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Sunday, September 8, 2019

Feminist: 'Heterosexuality is Just Not Working'


It will come as no news to FrontPage Mag readers that feminism, like every facet of Progressivism, has gone completely off the rails since the triggering ascension of Donald Trump to the White House, but it’s worth an occasional reminder to grasp fully just how desperate and detached from reality feminism is. The latest case in point: a self-described lesbian feminist columnist has declared that pop singer Miley Cyrus, “suicided” sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, and the mass shooters in Dayton and El Paso are examples of how heterosexuality “is just not working.”
In an opinion piece for NBC News, Marcie Bianco curiously claims that recent trending news stories — Epstein’s downfall; the “toxic masculinity” of male mass shooters; the bisexual Cyrus’s marital breakup; and entertainer Julianne Hough’s public announcement that she’s “not straight” — present “a snapshot of 2019 America” which depicts “an American patriarchy on the edge of a nervous breakdown.”
Bianco – a columnist at the Women’s Media Center, a nonprofit created by Jane Fonda, Gloria Steinem, and radical activist Robin Morgan to “raise the visibility, viability and decision-making power of women and girls in media” – observes that Cyrus’ separation from actor Liam Hemsworth and her subsequent dalliance with at least one other woman is more significant than just another failed celebrity relationship. It’s “a blow to the patriarchy.” I am skeptical that it was even a blow to Hemsworth, much less to the entire so-called patriarchy, but the collapse of any marriage, no matter how “consciously uncoupled,” is nothing to celebrate.
Bianco approvingly quotes Cyrus’ redefinition of “what a relationship in this generation looks like. Sexuality and gender identity are completely separate from partnership.” Considering that Hemsworth’s and Cyrus’s “partnership” dissolved, perhaps the lesson here is that indulging a trendy sexuality that is at odds with your partner’s isn’t the best way to redefine a relationship – and doesn’t bode well for this generation. Bianco also praises Julianne Hough’s self-empowering revelation to her husband that she’s not straight. Although Hough’s initially-surprised husband seems supportive of her thus far, anyone who thinks a marriage can survive in which the sexuality of one partner is “completely separate” from the other is living in an ideological fantasy utterly divorced (pun intended) from the reality of human nature – which of course, feminism is.

2+2 = White Privilege

 
In the end, the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it. It was inevitable that they should make that claim sooner or later: the logic of their position demanded it. Not merely the validity of experience, but the very existence of external reality, was tacitly denied by their philosophy. – George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four

It’s no secret that leftist educators have utterly ruined the fields of the humanities with their Marxist wokeness, postmodern deconstructionism, and openly anti-Western bias. Now The College Fix reports that educators are increasingly imposing a social justice agenda in at least one field that you might expect would be free from any sort of ideological perspective: mathematics.

Math is often referred to as a universal language because its principles are universally true. Theorems and formulas are equally valid in America and China and Zimbabwe, and equally apolitical. Nothing seems more politically incorruptible than a math equation. What policy is there to debate in 2+2 = 4? How can one take sides over the fact that the area of a rectangle equals its length multiplied by its width? But for the social justice Left, politics is, or should be, as omnipresent as God. No corner of the universe may remain unilluminated in their quest to overturn the flawed existing order, free the oppressed, and rebuild the world according to their utopian vision. There can be no topic of discussion or field of endeavor in which politics is absent or in which neutrality and objective truth reign.

Mathematics is no exception. Having successfully reduced other pursuits of knowledge from the search for the true, the good, and the beautiful to the subversion of the true, the good, and the beautiful, the relentless Left is now taking aim at the methodological bias supposedly inherent in our Eurocentric (read: racist and colonialist) understanding of math. The goal is “math equity,” because there is no more unforgivable iniquity for the Left than, well, inequity.


Monday, July 22, 2019

Is There Any Hope for Western Europe?


