Sunday, September 19, 2010

Patterns of hate and fear

Sixth graders are taken on a field trip to a mosque, taught a nonstandard version of history, and led in prayer. No one would dream of "balancing" this with a similar field trip to a Catholic church, a synagogue, a Mormon temple, or even a Hindu temple. Why the difference?

I've attributed it to Islamophobia – of the religions mentioned above, only one has demonstrated, in the here and now, a significant population of shock troops willing to kill infidels. The others are much safer, even if you insult them.

Bookworm sees a larger pattern at play: We only hate what we fear — why liberals hate the church and pay lip service to the mosque

The interesting question is why the Left doesn’t perceive a similar separation problem when it comes to mosque and state. I think it has to do with the liberal’s perception of an institution’s potential power over the masses.

A few months ago, I did a post about Rush Limbaugh, and the inordinate fear Leftists, not just extreme Leftists, but garden-variety Democrats, feel when they think about Rush. After a lot of background talk (I do love my background talk), I boiled it down to my key thesis, which is that liberals fear Rush because he is the one they worry will penetrate their defenses, make them think, and change their minds...
The same dynamic is at work when it comes to Leftists on the one hand, and mosques and churches on the other hand. For all their multicultural bloviating, so-called liberals don’t think much of Islam. They recognize that its moral teachings are limited (nothing clear and humanist like the Ten Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount, or the Golden Rule), that its history is ugly, and that its current practice, with all the demands about daily prayers and handwashing and fasting, is not going to be that attractive to the majority of Americans.

The Progressives therefore don’t seriously believe that anyone can go to a mosque and convert. Sure, if you go to prison you might convert, but anything looks good in prison. Further, as my cousin, the prison pastor, says:
It is not a contradiction to be a Muslim and a murderer, even a mass murderer. That is one reason why criminals “convert” to Islam in prison. They don’t convert at all; they similarly remain the angry judgmental vicious beings they always have been. They simply add “religious” diatribes to their personal invective. Islam does not inspire a crisis of conscience, just inspirations to outrage.

In other words, it’s not really a conversion at all.

Christianity, though, is scary. If you’ve got a good minister or priest or pastor, suddenly all sorts of persuasive stuff is going to appearing on people’s radars and penetrate their ignorance or defenses. You know what I mean: Stuff about justice, about dignity, about respect, about love, about forbearance. Worse, all this icky, non-Marxist stuff is going to fall on fertile soil, because even forty years of Progressivism in the public sphere hasn’t completely managed to leech away the Judeo-Christian beliefs that underlie American culture. Worse, Christ doesn’t demand of his followers grueling physical rituals. Instead, he demands faith. Not lip service and clean feet, but faith.

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