Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Identity Politics • Post • The Left

Woke Racism

Well before Sigmund Freud formalized the idea of “projectionism”—the defense of one’s own shortcomings and sins by attributing them to others—it was a common theme in classical literature and the New Testament: the ridiculing of the mole on someone else’s nose to hide one’s own boil.

The term projection more or less sums up much of the woke identity politics movement, in which obsessions with racial privilege and tribal exceptionalism are justified by accusing others of just such bias.

While such racist projectionism can often be a psychological tic that assuages the guilt of one’s own rank prejudice, just as often accusing others of racism is a peremptory careerist move to win media attention, lucre, or job advancement.

Racists—those who assume those of different races always act collectively in predictable ways, usually far worse than does their own tribe—who charge racism assume that unlike the proverbial wolf crier, there is currently no downside to their hysterias and fantasies.

That is, the racist who for a variety of reasons lobs “Racist!” at others assumes that, even when his tired charges are proven false, in our postmodern society he can argue that these accusations in theory always could be true, and therefore no one would ever accuse a self-identified victim as a racist perpetrator himself.

For example, a Louisiana State University student, who falsely claimed she encountered a noose on campus—supposedly planted by whites to intimidate African-American students such as herself—was hardly contrite about inflaming tensions with a false accusation when the “noose” turned out to be simply a dangling power wire cable. Instead of apologizing, the accuser redoubled her claims: “Considering what is currently happening in this country, someone hanging a noose certainly seems plausible . . . Black students all over are being threatened for speaking out. I’ve previously been threatened for talking about race at LSU.”

The Logic of the Tribe
In some sense, today’s hip new racists have adopted the ideology of Lester Maddox and not Martin Luther King, Jr. Segregation, not integration, is the new racist mantra—by dorm, by theme house, by caucus, by safe space, by graduation ceremony.

True intersectionality is impossible for racists—given that competing tribal agendas can never be reconciled. Far from creating force-multiplying woke ideologies by uniting various “identities”—black, Latino, Asian, LGBTQ, female, and non-American—intersectionality becomes a logical contest among professed victims to acquire preeminent tribal victimhood, and with it, DNA-sanctioned superiority.

The logic of the tribe leads to sectarian warfare, not harmony. We see just that when Asians revolt against black and Latino preferences in college admissions. Feminists push back against the endemic misogyny of rap music that is given an intersectional pass to demean women and freely employ the n-word. There is sometimes less, not greater, tolerance for unapologetic homosexuality in supposedly hyper-macho Latino culture. Doctrinaire Islam makes few concessions for the Muslim convert to Christianity; he is still an infidel to be shunned, even killed.

Jussie Smollett hired two black associates to dress up as white Trump-hatted supporters to stage a fake attack on himself. He hoped to gain sympathy as a victim of supposed rampant intersectional racist hatred in the age of Trump. Apparently, only that way would the pathetically desperate Smollett restore his sinking brand and jumpstart his fading acting career—through becoming an icon of the innocent black man symbolically lynched by predatory whites.

Smollett, himself half-white, accused an innocent large segment of the U.S. population as racist without any worry of the consequences from such false charges. And rightly so: Smollett has faced little pushback, remains in the news, and believes that no one ultimately will dare to charge him as a racist who committed a hate-crime.

The Covington Catholic fiasco illustrated the same modus operandi. Native American activist Nathan Phillips sought media exposure and careerist advantage by deliberately confronting a group of young Catholic students on the National Mall. Phillips hoped the resulting staged optics would show privileged, male, young, white Christians with red MAGA hats haranguing a wizened Native American elder and Vietnam veteran.

Phillips succeeded in his quest for universal victim status, media exposure, and the demonization of the Covington school students, despite being quickly exposed as a faker who never set foot in Vietnam and a serial racial provocateur.

Most of the media bought his ruse and have retreated to the usual fallback defense for faked racist accusations: in a racist America, the charges could in theory have been true, and therefore that they were demonstrably not true this time means little.

Enter the Anti-Enlightenment Squad
The new racism is epidemic among those in the so-called squad, the self-referenced nickname for four media-obsessed, first-term congressional representatives, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), who without their daily charges of bias largely would be unknown back-benchers laboring away in obscurity.

Take Pressley’s recent formulation of the new racism at a recent Netroots Nation conference:

If you’re not prepared to come to that table and represent that voice, don’t come, because we don’t need any more brown faces that don’t want to be a brown voice. We don’t need black faces that don’t want to be a black voice. We don’t need Muslims that don’t want to be a Muslim voice. We don’t need queers that don’t want to be a queer voice. If you’re worried about being marginalized and stereotyped, please don’t even show up because we need you to represent that voice.

In sum, Pressley just outlined the classic anti-Enlightenment mindset: we are all permanent captives of our superficial race, religion, and sexual orientation. We must at all times think, act, and speak in such tribal fashion—and do so monolithically and collectively, in adopting the party line as set down by such elites as those like Pressley herself.

Blacks who oppose affirmative action, or Muslims who recognize Israel, or “queers” whose sexual preferences are incidental, not essential to their personas are thus declared not authentic and thus not to be welcomed by Pressley into the new racialist Democratic Party.

In practical terms, Pressley assumes that whites, reportedly about 70 percent of the population, tune her logic out. That is, they should never take her own racist advice and vote en masse according to their superficial shared skin color. If they did, the 55 percent of actual voters who are white in her otherwise minority-majority congressional district might never have elected someone who, according to her own rationale, is not part of their own tribe.

Ilhan Omar said the following in a 2018 interview with Al Jazeera when asked about purported American paranoiac fear of “Islamic terrorism”:

I would say—our country should be more fearful of white men across our country, because they are actually causing most of the deaths within this country. And so if fear was the driving force of policies to keep America safe, Americans safe inside of this country, we should be profiling, monitoring, and creating policies to fight the radicalization of white men.

Omar was not merely racially stereotyping but lying as well. African-Americans, not whites, according to the various Department of Justice figures, commit a somewhat larger percentage of the nation’s likely total of annual homicides despite comprising a percentage of the population almost seven times smaller.

A Jacobin Resurgence
Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez has accused House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) of being a racist for criticizing fellow squad members. In turn, Pelosi recently had called Trump a racist for his tweeting and declared that his efforts to secure the border were racist efforts to hurt the nonwhite.

No matter. There is no exemption from being charged with racism for old, rich, white, and liberal females like Pelosi. In the new racist cosmology, the multimillionaire Pelosi can never escape her white privilege. One element of the new racism is thus Jacobinism—the idea that the circle of racists always widens until the racists devour one another with charges that everyone but themselves is insufficiently racially woke.

Smollett taught us that is was not enough for a gay man to be attacked by homophobes, or a liberal crusader to be attacked by right-wing Trumpers, or a black man to be attacked by white racists. In the ever-spiraling rules of woke racism, only a gay, left-wing, and black victim can win singular revolutionary authority—and only when invented Trump fanatics scream racial taunts and routinely patrol the liberal neighborhoods of Chicago nightly armed with bleach and nooses.

On matters of immigration, it is no longer enough to endorse the old bipartisan compromises on border security and amnesties or to see the problem as one of illegality. No longer is it sufficient to advocate making DACA the law of the land and extending amnesty to the “dreamers.” Now instead the border has become for some presidential candidates an existential racial question of bringing in millions of supposedly “nonwhite” rather than just illegal immigrants—and in public photo ops escorting them as they illegally cross the border—providing them with amnesty, legal residency, sanctuary from immigration enforcement, and free health care, while calling anyone a “racist” who complains that such caravan immigration is not diverse, legal, measured or meritocratic.

Anti-Semitism Again
Another trait of the new racism is the old anti-Semitism. Omar, Ocasio-Cortez, and Tlaib want Congress to endorse the anti-Israeli boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement to isolate the Jewish democracy—as if Israel was an international outlaw far worse than China, North Korea, or Iran.

Omar (“Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.”) has likened her effort to endorse BDS to the 1930s humane boycott of Nazi Germany. Earlier she claimed, with a clumsy “two Benjamins” metaphor, that naïve Americans were deluded by Jewish money and Benjamin Netanyahu into supporting Israel against their supposed own interests.

Ocasio-Cortez believes the detention centers at the border (where far fewer illegal aliens have died annually than during the Obama administration) are analogous to Nazi concentration camps and thus by extension the Holocaust. Apparently, she believes that the 218 tragic deaths in 2018 at the border (471 died in 2012), as a result of a massive wave of illegal migrants into the United States, is analogous to the 6 million Jews who were gassed or starved to death during World War II.

In the puerile mind of honor student Ocasio-Cortez, the 15,000-20,000 Jews who died on some days in the Nazi death and concentration camp archipelago are analogous to 218 accidental deaths at the border of those who entered the United States illegally en masse. When everything is the Holocaust and everyone is a Nazi, then nothing is and no one is. It is hard to calibrate whether Ocasio-Cortez’s anti-Semitic editorializations were designed to downplay the Holocaust or libel her own country—or both.

Being a woke anti-Semite is no longer any big deal. Just ask woke novelist Alice Walker, who is a fan of unapologetic anti-Semite David Icke—or for that matter the woke New York Times that published two anti-Semitic cartoons. For the woke, no one cares about having his picture taken with Louis Farrakhan (Barack Obama included) or mouths anti-Semitic tropes like Georgia congressman Hank Johnson’s comparison of Jewish settlers to “termites.”

What will put an end to this new anti-enlightenment racism of the woke that is emulating the familiar overt racism of the past? It will cease only when the majority of Americans of all racial heritages are brave enough to call out those projectionists who are obsessed with constructing or promulgating racism as the purveyors of hate themselves, the sad and the pathetic dividers who seem believe they are innately and collectively superior on the basis of their superficial appearance or creed.

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Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Identity Politics • Post • Progressivism • The Left

‘Prog-Whistles’ and Safe Spaces

The Left controls the three major platforms for messaging the American people—the arts; academia; and the old, new and social media. Yet, America remains a generally center-right country—and certainly has not become the “fundamentally transformed” backwater socialist collective President Obama once promised.

Oh, sure, he and his leftist minions never explicitly called for that; but that’s because words have no meaning, only utility, to the Left. The elasticity of content within their leftist lexicon is no longer matched by their phrasemongering’s efficacy. Succinctly, the country has decoded the Left’s “prog whistles”—and they don’t like what they hear.

In turn, what the Left hears is dissent and opposition to their ideology and aims; and, being the true owners of the moniker “stupid party,” the Left is doing its damnedest to silence it.

Sure, the censorial Leftist ignoramuses doth protest too much. Still . . .

Why else would the Left call its opponents every ad hominem “-ism” in their scurrilous arsenal on all their group-think blogs, broadcasts, and sundry other sites that cater to their free speech-averse caprice and further their crusade to destroy independent thought for the sake of their “greater good”⁠—i.e., an equitable collective of human misery?

Why else would the Left expropriate religious terms for its collectivist cult acolytes, thus diminishing their ability to reason by replacing it with unquestioning secular faith of the self-anointed?

Why else would the Left conjure up “deconstructionism,” where the plain meaning of an author’s words are ignored based upon the reader’s subjective interpretation?

Why else would the Left pimp “narrative” as anything other than what it is⁠—a device for the crafting of fictional works? To deny facts and truths that don’t support their historically failed proposals, the Left refutes the logical fallacy that the number of adherents to a proposition do not validate its truth.

Instead, the Left transmogrifies civic discourse into an exercise in character assassination, whereby a proposition’s verity and/or desirability is determined by which of the dueling subjective “narratives”⁠—“good” progressive versus “evil” conservative, both of which are crafted by the Left—“wins” by muscling its way by hook or by crook into roping 50 percent plus one of the public to agree (or at least acquiesce).

Why else would the Left reject the self-evident verity that every individual is unique and possessed of God-given dignity, intellect, talent, and rights which allow for their pursuit of happiness and potential; and instead subscribe and demand fealty to the racist dogma that the group into which a person is born should dictate what he thinks. Of course, if said thinking doesn’t toe the line of the Left’s group think, they will ominously predict a myriad of detrimental consequences for the dissenter.

Consider this chillingly lucid exposition of this insidious leftist dogma from an official of the federal government:

We don’t need any more brown faces that don’t want to be a brown voice. We don’t need black faces that don’t want to be a black voice. We don’t need Muslims that don’t want to be a Muslim voice. We don’t need queers that don’t want to be a queer voice. If you’re worried about being marginalized and stereotyped, please don’t even show up because we need you to represent that voice.

Yes, why would the Left progressively support the regression of American’s free speech by deeming words and opinions “violence”; supporting the violent neo-brownshirts of Antifa; preventing guest lecturers, speakers and faculty and cordoning off “safe spaces” to be free from challenging opinions on campus; doxxing and demanding the firing of non-leftists in both the public and private spheres; boycotting any and all platforms and their advertisers that allow for opinions not conforming to the Left’s collective delusions; chilling any speech they subjectively deem “offensive”; and on and on and on…?

Why doesn’t the Left welcome a vigorous, civil discourse and debate about the merits of its propositions and proposals?

Or, more bluntly, why does the Left fear the First Amendment?

The truth is self-evident: the Left is intellectually bankrupt.

And they know it.

Content created by the Center for American Greatness, Inc. is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a significant audience. For licensing opportunities for our original content, please contact licensing@centerforamericangreatness.com.

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America • Americanism • Cultural Marxism • Defense of the West • Democrats • Identity Politics • Post • Progressivism • The Left

A Transformation of the American Regime?

Almost all observers agree that America is profoundly divided. This intense polarization has been described by the Claremont Institute’s Angelo Codevilla as a “cold civil war.”

What is it all about?

First and foremost, this conflict is between those who unhesitatingly love America, its history, culture, principles, and people and those who believe that “the United States of America,” its past and present, is seriously flawed and, thus, in need of “fundamental transformation” as Barack Obama famously put it.

The former emphasizes the positive aspects of what was once proudly called the “American way of life,” while noting past failings. For the latter, any affirmation of America as it actually has existed for the past two and a half centuries is heavily qualified and accompanied by endless carping about the nation’s sins. At the same time, they insist they support American “ideals,” which they view as synonymous with the goals of a new “social justice” regime that places ethnic, racial, and gender groups at the center of political, economic, and cultural life.

