My takeaway is that US cable news was just as badly exposed by this exchange as was Ben Shapiro.
US corporate media is the only place where this sort of puerile malicious twerp can thrive as an intellectual.
Right wing “intellectuals” need the safe space of a news media willing to coddle any opinion, no matter how barbaric or ill-informed. Outside of those nurturing waters, they shrivel and run, exposed for what they are.
They add nothing to the discourse. They only add to ratings.
Ben Shapiro was casually destroyed in an instant, not by debate, but simply from a single disinterested yet contemptuous chuckle from a man who saw his bullshit for what it was and demonstrated he would be neither indulging it or engaging in it.
Ben dissolved like sugar in tea.
But by all means let’s have another dozen takes from Bret Stephens and David Brooks about how vital it is to a free society that vapid shells and hucksters like Ben Shapiro have a stage and a megaphone reserved for them, and how contempt for their vile message is The Real Facism.
Lots of really great points here.
The context is he got his ass handed to him in a sidecar and ran.
I’m told cable media is bad in other countries too, so the “only in America” thing is likely overstated.
But it’s still bracing to see how easy it is to destroy them simply by refusing to indulge nonsense. Same guy, different guest, same result.
And there’s a flip side to the equation, too.
The act of debating toxic dummies lends them undeserved credibility, which is why they seek debate.
Why? Because their horseshit ideas have now become something up for debate. Just getting on the stage is a win for them.
Free speech doesn’t require us to debate everyone or every idea.
Anyone can think or say as they please. Not everyone has earned a debate.
We should get smarter about the difference.
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