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EDITORIAL: Another day and the perpetual outrage machine keeps humming along

In these hyper-partisan political times, every day is a day of outrageous outrage. People across the political spectrum wake up each morning, head to social media and join in on the grievance du jour.

Last month, students shouted down an outwardly liberal, progressive professor at Evergreen State College after he took a completely reasonable viewpoint regarding the right to speak — or even just exist — on campus. The professor’s dastardly misdeed? He opposed a scheduled Day of Absence on which all white people would be asked to leave campus. Students are now demanding he be fired, or at least suspended without pay, for being racist.

That’s a case of political correctness having gotten so bad that the left is now devouring its own.

Media Matters is a liberal-leaning organization whose stated goal is “comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media.” But the progressive watchdogs go well beyond that. In just the past couple weeks the group has launched a campaign targeting advertisers on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show. Media Matters not only wants advertisers out, but ultimately wants Mr. Hannity out of work.

And, no, it’s not just the left. A couple of months ago, late-night TV host Stephen Colbert made a derogatory joke about President Donald Trump. It certainly pushed the bounds of good taste, but many on the right — clearly emboldened by the liberal left’s rule that if you strongly disagree with somebody’s politics, that somebody must be ruined — pushed for CBS to fire Mr. Colbert.

In the past week, Kathy Griffin’s gratuitous and grotesque display went viral. In a photo shoot, the stand-up comedian was shown standing with the purported decapitated and bloodied head of President Trump in her hand. It was well over the line, as most people agreed — she was criticized for it from all corners, and she subsequently apologized amid huge backlash. Yet many right-leaning folks jumped on the politically correct bandwagon they claim to abhor, calling for her to be silenced and exiled and pressuring companies to ensure she doesn’t work again.

Generally speaking, there is indeed a gaping double-standard between how those on the left and the right are “allowed” to act and react to issues of the day. But if conservatives are going to decry the progressive fascists now running amok, they do themselves no favors by mimicking them in an effort to “get even.”

Perhaps Ms. Griffin’s stunt can teach a valuable lesson: Those who don’t like it when a member of their team comes under fire for some perceived slight should keep that in mind the next time they try to get someone fired or a business boycotted, often for much lower offenses — if they’re offenses at all, by most sane folks’ standards — than Ms. Griffin’s debacle of an idea.

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