There have been a lot of excellent articles recently on the existential crisis among European elites triggered by the mass sexual assaults in several cities on New Year’s Eve. PJ Media’s Richard Fernandez has one of the best:
A political crisis of the kind which may engulf Europe has a destabilizing effect analogous to free-surface flooding in ships. This occurs when tons of liquid slosh inside a ship and slam it from one side to another. The great transatlantic liner SS Normandie sank during WW2 in New York harbor from the water pumped into her by firefighters trying to put out a blaze. Suggestions from her designer to flood her to shallow bottom were rejected in favor of a failed program of flooding and counter-flooding which caused her to heel over and capsize.
In the same way, periods of political upheaval will threaten to overturn societies unless people pay attention. One advantage the United States theoretically enjoys over Europe during periods of free-surface flooding is the Constitution. This serves as a foundation, a sort of ballast which lowers the meta-centric height of the ship of state and keeps it on an even keel in all but the roughest sailing.
Pope Francis, supposedly the conscience of secular Europe, is an establishment figure whose divided mind on the refugee crisis was on full display during a speech to Vatican diplomats.
Pope Francis on Monday urged European governments to keep welcoming migrants while acknowledging security and other concerns over the recent mass influx of people mainly from the Middle East, Asia and Africa.
Addressing ambassadors to the Holy See in the aftermath of the New Year’s Eve mass assaults in Germany’s Cologne, the pontiff said the present wave of migration seemed to be undermining the foundations of Europe’s “humanistic spirit”.
He urged European leaders not to to lose “the values and principles of humanity … however much they may prove, in some moments of history, a burden difficult to bear.”
Francis said Europe was struggling to cope with the unprecedented wave of refugees, which saw over a million people arrive on the continent’s shores in the course of 2015.
“Many migrants from Asia and Africa see in Europe a beacon for principles such as equality before the law and for values inherent in human nature,” he said.
“All the same, the massive number of arrivals on the shores of Europe appear to be overburdening the system of reception painstakingly built on the ashes of the Second World War, a system that is still an acknowledged beacon of humanity.”
He said the sheer size of the influx was causing “inevitable problems” and raising concerns about “changes in the cultural and social structures” of host countries.
“Equally significant are fears about security, further exacerbated by the growing threat of international terrorism,” the pontiff added.
The migration crisis — Europe’s worst since World War II — has caused deep rifts between EU member states and left the bloc’s Schengen system of open borders on the brink of collapse.
And the shock generated by events in Cologne at New Year has piled pressure on Chancellor Angela Merkel over her liberal stance towards refugees.
Pope Francis said EU governments could welcome people fleeing conflict, repression and hunger whilst also ensuring the security of their own citizens.
“Europe, aided by its great cultural and religious heritage, has the means to defend the centrality of the human person and to find the right balance between its twofold moral responsibility to protect the rights of its citizens and to ensure assistance and acceptance to migrants,” he said.
This is a man who urged that no refugees be turned away. Now he is saying the newcomers are a threat to traditions and values of Europeans?
And Europe should welcome them anyway — even if they can’t assimilate or if terrorists are hiding among them.
This is a mind divided against itself. The pope is trying to reconcile two completely opposite world views: his role as guardian of the traditions of faith and the core values of western civilization with his advocacy for “humanistic” society that allows anyone to enter even if they mean to do harm. In the end, what comes out is mush.
We will probably see more of this disconnect as the crises at home and abroad become worse. Leftist elites, who find it impossible to alter their views, will be unable to accept the reality they can see with their own two eyes, maintaining their loyalty to the Narrative at all costs.
The crash — when it comes — will be loud and long.