Self-righteousness can take many forms in the language of Leftism – social justice, equality, human rights, and so forth. The insertion of self into righteousness is the trick and the distortion – the replacing of perfection with imperfection. God is cast aside and the imperfection of Man is held up as perfection.
Leftism urges people please themselves instead of God – to adopt a smug sense of moral superiority and embrace the idea that Man-made beliefs, affiliations, and actions represent the highest possible virtues. Self-righteous Leftism cannot tolerate the opinions, actions, and behaviors of those who strive to be righteous and considers these strivings to be laughable, outdated, regressive, hateful, and deplorable.
Leftism also deftly wields self-righteousness as a weapon and uses it to attack those striving to be righteous. In a deft sleight of hand, the Left accuses everyone else of being infected with self-righteousness.
“Who are you to judge us?” they demand. “It is you who are smug in your perceived moral superiority! What gives you the right to believe you are holier than we are? Do not enslave us with your sententiousness – your excessive moralizing. We seek to be free and we wish to liberate you from your own sanctimonious morality.”
Seeds of doubt are planted and many abandon righteousness for liberation. Others withdraw and fall silent lest they themselves be judged.
Yet those who honor and strive for Truth, Beauty, Goodness, and Virtue are not immune or blameless, for some become self-righteous themselves. Some cannot resist the self-satisfaction of donning righteousness and displaying it scornfully for the world to see as they perform struts of unearned certainty and strike poses of unwarranted confidence.
And in my darker moments, I become one of them. Those times I rise from my chair and glare banefully at the world, convinced I can do no wrong as I mercilessly place others on the scales.
Utterly oblivious to shadow I have cast – to the self and the place it should not be.