“The interesting question is not whether the pain is real. Rather, the question is why we’re seeing more of it today than in the past. And the answer is because we’ve incentivized pain. We’ve let people know that pain, even idiotic, senseless pain, can be weaponized and employed against hated opponents, whether college teachers or local conservatives. And when you incentivize something, you get more of it.
The pain is real. But it is also strategic. What comes first is the desire to justify one’s hatred, for which the pain operates as a permission slip. It makes the protestor think his hatred noble, and lets him hug himself in self-delight for reveling in the most evil of emotions.”