Progressives Eat Their Own in Virginia

Continuing their commitment to silence anyone who might stand in the way of their agenda, gay and lesbian groups are now beginning to criticize supporters who are thought to be insufficiently loyal. The most recent case involves Douglas Laycock, a University of Virginia law professor, who is married to the University’s president, Teresa A. Sullivan.   A man with impeccable progressive credentials, Laycock has been a longtime supporter of gay rights and same-sex marriage—filing an amicus brief in the 2012 Supreme Court case, United States v. Windsor that urged the court to extend same-sex marriage benefits to every state in the union.

His offense? Laycock supports religious liberty. According to news reports, Laycock wrote a letter to Arizona Governor Jan Brewer in support of SB1062—a bill that if it had passed would have provided greater legal protections for individuals and businesses accused of violating state anti-discrimination laws. The bill was designed to protect those who cite religious reasons for not participating in same-sex weddings by baking cakes for same-sex couples, taking photographs of the same-sex wedding ceremonies, or hosting same-sex wedding receptions at their places of business. Professor Laycock’s letter to the Governor, which was signed by ten other law professors from institutions around the country, argued that “the Arizona law was a fair extension of the existing federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act because it didn’t pick winners: the government could still show that compliance with the law was necessary to serve a compelling government interest.”

Laycock has been consistent in his support for religious liberty. A few years ago, he filed an amicus brief in Sebelius v Hobby Lobby Stores, a contraception coverage case currently at the U.S. Supreme Court. Supporting the religious owners of Hobby Lobby, Laycock argues that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act protects Hobby Lobby from being forced to pay for insurance coverage for the type of contraceptives (abortifacients) that the government is mandating them to cover.

Although he has been committed to religious liberty causes for years, it was not until Laycock became involved in supporting the Arizona religious liberty bill that he began to draw the ire of the gay rights advocates. Heather Cronk, co-director of Berkeley, California’s LGBT activist group GetEQUAL told a reporter for that their organization tapped two University of Virginia students to help them file a Freedom of Information request seeking access to emails to and from Laycock’s university account to three conservative political organizations, along with phone records from the professor’s work cell phone. The request also seeks access to relevant emails sent to and from the professor’s assistant and the professor’s employment contract.

While Cronk claims that the request is not an attack on academic freedom, Laycock maintains that the intended consequence of the FOIA is “to intimidate and deter, only I’m not that easily intimidated or deterred.”

Maintaining that the LGBT community has the right to know “about ways that Professor Laycock might or might not have used university resources to work directly with some of the anti-LGBT and anti-choice groups that are now using his work to further their agenda,” Cronk complained that although “Professor Laycock has maintained a sort of academic agnosticism about the issues of LGBT equality and reproductive access, his work is nonetheless being used by individuals and organizations that have very clear and harmful agendas.” According to, Cronk wrote in an email: “We are absolutely concerned with protecting academic freedom—the rub is that, while a professor has every right to do academic work of his or her choosing, there must be a system of checks and balances when that work is being used to harm individuals.”

Campus Progressives Seek Intellectual Conformity
Cronk may have the power to impose a “system of checks and balances” on college campuses by using bullying tactics. Advocacy organizations like Cronk’s helped to purge many campuses more than a decade ago of those suspected of conservative or religious leanings. Being a pro-life faculty member or a traditional marriage supporter could no longer be allowed on these campuses. Increasingly, progressive students are pressuring colleges and universities to purge the ideologically impure from their midst. Haverford College recently disinvited Robert J. Birgeneau, the former Chancellor at UC Berkeley as commencement speaker. A long-time progressive, Birgeneau’s offense was to allow the Berkeley police to use force against Occupy protestors in Sproul Plaza in 2011—negating a career-long commitment to progressive causes including advocating for undocumented immigrants and promoting the LGBT community on campus.

Surprised by the students’ animosity toward Birgeneau, Haverford’s president, Daniel Weiss complained that his students were acting more like jurors “issuing a verdict” than a campus community extending an invitation for “shared learning.”  Weiss should have noticed that “shared learning” disappeared decades ago from colleges like Haverford.  He may have missed the memos on the well-qualified conservatives who were passed over for faculty jobs at his school.  Having served on administrative and faculty search committees for fifteen years as chair of a West Coast sociology department, I have seen those memos. The discrimination is real—and it occurred on campuses across the country.

