Radio Derb Is On The Air: Mayhem, Gender Identity Confusion, Hate Crime Bogosity, and Random Teen Homicide
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As a podcast on iTunes, listenable/downloadable onscreen at Taki’s Magazine, or as a transcript here.

In one segment I compare and contrast the cases of Bradley Manning and Nidal Hasan, both of whom got sentences handed down at court martial last week.  I reach back into family history for some suitable terminology.

The two cases in fact have plenty of parallels. In both cases you have a service member who was, obviously and plainly, from the get-go, significantly peculiar. Nidal Hasan's peculiarity consisted of his being a fanatical Muslim looking to bring holy war to the infidels, including his comrades in the Army. Bradley Manning's peculiarity consisted of his being as gay as a maypole, a thing that was observed by all he came into contact with from his first days in basic training.

My mother's father Jack Knowles, a coal miner in the West Midlands of England, enlisted in the British Army during WW1—while drunk, according to family tradition. He served 211 days with the colors and was then discharged by a certain Major R.F. Knox of the Royal Engineers. I know this because I have the discharge papers. One of the boxes Major Knox was required to fill in on the form began with: "He is discharged in consequence of …" Major Knox completed the box by writing: "Not being likely to become an efficient soldier (on medical grounds)."

Well, Grandad Knowles was 41 when he enlisted, and the country needed coal miners back home digging coal, so there was no disgrace in the discharge. In any case Grandad was definitely not a Muslim; and if he was gay he did a superb job of hiding it, staying married to the same woman for nearly 70 years and fathering 13 children by her.

Still, I think that phrase on Grandad's discharge papers, the phrase "Not being likely to become an efficient soldier," could have applied perfectly well to both Nidal Hasan and Bradley Manning. It was obvious, long before either of them committed his crime, that neither Major Hasan nor Private Manning was likely to become an efficient soldier.

So why did they progress smoothly through their military careers? . . .

Because they both belong to Protected Minorities, that’s why.  In our zeal to vanquish every kind of unfairness, we have made entire classes of people invulnerable to fair scrutiny and placement.

The whole thing is at Taki’s Magazine.          


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