Years ago as I was awakening from my long Democrat slumber and educating myself about Islam, one of the most eye-opening books that I read was a 2006 page-turner titled While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West From Within, by a gay American living in Western Europe. Not only was it enlightening, but it made me an instant fan of Bawer’s compelling storytelling. In addition to following his subsequent books such as Surrender: Appeasing Islam, Sacrificing Freedom, The Victims’ Revolution: The Rise of Identity Studies and the Closing of the Liberal Mind, and even a thriller about Islamic terrorism called The Alhambra, I was fortunate and honored to become friends with Bruce through our mutual work for the David Horowitz Freedom Center.
Now Bawer has released a new volume with a stark black cover titled Islam: The Essays, a massive collection of well over three hundred of his articles on this crucial subject dating from the fall of 2002 through the summer of 2018. Though he suggests that the reader undertake the book chronologically in order to understand the evolution of his understanding of the topic (“Early on, for instance, I refer to ‘fundamentalist Islam’; soon enough, I drop the word ‘fundamentalist,’ having realized that Islam itself, properly understood, is fundamentalist.”), Bawer is such an engaging, perceptive writer that one can open the book at random to literally any page and find it impossible to stop reading. A chilling chronicle of the Islamization of multicultural Europe over the last 17 years, Islam: The Essays is a must-have for FrontPage Mag readers and for others in need, like I once was, of awareness and insight into the Religion of Peace™.
Bruce Bawer was able to find time to answer a few of my questions about the book and about the Islamization of Europe today.
Mark Tapson:             Bruce, you note in your opening essay that it wasn’t until you moved from your native New York to Western Europe in ’98 that what you then called “fundamentalist” Islam became a daily reality for you. How was that daily reality different, and how long did it take you to fully grasp what the Islamization around you meant for Europe and the West? Was there any particular incident that showed you the writing on the wall?

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Colin Kaepernick’s Symbols of Hate


Just in time for Independence Day 2019, sports apparel giant Nike released the Air Max 1 USA shoe, featuring a miniature “Betsy Ross” flag on each heel. This, of course, is the flag with the earliest American colonies represented by thirteen white stars in a circle which, legend has it, Mrs. Ross presented to George Washington himself. But when Nike pitchman Colin Kaepernick, former NFL national anthem protester, got wind of the plan, he complained to Nike that the flag recalls a time when blacks were enslaved. Also, according to a person who reportedly was privy to the conversation, Kaepernick informed Nike that the flag has recently been appropriated by American white supremacists.
Instead of telling Kaepernick, “So what?” and going forward with the patriotic product, Nike sparked controversy by recalling the shoe from retailers and issuing a statement in which it claimed the decision was “based on concerns that it could unintentionally offend and detract from the nation’s patriotic holiday” – a pathetic excuse. If anything detracted from the Independence Day holiday, it was the controversy that erupted over Nike’s choice to offend the patriotic majority of Americans by sending the message that the Betsy Ross flag is a shameful symbol of racial oppression.
On MSNBC, race-huckstering Georgetown University professor Michael Eric Dyson chimed in on Nike’s decision, of which he predictably approved. He claimed that the Betsy Ross flag
hails from the revolutionary period of this nation’s founding which was deeply embroiled in, you know, in enslavement... But also, it’s the recent use of this flag that has been the most opprobrious. Right-wing white supremacists have used it as a rallying cry for their own cause... Right now this flag has been used by people who want to pummel African-Americans, Latinos, Jews and other people, neo-Nazis that want to claim that they have the true copyright on American identity. So why not choose a flag that is representative of everybody? The diversity of identities, ideologies, people of color and mainstream people who exist in this country? That’s the kind of blowback against the use of this particular flag.
The notion that white supremacist groups have appropriated the Betsy Ross flag is ludicrous. They aren’t in a position to appropriate anything unless the American people allow it. There is no more marginalized, politically impotent extremist element in America today than actual white supremacists, who have been hyped by the leftist media complex as a rising Hitlerian tide empowered by President Trump’s purported bigotry. (Meanwhile the media downplays or even covers for actual threats such as the violent Antifa network, human traffickers at our collapsing southern border, and Islamic terrorists). Mark Pitcavage, a senior research fellow for the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism, said that the ADL does not even include the flag in its database of hate symbols. “It’s not a thing in the white supremacist movement,” Pitcavage asserted. Lisa Moulder, director of the Betsy Ross House in Philadelphia, said she has never heard of the flag being used as a hate symbol. Even if random bigots have tried to adopt the Betsy Ross flag, we only empower and legitimize them when we declare that we don’t have the cultural power to stop them from making the flag their own.  

