Millennials should take note of Eric Blair
To my Millennial friends,
Your social justice fervor has taken on a revolutionary hue, but not in a 1776 sense. Today looks more like 1789, in France. Or 1918, in Russia.
Please listen to one of your own, Eric. Eric, a white prep-school educated son of civil servants, has described himself as “lower upper middle class.” In his twenties, Eric took interest in social justice causes, a self-identified democratic socialist. He has written about oppression, the economically disadvantaged, and the racist colonialism of his country.
In his early thirties, Eric traveled to join “anti-fascist” agitators in armed conflict. He unwittingly allied with anarchists and Marxists who advocated overthrow of the government. During the violence, Eric was shot through the neck. His life was spared by the width of a hair.
It was Eric’s experience with the Marxist revolutionaries that left the lasting mark on him. Left to their own devices, Eric learned that they are far worse than the imperialist inequities of his own country. Eric later discovered that these Marxists had even plotted to kill him for he was not “woke” enough for their cause.
Eric has written some excellent essays and books about what he learned. He describes how these revolutionaries take force by exploiting the plight of the “oppressed,” using them to procure the overthrow of power. Yet those supposedly oppressed ultimately never share in that power.
He astutely describes how these revolutionaries carefully employ language to plot their overthrow–and more so to retain power after. They engage double-speak to make what seems wrong, right.
When they do take full power, the power is total. Eric recounts how they erase names, pull down statues, and burn books. He describes how those who defy are “re-educated” — or simply removed. They dismantle institutions, such as the police and replace them with their own. They use cameras to watch. They enlist fellow citizens to spy and tell. They imprison for words and thoughts.
Eric died recently of the dreaded lung infection. Not COVID. Tuberculosis. And “recently” is a matter of degree. Eric died in 1950.
You may have heard of Eric, Eric Blair, by his other name: George Orwell.
My apologies to Paul Harvey for pilfering his literary device, but no one under forty knows about the “Rest of the Story” anyhow. Those of us who do also know how the rest of our story can end. Horribly.
We have read Eric’s Animal Farm and 1984. We remember Eric’s satirical utterance that “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” We are watching, and we will not passively become the farmer and the horses of the Animal Farm.
We are watching. We saw a Supreme Court justice vilified by shrieking protestors who clogged the halls of our Senate while we were admonished to “believe all women.”
We are forced to watch our daughters suffer athletic defeat to muscular young men who “identify as women.” Those who deign to cite the unfairness in this, right wingers like Martina Navritolova, are branded as bigots. We must merrily bake their cake and decorate it too.
We watch as a group of mostly white leftists has snatched part of a major U.S. city and ousted its police department, hijacking the moment because a black man was wrongfully killed in another city. We are told to kneel and acknowledge our “privilege,” though many, if not most, ordinary black citizens only wish to be treated fairly by police.
Any who differ are belittled, canceled, or derided as Uncle Toms. Few are spared. A major newspaper apologizes for publishing an opinion piece by a sitting U.S. senator whose heresy was to demand that we restore order. Treasured movies, like “Gone with the Wind,” are hidden. Cartoon characters are “disarmed.” Major universities enforce speech codes and rename buildings funded by “oppressors.” (Of course they won’t rename the schools themselves even if Yale University was founded by a slave trader. Sanctimony is seldom self-directed.)
Israel, the only democracy in the middle east, has been assailed by our home-grown leftists as an “Apartheid” regime and subjected to a boycott, divest, and sanctions effort. Cancel Israel. History has proved that revolutionaries have little use for Jewish people.
Or any religion for that matter. Lest we forget how the French “egalitarians” seized church property, toppled church statues, concocted a ten-day week renaming the days to expunge religious reference, stripped the names of saints from streets, killed priests, and outlawed the church altogether. Alas, today’s Hollywood starlets have resurrected John Lennon’s charge to “Imagine there’s no countries… and no religion too.”Can’t happen here, you say? That is what the regular folks in France, Russia, China, Cuba, North Korea, and Venezuela thought too.
Ethan Vessels is a lawyer in Marietta.