NICHOLS: There’s Nothing Progressive About Ignoring Reality

by | Jun 21, 2024 | Opinion

Let me tell you a story that really got under my skin recently. I was scrolling through Twitter the other day and came across this post in the r/trans subreddit. It was from a parent talking about their 3-year-old biological boy who suddenly started saying he felt more like a girl. This kid, barely out of diapers, was asking to be called by a new name and use different pronouns. And get this – the parents were going along with it (or dare I say… encouraging it)!

Now, as a dad myself with a 14-month-old at home, this just made my blood boil. I mean, come on! We’re talking about a toddler here. At that age, kids are still figuring out how to use a spoon properly, let alone make life-altering decisions about their gender identity. It’s like if my daughter suddenly declared she was a firetruck – should I start calling her “Engine” and spraying her with a hose?

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This whole situation really got me thinking about where we’re at as a society. How did we get to a point where we’re taking the whims of a 3-year-old so seriously on such a complex issue? It’s not just about this one family, either. This is happening all over the place, and it seems like anyone who questions it gets labeled a bigot or a transphobe.

But here’s the thing – I’m not afraid of trans people. I’m afraid of what’s going to happen to our society if we keep ignoring reality and common sense.

And you know what? This isn’t just some isolated incident. It’s part of a much bigger problem that’s been gnawing at me for a while now, especially when I look at what’s going on in the Libertarian Party. I mean, have you seen the backlash over Chase Oliver’s nomination? It’s like we’ve completely lost the plot. We’re supposed to be about individual liberty and personal responsibility, but instead, we’re getting caught up in this cultural leftism that’s just… well, it’s just not libertarianism.

Let me break it down for you. Chase, bless his heart, he’s out there talking about gender-affirming care for kids like it’s just another healthcare decision. But come on, folks. We’re not talking about getting an annual flu shot here. We’re talking about potentially life-altering treatments for kids who can’t even decide what they want for breakfast without changing their minds five times. How is that protecting individual liberty? How is that promoting personal responsibility?

And don’t even get me started on the whole COVID-19 response. Remember when Chase was all about masks and social distancing, even when you’re outside alone? That’s not libertarianism, that’s just buying into the fear-mongering hook, line, and sinker. We’re supposed to be the ones questioning authority, not blindly following it!

Now, I know some of you out there are probably thinking, “Brian, you’re letting your morals get in the way of your principles.” But here’s the thing – our principles are based on our morals. We can’t just separate the two and pretend they don’t influence each other. This whole “live and let live” mentality sounds great in theory, but in practice? It’s what’s gotten us into this mess.

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Think about it. We’ve gotten to a point where we can’t even express an opinion about someone else’s lifestyle without being called every name in the book. But what if that lifestyle is impacting society as a whole? What if it’s changing the very fabric of our culture? Don’t we have a right – no, a responsibility – to speak up?

I mean, I want to be able to take my daughter to a public event without worrying about seeing some grown man waving his junk around in the name of “progress.” Call me old-fashioned, but I don’t think that’s progress. I think it’s a step backwards. And I think we need to be able to say that without being shouted down.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying we should use government force to stop people from living their lives. That’s not what libertarianism is about. But we’ve got to be able to have honest conversations about this stuff. We’ve got to be able to look at the facts and say, “Hey, maybe this isn’t such a great idea.”

Take the whole trans issue, for example. Did you know that the number of kids identifying as something other than their biological sex has exploded in the past five years? Now, I’m no scientist, but that doesn’t seem natural to me. That seems like there’s something else going on – maybe social media, maybe the healthcare industry, maybe both. But we can’t even talk about it without being called bigots.

And here’s the kicker – a lot of libertarians are just going along with it. They’re so afraid of being seen as intolerant that they’re willing to ignore reality. They’re willing to pretend that a 3-year-old can make life-altering decisions about their gender. They’re willing to ignore the potential harm we’re doing to these kids in the name of being “progressive.”

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But let me tell you something – there’s nothing progressive about ignoring reality. There’s nothing libertarian about refusing to protect the most vulnerable members of our society. And there’s certainly nothing principled about letting fear of social backlash keep us from speaking the truth.
So where do we go from here? How do we get back to a place where we can have honest conversations about these issues? How do we protect individual liberty while also acknowledging the reality of the world we live in?

I think it starts with us. It starts with libertarians being willing to stand up and say, “Hey, this isn’t right. It starts with us being willing to have those tough conversations, even if it means facing backlash. It starts with us remembering that our principles are based on protecting individual rights – and that includes protecting kids from making decisions they’re not equipped to make.

We need to be willing to engage with people who disagree with us, but we also need to be smart about it. We need to make sure we’re having good-faith conversations, not just getting into shouting matches on social media. And we need to be willing to call out bad-faith actors when we see them.
But most importantly, we need to remember who we’re fighting for. We’re not just fighting for some abstract idea of liberty. We’re fighting for a future where our kids can grow up in a society that values individual freedom, personal responsibility, and yes, common sense.

So let’s get back to basics. Let’s remember what libertarianism is really about. It’s not about blindly accepting every new social trend that comes along. It’s about protecting individual rights, promoting personal responsibility, and standing up for what’s right – even when it’s not popular.
Are we going to face backlash? Probably. Are we going to be called names? Almost certainly. But you know what? That’s okay. Because at the end of the day, I’d rather be called a bigot for speaking the truth than stay silent and watch our society crumble.

So what do you say, folks? Are you ready to have some real conversations? Are you ready to stand up for what’s right, even when it’s not easy? Because I’ll tell you what – I am. And I hope you’ll join me. Because if we don’t start speaking up now, I’m afraid of what kind of world we’re going to be leaving for our kids.

Let’s bring some common sense back to libertarianism. Let’s bring some reality back to our conversations. And let’s start building a future that we can all be proud of.

Brian Nichols is host of the Brian Nichols Show – powered by Amp America. You can follow Brian on X at @bnicholsliberty.

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