Put otherwise, the conflict is between those who want to transmit the American regime to future generations and those who want to transform it fundamentally. Therefore, the conflict is not simply about policy disagreements over how best to achieve the shared goals of liberty, equality, and justice, but grave disagreements over the meaning of those three principles.

The argument over “first principles” has been brewing for decades. While many were busy luxuriating in “end of history” triumphalism, during the 1990s historians and civic educators essentially uprooted and revised the traditional story of America. Textbooks and curricula now referred to the American “peoples,” plural. The concept of American “peoples” portrayed a multicultural society in which new immigrants were not “assimilated” into a shared mainstream American culture but, instead, retained their own (and sometimes adversarial) cultures as separate “peoples.” This new framework is captured by the metaphor of a “mosaic” or “salad bowl” replacing the traditional concept of the “melting pot.”

We were told America was not “discovered” by European explorers, but was the result of “three worlds meeting.” Leading state curricula declared that the United States was not the product of Western Civilization and British constitutional heritage, but the “convergence” of three civilizations, the Amerindian native culture, European culture, and the civilization of Islamic West Africa. In the same vein, the recently revised AP (Advanced Placement) curriculum refers to the “three worlds meet” narrative as the “Atlantic World.”

Whereas traditional American history began with English colonists landing in Jamestown and Plymouth Rock, multiculturalist educators (who now dominate the profession) place the foundations of the history of the United States with hunters crossing the Bering Strait from Asia to North America thousands of years ago. Of course, American civilization is not the product of nomadic hunters from Siberia, but of English colonists who were part of a broader Western Civilization, and whose single most important text, after all, was the King James Bible.

At the same time that the story of America became the “convergence” of three civilizations and its related “Atlantic World,” the promotion of “diversity” and the trinity of race, ethnicity, and gender came to dominate education from K-12 to graduate school. What mattered was not equality of American citizenship but the racial, ethnic, and gender group to which one belonged.

Meanwhile, “global education” was all the rage as Americans were admonished to “think globally and act locally” and that “global problems” require “global solutions.” The practitioners of global education deliberately obfuscated the rights and responsibilities of national citizenship in a constitutional democracy such as the United States.

This new narrative, although historically inaccurate and antithetical to responsible American citizenship, served the political purposes of its proponents—the delegitimization of the concept of Western civilization and the deconstruction of the American way of life (or the “regime” in the Aristotelian sense) as it had been traditionally understood, with the ultimate goal of “fundamental transformation.”

Since, as the truism puts it, “politics is downstream from culture” the transformationist concepts that were developed decades ago have slowly and steadily spread to the mainstream media, major corporations, and finally elected officials and politicians.

The conflict between the transmission and transformation of the American regime continues to heat up. Around Independence Day, we saw the city council of Charlottesville, Virginia vote to cancel Thomas Jefferson’s birthday holiday; Nike recall the Betsy Ross flag sneakers; the San Francisco School board vote to cover up a painting of the life of George Washington; and in St Louis Park, Minnesota, the city council vote to abandon the traditional “Pledge of Allegiance” before its meetings.

As a way of clarifying the current conflict in contemporary America over transmitting or transforming the American regime, I have developed a chart of 36 dueling concepts pitting one against the other. The chart, examining the “regime conflict,” the “cold civil war” or the “culture war” (whatever term one wants to use) compressed into the table you see on this page.

Americanist forces are striking back. St Louis Park’s mayor, for example, wants the city council to restore the pledge. The Claremont Institute has launched a major project explaining that the most important issue facing our nation is the regime struggle between Americanism and multiculturalism (understood as synonymous with identity politics, political correctness, woke-ism, social justice warrior-ism, etc.). More broadly still, people are beginning to recognize that the multicultural Left has a large megaphone but little popular support.

Americanism is not a dirty word; it’s a good thing. We should be proud to say so—and say no to the fundamental transformation of our country.

Photo Credit: iStock/Getty Images

Cultural Marxism • Identity Politics • Post • Progressivism • The Left

Case for Reparations Is Progressive Corruption of Christianity

In Christianity, original sin is the first cause which allowed evil to enter the history of mankind. While progressive liberals basically reject traditional Christianity, having their own origins so intimately tied up with those of Christendom, they cannot escape similar patterns of thought. They have their own versions of original sin which are the lens through which they see the world. This was on display once again as Marianne Williamson called for reparations during the Democratic primary debates last week. For the Church of Progressive Liberalism, slavery is an original sin, the first cause from which racism entered the body politic of the United States and Western Civilization in general.

Racism saturates the universe of the progressive. Former President Barack Obama said as much in a 2015 speech: “The legacy of slavery, Jim Crow, discrimination in almost every institution of our lives, you know, that casts a long shadow, and that’s still part of our DNA, that’s passed on. We’re not cured of it . . . Societies don’t overnight completely erase everything that happened 200 to 300 years prior.” (Emphasis added.)

What makes this original sin concept so attractive to the progressive liberal believer is that the history is all true. Europeans did engage in the slave trade. African slaves were brutalized for four hundred years. Jim Crow happened. European imperialism and colonialism happened. All of these are incontrovertible facts, and thus they form a solid foundation upon which to build the racism-as-original-sin structure.

Be that as it may, these facts do not change how perverse, unjust, and arbitrary this new conception of original sin is in its thinking and practice.

In traditional Christianity, the concept of original sin affects all humans alike. Mankind is fallen. But the racialized original sin of progressive liberals doesn’t apply to all humans equally. Some are more guilty than others, though all of the actual perpetrators are dead. Writing for the Daily Beast, Columbia University linguist John McWhorter sums it up:

The Antiracism religion . . . has . . . a conception of Original Sin . . . One is born marked by original sin; to be white is to be born with the stain of unearned privilege . . . The proper response to White Privilege is to embrace . . . the understanding that you will always harbor the Privilege nevertheless. Note that many embrace the idea of inculcating white kids with their responsibility to acknowledge Privilege from as early an age as possible, in sessions starting as early as elementary school.

Look into the overwhelmingly white and liberal professors and educators of the university and K-12 schools and you’ll see people who take racism seriously and have a well-formed race-based metaphysics.

In one lesson taken from the Southern Poverty Law Center’s “Teaching Tolerance” website, we get a glimpse of this metaphysical approach to racialized original sin through the doctrine of “White Privilege.” Teaching Tolerance is used by thousands of American teachers in front of tens of thousands of students every year. The lesson claims it is not about shaming anybody: “having white privilege and recognizing it is not racist. But white privilege exists because of historic, enduring racism and biases. Therefore, defining white privilege also requires finding working definitions of racism and bias.”

Perhaps the most important lesson about white privilege is the one that’s taught the least. Teaching Tolerance explains:

The “power of normal” and the “power of the benefit of the doubt” are not just subconscious byproducts of past discrimination. They are the purposeful results of racism—an ouroboros of sorts—that allow for the constant re-creation of inequality. These powers would not exist if systemic racism hadn’t come first. And systemic racism cannot endure unless those powers still hold sway. You can imagine it as something of a whiteness water cycle, wherein racism is the rain. That rain populates the earth, giving some areas more access to life and resources than others. The evaporation is white privilege—an invisible phenomenon that is both a result of the rain and the reason it keeps going.

First, notice how “white” is used as a slur, a pejorative. Second, and most important, notice the use of the word “ouroboros.” An ouroboros is a snake eating its own tail. It means something which is infinite. In other words, this idea of racialized original sin goes back forever—and crucially, will go on forever. Ending white privilege, to use Teaching Tolerance’s own words, is as likely as ending the rain. There is no reconciliation. No redemption. No escape.

This point is vital. It means the policies meant to “remedy” the original sin of white privilege—reparations, apologies, preferential hiring—will never allow the living to make a clean break from the deeds of (some of) their long dead ancestors. Instead, it will live on through successive generations the way some Christians saw the crime of deicide embodied in living Jews over 1,000 years after the Crucifixion. Unlike the practice of baptism, which allows the Christian to escape the penalty of the Fall once and for all, no such mechanism exists within the progressive liberal religion.

A racialized conception of original sin is not confined to African slavery. It is easy to find well-meaning (usually white) progressive liberals writing pieces in the style of the salvation testimony declaring the need to re-educate the benighted youth about America’s “original sins.”

Consider James Loewen’s Lies My Teacher Told Me, a bestseller that has sold over 2 million copies. It was used in my university’s school of education for teacher preparation. Loewen’s chapter on the conquest of the Americas is titled “Red Eyes.” What do you get after you’ve come home in shame and tears? Red eyes. Recall how Teaching Tolerance said learning about white privilege wasn’t about shame. This is a lie. Loewen begins “Red Eyes” with this quote: “There is not one Indian in the whole of this country who does not cringe in anguish and frustration because of [American history] textbooks. There is not one Indian child who has not come home in shame and tears.”

Loewen’s remedy for this? Convicting the descendants of those who perpetrated these sins of their guilt and sending them home from school ready to repent.

Loewen explains, “what we have done to the peoples who were living in North America” is, according to anthropologist Sol Tax, “our Original Sin [emphasis added] . . . If we look Indian history squarely in the eye, we are going to get red eyes. This is our past, however, and we must acknowledge it. It is time for textbooks to send white children home, if not with red eyes, at least with thought-provoking questions.”

Karl Marx, in the Communist Manifesto, said, “the history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles. Freeman and slave, patrician and plebeian, lord and serf, guild-master and journeyman, in a word, oppressor and oppressed, stood in constant opposition to one another, carried on an uninterrupted, now hidden, now open fight, a fight that each time ended, either in a revolutionary reconstitution of society at large, or in the common ruin of the contending classes.” There are numerous other original sins: patriarchy and sexism, heteronormativity and homophobia, cis-privilege and transphobia, Christian privilege and Islamophobia, and on it continues ad infinitum. Progressive liberalism is appropriating traditional Christianity and building an entirely different superstructure on top of its vandalized foundations.

National Review’s Michael Tanner argues that “issues like (reparations) are about more than politics, and the animating sentiment behind reparations is not one that can be easily dismissed.” Tanner is right, the animating sentiment behind these issues is definitely hard to dismiss. But why is it so hard to dismiss? Why can’t we finally be up and done with this? Because this issue of reparations is a religious dogma in essence.

The real question is: should progressive liberals be able to use state power to enforce what amounts essentially to a religious doctrine on those of us who do not accept this surreptitious new religion?

Photo Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Identity Politics • Immigration • Post • The Left • The Media

Who’s the Radical? On Confidence and Common Sense

I just heard a fellow on CNN say that Donald Trump has radicalized the Republicans. Let’s be clear on what is and isn’t radical.

A well-patrolled border is not a radical policy. An open border is a radical policy.

To believe in two genders is not radical. To insert gender identity into Title IX is.

To praise Western Civilization as a legacy of political freedom and artistic genius is not a radical opinion.To regard it as promotion of white supremacy is a radical opinion.

To love America as an exceptional creation is not radical. To see America as founded on slavery and imperialism is radical.

For a president to express support for the outcome of a vote in a foreign country is not radical. For a president to threaten a unique ally with economic hardship if a popular vote goes in a certain way, as Barack Obama did before Brexit—that’s radical.

To cancel student debt is radical.

To make college free is radical.

To demand reparations 150 years after the end of slavery and 60 years after the end of Jim Crow is radical.

To demand more public attention to the tiny population that fits the label “transgender” is radical.

To introduce 5-year-olds to drag queens is radical.

To award a Pulitzer Prize to a rapper whose award-winning record includes the lyrics

I got so many theories and suspicions

I’m diagnosed with real n—- conditions

Today is the day I follow my intuition

Keep the family close, get money, f— b—-es . . .

is radical.

To mount campaigns to get people fired from their jobs because they donated money to a political campaign that ended up winning—that’s radical.

To deny a popular food franchise a license to operate because its owner upholds a biblical conception of marriage is radical.

It may appear ironic or hypocritical for liberals to charge the president with radicalism, but it quite predictably follows the Alinsky-like rule that says: “Always accuse your opponents of the foul play that you commit.”

The wilder the Democrat candidates get in their championship of pet projects of the hard Left, the more they and their mouthpieces in the media have to tar the other side with a worse extremism. That’s one way to legitimate a far-left proposal: concoct a far-right that blocks it, a far-right that is patently stupid and vicious. The way is then paved for more “justice” or, at any rate, more change.

Yes, keep pushing, get louder, never stop centralizing what is radical, normalizing the abnormal, defining deviancy downward. Eventually, the return of common sense does indeed look radical. Seize the institutions—schools, the press, the Boy Scouts, the Olympics—and punish participants who won’t go with the flow. Take a few scalps, publicize them well, and most everyone conforms.

It doesn’t matter if now and then it all looks nutty and barbaric. The maestros out to “transform” America expect it. They know that the occasional Jussie Smollett and Nathan Phillips embarrassment is bound to happen. When you are as venturesome as the Left is today, some rockets will fizzle. But so what? The fact that the entire establishment, both Right and Left, jumped on the Covington Boys straight away, and that so many public voices credited so outlandish a tale as Smollett’s, proves that the tactic is working.

This is what “tolerance” is for. It softens up the people, conservatives included, for another overturning of common sense.

It’s all so exciting, too, so edgy. Common sense is just that—common, ordinary, routine, unimaginative. Only two genders? Let’s try three, or four . . . oohh, interesting. Who’s more fun, the young gals in the House or the old white guys in the Senate? AOC isn’t an irresponsible Millennial who mutters “like” too much. No, she thinks outside the box, which makes what she has to say so much more camera-friendly than the laconic replies of Mitch McConnell.

The culture sphere sets it up that way. Many years ago, gender theorist Judith Butler explained in the New York Times:

. . . scholars are obliged to question common sense, interrogate its tacit presumptions and provoke new ways of looking at a familiar world.Many quite nefarious ideologies pass for common sense.  For decades of American history, it was ”common sense” in some quarters for white people to own slaves and for women not to vote.

Got that? Common sense, you see, isn’t based in nature or human nature or time-tested traditions. It is a form of repression, and once it is lifted, to reinstate common sense is to restore that repression. Common sense is disguised ideology. It must be fought tirelessly, not least because human beings are ever disposed to slip back into bias and scapegoating (so the progressive thinks). We need to find, therefore, new occasions by which to take down commonsensical notions, the “trans community” being the current favorite.

