Saturday, 15 September 2012

plenipotentiary or chargรฉ d'affaires

Doubtless, while the raw rage and violence is a dread and frightening thing inflamed at cultural crossroads the world over, it is in fact a completely understandable reaction. Measured or otherwise, an attack on the sensibilities of others, profaning the sacred, is not something I think the occidental press and public are accustomed to really framing or presenting in a way that’s not even more dismissive or divisive.

Our (Western) not so measured but pretend-sophisticated response rakes the matter over such pedestrian and alienating questions like why even dignify the insult with a response, worse—I think—that these people are riding the swell of revolt from toppling long-seated tyrannies and another, crueler order is managing the chaos. I believe, rather, that Americans, specifically and the their partners and aspirants by extension, are the ones so beaten down by oppressions, castes and the impossibility of mobility, a hundred affronts to personal dignity daily that propagate in subtle, lulling ways and placated by false and empty comforts and assurances, have no limits or standards of respect, not respecting themselves to ever say that that is one infringement too far or to hold anything as sacred or inviolate. Rather than understanding and reconciliation, the security apparatchiks will use this excuse to tighten their grips. Of course, this is not a true or fair characterization of all of Western culture and there are many individuals and group-causes that are passionate and care about justice and healing, just as the Muslim world is not monolithic. That fact, however, is too easily forgot, just as one tends to not remember that aversion is not the sole response to hatefulness but also rage.