Sunday, August 16, 2015

What They Do

     One of my blessings/curses is an unusually retentive memory. It often reacts to some contemporary phenomenon by bombarding me with related incidents and ideas from many years ago...and typically, just when I was trying to set to work on something completely different.

     This piece from yesterday caused my memory to thrust this recollection at me:

     All the parties agree to the facts of the incident at Northwestern University on the night of April 13, 1985. Adolfo Calero, a leader of the contras, was scheduled to speak at Harris Hall. Outside and inside the building, demonstrators were shouting and chanting their protests at Calero's very presence on campus.

     About 10 minutes before Calero was to speak, Barbara Foley, an assistant professor of English and American culture, walked up to the microphone on the stage and said: "This monster that they're bringing here tonight is not a human being. . . . He had no respect for the free speech, much less the right to live, of the people that he slaughtered . . . with the backing of the CIA. He has no right to speak tonight, and we are not going to let him speak. He should feel lucky to get out of here alive."

     When Calero arrived, someone -- not Foley -- threw red paint on him, and the roars of rage directed at him were so overpowering that he was unable to give his talk.

     That is what Leftists do. They will move heaven and earth to prevent any viewpoint contrary to theirs from being heard. It’s far easier than actually refuting that disliked viewpoint...easier, because the disliked viewpoint is almost always founded on facts and reason, rather than Leftist antipathy for freedom, capitalism, and the like.

     Roosh Valizadeh’s experiences in Canada are on all fours, as the lawyers would say, with the Foley outrage. There have been many comparable efforts by Leftists to silence spokesmen of the Right, particularly when the audience is predominantly young persons. That Foley’s deeds happened thirty years ago speaks to the lineage of this fascist tactic.

     But soft! What new outrage through Breitbart’s window breaks?

     This afternoon multiple bomb threats were called in to a Society of Professional Journalists debate about GamerGate. I’ve been passed the remarks my fellow panellist, AEI scholar and feminist academic Christina Hoff Sommers, was planning to make.
     A video game journalist from Vancouver recently took to Twitter to draw attention to a Tweet sent by a gamer: The gamer had tweeted: “I fucking swear—they get rid of Huge Boobs, I’m gone.” For this journalist those 11 words captured the essence of the gamer crusade. The hypermasculine dudebro attitude— the crude objectification of women. It’s all there. Or so it seemed to him. As he put it: “#Gamergate summarized in one impossibly perfect tweet.”

     But as is often the case with media accounts of GamerGate the facts don’t really fit the narrative. First of all, the author was not talking about video games, but rather efforts to censor images of buxom ladies on Reddit. But more importantly—the author of the tweet is a young woman named Alison. Alison is a lesbian gamer who apparently enjoys gazing at images of busty women. For me, it is the game journalist’s tweet, not Allison’s, that is emblematic. It is an impossibly perfect illustration of a serious flaw in contemporary journalism: the narrative matters more than truth. The Rolling Stone’s apocryphal story about a gang rape at UVA is frequently cited as the classic example of narrative over-reach. But the press literature on GamerGate is strikingly similar.

     Please read the whole thing. Apart from characterizing herself as a “feminist,” which she really ought to know is a bad idea in this day, Professor Sommers is dead on target. She captures perfectly the complete amorality of the Left in pursuit of its agenda. As demonstrated by the bomb threats used to prevent her from being heard, Leftists will do anything to advance their various causes. They’re particularly determined to own all media of communication, from the Internet down to the humblest mimeographed leaflet.

     That the subject of Professor Sommers’s remarks is the “GamerGate” pseudo-controversy only sharpens her blade. Video gaming is a realm of pure entertainment...but the Left cannot abide any venue in which free people can freely express themselves, or enjoy themselves according to their personal tastes. Inasmuch as video games tend to depict female characters as possessing highly attractive figures – often scantily clad, at that – the Left’s “feminist” wing is determined to shut it down, or, if possible, to remake it in a fashion acceptable to the Left. Can’t leave a bastion of masculinist sexism and oppression open to entertain people; they might get unapproved ideas.

     The Left’s major problem in our time is the explosion of new channels through which people can freely express themselves and argue for their points of view. They can’t keep up. They tried to “colonize” the World Wide Web and failed miserably; their presence there is merely representative. Talk radio has defied them for several decades. Ease of travel has made it possible for persons of like interests to gather and talk freely with little expense or preparation. Electronic publication has created an escape route from the political correctness enforced by conventional publishing houses for fiction that expresses any and every thesis under the Sun...or, as is the case with science fiction, under some other sun.

     The Left means to have its way, and woe betide anyone who stands against it. Leftists’ recourse when they’re out-argued is always the same: intimidation if possible, violence if not.

     The fascists cannot argue, so they kill. – Victor Marguerite

     That is what they do.

1 comment:

Reg T said...

SEIU would be another cogent example.