From: A Washington Post Reader [Email him]
I saw this piece by Boston University Professor Stephen Prothero,
in the Washington Post: Why conservatives start culture wars and liberals win them
[January 29, 2016]
Many people now view the culture of victimhood so visible on the right — in Bill O’Reilly’s war on the so-called “war on Christmas,” for example — as a pale imitation of the victimhood culture of left-wing identity politics. But this tradition goes back to Protestants who saw themselves as victims of Deism in 1800, of Catholicism in the 1830s and 1840s, and of Mormonism before and after the Civil War.Even though conservatives tend to start the culture wars, liberals almost always win them. The “infidel” Jefferson and “papist” John Kennedy become president. Prohibition is repealed. Marijuana becomes legal. Gays and lesbians get marriage rights. Conservatives manage an occasional victory — on guns, for example. But in almost every arena where the contemporary culture wars have been fought, liberals now control the agenda.Liberals may win our culture wars for philosophical reasons (because the constitutional principle of liberty is on their side) or for practical ones (because the nation is becoming more Catholic or more brown). But the most important reason they win is because their opponents fixate on lost causes.
Extremely broad strokes. I hope someone at VDARE.com has the insight to be able to offer intelligent commentary on this. Prothero [Email him]
is essentially saying conservatives are always doomed, no matter what cause they invoke.James Fulford writes: What's wrong with Prothero's thesis, briefly, is
In fact, all these culture wars can go both ways. The 1924 Immigration Act was a reaction to early 20th century immigration—which was what was making the nation become "more Catholic." It limited immigration for 40 years. Who knows what the 2024 Immigration Act will do? It might very stop the nation from becoming "more brown."
As Peter Brimelow says "miracles happen quite often in politics. For example, no-one in the 1970s expected the Soviet Union to collapse."
That's what Trump is about.
- The belief that conservatives started the fight—"Bill O’Reilly’s war on the so-called 'war on Christmas' " only happened after years of an actual War on Christmas.
- The assumption that all historical changes in a "liberal" direction are progress, and therefore good.
- The belief that immigration, in particular, is something that just happens—"because the nation is becoming more Catholic or more brown".