On every issue, from guns, to taxes, to climate change, to abortion, to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the Left lies, repeatedly. They invent stats, skew science, present facts in a selective matter, and, at times lie of commit hoaxes. They do so to further their narrative. That they will lie, and think nothing of it illustrates the moral, and intellectual vacuum that Leftists live in. In the Virginia “gang rape” story for instance, Rolling Stone
journalist hack Sabrina Rubin Erdely had a narrative to push. The same “rape culture” narrative that radical Feminists are pushing. So, rather than investigating facts, and talking to all sides, she simply tried and convicted a UVA fraternity. Again, that it was not true, did not deter her. By God the truth is meaningless to the Left. The narrative is all that matters. Stacy McCain offers up some excellent points
One of the first journalists to raise serious questions about Rolling Stone‘s rape hoax story, Richard Bradley makes this point:
Sabrina Rubin Erdely started with a thesis and went in search of someone—and some place—that fit her thesis. She found Jackie and the University of Virginia. But, she admits, if she had discovered that Jackie was a liar, it wouldn’t have caused her to question her thesis.
Erdely’s article began with her belief — i.e., rape is commonplace on American campuses, and university officials are indifferent to the plight of victims — and all her “reporting” was intended to confirm this belief. Rather than following the facts wherever they might lead, Erdely instead ignored facts that did not fit her pre-existing belief, and therefore accepted Jackie’s gang-rape lies without investigating them properly.
Erdely’s article was not only a baseless smear of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity, but a vicious libel against University of Virginia officials who were presented as heartless enablers of an out-of-control culture of sexual violence. The crucial link in Erdely’s dishonest work — the person whose assistance made it possible for her to produce this cruel fabrication — was a young UVA activist named Emily Renda.
Ah the activist. I have written before why I loathe many activists, especially Leftist activists. They start out with an issue, then morph into a person obsessed with only that issue, a person to whom truth, again is meaningless. Finally, the activist becomes engrossed with only promoting themselves. Again, if the truth gets in their way, well…. Again, back to the Other McCain piece, and the “activist” Emily Renda
K.C. Johnson at National Review highlights Renda’s role:
“Last July 8, Sabrina Rubin Erdely, a writer for Rolling Stone, telephoned Emily Renda, a rape survivor working on sexual-assault issues as a staff member at the University of Virginia.” So opens the Columbia Journalism School’s review of Rolling Stone’s retracted story about the University of Virginia. The piece confirms that it was Renda who informed Erdely about Jackie, the fabulist whose tale became the spine of the Rolling Stone article. Though the CJR labels Renda a “rape survivor,” she appears never to have filed a complaint with the university, much less with the police.
Whether or not Renda was actually raped is hard to say. Certainly all victims of rape do not report it, Certainly no one deserves to be raped. Certainly rapists, in my view, should be put away forever. But all of that is not the point is it? And, more importantly, remember, it is likely only important to Renda in that she can use her victimhood, real or imagined for cred. We must not question her because, VICTIM! And victim hood is now becoming a desired status. Again, back to the McCain column
Excuse me if this seems impertinent or disrespectful, but this goes back to something that happened last summer. George Will wrote a column about the “campus rape epidemic” hysteria in which he said that university officials are learning “that when they make victimhood a coveted status that confers privileges, victims proliferate.” His suggestion that being a victim of rape is a “coveted status” on campus made Will a target of vilification, although anyone with two eyes and a brain can see that what he said (or, at least, what he intended to say) is quite true. Emily Renda’s status as a “rape survivor” has become the basis of her career as an activist, and Jackie’s tale of being raped at the Phi Kappa Psi house made her a source so authoritative that she was cited in Renda’s testimony to the U.S. Senate and was pursued by a reporter for Rolling Stone. So, yes, at some level, victimhood is a status sufficiently “coveted” on campus that Jackie was willing to lie to obtain that status. We have certainly seen how “victims proliferate” in this manner, and even several clear cases of rape hoaxes.
Go read the whole piece at The Other McCain, it is lengthy but well worth your time. I referenced it as a way to illustrate my point that to the Left, truth is unimportant. It matters not if something actually happens, or if data and stats are presented in a factual manner. It only matters that the narrative is fed, that is all. The Left thrives on the creation and perpetuation of narratives, and anything that aids that venture is wholly acceptable to Leftists. It is all part of the Left’s Collectivist world view, as this screed at New Republic shows
The left tends to view oppression as something that operates within systems, sometimes in clearly identifiable structural biases, and other times in subtle but persistent ways. Mortgage discrimination against black families over the last century is an example of a structural, on-the-books bias that had an extraordinarily damaging impact on African-Americans; but the fact that black children are read as older and less innocent than their white peers, while neither a law nor a regulation, is of a piece with the overall oppression of black folks in America, resulting in subtle treatment by teachers and authority figures that alienates black children from wider society starting at a very tender age. These disparate forms of discrimination come together, in the left imagination, to form a tightly composed set of prejudices and policies that are difficult to disentangle. Making sense of oppression, therefore, requires looking at entire systems of oppression, not just specific instances or behaviors.
In other words, facts do not matter as much as proving that “oppression” is rampant in America. Facts can be inconvenient. The Left loves to go on about the “disproportionate” arrests and convictions of Blacks. Yet, they ignore the disproportionate rate that young Black men commit violent crimes. They are currently selling a narrative that police officers across America are slaughtering young Black men. The facts are damned inconvenient for that narrative. The vast majority of dead young Black males are killed by other young Black males. But, focusing on that fact challenges the narrative, so anyone talking of it will likely be called a racist. Again, truth is unimportant to the Left.
The right, on the other hand, tends to understand politics on the individual level, which fits in neatly with a general obsession with the capital-i Individual. Thus, the right tends to pore over the specific details of high-profile cases like those of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, concluding that if those particular situations were embattled by complications or mitigating factors, then the phenomena they’re meant to represent must not be real either. And if a few highly publicized rapes turn out to be murkier than first represented, then rape itself is not a crisis, just a regrettable and rare anomaly. The positive version of this approach is the elevation of people like Joe the Plumber, individual cases that purportedly show the value and effectiveness of conservative politics. It isn’t great reasoning, but it is very appealing on a sub-intellectual level.
Aha! Those darned Right Wingers and their Individualism! They focus on facts! Imagine that! They are just trying to destroy the precious narrative with evil facts! In fact, the strange thing is that when facts are examined, almost all of the “hands up don’t shoot” narrative falls apart. Then there are all the incidents of racism, that were actually hoaxes committed by Leftist activists. Again, to the writer at New Republic, the narrative must not be challenged by truth. And if you do, well, you are just a sub-intellectual knuckle dragger or something. Hmmm, it would seem to me that an “intellectual” person would ask one question about the hoaxes, and disproved “hand up don’t shoot” narratives, and the supposed rape epidemic on campuses. That question is why is there a need to create false narratives, ignore facts, or even sink to hoaxes if these problems are as prevalent as the Left claims? It would certainly seem that such massive common place problems would offer numerous factual examples.
In short, an intelligent person would ask why the Left so often has to lie? And, if that person focuses on that question, they will soon realize that the Left does not value truth.