Why can’t Ben Carson address the ramifications of his bigotry?

Maybe because it would be awkward?

Caricature by Paul Szep

Caricature by Paul Szep

From PolitiFact: Ben Carson: Do any Muslim countries have women’s rights, gay rights or religious freedom?

Spoiler: mostly false, with caveats. Ironically, while busily lambasting nations where a different religion holds the majority and calls the shots, he rather fails in addressing those inequalities and the political extremes evidenced here.

What do I mean? He feels that being Muslim should exclude a person from the presidency, because heaven forbid a single Muslim should be the head of state. Maybe if America were to become a majority Muslim nation we’d have to worry about being one of the worst Muslim-dominant nations according to the data in the fact-check. Maybe we’d be one of the best. We will probably never know.

But take the two existing extremes we do have here: one extreme that would like to see equality of opportunity for all without discrimination against gender, preference/identity, or religion, and a different extreme would utterly exclude some religions and barely tolerate others, that isn’t tolerant of homosexuality, and, for all the lip service to the contrary, is anti-woman, at least insofar as it’s “those” women and not women abiding in their proper role according to that extreme’s terms. I think that’s just an honest assessment of the extremes (not of shades of gray approaching the middle).

What happens if the inclusive extreme were to become the dominant power (remember, that’s the fear of Muslims in office, right?) Irrespective of gender, preference/identity, and religion, all Americans would have the same opportunities, and the genuine evidence of that would be that we would expect roles in leadership to be statistically representative without having to be forced into that shape by policy. The law of the land would be simply, “believe what you will, but comport yourself according to the rule of law when in public, especially if holding public office.”

What happens if the opposite extreme were to become the dominant power? Again, look to the vocal fringe, not the reasonable factions. “Muslims are a problem and we need to get rid of them.” There’s a word for that. Pogram. Maybe even genocide. How open to even Quakerism and Unitarianism would that extreme be? It wasn’t that long ago in the news that extremely radical self-proclaimed “Christians” (who I do NOT think are representative) made it a point to go to Unitarian churches during services expressly to disrupt them, and one of those services was a memorial service. Let that sink in. THAT extreme in power. How would other non-Christian faiths and atheists fare in the face of that kind of extremity?

If one has doubts about the extremity of that kind of Christianity when it comes to homosexuality and alternative sexual identities, consider it was that kind of extreme Christian American that traveled to Uganda to advocate for a death penalty for homosexuality. What would that kind of extreme do were it the majority in power here?

If one has doubts about the extremity of that kind of Christianity when it comes to women, look at the Quiverfull movement, e.g., the Duggars. As a personal choice of faith/practice, sure, whatever, I respect individual decisions. But when that is the dogmatic view of the proper role of women in Christian society, subservient to man, charged with unsustainable reproduction rates, what are the implications for a nation under the rule of that kind of extreme as a majority power? What would the education, career, and bodily autonomy ramifications for all women be if the extreme becomes the law of the land?

As things stand right now, it’s not Sharia we have to worry about. It’s simply tyranny of any majority.

And lest the left thinks I’m solely cheerleading on their side, we hear a lot of anti-Western hegemony gobbledygook from those quarters. Can you think of another dominant culture whose hegemony you’d rather your great-grandkids live under? Or are we just supposed to be so very inclusive that, like our military in Afghanistan right now, we must turn a blind eye to things like child rape and sex slavery because, “oh, that’s just the culture, we can’t interfere with that?” Or maybe we need to keep making allowances for female genital mutilation? Or mutilation as a just punishment for misdemeanors? Or any other reprehensible cultural cruelty of which we may find modern examples in the world?

Colonialism and imperialism over the last few centuries have absolutely caused severe problems, but cultural hegemony? I don’t think so. I think there’s absolutely a spectrum of savagery to civility, and that if we want to be on the truly moral end of that spectrum, its the civility end, and that’s what our rule of law should reflect, not the wildest fever dreams of any extreme expanded into a majority power and exercised with an iron fist.

Carson, for all his brain surgeon genius, doesn’t reflect on any of that.