The Crackup of the Israeli Left



In recent weeks the mostly left-leaning news media have published articles about the turbulence of this year’s elections in Israel with such handwringing titles as “Is the Israeli left doomed to marginalisation?,” “The Decline of the Israeli Left,” and “Whatever Happened to the Israeli Left?” But if one really wants to educate oneself deeply and broadly about this shift in the tiny democracy’s political landscape, one can hardly do better than to read Mordechai Nisan’s new book, The Crack-Up of the Israeli Left, published by Mantua Books. In it, Dr. Nisan brilliantly dissects the rise of the Right and the decline of the Left in the Jewish state. To quote from the book cover’s description, it details how “the Left detached its moorings from reality and principle, raised its voice against the Zionist enterprise, and chose surrender to the Arab enemy.”
If anyone is qualified to expound upon Israel’s political and cultural battlegrounds, it’s Mordechai Nisan. Dr. Nisan (with a doctorate in Political Studies from McGill University) has been a teacher and consultant for a number of academic and public institutions in Israel, including Hebrew University in Jerusalem, where he taught Middle East Studies for 35 years. Among his many books are Toward a New Israel: The Jewish State and the Arab Question (1992), Only Israel West of the River: The Jewish State and the Palestinian Question (2011), and Politics and War in Lebanon (2015). He has written articles for The Jerusalem Post, Israel National News, Global Affairs, Middle East Journal, and many other publications. He has also been an activist for Jewish settlement in the territories of Judea and Samaria.
Dr. Nisan was kind enough to take time to answer some questions for FrontPage Mag.
Mark Tapson:             You begin your book by describing Israel as “a fable and a myth, but also a Great Truth.” What do you mean by that?

Mortality and Faith


In 1996, David Horowitz published Radical Son: A Generational Odyssey, which became the most noted autobiography of political conversion since Whittaker Chambers’ Witness nearly half a century earlier. Like Horowitz himself, the book became and remains a conservative classic.
The founder of the David Horowitz Freedom Center passed his 80th birthday earlier this year and has just released a less political and more meditative autobiographical follow-up to that iconic work: Mortality and Faith: Reflections on a Journey Through Time. This book collects three* of Horowitz’s previous observations on life, death and meaning, titled The End of Time (published in 2005), A Point in Time: The Search for Redemption in This Life and the Next (2011), and the arrestingly-titled You’re Going to Be Dead One Day: A Love Story (2015), together with a short concluding chapter fittingly called “Staying Alive.” As Horowitz puts it in the new book’s preface, Mortality and Faith explores the beliefs which we embrace to answer the existential questions of our lives, and how we are impacted by those answers.
Readers who are familiar only with David Horowitz the political firebrand, the political general who preaches a take-no-prisoners strategy to combatting his former comrades on the left, may be surprised to discover that he is capable also of a disarming sensitivity, vulnerability, and personal honesty. He does not flinch from self-criticism nor engage in self-mythologizing, which is refreshing for a public figure, particularly in the arena of politics. Every page of Mortality and Faith is redolent of a battle-scarred wisdom, earnestness, and humility earned from trials and tribulations both public and private.
Though one gets the impression he might have wished otherwise, a belief in God is not a sustaining or consoling worldview for Horowitz. He freely confesses that his philosophy of life and death stem from a melancholic agnosticism. In You’re Going to be Dead One Day he declared that “All questions about death begin with observations that only a religious faith can answer. I have no such faith,” he says, “and therefore my posing of these questions is without a hope that life eternal awaits us where all will become clear.”

