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Category Archives: Political Correctness
Posted: February 25, 2017 at 3:25 pm
Two weeks ago, conservatives were up in arms about the treatment of Breitbart tech editor and alt-right online superstar Milo Yiannopoulos, who was, to hear them say it, being rudely deprived of his free speech by triggered liberal snowflakes in the name of political correctness. After Yiannopoulos was forced to cancel a speaking event at UC-Berkeley due to protests on campus, President Donald Trump tweeted: If U.C. Berkeley does not allow free speech and practices violence on innocent people with a different point of view NO FEDERAL FUNDS?
On Saturday, Yiannopoulos was invited to give a speech at Conservative Political Action Conference, an influential gathering of conservatives in Washington where President Trump is also scheduled to speak. American Conservative Union, which organizes the event, said that Yiannopoulos message was important to hear at a time when political correctness is properly being discarded.
If the specter of political correctness can move a political institution like CPAC to embrace a glorified internet troll, its probably worth examining what political correctness is. Conservatives say that its the antithesis of free speech: the idea that there are some things you shouldnt be allowed to say. The truth, of course, is more complicated. Of course youre entitled to free speech, but youre not entitled to a platform, and institutions with control of particularly influential platforms like the American Conservative Union and UC-Berkeley should be discriminating about which voices they decide to elevate.
In other words, people with platforms should know where to draw the line. Thats not a radical idea.
Where do conservatives draw the line? As the last year and a half has proved, thats a hard question to answer. Its not at mocking prisoners of war for being captured. Its not at proposing to ban more than one billion people from the country on the basis of their religious beliefs. Its not at picking fights with the parents of a fallen soldier. And its not at sexual harassment.
CPACs embrace of Yiannopoulos last week only deepens the mystery. It means they dont draw the line at someone who, despite being gay, has advocated for forcing gays back into the closet in order to preserve the nuclear family. It means they dont draw the line at someone who instigated an army of racist trolls against comedian and Saturday Night Live star Leslie Jones. It means they dont draw the line at aggressive transphobia, hate speech against Muslims, or ad hominem attacks against feminism.
But this week, we got some answers. On Sunday, a video emerged in which Yiannopoulos appears to condone statutory rape and sexual relationships between boys and men. For once, there was universal outrage at his comments, and in the span of 48 hours he lost his speaking slot at CPAC, his book deal and his job at Breitbart.
So it turns out conservatives do draw the line, not at bigotry or harassment or hate speech, but at pedophilia. Whether they like it or not, the right subscribes to the same basic idea behind the UC-Berkeley protests namely, that there should be standards for elevated public speech. They just have vastly lower standards.
Groves is a government sophomore from Dallas. Follow him on twitter @samgroves
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Despite Rumblings About Political Correctness, the Black Oscar Nominees This Year Deserve All the Accolades – Heat Street
Posted: at 3:25 pm
The Oscars this year will have a remarkably different vibe than last year, starting with a lack of protests over the skin color of the nominees. Last year, as youll probably remember, the ceremony was heavily infusedwith the social media-driven #OscarsSoWhite protests, which Al Sharpton then latched onto to lead a protest outside the Kodak theater.
As Maria Puente in USA Today wrote after the announcement of this years nominees:
So is this the start of a permanent shift in nomination diversity or just a temporary break from the same-old, same-old? Is it the result of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences recent efforts to diversify and expand its voting membership?
Or is it the consequence of a powerful social-media campaign to shame Hollywood about the persistent lack of diversity in the industry and in those it chooses to nominate and honor with gold statuettes every year?
The amount of African-American representation at this years award show obviously left the insatiable social justice left demanding more Hispanic and minority representation as wellapparently no matter if the film, artist or engineer deserves it for the work. Armchair hashtag activists can attempt to take credit for their tweets and outrage pushing the academy to nominate more African- Americans in film this year. But they would be misguided in doing so.
