More “Little Mermaid” Ethics: The White Ariel Version Of The Black Ariel Version Of The White Animated Ariel

In yesterday’s post, “Stop Making Me Defend Disney!,” Ethics Alarms looked at the controversy over Disney’s live-action version of its 1989 classic animated film “The Little Mermaid” that casts a black performer, Halle Bailey (not Halle Berry) as the Hans Christian Anderson heroine. Well, this one is moving fast.

One of the many fans who object to imposing “diversity, equity and inclusion” on “The Little Mermaid” announced via Twitter that technology was now available that could digitally transform Bailey into a white, red-haired mermaid just as Disney had transformed its original Ariel into a black one:

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Dear Twitter: How Exactly Is Protecting Hateful Assholes From Being Exposed Ethically Justified?

I was unaware, and likely to remain unaware, of this now viral tweet before reading the Ethics Alarms Open Forum today. The tweeter, Uju Anya, is a linguistics professor who is a professor at Carnegie Mellon University. She tweeted the above as news broke that Elizabeth, 96, was “under medical supervision.”

Nice. Continue reading

Observations On Larry Tribe’s Latest Trump-Deranged Tweet…

I can only find out about EA post-worthy tweets second-hand, as I killed my Twitter account after the platform censored the Hunter Biden laptop story. I actually followed Tribe’s tweets before that, because his public descent into demented hackery after such a distinguished legal and academic career had the tragic fascination of gruesome car wreck as well as conveying a useful lesson in mortality: I have asked my wife to bash in my head with a brick from behind should I ever jump the cognitive shark as obviously as Tribe has.

This time, Ann Althouse was my tweet source, though her post’s subject was another, slightly less whacked-out tweet re-tweeting Tribe by author Joyce Carol Oates. Tribe’s tweet, in turn, only quoted a typical piece of furious Trump-Deranged venom from Times columnist Maureen Dowd. Before his brain started to melt, the idea of Prof. Tribe appealing to the authority of the likes of Dowd would be like imagining Henry Kissinger quoting “Mark Trail.”

All clear now? Observations: Continue reading

“A Nation Of Assholes,” Congressional Division

Nice! There has been a recent outbreak of further uncivil, undignified speech and communication from members of Congress, who are, unfortunately role models and set help societal standards. The recent outburst have come from Democrats, though the phenomenon is not limited to that more rapidly rotting party….on the other hand, no Republican House member has yet said, in reference to President Biden, “Let’s impeach the motherfucker!” as Rep. Rashida Tlaib  did regarding President Trump. On the other hand, two Republican House members, Bill Posey and Jeff Duncan, evoked “Let’s go Brandon!” during House, which is the equivalent of  “Fuck Joe Biden.”

Chuy Garcia’s tweet is special, though. The Cook County House rep’s deep dive into vulgarity against  a random critic on Twitter was in print (though he deleted it eventually) and was unethical, unprofessional and unseemly in many ways. “Retarded,” of course, is a banned word in Progressive World. “Dipshit” is not acceptable discourse by an elected official, nor is “fucking” and its variations, though Rep. Talaib would doubtless argue that the normal rules don’t apply when the target is Donald Trump, just like “journalists” now argue that his existence justifies their routinely—but righteous!—biased and misleading reporting. Continue reading

Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 7/11/2022: Twitter Wars And More

But first, a cheerful song, because it’s all downhill from here…

Speaking of music, some opening notes are in order:

  • Yesterday was the anniversary of the much-heralded Scopes “Monkey Trial,” a 1925 ethics train wreck that I wrote about extensively last year, here and here.
  • Today, July 11, marks two of the most vivid examples of how random chance changes everything—history, culture, values, traditions– in ways that cannot be imagined. The first was the foolish duel in 1804 between Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr that resulted in Hamilton’s premature death (but ultimately in a boffo Broadway musical!). The second was Count Claus von Stauffenberg’s close-but-no-cigar assassination attempt on Adolf Hitler in 1944.
  • Nearer to the present, the apparent collapse of Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter is disappointing, because it would make reporting on various Twitter-Twiggered ethics issues a lot easier if I could start an account again in good conscience, as I was prepared to do once the service got out from under the clutches of its current censorious and progressive-biased masters.
  • I also haven’t felt like participating in Facebook of late, as the Woke Hysteria among my once rational friends there over the recent SCOTUS decisions is too great a temptation–as in “target”— for me. Right now they just want an echo chamber to scream in, and that’s what they have. Someone somewhere on the web opined yesterday that late night talk shows,  “Saturday Night Live” and its ilk were no longer primarily about comedy, but rather therapy sessions for angry and depressed progressives and Democrats, with the shows using mockery and insults to reaffirm their convictions about “the others”—those dumb, evil, racist conservatives. I think that may be a perceptive analysis. “Saturday Night Live” is a particularly vivid example: the show that once reveled in portraying Gerald Ford as a bumbling klutz and George W. Bush as an outright moron week after week while they were in the White House now hesitates to exploit the comedy gold represented by Biden’s misadventures and Kamala Harris in general. It proves that SNL is more interested in hanging out with the cool kids than actually being funny—which is supposedly its mission. This is a conflict of interest, and the producer and writers aren’t even attempting to resolve it ethically.

