Random Context and High Horses
There have been a lot of Facebook memes cropping up lately comparing the lynching’s and struggles of the American civil rights movement to the morality of radical Islam. Our own President who has no problem with “high horses” himself condemned those who would suggest any kind of moral superiority of our values verses the values of ISIS due to these transgressions of our past.
First for the record, let me state without question that there are horrors in the past especially in the area of civil rights that our Progressive leaders from the turn of the century and their apologist need to answer too. I’m glad that Roosevelt and Wilsons Racism are being exposed, and those that honor them should be aware of the sordid hatred they harbored and exercised in policy. And Christianity certainly isn’t blameless. Was Christianity used to defend both Slavery and the Racism that followed? Most certainly, and Christians in the US need to recognize that. To this day there is far too much segregation on Sunday mornings in our churches wither intentional or just a product of culture. And there is no doubt in my mind that these are parts of our past that need to be exposed with and dealt with. In that sense these memes are valuable and need to be examined.
But where they fall short is the context of overall world history. At the turn of the century when Jim Crow was occurring in the US and we had isolated lynching’s, (4000 over the period of 80 or so years in a country of 250 million) the Muslim Caliphate was attempting to exterminate an entire ethnic group and killed over a million Armenians. In 1962 when the US Civil rights movement was just gathering steam, American foreign policy leaders convinced “moderate” Saudi Arabia to end Slavery. Although, if you look at the condition of foreign workers today in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Dubai (including the Palestinians they claim to have so much concern for) they still resemble slavery.
The reality is this, it was the French that ended the Jiyza (tax on non-Muslims) in Morocco and Algeria in the late 1800s, it was the Western influenced minority Christian government that opened Lebanon to educating Women and liberalizing it’s culture with Freedom of expression and Religion that led to it being called the “Paris of the Middle East”. The reality is this without the West; Islam is STILL in the sixth century. The ultimate evidence of this is the countries where Islam is in power.
There is a myth that leftist Islamic apologists in the West love to tell of how minorities, including the Jews lived in peace and tranquility under Islam until the West got involved in the ME. Can we put away that myth once and for all? Islam slaughtered perhaps as many as 80 million over 200 or so years when it invaded the Asian sub-continent for the crime of being Hindu. Programs were as common for the Jews in the 1600 -1800’s in the Arab world as they were in Europe. In the early 1900’s Iraq’s government went about the systematic ethnic cleansing of its Jewish population. Were Jews and other ethnic minorities treated better in the West at the same time? Nope, but living in the Arab world was never utopia for minorities. The reality is without the influence of the West; the Arab Muslim world would still be in 6th Century.
Have we in the West always behaved better? Nope, not by any means, but most humans fail to live up to their own personal values, much less their cultural values. But the context of History is this. The West experienced enlightenment and the values that came with it made the entire world a better place. While Slavery and tribalism with it’s associated bigotry pre-dated Christianity by thousands of years it was Christian influence on the West that ended Slavery in the West and ushered in both the abolitionist and the civil rights movement. And it was the Christian West that set about on a campaign to end Slavery in the rest of the world. That’s a high horse worth riding. Our problem in the war on Islamic extremism is two fold.
One we don’t believe we’re at war, while our enemies have stated their goals clearly. Second, our President doesn’t believe our Ideals are worth defending. This is why I was so offended by his prayer breakfast comments and even more offended by his “random violence” comments about the attack on the Jewish Kosher Deli and the Bar Mitzvah. The Anti-Semitism that he possesses is palpable. Can you imagine if the KKK attacked a Black church that he would call it random? It is my belief that Western Civilization will lose this war, and it won’t because of guns or money; it will be because of death by suicide to 6th century values. History is rarely random, and context is everything when exploring it, especially when you’re riding a “high horse”.