We can certainly have co-belligerents from many disparate tribes. When CrossPolitic interviewed Rod Dreher last Fall, he said much the same thing. Despite his differences with us, smashmouth Calvinists (I’m just going to call everything we do “smashmouth” from now on), he figured we’re all going to end up in the same prison cell together (maybe cell block four?), so he might as well make friends with us now. I’m no perfectionist. If a Roman Catholic is trying to honestly end abortion, we can stand side by side in that fight. If an atheist is exposing woke cancel culture, I’m happy to help chuck those grenades. But co-belligerents are different than allies. Co-belligerents have a common enemy but often they have a common enemy for very different reasons. When the Soviet Union was a co-belligerent with England and the US in World War 2, that wasn’t because we had shared values, but merely because we had a common enemy.
So none of what follows is me taking my toys and going home. As I say, I’m not a perfectionist. Have I mentioned that I’m a smashmouth incrementalist when it comes to ending abortion? But I do believe that good fences make good neighbors, and the truth is always helpful, even when it stings. Not that anyone asked me, but I just want to point out that unless something changes dramatically in the current trajectory of the Daily Wire, it will be the next Fox News before too long, and what I mean by that is that it will be CNN but with more cleavage. And the Blaze and Prager U are already up to their armpits in woke compromise. And by that, I mean they are well on their way to being the next so-called conservative news sell-outs. They may hold out for some time with their own versions of a Tucker Carlson questioning the dominant narratives, but the Daily Wire is now officially begging to become irrelevant and obsolete and likely, just another CRT tumor in American media.
Splain Yo Sef
The problem far too many conservatives have is that they are often way late to the fight. Here we are, chubby toddlers all, running into the living room of our country to find that our public schools are grooming kindergarteners to be trannies and sodomites and drag queens, and we squawk and think we’ve joined the culture war. But what we have to get our heads and hearts clear on is that the culture war is actually centered on the Bible and the Lord Jesus Christ. That is the center of the culture war. The central question is whether we will submit to the Triune God and His Christ or not; the rest is details. Ben Shapiro says that Jesus is not the Christ, and therefore Jesus is not Lord. Ben Shapiro, God bless him (and I mean that), does not have a consistent place from which to actually fight the darkness of woke lies and progressive tyranny. This is because his core conviction is a woke lie: Jesus is not Lord. Again, that doesn’t mean he can’t say many true and helpful things, but his denial of Christ means that ultimately he is what Paul calls an enemy of the gospel, even though he is Paul’s countryman by religion. Matt Walsh and Michael Knowles are Papist idolaters who think the Pope is the head of the church, that Jesus is re-sacrificed every time the Mass is celebrated, and that (holy) tradition is an authority over the Bible (more on that in a minute). And the one Protestant evangelical leading that operation is Jeremy Boreing (co-CEO with Ben Shapiro), and he apparently thinks he can take on the woke mob with boobs.
Look, I’m not an idiot, I watched Jeremy’s razor ad, and I see clearly what they’re doing. It’s an appeal to men to be manly, to build an alternative, conservative economy, and screw the pansy, woke liberals. We don’t need your woke razors; we’ll make our own damn razors. It’s a brilliant move, and almost brilliantly executed. The problem is that Jeremy Boreing is doing what evangelicals almost always do and that is trying to win the war by going three or four decades backward to where it was not yet quite as obvious that we were already losing the war. Those of us who champion the traditional family sometimes get accused of just wanting to turn back the clock to Ozzie and Harriet or Leave it to Beaver or whatever your preferred iconic 1950s family looked like. But to Hell with that. While I would certainly take the 1950s in some respects over what we have today as far as public morality and freedom goes, if we’re aiming for that as some kind of potent cultural highwater mark, prepare to be massively disappointed, and to our point here, prepare to repeat a Vietnam, literally and culturally.