The result is that there are few faculty conservatives, and even fewer conservatives in leadership positions. A few years ago, conservatives were encouraged to learn that one of two finalists for the presidency of Seton Hall was Monsignor Stuart Swetland, a faithful priest, and a Rhodes scholar who graduated first in his class from the US Naval Academy.  Swetland was uniquely qualified for the job as he has served as vice-president for Catholic identity and mission at Mount St. Mary’s in Maryland, and has been directly involved in revitalizing the Catholic identity on Catholic campuses like Seton Hall. But, signs of doom for Swetland were clear when the other candidate for the presidency withdrew his name from consideration, and a headline in the New Jersey Star-Ledger warned: “Anticipated Seton Hall President Thought to be a Conservative Choice.”  The search was suspended and although Seton Hall officials deny it, strong resistance from the faculty to hiring a faithful Catholic priest like Monsignor Swetland to lead the school had an impact on the failed search.

As the progressive standard of ideological purity moves farther to the left, more and more liberal faculty members find themselves targeted. “Conservative” is now defined as a professor who was once viewed as progressive because of her success in writing grants that brought social services to the poor in the neighborhood adjacent to the university, but when she began to voice concerns about allowing students at her Catholic college to function as abortion clinic escorts for internship credit, she became the enemy on her campus.  Even professional women who can point to a record of achievement in public life are often disparaged for ideological reasons. Thus Condoleezza Rice is pressured to withdraw as commencement speaker at Rutgers University while Christine Lagarde is opposed at Smith College because she allegedly participates in an imperialistic economic system as managing director of the International Monetary Fund. Even women’s rights activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali was denied an honorary degree from Brandeis University this year when students objected to her criticism of Islam.

We are all conservatives now. But, in some ways, this broadened definition of “conservative” may actually be a hopeful sign for the future. The hostility to intellectual freedom today is reminiscent of the Salem witchcraft trials of the 1600s in Massachusetts when the desperate hunt for more witches spread throughout New England and resulted in the witch hunters beginning to turn on each other. Respected clergymen and community leaders who had become swept up in hunting for witches began to be defined as witches themselves. The hysteria finally ended when the wife of the Massachusetts governor was accused of practicing witchcraft.

Defenders of academic freedom and true liberal learning need to fight back against the progressive witch hunters with their own FOIA requests and their own lawsuits. Until the witch hunters are themselves hunted down and exposed, the threats will continue.

Anne Hendershott


Anne Hendershott is Professor of Sociology and Director of the Veritas Center at Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. She is the author of Status Envy: The Politics of Catholic Higher Education; The Politics of Abortion; and The Politics of Deviance (Encounter Books). She is also the co-author of Renewal: How a New Generation of Priests and Bishops are Revitalizing the Catholic Church (2013).

  • Scott W.

    Laycock encounters Screwtape and learns the first lesson: find his minions food or becomefood. There is nothing live-and-let-live about the homosex movement. Never was, never will be.

  • John O’Neill

    American Progressives are at heart deeply fascist. They are the ones who push the famous Orwellian “boot in the face” political philosophy. Historically they cheered Lincoln’s abrogation of freedom of speech and his subsequent imprisoning of hundreds of people who opposed his war, they cheered Wilson who also imprisoned thousands of people who were against his war, they cheered FDR and justified his imprisoning of tens of thousands of Japanese Americans and they also vilified anyone who opposed that war. They insist that every citizen in America must submit their children to government indoctrination in their schools and virulently attack anyone who proposes that parents have a right to choose the education for their children. They now claim that they have the right to redefine the traditional definition of marriage and they also insist that Americans be forced to pay for abortion even though they consider it murder. They have made it very difficult for any Christian or traditionalist to live in the country they now control. And finally they find no difficulty wrapping themselves in the American flag and daring anyone to oppose them at the price of being declared “un-American”. Their America has become overnight the realm of the Evil One and may God spare us. Nolite confidere in principibus.

    • Thomas

      Right on.

