We do not love our “side” if we let it slide into movements that history and our consciences show lead to atrocities.
Last week a Jewish woman, an activist in progressive causes, told me her daughter and her friends were terrified that fellow students at their elite university would find out they were Jewish. This is hardly paranoia, given the way that report after report confirms such actions, from the ripping down of signs of Hamas-kidnapped Israeli children to the chanting of baldly antisemitic slogans in protests.
This week law enforcement identified the source of alleged threats against Jewish students at Cornell University to be not an outsider but a student. At Emory University, students marched alongside their Jewish classmates in solidarity in response to the chants they heard of “From the River to the Sea” (a call for the eradication of Israel itself).
Those of us on the center-right who have seen our movement go awry should expect our friends and pro-democracy allies on the Left to learn from what’s happened with us in recent times. Many of us laughed away charges of incipient racism, nativism, and authoritarianism. After all, most of those critiques came from political rivals and was thought to be exaggerated.
But few of us could have imagined that political leaders at the state and national level would meet with or speak alongside a Holocaust-denying, self-proclaimed Hitler admirer such as Nick Fuentes. Few could have imagined the torch-lit mob at Charlottesville.
Many would have said it is “nut-picking”—letting only the most extreme examples speak on behalf of the whole—to suggest any such dark realities. Now, however, it seems that rarely a week goes by where we don’t find out that some “based” …