Column: Why the left tries to suppress free speech
Far leftist extremists have several tactics to minimize or negate conservatives and their agenda. It didn’t start with the recent “protests” against conservative speakers on college campuses or the “resist” movement by the anti-Trump Democrats. It probably started when Ronald Reagan ran for president. The voters seemed to reject the left’s and the media’s assertions about candidate Reagan being a lazy, intellectual light weight, especially when compared to the “hardest working, smartest president,” Jimmy Carter.
The left didn’t really have to minimize what George H.W. Bush said. He did it himself when he uttered the infamous, “Read my lips, no new taxes” campaign promise, and then teamed with the Democrats to raise taxes. His son, George W. Bush, was presented to the public as little more than an intellectually challenged frat boy by the national press. His every verbal faux pas was shown as proof of his brain power. Contrast that with the biased press reaction to candidate and President Obama’s ignorance of geography and the military with his comments about “all 57 states” and his mispronunciation of Navy corpsman.
Radicals have ramped up their tactics since Obama was elected president. In their efforts to inhibit opposing views, they used the IRS to target Tea Party and other conservative groups from obtaining tax exempt status, demanding lists of donors and other requirements. Few, if any, liberal groups had to provide these lists and requirements. Once Lois Lerner became involved, the applications of conservative groups were delayed, often for years. This had a dampening effect on conservative fundraising in the 2012 election.
Another scheme that extremists use to discredit those with opposing views is to label them with their latest pejorative terms. Just because a person believes in the historical view that marriage is between one man and one women, does not make that person a homophobe. Someone who thinks that we should not let people immigrate to the United States from Muslim majority countries where the governments have broken down or are non-existent (such as Somalia and Libya), or are the largest exporters of terrorism (like Iran) are not Islamophobes. Wanting to properly vet people from those countries is not Islamophobic, it is self-preservation.
It is not racist to point out that the Black Lives Matter movement is based on a lie, “Hands up, don’t shoot.” One is not “anti-science” or a flat-earth advocate if he or she points out that a consensus of scientific opinion regarding man-made global warming is not necessarily science. An individual who has the religious or personal belief that life begins at conception and an abortion is the taking of a human life, is not a misogynist.
Since President Trump’s election, the most strident of the anarchist left have resorted to violence to stop the free speech of those whose views they oppose. They used to shout down or throw pies at those with whom they disagreed. Now they throw punches, rocks, bottles, wear masks and destroy property. This is evidence of their desperation.
They have to suppress free speech because they have a record of failure and no arguments to support their views.
Buz Williams is a retired Long Beach, California, police officer who has lived in Prescott since 2004.