminates the authenticity of one’s suffering.

There’s no harbor in the Sixth Amendment either, which ensures the right to a “speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury.” Under Woke assumptions about power dynamics, there is no such thing as an impartial jury because impartiality, like objectivity, is a myth that those with systemic power have told themselves so that they might maintain that power. The Second Amendment’s controversial clause about a “well-regulated militia” will be interpreted strictly and literally with the definition of “well-regulated” meaning, roughly, “Woke.” The First Amendment’s speech protections could be maintained while protections from mob “accountability” could be gutted—power dynamics determining the actions of district attorneys to charge as they see fit—so that the state is technically not the repressive actor but instead the guarantor of a permanent invitation to an American Hundred Flowers Campaign.

This line of thinking could extend to almost anything, applying to any number of laws, policies, contracts, and even the text of the Constitution and its Amendments—even without changing a word of them (as they are seeking to do in California currently). The Nineteenth Amendment, guaranteeing no abridgment of suffrage based upon sex, is frequently attacked in Woke circles for being racist because the Suffragettes are charged under Critical Race Theory of failing solidarity to black women, who did not achieve similar levels of legal equality (independent of the voting issue) until 1964 with the passage of the Civil Rights Act. None of this makes sense to a fair-minded, impartial observer, but Woke ideology denies such an observer can exist in principle or would even be desirable if it were possible.

That is, even the Constitution offers us uncomfortably little protection against Woke totalitarianism as the Woke gain cultural hegemony and, as a result, control over ever more levers of power. Theirs is a war waged at the levels of interpretation, meaning, and context, and until we stand up firmly against their empowerment, we risk finding out in very disquieting ways just how crucial those can be.

James Lindsay

James is a bestselling author, mathematician, and internet thought leader.

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@RideTheNews

The Sizzle breaks down the day's hottest topics in politics, culture, and society. Follow RocaNews @RideTheNews to get all Roca updates as they happen.

James Lindsay

James is a bestselling author, mathematician, and internet thought leader.

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How wokeness undermines the constitution

James Lindsay

October 15, 2020

“We live on stolen land.” So we’re told - repeatedly - and so we’re increasingly forced to repeat to ourselves in public-facing “land acknowledgments.” Solidifying this spurious message is one of the primary objectives of the Critical Theory of Postcolonialism. It is echoed in Critical Race Theory, which reminds us ad nauseum of an even more inaccurate claim that the American economy was built on stolen labor through the institution of slavery. To the casual observer, these narratives might spur reflective thought or even a critical consciousness, or they might only induce an eye roll, but they have a far more sinister application that can be seen quite clearly when one understands the subversive method of political activism employed by Critical Theory (“Woke”) activists.

 The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects individuals in our society from illegal search and seizure of property without probable cause and a duly issued warrant consistent with it. It does not apply to stolen property. Suddenly, then, in the instant the popular Woke narrative above is juxtaposed with this idea, the property rights ensured by the Fourth Amendment come crashing down around us even while their guarantor remains fully intact and in precisely the same black and parchment print it has always been. With a narrative about stolen property, the Woke can gut the Fourth Amendment and subject “warranted” search and seizure upon anyone they so choose, if duly empowered. Those who are said to benefit from systemic power dynamics will be the victims of this narrative-writing, and those who are said to be oppressed by them will be their protected beneficiaries so long as the Woke hold power.

News should be fun

Get the Roca Rundown delivered to your inbox each morning:

Thank you! Let's ride the Roca Wave!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Put another way, as the Woke narratives about society and its “true” machinations gain sway, the fundamental protections of the Bill of Rights will increasingly be subverted. They will not be done away with but will be reinterpreted in total according to the usual double standards the Woke so successfully employ for themselves everywhere they gain the power to do so. This will happen without the need to change a single word. This sounds hyperbolic, but consider these words from Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic’s Critical Race Theory: An Introduction:

Unlike traditional civil rights discourse, which stresses incrementalism and step-by-step progress, critical race theory questions the very foundations of the liberal order, including equality theory, legal reasoning, Enlightenment rationalism, and neutral principles of constitutional law. (p. 3, third edition, emphasis added)

It isn’t just the Fourth Amendment that can be subverted and repurposed to a Critical double standard within the purview of the Woke ideology, then. Equality, legal reasoning, rationalism, and neutral principles of constitutional law are all on the chopping block. Thus, any policy or contract can be manipulated in similar fashion, either by changing the meaning of the terms used in writing it or by changing the context in which they are to be understood. It is the latter of these that we see able to be employed against Fourth Amendment protections in the United States. 

