(A quick, unedited and rambly thought-salad on something that's been bothering me lately.)
I really don't know how else to put this, or what fancy Introduction to use, so let me just write it out in a somewhat ironic way to hide how serious that is of an issue to me:
Am I a baddie?
Over the past 5 years the Landscape on Political YouTube changed dramatically. Gone are the Days of Atheism and Atheism+, the Days of Thousands of "Bedroom Feminist" videos and even the Days of the old Rantosphere. Instead we have this weird amalgamation of beliefs, that together form the new face of Political YouTube: Anti-SJW, Anti-Feminist, Pro-Freedom of Speech, Pro-Science, Anti-Islam, Pro-Gun, Pro-Brexit, pro-"Common Sense" and anti-Progressive altogether.
On the face of it, it doesn't sound too horrible. But beneath this superficial facade of Intellectual Rigor and "Rational" thinking is an ugly beast. A beast that on the one hand worships (Pop-)Science, but on the other hand denies Science whenever it fits. With one breath it's a Free Speech absolutist,with the next breath it tries to get you censored for saying something it doesn't like. It says that open, rational and calm debate is the best thing since sliced bread, but at the same time it refuses to engage with anyone in a meaningful way, instead relying on ridicule, insults and underhanded tactics.
That beast is the audience.
While most of the Content Creators themselves are most likely not malicious in their intent, there is an increasingly vocal culture on YouTube, that assumes it has all the answers. It's all a simple black and white war for our minds: Enlightened, Rational, Empirical, Skeptical, Smart Intellectual Giants that have peaked behind the curtain and now understand how the world works vs. Low T Beta Male Cuck Soyboy Cultural Marxist Feminist SJWs that are completely blind cogs in the machine, hellbent on destroying Western Civilization.
Anything and everything is sacred to defeat such a monstrous enemy. Even sacrificing the principles you scream about wherever you go.
Don't get me wrong, there was a time on YouTube where it seemed to be the other way around: Compassionate, Open-Minded, Educated Children of the world vs. Racist Bigoted Ultra-Fascist Literal Hitlers. But does that justify behaving in exactly the same way as they did, while also claiming the moral high-ground?
There is so much hate in and around Political YouTube Content, so much Tribalism and so much hypocrisy, that it at times seems like a bad joke. But it isn't. And it's been getting worse and worse over time.
Every day I read just plain stupid, hypocritical comments even under well-made, well-researched videos, insulting the creator because he dared to disagree.
By now, it's a regular occurrence to get E-Mails by people asking me "How could you go after this one Idea/Person? I thought we were allies!" Usually, a good part of each E-Mail are just genuinely creative insults.
And not a single week passes by without someone asking me to "DESTROY!!!!" someone they deem an opponent. When I tell them that while I disagree with the creators conclusion, his conduct was okay, I suddenly become the enemy.
When I spoke out against Sargon's Petition back in the day, I was met with a barrage of people that hadn't even watched the video, but because I dared to disagree with Sargon of Akkad, I had to be a Cultural Marxist SJW. Back then I thought we reached peak Insanity, turns out I was completely wrong.
With each new video that dealt with something the audience deemed Heresy, such as disagreeing with Paul Joseph Watson or talking about Marxism in a non-malevolent non-strawmanning way, the audience became louder, more unhinged and more volatile.
It's okay to want Bloodsports, to wreck your opponent, to have some fun at the expense of others and it's fine to be an entertainer first and disregard actual research for the sake of being entertaining. The only real danger is, when Entertainers, or generally speaking Content Creators on YouTube, are mistaken for Intellectual Authorities (This includes me as well). And not only that, but also as cornerstones of ones Identity. Attacking the Content Creator, an Idea he espouses or frankly any Idea you feel strongly about is automatically a reason to dehumanize the opponent, turn him into an ideological monster and justify anything you feel like doing to him.
When I ask "Am I the baddie?" I ask because I feel as if I have contributed to this - however small my contribution may have been with my small subscriber count. At times I find people that really like my content, but depsite all of my attempts, take it as malevolent gospel. "If you want to see Armoured Skeptic D E S T R O Y E D, go watch Dr.Layman".
The research, the conduct, the talk, the process - all of that doesn't matter anymore, it's all about that one quick and gratifying dose of someone on the Internet confirming your beliefs and pandering to your fears.
And again, it's fine to do that, but not while also pretending to be an "Intellectual Heavyweight".
When I go to the "Opposing Side" and decide to watch content, often by very small content creators that never the less do a great job, I am consistently greeted by nothing but hate, condescension and just pure vitriol in the comments. The second someone disagrees with you, you claim the Moral and Intellectual High-ground, stop watching the video, write a condescending comment, try to dox and/or smear the creator and do your best to be as much of a general nuisance as you can.
Over the past months and years, I've seen a rise in all of the behaviors I described in this post. Sadly, including from people that are Fans of my content. I'm not responsible for you, you are not responsible for me - you are of course free to do whatever you want. All I'm asking from you is, that if you like my content, try to give your ideological opponents a chance, treat them as human beings and always, ALWAYS, doubt your own ideals, convictions and beliefs.
But even with that said, I can't help but feel responsible for fueling and contributing to this unhinged, aggressive Backlash against what most people would sum up as "SJWs, Political Correctness and Feminism.". Even though it was never my intention, I probably helped fuck up a good chunk of Political YouTube.
It's important and good to disagree, but always keep in mind that it's often other Humans you are trying to hurt for no other reason except being butthurt.