Monday, November 07, 2005

Compare and contrast (Billy Dembski dodges the issue edition)

Like RSR, TfK thought it was odd that Intelligent Design Creationist Billy Dembski was approvingly quoting someone saying (regarding the Paris riots):
Policies which deprecated European culture, frowned on a national identity, lowered the birthrate, created a welfare state, imported ‘guest workers’, promoted mindless multiculturalism and relied on ‘international’ treaties for protection — all articles of Leftist faith — are now facing the judgment of history; and worse, the verdict of Islam. It would be supremely ironical if the European Left, the ‘vanguard of history’, required for its future survival the very things it had set out to destroy.

This sort of petty nationalism is one of the hallmarks of European fascism (RSR's analysis), and the "good Europe vs. bad Islamic Africans" rhetoric gets us close to outright racism (TfK's analysis).

In response to these criticisms of his views, Dembski
quotes Teddy Roosevelt, and doesn't touch on charges of racism or fascism.

Now I like Teddy Roosevelt. I respect him, and I think he's under-rated as a president. But he had a streak of nativism and was not immune to the arrogant racism of his day. Advocating English only was but one of the ways that came out. That attitude was the vanguard of the anti-immigrant attitudes which lead to the judicial lynching of Sacco and Vanzetti and to the anti-immigrant/anti-Communist "Red Scare" of the 1920s. Roosevelt advocated that immigrants be given 5 years to learn English or get kicked out. Is Dembski advocating that, too?

In either case, this is irrelevant to "European culture" and the Paris riots, riots which
I've argued have nothing to do with culture, and everything to do with internal politics, especially the practice of isolating immigrants and their offspring. Which, it turns out, is exactly what Dembski seems to advocate.

But, as always, he'd rather impose his beliefs than look at the data.

Interestingly, the PA ACLU just posted a piece about
a proposal to make English the official language of the Commonwealth. They note that courts in Alaska, Arizona and Oklahoma have rules such laws to be violations of the free speech rights of the citizens and public servants. Apparently, Billy Dembski wants to tear down the Constitution to save American culture.

"Sacco Writes to His Son" by Dylan Thomas from the album Return Journey to Swansea (2002, 3:37).

(I got the album with my subscription to, but now you have to buy the CDs.)