      Lately, I’ve been thinking back to when Nixon was president it was “uncool” to be right of center. The liberals supposedly espoused liberty while Mr. Nixon and the Republicans wore jackboots. The press promulgated this notion that liberty lovers were progressive and Democrats. Your post is, indeed, quite accurate. Progressives are anything but lovers of liberty.

    • redfish

      Hm. The Lincoln-era progressives also worked to ban prostitution, abortion, and contraception, and fought against the liberalization of divorce laws. They also supported some liberal things like women’s suffrage. Not sure what purpose these partisanized historical narratives serve.

      • John O’Neill

        Lincoln also whether directly or indirectly started a war that caused the deaths of nearly a million Americans. Is your praise of him along the lines that Mussolini made the trains run on time?

        • redfish

          I’m not even praising him… not really commenting him at all. I’m questioning linking of 19th century politics with modern politics. If I were a libertarian (which I’m not, btw) I could claim that social conservativism is a fruit of progressivism, because a lot of socially conservative politics started with progressive moral reformers.

          • Tony

            There are several things remarkable about that citation from TR.

            The first is that a President could have written it. It required considerable intelligence, learning, and mastery of English. It required also an ability to see beyond slogans, and to bring together apparently disparate realms of human thought and action into one coherent whole.

            The second is that the President expected it to be understood.

            The third is that the President who said those things believed himself to be a progressive and a Christian; and I can find for you essays by his allies in New York, whose Christian progressivism set them AGAINST liberalizing the divorce laws, AGAINST governmental replacement of the family, and even pretty dubious about woman’s suffrage. In other words, there was at that time a family-oriented progressivism that drank at the springs of the gospel and the natural law, against economic determinists and scientific poseurs. Some time between TR’s presidency and FDR, the progressives became radically materialist and totalitarian….

            • redfish

              Yea, and something a lot of conservatives don’t understand is that in the 19th century political vocabulary, “progressive” semantically wasn’t the opposite of “conservative”; rather, it was the opposite of “radical.” Political progressives positioned themselves as centrists who neither wanted to associate themselves with a reactionary conservatism which opposed no changes and a radical liberalism which tried to change everything. The idea was to make progress in society while holding onto conservative values such as traditional morality and Constitutional law. They were firmly against judicial activism and against the breakdown of values.

              What happened is the original progressive movement fell apart, and then liberals started assimilating progressive rhetoric and started using the word “progressive” for themselves. Eventually, “progressives” were no longer centrists, but decidedly left-wing. Then the whole idea of “progress” in general became attacked by postmodern critics, who associated it with Victorianism, and favored the notion of transgression over progression. Now, some leftists who thought postmodern liberalism wasn’t muscular enough have revived the term. Its not a straight line from A to B, anyway.

              • TheAbaum

                Interesting take on the overt Protestant religiosity the early progressives,especially people like Ely and Henry Carter Adams.


                • redfish

                  I’ll read it.

                  I’d note that the Social Purity movement, which pushed to abolish abortion and prostitution and led to temperance campaigns, also gave rise to the early eugenics movement — which relates to the article’s title. However, like in the temperance movement — where many activists openly disagreed with prohibition — not everyone writing about eugenics was a scary totalitarian.

                • Tony

                  Ely was one of the men I was thinking of. He was a member of a group of seven signatories to “Present Day Papers,” a series of essays printed in Century, at around 1890. The others included Seth Low, future mayor of NYC (Republican reformist) and president of Columbia; William Chauncy Langdon, promoter of the YMCA movement; Samuel Dike, founder of the Divorce Reform League (that is, a league for making divorce HARDER to procure), and others … They were in intellectual conversation with Pope Leo XIII and Cardinal Lavigerie … Dike, in one of the essays, penetrates to the heart of the suffrage question, by noting that it would complete the movement from considering the family to be the fundamental unit of political action, to the individual. He regarded that development as ominous, and a part of the atomization of society.

                  • TheAbaum

                    The founders of the AEA were clearly religious men and although Protestant, more amenable to Catholic sensibilities in social matters than the modern left, but they were statists.

                    They regarded economics as a method of analysis to inform actions to be taken by the state, which they regarded as an omniscient, benevolent and in-corrupt `actor which could right terrible errors wrought by free markets.

