"By signing onto the ruling, Judge Roberts demonstrated that he can capably confront one of the most critical issues before the Court this decade: balancing the protection of fundamental liberties against the defense of our homeland.

"In short, if Roberts' foes are looking to Hamdan to undermine his nomination, they're barking up the wrong tree."

Is Diversity a One-Way Street?


Loose Canon, a genuine multiculturalist in that I appreciate the art and other achievements of various cultures, abhors multiculturalism--the notion that one can't make value judgments about cultures. The always iconoclastic Brit journalist and essayist Julie Burchill has some choice words on how the reactions to the London bombings have revealed the folly and one-sidedness of multiculturalism:

"[I]f this is such an unwelcoming, racist place to live, why do all races continue to flock here, as they do to evil, imperialist America?" asks Burchill.

"[T]here was something a little creepy about the way in which certain people went on about the diversity of the dead. For one thing, it showed a willingness to believe the best of the bombers: that if only they had known that they had murdered delegates of all creeds and colours, they wouldn't have done it.

"B-llsh-t. This sort of Islamofascist hates multiculturalism. Just you try building a church in Saudi Arabia! They won't even let our troops out there celebrate St. Valentine's Day. And as for any idea of the races being equal ... it is the Muslim world that keeps slavery alive, and Muslim governments, as in Sudan, that see nothing whatsoever wrong with ethnic cleansing. Recently a Muslim columnist wrote sorrowfully of how in her culture a Muslim girl marrying a black man was the greatest shame that could fall upon a family. So much for equality under Islam.

"There was also the implication from some quarters that if all the dead had been white Christians, the tragedy and abomination would have been somehow less. This seemed particularly inappropriate at a time when we were celebrating this country's wartime suffering and resilience. We were white then - but did we bleed less because of it?

"In an effort to fight racism, certain people like to pretend that there was no fun, no culture, no nobility here before multiculturalism - but there was. And to follow that weird logic, you'd also have to say that the Third World also had none of the above before the white man went there and interfered. And before you know it, you're making all sorts of mad claims."

Out of the Closet and Into the Frying Pan


Loose Canon is always distressed by the faulty logic by which gay people who oppose gay "marriage" are considered hypocritical. Therefore I was pleased to happen upon (via Relapsed Catholic) an anti-gay marriage piece by "Civilization and Its Enemies" author Lee Harris, who writes in the piece that he is gay. According to Relapsed Catholic, Harris "has decided to reveal his homosexuality now because gay marriage (and worse, he fears) is becoming the norm. He feels it is his duty to denounce it."

In his lengthy piece, Harris asks if tradition is valid in determining whether or not gay "marriage" should be introduced into society:

"Too often, cultural relativists cannot get beyond drawing this one conclusion, which they use as ammunition against traditionalists: 'The traditions you think of as having an absolute claim on the human race are merely those that happened to have come down to us, and which we have blindly accepted.' While this objection does follow logically from the cultural relativists' premise, so too--and just as logically--does this conclusion: If we cannot use our traditional ethos to attack another's, it is equally illegitimate for him to use his to attack ours. If our cultural relativists must forgive those who sacrifice their infants to Moloch, they must also forgive members of their own society who wish to abide by their own traditions. The cultural relativist's position, practiced consistently, collapses into reactionary obscurantism: All cultures, including his own, are incommensurable, so it is impossible to judge any of them by higher standards than those offered by the cultures themselves. The appeal to enlightened reason rings hollow, for if enlightened reason can guide us to condemn characteristics of our own culture by offering us a higher standard by which to judge them, the same standard may also be used to judge other cultures as well. The cultural relativist must make up his mind: Either there is a higher standard or there isn't.

If there isn't, it is impossible to judge among competing traditions, as the cultural relativist argues; if there is, it is possible to judge tradition A to be superior to tradition B, provided A meets the higher standard and B does not....