touch not the unclean thing

I pay for four Substack newsletters, but am on the free tier for several others, and the writers I follow who are huffily declaring their departure from Substack because Substack will tolerate [insert taboo object here] perfectly illustrate Left Purity Culture. What’s sad/funny about this is that the platforms they are decamping for are no more pure than Substack. (You think no right-wingers use Tinyletter? Also: You’re announcing your purgative action … on Twitter? Wow, you can’t get more ideologically pure than that.) It’s a useful reminder that ritual cleanliness bears no resemblance to actual cleanliness. It’s just a matter of making the approved gestures. But it may have the self-fulfilling prophecy effect: Eventually the claim that “Substack is just a venue for right-wingers” may be largely true.