After Charlottesville, Bret Stephens wrote a New York Times column challenging lefties for giving Islamists a pass in the same way that they would never tolerate if they were Neo-Nazis.
Regarding last week’s events in Charlottesville, Va., consider the following propositions:
(1) James Alex Fields Jr., the young man who on Saturday, police say, rammed his Dodge Challenger into a crowd in Charlottesville, killing Heather Heyer and injuring 19 others, was not a “domestic terrorist.”
(2) He was a fatherless, troubled individual who likely experienced economic disenfranchisement as a child of Kentucky and was moved to violence for motives about which we can only guess.
(3) The marchers who gathered in Charlottesville to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee are not necessarily “alt-right.” After all, the alt-right movement encompasses a diverse spectrum of opinion, only some of it racist, and should not be tarred by the rhetoric or actions of a few.
(4) White people should feel no sense of responsibility because a tiny handful of so-called white “nationalists” and “supremacists” falsely claim to speak in their name.
(5) The blame for the events in Charlottesville does not lie with any particular group. Both sides bear their share of guilt and should have shown greater restraint.
(6) President Donald Trump was right last Saturday to avoid stigmatizing any particular group in his remarks condemning violence and hatred. Doing so would unnecessarily elevate the profile of the angry losers and occasionally violent extremists who defame Americans and give them the PR victory they were seeking all along.
OK, now here’s hoping you’re revolted by each of the six preceding points. Because, if you are, then maybe we can at last rethink the policy of euphemism, obfuscation, denial and semantic yoga that typified the Obama administration’s discussions of another form of terrorism.
That would be Islamist terrorism...
Predictably the responses on the left were furious. The left hates two things above all else.
1. Being mocked
2. Being called out for its hypocrisy
And Bret Stephens had managed to do both in their own media safe space. Worse still, he had raised a few good questions. 3, 4 and 6 are particular staples of the left's approach to Islamic terrorism.
Since every publication has its own social justice blogs rolled in, the rants quickly followed. Here's an except from GQ.that is meant to tar and feather Bret, but actually makes the question stronger...
Because you are a person with critical thinking skills, you probably understand that shouting RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISM from the rooftops at every opportunity has its drawbacks, since doing so could foster a culture of fear and xenophobia in which every brown person is treated as a threat. Publicly repudiating white supremacists simply doesn't entail the same risks.
The left's premise has been that linking all Muslims to terror will make them feel more marginalized and more likely to become terrorists.
Why doesn't that same formula apply to white men? Doesn't pushing "white privilege" everywhere make it more likely that they'll feel marginalized? Doesn't accusing all white people of being racists lower the social cost of becoming an actual racist?
You're not supposed to ask question. But it is a good one.
Our GQ blogger dances around it by playing the "safe space" card and concentrating on how awful the marginalized people would feel if we did that. But that's only half the formula. The other half is that it makes violence more likely.
Either that's true of groups in general, in which case the left should drop its white privilege witch hunt, or it isn't, and then its objections to calling out Islamic terror collapse.