“Critics who branded (Huntingdon’s) book as a work of undisguised nativism missed an essential point. Huntington observed that his was an ‘argument for the importance of Anglo-Protestant culture, not for the importance of Anglo-Protestant people.’ The success of this great republic, he said, had hitherto depended on the willingness of generations of Americans to honor the creed of the founding settlers and to shed their old affinities. But that willingness was being battered by globalization and multiculturalism, and by new waves of immigrants with no deep attachments to America’s national identity. ‘The Stars and Stripes were at half-mast’ he wrote in ‘Who Are We?’, ‘and other flags flew higher on the flagpole of American identities.'”
Wall Street Journal Article On Huntington
1.) It is difficult to see how one can get to Anglo-Protestant culture apart from a majority of Anglo-Protestant people. Huntington desired A native America maintaining its original meaning but manned by a people shaped and drawn by a plethora of alien cultures. This is the ridiculous notion of America as a “proposition nation.” Now certainly people from other cultures and nations can become American but only as America remains a majority of Anglo-Protestant people. When America becomes a majority of non Anglo-Protestant people America will no longer have a Anglo-protestant culture.
2.) The third sentence of that quote above is also questionable. During the war of Northern Aggression many immigrants did not honor the creed of the founding settlers and did not shed their old affinities but instead forced those old socialistic affinities on the South and the country through the war and the reconstruction that followed. An argument might be made that what happened in the war of Northern aggression was that America was battered by the use of those immigrants who had no deep attachment to America’s national identity.
This can be seen in how the Union cause attracted to itself numerous German revolutionaries who had fled to America after collapse of the European uprisings of 1848. Though they had left the Deutschland behind, these Germans had not abandoned a radicalism that was anything but American. As a result they were among the greatest haters of all things American. Professor Clyde Wilson reminds us of an encounter between one of these German radicals and Confederate General Richard Taylor. In his elegant memoir, “Destruction and Reconstruction,” General Taylor recalled the occasion in 1865 when the duty fell to him to surrender the last Confederate army east of the Mississippi River. At Union headquarters, a German, wearing the uniform of a Yankee general and speaking in heavily accented English, lectured General Taylor that now that the war was over, Southerners would be taught “the true American principles.” To which General Taylor — the son of Zachary Taylor — replied that he regretted that his grandfather, an officer in the Revolution, and his father, President of the United States, had not passed on to him these “true American principles.”
It is not politically correct or multi-culturally proper but the fact of the matter is that you can not sustain Anglo-Protestant culture apart from a clear majority of Anglo-Protestant people who have been trained to cherish what makes them uniquely them which includes their ethnicity, family ties, faith, language, traditions, customs, and land. If this is not pursued what will result is that those who are Anglo-Protestant will be ashamed of their own unique culture and exchange their unique culture for the mono-culture of multi-culturalism.
6 thoughts on “More On Samuel Huntington and Fouad Ajami”
Korean Presbyterians are better Calvinists than the Scots.
So “propositions” are indeed embedded in the genetic code?
Don’t believe that. When the Koreans give us a John Knox or a Thomas Boston, or a Ebenezer Erskine or even a Sinclair Ferguson or John Murray I will sit up and take notice.
Well, very few people have taken the notion of tabula rasa seriously.
If you let me raise Amelia and Eleanor they will take on some McAtee traits but at the heart they will always be Ehnis’s.
Look, some people will be put out by the following analogy but so be it.
If you took a poodle from a litter and raised it around Golden Retrievers that poodle might do some things a Golden Retriever does but it will never be a Golden Retriever. Similarly, God put peoples in families. Those families have distinct capacities from other families. If you put a baby from a long line of weight lifters (big boned, big framed,) into a family that was legendary for producing figure skaters (petite, tiny,) the baby from the weight lifters may learn how to skate but at the end of the day he will instinctively be a weight lifter. I think the same thing holds for other categories. I don’t know why this is controversial among people but it is.
OK … I’m rambling now.
No, you’re not rambling. Here’s what I’m having trouble with: either 1, genetics are as strong as you say, meaning that no matter the “environment”, a good deal of the traits of a person’s soul will shine through, or 2, genetics are as weak as you say, so much so that we need to be concerned about loosing it. A Christian worldview HAS TO transcend the genetics (I think this is clear in Scriptures), and that being the case, isn’t that the culture we should be striving to build? I am not contending that we build a democratic utopia – that has never worked and will never work, however, stating that “one can [NOT] get to Anglo-Protestant culture apart from a majority of Anglo-Protestant people” confuses me because we don’t FIRST want an AP culture. We must believe that the under-pinnings of the AP, because it has been successful pulls deeply from the the well of Christianity, which, no matter what the genetics is in the realm of possibility for an genetic club to achieve. Now who’s rambling?
for another take on the same article, and some thoughts on Ajami’s reading of Huntington vis a vis 9/11, see: