The First World is the New Third World (Rapture Ready Edition)
"...Which raises the question: Can a people that believes more fervently in the Virgin Birth than in evolution still be called an Enlightened nation?
America, the first real democracy in history, was a product of Enlightenment values - critical intelligence, tolerance, respect for evidence, a regard for the secular sciences. Though the founders differed on many things, they shared these values of what was then modernity. They addressed "a candid world," as they wrote in the Declaration of Independence, out of "a decent respect for the opinions of mankind." Respect for evidence seems not to pertain any more, when a poll taken just before the elections showed that 75 percent of Mr. Bush's supporters believe Iraq either worked closely with Al Qaeda or was directly involved in the attacks of 9/11.
The secular states of modern Europe do not understand the fundamentalism of the American electorate. It is not what they had experienced from this country in the past. In fact, we now resemble those nations less than we do our putative enemies.
Where else do we find fundamentalist zeal, a rage at secularity, religious intolerance, fear of and hatred for modernity? Not in France or Britain or Germany or Italy or Spain. We find it in the Muslim world, in Al Qaeda, in Saddam Hussein's Sunni loyalists.
Americans wonder that the rest of the world thinks us so dangerous, so single-minded, so impervious to international appeals. They fear jihad, no matter whose zeal is being expressed."
Exactly. I know I've been less than eloquent today, I'm angry, frustrated, and tired of trying to reason - but this article says the things I have been struggling to. Please read it. Bolding's mine.
I'm an American who's grown up seeing firsthand the effects of religious fundamentalism and fascism in the poorest, most violent parts of the Third World. This is how we turn into them