CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Pronoun Police, Political Correctness, and the Death of Freedom

Nov 5, 2016

Years ago when communism was still raging over large parts of the globe, enslaving and killing millions, I used to wonder what it would look like if it took over the West. Would we be grabbed from our homes in the middle of the night by armed police state officials, whisked away, never to be seen again?

peterson-jLittle did I realise that it would actually be much easier to destroy freedom and democracy, and do away with all the recalcitrants: all that will be needed is to go on a gender bender rampage, and target everyone who dares to not use the politically correct pronouns.

Yes it is that simple – and diabolical. Create a brave new world in which reality, biology and the two sexes are said to be mere social constructs, pull out of the hat a whole bunch of new genders and sexual orientations, invent dozens of new pronouns, and presto, you have the recipe for the perfect storm: the modern PC Western police state in action.

Yes it really is getting that bad. We see this occurring all over the West. Let me offer yet another horrific case of this. Exhibit A is Jordan Peterson, a popular lecturer and tenured professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, and a clinical psychologist. For daring to resist the gender benders and pronoun police, he is in all sorts of trouble.

Protests over his refusal to bow the knee to Orwellian doublespeak and tyranny have been escalating, but he refuses to back down. Here is how one article describes his grievous “sins”:

Psychology professor Jordan Peterson is a man under siege. Angry students are accusing him of hate speech and transphobia. More than 250 faculty members at the University of Toronto, his employer, have signed a letter condemning his behaviour. The CUPE union local has denounced him and told its employees not to report to work if they feel “unsafe.” Now even his bosses have lowered the boom. A joint letter signed by David Cameron, the dean of arts and sciences, and Sioban Nelson, the vice-provost for faculty and academic life, warns him that he is suspected of a serious breach of human rights. What, then, is the nature of Prof. Peterson’s misdeeds? He refuses to use gender-neutral pronouns for non-binary students.

And this is not a one off:

The pronoun warriors have won many victories. At leading U.S. universities, such as Columbia and the University of Michigan, students are allowed to select their own “designated personal pronoun,” whose use is mandatory (one wag at the U of M immediately sabotaged the system by demanding to be referred to as “His Majesty”). In New York, you could face a fine for failing to use a person’s chosen pronoun. In Canada, the Toronto District School Board, the Alberta ministry of education and other public institutions also require that people’s personal-pronoun preferences be respected. Intentional failure to do so may be considered a form of discrimination, and is not condoned. It’s a certainty that private-sector work places won’t be far behind.

The pronoun mafia are going ballistic, targeting anyone who has enough intelligence and common sense to say no to their madness. Thus it is so very important and encouraging that people like Peterson are taking a stand. Says another report:

Today Peterson is laser-focused on fighting the cultural cancer of political correctness. He is alarmed at how quickly it is metastasizing into laws that seek to punish any and all self-expression. Such legislation—in his case, Canada’s bill C-16, which would amend the Canadian Human Rights Code and Criminal Code to add “gender identity and expression” as a special category for anti-discrimination—is tailor-made to program people into conformity of thought. As with all things politically correct, such legislation always comes disguised in the language of “equality.” Pointing this out is a herculean task today, and one Peterson seems to have taken on by himself. If he has colleagues who are also distressed, they probably don’t speak up out of fear of being smeared or fired. But there really is no alternative to loudly fighting political correctness….
Peterson quotes section 46.3 of the Ontario Human Rights Code to indicate how liability is so broadly defined in Canada’s anti-discrimination laws that there is virtually no hope of due process. Employers and organizations are subject to punishment under the code if any employee or associate says anything that can be construed as “directly or indirectly” offensive and—here’s the biggest kicker—“whether intentionally or unintentionally.”
Furthermore, an employer or an entire organization is responsible if anyone associated with them uses speech deemed offensive, whether or not anyone files a complaint! If you cannot see how such legislation places a universal gag order on every single citizen at the whim of the powers that be, then you are simply not paying attention.