The simple fact is this was a very good year for films centered around African- American culture and performers. It may be the best year in modern history for it. Denzel Washingtons Fences, Moonlight, Hidden Figuresall deserve the attention they are getting as works of art. Acting categories could see threeout of the big fourfinal awards go to actors of colorand all of them would be deserved.
Washington, who has won prior awards for his work on the play Fences, also directs himself in the film version. He knows the character Troy Maxon and thunders his way through it. His winning ofthe Screen Actors Guild award could be an early notice to Casey Affleck that its not going to be his year.
Mahershala Ali steals the spotlightin Moonlight, giving the film a flawed and layered moral center. Its the closest thing to a lock in any category this year. ThreeAfrican- Americans out of the five Supporting Actress nominees dominate that category as well: Viola Davis in Fences (the favorite), Naomie Harris in Moonlight and Octavia Spencer in Hidden Figures. (Spencer is a previous winner for her role in The Help in 2012).
Its possible that Michelle Williams, an Oscar darling, takes home the award for basically one powerhouse scene in Manchester by the Sea, but I dont see how that happens over Davis or Spencer.
Each of these films represented different parts of black culture in America and throughout history, and each deserves its place at the awards. Though La La Land still appears to be the favorite for Best Picture, theres been a sudden burst ofSJW angst around the film, everything from claims that it whitewashes jazz, to people complaining that its just too pretty or too white.
If there are two sleepers to upset LaLa Land, theywould have to be MoonlightandHidden Figuresthe lattertook home Best Ensemble honorsat the SAG Awards, the closest thing the union awards show has to a Best Picture. Moonlight, while short and a bit hollow in the script department, has one of the most authentic settings of the year (and best soundtracks).
Some have criticized Hidden Figuresfor featuring a White Savior (Kevin Costner), which is something of a pattern infilms about black history. But it was a genuine crowd pleaser and a story not many knew about. It also surprised at the Box Office, and thats one of the only things Hollywood loves more than stories about itself.
If Moonlight or Hidden Figures unseatsLa La Land it would be hard to call it an upset. Neither Moonlight, Hidden Figuresnor Fencesisnominated for the purpose of bringing more forced diversity to an award show that may or may not be trying to shy away from more social media controversy. It would one thing to suggest otherwise if the level of craftsmanship werent apparent in thosefilms. If anything, its surprising more films and performances from black-led works werent nominated. Specifically,Loving andBirth of a Nation.
What is clear is that even if the winners represent a cross section of diversity, social justice criticswill not relent in the future. Remember two years before the ridiculous OscarsSoWhite campaign, 12 Years aSlave swept fourawards, including Best Picture and Best Supporting Actress. The awards were absolutely deserved.
Its easy for opponents of political correctnessto level the charge that this years rich diversity ofnominees are only up there to placate a mob obsessed with their Netflix and Twitter. Butcritics in a rush to grab their phone for an outraged tweet should step back and appreciate the year that this was for African-American film.
Posted: February 24, 2017 at 6:32 pm
LONDON — The founder of a U.K. Christian TV network has found a unique way to share famous quotes from Jesus — by displaying them on buses throughout London.
Revelation TV’s Howard Conder explains how God gave him the vision for this campaign, called QuoteJesus.com.
“The Lord spoke to me very clearly about starting to put the words of Jesus on the buses in London,” he told CBN News. “We have a website. We have the buses booked. We’re now on our second campaign.”
Conder, who started his career as a musician, says he now believes God is using his previous self-promoting skills to now promote Jesus.
“I experienced first hand how bands and performers were marketed ruthlessly,” he explains in a video posted on the Quote Jesus website “In time, I became a Christian and saw things in a new light. I channeled that same energy and drive into which I had to working in a purpose greater than myself.”
Conder says he’s overcome many challenges to launch this campaign, which he believes will impact many thousands of lives.
“There’s 17.5 million people who visit London,” he said. “There’s between 8-9 million who live here. So we’ve got so many people who will, subliminally, will at least be looking at those scriptures, and here we have one here: ‘You will be with me in paradise.'”
So what does the future hold for this unique evangelist project?
