The intellectually mediocre Mona Charen
Mona Charen in her syndicated column praises Ayaan Hirsi Ali for drawing attention to Muslim honor killings:
Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a refugee in every sense from the Muslim world, pleads for Western feminists to ride to the rescue of the hundreds of millions of women and girls who are abused, mutilated, sold, traded, beaten, and hidden away in the Muslim world. “But the more pressing business is what feminists can do now to prevent an alien culture of oppression from taking root in the West…. This is what Americans can learn from Europe’s experience with Muslim immigration: we simply cannot compromise our own principles by tolerating honor killing, female genital mutilation, and other such practices.”And how, according to Ali and Charen, do we prevent that alien culture of oppression from taking root in the West? By … (drum roll) … opposing “multiculturalism.” We thus permit millions of carriers of that alien culture to enter the West, a West devoted to the principle of non-discrimination against carriers of alien cultures, and then, having allowed that alien culture to enter our society which is devoted to non-discrimination toward carriers of alien cultures, we will prevent that alien culture from taking root here by somehow forcing the people we have allowed to come here to give up their culture and religion. The idea that if we don’t want that culture of oppression to take root in the West, we shouldn’t be allowing its carriers to enter and become citizens in the West in the first place, never crosses the threshold of consciousness. It’s not even a dust mote on the far horizon of consciousness.
Such is the lazy, uninsightful, rote repetition of kneejerk neoconservative attitudes which characterizes every column Mona Charen has written for the last 15 or 20 years, and for which she was recently given the Eric Breindel Award for Excellence in Opinion Journalism. (See list of previous winners, all of them members of the neocon establishment.)
On another subject, what’s this business of Hirsi Ali saying “we Americans”? She was a member of the Dutch parliament until four years ago when she first came to the U.S. under the auspices of AEI. Even with expedited naturalization as a celebrity, there’s no way that she can be a U.S. citizen yet. Despite the big controversy in 2006 over the legality of her grant of asylum in the Netherlands because of the untrue statements she made to win asylum, which led to her resigning from Parliament (covered in detail by Wikipedia), she is still a Dutch citizen and retains her Dutch passport. She acquired U.S. permanent residency in September 2007, but Wikipedia says nothing about her applying for U.S. citizenship. So, again, what gives Ali the right to say “we Americans”? I guess she subscribes to the neoconservative idea that everyone in the world who believes in “freedom” is an American.