- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 11, 2003

Hating evil

“Recently, the film version of ‘The Two Towers,’ the second installment of the [‘Lord of the Rings] trilogy, was released on DVD. Watching it again, I was reminded of the despair exhibited by some critics. One reviewer was put off by the breathtaking scene when the armies of the West come face-to-face with the armies of the evil wizard Saruman. The good soldier Aragorn calls to his men, ‘Show them no mercy, for you shall receive none.’ …

“To one critic, this response was … too evocative of the ‘hysteria’ following September 11. The left has continually tried to muffle Americans’ hatred for radical Islam by equating it with racial profiling, but that hasn’t worked. Americans know evil when they see it, and all the social and economic reports from Amnesty International won’t change that.”

Mark Gavreau Judge, writing on “Bring Back Hate,” in the Wednesday issue of New York Press

Selling sleaze

“Advertising moguls are making millions by assaulting childhood in America. Parents say that salacious, suggestive advertising targeted to children and teens is making their job harder, if not impossible. They are, increasingly, unable to protect their kids from subjects and images that the children aren’t emotionally and psychologically ready to handle. … Many haven’t even had a boyfriend or girlfriend, yet they are being accosted by advertising that portrays kids their age as sexy and seductive, behaving provocatively.

“Innuendo and provocative dialogue is getting more and more blatant. Ads have gone far beyond shock value; instead of being creative, they have sunk to merely coarse and vulgar. …

“Everyone talks about caring ‘for our children’ yet we are producing an inescapable cultural climate that is harmful to children. Childhood is a time to dream dreams and play games. Without childhood, kids miss out on an important stepping-stone toward their full potential as human beings.”

Janice Shaw Crouse, writing on “Risque Business,” Wednesday in Dot.Commentary from the Beverly LaHaye Institute

Faulkner’s faith

“On many sides right now, we are hearing the unsavory news that if we continue this struggle, it is only because we have no choice. Actually we do. It is a choice beautifully articulated by novelist William Faulkner in 1950, as the Cold War turned hot in Korea. That year Faulkner won the Nobel Prize for Literature, and in his acceptance speech he laid out one option … in which we duck, discuss, deny and just kind of hope to personally survive the next attack:

” ‘Our tragedy today is a general and universal physical fear so long sustained by now that we can even bear it. There are no longer problems of the spirit. There is only the question: When will I be blown up?’

“Then Faulkner offered another option:

” ‘I decline to accept the end of man. It is easy enough to say that man is immortal simply because he will endure: that when the last dingdong of doom has clanged and faded from the last worthless rock hanging tideless in the last red and dying evening, that even then there will still be one more sound: that of his puny inexhaustible voice, still talking. I refuse to accept this. I believe that man will not merely endure: he will prevail. He is immortal, not because he alone among creatures has an inexhaustible voice, but because he has a soul, a spirit capable of compassion and sacrifice and endurance.’ ”

Claudia Rosett, writing on “I Decline to Accept The End of Man,” Wednesday in the Wall Street Journal

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