“I believe that the future of Quote Jesus is something that’s not just for here in London,” Condor told CBN News. “It’s across our nation. But it’s also I believe could go global. Why with all the millions of Christians that are around today, all they need to do is just get on board literally with us. But to help us to bring the quotes of Jesus to this generation.”
With so much political correctness in the U.K. seeking to silence the Christian voice, the hope is that these public displays of quoting Jesus will play a significant part in people going on their own personal journey towards faith in Christ.
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Op-ed: He’s just saying what we’re all thinking: How political correctness fails us in the age of Trump – The Eagle
Posted: at 6:32 pm
By Joe Henao | 6 hours ago | Updated 6 hours ago
I wasnt quite sure if it was a universal maxim, but I had heard friends of mine recite the humourous adage, hes just saying what were all thinking, fictitiously assuming the role of the cucked Trump supporter proclaiming their admiration for our new Commander-in-Chief and his knack for stating the obscene, perverse and politically incorrect.
Although the phrase was generally used as a low jab towards Trump and his groupies, it reveals much of what is inefficient, and theoretically damning, regarding liberals and their use of political correctness as a means, end and political action.
As a disclaimer, Id like to point out that the act of censoring our speech for the sake of inclusivity and general respect should be commonsensical. It is in no way harmful in and of itself, and we should press our peers to consider utilizing language that does not carry with it preconceived sexist, racist, ableist, etc. values that devalue people and their identities.
This should be of no debate. (Hint: punch those who do debate it.) It is when political correctness is simultaneously employed as both an act of resistance and as a means to true liberation when it falls short. I urge liberals to reconsider what they understand as revolutionary and legitimately useful. The struggle does not end here.
Popular aphorisms Trumpisms such as, He just tells it like it is, or Hes just saying what were all thinking, should exact to us the nature of the isms politically correct liberals desperately attempt to combat. Discrimination, injustice and violence are not structured within language; they are structured within the base of the reality we inhabit.
Language, the medium poltical correctness aims to alter, operates in the most symbolic of realms, existing not as a categorical truth, but as a way of understanding, relaying and reflecting the social landscape were subjected to navigate.
Postmodern deconstructionists such as Foucault and Derrida, whom left-liberals love to misconstrue, correctly conveyed to us how power, hierarchy and violence is transcribed and sustained through language. Are we so ridiculous to assume that their solution was to simply not speak? Of course not, and for precisely this reason these thinkers were not liberals, but critical leftists.
Our goal should, therefore, not be to constantly censor our speech, but to rewire the zero-level relations of society so that the linguistic lexicon available to us does not contain within it discrimination/violence. Simply put, political correctness aims to alter the superstructure of society, while the true root of the violence that exists within our language is reflective of the relations in the base of society. If we are to truly uproot injustice and attack it at its source, we must attack the base, not language.
He tells it like it is: In this sense, racism very literally, is. Hes just saying what were all thinking. Regardless of whether or not racism is communicated or expressed through language, it still exists, and is still being thought and experienced.
Political correctness does nothing but obscure a forever lurking issue, acting as the proverbial band aid struggling to suppress an open wound. Within our subjective reality, violence exists structurally whether we speak about it or not.
So then, what is to be done? Ultimately and this will no doubt elicit opinions from all ends of our political constellation we must radically reorganize the ways in which we relate to one another. What I am proposing is far too utopian for todays standards, especially considering the state of affairs following the election, but nonetheless, we should still aim for the eventuality of an alterity rationally built upon entirely different relations, and keep certain options on the intellectual backburner for future use. By all means, let us all be inclusive with our language and utilize every tool available to us in mitigating injustice, but know that the struggle does not end here.
Joe Henao is a junior in the School of International Service.
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Posted: February 23, 2017 at 1:20 pm
Milo Yiannopoulos, now the former senior editor at right-wing Breitbart News after being forced to resign, has finally found the boundaries of free speech.
