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Weigel on Benedict’s Central Ideas

George Weigel has an erudite and concise op-ed in today’s Los Angeles Times explaining in the plainest language possible the true meaning of the Pope’s speech last week. I have seen nothing clearer or more to the point.  

Discussions - 5 Comments

Weigel seems to be ignorant of the nature of Islam. He calls for a "cleansing of the Muslim conscience" and overcoming false and extreme ideas. However, the notion of God as beyond human reason, and of human duty as limited to unquestioning submission is central to that faith, and Muslims cannot give it up without ceasing to be Muslims, at least in any sense that relates to the specific language of the Koran. Muslims believe that the Koran is not merely scripture reflecting what some religiously inspired human said, but the exact word of God, set down by his faithful scribe, the Prophet. The calls to violence are embodied in those exact words. Whatever may be said of the jihadists, they do not have a false idea of the Koran, or what it enjoins upon them.

Weigel also seems to be ignorant about the old testament depicition of God. He claims that only Islam’s God is irrational, yet there seem to be plenty of episodes in the old testament where God is irrational, or where people are to submit to his will unconditionally.

I think the Issac sacrifice thing a perfect example. If it happened today it would be attempted murder. How does Weigel explain this episode away?

Were Weigel to come out and speak the truth about islam, he would be marginalized. The price of speaking the truth is simply too high for him. So instead, we get him pulling his punches.

His last book, "The Cube and the Cathedral" is an extended essay in escapism and and wishful thinking. But in academic circles today, that’s the coin of the realm. Clarity and candor go a wanting. So much has been invested in this multi-cultural dream world, that even with the prospect of an islamic reconquista staring them dead in the eye, there is an inability to speak the truth about the great immigration policy regarding muslims. So instead of historical analysis, steeped in seriousness, we get anecdotes, concerning some muslim academic who makes a "great citizen."

It’s surreal. What do these anecdotes have to do with the muslim ghettoes getting established throughout Europe. And what is going on in Europe, is headed our way, unless we draw up the draw bridge for muslims. At least during the pendancy of this "decade long" war that GW tells us we’re in.

At the very least, cease all muslim immigration. Stop the inflow of petrodollars for muslim "charities." Slash by 2/3 all muslim diplomatic staffing. End all muslim dollars flowing for academic chairs and endowments. End the ability of former governmental employees and office holders of getting a cushy little spot on some muslim "think tank." End the ability of politicians to find a soft and cozy spot at some saudi "consultancy."

In short, act like you’re a country at war. Instead of some damn popularity contest.

Weigel is right about the pope’s speech. It is brilliant. And point number 1 is not only true it is "the truth". In fact because point number 1 is "The Truth" point number 3 cannot really be made...and point number 2 is somewhat of a Lockeian extention of point number 1.

In other words the great tragedy is that point number 1 is "The Truth" and that therefore Thucydides is right.

In any event, clarity is to be preferred over agreement. I agree. It is time for the West to get clear about our disagreement with this kind of Islam. However, Thucydides--if correct--is not being very Thucydidean with those remarks, however clear they may be. There is a higher truth than what simply "is." And yet, we must accept what is to understand what we might expect to achieve.

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