* Antisocial by Andrew Marantz

As I was reading Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation, I felt a little sorry for the author, an earnest New Yorker writer, who seems to struggle to think that our fellow humans are not always rational and restrained like, apparently, his colleagues and fellow Brooklyn dinner-party attendees. To his credit, he spent a lot of time following and interviewing alt-right extremists, who will not miss an opportunity to shock and attack, but that makes for pretty depressing stories, sadly not because of the venom that they spew but because of the extreme banality of their lives. Yes, they live for ratings and likes, and it’s the fault of the communication platforms. Maybe. Perhaps the real problem is that we have all been willfully ignoring the inconvenient truth of evil in our midst.

 

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