Whether Christianity is true or false, and whether European morality is good or bad, European morality is in fact founded upon religion, and the destruction of the one must of necessity involve the reconstruction of the other. -- James Fitzjames Stephen
To regret religion is, in fact, to regret our civilization and its monuments, its achievements, and its legacy. -- Theodore DalrympleApparently (above), the cultural practices of a rapidly increasing population of Third World colonizers of Europe — primarily Arabs, Maghrebis, Pashtuns, etc — have actually turned out to be “antithetical” to the primarily white “civil society” of white Western civilization of white people. So… uh… was that supposed to bring your “fellow liberals” over to your side, Mr. Harris? A bold stratagem indeed.
You mentioned that certain “conservatives” are waging a “culture war” on behalf of “western standards of moral order,” which are under attack by “multiculturalists” wielding accusations of “racism,” “Islamophobia,” and a “legacy of colonialism.” “Political correctness” and “white guilt” are out of control, and your fellow Liberals, in a puzzling display of illiberalism, have rejected you. Your “reason,” “evidence” and “common sense” are not welcome. You simply do not fit in. What have we learned?
Well, the late Christian paleoconservative Lawrence Auster has an opinion — but he was one of those right-wing extremists you’ve heard so much about (2004):
Treating leftists as “liberals,” they are constantly surprised and scandalized at the “liberals’” illiberal intolerance. They deceive themselves in regarding political correctness and the double standard as extraneous to liberalism, as a mistake or silly excess or regrettable hypocrisy, which, if pointed out to the “liberals,” the “liberals” will renounce.
He never seems to notice that his brilliant exposure of the double standard fails to stop his “liberal” adversaries for even a single beat.
Conservatives never suspect that there may be something about “liberalism’s” essential nature that has generated this double standard, and that will keep generating it as long as “liberalism” itself survives.Or maybe we can just teach your fellow Liberals to be reasonable, so we can all band together and fight the “multiculturalism” brought about by “diversity” (2006):
I am here to report that liberals and conservatives respond very differently to the notion that religion can be a direct cause of human conflict.
This difference does not bode well for the future of liberalism.
My correspondence with liberals has convinced me that liberalism has grown dangerously out of touch with the realities of our world — specifically with what devout Muslims actually believe about the West, about paradise and about the ultimate ascendance of their faith.
On questions of national security, I am now as wary of my fellow liberals as I am of the religious demagogues on the Christian right.
This may seem like frank acquiescence to the charge that “liberals are soft on terrorism.” It is, and they are.
Such an astonishing eruption of masochistic unreason could well mark the decline of liberalism, if not the decline of Western civilization.
Increasingly, Americans will come to believe that the only people hard-headed enough to fight the religious lunatics of the Muslim world are the religious lunatics of the West. Indeed, it is telling that the people who speak with the greatest moral clarity about the current wars in the Middle East are members of the Christian right, whose infatuation with biblical prophecy is nearly as troubling as the ideology of our enemies. Religious dogmatism is now playing both sides of the board in a very dangerous game.
While liberals should be the ones pointing the way beyond this Iron Age madness, they are rendering themselves increasingly irrelevant. Being generally reasonable and tolerant of diversity, liberals should be especially sensitive to the dangers of religious literalism. But they aren’t.
The same failure of liberalism is evident in Western Europe, where the dogma of multiculturalism has left a secular Europe very slow to address the looming problem of religious extremism among its immigrants. The people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists.
To say that this does not bode well for liberalism is an understatement: It does not bode well for the future of civilization.“Moral clarity” from the big, bad right-wing Christian Crusaders (they’re usually good for that); “masochistic unreason” and a suicidal “dogma of multiculturalism” from the self-proclaimed forces of reason and tolerance. Who could imagine?
