Political correctness has claimed innumerous victims (words, phrases and ideas) through its relentless quest for censorship. Such suppression of speech has primarily been perpetrated by the liberal lunatics of the modern era. Conjured by minority groups, fueled by the mainstream media and legislated by politicians, sensitivity culture has reached an all-time highpoint, forcing common sense and good manners to an all-time low.
However, the dire current state of the right to freedom of expression was not an unseen conundrum. It was quoted by the prescient George Orwell over seventy years ago that “the further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it”. Hence the modern left’s hatred for his renowned allegorical novella, Animal Farm – a candid satire of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution and the natural manifestation of power.
Only as recently as October the 4th was the American state of California’s First Amendment right signed away to a new piece of deviously wrought legislation which assigns up to six months jail time to those who refer to citizens using the wrong preferred pronoun.
Interestingly, in the same state, the intentional spread of HIV (a potentially fatal disease) was downgraded to only a minor misdemeanor, warranting no jail sentence. The change echoes the cries of the coal mine canary – it is a stark warning, as it bears an alarming resemblance to the censorship featured in Animal Farm.
Exercising one’s freedom of speech has been deemed more harmful by the state than deliberately infecting an individual with a lethal disease. However, in the United States’ most left-wing region, the old ways have been reversed. Dare to stand against the perverted legislation and they’ll say it’s YOU who’s wrong.
Of course, it is the general consensus that people should be called what they wish to be. That is merely good manners and positive social behavior. However, the issue does not regard which gender pronouns should be used to describe people, but rather whether or not it should be the right of citizens to determine their own speech.
Legislation designed to limit speech is indicative of nanny-statism. The right to speak and think freely is the foundation of democracy, and once infringed upon, opens a variety of nefarious pathways to authoritarian rule. It is not within the government’s power to determine the consequences of hateful and inconsiderate speech. The people themselves will react accordingly and isolate those who choose to preach hate.
A more brazen method of silencing conservative speech is the branding of anyone who opposes progressive ideals. Far too often and casually now are the buzzwords “Fascist”, “Racist”, “Islamophobia” and “Nazi” thrown around, even to the extent that they have lost much of their true meaning.
The tactic of labelling rivalry has proven vastly effective in two particular ways: the first is the avoidance of intellectual debate – a convenient escape for most young college progressives. Labelling someone a “racist” means you don’t have to debate them. You have instantly taken the moral high ground – a childish checkmate.
The second advantage of bullying and branding is the ability of the left to conflate political stances with violence. Everyone would seem to agree that violence against Nazis is acceptable. It is a prejudicial and deplorable ideology.
However, the modern left has exploited a loophole which allows anyone who deviates slightly from their viewpoint to be labelled as such. And then, of course, violence may be used against the said opponent. If you are labelled a “Nazi” for opposing open borders, don’t be surprised if irate insults and violence ensues.
The third and most pressing form of censorship begins in universities, who are guilty of fostering a vast sensitivity culture. The decay of resilience and mollycoddling of young adults in order to achieve a sense of righteousness has undoubtedly infringed upon freedom of speech. And to some, it may seem rather ironic that society’s greatest dens of iniquity now pose as the morality police.
The development of safe spaces and wayward banning of “provocative” words on college campuses in order to bolster inclusiveness has stifled free speech. Only last year did the University of Wisconsin-Madison introduce a ban on the terms; “crazy”, “that’s gay” and “politically correct”. Indeed, university campuses are huge reserves of latent liberal lunacy.
In addition, the sensitivity cesspools strongly encourage the use of euphemisms in speech. The malicious modern left seeks to achieve a sense of nobility and moral goodness through applying, and forcing others to, labels to society’s victims that are unrealistic, yet heroic and more positive. Fat people are generously portioned and unintelligent people are minimally exceptional.
Central to Orwell’s prophetic text and to the establishment of totalitarianism is the control of speech and thought. Despite a very sound forewarning, it seems that the despotic left has so far been successful in pulling the wool over the eyes of the populace.
As stated by the pigs of Animal Farm, “All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others”. The parallel with today’s fight for free speech is utterly uncanny. If progressivism is to continue further down the rabbit hole, the future of freedom may be bleak.
It is incumbent on sane people, those few who still operate on a common sense basis, to actively question the effects of speech censorship. Although the illiberal leftists may not see it yet, the banning of words is enormously detrimental to a democratic society.
The most sensible reaction to such callous contemporary communism is to participate in intellectual debate rather than incensed protests, and to speak the mind openly and freely, even when challenging the status quo. It is necessary to challenge our socialist mind engineers in reasoned and mature debate, rather than stooping to their seemingly shallow level of thought.
As Orwell once warned us, ‘free speech is meaningless unless it tolerates the speech that we hate’. We must rigorously act to avoid suffocation through overregulation. Although we may not agree with what our enemy has to say, we must defend to the death their right to say it.
Freedom of thought and speech is the very foundation of democracy. I have a general faith in society that common sense will be chosen over political correctness. Considering the political volatility of the time however, it’s never really over until the fat lady generously portioned woman sings.