There are probably hundreds of thousands of men and women who, because of political differences, maintain minimal or no contact with their parents and, even more cruelly, do not allow their parents to have any contact with their children — their parents’ grandchildren.
Probably an unprecedented number of Americans with grown children will be alone this Christmas because their children will neither visit them nor invite them for the holiday dinner.
In some rare instances of horrific parental behavior, this may be excusable, but when the reason is politics, it is inexcusable.
I know of this firsthand. Parent after parent calls my radio show, often close to tears, sometimes actually sobbing, pouring their heart out to me about being alone on holidays despite having children and grandchildren.
In virtually every case, the parent is conservative, and the child is on the Left. I assume there are cases of grown conservative children who won’t allow a liberal/Left parent to see his or her grandchildren — but I have never heard of a single such case. It is almost impossible to imagine a conservative adult depriving his or her parents of access to their grandchildren because the parent(s) voted for President Joe Biden. Moreover, if there were such a person, every conservative I know would vociferously condemn this individual.
Why is this happening?
No. 1: No accountability
The further left you go, the less likely you are to believe that you are accountable to an absolute moral code, let alone to a Giver of an absolute moral code. On the other hand, conservatives, certainly religious conservatives — who are people who believe in a God-given Ten Commandments — believe that they are obligated to honor their parents irrespective of such things as political differences.
While on rare occasions it may be morally necessary, there are few actions meaner than ending all contact with one’s parents and depriving them of access to their grandchildren. But on the Left, this is not uncommon, and immeasurably more common than on the Right.
The fact is that leftism often produces mean people. There are decent and indecent liberals, and decent and indecent conservatives. But many leftists are indecent — and leftism makes them so, whereas neither liberalism nor conservatism makes people indecent. Leftism breeds ingratitude, victimhood, moral arrogance — and therefore cruelty. The Democrats’ treatment of then-Judge Brett Kavanaugh was one of innumerable examples. The screaming shutdowns of conservative speakers on campuses is another. And cruel treatment of parents is yet another.
No. 2: The inadequacy of the conscience
The Left proves the utter inadequacy of the conscience. To cite the present example, the adult children who deprive their conservative parents of contact with the parents’ grandchildren have a perfectly clear conscience. All those secular people — including secular conservatives — who argue that God is unnecessary because it is enough for people to answer to their conscience are spectacularly naive. The consciences of most people who do evil are blissfully untroubled.
Most religious people who have done — or at least not resisted — evil also have undisturbed consciences. But to return to our present example, religious people who believe they have to answer to God for their behavior are likely to treat their parents better than those who do not believe so. They believe that God commands them to honor their father and mother. There is no such command on the Left.
No. 3: College
Millions of young Americans who graduate from college are, morally speaking, worse people than they were when they entered college. How many parents believe their child became a finer — or even a happier — human being at college? How many parents believe their child became a worse — and less happy — person?
You almost have to be a college graduate to shun your parents and deprive them of their grandchildren because of political differences. If you had asked most of these college graduates before they enrolled in college who, because of political differences, won’t see their parents for Christmas if they could imagine never talking to their parents because of political differences, most of them would probably have deemed the question absurd. After four years of college indoctrination — essentially consisting of hatred of nonleftists — the question is no longer absurd.
On the Left, it is a grave sin to abuse the Earth. Not one’s parents.
Dennis Prager is a nationally syndicated radio talk-show host and columnist. His commentary on Deuteronomy, the third volume of “The Rational Bible,” his five-volume commentary on the first five books of the Bible, was published in October.