Sep. 17, 2009, at 11:49am
Jay Nordlinger makes a key personalist point—one that ties into more than one of our ongoing discussions—in a post this morning at the Corner: [my emphasis]
P.S. When President Ford, at the encouragement of Secretary Kissinger, refused to meet with Solzhenitsyn, conservatives thought this was a pretty rotten move and posture. I hope these same conservatives, and their heirs, see what President Obama’s snubbing of the Dalai Lama means today.
P.P.S. When President Obama does something — even a small something — like turn off the “news ticker” outside the American interests section in Havana, he tries to make nice with oppressors. Sometimes in life you have to choose: whether to make nice with the oppressors or with the oppressed. It’s hard to do both.
Writ large on the stage of international politics, it’s easy (at least I hope for most of us) to see the wrong of this. But this same dynamic is constantly at work among us in smaller, subtler ways much closer to home, where it is often disguised in pious garments. For instance, when those who have been abused or mistreated bring their charges forward and receive from those in a position of responsibility not justice (or even an honest investigation of the matter involved), but homilies on forgiveness and the need to avoid bitterness and vindictiveness.
It reminds me of that marvelous scene in The Winslow Boy, where Sir Robert calls on parliament to allow the boy’s case to be heard by reminding them of some the deepest principles of Christian justice: “You shall not stand with the powerful against the weak!” and “Whatever you do to the least of these, you do to me.”