Dear IDW: What Is “The Left” Anyway? (A Satire.)

The Left, gripe of my life, fuel of my income. My obsession, my daemon. The Left: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. The. Woke. Crowd. It was “liberals,” plain “liberals,” in the evening, repeated earnestly by pundits in suits. It was “snowflakes” on Twitter. It was “libtards” on bumper stickers. It was “socialists” on the printed page. But on my podcast, it was always The Left.

Did it have a precursor? It did, indeed it did. In point of fact, there might have been no Left at all had Joe Rogan not loved, one winter, an initial Jordan Peterson. In a university by Lake Ontario. Oh when? About as many years before The Left was born as their friendship was that winter.

You can always count on the Intellectual Dark Web for a fancy prose style.

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, exhibit number one is what the zealots, the misinformed, simple, witch-hunting zealots envied. Look at this tangle of thorns.

With whatever respect is due to the IDW (whatever that is) and its devotees, apologies to Vladimir Nabokov, and writing as someone who lives in a rural Western state where armed anti-government extremists and violent white supremacists are a far greater threat than the “wokeness” (whatever that is) bogeyman could ever be, AND as someone whose father grew up under Stalin, it would be nice if the IDW et. al. defined what they mean by “The Left” once in a while — something that goes beyond Twitter’s cancel culture (whatever THAT is), that one time at Evergreen, that one time at Middlebury, and that one time Vox wrote an unflattering article.

Antonia Malchik is the author of A Walking Life: Reclaiming Our Health and Our Freedom One Step at a Time; walking, tech, community, and embodiment.