After President Trump and others fiercely defended Yiannopoulos’ right to speak hatefully about blacks, Muslims, transgender people, and immigrants online and on college campuses, the provocative writer and commentator finally went too far.
In a video released online by the Reagan Battalion, a conservative group, Yiannopoulos condoned sexual relations between men and 13-year-old boys, and joked about Roman Catholic priests and pedophilia. His words not only cost him his job at Breitbart. They also cost him an invitation to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). In addition, Simon & Schuster will not release his book, Dangerous.
In short, Yiannopoulos has been brought low by his own twisted comments.
Which brings me to my point. Limiting one’s hate speech is not “political correctness,” as some would have us believe. No, limiting hate speech is common decency. That’s the price we all should pay for the freedoms we’re afforded. But too many on both sides of the aisle have forgotten that simple truth.
We have become a culture where the kind of outlandish behavior that used to bring swift rebuke can lead to fame and fortune. People like Yiannopoulos, a gay man who should have long ago been censured by his own LGBT community for his verbal attacks on transgenderpeople, was allowed to speak hatefully about everyone who was not like himself. As long as his antics entertained, no one, it seems, had the courage to stop him.
Twitter tried. In a nod to common decency, the social media platform banned Yiannopoulos for his relentless trolling of blacks, Muslims, immigrants, and others. Liberals and some conservatives also raised alarms about Yiannopoulos’ hate-filled commentary.
But as the young writer and commentator ratcheted up his hate speech to levels that prompted protests at universities where he was invited to speak, his fame only grew.
President Trump, via Twitter, threatened to yank federal funding from universities that would not allow Yiannopoulos to appear. Former Brietbart publisher and current White House Chief strategist Steve Bannon, who counted Yiannopoulos among his protgs, was also a staunch defender. Simon & Schuster, a major publisher, rewarded Yiannopoulos’ hate speech with a six-figure book deal.
Then the video from a radio program appeared, and it all came crashing down.
“No, no, no,” Yiannopoulos says on the tape. “You’re misunderstanding what ‘pedophilia’ means. Pedophilia is not a sexual attraction to somebody 13-years-old who is sexually mature. Pedophilia is attraction to children who have not reached puberty.”
In the video, he goes on to call the idea of consent “arbitrary and oppressive” before crediting a Catholic priest with teaching him about sex.
The negative response to Yiannopoulis’ comments was swift and sure, but in my view, they were also hypocritical.
We can’t be a society in which everything that everyone says or does is OK, and then recoil when someone crosses a line no one bothered to define.
We elected a reality-show star as president even after he bragged on tape about grabbing women’s genitals without their permission, called Mexican undocumented immigrants rapists and criminals, and made disparaging comments about blacks, Muslims, immigrants, and refugees.
Now those who were silent during the campaign are up in arms when the president’s executive orders reveal that what he showed us on the campaign trail was real.
But the hypocrisy does not only exist on the right. It exists on the left as well.
We elevate people who appear in sex tapes to stardom and call it shaming if anyone dares to say anything about it. We tell ourselves it’s OK to use one drug and then wonder why we are in the midst of an unwieldy epidemic when it comes to another drug.
We run to airports to defend the rights of refugees, but refuse to condemn police officers who unjustly take the lives of unarmed black and brown people on our streets.
In other words, Milo Yiannopoulos is not an aberration in our society. He is rapidly becoming the norm.
We can’t pretend to be outraged when he pushes beyond boundaries we never set. We can’t now be offended when we laughed at his previous stunts. We can’t condemn his abhorrent behavior when we helped to create him.
We empowered Yiannopoulos by creating a society in which the lines are invisible. Then we pounced on him when he crossed them.
Freedom of speech is not a pass to act without shame, to speak without limits, or to move without consequences, because freedom of speech is not free. It comes with a cost that was perhaps too steep for Milo Yiannopoulos to pay.
It costs us just a bit of common decency.