The Whole Argument
Look, let me try to explain this to you carefully: right after the 1950s came the 1960s. That’s it. That’s the argument. Whatever was going on in the 1950s, it birthed, created, and curated the 1960s. Whatever hypocritical façade was on television in the 1950s, let us be clear that all was not well. And a whole bunch of what was not well can be exemplified in Jeremy Boreing’s razor ad, a sort of call back to a 1950s-let-boys-be-boys. But the thing that conservatives have to understand is that what Jeremy Boreing playfully exudes is nothing less than the proto-wokism that led directly to the current woke jihad. And just to put a fine point on what I’m talking about: I’m talking about the girls dressed as whores. That’s the fly in the ointment. It’s the glaring contradiction that undermines everything else in the ad. Because having multiple women standing around you with their breasts hanging out is not manly. It is what men think is manly who are already in the grip of woke lust. It is what men think is manly who are already in the process of giving their strength to women. And it is precisely how we got here.
The original offer of woke enlightenment came in the Garden 6,000 years ago, when the serpent told a woman that if she ate of the forbidden fruit, her eyes would be opened and she would be like God, knowing good and evil. This is the continental divide. This is the watershed issue. Did God really say? And don’t misunderstand. My objection is not coming from some kind of prude embarrassment of female bodies, sex, or breasts. I just gave a wedding homily a few days ago in which I hit the glory of feminine beauty in a straightforward and biblical way. I’m a minister of the gospel, and one of my assigned texts is the Song of Solomon. And I do believe it is my duty to bring these things up in a way calculated to embarrass real prudes. But the Bible is utterly clear that a woman’s breasts belong to no one but her own husband to enjoy (Prov. 5:19).
But watch this: the Bible teaches that there is a moral and logical gravity to sexual immorality. You cannot stop at pinups and bikini babes because you are already in the process of deciding for yourself what is good and evil. When you reject God’s Word, you are building a house on the sand, and it cannot stand. You cannot say that your standard is traditional family values or Western culture or even “holy” tradition because that is no transcendent, eternal standard. The “Judeo-Christian tradition” divorced from the authoritative Word of God found in the Bible is just humanism in religious drag. What we find in the “tradition” is promiscuity, injustice, and bigotry. What we find in Western culture is a bunch of good stuff (from Christ and His Word) and piles of bad stuff still getting worked out of fallen humanity’s system. There really was misogyny, polygamy, racism, and slavery. Hear me carefully: I’m not saying the West intentionally promulgated all those things. I’m not saying that there is nothing to conserve from the Christian West. No, I believe the Christian West has been a glorious explosion of progress and blessing precisely because the gospel was leavening that loaf, because in various ways, more or less, and to varying degrees, it was Christian and becoming Christian. I’m a conservative because I believe with all my heart that we must conserve those good things given to us by Christ and built on the firm foundation of His Word in the Bible. But if you make the tradition or the culture all by itself the standard you have made a very imperfect artifact of Christian influence the standard, which is just as foolish as making one man or one Christian denomination your standard (Sorry, Walsh and Knowles). For whatever good they may truly have done, they are not the standard. The standard is Christ and His Word.
But the point is this: you cannot fight back against 2022 wokism with 1950s proto-wokism. OK, sure, you can try and you can score a few points, maybe even make the other side hurt in the bank account and in the cool points category. I mean let’s face it, modern woke progressives are some of the least cool people in the world, and dudes with blowtorches and fast cars are way cooler. No doubt. But it’s like if Boreing had gone for a slightly older audience, aiming maybe instead for the 1920s, and instead of pinup girls, he had two dudes in white hoods standing next to him, maybe with burning crosses. And you say, who would do that? Well, Jeremy Boreing apparently. Why do I say that? Well, the KKK really was a respectable Gentleman’s club that stood for “tradition” for a time in our nation. It was full of crap, but it’s true. And I have no way of knowing from Jeremy’s Razor ad on what basis the Daily Wire chaps would object to it. I mean those white hoods were signs of American masculinity (for a minute). They were wicked signs, but why hookers and not white hoods? And the answer I suspect is that one is more universally popular with lustful men. And that’s all I need to know. If you think you will win this culture war through pure populism, through some vague goodness of the common man, then you may be good for a momentary speed bump of the progressive tidal wave, but you won’t be here in 10 years.
