Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Stop the Presses


“Journalism is the one solitary respectable profession which honors theft (when committed in the pecuniary interest of a journal,) & admires the thief.”

- Mark Twain

The situation in the Middle-East hasn’t escaped the eagle eye of Patrick Kelley and the folks down at the Emporia Gazette. This is what the lead editorial had to say about it last night:

“Israel has demonstrated its intention to protect its people. Hezbollah has demonstrated its ability and determination to oppose Israel. In the process, hundreds of people – many of them non-combatants have been killed.”

“More fighting will just kill more people and risk wider war and more decades of misery.”

“It’s time for diplomacy. Both sides have indicated that they are ready to stop the shooting and negotiate. The rest of the world – including the United States – must do all it can to support the negotiations process.”

Once you strip out the one thing we all agree with – that peace is the desired state of international affairs – it becomes pretty clear that even here in the Kansas Flint Hills moral relativism is the order of the editorial writer’s day.

I’m beginning to think that every left-leaning American journalist gets his or her marching orders every day on an early morning conference call from the big boys at the New York Times. It’s a way of enabling them to do their work without the thinking normally required to try to make sense of the world. “This will be the approved take on things.” “Puff Hezbollah.” “You furnish the pictures and I’ll furnish you Israel as the Middle-East aggressor.”

Just a half an hour of early morning indoctrination and they’re ready for the day.

A while ago I fired off the following letter to the editor of the Emporia Gazette:

The Gazette’s editorial “Wider War” came hot off of the rhetorical presses suspended in mid-air, somewhere in the grand universe of moral relativism. What the Gazette needs to do is to pull them down from the ionosphere and put them back on the earth where they belong.

Try as they might to split hairs, they didn’t succeed. The Hezbollah/Hamas attacks on Israel and Israel’s response to the provocation are not morally equivalent acts.

What does the Gazette think would happen to Israel, in the near and long term, if they were to cease fire unilaterally? Perhaps this excerpt from Hezbollah’s founding manifesto will give them a hint:

“Our primary assumption in our fight against Israel states that the Zionist entity is aggressive from its inception, and built on lands wrested from their owners, at the expense of the rights of the Muslim people. Therefore our struggle will end only when this entity is obliterated. We recognize no treaty with it, no cease fire, and no peace agreements, whether separate or consolidated.”

As Bob Dylan once wrote, Israel is not the neighborhood bully in this twisted equation. The Jewish nation was provoked, its sovereign territory invaded, and now it’s responding. Just what did the Gazette expect Israel to do?

The Gazette’s problem is that they’re holding Israel to a standard they would never live by themselves. Do the good folks down at 517 Merchant think I’m naïve enough to believe that if a burglar or rapist started kicking down their doors that they’d welcome them with rose petals and fine wine or negotiate the terms of the rape and theft?

While the Gazette might like a solution in which all parties get what they want, the overwhelming majority of us hope this crisis will end on Israel’s terms, not Hezbollah’s.


Phil Dillon
Emporia, Kansas


It’s probably been an act of futility. To paraphrase Texas populist Kinky Friedman – “You can lead a left-leaning journalist to water, but you can’t make him think.”

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1 comment:

James Fletcher Baxter said...

"To paraphrase Texas populist Kinky Friedman - 'You can lead a left-leaning journalist to water but you can't make him think.'"

There is a very good reason why this is true.

Left-leaners are humanists. They hold that faith in God and His Word is myth. Consequently, they reject Biblical Scripture as merely human writer's opinions.

Since no human being (locked as we are into an ego-centered condition) can invent social and spiritual criteria greater than themselves, they are left to mere human opinion that rises no higher than the eyebrows. Mediocrity - and worse.

The challenge we must make is for the non-thinkers to produce Transcendent Criteria they place confidence in to guide their personal lives and opinions.

In humanism, "There ain't none!"

Sir Isaac Newton said that "every Word of God is pure and true." No wonder he could think!

And choose...

You bet your life! Amen