Mr. Douthat’s augmentative attack on the monster of Political Correctness is carefully embellished for maximum effectiveness? Note that he places the cyber-attack on Sony in an American political context: one might ask how is the presumed attack by Korean hackers, in retaliation for making their dear leader and North Korea the object of ridicule, related to Mr. Douthat’s straw man argument. Call him the political/literary stepchild of Mrs. Malaprop?
OF course it had to escalate this way. We live in a time of consistent gutlessness on the part of institutions notionally committed to free speech and intellectual diversity, a time of canceled commencement invitations and C.E.O.s defenestrated for their political donations, a time of Twitter mobs, trigger warnings and cringing public apologies. A time when journalists and publishers tiptoe around Islamic fundamentalism, when free speech is under increasing pressure on both sides of the Atlantic, when a hypersensitive political correctness has the whip hand on many college campuses.
Followed by the bathos of a carefully calibrated exercise in self-pity:
As a conservative, you take for granted that these institutions are often political monocultures — that the average commencement speaker, like the average academic, will be several degrees left of center, that Silicon Valley isn’t the most hospitable place to be a religious conservative, that when Hollywood gets “edgy” or “controversial” it’s usually a right-wing ox that’s being gored.