Sunday, January 09, 2011
Proto-PC MC: those "conservative" 1950s!
Very interesting -- but, alas, no longer surprising -- details about President Eisenhower and Islam, presented on the blog Logan's Warning, with reference to a mosque that had been built in Washington, D.C., in 1957 (and planned for years before that) -- a mosque, by the way, that, just like Imam Rauf's Ground Zero Mosque, was deceptively framed by the term an "Islamic Center":
...the Islamic Center’s dedication ceremony took place on June 28, 1957. Former United States President Dwight D. Eisenhower spoke for the American representatives. In his address, he praised the Islamic world’s “traditions of learning and rich culture” which have “for centuries contributed to the building of civilization.”
He affirmed America’s founding principle of religious freedom and stated that:
“America would fight with her whole strength for your right to have here your own church and worship according to your own conscience. This concept is indeed a part of America, and without that concept we would be something else than what we are.”
“As I stand beneath these graceful arches, surrounded on every side by friends from far and near, I am convinced that our common goals are both right and promising. Faithful to the demands of justice and of brotherhood, each working according to the lights of his own conscience, our world must advance along the paths of peace.”
To absorb the full impact of these nauseatingly Wilsonian statements of Eisenhower's, one must remember that Eisenhower is vaunted as one of the great -- and one of the staunchest -- conservatives in 20th century America (and let us not forget that his Vice-President was Richard Nixon). He was staunchly anti-Communist, for example.
Furthermore, before he was elected President (to two terms), he was one of the great Generals of World War 2.
Lastly, Eisenhower flourished in the heydays of the 1950s -- surely, one would think, a decade unencumbered by the disease of political correctness.
And yet, here we have straight from "Ike" sentiments about Islam and about Muslims that positively reek of PC MC. They could just as well have been spoken by that other benighted neo-Wilsonian, George Bush -- or by Obama.
Not only does this indicate the broad mainstream base of PC MC, far outside the limited confines of "Leftism" or "liberalism"; it also reflects a historical dimension to the problem which I have noticed over the years: PC MC did not spring out of nowhere, nor did it pop out of the blue sky one fine day in the late 60s. In fact, it is evident that it has roots going back to the early 20th century, beyond that to the 19th, then to the 18th (where it first burst into relative prevalence in the form of the so-called "Enlightenment"). Not only have I found examples of it in decades past in the writings of the scholars of yore (back in the era prior to what Hugh Fitzgerald, rather simplistically, terms "the Great Inhibition", as far back as 1849) -- I even found PC MC as far back as the 16th century, in the famous essayist and politician Montaigne.
The only difference that seems to remain is that, while we may detect various instances and signs of PC MC here and there prior to the latter half of the 20th century (and even, as we have seen, smack dab in the supposedly "conservative" 50s), it only attained mainstream dominance throughout the West beginning in the 1960s. And, apart from the blip of the Reagan/Thatcher/Pope John Paul II Era of the 80s (which was a robust exception to the rule), it has been getting stronger and stronger with each passing decade.
Paradoxically and perversely -- but logically -- PC MC has been strengthened, not weakened, with regard to its idiotic protection of Muslims after 911: the more that Muslims explode, the more that the PC MC West anxiously seeks to protect Muslims.