The Tribe of the Damned

There is a special kind of stupid forcing its way into everyone’s lives in the US at the moment, the kind of stupid that can only happen when someone is highly educated and has little to no experience of working in a field where actions have consequences; or when someone has been indoctrinated with it from birth. I don’t presume to know which of the alternatives is the case for each of the specimens demonstrating their lack of understanding, nor do I particularly care. I wouldn’t care what they thought or believed if they weren’t so insistent on both forcing their nonsense down everyone’s throats and endangering the US in the process.

These are the people whose response to a murderous terrorist attack it to publicly opine that the perpetrators merely need more love. Or that criminals need the same.

I could possibly even agree, if the “love” in question included some serious lessons in taking responsibility for one’s actions and accepting the consequences.

See, in every dysfunctional culture that spawns violent criminals, be they the mundane or terrorist sort, there’s a big strain of blaming someone else for everything. It’s encouraged. They’re told that what they’re doing is the will of some deity or other, or that they’ve been hard done by by “the man” or some such nonsense, and that it’s the fault of someone else if whatever they do ends badly. In some of these cultures it’s little short of a miracle that anyone rejects the constant subtext that it’s perfectly fine to beat shit out of the designated enemy (or blow the designated enemy’s little children to bits), because it’s just that pervasive and nihilist.

That does not mean that the culprits deserve to be spared the consequences, no matter how misled they may have been. They still chose to pick up that weapon or detonate that bomb, knowing full well that the outcome would be the injury or death of someone who meant them no harm.

The legions of idiots claiming that their actions are caused by poverty insult every law-abiding poor person. Claiming “oppression” insults every person who is actually being oppressed and doesn’t go around hurting uninvolved third parties. Claiming it’s all American imperialism goes beyond insulting into patronizing lies. There’s a difference between economic and cultural hegemony that happens because the US is the largest native-English market in the world, and arguably the largest market in the world, period (I say arguably because one can quibble endlessly about precisely how you define a nation-sized market, but the end result is much the same: American cultures are so dominant that many aspects of them tend to get adopted just so business can be done. I’d guarantee there are very few non-Americans around who don’t know what the major American festivals are. Who can say the same about Russian festivals? English? French? Any other culture?) and going out and forcing others to take on your values.

Even when, measured in terms of quality of life and freedom of choice, your values are in many ways objectively better (don’t start with life expectancy: US life expectancy statistics take a big hit because if a baby is born with a heartbeat it’s a live birth. Even if it’s so far premature it’s got almost no chance to live. One heartbeat, one drawn breath is a live birth. Other places tend to count babies who die within a short time after birth as stillbirths, which don’t impact the life expectancy averages) that doesn’t mean you get to impose them on someone else, and for the most part the US has abided by this principle.

That doesn’t stop these fools who have been seduced by propaganda originally disseminated by the Soviet Union to divide and weaken its great enemy (the USA, of course). Their lack of experience of a world where consequences happen, often in an unpleasant fashion, and where there is nobody but you to blame for your fuckups leaves them spouting the most inane nonsense that fails to pass the most rudimentary smell test.

If they succeed in their espoused aim, things will get much, much worse. Whether we’re talking a second dark age worse, or merely unstable, unpleasant, and violent doesn’t matter: it will be much worse because it will be ruled by people whose main concern is their own power. These fools won’t be there: they’ll be among the first against the wall because that sort always is. The power-chasers will happily use them then discard them.

If they fail, the survivors (sadly, I no longer believe the mess these fools have created can be resolved without violence) will wonder what went wrong and blame everyone except themselves. They already do that whenever there’s any kind of setback to their dreams.

Either way, by their own actions they have damned themselves, and whether the price is taken before or after their deaths is merely a matter of chance. I would pity them if they did not pose me and those I care for so much danger.


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