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Unread February 17th, 2010, 01:49 PM
James Brody James Brody is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Philadelphia area
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Arrow Review: Mark Steyn, Lights Out

Steyn, Mark (2009) Lights Out: Islam, Free Speech, and the Twilight of the West. Woodsville, NH: Stockade Books. 322 pages, 57 chapters.

I met Mark once and got his autograph – “Jim, let’s win!” - inside the cover of America Alone. I now scan the Net eagerly nearly every day for his latest essays, often classics that snare collectivist politicians with double meanings and metaphors. He almost makes it possible to tolerate Obama because in an odd way, Obama and his minions inspire Mark to be brilliant!

Lights Out is no exception as Steyn caricatures his life from October 2006 when MacLean’s published clips from his America Alone and alerted Canadian Islam and the prissy leftists to his existence. A handful of Muslim students, the Canadian Islamic Congress, and the Canadian Human Rights Commission decided to examine Mr. Steyn’s written thoughts. They needed several years and several lawyers. They also needed a case.

Canadian justice, unfortunately, is like that in much of Europe: free speech is an old hound’s bark, to be muzzled unless it is toothless. In contrast, America and most Americans still resist nasty collectivist webs and it’s legitimate for therapists to make sensitive folks tougher rather than silencing the rude folks around them.

Publishers, however, have interests in many countries and restrict publications in America if there is some chance for a law suit in London or Amsterdam. (Yes, Islamists have a reputation for “jurist shopping”!) Similarly, many academics and clerics in the United States now do the secularist thing and spout bland opinions but no children while Islam has conviction, enforced morality, and lots of hostile males. Islam, thus, wins often in our prisons and poor neighborhoods not on the basis of numbers but because of the absence of competing faiths. We are indeed “the hollow men.”

Lights Out makes its long argument again and again and again and I am amazed at the number of subtle ways that people repeat the same stupid tactics. I suspect that Mark “chained” Lights Out as he lived it. Of course, he found a tool for revenge, self-therapy, and making a bit of money as he confused his critics. (I get the same thrill from writing conservative columns in Starbucks!)

Bottom line effect of Steyn’s book: I’m glad for the United States Constitution and for those who wrote it. And I’m glad the Canadian legal apparatus finally had the good sense to be embarrassed!

Cheers to Geert!

www.DeadCatsandClippings.com; www.ValleyForgePatriots.org.
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