July 07, 2007

In the comments on “Control the Borders, Not the Citizens,” Michael Morris suggests that I’m engaging in “fear-mongering” when I mention the possibility that Islamic immigration to the United States has reached critical mass.  I think Mr. Morris misread me, so let me elaborate on the point.

The problem isn’t that, say, there are so many Muslims in the United States that they corporately are poised to take over.  (Although, in certain areas, that is true—witness Hamtramck, Michigan, which is more a part of Dar Al-Islam today than it is a part of the United States.)  What I’m talking about is a cultural clash—what happens when vibrant cultures come into contact with decadent ones.  The lure of the foreign and the exotic is very strong, particularly when what is foreign and exotic is also more vibrant and vital.

American Christianity today, in almost all of its forms (some ethnic Orthodox and traditional Catholics excepted) is enervated.  The same cannot be said for Islam.  For all of its faults—and, as a traditional Catholic, I do believe that Islam is a demonic religion—Islam presents a way out of a decadent, hedonistic American way of life that is supported by a peculiarly American form of Christianity.

And so conversions to Islam in the United States are increasing.  It used to be that such conversions were largely confined to blacks in prison, who joined the Nation of Islam.  Today, such blacks are still converting—but to “mainstream” Islam.  And blacks outside of prison are converting, too.  But what is the fastest-growing group of converts to Islam today?  Recent immigrants from Mexico.  Why?  Because they find in Islam something that they are missing in American Catholicism—a vital religion that structures their entire life.  (For all of its failings, the Catholic Church in Mexico still provides something like that.)

Without sounding too much like an advertisement for Chronicles, let me mention that I’m currently publishing a multipart narrative based on several interviews I conducted with a local convert to Islam.  The experience has been eye-opening for me (and readers have told me the same).  If you want to begin to understand how even a relatively small population of Muslim immigrants has made conversion to Islam socially acceptable—let alone to understand what kind of Islam those immigrants are peddling—pick up the June and August issues of Chronicles.


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