Remember the bloody sock? It became the symbol of the Red Sox World Series championship in 2004 that ended “the curse of the bambino” — an 86-year-long drought following the Babe Ruth trade in 1918. The sock was worn by pitching ace Curt Schilling who’d just had surgery.
With a bleeding ankle, Schilling still won the crucial game six of the American League Championship series against the New York Yankees. That put the Sox into the World Series in which Schilling won game two in a four-game sweep of the Cardinals.
Schilling is a hero to New Englanders, but not to the liberal Boston Globe which ran the Sunday headline: “Will Curt Schilling’s inflammatory rhetoric keep him out of the Hall of Fame?” Sports writers cited his conservative politics for their negative votes.
Now Schilling’s scalp hangs in the cancel-culture hall of fame. No one can doubt that Schilling is one of the greatest pitchers of all time, but to liberal media his politics are deplorable, especially his support for Donald Trump.
I voted for Trump in 2016 and 2020 — and I would again given the same choices. So would tens of millions of other Americans, but our vilification is accelerating. In 2016 Hillary Clinton called half of us “deplorable” and “irredeemable.” However, two weeks ago former mainstream media news anchor Kati Couric suggested we need to be “deprogrammed.” Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson echoed that saying: “there are millions of Americans, almost all White, almost all Republicans, who somehow need to be deprogrammed.”
How would that be done? Gulags?
Fellow Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin said: “We have to collectively, in essence, burn down the Republican Party” and leave no survivors. She also said we have to blacklist Trump supporters from universities and media. And it’s not just media; a former FBI Director, James Comey, said: “The Republican party needs to be burned down ... It’s just not a healthy political organization.”
Does that sound like inciting violence? Just as Cool Hand Luke was warned, you conservatives have to “get your mind right.” I only hope the above-named “progressives” envision only a night in the box and not life in a concentration camp or a bullet in the back of the head. But, then again, WaPo columnist Jennifer Rubin said: “We have to level them, because if there are survivors... they will do it again.”
Leftists in academia control what students learn, but Pew Research said last week that almost all Americans increasingly get their news from their smartphone or tablet, often on platforms like Twitter and Facebook and Google. These are owned and operated by liberals who use their power to censor news like the Hunter Biden laptop story they spiked until after Biden won the election.
For years now our colleges and universities have banned conservatives speakers. Now Smith College Professor Loretta Ross says Trump supporters must be: “treated with the same public condemnation that the Nazis received after World War II.” For Professor Ross, “The term ‘Nazi’ is not even strong enough to convey the opprobrium and disgust human rights activists feel for those who brazenly claim they are simply patriots with different opinions.” It’s hard to believe students pay Smith $75,000 a year to learn this stuff.
George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley says: “Many professors admit...they are afraid to speak out... about the rising level of intolerance [for conservatives]... In over 30 years of teaching, I have never witnessed the level of intimidation at colleges and universities that we have today.”
Democrats, and some Republicans, are pushing impeachment of President Trump because of his remarks at the White House on January 6th, which they claim incited a violent takeover of the US Capitol the same day. In a column January 7th, I called on Trump to resign for the same reason, but what is the point of impeaching him after he’s gone? None I can see except spite and fear he might run again.
Now my newspaper column is affected by the leftist cancel culture. My piece last week explaining why I voted for Trump in 2016 and 2020 and listing his accomplishments was spiked in one of the newspapers that has carried it nearly every week for decades. I'll think of it as my bloody sock and snap a salute to Curt Schilling.
Mr. McLaughlin, a former history teacher, is a columnist based in Maine.