When orthodoxy is more important than free speech

Victor Davis Hanson highlights for National Review Online readers the political Left’s increasing intolerance for views that diverge from the official party line.

We are in a new Inquisition. Self-appointed censors try to stamp out any idea or word that they don’t wish to be aired — in the pursuit of a new race, class, gender, and environment orthodoxy.

Hounding out people with different views is seen by the Left as a necessary means to achieve its supposedly noble goals — just like the Spanish Inquisitioners who claimed God was on their side as they went after religiously “incorrect” Jews, Muslims, and heretics.

Unfortunately, the Obama administration has been part of the problem, not part of the solution. Its appointees used the once-impartial IRS against conservatives. They monitored Associated Press reporters. They denied that the NSA was eavesdropping on average citizens. They arbitrarily chose not to enforce laws they didn’t like.

The president bragged of using “a pen and a phone” to circumvent the legislative branch, and urged his supporters to “punish our enemies.” The attorney general calls Americans who have different views from his own on matters of affirmative action “cowards.”

All of that them/us rhetoric has given a top-down green light to radical thought police to harass anyone who is open-minded about man-caused global warming, or believes that gay marriage needs more debate, or that supporting Israel is a legitimate cause, or that breaking federal immigration law is still a crime and therefore “illegal.”

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