KSL news in Salt Lake City reports that the Young Americans for Freedom chapter at the University of Utah recently scheduled an on-campus screening of the film “Damaged: The Transing of America’s Kids,” which “tells the story of the lives of transgender people who wish they could go back.” About fifty protesters came to the event from a group called Mecha de U of U, which describes itself as an “anti-imperialist, anti-colonial, socialist student organization.”
The protestors chanted and held up signs for twenty minutes until police arrived. When some of the shouting socialists began to use “a tactic to block the officers from leaving the room,” the chief of campus security decided to cancel the event for safety concerns. Much to its credit, the Center of Equity and Student Belonging at the university afterward sent a letter to the Mecha organization notifying that its sponsorship as a legitimate student group had been suspended.
The protest was disturbingly ironic considering how common it is for leftist activists to appeal to “lived experience” in arguing for the legitimacy of transgenderism, and yet the film they would not allow others to watch is an account of the lived experience of those who regretted their attempt to change their gender.
The message from the protestors is clear: “We have decided what is the correct view on sexuality and gender identity. If anyone disagrees with us, we will shut them down. Dissent will not be tolerated.” The Mecha student group is a living illustration of “extreme views or practices that try to make other people think and behave in the same way.” This is the dictionary entry for the word “fascism.”
It may be easy to dismiss the protestors as a bunch of fringe, narcissistic college kids clamoring for attention. It’s comforting to think that the real world after graduation will make them less inclined toward faddish, social justice tantrums, but there are too many examples of people who continued further in the same direction. The angry campus activist with a megaphone often becomes the smiling, but equally intolerant politician with a microphone (and a few million followers on X).
American Christians should be deeply grateful for their country. Unlike any other nation in the world, America provides an open platform where people of vastly different beliefs and worldviews are all allowed space to pursue life, liberty, and happiness. However, one of the essential, weight-bearing pillars undergirding that platform is tolerance. If certain rancorous groups of people are allowed to knock out that pillar because they are too fragile to tolerate tolerance, then inevitably—and sooner than most of us would like to think—the platform will collapse.
Mike Mitchell holds an MA in theological studies from Asbury Seminary and a PhD in theology from Liverpool Hope University. He lives in the Mountain West with his wife and their five children. Mike also regularly writes for his Substack page at mitchell435.substack.com. Write to Mike at .