No, Your Politics And Morality Are Not Superior If Children Endorse Them

No, Your Politics And Morality Are Not Superior If Children Endorse Them

The only thing more insufferable than child activists prodded along by cynical cultists are adults nodding as if they are listening to Socratic wisdom.
Sumantra Maitra
By

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, of all people, was ambushed recently by a bunch of child global warming activists. The video of their encounter is painful and cringeworthy to watch, and Feinstein gave a proper verbal beatdown to the children, so to speak. So, for the first time ever, I will go on record to say, Well done, senator.

The children had a predictably kindergarten-level knowledge of the American legal system and Constitution. One kid tried to repeat Abraham Lincoln’s dictum about government and failed to recite it accurately, so one can imagine how the rest of the farce went.

Kids as young as seven cannot master fundamental arithmetic, so it was only natural that they would be chosen by a bunch of fundamentalists to lead a movement that claims that we live in the darkest of times (we do not) and that we have to demolish and rebuild from scratch the entire existing economic structure of the world, from top to bottom, or else we will all die in a decade. They deserve no sympathy or respect, because they have earned neither.

Using Children As Moral Validation

This is a new trend — not using children as props or politics, there’s a cynical tradition of that. Children were used as props by dictators throughout history as a form of authentication and public relations, from Benito Mussolini to Kim Jong Un, Hitlerjugend to the Soviet Komsomol to the deadly Maoist Red Guards.

But using children as moral validation is a newer tactic. Consider the new sensation on the block, 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg. Apparently, she’s determined to lead a global movement of kids by prompting them to avoid classrooms (and studies, lest they have independent thought) in political protest, has an obligatory blue checkmark on Twitter, and writes passive-aggressive letters and tweets to various global leaders.

To British Prime Minister Theresa May, she tweeted, “British PM says that the children on school strike are ‘wasting lesson time’. That may well be the case. But then again, political leaders have wasted 30 yrs of inaction. And that is slightly worse.”

If she were not wasting time on nonsensical persuasions, she would have known that we were told that the planet has a decade to survive or see the start of another ice age — in the 1970sSubsequent studies have found the models to be wildly exaggerated. Everyone remember Al Gore saying we only have ten more years? That was 13 years ago. For some reason, these deadlines keep shifting.

Thunberg’s letter to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was another gem: “Dear Mr Modi, you need to take action now against the climate crisis, not just talking about it because if you keep going on like this, doing business as usual, and just talking about and bragging about the little victories, you are going to fail. And if you fail, you are going to be seen as one of the worst villains in human history in the future. And you don’t want that.”

I’m sure Modi, the leader of the largest democracy and a nuclear power and the world’s fourth-largest economy, is petrified, but consider Thunberg’s tone and syntax. There’s a certain totalitarian “history is on our side” playacting in all of them, combined with an implicit mafia-like threat, which although it may be a translation error, seems deliberate.

It is how we tolerate from the corner of our eyes that pesky kid in a gathering when she throws a tantrum to her mousy embarrassed mother trying to feed her: “Well, yes, I might eat it, but then I will vomit on the carpet, and you wouldn’t want that.” This is insufferable. She is touring the European Union lecturing policymakers and doing news shows, with older people nodding sagely as if she offers Socratic wisdom.

Youth Does Not Beget Wisdom

The list is endless. From David Hogg to the South African Rhodes scholar who wants to topple the Cecil Rhodes statue in Oxford (while enjoying the scholarship), to Hamas using children as actors for propaganda, to the urban moms taking their kids on “resist”-themed outings, the principle behind all of this is the same. Youth, by virtue of age, is considered a moral factor.

The younger the person making the argument, the more pristine and authentic it is deemed, with the implication that one should not just listen to but also respect them simply because they are young, regardless of how insanely idiotic and ignorant their argument is. It’s the posture and passion of Joan of Arc with the intellect and IQ of Billy Madison.

For a moment, ignore the issue at hand. No sane individual denies there’s climate change, although cynically the original tagline of global warming has been dropped since the ’90s. The debate between cultists giving us arbitrary numbered days left to live and those who actually value science and evidence rather than just pretending to is just about the rate of the change.

While believing that climate change is happening, conservatives plant themselves firmly against the panicking because they see right through the phony narrative. The intention of this panic is not a genuine concern for the climate or else the climate activists would support nuclear power. In the words of the consultant of nuclear policy for Greenpeace, “Sabotaging nuclear is a vital part of any successful attempt to save the climate,” while scientists have established that nuclear energy is the only future and is the safest of all energy types.

No, this is a far more cynical ploy to destroy the comparative economic advantage of the West. Throughout history, the Western left’s primary intention has been global egalitarianism. In absence of the rise of rival powers, the only way to ensure that is to sabotage and destroy the West’s economic and military advantage. Hence all the activism against nuclear power as well as the effort to restructure the economy from a capitalist system to a command system. The crazies are in charge of the asylum, and will not stop till you have chosen a side.

The bigger and more troubling concern is the issue of literal children dictating what is good or bad. Children and adults are not peers, and shouldn’t be considered so. The same reason children shouldn’t be allowed to vote is the same reason they shouldn’t be dictating policy––their cognitive abilities aren’t fully formed.

Children and teens are more emotional than adults, and can be swayed by both rhetoric and charismatic charlatans, which is why both ethno-centric fascism and leftist radicalism are usually more attractive to kids. They might have all the knowledge and information from Wikipedia, but they lack a little extra wisdom that comes with age, experience navigating life, and a sense of personal responsibility.

Anyone who cannot differentiate between a bill and a policy draft should be in no place to talk to a senator or a parliamentarian, much less interrupt her when she’s talking, regardless of which political party she is from. There’s this insane narcissism in liberal societies, where utter ignorance, combined with an arrogant, abrasive, dogmatic, sanctimonious, holier-than-thou personality, is treated as a virtue to be cultivated. It’s simply false to think everyone’s opinion needs to be respected, regardless of how abhorrent or juvenile their behavior and ideas are, and regardless of the latent totalitarianism that floats beneath the surface.

Thunberg argues that the politicians cannot “wait for us to grow up and become the ones in charge.” I agree. God help us if these totalitarians are in charge. It is about time that the adults get back in control again, and treat these kids with the disdain that they deserve.

Talking to the recent recruits on the eve of Trafalgar, Lord Nelson reminded them what authority and hierarchy and the iron-cored disciplines of our previous eras meant: “You must always implicitly obey orders, without attempting to form any opinion of your own respecting their propriety.”

One can only hope that Feinstein, for all her faults, shows the increasingly deferential Republicans how to push back against climate totalitarianism fronted by our modern Jungvolks and Komsomols. The coming catastrophe will not be due to climate change, but due to an economic crash because of hyper-zealous attempts towards radical Green Leap Forwards, led by totalitarians and their hysteric teenage armies.

Sumantra Maitra is a doctoral researcher at the University of Nottingham, UK, and a writer for The Federalist. His research is in great power-politics and neorealism. You can find him on Twitter @MrMaitra.
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