How to Survive “Cancel Culture” When You Have Unpopular Opinions

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by Terry Trahan

Well, hello there. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we live in a vastly different world than the last time I posted here. The social landscape, political, and, it seems, everyday life is trending vastly different since 2020, Covid, and the national elections.

Daisy recently sent out an email explaining the shift away from discussing politics in light of cancel culture and the like. I want to expand on those thoughts, but from an underground, guerrilla angle.

A huge part of survival, prepping, and Nomad Strategies is getting done what needs to be done with minimal interference or notice from those around us. The more eyes on your project, the more people that can foul up our plans, throw a wrench in the works, or, nowadays, ruin your life.

Have a secret identity.

So, we turn to lesson number one from the great bastion of literature: comic books.

What does almost every comic character have? A secret identity. And why? So they are not having to fight, protect their family, and hide from the public all the time. That is a mighty wise course of action. Life is not a movie. There are rarely times to take a bold, public stand that will put you or your people in danger.

It is a blessing to live in the time and place we do that enables us to engage in such vociferous debate levels with no real consequences. That is not the norm throughout history, and, as we can see, it is changing in front of our eyes. All one needs to do is look at the world outside of the U.S. for current or very recent historical examples. Take a look at where Selco comes from or Belfast just a couple of decades ago. Look at many areas of the Middle East, Syria, or Asia for current displays of enforcement. 

You don’t have to share your opinions with everyone.

Keeping a low profile as long as possible is a crucial OpSec practice.

Note: I am not saying you are not allowed to have opinions. But, I am a firm believer in only discussing them with known associates in private. It is also easier to keep seeing the other party as still human if you do it in person. *Othering is a nasty thing to do and nastier to be on the receiving end of. Remembering that the other side is not the devil incarnate helps to identify actual enemies easier. Instead of jumping at every boogyman brought to your attention, save your energy for real, in your face threats.

*The term Othering describes the reductive action of labeling and defining a person as a subaltern native, as someone who belongs to the socially subordinate category of the Other. 

Choose your battles wisely, or don’t battle at all

Another reason for concentrating on the mission: it’s a waste of your time. Leave the arguing and name-calling to others. Arguing lessens your productivity and may alienate potential allies that could assist you. (Except for those pesky Facebook posts you made, calling their kind evil and stupid.) Choosing not to participate in arguments and debates shows that you have mental toughness, compassion, discernment, and, most importantly, self-control.

In case you aren’t aware, those and your integrity are essential things to keep intact. Both for our own well being and for cultivating good, successful relationships. Keep your ego intact, and if you can exercise the self-control required to not argue points with others that don’t matter in the day-to-day. 

You will be more peaceful. 

Fewer distractions = more time to work on numero uno

As Toby Cowern’s recent article asks: Are You Maintaining the Most Vital Resources in Your Preppertoire? And what is that resource? YOU. Are you making sure that self-care is the most important part of your prepping plans? 

We want to give ourselves as much time as possible to work on various aspects of ourselves that need the work.

Distractions from this can be costly. It can be costly in terms of time wasted on a needless post, and at its worst, it can literally cost you everything you have worked for and built up.

Stop throwing chum to the internet sharks.

An important but often overlooked aspect of any successful underground work is the ability to escape notice. Therefore escaping issues that will negatively impact your ability to move forward will help you complete whatever the mission at hand is.

Rather than willingly compromising your future, stop engaging with the sharks. Instead of spending time engaged in activities that are not beneficial, use your time wisely. Allocate the majority of your time to doing the work. Use your downtime to recharge, find the good, relax, and keep your eyes on the prize.

There may be a time in the near future where we must elevate to a more offensive posture. But now is not that time. What we do now is an important step in keeping us more even-keeled and ready. Don’t volunteer yourself for the enemies list. There are already plenty of people that will gladly put some of us there.

How are you handling the current situation?

Have you been personally affected by the escalated social climate? Are you focusing on keeping a low profile? Let’s discuss it in the comments.

About Terry

Terry Trahan has been a long term martial artist and teacher of personal protection, as well as an author for numerous publications. His experiences from being a gang member, enforcer, protection specialist, and bouncer have given his teachings a strong bent towards the practical. Fighting his way out of extreme poverty and some unsavory environs also gives him insight into survival and everyday life not often commented on. He can be contacted at terry.trahan at gmail.com

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Terry Trahan

Terry Trahan

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  • We have become a nation divided by manipulated and, more often than not, inconsequential wedge issues. I’ve learned not to engage with those who are consumed by identity politics. Arguing with them, regardless of their ‘side’, is an exercise in futility.

