September 15, 2012
Your 3rd-rate satire is my fighting/killing words, sir.
Multicultural Islam or multicultural anything non-Western: Do not hold your breath. I was in Los Angeles for a day--and by the time I get back the U.S. has deployed armed services people to an astounding number of locations around the world to handle (or deter) the multiplying protests and attacks in the wake of sudden publicity about one of the dumbest films ever made. Outrage over "Innocence of Muslims"--an anti-Islam satire (sort of)--first resulted in the deaths of four Americans in Libya last week. The reaction, however, seems to have legs. According to the French news agency AFP, as of late Saturday GMT, the number of locations where violence has already occurred or is expected to occur by the U.S. State Department is a whopping eighteen (18).
The offending movie--a very bad one from what I can tell from the trailer--was trotted out weeks after it was accessible by one manipulative Egypt-based "tele-Islamist", part-time television host and full-time asshole. So aren't some of these energies born of a pretext by a few firebrands to wage war on the West and gain pawns to carry the ball? Sure they are. But many more Muslims genuinely deeply believe that "insulting" Islam deserves swift punishment. It is the way they think and feel. And most who think and feel that way are not evil humans.
Arab Spring and the new "democracies" now cropping up in Africa and the non-Western world does not mean--and may never mean--that underlying cultures that struggle with building new forms of government and societies are going to "get" or embrace Anglo-American notions of dissent, freedom of the press or the First Amendment. It does not mean that they will buy into these principles, or even appreciate or tolerate them in Westerners, for years or even decades. Those states have not yet been able to reconcile a new form of government with religions that have old, sometimes very old, nuances and rules. It will take a while. We need to get used to that.
In the meantime, what efficient Yankee-styled solution is there, if any? In the short term, there is none. Get used to that, too. But there is an approach. I think it's this: get our heads out of our wazoos and realize, in all our dealings with non-Westerners, that we are wired very differently than them and that they are not "wrong" or evil. They are culturally fundamentally different--and we need to remind each other of that truth. And also take to our hearts and heads what one Western 12-step program likes to say--often unthinkingly but wisely--about time. It is simply that "time takes time".
From "Innocence of Muslims".
Posted by JD Hull at September 15, 2012 08:03 PM
Obama should have launched a drone strike at the movie makers home.
This is not about us. It is about our allies in places like Libya. They cannot defend us.
MY latest pet peeve are the nude ass holes in SF to whom the City has responded with an anti-skid marking law. they have to sit on a towel.
The problem with this Country are the incredible number of people who claim the 1st amendment right to be a complete ass hole, which goes from this wack job to gays to libertarians to a lot of attorneys, business execs, and tv and radio personalities.
We need a new law.
If another country won't take you, you cannot stay here.
Posted by: Moe Levine at September 16, 2012 09:43 AM
So killing an ambassador of the U.S. (and doing worse things to him) because a yahoo uploaded a bad movie to Youtube and thereby offended the delicate sensitivities of the killers is not "bad"?
The Germans also thought differently in the 1930s. I guess we should have understood their frustrations more. We could have avoided the whole sordid business of a world war.
Posted by: NC at September 17, 2012 11:30 AM
There's a distinction here. Anti-western pols and firebrands who incite protesters to violence in the name of any religion are "bad". We continue to work against them. Rank and file pawns can be educated and are not "bad". They can and will come around. We have no other choice than to educate them.
Posted by: Hull at September 17, 2012 12:06 PM