The Tragedy of the West: Égalitié, Fraternitié, Boko Haram
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In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, we now learn that upwards of 2,000 may be dead in Nigeria in Boko Haram's deadliest attack yet (Boko Haram is an Islamist group that for years has been waging a bloody insurgency against the Nigerian government). Thankfully, Europe has not yet reached this point, but given current immigration policy, are they not at least moving closer to a Boko Haram?

"Boko Haram," of course, translates as "Western education is forbidden/sinful." So what could be a more fitting end to The Tragedy of the West, than our own Boko Haram? The Tragedy of the West, by my definition, is that in the West's attempt to spread its "universal" values, over time the calculation is made that those same values must be sacrificed. For example, as part of the effort to welcome what was formerly "the other" into our culture, our former principle of free speech must be eliminated (like in France).

In my book (published by last year), I explain the modern origins of The Tragedy of the West in this way:

In the decades before the dismantling of the empires, the universality of our values was questioned and the idea was wounded, but it was too strong and adaptable to just die. The origin of the empires was of the same cultural impetus that now compels us to denounce those same empires and celebrate multiculturalism. The universalistic urge turned us against racism and birthed multiculturalism to fight it. Belief in the universality of western values was once implicitly contradicted by racism. Now, in our anti-racist and post-colonial era, universal and cultural imperialism is no longer burdened by such an obvious cognitive dissonance, and so it moves forward at an ever greater pace.

Here in the US, our own Boko Haram has already struck a mighty blow against oppressive Western rationality—see below:

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