This is not just insane, but it is a perfect recipe for an all-powerful police state. As Lea Singh asks:

So why is this happening? Why are the gender-rights warriors pushing so strongly against free speech? A surprisingly perceptive answer came from a member of the trans community, a man who transitioned into a woman named Theryn Meyer.

Paikin: I wonder if you could give us your explanation for why some people adamantly refuse even to have this discussion, that the notion of having this discussion is somehow transphobic.
Theryn: I think it has to do with there’s a lacking when it comes to actually being able to defend your points through argument. So if you open up the discussion for argument, they know they will lose.

It’s the oldest trick in the book: when you run out of arguments, use your fists – or in this case, Bill C-16 – to crush your opponents.

Peterson explains why things are so ominous here:

For the first time, the government, advised by radical leftist social justice warriors, has decided what we must say, instead of what we can’t say. I believe this is extremely ill-advised. I believe it constitutes a serious restriction of free speech.
Since free speech is the mechanism by which we formulate problems, discuss their solution, and reach voluntary consensus, any act (particularly any legislative act) which constrains it is, at minimum, perilous.
I also objected to the requirement that I mouth words that have been produced by those pushing an ideology with which I strenuously and deeply disagree. I regard artificially formulated words such as the so-called “gender neutral” pronouns as part of the vanguard of a wave of political correctness which has historical roots that disturb me (the association with Marxism) and psychological motivations that I do not trust (based as they are on an excess of care best devoted to infants and grounded in an intense resentment of anyone who has become successful for any reason whatsoever)….
The demand for use of preferred pronouns is not an issue of equality, inclusion or respect for others. It’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It’s a purposeful assault on the structure of language. It’s a dangerous incursion into the domain of free speech. It’s narcissistic self-centeredness. It’s part and parcel of the PC madness that threatens to engulf our culture.
A line must be drawn somewhere, and this is a good place to draw it. We should, further, abolish the Ontario Human Rights Commission and its enforcement wing, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal. We should reject Bill C-16, and we should repeal its sister legislation in those provinces where it has already been instantiated.
We should refuse, in no uncertain terms, the demands by the ideologically possessed that we speak their special language. Or we should await the consequences, and they won’t be pretty.

He is exactly right, and thankfully others are also aware of how wretched this Big Brother repression really is. A Toronto Sun columnist reminds us that “Once they’re done with Jordan Peterson, they’ll come for you”. He concludes his article with these words:

Social justice warriors construct fictional worlds then try to bring real world consequences upon those who refuse to live within them. American professor and social critic Camille Paglia has been warning about this in academia for a long time. Here’s what she told Reason TV last year:
“I’ve encountered these graduates of Harvard, Yale, the University of Pennsylvania, and Princeton, I’ve encountered them in the media, and people in their 30s now, some of them, their minds are like Jell-O. They know nothing! They’ve not been trained in history. They have absolutely no structure to their minds. Their emotions are unfixed. The banality of contemporary cultural criticism, of academe, the absolute collapse of any kind of intellectual discourse in the U.S., is the result of these colleges, which should have been the best, instead having retracted into caretaking. The whole thing is about approved social positions in a kind of misty love of humanity, without any direct knowledge of history or economics or anthropology.”
Yet these are the people calling the shots now, courtesy of unwitting taxpayers. The Jell-O minded know nothings are in control. This is free speech’s last stand. If society caves to Peterson’s harassers, there’s no telling who the social justice mob will throw in front of the firing squads. Get in line. You might be next.

Yep. We are all at risk. That is why the courageous stance by Peterson must be trumpeted, applauded and emulated. We need more fierce warriors for freedom, democracy and common sense, before we lose it all. Will you stand with him?

www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/the-professor-vs-the-pronoun-warriors/article32474079/
thefederalist.com/2016/10/17/canadian-professor-ignites-protests-refusing-use-transgender-pronouns/
www.lifesitenews.com/opinion/jordan-peterson-exposes-the-creeping-dictatorship-of-gender-rights-movement
www.torontosun.com/2016/11/03/why-i-wont-use-preferred-pronouns–and-why-you-shouldnt-either
www.torontosun.com/2016/10/29/once-theyre-done-with-jordan-peterson-theyll-come-for-you

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15 Responses to Pronoun Police, Political Correctness, and the Death of Freedom

  • Every day I now read more and more bizarre things and the line from Dorothy Parker comes into mind- “What fresh hell can this be?”

