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Are we too civilized to save civilization?

Reader comment on item: Finding Europe's Hidden Conservatives

Submitted by Dave (United States), Apr 21, 2020 at 17:09

The challenges posed by DIMI are all a product of civilization, since liberality in immigration and the willingness to tolerate a great deal of cultural diversity is itself a product of civilized morality. The more highly educated people are, the more they come to understand the weaknesses in their own culture and the more they come to understand, if not to condone, less attractive aspects of foreign cultures. As Saint Augustine once said, to understand all is to forgive all. Indeed, Judeo-Christian ethics elevates forgiveness, self-criticism and forbearance, and even "loving the stranger", as major virtues. Pope Francis has praised Islam and welcomed migrants. He is a good Christian.
Among the problems in this approach are the lack of reciprocity by those indulged, the violence wreaked on hapless natives by some feral immigrants and the importation of hateful attitudes. In a sense, civilization in western Europe is being undone by its own values. Eastern Europe, being a little less civilized, a little coarser, perhaps like the American South, is actually protecting itself much better than western Europe, and that's hardly an immoral outcome.
An important point here is that one should never take things for granted. Western Civilization, while flawed and sometimes badly broken, is not an achievement to be lightly squandered away. Perhaps its most important characteristic is its largely equitable system of justice; it's quite unusual to have the crooks behind bars and not running the country. Try getting a fair trial in Turkey, China or Iran.
The idea of sacrificing some of the niceties of civilization to save it is hardly new: that's the function of our military and that's why we have prisons. DIMI means war, albeit an insidious one, and we need to win it.

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Reader comments (4) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
Ethnic Identity and Pride Is the Key [201 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Man Among the RuinsApr 24, 2020 16:14258739
Does Civilizationalism have room for Ultra-Orthodox Jews? [159 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
SpinozaApr 22, 2020 02:47258713
1Are we too civilized to save civilization? [290 words]DaveApr 21, 2020 17:09258710
1Globalism fragments [37 words]Jeffrey SheffApr 21, 2020 16:13258709

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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