Monday, September 24, 2007

Turning Away from Knowledge

Kyle Moore makes a point that I have been thinking for a while now (I've bolded it):

Much has been said about Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s visit to New York this week, not the least of which has been directed toward the invitation extended to him to speak at Columbia University earlier today.

About this, I’ve been relatively quiet, mainly because I’ve already expressed my general opinion on the matter. I really don’t care.

What I have cared greatly about, however, has been our reaction to him as humans. Now, don’t get me wrong, this is not my Chris Crocker “Leave Ahmadinejad Alone!” moment. Okay, maybe it is sans the eyeliner, tears, and actual sympathy for the Iranian President.

The point is simple. We’re doing it again. We’re engaging in the kind of mass hysteria that leads us as a nation to not only fail to miss the mistakes of our elected government, but actually goad them into it.

Why do we hate this man? His personal record aside, because we are told to. He’s a far cry from the worst dictator we’ve ever known, hell, he’s a far cry from quite a few that are living today. Does this excuse him? No, but we also have to ask ourselves, does it also warrant the chest thumping the moment he comes to town?

Haven't you ever wondered why this mass hysteria around one particular person seems to spring up out of nowhere and start filling the atmosphere like clouds of tear gas precisely at the time when the Bush administration needs another villain to justify another war?

Kyle makes another astute observation: This is the second time Iran has offered Americans respectful sympathy for 9/11 and gotten the finger in return:
The fear of knowledge crew, led by the blood thirsty Madame Malkin, have been up in arms not only about Ahmadinejad’s visit to Ground Zero (which was quickly axed; interesting considering the fact that this would be the second time we snubbed Iran’s attempt to show condolences for that attack. Immediately following 9/11, Iran made a great show of its sympathy and offered the United States its assistance. Of course, we turned them down… on principle), but also about his speech he delivered today.

Now, this strikes me as silly, but then, I never had much time for those who would willingly turn away from knowledge. Of course the things that Ahamdinejad has to say have merit. Whether you agree with him or not, this is a man who is the Head of State of a nation that is growing in power in an entire region of the world. This is a guy who will be in History books and debated long after we have all shuffled off this mortal coil.

Do you listen to what he has to say and challenge it where you think he is wrong and learn from the whole experience, or do you act like a three year old, shove your fingers in your ears and hum the National Anthem the whole time?

What are the Bush groupies so afraid of?

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