Understanding American pop culture.... Jun 3, 2009 1:31:36 GMT -5
Post by aric on Jun 3, 2009 1:31:36 GMT -5
Jun 2, 2009 21:27:54 GMT -5 @toki said:The United States was fairly lucky (see the quote from Otto von Bismarck in my sig) in its development. The US has generally been safe from invasion from the outside so for a good part of our history we could afford for isolationism to be popular.
Well, there's that, but it's not even about isolationism. It's about the American inability to understand or admit that words can compel vicious and stupid people to commit acts of violence. Take a look at the recent murder of an abortion doctor in Kansas. Anti-abortion groups like Operation Rescue have put out constant rhetoric against him and others of his profession, calling them mass-murderers. Then one day someone finally acts on that sentiment. Of course, these groups will (sometimes) try to mitigate their own responsibility in that man's death by saying that they didn't intend for this to happen, but frankly murder is the logical extension of their incessantly provocative rhetoric. They have Tiller's blood on their hands. We've seen this before in history. The Nazis did it to the Jews, and the Hutus did it to the Tutsis. Propaganda inspired people into acts of violence against other people of different groups. It happens to a lesser degree today in America against gays, hispanics, muslims, etc. The fact of the matter is, words have power, and there should be penalties on those words proportionate to the social harm they create.
But, you're generally not going to see the American media or Christians in general push this responsibility angle with regards to Tiller's assassination. 1) People think the Freedom of Speech is sacrosanct, as I said above, and 2) Americans think it's the muslims who deserve to be painted as violent animals, not Christians.