When news broke a few days ago that Facebook had been suppressing conservative, or so called “right wing” content, it was no surprise to anyone. The only surprise was that a (former) employee of the social media giant had actually admitted to it.
We at the XYZ have often discussed the ways which the left labels, slanders and attempts to silence those with dissenting voices. Those who express views at odds with the present political orthodoxy are labeled as bigots, racists, sexists, xenophobes and Islamaphobes.
This labeling of opponents seeks to discredit them before a discussion can even take place. Of course, it is a dirty trick that prevents us from having open debates about important issues, and suppresses the speech of divergent and diverse voices.
But there is an even more sinister element to the left’s tactic of slurring and labeling those with different opinions, and that is its attempt to dehumanise those who do not ‘toe the party line.’
Labeling someone as a “bigot” implies that they not only have the “wrong” opinion, but that there is something defective about them, either intellectually or morally. Moreover, the same is inferred in branding someone a “hate-speaker”. The implication is that so called “hate-speakers” are defective in their humanity in a very critical way (they are a ‘hater’ and are therefore ‘evil’) and as such, should be silenced.
During the 1950s, the Frankfurt School writer Theodor W Adorno attempted to pathologise conservatives and conservative values in his book, The Authoritarian Mind. Rather ironically it is actually the left itself who assumes the authoritarian mindset which we saw clearly in the rise and bloodshed of communism in the 20th Century, and now with politically correct policing of thought.
In recent years, there have been cases where climate change “experts” have called for the jailing of climate change “deniers”. The implication is that climate change deniers are dangerous and potentially sub-human. Add the accusation that conservatives are greedy, love money, hate blacks and women, and you have painted for yourself a picture of a villain who is barely human. People are now sent for “re-education”, or “diversity” training or the like when breaches of political correctness are found. Right now, we thankfully lack the death squads and the labor and concentration camps.
The dehumanisation of opponents has been used as a political and military tactic throughout history. If people are dehumanised as was (and still is) in the case of slavery, the dhimmitude of Islam, or laughably, in the case of climate change deniers, then the usual and intrinsic human rights we recognise that all people posses do not apply.
Once an individual or group has been dehumanised, then almost anything becomes permissible.
So in the scheme of things, where are we now?
The slandering and vilification of opponents by the political left has become par for the course in contemporary debate. Ironically, such offensive behavior by so called progressives is never called to account by Section 18C of the the Racial Discrimination Act 1975, despite clear breaches. However, these laws are used against conservative, classically liberal and dissenting voices as we have seen.
Already in Australia and throughout the modern West, views that do not conform with those of our political classes are being outlawed. Should you express a dissenting view, you may be prosecuted.
We thankfully are not yet at the point where accused climate change deniers are jailed, yet the fact that such an idea emerged and was entertained for a moment is cause for alarm. Further more, that the left have become so blinkered by their ideology through texts such as the Authoritarian Mind, for them to approach issues and arguments without prejudice is all but impossible.
To our readers – please share with us and let us know of instances where you have seen or are aware of the attempt to dehumanise conservative or other dissenting voices.
Photo by patdebaz