After it became apparent that the shootings in San Bernardino, which left 14 dead, constituted another act of Islamic terrorism, Americans looked to their leaders to provide a way reducing the likelihood the next attack. The response from both Democrats and Republicans was disappointing. None of them had any tangible ideas except for one candidate—Donald Trump.
On December 7th, the anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Donald Trump dropped his call for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” His reason is that a lot of Muslims really hate Americans:
Most recently, a poll from the Center for Security Policy released data showing “25% of those polled agreed that violence against Americans here in the United States is justified as a part of the global jihad” and 51% of those polled, “agreed that Muslims in America should have the choice of being governed according to Shariah.” Shariah authorizes such atrocities as murder against non-believers who won’t convert, beheadings and more unthinkable acts that pose great harm to Americans, especially women.
Not surprisingly, progressives suffered an aneurism in response to the proposal. But it wasn’t just liberal heads that exploded—mainstream “conservatives” also went into full meltdown mode. Here is a sampling of the reactions.
Trump is “literally Hitler”
The knee-jerk reaction of the left to any idea that they don’t like is to compare the author of the idea to everyone’s favorite bogeyman, Hitler. Liberal newspapers like HuffPo and Philadelphia Daily News carried pictures of Trump gesturing with his hand outstretched. The implication being that Trump is doing the Nazi salute.
Astute people on Twitter also noticed that Trump was “literally Hitler.”
Trump is so evil that even comparing him to Hitler fails to capture the full darkness of his black heart. Trump is worse than even literary villains. Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling chimed in with this comparison:
The Hitler comparisons didn’t faze Trump supporters who demonstrated that comparing someone to Hitler, like calling someone a racist, is losing its power:
The Republican Response
Most of the Republican candidates were quick to distance themselves from Trump’s position. Jeb Bush tweeted out: “Donald Trump is unhinged. His “policy” proposals are not serious.” Marco Rubio echoed the sentiment saying:
I disagree with Donald Trump’s latest proposal. His habit of making offensive and outlandish statements will not bring Americans together.
The only candidate that didn’t attack Trump’s position was Ted Cruz. While Cruz did not endorse Trump’s proposal, he complimented Trump for having the courage to broach the topic:
In the media, there has been no shortage of criticism for Donald Trump, and I do not believe the world needs my voice added to that chorus of critics. And listen, I commend Donald Trump for standing up and focusing America’s attention on the need to secure our borders.
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan abandoned his neutrality to condemn Trump’s proposal saying that a religious test for immigration is “not what [the Republican] party stands for, and more importantly, is not what this country stands for.”
Even former Vice President Dick Cheney came out of retirement to condemn Trump. In an interview with Hugh Hewitt he said:
I think this whole notion that somehow we can just say no more Muslims, just ban a whole religion, goes against everything we stand for and believe in.
Democrats joined mainstream “conservatives” in rejoicing over Cheney’s condemnation. This is odd because up until yesterday, Democrats regarded Dick Cheney as more evil than Darth Vader. As the proverb goes, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”
So if the Republicans are unwilling to embrace Trump’s ban on Islamic immigration, what are they willing to do to stop Islamic terrorism?
Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio opt for a two part approach: (1) Increasing surveillance of Americans through the Patriot Act, and (2) Destroying ISIS in Iraq and Syria (and probably following neocon recommendations to take out Assad in the process).
Ted Cruz rejects increasing surveillance of Americans saying. “It is absolutely critical for Congress to balance the privacy interests of law-abiding citizens against the public’s interest in national security.” However, he does promise to “carpet bomb [ISIS] into oblivion.”
There are two problems with the Republican alternatives. The first is that Islamic immigration is forcing the United States to gradually evolve into a police state. If the government is mining everyone’s meta data, it is just a matter of time before the information is used for purposes that are unrelated to uncovering potential terrorists, such as finding dirt on political enemies.
And as more Muslims enter the country, the surveillance will need to become ever more invasive. What George Orwell foresaw in 1984 will become a reality, if it is not already.
The second problem is that destroying ISIS does not solve the problem of Islamic terror. The San Bernardino terrorists came from Pakistan, not Syria. Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hasan was born in Arlington Virginia to Palestinian parents. The 9-11 terrorists came from all over the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, UAE, and Lebanon.
Also, if ISIS ceases to exist, who is to say that there will not be some other radical Islamic group that will take its place? In other words, the “destroy ISIS” approach neglects to account for the fact that there is something within Islam itself that lends itself to violence.
There was a time when journalists took great pride in trying to report the news in an unbiased way. Those days are long gone. The media joined the Democrats and Republicans in condemning Trump. Every news program grilled Trump on his proposal.
Joe Scarborough of MSNBC went so far as taking an unscheduled commercial break to cut Trump off. Later, he tweeted that each candidate who wanted to become president must condemn Trump. Very unbiased.
Chris Cuomo of CNN took to Twitter to argue how awful and un-American a ban on Islamic immigration would be. He also promised to challenge Trump saying, “We have never given [Trump] a pass. All should be tested and good to see others following suit.” I wish journalists had held themselves to such lofty principles when Barack Obama was running for president.
Trump’s proposed ban on Islamic immigration is not a pleasant topic for anyone. If it were to go into effect, many good Muslims would be at least temporarily precluded from entering the US. It is not fair that these good people should be penalized for the actions of their coreligionists.
But life is not fair. Anyone who does a cursory survey of the history of Islam will find that it has been spread through the sword. There is no good way of screening out the 25% of Muslims who believe that violence against non-Muslims is justified. There is also no way of screening out those Muslims who are moderate, but who will later become radicalized.
Until we can figure out exactly what it is within Islam that is causing this propensity to violence, it is perfectly reasonable to limit our exposure by restricting Islamic immigration. Donald Trump has done us all a favor by having the courage to say what we were forbidden from saying before.
Read More: Donald Trump And The Tyranny Of Feelings