The Steyn fantasy phenomenon continues

From the website of the International Free Press Society comes a report on Mark Steyn’s speech in Denmark to the Free Press Society’s conference on Humour, Satire and Free Speech on September 11:

Paraphrasing the British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Lord Grey’s comment on the outbreak of World War 1, Steyn remarked: “One by one the lights go out in Europe because those who have created the multicultural societies will not defend them.”

So Steyn is still up to the same thing he’s been up to for the last five years. He writes off Europe as finished, because its left-liberal rulers won’t defend it from Islam, instead of encouraging and supporting the non-liberal forces that would defend Europe from Islam.

The report continues:

Steyn noted that Obama has never criticized honour killings or other outrages taking place in the Muslim world. But if Westerners commit the slightest transgression—as is now the case with the mad priest in Florida who wanted to burn the Koran—he immediately feels called upon to issue an official condemnation. That is a disgrace, said Steyn, who could only express his contempt for Western governments that think Islam should be exempted from criticism.

Ok, so Steyn believes in criticizing Islam. But what does Steyn think we should actually do to stop the Islamization of the West? As I’ve pointed out many times, Steyn doesn’t think we should do anything to stop the Islamization of the West. The only idea for stopping the Islamization of the West that he has ever suggested is that Westerners should start having babies at the same rate as Muslims, and he not repeated that particular piece of foolishness for years.

What, then, is the difference between Steyn and the left-liberal rulers of the West whom he attacks?

The left-liberal rulers of the West suppress and punish all criticism of Islam, while surrendering to Islam.

Steyn calls for criticism of Islam, while surrendering to Islam.

Steyn’s position is the “conservative” position. It has made him a hero to thousands of unthinking “conservatives” who imagine that a call to criticize Islam amounts to a call to defend the West against Islam.

- end of initial entry -

John S. writes:

But wouldn’t you agree that regardless of what measures one favors for defending the West against Islam, that defending the right to criticize Islam is necessarily the first step? If we can’t do that, we can’t do anything. Consequently, it seems to me, that Steyn is just calling for the obvious first step. That doesn’t mean he is not in favor of other steps, but why muddy the waters?

LA replies:

Not if that first step is presented completely by itself, hermetically sealed off from any further steps!

Imagine that a town has been invaded by a gang of barbarians who are in the act of preparing kindling and gasoline to burn it to the ground. Imagine that an inhabitant of the town said, “What we need is the right to criticize these barbarians.” Instead of taking action and calling on his fellow townsmen to take action to stop the savages, he turns the issue of the imminent threat to the existence of his town into an issue about the desirability of free speech. Meanwhile the barbarians are setting fire to the kindling. Then you, John S., come along and say, “But wouldn’t we all agree that regardless of what measures one favors for defending our town from being burned to the ground, defending the right to criticize the savages is necessarily the first step?”

Your position is unreal. If you don’t see that it is unreal, I don’t know how to convey that to you, beyond what I’ve already said.

October 29

John S. replies:

I read your blog pretty much every day. I also keep up with Mark Steyn religiously. I don’t really see that much of a conflict, but I appreciate the precision of your thought.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 27, 2010 12:21 PM | Send

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