All’s fair in love and war, unless what one has to say threatens war on the beloved pieties of progressivism. Stephanie Martinez and Lauren Witzke learned this lesson recently.
Martinez is a pro-Trump student at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. In early April, she joined the LMU student government as a “senator for diversity and inclusion.” But Martinez turned out to be a little too diverse in her views for her peers.
Students skeptical of Martinez dug up tweets that show her support for President Trump, the United States, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, immigration restrictionism in general, and—worst of all—the notion that being in possession of a sense of humor might be a good thing.
In one of the offending tweets from last year, Martinez wrote, “the same people advocating for rights, equality and better conditions for illegal aliens are the same one [sic] censoring freedom of speech (a right), defaming and initiating hostility for those Americans with divergent views! Sad!”
Martinez was subsequently impeached. She, like Lauren Witzke, found out the cost of standing your ground.
Witzke is a Delaware Republican candidate taking on Democrat Senator Chris Coons. Her brand is fiery, as attested to by the tweet that got her Twitter account temporarily locked. “Let’s be clear, mass migration absolutely destroyed Europe,” she wrote. “Italy, France, Sweden and Germany took in tons of migrants who never assimilated. Rapes, murders, and other heinous crimes abound. I will end ALL immigration into the US for ten years.”
Nothing Witzke wrote is untrue. Mass immigration, in fact, came with catastrophic consequences for Europeans, from high-casualty terrorist attacks to the proliferation of rape gangs. Progressive intellectuals, in response, continue to put on a baroque performance of mental gymnastics to downplay, elide, or excuse misbehavior and murder. Sweden is illustrative.
More than 160,000 people from Middle Eastern and African countries applied for Swedish asylum in 2015. According to the Swedish Crime Survey, attempted rape against girls 15-17 years-old increased by 46 percent between 2015 and 2016. “Sweden has changed very much. It has never been like this,” said Swedish journalist Katerina Janouch. It takes a social scientist to obfuscate the obvious. But they can do that, because authorities in Sweden don’t physically describe suspects. “That’s one of political correctness,” a former Swedish police officer remarked of the policy. Political correctness is the international lingua franca of our time.
Beyond the issue of free expression, the problem with political correctness is that it increasingly forms the basis of eligibility for holding office, whether in a student government, the Senate, or as we are seeing in real time, the Supreme Court. Moreover, the unsuccessful efforts by the administration to combat censorship indicate that more than legislation, what is needed is a cultural change in a critical mass of Americans.
Neither Martinez nor Witzke wavered in their views when challenged and slandered. Neither buckled beneath the charge of “racism,” or responded by flashing their anti-racist bona fides—and why should they or anyone else? When enough Americans are willing to endure the arrows of outrage as they did, the tide just might turn.