The latest incident of a member of the humane and progressive left accidentally letting slip a little honesty this week is as good a time as any to reflect on just who these people really are. In the words of Jay Severin, it’s not that Nir Rosen is anti-war, it’s just that he’s rooting for the other side.
American progressives like to hold themselves up as the inheritors of a grand tradition of fighting to expand people’s rights and freedoms. While this makes for fine rhetoric and campaign fliers, it’s a pretty thin disguise.
A guy like Nir Rosen probably thinks he believes in women’s rights. Likewise the people he associates with, his friends, his family, his colleagues. And yet he casually makes a joke about a woman getting beaten by a mob (oh, that glorious democratic revolution in Egypt!), and feels justified in so joking because he assumes this woman holds politics which differ from his own.
It’s like the old adage, “freedom of speech for me, but not for thee.” Except intellectually bankrupt hacks like Rosen have extended the concept to simple human dignity.
For more in this vein, read Brian Doherty’s October column in Reason.