    • “Arguing with them, regardless of their ‘side’, is an exercise in futility”

      they’re not going to back off until you agree with them.

    • Jimmy, I agree that “arguing,” in the traditional sense of the word/action, usually provokes division between people. What about asking questions to help find common ground? If you’re interested, look into the work of Larken Rose and his wife Amanda (they have an excellent program called Candles in the Dark, and many videos on YT). Larken suggests playing “interviewer”—instead of simply spouting facts—to help the person come to their own understanding (like shining a light on their own cognitive dissonance) with regard to whatever “truth” you are trying to arrive at. It’s a very interesting process and I am improving my skills!

      • “to help the person come to their own understanding (like shining a light on their own cognitive dissonance) with regard to whatever “truth” you are trying to arrive at”

        doesn’t work with most people. most people, you ask them a question and they’ll take half an hour telling you how wise they are and how ignorant everyone else is.

        and for a fair percentage of the rest, they don’t discuss anything with any of the lesser beings, they just say whatever will manipulate the cattle into doing what the superior beings want. i.e. they’re lying, and there’s just no discussing your way around or through it.

      • I’ll definitely check that out. Funny, because that has been my approach to people for a few years now. It wasn’t always that way for me. I really enjoy finding out what makes people tick, and the ‘interviewer’ technique goes a lot farther to that end than putting up all of the political walls.

  • I don’t recall where i read it but one of wisest quotes I’ve seen is “Be chary of giving advice, wise men don’t need it and fools won’t heed it”

  • heh. ran across an old post – “”right now the only thing worse than for it all to collapse would be for it all not to collapse.” looks like. not many preppers prepped for this.

  • “Do you support the American/Israel coalition against terrorism?”

    “I am also deeply proud that Israel and Massachusetts are natural economic allies … As a United States Senator, I will work to ensure Israel’s security and success.”

    Senator Elizabeth Warren

    “Stuart (Meissner) has been a strong and vocal supporter of Israel for decades. He is intensely concerned about the security and safety of Israel, and will seek to protect those concerns as a United States Senator.”

    Stuart Meissner

    “Speaking from firsthand experience, Israel’s security is absolutely a priority to me … My wife also works in Israel with the Israeli military … In Congress, I took every opportunity to vote to support Israel with robust military and economic aid — a record that I will proudly continue in the Senate.”

    Admiral Joe Sestak

    define “terror”.

  • “You don’t have to share your opinions with everyone”

    china recently enacted an app called “advance the nation” or something, a communist-party-ruling-class-family-sponsored history lesson on china. it’s basically an on-line struggle session in which you can earn points for answering the numerous test questions correctly, which are then applied to your social credit score (and a low social credit score means yo can’t travel, buy certain things, etc). the app is very extensive and detailed and takes up vast amounts of everyone’s free time, so there’s no time to share one’s own personal opinion with anyone because everyone’s too busy memorizing and parroting back the party line so they’ll be able to take the train to visit their parents.

    that’s what will happen here.

  • For myself, I find that I’m divesting myself of some sites. Especially those that have content that could be viewed as inflammatory. There’s simply no point to continuing. There’s also little point in commenting or pointing out fallacies, so I’m commenting less and less as time goes on.

    As I mentioned to Daisy in my reply, RESTRAINT is the watchword these days, and there’s no point in making yourself a Target, especially when the “Cancel” movement is just getting started. It’s going to get worse, before it will get better.
    Keeping my head down and mouth shut is difficult, but I believe it’s necessary in the current climate. OPSEC is necessary, if we’re going to survive what’s still to come.

    • “Keeping my head down and mouth shut is” …

      … what they want you to do. they are few and can’t rule the nation if the nation resists, so they get the soft ones to shut up, then they pressure the ones that don’t shut up, then they’re free to hammer down on the few that won’t shut up. this leaves them free to loudly parade around in public as if they’re the majority and in control, while the vast majority cower in silence thinking they’re alone and isolated.