Friday, May 24, 2019

The Rage Less Traveled


On December 18, 2010, two female friends – one Christian and the other Jewish - were hiking together in the hills of Jerusalem when they were accosted by a pair of members from a Palestinian terror cell. Both women were bound and hacked with machetes until the Christian, Kristine Luken, was dead and the other seemingly so.
But in an incredible display of a bottomless will to live, Kay Wilson – with thirteen machete wounds, a crushed sternum, multiple rib fractures, bone splinters in her lungs, a dislocated shoulder and broken shoulder blade – got up and walked over a mile barefoot, bound, and bleeding until she reached help. She survived to testify against her assailants in court. The reason the pair was caught was that Wilson had managed to stab one in the groin with a penknife during the assault, and investigators linked him to the DNA in his blood on her clothing. The two monsters, who were convicted of other crimes as well, including stabbing another Jewish woman to death earlier that same year, were imprisoned for life.
The Rage Less Traveled: A Memoir of Surviving a Machete Attack is Kay Wilson’s relentlessly gripping, intensely personal story. You can find it on Amazon here (and here on audiobook) where the book has racked up dozens of exclusively 5-star reviews. Simultaneously raw and poetic, transcendent and unsentimental, The Rage Less Traveled is not a predictable book about learning to forgive your attackers or seeking interfaith dialogue with members of a Jew-hating ideology. The book acknowledges that evil exists and that there can be no coexistence with it. It is a story about the tortuous road through survival into the light. As Wilson said in her 2019 AIPAC address, “My story is Israel’s story.”
Ms. Wilson kindly agreed to answer some questions about the book and her shocking experience.
Mark Tapson:           You wrote that the media’s initial explanation for the attack on you and your friend Kristine Luken was that it was in retaliation for Israel’s assassination of a Hamas commander. But what was the real reason?

Friday, May 17, 2019

And a Little Child Shall Lead Them


In this recent video clip from a news channel’s interview with 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg, it is clear that the young girl has no special insight to offer, only canned platitudes (“If everyone does something, huge changes can happen”). And yet the older male interviewer fawns over his teenage subject as if she is a credible, informed expert and a wise Cassandra whose dire warning we ignore at our peril. He does so not in spite of her youth, but precisely because of it. Why? Because the leftist media, and the left generally, love propping up gullible, politically indoctrinated children as authoritative mouthpieces to promote their agendas.
Swedish schoolgirl Thunberg attracted worldwide media attention at age 15 for her activism against weather, and is now the deadly serious face of the left’s climate change hysteria. Recently nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, Thunberg is following in the carbon footprints of environmental activist Xiuhtezcatl Roske-Martinez who, at the age of 15, entreated the United Nations General Assembly in 2015 to take action against purportedly human-caused climate change.
After the Parkland school shooting in Florida on Valentine’s Day, 2018, student activists David Hogg and Emma Gonzalez (pictured above), 17 and 18 respectively at the time, were ubiquitous in the media coverage about the atrocity – not because their thoughts on the incident were any more insightful than those of any of their fellow students, but because of their forceful calls for stricter gun control and their eagerness to demonize the hated National Rifle Association. Parkland students who didn’t take a strong anti-gun stance quickly found themselves ignored by the news media. Hogg, whose bumper-sticker mentality proved to be no barrier to getting into Harvard, shot to prominence overnight as the face of the gun confiscation movement in America.
Jazz Jennings, born male in 2000, was only six years old when he began making television appearances – including an interview with Barbara Walters – to discuss his gender dysphoria. He went on to become the media darling of transgender activism, with his own reality TV show about transgender teen drama and his gender reassignment surgery. Similarly disturbing, child drag performer Desmond is Amazing has been the young, garishly made-up face of LGBTQ activism for years, celebrated as a trailblazer on national talk shows and in gay pride parades. He is only eleven.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

