The progressive left calls a new meme “dehumanizing,” and now Twitter has deleted a host of accounts for posting it and others. What kind of awful meme would make the left ramp up its censorship machinery, you may ask? It’s a gray man called an NPC, which is short for “Non-Player Character.”
Now, let’s think real hard: Who fits this description?
It’s a term from the gaming industry that traces back to the beginnings of Dungeons & Dragons. In another modern incarnation, they are bots run by a primitive AI that participate in a video game to drive forward the narrative. If you interact with them, they can respond with a few scripted responses – but that’s it.
If you immediately thought of mindless Social Justice Warriors, you have a real-world demonstration of why this meme is so powerful and has become so popular. It has instant recognition value.
This is also the very reason that so many on the left respond so viscerally to it. They recognize the truth of it, and they don’t like it. Ironically, they give a scripted response: “dehumanizing.” Remember, these are the same people who regularly dehumanize conservatives with any one of many subhuman slurs in their basket of deplorables: racist, sexist, misogynist, homophobe, Islamophobe, etc.
Every era has its favorite nickname for such one-dimensional behavior. In the olden days, they called it demonic possession. In the era of television, they were referred to as zombies. In science fiction, we know them as the hive mind species Borg. NPC is the term for the gaming era.
The Turing Test
How do we know when we are dealing with an NPC? The great mathematician Alan Turing invented a brilliant test to determine if a computer is truly intelligent. It’s called the Turing test, and it goes like this: Have a conversation with the computer and if, after a 20-minute period or so, you cannot tell it apart from a human, it is truly intelligent. NPCs fail the Turing test.
The script Social Justice Warriors follow can be described in just a couple of paragraphs. If you run into them individually, they will give one-liner statements such as “capitalism is evil” or “America is the most racist country in the world.”
“racist”, “sexist”, “bigot”, “transphobe” or “homophobe.”
If you give them a thoughtful response and a good argument – one that lies outside their script – they will assign some label, chosen from the aforementioned basket, to declare your argument evil. This saves them from providing counter-arguments, which requires thinking.
If you try to advocate for conservative values, such as law and order or the nuclear family, their scripted response is “racist”, “sexist”, “bigot”, “transphobe” or “homophobe.”
However, the NPCs are herd animals and prefer to hunt in packs. They will therefore form mobs and mindlessly chant slurs and banalities. The most common are:
“Hey hey, ho ho, [something/someone] has got to go!”
“We believe survivors!”
“Shame, shame, shame!”
“We are the Borg, resistance is futile, you will be assimilated!”
NPC is a deliciously accurate term, capturing the essence of the regressive left: a human acting like a mindless bot controlled by an ideological script. Next time you run into one of these NPCs, try to confuse her script with a counter-chant: “hey hey, ho ho, NPCs have got to go.”