Using flamethrower of satire, 'Babylon Bee' roasts 'wokeness' in new book

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Being woke means never having to say you’re sorry, according to “The Babylon Bee Guide to Wokeness,” a new book released Nov. 2 by District-based Salem Books.

According to authors Kyle Mann and Joel Berry, a woke person understands the problems in their life aren’t their fault.

“In fact, when you really think about it, nothing is your fault,” the satirical book declares. “Blame everyone else for your problems. This is the first step to being woke.”

With chapters such as “The True Story of American History,” where readers can “learn how [they] were brainwashed into thinking America is an OK place,” or a discourse on microaggressions called “How to Be Offended By Everything,” the volume aims a flamethrower of satire at many of today’s hot-button social topics.

Not even a fictional animated Disney princess is safe. In the author’s analysis, Elsa in “Frozen” is a hero, albeit with complications. In deciding to “be herself,” they write, “Elsa almost mass-murdered her entire kingdom by covering it with an ice storm and nearly stabbed her sister in the heart with an icicle, but hey! She was LIVING HER TRUTH.”

The authors assert gender is “set in stone, never changing, an immutable part of who you are. Until you change it.”

And religion? “The only good church is a woke church,” Mr. Mann and Mr. Berry, tongues firmly in cheek, assure readers.

Although more serious thinkers who advocate for greater empathy and understanding of social justice issues would vehemently disagree, not being able to laugh at one’s self is symptomatic of being a modern-day Pharisee, Mr. Mann and Mr. Berry said in a recent interview.

“Obviously any movement has its Pharisees, but it does seem that in wokeness and leftism is that you have the system set up where unless you follow these steps, these works-based salvation steps, you’re not gonna be educated enough or you’re never going to do good enough for these people,” Mr. Mann, the website’s editor-in-chief, explained.

The five-year-old Babylon Bee, a humor website popular with evangelicals, has grown from gentle pokes at the Christian faith — the site’s first book was “How to Be A Perfect Christian” — to broader swipes at events and people in the headlines.

Sometimes, the jokes become news in and of themselves. A January 2020 Babylon Bee piece satirically claiming congressional Democrats wanted American flags flown at half-mast to honor assassinated terrorist Qasem Soleimani took on a life of its own, The story was shared on social media 3.3 million times, a number that caused a reporter for The Atlantic magazine to question Mr. Mann about the joke’s humor.

Mr. Mann replied in part, “If you don’t know why that’s funny, then you’re not the audience for the joke.”

Speaking with The Washington Times, Mr. Mann agreed there is a humor deficiency in much of today’s society.

“I think it’s something that we need to reclaim, especially as conservatives,” Mr. Mann asserted. He said, “our entire worldview and philosophy is that this is a good world with good things worth defending.”

Mr. Berry added: “If your ideology robs you of the ability to laugh, that’s a good indication that you’re in a bad ideology.”

Despite the heat the authors take at times, they each have a positive outlook, crediting humor as a means of maintaining their equilibrium.

“There’s a lot to freak out about and despair about when we look at the state of the world way things seem to be going,” Mr. Berry. “And we need to be able to find laughter in it.”

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