A Safe Zone For Conservatives

05/01/2017 12:20 am ET Updated May 01, 2017

What twisted logic do conservatives use? Not long ago they were whining that bigots going to college campuses should be protected from assault—and they should be in my opinion. But bigots should also be ignored.

Then you get conservatives like Erick Erickson of Fox News claiming this rule doesn’t apply to individuals who dress in ways that make real men uncomfortable. “I’m really damn tired of all the people running around making other people extremely uncomfortable then screaming about their rights and privileges when called out. If you want to go around making people uncomfortable, you’ve got the problem, not the rest of us.”

Erickson wants a safe zone for conservatives.

Erickson was talking about men who he doesn’t think are dressed masculine enough to calm his terror about homosexuality. If a man isn’t dressed masculine then he should expect to get punched writes Erickson. “If a guy walks into a bar in Wyoming wearing make up and a tutu, he’s probably going to be asked to leave, if not picked on or punched. If you don’t like that, don’t go to a bar in Wyoming wearing a tutu. It really is that simple.”

Would it work to say: “If a guy walks onto a campus promoting racism he’s probably going to be asked to leave, if not picked on or punched. If you don’t like that, don’t go to a campus spewing hate. It really is that simple.”

But, if I were to argue that position, conservatives would be triggered and demand a safe zone to recover from the shock.

If someone dresses in ways that make Erickson weak in the knees, and they are assaulted, it’s partly their fault. “[Y]es, the dude wearing the tutu shoulders some of the responsibility. He should have known better,” wrote Erickson. The emphasis is his own.

By that logic if some religious extremist rapes a woman, because she showed her ankle, or her face, her attacker is justified to say, “Yes, the woman wearing the short dress shoulders some of the responsibility. She should have known better.”

Erickson’s own hypocrisy is blatant in his diatribe. He writes: “If you want to keep pushing boundaries and making people uncomfortable, don’t be surprised when people try desperately to revert to cultural norms.” At the same time he attacks “liberals” for not tolerating conservatives.

Conservatives assaulting men over how they dress is to be expected in Erickson’s world, but neo-Nazis, racists, and gay bashers on campus deserve their rights. Why are hate mongers allowed to “keep pushing boundaries and making people uncomfortable” but the guy in the tutu is not?

Erickson’s final word is, “Stop your bitching that others have to go along with your ‘rights.’ Get over yourself.”

A consistent application of this would mean:

“Milo Yiannopoulos, stop your bitching that others have to go along with your ‘rights.’ Get over yourself.”

“Ann Coulter, stop your bitching that others have to go along with your ‘rights.’ Get over yourself.”

The modern conservative movement has picked up one of the most blatant sins of religious fundamentalism—a blatant hypocrisy and double standard.

If a conservative refuses to serve a gay customer it’s “freedom of association” and should be legal. If a gay business owner refuses service to a fundamentalist, it’s religious persecution and should be illegal.

If religious conservatives call for yet another boycott of Disney, it’s free markets at work. If people boycott Chick-fil-A for donating to bigoted groups it’s intimidation.

What conservatives don’t quite get is individual rights are a two-way street. Individuals even have rights if they aren’t male, aren’t white, aren’t Christian, aren’t straight, etc. In fact, they even have rights if they walk around in a tutu in Wyoming.

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