Friday, November 13, 2009

Calling a spade a shovel

Semantics are very important in politics. The wrong phrase uttered at an inopportune moment can sink a political career. Conversely, the right phrase said at the right time can make an immortal statement. "Four score and seven years ago"…"we have nothing to fear but fear itself"…"ask not what your country can do for you"…"Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" As you read these words, you probably envisioned the men saying them[1].

Now, how about these: "read my lips; no new taxes" or "I did not have sexual relations with that woman." Both of these lines are unforgettable, but for different reasons than the previous examples.

So, with all the eyes on a politician, the opposition watching for a misstep to take advantage of, it's not surprising that they are so careful with what they say, and the President gets the most focus of all. With all the goo-goo eyes the media makes at Obama, fawning over his celebrated oratory skills, it gets lost that what he DOESN'T say that can be just as important as what he DOES say. In the case of the Ft. Hood shootings, the word to be avoided at all costs is TERRORISM. If the attack was decreed to be terrorism, it would be the first attack on our soil since 9/11, and would be a mortal blow to Obama's credibility.

Enter the science of semantics. It was mass murder, a mass killing, the desperate act of a troubled mind, but it was definitely NOT the ideological act of a terrorist.

Then start the blame game. Psychiatrists who examined Major Nidal Hassan wondered if he was capable of something like this. The Army knew he was unstable but did nothing. The FBI knew he was communicating with Al Qaeda but didn't do anything with that knowledge. Everyone else is to blame, not Obama!

Why would I blame Obama? One of his first acts as president was to send a video to the Iranian people [2] telling them how much America admires them. The most beautiful sound in the world to Obama is not the National Anthem being sung before the World Series or church bells on Christmas morning; rather, it's the Islamic morning call to prayer. He's bowed to the king of Saudi Arabia, which was the first time an American president has done so. He went to Cairo at talked at length about how, like, totally awesome Islam is and how much the rest of the world owes Muslims for their contributions to society at large[3]. He gave two minutes of fluff and 'shout outs' in a speech on the day of the shootings before addressing the tragedy and cautioning not to jump to conclusions about the motives. He's repeatedly referred to Islam as a peaceful religion and is careful not to offend Muslims by referring to them as "Islamic Extremists," but has no qualms about his Department Of Homeland Security labeling people in our own country "Right Wing Extremists." And he's let Eric Holder run roughshod over the intelligence community for past perceived indiscretions. In light of the environment fostered in the last 10 months, can we fault the FBI for not labeling an Army Major as an Islamic extremist and potential terrorist? Political correctness has replaced honesty in our society, and that is obviously a dangerous thing.

Here are some things coming to light about Major Nidal Malik Hassan:

  • He shouted "Allahu akbar" (God is great in Arabic) before he peacefully opened fire, killing 13 people and injuring dozens more
  • He sent several emails to Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical Muslim cleric who has since praised Hassan's peaceful actions.
  • He felt Muslims should be exempted from being deployed to war zones where they will be killing fellow Muslims. Apparently deploying to kill Christians was not a problem for him.
  • He had personal business cards on which he declared himself to be a "Soldier of Allah."

As I said, political correctness has replaced honesty in our society. Let's call a spade a spade [4]; a terrorist act is committed with a ideological or political goal in mind. A mass killer goes to an office building in Orlando and kills 8 people because he believes the business is preventing him from getting unemployment. A terrorist kills 13 people in an Army base because he is a Muslim and wants to prevent the soldiers from killing other Muslims, and killing these soldiers is an acceptable form of protest in his mind.

Do the actions of Major Nidal Malik Hassan meet the definition of terrorism? What do you think?

[1] Well, except for Lincoln. Maybe you envisioned Hal Holbrooke in "North & South" in which case I recommend you visit Boone Hall Farm just outside Charleston, SC. You'll love it! But I digress…"

[2] Later Obama would later stand mute while these same people he professed his admiration for were gunned down in the streets of Tehran for protesting their election results.

[3] Go to this link to see a heavily edited video containing segments of this and other speeches: It really is amazing the lengths to which he goes to pander to Muslims.

[4] No, it's not a racial slur. Look it up.

No comments: