The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Thursday, October 22, 2015


We've all seen it a hundred times, often affixed to the bumper of a Volvo or VW beetle. Every time I see it I can't help but smile. After all, who but barbarians, you know, folks who cut off heads or burn people alive, or kidnap young woman to use them as sex slaves, or label as "infidels" those who believe differently than they do, would disagree with the message.

But why do I smile when I see the message—set in stylized icons? Because those who decide it's a useful addition to their vehicle don't seem to understand its irony—after all, the word "coexist"  begins with the symbol of Islam, the crescent moon and star and that, like it or not, represents a problem.

Mark Steyn can be accused on many things, but being politically correct is not one of them. He writes:
The world divides into those who sincerely believe in that "Coexist" sticker and those who think it's a delusional evasion. After all, if it weren't for that big Muslim crescent "C" at the front, you wouldn't need a bumper sticker at all:

That peace-symbol "O"? It's Muslims, alas, who kill secular hippie pacifist backpackers in Bali nightclubs.

That equal-rights "E"? It's Muslims who take girls as their sex slaves in Nigeria and kill their own daughters and sisters in Germany because rape has rendered them "unclean".

The star-of-David "X"? It's Muslims who are currently stabbing and running over Jews in Jerusalem and then celebrating by passing out free candy.

In India, it's Muslims vs Hindus. In southern Thailand, Muslims vs Buddhists. The world is a messy, violent, complicated place, but as a rule of thumb, as I said all those years ago in America Alone, in most corners of the planet it boils down to: Muslims vs [Your Team Here].

Millions of complacent westerners genuinely regard Islam as merely another exotic patch in the diversity quilt, but I find it hard to believe that the leaders of liberal progressive political parties can be quite that deluded.
But it's not just "liberal progressive parties" (although they certainly lead the pack). Politicians along the spectrum from George W. Bush to Barack Obama, tell us with fervent voices that Islam is "the religion of peace." Do they really believe that?

I have to believe that most do not. Sure ... some progressives might honestly think that any attempt to call out Islam is "Islamophia." But if that's the case, why didn't those same progressives label the many justifiable criticisms and demands for reform of the Catholic Church during the sex abuse scandals that surfaced in the 1990s as "catholiphobia?"

Steyn, a Canadian, continues:
Most people want to think of themselves as "nice", and so it's easier to welcome the increasing presence of shrouded women on the streets of Canada as a deepening of our heartwarming embrace of self-affirmation-by-multiculturalism, rather than something that mocks any conventional notions of women's rights. Yet, whatever disquiet might be felt, they will take their signal from their politicians, and fall silent on the matter.
But faced with the exact opposite of "coexist," why should we remain silent? To be "nice?" Why don't major world leaders (say, the pope) call out Islam for not doing more to stop genocidal destruction of Christian communities throughout the Middle East? Why don't important feminists call out Islam for its treatment of woman? Why don't Professors of History call out Islam for not doing more to stop the wanton destruction of ancient sites and artifacts? Why doesn't the ACLU demand that anti-Semitic rhetoric be condemned in those mosques in which it is espoused? Why don't publishers demand that Islam censor the Imams who suggest that cartoons of Mohamed should be met with bloodshed and/or murder? That's a lot of whys?

But no worries. It all goes away if you put the "Coexist" bumper sticker on your car. That will make it all better, won't it?