Sunday, November 2, 2008

Culturism and Barack

The election of Barack Hussein Obama will be a great event for mulitculturalism and thus a horrible one for culturism. Multiculturalism denies that western nations have a core culture. They would assert that America has no more of a tie to the heritage of British protestant culture than it does to Saudi Islamic culture If Barack Hussein Obama gets elected, if our President's name has an Islamic cast, it will undermine our ability to define ourselves as unique and in competition with other cultures.

His supporters will respond, but he is not a Muslim, he just has an Islamic name. This argument would fly if he were born with that name. In fact, he chose it as an adult. And people should ask themselves why people have changed their names to Islamic names. Why did Cassius Clay become Muhammad Ali? Why did Lew Alcindor become Kareem Abdul Jaabar? But if we take him at his word, if he is as he claims to be, we have to hold him to it. We need him to repeatedly remind us that he American and proudly identifies with our Christianity and Enlightenment based culture. To control the damage his Islamic name does, we need him to constantly reaffirm he does not identify with Islam.

Unfortunately, his reassurance that he is not a Muslim will not help us internationally. Whether true or not, the Islamic world considers it obvious that he has ties to Islam. His name, muslim father and stepfather, madrassa training and close ties to the Islamic rebel in Kenya give them grounds. And though multiculturalism has hidden the fact that the West has been in mortal conflict with Islam since 700 ad, the Islamic world meditates on this fact day and night. They will see this as a victory and get a tremendous morale boost from it.

Obama's policy on Iraq makes him seem like a culturist. Culturism takes diversity seriously and so has very limited hope for turning Iraq into a progressive democracy. McCain takes the globalist position that we are all the same and Iraq's Islamic culture is not inherently incompatible with being a liberal democracy. Obama follows culturists in regretting our involvement in Iraq. But, culturists should be fooled into thinking him a culturist because of this coincidence. Whereas culturism takes Islamic nations to be essentially hostile and foreign enemies to whom we owe nothing, Obama sees them as friends in the global community whom we have injured.

Obama's name not being recognized by English spell checkers reflects its foreign genesis. It reflects the fact that much of his family has non-American ties. Does this create complications? Well, how can he purely think of American interests when his aunt is an illegal alien? How can he consider the American perspective in international aid when his brother lives on a dollar a day in a Kenyan slum? His connections with the Muslim Luo tribal leader Odinga shows a non-Western cultural affiliation. For internationalists, for globalists, these relations are a boon. Just as other nations do, culturists argue we have to put our culture and nation first in our land. Culturists would rather have an American president purely reflect American interests.

What's in a name? A whole lot. Even though Obama is not Osama, the Islamic world will interpret his pulling us out of Iraq will in a much different way than if someone named McCain did. Even if Obama is not a Muslim, celebrations will break out across the Islamic world on this basis if he gets elected. Even if he is as Christian and American as the day is long, his very name will undermine the idea that we have a common cultural heritage in the West. His aunt being a Kenyan illegal immigrant shows the foreign nature of his name actually does reflect foreign ties. But even if he governs with none but America's interests in mind, his name alone will convey extremely detrimental culturst lessons.
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