Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The U.S. is going to sign on to a U.N. declaration calling for the worldwide decriminalization of homosexuality. I don't have a problem with decriminalizing homosexuality, at home or abroad, but isn't there a disconnect somewhere in here?
This brought luster to my tired old eyes. When Jonah Goldberg starts out like this, it either means he thinks he has a devastating and unexpected point, or he's using voice recognition software while he tries to get his sweater on right-side out. Alas, Goldberg never gets out of the warm-up phase:
For the last eight years the neo-realist, reality-based, liberal foreign-policy types have been telling us how crazy it is to impose "western values" on foreign or otherwise non-western societies. So why is it ok to impose this very Western value?
I'm not even going to look for a defense of, say, ritual clitorectomy by whatever people Goldberg is talking about, since he obviously hasn't gone to that trouble himself. I will say that, though he seems to have some pipe-chewing namby-pamby dashiki-wearing liberal strawmen in mind, he could just as easily be talking about Samuel Huntington.
Is decriminalizing homosexuality more important than decriminalizing tyranny?
Oh Jesus Christ.
One response, and a fair one, would be that the U.N. wouldn't be imposing anything. It's just a declaration of principles or some such. Okay, but there are a few problems there.
I'll spare you; you can read the rest if you have a fascination for spoiled conundrums. Eventually he gets to, I'm guessing from context, the Bush abstinence program for Africa.

I wonder if Goldberg ever considers that these arguments are about finding the best way to improve or save people's lives, and that even in countries where same-sex relations have been legalized, ancient prejudices against them can still be violent. I wish someone would get him to do so -- not because it might change his mind, but because it might challenge him to escalate his argument into the sort of 3-D laser light show of bullshit I know he's capable of.

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