Trump’s America will be on vivid display at annual conservative gathering Feb 22 – 9:01 AM
Milo Yiannopoulos apologizes for remarks, quits Breitbart Feb 21 – 6:12 PM
Conservative group cancels speech by Yiannopoulos Feb 20 – 9:34 PM
Published: February 22, 2017 9:52 AM EST | Updated: February 22, 2017 11:29 AM EST The Philadelphia Inquirer
Posted: at 1:20 pm
Oscar Duke visits albino Africans in Born Too White. Photograph: Sam Clarke/BBC/Dragonfly/Endemol Shine Group
Typically absorbing This World documentary, exploring the shameful plight of albino people in east Africa. Oscar Duke, adoctor previously featured in 24 Hours in A&E and an albino himself, visits Malawi and Tanzania, where albinos are not merely persecuted and shunned but frequently attacked and even killed. Duke meets east Africas albinos and illuminatingly, if enragingly their tormentors, including aman imprisoned for murder. Andrew Mueller
Trevor Phillips delivers another unhelpful polemic. He rehearses the canard that stopping minority groups being demonised has infringed ordinary peoples freedoms; trivial instances of uncertainty or ambiguity are held up as evidence that the effort to curb hate speech has overreached. This mythical suppression is then blamed, to the exclusion of other factors, for Brexit/Trump: he says we gave anti-immigrant views too little attention, not too much. Jack Seale
Madame Tussauds official memoir, as Professor Pamela Pilbeam says here, may be a load of tripe, but it was the product of a businesswoman who absolutely knew the value of a brand. As evinced by this profile, her real-life story, bound up with the French Reign of Terror, the Industrial Revolution and British royalty, was astonishing (and its amusing to discover her original Baker Street exhibit was considered a wee bit pricey, too). Ali Catterall
This new Dutch drama, based on a best-selling novel by Saskia Noort called rather less provocatively New Neighbours, finds writer Peter and pregnant girlfriend Eva embarking on a move to the suburbs. Their new place is opposite that of fitness instructor Rebecca and Steef, a sleazy, corrupt policeman. Soon tragedy strikes. Just because Peter is wearing a Wilco T-shirt, it doesnt make this any-the-less soapy. Its going for Scandi noir, but really misses the mark. Ben Arnold
The enduringly popular murder-mystery series concludes its sixth season. For those not immediately charmed by the scenery and the gentle pace, new lead Ardal OHanlon has proved to be a real incentive to watch, his bemused, quizzical air a good fit with the shows red-herring-strewn plotlines. In tonights finale, a mayoral candidate is murdered while casting his ballot. True to form, DI Jack Mooney discursively uncovers the grudges that all present had against him. John Robinson
Its not clear why this comedy drama by Tom Basden creator of Plebs, writer of Fresh Meat and one quarter of 00s sketch group Cowards is called Gap Year, seeing as nobody involved is on one. Instead, it follows two mates travelling around China over the summer and the people they meet there. Compared with Basdens previous work, this opener feels disappointingly pedestrian – barring every word uttered by annoying Brit Greg (the inimitable Tim Key), that is. Rachel Aroesti
Given that he played for Arsenals youth team and sang backing vocals on his dad Keiths era-defining ladsploitation anthem Vindaloo, Alfie Allen has modern football covered. But hes aware that many children of the Premier League are ignorant about what came before. This series sees him revisit a semi-forgotten world of mud, racism, modest wages and community centrality, and pondering what came after. Did we lose more than we gained? Phil Harrison
Marley & Me (David Frankel, 2008), 11pm, 5Star
Adapted from John Grogans book of memoirs, this winning canine comedy has Marley the cheeky golden labrador moving in with the Grogans (Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston) when they relocate to Florida. Youll laugh, youll cry, youll pant and scratch in sympathy with Marleys antics, as a pretty serious account of a sometimes troubled marriage unfolds. Paul Howlett
Snooker Shootout Coverage of the opening days play at the single-frame tournament, which takes place at the Watford Colosseum. 11.45am, ITV4
Premier League darts Action from the fourth round of the season, including Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis. 7pm, Sky Sports 1
Europa League football: Spurs v Gent Last 32 second-leg clash, held at Wembley Stadium. 7.30pm, BT Sport 2
