Ben Shapiro Is Feuding With His Own Employees
Let's say, hypothetically, that Benny didn't pay attention to the Golem legend.
It’s always funny when far-righters fight each other because it’s almost always about petty shit, and yet they are unable to rein in their virulent hatefulness when attacking their peers. It’s almost always funny. This one time, I almost feel sorry for Ben Shapiro. So much that I’m not going to refer to him the way I usually do: Eenie Meenie Teenie Weenie [Four Syllable Put-down: Women Drying] Ben Shapiro. Because this time, the stakes are different. This is a far-right pundit civil war that puts antisemites against Islamophobes. This time, they won’t be able to set their differences aside by turning their hate onto Trans people.
In the US, support for a cease-fire in Gaza hasn’t just been growing; it is the overwhelming opinion, including a small majority of GOPers. The same poll showed that most Americans favored the US standing as a neutral mediator or not getting involved, with a sharp decline in outright support for Israel. The US far-right saw these figures (and the general tone of the conversation) as their way out of a political stance wholly unnatural to them: Support for Israel. One core tenet of the far-right anywhere, after all, is hatred for Judaism.
There’s one problem: One of the most famous figures in far-right punditry in the US right now, and the man who cuts the checks for many far-right voices, is a Jewish man himself who is staunchly pro-Israel: Ben Shapiro, editor in chief of The Daily Wire.
Meanwhile, one of the most prominent voices platformed by The Daily Wire is public idiot and ringleader of grifters Candace Owens, who is not an idiot when it comes to adjusting course to appease her white supremacist funders. Over the last few weeks, she has voiced her opposition to the US providing military support for Israel, which is not out of step with the whole neo-isolationist ideology of the US’ far-right (which, in reality, it’s just an excuse to let Putin do whatever he wants with Ukraine). Meanwhile, the official party line at The Daily Wire is "Military support for Israel good; Military support for Ukraine bad. Can we please go back to harassing Trans people?” It started with trickles on her Twitter, followed by comments on her podcast.
Shortly after that, a recording of Ben Shapiro at an event made the rounds, where he attacked her.
Candace responded in the only way a grifter knows how: By making it about herself. Like all far-righters do when they want to garner sympathy, she quoted the Bible. The New Testament, followed by a “Christ is King.” To punch back against a Jewish person. That’s not a dog-whistle. That’s the goddamn garbage truck.
Ben Shapiro, never one to ignore deliberate bait, quote tweeted her with casual-professional language, encouraging her to quit The Daily Wire.
That was when the blue-tick swarm on Twitter broke ranks and turned on Ben. The way his fellow far-righters piled on him would be funny if it weren’t for all their subtle and not-so-subtle antisemitism.
Candace, for her part, responded by delivering a low blow. And here’s where I cannot help but feel bad for Ben:
The antisemitism of “you cross a certain line when you come for [New Testament] scripture” aside, her response is gross because, for obvious reasons, Ben Shapiro cannot be in a good place right now. The horrors of October 7th may have been traumatizing for him. He probably knows people who were attacked by Hamas that weekend. On the other hand, Ben Shapiro has always worn his Islamophobia on his sleeves and has been rabidly anti-Palestinian since day one. You can only imagine how he’s acted at The Daily Wire’s offices over the last few days. Still, Owens’ tweets are signaling to his far-right audience that she is ready to jump ship and pivot to antisemitism. She followed up her campaign by stopping by Tucker Carlson’s show, perhaps the most prominent voice in white supremacy today.
Going by the Tweets, Ben Shapiro is running out of friends. In the same week that Elon Musk endorsed a tweet openly accusing Jewish people of being behind the “Great Replacement,” other popular far-right pundits, all of whom have ties or have been platformed on The Daily Wire, decided to throw their support behind the Apartheid Boy. The signaling has been explicit. Chief amongst them has been Matt Walsh, also from The Daily Wire, who has taken time off from parroting transphobia to have friendly exchanges with transparent antisemites like Jack Posobiec and Mike Cernovich. There are no surprises here; he is a Catholic extremist. There is no such thing as a far-right Catholic who isn’t rabidly antisemitic.
Surprisingly, Ben Shapiro’s hands seem tied if he wants to fire Owens or Walsh. According to his partner and The Daily Wire’s cofounder, Jeremy Boreing, it’s because of their “commitment to free speech” and they “don’t have executive powers.” My take is that their funders, the Koch family, won’t allow them to be fired because they don’t want to piss off the voting base they’re trying to sway.
These figures have been platformed on The Daily Wire (Posobiec has been a guest on Owens’ podcast), and their tweets are usually featured in news articles as supportive voices. They move in the same friendly circles, like Charlie Kirk and his TP organization. Regardless of how much control he may or may not have over their firing, why on Earth would a Jewish person give these people a platform in the first place when he should know they’re inherently antisemitic? This is not like Candace Owens or Caitlyn Jenner throwing marginalized communities under the bus — the same communities they belong to — in a vain attempt to keep their heads above water. Shapiro and Boreing have been promoting the very ideology that has always threatened Jewish people. Did they think that by owning the platform, they would have control over the antisemites? Do they always live in a state of “it’s never going to happen anyway; the fascists will never fully take over the US”? It’s almost tragic. Though again, Ben Shapiro isn’t free from antisemitism himself; he pretty much dismisses all of Reform Judaism.
Let’s not be fooled though: People like Candace Owens and her ilk don’t give a damn about the suffering of Palestinians. They don’t care about Palestinians’ independence or dignity any more than Ben Shapiro; Benny is just honest about his hatred. These people are not allies or useful in the opposition against Netanyahu and Co. This is something that many people on the Left should be wary of: If Glenn Greenwald or one of the idiots at The Gray Zone shows support for a right-wing pundit, keep them away from your movement.
Alberto Cox will soon return to regular dunking of Ben Shapiro. But he does actually feel sorry for him and about his safety overall.