“The Handmaid’s Tale,” a TV show based on a Margaret Atwood novel of the same name, has returned to Hulu for a second season. The Emmy award-winning show’s return resurfaces its comparisons of Republicans and pro-life policies to the dystopian nightmare that Elizabeth Moss’s character, Offred, finds herself in the theocratic regime of Gilead.
The show has become something akin to a rallying cry for pro-abortionists and liberals everywhere who spend their weekends #Resisting. Protestors dressed in crimson robes and white hats abound along protest routes and state capitol buildings to express their ire against President Trump or to oppose bills that would regulate abortion. They say, to regulate abortion or implement a travel ban that mirrors one the Obama administration set up is just like the cruel regime depicted in the TV show that strips citizens of all natural rights.
At the White House Correspondent’s Dinner this Saturday, host Michelle Wolf compared White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders to one of the show’s most evil characters, Aunt Lydia, who literally beats women into submission. She also forces these women, dubbed “handmaidens,” to serve as sex slaves in order to carry and bear children for the elites. Wolf also encouraged Vice President Mike Pence, whom media outlets frequently like to (wrongly) depict as a homophobic Bible-thumper, to watch the show, saying: “If you haven’t seen it, you would love it!”
Moss and her co-stars have said they see the show as a rallying cry to resist the current administration and powers that threaten our democratic republic.
“I think it’s scarily relevant right now,” said Samira Wiley, who plays Moira. “I think one of the things we can see — especially through the flashbacks [in the show] — is how it doesn’t happen all at once. And that’s the thing that’s so scary.”
They’re not wrong. As Benjamin Franklin once famously quipped, our governmental system is: “A Republic, if you can keep it.” It is absolutely necessary to hold those in power accountable or risk losing control of the government that is supposed to serve our interests and protect our inalienable rights.
But their zeal is misguided. Inaugurating a theocracy that forces fertile women serve as sex slaves and sends those who identify on the LGBTQ spectrum to gulags, which the show depicts, is not a reality that’s imminent in the United States in 2018. However, there are real, ongoing threats to our liberties. Like Aunt Lydia in “The Handmaid’s Tale,” U.S. lawmakers, school officials, and bureaucrats are actively trying to punish us for thinking wrong thoughts, force us to embrace their sexual dogmas, and curtail our rights to speak and worship freely. Here are five of the scariest examples.
1. These Nuns Who Were Punished For Resisting The State’s Sexual Orthodoxy
A Catholic order of nuns, which owns and operates about 30 affordable care and living centers for senior citizens across 20 states, is still embroiled in a lawsuit with the U.S. Department of Health and Human services. The Little Sisters of the Poor are facing crippling fines that could shut down the care centers they operate, all because they did not want to be forced to provide contraceptives to their employees, as doing so would violate their Catholic beliefs.
These women dared to stand up for their religious beliefs and the sexual teachings outlined by the church. They do so freely, under no coercion. But because their views on sexuality collided with those of the state, bureaucrats at HHS decided to take them to the mat.
2. Baker Forced To Pay Fines, Retrain His Employees For Thinking Wrong Thoughts
In 2012, Jack Philips of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Colorado told a same-sex couple he could not bake a custom wedding cake with a pro-LGBT message for a same-sex couple because doing so would violate his Christian beliefs. He offered to sell them anything else they wanted — cupcakes or pastries and the like — which shows he’s happy to serve gay people. His decision is about his conscience, not about discrimination or bigotry.
But this wasn’t sufficient for lawmakers, who ordered Philips to make cakes for same-sex couples or else. He was also ordered to provide comprehensive staff training to his employees to correct their Wrong Thoughts and submit quarterly obedience reports to the state.
If he did not comply with Colorado’s thought police, he was told he would face debilitating fines or even jail time. Philips’s case is currently before the Supreme Court — which will decide if it is within his rights to decline to portray a message antithetical to his deepest convictions.
3. This First Grader, Who Was Sent Home For ‘Misgendering’ A Classmate
Last year, a first grade student was sent home from Rocklin Academy, a network of charter schools in California, after she called a classmate by the “wrong” name. The unnamed girl was apparently unaware that her classmate was starting to live as the opposite sex, and called out to her classmate by the student’s given name.
A kindergarten student from the same network of schools came home from school “crying and shaking” because she was so afraid she would “turn into a boy.” Parents were furious at the school for not being notified adequately in advance about a teacher’s decision to lead a classroom discussion on transgenderism and host a “gender reveal” party for the student.
Policing five- and six-year-olds’ use of pronouns and sending them home if they speak “incorrectly” is ridiculous and repressive. If a child’s speech threatens to undo the entire concept of gender fluidity and the Left’s orthodoxy on gender identity, it is certainly frail indeed.
4. This Bill Would Police Speech And Writings that Challenge Libertine Sexuality
California’s AB 2943, which passed the state’s assembly last week and is awaiting a vote in the senate, would ban churches and organizations from giving counseling on LGBT sexuality in exchange for any sort of financial compensation. This could include cracking down on conferences or seminars offered by a church as well as restricting the sale of books or other materials (not excluding the Bible) that speak to this practice.
Proponents of the bill have told numerous media outlets that it would not restrict one from speaking or writing about conversion therapy. They also say it definitely wouldn’t ban the Bible, but that’s not what the text of the bill itself says. The bill bans any “transaction intended to result, or which results, in the sale or lease of goods or services to any consumer.” Selling a book is by definition a transaction, as is receiving money to advertise a book or a conference that promulgates Wrong Thoughts.
Even if the bill’s proponents are telling us the truth and it does not threaten to restrict the sale of Christian books that disagree with their views on sexuality, it would still put churches and religious organizations in the state’s crosshairs, all because they hold different views on sexuality than those affirmed by lawmakers Sacramento.
5. These Pregnancy Centers Being Targeted For Using Google AdWords
A chain of Christian crisis pregnancy centers in Northern California is embroiled in a lawsuit against San Francisco, which claims it’s illegal if their organization pops up in a search engine window when a woman is searching for abortion clinics. Apparently letting an organization that offers free services to women buy Google AdWords is not okay in the ultra-liberal town. Didn’t you know? Free speech is for everyone, except pro-lifers.
In all five of these cases, to stand by one’s religious convictions — or to even have an opinion that varies from the powers that be — is to defy the state and face repression. In 2018, to hold biblical views of sexuality and marriage, or to be pro-life is not just unpalatable, it’s punishable by fines or even jail time. This is not fiction, this is real life.