Posted by Curt on 15 April, 2016 at 5:00 pm. 35 comments already!


Matt Walsh:

Progressivism is an ideology utterly devoid of intellectual integrity and coherence. It rides a certain argument like a train to Point A and denies there is a Point B, even though Point B is only a mile or two straight ahead and they already built the tracks that will take us there. Of course, Point B is always more horrific than Point A, and Point C more than Point B, so despite the incoherence and dishonesty of it, you don’t necessarily want to stop them from hitting the brakes.

A real world example: It is ridiculous that liberals support abortion but (usually) recoil at infanticide, or any other kind of -cide. If human life is not worthy of basic legal protections from the moment it is conceived, then there is nothing inherently sacred about it. If it can be cut out and disposed of like a plantar wart at 8 weeks or 12 weeks or 20 weeks, then by its very nature it is not fundamentally special or important. Its importance is entirely relative to how useful or desirable it is to others. If that’s the case, then infants — who, next to college students, are the most helpless and unproductive human beings in existence — should not be protected from termination. Neither should the elderly. Neither the sick. Neither the disabled. Neither the Kardashians. And so on.

But do I actually want progressives to follow their principles consistently here? No. Indeed, I live in fear of the day when they decide to be honest on this subject. They’re already starting to apply their pro-homosexual “marriage” arguments more universally, and now we have the mainstreaming of incest, bigamy and pedophilia. They’re taking their “transgenderism” arguments to their inevitable ends, and now we have perverts pretending to live as six-year-old girls and psychotics cutting off their nose and ears to live as dragons. I think I much preferred the more slapdash, incomplete version of progressivism.

Yet, at the risk of giving them ideas, I think we should try to make liberals understand what they’re arguments necessarily justify when taken to their logical conclusions. Not because we desire those conclusions, but because, hopefully, they don’t either.

So what happens when we bring the progressive enthusiasm for “anti-discrimination” laws to completion?

As you’ve heard, several states including Mississippi and North Carolina have recently passed religious freedom laws protecting, among other things, a Christian’s right to follow his conscience in determining who he will do business with, and what that business will entail. Other states like Georgia have attempted to pass similar laws only to have their efforts flaunted when their governors caved to outside pressure. Usually that pressure takes the form of boycotts and other economic threats from prominent figures, major corporations and even the federal government.

The boycotts are what I find especially interesting. Many companies have said they will not conduct business in states where the conscience rights of Christians are protected. PayPal, for example, announced last week that it’s canceling its plans to open an office in Charlotte due to the state’s “anti-LGBT” law. The NFL, Apple, Disney, NBC, etc., have made similar promises.

A few days ago, Bruce Springsteen canceled a show in North Carolina, which caused great distress and disappointment to 65-year-old white dads across the state. Someone named Bryan Adams also announced he will not be performing his two songs in Mississippi. In response, thousands of confused Mississippians typed “Bryan Adams” into Wikipedia. (He’s the “Everything I Do, I Do It For You” guy, by the way, so Mississippi really dodged a bullet.)

The irony here is so thick I might choke on it. These are people and companies choosing not to provide services to a group of people as a means of protesting a law that allows people to deny services to groups of people. They are following their conscience and boycotting to overturn a law that allows people to follow their conscience. They are exercising their First Amendment rights in order to make a statement against First Amendment rights. They are discriminating in response to “discrimination.” What’s next? Will they fly a private jet around the world to lecture people about the dangers of fossil fuel? Oh, never mind.

The contradiction here is impossible to overlook. If the underlying principle is that we may not “discriminate” and deprive others of “services,” then PayPal certainly should not be legally permitted to deprive North Carolinians of jobs because it disagrees with the politics or faith of many of the state’s residents. Bruce Springsteen and Bryan Adams should not be allowed to impede a person’s access to annoying music just because they disapprove of certain religious practices. A Bryan Adams concert is about as necessary and lifesaving a product as a wedding cake. If a baker cannot withhold his services because of his conscience, why should the singer be allowed to withhold his for the same reason?

If progressives wished to be consistent, they’d advocate that these religious freedom laws be abolished, but they’d also insist that, in the meantime, federal law enforcement officers barge into Bryan Adams’ townhouse and Bruce Springsteen’s retirement community and drag both men to their respective concert venues at gunpoint. If homosexuals have a God-given right to pastries and photography, then your aunt in Mississippi certainly has a God-given right to stand teary-eyed in the third row and listen to Bryan Adams croon about the summer of ’69.

But, OK, if the guns and the FBI agents seem a tad like overkill, at least progressives must agree that Adams and Springsteen, along with PayPal and every other offending company, ought to face fines and other financial penalties for greedily withholding their services from an entire group of people. We can’t let folks just follow their conscience all willy-nilly, can we?

As I see it, there are only two ways you can try to make a distinction between Christian business owners choosing not to provide services to gay weddings and liberal businessmen/80′s singers choosing not to provide services to entire states:

1. You can argue that one is discrimination and the other is not.

Let’s check with Webster. The definition of “discrimination” is “an act or instance of discriminating, or of making a distinction; treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit.”

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