Sam, I think it might be time to trade that rapier for a hammer…
We used to hang out with GSV crew, or B-Gjengen as they are popularly called today, a Muslim Pakistani gang, quite violent even back then. “Gang alliances” was a part of our everyday life at that point and assured that you avoided threats and harassment. Alliances with the right people guaranteed safe passage everywhere without the risk of being subdued and robbed (Jizya), beaten or harassed. […] Even at that time, the Muslim gangs were very dominant in Oslo East and in inner city Oslo. They even arranged “raids” in Oslo West occasionally, subduing the native youths (kuffars) and collecting Jizya from them (in the form of cell phones, cash, sunglasses etc.). I remember they systematically harassed, robbed and beat ethnic Norwegian youngsters who were unfortunate enough to not have the right affiliations. Muslim youths called the ethnic Norwegians “poteter” (potatoes, a derogatory term used by Muslims to describe ethnic Norwegians). These people occasionally raped the so-called “potato whores.” In Oslo, as an ethnic Norwegian youth aged 14–18 you were restricted if you didn’t have affiliations to the Muslim gangs. Your travel was restricted to your own neighbourhoods in Oslo West and certain central points in the city. Unless you had Muslim contacts you could easily be subject to harassment, beatings and robbery. Our alliances with the Muslim gangs were strictly seen as a necessity for us, at least for me. We, however, due to our alliances had the freedom of movement. As a result of our alliances we were allowed to have a relaxing and secure position on the West side of Oslo among our age group. Think of it as being local “warlords” for certain “kuffar areas”, which were regulated by the only dominant force, Muslim gangs collaberating with anarcho-Marxist networks.
Many of these groups claim to be tolerant and anti-fascist, but yet, I have never met anyone as hypocritical, racist and fascist as the people whom I used to call friends and allies. The media glorifies them while they wreak havoc across the city, rob and plunder. Yet, any attempts their victims do to consolidate are harshly condemned by all aspects of the cultural establishment as racism and Nazism. I have witnessed the double standards and hypocrisy with my own eyes, it is hard to ignore. I was one of the protected “potatoes,” having friends and allies in the Jihadi-racist gangs. […]
In retrospect, it’s easy to understand why ethnic Norwegians are fleeing Muslim areas. No one likes to be “subdued” — live in fear, being harassed, beaten and robbed. The Muslim ghettofication process has been ongoing the last thirty years and it will continue until there is close to 100 percent concentrated Muslim areas in Oslo (the same tendency we see in Paris, London and other large Western European cities). When I was around 15–16 there was only one or two schools where the majority was non-ethnic Norwegian. Now, fifteen years later, there are around fifty schools on the East side of Oslo where the majority of students are non-natives and primarily Muslim.
It’s a miracle how I managed to successfully pass through my “vulnerable years” without being subdued by Muslim gangs even once. I know that there are hundreds, even thousands of incidents per year (I have personally witnessed around 50 incidents) where ethnic Norwegian youths ranging 14–18 are harassed, beaten, raped and robbed and it’s getting worse every year. I really don’t envy the new generations and the challenges that are facing them regarding Muslim subjugation.
If ethnic Norwegian youth or other non-Muslims attempt to create gangs of their own (for protection purposes), they are immediately labelled as racists and Nazis. At the same time numerous Muslim gangs commit thousands of racist acts each year against ethnic Norwegians and it’s either hushed down, ignored and therefore tolerated.And so on. “At the time,” says Jonathan Freedland (2013),
there was no shortage of voices on the right rushing to denounce what Breivik had done, before suggesting he was voicing a widely felt sentiment, adding that perhaps a frank conversation about the excesses of diversity and the alienating effects of globalisation and migration was overdue. As I wrote at the time: “To listen to it, you’d think Breivik had simply wanted to start a debate, that he’d perhaps written a provocative pamphlet for Demos, rather than committed an act of murderous cruelty.”
Some shook their heads ruefully, sadly noting that they had long warned such violence would be the result of the headlong rush to a multicultural, rainbow-hued future.
Liberal and left opinion knew what it thought of such talk. It was wrong to accord Breivik’s warped beliefs such a respectful hearing. Airing his ideas this way was to reward his massacre, surely providing an incentive for others to repeat the slaughter. His actions should be treated as murder, plain and simple. To respond by debating his grievances was to cede him, and violence itself, too much power.Freedland concurs: “Breivik’s views on Islam did not deserve a hearing by the right.”
Yes, any occasion is a good occasion not to have that “frank conversation about the excesses of diversity and the alienating effects of globalisation and migration.” Bombings, beheadings, elections, epidemics, the vernal equinox or the Witches’ Sabbath, just after a large meal or right before going swimming — all of these are appropriate times not to question the merits of the Western world’s “headlong rush to a multicultural, rainbow-hued” but mostly brown “future.” Don’t worry, if there is ever an appropriate time to have that conversation, the left will let us know! Probably through the information organs of the state — the universities and the press, which they control. Until then, you can just keep your racist mouth shut, you Christian fascist.