                    Henry Carter Adams was instructive in this regard. The first statistician of the ICC at its inception in 1887, he spent the rest of his career seeking additional power. When Teddy Roosevelt took office he used the railroads as whipping boys, Carter got what he really wanted in the Hepburn Act, the power of financial examination and power over rates, apparently ignorant of the fact that cost accounting is an art, not a science. The ICC used this power with gusto and the railroads became capital starved.

                    When WW I came along, there were stresses that a decade of capital starvation made unbearable. The Federal Government then created the United States Railroad Administration in the first takeover.

                    Carter was retired and dead by the time this happened, but his voice was replaced by other academics who advocated centralized control such as William Z. Ripley. Whether Carter would have advocated seizure of private property is obviously unknown, but it was the result of an incremental process that started in 1887 with the Interstate Commerce Act and other “reforms”, pushed by statist “progressives”.

                    The ultimate result of ICC regulation was the bankruptcies of the eastern roads and Conrail. Deregulation finally came in 1981, President Clinton signed the ICC Termination Act in 1995, and the rail industry (still regulated by the FRA (safety) and the STB (market conduct), freed from the onerous regulations are healthy, no longer requiring a Conrail bailout.

                    • Tony

                      I’m not as conversant with the economic progressives as you are. The Present-Day Papers I’ve read are remarkably “domestic,” that is, suspicious even of such an apparently benign institution as the Sunday School, on the grounds that that might undermine our trust in the family as the principal educator of children.

                      The signatories do tend to be a little over-optimistic about the power of the new discipline of sociology. But they were classically educated Christian men. We no longer have anyone quite like them.

                • redfish

                  It mainly aligns with my understanding of the politics of that era. The only real place where I think the author does a bit of disservice is that he makes it sound that all racial theories were grounded in physiology, when a big deal of racial theory was grounded in culture. Just, rather than adopted from society at large, it was social habits passed through parent to child. If you read TR’s views on race, for instance, he argued it to be mostly cultural and affected by social changes. This is why the the race could “degrade” if mothers took industrial jobs.

                  Early eugenicists likewise were more interested in “uplifting” other races than “weeding them out.” For instance, they advocated black parents to only have children when they were economically able to; and believed this would help uplift the race. Eventually, the anti-contraception, anti-abortion position of the Social Purity movement were abandoned in favor of the views of Margaret Sanger… and the rest is history.

                  • TheAbaum

                    Early eugenicists likewise were more interested in “uplifting” other races than “weeding them out.”

                    I’m a big believer in “by their fruits you shall know them” and “the road to hell is paved with good intentions” when it comes to the architects of social policy. That the Nazis expressed their gratitude to American Eugenicists is damning enough for me.

                    • redfish

                      I don’t know that I find the concept of eugenics useful at all, since I don’t really think it really makes sense a field of study or a basis for activism. — I’m just pointing out how the politics of the idea evolved. It makes as much sense, to me, to compare equity feminists to all forms of modern feminists just because they share the term “feminism.” There’s such a thing as an idea outliving its intentions.

                      But a misreading of early eugenics as a historical subject does, in my view, often add to a false impression about 19th century views on race.

                    • DE-173

                      “I don’t know that I find the concept of eugenics useful at all, since I don’t really think it really makes sense a field of study or a basis for activism. — I’m just pointing out how the politics of the idea evolved.”

                      I agree, except I don’t see its terminal state as useless, but evil. Whatever the intents, it transmogrified into something monstrous, because it was social engineering and that always end up in the same place-with so-called experts manipulating the rest of humanity.

                    • redfish

                      Yes, that’s what the problem was.. social engineering. And a good number of churches preached against eugenics because of that, even while some religious men supported it. In fact, I went back to reading on the subject just to get a clearer picture of what was happening. A lot of eugenics writers took some space chastising priests for objecting and tried to correct their ignorance.

                      And what was happening appears to be a bit complex… because at first, you had a mix of ideas of what eugenics entailed… it was really general.. some writers who accepted the concept backed off from a complete application of the idea which they thought would be silly. Eventually, eugenics was separated from ‘euthenics’, which means good influences and ‘social heredity’ versus ‘physical heredity.’ Some eugenicists were Lamarckians and thought acquired traits could be inherited, others were Darwinian. There were a bunch of really wacky, totalitarian proposals. And many writers, in order to be “objective” considered objectively violent, coercive approaches, right before they dismissed them.

