A War of Culture, A War of Religious Values

I read a story about Islam in Europe and it made me think about a number of things. The article is part of a series that the Chicago Tribune has run about the new role of Islam in Europe and how it may foreshadow it’s role in the U.S.

There are multiple wars/battles taking place within the world and the United States today, some are obvious and others less so. There is the War in Iraq, the War against Terror, and the Cultural War of Blue States versus Red States among others.

There are far too many issues to discuss as the war as a single unit. Anyone of these topics could be the topic of many long discussions as they all have the ability to have a very large impact upon our lives and the world around us. Sometimes it makes sense to try and take a view of the bigger picture but there are too many details to do so here. The best approach is to break things up into bite size pieces, it is easier to digest and once you solve the smaller problem it makes it easier to go after the bigger picture items.

In terms of priority the current Cultural War of Blue States versus Red States is one that irritates me very much. The polarization of the two sides is not beneficial, it does not serve anyone and it seems very wrong to me that we are wasting so much time and energy trying to legislate love. And if ever there was an example of trying to count the number of angels dancing on the head of a pin it is the legislation of love.

Love is not rational, it is not logical, but it is powerful. Love is an incredible motivator of men and ideas. Love will make you act without regard for consequences. So why do we think that legislating it will change the behavior of those whose love we disappove of. Forbidden love is the topic of movies, plays, books and television. Forbidden love has been around for as long as people existed and will exist in one form or another regardless of what we do.

I would rather take the gov’t out of the bedrooms of Americans and apply the mind and manpower on more important discussions.

Islam is on the rise and on the move throughout the world. For better or for worse, it is growing and we need to pay attention to the waves it is making. I’ll go out on a limb and say that the majority of terrorism in the world today is committed by the adherents of Islam.

This does not mean that all Muslims are terrorists. What it means is that there is a common thread that is pushing a violence as an acceptable solution for social and political problems around the world. We need to identify the source and deal with it aggressively, effectively and efficiently.

It means that we devote enough resources to identify the cause of the ideology that is behind the violence. That we develop rational responses to combat this ideology and that we do so without developing a bureaucratic nightmare. The problem with ideological battles is that they are often not based upon logic. You cannot just throw money at them and expect them to disappear.

Ideological battles are easily fragmented into smaller groups. That is not always a positive. The fragments can be more difficult to deal with than the whole was. And in this kind of battle it is important to be thorough so that we are confident that we have come to a real resolution and not some short term band-aid.

It is late and I am fading. Night to all from Los Angeles.

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