From Pinups to Mastectomies
It’s not an accident that when the prophet Ezekiel describes the promiscuity of Israel and Judah, likening them to desperate whores who paid their lovers to grab their breasts (Ez. 16:33, 23:21), that God gives that kind of whoring over to a kind of drunk insanity that ends up cutting off its own breasts: “Thou shalt be drunk with drunkenness and sorrow with the cup of astonishment and desolation… thou shalt even drink it and suck it out, and thou shalt break the sherds thereof, and pluck off thine own breasts…” (Ez. 23:33-34). So this is the moral and covenantal gravity we are dealing with: if you show your breasts off or pay women to do so, you are asking for the kind of judgment from God that will drive you to the madness of self-mutilating mastectomies. Read it for yourself. Start with Jeremy Boreing, and you will end up with that poor Elliot Page girl.
We are living in that world now, a world where having flaunted sexual promiscuity for a solid generation and more, we now find ourselves (shock) surrounded by women and girls getting mastectomies because they think they might actually be men, and we have men voluntarily being castrated because they think they are women, and men buying and selling babies because they have rejected the natural use of women. You can’t stand on some kind of moral high horse mocking Ketanji Brown Jackson’s refusal to define what a “woman” is, when you clearly don’t know what one is either. Sure, I can prefer a world where everyone knows that a woman has real, God-given mammary glands. But it’s unclear that Jeremy Boreing knows what they are for. They are not for the world to ogle. They are for one man to enjoy, a man who took vows to lay down his life to provide for and protect that one woman till he dies, and they are for giving life to children.
I don’t write this because I want the Daily Wire to fail. I write this because they have been one of the closet things to an honest, conservative news and media house in recent years. But I’m told that their first feature film couldn’t help but have brief shots of breasts, and now the CEO comes out with his own ad pretending to be a pimp.
This is the point: you do not fight the judgment of God with the very thing that brought the judgment of God. You do not fight the woke mob with the thing that sent it. I’m all about true, biblical masculinity, the kind that shoots guns (and flamethrowers), drives fast cars and big trucks, chops wood, smokes cigars, drinks whiskey, works hard, and doesn’t give a damn about what the godhaters think, but I also believe that all of that grit, all of that sweat, all of that strength and swagger (the godly kind) is for the purpose of finding one woman to love till your dying day, putting a roof over her head, and making her the mother of as many children as the Lord will bless you with. I believe that a husband not only may but must delight continually in his wife’s breasts and their bedroom should be a place where the two of them are constantly having a good time. But I don’t care how much you paid the ladies in the commercial, Jeremy, that’s still called buying and selling flesh. And while I hope that you object to what Dave Rubin is doing, you must hate the path that got us here. And while the liberals are full of lies and smears about true biblical masculinity, what you presented really is toxic masculinity and some of those 1950s dudes really were racist bigots.
It could have been an amazing ad, but instead, the Daily Wire pulled the punch. Instead, they sold out to a proto-woke mob, and if they continue down that path, they will soon be as lame as all the rest of light night television. What they needed to do was have all the swagger and explosions minus the prostitutes, and the ad should have ended with Jeremy going home to a lovely wife and a table full of kids. That’s the most punk rock thing a man can do: work hard, kick ass, and do it all for Christ and his family. And having been a dude all day long, crushing the competition, paying his bills, putting food on the table, providing for his kids, taking dominion and putting woke razors out of business, the ad could have ended with a sly look from his wife and the two heading off to the bedroom. That’s manly sexuality. And that’s the only kind of masculinity that will actually conquer the woke mob. It’s a principled masculinity, a faithful masculinity, and most importantly, it’s a truly fruitful masculinity that’s good for the world because it imitates the masculinity of Christ who was faithful to His bride to death. Otherwise, we’re only grooming our kids to lose the culture war again. Jeremy and the Daily Wire, I hope you’ll do better.