By Jonathon Van Maren
It’s a cruel irony that each fresh atrocity in Europe seems to pit the West’s decline against the Islamic death cult’s mindboggling sadism. The death metal of ISIS versus the Eagles of Death Metal in the Baclatan Theatre. Machinegun-toting murderers mowing down cartoonists specializing in the sacrilegious and obscene at the Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris. And now another homegrown Islamic terrorist blew himself up at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, killing 22 people and wounding 59.
It’s hard to comprehend just how horrifying this was. A young man literally blew shrapnel and nails into little girls—the youngest victim was only eight years old. This brute could have chosen an embassy, or a military base, or a police station, or some other political symbol. But he didn’t. He chose a pop concert with a target audience of young girls. Just watch the video, and listen to the screaming. That is why there is so much anger at the politicians who refuse to call out Islamic extremism by name. Progressives won’t call them out for fear of rocking the multicultural boat while barbarians shred children without mercy.
While shaken talking heads babble on about “unity” and the courage to keep partying in the face of an enemy that enjoys making their own appearances at such parties, the aftermath discussions of these attacks are becoming increasingly polarized. Gone are the days just after 9/11, when the Left and the Right joined together under the flag and stood hand in hand. I remember standing with hundreds of others of every political stripe after the towers fell listening to Alan Jackson sing his ode to the dead, “Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning.” Now, as Mark Steyn pointed out contemptuously, some guy had the guts to play John Lennon’s “Imagine” outside the Baclatan Theatre. As horrifying and tragic as those attacks were, the unity that emerged actually seemed genuine.
Not anymore. Now, each attack is symbolic of our utter failure to grapple with the source of these threats. Mass immigration continues unabated. A wave of migrant sex crimes across Europe gets ignored for fear of a backlash from voters who want to know why their daughters must pay the price for the policies of men and women who live behind iron gates. Those who point out the spreading cracks in the multicultural consensus are labeled racist, far-right fear-mongers. The Official Response is always the same: Hold a vigil, light some candles, bury your dead, and carry on.
That’s where the anger is coming from. Some progressive commentators are already calling this an act of violent misogyny, which wouldn’t be so bad if it were not such an obvious attempt to avoid discussing the belief system this misogyny is based on. When Faith Goldy asked why young girls were permitted to attend such a pornographic concert on Twitter and was accused of victim-blaming, she pointed out that she was putting the blame exactly where it belonged—on the jihadists—and the critic began to twist awkwardly. We mustn’t use that word, after all. It sounds rather Islamic.
And so the debate rages on. Columnists and commentators demand that we see this attack in light of our own Western sins, for which we must be punished by giving up our heritages and accepting the transformation of our nations. Those who demand that we address the threat of Islamic terrorism—the first step, of course, being to call it that—are called extremists themselves. And at the end of the day, the little girls will be buried, the elites will do nothing, and this will all replay next time. The only real question is where it will happen next.