The occasion of my show reaching its 500th episode this week was accompanied by multiple instances of serendipitous fortune.
It just so happened that we landed none other than my lady of Wokeness, Titania McGrath (aka comedian and writer Andrew Doyle), on our show. And while that was in no way accomplished with the 500-show milestone in mind — I had no idea until last weekend that it was even in the offing — I can’t think of a more perfect companion to diagnose the current temperature of this zany age.
Doyle’s lampooning of our postmodern state of affairs, through the uber-shrill alter ego of McGrath, strikes the perfect tone for the bottom of the slippery slopes we have collectively arrived at. For years I have warned about those slopes and where they lead. And sure enough, we have arrived in all the broken places I said we would, but at an even faster pace than I thought possible.
I was right not because I am super smart, but because I am readily observant. And conservatism is nothing if not an observational science. It seeks to conserve what works, while warning against existential impostors, both foreign and domestic. And it has always worked because it understands the true cosmic nature of the human condition.
Thus, conservatism acts as the proverbial shepherd. More and more, though, the sheep in its care are getting dumber and dumber.
For years I have tried my best to pick all the right battles and make all the right enemies, but I stand here today struck powerless at times at the taste for invincible ignorance many have cultivated on both ends of the political spectrum. There is no reason. There is no debate. There is only a food fight in the middle school lunchroom. Washington, D.C., is basically a redux of “Mean Girls.”
When that happens, following McGrath on Twitter may in fact be the best shot all of us have remaining at the sort of public shaming that can bring us toward a much-needed course correction. We aren’t so much woke as we are a total and undeniable joke.
The punch lines offered by Doyle/McGrath are brutal and relentless. In their maximum concern for pathological levels of political correctness, they are indeed politically incorrect to their core. They refuse to play the silly spirit-of-the-age progressive game by actually playing it more honestly than anyone else.
It is perfect in its tragedy.
That is vital. But mockery is not a destination we can stay at indefinitely. At best, laughing at one’s plight is only a U-turn. We must move on to something better eventually, and for help with that I am comforted by the likes of University of Virginia basketball coach Tony Bennett.
In a year’s time he took a program with arguably the worst defeat in NCAA Tournament history to the pinnacle of sports achievement. And he did it not by wallowing in the sort of faux victimhood that wokeness is so heavily dependent upon, but through humility, through accountability, through resilience, and through gratitude.
“You have scars, right? You have a scar, and it reminds you of that, but it’s a memory,” Bennett said. “Does it go away completely? No. I wish [the 2018 loss] wouldn’t have happened in some ways. Now I say, ‘Well, it bought us a ticket here. So be it. … It drew me closer, most importantly, to my faith in the Lord, drew me closer to my wife and children, just because you realize what’s unconditional. In those spots when the world’s telling you you’re a failure, you’re a loser, and you’re the worst thing going and all that stuff, you say, ‘OK, what really matters?’”
Indeed, I close by repeating the question — what really matters?
Steve Deace is broadcast nationally every day on BlazeTV. He is the author of the book “Truth Bombs: Confronting the Lies Conservatives Believe (To Our Own Demise).”