Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Bear with a Head Cold (reprise)

Second day at home sick, re-reading my post from yesterday, a little concerned that my 'humour'(?) may have been as logical as his 'facts', bored, bored, bored, I think I may have another crack at his ... what I would not like to flatter by calling writing, perhaps more a collection of words ..?

Okay, let's start from the top shall we?

Spanish Newspaper article on Judiasm (In English)

Yup, sure does mention the Jews. Not sure it is an in depth exploration of Judaism as such, but it sure mentions the Jews. Great. Also mentions Muslims at least as prominently. Still, don't want to get too specific here. It is in English also. Points all round for the first line.

All European life died in Auschwitz.

Snappy, emotive, very self-flagellatory, good parallel between genocide and the death of Western Reason. Plenty of good, fact based arguments coming up I reckon.

I walked down the street in Barcelona, and suddenly discovered a terrible truth - Europe died in Auschwitz.

Good bloke, learning never stops for him, always on the lookout for entire swathes of European History that may have slipped through the cracks in the Education System.

We killed six million Jews and replaced them with 20 million Muslims.

Yeeeeeees-no. Hello Dan Brown, taking two facts, squishing them together in a sentence, making a new factual truth. No.

The Huns and some of their mates killed 6 million Jews, waged a few wars during which just as many non-Jews died. Peace was reached, nations were built up again, labour was sought due to sudden, inexplicable lack of people.

Immigration was encouraged, people from all different races and religions migrated. Lots of Muslims turned up since the people in the Muslim World are quite numerous and not so wealthy as the profligate Europeans who like to kill millions of people and still need more flesh for their money-making machines.

In Auschwitz we burned a culture, thought, creativity, talent. We destroyed the chosen people, truly chosen, because they produced great and wonderful people who changed the world.

The contribution of these people are felt in all areas of life: science, art, international trade, and above all, as the conscience of the world. These are the people we burned.

I would like to take this moment to introduce you all to zefrank and his definition of The Wedge Strategy. For those without Quicktime, here is the text version of zefrank's little riff on The Wedge Strategy:

'A wedge strategy is where you focus on a highly charged issue at the borders of rationality and emotion. The emotional content of the issue can create a moral conviction that the issue needs to be resolved at any cost. Tactics that would otherwise be called into question can then be employed to resolve the issue. This sets precedent for the future use of those tactics in other arenas.'

So, with the sneaky little wedge strategy in mind, let's look at these four sentences again. Can anyone spot the emotionally charged issue?

Where are the borders of rationality and emotion? Let's see; don't want to speak ill of the death, check for emotion; not every one of those six million humans could have been a paragon of greatness, wonderfulness and intellectual contribution, check for irrationality.

As a historian, as a historian who studied the Holocaust, as a historian who studied the Holocaust and wanted to JOIN the Jewish religion at age 17, I will never argue with those four sentences because many brilliant, kind and humanly flawed people, undeserving of death, died at the hands of other brilliant, kind and humanly flawed people who either believed the Jews deserved to die, or wished to live themselves and chose another to die instead of themselves.

I just wouldn't construct an argument against another culture using a faux self-effacing acknowledgment of the worst aspect of my own. Call me crazy.

[Well you can call me crazy for wanting to join a religion/nation because it had a cool history and I thought that a person could appropriate history for oneself merely by calling God by another name. That is another discussion altogether however.]

And under the pretense of tolerance, and because we wanted to prove to ourselves that we were cured of the disease of racism, we opened our gates to 20 million Muslims, who brought us stupidity and ignorance, religious extremism and lack of tolerance, crime and poverty due to an unwillingness to work and support their families with pride.

*Claire dances a little angry jig* Where to start, where to start, OH LORD WHERE TO START?

In my other post I dealt with the *cough* author's *cough* claims with matching emotional arguments based on sweeping generalisations. But two wrongs cannot make a right, so I will repeat a theme I mentioned above, just with some different illustrations.

Where are the borders of rationality and emotion? Let's see; ruefully admitting 'we was wrong, evil, weak, racist and intolerant', check for emotion; all Muslims are the same, check for irrationality.

Where are the borders of rationality and emotion? Let's see; no Europeans are stupid, ignorant, religious extremists, intolerant, criminal and poor, with no family pride, the Muslims brought that into our great country, check for irrationality; all Muslims are to blame for terrorists that share their religious beliefs, check for irrationality; Europeans are being punished for the Holocaust; check for emotion.

Where are the borders of rationality and emotion? I don't know, right in front of us every day as people in every strata of life try to assert themselves with violence instead of reason perhaps.

Perhaps in the words pasted together by somebody who is using the argument that ALL of Europe was stupid, ignorant, religiously fanatic, intolerant, criminal and dismissive of familial safety to argue that ALL of Islam is likewise, coated in the inarguable emotion of the Holocaust to make it slide down a treat.

And now - the magnificently crafted crescendo of crassness ...

They have turned our beautiful Spanish cities into the third world, drowning in filth and crime. Shut up in the apartments they receive free from the government, they plan the murder and destruction of their naive hosts. And thus, in our misery, we have exchanged culture for fanatical hatred, creative skill for destructive skill, intelligence for backwardness and superstition. We have exchanged the pursuit of peace of the Jews of Europe and their talent for hoping for a better future for their children, their determined clinging to life because life is holy, for those who pursue death, for people consumed by the desire for death for themselves and others, for our children and theirs.

In summary: We treated the Jews like animals, then in righteous remorse we let other, real animals into our lands and they are killing us like animals.

At no stage does this crazy author, whose words have spread over the internet like poison in a water source, disassociate the masses of the Muslim world from the comparatively tiny number of terrorists, suicide bombers and the victims of the well-documented institutionalised racism of European employment laws and processes.

Perhaps then we have no right to let New York Staters disassociate themselves from the mantle of terrorism that Timothy McVeigh gave them. All Cambodians must be labelled as perpetrators of horrific murder because of Pol Pot. Australians are mass murderers of English Tourists. All the Chinese oppress themselves in an orgy of human rights abuses.

At no stage does rationality shine upon the words of this author, that have regrettably been taken up and passed around by so many as some kind of amazing truth.

What a terrible mistake was made by miserable Europe.

Damn right.

This is a translation of an article from a Spanish newspaper.

Ooooooh, the Spanish should be pissed that they are being credited with owning this imbecile.

Please send this article to as many people as possible, with a request to forward it on. The truth must be told!

Yes, the truth does need to be told. Peace is not won by propaganda, it is won by reason.



Anonymous said...

While your critique is well constructed, where do we find a solution on how to protect and defend ourselves from the terrorists?
Keep in mind that the majority of terrorists to date seem to claim citizenship in the Muslim world.

Claire Madeleine said...

Hi Anonymous

Sorry for this late reply as I don't really have many people taking advantage of my comments!

Terrorists are a logical result of the freedom to act against those whom you despise; no matter what religious, political or national identity the terrorist and the victim are assigned or subscribe to.

There will never be consensus on issues that move people, so there will always be opposition to those in power. Those who oppose those in power will always revolt, and will always be labelled terrorists or Fifth Columns etc.

The current media attention on terrorists from the Muslim world is simply more important to us because it is of the moment - it is OUR time and OUR crisis. For thousands of years there have been terrorists - after all, Pogroms against the Jews were justified because they were terrorists. Just terrorists who were bankers, not bombers,

I am quite biased when I am asked any question that starts out with the phrase 'What is the solution to ...'

The solution is to travel and read history - not your history or your country, but the history and countries of others. Once you have encountered and really engaged with the world of another, yours will never again be the ONLY one, it will simply be the one you grew up in.