How the west is being lost
The convolutions of the culture war have become a vile and frightening process
The convolutions of the culture war are becoming ever more twisted.
As I observed here, the “anti-racist” identity-politics ideologues promoting it are now claiming that the culture war is an invention of those resisting it, aka “the right”.
They are unable to deal with being called out for promoting bigotry themselves by endorsing the false claim that white society is innately and systematically racist, thus damning every member of that society on the basis of the colour of their skin. So to deflect this point they assert, with breathtaking moral and intellectual legerdemain, that anyone who criticises Black Lives Matter or supporters of taking the knee — the vehicle and the symbol of that anti-white attitude — is therefore demonstrably racist.
There was an example of this two days ago in the Guardian where, in a column lamenting that “the right” was winning the culture war, Nesrine Malik attacked me for having called out Black Lives Matter as racist on BBC TV’s Politics Live last week.
The right’s culture warriors have profited enormously from their opponents’ failure to understand the nature of the war and the means by which it is fought.
And how has this war been fought? Apparently by the Conservatives having
successfully connected race to patriotism in the public mind.
The fact that the left is libelling the attachment to western culture as “white supremacism” was thus turned into a character assassination of the victims of that onslaught. Malik went on:
Culture war is an aggressive political act with the purpose of creating new dividing lines and therefore new and bigger electoral majorities… In the right’s mobile army, race and identity have played a central role, painting an England that is under assault from uppity minorities and their woke backers who can only be kept at bay by the Conservatives.
And so of course, my remarks on Politics Live were duly cherry-picked to demonstrate this Machiavellian strategy:
The Times columnist Melanie Phillips, invited on to the BBC on Wednesday to discuss the horrific abuse suffered by three young black footballers, simply explained that taking the knee was actually the “racist gesture”, and that Black Lives Matter was “fundamentally anti-white, anti-west, anti-Jew”.
Malik somehow unaccountably omitted the fact that I strongly condemned that horrific racial abuse, and furthermore said in terms that the England footballers undoubtedly believed that in “taking the knee” they were merely making a decent protest against racism.
Strikingly, she also seemed unaware of her own contradiction in claiming that people who think like me “deny racism is an issue” — while attacking me three sentences later for saying that taking the knee is a racist gesture.
Many decent people who support “taking the knee” similarly refuse to acknowledge its deeply unsavoury implications. At the root of this denial of the racist agenda of Black Lives Matter is the fact that many young people, in particular, are simply stupefied by the suggestion that racism isn't confined to white people and that ethnic minorities may also be racially prejudiced.
Goodness me! People of colour have the same qualities as those with pale skins?! They make moral choices, both for good and bad, in exactly the same way as all other human beings?!! Who’d have thought it? Well clearly, not the so-called “anti-racists” of the Black Lives Matter-supporting left who, in portraying ethnic minorities as being unable to make the moral choices that define our common humanity, are therefore demonstrably as bigoted as they come.
This open-mouthed astonishment by so many young people at the idea that people of colour are as human as they are themselves provides further frightening evidence that what passes for education has become in recent decades a propaganda system for an anti-west ideology that stands rationality and evidence on its head. And anyone who tries to bring reality into this picture is automatically damned as “right-wing,” code for “nasty bigoted extremist”.
A case in point was the all-too revealing story about me to which Malik’s article linked — all-too revealing, that is, about the writer, Lee Harpin. Reporting in Jewish News my comments on Politics Live, Harpin labelled me a “right-wing commentator” and claimed that I had become
in my comments on
issues around race and Islam over recent years,
and that as an example of this, in a column in the Jewish Chronicle, I had
claimed the concept of Islamophobia was “profoundly anti-Jew.”
You can read that column here. This is what I actually wrote:
Of course, true prejudice against Muslims should be condemned, just like prejudice against Hindus, Sikhs or anyone else. But the taunt of Islamophobia is used to silence any criticism of the Islamic world, including Islamic extremism.
… “Islamophobia” was invented by the Muslim Brotherhood to mimic antisemitism, the concept which these Islamists falsely believe immunises Jews from criticism — itself an antisemitic belief.
So “Islamophobia” appropriates to itself the unique attribute of antisemitism — that it is deranged — in order falsely to label any adverse comment about the Islamic world as a form of mental disorder.
The concept of “Islamophobia” is thus profoundly anti-Jew. To equate it with the dehumanising, insane and essentially murderous outpourings of Jew-hatred is obscene.
Those who call out Islamic extremism or Muslim Jew-hatred for what it is find themselves defamed as “Islamophobes” in order to silence them.
Cue the unpleasant smear job by Lee Harpin. Alas, there are many liberal Jews in Britain who think in exactly the same way that anyone who calls out the pernicious weaponisation of “Islamophobia,” or who identifies the bigotry behind Black Lives Matter and “taking the knee,” is thus proved to be an Islamophobe, a racist — and of course “right-wing”.
For just like “Islamophobe” and “racist”, “right-wing” is a term whose innate conceptual incoherence enables it to be weaponised by those who wish to silence views that left-wingers can’t defeat through evidence.
So anyone who dissents from any aspect of left-wing ideology is instantly labelled “right-wing” (even though they may actually be liberal, libertarian or have no governing political view of the world). If they provide evidence to show that the ideology is mendacious, they find themselves anathematised as “far-right” or “hard right” — a social and professional bill of excommunication.
And the more persuasive their evidence against that ideology, the further “right” any such dissident is said to be — and the more toxic it becomes for anyone to be seen to associate with, let alone endorse, that individual.
This vile and frightening process is how the west is being lost.
And you can read my most recent post that’s available to everyone, on the real challenge of reconciling Christians and Jews, by clicking here.
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