A reader just emailed me to object to our publication of the essay that Mr Smith cross-posted here last night. He viewed with alarm the talk of civil war, and cited historical precedents to support his position.
His main point was that “[p]ublishing this sort of thing will be fatal to your overall aim.”
I sent him this response:
I disagree that “this sort of thing will be fatal to [our] overall aim.”
Our overall aim is to air many different viewpoints, to encourage open discussion of those viewpoints, to allow our commenters to debate, and to arrive at some sort of synthesis based on the “distributed intelligence” of the internet.
When I post a piece by somebody else, it does not necessarily represent my own point of view. On Mr Smith’s essay, in particular, I included a disclaimer, because I disagree with him at several points.
Nevertheless, his position is a well-reasoned one, and deserves to be heard. Especially after the debacle at LGF, I refuse to squelch people who are genuinely trying to discuss these issues in good faith.
As for civil war: Mr Smith is not advocating a civil war (I wouldn’t publish his essay if he were; that would verge on incitement). He considers civil war in various European countries to be quite likely in the not-so-distant future, and he’s not he only writer gazing into the entrails of the beast and arriving at the same haruspicy. His sole point in that civil war might not be the worst of all possible outcomes.
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I’m not concerned with our blog’s “reputation”. That reputation will rise and fall with the fads and trends of the day, and is not important.
What’s important is the truth, insofar as it can be determined, and the survival of Western Civilization — which goal I think we all can agree on.
I advise you to get into the comments and make your presence felt there. Or send me a well-written and carefully thought-out essay of your own refuting Mr Smith’s points, and I’ll consider publishing it.
Anyone who approaches the discussion reasonably and calmly is welcome to be heard at Gates of Vienna. That has been my policy for three years, and I’m not going to change it.
Thanks for writing. I really do respect principled disagreement.
— Baron B.