If what I am about to tell you is true, almost everything we most treasure – freedom, beauty, reason, the family, economic well-being, and even goodness – is in jeopardy.
Who or what poses this threat?
The answer is the most powerful ideology of the last hundred years: leftism. Not liberalism; leftism – or, if you prefer, "progressivism."
Leftism destroys everything it touches.
Here are a just a few examples:
1. The universities
Perhaps the most obvious example – one that many liberals acknowledge – is the left's near destruction of most universities as places of learning. In the words of Harvard professor Steven Pinker – an atheist and a liberal – because of the left, "universities are becoming laughing stocks of intolerance."
At almost every university – and now high schools and even elementary schools – students are taught to shut down – not debate – those who differ with them. And to rely on feelings rather than reason.
2. The arts
Throughout history, the primary purpose of art was to elevate people – through beauty, artistic excellence, and emotional depth. To the left, the primary purpose of art, sculpture, and music is to shock. That's why so much contemporary art is meaningless, and involves the scatological, meaning urine and feces.
Yes, urine and feces. To give one of countless examples, in 2016, the Guggenheim Museum in New York featured a pure-gold working toilet, which visitors were invited to use. The name of the exhibit was "America" – so one could literally relieve oneself on America.
The English department at the University of Pennsylvania replaced the portrait of the greatest English-language writer who ever lived, William Shakespeare, with a picture of a black lesbian poet. Why? Because he was a white European male. Leftist professors have replaced the pursuit of excellence with the pursuit of diversity.
4. Late-night television
In America, late-night television shows were completely apolitical. The hosts believed their role was to entertain viewers and offer them relief and laughter after a difficult day. No longer. You cannot watch late-night television if you just want to be entertained. Late-night TV is now left-night TV.
The left has ruined much of mainstream Protestantism and Catholicism, and non-Orthodox Judaism, which are now little more than left-wing organizations with religious symbols. In many churches and synagogues, one is more likely to hear the clergy talk about political issues than about any other subject, including even the Bible.
6. Free Speech
If there was anything virtually every American considered a bedrock value, it was freedom of speech. Yet, the left is destroying even this unique American achievement. Almost half of America's young people say they believe in free speech – but not for "hate speech." Yet, the whole point of free speech is that it allows people to express any political or social position, including what any one of us considers "hate speech." And "hate speech" now means "any position the left differs with."
America has become the least racist multi-racial society in world history. On a daily basis, Americans of every race and ethnicity get along superbly. But the left constantly poisons young minds with angry diatribes about "systemic racism," "micro aggressions," and "white privilege."
8. The Boy Scouts
The left is destroying the Boy Scouts. They're not even the Boy Scouts anymore; they're just the Scouts. The left forced them to admit girls.
Here's the thing about the left: it only destroys. It doesn't build. The Boy Scouts have helped shape tens of millions of boys into independent, strong, good men. So where is the left-wing version of the Boy Scouts? It doesn't exist. There is none.
In some ways scariest of all, the left is committed to ending male and female as distinct categories. Children are increasingly raised not to think of themselves as a boy or a girl. Teachers are told not to refer to their students as "boys" or "girls," just "students." In New York City, parents do not have to check off male or female on their newborn's birth certificate. They can check off "x." All this imposed gender confusion can only end up producing confused people and a confused society.
So why does the left engage in so much destruction? Because it thinks America is essentially a bad country. But America is only bad compared to Utopia. And the left is utopian.
I'm Dennis Prager.