In End of Discussion by Mary Katharine Hame and Guy Benson tackle a major issue in our culture, what they call the outrage industry. As they note throughout the book the left is seeking to eliminate any discussion on contentious issues in our culture. Agreeing to disagree isn’t an option anymore, the new paradigm as they note is agree or you’re some type of bigot.
The first three chapters deal with how the outrage culture came to be from the extreme focus on political correctness to the quickly disappearing idea of personal privacy. The reality is as they demonstrate each one of us is one step away from being nationally infamous for saying something contrary to the perceived status quo. We live in an Orwellian society and that has done nothing but to strengthen the outrage industry. The following chapters deal with the issues that have been so polarizing in our society covering voter registration, feminism, abortion, gun control, and homosexuality among other issues. It is refreshing to see someone argue that you can disagree with the left on the issues without being a misogynist racist homophobic gun toting monster who is filled with animosity. It is especially refreshing as Guy Benson a homosexual points to the ridiculousness of how being opposed to homosexuality has become so stigmatized in our society.
Unless you’ve lived under a rock or are willfully ignorant you can’t deny the central issue the authors are dealing with. At every turn in our society when you disagree with the status quo of the left you become demonized by them. It’s hard to say whether this book will convince someone on the left that there is a place for debate and disagreement in our society. I think the advice in the last chapter is especially helpful as election year draws near.
This book is outside of what I normally read but I’m glad I read it as it has helped give me additional perspective on our culture. It was tiring at times to read it mainly because the our society is so tiring in its manufacture of outrage.
A free review copy of this book was provided by the publisher through Blogging for Books.The opinions I have expressed are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html.