Goodbye to all that

Welcome to the new world. It’s not very different from the one you experience every day, yet it’s turned upside-down and inside-out. You live in a society that has some of the same laws and many new laws. You are confused as to what you can say and do, since you are not “one of them.”

It’s a world with no music. It’s forbidden, you see. Classical music, arguably the greatest intellectual creation of the Western world? No. Goodbye Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart, Bach. Goodbye Mahler and Chopin. No Stravinsky, no Messiaen, no Steve Reich, no Phillip Glass. Opera? No. No more John Williams or Bernard Herrmann. Jazz? Goodbye Louis, Bird, Trane, Diz, and Tatum. So long, Miles. Blues? No way! The music inspires unclean thoughts! Cuban music, the apotheosis of rhythm? Give me a break! No pop, no country, no hip-hop, no music for dancing. (Dancing is forbidden, too.) Religious music? Absolutely not, even if you pay your jisya tax.

It’s a world with no great art, at least not as we have become accustomed to art. No “Starry Night,” no “Las Meninas.” No Rembrandt, Degas, Monet. No Van Gogh, Michelango, Leonardo, David, Ingres, or Velazquez. No Picasso, Cezanne, Gaugin, Kandinsky, Miro, Warhol. No Pollock. No Rauschenberg. The Duomo in Florence? Gone. The Sistine Chapel? Ditto. The Guggeneheims? Fuhgeddaboutit! Sculpture? Graven images are not permitted! Michelangelo’s David and Moses: gone. Masterpieces from Bernini, Donatello, Rodin, Calder: gone. Personal religious sculpture — all those statues of Jesus, the Virgin Mary, and St. Joseph, status of Krishna, and the images of the Buddha of enlightenment and the Buddha of contentment – outta here! Plenty of bonfires will have plenty of fuel to last weeks and weeks.

It’s a world without familiar literature or fiction. Get ready to learn a new language so you can read all of the new books books with themes approved by the right people. No Moby Dick, no Great Gatsby, no Count of Monte Cristo, no Lord of the Rings. No Shakespeare. No Homer. No Solzhenitsyn. No Rand. No Poe. Nabokov? Lolita is absolutely forbidden! Sherlock Holmes? Of course not! No Dan Simmons, either; he is a bigoted reactionary. Stephen King, Peter Straub, Dean Koontz? No way! A romance novel with heaving bosoms? Are you joking? And if you’re Salman Rushdie, bon chance!

Movies? Can’t permit the filth of modern cinema to pollute the people. No more Citizen Kane, The Godfather, or Chinatown. No French cinema, no British comedies, and no more Indian cinema, either. No sir! The women are too beautiful and they are — gasp! — immodestly dressed! Japanese cinema? Decadent and disgusting beyond description. TV? You can count American Idol out! And 24, The Sopranos, Sex and the City. Will and Grace? Don’t make me laugh! I think you get the picture.

If you happen to be a woman in this world, you are literally worth half what a man is worth. You are property, chattel. You can be one of many wives. You have to wear a hijab from head to toe. Your jobs are simple: pump out babies, preferably boys, and cook and clean for your husband. This world may condone your murder if you dishonor your family by falling in love with the wrong boy, and it may sentence you to death if a man rapes you. (Yes, you read that correctly.)

If you can imagine all this (and more, of course) you can imagine what our world would be like under sharia law. Sharia is the law established in all Islamic countries that is based strictly on the Koran, the Hadith, and sundry interpretations by Imams and clerics. If you think I am exagerating, read the statements from the spokesmen of the major Islamic lobbying groups in the US. They are hell-bent on trashing the Constitution and repacing it with sharia.

Robert Graves, one of England’s great writers and chronicler of Greek myth and legends, wrote a memoir about his experience in World War I. I shamelessly stole the title of his book for this essay because his melancholic rambling about what was lost in the Great War resonates with me in our current situation. We have so much to lose. The West is not guiltless by a mile for the current state of our world. But we have created such beauty that we — us collectively, the West — have a duty and an obligation to save the treasures we have given the world. Western civilization has to be saved. We may not lose it in my lifetime, but it’s a distinct possiblilty within the next fifty years if we stand idly by and permit the unthinkable to happen.

12 thoughts on “Goodbye to all that”

  1. “…it’s a distinct possiblilty within the next fifty years if we stand idly by and permit the unthinkable to happen.”

    They’ll have to contend with 100 million Catholic Mexican immigrants first. At least they’re not hell bent on the pope reigning over us.

  2. Every time I meet someone who has vsited a country in the Islamic world, I always ask them (particularly in the case of Saudi Arabia) if that country is as f****d up as people say. The answer is always “worse” , or some variation thereof.

  3. Winston Churchill On Islam over 100 years ago:

    A quote from an 1899 book by Winston Churchill, “The River War”, in which he describes Muslims he apparently observed during Kitchener’s campaign in the Sudan


    How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property – either as a child, a wife, or a concubine – must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men.

    Individual Moslems may show splendid qualities. Thousands become the brave and loyal soldiers of the Queen; all know how to die; but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science – the science against which it had vainly struggled – the civilisation of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilisation of ancient Rome.

  4. George,

    This post reminds me of your post back in April, giving attention to Dan Simmon’s message about a Time Traveler.

    The West has got to wake up.

  5. I was cataloging my collection of 2,500 CDs and 2,000 LPs (mostly classical and jazz) and was in awe at the variety of great music the West has produced. The muse just took me from there…

  6. The historical record shows the West has been at its best when its back is to the wall…iSSlam carries within it the seeds of its own destruction and I am convinced when the chips are down, the West will effectively exploit the cult of iSSlam’s weaknesses and take it down, permanently. That is not to say it will not require much blood and sacrifice in order to accomplish this.

  7. Some months ago, I read there’s a move afoot in some EU countries to allow sharia law be applied in their muslim enclaves. One of those places was/is the UK (indeed).

    A direct quote from a missionary friend of mine who spent 8 years in Kabul (Afghanistan) until the Taliban were deposed: “The problem with those people is not their culture … [economics or history] …. the problem is their religion.”

    These words after she showed us a burqha she was forced to wear just befoer the war.

    Yep, lotsa people here sleeping.

  8. My parents lived in Saudi Arabia for seven years. They never got a weather forecast there (not that it was necessary — hot and hotter). Forecasting the weather is messing with Allah. You don’t do it. There were public executions, cutting off of hands and stonings every Friday. Thieves had their right hands cut off. (Really bad because you’re left with the left hand — the one you clean yourself with — for eating. Very gross in that culture.) Fornicators and adulterers would be stoned to death. Murderers were beheaded, I believe.

    No alcohol. No pork. No religion other than Islam. I was not allowed to send them anything with a religious image on it, although my dad’s students showed him very vulgar, even pornographic (Christians would consider them blasphemous) images of Mary, Joseph and Jesus. Religious Christmas cards were out. My parents couldn’t celebrate Mass. The hypocrisy over the Mohammed cartoons outraged my mom after what she said my dad had seen.

    Remember those Saudi women who drove cars during Gulf War I? They lost their jobs and their passports. So did their husbands. For DRIVING.

    Welcome to the 7th century.

  9. My English guy says, “the English are brilliant in a crisis and hopeless at averting one.” As bad as things seem in some parts of the UK, they will have to get a lot worse before the majority of Brits decide that enough is enough. Their stoicism is mistaken for weakness by their enemies. Any Muslim who actually believes that sharia law will be imposed on Croydon without blood (his, that is) in the streets is seriously deluded.

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