Flemish nationalist party leader claims 'woke' criminalises Western society
Bart De Wever, leader of the Flemish right-wing nationalist party N-VA, condemns the so-called woke ideology in his new book 'Over Woke'. He claims the ideology pushes society towards the extreme right. However, political philosopher Patrick Loobuyck says calling something 'woke' kills the debate.
In his recently published book, 'Over Woke' (On Woke), the 52-year-old politician argues that 'wokeism' criminalises Western society and glorifies everything that can harm it. "Not a day goes by without the quality press holding up a mirror to our ugliness," De Wever writes. "Wokeism creates a false identity that serves as a cover to exclude others."
"That's not how to achieve emancipation"
In an interview with De Standaard on Saturday, the politician clarifies this statement. "I have no problem with social struggle, and I understand that it involves polarisation in the service of a new synthesis. As a conservative politician, I am not against progress. But progress must be the objective, not the organisation of a vendetta between citizens divided into victims and perpetrators. That's not how to achieve emancipation."
"Public debate often degenerates into a kind of discussion between opposites," political philosopher Patrick Loobuyck comments in De Morgen on Saturday. "With the result that people end up opposing each other and simply not listening to each other. Those who take sides sometimes only see half of reality."
We can speak freely
"If people with certain views or characteristics, such as older white heterosexual men, can no longer speak freely, open debate is threatened," Loobuyck believes. "But we can speak freely."
According to Loobuyck, opponents of 'wokeism' are entirely out of touch. "Dries Van Langenhove (a former extreme-right party Vlaams Belang member) even describes Bart De Wever as woke. And Rik Torfs (professor at KU Leuven and church lawyer) often acts as if he is not allowed to say anything anymore, which is not true. The attitude towards 'woke' is too hysterical. Calling something 'woke' kills the debate."
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