"It behooves every man who values liberty of conscience for himself, to resist invasions of it in the case of others." ~ Thomas Jefferson
The Ten Commandments of Wayne Root
Exclusive to STR
June 5, 2008
While reading the Lew Rockwell blog, I noticed a mind boggling essay from the Libertarian Vice Presidential candidate Wayne Allyn Root. The complete ravings are extraordinary and could serve as fodder for several columns, but I want to focus on what seems to be the heart of it: his belief that Muslim anger towards America stems not from perpetual intervention, but from their hatred of the American culture and lifestyle. Here is the key statement and the ten reasons he lists to support it: If America had never interfered in the affairs of any Arab country the Islamic extremists would still be trying to destroy us.
They hate us because we're not Islamic. They hate us because we're a Democracy. They hate us because we allow dissent. They hate us because we treat our women like human beings and equals. They hate us because we let young girls go to school. They hate us because we believe in progress. They hate us because we celebrate music, art, dance, literature, and sexuality. They hate us because we believe in equality of races. They hate us desperately because we actually allow Jews to survive and thrive in our society. They hate us because we don't murder gays in the street for the 'crime' of being gay.
The first commandment bluntly states that the Muslims hate whatever isn't Islamic. This is interesting since Muslim countries also have large numbers of non-Muslims who don't appear to be hated. There's also the small matter of Muslims not hating a whole host of other non-Muslim countries that share one common trait: they aren't trying to colonize the Muslim world.
The second commandment assures us that 'Democracy' is why Muslims hate America . This one has the same problem as the first commandment, namely that Muslims don't hate the democracies that refrain from murdering and torturing large numbers of Muslims. Perhaps there's a connection?
The third commandment is that they hate America for allowing dissent. Yes, in America no one would ever be tasered for asking one of their overlords a question. There are also the countless Iraqis who have been imprisoned, tortured, exiled, and massacred simply for expressing their 'dissent' with the occupation.
The fourth commandment states that Muslims hate women being treated as 'human beings and equals.' If he means 'equality' derived from government, laws, and whatnot then I'll mention that the Lebanese constitution declares that Tous les libanais sont 'gaux devant la loi. (All the Lebanese are equal before the law), and there are women in the parliament. Interestingly enough, this hasn't prevented the Americans and Israelis from repeatedly invading Lebanon . Perhaps they hate the Lebanese for their freedom?
The fifth commandment claims Muslims hate that American kids go to school. Before America had even finished 'liberating' the Iraqis in April 2003: U.S. soldiers killed at least 13 Iraqi civilians who marched on a school west of Baghdad to demand the troops leave the building and get out of Iraq, doctors and witnesses said on Tuesday. In case it isn't clear, the Iraqis are angry that invaders are occupying their land (and schools!). They are not angry that the invaders also have schools.
The sixth commandment alerts us to the Muslim hatred of 'progress.' This is a rather nebulous thing to hate, but I'll point out that the Iraqis had electricity, fuel, and water before America invaded and destroyed the place. Deindustrialization certainly isn't a good definition of progress.
The seventh commandment stipulates that 'music, art, dance, literature, and sexuality' are hated by Muslims, and therefore must be absent from the Muslim world. Leaving aside the improbability of a billion people not having an interest in either reading or sex, can anyone watch this and say it isn't a celebration of dance, music, and sexuality? The singer is Lebanese and her brother died fighting the Israeli occupation of Lebanon in the 1980s. Please note that no one in the audience appears to hate her freedom.
The eighth commandment insists that Muslims hate America for believing in the 'equality of races.' This only makes sense if you view it as America believes in treating all the colonized races ' from the American Indians to the Filipinos, Vietnamese, and Iraqis ' as equally subhuman. All other interpretations are simply too ludicrous to consider. Can anyone honestly claim that the American government views Arab lives as equal to American ones?
The ninth commandment is the venerable chestnut that the Muslims hate America for allowing Jews to live. If the Muslims want to kill Jews, wouldn't they start with the ones living in their own countries? Would the 20,000 Jews living in Iran still exist if Muslims were genocidal madmen?
The final commandment informs us that Muslims hate America for not murdering gay people. What has Matthew Shepherd been up to recently?
I'm mystified that anyone with opposable thumbs could still believe that someone hates them for their freedom. Surely even Americans are able to understand that people don't like being bombed and tortured? They aren't angry about what their bombers and torturers wear, or eat for lunch. They're angry about the endless interference in the affairs of their countries. In spite of all that, I'd like to congratulate the Libertarian Party for choosing such a charming man to help carry their electoral banner. What could do more to convince people of the futility of voting than to have the party of liberty advocating perpetual war?