Everything has an upside.
That’s what we learn when we understand that God is good, things happen for a reason, and good comes from all things (even if it’s not immediately obvious what it is.)
Consider cancel culture. There’s been plenty written about how Orwellian, horrible, inhuman, and unfair it is. It doesn’t allow for redemption, and creates an atmosphere of fear that prevents many from sharing their point of view.
But consider the plus side. As with all things, there is some good in cancel culture.
First, it should teach many a lesson that there is never an event in life so damaging and cataclysmic that we can’t come back from it. Many people who get laid off or fired, especially those younger in their career, believe that it’s permanent. They think it’s over and they’ll never work again, or they’ll never have such an opportunity.
Then reality sets in, and they realize that life is a journey, and the only endpoint is when you’re dead. Throughout history, all people have suffered some setback or hardship that seemed like it could make or break them (sure, some more than others). But more often than not, something good comes of it that may not have happened without that tough event.
Such is cancel culture. It may seem like you’ve truly lost opportunities, friends, or even your place in a club or group of friends. However, when events like that happen, that’s when you find out who your friends really are. Those who truly love, understand, and support you will be there for you to help you pick up and get moving again.
Two years ago, I was fortunate to see Amy Poehler speak at a conference. She was very insightful, and one of the things I remember most was when she talked about some of her failures. She said the best part is that your friends rush to you, and the fakes run away from you. So it is with cancel culture.
It may be catastrophic at the time it’s happening, but your true friends will not let you down. And frankly, even if no one shows up, it’s good to learn that, too. It means that perhaps you have some self-evaluation ahead of you. That’s also a good lesson.
As it applies to artists, writers, or performers who have shows or book deals or other types of jobs cancelled, that just means whomever picks you up will stand behind you through thick and thin. Or, perhaps it’s a wake up call to start your label, or publish your own works. At least that’s one person who will never cancel you.
Perhaps we should double down on it. As some get cancelled, others will strengthen their support. The free market will take over. Maybe, as airlines or restaurants stop allowing certain types of people, we can loosen all anti-discrimination and fairness laws. Heck, let there be places that don’t allow men, or women, or whites, or blacks, or Christians, or Asians. Let the market speak.
Those who don’t support or like discrimination can speak with their wallet and only support those who don’t discriminate. Those who think cancel culture is a good things and believe certain people shouldn’t be allowed access to aspects of society can support those places who discriminate against those they don’t like.
At least we’ll know who everyone is and where everyone stands.
Obviously, cancel culture is a blemish that needs to go away. But perhaps that we have it now can be good for society as many learn who their supporters really are while others learn how bad it really is.