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Posted: at 1:20 pm
Guccis “pineapples” were born out of some obvious origins. There was the 80s hair metal dude. The nebbish nerd. The Palm Springs grandma. The guy who likes Wes Anderson too much. Japanese paper parasols adorned with flora and fauna motifs in the beginning of the show transformed into oversized velvet lampshades at one point. Bamboo walking sticks became gold-tipped arrows that became a Godfather-esque scepter adorned with a white cat and a brass knuckles. Chinese peony prints decorated a qi pao in Look 9 by Look 112, it was on a ruffled blouse that looked more Swiss than Shanghai. This collection was as much about borrowing Oriental symbols (especially symbols associated with Western depictions of Orientalism, like Chinoiserie, rather than real Asian cultures) as it was about making the argument that parasols, peonies, and bamboo belong to the world, not just one culture. Plus, those elements have been an integral a part of Gucci’s historic iconography and Michele has proven to be a master of tapping into Gucci’s archive to present old tropes in new ways. It’s worth mentioning that this has led to incredible financial and cultural success, even outperforming the cash-cow that was Hedi Slimane’s Saint Laurent.
Posted: at 1:20 pm
I used to think I was your conventional regular guy. I just went along to get along. Now I find out it isn’t so.
First off, I was born to Caucasian parents. Now I’m told, whether I like it or not and regardless of how I treat others, I’m a racist. And I’m being asked to apologize for the actions of ancestors whose names I don’t even know.
I’m fiscally and morally conservative and otherwise a social moderate. By today’s standards that makes me a fascist.
I am incurably heterosexual, and I’m having trouble understanding why some other people have a different orientation. So the gay lobby automatically brands me a homophobic.
I’ve always been non-union. That, I’m told, makes me a traitor to the working class, and big business has me in its pocket.
Although I haven’t had occasion to shoot a firearm since I was in the Army half a century ago, I believe in the Second Amendment and in people’s right to own and use guns in a legal manner. Oh, but no, that makes me a member of the vast gun lobby. But the fact I think there are certain types of weapons that don’t belong in civilian hands, on the other hand, makes me a radical gun-control advocate. I’m in a no-win situation.
I’m a Christian. That means Muslims label me an infidel and those of an atheist bent brand me a radical religious nut who wants to impose my beliefs on everyone else.
I’m in my 70s, which makes me a useless old man.
I am proud of my heritage and our inclusive American culture. That, I’m told, makes me a xenophobe (I keep having to go to the dictionary, too).
I champion the safety of myself and my family, and I support the police and the legal system. That makes me a right-wing extremist.
I believe in the defense and protection of the homeland for and by all citizens, which now makes me a militant.
I believe in hard work, fair play and appropriate compensation according to each individual worker’s merits. Today that makes me an antisocialist.
This list, by the way, is based on something I saw on the internet recently. That makes me a plagiarist.
While I’m retired from a long career in the news media, the gamut of real news and fake news and alternative facts being thrown at us of late leads me to question much of what the media is feeding us, even sometimes the mainstream agencies. That must make me a reactionary.
And if that isn’t enough, some of my friends and I have been tossed into something called a basket of deplorables.
As a result of all this, I’m not quite sure who I am anymore. Things are happening so quickly that I’m having trouble trying to adjust my thinking.
And now I’m becoming afraid to go into either restroom.
Jim Baileys column appears on Thursday. He can be reached by email at email@example.com.
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Posted: at 1:20 pm
In the madhouse built by our ruling elite, supported by progressive cheerleaders, we are literally paying our enemies to wage their brutal war against our civilisation.
That is the only conclusion to draw from the outrageous case of Jamal al-Harith, sometimes known as Abu Zakariya al-Britani, a Muslim convert and Islamic State fighter from Britain who was reported this week to have blown himself up in a suicide attack on an Iraqi army base near Mosul.
