Nathan Robinson is a left-wing journalist who edits the radical magazine Current Affairs. Last June he wrote a piece criticizing some on his own who had complained about cancel culture.
“Right-wing takes on Social Justice and Cancel Culture are everywhere. Frankly, I hear people complaining about the thing far more than I encounter the thing itself.”
Well, now he has had that encounter.
On Feb. 8, The Guardian, a liberal British paper, canceled Robinson’s column.
Robinson recounted what led to that in his own publication on Feb. 10. In December, Robinson had tweeted about a Covid relief bill Congress was debatingr.
“Did you know that the US Congress is not actually permitted to authorize any new spending unless a portion of it is directed toward buying weapons for Israel?” it read. “It’s the law.” He was being satirical, and to emphasize that point, he added, “Or if not actually the written law, then so ingrained in political custom as to functionally be indistinguishable from law.”
His editor, John Mulholland, was not amused. “No such law exists,” Mulholland said in an email. “In which case this is, as one might say, fake news, irrespective of the later tweet.”
He then added, “Given the reckless talk over the last year — and beyond — of how mythical ‘Jewish group/alliances’ yield power over all forms of U.S. public life I am not clear how this is helpful to public discourse,” Mulholland added.
On Thursday he note that he grudgingly deleted the tweet in response to Mulholland’s email.
“I need my income, and while it was deeply frustrating to me to have the Guardian policing my tweets, I grudgingly felt I would have to accept the new limits I expected would be imposed on my public speech,” he explained. “I knew that the censorship would be aggravating, but it seemed unavoidable and I hoped it would be limited. … and I have to pay my rent like anybody else.”