Unlike so many of the blowhards who infest cyberspace, Rod Dreher has a gift: a verbal adroitness that makes him exquisitely annoying to rational observers of his reason-free, grandstanding polemics against the conservative/traditionalist unwashed by which he has made his name as an Internet sage—that is to say, a shallow demagogue.
Dreher’s basic argument is that people who decline to enact the suddenly mandatory public ritual of the wearing of assorted masks or “face coverings” by the entire population to “limit the spread” of the Wuhan virus are—what else could they be?—just very bad people whom everyone must loathe:
Dreher is not interested in rational discourse; that requires too much work. His aim, as always, is to attribute pathology to people with whom he disagrees. Facile mockery is his métier. And so, he writes, the “Mask Truthers” are “refusing to wear masks because they see them as a symbol of social control.” Not to be considered are their rational objections to social control in the form of a compulsory mask regime the “experts” themselves rejected only days ago. No, the objectors can only be seen as mindless ideologues. Referring to the widespread rejection of masks in Stillwater, Oklahoma, resulting in an amendment of the city’s “emergency” mask ordinance to make masks optional, Dreher characterizes the opposition as “thugs” and concludes: “It’s hard to deny that many conservatives have reacted to Covid-19 more out of ideology than fact. That’s exactly what these Stillwater people have done: opposing wearing masks on ideological principle.”
But what makes opposing masks an “ideological” stance as opposed to an entirely rational refusal to submit to the irrational dictates of unreliable “experts,” bureaucratic incompetents and tyrannical Democrat governors who deem liquor stores, pet stores and marijuana dispensaries “essential businesses” while declaring that “mass gatherings” for the worship of God are forbidden? Dreher has no serious answer.
Dreher has had nothing to say about the Flynn investigation, nor about the complete mental unfitness of Joe Biden for the highest office in the land.
But he has plenty of time to shriek about mask skeptics, because we won’t bend the knee to his new god.