Entertainment

Social Justice Warriors Are Trying to Censor This Show

The HBO series is at least two years off — but already the haters are rendering their harsh judgment

An upcoming HBO television series called “Confederate” likely won’t begin production for another year — and then likely won’t debut for audiences until a year after that. But many people have already deemed it unworthy of being created at all.

Sadly, this is a time that people will jump at the chance to censor others not based on their actual work, but on their own projected ideas of other people’s future projects.

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HBO recently announced “Confederate” — to heavy backlash on social media. The series is an alternative-history work of fiction set in modern times, in which the confederacy won the Civil War and slavery still exists. Behind the scenes on the project are acclaimed “Game of Thrones” writers and producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss (both pictured above), who are white — and Malcolm Spellman and Nichelle Tramble Spellman, a husband-and-wife writer-producer team, who are both black.

The announcement of the far-off project by HBO led to criticism from many, including writer Roxane Gay (“Difficult Woman,” “Hunger”), who wrote a piece for The New York Times entitled “I Don’t Want to Watch Slavery Fan Fiction.”

“It is curious that time and again, when people create alternate histories, they are largely replicating a history we already know, and intimately,” she wrote. “They are replicating histories where whiteness thrives and people of color remain oppressed.”

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During Sunday night’s broadcast of “Game of Thrones,” detractors of the upcoming program used the hashtag #noconfederate to send a message to HBO that the network should abandon the future project.

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The judgment is mostly based on their own ideas of the way artists’ minds work — artists whom they’ve never met. Do people really think the producers behind “Confederate” will be making some sort of pro-confederacy television series? Isn’t it more likely they are using the alternative history platform to engage in a larger and deeper discussion about things such as racism in America?

HBO responded to the criticism in a statement: “The project is currently in its infancy so we hope that people will reserve judgment until there is something to see.”

HBO’s request is unlikely to be fulfilled. Social justice warriors now smell blood in the water and probably won’t stop until “Confederate” is completely scrapped by the network, which is unfortunately a real possibility.

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America offers freedom of speech and expression like no other place in the world — yet movements like this only work to undermine such freedoms. In the name of social justice, many people are resorting to the bullying of artists and promoting censorship of art that hasn’t even been created yet.

It’s authoritarianism and groupthink rolled into one vicious anti-art mindset. While a television show like “Confederate” is not above judgment, passing judgment and casting aspersions before it’s even been presented to viewers shows a raw and dangerous misunderstanding of context and creative expression.

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