How funny is Lisa De Pasquale’s new Social Justice Warrior Handbook? So funny that I felt compelled to share a few pages with a guy I had just met at breakfast at a recent conservative gathering.
We guffawed over the Donald Trump “hate coloring” page, which invites the reader to “channel your feelings about Trump.”
There are many other laugh-out-loud moments: beware of outing yourself if you dare to read it at the local fair trade organic coffee store.
De Pasquale’s short, satirical manual — officially titled The Social Justice Warrior Handbook: A Practical Survival Guide for Snowflakes, Millenials, and Generation Z — is a sendup of the sensibilities of today’s anti-Trump left.
Of course, the book’s real audience is conservative. As such, it is a refreshing approach to a serious subject: namely, the left’s militant response to losing in 2016, and its effort to suppress opposing views in the media and on campus. As “community organizing” guru Saul Alinksy himself said in (sadly) patriarchal fashion: “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.”
It also beats the hand-wringing that haunts most conservative books on left-wing intolerance. Better to laugh at the snowflakes — at least for a while — than to feel constantly anxious about what they are doing.
The Handbook goes beyond mere in-jokes and gags. It does have one blank section — like the blank-paged Reasons to Vote for Democrats, which was a conservative hit earlier this year — but De Pasquale does not settle for cheap laughs. She has given great thought to her subject, which pays off in sections like “How to Plan an Awareness Campaign.” De Pasquale lists twelve examples of recent alleged hate crimes that were highlighted by left-wing activists. She ends by observing:
All of these incidents perfectly illustrate the racist, homophobic, sexist, and Islamophobic attitudes that exist in America. The events listed above were all case where the victims performed the actions themselves, but they still helped raise awareness despite being proven to be hoaxes. They were immediately reported and shared by friendly social media influencers and media outlets. The awareness campaign worked because even though they weren’t true, they certainly could be true based on our worldview.
Another helpful section includes tips for “planning a coworker’s fetus shower.” And the text is accompanied by many delightful illustrations and interactive exercises. My favorite is the maze, which is rigged so that there is only one path from the beginning — a drawing of an androgynous, sneering, pierced liberal activist with hipster glasses and a buzz cut — to the end, which is an illustration of the president accompanied by the caption “Trump’s Fault.”
The left has plenty of caricatures it uses to lampoon conservatives — Stephen Colbert being only the most famous example. It is about time the right responded in kind. The phenomenon of the “social justice warrior” — the perpetually aggrieved, yet aggressive, “crybully” who has escaped the ivory tower of academia to occupy social media and the Democratic Party itself — offers a perfect opportunity for conservative humorists to turn the tables.
De Pasquale has seized that opportunity — and has accompanied her book with an interesting marketing campaign. At her SJWhandbook.com website, readers and fans can purchase their own “social justice warrior” gear, including activist coffee mugs a “melting snowflake trucker cap.” The t-shirts, sadly, are offensively cis-gendered as “men’s” and “women’s.” I’ll save my money until De Pasquale can offer branded melting snowflake pink pussyhats as well.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.