                      So it was a mess, and perhaps some negative direction was to be expected.

              • slainte

                Were the Progressives connected to, or a part of, the Fabian Society?

                • redfish

                  You’re talking about in Britain? I don’t know as much about British politics in that era, honestly. From what little I’ve read they were distinct entities, but Fabians did start entering the Progressive Party, though not all Progressives were Fabians. In the America, I know that political Progressives were often criticized by socialists and perceived as favorable to business, even as they were criticized by others to the right as radical.

            • ForChristAlone

              would his name be Wilson?

              • Tony

                No, Wilson wasn’t one of the seven. I don’t believe Wilson ever showed any love at all for tradition, or any real care for the primacy of the family. Wilson believed in the magic of abstract political systems, but the Present-Day Papers are suspicious of systems. Hence their hesitancy, and even grave reservations, on the question of universal suffrage.

        • redfish

          Here’s another example of the dissonance between politics a century ago and politics today:

          “There is superstition in science quite as much as there is superstition in theology, and it is all the more dangerous because those suffering from it are profoundly convinced that they are freeing themselves from all superstition. No grotesque repulsiveness of mediæval superstition, even as it survived into nineteenth-century Spain and Naples, could be much more intolerant, much more destructive of all that is fine in morality, in the spiritual sense, and indeed in civilization itself, than that hard dogmatic materialism of to-day which often not merely calls itself scientific but arrogates to itself the sole right to use the term. If these pretensions affected only scientific men themselves, it would be a matter of small moment, but unfortunately they tend gradually to affect the whole people, and to establish a very dangerous standard of private and public conduct in the public mind.” — Theodore Roosevelt

          • HughieMc

            Brilliant quotation. But, not being American, I have to ask where does it come from?

            • redfish

              An essay titled “The Search for Truth in a Reverent Spirit” by Theodore Roosevelt, which can be read here

              • HughieMc

                Sorry, didn’t realise you might be live online. I Googled the opening of the quote and got it. Thanks.a lot. Not much good at computers.

  • fredx2

    From the Article:

    “Maintaining that the LGBT community has the right to know “about ways that Professor Laycock might or might not have used university resources to work directly with some of the anti-LGBT and anti-choice groups that are now using his work to further their agenda,”

    In other words, they are maintaining that no one who works at a university has any free speech rights – unless they are working to support LGBT groups.

    The fascism is palpable.

    ” Cronk wrote in an email: “We are absolutely concerned with protecting academic freedom—the rub is that, while a professor has every right to do academic work of his or her choosing, there must be a system of checks and balances when that work is being used to harm individuals.”

    But any stance on any public issue could be considered to “harm individuals”.

    The fascism is palpable.

    Gays are now in the business of trying to destroy people that do not knuckle under. They are very serious that a free wheeling, open public debate is inimical to their cause. They can’t stand sunlight.

    • uncle max

      They can’t stand sunlight – Absolutely.

      They thrive on victimhood, Now that dodge is running low so tactics switch to demonizing ANYONE who disagrees with them for ANY reason, no matter how reasonable it may be.

      When that well runs dry, and it will – where then?

  • Feminism, socialism, Islamism, homosexism, fascism, etc are about sexual license at the expense of life, liberty or happiness.

  • tamsin

    When we read The Crucible in high school English, I thought it was a good, cautionary tale.

    • Nick_Palmer3

      Yet so few seemed to be being cautious…

  • Vox Laudis

    My husband and I were hounded out of a ‘catholic’ institution of higher education for this very reason, with the result that, by choice, neither of us will work for a Catholic educational institution ever again. We may end up out of jobs in the future for our Catholicity, but at least it will not be at the hands of ‘catholics’.

  • thomistica

    Wonderful article.
    Far more pro-life and traditional marriage advocates among tenured faculty need to be vocal. Until that happens, nothing will change in academia. Those who lament the situation, but remain silent, have no excuse, and have earned no right to complain. Not just the Catholics or Christians.

  • JP

    It is ironic that this is the same university that refused FOIA requests and subpoenas concerning Michael Mann of the Hockey Stick fame.

