Cuomo the IntolerantPosted: January 22, 2014
The New York governor’s recent remarks show just how close-minded liberals can be
Jonah Goldberg writes: On paper, “liberal intolerance” is something of an oxymoron, like “jumbo shrimp,” “loyal opposition,” or “conspicuous absence.” But what makes oxymorons funny is that they are real things. There are jumbo shrimp. Absences can be conspicuous, opponents can be loyal, and liberals can be staggeringly and myopically intolerant.
[Amazon has Jonah Goldberg‘s fine book: The Tyranny of Cliches: How Liberals Cheat in the War of Ideas]
Last Friday, in a public-radio interview, New York governor Andrew Cuomo offered the sort of potted analysis of the national Republican party one would expect from an MSNBC talk show. But he went a bit further. After nodding to the fact that, historically, the New York state Republican party has been the most ideologically gelded of the breed (it is the birthplace of Rockefeller Republicanism, after all), Cuomo proclaimed that “extreme conservatives” have “no place in the state of New York.”
Who are extreme conservatives? People who are “right-to-life, pro–assault weapon, anti-gay.”
It’s an interesting — and repugnant — tautology: Extremists hold extreme views, and we can identify extreme views by the fact they are held by extremists.
Of course, Cuomo frames the matter to his benefit. Opposing same-sex marriage — the mainstream Democratic position not long ago — is now anti-gay. Being in favor of gun rights is pro–assault weapon (whatever that means).
Most vexing and revealing, however, is that Cuomo doesn’t even bother to wrap opposition to abortion in scary adjectives. Simply believing in a right to life is extremist, and such extremists have “no place in the state of New York.” Cuomo claims that he was being taken out of context. He was talking about “extreme” Republican politicians, not average citizens. Fair enough.
Still, given that Cuomo is the scion of one of the most famously Catholic families in America, it’s a pretty remarkable statement…
— Jonah Goldberg is the author of The Tyranny of Clichés, now on sale in paperback. You can write to him by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or via Twitter @JonahNRO. © 2014 Tribune Media Services, Inc.
- ‘What a douche’: ‘Idiotic’ NY Gov. Cuomo catches hell for right-to-life ‘banishment fantasy’ (twitchy.com)
- Goldberg: Andrew Cuomo has a tolerance problem (newsday.com)
- Andrew Cuomo’s Religious-Freedom Problem (nationalreview.com)
- Trash-Talking In Sports and Politics (powerlineblog.com)
- Cuomo’s Version of Liberal Tolerance (commentarymagazine.com)
- Andrew Cuomo criticized for remarks about ‘extreme’ conservatives (newsday.com)
- Cuomo: I guess you extremist pro-lifers can profess your views in New York after all (hotair.com)
- Awful… Gov. Cuomo Now Says He Never Told Pro-Lifers to Leave New York State (thegatewaypundit.com)
- Sean Hannity Says He’s Leaving New York Following Gov. Cuomo’s Intolerant Statement Against Conservatives (pjmedia.com)
- ‘Extreme’ ‘Right-to-Life’ Citizens of the State of New York React to Governor Cuomo’s Banishment Fantasy (nationalreview.com)