- The Washington Times - Friday, September 21, 2007

Moral equivalence

“[T]here is no such thing as unqualified tolerance; ultimately, one must be able to expound intolerance of certain ideologies without surrendering the moral high ground normally linked to tolerance.

“Which brings me to my son, Daniel Pearl. Thanks to the release of ‘A Mighty Heart’ … Danny’s legacy is once again receiving attention. …

“I am worried that the film falls into a trap … the paradox of moral equivalence, of seeking to extend the logic of tolerance a step too far. You can see traces of this logic in the film’s comparison of Danny’s abduction with Guantanamo (it opens with pictures from the prison) and of al Qaeda militants with CIA agents. …

“Drawing a comparison between Danny’s murder and the detention of suspects in Guantanamo is precisely what the killers wanted. … Indeed, following an advance screening of ‘A Mighty Heart’ in Los Angeles, a representative of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said: ‘We need to end the culture of bombs, torture, occupation and violence. This is the message to take from the film.’

“Yet the message that angry youngsters are hearing from such blanket generalization is predictable: all forms of violence are equally evil; therefore, as long as one persists, others should not be ruled out.”

Judea Pearl, writing on “The death of relativism,” Wednesday in the British newspaper the Guardian

Lone star

“Unlike any other candidate, Democratic or Republican, Hillary [Rodham Clinton] is still the only superstar. [Barack] Obama, no matter how much money he raises, and Rudy [Giuliani], no matter how well he may be doing in some polls, still remain B-listers in this election. She has made headlines for so long; she has the soap-opera story we all know so well. And now she has even turned her first attempt, that colossal failure at health-care reform, into just another part of her ongoing personal melodrama. …

“No matter what policy she is espousing, deep down Hillary is really always selling Hillary.”

Myrna Blyth, writing on “Hot Stuff,” Wednesday in National Review Online


“Is it any coincidence that the two entities American liberals probably hate most are organized religion and our military? …

“[T]he main driving force behind those who denigrate our military and religious practices is egotism. They just can’t wrap their minds around the concept that there is something bigger than themselves. …

“All of this can be summed up by the vacuous and insipid lyrics of John Lennon’s ‘Imagine,’ the opening notes of which still send graying hippies and their progeny into ecstasy. …

“This dreaming of a dreary existence without heaven, hell, religion, countries and especially ‘nothing to kill or die for’ sums it all up nicely. …

“Yet we can see the similarities between Lennon — a millionaire ‘tax exile’ from the UK who asked us to ‘imagine no possessions’ — and certain current lefties who hector us on the evils of energy consumption while jetting around the world in the process of doing so.”

Lisa Fabrizio, writing on “Imagine That,” Wednesday in the American Spectator Online at www.spectator.org

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