Cultural conservatives have barely begun to fight

The grassroots of social conservatism are not just strong but increasing in strength. The cultural Left has lost one high-profile cultural clash after another. From the Chick-fil-A “boycott,” to Hobby Lobby’s legal and cultural triumph, to the recent windfall and triumphant reopening of Memories Pizza, when the cultural Right actually bothers to mobilize, the cultural Left tends to lose. And while pop culture produces prodigious quantities of leftist propaganda, the surprising box office of God’s Not Dead, the overwhelming success of American Sniper, celebrating the life of a Christian warrior, and the consistent ratings for Bible-themed television demonstrate that there remains a large-scale appetite for works of art that advance, whether by intention or by effect, a substantially more conservative point of view.

Crucially, the Left is engaged in a furious internal debate over the very same hysterical tactics that are driving some conservatives to despair. Not every leftist wants to live in a culture where dissent is crushed, dissenters are driven out of jobs, and free speech is redefined as the freedom to shout down your opponents. It is not time to retreat when even key members of the cultural opposition — people who will never agree with conservatives on core social issues — agree their side has gone too far.

Finally, a strategic withdrawal would play directly into the hands of those who would redefine religious liberty as simply the things that people do within the four walls of church.