Posted by Sam Fenny - Memes and headline comments by David Icke Posted on 10 April 2024

How to Spot the Next Mania

Why does the world keep being sucked into collective crazes like transgenderism, MeToo, lockdowns and BLM in recent years? Lionel Shriver takes the question head on in an excellent article in UnHerd. Here’s an excerpt.

Within the astonishingly short time frame of 10 years, I count four real-life collective crazes: transgenderism, #MeToo, Covid lockdowns (which spawned sub-crazes over masks and vaccines), and Black Lives Matter. I also worry we’re already in the grip of social mania number five.

Take trans. Gender-identity disorder was not that long ago an extraordinarily rare psychiatric diagnosis largely constrained to men. Abruptly circa 2012 — on the heels of such a successful crusade for gay rights and even gay marriage that homosexuality became passé — a profusion of television documentaries hit our screens about little boys who wore dresses and played with dolls. Fast-forward to the present, and the renamed diagnosis has exploded by thousands of percent across the West and now pertains abundantly to girls. Teachers tell toddlers that they have to decide whether they’re a girl or a boy or something in-between. We’re subjecting children to powerful, life-altering experimental drugs and surgically removing healthy breasts and genitals, even at the cost of permanent sexual dysfunction and infertility. “Some people are born in the wrong body” has become a truism, which sounds to me as medically credible as phrenology or bloodletting.

The social mania displays a few consistent characteristics. First and foremost, it never seems like a social mania at the time. In the thick of a widespread preoccupation, its precepts simply seem like the truth. Trans women are women; get over it. Or: masculinity is toxic; virtually all women have been subject to sexual torment and male abuse of power; regarding any accusations they make, no matter how far-fetched or petty, women must be believed. Or: COVID-19 is so lethal, and such a threat to our endurance as a species, that we’ve no choice but to shut down our whole economies and abdicate our every civil liberty to contain the disease. Or: all Western countries are “systemically racist”; all white people are genetically racist; the police are all racist (even if they’re black) and should be defunded or abolished; the only remedy for “structural racism” is anti-meritocratic, over-compensatory racial quotas in hiring and education.

While the seeds of a mania have often been planted earlier, for most ordinary people it comes out of nowhere. Transgenderism rocketed to a cultural fetish over a matter of months. After one fully fledged creep was exposed as a serial sex abuser, #MeToo spread on Twitter like potato blight. Literally overnight, citizenries in March 2020 took it for granted that their “liberal democracies” could justifiably deny them freedom of movement, assembly, association, press and even speech, while many became eager enforcers of the chaotic, despotic, and sometimes positively silly new regime. It took only a few days for George Floyd’s death to trigger huge protest marches all over the world. This hyperbolic response to a single undeserved killing in a one mid-sized American city was partially fed by the pent-up frustrations of whole populations under house arrest during Covid. But for Koreans to troop down the streets of Seoul chanting, “Black lives matter!” when the country has hardly any black people was insensible. Likewise, Britons chanting “Hands up, don’t shoot!” when their constabulary is unarmed. Moreover, all these recent examples illustrate how moral panics have become more international in scope than ever before.

Manias are fuelled by emotion. The cult of trans has capitalised on our yearning to seem enlightened and compassionate. It has been presented as the logical next step after gay rights, the movement plays on our craving to feel ultra-contemporary. #MeToo both fed off and promulgated resentment, self-pity, and vengeance; in standing up to abuse of power, it tempted some women to abuse their own power to ruin men’s lives. Covid lockdowns stirred primitive terror of death and contagion, until we came to view other people as mere vectors of disease. BLM stimulated the nascent Christian proclivities for guilt, repentance, and penitence even in the secular, while offering black people opportunity to vent frustration, self-righteous fury, and even hatred. All manias thrive on our desire to be included by our own herd and on our anxiety about being exiled — or, if you will, about being UnHerded.

Because a proper mania brooks no dissent. In its grip, everyone believes the same thing, says the same thing, and even uses the same language. A quasi-religious fervour makes anyone outside the bubble of shared obsession seem heretical, dangerous, insane or outright evil. Opponents of lockdowns were granny killers; the unvaccinated were pariahs who shouldn’t be allowed to fly, eat out or obtain healthcare, while some argued “anti-vaxxers” should be imprisoned or put to death. Their rhetoric and affect often violent, transactivists tar critics as murderers; not long ago, writing a single discouraging word about the mutilation of children would end your career. (Self-protectively, I kept my own journalistic mouth shut for a good four years; most journalists are still prudently bumping along on the trans bandwagon.) Women who expressed reservations about the indiscriminate sweep of #MeToo were traitors to their sex. In 2020, even tweeting “All lives matter” got you sacked.

Read More: How to Spot the Next Mania

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