The West is dying because it has turned its back on the Permanent Things. But what will be left when the secularist “West” is dead?…
I expected my recent essay “Race against Reason” to provoke an element of controversy and was not surprised when it elicited the following comment:
Yes, this is all well and good, but we can’t ignore the simple facts of mathematics and human population growth. If Europeans get displaced by vast numbers of non-Christian (if not anti-Christian) foreigners, there is no more West, there is no more ‘Europe,’ and respect for the Permanent Things—which is by no means universal—is lost forever. At this point if we truly wish to conserve we must entertain some level of repatriation and decreasing non-Western immigration massively.
The points raised deserve a response even though, in point of fact, they have nothing to do with my essay, which sought to show the irrational roots of racism. As I made clear, “the thorny and volatile issue of immigration… is not a racial issue, in spite of the efforts of many to brand it as such.” The setting of limits on the number of immigrants and the tackling of the problem of illegal immigration is a legitimate right of sovereign nations, irrespective of the color of the skin of the immigrants.
Similarly I insisted that “the problem of radical Islam and the barbaric terrorism to which it has given birth… has nothing to do with race or racism”:
Islam is a religion, not a race, and, what is more, it is thoroughly multiracial, with all races represented in its ranks. To oppose ISIS and seek appropriate measures to prevent the spread of its influence and power is no more racist or ‘Islamophobic’ than opposition to the terrorism of the IRA in the 1970s was racist or ‘celtophobic.’ Opposition to barbarism and the terrorism it practices is a mark of civilization, not racism.
With regard to the Islamic presence in Europe, do we need reminding of the wars in the Balkans, of recent memory, in which Christians and Muslims in Bosnia and beyond, killed each other in a frenzy of hatred and “ethnic cleansing”? Do we need reminding that all of those doing the killing, on both the Christian and Muslim side, were impeccably white? Do we need reminding that such ethnic cleansing has been part of the demographic dynamic of that region ever since the Muslims first invaded centuries earlier? Do we need reminding that the very word “balkanization” entered the language because of such enmity between peoples and the destructive fragmentation that is its consequence? The point is not whether Islamic immigration to Europe is a major threat to peace—obviously it is—it’s that Islam is a multiracial religion as Christianity is a multiracial religion. It’s about a clash of cultures, not a clash of races. In such a clash of cultures, a black Christian and a white Christian are one side of the divide, and a black Muslim and a white Muslim are on the other. It might well be the case that the influx of Muslims into Europe is leading to the balkanization of Europe with all the harmful consequences that this entails; however, it’s not a racial issue but a religious or cultural one. Let’s not confuse the issue by blurring our terms.
Let’s move on to my interlocutor’s discussion of “the simple facts of mathematics and human population growth.” I agree that these mathematical facts can’t be ignored, but they are not so much about the problem of addition as of subtraction. It’s not a problem of population growth but of population depletion. Europeans have embraced the culture of death, contracepting themselves out of existence. Europe is not suffering from a population explosion but a population implosion. With a shrinking and aging population, unwilling to reproduce itself, immigration becomes a necessity. One cannot have a sustainable economy, still less a continually expanding economy, if the number of producers and consumers is shrinking. A culture which seeks self-gratification instead of the self-sacrifice needed to raise children is doomed to self-destruction. It has no future. It has no future for the plain and simple reason that it has no children. In this sense, it can truly be said that the future belongs to those who forsake selfishness for the selflessness of parenthood. The meek really do inherit the earth!
But, my interlocutor responds, “if Europeans get displaced by vast numbers of non-Christian foreigners, there is no more West, there is no more ‘Europe,’ and respect for the Permanent Things—which is by no means universal—is lost forever.”
What is one to make of these doom-laden words? Is it the end of the world as we know it?
As one who subscribes to–nay, as one who submits to—the Permanent Things, I would say that the “West” is not synonymous with the Permanent Things, nor do the Permanent Things depend on the survival of the “West” for their permanence. On the contrary, the “West” is dying because it has turned its back on the Permanent Things.
The Permanent Things are grounded in a reverence for God and for the Church that He established, and also in a reverence for the traditional family which is the bedrock of all healthy culture and the seed with which it plants itself into the future. When the love for God is gone and the family has been abandoned, there is no future. The secular fundamentalist “West” is decaying because it is decadent, and it is dying because it has embraced the culture of death.
What will be left when the secularist “West” is dead will be the Permanent Things. Christianity is alive and well, and thriving and growing, in Africa, Asia, China–and yes, even in resurrected embryonic form in Europe and other parts of the “West.” Europe and the “West” might be committing collective suicide, but Christendom is always new, as it is always old, because it is the Permanent Thing.
The future looks grim for those who have cast their lot with the Grim Reaper, but for those who follow the God who conquered death there is always the promise of the resurrection. The “West” might be “lost forever,” but the light in the East is always rising.
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