Al-Harith, previously known as Ronnie Fiddler before his conversion to Islam, was not just a terrorist but also the recipient of a reported 1million from the British taxpayer.
This vast sum was handed to him by our supine politicians as so-called compensation for alleged mistreatment while he was held in the US detention camp of Guantanamo Bay, having been arrested in 2001 by US forces as a suspected Taliban sympathiser.
The Islamists do not respect us for our self-abasement
Predictably he denied the charge, claiming that he had merely been backpacking in Pakistan, the worldrenowned tourist destination.
More eager to trumpet its liberal virtue than to fight extremism the Labour government lobbied hard for his release, which soon took place in 2004.
When he was freed, along with several other Guantanamo detainees from Britain, the home secretary David Blunkett grandly declared that no one who is returned will be a threat to the security of the British people.
That empty boast now lies flattened by al-Hariths Mosul car bomb. But in this depressing saga our political leaders were as disdainful of the public purse as they were of national security.
For al-Harith was just one of several winners from the compensation racket. Altogether 16 people from Britain received handouts after spells in Guantanamo, with the total sum estimated to be 20million.
Yesterday the press carried pictures of al-Harith grinning widely and he had every reason for his self-satisfaction.
He had scooped the jackpot in the government-sponsored jihadi version of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?
In a morally self-confident society, terrorists and traitors are punished. But our sick system means that people such as him are lavishly rewarded.
Hatred of our values is the cue for riches. Yet the Islamists do not respect us for our self-abasement. They despise our gullibility dressed up as compassion and our cowardice masquerading as tolerance.
There is a revealing contrast between the official generosity towards former Guantanamo detainees and the more miserly approach towards our veterans wounded in the fight against militant Islam.
Such heroes include inspirational paratrooper Ben Parkinson, who suffered devastating injuries to his legs and head while serving in Afghanistan in 2006 but received barely half the compensation that was dished out to al-Harith.
Lenin famously described his Western supporters as useful idiots and that term certainly applies to the enablers of this fiasco.
A large part of the guilt belongs to Tony Blairs Labour government, which liked to blather about its belief in the war on terror but failed so pathetically to support the Americans over Guantanamo, which has been a vital facility in that fight.
Labours eagerness to side with al-Harith belonged to the same doctrinaire, anti-British mindset that opened the floodgates on immigration, imposed cultural diversity and introduced the misnamed human rights regime.
But Blair and his ministers were also backed by a host of other elements. One was the gang of lawyers posing as the champions of freedom in order to milk the taxpayer.
Another was the civil rights lobby led by the sanctimonious Shami Chakrabarti of the pressure group Liberty, who built a public career out of shrieking against anti-terrorist crackdowns before she became one of Jeremy Corbyns acolytes.
Typically, when al-Harith was released in 2004, she said she was delighted, even though the American authorities had said, with full justification as it turns out, that he was a known Al Qaeda operative who represented a threat to the USA, its interests and its allies.
Just as offensive were the brigade of Muslim organisations such as the notorious Cage, which continually undermined attempts to tackle extremism by wailing about Islamophobia.
It is absurd that this cynical, destructive brigade should have been allowed such influence. The voice that should really count in the fight against our enemies is that of the security forces.
Unlike the lobbyists and the politicians their entire agenda is to protect the public. They know the tools they need and the action required.
Unlike the ideologues who are obsessed with the concept of Muslim victimhood they recognise that militant Islam is a very real menace to our way of life.
The new US President Trump also recognises this. That is why he and his new Attorney General Jeff Sessions are determined to keep Guantanamo Bay open as they strengthen Americas counter-terrorism policy.
Inevitably Trumps policy, which overturns President Obamas executive order to close the camp, has been opposed by lawyers and liberal campaigners.
But the case of al-Harith provides him with powerful ammunition to maintain this military prison.
Trump has been derided by smug European sophisticates for his declaration that he will put America first.
But we need far more of that kind of patriotism in Europe rather than the current anarchy of open borders, social breakdown and cultural cringing.
Posted: at 1:20 pm
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