I know. I'm as shocked as my regular readers should be. But Tim Rutten, in only the second time I've ever agreed with him on anything, excoriates the Western media editorial pages for not defending Salman Rushdie's knighthood. I actually can't remember what the first thing was which I agreed with him, so traumatic that was, but I believe it was the blasé attitude most papers have in covering the 9/11 truther movement and not tamping down those little sparks of conspiracy theories. Defenders of truth and public record, right? Today, though, Tim Rutten writes about his amazement at the lack of coverage of radical muslims, and how he had to find statements decrying renewed calls for fatwas against Rushdie online, even having to quote the right-leaning Pajamas Media. Not only that, Rutten diagnoses exactly what is wrong with most newsrooms today:
What masquerades as tolerance and cultural sensitivity among many U.S. journalists is really a kind of soft bigotry, an unspoken assumption that Muslim societies will naturally repress great writers and murder honest journalists, and that to insist otherwise is somehow intolerant or insensitive.
Lost in the self-righteous haze that masks this expedient sentiment is a critical point once made by the late American philosopher Richard Rorty, who was fond of pointing out that "some ideas, like some people, are just no damn good" and that no amount of faux tolerance or misplaced fellow feeling excuses the rest of us from our obligation to oppose such ideas and such people.
Some ideas are just no damn good. Political correctness, cultural diversity, sensitivity training, tolerance, multiculturalism, and most post-modern schools of literary thought would have you believe otherwise, but the truth remains: Some ideas are just no damn good, and we should not be afraid to say so.
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