The American President


In a campaign rally in South Carolina recently, presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg became the latest in a growing number of Democrat leaders who feel that disparaging America is necessary to inspire their base and prove their ideological bona fides. Taking issue with President Donald Trump’s triggering slogan “Make America Great Again,” Buttigieg declared that the America Trump “wants to return us to was never as great as advertised.” Something about the notion of American exceptionalism simply infuriates the left. Trump was savvy enough to realize his MAGA slogan would expose that anti-Americanism and would rally patriotic Americans to his side. One of the principal reasons Trump is sitting in the White House is “that he re-instilled in the common man that sacred presumption that the United States was, and still remains, an exceptional nation blessed by God.”
That quote is from New York Times #1 bestselling author Larry Schweikart’s brand new book, a biography of an American icon – Ronald Reagan, and actually refers to the book’s subject, not Trump. But like Trump, Reagan swept into the presidency in the wake of one of America’s worst presidents by appealing to a yearning to make this country great again.
At nearly 550 pages (including endnotes), Reagan: The American President, from Post Hill Press, is a weighty tome but a page-turning read about the beloved leader whose administration wasn’t perfect, but whose “magnificent, world-changing successes” included “defeating the Soviet Union, putting communist ideology on the road to extinction, and reviving a moribund American economy.”
The prolific historian Schweikart’s previous works include 48 Liberal Lies About American History and A Patriot’s History of the United States (co-written with Michael Allen), the best antidote to the radical Howard Zinn’s corrosive, anti-American work The People’s History of the United States, which has infiltrated virtually every schoolroom in America. Dr. Schweikart kindly agreed to answer a few questions about his new biography of the man many conservatives consider the great American president of the 20th century, and some the greatest of all time.
Mark Tapson:           What did you want to say about Ronald Reagan that sets your book apart from his many other biographies?

Monday, April 29, 2019

Hollywood Begins Eating its Own


For decades Hollywood, along with academia, has been one of the two prime movers of cultural Marxism in America: promoting leftist causes and narratives, undermining traditional morality and social structures, and rewriting history. Increasingly, showbiz is now being choked by its own wokeness – just as our universities are – as the social justice whiners have inevitably begun to turn on their own.
Hollywood is floundering. This past Easter weekend at the box office was the worst in more than a decade. The big studios with their mega-budget franchises (where would Hollywood be today without Marvel Comics?) increasingly have to resort to overseas profits to keep afloat. Showbiz awards shows, which have degenerated into self-congratulatory displays of anti-Trump virtue-signaling, have been failing spectacularly, posting record low ratings year after year. Trump Derangement Syndrome has caused celebs to publicly double down on their contempt for all those unwoke Americans in the flyover states, pushing audiences farther away than ever before. Meanwhile, independent flicks like Gosnell and Unplanned aimed at underserved conservative audiences are succeeding despite media blackouts and social media subversion.
Instead of engaging in some serious self-examination and concentrating on projects that might win back the American heartland moviegoer, establishment Hollywood is now preoccupied with proving its commitment to identity-politics ideology. Enforcing diversity of gender and skin color (but not of worldview) in all the “above-the-line” fields (acting, directing, producing, showrunning, etc.) has become the dominant consideration in the entertainment realm now. Actress Brie Larson, for example, says playing superheroine Captain Marvel is “my form of activism”; she has has spent almost every minute of her movie promotions slamming “white male critics” and speechifying about gender equality. “Oscars are so not white this year,CNN announced after a record number of non-white actors won awards in the 2019 ceremony. Deadline declared ecstatically that “Diversity was one of the biggest winners.”
Like all totalitarian environments, Hollywood is also purging itself internally of anyone deemed insufficiently woke. Likeable, nonpartisan comedian Kevin Hart, for example, was pushed out of hosting this year’s Academy Awards show because of a ten-year-old “homophobic” tweet. Actress Roseanne Barr was famously removed from her own show and denounced as a racist for joking that Iranian-born, Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett resembled a character from Planet of the Apes. And the industry which never tires of making movies condemning the Communist-era blacklist has taken up a blacklist in support of the search-and-destroy #MeToo movement. Showbiz hypocrites who slandered Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh as a rapist yet who knowingly covered for, if not engaged in, decades of systemic sexual predation are now demonstrating they #BelieveAllWomen by shunning the suspects among them, even over unconfirmed accusations.