Channels

Syed Raheel Farook and Tashfeen Malik, perpetrators of California shooting
Photo: AFP
Sever Plocker
It’s time to end political correctness
Op-ed: When institutional politics evades critical issues for fear of diverting from the correctness route, frustrated voters escape straight into the arms of non-institutional radicalism; in order to stop this dangerous flow, things like terror must be called by their real name.
Ten days after the terror attacks in Paris, French public opinion polls revealed a surprising phenomenon: The support for Marine Le Pen's populist-nationalist party has weakened significantly.

  

 

Political sociologists and psychologist provided a convincing explanation: After the attacks, they said, the traditional parties changed their approach and began speaking openly about "Muslim terror," without any artificial blurring. The French public developed an open discourse, free of the chains of political correctness.

 

The change made many French people abandon Le Pen's party, which until then had been perceived as the only movement daring to openly with the religious-demographic problems.

 

What the French have learned, the Americans are forgetting. Two days after the massacre in California, official spokespeople kept on claiming that the motives of the pair of Muslim terrorists, who murdered 14 civilians, were "still unclear." Only after the Islamic State announced that the murder was carried out by its supporters, the authorities were forced to announce that they were investigating the attack "as a terrorism case." Still, they repeated the unclear motives claim.

 

Scene of California attack. It's no surprise that American citizens are losing their faith in 'old politics' and turning to Donald Trump and the likes of him (Photo: Reuters)
Scene of California attack. It's no surprise that American citizens are losing their faith in 'old politics' and turning to Donald Trump and the likes of him (Photo: Reuters)

 

Of course they are unclear: Doesn’t is seem reasonable for a couple of murderers to purchase an unusual amount of weapons, bullets and disguise suits, prepare a dozen pipe bombs and swear allegiance to ISIS - just in order to teach a work colleague a lesson? Of course it's reasonable, according to the political correctness commandment which has taken over extremely wide circles in America.

 

The New York Times outdid itself by dedicating two editorials to the incident. In the first it warned against a hysterical overreaction against Islam, and in the second it diverted the attention from "the latest slaughter of innocents in California," which "law enforcement and intelligence agencies are searching for motivations" for to the lack of gun control restrictions. While there is a need for restrictions, it has nothing to do with Islamic terror: The Paris terrorists bought their weapons in a remote store in Slovakia.

 

It's no surprise that the American citizen is losing his or her faith in the "old politics" and turning to Donald Trump and the likes of him. Trump, rude and verbally violent, does not hesitate to shout what the citizen feels. The recent conduct of the spokespeople of the authorities responsible for homeland security strengthens his candidacy and could even pave his way to the presidency. Just like the hypocrisy and over-righteousness of American university teachers is leading to a particularly concerning counter-reaction: A wave of blatant racism among students.

 

The strange hesitation of the FBI and others to define what any sensible person would define as an act of terror seems less strange when you think about the tens of billions of dollars that the American administration spends every year on homeland security in general and on thwarting Muslim terror in particular.

 

Tens of millions compared to less than 1 billion in France - and the result is quite similar: We are not seeing any prevention in advance. What we are seeing is a disgraceful failure to prevent a mass slaughter by people who planned it for months. What we are seeing is security forces arriving at the scene of the attack too late. And what we are seeing is the collection of big data which fails to yield results, because there is so much raw data, from wiretapping to monitoring of social networks, that the investigators can't see the forest, or even the path leading to the forest.

 

Words create consciousness. False words create a false, distorted consciousness, particularly in the political field: When institutional politics evades critical issues for fear of diverting the correctness route, the frustrated voters escape straight into the arms of non-institutional radicalism.

 

In order to stop the dangerous flow, things must be called by their real name. Muslim terror is Muslim terror, not a "mass shooting." Jewish terror is Jewish terror, not a "price tag" activity. Anti-Semitism is anti-Semitism, not "resistance to the Zionist state," and occupation is occupation, not "holding onto lands." The repressed, according to Freud and his followers, not only returns, it returns reauthorized.

 

 new comment
See all talkbacks "It’s time to end political correctness "
Warning:
This will delete your current comment