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A big ask

You know, it is a huge thing we’re asking of the Middle East and Afghanistan. We’re asking them to catch up to, like, 400 years of Western cultural shift. Overnight.

We’re demanding they instantly accept attitudes toward self-government and religion that it took us hundreds of years and a few nasty wars to reach.

We’re asking them to adopt attitudes about women we’ve only reached in the last forty years and attitudes to homosexuality we’ve only realized in the last twenty.

And some of the stuff we’re pushing on them has to look pretty unattractive. They could be forgiven for thinking free speech and a secular society inevitably results in our current style of slutty, trashy popular culture. (I don’t think it is inevitable. I think it took a relentless campaign to eradicate shame to make that happen).

It’s not exactly sympathy. But I think we asking for a huge leap from…excitable people. I’ll be astonished if the Arab Spring ends well. Or soon.

April 12, 2011 — 9:49 pm
Comments: 23