President-elect Donald Trump reinforced the fears of some of his strongest critics last weekend when he announced his selection of former Breitbart chairman Steve Bannon as his "chief strategist and senior counselor." Bannon, along with his former publication, has been accused of supporting white supremacist causes in his personal and professional life. Bannon proudly called Breitbart a "platform for the alt-right," a community that has more-than-subtle undertones of xenophobia, racism, and anti-Semitism. For example, his ex-wife gave a statement in court describing an incident in which Bannon allegedly said that he "didn't want [his daughters] going to school with Jews." Bannon denied that allegation, with a spokeswoman telling the New York Daily News (which first reported the claims) that “At the time, Mr. Bannon never said anything like that and proudly sent the girls to Archer for their middle school and high school education."
However, the sorts of headlines run by Breitbart during Bannon's tenure raise their own concerns. Under Bannon's leadership, Breitbart has frequently been accused of promoting racism, misogyny, and xenophobia, and of being a haven for the extreme alt-right. The comments on a recent Breitbart article describing swastika graffiti found in a New York City college after the election of Donald Trump almost unanimously deride the report as a "hoax." One of the featured articles on the website Monday, perhaps unsurprisingly, makes fun of "anti-Bannon hysteria."
Under Bannon's leadership, here are just some of the headlines of Breitbart stories that may make you think twice about what influence he will have on the White House.
Why Equality and Diversity Departments Should Only Hire Rich, Straight, White Men
"Actually, only rich, straight white men should have anything to do with running diversity initiatives," writes author Milo Yiannopoulos, one of the most famous members of the alt-right, who argues that since they are not victims of discrimination, they are the best judges for whether someone else is. "This is why," Yiannopoulos continues, "I, as a gay man, am one of the few people you can trust to talk dispassionately about birth control, which is evil."
Birth Control Makes Women Unattractive and Crazy
While I can think of few things I care about less than what Breitbart staffers think of my appearance, this article is also noteworthy for this gem:
We need the kids if we're to breed enough to keep the Muslim invaders at bay.
This is what happens when you mistake "provocative" writing for good writing.
Teenage Boys with Tits: Here's My Problem with Ghostbusters
Ghostbusters, the film acting as standard bearer for the social justice left, is full of female characters that are simply stand-ins for men plus a black character worthy of a minstrel show.
Possibly the least surprising review of all time, considering the fact that its author was banned from Twitter for harassing Leslie Jones, one of the stars of Ghostbusters.
Hoist It High and Proud: The Confederate Flag Proclaims a Glorious Heritage
This article managed to incorporate birtherism and Soviet Marxism into an argument that calls the Confederacy a "patriotic and idealistic cause."
How Donald Trump Made it Cool to Be Gay Again
With mainstream acceptance has come cultural castration. I bet some of these frustrated married homos wish they they could be on Grindr getting an 18 year old sent to their door, just like they used to pick up f*gs in seedy underground bars in the 1980s.
Of course, this tirade begs the question — when, exactly did Trump make being gay cool? Was it the part where his party's platform supported conversion therapy? No? Maybe it was the part when he nominated one of the most homophobic politicians in America to be his vice president? Am I getting warmer?
Lesbian Bridezillas Bully Bridal Shop Owner Over Religious Beliefs
Wait, I thought being gay was cool, again, because of Trump? It's almost — almost — as if blanket hate speech about entire groups of people can't be completely logically coherent. Imagine that.
In the bizarre piece, the author argues that "the gay population in the United States is far less than perceived," as if that has anything to do with the relevant legal principle involved, and that LGBT Americans tend to be less religious.
Would You Rather Your Child Had Feminism or Cancer?
This feature was a video of students quizzing one another with that question. "Well, that's between a rock and a hard place," said one interviewee, beaming.
For a reasonable, respectful debate about women's rights, check somewhere other than the comments section on this video.
Critics were initially relieved when it was announced that Reince Priebus would be named chief of staff instead of Bannon. But now that we know the man whose publication praised the Confederacy will be Trump's top advisor, it's time to start worrying again.