Beck, Krauthammer and the Geert Wilders perplex
Roger L Simon:
Geert Wilders – the sometimes-libertarian Dutch politician currently on trial for “hate speech” in his country – has become a kind of Rorschach test for right-of-center American pundits. He has recently been under attack by Glenn Beck, who seems to have called him a fascist, and by Charles Krauthammer, who, while more judicious, claims Wilders does not understand, or misconstrues, the difference between Islam and Islamism (and is therefore not worthy of our support).
If you agree with Mirengoff – and I do -, it is important to support Wilders in his trial, if only as a supporter of fundamental free speech. The ACLU – if it existed in any honest fashion – would be behind the Dutchman in a heartbeat. Such support would seem to be obvious and an easy choice for a man like Krauthammer. So why his unease with Wilders?
Much of the condemnation of Wilders – and an issue that disturbed me – comes from his supposedly calling for the Koran to be banned in Holland the way Mein Kampf is restricted in that country (to scholars in libraries). He reasoned that the Islamic holy book contained the same kind of racial incitement as Hitler’s apologia; therefore, it should have the same treatment. Well, that could be, but the problem for Westerners, especially Americans, is the whole book banning thing. Wilders, however, insists that he never really wanted a true banning and that his call was to give publicity to this issue in his country.
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