By: Peter Suciu
When it comes to TV shows, liberals quickly see every completely fictional dystopian setting as a possible future brought on by the likes of President Trump. A similar theme occurred from 2001-2008, when President George W. Bush was in office. Liberals cannot see movies such as The Hunger Games or TV series such as The Handmaid's Tale without suggesting that it is a path we're on and that our conservative leaders are guiding us towards such a reality.
Liberals should, however, take a look in the mirror after watching the latest season of The Handmaid's Tale, because in many ways, it’s a politically correct culture that is far more dangerous than anything President Trump may be doing as Commander-in-Chief.
While Margaret Atwood, the author of the best-selling novel on which the Hulu series is based, said that the United States is becoming more like the Republic of Gilead under Trump’s rule, and the show's star, Elisabeth Moss, has compared the show to “Trump's America,” both women need to consider one point: the fact that the show is even exists!
In the Republic of Gilead, a show that criticized the government wouldn't possibly be made, as books, magazines, and virtually all forms of entertainment are banned. The very fact that Hulu was able to make the show should be proof to Atwood and Moss that the show’s dystopia is far from happening in America, at least for now.
Meanwhile, Showtime is running The Loudest Voice, a very one-side exposé on Fox News, and there are countless other shows that cast conservatives in a bad light. President Trump hasn't banned these shows, nor did President Bush.
Painting conservative leaders as villains has a long history in entertainment. In fact, the very idea of the United States becoming a dictatorship has existed for decades, notably beginning with Sinclair Lewis' 1935 semi-satirical novel It Can't Happen Here, which has a populist candidate winning the White House and becoming a fascist-style dictator. When Lewis wrote his novel, he highlighted the almost impossibility of such a transformation of America; yet today every dystopian future becomes near proof that this is where President Trump is taking us, according to liberals today.
For her part, Atwood doesn't see her 1985 book as satire, but almost as a prophecy coming true. She was quoted in The Hill as saying, "We're not living in Gilead yet, but there are Gilead-like symptoms going on." She added, "I don't enjoy being right, because being right means that we are where we are."
With all due respect to Atwood, she should stick to fiction, because the reality is that we're far from becoming anything like Gilead.
Moss told The Washington Times, "The principles that this country was built on are important, and we're losing them – and perhaps we've already lost them. You feel a sense of responsibility, and you feel honored telling this story at this time."
Clearly Moss needs a history lesson. When the United States was "built" as she described it, women couldn't vote, nor could men who didn't own property, slavery was legal in much of the country, and the United States was far more pious than it is today. The United States, following the Revolution, was far closer to Gilead than it is today. The United States is also far more progressive in 2019 than it was even in the 1960s or even the 1990s.
Suggesting we're somehow going backward in terms of individual rights is simply wrong.
More importantly, the danger to our democracy isn't coming from conservatives, but it is the assault from political correctness. In June, for instance, an Ohio middle school had to remove a 1920s-era Ten Commandments plaque because it offended atheists, and last year, Yale removed a carving on the side of a building because it featured a Puritan with a musket – which critics said was aimed at a Native American.
In both examples. these motifs were on display for decades and didn't hurt anyone, but in today's PC culture, the mere suggestion that someone could be offended means these have to go. Isn't that similar to what we see in The Handmaid's Tale, when the past needs to be erased?
In just the past three years, we've seen statues of Confederate leaders pulled down by mobs, and while we could debate whether the statues should have ever gone up, the fact that angry citizens can take the law into their own hands should be worrisome. Meanwhile, conservative speakers have been banned from many college campuses, conservative leaders have been chased from restaurants, and Trump supporters are now being banned from online communities.
While businesses that have refused service for reasons related to religious convictions – notably the bakers who refused to make a wedding cake for a lesbian couple – have faced prosecution, the same has not occurred for businesses that refuse service to Trump supporters.
The most recent example is how knitting website Ravelry banned any support for President Trump. The site stated, "We cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy. Support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy."
Let's review the first part of the sentence again: "a space that is inclusive of all" is what Ravelry stated. It is a common theme with the left these days – inclusive unless that includes Trump supporters, Republicans, or conservatives. Liberals claim they want to be inclusive, but only if you think like them and agree with their politics.
Otherwise, it is dissension, which liberals see as treasonous when they're in power. Back when President Obama was in office, it certainly was suggested that those who opposed him opposed America! But this is because a key goal of fascism is to demonize an enemy – to shun them, to ban them, and eventually to brand them as traitors and the enemy.
Consider how merely supporting Trump can have someone branded a bigot, racist, or fascist. As noted, conservatives are being banned from even being part of the dialogue on some groups, are chased out of restaurants – that doesn't sound the least bit inclusive.
Thus, it isn't President Trump and his supporters who are the great danger to our country, but the liberals who oppose an open and fair dialogue. It is their way or the highway on nearly every issue.
If there is a danger that people rise and take our country towards Gilead, it could be a result of their rights being stripped away – such as the bakers with strong religious convictions.
Margaret Atwood should be reminded that when she wrote The Handmaid's Tale, she said the leaders in that dystopian society used religion as tool, but didn't truly believe it or embrace it. They wanted the power, and while they were pious for appearance’s sake, they were anything but pious in private.
With that in mind, it wouldn't be that hard to see today's liberal zealots using such tools and methods to achieve their end goal.
Peter Suciu is a freelance writer based in Michigan. Contact him at [email protected].