“Anything that makes the Soviets squirm has to be good.” – Gen. Chuck Yeager on the widely criticized SDI program in the 80s.
The secession skirmish is getting particularly nasty among conservatives. It was already ugly with the liberals, who proved themselves (at least a few thousand of them) to be nothing but fascist thugs by posting a WhiteHut.gov petition to strip all secessionists of their citizenship and deport them.
To be clear, I acknowledge the widespread criticism of the petition drives going on through WhiteHut.gov, and I agree that signing such petitions is both hazardous in substantial ways, and useless in practical ways. However, I absolutely refuse to condemn those brave, pissed-off people who are doing so, if only because it puts a smile on my face, and – make no mistake – it eats away at the smugness of the narcissist in the dark recesses of his twisted mind. For a movement that is truly on the ropes, like we American conservatives unquestionably are, it does not serve the cause to carelessly toss away weapons that are at hand merely because they are not entirely safe or completely effective. Some weapons, like Doolittle’s raid over Tokyo, are neither of these things, and yet they serve in desperation. It is unfortunate that so many people forget the fact of the unpleasant, regular occurrence of truly desperate times in history and seek to demand that we not accept them when they reappear, as though wishing makes it so.
Remind me again how conservatism is served by calling each other cowards and dunces? By rewarding every brave impulse toward the resistance of tyranny with contempt? That’s what the very bastions of conservatism have been doing in the last few days. Just the other day, Glenn Beck called all secessionists “out of [their] minds.” He also called such questions “settled” by the Civil War. I doubt he asked the 50 million or so still-pissed-off southerners, many of whom are Texans – with still quite open minds about such things – whether the issue is settled.
But the most offensive talk came just yesterday from Breitbart’s own John Nolte, who called secessionists a “confederation of dunces.” But he didn’t stop there. He also called them “dumb,” “coward(s),” “crybab(ies)” and much more. Like Beck’s, his arguments were careless and superficial, and surprisingly, full of logical holes. For example, he asserted hypocrisy by saying that those who mocked Alec Baldwin for threatening to flee the country should refrain from making the same threat now. I’m sorry, John, but that’s the same kind of flawed logical trap that leftists use, and you should be above that. It assumes too much, first that the secessionists actually did mock Baldwin, and then that there’s an actual logical link where there isn’t. In truth, all of us are free to both mock Alec’s ridiculous threat to leave out of disdain for G.W. Bush, and also to threaten to dissolve our union with another President who is a tyrant, falsely elected, patently ineligible, and clinically insane. There is no hypocrisy there, and shame on John for pretending to be a leftist for a day while uttering that false syllogism. I could go on, but I think Nolte’s piece was written while strung out on too many grasshopper cocktails, and maybe we should just ignore it as a favor.
But I have even more reason today to admire those poor “idiots” who signed secession petitions. You see, I wondered if the whole thing might simply serve as a rallying point for those who needed it, and I was proven right last night at the dinner table. My wife brought up the subject, and after a brief discussion, she asked the youngest son, the Boy Scout, the patriot who, even at 14 bleeds red, white and blue, a grave question. In a slightly worried tone, she asked him if he would go to Texas, hypothetically, to join them in a secessionist fight if it came to actuality. He looked up thoughtfully, and with conviction said: “Yes, I would.” And then he explained why. No one was more surprised than me. Or more proud.
So, I ask you, you sages who are engaged in shooting down this silly talk, don’t we already have enough armchair quarterbacks? If our gravest error in the last five decades, as conservatives, Americans and patriots, was to listen overmuch to counsels of inaction as our country was overrun by actual communists, should we not now be extremely reticent to counsel even more inaction? How has that peaceful deference and restraint served us? I’ll tell you how: exactly as Tecumseh warned us it would not.
“That people will continue longest in the enjoyment of peace who timely prepare to vindicate themselves and manifest a determination to protect themselves whenever they are wronged.”