Are You Woke? Well, I Care About My Children’s Future. So, Yeah. I’m Woke.

March 10, 2023

The Hill:

A majority of Americans in a new poll have a positive association with the term “woke,” understanding it to mean “to be informed, educated on, and aware of social injustices.”

The USA Today-Ipsos poll released on Wednesday found that 56 percent agreed with the more positive definition, while 39 percent had a negative association with the word and understood it to mean “to be overly politically correct and police others’ words.”

Inside Climate News:

America’s top Wall Street regulator might scale back a proposal that would require public companies operating in the United States to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions and any financial risks they face from global warming. It’s a move that climate activists worry will prevent regulators from holding businesses accountable when their pledges to reduce their carbon footprints aren’t aligning with their actions.

Financial regulators have come under increasing pressure in recent years to address the private sector’s role in exacerbating climate change. Some 10,000 publicly listed companies are responsible for 40 percent of all climate warming emissions, more than twice what was previously believed, recent research found.

In response to that pressure, the Securities and Exchange Commission proposed a new rule last year that, among other things, would require certain large, publicly traded companies to report the climate emissions generated by their supply chains and customers—known as Scope 3 emissions—which experts say often make up the majority of the private sector’s carbon footprint. 

That means businesses would not only take responsibility for the direct emissions produced by their factories or office buildings, but also for their indirect emissions, including those caused by the distribution of their goods and the transportation needs of their employees. For oil and gas companies, it would also mean they would tally the greenhouse gas emissions created by customers who burn their gasoline while driving—by far the largest segment of the transportation sector’s massive carbon footprint.

But amid intense backlash from corporate America and legal threats from Republican lawmakers promising to wage war on what they call “woke capitalism,” Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler is now considering removing the Scope 3 requirements from the proposed rule, according to several news reports citing people familiar with the commission’s plans.

Conservative lawmakers and business trade groups, such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, have opposed the draft rule, saying it would impose overly burdensome costs on companies and force them to violate their fiduciary duties to investors. Proponents, however, say the rule is not only necessary for tackling climate change, but that it would actually help companies stay solvent in the long run as the climate crisis worsens. 

“The facts are clear: Reducing emissions by half by 2030 is necessary to avoid the worst consequences of climate change, and the private sector has an important role to play,” Michael Sheldrick, co-founder of social justice advocacy nonprofit Global Citizen, wrote in an op-ed for Forbes on Sunday. “Ignoring growing climate threats may in the long run have disastrous effects on a business’ workforce, supply chain and business models.”

In fact, a growing number of economists now argue that the consequences of climate change are already imposing increased costs on businesses and governments around the world, and as countries transition to cleaner energy, companies that are slow to adapt risk losing out financially.

Climate-related natural disasters in the U.S. alone caused a whopping $165 billion in damages in 2021, recent government data revealed. And some of the world’s largest financial analysis firms have estimated that without stronger intervention, the impacts of global warming could slash the world’s gross domestic product anywhere from 4 percent to 18 percent by 2050, which translates to trillions of dollars in potential lost revenue.


23 Responses to “Are You Woke? Well, I Care About My Children’s Future. So, Yeah. I’m Woke.”

  1. neilrieck Says:

    According to Wikipedia, the word “woke” first became popular in US African American community (especially that of Jazz musicians) during the 1930s and means “alert to racial prejudice and discrimination”. So today, anyone who is anti-woke could technically be called a racist.

    But on the flip side, it appears than many people are using this word to mean something else.

    • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

      As Florida’s Gov. DeSantis uses it, “woke” means making white children feel bad about being white.

  2. tildeb Says:

    If you believe your children’s future is best served by promoting their group identity over their individual autonomy, that the colour of their skin is more important than the quality of their character so to speak, then yeah, you’re woke. If you believe these group based identities – chosen or inherited – define reality and that we should promote these memberships in public policy and in the public square, then yes, you’re woke. If you believe group equity trumps individual equality, that disparity of results between such groups means systemic discrimination that requires public action, then yes, you are woke. If you believe being woke is virtuous and those who do not go along are moral villains, then this has dire social consequences.

