The Reclaim American Liberty conference last week featured a panel on sovereignty. I find “sovereignty” to be a somewhat abstract term that lacks resonance except for the already “converted.” What we really mean by sovereignty is the right of Americans to govern ourselves, i.e., democracy.
In any event, the main theme that emerged from the panel is a crucial one — the primary source of the threat to our sovereignty comes from within in the form of political correctness. Mark Steyn made the point with his usual aplumb. Joseph Loconte, a fellow at The King’s College, phrased it differently, arguing that American sovereignty depends on “American exceptionalism,” a view that is under serious assault. But since political correctness is the wellspring of that assault, I took Steyn and Loconte to making essentially the same point.
Steyn called political correctness a “cult of stupidity” that has become “the air we breathe.” It short circuits argument by calling on people to base their articulated judgments on attractiveness, as measured by multi-cultural ideals, rather than on the merits. For example, those who knew that Nidal Hasan, the Fort Hood jihadist, was a radical Islamist did not articulate that judgment to those who could have done something about him because it would have been unattractive, in multi-culturalist terms, to speak ill of a Muslim army psychiatrist. This is what Ralph Peters calls “the PC tyranny of today’s armed services.”
Asserting American exceptionalism is enormously unattractive in multi-cultural terms. But if America is not exceptional — if we’re just another arrogant hegemonic power — then what is the harm if a body of mostly foreigners has a major say in how we are governed? Might it not be better, in fact, if we are reined in? The answers are: “there is none to speak of” and “probably.”
Thus, the key to “reclaiming American liberty,” and to retaining the liberty we have, is to combat political correctness and to insist on American exceptionalism. This also happens to be a great tactic. Because it’s a form of willful stupidity, political correctness is the Achillles Heel of the left (it’s no accident that left-winger Bill Maher decided to call his show “Politically Incorrect”). And, if the blinders of political correctness are lifted, the foolishness of denying American exceptionalism will be too apparent for any serious politician to ignore.
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“Arise and take our stand for freedom as in the olden time.” Winston Churchill
“Proclaim Liberty throughout All the land unto All the Inhabitants Thereof.” Inscription on the Liberty Bell