Conservative pundit Ben Shapiro was mocked following an appearance at a Young America’s Foundation (YAF) event at Iowa State University where a liberal attendee challenged his definition of "wokeism."
Shapiro defined wokeism as the belief “all inequalities of today are attributable to not only historical injustices but also continuing injustices in the now.”
However, the liberal, identified as a former campaign staffer for Massachussets Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren, pushed back and questioned why Republicans have become so confrontational about efforts to raise a broader awareness of racial prejudice and discrimination.
You can watch their encounter below.
Shapiro dodged the question entirely when the unnamed activist said he was "not characterizing what I am saying accurately" and even attempted to cut off the conversation entirely, saying that “we’re going to have to stop this because it is going nowhere.”
Sure enough, when the activist said he was “just trying to understand” Shapiro’s perspective, someone working for the event walked over him and blocked his microphone.
"I thought you were a free speech warrior," the activist said in a moment that quickly went viral for what many of Shapiro's critics said exposed his own hypocrisy regarding free speech.
Many have criticized Shapiro as a result.
Shapiro has often accused leftists of censoring right-wing activists and politicians and has even accused Democrats and progressives of believing in an imaginary "hierarchy of victimhood" in which the opinions of members of persecuted groups are afforded more credence.
These claims have formed a major element of Shapiro's ideology, which he has promoted in an effort to court more young conservatives.
Shapiro has also spoken out against safe spaces, arguing that they undermine free speech, especially on college campuses, claiming that "political correctness" has run amock and that, ironically, leftists are not interested in engaging in civil discourse.