Within the past two years, conservatives have coveted “woke” as their new buzzword to drive their agenda. Most of those jokers don’t even know what “being woke” even means, which was proven through an interview with conservative columnist Bethany Mandel on The Hill TV’s “Rising.”
Twitter had quite a time ripping apart Mandel’s embarrassing attempt to define “woke,” a term that comes up frequently in her book, “Stolen Youth.” Vanguard reporter Briahna Joy Gray paused Mandel to address her comment about Americans considering themselves as “woke.” If you ask me, Gray already knew the answer to this question was going to be laughable by the way she beamed her eyes in skepticism.
“Would you mind defining woke, as this came up a couple of times? I just want to make sure we’re on the same page,” Gray interjected.
In response, and I’m paraphrasing, Mandel responded, “So, well, see, uh, if you, because, and, I mean.” Then after accepting her defeat she blurted, “This is gonna be one of those moments that goes viral.”
Bethany, you were absolutely correct. She tried to clean it up by saying “woke” is hard to define but also adding that her book has an entire chapter defining it (I’m sorry, what?). By then, her time was up and later, the clip went viral on Twitter. Many Black people took to the feed to offer the real definition of “woke.”
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As much as it’s fun bashing conservatives for not knowing the real definition of the term they throw around so confidently, their actions show they may actually know what being woke means.
The anti-woke movement has been pioneered by conservative Republicans, most famously Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis or Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. Within the past two years, they’ve continuously labeled anti-racist education and gender and sexuality studies as inappropriate for the classroom and a product of a political agenda - all under the guise of “wokeness.” School boards and parents who struggle with white fragility have used their power to censor the very topics that have been historically white-washed or just not taught.
Yet, by doing so, they are almost admitting there is something about these topics that can spark a certain line of thinking. Perhaps, a woke line of thinking.
In middle school, I was always told before going out with my white friends, “Remember, you’re Black.” I didn’t realize what that meant until I fell down the Black-history-rabbit-hole (which my teachers never taught, of course) and suddenly, my understanding of the world changed. I knew why everyone was so angry at Trayvon Martin’s murder. I recognized the moments my teachers, peers and even their parents were being racist towards me.
Pushing the anti-woke agenda actively works against the original definition of “wokeness” by trying to blind people from the racial injustice imbedded in our society and hide the experiences that could awaken the minds of people who could demand change.