Story Must Be Told, Pt.6: Critical Theory — Don’t Repress Me, Bro!

Written by Clark Howell on July 23, 2013

Further, Marcuse (and his minions) believed that tolerance extends only to the ideas and beliefs of the powerful, while shutting out ideas on behalf of the weak or “marginalized”– the poor, minorities, women and the rest. While this may be true to a small extent, and has never been proven, I would argue that American society is built upon a foundation of safeguards built into the Constitution that should and does prevent the abuse of persons who find themselves marginalized.

So, if you “buy” this argument, what happens next is what Marcuse calls the exercise of Liberating Tolerance. Liberating Tolerance simply “liberates” those on the Left from having to honestly consider any ideas that come from the right side of the political spectrum. No muss, no fuss, right?

Wrong. The problem is, as Daniel Henninger put it in 2007:

Liberals consistently fail to see that there is a dark side to this “virtue” that they hold so dear – these notions of Repressive and Liberating Tolerance. The result of employing these tactics leads to a total break down of the political process, as the Left no longer feels any obligation to honestly respect the views of the other side.

Yeah, but you say, I don’t believe in this notion of Liberating Tolerance – I’ve never even heard of it! How could I practice something I’ve never heard of?

Well, the trouble is, as I see it, these notions have been so firmly engrained into our very social and political fiber, thanks to years and years of pressure and practice by those in power on the Left, that they inevitably became normal behavior for those who admire and follow these political and institutional “leaders.”

Ask yourself, how many times have you rejected someone’s suggestion regarding a problem or an issue simply because that person came from the other side of the political spectrum? I’ll admit that I have. And, if you have, than you practice Liberating Tolerance. Taken to the extreme, this practice has come to infiltrate and even take over many demonstrably left-leaning news organizations, such as the NY Times, Washington Post, AP, NBC, CBS and ABC. Even President Obama, in as much, admitted that this bias exists at a recent Washington correspondent’s dinner (with all the cameras running and everything) when he said to reporters gathered there, that “Most of you voted for me,” which, of course, they did.

Next week, “Here Come the 60’s, Baby,” where the Hippies and “progressives” reject the so-called Authoritarian Personality. Indeed, the 1960’s were such a “groovy” time that by 2008 America would elect an actual Cultural Marxist as its first black President, although almost no one quite realized it at the time. Most, of course, still don’t.

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Clark Howell is a 50-something, former Liberal who, sometime in the mid 1980's, began to take notice of Ronald Reagan and the positive policies that he and his political allies brought to the table of American life and politics. Since first leaning about Barrack Obama and his ambitions in 2004, he has begun a quest to understand the motivations behind modern "Liberalism" and "Progresivism." Mr. Howell is a professional Marketing Consultant in Central Massachusetts.