The very weird “calling a baby a nazi” clip

We live in an era, unfortunately, where if you want to find footage of people screaming at each other at some protest and counter-protest over a touchstone cultural issue, then clips are ten a penny. Just look at the protests in Washington over the reversal of Roe V Wade, or lockdown protests in Dublin, or Paris any Saturday. We are living through a time when heading out on to the streets at the weekend to call your fellow citizen a fascist is just about a normal hobby for a significant chunk of the population. Calling a baby a nazi though? That’s a rare treat indeed.

The lady in question here, by the way, is the head of policy for a UK Labour MP. She’d have been better served attending the funeral of her late Queen, I think, than whatever this is:

Regular readers will know that a recurring theme on these pages, at least the parts of them written by me, is that for a great many people, politics has replaced religion as, well, religion. This is hardly a unique insight, and many others have arrived at the same conclusion. But it’s hard to overstate how important that conclusion is.

What strikes me as interesting here is that this is a protest about trans rights, but none of the people involved are trans themselves. Don’t get me wrong – that’s not to say that people have no right to a view on an issue if they are not directly affected. Of course they do. But the strength of these views is not normal. At stake here is no great issue of import – there is no choice to be argued, for example, between respecting transgender people on the one hand and locking them up on the other. The debate is almost entirely about what pronouns, and bathrooms, people use, and which categories of sport they play in. There is an ancillary debate – one of greater importance, I think – about to what degree children are being harmed by quack gender assignment surgery, but that is not what seems to get trans activists most angry.

I wrote yesterday, in my piece about the little mermaid, that the problem for progressives is that it’s the fight itself, not the issues at hand, which gets them out of bed in the morning. That’s why we hear so much in Ireland about the “far right”, even though the far right in Ireland is a fraction of a fraction of 1% of the population. They are elevated not by their own actions, which have not been very good at winning support for their causes, but by their opponents. The modern progressive is entirely addicted to fighting the “fascists”, which means that a fascist to fight must always be found – even if, as in this case, they must resort to fighting babies.

These religious panics are nothing new. The history of Europe is littered with moral panics which the panickers seemed to actually enjoy. In times past, these religious manias were overtly religious, like the witch hunts in the UK, or the Spanish Inquisition, or any one of a hundred others. In every case, those hunting the witches or the heretics were not only purging society of an ill, but advertising their own virtue in the process. That is exactly what is happening here. The baby is not safe, because it is in the foul arms of witches.

Political differences have long been strongly felt, of course: This country had a civil war a century ago, the Spanish had one more recently than that, and even the British, who buried their Queen yesterday, got so angry with each other at one point that they decapitated one of her Royal predecessors. But those fights, you’ll note, were all about big, important, political questions. Had the other side won, in all three cases, modern society would be vastly different in each country than it is today. By contrast, strong though views might be on the trans issue, the pronouns one uses to describe a former male will hardly have consequences that echo through civilisation. Progressives – and an increasing number of their opponents – just love having an enemy.

I do not know what, if anything, can be done about this. And there is irony in writing all of the above, and then typing the following sentence, but I think it is necessary that progressives – or at least the most voluble of them – are soundly defeated on this stuff. Society does not prosper when bad behaviour is rewarded. And if you’ve reached the point where you think your political views justify abusing a baby in public, you are no longer representing anything that’s really worth defending to begin with.

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