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Let's Combat Terrorism with ... Love
Loretta Lynch, the U.S. Attorney General, recently made a remarkable observation – an observation about terrorism and what in her view our response to it should be. I’ve held off writing about what she said because I didn’t want to offer up a cheesy knee jerk reply, one that would have painted her as hopelessly foolish and pathetically naïve. And that would have been a generous response on my part.
Ms. Lynch was talking about the massacre in Orlando – and it sounded like she was channeling the Beatles hit, All You Need is Love.
“To the LGBT community — we stand with you,” she said in Orlando. “The good in this world far outweighs the evil. Our common humanity transcends our differences, and our most effective response to terror is compassion, it’s unity and it’s love.”
Our most effective response to terror is … love”? Huh? Given the choice between hugging these psycho bastards and dropping great big bombs on their heads I’m opting for the latter.
When I asked a friend, one of considerable intelligence, what he thought about this, he offered up an analysis steeped in religion.
“As a Christian,” he told me, “I’m a believer in love conquering all. As a realist I recognize that some folks just don’t take well to the love I may offer them. Turning the other cheek worked for Jesus; not so much for me. And the radical Islamists won’t be moved by our offer of love unless a miracle happens, which I’m not counting on. But if Saul, who persecuted Christians, can be converted to love by Divine intervention there may be hope for a Damascene conversion. But I’m not holding my breath.”
Neither am I. What puzzles me about Ms. Lynch’s optimism is how exactly would this love thing work? How would love and compassion combat terrorism? Would the terrorists stop slaughtering innocents because we love them? Would they stop burning people alive in cages and cutting off the heads of their enemies?
How would it work?
It wouldn’t. So we might just chalk this up as a silly comment worthy of a 60s hippy hanging out in San Francisco but not someone of her stature. But it’s par for the course with this president and his team, a president whose guiding philosophy seems to be: Let’s do whatever we can to downplay the reality of terrorism so I don’t have that inconvenient piece of history besmirching my iconic legacy.
Let’s not call it by its name, Radical Islamic Terrorism. Let’s call the Islamic State the JV team. Let’s say the Islamic State isn’t even Islamic.
In that context, what Loretta Lynch said wasn’t as crazy as it sounds.
I don’t know what Ms. Lynch was actually thinking when she talked about love and terrorism. I'm guessing she didn't mean we should give the terrorists a great big kiss and the raw power of love would turn them into wonderful caring human beings. I'm guessing she meant that when they hurt us we shouldn't let their evil consume us. Maybe it just came out of her mouth wrong. But for all I know Loretta Lynch is one of those devout Christians who honestly believes that love really is the most effective response to terror. But there's another possibility: She may be nothing more than a loyal member of the Obama political team spouting nonsense to help out her boss.