Many wonder why we seem to have slowly slipped further into a September 10th mindset over the last few years. This depsite atrocities like those in Bali, Madrid and London. Incidents like those in Chapel Hill and last week's Seattle mass shooting, not to mention arrests in Buffalo, Florida and others that escape me, haven't been enough to drive home the point that we really are at war with people that want to kill us all.
There are many reasons for this. Part of the blame can be laid on the President and the administration. With a few notable exceptions, it's hard to imagine a worse job of articulating why we're fighting and who we're fighting against. Then there's the fact that, despite all expectations immediately after 9/11, we haven't taken another significant hit. This must surely be due to good work by our national security apparatus as well as the national-security-above-all attitude of the President.
We can also look to the American left and the media when considering the lack of a war-time attitude in the U.S. Their obvious tack of treating George Bush and the Iraq war as a more immediate threat to American security than anything the terrorists may be dreaming up has, over time, had its desired effect. Frivolous items such as the Plame affair, as well as the attempt to criminalize (in the mind of the American public) security measures such as phone call monitoring and international bank transactions have worn on the collective will, too.
However, despite these and other recent factors, another more long-term change in the American (and Western) psychological make-up has had a more profound effect on our will to see and confront threats that should otherwise be self-evident and that is the long-term effect of the cult of multiculturalism and 'cultural sensitivity' on our colllective self worth.Mark Steyn
, in an article in Macleans, articulates this as well as anyone has:
In "Multiculturalism and The Politics Of Recognition," a very early entry into the field, Charles Taylor writes: "It makes sense to demand as a matter of right that we approach the study of certain cultures with a presumption of their value . . . But it can't make sense to demand as a matter of right that we come up with a final concluding judgment that their value is great, or equal to others." ...But, given that multiculturalism is principally an exercise in Western self-abasement, the presumption of greater value is the entire point. The problem, pace Taylor, is not that Group A holds values that are incompatible with Group B, but rather that Group A holds no values at all. In the modern multicultural state, we accord all values equal value: in effect, our values are that we have no values -- and so the best way we can demonstrate our lack of values is by deferring to those values most antipathetic to us.
With each new assault on human decency by someone named Ahmed or Ali, the first words out of the mouths of politicians and the press is invariably something to the effect of, "...while the accused was a member of the Acme mosque, there's no evidence whatsoever that the crime was terror-related... ." Uh huh.
This kind of boilerplate qualification is now de rigeur
in order to conform to what have become the requirements of modern political correctness. Right thinkers everywhere feel morally obligated to begin any sentence referring to Muslim fudamentalist terror with the qualification that, of course Islam is a religion of peace
and most Muslims are good people who despise the terrorists
. Sure it may be hard to tell if this is purely P.C. pap or if maybe there's a certain amount of fear mixed in, but it's garbage nonetheless. You only have to look to old Europe to see where this has gotten them. They're just waking up to the fact that they're in real danger of losing their societies.
The heavy weight of white, western guilt (due to our wealth, our modernity, our culture, our Imperialist ancestors, whatever) and the incessent preaching of that guilt by sixties era socialists that have largeley taken over universities, foundations and the press in the last generation have had the desired effect of wearing down our will to believe that our society is not merely as good and morally valid as that of the Muslim world, but is in all way superior. Our moral backbone has been softened and our willingness to endure a long hard slog, as the war on Islamo-facism must surely be, has been significantly diminished. Any time we see a Lebanese civilian casualty, the first thought isn't that it's an unfortunate consequence of fighting the scum who use civilians as human camouflage. No, most think to themselves that war itself is the enemy and that Israel must stop its barbaric assault on these people.
It may take, God forbid, another body blow or two on U.S. soil before we have the moral certitude to carry this war to its necessary conclusion. As painful as that would be, it might have the long-term effect of waking the sleeping giant and saving tens of thousand of lives (or more) in the long run.