Fans of The Clash will get the title’s allusion. Another Islamic attack has unfolded before our eyes, this time at the iconic London Bridge. As of this writing, there are victims and scores injured. One man tried to describe a woman who stumbled into a nearby pub with her throat slashed, with her blood shining crimson everywhere, but he couldn’t finish his sentence, the trauma of what he had just seen was too much. ISIS websites are already gloating.
To their credit, the U.K. press framed the story immediately as a terror attack. The ferocity, regularity, and similarity of these attacks is too obvious to deny even for our betters, The Journalists, whose daily brain function has been shown in this study to be impaired due to dumbness and/or drunkenness. I’m sure viewers of CNN are shocked, shocked to learn this.
With this London attack, however, they media correctly and quickly named the attack as Islamic in nature and motive. Progress!
The latest atrocity comes on the heels of the Ariane Grande concert in Manchester two weeks ago and the Westminster terrorist attack on March 22. Very similar m.o.s: mow down crowds of innocent people who have no means of escape. Very deliberate location choices. Same with the timing. They succeeded in disrupting the British election process. Very bad sign.
My friend Mike Miley. drummer for the Rival Sons rock band, texted me the other day to tell me their huge gig in Germany, the Rock am Ring festival was cancelled and the crowd evacuated because of a terror threat last weekend. It’s going to get worse as long as leftist politicians keep coloring inside the politically correct lines.
Have you noticed how hard it’s getting to use words that adequately describe the horror in these attacks? After using words like sickening, atrocious, horrible, terrifying, revolting, ultra-violent, amoral, insane, evil — the mind shuts down. It’s all too much. Hannah Arendt wrote a book about this problem, titled, Eichmann in Jerusalem : A Report on the Banality of Evil. Arendt covered the trial of Nazi leader Adolf Eichmann for The New Yorker and the book is an expanded treatment. One of her insights is that “six deaths is a tragedy; six million is a statistic.”
Evil is banal, a cypher, a nothing. In the classical philosophical tradition, evil is not a substance, it’s a lack of a due good. As a preternatural reality, it defies finely calibrated analysis. Same with Islamic terror.
Ms. Grande’s visit to some of the recovering victims in Manchester hospitals was lovely. And brave was the decision to go ahead with the large-scale benefit concert at the Emirates Old Trafford Cricket Ground to benefit the victims. Let’s keep holding concerts, having fun, enjoying the music, culture, and artistic freedom that typify modern democracies.
Obviously the need for armed security for these events is crucial, and provides quite the dilemma for anti-gun activists: can guns be legitimately used to protect thousands of innocent young fans of Ariane Grande, Justin Bieber, Katy Perry et al? If yes, then why oppose their use for self-protection? Is it really a mystery why American concert venues have not been deemed as vulnerable to attack by armed terrorists? Could it have, maybe, possibly, in some dim way, have something to do with the Second Amendment? Terrorists may be evil but they’re not stupid.
Well-intended no doubt, most European countries have doubled down on even stricter gun control laws in response to the spate modern Islamic terror rampages. The Brits, however, might reconsider their tradition of unarmed police officers. Islamic terrorists bring a hell of a lot more than batons to the fight.
I have a question. Since the weapons of choice in the last decade have been machetes and vans, why not pass machete control laws and van control laws? Don’t they kill people? And whatever we do, let’s keep changing the subject about the ideology that inspires and excites the killers to action.
I write this as we continue to celebrate the great Solemnity of Pentecost. Is there a more powerful prayer today than, “Come, Holy Spirit”?