Cancel Culture is a real thing and in many cases is warrented. But sometimes, I think, those that cancel do so without understanding that the world in that moment is viewing them as a Ferrari.
Lots of people out there driving cars and making moves. Sometimes they signal, sometimes not. In rare cases, they honk their horns or flash their lights and flip the bird. But sometimes this is happening not because of dumb drivers being dumb, but becasue we are unsure of what car we are driving.
I think part of Cancel Culture is because of this. Disclaimer: Before I go into a relaxed unity message, I want to be clear about my views. If someone is purposely doing harm or speaking ill of others based on cultural differences or identity politics, then cancel away. End them.
If not, then a more tempered approach should be applied and this is where I diverge away from CC. It happens when I run into someone who has a legitimate gripe and issue but doesn’t understand what car they are driving.
Most of us are base model cars, Toyotas and Fords and Hondas. The tough drive trucks. Patriots domestically built. Surfers and athletes, SUVs and Jeeps. The beautiful cabriolets and convertibles. You get the point. Our cars represent a part of who we are. This does not apply to all, but if you hang with the premise, it will make sense in a minute.
I identify as an 82 VW Van that is not in mint condition. Kinda like the modern day Crappy Blue Chevy Nova. I love my car and it is perfect for me but it is not a clear representation of how the world sees me. And that’s what I want to speak about.
One of the most iconic lines, in my mind, of all time, was when Axel Foley played by Eddie Murphy said, “the same crappy blue Chevy Nova.” Link here.
Now, Eddie Murphy no longer drives or should ever be identified with the crappy blue Chevy Nova unless someone is giving him credit for his success as an actor, African American or not. He is a Ferrari of the highest order. He is a celebrity.
Now, I am not a celebrity but I am still a Ferrari where I live. I am the American in my neighborhood. I don’t speak the language well and am not viewed as below the culture I live in, but as a stand out. Why? They see me as a Ferrari.
Cultural and gender identity only go so far. Kind of like the glass ceiling. There is a point where transcending occurs. Where you are no longer viewed as being equal to or below, but as a Ferrari. A special thing that makes them feel gifted when they see it.
Look there’s the American with the dog on his bicycle or the American with the surfboard on his motorcycle. We stand out sometimes because of the differences we bring to the table.
What I have started to notice, question and am trying to understand and learn about, is what happens when we have moments in which we miss identify what car we are driving. We see that other people are looking but forgot or didn’t know that our Chevy is now a Ferrari in these moments.
So all day we scroll, search, click and look at cars on screens and in the world. When we see something or someone that catches our eye, we stop for a minute and take a look just like what people do when a Ferrari drives by. And in those moments we may just keep going or like or comment or scream in delight or throw a rotten apple and scream profanities.
Unfortunately, that is the consequence of being a Ferrari. They elicit responses. Many, though, get offended or think that these responses are directed at their Chevy. It’s not the case. In these moments, you are the celebrity that is being ogled, examined and emulated.
But what happens is that those who identify as a Chevy feel as though they are being attacked instead of being admired and that is the problem. These drivers get out of their Ferraris ready to attack and pounce and cancel but the scene is very different from the bird’s eye view.
What we see is a Chevy driver admiring a Ferrari and the Ferrari driver attacking the Chevy driver. It’s something to think about. The roles we play in life are not stagnant. They are ever changing and sometimes quicker than we want them too.
So before you cancel the asshole, which I am all for, make sure they are the asshole and you are not driving a Ferrari at that moment. My hat changes throughout the day. I am a son, a boyfriend, a friend, a guide, a coach, a dog owner, a teacher, a podcaster, an advocate, a chef, an athlete, an American living abroad, a writer and a thinker.
My roles shift and change daily. My advice is before you come out swinging, take a glance back and see what car you are driving.
If you are interested in reading a personal Ferrari story. Click the link below.
- All works at Observations from the Spectrum written by Dylan Netter
- On? a third point of view – book of Essays
- Marinehippie.com podcast w/ Docstodden.com – dialogue exploring politics and musings of life
- Horizoncoaching.org – English Tutor and Guide