Sunday, November 28, 2010

LA on the the Mayor of Portland

The Mayor of Portland has issued a sickening response to the Christmas tree bomber. Move along, folks, this has nothing to do with Islam. It would be wrongthought to think this has anything to do with Islam. The most important thing we can think in the wake of this attempted murder is that it has nothing to do with Islam. Shades of General Diversity-would-be-the-worst-casualty Casey.

Auster nails it:

The Liberal Prime Directive is: Thou shalt not make negative judgments about, discriminate against, or exclude people who are different from us. So, when people different from us attempt to mass murder us, what the liberal sees is not the threat to us, but the threat to liberalism. His immediate response therefore is not to defend us from those who are attempting to kill us, but to defend and reinforce liberalism from the truth which threatens liberalism.


Mr Veale said...


I'm not sure where this argument takes us. Yes, Islamic beliefs are part of the explanation.

But Catholic and Protestant beliefs were part of the explanation for the Troubles in Northern Ireland. It would be naive to deny this. But doctrinal differences aren't sufficient to explain the conflict. And I'm not sure that there is a clear case that Islamic doctrine inevitably leads to terrorism, in the absence of other factors.

My other problem is that the doctrines that motivate this sort of attack are not only popular among Muslim communities, and they are not of recent vintage. There is a real danger that you cut one head off a hydra, and then face the same occidentalism from another direction.


Lydia McGrew said...

I think the Ireland analogy can definitely be carried too far. Islam _does_ mandate holy war, _is_ a supremacist ideology that involves attempting to take over non-Muslim countries, _does_ support jihad directly, etc., etc. This young man was not a misunderstander of Islam.

The same cannot be said for Protestantism or Catholicism in anything remotely like the same sense. To put it bluntly, Islam is a bad religion. Protestant and Catholic Christianity aren't.

It's sort of pointless, too, in my opinion to say that other people also have violent doctrines. Right now, in our world, in our country and in Europe, Islam is the major terrorist religion, the major terrorist problem. We should deal with that head-on. Other terrorist organizations we can deal with on their own as well. But this problem that we really do have does have to do with Islam in a very essential and intimate sense, and it would be folly to deny that.

We need to profile. What the mayor is saying is dangerous foolishness.

Lydia McGrew said...

I totally agree that these doctrines aren't of recent vintage, by the way. The jihad has been going on for many, many centuries. :-)

Mr Veale said...

"I think the Ireland analogy can definitely be carried too far."

I do tend to go on about it a bit, don't I? And Ireland does not provide an analogy for the crisis facing the US.
However, in Northern Ireland a Democratic state (the UK) confronted religiously motivated violence and terrorism. So I'd be surprised if there wasn't something to be learned.

"doctrinal differences aren't sufficient to explain the conflict"

Nor are they sufficient to explain the Crusades, the 30 Years War, or the growth of Al Quaeda and their kin.

"It's sort of pointless, too, in my opinion to say that other people also have violent doctrines."

That's not really my point. My point is that the same doctrine (occidentalism) partly motivates Hindutva ideology, Russian nationalism and Islamist terror. Or at least, that's one analysis.


Lydia McGrew said...

Well, Graham, since you were the one who brought up "doctrinal differences"...

I would never say that doctrinal differences explain Islamic hatred for America. After all, Jehovah's Witnesses also don't believe in the Trinity, and they aren't blowing anything up.

No, the problem is that jihad is an intrinsic part of Islam as are things like dhimmitude, sharia, etc.. Islam shd. never be regarded as just another theological theory, just another "version" of monotheism with disagreements of detail from Christianity. It isn't like that at all. It's a totalizing religion encompassing every area of the lives of its adherents and commanding the attempt to, literally, conquer the world for the House of Islam.

That's why we have problems with it.

Calling this the "same doctrine" as other forms of hatred of the West doesn't seem to me to tell us much of anything in terms of policy. This is what we are currently fighting, and this is what we have to find a way of responding to.