Monday, August 16, 2010

Overwhelming Guilt

Do I feel overwhelming guilt for arguing for xenophobia's upside in my book with Bill (the non-terrorist) Ayres: For Kin or Country?  One part of the book's argument is that people will be less enthused about bringing back "lost territories" if they consider success to be the equivalent of a large wave of immigration, as they will not want to share their country with these "others."  Even if these others speak the same language as long as their shared identity has weakened a bit over time. 

The conclusion was that what was bad for domestic peace might be good for international stability, so xenophobia might not be always a net negative.  But now I am stuck watching the xenophobes running amok in the US.  Is it ok, in the larger scheme of things?  No.  Why?  Because there are no positives to American xenophobia.  There has been little risk of American irredentism ever or manifest destiny lately (since 1898 or so), whereas a bit of domestic hatred (towards Roma, Jews, gays, Muslims, whatever) might be compensated by regional peace in Eastern Europe.

Still, the anti-Muslim fever in the US, fanned by those who have nothing positive to stand for, is appalling, and makes me perhaps a bit more reluctant to be flippant about xenophobia.  The good news is that we can divert the American people from these demagogues with this video:

1 comment:

Steve Greene said...

Huh? What? Islam? I need a new Dodge.