Posted by Lex, on August 26, 2010
VDH asks a salient question:
I am always amused by the Indian, Pakistani, Arab, or South American journalist, who comes to the U.S. to be educated, stays, marries an American, begins writing in places like Time, Newsweek, the New York Times, or the Washington Post, starts lecturing red state/middle America about its blinkered prejudices, praises in the abstract his godforsaken and long since abandoned homeland — and since arrival has mastered the proper phraseology and referents to please an entrenched elite left who hired and alone reads him. America is always to be judged in the abstract, never in the sense of “compared to what?”
It’s not just the ironic envy of people from exotic locations, of course. It’s perfectly possible – perhaps even necessary – for a certain class of citizen to simultaneously and passionately hold the beliefs that 1) America is a den of economic inequality, irremediably racist, genocidal, guilty of rapine imperialism and, B) too pure and noble to entertain even for a moment doubts (far less dialogue) about whether it is either appropriate or tasteful to build triumphal “cultural centers” a block or two from from the site of a national catastrophe.
Orwell opined that it is a matter of controlled insanity to simultaneously and fervently hold two mutually contradictory beliefs.
I rather think it’s more “controlling,” than controlled.