The culture sphere gives progressive politicians and commentators the vocabulary for doing so. Go into a modern art exhibition and check the wall text. “Subvert,” “transgress,” “challenge,” and “question” are everywhere, and common sense is the target. The schools constantly talk about instilling “critical thinking,” critical thinking usually meaning “interrogating” ordinary notions of life, history, nation, God, and humanity held by the man on the street. The 1960s gave us one “experiment in living” after another, and all the cool people went along with it even if they forged bourgeois lives in the ’80s and ’90s. The 2010s are at it again, this time with the powers of America behind them, from Yale to corporations to the Democratic Party leadership.

Of course, then, Donald Trump sounds radical to them. They see him as an anomaly, as atavistic. The current of History flows toward a sea of total openness—open borders, open sexualities, open access to all resources and pleasures—and they swim happily within it. Throwbacks such as Donald Trump are just boulders in river; we will pass them soon.

That profound confidence has been given to them by a thousand Hollywood films, Antifa, required courses and orientations in gender and diversity, women’s marches, blabbering musicians and celebrities, Pride Month, advertisers who pulled out of Tucker Carlson’s show, corporations and the NCAA that threatened Indiana if it held to its religious freedom restoration law, and, not least of all, the weak-kneed posture of peacetime conservatives.

Liberals accuse Donald Trump of radicalism, or of just plain off-the-chart outrageousness, not because of the substance of what he says. They do it because he stands up for common sense without apology or conciliation.

Progressives have managed to persuade a good portion of the citizenry that certain off-the-wall ideas are salient and practicable. They know it is a fragile consensus among every group except the social justice brigades. Trump’s common sense, launched with an equal and opposite confidence, raises a sharp needle to the identity politics/gender theory/socialism balloon. By now, we should have dozens of Republican politicians doing the same thing.

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America • Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • feminists • Post • the family • The Left

America Needs a True Family-First Movement

Last week, I wrote about the formulaic demise of Taylor Swift. Once a picture of feminine potential, she’s now little more than a piece of meat chewed up and spat out by the legal sex cartel that is show business. Her spark has been squashed, and she joins a legion of other blinking drones with vaginas, one among many damaged, washed up women who know only exploitation and resentment and replicate it unto oblivion.

Call it the wholesome-to-whore pipeline.

This particular, ritualistic desecration of feminine virtue in the public square is so repetitive and predictable, so real and so pernicious, it is a wonder that so-called conservative people don’t talk about it more seriously. And, no, it’s not simply that the Democrats want women to vote for their party.

Throughout history, women have been understood properly as potential targets and tools of subversion, precisely because of the softness of heart they generate in their men. It is literally the oldest story in the book: Satan went through Eve to Adam. And as a result, they lost Eden. Civilizational disintegration follows spiritual disorientation. Spiritual disorientation follows a rebellion against the natural order.

The subversion of the American woman has political consequences beyond those topics that fall under the umbrella of “women’s issues,” and this kind of political warfare certainly transcends the tired, false paradigm of Republican versus Democrat.

The global neoliberal cultural and financial regime relies on men being hopelessly driven by their appetites such that they remain isolated slaves to their debts and desires. Men consumed by their own pleasures are effeminate, self-obsessed, and neurotic—incapable of leading or defending the integrity of the family and the nation by extension. As such, women (gatekeepers and natural regulators of the highest of pleasures) are the ideal political target for those who seek to destroy a nation. Modern woman has been conditioned to be a weapon against herself, and by extension, against the men who love her.

As we careen toward a world of lonely lotus eaters, we can look to the subversion of women for answers to the questions: How did we get here? Where are we headed? And how do we reverse the tide?

Raising the Modern Woman
The indoctrination process begins early and starts by accessing a girl’s implicit desire to be doted upon. With their own mothers away in a wage cage, America’s daughters have for many years found role models in Hollywood’s mistresses. Over and over again, we watched our childhood idols lose their innocence and become the new queen of cool. Repetition leads internalization. Internalization leads to normalization.

Over time, immodesty and rebellion have become perfunctory rites of passage for the average American girl. The limelit girl-next-door paved a twisted path for the literal girl-next-door, and for most of us, the Miley Cyrus/Taylor Swift/Ariana Grande/Selena Gomez arc of destruction has become all too familiar.

And if you think that’s bad, you should see what your tween is following and posting on Snapchat. Seriously, have a look.

At the same time girls are groomed by the entertainment and fashion industries to view themselves as sex objects, they are indoctrinated to compete with boys—to outlearn and outearn their male counterparts. Growing up in modern America, we were saturated in several contradictory messages: that sex is no big deal, but that being sexy is ideal. Of course you should have all the sex you want, but the natural consequences of “unprotected” sex would, catastrophically, “ruin your life.” Babies get in the way of you beating the boys, they said. And besides, boys don’t even have the decency to stick around. Even if they did, look how stupid they are! You can’t rely on them. You can only dominate them.

The net result of this two-pronged approach is the masculinization of women. Women’s financial independence and liberation from sexual standard bearing are the twin sisters of female “empowerment,” and, ask any devout feminist, neither may thrive without their counterpart.

By demystifying virginity, we rob women of their unique role of sexual gatekeeping. By denigrating domesticity, we rob women of their unique role of childbearing and childrearing. When the sexual and labor markets are thus deregulated, we make ersatz men of women, and things fall apart.

So long as man can access sex virtually or in reality with little effort, and so long as the only person who relies on him is himself, he is trapped in an addictive cycle of pleasure-seeking. He is ruined. And hoes are mad.

Atomization and Demoralization
The masculinization of women serves an end that most Americans consider a self-evident good: independence! But as it pertains to love and romance, “independence” means only one thing: the mutual alienation of women and men. In other words, loneliness.

The most stable unit of organizing people is that which is most natural. Man and woman need each other. It is the perfect interdependence of the two that mutually grounds the bonded persons: woman becomes the reason for man’s striving while man becomes the source of woman’s security. The stability generated by a happy marriage creates the foundation upon which good children can be raised properly and humanity may thrive.

Alienation is demoralizing and, for everyone but the lonely, profitable. It doesn’t matter if they’re  frustrated by their inability to create and maintain romantic bonds or if they embrace the transient experiences available to them, the result is the same. Isolated individuals pay rents all their own, buy groceries all their own, and spend their disposable income on passive pleasures. Oriented toward momentary inclination rather than long-term goals—or better yet, eternity—the atomized and demoralized with their ever-aching longing make ideal consumers.

Institutionalizing Degeneracy
Over the past century, market forces working in tandem with the propaganda machine (but maintaining the illusion of independence from it) extracted the heart of the family from its hearth. The hollowness ensuing from motherless homes formed a vacuum not only in the soul of women, but in men and children, and in the spiritual center of society itself.

More recently, the most powerful cultural and financial elements in society have joined forces to fill that hole.

Over the past 10 years, we have seen the total fusion of this contra natura cultural agenda with corporate interests in what some have termed “woke capitalism.” The rotten fruit of women’s lib are too numerous to count, but chief among the putrid selection might be the advent of this new system. Is it any wonder that Generation X—the Baby Boomers’ kids, the first children of mothers and fathers to sacrifice their posterity on the altar of capital gains, the latchkey kids, the first generation to know en masse the ennui of a motherless home—inject a matronly moralism into their corporate policy?

They’re compensating.

Woke capitalism imposes a particular kind of gravity on the social order: Obey and consume, consume and obey. Just as the administrative state relies on absentee fathers in order to replace their function, woke capitalism relies on absentee mothers in order to replace their function. Daddy welfare will give you a check in exchange for your devotion. In exchange for your devotion, Mommy multinational corporation will tell you she loves you. Each entity is a pharmakon answer to brokenness in the family unit.

Revolt Against the Modern World
Men and women are each targeted by the subversive Left in ways unique to their condition. A valiant few on the mainstream Right have recently attempted to push back against the attack on traditional masculinity, but many more are mum about the attack on traditional femininity.

When women’s issues are brought up on mainstream conservative programming, it is usually related to the most recent grotesque and whorish display made a teen idol. The talking heads that respond to this type of thing are usually those women who have made Conservatism, Inc. their career. Their complaint is usually that media hypersexualization doesn’t empower women enough, or that it reduces the possibility of men treating them as equals. It’s the old anti-porn feminist’s take.

They aren’t wrong, but they’re missing the point. The approach that the establishment Right takes to feminism today is that the Left has simply taken liberation too far. But by implicitly accepting the baseline logical framework of the enemy, they have already lost the argument. More importantly, they have assumed a worldview that automatically leads to the very outcomes they seem to despise.

Women’s liberation in every iteration and at its core is an attack on the family. Accepting any element of the philosophy is a suicide mission. A cryptofeminist stance is not appropriate for a political party that pays any lip service to “family values.”

One foot in, one foot out is the stand of cuckolds who think women will like them better if they give them what they say they want. Or it’s the stand of mercenaries. So-called conservative men have sat by rather idly as, since the middle of the prior century, women were empowered by corporate America to chain themselves to a cubicle, take on more student loans than any other demographic, and nearly double the labor market, slicing real wages and making single-income households a near impossibility for working class people.

Corporate America, said to be represented by Republicans, supports modern woman’s right to choose infanticide, to send the daughter they decide not to murder to day care from six weeks to six years old, at which point she is enrolled in public school where Planned Parenthood can begin explaining to her the intricacies of anal sex and the importance of sterilizing oneself for the sake of career. It’s the beauty of the free market, said the Koch brothers. Hooray! Capitalism crushed the patriarchy, said the libertarians.

No more.

A family-first political movement must begin by rejecting the losing stances of its Republican predecessors. This means rejecting the sexual and economic sides of the feminist proposition. Of course, we should raise daughters who regard Cardi B as unworthy of imitation. This is obvious enough. But in addition, if we care more about our families than we do about disposable income, we should raise our daughters to prioritize family, not finances.

The nation needs virtuous wives and mothers, not wage slaves and managers. This probably means you rethink sending your daughters to college, where life is light on learning and heavy on hooking up. Or at least that you take more care in choosing one. She probably would be better served learning to read, write, and think on her own. This certainly means advising your daughters to avoid debt. Few things make women more unmarriageable than a lifetime of loan repayment.

This absolutely means that your wife (not a Guatemalan nanny, a state employee, or a TV) raises your kids. Her absence hurts your children over the long run, even if her paycheck feels good in the short term.

Above all, we must remind ourselves that degeneracy is not an inevitable way of life unless we are passive. We don’t have to be atomized or demoralized. Our daughters don’t have to be sterile. Our sons don’t have to be suicidal. We just need to recover our will to live.

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Black Lives Matter • Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Donald Trump • feminists • Identity Politics • Post • Progressivism • The Left

Crack-ups at the Crossroads of Intersectionality

Progressives do not see the United States as an exceptional uniter of factions and tribes into a cohesive whole—each citizen subordinating his tribal, ethnic, and religious affinities to a shared Americanism, emblemized by our national motto e pluribus unum. Instead, they prefer e uno plures: out of one nation arise many innately different and separate peoples.

Progressivism’s signature brand is now tribalism: all of us in different ways are victims of a white male Christian heterosexual patriarchy—or a current 20 percent hierarchy that past and present has supposedly oppressed anyone not like themselves. In contrast, our differences define who we are, and are not incidental to the content of our characters. The salad bowl, not the melting pot, is the new national creed. America is to be a conglomeration of competing tribal parties in the fashion of the Balkans, Rwanda, or contemporary Iraq.

How does the relative victimhood work politically? Progressive elites (oddly often white, but “woke,” males) serve as umpires who adjudicate familial spats and intersectional fractures. Like good cowboys, they ride herd, directing the squabbling and snorting flock in the right direction without losing too many strays on the way to the election booth.

Is Mayor Pete Buttigieg, recently confronted as an unwoke white guy by Black Lives Matter activists, a white male elite, or an oppressed gay male victim who feels the Christian faithful, like his former working associate Mike Pence, supposedly oppress him to the degree he cannot ever be slurred as an oppressor of others who are nonwhite, not affluent, and non-male? In this world of collective woke stereotypes, are inner-city blacks and Catholic Hispanics victims of white males like Buttigieg, or disproportionately insensitive victimizers of such gays as Buttigieg?

Class is a factor, too. Part of the reason Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J.) cannot speed through the Democratic intersection is that he talks and dresses like what he has always been—a rich kid of privilege, son of corporate elites, who glided through Stanford, was a Rhodes scholar, and has little idea of the experience of the black underclass that he now champions as an African-American activist. The middle-class Barack Obama faced the same problem but far more successfully camouflaged his prep school elitism by dropping the old preppie persona of Barry Obama, and reemerging as Barack Hussein Obama—authentic child of an African diplomat and well-acquainted with Islam as an expatriate youth in Indonesia. Booker, whose patois and schooling are akin to Obama’s, can hardly in the same fashion reinvent himself linguistically or ancestrally into the multifaceted Other.

Senator Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), an elite offspring of an immigrant Jamaican Stanford academic and a surgeon from Madras, is now running not as a child of privilege, or the former paramour of political fixer and San Francisco pol Willie Brown, or the hard-nosed city prosecutor who hounded parents of truant kids, but as an intersectional child of the Caribbean and the Indian subcontinent. And yet despite the authenticity of Harris, she, like Joe Biden, is reckless: she was a loud megaphone for reparations until her obviously embarrassed father, who is apparently proud of past parental efforts to ensure that Harris successfully assimilated and integrated into the dominant culture, reminded his daughter that their shared ancestry included Jamaican slave-owners: in effect, schooling Kamala that the Harrises would have to seek reparations for the descendent Harrises from the descendants of the Harrises.

Give Jussie Smollet credit, the son of a Polish-Jewish father and African-American mother. He took no chances when he set off intersectional megatonnage to ensure that he was a multifarious victim of white male, right-wing, MAGA-spouting, homophobic racist oppressors—and therefore deserved another season on “Empire”or else! That Smollet is still believed by millions is a testament to the insidious power of intersectionality.

After all, we are asked to believe that the actor at 2 a.m., in subzero temperatures, bumped into the lidless eyes of white Trumpist racist America. Indeed, we learned that he by chance encountered two patrolling MAGA-hatted, white burly males, who were curious watchers and fans of the black cult series, (“Aren’t you that f—-t ‘Empire’ n—-r?”) and on constant vigilance in the wee hours in African-American neighborhoods of progressive Chicago (“This is MAGA country!”), with lynch rope, bleach, and a barrage of obscenities for randomly targeted gay, black, left-wing, and famous victims—coincidentally just like Jussie Smollet.

