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OPINION

Censorship and History

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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AP Photo/Alex Brandon

“His parents said these [things] because they feared the [Pharisees], for the

[Pharisees] had agreed already that if anyone confessed [Jesus was] Christ, he would be put

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out of the synagogue” (John 9:22).

I have an existential question for you based upon the above quote:

Are today’s Democrats modern-day Pharisees, or were the Pharisees early members of the Democratic Party?

I’m being a little facetious, obviously; the Democratic Party did not exist in the Roman Empire. But what we are witnessing today in modern America is a repetition of history. Censorship. If you don’t toe the right party line, out you go. Biden’s party didn’t invent it, but they are certainly strong adherents to it. 

How many people have been “censored”—removed from Twitter, YouTube, et al—or even arrested and put in jail for “election denial,” January 6 “insurrection crimes,” pro-life advocacy, questioning the COVID-19 vaccine, or “climate denial”? Off with your head, peasant. What the Left is doing today isn’t new, by any means. It’s why freedom is always in danger, and when we fall asleep and slacken our diligence, we lose it. That’s the most important lesson here.

The story in John 9 is about Jesus healing a blind man on the Sabbath day. The Pharisees hated Jesus because, frankly, they perceived him as a threat to their power. What is interesting in the quote above is that the blind man’s parents “feared…the [Pharisees];” they would not speak up in defense of their son because they were frightened they would get…censored. Kicked off Twitter. Or a 1st century Palestinian parallel, not allowed access to the synagogue (far worse actually). Freedom of speech was restricted unless you said the right thing. And anything that might have sounded like support for Jesus was definitely the wrong thing.

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Donald Trump has been re-instated onto Twitter, if he wants to go back. Elon Musk did a “democratic” thing and let the people on Twitter have a vote. It was 51.8% for Mr. Trump to 48.2% against him. We all rejoiced because “the majority” voted for “free speech.” Democracy won!

Well, maybe it’s my pessimistic, cynical nature, but I didn’t really see the vote that way. What I saw was that 48.2% voted AGAINST free speech. Almost half voted to deny a right to an American that they themselves enjoy and would probably explode if it were forbidden to them. “Don’t you dare deny me the right of free speech! But we can do it to others we don’t agree with.” Phariseeism maxed out. Talk about blindness. This is nothing but blind, mechanical, irrepressible hatred of Mr. Trump. And, yeah, “parents” (another target of Democrats today) and the rest of us should be frightened. The Pharisees (and Romans) eventually killed the man they hated. And many of his followers.

It doesn’t matter one whit what you think of Donald Trump. He hasn’t been convicted of any crime, he is a former President of the United States. You may not like what he says (millions of Americans obviously don’t) but that does not give you the right to deny him freedom of speech. In fact, that is one of the very reasons the 1st Amendment exists—to protect ALL political speech, especially that which other people find disagreeable. In the late 1790s, when John Adams threw some of his political opponents in jail because he didn’t like what they said, he lost the election of 1800 to Thomas Jefferson, a man he hated. Let’s hope that historical precedent is repeated with Joe Biden.

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This kind of censorship/restrictionism is common for totalitarian governments and elitists (like Pharisees). The current lockdown situation in China is a perfect example. Of course, nobody in China has “freedom of speech”; walk down any street there carrying a “F*** Xi Jinping!” sign, and, after five minutes, you’ll never be heard from again. The Chinese know that and accept it because they can’t change it. They are getting fed up with the virus lockdowns, but they can’t change that, either. I still do some online English teaching with Chinese students. This weekend, one of my students (in Beijing) had to cancel three classes because he couldn’t leave school due to the virus quarantine. Three other students (in the southern city of Guangzhou) had to cancel, or delay, class the past two weekends due to being quarantined. As I have said before, these lockdowns have absolutely nothing to do with the virus and everything to do with Lord Xi informing the peasants that he is in control and they WILL obey. It’s about power, not about the virus. Xi Jinping couldn’t care less how many people die because of Covid. But he does care about free speech and people thinking they have the right to do things he doesn’t want them to do. Like leaving home and buying food. “You can’t do that until I tell you that you can.” It’s tyranny, not the virus. “You can’t get on Twitter, Mr. Trump, until you submit to the elitist dogma.” And 48% of Twitter users agreed with that.

When Democrats in America die, they don’t go to heaven; they go to China. That’s their dream.

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The Democratic Party is the most hypocritical institution on earth right now. They scream “democracy” and “racism,” but they are anti-democratic and racist to the core. Like the Pharisees of old, and the CCP of today, they love power, dominance, and manipulation. And if citizens don’t yield, then they get censored, or worse. That this is happening in America is, in one sense, shocking. Our whole founding was predicated on just the opposite vision.

But history warns us. And, tragically, as Hegel said, “History teaches us that men learn nothing from history.” Let’s hope it’s not too late.

Christmas is coming! Thanksgiving and cold weather, too. Get some good reading material to tide you over. My western novels, Whitewater and River Bend, are available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Eliva.com. A third western, Allie’s Dilemma, is available for Kindle only. And read some different posts on my blog at thailandlewis.blogspot.com.

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