The danger of cancel culture


Junior managing editor Rayna Christy shares the dangers of cancel culture.

Rayna Christy, Managing Editor

Technology, being as it is a part of nearly everyone’s daily life, has the potential to create environments for many different types of people to interact with one another. With social media, it gives people the opportunity to meet others they might have never spoken to. However, with many ways to misuse the platform, the potential it had has been set aside in exchange for a new phenomenon: cancel culture. 

Cancel culture is the action of withdrawing support for public figures after they say or do something considered offensive by the public, according to Historically, the act of cancel culture has been seen many times. For example, starting in the 1940s, the fear of Communism sparked a movement called McCarthyism. Anyone who was thought to partake in or sympathize with Communist ideals were blacklisted, even if the suspicion did not prove correct. Social media gives the opportunity for many people to partake in cancel culture, making it increasingly more widespread. While the act of holding people accountable might seem appealing, it holds many downfalls.

For one, difficulty arises when determining what gives one person the right to judge another. Everybody is flawed in their own individual way, so deciding which flaws are lesser than others can create conflict. Without some level of identifying the shortcomings of oneself, it is dangerous to begin searching for someone else’s.

With that, judging someone puts one on a pedestal. This pedestal, while giving a temporary sense of righteousness, is also accompanied by a further drop if one falls to judgement. This drop, whether it be personal or societal, can harm a person even more than the judgement itself. Whether it be the loss of a friend, a job, or even self respect, this loss can ultimately shift a person’s entire outlook of themselves.

If one looks for their own flaws before allowing themselves to judge others, they can somewhat steer clear of the harm on both ends. They can help others change for the better, while also working to better themselves. However, with this change, cancel culture would no longer be itself.

All in all, the damage cancel culture comes with can be avoided if the entire phenomenon is avoided as well. The appeal of identifying someone’s shortcomings in order to “fix” a problem does not add up to the harm that follows. Whether one is the judged or the judger, they are faced with the opportunity for a world of hurt.