The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Liberal Decides It’s OK to Hint Politicians May Be Hiding Their ‘True’ Religion

Posted on | June 13, 2010 | 57 Comments

No, not Barack Obama. Nikki Haley:

By no means am I questioning their right to convert or their sincerity. . . . I think, instead, that if Haley felt compelled to revise her campaign materials this way, it says a lot about what’s still acceptable to the voters she’s courting.

Neela Bannerjee at Slate scrupulously avoids the Jake Knotts “Nikki the Secret Sikh Raghead” route — Bannerjee is herself of East Indian heritage — but why is it necessary to dwell on Haley’s Sikh ancestry?

Assimilation to a big amorphous “American” identity has been, historically, a slow process for immigrant groups, one that occurs over the course of three or four generations. And some people never discard their hyphenated history. More than 150 years after the Potato Famine, for example, Irish-Americans still tend to be chauvinistic about their heritage — quite proudly Irish, and also often Catholic in the same chip-on-the-shoulder way, as if it would be a personal insult to mistake them for a Methodist or a Lutheran.

Defining oneself as distinct from the Vanilla-American — that stereotypical Wonder-Bread-and-Miracle-Whip WASP — has become a sort of geneaological parlor game since the 1960s. Nowadays, even the blandest of Anglo-American yuppies seem to feel obligated to put an ethnic asterisk beside their ancestry, as if to signify that they’re down with the whole multicultural-diversity agenda.

Sheriff Bart in Blazing Saddles: “My grandmother was Dutch.”

Well, OK. If someone wants to trot out their family tree to make a point, I’m fine with that and will happily share my own pedigree, all the way back to the 18th-century South Carolina forebear through whom I am a distant cousin of that worthless a–hole Republican who lost the election to Obama. (End my family’s shame: Vote for J.D. Hayworth!)

Notice, however, that liberals only want to interrogate the religious and ancestral loyalties of Republicans. Democrats are off-limits.

Anyone who so much as mentions Barack Obama’s middle name is automatically presumed to be a racist Birther wackjob, but the editors at Slate have no problem letting Neela Bannerjee devote 670 words to examining Haley’s Sikh-to-Christian conversion with the suggestive headline, “Nikki, aka Nimrata,” complete with this kind of helpful information:

Punjabis like Haley are often lighter-skinned than the world’s notion of what Indian looks like.

Oh, yeah, and Bannerjee brings up Bobby Jindal for good measure, because it’s always vaguely suspicious to liberals if a Republican isn’t 100% Premium Saltine cracker.

White Guilt, American Shame

If you’ve read Shelby Steele”s book White Guilt, you understand that liberals are engaged in a multi-level strategy to define “Republican” and “conservative” as negative identities by employing a sort of racial jiu-jitsu:

  • Whiteness is bad — If your ancestors arrived with the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock, you should be ashamed of yourself, you imperialist oppressor. Not only are white people genetically predisposed to genocidal racism but they are also, at the same time, effete and inauthentic. Ergo, if you’re white, the only way you can purge yourself of this congenital blood-guilt (and implicit lack of ethnic coolness) is through displays of empathy and solidarity with the downtrodden brown masses.
  • Assimilation is bad — Perhaps you are fortunate enough not to be descended from those wicked Dead White Males who raped the continent and annihilated its indigenous peoples. It is therefore necessary that you distinguish yourself as Something Else. You must emphasize that you’re Czech or Greek or Polish because to identify as a regular Vanilla-America would be to implicate yourself in the historic hatefulness of slaveowners like George Washington, Injun-killers like Andrew Jackson and Jap-haters like Harry Truman. Immigrant and their descendants must therefore cling tightly to their hyphens, lest they assimilate themselves into complicity in America’s criminal past.
  • America is bad — Given that its founding, expansion and ascent to superpower status were works of unmitigated White Evil, America can only be “good” insofar as there is Hope that we can Change it into something it never originally was. Only by committing yourself to the Progressive mission of remaking White Evil America into a force for World Peace and Social Justice can you redeem yourself as a sophisticated, enlightened and well-meaning person — a cosmopolitan, a bien-pensant.
  • America’s allies are bad — And, by the logical observse, America’s enemies are good. We must therefore abrogate the “special relationship” with England, embrace Castro’s Cuba, and take up the cause of Good Brown Palestinians at the expense of White Evil Israel.
  • Conservative Republicans are the ultimate bad — To reject the liberal worldview is to repudiate what Thomas Sowell has so aptly described as The Vision of the Anointed. Conservatives thus reveal themselves to be benighted — ignorant and probably also malevolent — by suggesting that the United States is a good country whose Constitution, cultural heritage and traditional institutions are worth defending and preserving.

Like Goethe’s devil cited by Marx in the Nineteenth Brumaire, Progressives believe “everything that exists” — in the sense of anything a conservative would recognize as distinctly American — “deserves to perish.” Because conservatives oppose this crusade to destroy America, and because Republicans are de facto the conservative party in American politics, to be a conservative Republican is to define oneself, in the eyes of the Left, as the Enemy of All That Is Good and True.

