A few weeks ago former President Barack Obama traveled to Germany, met with the chancellor and talked about the dire need to combat climate change — and then, in the very next breath, spoke of the right of all people to be respected, regardless of their ethnic backgrounds, regardless of where they lived.
He likened climate change to civil rights. He cast climate change as a human rights issue — a social justice issue.
He changed the narrative so that the topic of high controversy turned into one that’s hard to fight. After all, who can argue against civil rights, human rights, equality for all?
And that right there is the first of three big ways the left has been able to advance its progressive-slash-socialist-slash-secular Big Government agenda into America. Changing the narrative gives those on the left the ability to dictate the terms of the battle — to shape the battle as they see fit, to their best advantage. They do it frequently.
Think gun control, where Second Amendment rights’ supporters are practically called child killers every time there’s a school shooting. Think LGBTQ rights where those who believe in traditional marriage, in biblical teachings, in the fact that God determines sex, are accused of unfairly and coldly keeping apart those who are simply in love, or who are only trying to freely express their true selves. Think immigration and border control where those who simply believe in the rule of law are accused of bias and discrimination and racism.
The left fights hard to keep ahold of the narrative because those who control the rhetoric cower into silence those who would oppose and ultimately, control the culture. And that’s win number two for the left of late — controlling the culture. Just ask Chick-fil-A, which has been under near-constant attack because its owners and executives believe in traditional, biblically based marriage.
Just ask the Boys Scouts of America, which has been pressured into allowing gays serve as leaders — and into changing their application packet to allow for boys who self-identify as girls and girls who self-identify as boys to join the group.
Just ask all the cake bakers around the nation who simply want to run their cake-baking businesses in ways that don’t conflict with their religious, Christian, Bible-based beliefs.
The sad fact is radical liberals have been so successful at controlling the narrative that they’ve been emboldened to go after businesses and organizations and entities for so-called crimes against the special interests — and in so doing, completely flip traditional Judeo-Christian normalcies. Why?
Chaos is good for leftist business.
Once leftists have control of the narrative and stifle those who would dissent, once liberals have seized the culture and spun the abnormal as normal, the right as wrong, the evil as good — and insisted the rest of the nation do so, too — the last wall to crumble to usher in Big Government’s dream of total societal takeover is to boot God from the public arena.
Because nobody says rights versus wrong like God, right?
Nobody says absolutes like God, right?
That’s where America’s at now. This is the final frontier of America’s fight before the walls crumble, the leftists win, and the limited-government types are pushed to the side. First comes the changing of the narrative that lets leftists cause the confusion that lets them win the battle. Then comes the stealing of the culture that lets the left create the chaos of a society without absolutes, without standards. Then comes the driving of God from all-things-public so that government can swoop in and become the new god.
America was founded on the idea that rights come from God, not government. In order to keep this idea in place — in order to keep America the dream of the free — Americans must fight for the right to keep God in the public arena.
It’s the only way to save America from the socialists, and worse.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter, @ckchumley.