Late last week I came across a tweet that referenced Dave Chappelle’s statement, “if this is what it’s like to be canceled, I love it”, and the tweeter that referenced Chappelle’s statement claimed that Chappelle was using cancel culture for his own marketing strategy. Thus, I started to think about how much attention is given to cancel culture and if people are more drawn to something if it is considered “canceled.”
Personally, I don’t think cancel culture is productive towards addressing a problem. Furthermore, I don’t think we should base our judgments on single posts or short clips. Yet, most of the time I think people are just trying to hold people accountable for harmful words that can inspire harmful actions towards a vulnerable group. As times are always changing, canceling, or as some may call it, holding people accountable, is prominent. While some may think cancel culture is only subjected to those who may express more conservative views, it can happen to anyone from any viewpoint, and it has gone on for years. For example, when Nike partnered with Black Lives Matter activist, Colin Kaepernick, and it followed with many posts of videos that consisted of people burning their Nike shoes. Additionally, many can probably still remember when The Chicks, or formerly The Dixie Chicks, were blacklisted and harassed for years as a result of their member Natalie stating, “just so you know, we’re ashamed the President of the United States is from Texas,” in a concert years ago. There are many more instances far before these I mentioned. Cancel culture can happen to anyone, and it brings lots of attention.
Besides whom and what cancel culture targets, saying something is canceled now seems to be used to help the work of those being canceled. When I search cancel on YouTube, I can find many videos which discuss cancel culture that have hundreds of thousands and millions of views. When I log onto Netflix, I can find Dave Chappelle’s new special in reference to the article and tweet I came across, at number three in must watch. It has only been recently that mass media has liked to talk about cancel culture more extensively. More people have opinions on cancel culture, and those opinions are often used to make a statement about a certain group of people.
We will always have different opinions whether it’s between individuals or different groups. I think we are letting cancel culture get the best of us and our decisions if it’s leading people to want to consume something more.