Trapped in the Closet

Trapped in the Closet, by Charles Norman.

There is now an atmosphere of intimidation and self-censorship that is forcing a number of people, not just right-wingers, into a kind of ideological closet. They don’t feel they can speak their mind or step out from these grim left-wing orthodoxies and the lobby groups that see to it that no “dark truths” are ever spoken. …

Of course, it’s not coincidental that liberal democracy should now resemble communist societies. In one of the best books I’ve read in recent memory, worth quoting at length, Ryszard Legutko’s The Demon in Democracy, the Polish author compares the type of censorship he remembers from communism to the kind that passes in liberal democracies today:

The characteristic feature of both societies — communist and liberal democratic — was that a lot of things simply could not be discussed because they were unquestionably bad or unquestionably good. Discussing them was tantamount to casting doubts on something whose value had been unequivocally determined.

Under communism, one could not discuss the merits of idealism because by definition it did not have any, or the leading role of the Party because such a role was indubitable, or the good sides of Marxist revisionism because the revisionism had only bad sides, or the controversies over planned economy because there was nothing uncontroversial in it, and many other things that the doctrine declared clearly right or clearly wrong.

In a liberal democracy, the degree of freedom is much larger, but even so it seems to be shrinking at a frightening speed. Some concepts are so value-loaded that they permit no discussion, only unconditional praise or equally unconditional condemnation: tolerance, democracy, homophobia, dialogue, hate speech, sexism, pluralism. They therefore serve either as a stick to beat those who are not docile enough, or the ultimate form of laudation. For the majority of people there is no other way but to follow the orthodoxy and to watch one’s language. Because the power of ideology increases, one should be more and more careful about the language one uses. The language discipline is the first test for loyalty to the orthodoxy just as the neglect of this discipline is the beginning of all evil.

You can see an example of this with the buzzword “diversity.” What is even the antithesis of diversity? Is it uniformity? Homogeneity? We don’t usually hear of it because there is no discussion or nuance, just “diversity = good” with no sense of proportion, trade-offs, diminishing returns, or anything else that you might need in an adult conversation about anything. We’re in the world of “four legs good, two legs bad.”

PC propaganda currently reigns in the West, and is getting worse. But its dominance is brittle, because most don’t really believe it.

It should be noted that it was Donald Trump’s first major political achievement to get Americans to speak their minds again. That war has obviously not been won, but he helped win battles. ….

More good news: Courage is contagious.