German Chancellor Merkel: Multiculturalism is dead.
British Prime Minister Cameron: Multiculturalism is dead.
These three countries tend to agree on nothing. When two them agree on anything you tend to get a world war with the third. When all three of them agree you’re generally talking about self-evident, incontrovertible truths like 2+2=4, the sun rises in the east and the fact that multiculturalism is dead.
Oh and the former head of Australia and Spain agree. As does prominent Dutch politician Geert Wilders.
But what does it mean that multiculturalism is dead?
Does it mean we should all be isolationists and no longer look to anything but the few things our own particular culture has produced for wisdom and accomplishment? No. These heads of state are too intelligent to make such a preposterous assertion, even though that’s what I’m sure most of the left will try to spin this as. But that still doesn’t tell us what it does mean…
To say multiculturalism is dead means that people from the world over can’t say they want the blessing and advantages of the free westernized world, with all its economic and personal success, and not adopt the culture that created those advantages. You can’t move to Germany, England, France or even the United States and not adopt the culture.
It means that these advantages and advances do not come from the mere luck of the draw in terms of geography (after all Africa has more resources than any other continent and is dirt poor), from accidents in history (history tells us that history is made by those who make a choice not by random happenstance) or just because your ancestors made some really good inventions and you’re riding the wave (remind me again what happened to Babylon, Persia, Egypt and Rome…oh that’s right the wave never lasts). It means that a country is great because of the culture it has which creates greatness, not in spite of it.
Yes I am saying that certain cultures are unequivocally superior to others.
For instance, any culture that treats women as less than human: Inferior. Unquestionably, unmistakably, undeniably inferior. Go on, tell me that a culture that treats women like dirt is of equal value to one that respects women as equals to men. Go on, I really want to hear some liberal sacrifice one value to defend another. Some other qualifications that mean your culture should be thrown into the dust bin of history: placing faith above reason (although placing reason above faith might be just as stupid, they both have their fields and shouldn’t step on each other’s toes), not valuing the individual, and not honoring the rule of law.
Does that mean western civilization is perfect? No. Hell no. It has things we can, need to, and will eventually improve upon. It just isn’t completely shit for brains. Does that mean a culture is either on one side or the other? No. In the 1800’s the culture of India was far superior to others in many respects, but when it came to throwing living women onto their husbands’ funeral pyres they were clearly inferior to much of the world (and thank you Britain for getting rid of that, one cheer for colonialism). Conversely 1800’s Britain has some of the most advanced legal protections for the individual in the world, but were clearly inferior in their colonialistic policies of trying to rule everybody (two boo’s for colonialism). Over here in America until the 13th, 14th, 15th Amendments we had just as much bad going for us as good.
But it does mean that while you don’t need to shed everything of the culture you came from, you do need to leave a lot behind because it was that culture that made the place you left a hellhole. People need to adopt the language of the country they are moving to. They need to adopt the laws and legal traditions and leave their old laws behind. They need adopt the toleration for difference that the west has developed, the toleration that says ‘over here we make fun of everybody, no one, no topic, no group is sacrosanct.’ And if you can’t adopt the freedoms that make the west great and, well, free…then don’t come here. We’re not going to force our culture on you if you stay in your own country…but don’t buy our goods, ask for our help, and come to our countries and then say that your culture is superior. (Oh, and don’t try to blow us up either, we get awfully touchy about that sort of thing and will force democracy down your throat if you threaten our survival, otherwise we simply don’t care). (Oh, and try not to kill your own people, the west doesn’t have a great track record of defending the oppressed, but we’re getting better.)
And dare we forget that western civilization has a long tradition of reciprocation (especially the America version of civilization): adopt the best of our society and we’ll incorporate the best of yours into our overall structure (ask anyone of German, Italian or Irish descent, and within another generation or two you’ll notice a much heavier Asian influence in American culture—which is a good thing). But it’s the new comers that have to make the first move…like doing little things like coming here legally (or at least with a really good persecution story…and, to our friends to the south, just because your country is hell but could be fixed if you tried is not a good persecution story), learn the language (nothing brings people together like a common tongue, and nothing drives them apart like not being able to communicate), don’t insist on you ass backward misogynist religious traditions being written in our legal system, love dogs. You know, the little things.
Multiculturalism is dead. Many cultures have things to learn from. But that does not mean the freedoms, values, and liberties of western classical liberalism are not superior to anything and everything that has come before. They are superior and to not admit this little fact is a bit of insanity. You can’t defend every civilization as being perfectly equal in value unless you’re an idiot or President of the United States (but I repeat myself). You don’t have adopt what I consider to be superior traditions….but don’t come to a place ask for all its blessings and not want any of the culture that created those blessings.