1. Twitter Wars #1: @Ka1zoku_Qu0d, an idiot of the sort that literally clogs Twitter, posted this: “Hold on I want to make sure I say this carefully. Yeah Anne Frank had white privilege. Bad things happen to people with white privilege also but don’t tell the whites that.” This caused so much static on the platform that “Anne Frank” ended up “trending.” Continue reading

7 Observations On The Unethical Tweet Of The Week By Rob Reiner

Observations:

1. What happened to Rob Reiner? How did he get that way? I’ve asked my wife to swear that if I ever start writing or saying things this stupid and ignorant, she will hit me over the head with a brick.

2. Declaring Trump a criminal is on the cusp of libel, and capitalizing “criminal” is unethically illiterate for someone with so many followers.

3. The tweet deceitfully implies that using the platform to spread misinformation is unique to Donald Trump. What is significant is that virtually only conservatives and Republicans (and the Babylon Bee) get punished it. Chris Cuomo, to name one of many examples from the news media, tweeted that “hate speech” wasn’t protected by the Bill of Rights, and that it would be illegal for anyone but journalists to read Wikileaks leaks of classified documents. He’s a lawyer (how did THAT happen?), and the public assumes he knows what he’s talking about.

4. Nothing Trump tweeted ever threatened to overthrow the government by any definition: Reiner’s tweet is disinformation!

5. Nothing Trump ever tweeted was “Criminal activity” either. Also disinformation, and yet on Twitter Carl’s deranged son remains.

6. It is clear from Reiner’s tweet that he believes that political opponents’ criticism of his party and political allies should be stifled and blocked if possible. That marks him as hostile to democracy…like increasing numbers of Americans and politicians of his political persuasion.

7. Deft and funny take-down, John Rich!

The Immediate Benefit Of Musk’s Twitter Takeover: The Left Is Revealing Its Fear Of Free Speech

That depressing exhortation above was released by the president of the NAACP, Derrick Johnson. It is signature significance for a man, and presumably the organization he has led and spoken for since 2017, who favors censorship, content-based control of communications media, and a manipulated political system. It also reveals a leader of an influential organization who sees no danger that his members and his organization’s supporters will react negatively to his open embrace of totalitarian principles.

“Hate speech” is free speech, and groups like the NAACP (and the Democratic Party, and too frequently the mainstream media) define as hate speech any speech that they hate, because it is critical of their positions, agendas or members. “Disinformation and misinformation” have always been welcome on Twitter as long as it advanced progressive goals. “Do not allow 45 to return to the platform”? What is that but a demand that a prominent political figure who was recently President be handicapped in his efforts to seek political office? How would the NAACP have responded to a call from white supremacy group to keep Barack Obama from a communication platform in 2008?

The organization is only about power. It has no integrity or principles.

Or self-awareness. Or comprehension of the words it uses and the concepts it claims to revere. Censoring speech and political opinions along with a recent President and current political leader protects democracy.

War is Peace

Ignorance is Strength

Slavery is Freedom

Silly me, I did not expect the NAACP to reveal itself as such a fan of Big Brother; I somehow thought that last motto would be a deal-breaker.

Well, now we know. It’s sad, and scary, but that’s what’s so great about letting people say what they think.

Among other benefits, we learn who can’t be trusted.

Ethics Breezes And Gales, 4/14/2022: The End Of A Conspiracy And The Beginning Of Conspiracy Theories [Corrected]

April 14 will always be the date that I associate above all else with Abraham Lincoln’s assassination, which occurred 157 years ago.  Lincoln and the audience at Ford’s Theater laughed uproariously, as John Wilkes Booth knew they would, at the line “Why you sockdologizing old man-trap!” in the play the Lincolns and their guests were watching, “Our American Cousin.” Booth fired a single-shot derringer into the back of Lincoln’s skull, dreew a dagger and stabbed Major Rathbone, also in Lincoln’s box along with Mrs. Lincoln and Rathbone’s fiancee, in the arm, and dramatically leaped down onto the stage, shouting Virginia’s motto,“Sic semper tyrannis! (Thus ever to tyrants!) The South is avenged!”  Booth caught his spur on a draped flag on the way down and broke his leg, but limped across the stage and out to waiting horse through a back stage exit. Lincoln never regained consciousness.

