All of us have seen them. Islamic demonstrators here and in Europe raising aloft posters proclaiming “Death to Infidels,” “You Will Submit to Islam,” and “Holocaust Coming to the West (against Christians and Jews).” Newly arrived in Western countries, these protestors are advocating the murder of the non-Muslim citizens in our countries who are hosting them. Yet there is no outcry against them and no effort to ban these calls for murder, nor police brigades ever ready to imprison those so audaciously urging co-religionists toward the hoped for bloodbath.
Is this due to our respect for freedom of speech? I think not, since we all know that crying “fire” in a crowded theater is not protected under free speech codes. We in the West would never allow public parks to be used for agitators displaying placards calling for “Death to Moslems.” More than mere outcry would be incarceration for hate speech and immediate cease-and-desist orders. Given how most of the media censored themselves and high-profile liberal politicians called the Muhammed cartoons unacceptable, one reaches the conclusion that the West is selective, allowing a form of speech to haters in Islam that it would forbid the average citizen.
Perhaps an appeasement has gripped us that says if we allow them to vent, they will be satiated and go no further. It won’t—it only emboldens them and portrays us as frightened people, paper tigers unwilling to stand up even to declare our own right not to be harassed and extinguished.
What we have here is an illustration of four diseases that, if not reversed, will cause the slow death of the West, without too much of a struggle by those calling for our end. All four afflictions predate this latest wave of jihadism.
First is guilt. The West is mostly white and Christian. A half century of liberal indoctrination has, according to Shelby Steele, convinced the West that white people and Christianity have been the source of the world’s problems and sufferings. We were “colonialists.” Our success in contrast to the failure of so many other societies attests to us necessarily being “oppressors,” keeping others down. In other words, we achieved on “the backs of others.”
Most of this is not true, nor does America bear any guilt higher than any other previous successful nation. In fact, America has shown more magnanimity than any nation in history, and the world is better because of the efforts of America and before it Britain. Unlike feudalism, America showed how success is inner generated, where the more who have the more all have. In other words, wealth is not finite and thus obtained only by robbing others. Wealth is created, and does so by growing outwardly, by including others. Moreover, our society — as a first in history — has redressed so many of its previous indiscretions.
Nevertheless, we’ve accepted this mark of Cain and, therefore, feel that if the demonstrators are not “official” whites and Christians, there is merit to their cause. Though Islam was never a victim of Western “exploitation,” Muslims are given an “outrage pass” since any non-white or non-Christian group has halo status under the “I’m a victim of Western supremacy” syndrome.
Though there are self-hating liberals who actually identify with our enemy, many non-ideological Westerners “understand” the cause of the hate and the posters, though they’d be hard put to identify what exactly we did or why a pass is given to Islam’s centuries of brutality to its neighbors.
The danger is that a society so proud of its “understanding” of outside rage may begin to accept the atrocities against its self and allow this rage to continue to a point where it can no longer be contained or defeated.
Second is the liberal notion that there is no greater virtue than “dissent.” Supporting your country is corny while dissenting shows that you are not only a “person of conscience,” but also a deep intellect and a feeling soul capable of apprehending the societal injustices beyond the discernment of the average Joe Blow.
The Muslims, therefore, are simply dissenters, and what can be nobler than that? In fact, silly liberals assume a brotherhood with the Moslem placard carriers since both are condemning, dissenting against, America. The silly ones among us are sure they’ll be spared the jihad since they are not ‘official’ whites, nor Christian, or they are the right type — the tolerant type — of Christian, one that is a world citizen, not a mere parochial American. What we see from the Islamic protestors, however, is not dissent but a call to battle, fervor for concentration camps.
Third is our having made a god out of the idea of tolerance. Everyone today is hell bent on showing how tolerant he is, since in our society the quickest road to official virtue and sainthood is reached not by the good deeds one does or by one’s personal sacrifice but how tolerant one appears to others. I’m tolerant, therefore, I am. It is the world’s easiest achievement: I am good not for what I do but for what I espouse.
Now, what greater tolerance is there than being tolerant of those who wish you ill? What greater “understanding” is there than understanding those enraged at you, not even for what you did but because of who you are: whites, Christians, westerners, Jews. In the name of tolerance, today’s liberal accepts racism — a racism against themselves. The only acceptable racism is that which is directed against westerners since it gives tolerance-obsessed Westerners the opportunity to show that their tolerance is so great that it accepts racism against itself.
Fourth is how the elites leading the West no longer believe in the West. They are bored of it, cynical, and full of self-loathing. They are not patriots but “hateriots.” They no longer take our values seriously. They dismiss our conviction, our patriotism and our old fashioned religion.
Ironically, their cavalierness toward their own culture has led them to a reverence for that which is opposite their culture: Islam. We often grant respect to that which is seen as the opposite of that which we now reject. No longer serious about its own culture, they are impressed by those who are serious about their culture. Having dismissed their own religion, they are in awe of those who demand utter devotion to a counter religion.
Deep down they know their life has become frivolous, centered on such topical things as same-sex marriage and transgenderism, goody-goody sensitivity, with an intellectual ditzy-ness of those no longer engaged in tough day-to-day struggle. The comfortable West is gripped by a weltanschauung of “Barneyism.” Westerners are increasingly concerning themselves with notions more befitting kindergarten and may perhaps be impressed by those who appear firm and resolute in contrast to their own tentativeness and relativism.
In Muslims they see people willing to die for a cause when they know they’d never be willing to die for anything, not even the “civil liberties” in whose name they condemn a President fighting the War on Terror. How do I know? Because they weren’t even willing to uphold their own clarion call of Freedom of the Press when faced, for the first time, with some protestors and mobs in far away Europe and the Middle East.
A society ridden with self-imposed guilt is incapable of defending itself against those charging that society with guilt. A multicultural society which no longer believes in itself and finds nothing special in its own particularism will not fight for itself. A culture that elevates tolerance over its own survival is suicidal. A culture that views dissent against itself as the greatest calling has given its enemies the tool in which to anesthetize the inhabitants. A society cannot recognize an enemy when it’s always pointing to itself as the enemy.
The headstone overlooking the grave of Westernism will read: Brought to its end by a liberalism, which weakened and incapacitated it. If we reverse course and expel these noxious suicidal attitudes, there will be no headstone, but another millennium of freedom and blessing.