“Enough stupidity and blindness. The barbarians are no longer at the gate. They are inside — inside our cities, our civilisation, and our souls. Too many clamour, in consequence, to once again punish Jews. The bloodthirsty desires and doctrines motivating and justifying such behaviour must be identified, understood and rejected, before things get seriously out of hand — and that could happen sooner and with more devastating force than even the most pessimistic among us might be inclined to think.”
In a radio interview I recently did (concerning the willingness of British young people to actually ban the Bible if they find it offensive), I mentioned that the left used to be known as standing up for free speech and opposing censorship. ‘Used to be…’
Now of course the secular left is all about defending woke ideology, and that routinely means cancel culture in all its ugly forms. It means censoring different points of view; it means preventing others from being heard; it means punishing those who do not think and say the “right” things.
In addition to today’s left seeking to silence all forms of dissent and contrary thought, a related hallmark is this: a willingness to believe a lie. Indeed, truth takes a hammering as falsehoods are embraced and promoted. We perhaps see no better example of how both these traits of the left are being played out today than in its blind support of Hamas and its frenzied hatred of Israel.
This sort of moral and mental madness is really no different from those who seek to argue that somehow the Germans and Japanese were actually the good guys during WWII. And yes, I just unfriended a social media “friend” for saying just that the other day!
All up we can say that the left is really morphing into the new Nazis of today. Two important thinkers have just penned pieces on this very matter, and they deserve to be heard. The first is titled “Has Hitler won on the left?” by Carl R. Trueman. He writes:
When is a crime victimless? When its perpetrators enjoy the status of victims, at least according to the nihilistic tastes of the West in our day. That is the lesson of reactions to various events in recent years, from the looting that accompanied many of the “mostly peaceful” BLM protests of 2020 to the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7 this year. The response to the violence in Gaza was especially chilling. While there is always room for debating whether a response is proportionate to the act of aggression, the jubilation and exhilaration expressed by American academics, students, and some politicians over the Hamas attacks started before the Israeli counter-attack.
The contradictions at the heart of the modern morality of victimhood have now been exposed to all with eyes to see, even to many who have been pressing it in the political sphere. When members of the LGBTQ lobby express support for Hamas, it is another reminder that many progressives have lost any sense of a moral compass. But this was predictable. When oppressor and oppressed, victimizer and victim are the decisive categories by which to understand the world with no broader moral framework for defining those terms, political morality defaults to that of ressentiment, a reactive stance that simply opposes on principle whatever is. It is the spirit of negation.
He finishes his piece with these words:
Watching the displays of anti-Semitism and pro-Hamas support on the streets of Western democracies over the last few months, I was reminded of two books. One is Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno’s Dialectic of Enlightenment. In that work — the foundational text for critical theory — they argue that the Nazis needed the Jews because they required an inferior race to dominate in order to establish and justify their own superiority. Today, that necessity for demonizing Jews seems to be felt most acutely by the left. And that connects to the second book: Philip Rieff’s My Life Among the Deathworks. Near the end he recalls that his grandfather did not want to be buried in America, where he lived, but in Israel, where he had grown up.