Jon Caldara

Jon Caldara

Live by the sword, die by the sword.

Live by virtue signaling, die by virtue signaling.

We’re all guilty of virtue signaling, but progressives seem to make a competition of it. They have a smug compulsion to emote their beliefs.

I mean if you see a guy smoking, he’s not virtue signaling, still you get the idea where he stands on the issue.

But someone who has a bumper sticker with a red line over a cigarette that says, “Keep your butt out of my car,” feels strangely compelled to let you know he’d rather you not smoke in his car.

Um. Thanks? But I wasn’t even going to go into your car. I’m too busy trying to crash into that car with the “Baby on board” sticker.

I live in Boulder, where there’s a gladiator-like contest to see who can out-virtue-signal each other in some bizarre, self-righteous arms race.

The “We Recycle” yard signs were bested by “Black Lives Matter” signs, an interesting statement given that Boulder’s anti-growth policies have produced housing so expensive, it makes Boulder the whitest town in Colorado. Those signs were then bested by we-catalog-our-virtues yard signs, “In this house we believe love is love, science is real, no human is illegal, etc., etc.”.

My favorite signaling in Boulder was two stickers on different ends of the very same car bumper (and you can’t make this up). One said, “Split wood, not atoms.” The other said, “Save the forests.”

Progressive virtue signaling makes it all the way to one’s wedding.

My sincere congratulations to Jared Polis and his longtime partner Marlon Reis for finally tying the knot last week in our shared hometown of Boulder.

Among Jared’s many incredible achievements was the ability to keep a partner for 18 years before finally cratering into marriage. I was only able to put off marriage to my girlfriend for four years before I had to make good on my promise. (And yes, she wisely divorced me later.)

The news of the first openly gay governor in the U.S. having a wedding is certainly newsworthy. But it was their choice of clothes that also made national news.

Much like socialist AOC virtue signaling at the $35,000-a-ticket, star-studded Met Gala in a dress graffitied with the words “Tax the rich,” Jared and Marlon’s expensive, handmade outfits shouted their goodness by being all vegan.

It's not a surprise to anyone that most suits are made from wool, which come from sheep. Buttons often come from animal horns or seashells. Bee’s wax can be used in making a thread. Silk is made from systematically oppressed worms

From a vegan activist’s point of view, we might as well be walking around draped in raw, bloody meat (which actually sounds kinda fun and the perfect wardrobe choice for Polis’s next virtue-signally “meat-out” day).

The couple’s public announcements of their vegan tuxedos was NOT virtue signaling for animal rights. On the contrary. This was a virtue signaling for support of the oil and gas industry, and the fracking that makes it possible.

Newspapers and magazines like Veg News, my go-to source for political news and fashion advice, celebrated how their wedding attire was made from petroleum, mercilessly ripped from mother earth.

A.J. Machete, co-owner of Denver-based Machete & Sons worked with the happy couple to design their fossil fuel-based tuxedos. He crowed to the media how he designed the coats with a high-tech polyester fabric, replacing wool, and featured rayon (petroleum) for the liners and thread (petroleum) in lieu of silk. Additionally, the lapels were made of satin (petroleum).

And of course, none of this high fashion miracle of fracked-petroleum would be possible without electricity and heat created by fossil fuels.

This loving couple doused themselves in oil to virtue signal to the world that to embrace the vegan lifestyle is to embrace fossil fuels!

There is no other way to interpret it. They have made the choice. They are against using any animal-based products, at least at weddings. Therefore, they are pro-fracking. You can’t have your virtue signaling both ways.

Too bad the mainstream media missed the real story: Colorado’s first couple chooses petroleum-dependent wedding.

Here's to the happy couple, raise your oil can for a toast.

Jon Caldara is president of the Independence Institute in Denver and hosts "The Devil's Advocate with Jon Caldara" on Colorado Public Television Channel 12. His column appears Sundays in Colorado Politics.