    This belief and the actions taken on its behalf is the fuel – the ONLY fuel as far as I can tell – that the more extreme right wing standing against this rising regressive push is using to electoral success to gain political power. And the woke are providing buckets and buckets of it… in the name of children, of course. But is it really?

    • jimbills Says:

      You’ve noticed, I’m sure, that no one is being ‘woke’ about white or heterosexual group identities. There’s no need for it. Those two groups are majorities.

      Forming group identities is an inherent part of human nature. Everyone does it (even whites). Some, absolutely, take that group identity too far, especially when it leads to treating other sub-groups as inferiors. But group identities are also a means of protection for minority groups. Take any cultural/religious/ethnic/sexual preference minority and try stripping away their group identity. It won’t happen. They’ll just fight harder for that identity.

      It’s naive to think that non-members of a particular sub-group (especially a minority group) don’t also view that sub-group as an identity – then place their own stereotyped ideas upon that group, and then try to increase their own cultural and political power over those sub-groups. It’s not a one-way street where only sub-groups take the power from majority groups. Historically, it’s quite the opposite.

      Group identities DO define reality. Only a member of an ensconced majority group that has never (or perhaps not until recently) had to think twice about their own group identity would consider that group identities are not a real thing, or that group identity is not important.

      The cultural fight that is taking place is nothing more than the old political power struggle between sub-groups in our society. Minority groups have had successes of late in gaining political and cultural power, and this causes majority groups to feel less in control.

      The response of the majority groups that feel threatened has been to find ways to limit minority power. ‘Anti-wokeness’ is the rallying cry, but the practical results have been a raft of new laws limiting individual freedoms (also in the name of protecting children) and an increase in harassment of minority groups.

      Group identity does not erase individual autonomy or ‘character’, and it’s a little gross to think that ‘woke’ groups lack those traits.

      On group identities being ‘more important’ than individual autonomy, are you perhaps assuming this is the case for individuals in minority groups? Is it a stereotype on your part? How are you getting that a gay or black person, for instance, see themselves as gay or black first and an individual human (with their own responsibilities and autonomy) second?

      Educational materials like the 1619 Project are not about how blacks have historically been oppressed so that they can forever be oppressed (and so cede any individual autonomy for their own fates), and it isn’t about making majority groups feel bad about themselves – it’s about opening eyes to oppression to reduce future oppression. It seems to be having the opposite effect, granted.

      • tildeb Says:

        Being woke means promoting a group identity OVER individual autonomy. One becomes a woke activist by by supporting this hierarchy in law. As for group identity, it’s both cultural and biological: it’s based on an inherited ability we call empathy and it well documented across primates to be very biased; unquestionably, it is aroused more by individuals who are familiar and similar. It’s perfectly natural to have various identities and look for them in others. That’s not what being woke is about: being woke means believing that group identities are real states of being and that individuals who constitute them are nothing more than expressions of these. This is an incoherent model in that some identities change all the time (aging, for example) so we are more than just today’s identity. The problem arises when belief in the supremacy of group-based identities supplants our liberal values upon which our laws are based. This is why this ‘progressive’ notion of being ‘woke’ – of putting into law group identity over the equality of rights and freedoms shared by all is at its heart deeply anti liberal, deeply problematic for liberals who support quality of character – an individual’s quality – over an individual’s group affiliation – say, the colour of one’s skin. When the law starts to implement illiberal group-based privileges at the expense of the our shared rights and freedoms, then we’re going to have a very serious problem, not least of which is the breaking of a population into two separate conflicting groups who believe in either one or the other. You cannot have both. This is no way to show care about the future of children but a guaranteed way to promote division and conflict for them to inherit.

        • jimbills Says:

          “putting into law group identity over the equality of rights and freedoms shared by all”

          Please provide specific examples of this. Besides perhaps affirmative action (a much earlier action than our current ‘woke’ mania) which was meant to reduce historical black inequality in the U.S., but can be problematic in practice, I can think of only one other example where minority groups are using group identity to reduce the rights and freedoms of others – forcing business owners and churches to accommodate homosexuals when they don’t wanna.

          Minorities just want to be heard and treated equally. ‘Black Lives Matter’ wasn’t ‘only black lives matter’ or ‘blacks are more important than whites’, it was ‘blacks are treated more harshly than whites by the police, stop it’.

