A guest column by Tom McCaffrey
The owner of a gym in Troy, Missouri recently asked army vet Jake Talbot not to wear his “Trump 2016” shirt to her gym in the future. The owner did so in response to complaints from other customers that the shirt made them feel “uncomfortable.”
It is all too common nowadays for graduates of our finer colleges to accord moral significance to their feelings, regardless of whether those feelings are objectively reasonable. You’re uncomfortable? Then clearly someone needs to alter his behavior. Reports say that some customers found the shirt “offensive” or “racist.”
That such judgments are preposterous is irrelevant in our brave new world of political correctness.
The culture warriors at Ms. Drew’s gym have won a small victory over President Trump’s America
What about the discomfort of Mr. Talbot at having to alter his dress at the whim of anonymous complainers? Also irrelevant. As a white male, Mr. Talbot has no say in the matter. Gym owner Liz Drew texted that she just wants “to ensure that all my members feel safe and unthreatened.” Threatened? By a shirt with our president’s name on it? Ms. Drew is well schooled in the lingo of the Left.
Will Ms. Drew now ban all expressions of political opinion, Republican and Democratic alike, from her customer’s garb? Perhaps, but Republicans are not in the habit of objecting to such things. To complain that a T-shirt makes one feel unsafe or threatened is strictly a leftist ploy. It is guerilla theater, probably learned in college, likely at taxpayers’ expense.
In this case, it is a way of giving effect to one’s moral evaluation of Donald Trump, and of imposing that evaluation on the deplorable Mr. Talbot. And it advertises to all involved that any right-minded, appropriately sensitive person should likewise be offended by the name “Trump” on a T-shirt.
Will Ms. Drew now prohibit her customers from wearing a crucifix around their necks, should someone complain? Will she ban the display of the American flag because it causes sensitive leftists to suffer the vapors? How soon before all the symbols and expressions of our great culture disappear from view, to be replaced by those of the brave new Left.
Such craven groveling before the gods of political correctness is now the rule among the putative guardians of Western civilization
Which brings us to Notre Dame president Rev. John Jenkins, who has announced that murals long on display at the campus depicting the life of Christopher Columbus will, in effect, be relocated to a place where “the darker side” of the Columbus story can accompany the murals. Such craven groveling before the gods of political correctness is now the rule among the putative guardians of Western civilization.
The culture warriors at Ms. Drew’s gym have won a small victory over President Trump’s America, the America of individual rights, limited government, and private property. They can now claim the gym as “liberated” territory, liberated from the forces of patriarchy and “heteronormativity” and “white supremacy.” Credit where credit is due: the Left know how to win a culture war, one little patch of ground at a time.
If we don’t start contesting their every assault, and with a whole lot more moral conviction than the Reverend Jenkins has been able to summon, we shall soon find ourselves like the British at Dunkirk, with no more ground to surrender. And there will be no boats coming to rescue us.