Posts Tagged ‘Slate’
October 15th, 2010 at 1:11 pm
Conservative Women Leading the Social Network Revolution

Slate’s Noreen Malone writes an incisive article detailing the secret behind the rise of conservative female activists: superior use of social networking.

This brand of social activism also happens to perfectly dovetail with the brand of conservative feminism that was being promoted at the (Smart Girl Summit): You can maintain your duties as a wife and mother but also become involved in the movement through making phone calls, handing out flyers, running for school board if national office seems too disruptive to your family. ( “Start small, build big” was another theme—school board leads to county leads to state, etc.) You can organize an entire conference and run a highly trafficked Web site but, since those activities are not professionalized, still call yourself a stay-at-home mom. And those “maternal” skills—organization, communication—are just as good, if not better than, a high-powered professional résumé in a movement that’s asking for foot soldiers. (But high-powered résumés are OK, too—cf Liz Cheney.)

Though Malcolm Gladwell makes some excellent points about the limitations of social networks as vehicles for social change, the increasing use and adaptability of social networking technology is allowing a whole new breed of conservative activists (homeschooling mothers) to dramatically impact the national political scene; at least when it comes to news coverage and GOP primaries.

Stay tuned…

August 23rd, 2010 at 6:11 pm
Christopher Hitchens Cuts Through the Noise on the Ground Zero Mosque
Posted by Print

With the Ground Zero Mosque raising the hackles of some of the loudest and most cloying voices on both sides of the political aisle, it’s becoming increasingly rare to find a pundit of any ideological persuasion who can put together a reasoned position on the proposed house of worship.

A glaring exception comes courtesy of Christoper Hitchens’ piece on Slate today, where he highlights some of the darker views of Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf, the head of the group looking to build the mosque. Foremost among them is Rauf’s unapologetic embrace of the radical regime in Iran — a position that Hitchens rightly notes can’t be squared with any authentic belief in democracy or liberalism.

That’s particularly ironic when you consider how much Rauf and company have wrapped themselves in the flag of tolerance as they push forward on the mosque project, a tactic brilliantly dissected by Hitchens:

Emboldened by the crass nature of the opposition to the center, its defenders have started to talk as if it represented no problem at all and as if the question were solely one of religious tolerance. It would be nice if this were true. But tolerance is one of the first and most awkward questions raised by any examination of Islamism. We are wrong to talk as if the only subject was that of terrorism. As Western Europe has already found to its cost, local Muslim leaders have a habit, once they feel strong enough, of making demands of the most intolerant kind. Sometimes it will be calls for censorship of anything “offensive” to Islam. Sometimes it will be demands for sexual segregation in schools and swimming pools. The script is becoming a very familiar one. And those who make such demands are of course usually quite careful to avoid any association with violence. They merely hint that, if their demands are not taken seriously, there just might be a teeny smidgeon of violence from some other unnamed quarter …

In recent days, many critics of the mosque have been tarred by liberals who use the most extreme examples of opposition to Rauf’s plans to indict the nearly2/3 of the public who are opposed to it (see Frank Rich’s column in the New York Times this weekend for an example). With spokespeople as eloquent as Hitchens, however, that line of attack will ultimately prove fruitless.