Category Archive 'Liberal Orthodoxy'

11 Apr 2016

A British Heretic Repents

, , ,

IanMcEwan

In the old days, people would die for their convictions. Protestants and Catholics alike suffered themselves to be racked, torn with irons, and burned alive to uphold the truth as they perceived it. You can still see scorch marks on the door of Balliol College from the burning of Latimer, Cranmer, and Ridley.

Brendan O’Neill, in National Review, describes how the confrontation between Heresy and Orthodoxy plays out in our own time. No scorch marks for Ian McEwan!

For a worldview that claims to be all about freedom and choice and “being oneself,” transgenderism sure is tetchy and intolerant. Consider what has just happened to the celebrated British novelist Ian McEwan. Last week, during a speech at the Royal Institution in London, McEwan took a genteel swipe at the politics of identity. He said identity politics is becoming increasingly consumerist, where we now pluck a ready-made “self” from “the shelves of a personal-identity supermarket.” The making up of one’s identity has gone so far that “some men in full possession of a penis are identifying as women and demanding entry to women-only colleges,” he said. Then came his killer line: “Call me old-fashioned, but I tend to think of people with penises as men.”

Can you guess what happened next? Yes, McEwan was subjected to a Twitch hunt, to that 21st-century bloodsport in which anyone who expresses an unpopular view or makes a less than PC utterance or simply misspeaks a little will be “called out” (shamed) by the bedroom-bound, Twitter-living, self-styled guardians of correct thinking. Twits went berserk over his apparently perverse linking of penises with maleness. They branded him a bigot, weird, a transphobe. Trans-rights activists put the boot in, too. Stonewall, the LGBT activist group, slammed McEwan for being “uninformed” and said his weird worldview doesn’t only “denigrate the trans experience, it denies its very existence.” Paris Lees, a trans woman and journalist, scolded McEwan, telling him his “ideas about penises are outdated.” He should apologize, the mob said.

And he did. All the virtual tomato-throwing at this heretic who dared to say that people with penises are men had the desired effect. It elicited a public backtrack. In an open letter in the Guardian, McEwan accused some of his critics of being “righteous and cross,” yet he then bowed and scraped before the trans religion. Transgenderism “should be respected,” he said. Then, most strikingly, he obediently expressed the key tenet of the trans ideology: “Biology is not always destiny.” Remarkable. In the space of a few days, he went from raising interesting, awkward questions about trans identity to repeating in a national newspaper the trans mantra that “biology is not destiny.” For those of us who believe in freedom of thought, it was an ugly sight, reminiscent of those poor souls dragged before the Inquisition and set free only when they dutifully bought into their inquisitors’ belief system and publicly declared: “I believe in Jesus Christ.”

Read the whole thing.

20 Jan 2015

Gay Marriage & the Death of Freedom

,

gay-nazis

Brendan O’Neill, in the Spectator, laughs at “freedom to marry” as the phrase used to describe nothing less than forcible conversion.

Twenty-five years ago, American thinker Christopher Lasch argued that ‘progressive rhetoric has the effect of concealing social crisis and moral breakdown by presenting them as the birth pangs of a new order’. Bingo! There’s no better description of gay marriage. Here, too, progressive-sounding rhetoric is really the dolling-up of our atomised, risk-averse societies’ growing disdain for those deep relationships in which families and communities traditionally socialised the next generation, mostly away from the prying eyes of the state. This is why the gay-marriage campaign is so contradictorily illiberal, so hostile to dissent, and so attractive to petty-authoritarian politicians: because it isn’t about expanding liberty at all; it’s about unilaterally overhauling the moral outlook of the traditionalist sections of society and elevating the commitment-phobic, passion-lite, short-termist values of the chattering classes instead.
Aussie campaigners for the ‘Freedom to marry’ are actually lucky that the PM isn’t cheering their moral crusade. Because this means that when they finally win this illiberal liberty — which they unquestionably will — they’ll be able to present it as a great victory for civil libertarians who bravely took on The Man. When in truth, their victory will be built on the spilt blood of French protesters and the trampled-upon right to dissent of Americans and Britons and the transformation of gay marriage by Western political elites into a new orthodoxy that you question at your peril.

Read the whole thing.


Your are browsing
the Archives of Never Yet Melted in the 'Liberal Orthodoxy' Category.











Feeds
Entries (RSS)
Comments (RSS)
Feed Shark