The thread, it... it moves too fast! A few general, probably redundant thoughts that'll be three pages deep in twenty minutes either way:
Re: 300, the movie was transparently 'problematic' from day one (I mean from what I remember it basically celebrates eugenics) but I guess people were more willing to let each other compartmentalize their escapist entertainment back in the more innocent days of the Bush/Neocon era.
I don't particularly buy the topical connections the article was trying to draw, it's just going 'here was a movie celebrating fascists, now there are people going around celebrating fascists. Not saying it's responsible, but... well, draw your own conclusions'.
It just smacks of post hoc rationalisation to me, and as I said, the 'alt-right' is a vague and malleable enough concept that it's not hard to bend it into whatever thesis you want.
Originally Posted by Boone Daniels
It's not dumb or blaming to look at popular culture and say "hey, this is emblematic of a lot of cultural attitudes that were either prevalent at the time, or rather, something we can point to as functioning as a precursor to later trends/ideas." And I think it's certainly been argued that the hyper-masculine culture of the turn of the 21st century and Bush era generally produced a lot of entertainment that fed into or endorsed attitudes among young men who were later courted by the alt-right.
I'm not sure 300 can be seen as emblematic of as much as all that because part of the reason the movie hit was that it was completely different from almost anything else out there at the time, it stuck out like a sore thumb and still does in a lot of ways.
Bush-era entertainment wasn't characterised by hyper-masculinity. If anything, mainstream movies from that period were notably dark and prickly and morally conflicted. Ironically it was the Obama era that marked a return to a default setting of big buff strongmen punching people to save the day.
Re: Censorship, this always turns into a semantic argument that I'd rather avoid.
All I'll say is: when what's being asserted is that something other people enjoy is not just bad but actively harmful, it might not be censorship but it is a step beyond just stating personal opinion, and some kind of pushback should be expected.
Re: violence in video games etc, I've often found it interesting how much violence in media isn't a part of current cultural debates, even when it could arguably be relevant.
I have a sneaking suspicion that part of the reason for that is that those arguments were driven by conservatives and still carry their fetid stench. Now these conversations tend to be driven by the left, they're uneasy about touching that area due to those associations even though the basic ideas about how culture influences society aren't all that dissimilar...
Re: Confederate, I'm not touching America's uniquely screwed up racial politics with a ten foot pole, but I do find myself uneasy about campaigns to have a thing cancelled sight unseen based on their ideas about what it might be or the effect it might have. Feels a bit too reminiscent of religious people trying to ban Last Temptation Of Christ without even watching it.
Anyway, some good reads in here today chaps! Even you, Boone... *shakes fist*