Well, if this is what passes for intellectualism in some circles, we guess we’re happy to stay low-brow!
If you haven’t heard of Jordan Peterson, consider yourself fortunate — and feel free to blame us for bringing his harebrained ideology into your life after this. The Canadian clinical psychologist has made a name for himself over the past couple years as a leader of right wing cultural thought — mostly on his own YouTube channel and as a guest on Joe Rogan, where he can pontificate to his heart’s content without ever really being questioned.
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But on Monday he picked a fight on Twitter that he was always going to lose, and now he’s whining about it so hard he’s threatening to leave the social media site altogether.
OK, let’s rewind. On Monday Sports Illustrated debuted their covers for their annual Swimsuit Issue, and one went to model Yumi Nu, who just made her debut in the magazine last year. It’s a huge step for her as the first plus-sized Asian-American model to land the honor, which she shares with fellow 2022 cover models Kim Kardashian, Ciara, and Elon Musk‘s mother Maye Musk.
— Sports Illustrated Swimsuit (@SI_Swimsuit) May 16, 2022
Well, old Jordan think so. And he felt the need to tell us all that his opinion was the objectively correct one — and anything else was Big Brother trying to oppress you! For real. He quote-tweeted a pic of the cover, writing:
“Sorry. Not beautiful. And no amount of authoritarian tolerance is going to change that.”
“Authoritarian tolerance”? WTF is he even talking about?! This is how that f**king Book of Henry kid would respond to his mom saying, “Be nice.”
He wrote to one commenter, along with a link to articles on scientific studies about attractiveness:
“It’s a conscious progressive attempt to manipulate & retool the notion of beauty, reliant on the idiot philosophy that such preferences are learned & properly changed by those who know better. But don’t let the facts stop you.”
The facts are, what you find personally attractive are not necessarily what others do, you solipsistic f**khead. Beauty is an objective metric and what’s actually, officially beautiful just happens to align with what YOU like? Wow, what a genius!
This isn’t intellectualism, it’s like a parody of someone who thinks they’re smart because they’re using their bestest vocabulary words to espouse the same bullying bulls**t dudebros have been using to hurt others for decades. He’s just saying “ew, a fatty” but in a way designed to win him a Scrabble game — and, more importantly, more creepy incel fans for his brand.
Thankfully tons of folks on Twitter were quick to shout his ass down, writing comments like:
“There’s no better illustration of Jordan Peterson’s seriousness as a thinker than ‘it’s tyranny when a woman doesn’t give me a boner’”
“These authoritarians are forcing us to accept people as they are… What a hellscape”
“If Jordan Peterson found me hot I would end it all that’s a wrap on life for me”
“Standards of beauty change over time. Plus you posted two studies that don’t substantiate your point”
“Jordan Peterson imagining an “authoritarian tolerance” is trying to force him to find a particular woman attractive is maybe the most platonically perfect example of this phenomenon of the brittle debate posture you get from people who mistake their subjectivity for objectivity.”
Even many of his fans responded to the tweet telling him it was offsides.
Jordan Peterson fans were not a rocking with his recent tweet pic.twitter.com/wQxmH6cijS
— Right Wing Cope (@RightWingCope) May 17, 2022
There were also, of course, plenty of folks tweeting photos of the man himself next to his own words:
Sorry. Not beautiful. And no amount of authoritarian tolerance is going to change that pic.twitter.com/XGIk7b1kLu
— hasanabi (@hasanthehun) May 16, 2022
Yeah, there… there was a lot of that. It’s not a nice way to get the point across, but it is the door he opened. He chose the tiger instead of the lady.
Hilariously, the thin-skinned pseudo-academic did what bullies always do when they get hit back: he ran away! After just a couple hours of bashing he wrote:
“The endless flood of vicious insult is really not something that can be experienced anywhere else. I like to follow the people I know but I think the incentive structure of the platform makes it intrinsically and dangerously insane.”
He officially “quit” Twitter, writing:
“I told my staff to change my password, to keep me from temptation and am departing once again. If I have something to say I’ll write an article or make a video. If the issue is not important enough to justify that then perhaps it would be best to just let it go.”
Yes, good idea. Stick to articles and videos where no one can debate you. You can just spew the same old vitriol that you dressed up in tweed and leather elbow patches and you’ll never have to hear about it when anyone disagrees with you. Because academic ideas shouldn’t have to stand up to rigorous scrutiny, right?
Of course, saying he was quitting Twitter only got him mocked WAY more mercilessly. Here’s a very small sampling:
“Jordan Peterson is quitting Twitter because he tried to fat shame a cover model and his mentions got too hot to handle. lmaooo what a hero”
“Jordan Peterson is the sort of man who will denigrate the body of a Sports Illustrated model on Twitter—a model whose appearance on the cover of SI is specifically intended to combat the toxicity of social media—and literal hours later complain about the toxicity of social media.”
“Jordan Peterson going out of his way to publicly call a woman he doesn’t know and who did nothing to him unattractive and then making a big show of leaving the platform over his own hurt feelings in response to the pushback is entirely on-brand for King of the Incels.”
Hilariously, the best response was written by Yumi Nu herself. And she wrote it preemptively; it’s in the very magazine she’s covering. As part of her cover profile, she wrote about body shaming:
“Even here in the U.S., where a lot of the fashion industry has become more inclusive toward people with bodies like mine in the last few years, some people — for example, designers at certain high-fashion houses and dumb, angry guys on the internet, among others — just haven’t quite figured out yet that people who look like me belong.”
[Image via Yumi Nu/Instagram/Channel 4/YouTube.]