Canceling Cancel Culture


Kat Carlow, Staff Writer

Cancel Culture: The call out of a person on social media for something they did or said that turns society against them. The act of “canceling” somebody has risen from seamlessly nowhere within the past few years, and is now just another Twitter headline we see in our day to day lives. Most people find great fun in watching an influencers world cascade down in crumbles from a re-surfaced tweet they made several years ago. However, cancel culture is unfair in most cases and itself needs to be canceled. 


Past comments do not represent who a person is today. We have all said inconsiderate things in our past, things we would never repeat now. Unlike most of an average person’s past comments though, these influencers’ past comments are public, ready to access at any time. Within the time frame, someone may have said something unmindful, they have probably grown from who they were as a person at that point of time. Additionally, over time our language and expectations change. A comment that nobody would bat an eye at a few years ago may now be the source of controversy, and a majority of the time the individual being “canceled”  knows this is unacceptable in today’s society. For example, in 2018 an angry mob took to Twitter to “cancel” Jeffree Star over past racial remarks, however, Star apologized for his actions and has proved throughout his career that those past comments do not represent the person he is today. Nobody is the same person they were five, four, even one year ago, so why should we hold someone accountable for a past mistake that doesn’t accurately represent the person they are today? 


Something else to keep in mind is that vicious people will take actions or comments somebody made completely out of context. This is a problem because without context you do not have the entire understanding of the tone of a situation, it is like trying to have a court trial with only the plaintiffs. The most common cause of this is with jokes. In March of this year, an inappropriate joke Shane Dawson made in a past podcast made the rounds about Twitter leaving people horrified and in disgust. Although Dawson did apologize for the joke, admitting it wasn’t funny and wildly inappropriate, It proves that context is important in every situation. Everyone has a different sense of humor, so naturally, if you don’t have the context that a comment is a joke, the situation is going to be miscommunicated, while the people with the context do understand that the person speaking does not mean or believe in what they are saying. 


The most toxic aspect of canceling culture seems to be the online bullying that comes with it. There are polite yet still direct ways to convey to someone that their actions are not okay, yet it’s the internet and we live in a time period where bullying someone is chosen over-politeness. More common today are threats and derogatory remarks. These range anywhere from calling someone a slur to threatening their life, and in most cases, these comments are arguably worse than what we are “canceling” somebody for. At the end of the day, the people you are “canceling” still have feelings and do not deserve to be reading hateful comments. In fact, the act of online bullying is sometimes worse than what said bullies are “canceling” a person for.


Admittingly, cancel culture is sometimes a good thing. The internet has come together to improve so many lives by calling out the obvious wrongdoings of companies and influencers, but at the same time, the previous points need to be taken into consideration before doing so. Everybody will make plenty of mistakes in their life, but a person’s reputation or career should not be sacrificed from past experiences they have learned and grown from.