Saturday, November 7, 2009

Leaving the Left

A feminist leftist named Meryl Yourish explains why she has become a feminist conservative. In a nutshell, she realized that the Left is hostile to most of the things she believes in.

Today, I will be voting in the blowout victory of Republican candidate for governor Bob McDonnell, and it's highly likely that I will be voting for pretty much the entire Republican ticket.

Only nine years ago, I voted for Al Gore and the straight Democratic ticket in New Jersey-line A all the way, as the slogan went. (Funny how even though the position of Line A was a coin flip, the Dems had Line A almost every single year I voted in NJ.)

The question is, who changed: Me, or them?

Well, I've changed. I have become more centrist, and less willing to part with my hard-earned dollars because a politician says he can spend my money better than I. I'm definitely tired of state-run charity programs for the perpetually unemployed. Or the state wanting to run my healthcare. (Or, for that matter, auto companies and banks.)

But there were two major turning points in my march towards the center. The first came on September 11, 2001. The second came in the bloody Israeli spring of 2002. That was when I realized that the left-leaning crowd that I ran with didn't think that Israel had the right to use military means against the Palestinians to stop the terrorists. That was when I realized that the left-leaning crowd that I ran with were justifying Palestinian suicide attacks against Israelis by using the excuse that the Palestinians were oppressed. That was when I realized that the left-leaning crowd I ran with was full of anti-Semites who call themselves anti-Zionists.

You can find the rest of her essay at the link. There really are two kinds of people. There are those who value individual liberty and will fight to keep it, and there are those who hold their liberty cheap and are eager to surrender it to a government whose design is to gain as much control over our lives as it can. Ms Yourish, evidently, belongs to the first group. Most of those in power in Washington today hope you belong to the second.


Of Course Converts Should Be Killed

Many in America seem to think that Islam is just one religious option among many and that we need to respect and even honor both the religion and those who embrace it. What these same Americans are sometimes unaware of is the systemic violence which saturates Islam and Islamic culture.

Those who live in Muslim societies but who are not Muslims are considered second class citizens, dhimmis, and are often persecuted and expected to pay tribute to their Muslim masters. If they don't truckle to their overlords they're often killed.

If one is gay in Islamic culture one is executed. If a girl gets romantically involved with a man of whom the father doesn't approve she is often killed.

Those who criticize or "blaspheme" the Prophet or the faith are subject to death, and those who wish to leave the faith are also subject to death. People who convert to Christianity often live in fear of their lives.

Byron forwards this article by former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum which offers a glimmer of hope that some of this may be changing and that Muslims may be beginning to realize that we're no longer living in the 7th century. Here's the lede:

Three Muslim students approached me after I had finished a speech at Harvard University. I was there to talk about the threat of radical Islam across the globe, as part of the Ethics and Public Policy Center's Program to Protect America's Freedom.

The students, one man and two women, wore Western-style clothes and spoke English with little or no accent. They disputed my description of Islam as it's practiced in the Middle East, maintaining that al-Qaeda's version of Islam in no way reflects the Islam that is practiced around the world.

So I asked them a question: Should apostates - Muslims who convert to another religion - be subject to execution?

One of the women quickly said no. She insisted that she was free to leave Islam if she wanted to, and that she knew other people who had done so without a problem - in the United States.

I said I wasn't talking about her and others' freedom of religion in this country. What if they lived in a Muslim-majority country?

Silence. Eventually, the young man blurted out, "That's different."

Why? I asked. I recall him saying, "Because in Muslim countries, Islam and the government are one, and converting from Islam is the equivalent of treason against the government, punishable by death." The two women agreed.

The glimmer of hope, obviously, comes later in the article.

It's hard for many Americans to imagine that people still think this way, but they do. To read something like this gives a deeper understanding and appreciation, perhaps, of what our Founding Fathers were trying to avoid as they crafted the Constitution and the doctrine of non-interference by the government in matters of personal religion. It also gives a deeper appreciation of the words of John 8:32.