Is Ben Shapiro a conservative liberals can count on?

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Is Ben Shapiro a conservative liberals can count on? Empty Is Ben Shapiro a conservative liberals can count on?

Post by Maddog on Wed Jan 24, 2018 6:09 pm

Shapiro first hit my and many other left-wing radar screens in March 2016, when he called out the bullies at Breitbart News. A Breitbart reporter named Michelle Fields had been physically assaulted after a Donald Trump press conference by Corey Lewandowski, who was then Trump’s campaign manager. When Fields complained, Lewandowski said Fields was “delusional” and denied the incident had occurred. Trump spokeswoman Hope Hicks suggested Fields was just angling to get attention. Despite a Washington Post writer’s eyewitness account corroborating Fields (and, later, video evidence), the editors at Breitbart opted to accept the Trump team’s brazenly false version of events over the word of their own reporter.

Which made Shapiro furious. Shapiro had known Breitbart’s founder, Andrew Breitbart, ever since he emailed to compliment a column Shapiro wrote for the Daily Bruin as a 16-year-old undergrad at UCLA. Breitbart eventually hired Shapiro, years later, but died a month after Shapiro came aboard. Under a new boss, Steve Bannon, Breitbart News cozied up to the Trump campaign and to the burgeoning alt-right movement. Shapiro was disgusted by both. The treatment of Fields was his breaking point.

“In my opinion, Steve Bannon is a bully,” he said in a statement at the time, explaining his resignation from Breitbart, “and has sold out Andrew’s mission in order to back another bully, Donald Trump; he has shaped the company into Trump’s personal Pravda.”

Fields got little support from other right-wingers. “When the whole ordeal happened, Breitbart immediately threw me under a bus,” she told me. “Close colleagues abandoned me. Fox took me off the air. People didn’t want to alienate Trump. I was in this storm and Ben reached out to me and said he wanted to jump into the storm with me. He knew it would hurt him with his base, with people that liked him.”

Shapiro’s stand put him in the crosshairs of more bullies, attracting a hail of anti-Semitic harassment from Trump’s hordes of deplorables. Shapiro would open his inbox each day to see images of himself photoshopped into gas chambers, yellow Jewish stars pinned to his chest. There were death threats and threats to his family. “The reason they came after me,” Shapiro says, “was because I was anti-Trump, I was openly Orthodox, and I had worked for Breitbart. That combination was absolutely toxic.”

A report by the Anti-Defamation League, covering August 2015–July 2016, found that Shapiro was the direct target of at least 7,400 anti-Semitic tweets. This made him easily the most targeted journalist in the study. And the abuse hasn’t stopped. The morning I visited his office, roughly a year after the election, Shapiro discovered that alt-righters had gotten around to doxing his sister, who is an opera singer, and were spamming her YouTube clips with anti-Semitic messages.

Which leaves me with an ancient dilemma: Is the enemy of my enemy my friend? Shapiro is among a dwindling cadre of Trump-averse conservatives at a time when the mainstream GOP and its media apparatus are following (and sometimes leading) our cretinous president straight into the muck. Shapiro is ascendant, with a growing media empire and a large audience who adores him. Should there arise a constitutional crisis in which this president attempts to roll his tanks (metaphorical or otherwise) over the ramparts of American democracy, I will be relying on influential right-wing figures like Ben Shapiro to help America hold the line. The question I keep asking myself is: Will he?

Slate is a left wing entity, as is the author. However, this article shows that someone can have an open minded discussion about someone with a different political ideaolgy.

Hopefully a left of center opinion piece about a decent human that is right of center, is still allowed on here.

Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.

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