From the Right: What is Woke?


By Don Schmitz 

What is “socially woke”? 

The dictionary definition is “aware of social problems such as racism and inequality.” Sounds good! But wait, no one espouses racism or inequality, and the radical left has redefined what those mean. 

According to Ali Hodge, education and equity writer, a white teacher (only white ones, mind you) making an inadvertent mistake in pronouncing the name of a nonwhite student, is racist. “Microaggressions”, introduced by Dr. Chester Pierce in the 1960s, have evolved into an intimidating litany of forbidden statements. 

Don’t ask someone where they are from, that’s racist. A teacher saying, “If you want to succeed, all you have to do is make an effort,” is racist according to leftists, because the teacher isn’t “acknowledging the inherent privileges of white students” according to Healthline Magazine. They even label the statement “Skin color doesn’t matter. We’re all people.” as a “microinvalidation.” You read that right: stating that race should be irrelevant is itself racist. 

Apparently the “woke” crowd wants us to revisit that famous “I Have a Dream” speech by Dr. King, where he envisioned a society that was colorblind and all children would be judged by the content of their character, as opposed to the color of their skin. This January, after being rightfully mocked and ridiculed, Stanford University took down its “Elimination of Harmful Language” website. Pity, it had so many insights to the madness of the ultra-sensitive; for example, don’t say “American” but rather “U.S. citizen,” to avoid insinuating we are the most important country in the Americas. Don’t say “master list” because masters enslaved people. Don’t write a “white paper” because that term is subconsciously racialized. 

In July 2022, Berkeley Law professor Khiara Bridges chastised Senator Josh Hawley at a judiciary hearing as “transphobic” because he stated that only women can have babies. Think it’s just semantics? Last year Senate Democrats rejected verbiage in maternal and infant-related programs that only women can get pregnant. Gender fluidity refers to a person changing over time their “gender expression.” Biological males, for instance can identify as female. If you are “woke” you must accept that declaration as a scientific fact. 

Accordingly, if your daughter, who has trained since early childhood as, say, a swimmer or runner, has to compete against a biological male for a college scholarship, you are “transphobic” should you complain. It begs the question; why have women’s/men’s sports at all? If biological gender is a cultural myth subject to the whim of an individual’s decision, why differentiate?

It’s all very confusing. Washington state decided to allow people to choose which locker room to shower in based on what gender they had decided on. Yet, locally, Darren Merager, a registered sex offender, was charged with indecent exposure for exposing his male genitalia in the Wi Spa in Westlake. The Los Angeles Times reported that “she” was being charged with felonies. The “woke” demand compliance. 

Fifth Circuit appellate Judge Stuart Duncan refused to use a transgender’s preferred pronouns in a child-pornography case in 2020. Accordingly, last week, he was shouted down by 100 woke activists during an invitation speech at Stanford and had to be escorted off campus by federal marshals. These thought and speech police are having real effects. This year, 26-year-old James Tubbs pleaded guilty of molesting a 10-year-old girl two weeks before he was 18. Tubbs began identifying as female after being taken into custody, and leftist District Attorney George Gascon refused to try Tubbs as an adult. Judge Mario Barrera had no choice but to sentence Tubbs to only two years, in juvenile hall. This 26-year-old convicted child molester with a beard was sent to a facility full of juvenile girls. Think about it.

Once radicals embrace the premise that we are hopelessly, systemically racist, anything can be justified, including reverse overt racist policies. Congressional Democrats wrote a clause in the “American Rescue Plan” providing debt relief to farmers based on their ethnicity. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf guaranteed COVID relief money to “people of color” but impoverished whites don’t qualify. Coca-Cola required diversity training demanding employees be “less white.” Colleges now have racially segregated dorms. Critical Race Theory is taught to third-grade children, designating white people as inherent oppressors. Math, English grammar, and science courses are labeled racist by the woke crowd.

The Oregon Department of Education states “White supremacy manifests itself in a focus on finding the right answer and demanding students show their work.” The California Department of Education wants to eliminate high school gifted programs because Asian students are over-represented. The examples of overt rampant discrimination could fill pages. Our dream of a colorblind meritocracy is withering, dying under the loving yoke of American’s commitment to right the wrongs of the past, while ironically creating new social wrongs of today.