      • gman, That IS how the dark occultists’ playbook works. Seems like it is already happening with people complying with “mandates” which are not even man-made laws let alone Natural Law.

      • “the one who won’t shut up” is gman … about sick of his negative commentary that does not contribute … more like a mosquito

      • gman,

        You hit the nail right on the head! And those that respond negatively to truth are probably those that are with the ones trying to shut everyone up.

        God bless!

      • This is what concerns me. If we are interested in liberty, and we go dark, then no one else who’s interested in liberty and feeling isolated knows how to connect. I understand about laying low to maximize personal safety from the threats posed by the authorities, but I also think there are times and places where it’s better to stick your neck out knowing that it may threaten personal safety and get your head blown off, to let other scared liberty-minded people know they’re not alone, and have a chance of extending the life of the principles of liberty for however little longer is possible. Otherwise what are you trying to stay safe for? You can’t know for sure that there will be a calmer time later at which to re-emerge. You can’t know anything for sure, I realize that. It just seems like operating from a certainty that now is not the time to speak up, because there will come a time later, isn’t quite right. There are many times in history when people waited and then the darkness fell for many generations with what looked like no initial resistance at all, and then the question is, could it have stayed lighter for longer if more people early on had refused to silence themselves? Glad that others in this thread hold similar views.

  • It’s hard to know what to do. In order to protect my family I generally avoid stating any opinion outside my home and stay out of politics as a rule. However that’s also allowing some people who are really wrongheaded to think there is less opposition than there is. Then there’s the fact that some folks online thrive on conflict and are really good at turning other people’s statements against them so it’s nearly impossible to win. For the moment though I’m continuing to focus on my own health and sanity so that I can react more calmly when something comes up.

    • “some folks online thrive on conflict and are really good at turning other people’s statements against them”

      yes indeed. one way to deal with that is to remember that for every person who responds there are 40 or more readers who never respond, so don’t let the ones who respond negatively make you think that they alone are the audience and that if they’re still opposing you that means you haven’t persuaded anyone.

      • So true, gman! And MSM / SM cherry picks people/situations to show viewers that they are alone in their desire for freedom and solidarity.

      • Thanks for the comment gman – on that we actually both agree (for a change.) I suppose keeping this in mind would also help a person keep a cool head and not take the bait when trying to make a good, relevant point.

    • Redbranch, thanks for your honesty, it’s refreshing!

      I have spent much time exploring the work of Larken Rose and his wife Amanda, who have a great program called Candles in the Dark. It’s about learning to ask questions of people instead of arguing. The idea is to get them to answer questions and come up on their own cognitive dissonance so you don’t have to force it on them. The basic notion is to find common ground in that most people really want to be truly free but they no longer know what that looks like.

      Of course many people will argue ad infinitum for their and others’ enslavement, but at least you wouldn’t be fighting with these folks who out themselves through the question-and-answer process; in fact, they will probably feel weirdly empowered by sharing their desire to be a slave and to enslave others. Then you know who you’re dealing with: A person who has been so deeply mind-controlled that they need professional help to de-program.

  • I do try to pick my battles, preferring not to die on certain hills. However, I cannot sit idly by and watch my first amendment rights be swallowed. I used to think voting was the most important right I possessed; now I think the time has come for action. I’m 71 years old, witnessing the systemic destruction of my country. Perhaps I need to be less concerned about my personal safety. I plan to speak out, volunteer on voting days to monitor the polls, and remain constant in my research of judges who can be thrown out in elections. Get the word out.
    The clown show in DC on both sides (except for a few brave souls) is revolting. Who do they think they are?

    • Immigrants wanting to become citizens take a test about the structure of the government and so forth. One question’s answer is that our most important freedom is the right to vote. That makes Jan 6 and media shenanigans about how wanting election truth is an “attack on our democracy” look utterly idiotic.
      But I have never agreed. Our most important freedom is the right to act on our moral compass, speaking what we truly believe, attending church or worship that we feel is Truth, being kind to others.
      And it is precisely that right to a moral compass that is so threatened today that life will not be worth living unless we win.

      • “Our most important freedom is the right to act on our moral compass, speaking what we truly believe, attending church or worship that we feel is Truth, being kind to others.

