New York magazine’s Jesse Singal attempts to unpack today the intramural feud between former Breitbart.com editor Ben Shapiro and his former colleagues. Shapiro, an ardent member of the #NeverTrump camp, split from the site after an incident in which his then-colleague Michelle Fields was grabbed by Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski.
Shapiro’s refusal to support Trump as the presumptive Republican nominee has fueled a plethora of ugly and bigoted attacks against him, coming in particular from the “Alt-Right” movement.
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, “the Alt-Right is a loose set of far-right ideologies at the core of which is a belief that ‘white identity’ is under attack through policies prioritizing multiculturalism, political correctness and social justice and must be preserved, usually through white-identified online communities and physical ethno-states.” The movement’s “key tenets,” according to SPLC: “Racist ideas. Race-baiting ideas. Anti-Muslim and anti-Immigrant ideas.”
Breitbart.com Technology Editor and Shapiro nemesis Milo Yiannopoulos is one of the Alt-Right movement’s most prominent voices.
Singal quotes Yiannopoulos, who has in the past claimed “matrilineal Jewish heritage,” defending anti-Semitic attacks on conservative journalists:
The anti-Semitism on the internet, which is really important, I want people to understand this because nobody seems to, when Jonah Goldberg of National Review is bombarded with these memes, and anti-Semitic “take a hike, kike” stuff, it’s not because there’s a spontaneous outpouring of anti-Semitism from 22-year-olds in this country. What it is is it’s a mischievous, dissident, trolly generation who do it because it gets a reaction. Right? That’s been the case for young people for generations.
So, according to a prominent editor of a media company closely associated with the Republican nominee, using the most vile and bigoted language against Jewish reporters is now okay if the goal is just to get a reaction.