The Confusing Collapse Of Michelle Malkin
If you’re in the conservative movement, you’ve heard of Michelle Malkin. Depending on how long you’ve been politically aware, you could have seen her on Fox News, or you could have read her columns published on various websites. Publishing books with provocative titles. Most people thought of her as a rational actor. Certainly a firebrand, but a rational actor, still. That is until the end of last year.
In November of 2019, a small, but vocal group of alt-righters calling themselves “groypers” started crashing conservative events with the intent of asking questions to notable conservative personalities, that took a rational conservative view and steered it into racist and antisemitic territory, creating a strawman to make their case.
Led by the nasally Nick Fuentes, this was the plan: to appear at public events and portray the speaker as insufficiently conservative. Pretending that the alt-right is real conservatism. As I mentioned in a previous article, most alt-righters have dropped the label with the intent of claiming they are the real conservatives and they are fighting a watered down “Conservative Inc.”
Most conservatives condemned this effort. So it was a surprise when Michelle Malkin showed them support. Malkin had published over a hundred pieces at Daily Wire, so it was rather headscratching that she would suddenly side with people whose highest priority target is Ben Shapiro. With reasoning couched in antisemitism.
Malkin showed her support for Fuentes, in particular, at a YAF-sponsored speech at UCLA. YAF (Young American’s Foundation), which had been having its speeches sabotaged for weeks at this point. The white supremacist website, Stormfront, publicized a schedule of YAF and Turning Point USA events for alt-righters in the area to crash. She attempted to merge to immigration issues with the alt-right lie, merging the strawman of “Conservative Inc.” with the title of her new book, “Open Borders Inc.” She demonized Ben Shapiro, days after he had given a speech condemning this effort and debunking their claims. So naturally, following the speech, the conservative organization parted ways with her. Many prominent conservatives condemned her embrace of unrepentant antisemites and Holocaust deniers.
Then she decided to play the victim. Claiming she was being cancelled by “Conservative Inc” for not being liberal enough. Let me be clear: I despise cancel culture. But that is not what this was. Cancel culture results in somebody being shunned for something that is often unearthed from the past, leaving no room for the target to apologize or give room to the notion that the person changed.
That is the difference between the right, and social justice warriors on the left, who employ cancel culture. If somebody supported bad people in the past and acknowledges it was wrong, there is no reason not to forgive that person. Malkin, on the other hand, decided to embrace a fringe cause and pretend she was being cancelled when people didn’t want to support her anymore.
After this, she spoke at the AFPAC (America First Political Action Conference) and made a speech where she downplayed the immorality of Holocaust denial and other antisemitic conspiracy theories. Alt-righters have been attempting to reclaim the “America First” catchphrase to imply conservatives who don’t approve of their ideals aren’t sufficiently loyal or hold duel loyalty; harkening back to the antisemitic movement that opposed the US getting involved in World War II associated with Charles Lindbergh.
But have there always been hints this whole time? Since 2004, Malkin has allowed her writings to be published on The Unz Review. As in the site run by Ron Unz, Holocaust denier and platform of numerous antisemites and white nationalists. So, was she always okay with these kinds of lowlives and we just didn’t notice? Of course, if that is the case, she is much more obvious about it now. On March 10th, she shut down MichelleMalkin.com and had the URL redirect to her page on The Unz Review, where she is now publishing directly. Refusing to back down from her defense of these bad actors, she has recently conducted interviews with Fuentes and Vincent James, another alt-right streamer, who asked Matt Walsh, at a YAF event, how he, as a Christian, could possibly work for Ben Shapiro. Fuentes attacked Walsh earlier in the year as a “shabbos goy race traitor” because Walsh condemned the white supremacist shooting in El Paso.
I still don’t understand why Malkin has decided to take this route, as she was relatively well-respected before. I certainly think there is a place in the conservative movement for border hawks. I happen to be a border hawk. So it infuriates me that these people have tried to create a monopoly on it and poison the face of conservatism to the masses.