    Support Professor Peterson here on Facebook – he is a hero going it alone www.facebook.com/drjordanpeterson/?fref=ts

  • Hi Bill. Congratulations on a very thoughtful and well researched essay. I remember studying George Orwells Book “1984” when I was a student in Technical College. At the time all of us thought it was very much “pie in the sky” and a bit if a joke, however we’re not laughing now! The world wide cancer of political correctness with its main physical symptom of “personal pronouns” is slowly but surely destroying free speach. The complete destruction of independant thinking is its final goal. In John 9:4 in the Amplified, Jesus makes an interesting observation; “We must work the works of Him Who sent Me and be busy with His business while it is daylight; night is coming on, when no man can work”. It is not my intention to take this verse out of context, however I can see parallels with what Jesus had to contend with in His earthly ministry, and what we’re facing in the West right now. “Night is coming and time is a wasting” Well done, Bill, kind regards, Kelvin.

  • Yes, I will stand with Peterson. It’s fact vs fiction because someone seems to be freely speaking a lot of garbage that seemingly un-educated leaders are listening to, common-sense and reason are missing big time! Considering all this, why do those of us who speak the truth, not have a say any more and why are our so-called or it seems self-elected leaders, listening to such drivel? What is their motive? What do they hope to gain? More confusion!?

    Do these fellow human beings, behaving like imbeciles, not have a conscience or a correct understanding of right and wrong, love or hate, we know where they are headed, why can such people as these not see this? There’s none so deaf as those who will not hear! It is as plain as the nose on one’s face, we need to seek God and point others to Him who is the only answer to these simple questions in such troubled times. We ought to go back to basics, not communism Marxism, humanism or any other isms out there the world needs Christianity, note the “anity” as in sanity, this is the only hope for humanity. Our God rules and Jesus is the coming King! Let’s turn to Him!!

    Good to know someone is doing something about the matter in this case, I will share this article Bill. Thank you! Blessings

  • Dawn Stefanowicz in her submission to the SCOTUS wrote about the loss of Freedom of speech from a Canadian experience in relation to marriage. What is happening in Canada will continue to happen in all countries that go down that path. This is not helped by Trudeau who is on the left. At least we have people like Cory Bernardi speaking up. Keep up the good work Bill.

  • Yes I agree that Professor Jordan Peterson is acting in an honourable and righteous way. I for one would also never submit to such damaging thinking not only for me, but for the person who believes they are that way. I hope the Lord will help them see the truth too.

  • Thanks Bill,
    Peterson’s stand needed to be raised and researched.
    I spent a couple of hours the other night looking at his videos.
    He decided to draw a line in the sand; it was such a small thing but such a big issue.
    That though, is exactly the problem, we must stop getting bowled out by the little things, we must stop excusing them, otherwise the problem continues to escalate.

    For some time now even the choice between Mrs, Miss and Ms has bothered me especially since so many have changed their real or apparent married status, and some women retain their maiden surname. I have dropped the personal pronoun use nearly altogether, and use their given names. Just two days ago I was strongly told that she was a “Miss” even though there were two children and she is to all appearances in a bone fide domestic relationship with her man.

    The Blue Mountains Gazette had the front page picture of a lesbian couple with “their” children, saying that they will patiently wait to get married now that the plebiscite is unlikely.
    The letters to the editor in the two weeks since have been mixed but it is plainly obvious the the pro SSM group are running an highly charged emotional campaign. No-one can get a word in edgeways let alone make a discussion of the issue. Those who dispassionately decried the use of the front page for such a story are called the usual things. One person even wrote about being pleased that they moved from the mountains, and wrote “My suggestion to those people is, its time to come off the mountain and clear your head, or better yet volunteer within the LGBTI+ community..”

    It seems that we can expect violence before long.

