Thursday, March 24, 2016

Hear No Evil, See No Evil

Brussels. Ankara. San Bernardino. Paris. Chattanooga. Garland, Texas. Moore, Oklahoma. Seattle. Boston. Buena Vista, N.J. Waltham. Mass. Warren, Michigan. Marquette Park, Illinois. Fort Hood, Texas. Little Rock, Arkansas. Irving, Texas. Denver, Colorado. Chapel Hill, N.C. Moscow. Madrid. London. Arlington, Virginia. New York City. Countless locations throughout the Middle East, North Africa, and other locales around the world.

All have been hit by either terrorist attacks or other killings in the name of Islam. Yet, we have a President who will not say "radical Islam" or "Islamic terror." Recall Obama told us that "ISIL (ISIS for everyone else) does not speak for Islam." Rather, ISIS consists of "thugs and killers." Well, yes - thugs and killers all motivated by the same Islamic ideology.

The day before the major attack on Paris, Obama told us that ISIS was "contained." After all, they were the "J.V." team. Obama's oft repeated goal was to "degrade and defeat" ISIS. Degrade? Clearly, Obama has never gotten too worked up over Islamic terrorists murdering innocents. He was on the golf course minutes after announcing the beheading of American reporter Daniel Pearl. The murders at Charlie Hebdo and the kosher Jewish market did not warrant his standing in unison in Paris with other world leaders.

Obama: "...there is a violent, radical, fanatical, nihilistic interpretation of Islam by a faction - a tiny faction - within the Muslim community that is our enemy, and that has to be defeated." (Obama interview with Jeffrey Goldberg, in the Atlantic magazine.) Tiny? I would say small to now moderate in size, and growing. Besides, what is the difference? If it is 40,000 and growing, with thousands more supporters, is not the real issue the impact they are having on the West and the rest of the world? They are changing the way we live. They are costing us billions of dollars in defense and counter-terrorism spending. Is that a "tiny" effect?

But not to worry. Obama tells us that "the odds of dying in a terrorist attack are a lot lower than they are of dying in a car accident..." After the attack on Pearl Harbor, FDR spoke to an anxious nation before a joint session of Congress. "Yesterday, December 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan...No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory...I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7, 1941, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese Empire." An inspiring and motivating speech.

Now, imagine if you will, that Barack Hussain Obama was the President on December 7, 1941. Unlikely he would speak before a joint session of Congress and seek a declaration of war, as FDR did. I imagine Obama might give a radio address such as this: "I am here to tell the American people that, while 2,403 Americans were killed by some Japanese, it was done by a small number of the Japanese people. I ask that the American people not get too worked up and not live in fear. Let me remind you that the odds of dying from another Japanese attack are a lot lower than they are of dying in a car accident...After all, 32,914 Americans died in auto accidents in 1940, and we are on track for a total of 38,142 dying from auto accidents in 1941."

In that interview with Jeffrey Goldberg, Mr. Obama said something about human nature that is typical of leftists: "Look, I am not of the view that human beings are inherently evil. I believe that there's more good than bad in humanity. And if you look at the trajectory of history, I am optimistic." Well, I guess if we exclude the 20th century, maybe he can make that argument. Maybe. But the 20th century gave us Stalin and Mao and Hitler and Pol Pot, and the Great War and World War II and the killing fields of Cambodia. More recently, we had Rwanda, Sudan, and the sheer barbarism of ISIS wiping out Christian and other communities throughout the Middle East.

Are humans inherently evil? Clearly, humans are not inherently good. I do not know how many more examples Obama might need to understand that. Goodness needs to be taught, it has to be inculcated. People are more likely, by nature, to be selfish. And we have seen how little it takes for people to rationalize the most horrific murderous acts. Ordinary Germans were able to carry out the Holocaust. ISIS is able to convince young people that they should have but one goal in life - to kill infidels. Killing others as the only goal in one's life. But Obama can hear no evil and see no evil.