Monday, April 29, 2013

Extremism, Bigotry, and Hypocrisy

What would you do or say if I were to begin this post with this:
Ladies and Gentlemen, let me tell you of monsters and monstrous wrongs. And let me tell you what these bloody monsters thrive on.
One might think I was about to perform a public service or, alternatively, go off on some crazy rant.  Either could be right, although with language as colorful and loaded as that, you'd likely lean towards the crazy rant.

OK, so then let's suppose I add this to the post:
Today, we face incredibly well-funded gangs of fundamentalist Islamic monsters who terrorize their fellow Americans by forcing their weaponized and twisted version of Islam upon helpless government employees. Oh my, my, my, how "Papa's got a brand new bag."
If you are politically moderate, or at least politically ambivalent, you'd say that I was being both Extremist and Bigoted, and maybe a bit crazy.  If you were oriented towards the Left, you'd say that I was probably one of those paranoid Right Wing Nutcases who think Obama is filling the government up with Muslims in a secret plan to take over the country.  Those guys see boogie men behind every corner. Nobody should listen to them.

If, then, I go on to state:
What's Papa's new tactic? You're gonna just love this! These days, when ANYone attempts to bravely stand up against virulent religious oppression, these monstrosities cry out alligator tears in overflowing torrents and scream that it is, in fact, THEY who are the dispossessed, bereft and oppressed. C'mon, really, you pitiable unconstitutional carpetbaggers? It would be like the utter folly of 1960's-era southern bigots howling like stuck pigs in protest that Rosa Parks' civil rights activism is "abusing" them by destroying and disenfranchising their rights to sit in the front seat of buses in Montgomery, Alabama. Please, I beseech you! Let us call these ignoble actions what they are: the senseless and cowardly squallings of human monsters.
You'd likely say "Ol' Sarge has gone off the deep end.  When I started reading this Blog, I thought he would be reasonable, at least fair minded, but it turns out he's just one of those Nut Jobs I hear about all the time"  and you'd start thinking about not reading any further in this post, or think about never visiting the Blog again.

Now let's say that I then went on for a couple of paragraphs alleging terrible deeds, suspect motives, wrongs that needed to be righted, treatment that should be punished, and ended the post with THIS:
If these fundamentalist Islamic monsters of human degradation, marginalization, humiliation and tyranny cannot broker or barter your acceptance of their putrid theology, then they crave for your universal silence in the face of their rapacious reign of theocratic terror. Indeed, they ceaselessly lust, ache, and pine for you to do absolutely nothing to thwart their oppression. Comply, my friends, and you, too, become as monstrously savage as are they. I beg you, do not feed these hideous monsters with your stoic lethargy, callousness and neutrality. Do not lubricate the path of their racism, bigotry, and prejudice. Doing so directly threatens the national security of our beautiful nation.
You would stop reading this Blog, and you would be right to do so.  You would also probably discount anything I said in between the beginning and the end as racist, bigoted, extremist ranting and would be of the opinion that I should not be holding any position of responsibility, or be in any position where my views might affect the views of young people, the naive, or the easily led or have any position of authority or influence on government.  You'd be right about that, too.

Islam, like Christianity, is made up of a number of different sects, sub sects, and denominations, that have widely different views on a number of different interpretations of the Holy Bible.  One could not, for instance, fairly claim that Unitarians are exactly the same as the Westboro Baptist Church simply because both believe in the Divinity of Christ.  You could not fairly claim that Catholics are exactly the same as Methodists, even though the both adhere to the Great Commission of Christ.  To claim that all Muslims believe in violent jihad through terrorism is both Bigoted and Extremist.  Both George Bush and Barack Obama agree on this, and every time there is a terror attack in this country politicians and pundits on both sides of the aisle will caution against coming to rapid conclusions---and rightly so (that is, of course those who will tell you the Tea Party Did It and, to be fair, those who immediately jump to the conclusion that it was Jihad (although if one was to bet on the most likely perpetrator, they'd place a bet on Left Wing Environmental Terrorists, but that's math not bigotry).

The problem is this.
“The armed forces are on the verge of falling apart,” Larry Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Colin Powell, told me in an interview. Aside from proselytizing, he said, other problems include “sexual assault, suicides, lowering entrance standards and war weariness. They are in trouble, and the leadership is oblivious.” Sexual assault and proselytizing, according to Wilkerson, “are absolutely destructive of the bonds that keep soldiers together.”

Wilkerson was speaking to me in an interview with former ambassador Joe Wilson and the head of the private Military Religious Freedom Foundation, Mikey Weinstein. They were on their way to a meeting at the Pentagon on April 23 where they would discuss religious issues in a group that included several generals and a military chaplain.

"Now, why is that a problem?" you might say.

Well, its because Mikey Weinstein is the man who penned those thoughts I block quoted above, but as you will see, I made two minor changes.

Exit question:

See if your answer here is the same as mine was.


  1. Quite frankly, I think we should treat criminals as criminals, not soldiers. "Enemy combatants" are not soldiers. "Jihadists" are not soldiers. Posse Commitatus members are not soldiers. Thet are all just organized criminals and our crimninal law and jusatice system is perfectly capable of dealing with them. We should be gravely ashamed of holding criminals without trial for years on end, as is being done in Guantanamo. That is what totalitarian tyranies do.

  2. James. That's all well and good, I suppose, but what does it have to do with the Obama Administration appointing an Anti-Christian bigot to a panel to discuss religious issues in the military?