MAGA singer asks, 'Are we living in 1984?' as Free Speech Week goes kaput

Imagine this: a dystopian world where speech is highly regulated by a controlling “Big Brother” who teaches and curates young minds, but only allows one train of thought to run on its track, forcing people to go into hiding and to withdraw their viewpoints.

Imagine there are angry dilettantes-turned-anarchists who violently attack anyone who disagrees with this Big Brother and are given full access to do so.

No, this is not George Orwell’s “1984,” a fiction novel written in 1949. This is Berkeley, California, and the year is 2017. 

Saturday was meant to kick off “Free Speech Week” organized by gay, conservative activist Milo Yiannopoulos and was to feature a diverse array of speakers and performances including Steve Bannon, Ann Coulter, street artist Sabo, Mike Cernovich, former Pussycat Doll Kaya Jones and myself.

I was set to perform a rousing “God Bless America” to introduce Bannon and Milo to the stage, but had to cancel because of the numerous death threats against my life and that of my family. Now, the event has been cancelled for similar reasons.

Every day it feels like the only people being allowed to speak up on campus are the violent group of thugs known as “Antifa.” Ironically, this stands for “Anti-Fascists.” The irony that limiting free speech is what fascists do, is apparently lost on them.

This marks another conservative event set to be at the University of California Berkeley that had to be cancelled due to violent protests and the flat out non-cooperation of the Berkeley administration.

A few weeks ago conservative speaker Ben Shapiro was almost shut down from speaking at Berkeley but barely made it by. The cost of his security detail? $600,000. The biggest reason for the protests? “He’s a Trump Nazi.” Shapiro is Jewish and speaks wearing a yarmulke. He’s never uttered anything remotely racist and isn’t even a Trump supporter.

Every day it feels like the only people being allowed to speak up on campus are the violent group of thugs known as “Antifa.”  Ironically, this stands for “Anti-Fascists.” The irony that limiting free speech is what fascists do, is apparently lost on them.

Antifa's slogan is “Punch a Nazi!”  Anyone who is conservative, pro-America, or right-leaning politically, including myself, a bi-racial black, Choctaw and Italian woman, qualifies as a “Nazi.”

Video after video online shows black-masked Antifa members attacking Trump supporters for simply wearing red “Make America Great Again” hats.

As a woman of mixed racial heritage I find the very idea of being forced to withdraw from an event based on threats both embarrassing and horrifying.

I didn't expect to be facing this in 2017. This happened to my ancestors not that long ago, Martin Luther King Jr. fought for civil rights so I could use my voice, so all of us could.

Isn’t that why our founding fathers fought so hard for us to have our Constitutional First Amendment?

Campuses already have a long and torrid history of not admitting women, African American or Native American students for years.

Their choice to constantly shut down Republicans, Independents, conservatives, and other right-leaning voices, many of them of all colors, sexualities and backgrounds, frightens me. This isn’t just anybody, this is a highly established institution of higher learning where America sends their brightest and best young minds to be curated and educated and sent out into the world.

What hope do we have when our schools have shut down our right to speak or think differently than what they tell us? What hope do the kids of Berkeley have? Are these the places where our future leaders, artists and dreamers will be crushed into silence leaving us a grey and muted future filled with an enforced "Group Think?"

As I look around at more and more young conservative voices being stifled by Hollywood, the press and now universities I can't help but think perhaps 1984 wasn't just a fictional story after all.

Free Speech isn't just dying, it's dead. The question now is, what are we going to do about it?

The left has completely missed the point of Orwell's 1984 (which happens to be on the bestseller list again). As long as they are the ones who get to be in charge, to be Big Brother and dictate the terms of debate, our youth and our freedom are gone.

Berkeley was once the shining beacon of free speech. Now, they are the oppressors of anyone who disagrees. Tearing apart the fabric of our nation weakens us all.

It's time we took back our right to speak up.

Joy Villa is an iTunes, Amazon and Billboard recording artist. Her release "Make America Great Again!" hit #1 on Amazon Music. You can find her at www.joyvilla.com.