Does Social Justice Activism Cause Mental Illness?

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Thu, Apr 28 - 9:00 am EDT | 2 years ago by
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The Morse Code - Social Justice Activism and Mental Illness

During my time here at EveryJoe, I’ve written a whole hell of a lot about social justice, and just how damaging it can be. When I say damaging, I don’t just mean to universities that are its breeding grounds, or even to the country at large. I also mean it’s damaging to the very psyche of the person who holds social justice beliefs.

We already know that it causes high levels of stress within those who practice social justice. You’ll recall the articles that came out in February that detailed how students found social justice activism such a burden that it interfered with their school work, and they had to ask for extensions for their assignments. One student named David told The Daily Herald, “There are people breaking down, dropping out of classes and failing classes because of the activism work they are taking on.”

YouTube star and ultra-feminist Laci Green, of MTV’s “Braless,” even admits that “I also find it important to create positive spaces for myself, which sometimes means zoning out, and taking a break from feminist analysis. It should not become an all consuming shadow on life. That just ain’t healthy.”

How unhealthy? Stress produces the hormone cortisol, which in frequent doses, can result in a myriad of problems. These include weight gain, heart disease, memory loss, depression, and – drumroll – mental illness.

What kind of mental illness? Well, the chronic stress caused by social justice activism has various effects on the brain, especially that of the hippocampus and amygdala, which controls your fight-or-flight response. lays it out pretty clearly.

“The researchers performed a series of experiments on adult rats, focusing on the hippocampus region of the brain (which regulates memory and emotions). During the experiments, they found the neural stem cells behaved differently than expected. Prior to this study, the general belief was that these stem cells would only become neurons or astrocyte cells, a type of glial cell. However, under stress, these cells became another type of glial cells, oligodendrocyte, which are the myelin-producing cells. These cells also help form the synapses, which are the communication tools that allow nerve cells to exchange information. Thus, chronic stress causes more myelin-producing cells and fewer neurons. This disrupts the balance in the brain, causing communication in the brain cells to lose its normal timing, which could lead to problems.”

So what could that mean for the social justice warrior?

“This might lead to a stronger connection between the hippocampus and the amygdala (the area that processes the fight-or-flight response). It might also cause weaker connectivity between the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex (the area that moderates the responses).”

In other words, the stress is making it harder to respond reasonably to a given situation, that may even rank as a one on the social justice Richter scale. It increases the amount of fear and anxiety felt, and every situation becomes something of a big deal. So when some social justice warriors say they now have PTSD because people made fun of them online, like Melody Hensley did, they may not be all that wrong.

When they erupt into screaming and shouting at a person, they may actually be unable to control themselves.


When an SJW uses physicality, like Bonita Tindle did at SFSU to the kid with the dreadlocks or Melissa Click to the student journalist, it’s likely because the stress had altered chemicals in the brain that makes them more aggressive.


Not long ago, I noticed that the reactions most SJWs had to their given situations were mentally on par with that of children, and wrote about it here. I mentioned that to people like you and I, dreadlocks seemed like a weird reason to lose one’s mind, but to the SJW they might see the reason as valid.

This may explain why. The mental breakdown that occurs when people adhere to the causes and activist life of social justice can all be mapped back to chemical imbalances caused by stress. In other words, SJWs are very likely mentally unstable. We’ve noted that many times before, both jokingly and seriously, but here is the proof.

This opens up a whole list of answers to the SJW question. Do they really require safe spaces? They very well might. To us, coloring books, videos of puppies, and bubbles seem silly, but this kind of child-like fun zone soothes the nerves and calms the out of control emotions the SJW is currently suffering from.

Why would anyone really want to ban free speech? Because disparaging words and bubble bursting talk really does cause their already unstable emotions to derail, causing further stress and further harm to the self.

Furthermore, it should be noted that anger can be addictive, and SJWs are filled to the brim with it. But if the stress is so harmful, why keep it going? Why be so angry at everything all the time? Doctor Jean Kim writes what kind of effects SJWs are feeling when they unleash that anger.

What happens is that anger can lead to similar “rushes” as thrill-seeking activities where danger triggers dopamine reward receptors in the brain, or like other forms of addiction such as gambling, extreme sports, even drugs like cocaine and methamphetamines. Anger can become its own reward, but like other addictions, the final consequences are dangerous and real, and people follow impulses in the moment without regard to the big picture.

Being angry feels good when used at the time, much like a drug. You’ll notice, however, a pattern developing. Excess use of anger leads to a loss of control. They want to express that anger to get that rush, but soon the anger becomes nigh involuntary.

I admit that I’m not doctor or psychologist myself, but it would appear that a lot of what I read in my attempt to get down to the mental effects of social justice lines up perfectly with that of stress induced mental illnesses.

It’s scary to think that everyone from the media, to politicians, to celebrities are telling social justice adherents that what they’re doing is right and that they should keeping standing up and fight the good fight. This is on par with mental abuse, when you step back and consider the effects social justice activism has on the brain.

These people don’t need to be enabled, they need help.

Photo by SIPhotography/Getty Images

Hailing from Austin, Texas, Brandon Morse has been writing about politics and culture across many websites for the last six years, with a heavy emphasis on anti-authoritarianism. Aside from writing articles, he is also known for voice acting and authoring scripts. He is an avid gamer, dog person, and has a bad habit of making vague references to things no one has heard about or seen. Follow him at @TheBrandonMorse on Twitter.

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