Europe and Nothingness

George Weigel writes in “First Things“:

I don’t think it’s a matter of American prissiness to suggest that “satire” doesn’t capture the prevailing cast of mind displayed in Charlie Hebdo, which has always struck me as far more nihilistic than satirical. …

In the world of Charlāie Hebdo, sadly, all religious convictions (indeed all serious convictions about moral truth) are, by definition, fanaticism—and thus susceptible to the mockery of the “enlightened.” But that crude caricature of religious belief and moral conviction is false; it’s adolescent, if not downright childish; it inevitably lends itself to the kind of vulgarity that intends to wound, not amuse; and over the long haul, it’s as corrosive of the foundations of a decent society as the demented rage of the jihadists who murdered members of Charlie Hebdo’s staff.

The sophomoric nastiness regularly displayed in Charlie Hebdo most certainly does not constitute any sort of warrant for homicide; the incapacity of some Muslims to live in pluralistic societies and the rage to which those incapacities lead is a grave threat to the West. The question is: What do those two truths have to do with each other?

Here’s my suggestion: You can’t beat something with nothing—perhaps better, you can’t beat something with nothingness.

Interesting thoughts. Go read it all: First Things: George Weigel, Europe and Nothingness

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