Several years ago, Jonah Goldberg wrote a book with the title Liberal Fascism, and it of course enraged people on the left end of the political spectrum. How dare you call us fascists, they bellowed! Maybe this, from Andrew Walker and Owen Strachan at NRO, will help explain:
Last night, New York Times reporter Josh Barro tweeted out a disturbing message: “Anti-LGBT attitudes are terrible for people in all sorts of communities. They linger and oppress, and we need to stamp them out, ruthlessly.”
This is rather shocking. Barro is no angry blogger writing manifestos in his basement. He is a respected reporter from a prestigious newspaper that prides itself on equanimity in the face of heated debate. Yet he seems, by any reasonable measure, to be fomenting a campaign to rout out all dissenters from the sexual revolution. Erick Erickson wrote a brief response to Barro’s tweet, to which Barro replied that he thinks that “we should make anti-LGBT views shameful like segregation. Not saying we should off people.”
Make no mistake: when Barro refers to “anti-LGBT attitudes,” he’s not talking about Westboro Baptist. He’s talking about tens of millions of traditional, orthodox Christians and Jews, people whose views were virtually universal in the United States and indeed the entire West as little as thirty years ago. Even today, those views are hardly the views of a tiny minority.
Even leaving aside the potential for large-scale social conflict from efforts to “ruthlessly stamp out” traditional beliefs, the dictatorial impulse expressed in Barro’s tweet–and the likelihood that it’s shared by many others of supposedly “liberal” mindset–is not surprising, but chilling in its bluntness. In his (their) view, beliefs about homosexual behavior that are firmly grounded in Christianity and Judaism are no more rational, have no more validity, and should be given no more respect than the racism of the KKK. Of course, he doesn’t advocate murdering the holders of such views, for which I suppose we should be grateful, but I doubt that all of his fellow sexual revolutionaries will be so accommodating.
It is this dictatorial impulse that lies behind the state efforts to penalize bakers and photographers for refusing to take part in gay weddings, the destruction of Mozilla’s Brendan Eich’s career, the labeling of anyone who is against gay marriage as “homophobic,” and the forced mainstreaming of homosexuality in public schools. It is totalitarian, utterly intolerant of dissent, and determined to destroy anything, including orthodox religion, that gets in its way.
I guess we should thank illiberals like Jeff Barro when they let the mask slip, since every time it happens more people hear about what the Barros of the world really think should be done about those who dare to disagree.