And Smollet was no slouch. In he-man style, Smollet single-handedly beat back these white Trumpist demons, and he did so in apparent jiu-jitsu style while managing to keep his cell phone and Subway sandwich—and lynch rope around his neck. A sane person may conclude this is low farce—especially after two of his associates confessed that they were paid to play the role of MAGA thugs—but not so the industry of intersectionality. The hip woke magazine GQ immediately after the “assault” weighed in on Smollett’s “attack” in iconic fashion:

America’s choice to embrace the blind rage of late-stage whiteness in decline is an explicit longing for this kind of crime, a version of America in which those who do not assimilate to the satisfaction of their white, straight, and Christian betters are subject to the impunity of law enforcement, the scorn of the media and the fury of racist homophobes stalking the streets of your city, who want you to know that they could lynch you if they really wanted to, and maybe get away with it too.

So do not mock the tortuous labyrinth of mutually exclusive intersectionality. Treat it instead with fear as if one enters the crossroads with Dante’s warning at the gates of hell, Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate (“Abandon all hope, ye who enter here”).

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) assumed that a white woman from Oklahoma, with a 1990s interest in house-flipping and voting Republican, does not end up at snooty Harvard Law School. So she successfully reinvented herself as the law school’s first woke Native American professor. While Warren was later goaded by Donald Trump into a disastrous decision to prove her Indian fantasies by taking a self-incriminating DNA test, she otherwise did not have to go to the trouble of Ward Churchill, who wore a get up of beads, buckskin and a headband, or Rachel Dolezal who wore blackface (and now, apparently, bixsexuality) to recalibrate as an edgy social justice warrior.

The self-appointed security hothead George Zimmerman never got the intersectional message. The half-Peruvian Zimmerman became infamous for his lethal encounter in 2012 with Trayvon Martin. In the subsequent lead up to the trial, where he was found not-guilty on grounds of self-defense, Zimmerman’s 911 calls were selectively edited and the police photos of his injuries were photoshopped to downplay their severity. But had the mix-up not been between an armed white man with the scary Germanic name Zimmerman and a victimized black teen, but instead one of an African-American and a Latino Jorge Mesa (Zimmerman ethnicizing his first name and adopting his matronymic), the story might not have been so easily caricatured as a morality tale.

Good-ole gaffe-prone Uncle Joe Biden, 76 and time-tested liberal, can’t make it through the roundabout of intersectionality without a major crack-up. He flipped upside down to assure primary progressive media and primary kingmakers that he was once wrong about cutting off Anita Hill during the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings three decades ago, and that he was actually a cutting-edge feminist back when it counted, an abortion advocate, a once deluded but now woke supporter of reduced prison sentencing.

But even so, in our new age when touching the opposite sex is a window into a sick mind, how can Joe, a chronic shoulder squeezer and hair and ear breather of young girls and women, escape #MeToo only on the basis of his progressive fides? True, Joe tried to talk his way out of his prior race, class, and gender incorrectness, but his intersectional wreckage only got worse as he crowed about his prior coziness with segregationist Senators James Eastland and Herman Talmadge.

Did Joe not know that the one red line in Democratic politics is never to remind the nation that Democrats were the party of the Confederacy, Jim Crow, segregation, and opposition to the Civil Rights Act? Joe, in Neanderthal fashion, apparently thought that the fact that two old Southerners of the Senate once called him “son” instead of “boy” proved their mutual workmanlike Democratic admiration—a model for contemporary tolerance.

Others of his political affinities were not amused. As Politico put it, “New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, whose wife is African American, noted that one of the segregationists Biden invoked, James Eastland of Mississippi, would have outlawed his marriage. Sen. Cory Booker, who is black, took offense that Biden seemed to make light of Eastland calling him ‘son’ but not ‘boy.’”

This was not the first time that Biden had tried to prove his racial sensitivity fides. Do we not remember that he praised his one-time rival Barack Obama as the first “clean” and “bright” and “articulate” black presidential candidate (so much for Shirley Chisholm, Jesse Jackson, and Al Sharpton), and did so with such effect that Obama picked him as his vice president and would occasionally turn him loose on a predominantly black audiences to lecture them that Mitt Romney and his Wall Street white devils would “put you all back in chains.”

How does one adjudicate the legacy of feminist trailblazing athletes and the agenda of men born biologically male who transgender into females with the help of hormonal drug therapy, and thereby find advantage in their innately larger frames and muscularity to erase the landmark records of feminism? After all, day by day, sports records of a prior generation, at the local, state, and national level, are insidiously being erased by trans athletes. When sports icon and lesbian feminist Martina Navratilova objected to the innate advantages of former male, now female, athletes, she was ostracized as some sort of anti-progressive heretic.

Does ideology trump difference? Do white rich whiny pajama boys with impunity condemn black conservatives as traitors to the progressive cause? Did the woke left-wing Garrison Keillor still have to be sacrificed on the altar of alleged #MeTooism? Does race or ethnicity win, English or Spanish, the domestic or the foreign oppressed: do illegal aliens trump the concerns of non-Spanish speaking African-Americans worried over the driving down of wages by imported cheap labor? Is Hillary Clinton a rich, entitled insider who mastered leveraging and monetizing her political clout, or a feminist trailblazer who battled the sexist exploitation of alpha males—like her husband, empathetic, progressive and pro-abortion sexual harasser Bill Clinton?

The French Revolution devolved into an intersectional destruction derby of factions, each claiming the greater leftist frenzied fides. Serbs, Albanians, Montenegrins, Croatians, Slavs, and Macedonians ended up killing each other, in the fashion of Iraqi Shiites and Sunnis, on the premise that each faction had endured more historical grievances than the others and thus had a greater right to use their own tribalism to achieve political power and snuff out the others.

The race to the bottom of victimhood logically ends in Smolletism, an absurd effort to invent as many oppressors as possible, all beaten down by one’s own singular bravery, prowess, and overarching victimhood.

In the end, the only logical survivor of intersectionality is the multifaceted Smollet-like victim, not just black, but black and gay, not just a homosexual African-American, but a hip and left-wing victim, and not just black, hip, gay, and leftwing, but a young woke activist courageously on the barricades, and not just all that but also master of martial arts put only in the service of the oppressed.

The 2020 Democratic primary is a showcase of these intersectional Balkan wars—race, sex, class, and comparative claims on victimhood that cannot be reconciled by comparative set-asides, quotas, and reparations, much less by a self-appointed, supposed all-knowing, all-powerful old white guy like Biden, playing the role of Alexander among the squabbling city-states and Macedonian tribes, or Napoleon both channeling and transcending the bloody factionalism of the French Revolution, or Tito suppressing tribalism by an all-encompassing authoritarian leftist dogma.

Intersectionality ends not by compromise, but by implosion through its own utter nihilism that sees humans as collective cardboard cutouts rather unique individuals who transcend their superficial appearances.

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America • Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Donald Trump • Identity Politics • Post • Progressivism • The Left

Dangerous Derangement

America cannot continue as a republic without the acceptance that one party routinely will be turned out of office. Democrats no longer accept that bedrock principle of American liberty. They see themselves as the only party entitled to govern. “Trump Derangement Syndrome” and the Russian collusion frame-up are two faces of the same coin: Democrats now reject the orderly succession of power through duly constituted elections.

Democrats have whipped the nation into mass hysteria for three years. It’s a destructive game, manipulating people into a rage until Americans see each other as enemies. Most dangerous of all, driven by the social justice agenda of Obama progressives, Democrats are purposely delegitimizing our democratic institutions.

The attempted frame-up of President Trump as a traitor through the Russia collusion hoax was the hidden face of their drive for power. Trump Derangement is the public face. Trump Derangement is part of the Russian collusion hoax, now being recognized as an attempted coup.

To pull off the coup, Democrats need their voters behind them, no matter what. They need a Ministry of Truth, not a free press. They need hyper-partisanship. They need a crisis atmosphere that justifies anything they did to retain power. They need hate. Their answer is Trump Derangement.

In the words of Roger Kimball, “The actions taken by the Obama Administration threatened not just Donald Trump and his presidency but the very processes and protocols by which the peaceful transition of power has been effected in the United States.”

As Angelo Codevilla puts it: “ . . . no one really believed that a major party would rebel against the voters, and hence against our constitutional republic—yet. And yet the Democratic Party . . .  decided never again to concede legitimacy to any serious opponents’ victory.”

Democrats are playing an entirely different game than Republicans. Democrats think they have a mandate from history to seize power for people of color, LGBTQ minorities, and radical feminists. They don’t like America or Americans, who they consider bigoted and backward. They don’t like the principles of our founding, which recognize the God-given rights of individuals, not groups.

They don’t like how we elect presidents, because the Electoral College protects the heartland from domination by big cities, mostly controlled by Democrats. Social justice Democrats don’t want to control immigration, legal or illegal, because they are successfully replacing the existing American population with new people who will vote for them. They are substituting their Marxist vision of redistributive social justice for the American Dream.

This is why Democrats pretend Trump’s election is a national crisis. American political and constitutional norms must be suspended for them to have a chance at revolution. This “resistance” to President Trump (as if disregarding an American election is the same as fighting Nazi occupation) was organized by theSorosarm of the party, with all the big wigs in attendance, in a weekend confab immediately upon Donald Trump’s victory, before he had done anything to resist.

#TheResistance has been violent in words and in action. It has escalated for three years. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) says she wants to see President Trump in prison. For what? There doesn’t even have to be a crime for Democrats to call for punishment.

American voters have chosen presidents from alternating political parties for the last 40 years. That Trump would win in 2016 was unremarkable. It was a normal correction to the center. President Trump is one of the most popular presidents among his own party’s voters ever. He has been successful on jobs, energy, and the economy. His foreign policy has entangled us in no foreign wars or even adventures. There is nothing to be deranged about.

This should be a period of calm and optimism, bringing the country together. People in all walks of life are doing well. The country is doing well. Yet anger and political mayhem dominate, manufactured out of thin air.

Trump Derangement works beautifully as a propaganda war. Democrat voters still believe the claims that Trump is a traitor. They don’t care that it was the Obama Administration, the Democratic National Committee, and Hillary Clinton who colluded with a hired gun, Christopher Steele, and his Russian informants. Democrats don’t mind. They just hate Trump.

Trump derangement provides Democrats cover with their voters. It is strong enough to drown out whatever Attorney General William Barr proves about the spawning of the Russia collusion hoax. Democrats have discredited President Trump to the point where an inflamed Democrat electorate will not care when their guys are proven to be the bad guys.

Mass hysteria happens, but it isn’t spontaneous. It is purposely drummed up through media manipulation and propaganda, censorship on social media, street theatre, violence, social bullying, and corruption of basic institutions such as the FBI and the courts.

For three years, Democrats’ ability to use common sense has been overwhelmed by a tsunami of hatred, fear, resentment, and moral condemnation directed at Republicans. These emotions are the result of propaganda and political manipulation.

We must go on the offensive. It is time to delegitimize Trump derangement. Stop answering and reporting on each lie and rabid attack as if they are part of normal politics. Attack Trump derangement head on, as a dangerous rejection of our democracy. Call out the stooges, Democrat and Republican, who take part in it.

The propaganda blitzkrieg of false accusations that fuel Trump derangement has never been seen in American politics before and it has no place in American life. It is left-wing fascism. It is devastating to the civility, tolerance, and basic unity that make the American experiment possible. We need to call out Democrats non-stop to match their waterfall of lies. They are destroying our democracy on purpose.

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America • Cultural Marxism • feminists • Post • Progressivism • The Left

Worshipful Procession: The Progressive Liberal Protest March

In 2008, noted psychologist and addiction expert Stanton Peele argued in Psychology Today that, “Religious people are certifiable. They are obligated to believe crazy things . . . I write this from my hotel in Seville, on Good Friday, after marching through the streets following religious processions of floats, mournful bands, and men dressed in pointed hoods and robes (which makes all Americans uneasy). When I ask my daughter—much more culturally sensitive than I am—what this has to do with Jesus, she answers, ‘ritual.’”

This encapsulates a common conceit that secular progressive liberals hold. They look at the religious procession in much the same way they look at religion itself—a curious spectacle making very little sense.

Religious processions are a sort of inexplicable oddity of the sort they think they have escaped. When the clear light of secular, progressive, liberal reason is applied, curiosities such as these are supposed to fall away and be nothing more than bizarre spectacle.

Self-awareness isn’t a strong suit for this religion that pretends it isn’t a religion. But the progressive liberal faith has its own form of the religious procession: the protest march and rally.

The “Hidden Tribes” report by More in Common illustrates what I mean. “Progressive Activists,” approximately 8 percent of the U.S. population, are the most liberal part of our population. Of that group, 96 percent of them claim America needs more “science” than “religion” to overcome the nation’s problems. While hardly any of them ever attend traditional organized religious services, almost 70 percent of them have attended a political protest rally or march in the previous year.

As with worshipers who attend the Holy Week processions in Seville, the progressive liberal—when she marches—is involved with and receives the same emotional benefits as those Spanish men wearing pointed hoods and robes she criticizes. She feels a sense of euphoria from participating in what she believes is a noble cause; she senses an intense feeling of belonging—being in a crowd of like-minded individuals; she physically preaches her progressive faith and is preached at by various speakers during the march; she feels continuity with other believers who marched before her; and together, she and her progressive co-religionists are united against a common enemy.

Lara Americo, who took part in the Washington, D.C. Women’s March in 2018 described the experience as “euphoric” because there “were so many people there, in the streets, standing up for equality.” I imagine it’s not much different for those bumpkins who take part in the Holy Week processions in Spain. I know when I took part in the Holy Week festivities in Israel, I also felt an overwhelming sense of emotion and connectedness to my fellow believers. It was Orthodox Easter and I was surrounded by thousands of Orthodox Christian pilgrims. Knowing that they were believers like me gave me a powerful feeling of being in a holy place because it was consecrated by all those other believers like myself.

At the 2018 Women’s March, Denise Migliaccio connected her experience with protests of the past, “’Last time I marched was in the late ’60s, protesting the war and supporting George McGovern. This felt more important than even that time, those concerns. We felt our country was in danger . . . My husband and I joined our group . . . with a resurgent activism we had not experienced in a very long time.” Verna Ingram said that she marched because “People in my family marched for civil rights, and my family is from the South,” she said. “It was important to continue that legacy and to make sure everyone’s voice is heard.”

