When Britain savages itself
By Selwyn Duke
England's prestigious Oxford Union recently invited famed raconteur and talk-radio host Michael Savage to a debate on whether or not NSA leaker Edward Snowden is a hero. And that is certainly a matter for debate. Whatever Snowden is, though, he is definitely one thing: more noble than the British government.
You see, Savage won't be attending the debate for a somewhat well-known but nonetheless shocking reason: He's still banned from entering Britain.
Savage was placed on a list of persona non grata in 2009 along with Muslim extremists and race-group leaders for, as Gordon Brown's U.K. government put it, "seeking to provoke others to serious criminal acts and fostering hatred." Of course, with the "hate speech" laws in today's Britain — where Christians are arrested for professing their faith — such an accusation could be leveled for even just criticizing Islam or homosexual behavior. So what was it in Savage's case? His message of "borders, language and culture"? We can ask but the U.K. government won't tell.
And it doesn't even matter.
Because Savage was placed on the list not for polemics but political expediency: Cowardly to the core, the burka-brown-nosing Brown government didn't want to ban Muslim jihadists and the other miscreants without serving up enough white males for "balance." And this speaks volumes about today's Britain.
Before getting to that, however, I have a suggestion for the Oxford Union. Why not offer to have Savage appear via satellite on a large video screen? I don't know if Oxford has used this technique before — and my guess is that they like to adhere to a traditional formula in their debates — but think about the delicious irony: Michael Savage, banned alleged bad boy, appearing on a huge Big Brother-like video screen to bedevil a government that is actually becoming Big Brother. The appearance could be dubbed "The Savage Leak from the U.S."
The only problem is that Savage's image might then appear larger than the U.K. itself. Don't get me wrong, like many Americans, I have the instincts of an Anglophile. Why do you think our old films — even if set during the Roman Empire — might feature actors with British accents? (There's another irony: Britain was an outpost of the Roman Empire…and then we made movies with Julius Caesar sounding like Margaret Thatcher!) Americans have long wanted to love Britain.
Now Britain doesn't even love herself.
Those old films were made in the days when you could still say the sun never sets on the British Empire, which at one time ruled a quarter of the world's people. Now Britain's life clock reads a quarter to midnight.
It didn't surprise me in the least when David Cameron's "conservative" government did nothing to remove Savage from the banned list; after all, with a political spectrum situated where we're heading, U.K. conservatives are a lot like our quasi-moderate liberals.
Britain is now the Incredible Shrinking Land. Once a bold nation certain that "English" was synonymous with civilization, it is now contracting culturally into ever-tightening coils of callow and craven political correctness. If a boy says he's a girl and wants to go to school dressed like Maid Marian, the headmaster (probably a mistress today) will order a round of sensitivity training for the rest of the 8-year-olds. And dare they question his "gender" perception, well, it's like the headmistress who recently threatened to attach a "Racial Discrimination note" to the record of any child who didn't attend an Islamic workshop. They'll be branded bigots. Heck, this is a nation whose "National Children's Bureau" advised in 2008 that toddlers who say "yuck" in response to foreign food may be "racist."
So, listen, I still love traditional Britain, though it has now been relegated to movies and memories. As far as its current culture goes, however, I say yuck. And this brings me to a word for Michael Savage.
I know he was taking it quite hard when he first was placed on the U.K. banned list. But I think here of what Jesus said: "If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you." And if speaking the Truth is now a revolutionary act in Britain, I would take their banning me as a badge of honor. Hey, Savage could probably get off the banned list next week — he'd just have to have a sex-change or convert to Islam. The British government, rife with capons bearing hyphenated last names, will never reject one of its own.
So all I can say, UK-LBGT, is, why don't you ban me, too? Whatever Savage's ideological trespass, I'm surely guilty of it as well. In fact, you really need to ban millions of Americans — and of your own citizens — who still have the temerity to believe tradition isn't a dirty word.
Hey, why not?
You've already banned your true self.