CHARLIE KIRK: The lie of ‘live and let live’

As one of the radical trans movement's more vocal opponents, I'm often confronted with the line: "How does someone's decision to be trans affect you? Why does it matter to you?" Or in other words, "Stay out of my business, jerk." 

I'm sympathetic to the argument, if I’m honest. I like freedom. It's our birthright as Americans, or it was, at least. 

But in reality, this is a wholly inadequate, deceptive, and childish argument.

Allow me to explain.  

The most obvious retort to this argument, which you'll often hear from conservatives, goes something like this: "I don't care what you do in the privacy of your own home. I may find it weird/perverted/gross, but that's your business. But now the trans movement is indoctrinating our children and infiltrating women's sports, so we're drawing a line."

That's a fine argument. I've made it myself. But it's only half the truth. The other half is a much tougher pill to swallow, and it's less politically expedient. 

The reality is: a man dressing up as a woman and calling himself a woman and claiming to literally be a woman actually does affect me, you, and everyone else. Twenty years ago, it might have affected me only a little bit. But today, the effect, and the harm, is growing more glaring by the day. 

It affects me because it normalizes, and then celebrates, wildly self-destructive and delusional behavior. I’m not advocating for the Handmaid's Tale as the left lazily retorts. But a lie this fundamental affects us all because it is a lie about the very nature of reality and what defines us as men and women. It affects us all because a lie this blatant doesn't just hurt a person, it hurts an entire society, and its impact will be felt, as Hemingway wrote, first gradually, then suddenly.

This strikes against our modern American ethic of "live and let live." But I say "modern American," because our Founders happily passed laws against obscenity, indecency, drunkenness, and public nudity. Our Founders would never have considered pornography a form of "free speech," and they would have shuddered at the content that appears today on basic cable—or in our school libraries, for that matter. 

John Adams wrote, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." Adams understood that the Constitution he helped create was only words on paper. Its authority was anchored in the traditions, history, and values the American people shared together, and its power to dictate the nation's future would corrode if we promoted the vile and the grotesque over the good, eternal, and the beautiful. 

America requires at least some basic moral guardrails if we are to survive. If we become too depraved and too licentious, then we won't just be enslaved by our own appetites. We will eventually become literal slaves as well, as our constitutional system of ordered liberty becomes untenable. 

Nearly every societal ill in America today comes from the excesses of neoliberalism and what it endorses, either tacitly or explicitly. Porn, abortion, hookup culture, the sexualization of children—these things leave a deep stain on the spiritual health and moral character of our  nation. These faults and flaws might be tiny fissures at first, but as we're seeing today, they erupt into gaping cultural wounds if left unchecked. 

It is the moral character of America that determines the leaders we elect. A moral and responsible people will elect moral, responsible, farsighted leaders. A dissolute and decayed people will elect demagogues who promise to let them indulge their appetites and live an easy life at public expense, paid for by someone else. The policies these leaders choose will either chip away or build up the health and wealth of the people. 

Why is crime up? Why do young men—and now, young women—shoot up our schools? Why do our prosecutors bring sham cases against political foes while letting predators go free? Why is America's military, diplomatic, and financial standing disintegrating? Start by looking at what we value. We create ugly art and build ugly buildings. We make ourselves uglier through obesity, substance abuse, and self-mutilation. And then we look around, astonished that the great nation our forefathers built doesn't seem so great anymore. 

When a progressive sees a man in a dress, calling himself a woman, he sees "freedom" that we should leave alone. But wisdom sees how that dress props up a value system that will come after our kids, after our culture, and eventually, after our entire country.

And leftists know this. Their own actions betray their argument. They know “live and let live” is a ruse. While conservatives do pathetic virtue signaling, reassuring the world they don't actually want to control people, leftists see a clear path to taking more ground in the culture war. While we feign moral indifference, leftists are proving they know all too well just how much that man in a dress can affect us all. He becomes a useful prop to proselytize a new generation with cult-like fervor, until they control the entire country. 

Remember, evil is a consuming force, much like a virus, which exists to overtake the host and subdue it. The Bible describes the Devil as a prowling lion, seeking to kill, steal, and destroy. It is a force that spreads by consuming and converting healthy bodies. I’m not calling all trans people evil. Many have my compassion. But the underlying ideology must be forcefully confronted. 

Pushing back might mean passing new laws that protect children, punishing woke companies, or at least treating the transgender cult as the delusion it is. But the solution is not purely legislative or even political. It must be more fundamental. The only antibody possible is to become once more as Adams said, a moral and religious people. It means prayer and repentance. It means enforcing cultural mores and traditions and nipping emergent degeneracy in the bud before it can fully bloom. It means ignoring the childish lie that one man's sin affects no one else.

The left likes to say that the right is stoking a culture war. That's a lie. They're a cultural force that is inherently at war with what came before them. They have been waging an all-out assault on our culture for decades, perhaps much longer. We are only now beginning to fight back. Let them rage and cope and seethe. We must ignore them. We must win. Or else, all can and will be lost. Why? Because no man, transgender or otherwise, is an island. 

Charlie Kirk is the Founder and CEO of Turning Point USA, and host of The Charlie Kirk Show.

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