Honest liberals are having their Andrew Breitbart moment. Andrew started out as a liberal, except he was the kind of liberal that’s exceedingly rare today. He was a liberal who actually believed in the things liberals say they believe in, like free expression and personal autonomy.
But they don’t.
Andrew’s change began when he watched the Clarence Thomas hearings. He saw a “high-tech lynching,” as racist Democrats intent on stamping out dissent among black Americans channeled their former Majority Leader/KKK Exalted Cyclops Robert Byrd in attacking the black jurist for refusing to toe the liberal line.
Andrews’s views didn't change. What changed was his understanding of who actually stands for freedom. And it isn’t liberals.
Which brings us to the recent kerfuffle involving popular comic Patton Oswalt. He is known as a sarcastic, snarky, underdog with genuine stand-up chops. He’s also an occasional movie and television star who recently had a memorable role on “Justified,” a conservative favorite due to its general awesomeness and the presence of right wing acting legend Nick Searcy.
By all accounts a funny, decent guy, Oswalt thinks of himself as a liberal, and he frequently bickers with conservatives on Twitter. That's fine. Many conservatives died to give him that right. Conservatives don't resent him for doing so even as they disagree with what he says. But that's not true of his allies on the left. They want to shut him up. You see, Oswalt pulled a Clarence Thomas and left the reservation without the chiefs’ permission.
What was Oswalt’s crime? He tweeted approvingly about a Mark Steyn column in which the conservative raconteur took on the global progressive assault on free expression. He made the mistake of characterizing Steyn’s forceful advocacy of free speech as “hitting it out of the park.”
That, the Left cannot forgive.
You see, Mark Steyn is evil. He has ideas liberals don’t approve of. So to cite him as he took on the left’s Ball Gag Caucus was simply unacceptable to the progressive conformity enforcers. Soon Oswalt found himself swamped by a tsunami of Twitter outrage.
Oswalt, stunned but so-far uncowed, tweeted back that his erstwhile allies were proving Steyn’s point. And he was right.