The end of gay rights does not mean the end of homophobia. As long as gay kids commit suicide at rates higher than their straight peers, as long as even one gay person is denied a job because of his sexual orientation, there will be a need for activism, education, and other efforts toward positive social change. But for the gay movement to persist in its current mode risks prolonging a culture war that no longer needs to be fought because one side—the gay side—has already prevailed.
You Must Learn To Love Queer Big Brother
In a NYT op-ed today titled “How To Defy The Catholic Church,” Margaret Renkl complains about the Catholic Archbishop of Indianapolis firing a Catholic school teacher for being in a same-sex marriage. Renkl discharges a line that tells you everything you need to know about the LGBT movement’s plans for dissidents, including those who want to run their religious institutions according to the teachings of their faith:
Love will never truly win until everyone stands up for it.
Where have I read something like that before? Ah, it was just yesterday:
He paused, and went on in a gentler tone:
“You are improving. Intellectually there is very little wrong with you. It is only emotionally that you have failed to make progress. Tell me, Winston — and remember, no lies; you know that I am always able to detect a lie — tell me, what are your true feelings toward Big Brother.”
“I hate him.”
“You hate him. Good. Then the time has come for you to take the last step. You must love Big Brother. It is not enough to obey him; you must love him.”
I’m old enough to remember when “tolerance” was the word they used to describe what they were going for. It was always a lie. As O’Brien, the Inner Party member, tells captive Winston Smith, the power of the Party depends on identifying the eternal enemy in our midst, “the heretic, the enemy of society … so that he can be defeated and humiliated over again.”
“The more the Party is powerful, the less it will be tolerant; the weaker the opposition, the tighter the despotism.”
This will not stop until every single one of us learns to love Big Brother’s queerness. I’m not joking. Margaret Renkl, The New York Times, and other Inner Party members will search out every enemy of society and persecute them until they too learn to love Queer Big Brother. Imagine a drag queen’s high heel stomping on your face, forever.
If you are the kind of religious or social conservative who thinks there can be a “live and let live” detente with these people, now is the time for you to disabuse yourself completely of this fallacy.
In his new column, Andrew Sullivan talks about a new poll showing that fewer members of Generation Z think positively about LGBTs. He believes that piggybacking transgenderism into the movement is the likely cause. Excerpt:
Even GLAAD, the culture police for the gay left, concedes that the transformation of the gay-rights movement into a trans movement steeped in critical gender theory in the past few years is likely the reason: “The younger generation was coming in contact with more LBGTQ people, particularly individuals who are non-binary and don’t identify simply as lesbian or gay.” GLAAD of course blames Trump, and social media, and vows to crack down ever more firmly on those who aren’t fully onboard with its agenda. The last thing GLAAD would do is ask itself if it is actually exacerbating the problem, and that the redefinition of almost everyone’s sex and gender to accommodate less than 1 percent of the population is why this resistance is happening.
Take a look at this video of a young student in Britain refusing to concede that there are more than two genders. The kid had been thrown out of class for stating his opinion. He is told he has to keep his opinion in his own home and to obey the school’s authority policy. Now imagine those who agree with the student that there are not 54 genders and never say it. Kids are not stupid. They know they are being propagandized. This poll suggests the backlash has arrived, and it will likely grow.
It’s happening among young straight women especially, women who were once bedrock supporters of gay rights: “Driving the dilution of acceptance are young women whose overall comfort levels plunged from 64 percent in 2017 to 52 percent in 2018.” Hmmm. Why do you think that could be? Did Trump do this all on his own? Maybe, just maybe, it has something to do with the increasing presence of biological males in their sports, restrooms, locker rooms, and other traditionally all-female spaces. Maybe it is being told that your biological sex is meaningless, that someone with a dick is no less a woman than you are, and that boys can have periods too. As for young men, they are becoming aware of how the feminist left regards them.
Read it all (it’s the second item in the column). I think Sullivan is onto the main reason this is true, though of course I wouldn’t rule out the data having been cooked to provide a rationale for GLAAD to raise more money to fight heretics. I do think, though, that anger over the totalitarian nature of the movement might be responsible for some of the backlash.
