A ‘Policy Response’ Ponce

I mentioned in a comment elsewhere that Douglas Murray is doing us all a favour by going about the place telling the truth about the Islamist project. Another commentator, who I think is a Christian, said on the serious question of the reponse to the Manchester attack:

Douglas Murray focuses on one point: an attack on obfuscation, whether by some neo-liberals or some Muslims. He has nothing else to say. When Andrew Neil asks what policies he would suggest as solutions he has very little to say. Murray has one obvious point to make, and has made a career on that basis. His books become bestsellers.

This is frivolous in the extreme. What follows are some simple ideas about how to tackle the Islamist project. And a ‘quick fix’ it aint.

There isn’t any ‘policy’ response to the Islamist project. Nothing any politician (or anyone else) could say or do – no piece of legislation any politician could enact – would prevent the next Manchester attack, or the one after that, or the one after that.

The root cause of the Islamist motivation is obvious, but the success of the project is our fault, and that fault lies in our attitude to freedom of speech.

There is an attitude in our national mind which has many of us whining and complaining when we hear things we dislike: many of us point our fingers and say ‘you can’t say that’ or ‘I’m offended and I’m calling the speech-police’. Too many of us think the correct response is to make noise and try to get the other person arrested or fired.

If, instead of making noise and blubbing about our ‘feelings’ when we heard something we disliked, we made arguments, the entire floor of our discourse would rise, and we could all benefit from the civilising effect thinking has on the mind. Having one or two ‘off-message’ commentators making things irregular around the margins isn’t enough.

One thing which would come from this shocking new attitude would be the dissolving of the protective ring-fencing which surrounds discussion about religion. Consider our skewed values:

‘I believe in God’ is taken as a serious statement, but ‘I believe Elvis is alive’ gets the person mocked and laughed out the room. This is a genuine problem.

Mocking authority is more effective than challenging it directly. But here is where many get distracted by talk of ‘satire’ and the Charlie Hebdo question. Those behind Charlie Hebdo are wasting their time. Satire is therapy for the satirist and his fans. (It might actually *worsen* the problem by allowing useful energy to be lost in a sort of ‘steam-valve’ process.)

Allowing for the above, however, one must be realistic. My fear is that, even if such a new attitude became the national norm, it wouldn’t be able to deal with the ‘ace card’ religion plays, namely, the survival of death.

Where is the Christian or the Muslim who says that God exists, He answers our prayers, He loves us while we’re here, but has designed things so that after death we are gone forever? There are many denominations in Christianity and Islam, but not that one for some reason.

Our only hope of dealing with the Islamist project is to beat it back into its cave: we can never kill it, but we can rot its teeth.

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