Rod Dreher has been writing about the plight of Princeton professor Joshua Katz, who has been attacked by students, faculty, and administration over his public dissent of attempts to give additional benefits to Princeton faculty of color (additional salary, sabbatical semesters).
Dreher, as you may remember, is the author of the book, Live Not by Lies, which describes the similarity of Communist countries that attacked anyone who engaged in dissent from the totalitarian orthodoxy. That was what he called “hard totalitarianism.” Today, he argues, we have “soft totalitarianism” practiced on college campuses, by social media platforms, and by woke companies.
Professor Katz is a distinguished Classics professor with tenure. Therefore, it is harder for the university to cancel him. Instead, the university directs incoming freshmen to read about him on the university website, “in which Professor Katz is introduced to them as one of the most evil people on campus.”
The same week this article appeared, there were notable examples of people being cancelled. For example, Army General Michael Flynn was notified by Chase Bank that they were going to cancel his credit cards because he posed a “possible reputational risk to our company.” Once that story hit the news, the company claimed their letter was a mistake.
Candace Owens received an email from a COVID testing facility refusing her service because of her politics. Of course, she could merely go to another clinic to get a COVID test. But we also know that you are NOT allowed to decline to bake a cake (Jack Phillips) or provide flowers (Barronelle Stutzman) for a same-sex wedding ceremony.
These are just a few examples of how “soft totalitarianism” is surfacing in nearly every part of American society.