Monday, May 07, 2007

Oops...They Did It Again: Liberalism's Apparent Inability to Pick the Right Partner

One of the truly irritating things about liberals is the impression that they like to portray that they are the only ones who really think and that they have the corner on the defense of human rights. They also have this apparent passion for trying to make the rest of us feel guilty for one thing or another, as they forever apologize for or bemoan Western culture, values, and actions. And they will become bedmates with whomever they see as the chief opponent of Western (and particularly American) foreign policy. If the West is for it then it must be suspect...or so these liberal "intellectuals" would seem to reason.

In the 1980's, I traveled to Czechoslovakia while it was still staunchly communist and a vassal of the Soviet Union. As I waited at the Czech-Austrian border for my visa to be processed and my vehicle to be searched, I noticed a good number of posters and banners on the walls proclaiming the virtues of peace and disarmament. The West was portrayed as a horde of warmongers intent on destroying the peace loving Communist nations. What struck me was that this was the same message that was being proclaimed by the peace demonstrators in Western Europe and Great Britain at the time who were pushing for the removal of American nuclear missiles from their soil. The naïveté of these liberals was breathtaking. They really believed that the solution to the Cold War was the unilateral disarmament of the West. No wonder the communists supported their efforts publicly and financially.

As history shows, however, the Cold War ended not due to the efforts of the liberals. It was at the hands of conservatives like Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, and Pope John Paul II, who refused to listen to the liberal siren song.

Now Western liberals have a new bedmate; Islamists. Crying "Peace, peace" when there is no (and can be no) peace, they seem to be of the opinion that if the West would just leave the Islamists alone, then all of the problems in the Middle East, Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan would disappear. "After all," they reason, "somehow it is our fault that these young Muslims are blowing up market places and buses, and flying airplanes into skyscrapers."

Ah yes, liberal guilt. If something bad happens, it must be our fault somehow. They exhibit the same tragic tendency to internalize guilt as an abuse victim. It is never really the fault of the perpetrator. Their anti-western, anti-American bias drives them into the bed of those who, like the communists, know how to manipulate such naïveté. And our liberals, with their selective, short memories of Islamist atrocities of the past, eagerly embrace their new lovers. "At last," they sigh, "we have found someone who hates the West as much as we do. These poor people...surely it must be our fault that they are as angry and violent as they are. If we just show them enough love, I am sure that they will eventually love us in return."

Remind me, please, how is it is the fault of the West that every country that has enshrined Sharia law as the basis of their constitution has limited or no freedom of conscience, expression, the press, or religion? Tell me again, how the West is to blame for the second-class legal and political rights that women and religious minorities typically have in Islamic-controlled counties. Is the fact that Shiites and Sunni Muslims in Iraq seem intent on slaughtering each other to be blamed on the West somehow? I am sure that these thoughtful liberals will figure some way to exonerate their new love.

Astonishingly enough, it is because of our Western liberals that liberal Muslims are having a hard time being heard. As Farzana Hassan-Shahid of the Muslim Canadian Congress recently told the Toronto Star, what is disconcerting is a tendency he's noticed among many on the left to embrace militant Muslims because they like the anti-U.S., anti-George W. Bush rhetoric of such people. "They think they're like the Sandinistas," he says, referring to the Nicaraguan rebels of the 1980s.

I am not sure how we are going solve the Islamist threat to world peace. I am convinced that it will not be soon and it is likely to get far bloodier. In many ways, the present danger is far more complicated than the Cold War because we are not dealing with governments but with divergent, decentralized, religiously driven militant groups. I am convinced, however, that the solution will not be the liberal approach. Their approach is the product of sloppy thinking and misplaced guilt, fueled by prejudice, and blind to the past; things they often accuse us conservatives of.


Jack Niewold said...

Glenn, I certainly don't wish you to continue suffering physically as you have recently. But if this posting is representative of the "sick" Glenn Penner, I'm kinda hoping you'll take a little longer to get feeling well again.

Of course I'm only kidding, and continue to pray for your full recovery. But I am convinced that some of the most eloquent expressions of human experience come from our times of emotional and bodily tribulation.

Glenn Penner said...

Thanks, Jack. I do tend to write some of my better things when I am a bit cranky :-)

PheistyBlog said...


Thank you so much for your post. As I'm sure you know from my linking to your blog and blogging for VOTM, my blog focuses on the political climate of America. I have struggled with this, simply because I'm a Christian and find myself getting a little 'overly involved', trying to change things myself rather than allowing God to use me for His purpose. But I digress...

Anyway, I understand your frustration with the 'Left'. What I have come to realize is that this new 'leftism' is a religion like none the world has ever seen. It is a religion that completely blinds its followers, and alleviates guilt from their consciences because they actually believe that they are doing something noble. I believe that if we can reach liberals, we can truly change things.

I used to be overly-sarcastic and 'snotty' to liberals, using irony to show the err of their ways. God has spoken to me and He said that I'm not to return spite for spite, and that I need to be very cautious with my words.

We truly need to see that these are people who need to be reached out to, and we need to love them right where they're at, as frustrating as that is, and as destructive as their line of reasoning is. It is a cult, and in order for their trance to be broken, we need to love them so that communication can happen. If they can trust us enough to have conversations with us, we can show them the love of Christ and the freedom only He can provide.

Thank you for your blog. I plan on stopping back regularly.

Joey @ Pheistyblog