    I loved the comment that someone wanted to be called “His Majesty”. If this was serious, then it just shows the depth of the madness. If this was a ploy (which I might use) to show how emotionally bankrupt the other claims are then I applaud his “madness”. I have had a person working for me who seriously thought that they were a reincarnation of some ancient monarch. Reason doesn’t get much traction in discussions about this, but I suppose I should feel honoured that he felt safe enough to tell me. Hmmmm!

    One more little thing?

  • You could start all your pieces with the famous Gobbles quote about the big lie and it would more than likely be appropriate for any post about the modern world.

  • “When men choose not to believe in God, they do not thereafter believe in nothing, they then become capable of believing in anything.” G.K. Chesterton

    Quite franly we see people believe the strangest things right now and they call themselves enlightened. One such case is called “exosexualism”. Basically Panthiesm in other words.

  • Bill, great article. Love it. Not only does 18C and the AHRC need to be abolished, but also the wicked anti discrimination boards.

    I’m certain you are aware of Bernard Gaynor? He has had 32 complaints lodged against him by 1 serial litigant, all for speaking out against homosexuality and SSM. 16 of the complaints have been referred on for further action, with a $100k price tag attached to each. Thats $1.6 million dollars in sanctions he faces from the political police force. It appears from my readings of his case that the NSW ABD does not have the time for both procedural fairness and due process. Bernard Gaynor lives in QLD, and it is the NSW ADB taking this action…jurisdiction anyone?

    What is occuring in the western world surrounding the grievance industry is simply farcical.

  • Perhaps it is a good idea to scam the system to make a mockery of the whole thing. My choice would be “Your exalted majesty, crown prince for life of the ancient and worshipful order of the African Oompaloompas”. And don’t you dare laugh, boyo, or you’ll be up in front of the tribunal quick smart. These are my rights we’re talking about here.

  • Maybe Senator Joe McCarthy back in the 1950’s was on to something after all. What was once probably a good American college education system has been degraded and dumbed down to such an extent over the years through various forms of laissez-faire socialist training, that we now get this systematised insanity from students supported by taxpayer funds. These privileged ones are the same ones who come up with all these ‘grievances’. I wonder what colour the sky is in their world? When does reality kick in for these people? Won’t they have to confront the real world – find a job with a boss and compete in society? Or are we going to bend over backwards to accommodate them into their old age? I idly wonder at times just what this unreality must look like in parts of the world where reality still features heavily in people’s everyday lives. It has, for example given Vladimir Putin an easy goal to kick – we Russians maintain good moral standards unlike those stupid idolaters of the West. It is possible that you could be incarcerated in Russia for being convicted for criticising Christianity. Couldn’t be more chalk and cheese to what is coming into the open in the ‘enlightened’ West could it?

  • I saw this new interview with Professor Peterson yesterday about the way neo Marxism has taken over campuses

  • I have a bit of anger when I look back over the past 35 years and remember those few of us who tried to point out the absurdity of trying to enforce “inclusive language” and the ultimate dangers that could lead to. So many Christians were sucked in to using terms such as “sexist” and more latterly, “homophobia”. Even hymn books and Bibles were revised to accommodate the nonsense. On one occasion I had the effrontery to write to the great Don Carson and tell him I thought he was wrong to push the “inclusive language” cart. It’s pretty hard to find anything to criticise him on, but I believed and still believe that that he was wrong there. It’s good that more and people are waking up and that includes reaction to the Bill Leak affair and other 18C cases, but it’s pretty late in the day (or night).

  • Bill, I have no doubt that many of us want to stand with Peterson. What is the most effective way to make a stand (humanly speaking) ? without far-reaching media coverage most Jell-O brains have no chance of understanding what is happening… should we be flooding anti-discrimination tribunals with complaints about discriminatory behaviour against us during the ‘no’ campaign? (David van Gend’s view is that we should not use these farcical courts on principle) It appears that the left have control even of our courts now which leaves us nowhere to go. Is change of govt the only way? I for one am constantly trying to play catch-up with the history I was never taught, and to knock down the assumptions that the culture I was brought up in has imbued in me. I imagine there are many of us waking up and ready to stand up but leadership and a plan would help us to be more effective.

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