Selwyn Duke
Whoopi Goldberg's ignorance
By Selwyn Duke
November 30, 2010

Since I'm well aware of how leftists' claims of erudition are as empty as their ideology, not many of their failures surprise me. But an exception came last Tuesday when Whoopi Goldberg was interviewed by Bill O'Reilly. The two were discussing their differing views on the nature of the Islamic threat, with O'Reilly maintaining that we have a "Muslim problem" and Goldberg insisting that, no, we have a "terrorist problem." In typical leftist style, she even went so far as to rationalize away the threat, implying at one point that terrorists were as likely to be white guys as anyone else. But as ridiculous as this denial of reality is, it was followed by an admission of ignorance that was truly staggering. It occurred during the following exchange:

    O'Reilly: Do you know what a madrassah is?

    Goldberg: No, I don't.

    O'Reilly: Okay, a madrassah is a school that teaches Islamic jihad, and there are madrassahs all over the Muslim world. They teach four and five-year-old kids to hate people.

    Goldberg: Bill, Bill, that may be true.

    O'Reilly: It is true!

    Goldberg: It may be true; I can't prove it. You''ve clearly been to them, and I'll take your word for it.

Goldberg had no idea what a madrassah was. Wow. Just wow. Could you imagine if Sarah Palin exhibited such a striking lack of knowledge?

Now, if some readers didn't know what a madrassah was, while I would recommend boning up on the subject, it's a different matter: They're not professional commentators (plainly, Goldberg isn't, either). But this is a woman who obviously feels qualified to render opinion publicly on the Muslim threat, and she knows nothing about entities that serve as perhaps the main transmitters of jihadist propaganda to Muslim youth (there are 10,000 madrassahs across Pakistan alone).

And, of course, this has to reflect her knowledge base in general. If she didn't even know about madrassahs' existence, how much has she actually read about the Muslim threat? It's fair to assume that she knows nothing of the history of Islam. Could she possibly be acquainted with the Islamic conquests, from 632 A.D. onwards, of the old Middle Eastern Christian lands? Could she know about how the Muslim hordes then swept across North Africa (also Christian at the time), invaded Spain and Portugal (then Iberia), crossed the Pyrenees Mountains into France (then Gaul), and got within 130 miles of Paris before being stopped by Charles Martel at the Battle of Tours in 732? And could she have any idea that these continued conquests were what inspired the launch of the Crusades in 1095? No, she probably believes that those defensive campaigns were animated by rapacious, imperialistic Europeans who suddenly got in into their heads that they wanted to convert those practitioners of the religion of peace. (Note: Earlier this year, I addressed this in a magazine essay titled "The Crusades: When Christendom Pushed Back.")

It's also hard to imagine that Goldberg could know anything about the Islamic canon's eternal prescriptions for jihad, how Muslim thought involves Sharia law, or how dhimmitude is the inevitable lot of "infidels" in Dar al-Islam. In fact, after the O'Reilly interview, I very much doubt she knows what dhimmitude is.

Now, Goldberg was very pleasant in the interview; she's not a person of ill will. But while she did seem willing to listen to what O'Reilly had to say — she obviously wanted to make amends for an earlier blow-up during O'Reilly's last appearance on The View — there is a difference between listening and trying to comprehend. It's clear that, like all leftists, Goldberg subordinates Truth to her ideology; thus, when the two conflict, instead of amending her ideology, she rationalizes away the Truth. Put more simply, this is when something goes in one ear and out the other.

The ancient Chinese sage Confucius once said, "Wisdom is, when you know something, knowing that you know it; and when you do not know something, knowing that you do not know it." Sadly, Goldberg is ignorant of her ignorance. What's even sadder, though, is that such people can find a place in today's media.

© Selwyn Duke


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