As 2019 comes to an end, one of the (many) things it will be remembered for is the year politicians weaponized children. Politicians have always used kids as props, but now they’re routinely tossed around as explosive devices to short circuit or end discussions adults don’t want to take place. And we’re all in trouble if we let it succeed.
It actually started in 2018, with the David Hoggs of the world who were eager to turn tragedy into attention. The media was a more than willing partner, elevating voices singing songs they liked while ignoring every student with the same experience who wouldn’t sing the left-wing’s tune.
But 2019 took it to the next level. Not only did the left continue to use previous years models, they created a new queen in Greta Thunberg, presenting her as the savior of the entire planet.
Curiously, in the name of the environment, all that saving would cost us is our liberty, something the left has been after since the progressive movement started over 100 years ago.
In the name of saving the planet, all we have to do is cede all power to the central planners, swearing this time it won’t end the way it always has: suffering, death, and destruction. One thing the left excels at is insisting it’s not their ideas that have always led to failure, it was the implementation, and they’re the ones who will finally get it right.
But that is as it has always been: a lie. To avoid having to explain themselves and their failed history of lies, the left has wrapped itself in children, human shields to deflect questions and reality. To question Greta and any other child they’ve scared the hell out of with their propaganda is to “attack a child.” It’s typical leftist manipulation: lie, but package it in a way they frame as immoral to question. It’s only necessary when the message doesn’t hold up to scrutiny, and their climate alarmism doesn’t hold up to scrutiny.
For generations, progressives have been preaching about end times as a result of humanity, more specifically capitalism. Capitalism is their real target, their real enemy.
When the “scientific consensus” was a coming ice age, the solution was more government power, more regulations, higher taxes, and less freedom; i.e. less capitalism, less freedom.
But the ice didn’t come. In its absence, and in need of something to scare people into submission, the exact opposite prediction took its place. Weirdly, when the “problem” switched 180 degrees, the “solution” stayed the same. There aren’t many problems where that happens, no real problems anyway.
To protect from that reality, to insulate themselves from criticism, they’re using children. “It’s their future we’re ruining, so we must listen to them,” the argument goes. That would be a fine argument if we’re talking about dumping a barrel of mercury into the drinking water, but we’re talking about normal human activity, and normal human activity is what progressives have always sought to control.
The idea that we should listen to children, children marinated in doomsday cult propaganda for just such a purpose, is as insane as predictions in the first place.
It’s not just “climate change” where the left is attempting to weaponize children, it’s pretty much everything. Vaping, food bans, sugary drinks, health care, student loans, etc., etc. You name it, and the left has thrust children into the forefront of it.
They’ve gone so far as to advocate lowering the voting age to 16 while simultaneously raising the age for other things (purchasing tobacco products, staying on parents’ health insurance, etc). Get their vote, and their numbers, before they’re old enough to think for themselves and recognize the lies they’ve been told by people they’re supposed to be able to trust. All the while, using them as a shield.
It’s as diabolical as it is brilliant, but it can’t be allowed to succeed.
Bad ideas are bad ideas, and threats to liberty are threats to liberty, no matter the package that contains them. Using children to avoid that reality is despicable but not surprising. When you can’t win an argument, you change the rules governing the debate to your advantage. That’s exactly what the left is trying to do, and it’s what the right must not allow to happen. Children are our future, but adults must lead the present so there is a future worth having.
Derek is the host of a free daily podcast (subscribe!)