Jonah Goldberg: If the Islamic State is not evil, then what is?
“Perhaps without even realizing it,” Peter Roff, then with UPI, wrote in October 2001, “the President is using language that recalls a simpler time when good and evil seemed more easy to identify — a time when issues, television programs and movies were more black and white, not colored by subtle hues of meaning.”
No, it doesn’t. But perhaps a reflexive and dogmatic fear of the word “evil” hinders thinking?
Never mind that the Islamic State says it seeks a global caliphate with its flag over the White House. Who cares that it is administering social services? Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot did, too. That’s what revolutionary groups do when they grab enough territory.
As a matter of objective moral fact, the answer seems obvious. But also under any more subjective version of multiculturalism, pluralism or moral relativism shy of nihilism, “evil” seems a pretty accurate description for an organization that is not only intolerant toward gays, Christians, atheists, moderate Muslims, Jews, women, et al. but also stones, beheads and enslaves them.
Jonah Goldberg is a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and editor-at-large of National Review Online.
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