Give Me Liberty or Give Me Democrats

In Real Clear Opinion Research, Carl M. Cameron’s article “Is Censorship a Partisan Issue” provides Democrats an exceptional opportunity to follow the facts. The Left will not like where it leads.

The article delves into a Real Clear Opinion Research poll that reveals the Left is the party hastening to embrace government censorship of free speech:

But the most glaring gap is between conservatives and liberals, i.e., between Republicans and Democrats.  On the issue of free expression, at least, Republicans are not the authoritarian party. That distinction belongs to the Democrats…

Republican voters (74%) and independents (61%) believe speech should be legal “under any circumstances, while Democrats are almost evenly divided. A bare majority of Democrats (53%) say speech should be legal under any circumstances, while 47% say it should be legal “only under certain circumstances.”

Further, within the responses, there is one disturbing, though not surprising, finding that reveals the basis for this finding and, indeed, of much of the overall contention roiling the citizenry; moreover, it is a finding which shows no signs of ratcheting anywhere but upward. To wit:

Nearly one-third of Democratic voters (34%) say Americans have “too much freedom.” This compared to 14.6% of Republicans.  Republicans were most likely to say Americans have too little freedom (46%), while only 22% of Democrats feel that way. Independents were in the middle in both categories.

That slightly over one-third of Democrats believe their fellow citizens have “too much freedom” not only explains their embrace of censorship, it also explains the policies and proposals the Democrats have endeavored to foist upon their fellow citizens. Now, it makes sense why the president and his Congressional almost never use the word “liberty” when discussing public policy issues or in their addresses; and, indeed, the Left’s overarching attempt to supplant “liberty and equality” with the DIE cult of “diversity, inclusion, and equity” as America’s foundational principles. And these radical, extreme, and dangerous Democrats are determined to do so by any means fair or foul, including the weaponization of government against all dissent.

Ominously, it is this 34% of Democrats that largely provides its activist base in government, academia, NGOs, the media and elsewhere. Thus, the Left’s most paranoid and rabid proponents of limiting the freedom of Americans are the most empowered to do it. From government mandated and coerced COVID vaccinations through the destruction of parental right to the imposition of the DIE cult and cancel culture, this segment of the Democratic party is making Americans’ lives miserable, and fraying the bonds of civil society.

Why are these one-third of Democrats intent on foisting their freedom-curbing “democracy” upon our republic? A leftist’s morally superior sense of self is based upon their political beliefs; thus, any dissent to one’s views is seen as a personal attack. This leads the Leftist to feel offended and, ultimately, threatened by people who disagree with them. Inevitably, they come to view the dissenter as a bad person; and seek to silence them. Of course, the Leftist will rationalize away their authoritarian mindset and behavior, and for good measure, project their sins upon the dissenter.

That one-third of one of our two major parties believe Americans have too much freedom, and more than that are willing to censor free speech, is an existential problem for a free republic founded upon self-evident truths and God-given rights. It is first and foremost a problem for the Democrats who, to their credit, do not agree with the 34% of aspiring Leftist authoritarians. Just as preventing the ascendance of the 14.6% of “Republicans” who agree with the Left that Americans have too much freedom is first and foremost a responsibility of the GOP.

Perhaps, then, there can be gleaned a glimmer of a silver lining in these otherwise distressing findings: there is a basis for a bi-partisan consensus among the anti-authoritarians of both parties – who while they have sharp disagreements over how and what shape it should take – agree that the goal is the promotion, not the reduction, of American freedom. To abandon this bipartisan accord is to progress into authoritarianism. After all, fundamental rights upon which Americans have traditionally agreed and staunchly defended include “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

An American Greatness contributor, the Hon. Thaddeus G. McCotter (M.C., Ret.) represented Michigan’s 11th Congressional district from 2003-2012, and served as Chair of the Republican House Policy Committee. Not a lobbyist, he is a frequent public speaker and moderator for public policy seminars; and a Monday co-host of the “John Batchelor Radio Show,” among sundry media appearances.

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About Thaddeus G. McCotter

An American Greatness contributor, the Hon. Thaddeus G. McCotter (M.C., Ret.) represented Michigan’s 11th Congressional district from 2003 to 2012 and served as Chair of the Republican House Policy Committee. Not a lobbyist, he is a frequent public speaker and moderator for public policy seminars, and a Monday co-host of the "John Batchelor Show" among sundry media appearances.

Photo: NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 19: A 22 percent illuminated waxing crescent moon sets behind the Statue of Liberty on September 19, 2023, in New York City. (Photo by Gary Hershorn/Getty Images)