The Problem with the Political Left

 Currently in the United Kingdom, there's a scandal brewing in the liberal Labour Party regarding anti-Semitism. First, MP Naz Shah, a 42 year-old Muslim Pakistani, was suspended by her party due to a number of Facebook posts made in 2014, one of which controversially endorsed the idea of ethnically cleansing Israel of Jews and "transporting" them to the United States.  She also made other posts saying Israel was an "apartheid state", comparing it to Nazi Germany. Shah apologized, but was defended by former London mayor Ken Livingstone, who claimed that "Hitler was a Zionist", and was also suspended. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Jeremy Corbyn, the party's leader who declared that Hamas and Hezbollah were "friends" while also praising the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, denied that there was any anti-Semitism plague within Labour, even as he promised to look into this and weed out any such issues. A number of Labour Party members--including Sadiq Khan, a rising star in the party and Shah's fellow Muslim Pakistani--condemned this terrible prejudice that seems to have been incubating in their party for years. But unlike Shah, Livingstone didn't apologize, and instead blamed his suspension on "the Israel lobby". 
As disappointing, worrying, and frustrating as this all is, it's hardly an isolated incident in today's Political Left. In the era of John F. Kennedy, the Political Left was one where liberals would protest against societal inequalities, help their country, and yes, fight, if necessary, for such beautiful ideals as liberty and democracy, freedom of expression and freedom of religion, equality and justice. That same movement brought us massive economic growth--including for marginalized minorities--in the 1990s under President Clinton, expanded health care overage under President Obama, and last year, marriage equality in the United States. It has fought vigorously for common-sense gun control in a country, the US, where over 30,000 people die each year from gun violence. It has advocated for women to have equal pay for equal work, and to be in control of their own reproductive rights. But it seems that with each passing year, unfortunately, the Left seems to forget what it stands for, and contradicts itself. Despite championing free speech and tolerance of other viewpoints, many on college campuses protest when guest speakers arrive on campus to talk about a subject that they deem "offensive" or otherwise find disagreeable. This is especially notable in the case of SJP (Students for Justice in Palestine) regularly interrupting pro-Israel speakers on college campuses throughout America. In regards to the 2016 election, there has been a so-called "Bernie or Bust" movement of supporters of Bernie Sanders, a 74 year-old Independent and socialist senator from Vermont, who refuse to back the presumptive nominee, Hillary Clinton, because "she's establishment"--all this despite the fact that Sanders admitted he'd back Clinton over any Republican if she was the nominee.  So while claiming to be for marriage equality and women's rights, they'd rather cede the presidency to a Republican that would most likely nominate conservative justices to the Supreme Court and undo all the progress made so far by the Democrats, just so they can feel good about "sticking it to the man". If that's not the definition of "straight/male/White privilege" that liberals so revile--and by the way, it's safe to say the majority of these #BernieOrBust people are White straight men who would face less significant threats to their lifestyle or personal rights under a Republican president than people of color, women, or the LGBT community--I don't know what is. And then there's religion. For many leftists, it's fine to criticize or ridicule Judaism, Christianity, Scientology, and Mormonism, as well as other religions. But any criticism of Islam is "racist" (never mind that Islam is not a race), or deemed "Islamophobic". It's suddenly acceptable and okay, or at best, ignored, when racial minorities, women, the LGBT community, and religious minorities are oppressed or accosted by Muslims, but if a Christian comes out against gay marriage, they receive hate mail and sometimes violent threats. And while European colonization and the forced conversion of Christianity upon indigenous people around the world is condemned regularly, the Arab Muslim colonization of Africa, Asia, and southern Europe is given a pass because they have brown skin. 
The Political Left is also becoming weaker and more morally bankrupt than it ever has been when it comes to foreign issues. Many in the Democratic Party are against the bombing or drone strike campaigns in the Middle East used to take out terrorists and stop the assault by ISIS and other jihadist thugs on innocent civilians, including various minority groups that the Left claims to care about. It goes without saying that they are opposed to any ground operations. Their excuse? "We're murdering innocent civilians". While there are tragic, unintended consequences, such as collateral damage or unnecessary destruction, this is how war has always been, and it's certainly not murder. And what's the alternative? Sitting by and doing nothing as Christians and Yazidis face genocide in their homelands? How is that "tolerant" or "acceptable" to a political party that claims to be against oppression?  Should the US not have done anything in WWII and just let the Nazis and Japanese go about their murderous rampage, for fear of accidental death or damages? And then there's Israel. While there are certainly things to criticize about the Likud government, only singling out Israel--the Middle East's sole democracy--for criticism in the region, or the world, is either pure ignorance, or a case of bigoted double standards. Unlike it's savage neighbors (whether it's gay-executing Iran, terror-sponsoring Saudi Arabia, or journalist-arresting Turkey), Israel provides freedom of religion & speech for its citizens, protects its ethnic, religious, and sexual minorities by law, and has had a female head-of-state before America even has, which goes to show how women are treated and viewed in Israeli society. Yet the Political Left (in particular, the Obama Administration, the European Union, and the United Nations) continues to blame Israel for terrorism both within the Jewish state as well as terrorist attacks in Europe. It's abhorrent and insensitive that the Obama Administration chastised Israel for "occupation" shortly after Dafna Meir was murdered by a Palestinian terrorist, and did the same thing immediately after the recent bus bombing by Hamas in Jerusalem. And the argument and excuses made by the Left for this? "We're not anti-Semitic, just anti-Zionist". Well, that is anti-Semitic. Why should the Jewish people, the natives of the Holy Land, be the only people in the world without the right to self-determination? Or maybe we're not, since the Left clearly has no problem with Tibetans, Kurds, and Western Saharans living under occupation, rather than also being independent. Why is it that "mansplaining" to women is criticized, but it's acceptable for Gentile liberals to tell us what is anti-Semitic and what is not? Why is it that Jews are told to leave our homeland and "go back to Europe" (which just demonstrates their ignorance regarding history), when so many of those telling us this have no intentions of leaving the US to the Native Americans and "returning" to Europe, or wherever else their ancestors hail from? The Political Left seems to love pointing out the hypocrisy of its ideological counterpart--and rightly so, much of the time--but it fails to acknowledge its own shortcomings and contradictions. 
The Political Left has a lot to be proud of, as I pointed out earlier in this article. But the once-proud ideology that gave birth to John F. Kennedy, Bill Clinton, and Yitzhak Rabin is, sadly, no more, having been infected with political correctness, false moral equivalencies, and laziness. This is, in part, why Donald Trump, Marine Le Pen, Nigel Farage, and others on the Political Right have seen a surge in support recently. People are fed up with this apologist mentality, including many disgruntled former leftists who no longer recognize their political parties. The only way to halt this is to start standing up for what's right, even if it's not popular. Most Americans didn't want to get involved in World War Two, but ultimately, after being attacked at Pearl Harbor, realized that enough was enough. Many Americans now oppose sending ground troops into Syria or Iraq, for economic reasons and fear of a repeat of 2003's failed Iraq War. But merely emptying out Syria of its people (most of whom want to return to their country) and letting religious extremism spread, or letting authoritarian regimes get away with their own human rights violations while instead criticizing fellow democracies incessantly, is not going to solve any problems. Instead, those double standards, false moral equivalencies, and complacency will just accelerate the rise of the Right, which has grown bolder and also grown more tired of constant political correctness. If the Political Left is to be a champion of freedom worldwide, it should stand up for the values it claims to believe in, no matter what, and stop bowing down to illiberal ideology for fear of hurting someone's feelings.