One thing we sometimes forget is that the most important means of social control in communist regimes was the power over your job; if you offended the communist leadership, you could be fired. It turns out the NJ Transit Authority employee who burned a Koran near the WTC site was fired. The stated reason, “violating his trust as a state employee.” This is an outrage. The combination of anti-harassment laws, the habit of tip-toeing around Islamic sensitivities, and the increasing political correctness of both private and public sector employees means that winners and losers will be rewarded accordingly; dissent will be crushed by threat of economic penury. And this will all happen in a country that used to take pride not in its sensitivity, but in its rugged individualism, including the individualism to have peculiar beliefs and say offensive things.
We all know communsits, flag-burning hippies, and guys who say things like Rev. Wright never get fired on account of their extremism, but conservatives of any kind must be aware of this. I would not say the solution is necessarily to “play the game.” Such would be a type of victory too, as we’re often reminded by those who say the best antidote to terrorism is to be quietly defiant. It’s certainly true that half or more of the country that is uneasy with Islam cannot be fired from their jobs. But one thing you can be sure of, the Obama that cares about the Jena Six and racist Dept. of Agriculture employees and not jump to conclusions regarding a murderous Muslim Army Major, won’t be stepping in to remind everyone of the dangers of censorship anytime soon.