Why the secular left sides with Muslims

“The other day when he was asked to react to the attempted car-bomb attacks on London, the city’s mayor, Ken Livingstone, called for tolerance. Fair enough, you might say. But at whom was his call for tolerance directed? You are probably thinking, if you are a logical sort, that the call must have been directed at the fanatics who had come within an ace of killing and maiming possibly hundreds of people. But you would be mistaken. Instead Ken directed his call at his fellow, non-Muslim, Englishmen. He said that in the past Jews, the Irish and gays had been persecuted in England and now it was the turn of Muslims….

“The War on Terror, if that term can still be used, is revealing strange ideological fissures in Western societies. I came across these fissures in person last September when I took part in about eight radio discussions in the days after Pope Benedict had quoted the Byzantine emperor who had less-than-flattering things to say about Islam. The line-up on those shows was me playing my usual role as the Catholic commentator, a Muslim representative, and frequently a representative of what I suppose we’ll have to call the secular left.

“On almost every one of these shows the secular left representative did his or her best to impersonate Ken Livingstone. First there was the usual ritualistic condemnation of the extremists, but this was then followed by a much more detailed discussion of why we are to blame for whatever Muslims extremists do to us. To all intents and purposes this placed the secular leftist firmly on the side of the Muslim representative….

“Essentially you had the guardians of tolerance siding with people who would crush homosexuals under walls if they could, and who would turn women into property given half a chance. And why this horrid sympathy? It is because the secular left’s hatred of Western civilisation, and certainly Christianity, America and Israel, is such that they will side with anyone, no matter how unsavoury, who shares that hatred.”

David Quinn in the Irish Independent, 6 July 2007