At the 2018 March for Our Lives, one “teenager drew parallels with the civil rights marches of the past, relishing the idea that he was literally following in the footsteps of icons such as King.” For the progressive liberal, the protest march connects her with events gone past, providing a similar feeling of meaning, purpose, and zeal. For each and every one of them, the psychological feeling of being connected to heroes of the distant past—in this case, usually the 1960s protest marches—is the true object. It gives them a connection to a tradition no less sublime for them than my own feelings as I walked among Christians pilgrims in Jerusalem. I don’t doubt for a second that the Women’s Marchers or March for Our Lives participants literally think that they are walking in the footsteps of Martin Luther King, Jr. or Susan B. Anthony.

Just remember, when you watch the news about the recent (and poorly attended) Impeach Trump Day protests, you’re not actually watching a political protest. You’re seeing a religious procession. What you’re seeing is religion: the Church of Progressive Liberalism.

Photo Credit: Evelyn Hockstein/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Cultural Marxism • Education • Post • The Left

Did Your Child Return From College a Better Person?

When assessing America’s or any of the Western world’s universities—wondering whether you should send your child to one; whether you should pay for a child to attend one; whether you should go into great debt to attend one; whether you should donate money to one; and related questions—it would seem that the single most important question to be answered is: What type of person does the university produce?

It is hard to imagine any parent—left, right, liberal, conservative or apolitical—who would disagree with asking this question. They would disagree about what constituted a desirable outcome—obviously left-wing parents would want their child’s college to send home a child with left-wing views, and a parent on the right would not be happy if their child returned home with left-wing views—but every parent would agree that the question, “What type of person did college produce?” is an important one.

My belief is that most of the time, colleges today produce a worse human being or, at the very least, a person who is no better, wiser or more mature than when he or she graduated high school.

Let’s begin with behavioral issues.

There is a good chance your son or daughter will have spent much of his or her free time at college partying, which often means getting drunk, smoking marijuana and hooking up with someone for casual sex. While none of those activities necessarily means your son or daughter became a worse human being, all of us can agree that none of them made your child a better one.

Regarding college drinking, Alcohol Rehab Guide, an online alcohol addiction site, reports:

“A large percentage of college students consume alcohol by binge drinking. … For men, binge drinking involves drinking five or more alcoholic beverages in two hours. On the other hand, binge drinking for women is considered four or more drinks within a two-hour time period.”

The website also states that “Roughly 80 percent of college students—four out of every five—consume alcohol to some degree. It’s estimated that 50 percent of those students engage in binge drinking … ”
BMC Public Health reported in 2013:

“One young adult in two has entered university education in Western countries. … (This) is often associated with risky behaviour such as excessive alcohol consumption. … We found that the more a student was exposed to college environmental factors, the greater the risk of heavy, frequent, and abusive drinking. Alcohol consumption increased for students living on campus, living in a dormitory with a higher number of room-mates, and having been in the University for a long spell.”

And we are all aware of the sexual activity that emanates from college drinking and can be regretted the next day (usually by the woman).

Then there is depression and mental illness at college. In the words of clinical psychologist Gregg Henriques through Psychology Today, “It is neither an exaggeration nor is it alarmist to claim that there is a mental health crisis today facing America’s college students.

Evidence suggests that this group has greater levels of stress and psychopathology than any time in the nation’s history.”

Now, let’s move on to values and character.

Did your son or daughter (or niece or nephew, grandson or granddaughter) return home from college:

More, less or equally kind a person?

More, less or equally respectful of you, his or her parent(s)?

More, less or equally grateful to you for the monetary sacrifice you made to enable him or her to attend college?

More, less or equally proud to be an American?

More, less or equally respectful of religion?

More, less or equally wise?

More, less or equally committed to free speech?

More, less or equally open to hearing views he or she disagrees with?

I think I know the answers to those questions, in most instances. But far more important than what I assume is what you will find out. Please ask not only the college students and recent college graduates but their parents and other relatives these questions.

Then decide whether you want to risk sending your child to a place that will greatly increase their chances of being depressed, engaging in binge drinking and learning nothing important—while being taught how awful America is, why speech he or she doesn’t agree with should be suppressed, how pathetic religious Christians and Jews are, how wonderful religious Muslims are and how important skin color is.

I acknowledge that students who are entering STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields must attend college. But for most of the rest, sending your child to college is playing Russian roulette with their values, character and even joy of life.

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COPYRIGHT 2019 CREATORS.COM

America • Cultural Marxism • Defense of the West • Europe • Identity Politics • Immigration • Post

Why Are the Western Middle Classes So Angry?

What is going on with the unending Brexit drama, the aftershocks of Donald Trump’s election and the “yellow vests” protests in France? What drives the growing estrangement of southern and eastern Europe from the European Union establishment? What fuels the anti-EU themes of recent European elections and the stunning recent Australian re-election of conservatives?

Put simply, the middle classes are revolting against Western managerial elites. The latter group includes professional politicians, entrenched bureaucrats, condescending academics, corporate phonies and propagandistic journalists.

What are the popular gripes against them?

One, illegal immigration and open borders have led to chaos. Lax immigration policies have taxed social services and fueled multicultural identity politics, often to the benefit of boutique leftist political agendas.

Two, globalization enriched the cosmopolitan elites who found worldwide markets for their various services. New global markets and commerce meant Western nations outsourced, offshored and ignored their own industries and manufacturing (or anything dependent on muscular labor that could be replaced by cheaper workers abroad).

Three, unelected bureaucrats multiplied and vastly increased their power over private citizens. The targeted middle classes lacked the resources to fight back against the royal armies of tenured regulators, planners, auditors, inspectors and adjustors who could not be fired and were never accountable.

Four, the new global media reached billions and indoctrinated rather than reported.

Five, academia became politicized as a shrill agent of cultural transformation rather than focusing on education—while charging more for less learning.

Six, utopian social planning increased housing, energy and transportation costs.

One common gripe framed all these diverse issues: The wealthy had the means and influence not to be bothered by higher taxes and fees or to avoid them altogether. Not so much the middle classes, who lacked the clout of the virtue-signaling rich and the romance of the distant poor.

In other words, elites never suffered the firsthand consequences of their own ideological fiats.

Green policies were aimed at raising fees on, and restricting the use of, carbon-based fuels. But proposed green belt-tightening among hoi polloi was not matched by a cutback in second and third homes, overseas vacations, luxury cars, private jets and high-tech appurtenances.

In education, government directives and academic hectoring about admissions quotas and ideological indoctrination likewise targeted the middle classes but not the elite. The micromanagers of Western public schools and universities often preferred private academies and rigorous traditional training for own children. Elites relied on old-boy networks to get their own kids into colleges. Diversity administrators multiplied at universities while indebted students borrowed more money to pay for them.

In matters of immigration, the story was much the same. Western elites encouraged the migration of indigent, unskilled and often poorly educated foreign nationals who would ensure that government social programs—and the power of the elites themselves—grew. The champions of open borders made sure that such influxes did not materially affect their own neighborhoods, schools and privileged way of life.

Elites masked their hypocrisy by virtue-signaling their disdain for the supposedly xenophobic, racist or nativist middle classes. Yet the non-elite have experienced firsthand the impact on social programs, schools and safety from sudden, massive and often illegal immigration from Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and Asia into their communities.

As for trade, few still believe in “free” trade when it remains so unfair. Why didn’t elites extend to China their same tough-love lectures about global warming, or about breaking the rules of trade, copyrights and patents?

The middle classes became nauseated by the constant elite trashing of their culture, history and traditions, including the tearing down of statues, the Trotskyizing of past heroes, the renaming of public buildings and streets, and, for some, the tired and empty whining about “white privilege.”

If Western nations were really so bad, and so flawed at their founding, why were millions of non-Westerners risking their lives to reach Western soil?

How was it that elites themselves had made so much money, had gained so much influence, and had enjoyed such material bounty and leisure from such a supposedly toxic system—benefits that they were unwilling to give up despite their tired moralizing about selfishness and privilege?

In the next few years, expect more grassroots demands for the restoration of the value of citizenship. There will be fewer middle-class apologies for patriotism and nationalism. The non-elite will become angrier about illegal immigration, demanding a return to the idea of measured, meritocratic, diverse and legal immigration.

Because elites have no answers to popular furor, the anger directed at them will only increase until they give up—or finally succeed in their grand agenda of a non-democratic, all-powerful Orwellian state.

Photo Credit: Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images

(C) 2019 TRIBUNE CONTENT AGENCY, LLC.

Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Donald Trump • Post • The Culture • The Left

Republicans Aren’t Funny

Editor’s note: This article was first published at The American Spectator and appears in American Greatness by permission.

Conservative intellectuals in Washington, D.C. and elsewhere are gathering to discuss where conservatism stands in the Age of Trump and where it will be after he leaves office. As those deliberations evolve and spill into Republican Party affairs, the leaders better keep one thing in mind: conservatism, now and then, has to be fun, and sometimes funny, too.

William F. Buckley, Jr., made it fun 54 years ago in a free-wheeling run for the mayoralty of New York, his wit dispelling the despair conservatives felt after Barry Goldwater was thrashed by Lyndon Johnson  in 1964. (Buckley titled his platform statement, “Mayor, Anyone?”). Ronald Reagan certainly made people laugh, often at his opponents’ expense: “Republicans celebrate the Fourth of July; Democrats celebrate April 15th.” Laughter helped Arnold Schwarzenegger win California (“Don’t be economic girly-men!”) and, of course, Donald Trump the White House, including jokes about himself (“I never had alcohol, for whatever reason. Can you imagine if I had? What a mess I would be. I would be the worst.”).

It’s a sound liberals hate to hear. They know how important comedy is to public opinion, and they remember that many people preferred George W. Bush to the wooden Al Gore because he’s the one they’d have liked to join for a beer. Besides, they believe, comedy rightly belongs to the Left, from Lenny Bruce and “Laugh-In” to “The Daily Show” and Tina Fey doing Sarah Palin. If conservatives cultivate their own comedians and audiences enjoy them, 2020 and beyond looks less dim than it did last November after the midterms. Democrats have to stop them: there is no such a thing as conservative humor!

“How many feminists does it take to screw in a light bulb?”

“That’s not funny!”

Now the liberal must say, that’s not only not funny, it’s offensive.

So is the bake sale that conservative students mounted at the University of Washington, which charged Asians $1.50, whites $1, African Americans and Hispanics $0.50, and Native Americans nothing for each item. The stunt was a brazen parody prompted by a bill in the state legislature that reinstated affirmative action (voters had outlawed preferential treatment in 1998). University president Ana Mari Cauce, who has exquisitely correct progressive views, wasn’t amused by the kids. She upheld the right to free speech, but issued a sententious letter decrying the “crudity, offensiveness and sheer outrageousness of the message.”

And when Milo Yiannapoulos donned a blond wig and glasses, sat before a camera, called himself “Dr. Christine Blazing Faggot,” and announced, “You might know me from . . . lying to the Senate,” liberal observers assumed that anyone with a scrap of sympathy for survivors of sexual assault would consider it downright repugnant. That kind of malice, they insist, deserves to be scrubbed from social media, as happened to Milo last month. Reporting on the affair, The  Atlantic classified him as a “far-right extremist” who was banned by Facebook because he violated “policies against dangerous individuals and organizations.” They didn’t grant him an ounce of merriment.

President Trump isn’t funny, either, say the 53 percent of Americans who disapprove of his job performance. At the signing of the executive order threatening colleges with the loss of research funds if they fail to safeguard free speech, he regretted the catastrophe of student debt, but paused and told us not to get the wrong idea. “I’ve always been very good with loans,” he declared with a naughty smile. “I love loans. I looooove other people’s money.” All of us in the audience laughed, yes, but, really, it wasn’t funny, not to the reporters in the back, not at all.

President Obama, on the other hand, told a lot of jokes and he appreciated good comedy. As Politico reported in 2015, the Obama Administration went to “unusual” lengths “to cultivate” comedian Jon Stewart, then host of the popular “Daily Show” on Comedy Central. Obama did an hour with comedian Marc Maron on his popular podcast. And when it came time to defend Obamacare, he sat down for a conversation with comedian Zach Galifianakis that was, to be sure, appealingly droll. The YouTube video has collected nearly 26 million views. The Washington Post actually labeled Obama “the first alt-comedy president.”

Liberals and Democrats can enjoy that loose way of parleying; conservatives and Republicans can’t. We have an imbalance of laughter, which the left has created as part of its longstanding culture war tactics. What the Right thinks is comical the Left calls offensive, while the Left makes fun of its adversaries at will. Joe Biden was free to warn voters in a wry, folksy way during the 2012 campaign about Republicans reviving slavery, telling a half-black audience in Virginia, “They’re going to put y’all back in chains.” Hillary Clinton was sure that her “basket of deplorables” remark would count as a witticism, which did indeed get a laugh from the original audience.

So did Stephen Colbert when he characterized Donald Trump’s mouth as Vladimir Putin’s “cock-holster”; and Michelle Wolf, too, who in her speech at the 2018 White House Correspondents Dinner wondered what to call Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who was sitting nearby: “Like, what’s Uncle Tom but for white women who disappoint other white women?”; and Samantha Bee as well, who called Ivanka Trump a “feckless c—,” eliciting squeals of delight from the crowd.

None of those comics lost their platforms. Conservatives protested, a few liberals took some temporary distance from the speaker, the clip circulated widely, and it all passed over. Colbert continues his sarcasm every weeknight, and Bee still has 514,000 followers on Twitter. Milo has none—Twitter removed him three years ago. She’s “funny,” he’s not.

Nor is Paul Joseph Watson, another proclaimed hatemonger banned from Facebook and Instagram. His videos taunt and flout the sacred cows of “wokeness” and he has 1.6 million YouTube subscribers, but he gets no credit for wit. He created the “Creepy Uncle Joe” video in November 2017, which showed the former-vice president getting too touchy-feely with girls, inserting “COMPLETELY NORMAL” at telling moments and used camera slowdowns and close-ups to sensationalize Biden’s clinginess. The video has logged 2.4 million views and just as many guffaws, but the media judge such creations despicable, not a mode of Juvenalian satire as a Salon article did in justifying Jon Stewart’s anti-Republican obscenities.

