This is the mass, unbridled, brainless Id of the barbarian at war with modernity in all its expressions. This is where anti-science leads, where a contempt for education leads, where the suppression of women leads, where marrying political fanaticism to religious fervor almost always leads. This is where theocracy brings us, over and over again. In 1572, in Paris, on St. Bartholomew's Day, 3000 French Huguenot Protestants were butchered by Catholic mobs. (The death toll throughout France is thought to have been over 70,000.) None of this is new. It rises from the same foul ground it always has. This is why Mr. Madison believed that the adoption of Christianity as the official religion of the Roman Empire by Constantine to be one of the worst things that ever happened to both religion and government. Official religions end in blood, always. That's why we don't have one here.
- Charlie Pierce on the Charlie Hebdo murders this week, and the animating forces behind it. (But wait – "almost always," Mr. Pierce? Marrying political fanaticism to religious fervor almost always leads to this kind of mindless self-righteous bloodletting? How did that adverb get in there?)
For a look at the bloodthirsty delight over at Fox News, read Steve M.
For a know-your-terrorist-sympathizers pop quiz, read John Cole.