Is the Microaggression Movement Stoking the Jihad?
The microaggression movement is a serious problem threatening the foundation of our academy and the mental health of our youth, opine many people such as Michael Auslin and Jonathan Haidt, respectively. Meanwhile, it should be self-evident that the Jihad is a threat to the entire West, but the current president of the U.S. and some of the political leaders of Europe, not to mention many other members of the Left elites, still don’t recognize or acknowledge that threat. And now the microaggression movement is fueling the Jihad.
Haidt separately summarized the work of Bradley Campbell and Jason Manning as explaining that microaggressions have emerged from a shift in our culture. Up through the 19th Century, our culture prized honor, and society expected people to earn their honor and -- especially men -- to defend it, including fighting for it, as in duels or even warfare. Then our culture shifted to prize the dignity of an individual, a right that was deemed innate. They defended their dignity not through violence, but through the government or the courts. Now our culture -- or at least that on our Left -- has come to prize victims. These victims, whose status as such is conferred by the Left, appeal to the powers of the Left, such as the academy and, for the last seven years, the federal government, for protection.
Islam is still a culture that still prizes honor. Just consider the term “honor killing” and the slaughter of women deemed to have brought dishonor on a Muslim family or tribe.
Islam in the West has also clearly become one of the favored victim groups of the Left, thanks in large part to the efforts of Edward Said, the now-discredited former hero of the Palestinians and the friend and mentor of a young Barack Obama. Radicalized and professional Muslim apologists such as the members of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR, a creature of the Muslim Brotherhood) have learned the power of playing the victim and petitioning the powers of the Left, in the academy, the media, and the government, for protection in the face of what Muslims consider slights and microaggressions.
These petitions for protection and the resulting protection itself take many forms. A relatively minor one is the incessant barrage of feel-good articles in our media about Muslims. More significant is the theater of the media, captains of industry, and even the President defending a Muslim student from the perceived slight of his teacher asking for someone to look at his simple clock that he had converted into what could easily be viewed as a potential improvised explosive device. At the most preposterous and dangerous, this protection appears as the President and self-made Imam-in-Chief proclaiming that the Islamic State has nothing to do with Islam -- despite the repeated arguments from an actual professor at Princeton and the legitimate imams of al-Azhar University to the contrary. This blithe obeisance to Muslim victimhood has allowed ISIS to become a dangerous monster and may allow Iran to become a malevolent nuclear power.
Professors on our campuses have encouraged insecure students to claim victimhood and cry out for protection and safe spaces. In doing so, these professors are psychologically crippling their students and endangering their institutions. Meanwhile, other members of the Left in the media and government have endowed victimhood on Muslims and are providing them protections from perceived microaggressions, even while jihadists, acting in the name of Islam, are committing large scale atrocities around the world, including in our cities. Where are the safe places from jihadi macroaggression?