          Legislation is never clean, never perfect, but I don’t see how trying to improve the treatment of minorities suddenly creates an unequal society. We already have a deeply unequal society! Why don’t you see that? Being ‘woke’ to me means trying to improve that inequality – not ‘believing that individuals who constitute (group identities) are nothing more than expressions of these’ or ‘putting into law group identity over the equality of rights and freedoms shared by all’.

          “When the law starts to implement illiberal group-based privileges at the expense of the our shared rights and freedoms, then we’re going to have a very serious problem”….

          Examples that I see (and these aren’t theoretical, they are already happening):

          1. banning or restricting of abortion in the U.S.
          2. preventing college campuses from teaching ‘woke’ educational materials
          3. curtailing voting rights that disproportionately affect minorities
          4. gerrymandering (deserves its own bullet point)
          5. forcing libraries to remove certain materials
          6. most to all anti-trans laws:

        • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

          Being woke means being aware of the structural racial injustices that have plagued the US (and other countries) from the beginning. It means understanding that black citizens get longer or harsher sentences than white citizens get for the same or lesser crimes. It means cops (of any color or gender) get away with torturing or killing black people. Being woke means not being so fucking naive about life away from TV shows.

          Dancing around “identity issues” instead of the harsh reality of gross injustice towards large sections of our population is just self-serving denial.

          Do you really think that before the ubiquitous cell phone cameras, CCTVs and police body cams that black people were treated better than they are now?

          • tildeb Says:

            Yes, once upon a time that is what it meant. No longer. Now it’s all about critical social justice, about equity, diversity, and inclusion, which involves a set of four core beliefs.

            1) Censorship is necessary.
            2) Some groups of people have more power than others.
            3) What groups you belong to is more important than who you are as an individual.
            4) Lived experience is more important than empirical evidence.

            Equity under critical social justice means making up for past discrimination with current discrimination. This is opposite to equality.

            Diversity means people who look different but think alike.

            Inclusion means restricting speech.

          • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

            1) Censorship is necessary.
            If by “censorship” you mean criticizing the speech of others, that has always been necessary in a civilized society.

            2) Some groups of people have more power than others.
            Ha! Ha-ha! Hahahahahahahahahaha!
            As a woman, I have to agree with that.

            3) What groups you belong to is more important than who you are as an individual.
            Yep, we’ve definitely known that from the empirical evidence of disparities in housing, hiring candidates, getting loans, etc.

            4) Lived experience is more important than empirical evidence.
            Depends on how many times you’ve been pulled over on a traffic stop. (Trevor Noah, in his first few years in the US, has been pulled over—including in a Tesla—more often than I have in my forty years of driving here.)

          • tildeb Says:

            I presume even you might question the validity of woke ideology transferred into law if you had to share a cell with a serial rapist who identifies as a ‘woman’ with a female penis. The problem arises for our children you may be surprised to learn when the ideology so many of us champion as virtuous today (because words stolen from the liberal lexicon, donchaknow) actually meets reality and causes profound harm.

            Interestingly perhaps only to me, rowing federations allow men to identify as women for all women’s competitions; however, this is not the case when mixed rowing insists sex rather than self identifying ‘gender’ is the prerequisite. Funny, that sudden change in heart. One might presume unfairness doesn’t matter to organizing committees when women are negatively affected but hard lines must drawn if it interferes with men!

          • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

            I presume even you might question the validity of woke ideology transferred into law if you had to share a cell with a serial rapist who identifies as a ‘woman’ with a female penis.

            What an absurd scenario!

            Trying to scare me with a silly serial rapist “woman” cellmate scenario when prison rape is as common as it doesn’t even work as a slippery slope argument. (Women can rape other women, you know, as when a gang of girls bottle-raped another girl.)

          • tildeb Says:

            Thinking of the children, I see.

          • jimbills Says:

            There was a case, one case, in Scotland recently where a woman was raped in prison by a transgender. It was also touted by JK Rowling.

            Where I think people lose the thread is in perspective. This was one case (and the person was convicted). Stack it up against the countless rapes of transgender people in male prisons (without convictions):

            Common sense solutions aren’t impossible to reduce the number of rapes (in both circumstances) without crass politicization and fearmongering.

          • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

            That’s what’s so frustrating about the “anti-woke” nonsense: The Innocence Project has been working for decades to spread awareness of injustice, and these DeSantis idiots are pretending it’s all identity politics.

          • tildeb Says:

            No, there are many. In Canada, for example there are nearly a dozen. (Now reported by policy as ‘female’ violence so numbers are difficult to verify beyond testimonials. Throw in pedophiles and murderers who suddenly identify women and the numbers in just Canada are in the dozens. I’ve read testimonials from California about both birth control and abortion inducing drugs distributed after sexual assaults by ‘women with penises’ against women without them. Very few of these stories make it into legacy press because – as Rowling can attest – any criticism is evidence of bigotry and hatred!

            But notice what you’re doing: you are elevating the FEELINGS of some men who claim to be women over and above the physical safety of probably one of the most vulnerable groups in our society: incarcerated women. I am always surprised and, to be frank, disappointed when a sister not just overlooks and but so easily dismisses outright those feelings of those women under very real threat of male violence in order to support the feelings of those special guys.

          • jimbills Says:


            This has been the complaint by the far right concerning ‘woke’ matters. But, there are two VERY different types of censorship: governmental and societal. Social censorship happens all the time and is unavoidable. Twitter and Facebook, amazingly, are not governmental entities. The worst that can happen in societal censorship is it makes you feel bad, or possibly you lose your job. (For instance, teachers are fired constantly for posting racy pics of themselves on social media.)

            Governmental censorship, however, is an entirely different matter. In the West, we have forgotten how bad this can be. In Russia, right now, you can go to prison for over a decade for saying one thing negative about the war. In China, labor camps. In North Korea and Iran, execution.

            In the West, where are the laws that force people to use preferred pronouns? Where are the laws that cause jail time for saying something racist on Twitter?

            But, we do see the right enacting all sorts of laws to limit the speech and rights of minority groups. Again, perspective. Should we be afraid of what the minorities might do, or what the majority might do?

          • tildeb Says:

            Criticism of woke ideology in action is almost always automatically presumed to be political and from the ‘wrong’ side and so dismissed on this basis and the author smeared as an immoral person. But it’s not political at heart; it’s about each of us deciding whether or not we go along with lies, deciding whether we hold fast to principles of individual freedom and rights and equality in law. It’s about whether or not we will respect reality enough to arbitrate our beliefs about it.

            One may pretend we serve the best interests of children by believing in woke ideology but when over half of all university students now censor themselves to avoid causing potential offence, we’ve got a problem with free speech. And this is the fundamental right on which everything else is built and under sustained attack by people who honestly think well of themselves for doing so.

          • jimbills Says:

            Tildeb – everyone censors themselves ALL THE TIME. It’s called ‘watching our words’. Anyone not a sociopath rather cares about avoiding offending others (or causing harm to ourselves by our words). We ‘could’ say whatever we wanted whenever we wanted in the West. We’d get ‘cancelled’ by saying something socially unacceptable, but this is as old as time. It’s not a new phenomenon, and it has nothing to do with the 1st Amendment.

            Our culture is changing rapidly, perhaps more rapidly than many would like, but culture changes ALL THE TIME. Get used to it. You’re only reacting against recent changes because you don’t like the recent changes. Fine. No one here is censoring what you say, though. Say what you want.

            Again, to me anyway, this is all about majority groups fighting with minority groups for cultural and political power. It is politics. You’re worried about what the minority groups could do, okay. I’m much more worried about what the majority groups could do. I place a much higher probability on a reactionary right future than a reactionary left future. I’d like to see a future of equality and mutual prosperity, though I’m doubtful we’ll get it.

            And I’ll say this regarding politics. I know you feel you are fighting for principles you hold dear (I think I hold the same or similar ones, btw). But politically, and realistically, all you are doing is providing succor to the far right, who don’t give two wet farts about individual liberties when it comes to people and minority groups they don’t like.

            I see it over and over online. A ‘liberal’ gets on some wild hair about individual liberties being threatened by the far left (and I’m not saying there aren’t extreme cases of those on the left who would want to curtail individual liberties – I know one who comments here!), then they fall down a rabbit hole of similar believers and confirmation bias, and soon enough they’re saying Tucker Carlson has it right if they’re not themselves providing commentary on Newsmax.