Do Republican politicians and conservative commentators still not get it? Are they still unaware that this is all a set-up, conservatives-as-stunted and liberals-as-hip? As with all things cultural, the Left is way ahead of the Right on this matter. The censors who ousted Milo and Watson certainly understand. The more they paint those coarse performers as unfunny and odious, the less their performances will damage the progressive brand. So will the words of those conservatives who aren’t offensive and belligerent but are, liberals say, un-funny in a different way: uptight, repressed, literal-minded, and straight-laced. In either case, liberals reserve the joys of comedy for themselves. And the arrows of comedy, too.

For example: Fifty years ago, when anti-war protesters marched on the Pentagon, one group led by Allen Ginsberg and Abbie Hoffman, both of them experienced political performance artists, set about holding hands and chanting pagan prayers while The Fugs played in an effort to levitate the building—yes, to raise it three feet in the air (they actually secured a permit to do so). It was a ceremonial theater of the absurd whose stagy pointlessness had a satirical purpose: to treat the Pentagon itself as a site of absurdity. People normally assumed that inside the building were shrewd men devising plans of high geopolitical seriousness, but with these goofy protesters outside the image of noble patriotism dimmed. That was the point—to discredit the military, and there were no comics in 1967 to fight back. John Wayne’s patriotic 1968 film “The Green Berets” didn’t have a lot of irony.

Cheap or not, satire is a weapon, and it’s one that Democrats monopolize. They want to pigeon-hole Republicans as Puritanical Pat Robertson or Evil Dick Cheney, repressively humorless or villainously humorless. They have exercised that caricature secure in the expectation that Republicans won’t turn it upon them. When Whoopi Goldberg spoke at a fundraiser in 2004 for John Kerry and John Edwards (both of them were in the audience), she said this about the sitting president: “We should keep Bush where he belongs”—here she paused and pointed at her genitals—“not in the White House.” Even though the Kerry campaign had asked to see her remarks in advance, Goldberg refused. She described her response to that request and explained her reasoning: “I Xeroxed my behind and I folded it up in an envelope and I sent it back with a big kiss mark on it because we’re Democrats—we’re not afraid to laugh.” She was right. It didn’t hurt her career at all.

Establishment Republicans have learned to play along with their assigned role as prigs. They are most definitely afraid to laugh. They seem to be in a competition of earnestness. Did John Kasich tell a joke in 2016 and make it work? Did Jeb Bush ever evoke a belly laugh? How much of Jeff Flake’s sincerity did we have to take? One might assume their oh-so-concerned aura stems from an inner conviction, or from their readiness to assume the grave duties of leadership. In truth, they are under the sway of a liberal censure that strikes whenever they veer into a politically-incorrect mode.

They play this brand of sobriety because they fear the stigma liberals have attached to them: “Republicans don’t care about poor people, sick people, minorities, women, immigrants . . .” They must show that they care, that they feel their pain, which means that they must eliminate all sardonic edges from their words and visages. This is, of course, to strip them of a crucial firearm in the field of political battle. Saul Alinsky, a brilliant tactician, would approve.

Americans who lean right have been begging for their representatives to deride politically correct norms for a long time. People want to laugh; it brings relief as the straitjacket of liberal decorum is loosened. But establishment Republicans won’t do it. Left-wing scolds from Hollywood to the Washington Post to Silicon Valley have them cowed. Remember the attack ad from 2012 showing a Paul Ryan look-alike wheeling grandma off the cliff? It was so bizarrely melodramatic that it really was kind of funny. Ryan’s standard rejoinder to such lampoons, though, was the wholly unfunny Boy Scout persona, a hapless claim of innocence that was no defense against liberal raillery.

Recall, too, the story of Mitt Romney many years before sticking his dog on the roof of the family car for a 12-hour ride home, which evoked hundreds of jokes during the campaign, including one by President Obama himself at the 2012 White House Correspondents’ Dinner.  Romney’s answer when asked by Diane Sawyer if he would do it again wasn’t, “Heck, yes! That dog was never happier than when he had the wind in his face! I could never take him out in the car without him sticking his head out the window and begging me to drive faster, faster!” No, he said, instead, “Certainly not with the attention it’s received.”

This is the actual context for the indignation provoked by the new comics of the right: Milo, Steven Crowder, Paul Joseph Watson, Mark Dice,  . . . and Donald Trump himself. From the very beginning of the campaign, Trump realized that Romney and Ryan’s brand of solemnity doesn’t overcome liberal mockery, especially when that solemnity issues from the mouths of D.C. politicians who have absolutely no claim to victim status. Romney-Ryan lost, Trump won, but establishment Republicans haven’t learned the lesson. They didn’t register how much fun people had at Trump’s rallies, or how much his jibes (“fake news,” “Pocahontas”) countered the jibes they’d endured for so long (“Teabaggers,” “wingnuts,” . . .). Trump’s success in spite of all the times the media declared him done—for instance, after Trump in South Carolina called the Iraq invasion a disaster—proved that a significant voting bloc was waiting to be inspired by a leader who could make them laugh. Ordinary citizens felt the bliss of candor when Trump groaned in 2015, “I am so tired of this politically-correct crap!”

But establishment Republicans still wince at his sallies. They still want to display how respectable and civil they are. Romney said in 2012 that the Obama campaign aimed “to minimize me as an individual, to make me a bad person, an unacceptable person.” And yet Senator Romney just voted against a judicial nominee because the nominee “made particularly disparaging comments about President Obama” while the man was running for office in 2011.

We are in an arms race of political banter. Without the weapons of parody, jest, and artful invective, conservatives can’t win—and liberals know it. That’s why they cast conservative humor as offensive, for instance, Diamond and Silk as “unsafe to the community” (Mark Zuckerberg later called that judgment an error). And that’s why President Trump came to the defense of right-wing figures banned from Facebook.  He knows the value of raillery, and he recognizes the duplicitous game the Left has been playing and winning: propriety-for-thee and edginess-for-me.

Republican leaders should treat these sometimes racy but highly popular political satirists in the same way President Obama treated Jon Stewart. The impact of “Saturday Night Live” and “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” on the polls should not be underestimated (Colbert brings in 4 million viewers a night).

Republicans rightly abhor the bad language of Milo, et. al., but wrongly shun them for that reason. Those bawdy wits are, in fact, the best force against the heated social justice warriors flocking to Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.). If Hillary Clinton can share a stage one week before the election with Jay-Z, whose lyrics include:

You wanna know what’s more important than throwin’ away money at a       

strip club? Credit

You ever wonder why Jewish people own all the property in America?

This how they did it . . .

and the NBC News report on the event notes only that Clinton was able to bring out “star power” for her final push, then Republicans should be able to sit down with conservative YouTube stars and ask why so many young Americans love them. If they don’t, they surrender the entire territory of edginess so much prized by the young to the Left. The results speak for themselves. Last November, the youth vote went 2-to-1 for Democrats.

Besides, liberals decry President Trump’s un-presidential vulgarity not because of their high-minded image of the presidency. They do it because he has stolen some of their weaponry. Democrats have hemmed in Republicans with politically correct etiquette while maintaining a squad of comic culture warriors eager to jeer and demean conservatives the moment they wield comedy as political critique. Trump won’t cooperate. He has taken the antic advantage away from the Left, the first national Republican figure to do so in a long time, and liberals hate him for that. Oh, they make jokes about him, but the jokes they come up with aren’t very clever and they’re so predictable that they aren’t funny, either. They really aren’t.

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America • Book Reviews • Books & Culture • Cultural Marxism • Post • The Left

Smiling Through the ‘Apocali’

On the whole, the Right does little in the culture war but bitch. Intrepid individuals have endeavored to check the Left; and, if that individual happens to be an entertainer, it is often at the risk of his career.

A review of Apocali Now! By Evan Sayet and A.F. Branco (28 pages, $14.99)

Writer, producer, and comedian Evan Sayet is one such courageous soul. The author of The Kindergarden of Eden: How the Modern Liberal Thinks, Sayet has teamed with another brave soul, the nationally syndicated editorial cartoonist A.F. Branco, to produce a “faux children’s book” for readers of all ages: Apocali Now!

Apocali Now! walks readers and listeners through the cynical history of the Left’s false alarms of environmental end-times: global cooling, the ozone layer, acid rain, swine flu, mad cow disease, killer bees, missing bees, etc. Moreover, this fun, provocative book continues to punch above its weight by explaining the motive behind the Left’s bogus doomsaying—and why acquiescing won’t save the world, but will ensure the end of freedom—free thought, free speech, and free markets.

It’s a delicate matter to cite text when reviewing a children’s book. The verbiage will be sparse (and, in Apocali Now!, puissant). To quote too much would be unfair to prospective readers and the author (and, in this instance, the cartoonist, too).  That said, here is one passage which shows the author’s mastery of the children’s book genre and his trenchant knowledge of the Left:

Well, when I was your age,

they cried “Global Cooling!”

An Ice Age they said . . .

. . . then they said, “Hey, just fooling!”

At the time of this particular leftist false alarm, I was a young lad in Michigan who wasn’t particularly fond of winter. To this day, I’d still love to know the whereabouts of the clowns who spread this scam, so I can send them an invoice for the boxes of long underwear, ski masks, mittens, scarves, snowmobile boots, skates and ChapStick we bought back in the day to survive their “inevitable” Ice Age.

For the skeptic who considers the above hyperbole or doubts the fearlessness with which Sayet and Branco exhibited by writing this slim tome of truth, consider: Every year, schools invite elected officials to read to their classrooms. The Left’s elected officials will sanctimoniously declaim from a host of books propagandizing the apocalyptic scam of climate change. Let me know when you hear of a member of Congress reading Apocali Now! to the children.

As for the books name, Sayet and Branco explain it on the back cover: “‘Apocali’ is the made-up plural of apocalypse and the never ending apocalyptic visions used by greedy control freaks to increase their wealth and power.”

The Left wants to do so at your expense. Sadly, in the current Stalinist climate of the arts and entertainment world, Sayet and Branco are doing the exact opposite to bring readers their message, endangering their livelihoods to speak truth to power. Fortunately for them, the ultimate power in our free republic is not the censorial Left that screeches “the science is settled!”  (Yeah—if the Left likes the result.)

No, it is to the true power in our republic, the American people, Sayet and Branco are writing; and, yes, putting their fates in their fellow citizens’ hands. The least the Right can do is affirm their effort by buying, reading, and sharing with the next generation Apocali Now!

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Free Speech • Post • The Left

The Right Needs to Take Language Seriously

The Left’s ideas receive a major boost in ubiquity and apparent credibility because progressives control nearly all of the America’s major taste-making institutions: Hollywood, the universities, K-12 education, and the media. Such control allows progressives to set the terms of national debates, demarcating the range of acceptable opinions on any given subject. It gives rise to another ability: the power to (re)define terms by fiat. After all, when the vast majority of the most credentialed people in virtually all of the most influential organs of civil society are saying X, the average person is hard pressed to meaningfully push back and say Y. The sheer saturation of the information space is a formidable hurdle for even the most savvy to overcome.

Take immigration, for example. The Left insists, night and day, that true Americans should be perfectly happy to accept virtually unlimited migrant flows through our southern border. Not only that, but compassion demands we accept virtually all comers. Only bigots could want controlled immigration. As for the national interest, surely it’s in our interest to open our country to strivers and Dreamers. See what just happened?

Our historical practice of accepting large numbers of immigrants, contingent on the need to build up a young America, has been perverted into a suicidal posture: anyone who wants to immigrate—whether they hate or love America, want to assimilate to our national, Declaration-sourced self-understanding or not—gets to immigrate, no questions asked. Compassion is twisted to mean that you have to outstretch your hand even to the MS-13 member who would chop it off given the chance. Wanting a functional immigration system that promotes the interest of we, the American people, is equated with the KKK’s vile worldview. Sound familiar?

“War Is Peace, Freedom Is Slavery, and Ignorance Is Strength.”

And the Left gets away with it because the Left controls the debate. Progressives decide what’s worthy of debate, and what’s acceptable to be said within the limits they set unilaterally.

More examples abound. Former FBI Director James Comey is fêted for his higher loyalty and then invited to teach a class on ethical leadership. In fact, Comey is an ignoramus who insanely compares himself to former Secretary of State James Mattis; at a minimum, the comparison is inapt because the latter chose to resign, while the former was fired by President Trump. “Higher loyalty” is really just code for (ahem) colluding with the permanent bureaucracy to undermine the duly elected president of the United States. It’s a vain, self-serving distortion of the venerable natural law tradition on civil disobedience and conscience, classically expressed by Saint Augustine and restated for modern ears by Martin Luther King, Jr. in his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”:

One may well ask, “How can you advocate breaking some laws and obeying others?” The answer is found in the fact that there are two types of laws: there are just laws, and there are unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that “An unjust law is no law at all.”

Nowadays, a racist is someone who wants a colorblind society and an end to universities’ race-based admissions practices, both of which are in keeping with the original public meaning of the 14th Amendment and only possible because Christianity revolutionized our view of human moral equality and dignity. An anti-racist, if you can believe it, demonizes all whites just because they’re white and is happy to see the return of all-black (i.e., segregated) dorms.

Social justice means recognizing group rights, tossing out the presumption of innocence (recall l’affaire Kavanaugh), and affording special privileges to people based on the unchosen circumstances of their birth. What was wrong with plain old justice—rendering to each his due?

Tolerance means that Christians play their assigned role: meekly accepting secular subservience and social ostracization while the Left beats the war drums, fanatically pushing abortion on demand until the moment of birth and beyond, sexual chaos, and socialism.

Inclusion means, “You’re only part of the in-group if you swallow hook, line, and sinker progressivism’s dreary historical materialism”—not, “All are welcome.”

Many of these concepts are sourced in Christianity, but their traditional meanings have been manipulated into oblivion. The terms themselves are the same, but they’ve been hollowed out by cynical activists eager to commandeer the venerable traditions of an ancient faith and culture for their own godless purposes.

The Right needs to get wise to this—and quickly.

Politics is about rhetoric. It’s about persuading the public to hew to and support your plan for individual human flourishing and vision of the common good of the nation. The Left’s “megaphone”—it’s stranglehold on cultural “soft power”—is loud, and it makes it very difficult for the Right to be heard. Difficult, but not impossible, as President Trump’s 2016 election victory proved. Regardless, we have to do better because we’re living in Clown World; if left unchecked, it will only get worse.

