On Wednesday, comedian Owen Benjamin uploaded a video to his YouTube channel titled: "Why I Hate The Left." In the video, Benjamin explains what he means by "the Left." He also talks about political debate, and the idea that if debate isn’t centered around common goals, it’s fruitless.
It’s a fantastic video, and at just under nine minutes, it won’t take too much of your time. A partial transcription is below, followed by the actual video:
I use language like "the Left" on social media, and people sometimes say "you can't boil it down to that." So, I wanted to just quickly give my thoughts.
Humans think in binary terms right from our birth. My son's first words were "mama" and "dada," and he still separates the world into "mama" things and "dada" things. He says "mama" when he needs something to survive, like food, or her, a hug. He says "dada" when he's more aggressive; when he wants to go out somewhere and try something, you know? That's how humans think. Good versus evil, right/wrong, red team/blue team, zeroes and ones — that's binary code — Catholic versus Protestant, Sunni versus Shia, North versus South — this is how we think. And we have liberal and conservative.
When you have shared goals, it's great. The two teams engage and game theory and it's effective. It's a way to solve problems; it's a way to grow. Without friction, roots don't grow. When the goals are shared, the Left and the Right operate as kind of a think tank with animosity, you know? Different strategies, different policies, attacking the same goal — but that goal is very important.
My parents and brother are more on the Left. I'll put it this way, they're more liberal, and I'm more conservative or libertarian ... the thing is ... we argue; we slightly nudge each other, we change opinions a bit, and then we go back to scrabble. You know, it's all love when the goals are the same. When you have the same goals, you see love in the disagreements because you are just coming at it differently.
I'll give you some examples ... my brother and parents were devastated when America didn't sign the Paris Climate Accords. I was happy. We argued about it, but it was all good because we shared goals.
We all know that we want a clean planet for our children; and we know each other well enough to know that. We want to develop clean energy, we want America’s economy to prosper, we want to be less reliant on fossil fuels — these are all shared goals, it's just how we view the world is different. Because of that knowledge, we can argue in a healthy way. I thought it was a bad deal for America, the Paris Accords — we would sacrifice way too much money for what [the U.S.] was gaining, and I believe that ingenuity and free market forces will be our best shot at lowering carbon emissions. When you make something profitable, the technology emerges. ...
Doesn't matter. The point of this isn't about that argument because they could do the same argument, and they're not here, and I don't want to do that to them. It's all good though because we have the same goal.
We disagree on gun control. My brother is a little more with me, but my dad wants a lot more gun regulations because he wants to lower shootings. I want to lower shootings. My brother wants to lower shootings. I just want more armed and responsible civilians to lower shootings. See what I'm saying? Shared goal. ...
The thing that's happening now that's dividing people is the perception that we no longer share the same goal ... if the goal matches, you don't have to break friendships or relationships, but when the goal doesn't, that's when things get really crazy. ...
I'll give you an example. Three-year-old transgender children. I know I've been banging this drum now for a month, but I’m gonna keep doing it until people see what I'm talking about. I see it as disgusting as any form of child abuse. The end goal is not my end goal, and there's no argument for it. There's no argument for that.
Demonizing white people and males for the world's problems is not part of my value system. There is no goal in that.
I believe in merit over race, I believe in values over gender ... if we were to accurately put the evils of the past on everyone's race, we would have no one left. I think it's now cool to make it out that white males have done all the bad things in the world. I didn't care as much as I do now about speaking out about how evil that is because I have a son who's a white male. ... I get angry thinking about people telling him he's responsible for slavery. This beautiful little child that just dances in the kitchen and smiles. So that's not a shared goal.
The Left — and I make sure I say "the Left" as to not lump in the type of liberal I was raised with. My dad may be completely wrong in my view when it comes to government policy and regulation, but we share values. The Left is nihilistic, it's Marxist post modernism that believes right and wrong are subjective, that words can change definition based on who has power — the speaker, the listener, who has more power. That's insane; that goes against my values. We don't share the same goal. I want to empower the individual; they want to empower the group. I want to judge people on merit; they want to judge on power. These are not things that we can resolve at all.
When I am called a bigot and a racist for my views on health care — not by random trolls but by former CNN hosts and major celebrities — we don't share a common goal. When I'm called human garbage for not supporting the fantastical whims of a three-year-old desperately trying to please their troubled father, we don't share the same goals. Whims that will be cemented and eventually lead to chemical castration in the form of hormone blockers. We do not share the same goals. When people have no code, no goal, no respect for family, country, or a fair playing field for my children and my children's children to be a part of, we do not share the same goals.
And I don't see the classic debate between liberals and conservatives as bad. I think without Steve Jobs, Wozniak is just another bumbling genius, too undisciplined to tie his shoes, let alone employ millions. Without Woz, Steve Jobs is just another aggressive CEO with nothing to sell, no spark to light the bonfire he meticulously stacked.
I hate the Left; I don't hate liberals. I disagree with liberals, but I hate the Left. Our goals are not shared, our values are not shared, and you stand directly in the way of my, and my family, and my country's prosperity. Your cowardice will weaken our culture, turn our children into self-loathing profiteers, and our history into a highlight reel of human error — a history I'm very proud of.
So, hopefully that clears up why I hate the Left, and I do hate the Left. Yet, I'm still the same guy I have always been as long as we can agree on goals. We can argue till the sun comes up and I'll still love you — even if you're wrong. But if you come near my kid, I will blow your head off.