Month: November 2015

Are We “Hypocrites” If We Mourn Victims In Paris More Than Those In Beirut?

In my first piece for Quadrant, the great Australian journal, I mount a brief offensive against this notion:

Owing to the shared history and values between the United States, where I live, and the United Kingdom, I would be much more profoundly enraged by a terror attack on British soil than by one in, say, Botswana. Seeing an attack on France, a pillar of Western civilisation and both America’s oldest ally and a NATO partner, affects me in a way that thinking about attacks in Lebanon or Yemen simply does not. One might as well approach a widow at her husband’s funeral and ask indignantly why she never wore black for the millions of other men who went before her dear departed.

Since it is impossible to be equally outraged by every single atrocity in human history, it is, by the “progressive” standard, impossible to be outraged by any atrocity. To the anti-Western left, there is always an infinite cornucopia of reasons why we shouldn’t be too upset about the latest mass slaughter of our friends abroad — or, indeed, of our own fellow citizens at home.

I am proud to contribute to Quadrant, which fought the good fight during the Cold War. And don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

In Which I Take Part In An Informal Manhattan Symposium

If you’re a fan of Theodore Dalrymple’s writing, as I am, you’ll likely be familiar with the website The Skeptical Doctor, which archives Dalrymple’s frequent essays, columns, and reviews.

Some months ago, the friendly man who runs the site, Clint, arranged a meet-up in New York City of Dalrymple readers — a sort of light-hearted gathering for drinks and conversation. I couldn’t make it then, but I have kindly been invited to another such gathering, scheduled for the evening of December 1 at an elegant hotel bar in Manhattan.

If you’re interested, email webmaster@skepticaldoctor.com for details.

I am by no means a distinguished guest, but I look forward to meeting others, drinking wine, and casting a sour eye on the state of our civilization.