Consider an example: A mere five years ago, transgenderism was a fringe phenomenon. Back then, many Americans would have scoffed at the idea that a biological male could be a woman simply because he declared himself to be one, and vice versa. They would have been right to scoff. Because it’s patently absurd.

And yet, just three years ago, Caitlyn Jenner catapulted transgenderism into the public’s consciousness, where it has remained ever since. What to make of transgenderism was once an open question; perhaps even a sensible debate could have been had about it. But in a few short months, we went from groping for the beginnings of a discussion on the topic to fighting a desperate rearguard action: defending the validity of sex-segregated bathrooms and locker rooms (so that girls aren’t exposed to male genitalia or violated in other ways) and impotently lamenting that a trans man broke a female UFC fighter’s skull during a fight (there’s more where that came from at the rate we’re going, sadly).

Men run faster, jump higher, hit harder, and physically outperform women as a general rule; they have now invaded female-only athletics, and we’re expected to cheer it. We debate the people pushing this delusion. We accept them as conversation partners who are engaged in a good-faith pursuit of truth. That’s the power of the megaphone. It forces us to take nonsense seriously. It’s the, “When did you stop beating your wife?” question on a mass scale, a series of traps—heads the Left wins, tails we lose.

It doesn’t get more ridiculous than that. Until the Right wises up, and starts challenging this rigged game, the Left will keep control of the megaphone. And we’ll deserve it.

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Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Post • Pro-Life • The Left

‘Abortion’: Sloppy Thinking on Filicide in the Womb

In the wake of the Alabama state legislature’s decision to pass what its opponents call an “extreme” or “virtual abortion ban,” the topic of “abortion” is once more in the public eye—where it belongs.

This time, though, the self-proclaimed enemies of this hideous practice would do their cause a good turn by being more studious about the terms in which they cast their position.

And the first term that they must revisit, the most fundamental of them all, is that of abortion itself.

“Abortion” is a term of political convenience for those who value the practice to which the term is applied. “Abortion” is an essentially value-neutral word, one that is more at home within the realm of scientific or medical discourse than within the realm of morality.

Thus, the word by design conceals from view the nature of the act to which it is assigned. “Abortion” makes it sound as impersonal as any other procedure that involves the removal of, say, a tumor, a skin tag, or a rotten tooth.

The truth of the matter, however, is that there has never been a single “abortion” in this country. Rather, there have been tens of millions of instances of mothers killing their children while the latter were still in their wombs.

Whether they realize it or not, when “pro-lifers” refer to this act of killing to which they claim to object as an “abortion,” they minimize its moral significance and reinforce their opponents’ claim that the entity being “aborted” is somehow less human, if it’s human at all, than other members of the human species who are killed.

There are still other terms that the opponents of this ghastly act must jettison. Take pro-life,” for example—a term that is not only vapid, but which obscures the evil to which the “pro-lifer” purportedly objects behind the abstraction of “life,” a term encompassing all species of living organisms.

Remarkably, another term of their enemies that at least some opponents of killing in the womb continue to use is that of “fetus.” That the latter is meant to dehumanize the human whose life is ended before it is born can be gotten readily enough by the fact that no one who welcomes the impending birth of a child ever refers to that child as a “fetus.” When my wife and I found out that she had conceived our son, neither we nor anyone we knew—including her doctors—ever referred to the “fetus” growing within her.

No, we all excitedly anticipated the arrival of the baby.

And our experience is the experience of every parent who does not seek an end to the life of the child who has not yet been born.

But another term that misleads is that of the unborn.” Courtesy of a reader (who is a physician, if I’m not mistaken), it was drawn to my attention that, strictly speaking, the human being in its mother’s womb is not “unborn,” but, rather, pre-born. “Unborn” sounds too much like non-born, or non-being, nothingness. When something is “undone,” for example, it essentially ceases to be.

It is a pre-born child or baby whose life is ended by way of an “abortion.”

Opponents of the killing of the pre-born child in the womb collude with their adversaries in framing the issue in terms of one individual’s “right to life” versus another individual’s right to choose.”  To cast this issue in the terms of liberal individualism is, once again, to veil behind abstractions the concrete reality, a reality that is far more ominous and hideous than a matter of an abuse of “rights.”

The reality is that the act that some of us reject and that we misleadingly refer to as “abortion” is filicide, more specifically, maternal filicide.

When the U.S. Supreme Court decided the Constitution grants women the right to pursue an “abortion,” it announced to the world and to future generations that Americans endorse the right of mothers to kill their children. More specifically, Americans, the world now knows since Roe v. Wade was decided 46 years ago, celebrate as a sacred, constitutional prerogative the “freedom” of some 50 million mothers to kill their children.

This is what “abortion” entails. This is what renders it evil. And this is what makes it the scourge of all national scourges, the most disgraceful of all disgraces.

There remain far too many conservatives, especially Republican politicians and some of their media apologists, who repeatedly say that while they oppose “abortion,” they are willing to grant it in the cases of “rape, incest, and when the mother’s life is at stake.” Once, however, this talking point is translated in terms that are meant not to advance partisan political interests but, rather, to reflect reality, it shouldn’t be difficult to see that it is as logically as it is morally impoverished.

Translation: We “pro-lifers” oppose filicide, the killing by mothers of their children in their wombs, but this otherwise immoral act is morally permissible when these innocent children, uniquely dependent at this stage of human development upon their mothers, threaten their mothers’ physical well-being and/or have fathers who are rapists or relatives of their mothers.

“Pro-lifers” undermine their position when they assign moral relevance to the circumstances in which the conception of a child occurs. If “abortion” is wrong, as its opponents claim, it is wrong because an innocent child is put to death. The circumstances in which that child came into being are as morally irrelevant to the worth of that child as are the circumstances in which any child comes into being morally irrelevant to their worth as human beings.

Suffice to say, given the scandalously sloppy thinking on the part of those who purport to be opposed to filicide in the womb, it is no wonder that “abortion” has managed to become as endemic as it is.

Photo Credit: Michael Thomas/Getty Images

America • Cultural Marxism • Hollywood • Post • Pro-Life • The Culture • the family

Let’s See If Netflix and Disney Really Mean It

Pity the poor actors and production companies that have discovered a need in conscience not to film in Georgia because of its new abortion restrictions. Presumably they won’t film in any state that restricts abortion—so not just Georgia, which has a burgeoning film industry because of tax incentives—but also Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Ohio, and Missouri, which have all recently passed “heartbeat laws.” And –no!—not Louisiana! No more filming in the French Quarter or on the bayou? This is sacrifice indeed.

Netflix voluntarily complies with Saudi and Iranian censorship, and accepts content filmed in Egypt, which bans abortion entirely. Disney has a theme park in China in spite of its gulag and other blatant human rights violations. So one wonders at this newfound studio squeamishness at complying with local laws. It seems only to be in America, against American citizens, that the Silicon Curtain descends to bully the local populace about what it may say and think, who it may read, and which laws it may enact. Perhaps it is merely democratic enactment by free people that is the objection?

No matter. The rights of conscience must be respected, so I look forward to the brave Hollywood boycott of the Cannes film festival next year (too late for 2019), since France bans abortion after 10 weeks.

And I expect there will be no more films set in the major European capitals, or on the Riviera, or in the Alps, or exotic Morocco, or most of South America, or anywhere in the Middle East or Africa. Most of the world restricts abortion after the first trimester. Even Sweden, with one of Europe’s most liberal abortion laws, bans abortion after 18 weeks.

If you will only film in places where abortion on demand for any reason for all nine months is permitted, you’re restricting the industry largely to the anglosphere: Canada, Great Britain, New Zealand, and certain parts of the United States and Australia. (What is this thing Anglo countries have for abortion do you suppose?) Sorry, actors of color who want more great parts and more diverse stories told: “on location” from now on means mostly New York, Los Angeles, London, Toronto, and  Sydney. And Beijing, of course—a welcome exception to the coming studio boycott of practically the whole non-Anglo world.

P.S. Abortion is legal only in the first trimester in Switzerland. Should anyone be going to Davos?

Photo credit:  Mario Tama/Getty Images

America • Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Post • Republicans

President Trump Can Win on Race

The good news for President Trump is that most Americans agree with Republicans about race: that we are all created equal and deserve equal treatment and opportunity. The problem is that far too many Americans believe the lie that Republicans, instead of adhering to these basic truths, are racist. President Trump has the courage to express our views on race. We can win on this issue.

Democrats don’t want all citizens to be treated equally. Democrats want people treated differently and according to their skin color. They want group justice. They call it social justice because it sounds better. In their idea of a just America, whites, Asians, and Jews must give up opportunities as a group, and blacks and other people of color must be privileged with extra opportunities and reparations.

By their definition, Democrats claim half the country is racist. Understand this: the Democratic Party’s idea of racism is defined by group identity, not by an individual’s behavior or beliefs. You’re not biased? Doesn’t matter. Utterly reject discrimination? Doesn’t matter. White? You’re racist.

Democrats believe being colorblind is itself racist. Republicans, who believe laws should be colorblind, are by definition racist.

What Democrats think is justice, Republicans think is fascist.

The Democrats’ definition of racism is the opposite of Biblical teachings and Western jurisprudence, which is based on the concept of equality before the law, without fear or favor whether someone is rich or poor, black or white, gay or straight, male or female. “You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor” (Leviticus 19:15).

Republican justice is blindfolded. The Democrat scales of justice are weighted by group identity. Social justice is a Marxist, not an American, idea. Its outcome is a race-based society.

Because Republicans are so scared to talk about race, Democrats dominate public discourse. They constantly scream and rant that Republicans are racist. Since the success of President Trump, the volume has gone up, the lies have multiplied, and the label upped to white supremacist.

Republicans naively call this political tactic “Trump Derangement Syndrome.” It is not a syndrome, it is a strategy. Screaming “racist” works. It fosters loyalty among black voters and keeps well-meaning white people in line, because they believe the lie or are too afraid to counter it. Black and educated white Democrats will never give Republicans a chance as long as the racist label sticks.

Republicans need to express and stand up for their own views on race directly and forcefully. A sizable percentage of Democrats, black and white, even Millennials, would realize to their shock that they agree with Republicans on race.

To the Democratic Party and their pundits in the corporate left-wing press, bias and discrimination are so 20th century. The Democrats have moved on. The new Democrat idea of racism is totally different from what most Americans think when they hear it condemned. It is proven not by discrimination, but by differences in success in life. The progressive term is “disparate outcomes,” which are taken as proof of racism. The solution is racial quotas, not just on campus, but as zoning requirements for towns, in employment—in every institution touched by civil rights laws meant to combat  true discrimination.

Democrats call differences in prosperity and success “inequality” as if different levels of hard work, ambition, and achievement are a civil rights issue. They want white individuals’ success attacked as racism by federal programs and taxes.

Unknown to most Democrats, in the mid-1980s, social scientists dropped what they call the “old-fashioned” civil rights idea of racism as “prejudice, discrimination, stereotyping, or condescension” and substituted what is called the “Modern Racism Scale.” The media and politicians soon followed. The new proof of a racist attitude is to say anyone who works hard can make it in America. Believing in the American Dream is the definition of racism.

Leftist social scientists measure racism by agreement with this sentence: “blacks can achieve as much as anyone.” To social justice warriors, if you accurately and honestly say, “I have no bias against blacks,” that means you are racist.

In contrast, discrimination on behalf of minorities is required by Democrats. We see the rise to power of diversity officers in every corporation and campus in America. They work to bring the full force of the federal government behind requirements for de facto racial quotas in every aspect of life the federal government can reach.

Democrats don’t care if privileging blacks (or women) with quotas for jobs and school is terribly unfair to individual white or Asian candidates who are shut out by the color of their skin. Individuals have no rights to fair treatment. Disagree and you will be labeled racist and personally destroyed.

Democrats see all the unhappy aspects of many black people’s lives—dropping out of high school, having children without getting married, working in low paying jobs or not working at all—as proof of white oppression. At the same time, they argue that if you want blacks to join the American middle class, that is racist oppression, because you want them to “act white.” Barack Obama’s popular church in Chicago required congregants to sign a pledge against “the pursuit of middle-classness.”

Democrats’ race-based policies create a power elite of favored blacks, but are disastrous for the black community as a whole, especially black college students.

The Republican colorblind views on race are in line with the finest values of the civil rights era, the great heritage of our founding fathers, and Biblical teachings on equality and the brotherhood of man. Republican values on race would help black Americans flourish and improve their lives. We would all work together towards a harmonious and fair America, instead of setting each group against the other, as Democrats do.

Justice for one is justice for all. Justice for one group at the expense of another is justice for nobody.

If liberal and older Democrats really understood the way Democrats have changed the meaning of “racism” they would no longer believe Democrat assertions that all Republicans are racist. They would realize that they side more with Republicans on equality, fairness, and race.

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America • Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Defense of the West • Post • The Constitution • The Culture • The Left

The Constitution Does Not Protect Freedom of Speech

Around the inner rotunda of the Rhode Island state capitol stands this quotation from Tacitus: Rara temporum felicitas ubi sentire quae velis et quae sentias dicere licet. “Rare happiness of the times,” said the sardonic republican, “when it is permitted to think what you will and speak what you think.” Rare indeed.

Let us concede for the sake of argument that freedom of political speech in the broadest sense is a good thing, speech that bears not only upon whom we should elect to public office and what laws they should pass, but upon what is good and bad, true and false, wise and foolish.

Americans believe that that freedom is secured by constitutional provisions. They are wrong. Such freedom, such latitude for seeking the truth and securing the common good, must live within the hearts, the minds, and the cultural habits of a people. Otherwise it is dead, even while the constitutional provisions continue, like soulless automata, or the living dead.

The provisions march on, blindly and aimlessly, granting liberty to pornographers on principle, a mistaken principle as I believe, while ordinary people are ever more forbidden to think what they will and speak what they think, even about such ordinary things as what a marriage is, or what a man or a woman is and what they are for.

The phenomenon is, strangely enough, nowhere more evident than when the word “community” is invoked, like a talisman; and the undead shakes the dirt from his grave.

Where are true communities to be found? A communitas implies a place and identifiable members, sharing duties and benefits in common: think of a commons, or a town hall, or a public ball field. The community chest gathers donations from everyone in town, to disburse them to individual charities or to the poor according to their needs and the capacity of the whole. A Greek polis is a community, but a community need not be “political” in that specific sense. Your local parish is a community, or it should be. People who come together to build and operate a school form a community. An old-fashioned guild of shoemakers, ensuring quality of work, honoring their patron on Saint Crispin’s Day, and providing for their widows and orphans, form a community.

