There’s Nothing Revolutionary About ‘Morning After the Revolution’

culture morning after revolution book review

At its most entertaining, Morning After the Revolution hones in on this hollowness. In a chapter the place Bowles attends a multiday course known as The Poisonous Developments of Whiteness, the place individuals are inspired to pillory one another for making inadvertently racist remarks, Bowles captures farcical particulars like being requested to therapeutic massage her toes till she will bodily really feel the whiteness infecting every toe. (Afterward, the trainer tries to promote individuals on an extra two-day workshop.)Nonetheless, the writing in Morning After is, too typically, merely not adequate. Bowles strives for a wry have an effect on, however the result’s typically flat or irritatingly blogger-voiced. She describes a police officer killing George Floyd as an individual “doing what certain appears to be like like a homicide.”Maybe she may get away with it have been the prose extra entertaining—however because it stands, Bowles’ arguments typically don’t stand as much as scrutiny, and there’s no stylistic victories to distract from how muddled her theses are. “It sounded wild. It sounded pie within the sky. However cities truly handed resolutions to defund or, in some instances, abolish their police departments. It was all actually taking place,” she writes in a chapter on how absurd and damaging she finds the Defund the Police motion. It’s the opening of a piece that implies that American cities are more and more crime-addled as a result of the Defund motion led to drastic reductions in police presence. In it, Bowles describes how she grew to become so afraid of crime whereas pregnant that she went to the shop to purchase a gun, implying that the progressive motion towards police brutality has left her ready the place she has no alternative however vigilantism. (She summarizes her view of the progressive argument as such: “The actual white supremacy will not be shopping for a gun.”)The chapter is likely one of the guide’s most revealing, as a result of it elides info in favor of a tidy narrative. Crime is a sound concern for Los Angelenos, now because it has been for the town’s whole historical past, however the premise that the protests in 2020 led to speedy reductions in regulation enforcement that then led to speedy spikes in violence and mayhem is fathoms too pat.Whereas some main cities within the US did scale back police spending, many others truly elevated spending. No metropolis abolished its police drive within the wake of the 2020 protest motion. In Los Angeles, the place Bowles describes herself as fretting about rapists leaping via the home windows of her Echo Park dwelling, the police finances elevated greater than 9 p.c between 2019 and 2022. Whereas the LAPD did shrink in dimension, it didn’t evaporate. Statewide, the drop in regulation enforcement staffing in 2021 was 2 p.c, for instance, which is noteworthy. (There have been concentrated recruitment efforts to bolster these numbers.) But it surely additionally makes Bowles describing how she pays for personal security guards so she will “dwell as if there are police” come off as remarkably hyperbolic. Additionally: remarkably impolite to the police!Deceptive anecdotes are threaded all through the guide. In its introduction, Bowles rattles off a listing of foolish repercussions of the New Progressivism. “Pepe le Pew was lower from the House Jam film for normalizing rape tradition” she writes. This could, after all, be absurd—if it have been true. The rumor that the sexy cartoon skunk Pepe le Pew was deemed too problematic for the House Jam sequel took off on social media in 2021, after New York Instances columnist Charles M. Blow wrote about how the Looney Tunes character, together with a number of different well-liked childhood cartoons of yore, was problematic. However as a Deadline report famous, Pepe le Pew’s scenes had truly been lower when the movie modified administrators, means earlier than Blow’s column went viral. It’s simple to fact-check this sort of tidbit, and Bowles opening her guide with a fudged instance like this speaks to Morning After’s bigger failing. It’s not the work of a skeptic slashing towards conference. It’s a guide meant to substantiate biases quite than complicate them.Morning After the Revolution hopscotches throughout acquainted Mental Darkish Internet speaking factors on this means, mashing flatly written first-person reporting with sloppily gathered factoids and mixing till the narrative sounds believable sufficient for those who don’t cease to seek the advice of Google: DEI is silly, “gender ideology” is a harmful fad, calls to defund the police are naive, youngsters nowadays are too rattling delicate, asexuals are pretend and simply need consideration. Any reader with even a glancing familiarity with these speaking factors needn’t learn this guide for brand spanking new data. However this guide will not be meant, I believe, to influence the uncommitted. An enchiridion for an in-group, Morning After the Revolution is bound to consolation the already comfy. It’s Rooster Soup for the Anti-Woke Soul.

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