Angry Mobs of Enlightened Liberals

That reference to Goethe and Marx, by the way, was borrowed from David Horowitz. In 2007, when Horowitz appeared at George Washington University, I watched in fascination as a small crowd of student protesters outside the auditorium chanted: “Racist! Sexist! Anti-gay! David Horowitz go away!”

It so happens that Horowitz isn’t remotely racist or anti-gay. Although I’ve never really seen him address feminism in any direct fashion, I suppose that by the term “sexist” the students meant to suggest Horowitz was against abortion — and I’m pretty sure he’s pro-choice.

The reality of who Horowitz is and what he believes, you see, was entirely irrelevant to the slogans chanted by those GWU students. They have been indoctrinated to believe that all genuinely decent people are obliged to fight relentlessly against racism, sexism and homophobia (which, as they’ve also been taught, are the bedrock principles of the GOP) and because David Horowitz is a Republican, he automatically represents these Bad Republican Things.

David Horowitz is the son of Communist Party members, still fundamentally committed to many of the same liberal ideals that motivated those slogan-shouting students. Yet his knowledge, beliefs and experiences have led Horowitz to identify himself as a Republican and to ally himself, generally, with conservatives. In answer to the old radical slogan that Pete Seeger turned into a folk anthem — “Whose Side Are You On?” — Horowitz answers, “Not yours, pal.”

Not only does this apostasy provoke the Left to shout false accusations of hatefuless at Horowitz, but it also grants them license to dismiss him with a single word:


Yes, that’s it! He’s a necon, a Zionist imperialist, a hypocritical special pleader whose opinions on every issue foreign and domestic are merely the external manfestations of his ethno-religious chauvinism. The Left is only too happy to suggest you can’t trust a word David Horowitz says because he is a Jew.

Kenyan Savior vs. Punjabi Menace

No one may do to liberals what liberals do to Horowitz without being condemed as a hatemonger. Critics of Chuck Schumer must be careful never to make any reference to Schumer’s Jewishness. No opponent of Loretta Sanchez can suggest that her Hispanic ancestry somehow explains her political commitments. And don’t even think about criticizing Al Sharpton.

A sort of ideological force-field surrounds liberal ethnic loyalties, so that while Barack Obama may invoke his Kenyan paternity as a political asset — and what else is the authorial teleology of Dreams From My Father? — no opponent is permitted to invoke this factor as a potential liability. The liberal worldview confers upon Obama the presumption of victimhood and then waits vigilantly for opportunities to denounce the presumed victimizers, i.e., Evil White Republicans.

Nikki Haley’s Punjabi ancestry and Sikh upbringing are not similarly off-limits to liberals, because liberals carry with them the presumption of goodwill. If liberals can caricature David Horowitz as a crafty scheming Jew — which is what a liberal means when he calls Horowitz a “neocon” — then it is perfectly fair game for a liberal to suggest that Nikki Haley is a phony sellout trying to pass herself off as a white Christian.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: It’s wrong to accuse liberals of not having standards.

They have exactly two — one for them, and one for everybody else.


57 Responses to “Liberal Decides It’s OK to Hint Politicians May Be Hiding Their ‘True’ Religion”

  1. John McCain
    June 14th, 2010 @ 2:29 pm
  2. John McCain
    June 14th, 2010 @ 10:29 am
  3. richard mcenroe
    June 14th, 2010 @ 3:22 pm

    Estragon, McCain’s “principled stands” have done this country more harm than Hayworth could do if he wrote his own personal Obamacare bill.

  4. richard mcenroe
    June 14th, 2010 @ 11:22 am

    Estragon, McCain’s “principled stands” have done this country more harm than Hayworth could do if he wrote his own personal Obamacare bill.

  5. richard mcenroe
    June 14th, 2010 @ 3:25 pm

    Stacy,I agree that it’s wrong to hint at a politician’s religion. That’s why I never brought up that incident on C-SPAN (since removed) where Nancy Pelosi stood up before the House and starting screaming “Kill! Kill! Kill for the love of Kali!” It could have so easily been misinterpreted….

  6. richard mcenroe
    June 14th, 2010 @ 11:25 am

    Stacy,I agree that it’s wrong to hint at a politician’s religion. That’s why I never brought up that incident on C-SPAN (since removed) where Nancy Pelosi stood up before the House and starting screaming “Kill! Kill! Kill for the love of Kali!” It could have so easily been misinterpreted….

  7. Hope and Change (and Hateful Stereotypes) Liberals Can Believe In : The Other McCain
    June 14th, 2010 @ 3:39 pm

    […] standards. They have exactly two — one for them, and one for everybody else.” – Robert Stacy McCainRemember: There are 5 A’s in “raaaaacism.” var addthis_append_data='false';var […]