Yet when the killer’s cause is the matter of western intervention in Muslim countries, it seems some left voices find their previous fastidiousness has deserted them. […]You see, a couple of imported African Muslims had just hacked off a British soldier’s head on a London street in broad daylight. So look out! — for a completely fictitious “wave” of “anti-Muslim” “hate crimes” caused by “underlying Islamophobia.”
Imagine what they would say to the claim that Breivik’s terror vindicated the old rivers-of-blood warnings, predicting that decades of multiculturalism would end in disaster, and now it was time to change course. […]
Of course they’d have rejected such logic utterly.Yes, it’s almost as if Progressives don’t really believe that “debating grievances” will “cede violence itself too much power” — or even that political violence is necessarily wrong. (“Who? Whom?”) Meet Herbert Marcuse, “Father of the New Left” (1965):
Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left. As to the scope of this tolerance and intolerance: … it would extend to the stage of action as well as of discussion and propaganda, of deed as well as of word. […]
The whole post-fascist period is one of clear and present danger. Consequently, true pacification requires the withdrawal of tolerance before the deed, at the stage of communication in word, print, and picture. […] Different opinions and ‘philosophies’ can no longer compete peacefully for adherence and persuasion on rational grounds. […] It should be evident by now that the exercise of civil rights by those who don’t have them presupposes the withdrawal of civil rights from those who prevent their exercise, and that liberation of the Damned of the Earth presupposes suppression not only of their old but also of their new masters.(Amid pages of Marxist-Freudian hybrid sophistry, some examples of “progress in civilization” as Marcuse conceives it: the French, Chinese, and Cuban revolutions.)
More recently, the Guardian (2014) printed an open letter signed by distinguished academics including Marxist “critical theorist” Judith Butler, Marxist “critical theorist” Étienne Balibar, Marxist “critical legal theorist” Costas Douzinas, Marxist “critical theorist” Wendy Brown, Marxist “cultural critic” Slavoj Žižek, and Marxist terrorist Antonio Negri, to name a few. “Left-wing ‘extremism’” is good, the letter explains, because it is extremely “egalitarian,” and extremely “egalitarian” political theories (I’m sure you can think of one or two examples from the 20th century) are good:
Media accounts that misrepresent the importance of the growing electoral support for Syriza [the “radical left”] as the rise of leftwing “extremism” must be countered in the strongest of terms. There is no contemporary symmetry between the so-called “extremism” of left and right.(The leaders of the Greek “radical right” are currently in prison.)
A truly cynical observer might even suggest that, to Sam’s “fellow liberals,” such high-minded concepts as tolerance and free speech were never anything more than words — words to be wielded as weapons against their political opponents, when other weapons were unavailable. Meet Roger Nash Baldwin, founder of the ACLU (1934):
I champion civil liberty as the best of the non-violent means of building the power on which workers’ rule must be based. If I aid the reactionaries to get free speech now and then, if I go outside the class struggle to fight against censorship, it is only because those liberties help to create a more hospitable atmosphere for working class liberties. […]
When that power of the working class is once achieved, as it has been only in the Soviet Union, I am for maintaining it by any means whatever. Dictatorship is the obvious means in a world of enemies, at home and abroad.(Consult Issue 31 for more on this fascinating subject.)
Anyway, Sam Harris responded to Breivik’s attack quite reasonably (2011):
One can only hope that the horror and outrage provoked by Breivik’s behavior will temper the growing enthusiasm for right-wing, racist nationalism in Europe. However, one now fears the swing of another pendulum: We are bound to hear a lot of deluded talk about the dangers of “Islamophobia” and about the need to address the threat of “terrorism” in purely generic terms.
The emergence of “Christian” terrorism in Europe does absolutely nothing to diminish or simplify the problem of Islam — its repression of women, its hostility toward free speech, and its all-too-facile and frequent resort to threats and violence.Right on cue (2011):
Over at Truthdig, the celebrated journalist Chris Hedges has discovered that Christopher Hitchens and I are actually racists with a fondness for genocide. He has broken this story before — many times, in fact — but in his most recent essay he blames “secular fundamentalists” like me and Hitch for the recent terrorist atrocities in Norway.
