Condemn Culture, not Islam

Liberals condemn those who object to mass rapes in Europe by Muslims as being anti-religious bigots. They scream about “good” Muslims and win the support of low-information voters by convincing them, through the MSM, that those who are concerned about jihad and the misogyny of many Muslims are haters who don’t embrace diversity.

It doesn’t matter that the liberal lie is obviously wrong, it only matters that people who spend their time unconcerned about politics believe the lie.

A way to counteract that liberal lie may be to take notice of the fact that, just as there are Christian cultures, ranging from the general American Christian culture that condemns sin but not sinners to the Westboro Baptists, there are Muslim cultures too.

Many, or at least some, American Muslims don’t support jihad and/or terrorism. Is that because they’re not Muslim? No -- it’s because they’re culturally American. Just as there are American Catholics who support contraception there are American Muslims who believe in the traditional American way of life.

Those Muslims are culturally American even though their faith is Islam, or at least their own version of Islam. They don’t support raping women who are “immodestly” dressed and they accept that America is a pluralistic society.

Instead of framing the argument against Muslim immigration based on religion, we can explain the problem in terms of people’s cultural beliefs.

It’s irrelevant to our objective whether those good Muslims are in fact rejecting parts of Islam, and hence not good Muslims, or simply correctly interpreting the Quran just as it’s irrelevant whether or not Catholics who oppose illegal immigration are rejecting Catholic teaching -- they’re not -- or they’re correctly understanding what Christ taught.

What matters is that is possible for some people to believe in some version of Islam but condemn the same parts of Islam that conservatives condemn. It doesn’t matter if those good Muslims are heretical Muslims; it only matters that they share our beliefs about how an individual should interact with society.

There are, of course, American Muslims and Muslims who want to immigrate who avoid cultural assimilation, do support jihad, and are a threat to the country. They are the problem.

While as conservatives we can argue about how many Muslims are, or are willing to become, culturally American, we should be able to agree that Muslims who are culturally American are not our enemies. If those Muslims, no matter how few or how many they may be, have no desire to support sharia law, honor killings, jihad, terrorism, or the persecution of women, then they are not a threat to America.

We can gain traction with the low-information voters by changing our arguments from being about Islam, and hence all Muslims, to being about certain cultures.

For example, instead of saying that Europe shouldn’t let in Syrian refugees because they’re Muslim and Islam endorses rape we can say that Europe shouldn’t let in young men who come from a culture that empowers men to rape women, like Syria.

Think about it for a moment. Are any of us really concerned about an assimilated Canadian Muslim businessman coming to America? But most of us are concerned about bringing in a 22-year-old Syrian man with a 3rd grade education whose Muslim culture is like that of Saudi Arabia.

By taking a blanket condemnation of Islam, and hence all Muslims, out of the equation we remove a key weapon from the arsenal of liberal lies. Imagine how much weaker a reply liberals would have to:

We should not allow immigrants, especially young men, from societies that allow rape, religious persecution, and individual violence into America

than to:

We should not allow Muslims into America.

Even low-information voters will be unlikely to say that we should allow, without detailed investigation, young men into America who come from societies that believe that if a woman shows her ankle it’s okay to rape her.

In fact, when framed this way, supporters of mass immigration of men from countries whose cultures viciously oppress women can be cast as waging a real war on women; after all, what is more anti-woman than importing large numbers of misogynistic men who think rape is the woman’s fault?

We can argue among ourselves about whether or not Islamic cultures will always be horrible due to Islam, or if perhaps some Islamic society might be able to overcome the intrinsic evils of Islam and be tolerant, but it doesn’t matter.

To win elections and the support of voters, it doesn’t matter if most Muslim immigrants are bad because of Islam or because of their culture. It only matters that people agree that we shouldn’t support the importation of people who are from cultures that reject the basic beliefs of America.

The big problem with immigration in America today is not just that it drives down wages but that to many immigrants are unwilling to assimilate into the individual responsibility culture that makes America great.

By saying we shouldn’t bring in people who reject American culture and who want to change America as opposed to saying we don’t want Muslim refugee’s it’ll be easier to get both voters and politicians on our side.

Just as saying that military age men from Syria should not be rejected because they’re Muslim but because they have an obligation to go back and fix their own country will win us more support. After all, if the Frenchmen who escaped from the Nazi occupation to England formed military units that were heavily involved in the liberation of France we should expect no less of the Syrian men who escape Syria.

We need to remember that it doesn’t matter too much why folks agree that we need to limit immigration of people who don’t respect women or the rule of law. All that matters is that we succeed in turning around the existential threat of mass immigration by people who don’t want to assimilate into Western society.

When we win that war we can concentrate on peacefully converting Muslims or reforming Islam.

You can read more of tom’s rants at his blog, Conversations about the obvious and feel free to follow him on Twitter