I’m sure you’ve heard the saying: “You’ll attract more bees with honey than with vinegar.”
The adage equates using honey with “being nice.” And the point seems to be that if we are “nice” – if we are sweet – then we’ll be able to win others over to our way of thinking.
It sounds nice. But in a war it is totally useless. And frankly, foolish.
Too many free-market traditionalists have tried to advance their agenda with this sappy strategy. The thinking – the unspoken hope of some – is that by being “nice,” perhaps we’ll gain some respect; and perhaps our opponents – secularists – might even come to see things our way.
A recent example of this comes from the U.S. presidential campaign, where Republican Mitt Romney essentially turned tail and ran on the Iraq conflict. A questioner had asked him what he was going to do about Iraq, which – the questioner said – is “an unmitigated mess.” Instead of defending his president and his party’s policies in Iraq, Romney went for “nice” by instantly agreeing that Iraq was, indeed, a mess.
His is just one of numerous examples where being “nice” has caused mental apoplexy.
In their effort to seem “fair” and “nice,” some conservatives are prepared to bargain away the meaning of the word “marriage” by agreeing to “civil unions” for gays and lesbians. Others are ready to concede the battle on educational philosophy and on school curriculum to placate the so-called “human rights” of adults. All of this, they say, is so they can be seen as “reasonable” to secular-liberals.
I’m not saying there’s not a place for being nice. Like most people, I believe in being civil, respectful and polite – I really do – but unfortunately in the culture war, when traditionalists are “nice” they tend to look much more like a bunch of pantywaist pushovers than cultural “warriors.”
That, I think, is the main reason conservatives don’t get the respect they want. They are pushovers.
Secularists are loath to admit it, but they actually respect Islamists a lot. And it has nothing whatsoever to do with Middle-Eastern mannerisms, respect or civility – trust me. Deep down secular-liberals respect Islamists because whether we like their tactics or not, they’ve proven they actually mean business.
And being “nice” has nothing to do with it.
The last thing any committed Islamists would be concerned about is offending anybody in the West. But what do so-called traditionalists do?
In Holland, a Roman Catholic bishop has suggested that Christians should show their “niceness” by referring to God as “Allah.” In England, the new prime minister, Gordon Brown, told his Cabinet ministers not to use the word “Muslim” when referring to the recent attempted terrorist attacks in his country. Incidentally, this is the same Britain where “niceness” extends to not flying the national flag at the country’s prisons or at Heathrow Airport because that flag contains the Cross of St. George, the banner under which the Christians fought in the Crusades. Apparently, they don’t want to offend Muslims who fly or those doing time.
But back to the adage. What if we turned the analogy around so that it reflects the social dynamic of our culture a little more accurately? Because, folks, let’s face it, those secularists aren’t exactly the social equivalent of a bee.
What if, for the purpose of this argument I stretched the analogy so that it said: “You’ll attract too many cockroaches with honey; better use bug spray.”
I know that’s not very “nice” of me, but so what.
What has been the result of secular-liberal contributions to Western Civilization since the 1960s?
We live in a society where sin is celebrated, and virtue is mocked. A society where there is a total moral and legal vacuum on the abortion issue. We have a school system where teen sex magazines have been introduced as a “hip” way to teach biology, and where “gay-friendly” books are now required to be stocked in kindergarten libraries. These things, and all of the other social trash and bile we see day in and day out, are what “being nice” has gotten us.
These secularists, like the cockroaches, seem to thrive on filth, and our “niceness” has ensured we’ve got an infestation of muck on our cultural hands that won’t come off easily. But we can’t sit by and naively believe that a continent that parallels the moral slide of ancient Rome – and celebrates this cultural decline under the guise of “diversity” – will be free of history’s way of exterminating unwanted infestations.
Frankly, the fact we’ve been so concerned about being “nice” has ensured that Providence will meet our modern “City of Man.”
And when that happens, do you think the future generations will draw any comfort from our polite little concessions?
Besides being pushovers, being “nice” ensures that for the near future anyway, secular liberals won’t have much to worry about from so-called traditionalists. We just aren’t serious about winning this war.
But there is always a day of reckoning.
Either we clean up this mess, or the Islamists will. They have no compunction about being the exterminators. The only problem is that their bug spray would get the cockroaches, the bees and everybody else.
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