Internet talk show host Dave Rubin says he no longer identifies as a progressive after becoming disillusioned with the left’s increasing disregard for concepts such as freedom of speech, religious liberty and judging people on the content of their character rather than the color of their skin.
In an episode of Prager University released on Monday, Mr. Rubin says so-called progressives are actually rather regressive.
“Banning speakers whose opinions you don’t agree with from college campuses — that’s not progressive,” Mr. Rubin says in the four-minute video. “Prohibiting any words not approved of as ‘politically correct’ — that’s not progressive. Putting ‘trigger warnings’ on books, movies, music, anything that might offend people — that’s not progressive, either.”
“All of this has led me to believe that much of the left is no longer progressive, but regressive,” he continues.
The host of the eponymous “Rubin Report,” a popular talk show on YouTube, Mr. Rubin says progressives have become obsessed with identity politics and measuring which group has been most victimized by straight, white males.
“If you’re black, or female, or Muslim, or Hispanic or a member of any other minority group, you’re judged differently than the most evil of all things: a white, Christian male,” he says. “The regressive left ranks minority groups in a pecking order to compete in a kind of ‘Oppression Olympics.’ Gold medal goes to the most offended.”
But none of these things leads to a flourishing and free society, Mr. Rubin says. In fact, they’re the perfect “recipe for authoritarianism.”
“I’m a married gay man, so you might think that I appreciate the government forcing a Christian baker or photographer or florist to act against their religion in order to cater, photograph or decorate my wedding. But you’d be wrong,” he says. “A government that can force Christians to violate their conscience can force me to violate mine. If a baker won’t bake you a cake, find another baker; don’t demand that the state tell him what to do with his private business.”
Mr. Rubin says he now describes his political views as “classically liberal.”
“For these reasons, I can no longer call myself a progressive,” he says. “I don’t really call myself a Democrat, either. I’m a classical liberal. A free thinker. And, as much as I don’t like to admit it, defending my liberal values has suddenly become a conservative position.”