Consider the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which protects against self incrimination and ensures due process of law. To say nothing of the “stolen land” narrative, which will demand proving one’s innocence from a presumption of complicit guilt, the assumption under Critical Race Theory is that systemic racism is the ordinary—not aberrant—state of affairs in society (this can be read five pages later in the same book as above). That is, there is a presumption of guilt in racism and other systemic power dynamics, which could easily be construed as being in violation of the relevant titles of the Civil Rights Act of 1964—again, without changing the wording of anything. On its own, this subverts due process of law, undermining Fifth Amendment protections, but it gets worse when the context is allowed to shift with Woke narrative-making. “Silence is complicity.” “Silence is violence.” Pleading the Fifth is an admission of guilt for those who find themselves on the “privileged” side of systemic power, as the Woke define it. 

Given the context, this could turn the Thirteenth Amendment into a Woke weapon of ferocious power—as wouldn’t a fitting punishment for complicity in a system that enabled and profited from slavery be some involuntary servitude, once one is duly convicted by a Woke court? The Eighth Amendment would offer no protection against this as a “cruel and unusual punishment,” as that idea risks being interpreted under a Woke rubric where one’s privilege mitigates or even eliminates the authenticity of one’s suffering.

There’s no harbor in the Sixth Amendment either, which ensures the right to a “speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury.” Under Woke assumptions about power dynamics, there is no such thing as an impartial jury because impartiality, like objectivity, is a myth that those with systemic power have told themselves so that they might maintain that power. The Second Amendment’s controversial clause about a “well-regulated militia” will be interpreted strictly and literally with the definition of “well-regulated” meaning, roughly, “Woke.” The First Amendment’s speech protections could be maintained while protections from mob “accountability” could be gutted—power dynamics determining the actions of district attorneys to charge as they see fit—so that the state is technically not the repressive actor but instead the guarantor of a permanent invitation to an American Hundred Flowers Campaign.

This line of thinking could extend to almost anything, applying to any number of laws, policies, contracts, and even the text of the Constitution and its Amendments—even without changing a word of them (as they are seeking to do in California currently). The Nineteenth Amendment, guaranteeing no abridgment of suffrage based upon sex, is frequently attacked in Woke circles for being racist because the Suffragettes are charged under Critical Race Theory of failing solidarity to black women, who did not achieve similar levels of legal equality (independent of the voting issue) until 1964 with the passage of the Civil Rights Act. None of this makes sense to a fair-minded, impartial observer, but Woke ideology denies such an observer can exist in principle or would even be desirable if it were possible.

That is, even the Constitution offers us uncomfortably little protection against Woke totalitarianism as the Woke gain cultural hegemony and, as a result, control over ever more levers of power. Theirs is a war waged at the levels of interpretation, meaning, and context, and until we stand up firmly against their empowerment, we risk finding out in very disquieting ways just how crucial those can be.

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Roca wishes you a pleasant, productive, and happy day.

As always, send your thoughts, feedback, and interesting stories to Max@RocaNews.com!

Thank you for reading the Roca Rundown!

Sign up for the Roca Rundown here!

Copyright © *2020* *RocaNews*, All rights reserved.

Contact us:
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Roca wishes you a pleasant, productive, and happy day.

As always, send your thoughts, feedback, and interesting stories to Max@RocaNews.com!

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Roca wishes you a pleasant, productive, and happy day.

As always, send your thoughts, feedback, and interesting stories to Max@RocaNews.com!

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James Lindsay

James is a bestselling author, mathematician, and internet thought leader.

The Daily Sizzle

@RideTheNews

The Sizzle breaks down the day's hottest topics in politics, culture, and society. Follow RocaNews @RideTheNews to get all Roca updates as they happen.

James Lindsay

James is a bestselling author, mathematician, and internet thought leader.

Also read

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Roca Rundown

Roca's daily newsletter: fast, fun, and informative.

Today is a bad day to be a restaurant in Los Angeles

Today's Carney Cover

Starting on Wednesday, Los Angeles is forcing all restaurants to shut down to curb the spread of Covid. The ban includes outdoor dining. This move could prove the final nail in the coffins of struggling LA restaurants.  

Stop hating the news! Forward the Rundown to friends.

Click here to sign up for the Roca Rundown!

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Also, that wooly mammoth emoji will really come in handy! Impossible to have a normal conversation without it. And the fondue one – is that what the red one with the cross is? – is all you need to invite your Hinge date to the Melting Pot.

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Throughout Trump’s presidency, his opponents have decried him as a uniquely dangerous threat to democracy, a fascist, a Nazi – you name it. If these people actually believed the things they said, wouldn’t it be their moral duty to stop him from getting elected at all costs? Thad Russell makes the argument here.

Read it here

Roca wishes you a pleasant, productive, and happy day.

As always, send your thoughts, feedback, and interesting stories to Max@RocaNews.com!

Thank you for reading the Roca Rundown!

Sign up for the Roca Rundown here!

Copyright © *2020* *RocaNews*, All rights reserved.

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