There was a time in our childhood where words carried a meaning. Words conveyed some beliefs, some feelings, some identity. If you labelled someone, that person would be bothered by that label; they would try to explain why they are not that person.
But then things started “progressing”(sarcasm alert). The left kept getting stronger and vocal, and they began dropping labels until the point it became farce.
Take my story as an example. A few months ago, I was one of the many people who had filed a complaint against Vishal Dadlani for insulting the Jain Guru Tarun Sagar Ji Maharaj. Post that, I got calls from various media houses. Every time a media house would call me I would begin my conversation by stating the following points:
- I am Nireshvarvaadi (for folks who find this word too complicated you can call me an atheist. Although I don’t call myself an atheist).
- I would then state the reason I filed a complaint against Vishal Dadlani, even though I believed in free speech (this tweet of mine sums up my reason).
But there was something very disturbing in those conversations I had with these media outlets. Every time I was called, the media outlet on the phone expected a particular type of response from my side. In fact, in one case a fellow told me “but aap to BJP supporter ho naah”.
I was shocked at the response. It was as if the person had convinced himself even before conversing with me that if I support XYZ political outfit, I have to be of a particular personality type. But then as the conversation went on, that person must have found my thoughts to be deeply distressing.
Guess why? I was far too liberal for him. I was a “Sanghi” who is ok with homosexuality. I was a “Sanghi” who wants absolute freedom of speech. I was a “Sanghi” who believed in individual liberty that a left-leaning journalist couldn’t digest in their entire life.
The left has tried this tactic for ages now. If you cannot debate a person on facts and logic, you simply label the living daylights out of them. Take my case as an example. I have never attended an RSS Shakha. Heck, I am not even a member of the RSS. But because I disagree with the left and vote for the BJP I am called a “Sanghi”.
But, if being a Sanghi means that you support same-sex marriage, you are for absolute freedom of speech, you want a small government that doesn’t interfere in your day to day life than I am a proud Sanghi. If supporting anything that is backed by evidence makes one a Sanghi than I am a proud Sanghi.
Now words don’t carry any meaning. The left is responsible for the dilution of terms to the extent that no one takes these labels seriously anymore. Not that the label Sanghi is bad or good, but this has been a standard approach of the left. If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, you baffle them with bullshit.
And then you associate the label with something horrifying, and you try to sully the image of the opposing side. But what the left is saying via all of this is that anyone who disagrees with them is a Racist, Sexist, Xenophobe, Islamophobe, Homophobe, Fascist, etc. If you poke and prod them and try to get a justification for such an accusation, all they will say is “they just are”. Anyone who is not a leftist is one or all of these fantastic labels by default.
And the tragedy of all of this is that the leftists just don’t get it. They have entirely convinced themselves about their moral superiority. They have taken the mantle of being the moral judges of this world without anyone handing it out to them. And this is the reason why they are losing the world over. Whether it was Brexit or it is the victory of Donald Trump. The left just doesn’t get it. If you keep labelling people to avoid debates all you do is piss them off to the point that they vote for the other side and start accepting those labels as badges of honour.
This backlash is inevitable and has begun happening all over the world. If you are going to call someone names for merely supporting a political leader, you make that person even more determined to support that leader. If the left wants to win again, consider shutting up for a while.
Not everyone who disagrees with you is “Hitler”. But the leftists will go on calling Narendra Modi that name. The more you call Narendra Modi Hitler, the easier it gets for him to convince the people that he is not Hitler. Because always remember, people are not stupid. They see things for themselves. But the left wants to babysit the entire nation. Comparing Narendra Modi to Hitler won’t affect him at all, if anything, it’s helping him tremendously.
Silencing varying opinions is the way things are done in Pakistan, China and North Korea. Do we want to become like that? Or do we want to become a vibrant democracy where people have healthy debates with each other? The left intends to become the final judge of what is defined as knowledge. To them discovering the truth is not a journey which one has to take and then eventually they find it. The left has become power hungry. In this quest for power, they are trying to control all forms of knowledge dissemination and trying to redefine our entire cultural fabric.
There is a new type of liberalism in town. It is in the shape of leftist illiberalism. I am purposely calling this illiberalism because I don’t want to destroy the word liberalism like the left has destroyed many words.
Always remember, when the left says it believes in tolerance, it is promoting intolerance (by sleeping with Islamists). When they say people should be open-minded, they are promoting closed-mindedness (by labelling others and shutting out debate). When they say we have to compassionate, they mean let us become hate-filled bigots (progressiveness becomes hate for everything traditional and native).
They still enjoy this power and hold on narrative, but their labels don’t bother me anymore.