Adventist Media Response and Conversation

Saturday, December 23, 2006

How To Destroy America

I was sent an Email that presented a speech by former Governor Richard Lamm of Colorado on the dangers of multiculturalism. His title is "I have a Plan to Destroy America". It is posted on Snopes.com and is well worth taking the time to read. After the green background section is the more official version of his speech.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

You are prudent, Ron, to add a layer of insulation between this post and yourself (ie someone else mailed it to you!) but even then you open yourself up to accusations of racism and bigotry by simply bringing it up.

But the only ones who would find the message troubling are those who see the “culture” of America (we do have a culture -- don’t we? or is it only other nations who are allowed that privilege?) as being worth saving/defending. The ones who are “offended” by speeches such as this (yes, the ones who might call you a bigot for passing it along) find it is not. I mean, you know how prone “we” are to involve ourselves in other’s affairs, allow rampant capitalism to prey upon the “poor” and generally display a national arrogance that makes us the pariah of the entire world. One need not look very far at all to find those among us who eagerly mark the days -- and the ways -- which our nation fades away from it’s former prominence.

In many ways though, what the former Governor describes is merely a “local” outworking of what is a global phenomenon. Japan’s population is on steep decline; Europe is experiencing an “overtaking” of it’s own as those of Muslim background far out-reproduce the “original natives” (a London paper reports that “Mohammed” has jumped ahead of “George” in the list of most popular names!) So it seems that “success” (defined largely in material terms -- a relative elevation of ones economic status) fosters a priority structure that in essence leads to self-extermination while poverty breeds -- babies…

But aren’t these demographic changes merely a reflection of the ebb and flow of cultures and nations and demographics throughout history? A small and weak group grows to prosperity and prominence through various ways (often by violent means at first) and often under the influence of hardship and persecution (which seems to toughen them and firm their resolve and tribal identity) then fades away as others take their place. So, before us here in the US, were the Indians (not a homogeneous group at all -- and whose ways are none too pastoral or peaceful…) and after us, perhaps our Mexican neighbors take over (What Gov Lamm is talking about)… And of course the ironic aspect of the decline is that there are growing forces within that declining culture which foster and hasten that very decline! (eg the “great sensitivity and compassion” which advocates bilingualism, and multiculturalism, and so on…) I mean, isn’t that how a “good host” is supposed to behave?

There does seem to be a “great divide” among us in how we process and think about these things though. And while the labels are pretty broad and sometimes vague, with various overlaps between them, the labels “liberal” and “conservative” seem about the best we have at this time. For some reason, many dislike these sorts of groupings and prefer to think of themselves outside and perhaps above those sorts of distinctions. For example, your friend Alex over on Spectrum blog says this about himself:

"I don't care who's labeled liberal or conservative, but I have no time to argue with those who only relay anecdotes of our present fears. We're all aware of this nonce-sense. Now, let's talk about progress."

And I nearly choked when I read that because from everything I’ve read from him, he clearly reads from a “liberal” playbook; his personal denial not withstanding. Each “side” then accuses the other of manipulating fears to further it’s agenda (agenda just another word for “beliefs) and pontificates and “demagogues” to achieve those ends. So, I might guess that his position on the issue raised by Gov Lamm (I’ve not read his specific views on this topic, but would be willing to bet I could “divine” them from his stance on other issues) would be that “progress” -- which he says is what he want’s to talk about -- would involve embracing all this diversity and multiculturalism and bilingualism etc. But some might see that sort of “progress” as actual “regress” -- so how does one possibly proceed with the sort of conversation that one says he wants and that will include all voices??? (the speech your post presents would likely not see the light of day on Alex’s site -- already having been declared divisive and off limits for one who believes in “progress”)

If ever there was a paradigm in which all parties and peoples could talk about these things it seems to me Christianity should be that paradigm. Does my duty as a citizen of the US -- when it comes to the issue raised by former Gov Lamm -- differ from my duty as a Christian? And if so, to what extent may/must my Christian identity mould my civic behavior? When Christians disagree on issues like this one, what happens? A regression back to simple labels of political preferences and theories? I’m just not sure I see much of a coming together by Christians to deal with these sorts of things without thereby diminishing and perhaps demonizing each other in the process...

Elaine said...

Assimilation vs. multiculturaism?

Doesn't it all begin and end with economics? Economic disparity always separates people regardless of race. Striving for better future for one's self and children will inevitably lead to economic equality which fosters assimilation within a society.

A quick check of the many racial groups recognized in the higher income professionals is a certain guarantee of equality, both socially and politically.

The impoverished immigrants (remember,our ancestors were all original immigrants) have the same objective that we had. Too bad the native Americans didn't have an immigration policy!

Just as our ancestors, the new immigrants desire a better life for their families. At what point do we declare that "we got it, but you can't have it?" Should Christians deny ANYONE the opportunity to improve his life?

When there are sufficient tutors and mandatory classes available for immigrants to get on a fast track to learning English and become naturalized citizens without the fear of deportation which often separates families, will this nation be more consistent with its stated "Christian" principles.