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The Roundtable: Contesting the Boundaries of Public Discourse

A discussion about intensifying debates over what subjects and views are taboo — and who gets to decide.

"Cancel culture" has become a buzzword of our time, a shorthand for a particular set of political postures and social media strategies. But what attitudes really lie behind the rash of online campaigns against public figures? How is it reshaping our society and public discourse? A panel of commentators joined Roundtable to talk cancel culture, free speech, and contemporary taboos.  

Taylor Ferber, host of the podcast Cancel Me, Baby!, believes that we're beginning to see a shift away from the aggressive culling of unpopular opinions that has characterized the last several years.

"I wholeheartedly agree that censorship is a real thing, but you're seeing the tide turn," she says. "Look at Elon Musk, and look at Netflix, sticking behind Dave Chappelle. It's rare, but it is happening. In the case of Dave Chappelle, he can be judged in the court of public opinion."

The panel enumerates the current untouchable topics: Me Too, gender, and, as Joel Comm adds, "anything related to COVID. If you have questions about the vaccine, if you've been injured by the vaccine."

Watch the full discussion below:

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Roundtable Guests:

Joel Comm, Host, The Bad Crypto Podcast

Taylor Ferber, Host, Cancel Me, Baby! Podcast

Michael Loftus, Editor-in-Chief, The Loftus Report