A.J. DiCintio
The viruses that killed at Fort Hood
By A.J. DiCintio
November 20, 2009

Two viruses caused the murders, wounds, and suffering at Fort Hood.

The first arises from the fact that although a capacity for evil is inherent in human nature, human beings have, as David Brooks recently observed, a "conscious say" regarding the commission of evil acts.

Therefore, the actual cause of the Fort Hood attack is the conscious choice by terrorist Nidal Malik Hasan to commit an act of horrific evil.

There is, however, a second virus that is a proximate cause of the murders, one that — irony of ironies that cry out to Heaven for redress — allowed a madman who openly gave signs of being a radical Islamist to remain an officer and a psychiatrist in the U.S. Army.

That virus is Political Correctness, to which shameless liberals assign zero percent of the blame for the murders, as evidenced by the following contemptible behaviors:

. . . Liberal ideologues, including President Obama, have labored mightily to keep the PC issue out of the national discourse by maintaining a perfectly stupid silence about the subject.

. . . Liberal commentators, such as Chris "That's not a crime to call up al Qaeda, is it?" Matthews, have invoked perfectly stupid legalisms to distract the public from it.

. . . To cover it up, liberal members of the Political/Military/Intellectual Class have spewed perfectly stupid, rankly insulting non sequiturs that accomplish nothing good — except to put their mindless devotion to PC on full display.

"What happened at Fort Hood was a tragedy [emphasis added], but I believe it would be an even greater tragedy if our diversity becomes a casualty here."

No need to wonder if General George Casey's stream of consciousness would run along the same course if it were "Pearl Harbor" or "9/11" instead of "Fort Hood" because it would. After all, being possessed of a gnawing neurotic guilt that permits one to blame the victim while conferring victimhood upon the criminal is a sine qua non of what it means to be a liberal.

In contrast to the dangerous anti-intellectualism of liberals, other Americans, including conservatives who comprise the American "mob," have been clear about the role PC played in the terrorist attack.

In his commentary on the attack (nationalreview.com), Mark Steyn comments on the shallowness of liberal dogma regarding "diversity" and "multiculturalism," two pillars that support the PC agenda, before drawing this conclusion about the reality of the PC/Fort Hood connection:

What happened is not a "tragedy" but a national scandal, already fading from view.

David Brooks (NY Times) argues that liberals threw "a shroud of political correctness . . . over the [Fort Hood] conversation," thereby corrupting and demeaning it by "[reducing] a heinous act to social maladjustment."

Former FBI profiler Clint Van Zandt makes this observation (humanevents.com) about what enabled the terrorist to carry out his traitorously evil plan:

Political correctness has been called the handmaiden of terrorism, and in the case of Maj. Hassan[sic], she served him well.

The voting public also has their eyes, ears, and minds wide open, as revealed by the following data (Rasmussen, November 11, 2009).

76% believe the army should remove from duty all officers like Hasan who attempt to contact radical terrorist organizations such as al Qaeda.

While those intellectually honest reactions by commentators and landslide majorities of voters represent good news, the bad news is that a full national discussion about the moral and intellectual abomination called Political Correctness has not yet occurred — including a dialogue about how this cancer on our culture has metastasized to the extent that its malignancy exists even at the highest levels of our military.

With regard to the matter of discussing the "how," Thomas D. Segel has provided the nation with an excellent starting point (newmediajournal.us).

It started out as a mild virus initiated by the left of center intellectuals of academia. But, like every virus . . . it spread rapidly through schools, hospitals, civil service, the media, companies, governance and the armed forces. Political correctness has poisoned all of America.

Yes, a most excellent starting point — because only a few moments of serious thought are needed to confirm the aptness of Segal's characterization of PC as a twist of DNA that begins its life innocuously but soon transforms into a virulent agent whose first kills are intellectuality and free speech.

Did we not, for example, believe that ridiculously meaningless nouns such as undocumented alien and undocumented worker would never ascend into widespread use?

Were we not absolutely certain that the viciously false adjective anti-immigrant would never become a widely used replacement for anti-illegal immigration and anti-open borders.

And did we not dismiss man-caused disaster (for terrorist attack) and overseas contingency operation (for war on terror) as mere hope-babble that would never carry weight with those who actually make decisions about defending our nation from enemies at home and abroad?

(How like glistening, brave lions did President Barack Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano behave when they introduced the "nuance" of man-caused disaster into the American lexicon of public policy. And how predictably did those kings of the merely political jungle morph into dirty, cowardly mice when they meticulously avoided using that term with respect to the attack at Fort Hood.)

George Orwell, who fought the good fight against every perversion of language, would never have regarded PC as anything except an insidiously dangerous, death-dealing virus; for he knew that "if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought."

To his insightful observation, we can add this: Corrupt thought will eventually corrupt and destroy an entire culture.

That is the most important lesson the nation should learn from the virus that is a proximate cause of the terrorist attack at Fort Hood.

What remains after the lesson is whether we will dedicate ourselves to joining the battle against Political Correctness no matter how many times or where — from kindergarten to the workplace to the college classroom to the meeting room of the Joint Chiefs of Staff — we are called to the front.

© A.J. DiCintio


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

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A.J. DiCintio

A.J. DiCintio posts regularly at RenewAmerica and YourNews.com. He first exercised his polemical skills arguing with friends on the street corners of the working class neighborhood where he grew up. Retired from teaching, he now applies those skills, somewhat honed and polished by experience, to social/political affairs.


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