Liberals demand Big Government, except when it comes to national security

On my personal Facebook account, I linked to a report about the cartoonist who suggested “Everyone Draw Mohammed” day.  It turns out that this little moment of satire occasioned death threats so serious that she has now been forced into a life of hiding:

An American cartoonist whose satirical work inspired the controversial “Everybody Draw Mohammed Page” on Facebook has gone into hiding, the newspaper which published her comics said Wednesday.

Molly Norris, of Seattle, Washington, has moved and changed her name following a call for her assassination by US-born Yemeni cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, The Seattle Weekly said.

“You may have noticed that Molly Norris’ comic is not in the paper this week,” the newspaper said. “That’s because there is no more Molly.”

“The gifted artist is alive and well, thankfully. But on the insistence of top security specialists at the FBI, she is, as they put it, ‘going ghost’: moving, changing her name, and essentially wiping away her identity.

“She is, in effect, being put into a witness-protection program — except, as she notes, without the government picking up the tab,” the newspaper said.

I understand this news story to demonstrate how Islamists and jihadists are using terrorist tactics to hijack American freedoms — in this case, freedom of speech. In America, we fight speech with speech, not with swords.

My Facebook post resulted in comments several friends, two of whom (both far Left liberals) used it as a springboard to vent, not about Islamic terrorism, but about America’s security infrastructure.*  One complained that the airport security measures encourage terrorism.  Huh?  The TSA measures are definitely inconvenient band-aids, that leave the root cause of terrorism unaddressed, but I’m completely confused as to how they relate to the fact that Islamists are threatening to kill Molly Norris because she made a joke about their religion.

The other made almost precisely the same point:  He didn’t say that jihadists or Islamists are the problem.  Instead, he said that the U.S. government uses these threats (which he dismissed without comment) to justify stripping us of our civil rights and fighting two wrongful wars.  In other words, it’s not “cause and effect,” it’s “effect and cause” in his world.

Is it too much to ask of the liberals that they say “these Islamists are bad people whose theocratic world view is a fundamental threat to our Constitutional civil rights?”  Why do I ask these dumb questions.  Apparently it is too much to ask.

It’s this vast ideological chasm that explains why it’s virtually impossible to hold a civil conversation, let alone a persuasive one, with a liberal.  For one thing, they do not see Islam as a problem.  Instead, they see our government as a problem — except that they’re also the ones who want to expand our government to totalitarian levels.  They want overwhelming welfare and nanny-statism, which is the one thing the Founders didn’t want; while utterly rejecting national security, which is the lowest common denominator of effectiveness for any functioning government, and is both an implicit and explicit part of the government’s obligations under the Constitution.  Without the latter, you end up without a state.  (Just ask the Romans.)

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*Yes, I do have liberal friends, because I grew up in a liberal part of the world.  These are people I’ve known for decades.  In any event, I find their views interesting, if not always intelligible.

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Comments

  1. says

    This is horrifying, and this kind of thing represents a very serious threat to free speech. Threats against the making of terroristic threats need to be enforced rigorously and, if needed, strengthened. Any U.S. resident making such threats needs to be arrested (and probably held without bond until trial), and extradition or local charges need to be sought when the threat is made by a foreigner. If the threat-maker is being protected by a rogue regime, he needs to meet the business end of a Hellfire missile.

  2. says

    “These are people I’ve known for decades. In any event, I find their views interesting, if not always intelligible.”

    Guess you got to get your exercise somewhere, Book.

    We feel and sympathize with ya.

  3. says

    I’m horrified, also – at how easily this seems to have been accepted by the general public, and how readily Ms. Norris was blamed for provoking this reaction in various discussion threads. It’s sad and sickening, how easily freedom of the press and freedom of thought are given up by institutions that I expected better from. I was outraged by how craven the American press was generally about the Danish Mohammad cartoons, so I can’t say I’m particularly surprised at this development. I’m beginning to think that the only people who really give a damn about freedom of thought and speech are bloggers; the mainstream media and our government talk the talk, but walking the walk is just too much trouble. (more here from The Daily Brief about Ms. Norris.) Bit by bit we have been surrendering our principles over the last five years or so – and very few seem to care.

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