Friday, July 01, 2016
The forest fire for the trees...
Hugh Fitzgerald is one of those in the Counter-Jihad Mainstream whom I have called the "asymptotic analyst" (see my still incomplete Glossary for a definition of the term as I use it). In a nutshell, an asymptotic analyst is a Counter-Jihad analyst who comes relatively close to glimpsing the full enchilada, the full catastrophe of the problem of Islam (namely, that it entails Islam itself and all Muslims), but for one reason or another, shrinks back from this horrifyingly logical conclusion.
An exquisite example of this was evident in Hugh's recent essay on an episode of the Jihad of Lawfare that occurred back in April, when a posh seaside café in southern California was sued by some Muslima patrons because of what they alleged was essentially Islamophobic discrimination by the staff against them. The café, however, stood its ground and eventually Counter-Jihad attorney David Yerushalmi stepped in to defend them from the lawsuit. So far, the description of the incident sounds like a garden-variety episode of Mohammedan lawfare we've seen happen many times over the years, and as yet does not rise to -- or veer sideways into -- a tertiary problem of asymptotic analysis.
However, when the story first broke on Jihad Watch, and I read the details more carefully, it occurred to me at the time, in the comments thread to that article, to notice and call attention to the forest for the trees: the trees being the specific litigious Muslimas, the café defending itself from accusations of "discrimination", and the valiant Counter-Jihad attorney who steps in to help them -- and the forest being some facts which everyone else in the Counter-Jihad, apparently, but me have ignored. When Hugh Fitzgerald with his talent for words articulates these facts, the forest becomes as lushly apparent as if evocatively limned by Arthur Rackham's illustrations for the Brothers Grimm fairy tales. At least, apparent to me; evidently not to Hugh (or anyone else in the Counter-Jihad).
Thus Hugh's description:
The seven Muslim women were quick to get a lawyer, and to bring suit against the café for what they described as anti-Muslim “discrimination” against them. Their argument was that they were singled out for being asked to leave because they were Muslims wearing hijabs.
This is part of the trees Hugh is so intent on highlighting.
Next, he delves into the forest, without knowing it:
The café’s owners pointed out that much of the café’s clientele consisted of Muslims; that among those patrons were women in hijabs who were routinely served, and, indeed, that very night, other hijab-wearing women were in the café and served without incident; that far from having an anti-Muslim policy, the café welcomed Muslim patrons, who were particularly attracted to the Urth Caffé by its ban on alcohol; that up to 90% of the patrons on Friday nights were Muslims, and it would have made no sense for the café’s owners to enforce an “anti-Muslim” policy which would be devastating to their business; and finally, that one of the café’s co-owners, Jilla Berkman, was herself a Muslim.
The irony here is that Hugh is adducing this forest not to call attention to the forest, but rather to bolster his case about the trees! It's not as if we can show that Hugh is unaware of the forest. Not only is he not unaware of it, he presents that forest in its full bloom, as rich and heady as the Black Forest of Germany. Which brings the oddity of his lapse into stark relief.
This irony of Hugh's myopia to the forest is, moreover, exquisitely expressed in his essay title: "Civilizational Jihad" at the Urth Caffé. The problem is, the only Civilizational Jihad Hugh can see in this incident is the instigation of the seven Muslimas and their subsequent lawsuit. And certainly he's right about that; it is part of the Civilizational Jihad (along with a diverse panoply of other types of Jihad). His essay, however, seems oblivious to the other, deeper, more insidious Civilizational Jihad of a posh California café having a clientele that
1) consists of many Muslims; that
2) among those patrons were women in hijabs who were routinely served (and, indeed, that very night, other hijab-wearing women were in the café and served without incident); that
3) far from having an anti-Muslim policy, the café welcomed Muslim patrons, who were particularly attracted to the Urth Caffé by its ban on alcohol; that
4) up to 90% of the patrons on Friday nights were Muslims; that
5) it would have made no sense for the café’s owners to enforce an “anti-Muslim” policy which would be devastating to their business; and finally, that
6) one of the café’s co-owners, Jilla Berkman, is herself a Muslim.
And this is but a glimpse of a microcosm of the forest that is growing by leaps and bounds across not only America, but also the entire West. The forest is the massively increasing infiltration of Muslims into the fabric of our societies, in nearly every institution, in nearly every facet of our lives; and along with this, a growing and amorphous inculcation in us non-Muslims of a resigned acceptance of this metastasizing presence as a fait accompli. Given the dangers of Islam, this is indeed a veritable forest fire.
And Smokey was right: Only we can prevent forest fires. But will we? Not if we continue to fixate only on the comparatively fewer trees and fail to see the broader, subtler, more devastating epidemic all around us, under our very noses. When even the Counter-Jihad indulges this selective perception, I have dim hopes.
When the story first broke on Jihad Watch, and I registered a more abbreviated version of this argument, naturally the Jihad Watch regular "Angemon" zoomed in to pester and attack me; and naturally, none of the other Jihad Watch regulars came to my aid.