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March 14, 2006

JIM GERAGHTY HAS MORE THOUGHTS on tipping point politics and Islam:

I think I'm still optimistic and hopeful; as I wrote, "Thankfully, many would say that bin Laden never spoke for them, and they're ready and eager to do whatever it takes to eradicate Islamist terror cells," and "that some Muslims, after years of seeing a faltering, doubtful, self-hating and equivocal West taking on the relentless faith of Islamist fanatics, would come off the fence."

But here's a point that I should have added: Right now, if you're a Muslim, and you denounce Islamism, there is a severe price to be paid - Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Irshad Manji, etc. Often you have to live in hiding and dodge death threats.

If you embrace and/or endorse Islamism, there is little price to be paid. The West won't attack you for what you say. You don't have to worry about some crazy Westerner suddenly pulling a Pym Fortyn or a Van Gogh on you. Heck, in London, you can preach jihad for years before the authorities even think about deporting you.

Thus, our message gets stifled; their message gets amplified.

But what if we changed that equation? What if the bad guys had to live in fear? What if they had to be careful about who they told, who was in the crowd they addressed, who was listening? I bet it would go a long way to slow down their efforts.

Read the whole thing.