History is written by the victors, even when we’re talking about a culture war over statues and monuments.
“What are you, a confederate shill?”
That was a question seriously posed to me by someone on Facebook, when I said that I opposed the removal of Confederate statues and monuments in the wake of Charlottesville. When proponents of such measures argue that those relics should be confined to the walls of a museum and not the public sphere, they are aiding those who wish to hide America’s history – even its ugly history of racism and slavery – in order to re-write it and allow for such a history to repeat itself.
Above that, the catharsis that comes from toppling a monument to a confederate general will not assuage the left’s anger. Once every single confederate monument is removed, the left will turn their sights to the next outrage du jour and continue their moral crusade to social justice warrior-ify the world. I have been told, repeatedly, it’s silly to worry about the so-called “slippery slope” – that inevitable slide the left makes from a position of self-declared moral authority (see the “confederate shill” comment above) into broadening the scope and depth of their demands until the rights of others are limited. In the name of “justice” and “human rights.”
Don’t believe me? The left’s history is rife with examples:
- “Death with dignity” laws were meant to give terminally ill persons a chance to choose whether or not they die. Now, doctors are forcibly euthanizing patients against their will and proposals are on the table to allow otherwise healthy seniors to kill themselves, because reasons. We were told these things wouldn’t happen.
- Abortion was a necessary medical procedure, we were told, one vital to a woman’s independence and health. Now, abortion is used to “eradicate” Downs Syndrome in several nations; Iceland has almost a 100% abortion rate of individuals screened for being at-risk for the chromosomal abnormality. They aren’t eradicating the mutation that causes the disease, so they aren’t eradicating Downs Syndrome. They are exterminating human beings who happen to have that extra chromosome. Sources like CBS News make it seem as if the former, and not the latter is what’s happening. In New York City, 78% of abortions were performed on black or Hispanic babies. Sex-selective abortions are a problem, and often result in the abortion of baby girls (so much for women’s rights, huh?). The same people that march with signs reading “Keep your laws off my body” are totally cool with forcing people to pay for their bodies, as in Oregon where abortion through all nine months of pregnancy is now “free” and on-demand.
- Gay marriage, we were told, will not affect you. Except if you own a business and happen to be a Christian. Then, you can be sued or fined or run out of business for deciding not to participate in a gay marriage ceremony, even if you never declined service on a day-to-day transaction. It’s wrong, supporters of gay marriage say, to discriminate and if you open a business you cannot pick and choose who you serve. Unless you oppose the Trump administration or otherwise hold politically correct beliefs. Even hypothetically saying you wouldn’t serve a gay wedding is grounds for outrage.
- Women just wanted equality. The wage gap was proof businesses openly discriminated against women and paid them less. Women are no different than men and deserve the same rights and protections. Except when they demand extra leave for their periods. And abortion on demand (and funded by taxpayers). And free contraception. And if you don’t eagerly pay for or support those things, you’re a sexist who wants to keep women barefoot and pregnant or – worse – wants women to die. Oh, and if you’re a woman who happens to drink and have sex, you’re a victim of rape because you can’t possibly consent to sex when under the influence, like men can.
- The same people who (correctly) think the white supremacist belief in genetic superiority is wrong have absolutely no problem with the extermination of babies with Downs Syndrome; indeed, they’ll make it sound like the abortion of children is curing the chromosomal abnormality rather than racking up a body count.
And now, with Charlottesville and the push to hide the confederacy, we see subway tiles, haircuts, and other supposed “symbols of hate” being removed. The same people who morally justify punching Nazis because Nazis are bad go on to say that a slew of beliefs are now just like Nazism…which means it’s ok to use political violence against an ever-increasing number of people. In the name of peace and justice.
Whatever moral catharsis the left gets from tearing down symbols of the confederacy will not end when the last statue falls.
Indeed, it will only fuel their anger and their lust to rid society of anything they deem inappropriate. And the net of what they deem inappropriate is wide. Words are violence, just ask college students. Incorrect pronouns can get you a year in prison. Haircuts that look Nazi-like will get you stabbed. Hold any political belief to the left of Marx and you’re, by default, a Nazi. All Republicans are bad so it’s okay to shoot them, they had it coming. Just like the left broadened the definition of sexual assault to include “stare rape” and “fart rape”, the left will widen the definition of “Nazi” and “offensive” to include everything they dislike and disapprove of.
So you are naïve if you think this outrage ends when the last image of the confederacy is torn down. It won’t. It never has and it never will.
A Texas man was arrested for trying to blow up a confederate statue in Houston. A Christopher Columbus monument in Baltimore was vandalized. In Chicago, a Lincoln statue was burned and the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. was spray painted. If a Lincoln memorial isn’t the antithesis of confederate monuments, what is? The grave of a confederate soldier and KKK Grand Wizard was partially dug up, with the perpetrators threatening to return with heavy machinery to finish the job.
The natural progression is, of course, that the Constitution will have to be abolished because it was written by slave-owning white men and is, therefore, just as offensive as that statue of General Lee that was torn down. It is the left’s wet-dream, pardon the language, and one that they have lusted after for years.
In America, it’s possible to believe several things at once:
White supremacy and neo-Nazis are bad, and that doesn’t make you a communist.
Antifa, and the communist ideals they hold, is bad, and that doesn’t make you a Nazi.
Both of the aforementioned groups still have a right to free speech, and that doesn’t make you a Nazi or a communist.
Pulling down confederate statues is a bad idea that rewrites history, and that doesn’t make you a “confederate shill”.
Giving in to moral outrage today will lead to more outrage down the road, and the continued removal of “offensive” things from the public sphere.
It’s not the “slippery slope” to look back at the curtailment of liberty and behavior of the left and conclude they will do the same thing after toppling confederate monuments.