Lone Nordic nutbar Anders Behring Breivik kills nearly 80 people in a terrorist attack linked to his frustration with growing multiculturalism. Suddenly, media reports around the world are mistakenly calling it an alarming trend and a sign of far-right extremism sweeping Europe.
Meanwhile, in America, a 21-year-old U.S. soldier of Muslim Palestinian origin, Naser Abdo, is arrested for planning a terrorist attack on Texas' Fort Hood military base, with police finding enough material in his hotel room to make at least two bombs. Had he succeeded, he would have been the second American military member of Muslim origin in as many years to attack the same base -- the first being Nidal Hasan, who murdered 13 people there in 2009.
If one incident is enough to constitute a "trend" of violent far-right extremism, then why aren't we hearing the same concern about attacks on military bases and elsewhere by people of a certain common cultural and religious background?
Despite what the media says, far-right extremism isn't significantly on the rise in Europe. People can be legitimately frustrated with imposed societal re-engineering by leftists, and want to conserve the social and cultural cohesion that has traditionally made Europe a nice place to live, without being considered extreme. To suggest that increased support for legitimate political parties is dangerous is nothing more than an attempt to stigmatize real and valid concerns.
For example, about 25 percent of the French at any given time over the past several years could be considered "far-right," and French President Nicolas Sarkozy was able to win the 2007 election by tweaking his policies to specifically target these voters. And as with other European nations, if center-right leaders like Sarkozy appear to be suffering from waning popularity, it isn't because their right-leaning policies have failed -- it's because they haven't been implemented as promised.
Leftist policy and thinking has so horribly permeated every aspect of society and daily life that the results of a rightward correction are feared for the mayhem they might cause, from strikes to riots. So Europeans end up looking for a bolder, more fearless option in the form of a leader or party that will make the necessary reforms without fearing the fallout. Is this phenomenon violent or radical? Not in the least. If anything, it's just a sign of rejection of leftist extremism.
When French Socialist Party leader Martine Aubry announced last week that if elected to the presidency she'd blow a billion Euros on "French culture" at a time when cash flow is running pretty dry, why wasn't it decried as "fiscal terrorism"? When Greeks riot in the streets to protest necessary budget cuts, why is that not considered "violent extremism"? And when a group such as the European Network Against Racism (ENAR) issues a statement tying right-wing politics to the acts of a single, isolated loon, why does no one consider that logic an example of racist extremism in itself?
According to ENAR: "Indeed, most of the people from the European majority community have remained relatively insensitive to the numerous victims of extreme-right movements that often stemmed from minority communities: Jews, Blacks, Muslims, Roma, gays and lesbians, among others. However, the Oslo killings dreadfully demonstrate that extreme-right ideologies are a danger for the whole society and not only for minorities. Anyone can become victim to the violence of extreme-right fanatics, intent on wiping out diversity from our societies."
ENAR would have us believe that it's a steep, slippery slope indeed from, say, controlling illegal immigration of Roma gypsies to literally "wiping out diversity."
I have a question for ENAR: How many violent acts by people of an ideology or origin must be committed before it's considered a disturbing trend? Because it would seem from this statement that it only takes one. Why isn't the group at least equally concerned by the rampant violent acts committed by people from the same minority groups it lists?
As a peaceful white conservative, I find ENAR's statement strongly implies that I'm at best a quisling vis-à-vis humanity, and at worst a mere frustration away from going postal. I reject this stereotype foisted upon me by the bigots in the anti-racist company, and feel the group is trying to hurt my feelings, marginalize me and turn me into a social pariah. I'd start my own victim industry around this traumatic development, but I'm kind of busy right now.