1/08/2010

The Mighty Hitch And The Standards Of Racism

Michael J. Totten has an excellent interview with Christopher Hitchens in which he discusses the folly of combining Islam with multiculturalism.
Hitchens: Underneath this indulgence, Michael, this lenience we inflict on ourselves and others, is a vague feeling among millions in the West that Islam is somehow the religion of millions of the oppressed third world, of the brown-skinned, and of the black-skinned in Somalia and Nigeria. What I call the cultural cringe is involved. It's subliminal, but it's played on by terms like Islamophobia coined by the propaganda of the other side. It's designed to make you feel bad even if you don't like it. It's thought crime. The attempt is to make Islamophobia something you'll be as reluctant to be accused of as being a racist.

Actually, from some people I don't even care if I'm being called a racist. Their standards have become so low that it doesn't hurt like it should.


MJT: Right.


Hitchens: And, by the way, that's a disaster. Racism should be a severe accusation. It should be something you are afraid of.


MJT: It was when I was a child.


Hitchens: Islamophobia is vague and linguistically clumsy. A phobia is an irrational fear. My fear of Islamic terrorism is not irrational. It's quite well-founded.