By Tony Perkins
Family Research Council – Most people use Mozilla Firefox’s web browser to search — but the extreme Left has been using it to search… and destroy. Short-lived CEO Brendan Eich found that out the hard way, when the long-time employee was chased out of his job for holding a view that — at the time — even Barack Obama claimed to subscribe to. Eich, who was under the impression that Mozilla had hired him for his experience not his political views, became the latest trophy on the Left’s wall when it was revealed that he’d given $1,000 to the successful Proposition 8 effort five years ago in California.
Despite Eich’s apology, an unfortunate capitulation to the kind of self-censorship activists demand, he ultimately resigned — joining the growing list of Americans whose reputations and careers are publicly flogged because they dare to express an opinion that reflects the diversity liberals insist they want. At two and a half weeks, Eich held the job longer than Craig James — who was fired after a single day at Fox Sports Southwest — but having been involved with Firefox since its inception 16 years ago, the fallout still stings. Like most Americans, he didn’t know that exercising the freedoms that make our nation great are the same ones that make him unemployable by the Left’s corporate bullies.
It’s been a difficult lesson to learn, and Eich isn’t the first. Craig James, Dr. Angela McCaskill, Peter Vidmar, and Phil Robertson have all been victims of the Left’s eerily Eastern European approach, where expression is not only forbidden but punished. This kind of “gay rights McCarthyism,” as Rod Dreher calls it, is so deeply permeating the workforce that a person’s moral views may as well be listed alongside legitimate qualifications on a routine job application. But this brand of exclusivity for inclusivity’s sake isn’t exactly making fans of some on the Left.
With Eich, the pendulum has swung so far that activists may actually be alienating the base it claims to represent. “Call it left-wing anti-liberalism,” writes the far-Left’s Michelle Goldberg, “…At such times, old-fashioned liberal values like free speech and robust, open debate seem like tainted adjuncts of an oppressive system, and it’s still possible for radicals to believe that the ideas suppressed as hateful won’t be their own.”
Andrew Sullivan, who no one would mistake for a conservative, had even stronger words for his movement. “The whole episode disgusts me — as it should disgust anyone interested in a tolerant and diverse society. If this is the gay rights movement today — hounding our opponents with a fanaticism more like the religious right than anyone else — then count me out.”
Finally, the mask of “equality” has slipped, and even its cheerleaders are realizing that the real face of the movement is “hateful, intolerant, illiberal, persecutorial.” Nowhere is that more evident than GLAAD’s response to Eich’s ousting. “Mozilla’s strong statement in favor of equality today reflects where corporate America is: inclusive, safe, and welcoming to all.” Or, more accurately, welcoming to all who agree with us.
We all need to be clear: we are not merely contending with a different political or social point of view. The forces of political correctness intend to run over all freedom in America, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, of assembly, of press. They cannot achieve their goal without oppression. And Americans will soon understand this. Some already do — like “Duck Dynasty’s” Phil Robertson. He stood up to these bullies, refusing to live as a captive of a small, tyrannical minority. He wouldn’t join the growing line of timid souls whose surrender only fuels the intolerance of the Left. What happened when Phil stood, as some others have done? People stood with him. And the bullies walked away.
Our resident historian, Bob Morrison, helped put this in context with a story from America’s earliest days. George Washington understood this phenomenon when in 1783 he was urged to seize control of the government. “The people must act, I cannot,” he said. “But, Your Excellency, the people don’t understand the crisis that is upon us.” “The people must FEEL an evil before they can see it,”Washington responded. We are all feeling the evil. Soon, the country will see it too.
Tony Perkins is president of the Washington, D.C.-based Family Research Council. He is a former member of the Louisiana legislature where he served for eight years, and he is recognized as a legislative pioneer for authoring measures like the nation’s first Covenant Marriage law.
(Via FRC’s Washington Update)
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.