Every now and then I have a plan for what I’m going to write that gets sidetracked because every attempt to write turns into a rant about something else…this is going to be one of those days.
The most popular TV show on the planet is a car show produced by the BBC called Top Gear…or rather it was. One of the key players in making the show a global success is presenter Jeremy Clarkson, a tall man known for being witty and occasionally borderline offensive. Recently he was involved in what was described as a “fracas” with one of the producers on Top Gear and somehow or another he struck the producer stoutly enough to give him a bloody lip. As a result, production of Top Gear for this season was suspended and Clarkson was essentially fired from the BBC.
This isn’t an unexpected result, frankly. Most people could expect termination if they hit a coworker. Many feel, however, that Clarkson’s firing was unjust since the entire event has been described as a brotherly row that has been blown out of proportion by the outside world. Clarkson reported his actions to the BBC himself, and the producer who was hit has made several public statements about the whole thing being overblown and wishing no ill towards Clarkson…who, by all reports, seems to have been quite apologetic about his behavior.
Gun folks should have a special place in their hearts for Mr. Clarkson due to his relationship with Piers Morgan. You’ll remember that Piers Morgan showed up on CNN to replace Larry King and spent a bunch of time pushing to enact more gun control here in the states. Morgan, in case you didn’t know, rose to prominence working for a tabloid where his publication did all manner of nasty and objectionable things in pursuit of headlines to the point where he basically had to flee to the US where his status as pond scum was less well known. His show was short lived and is remembered primarily for ticking off gun owners. In closing his show for the last time Morgan said:
“I assumed that after 70 people were shot in a movie theater, and then, just a few months later, 20 first-graders were murdered with an assault rifle in an elementary school, the absurd gun laws in this country would change. But nothing has happened.
The gun lobby in America, led by the NRA, has bullied this nation’s politicians into cowardly, supine silence. Even when 20 young children are blown away in their classrooms.This is a shameful situation that has made me very angry. So angry, in fact, that some people have criticized me for being too loud, opinionated, even rude when I have debated the issue of guns. But I make no apologies for that.”
Clarkson holds a special place in the hearts of gun folks because he punched Piers Morgan in the face.
That punch was due to the nasty things Morgan was writing about Clarkson’s wife and family in his tabloid. In the old days someone could demand that you show up on the field of honor for that sort of thing. Punching Piers Morgan in the face was understandable…and some would say commendable. The punch that ended Top Gear certainly isn’t.
The thing that bothers me, though, is now there is talk of Clarkson facing criminal charges for essentially giving another guy a bloody lip.
To understand why I find this troublesome I have to take you to another location in the United Kingdom. A place called Rotherham. For almost twenty years in Rotherham police and government officials knew there was a gang of British-Pakistani men waging a campaign of terror against vulnerable girls in the area. These men were abducting teenage girls, raping them, and even trafficking them in forced prostitution. An investigation estimates that this was done to over 1,400 girls…all while the government officials in the area turned a blind eye.
Actually, that’s not entirely accurate. The officials did not simply turn a blind eye. It’s more accurate to state that they enabled the rape and forced sexual slavery of teenage girls by these scumbags. In fact, on some occasions the police even intervened to protect the rapists from families of girls who tried to get them back:
I want you to stop for a minute and process this. You are a father. Your daughter has been snatched off the street by a gang of thugs you know to be active in abducting and raping teenage girls. You know the police absolutely refuse to do anything about it. Left with no alternative, you take matters into your own hands and try to reclaim your daughter from the hands of this rape gang…only to have the rapists call the cops on you, and you are the one who gets dragged off in handcuffs.
I want to emphasize here that I’m not pitching a Michael Caine movie plot. This information comes from an official investigation into the matter led by a dispassionate and respected academic…who was utterly appalled at what she discovered. This all really happened…and unfortunately it didn’t just happen in Rotherham. Evidence is coming to light that this same pattern of behavior took place in other areas of the United Kingdom, and for largely the same reasons.
So what does that have to do with Clarkson, you wonder? Simply this: If Jeremy Clarkson faces criminal charges for punching a Top Gear producer during an argument, then Her Majesty’s Government will have officially doled out more concrete personal and professional sanctions against Mr. Clarkson than they have against the government officials who made the Rotherham rape scandal possible.
Even the BBC’s firing of Clarkson is tainted by the fact that for decades the BBC covered up the sexual abuse of children by Jimmy Savile. In Rotherham some government officials at least had to resign…but to my knowledge nobody in the BBC has been fired over turning a blind eye to a man who Scotland Yard claims must have spent every waking moment of every day plotting to molest children.
I’m not arguing that Clarkson should be held blameless, here. I’m simply trying to point out how utterly absurd this whole situation is. Clarkson behaved like a jackass, certainly…but the entire system is more up in arms over Clarkson giving somebody a bloody lip than it is over any number of true horrors that are taking place. This is the natural result of absurdity becoming public policy…navel-gazing political correctness given power to the point where the entire society strains out a gnat and swallows a camel. Or, to put it more bluntly, strains out a punch and swallows widespread sexual abuse of children because government officials fear being called a racist.
Do not believe this is just a problem in the United Kingdom. It’s a common ailment across all of western civilization including here at home. It’s not quite as severe in the function of our society just yet, but the creeping evil has a foothold here as well. Consider that Army psychiatrists listened to Nidal Hasan rant about the glories of jihad and praise the terrorists we were actively engaged in a war to fight and didn’t question Hasan…but rather questioned themselves for being uncomfortable with it:
“Hasan repeatedly referred to his strong religious views in discussions with classmates, his superiors and even in his research work, the official said. His behavior, while at times perceived as intense and combative, was not unlike the zeal of others with strong religious views. But some doctors and staff were concerned that their unfamiliarity with the Muslim faith would lead them to unfairly single out Hasan’s behavior, the official said.”
I’d say history proves that Mr. Hasan’s “zeal” was quite unlike others with strong religious views. Note the absurdity: Even after Nidal Hasan killed thirteen people and wounded thirty more in an act of terrorism, people who interacted with him feel compelled to try and claim that his “religious views” weren’t unusual. This is a man who gave a powerpoint presentation on the justness of jihad against American forces in what was supposed to be an academic assignment on issues related to psychiatry…and this isn’t “unusual”?
For this kind of absurdity to reign supreme, people have to decline to challenge it. This might be a clue as to why some are so eager to invent speech codes and various other restrictions on the expressions of unapproved ideas…because it’s the only true antidote to having absurdity as the governing principle of society. Being actively pro-gun is awesome and we should all continue to do it…but if we ignore these other manifestations of idiocy our gun rights are going to be a moot point. A robust recognition of the right to self defense and self determination cannot exist when absurdity is the governing principle of society.
We’re not quite there yet even though, at times, it feels like we are. The best way to fight it is to refuse to buy the attempts at “narrative” that get foisted upon you by various media concerns and look for what’s real. Narrative is how they push Mike Brown as a harmless victim of institutional racism and impugn the entire University of Virginia over what turns out to be a completely fabricated claim of gang rape. (Not like that’s ever happened before…oh, wait…) Think critically and, most importantly, speak up. Don’t be afraid to call things as you see them. The only way to keep absurdity from becoming default public policy is to smother absurdity with common sense.
…because if you don’t do it, who will?