        I agree. Interestingly, as more people begin to enact that Creator-given right, the harder the wanna-be controllers clamp down. I occasionally post comments and full articles on Medium.com, and their “Trust & Safety” editors just yesterday pulled two of my most well-researched, well-written pieces under their Stasi guise of preventing me from “harming others or endangering public health.”

        We must continue to speak up and out when the time is right, and the time is now, for there will be no future worth living if we don’t OWN OUR DIVINITY.

    • Marie I’m turning 74 this month. Up until I could no longer leave my husband home alone I was a pole worker. Last year I was asked to be a pole judge but had to decline. I’m a republican in a majority Democrat state.
      Ask about pole jobs at your county offices. I was paid to train and work. Not a volunteer watcher/observer. There are strict laws. I obeyed and helped others remember to carefully obey.
      I’m old enough death or jail aren’t too frightful. Mostly I work at caring for my husband with Alzheimers and still sharing my faith when there’s an opportunity. I care about politics. Its worth fighting for but not worth fighting over.
      I’ve written my support and thankfulness to some standing against some hard opposition. I’ve also asked politicians in my state why they say they want unity when a
      inquiry into the election process would had easily settled the question for everyone and let unity actually happen.
      I wrote it without accusations. Just as a citizen who wants peace. Truth is I have strong opinions but I prefer a softer approach. I learned that first when I was married to a man who joined a vicious gang. Later in life I worked with mentally handicapped adult men who were violent and lived in small group homes. We had to take de-escalation classes.
      In years past I wrote political opinion pieces that were carried internationally. Its far too volital today for that. But if I can gently provoke thought without provoking mindless anger its more productive. More of a gentle nudge than a slap in the face. A great grandma’s reminder to mind your manners.
      If we were to reach the point of actual re-education camps, removing polititians children from their homes, or the Communist Chinese style social points system, I’d be much less restrained with my opinionated verbage. I could see myself with a megaphone infront of my state capitol building. Or self publishing scathing words with a computer and printer, or posting on the internet until completely canceled… 🙂 For now I’ll sedately care for my husband. He has no one else. When that job ends a bit of excitement be more appealing. I hope we haven’t fallen too far down the slippery slope into some unrepairable.

  • Being silent to avoid oppression is also being silenced because of oppression

    NOW is the time to speak up!!! B4 we are truly black listed by the success of this fledgling fascism

    Your approach is flagging that it has won

    • “Your approach is flagging that it has won”

      Exactly! And the same is true that people wearing identity-concealing self-suffocating devices (face masks) are showing the wanna-be controllers that they will beg for their own enslavement!

  • There’s a lot more to privacy than the expression of opinions on social media platforms. This article today covers many of the privacy defense issues:

    Five ways to loosen Big Tech’s grip on your life, by Simon Black

    https://www.sovereignman.com/trends/five-ways-to-loosen-big-techs-grip-on-your-life-30556/

    Reprinted here:
    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2021-01-25/five-ways-loosen-big-techs-grip-your-life

    AND

    One of Simon Black’s recommendations was to bail out of Gmail (which for some people will take a LOT of work). I learned not to use Gmail for politically sensitive things a couple of years ago when it blocked the incoming webinar access link for a home defense presentation. I literally had to set up an offshore email account so that link could arrive almost instantly. But there’s more…

    Obviously if you order a catalog or even actual product from a company that sells “ghost gun” parts — and get a product-disclosing receipt emailed back to you that Gmail can see — you can be certain that information goes into your Google records profile. If you are stuck using Gmail for a while, always always use it only for non-politically sensitive products or services.

    I learned that even when I bailed out of Gmail but continued using the same browser where I’d been accessing Gmail, it would contaminate that browser so that any link Daisy had emailed to me would still suffer the entire left side whiteout of any of her articles. My workaround has been to shut down completely the Gmail carrying browser and switch to a different browser that Gmail’s tentacles have never strangled so I can read Daisy’s article with peace and completeness! The Brave browser has so far been very good to me.

    AND

    This is the operating system Edward Snowden recommends

    in this 4:44 minute video, from censiCLICK on 6 Sept 2020:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8-B9d7iz1A

    Famous NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden for many is a trustworthy source for privacy and security software recommendations. Here are his favorite operating systems,

    Tails and Qubes OS:
    https://tails.boum.org/
    https://www.qubes-os.org

    He also described Facebook as a mass surveillance system — rebranded as “social media.” We have a government that despises 4th Amendment privacy protection and their workaround using Big Tech is merely more evidence of that contempt.

