Obama slams 'cancel culture', asks woke people to 'get over themselves' because everyone has flaws
The former president said at the Obama Foundation Summit that 'casting stones' was wrong and social media outrage cannot be activism.
Former President Barack Obama, in a statement on October 29, called out the notions of ideological purity in politics and woke culture, adding "compromise" should not be frowned upon. He made the statement while speaking at the Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago where he also described Twitter outrage as "not activism."
“This idea of purity, and you’re never compromised, and you’re always politically woke and all that stuff. You should get over that quickly,” Obama said. “The world is messy. There are ambiguities. People who do really good stuff have flaws."
The former president also denounced online judgment and "casting stones" at others, saying he perceived it as a "danger" among the younger generation. "There is this sense sometimes of ‘the way of me making change is to be as judgmental as possible about other people, and that’s enough,’” he said, proceeding with an example.
"Like if I tweet or hashtag about how you didn’t do something right or used the wrong verb. Then, I can sit back and feel pretty good about myself because, ‘Man, you see how woke I was? I called you out.’ I’m gonna get on TV. Watch my show. Watch ‘Grown-ish.’ Y’know, that’s not activism. That’s not bringing about change. If all you’re doing is casting stones, you’re probably not going to get that far."
A former Obama aide, Jen Paski, while responding to the former president's comments, said that she believed his comments were directed at those challenging President Donald Trump in the 2020 elections.
"At times the reaction to Donald Trump has been to put out the purity tests that say if you don't meet these bars and are not with me on every issue and don't check every box, you can't be a part of the party", Paski told CNN. "If we are launching purity tests and say 'You can't be a part of us,' we'll have such a small party, we won't be able to win."