The wheels of conformity turn slowly, but finely do they grind
Mark Steyn: “celebrate diversity by enforcing conformity”
From Mark Steyn, The slow death of free speech – Must we celebrate diversity by enforcing conformity?
What all the above stories have in common, whether nominally about Israel, gay marriage, climate change, Islam, or even freedom of the press, is that one side has cheerfully swapped that apocryphal Voltaire quote about disagreeing with what you say but defending to the death your right to say it for the pithier Ring Lardner line: ‘“Shut up,” he explained.’
A generation ago, progressive opinion at least felt obliged to pay lip service to the Voltaire shtick. These days, nobody’s asking you to defend yourself to the death: a mildly supportive retweet would do. But even that’s further than most of those in the academy, the arts, the media are prepared to go. As Erin Ching, a student at 60-grand-a-year Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania, put it in her college newspaper the other day: ‘What really bothered me is the whole idea that at a liberal arts college we need to be hearing a diversity of opinion.’ Yeah, who needs that? There speaks the voice of a generation: celebrate diversity by enforcing conformity….
In the internal contradictions of multiculturalism, Islam trumps all: race, gender, secularism, everything. So, in the interests of multiculti sensitivity, pampered upper-middle-class trusty-fundy children of entitlement are pronouncing a Somali refugee beyond the pale and signing up to Islamic strictures on the role of women….
I’m opposed to the notion of official ideology — not just fascism, Communism and Baathism, but the fluffier ones, too, like ‘multiculturalism’ and ‘climate change’ and ‘marriage equality’. Because the more topics you rule out of discussion — immigration, Islam, ‘gender fluidity’ — the more you delegitimise the political system….
And then comes the final, eerie silence. Young Erin Ching at Swarthmore College has grasped the essential idea: it is not merely that, as the Big Climate enforcers say, ‘the science is settled’, but so is everything else, from abortion to gay marriage. So what’s to talk about? Universities are no longer institutions of inquiry but ‘safe spaces’ where delicate flowers of diversity of race, sex, orientation, ‘gender fluidity’ and everything else except diversity of thought have to be protected from exposure to any unsafe ideas….
As American universities, British playwrights and Australian judges once understood, the ‘safe space’ is where cultures go to die.
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Read this yesterday. Another Steyn must-read.
Yes. Brilliant. Steyn has out-done himself. Thank you for posting this, Professor.
The ‘Palestinian’ supporters are lacking any evidence in history, but are fueled by over-consumption of Islamic taqqiya propaganda.
Israel has bent over backwards, given up over 70% of the land granted to them by the international community and suffered the Arab occupation of some of the remaining 30% for decades in an effort to make peace with Islamists. Israel has also released murderous terrorist prisoners to try to make peace.
All that was futile.
History shows these Islamists have no integrity, no conscience, no mercy, no forgiveness, no capacity for peace with others or each other.
More than 22,750 murderous jihad attacks, many against their fellow Muslims, since 9/11/01, in every nation, against every religion…this is an ideology out of control, that must be dealt with unequivocally and firmly or contained and banned from interaction in the international community. They are not to be trusted or tolerated.
I recently had some actor friends performing a controversial play, and they were all making snickering, giggling little facebook posts about the Christians picketing on the sidewalk outside.
…Because, y’know, leftists NEVER picket anything.
Did anyone see the crazy pagan witch who invaded the Christmas services at Cologne Cathedral, with “I AM GOD” scrawled across her bare breasts? She hopped up on the altar and shrieked like an animal.
Anyone remember the clown-nuns from ACTUP who invaded Catholic churches and threw condoms at the priests and bishops?
Have you ever heard of Christians actually invading a theater and stopping a performance? How do you think THAT would go over?
And then there’s every college campus where the kids say, “There’s a conservative speaker showing up! Don’t let him talk!” They’re SO PROUD when they can shout a speaker down. “Yay! We didn’t let him talk! We’re so awesome!”
Only the left does that. Only the left has a “victory” when they stifle speech.
I recently watched on Netflix the whole series of “Dragnet” and “Adam-12.” Great stuff! It’s fun hearing all the hippies complain about “conformity” and “the establishment pigs.”
Fast forward 40 years and what do we have? They don’t have any problems with conformity now!