            (Morality or immorality is fungible in many cases. Most people think they are highly moral and others against them are immoral. I don’t personally consider you either – just wrong politically and practically. Cool if you think the same of me.)

          • tildeb Says:

            “all you are doing is providing succor to the far right.”

            Do a little thought experiment, Jimbills. Imagine none of this woke ideology was being imposed on all of us. What would the far right have to electioneer on? Nothing, as far as I can tell. No plan. No budget. No policies. Their entire oxygen supply comes from this. That should give you pause.

            So it is not critics of this ideology who are providing succor to the right; it is the ideologues of the left who are providing them with the fuel necessary to gain some electoral success. If more of us on the left actually cared about the liberal portion of our liberal democracies rather than what amounts to mob rule democracy, the right’s sail would have no wind. But as long as any and all critics of the anti liberal regressive woke ideology are automatically painted as bad people helping the far right – and this is an absolutely typical tactic of dismissal – nothing will change except, as you say, increasing the “probability on a reactionary right future than a reactionary left future.”

            And to get us back to loving one’s children, maybe there’s a reason you haven’t/won’t/can’t consider that both California and New Yok states have mysteriously lost tens of thousands of school age children from their rolls post COVID while Texas and Florida continue to show unprecedented increases. Sure, maybe all these parents don’t love their children, but maybe, just maybe, they have enough cause to do so. Maybe, just maybe, they have some very compelling reasons to upend their lives and it has everything to do with how woke ideology is being imposed without their consent on their children that they properly understand as indoctrination into activism… waved away as a non issue by almost all legacy media and Democratic government at all levels. And as far as I can tell, the only political party willing to stand up against this imposition is the far right. Not the moderates who make up the vast majority of the population. It’s too risky and comes at too high a price. Not the left who think undermining liberal democracy is required for social justice. It’s only the far right and they will use this for as long as the rest of us are fooled into fueling them.

          • jimbills Says:

            “Do a little thought experiment, Jimbills. Imagine none of this woke ideology was being imposed on all of us. What would the far right have to electioneer on? Nothing, as far as I can tell. No plan. No budget. No policies. Their entire oxygen supply comes from this. That should give you pause.”

            Okay, that makes me laugh. No pause. Dude, they’ll take ANYTHING. A few years ago it was how Democrats are actually Communists. In the Clinton years, it was about how Hillary secretly killed an aide. Abortion, religion, migrants ‘swarming’ on the border. It doesn’t matter. All that matters to them is political power. Anything that gives them that will work. They’ll invent it if they can’t find it (John Kerry and his Swift Boat).

            There are always extremists on both sides. I can’t stop them, you can’t stop them. Blaming them is pointless. We can only account for what we do ourselves. And from my perspective, you’re willingly providing the right what they want – a ‘liberal’ who agrees with them (‘And as far as I can tell, the only political party willing to stand up against this imposition is the far right’). I think common sense solutions should be enacted to prevent harm to others. I see more harm being applied to minorities than the majority – you see the opposite. I’d prefer less harm to all groups.

            I live in Texas. People move to Texas because their money goes further here. There are jobs here and good schools. California is bloody crowded and the housing market is insane there. Politics would be a post hoc reason for most, not all.

  3. ubrew12 Says:

    DeSantis: “Florida is where woke comes to die”
    A few years later: “Knock, knock! It’s the ocean. Wakey, wakey!”

  4. neilrieck Says:

    While talking about ignorance around political buzz words like “woke”, we should also discuss “critical race theory” (CRT) which started in the 1990s as an academic critique of “race theory” (a field now as discredited as eugenics). I should remind everyone here that the German NAZIs used “race theory” to justify murdering anyone who did not measure up to their standards. Given this fact, one could argue that anyone who is “against CRT” could be called pro-RT or pro-NAZI or both.

    People here might wish to listen to this online NPR program:

    • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

      Yeah, some Europeans have told me that the concept of “white” doesn’t mean much on a continent where peoples of comparable skin hue have been bickering and warring for centuries.

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