The left's attempt to ban public discourse on controversial subjects such as global warming amounts to totalitarianism, conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer writes.
"The left is entering a new phase of ideological agitation — no longer trying to win the debate but stopping debate altogether, banishing from public discourse any and all opposition," Krauthammer writes in The Washington Post
"The proper word for that attitude is totalitarian," he explains. "It declares certain controversies over and visits serious consequences — from social ostracism to vocational defenestration — upon those who refuse to be silenced."
Krauthammer argues that the debate over global warming is a prime example of the left trying to silence opposing views.
Those who believe in manmade caused global warming, including President Barack Obama, declare "the science of global warming to be 'settled,'" he explains.
As a result, "anyone who disagrees is then branded 'anti-science.' And better still a 'denier' — a brilliant chosen calumny meant to impute to the climate skeptic the opprobrium normally reserved for the hatemongers and crackpots who deny the Holocaust."
This totalitarian attitude was also recently on display in the situation that forced Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich to resign
just 10 days into the new post because it was discovered that he had donated money to the Proposition 8 effort in California, which defined marriage in the state's constitution as between one man and one woman, the conservative columnist says.
Krauthammer explains that there is a hypocrisy in whom the left decides to lynch since President Barack Obama held the same position in 2008, when Proposition 8 was passed, when he said that "his Christian beliefs made him oppose gay marriage."
The left calls opposition to gay marriage bigotry, he writes.
"By that logic, the man whom the left so ecstatically carried to the White House in 2008 was equally a bigot," he adds.
Those who hold opposing views to the left's orthodoxy are labeled "a denier, a bigot, a homophobe, a sexist, an enemy of the people," Krauthammer writes.
"What's at play is sheer ideological prejudice — and the enforcement of the new totalitarian norm that declares, unilaterally, certain issues to be closed," the conservative author contends.
"Closed to debate. Open only to intimidated acquiescence."
These intimidation tactics are also seen in women's issues like abortion and equal pay, Krauthammer claims.
The best way to fight this growing "totalitarian impulse," he concludes, is to "defend the dissenters, even if — perhaps, especially if — you disagree with their policy. It is — it was? — the American way."
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