Kamala’s Values Cudgel
by Ilana Mercer
Sen. Kamala Harris talks a lot about “our American values.” Ditto the other female candidates who’ve declared for president in the busy Democratic field.
“Our American values are under attack,” Harris has tweeted. “Babies are being ripped from their parents at the border …” As to her own proud “know your values moment,” the Democrat from California pinpoints the U.S. Senate Supreme Court confirmation proceedings inflicted on Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
To manipulate Americans, politicians always use the values cudgel. With respect to immigration, the idea is to impress upon gullible Americans that the world has a global Right of Return to the U.S. Fail to accept egalitarian immigration for all into America and you are flouting the very essence of Americanism. Or, to use liberal argumentation, you’re Hitler.
When politicians pule about the importance of preserving “our values,” they mean their values: Barack Obama’s values, Hillary Clinton’s values, Angela Merkel’s values, Chucky Schumer’s values, Jeff Bezos’ values, the late John McMussolini’s values, Lindsey Graham’s values, and Jared and Ivanka’s values (but not Trump’s).
When a politician preaches about “the values that make our country great,” to quote Mrs. Clinton, chances are they mean multiculturalism, pluralism, wide-swung borders, Islam means peace, communities divided by diversity as a net positive, and the Constitution (it mandates all the above, just ask Ruth Bader Ginsburg) as a living, breathing, mutating philosophical malignancy.
For them, “protecting” the abstraction that is “our way of life” trumps the protection of real individual lives. “We must guard against a weakening of the values that make us who we are,” opined Obama in the weeks before he was gone. The empty phrase is meant to make the sovereign citizen—you—forget that government’s most important role, if not its only role, is to protect individual life.
In his last few addresses, Obama promised to speak up on “certain issues,” in times when “our core values may be at stake.” Likewise, in delivering her Control-Alt-Delete speech against the Deplorables, Clinton asserted that “our country is great because we’re good. … Donald Trump disregards the values that make our country great.”
Such groupthink notwithstanding, only individuals can be virtuous, not collectives. Self-government, and not imposed government, implies that society, and not the State, is to develop value systems. The State’s role is to protect citizens as they go about their business peacefully, living in accordance with their peaceful values. A limited government, serving a free people, must never enforce values.
When you hear an appeal to “the values that make our country great,” to quote Clinton and the current crop of Democratic candidates—you know that you are dealing with crooks. These crooks want to swindle you out of the freedom to think and believe as you wish. In the classical conservative and libertarian traditions, however, values are private things, to be left to civil society—the individual, family and church—to practice and police.
The American government is charged with upholding the law, no more. Why so? Because government has police and military powers. A free people dare not entrust such an omnipotent entity with policing values, at home or abroad, for values enforced are dogma.
When incontestable majorities call on government to curb illegal immigration because it may imperil American lives, President Trump’s unswerving opponents (within his party and without) and their media mafia—invariably intone, “That’s not who we are.” Re that manipulative mantra, tell them to zip it up, mind their own business, stick to their constitutional mandate to protect the people, not police their minds. The American People must never admit into their midst those whose values are inimical to their very survival.
Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa (2011) & The Trump Revolution: The Donald’s Creative Destruction Deconstructed” (June, 2016). She’s on Twitter, Facebook, Gab & YouTube