“Like many physical diseases, anti-Semitism is highly infectious, and can become endemic in certain localities and societies. Though a disease of the mind, it is by no means confined to weak, feeble, or commonplace intellects; as history sadly records, its carriers have included men and women of otherwise powerful and subtle thoughts.” – Paul Johnson
Political correctness is dangerous for many reasons, but there are two prime ways in which political correctness is most harmful: it stifles thoughtful debate by creating a culture which is fearful of diverse ideas, and opinions. In doing so, it limits the scope of our perspective, tightening our view from a wide expanse to a narrow field. The consequences of political correctness act as a domino effect, which leads us down frightening roads that would otherwise be avoided were we not restricted by unnecessary sensitivities. Such is the case with radical Islam, American sensitivity, and anti-semitism.
According to Reuters via Breitbart:
“Germany’s foreign minister said at an international conference on anti-semitism on Thursday that ‘hatred of Jews’ was on the rise once more in his country and across Europe, fueled by spiraling violence in the Middle East. Frank-Walter Steinmeier said Germany’s Jews were subjected to threats and attacks at pro-Palestinian demonstrations, and the conflict between Israel in Gaza must not be used as justification for an anti-semitic behavior.”
It is well known that radical Islamists despise Jews, as well as Christians. Anyone whose beliefs do not fall within their fanatical ideology are seen as apostates, and as such, must be converted, or killed. That is a basic tenant of radical Islam, and no one is debating that topic. However, a frequent topic of debate is how pervasive radical Islam really is; how large a percentage of the world’s Islamic population subscribes to radical beliefs, versus what percentage are peace-loving Muslims.
I was recently engaged in a debate about this very topic with a good friend. I mentioned that numerous polls have shown that the support for radical Islamic beliefs among Middle Eastern Muslims is frighteningly high, and my friend replied by telling me that my perspective was skewed, and that my allegedly skewed perspective is xenophobic, and dangerous. In essence, though it was a long, and tortured argument, everything broke down to two central questions: how pervasive is radical Islam, and how should we perceive Islam, given how widespread radicalization is? I argued that radical Islam was indeed pervasive, and that although we should respect those who practice peacefully, we should be very aware, and wary of those who do not. My friend came down on the other side, essentially arguing that the notion of an extensive radicalization was overblown, and that linking extreme violence with Islam leads to warped perceptions about the faith, and xenophobic ideas.
My friend has been victimized by American political correctness. We have been taught to look the other way with regards to radical Islam because doing otherwise is offensive to Muslims, and we must not offend. It is a weak notion that erases the truth, and replaces it with a simplified fiction. It is an offensive belief because it insults our intellect by assuming that we cannot possibly grasp the difference between good people, and bad people practicing the same faith differently. It implies that we will lump together every Muslim with the terrorists, and start burning down mosques, and shooting Muslims on the street. It’s asinine. But it is a very prevalent belief.
This belief, born of political correctness, blinds its proponents from seeing certain things, like the rise in anti-Semitic behavior in the Middle East, and around the world. As radical Islam grows, anti-Semitic behavior, and violence will grow with it. If we refuse to acknowledge just how extensive radical Islam is, we cannot properly deal with the consequences of its advancement, because if we don’t believe it exists, how can we believe in the effect it has on its environment? We cannot. If we close our eyes when dad hits mom, we cannot explain her bruises.
This is a dangerous domino effect which has vast and chilling implications. There was a time when the world turned a blind eye on the persecution of the Jews, and that was one of the darkest times in our history. What can be born of this blindness? The unnerving fact is that we can only speculate. But history and common sense shows that the depth of humanity’s evil has few limits.
Political correctness has blinded us, and the repercussions can, and very likely will, be dire.