It may be difficult to believe, but McCarthyism seems to be making a comeback.
The late Wisconsin senator’s public hearings in the ‘50s where he investigated individuals for any and all connections to communism (which ultimately led to many losing their livelihoods) represent a dark time for the US, but Democrats appear to be taking notes on this unfortunate chapter in history for future use.
The warm embrace of a likely Biden presidency has not softened the left’s hatred for Trump supporters in any way, but rather only emboldened them to promote more and more extreme ideas.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) recently promoted “archiving” Trump “sycophants” so they cannot “downplay or deny their complicity in the future.”
One quick question for AOC: in what scenario besides a McCarthy-style hearing would someone need to “deny” their relationship to the Trump administration?
The congresswoman should be happy because Democrats have been promoting the Trump Accountability Project, which promises to hold anyone who worked for or with the Trump administration accountable for “what they did.”
“The world should never forget those who, when faced with a decision, chose to put their money, their time, and their reputations behind separating children from their families, encouraging racism and anti-Semitism, and negligently causing the unnecessary loss of life and economic devastation from our country's failed response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the group’s site reads.
Their list of who they want to keep from getting future jobs is pretty extensive as it includes anyone who donated to the president’s campaigns, worked with his campaigns or for any groups "affiliated" with them, as well as anyone who was part of his staff.
The group has even been promoted by Democrat operatives, including former Pete Buttigieg aide Emily Abrams and former Barack Obama campaign staffer Michael Simon.
Public figures like ‘The View’ co-host Sunny Hostin and CNN’s Jake Tapper have also been accused of promoting blackballing pro-Trumpers.
“I don’t think we should look the other way,” Hostin recently said of Trump “associates.”“I think we need to remember because if you don’t remember things then past becomes prologue. I do think people need to be held accountable for their actions and um I don’t think it’s reminiscent of McCarthyism at all.”
Tapper meanwhile warned Trump supporters backing accusations of voter fraud from the president about what future employers would think of their “character.” To be fair, when confronted with the Trump Accountability Project, blacklisting seemed to become too real for the anchor and he did a complete about-face on the issue.
The idea of blacklisting someone through public shaming or (gulp) Senate hearings may sound ludicrous, but there is sadly precedent for it in this country. McCarthy capitalized on the red scare in the ‘50s and played into people’s fears and ignorance by making communists and anyone associated with communists sound like deranged spies looking to infiltrate industries and government agencies to destroy American values.
Compare that extremism to how many on the left speak of anyone they deem a Trump supporter today. They constantly slam the opposition as white supremacists, misogynists, fascists, etc. Even someone like rapper Ice Cube simply admitting to working with the administration on legislation to help black communities was enough to get him called a racist and labeled a Trump supporter.
McCarthy is sadly not the only precedent here. We only need to look to Hollywood to see how organized and powerful liberals can blacklist conservatives.
Ironically an industry many theorize is very left-leaning due to McCarthy keeping Hollywood titans out of work once they were labeled communists, Hollywood has long been accused of blackballing anyone they deem right-leaning.
Many of Hollywood’s most outspoken conservatives like James Woods and Robert Davi have detailed in the past how their politics have kept them out of certain jobs. The president himself accused the industry of blacklisting conservatives after ‘Will & Grace’ stars Debra Messing and Eric McCormack demanded knowing who was attending a Hollywood fundraiser for the president.
While accusations of Hollywood blacklisting does not amount to actual full-blown McCarthyism, the strategy of shaming and punishing conservatives and non-liberals has evolved. Instead of being behind the scenes and only kept in discussion through accusations, it is now an idea being embraced and promoted by actual politicians and media talking heads.
Right or left, every American should resist and fear a world where one side controls the other through wild accusations, public shaming, and blacklisting. Joseph McCarthy is dead. Let McCarthyism die with him.