Monday, August 08, 2005

Cultures aren't equal

Michael Barone wrote in Townhall Anyone who has been keeping up with British opinion since the July 7 bombings will have noticed that "multiculturalism" is under sharp attack. Multiculturalism preaches that we should allow and encourage immigrants and their children to maintain and celebrate their own culture apart from the national culture.

And that is ok, as long as they respect the laws of that other culture, and do not expect that it should change to adapt itself to their own culture.
Society should be not a melting pot but, in the phrase of former New York Mayor David Dinkins, "a gorgeous mosaic." That mosaic, of course, looks less gorgeous as people surveyed the work of the British-born-and-raised bombers. In the past, Tony Blair has spoken favorably about multiculturalism. But on July 7, he struck a different note. "It is important, however, that the terrorists realize our determination to defend our values and our way of life is greater than their determination to cause the death and destruction of innocent people and impose their extremism on the world."
We woke up on 9/11/2001; the British woke up on 7/7/2005
Sadly, the muticulturalist policies of Blair's Labor government and its Conservative predecessors gave refuge to preachers of Islamist hate in what some have called "Londonistan." Even before the bombings that prompted second thoughts, the chairman of the Commission for Racial Equality said, "We need to assert that there is a core of Britishness," and the home secretary introduced English language tests for citizenship.
Which was a good idea, and which I wish we would do here.
Now, the Blair government has moved to expel Muslim clerics who preach hatred and terrorism, and the left-wing Guardian fired a writer who was a member of Hizb Ut Tahrir, a radical group that advocates a "clash of civilization" and urges Muslims to kill Jews.

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