||"dawnbreak in the west"|
Saturday, September 01, 2012
A society capable of keeping Islam at bay
Pat Condell (h/t, Xanthippa) thinks that only secularism, and certainly not Christianity, is capable of keeping Islam at bay.
Condell only asserts this point and doesn't directly argue for it; but perhaps we can glean some hints as to Condell's argument from the sides. For secularism to fend off Islam, or any aggressive religion for that matter, it has to have a plan - beyond believing personally (however devoutly) in secularism. I gather that Condell sees his part in the counter-jihad as to preach against the faith of jihad, as well as against various Stone Age practices which said faith does not claim but does exploit (like honour killings). So, I take it, the correct response against Islam is first not to convert to it and second not to tolerate those who profess it.
Such is difficult for a consistently tolerant person to do. Condell does offer a definition of secularism that shuts out the COEXIST sticker set, so, he's fine; but society can't be this hard-nosed. And we really can't expect society to be this hard. Society has... um, women in it. And beta men. Civilians, to use the military / Heinleinist term. So the average non-Muslim needs help.
One such help might be military. The first rule of Hobbes is that civilians raise up a sovereign State to protect them. The State, then, enforces the intolerances which civilians can't enforce for themselves. We trust the State to keep Islam out of our turf, and to keep out aggressive Christianity for that matter.
This argument has stumbled upon Auster's conclusion, that the First Amendment requires an exemption for the jihad faiths. But can Condell endorse this platform? I wonder.
So just being secular doesn't protect the average non-Muslim. And relying on State force is likely not a starter - and anyway, the State is only as strong as those who control it. So we're left with ideology. And here, we find that secular State ideologies have a VERY unpleasant record as to human rights. Worse than Islam's.
We are thrust back upon religious ideologies with a record of successful resistance to Islam. West and north of Arabia those would be Greek Orthodoxy, the Roman Catholic Church and certain Miaphysite groups in the mountains of the Caucasus and Ethiopia.
And how do these religions survive? There've been various strategies, internal and external, but foremost they survive by not by rolling over for loud village atheists like Condell.
So it is annoying for Condell (and for me) that various pastors are going after secularists instead of jihadists; but the pastors are looking to the long term. Secularists simply don't have the track record that Christians have.
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