Thursday, April 26, 2007

Feeling the Heat

After years of ignoring the strong opinion of a majority of Americans, and the overwhelming opinion of most conservatives, Republican politicians may have noticed that amnesty for illegal aliens (call it a "path to citizenship," if you like to lie about it) and increased immigration just aren't all that popular. Presidential hopeful Senator Sam Brownback, who back last year's thankfully failed immigration bill, appears to have had an epiphany on the subject.

Republican presidential hopeful Sen. Sam Brownback said yesterday he no longer supports the immigration overhaul bill that he helped pass in the Senate.

"I would not vote for the same bill," Mr. Brownback told reporters yesterday morning, saying that after the bill passed the Senate he had a chance to study its effects and decided it led to too much immigration.

It's a major reversal for a man who is listed as one of seven original sponsors of the bill, along with Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, Massachusetts Democrat, and Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican, who spearheaded the bill.

"What we got through was what we could get through the Senate and move the process forward," Mr. Brownback said in explaining his vote. "There are things in it that I don't think are good within that."

He said the bill would lead to too much "chain migration," allowing immigrants to sponsor family members to join them in the United States. Mr. Brownback said he supports sponsorship of spouses and children, but that thinks siblings should be excluded.

The immigration issue has Republicans spinning, particularly those running for president, as they try to match their rhetoric to the beliefs of conservative primary voters.

It's a particularly difficult issue for Mr. Brownback and Mr. McCain, who have been asked repeatedly about their positions on the campaign trail and who have distanced themselves from their own bill.

Mr. Brownback, speaking at a breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor, did not specify what changed to turn him against the bill, but his Senate office spokesman, Brian Hart, said the situation is different this year.

What likely turned Mr. Brownback against his earlier stance was the experience of meeting thousands of angry conservative votes on the campaign trail, many of who apparently questioned his pro-amnesty stance, and gave him a good measure of the public's growing anger over the immigration mess. It's easy to ignore the public's real opinions while sheltered in the Beltway Cocoon, but once outside of Washington's zone of unreality, the truth is easier to glimpse.

Of course, Mr. Brownback's sudden u-turn shouldn't be read as a real change of heart. Nothing a politician says or does should be assumed genuine, particularly while they are running for office. But Mr. Brownback's abandonment of the Presiden't pro-amnesty plan is at least a good sign since it means that some Republicans are getting the message. Keeping the pressure on the GOP is the only way conservatives can prevent Bush's disastrous amnesty ambition from becoming a catastrophic reality.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Multiculturalism at an End?

Canada's National Post carries an overly-optimistic, but otherwise incisive, editorial by Jonathan Kay trumpeting (he hopes) the death of multiculturalism in Canada.

When multiculturalism came into vogue a generation ago, it was powered by the conceit that group hatred is primarily a Western pathology -- an outgrowth of our warmongering, colonialist past. That's why from the 1980s onward, multicultural agitprop in schools, workplaces and government agencies has invariably focused not on assimilating immigrants and stripping them of their old-world prejudices, but on eliminating any vestige of white bigotry.

The idea that all evil emanates from Western Civilization and its European founders remains the intellectual core behind multiculturalism. That such a ridicilous claim has gained acceptance anywhere - but especially in the West - demonstrates the ridiculous ease with which leftist thought penetrated and came to control Western academic institutions, from which it slowly leaked out into the broader culture. Multiculturalism was never meant as a "corrective" to past injustices. It was, from the onset, designed as a vehicle to weaken Western Civilization, which is why - not coincidentally - the most diehard advocates of multiculturalism are almost entirely on the radical left.

Kay notes that the surge of non-European immigration into Canada (and the U.S. and Europe) has exposed the silliness of multiculturalism's underlying assumptions and the hypocrisy with which multiculturalism is implemented into government policy.

The reason multiculturalism now seems like such a fraud is that experience has taught us that old-school racism has nothing on the sort of hatreds brought into this country by the immigrants themselves: hatred toward homosexuals, toward heretics, toward "loose" women and, most importantly, toward each other.

It's hard to get too riled up about Don Imus or alleged "racial profiling" by cops, for instance, when I see Canada becoming home to African blacks who have been charged with murdering other blacks by the villageful for the crime of belonging to the wrong tribe. Ditto when I watch Canadian Sikhs who are so proud that one of their coreligionists murdered another group of South Asian Canadians that they hold a parade partly in his honour. And then there's the Liberal candidate in Edmonton- Mill Woods-Beaumont, who will have to explain to his constituents what he meant with his attacks on Israel, India and France.

Kay cites the example of Farhan Mujahid Chak, a candidate running for the Liberal party candidate in an upcoming national election. As other commentators have pointed out, Chak writes sympathetically of Islamist terrorists, denounces Indian democracy and spins wild conspiracy theories that posit Western governments and their allies as the agents behind alleged Islamic terror.

Chak isn't a Muslim extremist: During a phone conversation yesterday, he came across more as a naive left-wing sloganeer than a fiery hatemonger. The only reason I'm singling him out is because he happens to be a political candidate. Go to any run-of-the-mill Englishlanguage Islamic Web site and you'll find lots of folks just like him.

But that's exactly the point: Chak, like all the rest of us, is a product of his cultural mix -- which in his case includes a global Muslim culture that has become suffused with terror apologism, conspiracy theories and anti-Western animus. To the extent multiculturalism is supposed to preach "tolerance," this unappetizing stew is what we're being asked to tolerate. Twenty-five years after the Charter [Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms], is it any wonder most of us think the whole idea is nonsense?

Kay could have equally cited a thousand other examples of multiculturalists tolerating or excusing vile behavior or speech by non-whites, while hysterically condemning far less serious comments or actions by whites. In a sense, though, this behavior isn't hypocritical; since the whole point of multiculturalism is the destruction of Western society and the ethnicity that created it, the behavior of multiculturalists is entirely consistent with their intentions. The question becomes, now that multiculturalists have so blatently exposed their real agenda, will the people of Western nations rise and reject it? Can the West still marshal some semblance of self-preservation and defend itself against the intellectual poison that is now eating away at its foundations?