I went to Oakland, Calif., this week because I wanted to gauge the mood in the nation's largest state, one that is very different from New York City and Washington where the terror attacks took place.
On Saturday I spoke in front of 10,000 people in Bakersfield and then drove up the central coast to San Francisco. Along the way I talked with scores of people and most of them are really teed off. Very angry about the terror attacks.
There is some fear as well but anger is the dominant emotion, even here in mellow California. And that's good. America needs very strong emotion in this intense war against terrorism. If we are not angry, then we might succumb to the dangerous and false thinking of the ten percent of Americans who are reluctant to call the terrorists evil and to use deadly force against them.
Llisten to what Stanley Fish, a dean at the University of IIlinois at Chicago, wrote today in the New York Times: "We have not seen the face of evil; we have seen the face of an enemy who came at us with a full roster of grievances, goals, and strategies. If we reduce that enemy to 'evil', we conjure up a shape-shifting demon, a wildcard moral anarchist beyond our comprehension and therefore beyond the reach of any counter-strategies."
Here's a clue, Dean Fish: crashing planes into buildings where innocent people are working is beyond the comprehension of sane people. It is an evil act. Therefore, we have seen the face of evil, dean. Got that?
As for counter-strategies, Dean, well the options are few. These people are moral anarchists as you put it and there's really only one way to stop that philosophy: incapacitate it and remove the governments that allow it to exist. The U.S. cannot correct world poverty or incompetent foreign regimes. We cannot convince religious fanatics that we are not a threat to Islam. We can't persuade brainwashed morons not to hate us, no matter how much food we drop or aid we send.
The U. S. went to Somalia to feed starving people. We wanted to save lives, the warlords there killed our soldiers. I could give you hundreds of other examples.
Dean Fish wants counter-strategies, and he doesn't want to label anyone evil, he wants to legitimize the enemy. That is misguided to say the least. Evil is evil. If you can't contain it, you have to kill it.
Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
The People for the Ethical Treatment for Animals never let us down as far as being ridiculous is concerned. PETA is now coming out in support of gas masks for animals. So little Fido or Melanie the cat could be protected from any biological intrusion. PETA is urging people to get masks for them. I don't know about you, but I don't think I want to put a gas mask on a Rottweiler. In fact, if I had to do that, I'd call my local PETA representative.
Once again, thanks to PETA for the Most Ridiculous Item of the Day.
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