Shutterstock Photo of Mushroom Cloud

Social Etiquette For When Some Guys Says He Wants to Nuke Your Home

Emma Lindsay
4 min readJul 17, 2022


I was watching Sumo wrestling live (from Japan!) on Twitch last night, when I casually mentioned the time difference wasn’t as bad for me (as some people in the central timezone) because I was on the West coast. Some people made comments like “that’s nice, but overall not worth living there” which is fine. Some people said California was a shithole, which like, hey, we’re not the ones arguing 10 year old rape victims should be forced to give birth, but whatever, that’s fine.

And then, one guy went off on a rant about how if he had the power, he would nuke the entire west coast. I was just like… what am I supposed to do in this situation? Like, I could escalate it and fucking politicize a chat about sumo and make it about this stupid dumbass comment, I could ignore it, I could….? Eventually I said something like, Damn, that’s harsh, and silently blocked the guy. If I had to adjust it slightly, I would have responded “Even if you think it’s just a joke, saying you wish I was dead is too much, so I’m going to block username now. If anyone else wants to do it, you click on his name, click on the three dots, then click ‘block user.’”

End of story; no matter what they respond, I won’t be able to see it, so it won’t make me angry, and if they have an annoying freak out, other people know what to do too.

But, this raised another question for me — given this had all happened in a Twitch chat.

Where exactly does Mr Nuke-The-West-Coast think Twitch is made?

Twitch’s head quarters are in San Francisco, California, and this is something that is just fucking getting to me about all these conservatives who hate liberal areas. Who do they think makes their technology? All their fucking facebooks, computers, phones? Their rage twitter?

Where the fuck do they think all this comes from? And, why does it come from there?

Why will the tech industry never move to Texas? Because they just banned abortion, and tech workers are liberal AF on social issues. Why are tech workers socially liberal? Because you often need a university degree to get into tech, and people with university degrees tend to be liberal.

Now, conservatives think that universities are doing liberal brainwashing, and ok, maybe some are, but that’s not why this is happening. What many universities are actually doing — especially ones that center around technology and science — is they are teaching critical thinking. They are teaching people the ability to reason about things in the world, and see when things are false. Do you need a university degree to be a critical thinker? No you do not; I’ve met many non university educated people in tech who are highly rational critical thinkers. As far as I know, none of them support the republican party in its current form. Some were old school republicans or libertarians, but Donald Trump and Jan 6 really ended that.

Beyond just thinking critically, however, one things that liberals have (often learned in university) that conservatives sometimes don’t have, and that is the ability to work with others. Actually, maybe this is why conservatives need authoritarianism so much? They’re not familiar with the experience of producing a large piece work with people who are essentially their equals.

Anyway; at the end, why will the conservative movement fail? How will it fail?

It will fail because it gets nothing done. That’s how. Conservative politics have devolved into pure power games, with absolutely no production. Conservatives areas don’t currently generate anything new — not on a national scale, anyway — they just attempt to control people who are generating product using moralistic lies and outrage. Consider a place like Texas, where everyone always used to say Austin would be the next Silicon Valley, and legitimately a lot of companies were moving before the abortion ban. Leaving aside (for a second) that Austin is actually very liberal, Texas is poaching companies from California instead of actually coming up with their own industry.

That’s right. Liberals build it, conservatives copy it or try to steal it, that’s the state of the fucking world right now, and conservatives dismiss the liberals as a bunch of useless assholes after we’ve built them all the shit they like that improves their lives because they can’t come up with their own ideas. And, it’s not random they can’t come up with their own ideas; current conservative ideology is authoritarian in nature and oppositional to creative thinking. If you thought “wokeness” was bad for mind control, is is nothing compared to the religious fascism the right has in store.

And, the true tragedy of conservatism is that they have no idea how much they’re going to end up *hurting themselves* with their own policy, because they can’t think critically (like, that guy who wanted to nuke CA while watching Twitch.) They don’t understand that, technology and medicine and stuff like that doesn’t just magically appear in the world, it is built, and generally built by people with a very specific world view — a world view that allows them to evaluate things rationally, and a world view that allows them to cooperate with other people.

Current conservative ideology is not sustainable and eventually this kind of “ignorance is strength” and “obey our glorious leader” mindset will destroy itself; but the real question is, how many people will it take down with it before it does?