    –Lewis

    • Thank you for posting this. I got rid of my gmail account this week, and made my protonmail account my primary post office. Ill look into tails and qubes OS’s, and see how they work. Tails interests me in the fact that you can insert a USB and go from there, and return to your default OS later.

    • There’s one major way to stop being tracked, and that is to browse in “privacy” mode. That is, opening new windows in Brave using [shift][control][N] in Windows and Linux, [shift][⌘][N] on a Mac, in Firefox replace the N with P, then frequently closing the browser. Closing a browser where all the windows are in privacy mode wipes out all the trackers put there by websites, including Google. It also wipes out all the history of the websites you visit.

      Don’t store any private or log-in information in the browser. Yes I know it’s a hassle to key in one’s password instead of having the browser automatically inserting it, but what’s not in the browser can’t be revealed.

      I still have a gmail account, but I use it very little, then only for a professional use. It runs on a different computer. In privacy mode. I don’t send out sensitive emails through gmail.

    • I’d use Qubes, with its Security by Isolation, to run Firefox in an untrusted qube and load up your facebook page with cute cat pictures, knitting samples, and the such to create your online alter ego 😉

  • Not on social media anyway. It’s a waste of time and full of negativity and lunatic statists who want to force their beliefs on everyone else via the state.

  • I dropped all my social media on November 4th. Total deletion of everything. I got tired of getting tossed into political prison on a monthly basis.
    My opinions haven’t changed and instead of clicking on social media to get news, I go straight to my favorite news and opinion websites. I’ve also switched to the Brave browser and seriously looking at getting a VPN.

  • A friend of mine that I often talk politics and once in awhile have a glass with followed me up to pick up more drinks when we ran out of it. I never allowed him to upper floor before but I was getting drunk. When I opened one of the doors he made big eyes and commented on all the food and farmacy items packed in boxes. He wanted take photo and said he never seen a more stocked food room and wanted show other friend and his mom that is my neighbor…

    I told him not to do that and he accepted it but kept talking on way down. I started talk about something else but realized it was a mistake and promised myself be more careful.

  • Arguing religion or politics is a waste of time and energy. An it can make you positively unpopular.
    My friends know my opinions. Other than gently witnessing about my faith my opinions are just that..mine. If asked, I decide to answer or sidestep.

  • Re: privacy browsing [aka incognito browsing]

    The following article is just one of several you can find via DuckDuckGo.com on the severe limits of what incognito browsing can, and cannot, do for you — and especially why using a vetted VPN as well helps your privacy strategy much more.

    Is Incognito Really Safe? How It Does (and Does Not) Protect You Online, last updated 6 Jan 2021

    https://www.cloudwards.net/is-incognito-really-safe/

    –Lewis

  • I sum up my attitude as follows: “I didn’t make this world, I am just the poor slob who has to live in it.”

  • I haven’t been going on Facebook nearly as much, and it saves so much time and energy. It’s good for my mental health too. I continue to post my opinions about things on my blog, but I have comments turned off so that’s not another time/energy drain.

  • I preordered ‘The good Germans’ coming out in June. Six various types of people in early Nazi Germany. Each had a different approach. Some heads down, others resisted. I’m really looking forward to this book because I don’t want to to what is not useful out of fear or inadequacy or anything else. And want to be educated. I just got Gulag Archipelago after reading how a quarter of Leningrad was arrested in one night ! Officers ‘only doing their job’ pounding on the door, breaking in, stomping up the stairs while people hid somewhere. There’s also a couple good youtubes one with a Yugoslavian woman describing the method of overcoming by dividing society. One thing for sure, concentrate on building anything you have in common with everyone you can.

  • I practice all of the above plus vote with my shopping dollars, share my thoughts and ideas with very limited like minded people, cut way down on my tv watching so not to support certain programs and keep my tribe very small. When people ask my opinion I play dumb and just listen to what they have to say. I put up my 2 greenhouses back in the fall and when asked why my reply was because i am semi retired and like to garden and just never had the time – sounds good doesn’t it. When my garage doors are open all people see is a neat and clean garage, not the massive stockpiles I have hidden in plain sight. I limit people in my home to the front room only so they don’t see anything. I don’t post pictures except generic kinds.

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