Guest Post: By Karen Kataline
If you’ve had the growing feeling that things seem to be upside down — that what is good and decent in America is being regularly attacked and systematically eradicated, while the very worst impulses of human behavior are being encouraged and even elevated, you are not alone.
Some have begun to debate the question of whether or not we are in a “cold civil war” in this country. In either case, we are already in a hot culture war.
A primary aspect of that war is to manipulate a cultural shift to push behaviors that used to be private into the public sphere, while driving other behaviors that were always public into the private sphere.
It’s not just the sex lives of the famous that are of public interest, but everyone’s sex life seems to be discussed, debated and displayed. In keeping with growing expectations of faux tolerance, one is almost expected to announce one’s sexual preference and practices to strangers.
In doing so, people exhibit fewer personal boundaries in other aspects of life. They happily and regularly post the most personal details of their lives on social media, including what they had for dinner and pictures of relatives on their death beds.
The loss of cultural boundaries and decorum is celebrated provided of course, that one celebrates the correct thing. There is a women’s political movement, for example, to “free the nipple.” By going topless, we are told that women will desensitize men from seeing their breasts as sexual objects. These women also claim societal discrimination for being required to cover their breasts since men are not.
Issues involving toileting and bodily functions are openly discussed and are now even matters for public policy debate. Public defecation is tolerated in our country’s once-great cities and no one is sure exactly why.
Perhaps it has to do with another upside-down trend that portrays criminals as victims and law-abiding citizens as criminals who perpetrate imaginary crimes. This bizarre ideology is used to push new policies that “decriminalize” certain crimes. Consequently, streets and neighborhoods become more dangerous at the same time that law-abiding citizens and the rights they hold dear, such as the Second Amendment, are under constant attack.
Those who disagree with these upside-down policies are regularly met with unbridled attacks and name-calling. They are called prudish, intolerant, or worse, conservative. New words are made up and applied collectively to warn others that they had better not disagree either, lest they be called this new invective with the suffix of “ist” or “phobe.” Will it be long before we hear terms like “anti-urban camper” or “poop-a-phobe”?
As the coarsest behaviors are fully on display in public, what is being pushed into the closet in their place? Tragically, it is disagreement and independence of thought.
Regardless of how it keeps changing or contradicting itself, a socially unacceptable point of view isn’t just maligned. The person who dares to utter it stands to lose his job, his reputation and quite possibly, his livelihood. In fact, freedom of speech itself is in grave danger as in some quarters it has already been diminished to a whisper.
This cultural attempt to abolish the First Amendment without legislation is a cynical ploy to move people to demand that the government abolish it formally. How much easier it is to impose tyranny on a people when you can bring them to the point that they actually ask for it.
There are already places in America where this has happened. In the city and state of New York, you can be fined with penalties of up to $250,000 for using an unpreferred pronoun with one of your employees. The law isn’t called the abolishment of free speech of course. It’s called the “Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act and is described as the “expansion of protections for Transgender, Non-Binary, Gender Non-Conforming Workers.”
To get around that pesky little First Amendment in the Bill of Rights, the left endeavors to portray speech as violence, and portray actual violence as a mere understandable response to discrimination. The difference between speech and action is yet another of our dearly held distinctions that is being turned upside down and on its head.
The breakdown of the culture at the left’s behest brings us closer to the chaos they have so openly promulgated. They do so because it provokes the call for more government to “fix” the problems they and the government continue to create.
No matter how uncomfortable the current culture war may be, constitutionalists who love America must defy the bullying.
Instead, we must exercise our rights more boldly and passionately and more often than ever.