- The Washington Times - Friday, April 22, 2022

A new documentary film that explores the harmful effects of cancel culture debuts Friday at the former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida.

The Conservative Political Action Conference, known for hosting the nation’s largest yearly conservative confab, produced the documentary “Culture Killers: the Woke Wars.”

The film is an effort to “end the shame and silence of being smeared with false charges,” said CPAC Chair Matt Schlapp, who co-wrote the film with his wife, CPAC senior fellow Mercedes Schlapp.

Directed by veteran filmmaker Jason Killian Meath and hosted by the Schlapps, “Culture Killers” describes “how Big Tech, Big Media, and well-funded Leftist organizations actively coordinate to silence free speech and debate in the public square today,” the organization said in a press release.

“Cancel culture is tearing America apart. People are being fired from jobs, expelled from schools, abused verbally, blacklisted and even harmed physically in the name of wokeness and this film calls out the perpetrators,” Mr. Meath said.

While Mr. Trump does not appear in the documentary, his son Donald Trump Jr. does, and Mr. Schlapp hopes the elder Trump likes the final product.

In an interview, Mr. Schlapp said the film’s vision owes much to Mr. Trump, as does the conservative movement’s newfound vim in standing up to the political left.

“It’s perfectly appropriate to have it at Mar a Lago, because if [Mr. Trump] hadn’t come around, I think a lot of us would still be cowering and assume that this was a phase that America was going through, and that none of us was powerful enough to kind of do anything to stop it,” Mr. Schlapp said. “And so you cower, and too many of us have been guilty of that and it’s because of him that I think a lot of us aren’t doing that.”

He vowed to carry on the fight.

“CPAC is committed to telling the stories and defending those being destroyed professionally and politically, which is why we have set up the First Amendment Fund to come to the aid of those being desecrated,” Mr. Schlapp said. “The Walt Disney Co disgrace has awakened more people to the problem of being silent, and Elon Musk is turning more Americans into activists for our very survival.”

The CPAC’s First Amendment Fund was established as part of the organization’s mission on criminal justice reform “to advance Constitutional and civil rights through litigation and legal representation” that was launched “to help defend those unjustly targeted or canceled by the Far Left,” according to CPAC.

CPAC created the fund to defend people who have not been accused of crimes related to the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol but who, according to the group, “were simply engaging in free speech activities protected by the First Amendment.”

“Culture Killers: the Woke Wars” includes appearances by dozens of conservative leaders such as former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. Marsha Blackburn, Sen. Rick Scott, Sen. Tom Cotton, Rep. Kevin McCarthy, Rep. Ronny Jackson, Rep. Devin Nunes, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, Ambassador Ric Grenell, Stephen Miller, Ben Ferguson, James O’Keefe, Alex Berenson, Jesse Kelly, Pete Hegseth and Jack Brewer.

The Mar-a-Lago “Culture Killers: the Woke Wars” event is the first in a series of premieres hosted by CPAC. Additional events for the film are already scheduled in Palm Desert, California, and Washington.

Mr. Schlapp said he expects the documentary to eventually be available on a streaming service.

• Kerry Picket can be reached at kpicket@washingtontimes.com.

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