Opinion: Is it time to cancel “cancel culture?”

Modern day America is a world surrounded in controversy. For a country that preaches equality and freedom, America seems to be anything but.

The fight for equal rights amongst all races, religions and genders has been at center-stage for quite some time now. Monumental steps have been made to create a world for future generations in which children will learn to respect each other’s differences and unite as a nation.

Most recently however, a new approach has been taken by society to create this “dream” scenario — cancel culture.

“Cancel culture” is a phrase used to describe the process in which people use social media and other platforms to expose individuals, groups and products for societal wrongdoings. All of this in the pursuit of a world in which the majority perceives as “equal.”

The most recent victim of cancel culture is famous children’s author Dr. Seuss. Most-every child who has grown up in America within the last 75 years has read a Dr. Seuss book at one point in their lives.

For better or for worse, Seuss’s work has been heavily integrated into the upbringing of American children for decades. However, it appears as though his reign as the godfather of children’s books has come to an end with six of his titles being permanently discontinued due to much of the stories and artwork being deemed racist and politically incorrect.

It does not take much research into the life of Seuss to come to the harsh realization that he was not the saint that many believed him to be, and it comes as not too much of a surprise that his style of thinking and beliefs led to books that can be seen as racist and anti-semetic. 

Be that as it may, it is scary to think that six books being pulled off the shelves may be the first steps down a path of cancelling and censoring the wrongdoings of those who came before us.

Did the six books that were discontinued have inherently racist images and dialogue? Yes. Is it time for us to say goodbye to Dr. Seuss books entirely? Probably. However, the cancellation and censorship of literature and media is not going to move society in a positive direction.

It is imperative that we learn from the mistakes of those who came before us instead of trying to hide their wrongdoings. Combating the negativity of others with more negativity through the use of cancel culture is no way to progress as a society. It will only result in a recursive process of everyone turning against each other.

There is strength in unity, and there is much knowledge to be had through studying the past mistakes of both ourselves and of others. This is why I believe the whole concept of cancel culture is toxic.

Not to mention that it is unfair to allow one side of an argument to dictate what is appropriate and what is not. This is not a political observation, merely a simple truth that we as people living under democracy must understand.

Cancel culture on social media platforms creates an environment where people can gang up on one another to censor what they believe is wrong, and flex what they perceive as right. The mainstream media often plays into this as well, and ultimately chooses a side.

This is what makes cancel culture so dangerous. It creates a world where everybody is scared to slip up and be attacked, therefore they censor and hide their true selves from the public. This happens not only with celebrities and other elites, but with everyday people as well. 

We as a society need to come together to put an end to cancel culture, and instead figure out ways we can learn from one another’s mistakes so that we can build the proper foundations needed for our children and their children to truly thrive in an environment of equality and freedom.

Follow Nick on Twitter @nickmilano12.