So we’re actually stepping out of the Pagansphere for this post and looking at the larger world I’d done my best to avoid. Because while I bear Christmas no ill will anymore, dear gods it’s everywhere. Feel like I can’t breath for the carols and the shoppers.
But apparently, my desire to hide away shall not be granted, for presidential candidate (does it count yes, or is this candidate for the candidacy of presidential candidate?) Donald Trump apparently said some things about Muslims in the wake of the San Bernardino terrorist attack in which two terrorists attacked a place filled with special needs kids.
As much as I don’t like Trump personally, I think that deserves him a modicum of mercy. That being said, it’s Trump, so my mercy and patience are likely to be shorted out quickly.
Anyways, there’s two main things that he’s said (supposedly) that I want to address. 1) Having all Muslims register with the government. 2) A moratorium on Muslim immigration. If I’m missing anything major, please point it out in the comments with a link, and I’ll work on a part 2.
Now, as far as Trump wanting all Muslims to register on a list, I have to say I initially thought we already had this. In the form of the Census, in which everyone states what their religion is (along with population and other info) and it was already in a big database. Now, to be sure, the census is a voluntary thing, as best I can tell, so there is a difference between it and force registration.
And I am going to go ahead and say it: I don’t agree with a forced registration. I’d have to review my constitution and bill of rights, but I do think such a thing goes against the USA’s spirit as well as letter. Not that we don’t already have such lists for gun ownership, sex offenders, and a few other things (which I have issue with as well). Doing so simply based on belonging to a religion or ideology (even if it is one as terrible as Islam) goes against everything we nominally should stand for as a nation.
So what about barring all Muslims from immigrating to the USA?
Actually…this one is okay. Legally and philosophically speaking, a nation has the sovereign right to determine who it will and will not let into its borders. That is the right of every nation. And it is a right granted regardless of the reason for the ban. People might not like it (and that is alright) but it is a fundamental truth of governance. Indeed, it would not be the first time that the USA has banned or limited immigration in it’s history (many European races have found themselves banned at one time or another).
So in political theory, there would be nothing wrong with Trump banning Muslims from coming into the USA. Ethical theory might disagree. But different perspectives grant different “Good” outcomes. We in Paganism should know this well, and that doesn’t mean that any perspective is less valuable than the others.
In fact, I do believe the USA blocked the immigration of peoples from Soviet countries in an attempt to prevent both communist ideology and communist violence from coming to this country.
However, one of the things everyone glosses over is that Trump is calling for a temporary ban, not a permanent one, and he’s doing so under the auspices of wanting our Government to take the time (and have the time) to figure out better ways of screening to prevent Muslims intending harm to US citizens from getting in the country.
This, despite how everyone likes to bemoan as racist, is in fact a reasonable position to hold. The San Bernardino terrorists were radical for a good amount of time, the wife was publicly supportive and even allied with ISIS before she came anywhere near the USA, and yet they still managed to not only get into the country without any questions being asked, they managed to acquire a very nice cache of weapons and bombs.
Also recently, the French have been raiding radical mosques and discovering hundreds of weapons inside, along with thousands of rounds of ammunition. Given the history of Islamic based terrorist attacks, and the growing territorial and political power of ISIS (which is now capable of radicalizing agents in distant lands willing to murder people), I find it hard to call Trumps position on a moratorium pending investigations illogical or undesirable.
Trump is many things. Most of these things are unpleasant, and remind people of the worst things within themselves. Many like to say that Trump symbolizes all that is horrible about America. And maybe they’re right.
But facts do not lie. History doesn’t lie, not really (though people may lie about history). There is a political philosophy called realpolitik and it was invented, by who else, a German. The fundamental idea of it is this: There is the way we want to see the world, and there is the way the world really is. A politician must see the world in the latter way.
You have to accept reality for what it truly is. And the reality is that Islam is flooded with a dangerous, supremacist, violent ideology born from it’s oldest scriptures and which traces itself all the way back to the first Muslim. As long as this ideology exists, people will be killed by Muslims for not obeying Islam. Until such time as this ideology can be rooted out, either by Muslims or by the intended victims to such a degree as to become harmless, it will present a vital and lethal threat to the rest of the world.
This is of course not mentioning that the regular old “moderate” Islam is a misogynistic, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, paganphobic, racist, and pedophilic religion which would make most western moral guardians at their worst look like pansexual libertines in its own right.
Wait, why do we want people who believe in such a religion to come here again? I mean, we fight so hard every day to remove racism, sexism, prejudice, religious bigotry, homophobic and transphobic bigotry, and so forth…and yet we apparently want open immigration for a religious group whose own countries under their own religion murder people for not being Muslims and practicing non-Muslim lifestyles.
Not all Muslims are terrorists. But the terrorists with the highest capability wear the garments, faith, and scriptures of all Muslims. We can hate Trump for being anti-Islam, but Trump, for all his faults, is motivated by the desire to save lives, the lives of his countrymen and countrywomen. He is not calling for death camps, he is calling for the Government to prevent more potential threats from coming into this nation the same way every other Islamic terrorist has gotten into the USA before.
This is realpolitik. And that is what keeps people alive.
Meanwhile, there are no calls for helping non-Muslim immigrants from these conflict zones, like the Yezidi. Who are presently facing this.
Yeah, the problem is Trump not wanting to let in people who won’t fight for their countries, but might fight for their religion’s supremacy. Not in us as a Nation refusing to actually help the honest victims of systemic violence at the hands of Muslims.
Jön Upsal's Gardener said:
The Census bureau does not collect information on individuals’ religious identification as part of their mandatory reporting. In fact, it’s been illegal since 1976. It can still be collected on a voluntary basis. However, given the fact that we’re talking about a group of people who, by their nature, will attempt to obfuscate their connections with possible terrorist sources in order to stay under law enforcement’s radar, it seems inadequate to the task.
I have to disagree with you this time, Lucius. We should, as a nation, do a lot more for the Yazidis and the polytheists in Afghanistan. However, these clumps of oily sludge (DAESH) also murder their own religionists with impunity. Far more Muslims have been murdered than Westeners. Yes, known areas should be searched with court warrants. Most people who are planning vile things really cannot totally keep a secret. A quick call to the FBI will provide a tail on the said individual. Gun shops and other people who provide arms and munitions should be CLOSELY monitored — and I mean closely. I am a 1970s veteran of the USAF, yet I refuse to own any of that weaponry. There is ABSOLUTELY no reason for anyone — even a regular hunter — to own that type of weapon and ammo. These people somehow “got away” with getting that weaponry without it being reported. THERE ARE NO EXCUSES. We are our own worst enemies. I was born 5 years after the end of WWII. The Japanese internment camps were a travesty. The ships of tears were even worse when we did not allow passenger liners filled with Jewish refugees to land in America. I learned of these things when I was just about 6 years old on TV documentaries about the war. I still remember it to this day. There are things we can do which will prevent most of the horrible things DAESH can do which will not sink our values.
Lucius Svartwulf Helsen said:
You raise fair points. May I address them in a post?
Yes, you certainly can ; -). I enjoy intelligent discussion, which I am sure you can see from this post.