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popular culture

Performative Hysteria

Is there any end in sight for the deeply destructive “cancel culture” in our society? Are Twitter searches of minors the new journalistic standard? Has Twitter become one giant group therapy session? Roving correspondent for National Review, Kevin Williamson joins Dan and Amy to discuss his new book, “The Smallest Minority: Independent Thinking in the Age of Mob Politics."

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The Progressive Movement’s Useful Idiots

Are Silicon Valley and Wall Street regretting being a part of creating the progressive movement? Has Silicon Valley become so intolerant to their own detriment? Are older Democrats worried about the new progressives taking over the party? Contributing editor at City Journal, Joel Kotkin joins Dan and Amy to discuss.

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Colbert & Cooper On Suffering

"You said, what punishments of God are not gifts. Do you really believe that?"

"Yes."

That was a question from CNN's Anderson Cooper and an answer by late night talk show host Stephen Colbert during a most pleasantly shocking interview.

CNN anchors and network TV comedy personalities are not exactly known for their thoughtful treatment of Christianity ... but that's exactly what Colbert and Cooper provided.

Colbert conveyed his understanding of the communal nature of suffering and how it prepares us to better empathize with and provide ministry to others when they experience loss.

He also acknowledged our existence as a gift from God and that suffering is part of that gift. One is tempted to push him on the sanctity of life from conception to natural death given his affirmation.

But I'm happy to go slow here.

As William F. Buckley instructed, we have to leave room for people to come over to our side.

To paraphrase Tom Bodett, we'll leave the light on for Stephen Colbert.

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Stripped Of Title For Conservative Views

Why was Miss Michigan stripped of her title for tweets? Is there a mainstream bias against conservative women? University of Michigan student, Kathy Zhu joins Dan and Amy to discuss why she was stripped of her Miss Michigan title and what she plans to do next.

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“Soulless: The Case Against R. Kelly”

How did one of the worst predators of young black women on the south and west sides of Chicago get away with it for so many years? Did the music community not want to believe R. Kelly was capable of this unthinkable behavior? How many more victims are still out there? Reporter, Jim DeRogatis joins Dan and Amy to discuss his new book, "Soulless: The Case Against R. Kelly.”

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Politics And Media: Two Sides Of The Same Coin

What are the consequences of politics in our social life? Do we create a fantasy world of our own through our political ideologies? Has politics been reduced to carnage? What is the imagery of the U.S. in the eyes of the rest of the world? Life and Arts Editor at The Spectator, Dominic Green joins Dan and Amy to discuss.

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New Allegations Against R. Kelly

How did another video resurface of R. Kelly allegedly engaging with minor girls? What are the parallels between Michael Jackson and R. Kelly’s abusive behavior? How does star power give these huge celebrities the benefit of the doubt? Attorney, Gloria Allred joins Dan and Amy to discuss.

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“Fighting For His Life”

R. Kelly breaks his silence to ask America how stupid we think he is. Who’s the better actor, R. Kelly or Jussie Smollett? What kind of help does he think he needs? If everyone knew about these rumors for over 20 years, then where has the Cook County State’s Attorney been? Dan and Amy discuss R. Kelly’s interview with Gayle King.

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Two Americas

Will America's next civil war be worse than the last one? Have conservatives capitulated to the left on most cultural issues to avoid the brewing “civil war?” What will finally be the spark? Regnery Publishing VP, Harry Crocker joins Dan and Amy to discuss. 

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We Don’t Beat Them By Joining Them

If Roseanne gets cancelled so should Samantha Bee!

Who?

It’s someone you’ve never heard of who has a show you’ve never seen who said something vile about Ivanka.

Ok. Yeah. Fire what’s her name too.

And if Bob Iger is going to apologize to Valerie Jarrett, when is he going to apologize to President Trump?

Who? For what?

He’s a network executive you’ve never heard of whose opinion you otherwise find irrelevant who employs on-air personalities who have said profane and ignorant things about POTUS without consequence.

Ok. Yeah. Apologize!

Empty outrage is not synonymous with standing up for yourself or putting in the fight for others.

It’s just an uninspired substitute for having standards.

What Valerie Jarrett termed a teaching moment during one of MSNBC’s signature hastily-assembled, bigot-baiting town halls is actually a trap for conservatives.

Jarrett wants you to give in to the Left’s lack of principles by abandoning yours.

Outrage one-upmanship is a two-player game, you see.

Ask yourself: do you think we beat them by joining them?

Or is the move to be who they say they are but are not and, in so doing, give lie to who they say we are and are not?

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Elder And Proft On Kanye, Race, And Trump

Is the Democratic Party detrimental to black Americans? Can the GOP convert minorities without dismantling the welfare state? What effect does the left-leaning media and academia have on culture and opportunity? In this special episode of Against The Current, Bestselling Author and nationally syndicated talk show host Larry Elder, 'the Sage of South Central' joins Dan Proft for an in-depth discussion on race, culture and identity politics in America. Elder also explains Trump's likeness to Reagan and why Kanye is good for conservatives.

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Society As One Big College Campus

Liberal virtue signalers don’t believe in thoughts and prayers but think a button on their lapel will change the world? The actors and actresses are talented but who gave them the misplaced moral authority? Screenwriter, essayist and author, Andrew Klavan joins Dan and Amy to discuss the glitz, glamour, and virtue-signaling at the Oscars. 

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Is "Toxic Masculinity" The Problem?

How are boys supposed to know what it means to be a man when pop culture celebrates sexual harassment and disrespect? Can boys not be men when society is telling them gender doesn’t matter? In the case of mass shooters, is one of the common threads the lack of socialization of the shooter or their failure of instruction of what it means to be a man? Dr. Leonard Sax, author of “Why Gender Matters,” joins Dan and Amy to explain why gender matters.

