The Dangerous Stalinism of the “Woke” Hard-Left

The Dangerous Stalinism of the “Woke” Hard-Left, by Alan Dershowtiz, a Harvard law professor and lifelong Democrat who has offended leftist activists by occasionally preferring the truth over their fantasies.

We often forget that the concept of “political correctness” originated in the Stalinist Soviet Union, where Truth — political, artistic, religious — was determined by the central committee of the Communist Party and any deviation was regarded as unacceptable. To be sure, there is a vast difference between how Stalin treated political incorrectness and how the “woke” generation treats it.

Stalin murdered those who deviated from his Truth, while “wokers” generally shun and discredit, though there has been occasional violence from elements of the hard-left toward those who deviate from their Truth. But both produce a similar result: less dissent, less reliance on the marketplace of ideas and more self-censorship.

For many “wokers,” freedom of speech is nothing more than a weapon of the privileged used to subjugate the unprivileged. It a bourgeois concept that emanates from an anachronistic white, male constitution that is irrelevant to the contemporary world. Free speech for me — the underprivileged — but not for thee — the privileged. That is what the “wokers” want. Affirmative action for speech!

The other dangerous similarity between the Stalinists and the “wokers” is that both disdain due process for those they deem guilty of political incorrectness or other crimes and sins. They reject any presumption of innocence or requirement that the accuser bear the burden of proof. These bourgeois concepts are based on the recognition of human fallibility and uncertainty. For Stalinist and “wokers,” there is no uncertainty or fallibility. If they believe someone is guilty, he must be. Why do we need a cumbersome process for determining guilt? …

When I was in college in the 1950s, it was the McCarthyite right that was censoring and denying due process. … Now that it is conservatives who are being censored and denied due process on campuses around the country, many on the left have remained silent. Civil liberties for me, but not for thee.

hat-tip Scott of the Pacific