Tag Archives: Extremism

Speaker Vote Brings Out Worst in Some Conservatives

CompromiseThe recent reelection of John Boehner as Speaker of the House brought to light a disturbing trait among some who self-identify as “conservatives.” Boehner has been perceived as a thorn in the side of conservative interests since his first election four years ago, as he has continually acquiesced, or as some say it, “caved” to the left in his chamber, and to the president. The sentiment is captured in a landmark political cartoon showing an elephant reaching across a dangerous precipice toward an indifferent president, titled merely, “The Compromise.”

The sentiment is understandable, and shared by nearly all of us on the right of the political spectrum. But what was disturbing was the reaction of some toward their own congressmen who supported Boehner.

John-Boehner-debt-showdownRaul Labrador (R-ID) won reelection from Idaho’s 1st Congressional District in November and is as steeped in his conservative ideals, and the classical liberal precepts the country was founded upon, as any conservative in Congress. There can be no question that his loyalties lie with the Constitution, the enumerated powers of the federal government, and the rights ostensibly assured thereby.

But after it became known publicly that Labrador had voted for the Speaker, an outpouring of obstreperous denunciations ensued. Comments on Labrador’s Facebook wall accused him of being a traitor, a turncoat, of betraying his conservative values, and betraying all conservatives who voted for him. Many declared they would never support him again, while others called for his recall.

Anyone with a modicum of political savvy, knows, or at least should know, that our chosen candidates, and elected officials, are not always going to vote the way we want them to, or the way we would if we were there. But the very notion of removing, or refusing to vote again for, the congressman because of one vote, even though he may a Freedomworks conservative rating of 90, on a 0-100 scale, is nothing short of idiocy.

This is a dangerous mentality that seems to be common at extremes of any ideology. “Unless you agree completely with me, or refuse to vote precisely the way I would have you vote, I’m not going to support you.” The only way to assure that your representative votes precisely as you want them to is to hold that position yourself. No one sees issues and solutions precisely the same way, except perhaps pure ideologues.

Working together to Build Bridges

Working together to Build Bridges

The derision heaped upon Labrador for his Speaker vote is a perfect example of how illogically and ideologically rigid some can be. Labrador’s conservatism is indisputable, and yet because of one vote, he’s called every pejorative epithet in the book, and many who share his ideological orientation throw him under the bus. This is where the ignorance of governance is so blatantly manifest. A viable educational tool might be to consider what other forms of extremism employ the same tactic that ostracizes and divides based on ideological “purity.”

A critical component to our efforts in working together in this democratic experiment is the didactic process of refining tactics based on efficacy. That includes identifying the destructive tactics that preclude the very notion of compromise, (which is essential in a constitutional republic), and contribute to the increased polarization of the body politic. This is clearly one of the most detrimental tactics; when we are so rigid in our ideological convictions that we destroy the relationship shared with others who think mostly as we do. It’s destructive to the political process, and its nascence and impetus, is based in ideological rigidity.

saul-alinsky-obama-luciferIt’s also a tactic of some on the left, as superbly promulgated by Saul Alinsky. “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Conservatives should realize that the consequences of implementing the tactic on themselves vitiates the advantages of a conservative voting block by dividing and parsing tranches based on perceived fealty to our founding principles. The result basically culls the “nonbelievers” from the “believers,” by lashing out, maligning, and condemning those who are perceived to not agree entirely, essentially ostracizing those who should be our allies.

It should be disturbing to conservatives when they learn that they employ the same tactic as other extremists, but many seem to revel in it, as if it’s a badge of honor of how “conservative” they are. That’s not a measure of political ideological integrity – it’s a measure of political ignorance of how the system works and how we have to work together in this republic of ours.

We should express our disapprobation to our elected officials when we disagree. But it’s totally illogical, and self-destructive, when we marginalize and alienate those with whom we share values, but may differ occasionally on specific votes. There aren’t many affirming or positive adjectives that can be used to describe someone who can only be supportive of, or civil to, someone with whom they agree 100% of the time.

If conservatives continue these tactics, they will succeed only in splintering and dividing themselves, granting the left victory after victory at the polls. It’s so often quoted that I hesitate to say it again, but apparently some need the continual reminder. As Ronald Reagan once said, “He who agrees with me 80% of the time is not my enemy.” Or his variation on that theme, “My eighty-percent friend is not my twenty-percent enemy.”

A hapless journey’s end

mirror.co.uk2

What happened in Boston last week was truly a tragedy. Two Muslim brothers detonated two bombs at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Unless you have been living in a cave or under a rock somewhere you already know what happened. The sad fact is the Obama Administration, the FBI, and the entire intelligence community failed to protect the American people. Three people died and over 175 were injured by two brothers practicing their religion of peace.

