This is Not a Barbaric Book Review

Just last week, the beginning of autumn (Fall, for the Americans reading this) brought about a sudden change from 35°C days—which was barely tolerable as is—to under 20°C, with barely a flip of the hat, excuse the bad cliche. Naturally, my body reacted by getting a cold. Instead of picking up the copy of Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier I’ve been slowly trawling through since January, I decided to pick up another book. I did this back in March when I reviewed The Girl Before by J.P Delaney. I was about a hundred pages into Rebecca when I realised The Girl Before was due back at the library in less than a week. This time around, I just wanted a quick read, something to distract me from the dreary banalities of lying, snuggled up in a dressing gown with an overly warm Bengal cat by the my side. Lucky for me, Barbarians: How The Baby Boomers, Immigration, and Islam Screwed my Generation by Lauren Southern was a quick and easy read, and helped pass the time.

I first discovered Lauren Southern last year when she was mostly responsible for initiating #TheTriggering, a hashtag event on Twitter with a simple point: to annoy and ridicule the politically correct “social justice warriors”, or SJWs. I thought it was an interesting concept, but other than that,  I believed Southern, while noble in her cause, was too right-wing. A few months later, Southern reappeared in the limelight with two events: 1. having urine thrown on her by a social justice loony, and 2.when a transwoman punched Southern, leading to a college feminist dubbed Smugglypuff badly feigning ignorance to what happened. These events put ex-The Rebel reporter and Canadian millennial Lauren Southern, on my radar, and when her first non-fiction Barbarians was released in December, it was definitely something I knew I would read.

Barbarians: How The Baby Boomers, Immigration, and Islam Screwed my Generation was released in December of 2016, which is apt, considering most of what she talks about in the early chapters help provide a framework for the events of 2016, namely Donald Trump’s United States Presidential win. Being only 82 Kindle pages, it was an amazingly quick read, which I completed in under a day. Its synopsis is this: Southern, with a chapter dedicated to each, explains how the Baby Boomers, think tanks, immigration, Islam and Millennials (previously known as Generation Y) destroyed the millennials  and created a generation of what she perceives as whiny entitled brats and is essentially leading to the downfall of Western civilisation. Basically, after the end of World War II, the children of the Silent Generation became arrogant about their easy lives in a Post-War world and believed they were entitled to more than they were, infiltrating universities in the 1960s as “tenured hippies”. These Baby Boomers then raised the next two generations—Generation X and the Millennials—and these Boomers, both Left- and Right-wing, created the issues in the world today, and has led to a generation of entitled, whiny snowflake millennials.

One of the problems with Barbarians is that Southern assumes her only readers are Right-wingers, whether young or old. She aims to write for millennials, telling us we are the ones who will stop the rise of the Far-Left infiltrating the Western world. She goes into what is considered for most conspiracy territory, saying that the generation of university professors who were displaced by the Left in the 1960s became the Right-wing conservatives that had such a big hold on America. A lot of this talk on the history of Conservatism—or neoconservatives—is rather dull and feels like Southern is reciting an encyclopedic description of these events to me. Maybe it’s just a sign I wasn’t educated properly, as Southern says millennials were duped out of a proper education by the forces of these tenured hippies who place more focus on things like Safe Schools and indigenous decolonisation than simple reading, ‘riting and ‘rithmetic! As mentioned, she claims neoconservatives were ex-Left-wing professors who made the right-wing more Left and less of its true and honest way. She blames these neoconservatives for the fall of the Republican Party in its old, Tea Party, FOX News loving way, and the conservatives of the future won’t be rich, old trust-fund babies who think they control the world simply by their famous last name. They also won’t be called “conservative” because she states there is nothing to conserve about the West in its current state, to be fairly dramatic. These “think-tank fogies” are a relic of the past, as evidenced by Trump’s Presidential win.

After the rise of the entitled Baby Boomer, it led to the current situation today where forced immigration and Islam screwed over the West. She’s fairly blunt here, stating Islam is incompatible with Western civilization, and mass immigration will destroy a country’s welfare system and ruin the economy. By this point, I was used to Southern’s blunt delivery. Contrary to what I expected, she blamed both the Left and the Right for this influx of the wrong sort of people. She frankly tells the reader immigrants will either not get jobs and put a strain on the welfare system, or get jobs and funnel the money back to their home countries. The left-wing, to her, only wish to play mummies and babies with these immigrants, and don’t see any bit into the future to see the truth, because they focus more on emotions than logic, and panic when they discover most people don’t agree with said elite, out-of-touch left-wingers. I don’t fully agree with everything Southern says here—but you don’t have to agree with someone to understand them. Society relies on immigrants—granted there isn’t a “the limit does not exist” philosophy and they are helping out their new country—and many of them will contribute healthily to a new country. It’s the ones who refuse to assimilate—whether because the social justice uni students are telling them they’re oppressed, or because they’re too deeply stuck in the ways of their militant ex-country—that are the problem! Lauren Southern states almost as much, though more authoritarian about it.

