More on Labels

Of course, in order for the rhetorical trick described in the previous post to work, the label needs to be something that people really don’t want to be. Adding “phobic” to your insults is particularly brilliant because it puts you in a position of a psychiatrist giving out diagnoses. That’s a role that projects great power.

Nothing is more pathetic than people who try to attach labels that nobody minds. “Socialist! Communist!” These meant something negative in 1952. Today they are a badge of honor sought by the privileged classes. “Yes, but how is communism better than nazism?” It’s not but making these lame, nitpicky points about why your insult SHOULD land if only the world were fair is loser behavior.

Nazis, Anti-vaxxers, and Islamophobes

Everybody who voted for Trump was a Nazi in the same way as everybody who doesn’t want to get a COVID “vaccine” is an anti-vaxxer. And in the same way as everybody who doesn’t want to read Ibram Kendi and Robin DiAngelo is a racist. And in the same way as everybody who opposes puberty blockers is a transphobe.

This is the oldest rhetorical trick. Call people some outrageous name and redirect their energy towards denying the charge. They will look so weak and pathetic issuing denials (“No, Comrade Stalin, I’m not a Japanese spy. You know how dedicated I am to our great revolution. Please, Comrade Stalin!”), that they guarantee your win.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The power to name is the power to create and blot out of existence. Some people have figured that out while others keep mumbling pitifully “no, please, I’m not a racist-Nazi-hater-phobe.”