Saturday, July 16, 2011

Note from Underground

I wanted to write a quick word about why I haven’t been blogging much the past few months. I’ve been spending my time on other things.

It doesn’t mean I don’t care about the issues. But it’s been intensely time-consuming to keep up with just a tiny part of all that’s going on, (especially so since the Nakba of November 2008), all the more so because I try to hold myself to a decently presentable style. (Not that it helps. We bloggers are held in even lower regard now than we were five years ago). Anyhow, Vincent van Gogh once wrote to his brother Theo that even mediocrity requires a lot of hard work. As a bona fide mediocrity, I can vouch for that.

That said, don’t take my going over the wire as a sign that I don’t still care about all the things we’ve always cared about here, like free speech and resisting jihadism. But I’ll tell you I care much less now than I did five years ago about events and characters that keep reappearing over and over again without changing in any important detail.

Take the free speech situation. I stuck up for Terry Jones when he got arrested: I was impressed as hell with his closing argument at the kangaroo trial they gave him. But nothing he’s done since has added anything. Then this year I didn’t bother commenting about the Dearborn Arab American Festival. I concluded that, if you want to know what’s going on in Dearborn, the Arab-American Festival isn’t the place to look. True enough, it was reports from the 2009 and 2010 festivals that brought to light once and for all that Jack O’Reilly, Chief Haddad, and Dearborn’s civil watchdogs and churchmen are mere toadies of the city’s Muslim community. Nor has anything changed since, and in some ways they’re much worse. But the proof of that isn’t in video documentaries depicting gangs of yong Arab males bargmaking their impolite way through East Dearborn's three-day Coney Island. From what I’m reading, outsiders now see the Festival as a tourist stop promising up-close looks at Sharia from the very "belly of the beast.”

But I can hardly complain when Sharia-tourist Stuart Kaufman writes that Dearborn “is no longer part of America,” when I’ve said as much myself. Or at least I’ve said the First Amendment does not apply here.

Suffice it to say for now the situation hasn’t improved in Dearborn, including the way it’s being reported.

I’ll try to write more often, or post other material when I can’t. I do appreciate every one of you who keeps coming back to DU in spite of my long absences, and actually cares what I have to say.

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