Lean, a gutter thug who has threatened me repeatedly, did not, of course, did not reply to the arguments I presented in my piece responding to his op-ed; he doesn’t give any indication of being either intelligent or honest enough to do so.
But he does respond below to a letter to the editor that pointed out that he was calling for defenders of freedom to be censored. He wasn’t calling for censorship, he explains; he was only calling for those who call for resistance to the jihad and Islamic supremacism to be “publicly shamed.” Oh, that’s a big difference.
My Op-Ed article on Islamophobia and the Anders Behring Breivik verdict sparked a lively debate. And that’s a good thing. Conversations like this belong in the pages of prominent newspapers, not on the blogs of hate group leaders.
This is extremely ironic coming from a man who ignored my full-length reply to him, that was published in the Times as well, and instead focused on one letter to the editor.
But here Lean is practicing what he preaches: he has dismissed me as a “hate group leader,” and thus presumably unworthy of a response. The idea that I am a “hate group leader” comes from the Southern Poverty Law Center, which dedicates itself to smearing and defaming voices on the Right with which it disagrees; in reality, neither Lean nor the SPLC can or do explain what is “hateful” about standing for the freedom of speech, the freedom of conscience, and equality of rights for all people. Lean, like all on the authoritarian-minded Left, is hoping that you will fall for the smears and turn away from the message of defenders of freedom without their having to make a rational or honest case against us.
Shapiro falsely asserts that I prescribed censorship to combat a growing discourse of hate. Instead, what I advocated was that reasonable voices within the population should publicly shame bigots and marginalize their harmful messages so that there is a well-considered and persuasive counterpoint that drowns out their hate. If thoughtful people more frequently and more forcefully speak out against individuals who provided Breivik with his ideological underpinnings, one day, hopefully, they will be treated with the same derision as the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazi groups.
Re Breivik, my counter-argument is here, and I have often repeated it elsewhere. Lean has never responded to it. Instead, like Goebbels, he keeps repeating his own lie that we inspired Breivik, and evidently hopes that if he repeats it often enough, it will stick. But his other charges here have no basis in reality, either. The KKK and neo-Nazis stand for racial hate. I stand for equality of rights for all people. There is no comparison, and no bigotry in what I do.
And we should be “publicly shamed and marginalized”! What is this — the Salem Witch Trials? But it’s okay — Nathan Lean assures us that that is not censorship. What is it, then? And who will decide who should be publicly shamed and marginalized? What will Nathan Lean do if the worm turns, and the Leftist stranglehold on the mainstream media is somehow broken, and mainstream outlets suddenly become hospitable to defenders of freedom — would he then want those whose ideas are not mainstream to be “publicly shamed and marginalized”?
As I have pointed out before, this boy Lean is no friend of the freedom of speech, and has a fundamentally authoritarian mindset. It isn’t that he is important at all — the problem is that his boss Reza Aslan and the Los Angeles Times either don’t realize or don’t care about the sinister tyrannical edge of Lean’s writing. As Aslan is a stealth Islamic supremacist, that is not surprising, but as I wrote in my response to Lean’s first piece in the Times, there may come a day when they regret supporting proponents of authoritarian censorship.