Leftists have accelerated their radicalism in recent years.
The extremists that were once relegated to college campuses are now everywhere.
And one jaw-dropping attack showed the future of the Left’s cancel culture.
In 1989, author Salman Rushdie released the book The Satanic Verses, which was deemed blasphemous by Islamists.
Ayatollah Khomeini issued a death fatwa, which caused Rushdie to travel with security, even in western countries.
And 33 years later, Rushdie was brutally stabbed by a man with sympathies to the Iranian regime onstage at an event.
The attack on Rushdie is an escalation in a culture degraded by the Left that believes words are violence and political violence in retaliation is at best understandable, and at worst defensible.
Conservative author Stanley Kurtz wrote, “Salman Rushdie is just off a ventilator, likely to lose an eye, body pierced, and still struggling with serious injuries. His alleged assailant is reportedly ‘sympathetic to the Iranian government’ and to ‘Shia extremism more broadly.’ On the one hand, the Iranian connection makes this attack seem like a foreign intrusion into America’s bastion of freedom. After all, the topic of the talk Rushdie was about to deliver when he was assaulted was ‘the United States as a safe haven for exiled writers.’ On the other hand, the attack on Rushdie cannot help but raise questions about the crisis of free speech in America — that is to say, about our own retreat from liberty. The connection is profound.”
Ever since the election of Donald Trump and the rise of counter-narrative voices on social media, the Left have openly called for more and more censorship.
The Left are especially in favor of censorship when criticism is aimed toward “marginalized” groups.
Many so-called liberals either remained silent or blamed the victim when employees of Charlie Hebdo were massacred after the famously irreverent satirical newspaper lampooned Islam.
Kurtz continued, “My thoughts go back 33 years to a panel discussion on the furor over Rushdie’s novel…held at the Brattle Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts. That 1989 event was the first time I had ever experienced a security check (package inspection and likely metal detectors as well…To be clear, Rushdie himself was not on the panel. Violence was feared nonetheless.) When the Rushdie affair took off in early 1989, America’s campus culture wars had only just begun…What was then called political correctness (now called ‘woke’) seemed to be something of a different order than the command of a religious ruler to execute a literary figure in the name of the Muslim faith. Yet the professors who kicked off the campus culture wars did see a link. They argued that globalization requires us to demote or abolish the Western civilization narrative. Eurocentrism must go, they said, since the sensitivities of ethnically non-Western students were on the line.”
The political correctness movement of the late 80’s-early 90’s was seemingly defeated, but it came back ten times worse in the form of “wokeness” that now plagues American culture.
The belief was that leftism would remain on college campuses, but it did not.
Kurtz added, “To put it differently, the same globalization that turns an Iranian Ayatollah’s death sentence into a proximate threat to Americans at a speaking event in Cambridge requires us to abandon our focus on the story of Western civilization — a story, as traditionally taught, of the rise of classical liberalism and the rights it nurtures and secures. The professors may not have put it in precisely that way, yet that is what their position amounted to. They could have responded differently to globalization, of course. Assimilating immigrants from across the globe by reaffirming the Western civilization narrative was the road not taken.”
This is the underlying problem with mass migration.
Western countries opted for multiculturalism and denunciation of their own culture instead of insisting that new arrivals assimilate to the existing culture, which had been the common practice for decades.
Attacks like the one on Rushdie will sadly continue until America again upholds free speech as paramount and strongly—not selectively—condemns political violence.
Stay tuned to Unmuzzled News for any updates to this ongoing story.