American progressives have fnally gone all the way to a totalitarian vision, demanding control over not just your behavior, but your thoughts and beliefs. This as the price of simply living without being attacked.
Last year, Erickson released a book with a title he popularized: You Will Be Made to Care: The War on Faith, Family, and Your Freedom to Believe. The book is a summation of an argument Erickson has long made. As the sexual left makes progress on its biggest projects -- same-sex marriage, transgenderism acceptance, pronoun wordplay -- they are increasingly unwilling to brook resistance.
Do you believe in traditional marriage but don’t care that gays marry? Think it’s OK teenagers take hormonal injections to swap genders but it’s not right for your kids? Don’t really give a hoot about someone who identifies as “xe”?
Well, too bad, sucker. The new dispensation doesn’t care for your waffling. Going forward, your private beliefs must align with your public stance. No exceptions made or allowed.
In short: You will be made to care
Erickson’s warning was just vindicated in a tweetstorm by Zack Ford, the flamboyant correspondent for the liberal blog ThinkProgress.
Ford, who is prone to pique-filled tantrums, is the site’s LGBTQ editor. His beat consists of sniffing out any hint of pro-heterosexual bias and lambasting it as bigoted, backwards, and tyrannical. He’s a proud atheist who doesn’t hesitate to cite science when it’s convenient. But, nota bene, he believes men menstruate and become pregnant.
In response to an essay by Bethany Mandel in The Federalist, Ford had a bigger meltdown than Sex in the City fans when Mr. Big dumped Carrie at the altar. In her piece, Mandel admitted to once being a supporter of gay marriage, but the liberals’ Torquemada-inspired campaign for transgenderism inclusion among children has changed her mind. Feeling hoodwinked, Mandel pointedly wrote, “The Left has shown the totalitarian manner in which it exacts support, or at least silence, from everyday Americans.”
Ford wasn’t having any of it, no siree. Even though Mandel was an “ally” during the fight for same-sex marriage, her opinion that grates upon the “Approved Position” on transgenderism is hereby invalid. “What [Mandel] argues that [sic] she should be ALLOWED to believe what she believes, even though those odious beliefs harm others,” Ford tweeted. “Indeed,” our hysterical scribe continued, “she is a quintessential example of claiming free speech to justify her bigotry.”
Then came the kicker: “You'll be ‘made to care,’ because intolerance harms people and is unjustified and the rest of us want the world to be a better place.”
Ford tweeted this outburst without a hint of self-awareness or irony. Yes, Mandel also cited the famed Erickson phrase in her criticism. But that a prominent liberal writer actually evoked it, giving full approval to its thought police connotations, is quite stunning.
Lenin, eat your heart out.
It just goes to show that well-meaning conservatives who were willing to concede the culture war in the hopes the Left would cease marching forward were hopelessly wrong. Waving the white flag was never going to be a suitable compromise. Liberals aren’t satisfied with open-ended sexual rights; they want the complete eradication of bourgeois convention.
Like his campus-tied intellectual colleagues, Ford is guilty of what Jonathan Haidt calls “concept creep.” In a recent interview with spiked, Haidt described how the psychological term has become the Excalibur of social justice warriors: “When a word like ‘violence’ is allowed to creep so that it includes a lot of things that are not violence, then this causes a cascade of bad effects.”
For decades, university intellectuals have stretched the terms “oppression” and “violence” like rubber bands, trying to fit them over more gentle concepts like “disagreement” and “dialogue.” The slow creep eventually worked; hundreds of thousands of students graduate college every year believing words truly constitute aggression.
Ford completely buys into the notion that a person’s private belief represents “harm” to others. Worse, in strict Manichean terms, he positions himself as someone who wants “the world to be a better place,” and Mandel, accordingly, as someone who pushes death and destruction.
The terms of war can’t be any clearer. For traditionalists, being left alone to think, worship, gather, and evangelize in private is not an option. The logic of the Left doesn’t allow for empty spaces. If there is one corner of the brain that still holds fast to outlandish beliefs like marriage was made for man and woman, your chromosomes determine your gender, race is a biological reality, or countries have the right to determine enforce their borders, then it must be reprogrammed or wiped out.
Just ask Tim Farron, the former leader of the Liberal Democrats party in Britain. A long-time supporter of same-sex marriage, once it was discovered he was a closeted Christian, the press wouldn’t relent. Journalists were dying to know if Farron thought gay sex -- sodomy, in Dantean terms -- was a sin. Farron begged for his own private conscience, but it was to no avail. He was forced to resign from his position last month, saying it was impossible to be a faithful Christian and a politician of prominence.
And so another trophy for undaunted Left. In the liberal view, a society isn’t free until the last breadcrumbs of bigotry are swept away. A sincere leftist accepts no moderation.
When they’re as candid as Zack Ford, at least faithful conservatives know where we stand: blindfolded, on the firing line.
By Taylor Lewis