Not only was it the first and still most spectacular of the four Presidential assassinations [Notice of Correction: I originally wrote “five,” not because I can’t count, which is what usually happens, but because I was counting Reagan, because he was actually shot. Moron. Thanks to Steve-O-in NJ for alerting me, or I’d have to ban myself from the blog for passing on “misinformation”], Booth’s act and subsequent events, oddities and coincidences launched perhaps the first widespread political conspiracy theory. I wrote in 2010,

[A]s a teenager, I became fascinated by the Lincoln assassination conspiracy. A best-seller at the time was “Web of Conspiracy,” an over-heated brief for the theory that Lincoln’s War Secretary, Edwin Stanton, and others in the military were in league with John Wilkes Booth. The author, a mystery writer named Theodore Roscoe, was constantly suggesting sinister motives by asking questions like “The sealed records of the official assassination investigation were destroyed in a mysterious fire. Was the War Department afraid of what the documents would prove? Would they have implicated Stanton? We will never know.”  This tactic is on view regularly today, used generously by the purveyors of modern conspiracies…

Then again, sometimes conspiracy theories, even unlikely ones, turn out to be true. There was sure a lot of smoke around Lincoln’s assassination (after all, there really was a conspiracy, as Booth had at least five co-conspirators working on his plot for months), and it didn’t help when Robert Lincoln, Abe’s son, was caught burning his papers and told the man who interrupted him (allegedly) that he was doing so because the contained proof that a member of his father’s own cabinet was involved in his assassination. Yet none of the components of the Lincoln conspiracy narrative have held up to scrutiny, except as tantalizing suspicions.

1. First, the rest of a story...Two weeks ago Ethics Alarms covered the story of Kychelle Del Rosario, a fourth-year medical student at Wake Forest School of Medicine, who appeared to admit in a tweet that she deliberately caused pain and discomfort to a patient because he had mocked her  “preferred pronoun” pin. After her tweet was seen, circulated and attacked on social media, she deleted it in an attempted cover-up. Wake Forest suspended her pending an investigation, which is now complete. It’s conclusion: Del Rosario was grandstanding, implying that she stuck the patient a second time when she had turned the job over to a supervisor. “Our documentation verifies that after the student physician was unsuccessful in obtaining the blood draw, the student appropriately deferred a second attempt to one of our certified professionals. The student did not attempt to draw blood again,” the university stated. 

But had she deliberately missed the vein the first time to punish the “transphobic” patient? Wake Forest believed her statements that she had not, saying, “Our review revealed that the description of the patient encounter on social media does not reflect what actually occurred. We also determined that all of our procedures were followed while caring for this patient.” For her part, Del Rosarion, who expects to be reinstated, said,

“For the event mentioned in the tweet, I was performing a blood draw on a patient and during our conversation they had shown dismay at my pronoun pin,” she said. “I calmly shared my thoughts about pronouns and did not escalate the situation further. When I was doing the blood draw, I missed the first time due to my inexperience as a student, and per our policy, my supervisor performed the successful blood draw the second time….[I] never intended to harm the patient.”

She also wrote an apology to the school for her inflammatory tweet, admitting   to “poorly representing” the school and the healthcare system. [Source: Campus Reform] Continue reading

Hey, Professor Mann! The Jerk Store Called And They’re All Out of You!

Jerks come in all shapes, sizes and types, but jerks of some prominence who broadcast their jerkiness in public are an especially loathsome breed. Jerk aficionados, I give you Michael Mann, the inventor of that staple of the climate change fanataspere, the “hockey stick” graph. Prof. Mann is the director of the Earth System Science Center at Pennsylvania State University. He’s a hero to the climate change doomsday crowd; he’s also attempted to bully his critics by suing them. None of which is necessary malinger to his recent jerk orgy. Anyone who sent these two tweets would qualify as a jerk grandmaster.

First we have this one:

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At Columbia, Free Speech Chilling Takes A Great Leap Forward

The assault on free expression as well as the speech-chilling practice of seeking to publicly crush those who do not observe the social justice dictates of progressives in power advanced ominously yesterday. Unsurprisingly, the episode at issue occurred at an Ivy League University, as our educational sectors have been among the trailblazers in speech and idea suppression. Unsurprising to me at least was that it involved Twitter. Just like in the Illya Shapiro controversy at Georgetown Law Center, a scholar didn’t use quite the words he should have (to be safe, and safety is everything these days) according to the Democrats’ Little Red Book. This time, however, the hammer fell harder. Continue reading