I might have finally understood the Left. These days, the stance of the Left is best explained by one of my favourite jokes – the social worker joke:
Two social workers are walking down the street late at night. As they turn a corner, they see a man lying in the gutter. He is bruised and bleeding, his clothes torn, and moaning with pain; clearly he has been attacked. He sees the two people and calls to them “Please, someone help me!
And one social worker turns to the other and says: “Who ever did this to him needs help!”
This joke epitomizes the seemingly inverted attitude of the left to so many things today.
For the left, there is no such thing as a terrorist. They are “militants” or “freedom fighters” – heroes fighting for the most noble cause of freedom. Can there be a greater calling? And of course, they are fighting against those people who are depriving them of freedom. The deprivation of their freedom causes “despair”, which forces them to do terrible things, like murder innocent civilians by blowing themselves up.
If David Hicks is a terrorist (and that is a big “if”), it must be that he’s really just misguided and fell into the company of some other misguided people. He bears little or no blame for how he has ended up. By extension, if someone commits a crime, it is society’s obligation to help rehabilitate them because they are a product of society. They needs our help, more than anything.
Those Bali bombers that were just executed as punishment for mass murder didn’t deserve such a barbaric punishment. The threat of death is no deterrent to other would-be murderers; rather it’s more important to address the root cause of their desire to kill many people.
If someone hates me and openly declares their intent to kill me, it could not be because they have some twisted ideology, or are just plain bad folks. Rather, it must be because of something I did. Therefore, the onus is on me to change, and/or to appease them.
Where does this bizarre inversion come from?
It really comes down to a view on the nature of people. If you believe that all people are essentially good, then you are stuck with a question: why do essentially good people do really bad things? The only possible answer is that it’s because they have been provoked; because some root cause has led them down this path.
This ties in well with our social worker. The victim here has done nothing wrong, and is remedied with some medical assistance and perhaps some counselling for trauma. But what of the perpetrator? How can we “fix” him? He’s the one who needs our help even more! He’s the one who is the real victim, who for reasons far beyond his control, has fallen upon hard times and been forced into a life of crime.
By maintaining this view of people, the Left believe they can fix the whole world.
And so, President-elect Barack Obama, with his eloquent message of hope, and his plan of “conciliation” as the path to fix everything, has been fawned upon by the press, and been all but declared the messiah and saviour of all mankind. It’s very convenient and comforting to declare the eight years of the Bush government a total failure and the cause of everything that is wrong, and therefore look forward the the dawn of a new age. Once the Democrats take power, they can undo the damage of the past, and make the world like America again.
But what if the Left’s view of the world is flawed? What if there are people who are genuinely evil? People who view appeasement as weakness, and either pounce on it, or shift the goalposts so that consensus is never reached, or until their true motives are revealed? What if wars must be fought and won to defeat those who wish our destruction?
Let’s just hope that the new view from inside the Oval Office has a little more balance, and a little more realism than fanciful dreams of the Left.