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Time For Weinstein Co. To Put Their Money Where Their Mouth Is

Who knew what and when about Kevin Spacey? Who kept quiet? Is there going to be a new shift in Hollywood from business as usual? Are the men in Hollywood being put on notice? Will Weinstein be welcomed back in the industry? Lawyer for Harvey Weinstein accusers, Gloria Allred joins Dan and Amy to discuss why Hollywood leftists hate women and children, as well as why her daughter defended The Human Stain.

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Halloween Costumes: Cultural Appropriation Or A Child's Celebration?

Cosmopolitan Magazine says parents who let their children dress as a character of another culture or background, specifically Disney Princess Moana, are racists. Teen Vogue was unavailable for comment. So, we went to Lincoln Park Zoo to see if parents could Follow The Logic. 

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Is Nothing Sacred?

In his remarkable press conference, Trump Chief of Staff Gen. John Kelly prompted reflection on that which was once sacred and should be but no longer is.

Women. The dignity of every life. Religion. Gold Star Families. Selfless service to country. All once sacred. Now not so much.

Gen. Kelly provided a timely reminder that civilization is not always advancing. The latest point in time is not necessarily the most enlightened. Societies can regress.

The nature of man is immutable. Edifying influences like faith, family and work and the responsibilities associated with each are necessary.

Notions of duty and honor keep us from devolving into a Hobbesian state of nature.

So what is sacred?

The politicization of all things makes state power sacred.

The 41% of nonelderly-headed households who receive entitlement payments makes good intentions sacred.

Banning books and blocking speakers to protect feelings makes conceit sacred.

In other words, the power to distribute other people’s stuff and eliminate dissent has replaced what Gen. Kelly described as sacred and what four Green Berets died on a distant battlefield to protect as sacred.

If you believe their last full measure of devotion for your freedoms was sacred then you might consider fighting to preserve them. 

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Hollywood’s Men Without Chests

Victor Davis Hanson had the best one-line summary of Trump’s Presidential campaign suggesting that the basic Trump message was: I know the elites in media, Hollywood, big business, and politics and they’re even worse than you think.

Whether or not you think Trump, who came into the campaign as one of those elites also fits that description, the rest of the cultural mavens in question are certainly living down to it.

Now comes Harvey Weinstein, the human stain that won’t come clean because those who knew didn’t for decades.

But how could they? After all, Weinstein is just an extreme version of them, a difference in degree not kind.

The revolting Weinstein is the personification of the darkness that lurks inside the Hollywood beautiful people—and the pols and media types who sidle up to them—now climbing over each other to denounce the conduct about which they previously joked.

But they’re ever ready to trade sensitivity for sensuality. To look the other way requires only that they be rewarded for doing so.

Thus, Brad Pitt can confront Weinstein about his treatment of Pitt’s then girlfriend Gwyneth Paltrow only to subsequently do two movies with Weinstein.

To borrow from C.S. Lewis, they are Hollywood’s men and women without chests. They may possess intellect and they certainly have appetites but they are devoid of truth or any belief in it.

They are the incomplete humans that give rise to monsters like Weinstein.

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Media And Hollywood Guilty Of Enabling Weinstein

Will Hollywood endure the same fate of the NFL? Outlets were offered the story and they chose not to publish it? People talked about Weinstein’s behavior as an open secret, but were the warnings from those in Hollywood enough? ESPN’s Michael Wilbon compares Roger Goodell to a plantation owner. But employers such as Google can fire James Damore but the NFL can’t tell their players to stand for the National Anthem? Senior Editor for HotAir.com and columnist for The Week, Ed Morrissey joins Dan and Amy to discuss.  

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Are You A Faithful Pluralist Or A Sophisticated Barbarian?

Are you a faithful pluralist or a sophisticated barbarian?

Let’s find out.

Is man fallen or can he be perfected once elevated to public office?

Should a free society be governed by those with the humility attendant to faith or those who feature unrestrained emotion?

Someone who governs by emotion might not believe he's an angel. He might believe he's done some bad things, but he also believes he can set all that aside.

Once a political leader believes that he can think and feel in a sin-free way, there is nothing to constrain the newfound purity of his actions regardless of their consequences.

This is what Flannery O’Connor meant when she wrote, “In the absence of faith, we govern by tenderness. And tenderness leads to the gas chamber.”

Tenderness is the foundation of totalitarianism.

It is how otherwise sophisticated people indulge barbarism.

It is how heterodox thoughts are repressed under the guise of tolerance.

It is how religious freedom is marginalized and private property seized.

It is how science is subordinated to ideology.

It is how a free society gives away its freedom.

The faithful pluralist, by contrast, is skeptical about his emotional read on things because he understands he is influenced by sin in ways that are not always evident. In politics, such a leader is hesitant to extend his power as a result.

So which are you, the faithful pluralist or the sophisticated barbarian?

Your freedom depends on your answer.

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Fighting Cultural Colonization

Representative Jeanne Ives is taking heat for standing up to cultural bullies in our schools. Tiny Dancer sues the federal government for trying to make him follow federal law. Will Gov. Rauner follow suit and sign sanctuary state legislation? No action on K-12 school funding this week as IL Senate Democrats are out of town for the coronation of one of their own. Pope Francis calls it "terrible" that children are taught they can choose their gender. Don't tell Chicago Tribune's Kim Janssen who identifies as a "reporter." Dan & Amy covered education funding, sanctuary cities, and Illinois politics with State Representative Jeanne Ives.

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