I’ve had a few days to think about the “Laura Loomer Thing”. I’m referring, of course, to Friday night, when Rebel Media journalist Laura Loomer rushed the stage at Shakespeare in the Park’s production of Julius Caesar (which featured a Trump-look-a-like Caesar) and shouted “Stop the normalization of political violence against the right!”.
Right from the get go, I thought this action was a poor one on several fronts.
One, it was directly employing leftist tactics which those of us on the right would usually condemn (you know, when we’re not being complete hypocrites).
Two, it was politically ineffective – in my view, it would have been much better to let the left hang themselves with their violent rhetoric after the shooting of Rep. Scalise at a baseball game. We should have highlighted this sort of rhetoric, not attempted, however briefly, to silence it. Those in agreement with Laura Loomer (and Jack Posobiec, who also joined the protest by calling out the audience as directly responsible for the injury of Rep. Scalise and referring to them as Nazi-propagandist “Goebbels”) have argued that this protest got a lot of attention, and therefore was effective. I think that is a silly argument.
It sure seems like the "new right" is the club for people whose guiding principle is "there's no such thing as bad publicity".
— Stefanie MacWilliams (@StefMacWilliams) June 18, 2017
Three, it was used by a small group of Twitter famous right-wingers to add another person to their little fame club.
(Note: This is a link to Salon, a normally useless far-left rag. I have joked many times that the actions of fake conservatives like Laura Loomer would force me to agree with the leftist media, something I find rarely happens. Well, sorry, Rebel Media. I like you, but Salon is right, and you are completely wrong on this one! So is The New Yorker.)
I’ve written before about why I think applying leftist tactics will ultimately undermine our shared goals on the right. And, naturally, I’ve taken a lot of criticism for my positions, including from many of my close friends and writers here at Halsey News.
I’ve also accepted, at this point, that joining the “Twitter famous right-wingers” club just isn’t going to happen for me.
And I’m okay with that. It comes down to this: do I want to have to pander to a group of people to maintain my popularity? Do I want to have to put myself in a sub-ideological box? Do I want to, dare I say it, fall prey to self-censorship which limits my own freedom of speech?
I’m willing to talk about choosing to knowingly be a hypocrite. I’m willing to talk about, theoretically, what civil war would look like with the left. I’m willing to debate whether or not dirty fighting is sometimes necessary. I’m all about finding out what I believe, who I am, and where my line has to be drawn. And that means at times that I must criticize myself, my friends, and those I would consider allies in the broader political fight. Unlike Laura Loomer, I’m actually willing to engage in free speech and open discussion.
What I’m not willing to do is run on stage for thirty seconds and think that I deserve thousands of followers and thousands of dollars. (I personally could have used a situation I found myself in to seek fame. I chose not to utilize it.)
A journalist at The Federalist, Mollie Hemingway, sent a tweet a few days ago which I have been turning back and forth in my mind for a while. I’m not sure if she was actually talking about this situation, nor do I know her personal views on the subject, but I feel it is relevant, anyway.
If there is a purer form of anti-meritocracy than journalism, I've yet to find it.
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) June 19, 2017
Whatever your thoughts on Laura Loomer’s actions, it boggles my mind that very few people within the right-wing media community are willing to ask questions about her intentions, about her seemingly-bloated legal defense fund, and about her sudden, seemingly-concocted stardom on Twitter.
Laura Loomer is not handling her sudden fame well.
She’s picking fights with the New Right itself, such as Twitter famous Baked Alaska, who tweeted an anti-semitic meme at her. He was later suspended on Twitter:
— Laura Loomer (@LauraLoomer) June 18, 2017
Alt-Right figurehead Richard Spencer also had some words for Laura, after she refused to share the stage at a free speech event (For anyone who says Laura Loomer supports free speech, think about this: she refused to share a stage with a speaker whose speech she didn’t like – at a free speech event).
The Alt-Right is radical, edgy, sometimes outlandish. But we must be truthful and credible. We can never associate w/ liars and hypocrites.
— Richard 🇸🇾 Spencer (@RichardBSpencer) June 18, 2017
Thank you, Laura, for true unity. Apparently, I’m agreeing with Baked Alaska (I’m an Israel supporter), Richard Spencer (I’m a civic nationalist), and Salon/The New Yorker (I’m sane).
She’s also picking fights with “cucks” such as Ben Shapiro:
Funny, I didn't see you at Julius Caesar condemning political violence against the right. 🤔 @benshapiro
Sitting on the couch must be nice. https://t.co/vCVrQWmgoh
— Laura Loomer (@LauraLoomer) June 17, 2017
This tweet pissed me off even more than her absurd big headed tweet about how President Trump was going to watch her on Sean Hannity.
Now, many have legitimate criticisms against Ben Shapiro. I enjoy a lot of his content, but I part ways with him on Trump and the Michelle Fields hoax, for example.
But for Laura Loomer to say Ben Shapiro – one of the most prolific, hardworking, and well known figures in right-wing media – sits on the couch?! Really?! I’m floored.
The right-wing media constantly rewards the people who deserve it the least. It is anti-meritocratic. Of course, there are people whose views I can’t stand in the “New Right” who actually do produce a lot of content (see: Mike Cernovich). There are also people within the general right who I feel have ill-informed, silly opinions, who also produce a lot of content. This sort of leftist-esque “you’re valuable because you’re pretty / helping us win short term politically” anti-meritocracy annoys me too.
But it’s even worse when it comes to Laura Loomer specifically.
Not only does she have the gall to think she is some sort of courageous hero (!!!) for yelling on a stage in a city full of gunless liberal idiots, she calls people who choose not to engage in her stunt behaviour lazy and cowardly.
Cowardly? Please. I talk about Islam. Something that could quite literally get me in legal trouble here in Canada, or at risk of violence from jihadists. You really think the reason I wouldn’t jump on stage at a play is because I’m a coward? Don’t make me laugh.
Lazy? Even worse. I’ve seen it again and again on Twitter: “Don’t insult those on the right who are out there doing the real work”.
I don’t play the game of pretending I’m above it all, because being honest is the person I am and the brand I want to put forth with my writing here and my work on Right Millennial.
So here are my honest feelings: I am, yes, shockingly, a little bit jealous that while I bust my butt creating and engaging, you run around for 30 seconds and get on Fox News primetime. While I and hundreds of others do the real work (hint: it doesn’t consist of easy fame, money, and attention), you lecture us about being lazy cowards. How many articles have you written this year, Laura? I’ve written around 50. How many youtube videos have you produced, Laura? How many podcasts and shows have you participated in, sharing your views and ideas? How many writers have you worked with, edited, etcetera? How many hours have you spent talking with web developers and logo artists?
Hint: not much, from what I can see in your work history.
You are the one who has no f*cking clue what “the real work” or “courage” looks like. Not me, and certainly not Ben Shapiro.
Laura Loomer, I repeat, who do you think you are? You had better decide fast. You’ve had a massive platform and a bunch of money handed to you (allegedly). I didn’t write any of this to be a jerk, or as an attack on your personally. I’m sure you’re a nice girl. But if you want to last in this business, I suggest you consider my points and the points of the other so-called cucks you’re ranting at on Twitter.
I know you wouldn’t know this, seeing as you haven’t put in the work, but having any sort of platform isn’t actually that easy. It involves a lot of boring, thankless, unpleasant work that people don’t even see, half the time.
I wish you the best as you inevitably figure out what “the real work” actually consists of.