Scott Rasmussen’s Number of the Day for August 2 demonstrates the fear and distrust that grip our public discourse. According to Rasmussen’s polling, 22% of voters are afraid to share their political views most of the time, with another 25% fearing to do so some of that time. That means that 47% of voters are afraid to discuss politics with their co-workers, friends, neighbors, etc.
Of those voters polled, 39% who strongly approve of President Trump believe they are discriminated against because of their political views.
The Leftist will look at these numbers and say, “Ah HA! See?! They’re afraid because they know, deep down, how backwards and evil their ideas truly are” (compared to Trump supporters, 22% of those who strongly disapprove of the president believe they are discriminated against because of it). The Boomer Con moderate will say, “There’s so much divisiveness in politics today; why can’t we just get along?”
Straw men aside, I think these numbers reflect several unfortunate realities, and suggest some troubling trends ahead. Ever since the 2016 election, when Leftists had their hopes of permanent control dashed on the rocks of an awakening of the forgotten, they doubled-down on their lunacy, throwing a collective temper tantrum that soon morphed into acts of physical violence.
Ideas that can’t be expressed aloud will fester and breed resentment and bitterness. If a large chunk of the electorate is not free to air their support for Trump, or to speak aloud their true thoughts on topics like enforced diversity, corrupt governance, media duplicity, unbridled immigration, they will increasingly come to believe the system is against them, and disdains them.
Big Tech companies, the education system, and media have addressed this situation with more, not less, censorship and indoctrination, which now has reached cartoonishly patronizing levels. The most mundane of observations are now grounds for dismissal from one’s job.
Dare to question the efficacy of importing masses of people with foreign tongues, alien religions, and unassimilable views? To the unemployment line with you! Believe that men and women have distinct, mutually-supportive roles based deeply in biology and the cosmological and theological framework of Creation itself? You’re a bigot, and any loving god would support polyamorous relationships, because “love is love.”
In the wake of social and economic pressures against speaking their minds, Americans increasingly keep their lips zipped, only whispering in hushed tones what they really believe, while watching the zeppelin crash in flames.
Unfortunately, the problem only seems to be getting worse. Leftists have been—and in increasing numbers and with greater disregard for shared humanity are—actively targeting conservative figures for attack, both physical and professional. Poor Gavin McInnes has lost more jobs than he possesses fingers and toes simply because he’s funny and effective. Likewise Milo, the spirit animal of the Dissident Right.
Since we’re not allowed to talk about views that were completely normal and mainstream as little as fifteen or twenty years ago, and because such views are labeled de facto racist, misogynistic, or bigoted, we can’t have “agree-to-disagree” discussions with one another anymore.
I’m afraid that, for a time, those days might be over. It’s why I roll my eyes when I hear someone talk about how much they like John “My Father was a Mailman” Kasich talk about “decorum” and “working across the aisle” and the like. That sentiment does not reflect reality.
Yes, we should treat everyone with dignity and respect. We should never condone violence, except in self-defense (the Proud Boys deserve major kudos, rather than persistent scorn, for taking this bold approach). Gentle persuasion can still be effective, especially when someone is open to discussion. But at a macro level, I fear battle lines are hardening; we’re foolish not to acknowledge them.