From my mailbag on a very interesting day. This one comes from a French reader:

What seems to happen is that American liberals have “finally” discovered anticlericalism, which until then was a fixture of the European left. Yes, America is becoming more and more like Europe, and I don’t think it’s progress. Movement conservatives have a lot to answer for on this front, as their zealotry and jingoism ended making once universally shared notions like God or patriotism unpalatable, even disgusting, to a whole generation.

Here’s an excerpt from an e-mail from a white Evangelical who is moderately conservative, and who says he is sinking into an exhausted pessimism:

1. There is nothing we can do to make black activists happy. Yesterday a caller to NPR said that removing traces of slavery and racism required, among other things, renaming Washington, D.C. And at that moment, I gave up. We can elect a black President, remove historical monuments, require race-sensitivity classes, rename streets and schools and cities, and on and on, and there will always be newer demands. And the new demands will always be bigger and will always be made with louder and louder voices. Not only am I likely to stop making a futile effort to be understanding and accommodative, I think I need to stop listening. Can anything be more harmful to a cause than when a sympathetic listener decides to tune out, because he realizes that anything else will be a lifelong waste of his time?

2. Unrelated thought (I hope): With drones, there is no longer a need for suicide bombers. Current tactics require the death of murderous jihadis and the recruitment and indoctrination of new ones for one-off attacks. Soon, the same guys will be able to attack over and over.

3. Guns are hard to acquire in Europe. I read that the ones used in the two Paris attacks were decommissioned guns that amateur gunsmiths turned back into weapons. In the US, give me $1000 and I can get you enough guns and ammunition for one person to kill a hundred people. Give me three or four days, and I can do it legally. For all the talk about the Paris-style attacks being confined to Europe because of proximity and raw numbers of Muslims in-country, the U.S. is a much easier target. We’ve got roughly as many human targets and way, way more guns.

I’m not sold on the Benedict Option, and certainly not the run-for-the-hills caricature of the BenOp, but lately I’m thinking I just want a very large piece of land in the middle of nowhere where I can go and no one will bother me.

I’m somewhere between “il faut cultiver notre jardin” and “the center cannot hold.”

Here’s part of one from a reader commenting on my post about, in part, Steve Inskeep’s long softball interview this morning with a CAIR representative:

It was cringe inducing. I thought to myself, “My God, I can’t imagine NPR giving such free reign and respect to a leading prolife conservative voice after the Colorado Springs shooting.”  

These people have no self respect. If they were taken hostage, they’d be the first to sell out their countryman to save their own a*ses. 

A couple of days ago I was listening to Fresh Air and heard Terry Gross interviewing a couple of black writers. Her overly deferential whiteness was beyond infuriating. I felt really sorry for these guys. They were very interesting, and would have been more so if Gross had not focused almost exclusively on their race, race, race, race, and race. It was, like the Inskeep interview, cringe inducing. I thought to myself, “Who listens to this sh*t?” Answer: Morons like me. 

Hey, reader, I’m worse than you: I actually donate to pay for it!

Talk amongst yourselves.