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There’s a vast difference between the visions of America offered by the two parties in the upcoming election.
On the right is a vision of optimism, of competition in a free market, of growth and prosperity, and a reined-in government that has a relatively light touch on our lives and our earnings. The right sees America as a generally decent place, as the product of a long painful journey from its founding in a less enlightened time to a nation of freedom and equality today. If asked, people on the right will readily say that America is fundamentally a good and exceptional country.
On the left is a vision of a reckoning, of victims lifted up and oppressors put down, of ever-larger government that takes and spends more, regulates more, prohibits more, all for the good of the people. The left sees America as a fundamentally unjust place, as an oppressive influence in the world, and as an exploiter and destroyer of the global order and the planet itself. If asked, people on the left will be reluctant to say, and will rarely say it at all, that America is fundamentally a good and exceptional country.
One of those two competing visions will triumph in November. That’s frightening enough, but there’s something darker coming if the Democrats win. There is a growing intolerance on the left of thoughts and opinions, both the holding of them and the sharing of them, that deviate from the orthodox left perspective.
Regarding climate science, the left increasingly considers skepticism of apocalyptic claims to be “anti-science.” That’s a mistaken view, but it’s invoked to justify the silencing, for the public’s own good, of those skeptical of alarmist predictions.
Regarding the coronavirus, the left portrays those who believe that we are overreacting to a serious but not extraordinary health threat as “anti-science,” stigmatizing and silencing the growing number of medical professionals and normal citizens who think that ongoing lockdowns do more harm than good.
Regarding sexuality, any critique of the left’s increasingly radical embrace of gender diversity and rejection of sexual identity or meaning is met with efforts to silence and “cancel” critics by accusing them of “hate crimes.”
Regarding free speech, the left supports angry mobs of self-appointed Antifa thought police who take it upon themselves to violently suppress any speech they deem “hateful.”
Regarding race, any attempt to question the demonstrably, statistically flawed claims of the Black Lives Matter movement are met with accusations of racism and, again, aggressive and sometimes violent efforts to silence the opposing viewpoint and cancel or deplatform anyone who dares express it.
The theme is obvious: as we are witnessing today in social media and mainstream news, silencing dissenting views and controlling what normal people can say and hear is an accepted part of the left’s approach to politics and culture. Twitter, Facebook, Google, mainstream media, and urban street mobs all practice censorship in their efforts to further one side of the political and cultural debate.
It would be foolish to imagine that a victorious left will be less bold in its intolerance, its violence, and its aggressive suppression of free speech and opposing viewpoints.
There’s more at stake here than mere policy. The right of a people to safely express dissent, to believe what they wish, and to speak what they believe is under attack.Published in