virtue signalling
pp. Using words, actions, or symbols to indicate to other people that you are a good person or that you hold certain values.
Also Seen As
Scott Walker fell back on "Reaganism", which nowadays has less and less to do with the historical Ronald Reagan anyway. Among Republicans, referencing Reagan is now a form of "virtue signaling".
—Allan Wall, “Scott Walker — What Could Have Been,” VDARE, September 21, 2015
"My point was this whole culture of virtue-signaling where debates are about nothing. Look, Republicans all agree 100 percent that we are pro-Israel, pro-Life, pro-gun. So why do we spend so much time on these issues? It’s just pandering, so who are they pandering to?"
—Jay Michaelson, “Ann Coulter Defends ‘F--king Jews’ Rant,” The Daily Beast, September 17, 2015
The poster goes on to assert: 'We are part of a growing consciousness that is bigger than food — one that champions what’s good.' This a particularly blatant example of the increasingly common phenomenon of what might be called 'virtue signalling' — indicating that you are kind, decent and virtuous.
—James Bartholomew, “Hating the Daily Mail is a substitute for doing good,” The Spectator, April 18, 2015
It's Moral Preening, Virtue Signalling, Competitive Pearl-Clutching, Flashing Tribal Signs — call it what you will — it's a Superior Dance beyond the Church Lady's wildest imagination.
—dicentra, “Caught Lying by George Will, the Left Lies About George Will!” (comment), PJ Media, June 22, 2014
2004 (earliest)
Virtue signaling at its most pedestrian.
—Al Cowens, “guy walking behind a kkk parade playing a tuba,” Something Awful, August 11, 2004