On Friday I picked up a copy of Mark Steyn's America Alone. By Sunday afternoon, I finished it. Being a fan of Steyn's rightish bigotry, I had planned to purchase it months ago when it was first published. But the title threw me off.
America Alone? No thanks. I'm an inclusively minded Canadian, ergo, I don't like to feel excluded.
But after several months of flirting with, for lack of a better term (this is a blog by the way), Leftish explanations/solutions for our societal ills, I came face to face with the blatant paucity of their arguments. So I went back to Steyn.
American Alone is most easily categorized under social commentary. Steyn sees a very specific problem in the West, and America Alone is his comment. There is, first and foremost, a problem of demographics in the West. This is nothing new of course; most of us are at some level becoming increasingly aware of the problem of maintaining our current way of life without having any children. Steyn, and it comes quite naturally to him, sees a greater peril than the bankruptcy of the social welfare state. There are groups within the West who, while refusing to assimilate into the larger culture, have taken a stance in outright opposition to it. And to top it off, it is these groups who are having the kids, which means that in 20 years time, it'll be these groups calling the shots.
Where Steyn undoubtedly loses the more 'progressively' minded reader is when he names the groups. Actually, its just one group: Radical Muslims. Or Islamofascists. Or Jihadists. The terms are relatively interchangeable. For a reader who has forsaken common sense for political correctedness, Steyn's naming of the enemy is simply too much. Another example of the rightwingfringementallyunstablebigotedislamophobicbreeder political forces which are destroying their beloved society.
For everyone else, Steyn's assessment is disturbingly accurate. There is nary a Western country that has not been on the receiving end of Jihadist terrorism in some form since 2001. What is most worrisome, Steyn points out, is that these terrorist acts have been committed by 'Westerners', or at least people who were born, (or) educated in the West. It was young men who were born in Toronto, attended Toronto schools who planned to behead the prime minister. It was affluent British born Muslims who, prior to painting the Tube red with their, and anyone else who by chance was near them, splattered entrails. Whirling dervishes they ain't. Our neighbours they are.
Thus we have quite the problem. With our demographic collapse, our enemy (the Jihadist) just happens to be part of the fast growing demographic and religion in the West. To make matters even worse, our governments, who all seem to be auditioning for the Millenium Appeasement Awards, spend more time telling us that 'Islam is a religion of peace' rather than making sure 'Western' Muslims actually live that mantra.
Along the way, Steyn gives us his solution: Have babies, Be Christian, and Reform Islam. And it is America alone, who is up for the task.