  • cestusdei

    It is the homosexuals who are the real bullies. The professors should demand a trial using the procedures of the old inquisition, he would have a better shot at defending himself against his new inquisition.Nothing will satisfy homosexuals who in their hearts know that what they do is wrong and can never be acceptable.

    • Interested

      It is part of the syndrome.

  • TheAbaum

    Rainbow is the new brown. In shirts that is.

    • ForChristAlone


      It reminds me of a walk I took this Spring through Central Park where dog owners were gathered drinking their Starbucks and chatting with their confreres while the pedigreed “kids” frolicked in the grass (actually destroyed the grass). Not a child in sight for these NYC liberals. Forty years ago, their patents would have gathered at the playground. Now, there are no more children – only dogs. I commented to my wife: “Dogs are the new children.”

      • TheAbaum

        The use of the term “pet parent”, should be considered an indicator mental disorder.

        • ForChristAlone

          As a psychologist, I found it mighty strange how these people actually speak to their dogs as if they were children. I was tempted to walk over to one of them and ask, “So what did he reply to you?”

          • DE-173

            Who’s a good dog? Mommy wuvs you yes she does.

            Heard that and stuff like it many, many times. Twisted to be sure.

          • Michael Paterson-Seymour

            When I tell my dogs to “come-bye” (circle the sheep clockwise) or “away to me” (circle the sheep anti-clockwise), they certainly do reply, but by actions not words.

            • DE-173

              That is a conditioned response, not an reasoned course of action.

      • BillinJax

        I agree! But here is the moral to the story.

        We can take a wild and woolly dog that is as rowdy as can be
        and bring him in clean him up and domesticate him to the point he depends on us for everything to stay in the relationship with us and be half human.

        That’s a good example of the relationship we have with our God. Once we choose to break that bond and go on our own we become like wild mutts again. And today’s world is visual proof.

    • Patrick

      I know I haven’t watched the news regularly for several days, but I think “20 Dead after Pride Parade Ends in Attempted Violent Overthrow of the Government” is a headline I would have heard about.

      Ease off the hyperbole, man.

      • Art Deco

        The Nazi seizure of power was accomplished through legal means. The most violent element in the Nazi Party was under the command of pederast Ernst Roehm.

        • Patrick

          You’ve never heard of the Munich Putsch?
          Which involved a Nazi rally turning into a violent attempt to overthrow the government, including setting up machine guns to hold people hostage and attempted seizure of government facilities and elected officials?
          Oh, and 4 policemen and 16 other people dead in the end, and High Treason charges for which Hitler was convicted but only given a slap on the wrist?

          You know, the events perpetrated by the very Brownshirts that were referred to in the post I commented on.

      • DE-173

        Ease off the political immaturity, man.

        • Patrick

          How is it immature to object to comparing nonviolent campaigning to armed rebellion?

          • DE-173

            See Art’s answer.

  • BillinJax

    It is not justice it is not compassion it is not fairness it is not equality. It is the heat from the fires of hell that is warming the passions and arousing false courage in those whose perversions are erroneously being deemed worthy of mainstream morality.

    The gradual softening of Judeo-Christian will to protect the
    truth of scripture and its traditional values which with reliance on Divine
    Providence allowed western civilization to prosper and flourish over the last
    few centuries has now, by the last sixty years of easy living and the daily
    drumbeat of the live and let live lullaby of the secular progressives who
    convinced themselves they are more than simply God’s children and have ordained
    themselves His counselors among mankind, brought us to the brink of modern day
    Sodom and Gomorrah.

    As a result of our growing indifference to the truth we seem
    to never get it when it comes to recognizing Evil and its intent when it is wrapped
    in politically correct language or persuasive but corrosive compassion by legislators,
    news media, and the entertainment industry. This has been going on for so long
    that we now have some of our spiritual leaders falling victim to the mountain
    of madness being released as an avalanche of appeasement upon us by the
    aggressive gay agenda, abortion on demand despots, and most destructively those
    wise but devious secular progressives who cleverly challenge us and want you to
    turn the other cheek, not judge lest you be judged, love and accept everyone AND
    their sinful behavior lest you are less than the Christian you claim to be.

    These masters of deceit only quote and use scripture to serve their need to dilute and dissolve our traditional values one by one until the few truly faithful remaining are deemed enemies of society and antiquated bigots.

