The Left is Fascist. Its War on Free Speech Proves That.
LifeSiteNews has reported on the most recent effort by leftist elites to silence free speech. To mark the festive, traditional French holiday, the “Global Day of Action for Access to Safe and Legal Abortion,” France’s minister for “Families, Childhood and Women’s Rights” Laurence Rossignol
unveiled plans to criminalize those [web]sites that aim to dissuade women from obtaining a “voluntary interruption of pregnancy,” a procedure that is 100 percent state-funded in France during the first 12 weeks of gestation. Offenders will incur prison sentences of up to two years and fines up to 30,000 euro (about $33,650) when the plan becomes law.
Arrested for “Maligning Islam”
It isn’t just Frenchmen who want to save babies from abortionists who are feeling the leftist cork stuffed into the mouths. It’s also Austrian women who want to protect themselves from sexually aggressive and violent Muslim colonists. As The Daily Caller reports:
When the migrant crisis transformed ordinary life in Austria, Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff — a self-described housewife in Austria — held innocuous citizen seminars teaching about Islam. An aspiring young journalist secretly taped her remarks, leading to Sabaditsch-Wolff’s prosecution for impugning Islam. [emphasis added]
Here’s an sample of the “hate speech” which landed Sabaditsch-Wolff in court, drawn from her recent remarks in Dallas:
For the past nine months Austria and the rest of Western Europe have undergone a profound transformation, one that will inevitably change the face of Europe permanently. I refer, of course, to the migration crisis, which began in earnest last summer, and is continuing as I speak to you. As the weather warms up and spring gives way to summer, we may expect the crisis to intensify even further. More than a million immigrants arrived in Austria and Germany via the “Balkan route” last year, and at least as many are expected to come this year — probably significantly more.
These migrants are generally referred to by our political leaders and the media as “refugees,” but this is hardly the case. Not only are most of them from countries where there is no war to flee from, but they are also overwhelmingly young Muslim men, of fighting age. In other words, the current crisis is actually an instance of Islamic hijra, or migration into infidel lands to advance the cause of Islam. The hijra goes hand in hand with jihad — once enough Muslim migrants have settled in the target country, violent jihad can begin.
Does that sound like incitement to violence to you? Doesn’t matter. We’re way, way past arguments about shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theater. This is more like outlawing fire extinguishers because they might be offensive to arsonists. The left wants to make it impossible even to express any dissent to its increasingly unhinged program of social transformation.
The Left No Longer Even Pretends to Value Freedom
That’s the only possible explanation for a law like New York City’s, which forces employers to use made-up transgender pronouns like “ze” and “hir” or face “civil penalties up to $125,000 for violations, and up to $250,000 for violations that are the result of willful, wanton, or malicious conduct,” according to the Washington Post.
Progressives around the world are dropping the pretense that they care about freedom of speech, expression, or association. You will hear academics in humanities departments — as I did, while finishing my Ph.D. in English lit — denounce ideas such as “pluralism” and “free debate” as the tools of the “privileged” to keep their hold on power. Such “bourgeois” relics of a bygone era must be unmasked and discarded, in favor of paternalist efforts by institutions to aggressively reshape the beliefs of students and citizens. You know, along the lines that Hillary Clinton had in mind, when in 2015 she claimed that women’s reproductive rights required that Christians be brainwashed into favoring abortion. Or as she put it, according to LifeNews:
“Far too many women are still denied critical access to reproductive health care and safe childbirth. All the laws we’ve passed don’t count for much if they’re not enforced,” Clinton said, using the euphemism for abortion.
“Rights have to exist in practice — not just on paper,” Clinton argued. “Laws have to be backed up with resources and political will. And deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs and structural biases have to be changed.”
Leftists rarely even talk about “freedom” anymore, except now and then in a ritualistic sense. Or else they take the word and turn it inside out, to mean its exact opposite — as when they promise to keep a college campus “free” of “offensive” speech that might serve as a “microaggression” that violates the “safe space” of their students.
Fighting Thoughtcrime on Campus
That was the pretext used by “Catholic” DePaul University to ban from campus the calm, rational conservative speaker Ben Shapiro — treating him as if he were some violent thug with a bullhorn shouting threats at passersby. Of course, violent thugs shouting threats at passersby are entirely welcome on campus, so long as they serve leftist causes that meet elite approval. So Black Lives Matter can terrorize passersby caught wearing Trump hats. While public outcry forced the University of Missouri to fire Melissa Click — a journalism professor who was filmed calling for “muscle” to terrorize student journalists — have no fear! The Jesuit-run Gonzaga University has honored Click’s sacrifice by stepping up and hiring her. The Jesuits, you will recall, are the religious order that vice-presidential candidate Tim Kaine volunteered to help, as they ran guns to Communist terrorists in Honduras from the totalitarian Sandinista regime in Nicaragua. At least we know the kind of government whose idea of freedom meets their approval.
Toss the Deplorables’ Heads Into a Basket
The best, most comprehensive look at the left’s war on personal freedom can be found in Angelo Codevilla’s recent essay, “After the Republic,” where he notes:
A commission in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts reported that even a church may be forced to operate its bathrooms according to gender self-identification because it “could be seen as a place of public accommodation if it holds a secular event, such as a spaghetti supper, that is open to the general public.” California came very close to mandating that Catholic schools admit homosexual and transgender students or close down. The Justice Department is studying how to prosecute on-line transactions such as vacation home rental site Airbnb, Inc., that fall afoul of its evolving anti-discrimination standards.
Codevilla unflinchingly pinpoints exactly why progressives are willing to toss Constitutional protections and individual rights onto the ash-heap. Progressives believe, and are increasingly willing to say, that
America’s constitutional republic had given the American people too much latitude to be who they are, that is: religiously and socially reactionary, ignorant, even pathological, barriers to Progress. Thankfully, an enlightened minority exists with the expertise and the duty to disperse the religious obscurantism, the hypocritical talk of piety, freedom, and equality, which excuses Americans’ racism, sexism, greed, and rape of the environment. As we progressives take up our proper responsibilities, Americans will no longer live politically according to their prejudices; they will be ruled administratively according to scientific knowledge.
Progressivism’s programs have changed over time. But its disdain for how other Americans live and think has remained fundamental. More than any commitment to principles, programs, or way of life, this is its paramount feature. The media reacted to Hillary Clinton’s remark that “half of Trump’s supporters could be put into a ‘basket of deplorables’” as if these sentiments were novel and peculiar to her. In fact, these are unremarkable restatements of our ruling class’s perennial creed.