Saturday, June 21, 2008

America Alone

Mark Steyn (a Canadian writer living in the US) is one of the funniest and scariest writers around. He is currently on "trial" by a Canadian Human Rights Commission for inciting hate with remarks from his book, America Alone. There's lots of information on the net about the trial, such as this op/ed piece from the LA Times a few days ago. Instapundit often links to updates.

I just finished reading America Alone this morning. It's a worthwhile book. Some people can't stomach the anti-Islam tone, though all his commentary about radical Islam's desire to rule the world comes directly from the news or from quotes by Islamists themselves. So I don't see where the "hate" comes in. He's reporting.

But, if that's not to your liking, you could read just Part 1: "The Gelded Age," and the last 2 chapters, "the Importance of Being Exceptional" and "the Falling Camel," in which Steyn outlines the demographic problems facing Europe and, to a lesser degree (so far), the US: European citizens are not having enough babies to keep their cultures alive. The US is close to doing the same. And who pays for those nifty welfare-state benefits when the population ages and there are no babies coming along behind? Important to think about as we contemplate Canadian-style Socialist medicine.

There are great quotes, like:

As French philosopher Jean-Francois Revel wrote, "Clearly, a civilization that feels guilty for everything it is and does will lack the energy and conviction to defend itself."


Multiculturalism was conceived by Western elites not to celebrate all cultures but to deny their own.

That reminds me of a comment a long-lost friend of mine made about a neighbor's marriage: they were really cool, she said, because it was a multi-cultural marriage. Implying that mine, being mono-cultural, was not so cool, I guess. Sorry to be so boring by being white and American and marrying a white American guy.

It's funny, too. A quick read, maybe an important read for this election year.


Sandy said...

My son likes this book and shared parts of it with me when he read it. Gotta love the library. I have said from the beginning that part of the reason there is so much opposition to the war in Iraq (which I am not wholly defending) is that Americans have been taught that we are the problem in the world. Everyone else is a victim. That coupled with the 'everyone's a winner' approach to children's sports and other activities (ie- not keeping score, everyone gets a trophy, and my kids' favorite, passing out ten blue ribbons in 4-H) has produced a nation unwilling to defend itself. The terrorists attacks of September 11 should have produced enough anger in my generation to last a life time. Instead we think we can sit down and talk the terrorists out of their hatred. God help us.

Barbara Frank said...

Fantastic book...I bought it right after it came out and inhaled it.

You make some very good points in this post and the next one. If it weren't for the people who cared about our country's future, we wouldn't have the freedom so many are squandering now. All we can do is pray for our country. I am specifically praying for revival.

As for Steyn, he is truly gifted. I first found him when an article of his was posted at It's awful but not surprising that they're trying to gag him in Canada.