All this leads up to the modern day, and the millennial generation. This is the bit where I can identify with Southern; despite being a few years older than her, we’re both still millennials, formerly known as Generation Y. “Millennial” simply seems to be the new term to extend Gen Y to a longer period of time, to accuse more people of being the Horrible Youth™, only a few letters from the [Literally] Hitler Youth. She employs the us vs. them language employed similarly by radical feminist Clementine Ford in the sub-par Fight Like a Girl. Despite being on opposite sides of the spectrum, those of the left and right love employing the exact same tactics. Southern states the younger generation are the most likely to lead the world away from social justice-infested waters and become conservatives. It will stop us from being selfish, entitled brats who don’t understand how the world works because the Baby Boomers rendered us useless. She seems to believe the only way to turn the youth away from the understandably crazy far-Left is to lead them to what will inevitably be the far-Right. Yes, I get her main bit when she states there are two groups of modern Leftists…

…and both types are just as bad as the other, but the solution to one horrible thing is not to go to the extreme opposite. Just like fascism is agreeably awful, so too is communism. Where Islam fails, Christianity will not immediately solve the world’s ills. Still, the world will never be centrist.

Southern ends Barbarians with, and if you were to only read one part of this book, the chapter How to Stop Ruining Everything. She continues from the takeaway of the previous chapter, and that is for millennials to stop being controlled by the far-Left globalists/not-yet-Marxists, we need to educate ourselves, read into everything, learn what we didn’t learn in the education system, learn, learn learn. However, this final chapterChapter 7Southern has her guide for everyone, and by everyone, I mean her mostly Right-leaning audience. Her tips are:

  1. Become a nationalist, and not a nationalist in the “OMG Hitler fascism Nazis literally Trump” way. Support your country, and stop the elites of the Left and Right—the “globalists”—and unite as one group, as the universe intended. She brings up the traditional family unit and Christianity as proof of how to be nationalistic. Family unit, I understand for the most part, but the second point…Ugh, despite critiquing Islam for rightfully not fitting into modern civilisation, she thinks Christianity will solve all of the world’s problems. I’d never be a bitter, crazy atheist, but we need more focus on family, friendships, faith and spirituality in general. The world doesn’t work with religion—but it doesn’t work without it. We need faith and spirituality to keep ourselves grounded to ourselves and those around us.
  2. Secondly, she believes in the dismantling of the welfare state, which is pretty naive. Firstly, she implies all people on welfare are either immigrants or selfish young people who can’t be assed getting off their asses. She says we should make welfare recipients seen as disgraceful and for society to point and laugh. While the SJW philosophy of putting the non-white welfare recipients on a pedestal doesn’t work, the reversal idea isn’t perfect. This ignores the mentally ill, disabled, and those who simply cannot get a job in the current economic climate, and puts them in the Lazy: Please Ignore category.
  3. Halt immigration, but 40 legal Mexican immigrants are far better than 40 Huffington Post “journalists.” She restates what she said in the chapters about immigration and Islam respectively. A lot of typical right-wing beliefs put onto paper. Only allow immigrants that help keep the country flowing and the economy flourishing.
  4. Stop listening to the globalists who only care about money and influence. They are the old media, they are those in the ivory towers, they are the liberal elite in San Francisco and New York and Seattle and other upper-middle-class hubs. Don’t listen to them. Be your own person. Learn about the West. Read more. Read about Ancient Rome. Understand the works of Mozart, Chaucer, et al.

Barbarians: How The Baby Boomers, Immigration, and Islam Screwed my Generation is a quick read (that could have been longer) with a few interesting points, some radically blunt Right-wing beliefs, a history of Right-wing politics, and a book you should read if you want to understand how events like Brexit and Donald Trump’s Presidential win occurred. With a bit of anti-liberal jargon—words like cuck, SJW, and Marxist elite are generally not terms employed by the likes of the far-Left; they have their own Dictionary of Gobbledygook—it alienates those who don’t fit into the demographic of Southern supporters. It’s still a breath of fresh air in the current political climate. I may not be Right-leaning like Lauren Southern, but I learned a lot about the ways Right-wing millennials think.

Overall: 7/10

Said Bengal from the first paragraph. How can anyone resist this adorable face?

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