Mass Shootings

Melissa Chen: "Ideas Have Consequences. So Does Silence."

The Singapore-born journalist and free-speech activist says identity politics are destroying the media, higher ed, and Hollywood.

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"Ideas have consequences. But so does silence," insists Melissa Chen, the New York editor for The Spectator and managing director of Ideas Beyond Borders, a nonprofit that translates new and classic texts about science, history, and liberal political philosophy into Arabic and distributes them as free e-books throughout the Middle East.

Born and raised in Singapore, Chen came to the United States to study genomics at Boston University and quickly established herself as a foe of groupthink, political correctness, and cancel culture in America while critiquing authoritarian regimes in China, her birth country, and elsewhere. A frequent guest on shows and podcasts such as The Joe Rogan Experience, Bridget Phetasy's Walk-Ins Welcome, and The Rubin Report, Chen maintains one of the liveliest feeds on Twitter, mixing long threads with sardonic comments on the news of the day. "I'd like to welcome the Arabs to the Schrödinger's White People Club. Signed, Asians and Jews," she wrote after some commentators claimed the reason that suspected Boulder, Colorado shooter Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, a Syrian Arab, was not killed by police was because he was "white."

Chen talks with Nick Gillespie about how an obsessive focus on identity politics led the media to keep insisting without evidence that the murder of massage parlor workers in Atlanta was a hate crime against Asian Americans, why Hollywood is changing its products to please censors in the Chinese government, and how the best way to counter radicalization is with speech and information rather than repression.

NEXT: Immigration, Trade, and Narrative-Warping

Mass Shootings Identity politics Racism China Cancel Culture Political Correctness Singapore Coronavirus Asian Americans Atlanta The Reason Interview With Nick Gillespie Reason Podcast

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25 responses to “Melissa Chen: "Ideas Have Consequences. So Does Silence."

  1. “established herself as a foe of groupthink, political correctness, and cancel culture in America while critiquing authoritarian regimes in China, her birth country, and elsewhere.”

    So she’s a seditious, anti-authoritarian alt-right extremist.

    #Comply!

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  2. As a proud Jew, I would like to formally renounce my white privilege. Only an anti-Semite would attempt to compare Israel’s immigration policy and identify as a Jewish state with the vile, hateful white nationalism promoted by scumbags like Jordan Peterson, Joe Rogan, and Richard Spencer.

    1. Too late Rabbi. We’re all white now.

  3. This is about power, who wields it, who doesn’t, and pure revenge.

    It doesn’t end well.

    It is not about conservatives trying to make people feel good about them. Lefties don’t care and if one of theirs goes down in flames that’s the price to usher in global socialism and a full on totalitarian state.

    1. “usher in global socialism”

      LOL

      The Democrats are now the party of Wall Street, billionaires, and multinational corporations. And it’s not because those groups want “socialism.”

      #VoteDemocratToHelpBillionaires

      1. Imagine a boot, stomping on a human face, forever.

      2. Naw, the Democrats just want to be in power, and have no principles or ideology. The rich, fools that they be, think that getting in bed with the Dems now will enable them to share in that power later.

        Republicans don’t have principles or ideology either, but they aren’t as power hungry, and that’s odd Maybe it’s just the old conservative philosophy of don’t change anything, but that’s not much of an ideology and it sure isn’t a principle.

    2. And it’s White Lefties who want to wield that power. Go read the poem “White Man’s Burden”. It describes the modern Wokester Left to a T .

      If there’s one thing affluent coastal White Elites know how to do, it’s how to shove themselves in front of any parade to make it look like they’re magnanimous for leading the charge, even as they end up leading the parades down into blind alleys.

      The idea of live and let live is beyond them.

  4. some commentators claimed the reason that suspected Boulder, Colorado shooter Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, a Syrian Arab, was not killed by police was because he was “white.”

    Mark my words, such comments will eventually be considered “hate crimes”.

  5. Asians are copying from the antisemitism playbook. It’s a short term win but weakens the strategy in the long run (for both peoples).

    As for China, yes they need freedom. (And it’s the responsibility of American Chinese, who’ve lived here for over a century in many cases, to bestow the blessings of liberty they learned here upon their homeland. And before you call me ‘racist’ I say the same for all races and ethnicities.) But they have a tremendous advantage which is that they have no national debt – which is even more astonishing considering that one child supports up to 6 people: 2 parents and 4 grandparents. Whereas America is $30 trillion in debt caused partly by covid hysteria (which China did not succumb to despite the propaganda) but mostly by social security and medicare. These programs must be abolished. If one person can support a family in China, then we can certainly do the same. (Yes we probably have to default on the debt, but there’s no good alternative.)

    1. It’s all good if you want to live like a typical resident of China. I doubt you would enjoy it.

      1. It’s better than being stuck in decades of debt slavery to them.

    2. And it’s the responsibility of American Chinese, who’ve lived here for over a century in many cases, to bestow the blessings of liberty they learned here upon their homeland.

      wut

      Why is it the responsibility of people who have never lived in a country to partake in politics of that country? Are we going to tell the white people in America that it’s their duty to bring freedom and democracy to Britain? Fixing China is the responsibility of Chinese people (as in, people who are citizens of the PRC, and maaaaaybe Taiwan if you subscribe to the legitimate-government-in-exile theory), not people who have grown up their entire lives in America.

