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WALSH: I Disavow The Daily Wire

Photo by Gregory Woodman

This week, the heroes at Media Matters released a stunning exposé about the website you are currently reading. In a report subtly titled "The Daily Wire Is A Cesspool Of Bigotry And Hatred," Media Matters sifts through seven months' worth of podcasts to highlight the most egregious statements made by Michael Knowles, Andrew Klavan, and this author.

 

Accompanying the report is a helpful video montage of the offensive material. Some might argue that the montage is more like a greatest hits album and it actually makes The Daily Wire seem way cooler and may even drive more people to become premium subscribers for a low price of $9.99 a month or $99 a year (free tumbler included). But those people are mistaken. Having watched the video and read the report, I am aghast and stunned by the horrific bigotry of my co-workers and myself.

The comments highlighted by Media Matters truly shock the conscience. For example, in reference to the blackface scandal involving Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, Michael Knowles claims that Northam's support for killing infant children after they are born is morally worse than the insensitive costume he wore decades ago. Knowles should realize that killing babies cannot be morally worse than anything because babies have no value. Obviously, we would all agree that, say, destroying endangered sea turtle eggs or shooting a bald eagle would be morally abominable and possibly even worse than blackface, but the execution of an infant child does not rise anywhere near that level of severity. Knowles' failure to understand this basic truth is unacceptable and inexcusable.

In another clip, Michael Knowles is documented claiming that pedophilia is being "normalized" in our culture. This, again, is an outrageous statement with no basis in reality whatsoever. Just because young boys are dancing in drag at gay bars and posing with nude men doesn't mean pedophilia is being normalized. Rather, we are normalizing sexually charged interactions between prepubescent children and grown adults, which is completely different from pedophilia for reasons that GLAAD can surely explain.

Andrew Klavan, who seemed to get the most screen time in the hate montage, makes a number of wildly bigoted statements. For instance, he observes that men are attracted to the female body. I can't quite figure out how to be offended by that remark but I trust that there must be a reason, so I will be offended by default. In one especially misogynistic outburst, Klavan claims that feminism has given women the false idea that their opinions matter because they're women. Klavan seems to be arguing that all opinions should be judged not on gendered grounds but on the actual merits of the opinions themselves. That, at least, is one way to interpret it. The other way to interpret it is that Andrew Klavan hates all women and wishes they would die. Media Matters urges the latter interpretation, and I'm afraid I must agree. Elsewhere, Klavan calls Somalia a "hellscape." This is appalling. Somalia is a lovely country and I plan to vacation there with my family this fall.

 

Finally, there is yours truly. As I watched the selected footage of my own show (which you can subscribe to on iTunes or SoundCloud, or watch live on YouTube or Facebook every day, Monday through Friday), I was stricken with sorrow and remorse. The very first clip shows me arguing that drag is essentially female blackface. My point was that drag queens are making a grotesque mockery of femininity, turning it into a degrading and sexualized caricature that demeans women. This argument is perfectly coherent and obviously correct, but it gave the people at Media Matters a bad case of the frownies, and so for that reason, I apologize. It is not enough for a statement to be "true." What good is truth if it makes someone's tummy hurt? Truth, as Media Matters has long insisted, is overrated.

At another point in the video, I claim that abortion doctors aren't doctors but "medical assassins." I regret this because of the pain it may have caused the very fine and decent folks who crush the skulls of children for a living. As the old saying goes, scalpels and suction tubes may dismember babies, but words will really hurt you. I will be more careful in the future.

I likewise regret saying that some of the women who made MeToo accusations were "also culpable." At the time, I thought that perhaps some of the actresses who chose to sleep with Hollywood producers in order to get film roles are at least somewhat responsible for their actions and probably shouldn't have used sex as a tool for career advancement. I now see that women can never be held accountable for anything. Women are strong, independent, competent, and not responsible for their own behavior.

 

There are many other offensive remarks included in the compilation. I am so filled with disgust at myself and the other hosts that I can't continue writing about it. The tears are flowing onto my keyboard as I type. Everyone at Starbucks is staring at me. Let me close by saying this: I disavow The Daily Wire and everyone who works here. I don't disavow the paychecks, to be clear. I still like those. The paychecks didn't do anything wrong, so it would be inappropriate to penalize them. I should also stipulate that I will continue working here and saying all of the same kinds of things I've said all along. But just know that in my head and in my heart I stand in solidarity with Media Matters. I hear them. I believe them. I appreciate them.

Editor's Note: Because the internet is filled with foolish and utterly dishonest people, the editors of The Daily Wire wish to note that this column utilizes a literary device called sarcasm.

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