We can’t expect ill-educated, poorly-parented teahadists in their insular gated communities to achieve their full human potential as long as well-paid professional propagandists are willing to make excuses for their bad behavior. Isaac Chotiner at TNR calls out one such apologist:
Reihan Salam, in a column today:
One thing that is undeniably true is that American conservatives are overwhelmingly white in a country that is increasingly less so. As the number of Latinos and Asian-Americans has increased in coastal states like California, New York and New Jersey, many white Americans from these regions have moved inland or to the South. For at least some whites, particularly those over the age of 50, there is a sense that the country they grew up in is fading away, and that Americans with ancestors from Mexico or, as in my case, Bangladesh don’t share their religious, cultural and economic values. These white voters are looking for champions, for people who are unafraid to fight for the America they remember and love. It’s unfair to call this sentiment racist. But it does help explain at least some of our political divide. [Emphasis Mine]
… My question for Salam is this: how racially insensitive does one have to be to prefer an America with segregation because he or she saw other advantages to 1950s society? What possibly could outweigh the disgusting racial status quo of the 1950s (I am leaving out the status of women and gays)? To wish for a return to that America, I would argue, one has to be so racially insensitive that bigoted seems like an apt descriptor. The alternative answer, of course, is complete solipsism.
Well spoken, Mr. Chotiner. And that reminded me that I had yet not gotten around to linking to New York Magazines’s feature article on “God in the Basement of the Empire State Building“:
Each spring, the King’s College, a Christian school occupying two floors in the Empire State Building, hosts a series of lectures and debates on a single theme. This year’s theme is villainy. In a windowless basement room, Dinesh D’Souza, the college’s newly installed president, is delivering his remarks to a student camera crew, two potential donors, and about 30 undergraduates. In keeping with the college’s dress code, the students wear business suits.
“I want to talk a little bit about what I call the unique villainy of Barack Obama,” D’Souza, 50, says with a grin. “In my view, it’s the villainy of nondisclosure.” Obama campaigned as a standard liberal, D’Souza says, but actually is a vehement anti-colonialist. “For Obama, the radical Muslims are on the right side of history—that’s why he is so unnaturally solicitous toward them.”…
An austere young man asks, “Doesn’t the villainy of deception sort of pale in comparison to Obama’s moral villainies, such as supporting the abortion agenda or even the redistribution of wealth, stealing from the rich to give to the poor?”
“In a sense, yes,” D’Souza concedes, and later says, “Frankly, I don’t think Obama cares that much about the poor. What he cares about is bringing down the people at the top … In my opinion, Obama’s animating energies are negative.” By now the two potential donors have left the room looking ashen. Chris Ross, an employee of the college who is “facilitating” my visit by never leaving my side, winces slightly every time I write something down. As he escorts me out of the building, he says, “Remember that President D’Souza speaks for himself, not for the school.” …