October 22, 2020

Gen Z Conservative

The thoughts of a young conservative on political issues relevant to all ages

Winston Churchill on fanaticism

Winston Churchill on Fanaticism

The Quote:

“A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject.” -Winston Churchill on Fanaticism

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My Analysis

We’ve all met fanatics. Interest groups of the type warned about in The Federalist Papers are increasingly the most fanatical people in American politics. The gun control crowd and climate change alarmists are particularly fanatical about their chosen issues. Why do I think they’re fanatics? Because they perfectly fit the description provided in this quote by Winston Churchill on fanaticism.

The climate change crowd is particularly bad about this. They won’t change their minds and never change the subject. Even if presented with information that contradicts their viewpoints on why the world will end in 11 years because of global warming, they refuse to take an objective look at the evidence and modify their viewpoints. Instead, they just keep preaching the same old climate change lies.

The gun control fanatics like Beto O’Rourke are almost as bad. Never ones to let a mass shooting go to waste, they also fit the description provided by Winston Churchill on fanaticism. They don’t accept that the gun control lobby is lying about certain issues, that gun control leads to increased crime or that death by assault weapon is rare. No objective evidence is enough to convince them that they are wrong. And when horrible mass shootings do happen, they seem incapable of changing the subject.

Caring about an issue is one thing. That is good and helps lead to everyone becoming better informed, as long as it is shared as part of a respectful political discussion.

But what I think the point of this quote by Winston Churchill on fanaticism is is that fanatics don’t just care about an issue, they place their entire identity in caring about it. Their views and actions become increasingly irrational because it’s all they can think or talk about and they refuse to take new evidence into account.

That is a bad thing for our republic. Rather than focusing exclusively on one side of one issue, we should all try to be broadly informed of diverse views and perspectives. It’s why I include great quotes from many different thinkers from a broad swathe of eras and review books about a variety of subjects; it’s important to be broadly informed. Otherwise, you’ll probably just end up being one of the fanatics Churchill is warning about.

By: Gen Z Conservative

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