Such communities may require the awkwardly put “community standards” from their members, and these may be helpful or harmful, sensible or merely self-righteous and snobbish, as the case may be, and if you don’t like East Podunk, whose zoning laws will not permit bright orange houses, you may move to West Podunk, land of the garish. But in the absence of a real community, to call upon “community standards” is to establish an excuse for censoriousness, intolerance, and mendacity.

When I was a professor at Providence College, we used to receive messages from the administration, containing the words “Providence College community.” Mostly I ignored the phrase, as one of those pleasant fictions that the bureaucratic among us have enjoyed since the days of Orwell. The word “community” added nothing to the meaning. It was a smiley face in the margins, suggesting, “Here you are to have a feeling,” a tenth of a degree warmer than usual. For there were 4,000 students, transient of course, 250 professors, hundreds of staff members, at least 100 adjuncts, also transient, and nobody could know even a small percentage of all those people, by face or by reputation or by family.

Even so, you might attain some measure of community if you all shared a fundamental belief in God, regardless if you worshiped together; or if you all believed that the point of education was to discover the truth, regardless of what you thought the truth to be. But the school, like most others, was stocked with atheists and agnostics, some professed, some so by the sheer acedia of a life devoted to avarice, prestige, and hedonism. And the very idea that there is a truth to discover outside of the province of the slide-rule and the microscope was not only controversial but condemned by many as downright oppressive and wicked.

So there was no community. Why appeal to it, then, other than as a psychological hiccup? To shut down the expression of beliefs that those in power do not like. Hence it was that a professor of politics, while students nodded like puppets, delivered herself of the remarkable opinion that although the object of her public loathing (me) enjoyed academic freedom, that freedom must be used “responsibly,” according to community standards. The inversion was complete. Someone who does not believe in objective moral truth, and who therefore in moral debates cannot use her academic freedom “responsibly,” condemns someone else who does believe in objective moral truth, who seeks it, who declares what he believes he has seen, and who therefore can have cause to speak of what is responsibly or irresponsibly done.

Recently, four people, one of them an enfant terrible of conservative discourse, Milo Yiannopoulos, were banned from the public space provided by the Piranha Brothers, controllers of Facebook, for violating the unwritten law. Again, “community standards” were invoked. But there is no community. Facebook has become a gigantic public utility, like the telephone companies. There is no Facebook jamboree. Facebook has no fish-fry and clam bake. Facebook does not gather funds from little faces everywhere to succor the faceless. There are many thousands of what we might call notional Facebook commons, whereby people who are far-flung in geography write to one another about the topics of the times. These notional communities have little or nothing to do with one another, and nothing at all to do with Facebook, no more than conference calls have to do with Skype.

What can the Piranha Brothers possibly mean to convey, then, when they nailed Yiannapoulos’ head to the floor? It can have nothing to do with a “community.” It has to do instead with a desire that certain kinds of notional communities should be constrained or should not exist at all.

Hence the Piranha Brothers will permit you to put your ignorance of religion and your contempt for religious people on full display, all day long and every day of the week; the spike will never penetrate your temple. But they will not permit you to say, bluntly, that a man who believes he is a woman is in the grip of a delusion. If someone complains, out you go, and out goes your “community” or your portion thereof.

We must expect more of this in the future: people whose intolerance and censoriousness rises in proportion as their faith fades and their longing for the truth grows dull. We will hear the word “community” every day, and never see the real and living thing. We will have the Constitution, neither alive nor dead, but undead, and people who are afraid to let slip the wrong truth at work will continue to believe that they live in a free nation.

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Center for American Greatness • Cultural Marxism • Post • The Culture • The Left

Unteachable Moments

A great deal of the Left’s grip on the culture is rooted in its collective ability to manipulate information in the form of official narratives in the news, history, or statistics. The contemporary political goal comes first, and the facts are backfilled, manipulated, and emphasized or deemphasized accordingly. In other words, much of the Left’s stock in trade is a form of propaganda.

Thus, whenever some plausible (which is really only to say, “marketable”) connection may be made, we hear much about white males and their “toxic” masculinity, even as their many achievements are neglected. Following the cues of popular culture, one would think this group is disproportionately criminal; just look at the cast of villains on “Law and Order,” the obsession with otherwise ordinary white male serial killers, and the umpteenth PBS special on Emmett Till.

We can see this curation of what is deemed relevant from an unfortunate, recent school shooting that occurred at Colorado’s STEM school. Far from this being a paroxysm of right wing-hatred, Christian militancy, or an incel uprising, the killers were a gay male and a transgender “female,” who masqueraded as a male at the tender age of 16. Apparently they were angry at the world—and particularly hostile to Christians—even though the star is rising for their identity groups.

The male shooter left a statement on social media: “You know what I hate? All these Christians who hate gays.” While these killers come from now-elevated social backgrounds—particularly the faddish transgenderism—these identities often are not freestanding choices, but symptoms of a broader disturbance of identity.

Because these killers were not “white racists” or “anti-bully” avengers, but rather two exemplars of the Left’s identity aristocracy, the story has not occasioned nearly as much discussion and soul searching as that of the Columbine killers, the California car spree killer, or the Parkland school shooter. These incidents became stories about “bullying,” “misogyny,” and “the need for gun control” respectively, amplified by incessant national media coverage.

Other incidents, such as the anti-white killings by Omar Thornton or the anti-Christian killings at the STEM school last week tend to fall into the memory hole, and key facts are often concealed in national reporting.

This is not random. This type of information casts doubt upon the leftist worldview and reinforces a more conservative one. Violent street crime is similarly little noticed or explored—and the fact of disproportionate minority involvement in such crimes is suppressed—for the same reasons. Small choices in language, including the nihilistic expression “robbery gone wrong,” allow the media to conceal the hatred and cruelty often present in ubiquitous street violence. Much of this culminates in a real “war on noticing things,” in the words of comedian Patton Oswalt.

The propaganda aimed at promoting transgenderism as a fashionable cause akin to the gay rights crusade of a decade ago depends, in part, upon widespread ignorance of the condition of those involved. A great many people who call themselves transgender actually have another, significant mental health disorder. One study noted that the “frequency of personality disorders was 81.4 percent. The most frequent personality disorder was narcissistic personality disorder (57.1 percent).” Other studies have found even higher rates of personality disorders among this population. Similarly, many of these individuals have high rates of drug abuse and suicidal ideation.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the mutilating surgery involved most often does not solve the true problem—a significant disturbance in the psyche—and there are often post-surgical regrets, which cannot be repaired after the irreversible physical changes and artificial hormonal load required for such a procedure.

Again, this should not be surprising. The source of human happiness is some correspondence between objective reality and one’s view of reality. Humility and gratitude are two sides of the same coin, involving a proper and proportional sense of oneself and the world around him. Psychological adjustment means adapting one’s sense of identity to one’s objective circumstances and finding some healthy means of coping and thriving.

Desiring to be another sex suggests a massive problem with one’s appraisal of reality, and mere surgery cannot repair whatever makes one desire to be something wholly different from what one already is.

One wonders if a movie like “Silence of the Lambs,” which explored this phenomenon, could ever be made today. Before transgenderism became fashionable, we knew that a great many serial killers—including the BTK killer and Canadian Colonel David Williams—had a deep desire for consuming and in a sense becoming their victims, even dressing in their female victim’s clothing. Cross-dressing and more extreme variations on that theme used to be widely seen as disturbing behavior, not merely an odd preference. That such rejections of less pressing social demands leads to gross deviations from universal rules condemning sadistic rape and murder, while not typical, is not terribly surprising.

Behaviors are connected. We are not islands unto ourselves, and part of the demands of morality is the proper treatment of others, in addition to conformity to other rules and social expectations, including those involving self-care and self-discipline. When one deviates from these things in matters related to the self, and desires in some sense to obliterate and replace oneself, a desire to obliterate the broader society which naturally limits the self and its appetites is but a short logical step away for some deeply disturbed people.

The degeneracy and freakish behaviors justified and promoted endlessly in the news, movies, and higher education are not mere anomalies or side issues for the Left. The Left is defined by its hostility to limits of all kinds, including the limits of traditional religion and traditional morality. Just as the Left has made a cult of transgenderism, it similarly has embraced and promoted violence to families, to the unborn, to children, to the elderly, to property, to nations, and to all that is good, decent, and beautiful.

The STEM School shooters announced their intention to “f**k society.” Their shooting undoubtedly made this intention plain. But conservatives used to realize that their disordered transgendered fetish is another way of expressing the same sentiment.

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Cultural Marxism • Democrats • Economy • Energy • Environment • Post • The Left

A New Way to Deal With Green Oligarchs

As it stands today, more than half of the Democratic candidates for president support the Green New Deal, a “deeply ambitious” plan that backers say would bring America to “net-zero” carbon pollution by the middle of the century.

While the Green New Deal is framed as a selfless effort to save the planet, it is really just another political hustle. One need look no further than at the monied interests behind the bill to see that Democratic donors get the goldmine and the rest of the country gets the shaft.

The billionaire class happens to support the idea because it also happens to speculate in the market for renewable energy.

Take Tom Steyer, a left-wing billionaire who poured nearly $100 million into the Democratic campaigns of 2016. As the founder of Farallon Capital and a former coal investor, Steyer is now looking to protect his investments in clean energy—even as he crows about saving the planet and mobilizing the country’s resources to stop climate change.

When speaking to reporters last month, Steyer made it clear that “there’s no way we’d support somebody who wasn’t absolutely crystal clear and credible on climate. If they’re not a climate warrior, we’re not for them. Period. Period, the end.”

And like clockwork, just as Washington Governor Jay Inslee made climate change the single issue of his fledgling campaign, Steyer pounced to provide immediate financial support from his SuperPAC.

The list of billionaires does not end with Steyer. Nathaniel Simons, founder of the Meritage investment group who is heavily invested in “net-zero” real estate, is also a top donor to environmental causes promoted by the Democratic Party.

But affirming before God and man the benefits of green energy are not just a run-of-the-mill sacrament to our country’s billionaires. For some members of the professional class, it is also a highly lucrative jobs program.

Green energy legislation is a prime case of corporate cronyism—where trillions of dollars in taxpayer money will be moved to the tech sector, the wind and solar industry, and other well-connected lobbies for the purpose of producing clean energy tools and zero-carbon technologies.

Wherever green energy legislation is passed, the activists, media tycoons, researchers, and academics working in the green-industrial complex are sure to escape unemployment.

And just as the Green New Deal would benefit much of the professional class, the impact of the bill on America’s middle class will be equally devastating. The plan as envisioned by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and her democratic-socialist friends would affect the way normal Americans produce energy, farm land, raise cattle, construct homes, drive automobiles, and manufacture products—things city-dwelling liberals will likely never do in their lives.

According to a Heritage Foundation forecast, the Green New Deal would:

  • Decrease employment by 1.4 million jobs
  • Bring on a total income loss of more than $40,000 for a family of four
  • Increase the average electricity bill by 12-14 percent

In other words, green energy harms working-class families. They are the ones who spend a much higher percentage of their household income on energy for their homes and would be unable to afford green energy vehicles.

If you want to see how green energy policies would impact the working- and middle classes of America, look no further than Australia. In the Land Down Under, you see a development in their Labor Party that is similar to the affliction now consuming America’s party of limousine liberals.

“The Labor Party and its putative green allies have been transformed into an instrument of the bureaucracy and ‘progressive’ gentry, well-positioned to flourish in a hyper-regulated state,” wrote Joel Kotkin at City Journal.

As for Australia’s middle class, Kotkin notes, the number of households “earning between three-quarters and double the average income—has been dropping by more than a percentage point per decade since the 1980s.”

Australian elites, meanwhile, have little stake in the domestic forms of production which center on Australia’s natural resources. They continue to profit “from the flow of natural resources to East Asia, through tax policies or financing deals, or by pushing climate-change mitigation programs . . .”

Could not the same be said of the professional classes of America and the new political tensions  with the country’s “deplorables” working in the coal industry and in fossil fuels?

What Kotkin hints at, but does not fully develop in this piece, is how this new party divide goes far beyond economics—a commitment to green energy penetrates the social fabric of a country by making family life more difficult.

All across America, even in places like New York City, the Green New Deal would increase land use regulation and drives up the costs of housing. In some cities, especially high-cost places like New York and San Francisco, small families making less than $100,000 a year would be priced out completely.

The professional classes, meanwhile, will continue to afford a traditional conception of the American dream, while embracing policies that unwind it for the less fortunate. Having a family, a four-bedroom home, and a couple of cars would be a luxury available only to a privileged few. Everyone else, lawmakers suggest, should get used to multi-family homes and use public transportation.

For anyone who does not have a stake in building this green utopia, there is a remedy: we must continue to drive the class wedge in American politics between labor and the elites, while expanding the issue to encompass middle-class interests, which include access to things considered (until recently anyway) mainstays of American middle class life.

Just as those who traditionally vote for the Labor Party in Australia have found no place in the Labor/Green alliance, the coalition of GOP voters that continues to emerge in the United States has no stake in a green energy future. Preserving the portfolios of liberal and leftist billionaires is unlikely to be a winning issue in our democratic republic.

The good news is that the appeal to working-class voters for Republicans may not stop with the white working class. Minority groups, too, may soon ask themselves how they benefit from green energy policies.

Last year, for instance, when former U.S. Representative Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) lost to Green New Deal champion Ocasio-Cortez, many commentators saw his defeat as a sign that a new, “diverse,” wave of voters, enthusiastic for green energy, were ready to take the country by storm.

What few mention, however, is that Crowley beat Cortez among African American voters at a rate of more than two-to-one. Further, contrary to the identity-politics narrative, an Irish guy named Joe managed to split the Hispanic vote with Ocasio-Cortez almost right down the middle.

Green energy legislation, and the urban activists who represent it, are really nothing more than a wave of Millennials moving in to gentrify the district. That is, the “AOC vote” is mostly childless, white, university-educated liberals, whose tony parents will pay their energy bills no matter how high the costs may soar.

Demonstrating how liberal Democrats have become a class-conscious party, with the Green New Deal as their instrument, may be the best way to siphon off the traditional Democratic base against the professional class. We may soon have a healthy majority, united in scorn against the new green oligarchs.

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