Rupert Murdoch rails against ‘awful woke orthodoxy’ while accepting award
Media mogul Rupert Murdoch blasted so-called cancel culture and a “woke orthodoxy” that he described as “awful” and suggested was a threat to the free exchange of ideas in the U.S. and around the world.
“For those of us in the media, there’s a real challenge to confront: a wave of censorship that seeks to silence conversation, to stifle debate, to ultimately stop individuals and societies from realizing their potential,” Murdoch, the executive chairman of News Corp., said in recorded remarks while receiving an award from the Australia Day Foundation, according to The New York Times.
“This rigidly enforced conformity, aided and abetted by so-called social media, is a straitjacket on sensibility,” Murdoch added. “Too many people have fought too hard in too many places for freedom of speech to be suppressed by this awful woke orthodoxy.”
Video of the remarks was also posted on the website of the Herald Sun, an Australian newspaper owned by Murdoch, whose media ownership includes Fox News and the New York Post.
Many GOP lawmakers and media commentators on the right have decried “cancel culture,” calling it a concerted effort by those on the left to suppress opposing viewpoints.
The term has received renewed attention following the deadly Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol by supporters of former President Trump.
Major social media platforms later banned Trump from their sites, prompting claims by some on the right that Silicon Valley was trying to cancel Trump.
Murdoch, 89, has not spoken much publicly in recent years, the Times reported, and has been living at his home in England during the coronavirus pandemic. He reportedly received a coronavirus vaccine in December.