Hedges begins, measured as always:
The gravest threat we face from terrorism, as the killings in Norway by Anders Behring Breivik underscore, comes not from the Islamic world but the radical Christian right and the secular fundamentalists who propagate the bigoted, hateful caricatures of observant Muslims and those defined as our internal enemies. The caricature and fear are spread as diligently by the Christian right as they are by atheists such as Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens. Our religious and secular fundamentalists all peddle the same racist filth and intolerance that infected Breivik. This filth has poisoned and degraded our civil discourse. The looming economic and environmental collapse will provide sparks and tinder to transform this coarse language of fundamentalist hatred into, I fear, the murderous rampages experienced by Norway. I worry more about the Anders Breiviks than the Mohammed Attas.
The editors at Truthdig have invited me to respond to this phantasmagoria. There is, however, almost no charge worth answering in Hedges’ writing — there never is. Which is more absurd, the idea of “secular fundamentalism” or the notion that its edicts pose a greater threat of terrorism than the doctrine of Islam? Do such assertions even require sentences to refute?Dunno, Sam. I’m a stoopid raciss, like yoo (Issue 18).
In other news, “animal rights activist” Volkert van der Graaf (not a Muslim) was just released from a Dutch prison after serving a grand total of twelve years for the assassination of “anti-immigration” politician (and homosexual Catholic liberal sociology professor) Pim Fortuyn (2014). “More than a few members of Europe’s political establishment,” Steve Sailer noted at the time, “appear to believe that Pim Fortuyn… had it coming” (2002). And Harris — is still sparring with his fellow liberals (2014):
Increasingly, questioning Islam results in a person’s being vilified as an “Islamophobe” and a “bigot” — or, in a ridiculous but omnipresent misuse of the term, as a “racist.” These charges come from Muslims themselves and from their apologists on the Left. Even major news sites, such as The Guardian and Salon, frequently publish these attacks.
I also find it very depressing, and rather ominous, that liberal women are not celebrating you [Ayaan Hirsi Ali] as the best example in a generation of what could and should happen for nearly a billion of their sisters currently living under Islam. Your lack of feminist allies is alarming. And the fact that so many liberals ditch their commitment to gender equality and attack you in the name of “religious sensitivity,” despite all that you’ve been through — making your life both less pleasant and more dangerous in the process — is just infuriating.
So the truly mortifying answer to the question of why you are at the AEI is that no liberal institution would offer you shelter when you most needed it — and when your value to the global conversation about free speech, the rights of women, and other norms of civilization was crystal clear. And ever since, your affiliation with the one institution that did take you in has been used to defame you in liberal circles. Perfect.
It will probably seem tendentious to many readers for me to put it this way, but our critics are just dishonest.And yet, Mr. Harris, your “ugly Islamophobia” remains a popular topic among your fellow liberals (2014). Meanwhile, Brandeis University rescinds its offer of an honorary degree to “Islamophobic” Ayaan Hirsi Ali (2014).
Years ago, when the academic left began to ostracize professors identified as “conservative,” university administrators stood aside or were complicit. The academic left adopted a notion espoused back then by a “New Left” German philosopher — who taught at Brandeis, not coincidentally — that many conservative ideas were immoral and deserved to be suppressed.
No one could possibly count the compromises of intellectual honesty made on American campuses to reach this point.She’s none too popular at Yale, either (2014):
In an open letter sent to Buckley Program student leaders, members of 35 campus groups say they feel “highly disrespected” by the September 15 lecture “Clash of Civilizations: Islam and the West.” […] They accuse Hirsi Ali of “hate speech” and express outrage that she should “have such a platform in our home.” “We cannot overlook,” they write, “how marginalizing her presence will be to the Muslim community and how uncomfortable it will be for the community’s allies.”
These groups claim “to act on Yale’s fundamental values of freedom of speech and diversity of thought,” but they are, of course, interested in no such things. Freedom of speech and diversity of thought are agreeable insofar as the speech spoken and the thoughts pondered are agreeable to the Muslim Students Association/Women’s Center/Black Students Alliance/other acceptable grievance lobby. Verboten is speech that transgresses select political orthodoxies.Well, best keep updating your ‘Response to Controversy,’ Mr. Harris.
Clink, clank, clink, clank…