    The new Christian persecutions have begun and will increase rapidly just as prophesy has foretold that the flock will be scattered when the shepherds are smitten but ultimately those who remain faithful through the purification of the Church will, in the end, share in the glory of our savior Lords triumphant return and His divine justice.

  • Tony

    I’ve been a conservative in academe for thirty years. My particular position has been quite secure, and there are dozens of fellow conservatives of one sort or another at my school (pedagogical, theological, political), though we are still in the minority. Yet even here I’ve observed some pretty dirty stuff; and it’s nothing compared with what filth is lying in open sight on the carpet and the table at the big state universities and the one-time liberal arts colleges.

    Read Whitaker Chambers’ autobiography and confession, Witness. Our opponents never were interested in the vigorous exchange of ideas. They — with many exceptions, no doubt — were and are interested in one thing alone, and that is complete victory. There are many colleges in this country that would not only not hire someone like me, a conservative Catholic; they would not hire someone who teaches some of the literature I teach (e. g., Spenser).

    In the case of the gay rights crowd, we are deeply mistaken if we think that this political fight, for them, is about an idea. It is about a burning resentment against ordinary and healthy men and women, who enjoy ordinary and healthy marriages. I’ll note that almost all of the vindictive attacks come from gay women — grim, angry, vindictive, envious women, who go well out of their way to seek offense, so as to have something to attack. One of the hush-hush “secrets” about gay men is that they generally dislike being around lesbians. Most gay men long in the wrong way for what they correctly see as a great good: masculinity. But most gay women are so by fervent rejection of what they cannot help but see as a great good: the same masculinity. The former love wrongly what the latter envy and hate. This at least is the judgment of Camille Paglia, who should know, if anyone does.

    • tamsin

      I will note that lesbians were plaintiffs in the Windsor case and the Elane case and others.

      Lesbians have sold out all women as they agree with some men that any man can
      get married without a woman and obtain a child to raise without that child’s mother. In short, lesbians have agreed with gays to cut the baby in half.

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  • HughieMc

    “… the issues of LGBT equality and reproductive access…” Alas, I am not an American. Could someone explain to me what “reproductive access” is? And, if it has something to do with contraception, what interest is that to someone who is a practising homosexual of whatever variety?

    • john

      Of course your point is incisive. I suspect you already know this–it’s a tangled mess of self-contradicting proclamations proceeding from the gut (and loins?) and not the head. Confusion itself is part of the strategy.

  • ForChristAlone

    The consolation our planners offer us is that this authoritarian direction will apply “only” to economic matters….Such assurances are usually accompanied by the suggestion that, by giving up freedom in what are, or ought to be, the less important aspects of our lives, we shall obtain greater freedom in the pursuit of higher values. On this ground people who abhor the idea of political dictatorship often clamor for a dictator in the economic field….

    Economic control is not merely control of a sector of human life which can be separated from the rest; it is control of the means for all our ends. And whoever has sole control of the means must also determine which ends are to be served, which values are to be rated higher and which lower–in short, what men should believe and strive for…economic planning would involve direction of almost the whole of our life.

    • Scott W.

      I’ve casually mused that perhaps Christians should push the limit of the Hosanna-Tabor ruling before progressives find a way to shut it down. That is, for example, churches offering bakeries and photography studios positions as ministerial businesses.

      • ForChristAlone

        exactly…we get to define what is ministerial and what is not

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour

    As Hegel said of the French Revolution, “Virtue is here a simple abstract principle and distinguishes the citizens into two classes only—those who are favourably disposed and those who are not. But disposition can only be recognized and judged of by disposition. Suspicion therefore is in the ascendant; but virtue, as soon as it becomes liable to suspicion, is already condemned . . . . Robespierre set up the principle of virtue as supreme, and it may be said that with this man virtue was an earnest matter…”

    Sincerity thus became the essence of virtue. The result of this purely subjective conception of virtue was to unleash a relentless search to unmask those hypocrites who pursue their own private ends under the guise of public spiritedness.

  • Sherry Jones

    Wow. So, apparently the LGBT community supports your freedom as long as you support their agenda. But if you don’t support their agenda, you deserve no freedom. Is that how it works? They need to be made aware that EVERY article in the Constitution applies to EVERYONE equally or it means nothing.