We just went through Pride Month, which from a propaganda perspective was like 30 consecutive May Days in the Soviet Union. LGBT has conquered all the high ground in this culture — but that is not enough. The more the Party is powerful, the less it will be tolerant; the weaker the opposition, the tighter the despotism. So now they’re going to take out after a Catholic archbishop in the Midwest who has the gall to insist that Catholic schools be run by Catholic principles — this, even though a number of Catholic educational institutions (like the University of Notre Dame) are fully woke on LGBT issues.
They’ve won! They’re just bouncing the rubble now. But bounce they will, because there can be no resistance. You must learn to love Queer Big Brother! And that requires hating all those who do not love him, until they capitulate.
I’m going later this morning to do a podcast interview, in which the (liberal) interviewer will ask me to explain why conservative Christians feel so besieged in this culture. Today’s NYT op-ed will be at the top of my list. I wouldn’t even have mentioned it has Renkl simply complained about what the archbishop did, in that typical whiny liberal way. It’s the way she phrased her objection — that until and unless everybody affirms homosexuality, love will not truly have won — that gives the totalitarian game away.
Within church polities, conservatives have to realize that unless they are fully orthodox, and uncompromisingly orthodox, they are going to be rolled by the pro-LGBT left, which will not stop. In the public square, religious conservatives have to make defending religious liberty their most important goal. Ordinary Republicans are useless. They don’t want to talk about this stuff, because they don’t want to upset the donor class, and don’t want to be called bigots in the media. You will remember my story about the 2015 meeting with key Christian GOP staffers on Capitol Hill, in which I asked them, post-Obergefell, what the party’s plans were for protecting religious liberty.
Silence. Total silence.
And then came Trump. Yeah, he’s about as bad as they say he is — conservatives shouldn’t lie to themselves about this — but you know what? He and the judges he appoints are the only things standing between the Ministry Of Love and dissident Christian schools and institutions, who will increasingly have to endure the same progressive Two-Minute Hate that engulfed the innocent Covington Catholic schoolboys back in January. I wish that weren’t true — you have no idea how much — but it is true. As will be clear when the next Democratic president arrives (or standard-issue Republican), and the despotism of our cultural overlords tightens.
Love will never truly win until everyone stands up for it. That’s Moralistic Therapeutic Orwellianism!
UPDATE: Right after I posted this, a reader sent in this Atlantic essay from the gay journalist James Kirchick. Excerpts:
California now bans taxpayer-funded travel to any state that “authorizes discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression,” a list that includes Alabama, Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Texas. Who does that help? Not gay people in red states. But it does boost those political forces bent on convincing Americans that the gay-rights movement will only be satisfied once every individual citizen agrees with its precepts (a tough proposition in a religious country), and that gays will use strong-arm tactics to achieve this goal.
Trump’s promise to protect religious liberty from a hegemonic secular left is one of the major reasons why so many evangelical Christians supported a thrice-married sexual reprobate in 2016, and it lies at the heart of a recent debate among conservative intellectuals over whether they ought abandon civility altogether and, in the words of its instigator, “fight the culture war with the aim of defeating the enemy and enjoying the spoils in the form of a public square re-ordered to the common good and ultimately the Highest Good.” The illiberal queer left and the illiberal religious right exist in a mutually reinforcing, codependent relationship.
From a legal standpoint, the movement has achieved nearly everything it needs for gay people to prosper as equal citizens. Instead of fighting this pointless war over wedding cakes, it should declare unilateral victory. Of course, it’s unreasonable to expect this to happen. For many of those whose political identities have been shaped by crusades against government discrimination and pervasive societal ignorance, victimhood is too essential an identity to be so easily discarded.
There are some idealistic religious conservatives who want to reverse gay rights, but I think that most of us recognize that our side has decisively lost this struggle, and need to come to a modus vivendi within a culture that affirms gay rights, and homosexuality broadly. This is not going to be permitted.