      1. > Are we going to tell the white people in America that it’s their duty to bring freedom and democracy to Britain?

        I mean, it’s kind of an amusing thought…

  6. I would argue that identity politics played a key role in producing the most welcome development in recent years: the Democratic Party’s embrace of the Koch / Reason open borders agenda.

    Let’s start in the 1980s, when identity politics didn’t dominate American discourse the way it does now. Although I wasn’t alive in that decade, I learned in college that back then the Democrats could essentially be described as a working-class party. They would therefore be biased against the economic agenda of people like Charles Koch, who prefers hiring foreign-born labor. So it wouldn’t be unusual for 1980s Democrats to support “border enforcement.”

    As identity politics came to totally define the Democratic Party, however, immigration became a racial issue. Immigrants are often Black or Brown, so any policy other than open borders must be rooted in racism and white supremacy. That mindset left Democrats with no choice but to embrace unlimited, unrestricted immigration — even if they still occasionally pretend to oppose the billionaire agenda. (A phenomenon I’ve labeled OpenBordersLiberal-tarian’s First Law.)

    #LibertariansForIdentityPolitics
    #ImmigrationAboveAll

    1. Either your parody persona is slipping or you are not the OBL we have all come to admire.

    2. The Democrats of the 1980s are not the Democrats of the 2020s. Not only a different species, but a completely new genus.

  7. Kinda funny, that Tariq guy says the cops “didn’t shoot his a**” because he was white but the pic he posts shows the blood running down his leg from where the cops shot him. Does anyone know if he was hit in the butt or just the leg?

    1. Through and through in the thigh was what I’d read. Pity.

      Maybe he’d run out of ammo and overtly disarmed by the time the second set of cops showed up? ‘Cause he shot the shit out of the first set.

      Gotta’ admit, if he was praising Allah throughout his rampage, and he was wearing a vest, I wouldn’t have stopped until I saw brains. Just the way it is if he’s potentially packing a bomb vest. Yet again, I thank God that our crazies, unlike foreign ones, or ours in the 70s, evidently can’t figure out energetic materials.

  8. Scilence has consequences? Oh my I hope major platforms for speaking don’t unilatarrly impose Scilence on a specified group of people, all while crying that it’s unfair to apply the same standard to said platform.

  9. > I’d like to welcome the Arabs to the Schrödinger’s White People Club.

    I grew up with some Arabs. There were Arabs in my church. I thought of them as White. I never knew they were Arabs until decades later after 9/11. I also knew an Eygyptian who I thought of as White. Slur the word “Levantine” enough and it will reach half way across Pakistan.

    Yeah, but then 9/11 happened. People weren’t bigoted towards Arabs, people were bigoted towards Muslims. Bigoted towards a stereotype of robes and burkas. Against a specific culture promulgated by the Saudi royal family and its strange offshoot of the world’s largest religion.

    Mostly the same for Jews, at least for me who never lived in an area with a lot of Jews. To me they were just White people. The one Jewish guy I knew, an old man, was the greatest old man ever. I never knew they weren’t “White” until I got to progressive college.

    Hell, half the Latinos I knew were White as well. The other half were Chicano. To us it was a difference in the chosen culture. Gosh, was my area just enlightened or something? Maybe it was. We had a LOT of immigrants, and they tended to assimilate. We had Chinese families dating back two hundred years. Japanese who had their farms stolen then worked to get even bigger farms after the war. We all dated each other. Only one Black family, and the daughter was head cheerleader. She’s still on my Facebook and she’s the Blackest Black lady to ever dance down an AME aisle.

    Doesn’t mean there weren’t bigots. There were. KKK kept trying to move into the area from down south (San Diego) and up north (Portland). We didn’t let them. A lot of stupid bigot Whites. As I said, immigrants. From Oklahoma and po South, bringing in the bigotry they thought was their birthright.

    But back to Arabs. Who cares if they’re White or not? They’re human beings. Only the Left gives a shit anymore what “color” someone is. Used to be Color Blindness was our goal. Now we’re all supposed to make skin color the single most important feature of a person.

    The White Man’s Burden of the Left. Fuck them. We’re all the same on the outside. Except for our tattoos. Those are different.

  10. That Tariq man argues the police “didn’t kill his because he was white, but the photo he shares shows blood streaming down his leg from when he was shot by the cops. Is someone aware of whether he was struck in the buttocks or just the knee, and if you need content writing support, click the link below?
    https://www.acecontentwriting.com/

  11. This is a storey about power, who wields it and who doesn’t, as well as utter vengeance.
    It’s not going to end well.
    It isn’t about conservatives attempting to make people like them. Leftists don’t seem to mind if one of their own perishes in flames because that’s the price they’re willing to pay to usher in global socialism and a full-fledged authoritarian state.
    Best Regards: MyArticles