Ben Shapiro: alt-right or radical conservative?

Taylor Deaton, News/Opinion Editor

Photo by  Daniel Foster  on  Unsplash .

Photo by Daniel Foster on Unsplash.

Ben Shapiro is a well-known name in the world of politics. Specifically, among conservatives. Shapiro is a conservative political commentator and editor-in-chief of the Daily Wire.

Shapiro’s podcast, The Ben Shapiro Show, is high up on the apple podcasts charts and has an overall rating of 4.7 stars. 

When Shapiro’s name is circulating around social media, it’s typically because he made a statement on a particularly controversial issue, because he is known for his well-spoken answers on issues that are generally avoided.

Recently, though, Shapiro was in the spotlight for another reason. On March 28, an article was published by The Economist that described Shapiro as “the alt-right sage without the rage.” 

The “Alt-right,” which is short for alternative-right, is a white supremacy group whose beliefs stray from the beliefs of the Republican Party.

The headline received enormous backlash by Shapiro’s followers, and Shapiro himself took to Twitter to ask for a correction regarding this headline. Shapiro’s tweet to The Economist read, “this is a vile lie. Not only am I not alt-right, I am probably their leading critic on the right.”

Shapiro went on to “demand a retraction” for the headline of the article, which was promptly changed to refer to him as a “radical conservative.”

Shapiro then stated that, “if you lump me in with people who are so evil, I literally hire security to walk me to shul on Shabbat, you can go straight to hell.”

The Economist then tweeted an apology to Shapiro for labeling him as alt-right. In addition, a note was added to the article which stated, “a previous version mistakenly described Mr. Shapiro as an ‘alt-right sage’ and ‘a pop idol of the alt right.’ In fact, he has been strongly critical of the alt-right movement. We apologize.”

 The article, an interview in which Shapiro discussed his political views that are often times known to be controversial, has been heavily criticized since its publication. Specially, the criticism has been heavy on Twitter.

Joseph Steinber, a Cyber-Security and Emerging Technologies Advisor stated on Twitter that he was “perplexed as to how any journalist or editor could possibly run a headline that @benshapiro is an ‘alt-right sage’ when Shapiro has consistently and repetitively lambasted the alt-right, and alt-right members en masse have publicly expressed disdain for Shapiro.”

 On Fox News Shapiro spoke about being labeled alt-right, stating that The Economist labeling me some sort of pop icon of the alt-right was obviously wrong on its face and that’s why The Economist did the right thing, pulled down the headline.”

 Shapiro addressed The Economist revising their headline to call Shapiro a “radical conservative” saying it was “strange.”

“Radical conservative I can take, alt-right was not a thing I was going to allow to stand,” stated Shapiro.