Throughout history people of all different faiths have killed each other in the name of religion. Millions of people have perished in religious persecutions world wide and it unfortunately continues to this day. This article is not intended to bash one faith over another. It is intended to expose one of the biggest propaganda statements of all time; that Islam is a religion of peace.

Hard core leftist apologists will tell you till you are blue in the face that the word “Jihad” means spiritual struggle. This is a false statement. If this were true, then why are people with disabilities and debilitating deceases not included in the so called “spiritual struggle”? Apologist’s aside, Jihad means “Holy War” according to the Quran.

The Quran contains at least 109 verses that call Muslims to Jihad, or Holy War with the Infidels and the non-believers. The goal of the Islamic faith is to create a Caliphate or Islamic world wide rule. There is no room for any other religion especially Christianity and Judaism. There is also no spiritual struggle.

According to the Quran, Islam coupled with Sharia law is the only faith that matters. There is no tolerance or recognition of other faiths. In fact, the word infidel literally means to reject one’s faith.

Let’s take a look at some of the more violent verses from the Quran.

(3:56) “As to those who reject faith I will punish thee with terrible agony in this world and in the hereafter.”

(66:9) “O’ Prophet! Strive against the disbelievers and the hypocrites and be stern with them. Hell will be their home, a hapless journey’s end.”

(2:191-193) “Slay them where ever ye may find them, and drive them out from where ever they may hide. For persecution of Muslims is worse than slaughter of non-believers and the Infidels.”

And my personal favorite:

(8:12) “I will cast terror into the hearts of the non-believers. Therefore smite their necks and strike off their heads.”

Not all Muslims are bad people. There are many peacful Muslims who have spoken out against this type of extremism. The problem is there voices are far and few between. Peaceful Muslims unfortunately have been silent for far too long. They are either afraid to speak out or sympathetic to the more extreme voices in their faith.

How can a religion be considered peaceful if it does not recognize other faiths? If Islam is truly a peaceful religion than why are their so many verses preaching violence against others who practice a different faith?

Since 1970, it is estimated that over 80% of terroristic acts have been perpetrated by Muslims. There are the occasional acts of terror by White Supremacist Groups and even by Fundamentalist Christians however they occur less frequent and make up a very small portion of terrorism as a whole.

In Israel alone there have been over 75 separate terrorist attacks in the past 30 years. From suicide bombings to car bombs and rockets to kidnappings, the Israeli people have been feeling the love from the religion of peace for years.

Let’s look at some other acts of terrorism committed by followers of the religion of peace.

February 26, 1993- First World Trade Center bombing

October 12, 2000- Bombing of the USS Cole

September 11, 2001- Hijacked planes take out the WTC Towers and The Pentagon

September 11, 2012- Our embassy in Benghazi was attacked

April 15, 2013- Bombing of The Boston Marathon

All of these horrible acts were perpetrated by those who claim to practice the religion of peace.

Americans need to stop worrying about God Fearing Christians and instead start worrying about radical Jihadists. After all, it is not Christians that are strapping bombs to their waist’s and blowing people up in the name of their God. Shame on our Department of Homeland Security for labeling Evangelical Christians as a hate group. Big Sis needs to be watching our mosques not our churches.

Once again, I want to reiterate that not all Muslims are bad people. There are many Muslims who reject the narrow minded interpretation of many parts of the Quran. The problem is most of them who reject the more violent interpretation do not speak out loudly enough.

America needs a lot more Muslim voices to speak out and strongly reject the violence that is preached against men, women, and children of other faiths. We also need the apologists on the left to take their heads out of the sand and recognize that we are under attack from radical extremists.

According to the left in this country there is no such thing as Radical Islam. The blame America first crowd thinks we brought this upon ourselves. Give me a break.

The pathetic left can’t even muster up the courage to use the word terrorism. They say they are conducting “over seas contigency operations” instead. When their is an attack on our homeland they call it a “man made disaster”.

If the left truly believed in tolerance they would also speak out against the intolerance of the religion of peace. Instead they would rather attack truly peaceful Christians just because they disagree with them.

The truth is if we do not stand firm against extremism now than it will consume us later. We need to call it what it is, terrorism. Changing the words we use will not make the act any less frequent or less damaging. In fact it will only invite more terrorism. We can not stand down and accept acts of terrorism as some kind of new normal. We must band together and fight evil wherever it may be. You do not gain peace through weakness, you gain peace through strength.

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www.joshbernsteinpoliticalwriter.com
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