Monday, June 4, 2012

The Lessons of Culture: Roger Kimball

Well worth the read. 

So many great nuggets in here-what a great essay.

"Many illusions were challenged on September 11. One illusion concerns the fantasies of academic multiculturalists, so-called. I say “so-called” because what goes under the name of multiculturalism in our colleges and universities today is really a polysyllabic form of mono-culturalism fueled by ideological hatred."

"Genuine multiculturalism involves a great deal of work, beginning, say, with the arduous task of learning other languages, something most of those who call themselves multiculturalists are conspicuously loath to do."

And this observation:

"The hollowness of the left-liberal wisdom about the war brings me to another illusion that was challenged by the events of 9/11. I mean the illusion that the world is basically a benevolent, freedom-loving place, and that if only other people had enough education, safe sex, and access to National Public Radio, they would become pacific celebrants of democracy and tolerance. This is the temptation of utopia—Greek for “nowhere”—and it must be acknowledged that America’s fortunate geographical position in the world has long encouraged certain versions of this temptation."

Righteous, particularly on utopia:

"This favorite liberal pastime has not been abandoned, but it looks increasingly rancid. As the commentator Jonathan Rauch wittily put it shortly after the terrorist attacks, the cause of terrorism is terrorists. September 11 reminded us that with power comes responsibility. Power without resolution is perceived as weakness, and weakness is always dangerously provocative. In the aftermath of September 11, we in the West were often cautioned against exciting Islamic rage. My own feeling is that it is salutary for our allies and our enemies alike to understand that American rage, too, is an unpleasant thing."