I’m a free speech absolutist who is blessed to live in a country where we have a First Amendment that protects all speech, including hate speech. That said, I’m not a fan of hateful speech. I don’t encourage it and certainly don’t endorse it. Nor do I like intolerance.
Yet what is hate speech? For an increasing number of people on the Left, it now seems to be defined merely as speech they don’t like or even people they don’t like expressing themselves. That seemed to be the case on Sunday night when Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted in response to two Christian ads that aired during the Super Bowl.
“Fascism!” AOC claimed.
Something tells me Jesus would *not* spend millions of dollars on Super Bowl ads to make fascism look benign
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 13, 2023
The ads to which Ocasio-Cortez appeared to be responding to were part of a faith-based campaign titled ‘Jesus gets us.’ The first commercial showed children loving and embracing each other, and encouraged everyone to love one another. To “be childlike.”
It was sweet.
The second ad featured still photos of people from different backgrounds yelling at each other, appearing to encapsulate the often venomous current national mood. The video urged viewers to “Love your enemies.”
It was a wonderful message.
“Jesus loved the people we hate,” a final standalone sentence read, followed by, “He gets us.”
Who the hell would hate that message?
I wasn’t alone in thinking that AOC, even by her standards, had lost her mind.
That's your take from a great Super Bowl ad reminding us of the truth, universal to all religions and all wisdom, that hate is bad?
Are you serious?
You have jumped the shark. Presumably, an intern is writing your tweets while you wear a fancy dress to a Super Bowl ball.
— Eric Owens (@ericowensdc) February 13, 2023
When you get really mad at the "don't hate people" ad. https://t.co/N9YFzUvZDo
— Dan McLaughlin (@baseballcrank) February 13, 2023
Love your enemy equates to Fascism? 🤣. You’re brilliant!
— Lee Ziemba (@Ziemba73) February 13, 2023
In speculating what AOC probably didn’t like about the commercials, CNN reported that the ad campaign “has connections to anti-LGBT and anti-abortion laws” because The Servant Foundation that oversees the project “has donated tens of millions to the Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative Christian legal group.”
Is that what AOC considers “benign fascism?” Christians who hold orthodox views on homosexuality, marriage, and abortion? Because there are millions of people of faith in America among a variety of faiths whose religious and political views might not line up with hers.
It’s called diversity. Free speech. Individual liberty. You know, the very opposite of fascism.
That’s why religious liberty protections are included in the same constitutional amendment as our speech protections. They are all part of the same liberty ball. Inextricably so.
Actual fascists would only allow one view, typically the state’s view—which seems to be what Ocasio-Cortez actually wants, maybe? Do Democrats want to bring back the Disinformation Governance Board and label the ads “misinformation?” As determined by only AOC and people who agree with her?
Seriously: AOC is accusing Christians of “fascism” because some of them shared messages of love during one of the largest feel-good national gatherings of the year. That makes about as much sense as calling Gandhi ‘fascist’ because you disagree with Hindu orthodoxy or Mother Theresa ‘fascist’ because you disagree with Catholic orthodoxy.
Grown-ups don’t do that. People yearning for a more peaceful culture, a more loving society, and genuine diversity don’t do that.
Hateful people do.